Archive for July, 2006

And Many Shall Be Offended

Monday, July 31st, 2006

The uproar in response to Governor Romney\’s characterization of the problems associated with the \”Big Dig\” being akin to the proverbial \”Tar Baby\” is probably more indicative of Armagedon\’s approach than the hostilites that rage and reverberate throughout the Holy Land and beyond. There have always been \”rumor of war, plagues and pestilence and earthtquakes in diverse places\”, but only recently can one claim to have witnessed the blossoming of the rest of the prophecy; \”and many shall be offended, and the love of many shall wax cold.\” The Governor\’s innocent allusion to the childrens\’ fable and the disproportionate response to it bring this into sharp focus. (The Old Testament refered to the tar baby lesson as \”kicking against the pricks\”. It\’s all very sticky.)

I\’m reminded of another of Uncle Remus\’ worthy and timeless thoughts: \”You can\’t run away from trouble \’cause there aint no place that far.\”

No Will in the West

Monday, July 31st, 2006

In spite of numberless assertions to the contrary, from so-called experts the world over, there is no political solution to the crisis in the Middle East unless one draws his political paradigm from the Prussian perspective; \”War is politics by other means.\” Reasonable people cannot negotiate with unreasonable people. One cannot successfully bargain with those whose stated purpose is the extermination of all who oppose them. The real problem at this point, however, is not the intransigence of the radical mullahs and their not-so-smart bombers; the problem is the moral paralysis that exists in the West and the failure to fully recognise the threat posed by Iran and its proxies. No one, not even Israel, appears to have the will to do what is necesary. In our zeal to be politically correct, we have condemned ourselves.

In the News July 28, 2006

Friday, July 28th, 2006

After watching the congressional hearings on “Global Warming”, one fact stands out above the rest; the statistical models upon which the theory of global warming has been based have not been reviewed by those most qualified to validate the findings; real statisticians. Paleo-climatologists might know something about the weather but in the absence of a rigorous effort by professional mathematicians and statisticians to duplicate the results of the model created by those who claim that the earth is hotter than it ever has been, no firm conclusions can be drawn concerning historical weather patterns predating the creation of the first thermometer, less than 400 years ago. The scientifically essential element of appropriate peer review aside, if statistical models are truly capable of revealing historical weather patterns wouldn\’ t they be helpful in predicting future weather patterns? I would like to see some of that. Successfully predict a few hurricanes or tornados next year and I will consider the possibility that the historical models have merit. The emotional calls for \”solutions\” before we have properly identified the problems are something we have come to expect from Left-leaning politicians on the Science Committee who have not bothered to evaluate the impact of their hot air on the environment.

The list of “Happiest Nations” has just been released. Denmark is # 1. It must be because the Danes consume more ice cream per capita than any nationality on earth. This makes them not just happy but cool. The Swiss are # 2. The fact that one out of every 8 Swiss is a millionaire wouldn’t have anything to do with the result, would it? You can bank on it. The US placed 23rd. Ah, discontent; the fuel that powers creativity’s engine.

Iran and Syria are openly in support of Hezbollah, a universally recognized terrorist organization. Isn’t it time to get serious about the Bush Doctrine?

Tony Blair has chosen to stand by the US instead of Old Europe in the debate over the Lebanon/Israel crisis. He chose wisely. Has Britain ever been well-served by standing with France or Germany? Only when allying itself with one in the wars against the other. Besides, we are the only country to ever put a serious whoopin’ on the Brits (twice). If I was choosing sides, I would prefer to be with the winner. On the issue of “right” in the equation “might makes right” or its inverse, there can be no question who and what is right in this fight. Only a coward, a terrorist, or a terrorist sympathizer would suffer any confusion over the subject.

The President of Finland claims that Americans are not as concerned about civilian casualties in Lebanon as are the Europeans. The PC answer is “how could he say such a thing!”, but the real answer is “—-your point?” Americans remember 9/11 and the video documentation of the jubilation on the faces of the men, women and children of the region who are, as Mao once noted “the ocean in which the revolutionary swims”. Hezbollah and Hamas are not “men’s clubs”, although the tendency toward male chauvinism runs high in the Arab and Persian worlds. Referring again to the Bush Doctrine, those who support terrorists will meet the same fate as the terrorists. The people of Lebanon have a choice to make. The consequences, for good or ill, will naturally follow.

Hooray for John Bolton!!! He sure put John Kerry in his place, making the Senator from Massachusetts appear as irrelevent and illogical as he truly is. Bravo! Give that man with the white moustache a big stick and send him back to the UN.

Time crystalizes around traumatic events.

Nouri al-Maliki\’s Speech

Thursday, July 27th, 2006

The only way the Prime Minister of Iraq could have spoken more eloquently to the assembled representitives of our nation would have been had he made his remarks in English. His commitment to the fight against the Terror should have encouraged all Americans, yet there were those (Dick Durbin and Jack Reed, specifically) who must have listened to the remarks without the aid of the interpretor. To have politely agreed (for political effect) with al-Maliki\’s upbeat assessment and then immediately call for a pullout of American troops was clearly indicative of the Democrats\’ failure to grasp the essence of the speech; that America and Iraq are allied in the war on terror, that all nations have a stake in defeating this intractible enemy, and that the mistakes of 1991 (the catastrophic premature withdrawl of American Forces from Iraq) cannot be repeated.

We must thank God that Durbin, Reed and their ilk were not runnning the show at the beginning or the conclusion of WWII. We would have either been singing the Horst Wessel Lied by now or eating borscht and ratting on our neighbors. Apparent cowardice, deliberate and debilitating delusion run deep among Liberals. Good news is never welcome among the party out of power.

The Arab Contribution to Modern Culture

Wednesday, July 26th, 2006

One of the most critical elements of modern information technology might not exist without a significant discovery by Arab mathmaticians. One half of the basic binary language of computers is directly attributable to these oracles of the oasis. They gave the world a zero and have contributed virtually nothing since.

Stem Cell Research

Wednesday, July 19th, 2006

If there was a nickel to made off of this project the government would not be funding it. This is all about money invested in campaign donations and the anticipation of a return of large sums of tax dollars to certain special interests; the only way money will ever be made in this arena. The only other benefit to anyone is that politicians will be able to say they voted for the cure that might have saved superman (when pigs fly). If this venture was more than another government-funded boondoggle those political contributions would instead be going to buy stock in the companies reaping the rewards from stem cell research. After listening to Sen. Specter, however, I would be in favor of extra funding for research into the causes of cognitive atrophy.

The Final Solution

Tuesday, July 18th, 2006

The final solution to the Middle East crisis should be obvious. We should give the Czech Republic to Iran to administer \”living space\” for the members of Hezbollah, Hamas, their associates and their families. As we all recall it was this kind of genius that prevented World War II, bringing \”Peace in our time\”.

String Theory or String Philosophy?

Saturday, July 15th, 2006

For decades physicists have been searching for the “unifying” theory, that explanation that would reasonably address and resolve the differences between “big” physics (stars, gravity, time, light speed, relativity) and “small” physics (quantum theory, quarks, mesons, bosons, fermions, etc). These two theories regarding the structure of our physical circumstances might as well exist in separate universes when it comes to the attempts to explain the nature of one by using the laws that apply to the other. The laws that govern the big don’t apply to the small (which is not at all unusual from a cultural perspective-maybe we should have political scientists and attorneys take a stab at explaining this phenomenon?). Einstein spent 30 years grappling with the question but was never able to offer a hint or even a whiff of a solution. We don’t live in two separate universes simultaneously (or do we?). Where was the missing link?

In the 1980’s a group of bright (maybe even inspired) young physicists introduced a tantalizing notion into the unification debate; string theory. The idea is still being tuned but its essence is that the basic units of matter are electromagnetic “strings” (“force” strings looking to harmonize with “matter” strings) that resonate with each other to form what is called a supersymetrical (and arguably synergistic) relationship, and in varyingly “stressed” (or tuned) modes, form the world with which we are familiar.

These strings are far smaller than the sub-atomic particles measured in the particle accelerators; so small they cannot be measured at all. Herein lies the rub. If they cannot be seen or measured, they cannot be said to exist. Science can only validate that which can be proven scientifically. As “elegant” as string theory is, as much as it resonates with people of many persuasions (due in no small part to the human relationship with music and its capacity to resonate within us), string theory cannot even be elevated to the level of theory, which itself cannot be elevated to “fact”. Strings must be content, at present, to wear the mantle of “philosophy”, a secular belief system requiring faith; the evidence of things unseen. It is the physicists themselves who have made this call; if it can’t be seen or measured it is not science but philosophy. How many interesting questions does this raise?

Let us look at this from a different perspective, from the viewpoint of evolution. I firmly believe that evolution is a reality, that living entities can and do evolve, or change, from generation to generation. That my son is a better man than I am is proof enough for me. But the changes noted are contained within the species. My son, though better than his father, is still a man. Of course, there are those who have wildly extrapolated from Darwin’s diaries aboard the Beagle that species don’t just change, they become other species. The Galapagos finches, upon which Darwin based much of his theory, never became seagulls or gooney birds. They remained finches.

The problem for those who preach evolutionary theory as it relates to the question “am I my brother’s keeper or my keeper’s brother?” is that there is no evidence that connects arboreal primates to human beings. The Piltdown Man was supposed to have filled that void but was proven to be an elaborate (and artful) hoax. Leakey’s findings in Africa produced primate skull and bone fragments but no evidence that man evolved from apes. Where is the missing link?
(And where, in evolutionary theory, is the missing explanation for consciousness; the ability to theorize?)

Let us now return to the thoughtful pronouncement of the physicists noted above. If it cannot be measured or seen it is not theory. It is a philosophy. Therefore, lacking the requisite proof, evolution becomes a belief system reliant upon faith, as does religion. As such, both should enjoy fair and equitable treatment in the marketplace of ideas and in our public schools.

Taking Their Medicine

Friday, July 14th, 2006

Suspending hostilites before a clear victory can be declared is very much like discontinuing one\’s antibiotic treatment before finishing the prescribed dose. The infection may be weakened but it still remains and can grow back, often stronger. A premature cease-fire will not solve the problem in the Middle East. It will only make hand-wringing, weak-willed wafflers feel good temporarily. Israel must pursue the course until the terrorists are fully defeated.

The Middle of the Middle East

Tuesday, July 11th, 2006

The Democrats keep insisting that there are more terrorists in Iraq today than at the beginning of the war; that the presence of our military has created them. They are partially correct (please refer to the broken clock theory). In an honest historical analysis, years hence, the Iraq War will be heralded as a display of genius. The truth is our military is not creating terrorists but rather attracting existing terrorists to the battlefield where they are granted their greatest wish; martyrdom. Most of the terrorists we battle in Iraq are not Iraqi\’s. Would the Democrats prefer to have them come to the USA on tourist visas, or is it better to have our brave troops deal with them in the middle of the Middle East?

Legal Life Support

Tuesday, July 11th, 2006

The debate gurgles on, on legal life support. Homosexual marriage, consistently and overwhelmingly rejected by the majority in every state of the union, wouldn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of becoming a reality if not for the resuscitative influence of the un-democratic branch of government; the unaccountable judiciary. Today the matter was again revived in the California State Court of Appeals. The rationale?

Assistant San Francisco Attorney Therese M. Stewart argued that domestic partnership laws set up \”separate and unequal system for gays and lesbians.\” She said it was \”hurtful to deny marriage to a class of people.\”

Representing 12 lesbian and gay couples who want to marry, attorney Sharon Minter argued the California Supreme Court has recognized a principle of equality in upholding the legality of interracial marriages and the argument should hold for same-sex couples.

It would be helpful to consider the legal defininition of the critical terms before employing them in the legal debate. What is a “class of people”? Is this India? Wouldn’t these same attorneys be arguing against “class” in any other venue? Are people of different colors members of a different class? Are people of different genders members of different classes?

Aren’t the interracial marriages referenced by one of the attorneys still marriages in the legal sense of the word marriage (one man one woman)? Are we discussing race here, or are we talking about marriage?

When are men and women not men and women? Is a homosexual man still a man? How is a homosexual woman different than a heterosexual woman? If there is a difference, is it caused by genetics or behavior? Is behavior an indicator of \”class\”? (It can certainly be an indicator of a lack of class; see \”Zidane\”, but that\’s a wholly different story.)

Marriage, as defined in California law (and traditionally) is the legal union of one man and one woman. It is an interesting exercise to reframe the arguments made above by employing the definition of the word instead of simply using the word itself.

“It is hurtful to people of the same sex to deny them the legal rights accorded exclusively to people of the opposite sex.”

In truth either no one is being discriminated against or we are all being discriminated against. As a heterosexual I, too, am not permitted to establish a relationship with another man and call it marriage, so how is my legal status any different from that of a homosexual. In the same vein, he is fully free to marry a woman.

Marriage, the legal state of matrimony, cannot lawfully be marriage unless it conforms to the legal definition. At least not until we change the definition. If we call a cat a herring, is it a herring?

Throwing in the Towel

Saturday, July 8th, 2006

Phil Angelides has decided that he really doesn\’t want to be the governor of California after all. His pronouncement, today, that he would welcome the opportunity to sign a bill legalizing homosexual marriage in the Golden State is political suicide, even here on the Left Coast. The Protection of Marriage Initiative passed in California by a vote of 62% to 38% only a few short years ago. While things have changed somewhat, things haven\’t changed that much. His chief political advisor and hit-man, Bob Mulholland (himself quite adept at annoying just about everybody), just compaired Arnold Schwarzenegger to the mad North Korean dictator, Kim Jung Il. He must have simply mispoken while pondering his own candidate\’s insanity. Phil has obviously been spending a little too much time in the bath house of late. Throwing in the towel appears to have come naturally.

Is There a Draft?

Thursday, July 6th, 2006

I was listening to a talk radio program today when a self-proclaimed (self-diagnosed) Leftist recommended that the Administration re-instate the draft, stating that, if times were indeed as dangerous as everyone believes, we should prepare for an inevitably expanding, long-term conflict. He made every effort to appear thoughtful and prudent but ultimately failed the sincerity test. It was obvious to this reformed Lefty from the Vietnam era that the caller was hoping to kindle the same simmering revulsion that lead to our nation’s loss of heart and loss of nerve during that war. The Left no longer has the draft drum to beat; not this time, not with an all-volunteer US Military.

It is difficult for the Left to be believable when they claim to support the troops while they condemn the mission. If the soldiers who fight in Iraq had been drafted it would be easy to make the case that the draftees were being forced to fight for something they don’t believe in. Such is not the case. Not this time. Today’s soldiers, Marines and Air Force personnel all know why they chose to enlist, and with that choice they freely accepted known consequences. I thank God for them, for their bravery and for their willingness to sacrifice. I thank God daily for the families that raised these fine Americans to believe in something bigger than their own self-interests. They know why they fight, and for what.

The Leftists at the center of the opposition to the Iraq war; 60’s radicals who fled to journalism, to the universities, into law and politics, have not bothered to test their Vietnam era ideologies against modern day reality. The mindless perpetuation of politcal correctness continues to yield Pavlovian percs on campus, in the press room and in the halls of government. Fortunately, these are a very small minority, probably less than 5% of the population, but as many came from moneyed families and as most chose not to have children of their own (an enormous expense as those who chose to invest in children can attest), they command significant political power with the money they have been able to accumulate, and now lavish it upon their lapdogs who promise in return to bow and scrape, expand their influence, and never, never remind them of their emptiness.

It is self-loathing that drives an individual to the Left. The guilt one bears for hedonistic selfishness (and in the case of many rich kids and movie stars, for wealth they know they have not earned or deserved) is a painful and heavy burden. Pride prohibits introspection and causes the afflicted to search elsewhere for the cause. And misery still loves company. The hatred they feel is imputed to others and especially to those with more solid moral underpinnings, people who (usually fully aware of their own imperfections), out of human concern, might point out the roots of the affliction in an effort to be helpful, or mention that freedom is directly proportional to adherence to known laws. Instead of appreciating the concern, the hedonist flails like a drowning man against the efforts of those who would rescue him from doom.

Some are firmly addicted to their addictions. Many are convinced that the pursuit of pleasure and the pursuit of happiness are the same thing. They pull down our nation and its Christian Heritage, tear at its moral underpinnings and decry those who defend this land because they are daily reminded that they, themselves, have failed to answer the call to serve except as it relates to their own lusts. Their assurances instead that they care will fall on increasingly deaf ears. Their contributions will never be accounted for contrition. Their sarcasm will never be sanctified as sacrifice. Their perpetual pessimism will never pass for patriotism.

The most important battle in the War on Terror is being fought right here at home. The only draft the Left will get will be the wind on their faces as they fall from their ivory towers.


Tuesday, July 4th, 2006

A recent poll revealed that 55% of Americans believe that becoming famous is the American Dream. It is a peculiar but understandable notion given the attention and wealth lavished upon the celebrities of the age. It also confirms the old saying that most people lead “lives of quiet desperation”. I may be desperate but I refuse to be quiet.

There was a time when the idea of becoming famous was attractive to me. I am not sure why but it probably had to do more with money and the exercise of influence than it had to do with being a universally recognized and idolized figure. Who doesn’t want to be able to afford all that the world has to offer? Who doesn’t want to call the shots?

I have concluded, or perhaps rationalized as a result of my lack of temporal success, that I am actually blessed by the relative anonymity I enjoy. I am known only to my own family, the friends I have made and the few people I have offended.

I am not mobbed in public. No one camps outside my house. I didn’t feel the need to ferry my wife off to Namibia to give birth to our children for the sake of privacy. My retinas have not been singed by the flash of a thousand cameras. I am not chased by paparazzi, hounded by autograph seekers, petitioned for favors, bedeviled by fans who could use a little more imagination in the running of their own lives, hit-up to finance a million weird ideas or the campaigns of hundreds of politicians who themselves crave public adoration and acclaim.

I am free to travel anywhere I can afford to travel by any conveyance I might choose. I can shop anywhere, stand in any ticket line, walk down any street, show up at any game, watch or join in any parade, fill up my tank or browse the shelves of any bookstore without being accosted in ant way.

Am I not living the American Dream?


World Cup

Sunday, July 2nd, 2006

Every four years I become a soccer fan, which is only slightly less often than I display enthusiam for baseball. I was disappointed in the US team\’s efforts as previously noted. I have enjoyed cheering against France in lieu of cheering for the absent Ami\’s. In a strange way I am happy that they keep winning as it gives me at least 90 more minutes to cheer against them. It must be conceded, however, that Zidane is a master of the game and a marvel to behold. Viva Portugal!!