Friday, March 30, 2007

Gore's house vs. Bush's house

One of my recent blog entries discussed Al Gore's house and how energy inefficient it was. Later on, someone sent me a Snopes article that discusses Gore's house as compared to President George Bush's house. In this Snopes article, we see that George Bush's house is made in the environmentally correct way that we expected Al Gore's house to be. So I ask: What gives?

I know that the media doesn't have a liberal slant, because they told us that they don't, and if it's in the newspaper, then it must be true. However, don't you think that if Bush had the house that Gore had, the media would be telling us CONSTANTLY on how much energy is being wasted? No doubt there'd be a running meter somewhere in the front page - or on their website - which kept track of "How much energy Bush's house wasted today".

This would especially be the case if Gore was the one that had the environmentally friendly house that Bush has. No doubt that, along with the running meter of how much Bush's house is wasting, there would be another meter next to it showing "How much energy Gore's house saved today". Don't you think that, if Gore had Bush's environmentally house, the media would practically be canonizing Gore for sainthood? "Environmental prophet practices what he preaches", "Gore shows the way", and other such headlines would be a regular in their headlines.

And I say all this folks, not as a conservative (my political viewpoints are explained in my profile), but as someone who is tired of the hypocritical double-standards that are often on dispaly in the non-biased mainstream media. Should the media level any criticism against Bush? You betcha! Especially over the way this war in Iraq is being conducted. I'm not the kind that thinks the sitting president should be held above criticism. Bush deserves the criticism he's getting, and he should have to answer for his actions, especially in those decisions that affect American citizens. And his feet should be held to the fire over the war's progress.

However, Al Gore has been in the news a lot lately - especially in regards to environmentalism. He's made a movie that won an Oscar. He's very outspoken and passionate about the environmental cause. And yet, he lives in an energy inefficient house. His counters of carbon-offsetting actions come across as weak, especially since he's the prophet of environmentalism. Since the non-biased media is largely on his side, it would only be to his benefit for him to have an energy efficient home - and not just excuses of "carbon offsetting".

Just off the top of my head, I can think of reasons why Gore should renovate his home to be energy efficient like Bush's. Let me rattle them off:

* He would no longer be preaching a message of "Don't do as I do, do as I say".
* He would be setting the example for other "Don't do as I do, do as I say" environmentalists.
* He would no longer be upstaged by a Ree-publican - especially a currently unpopular one.
* He would have the non-biased media bowing at his feet and giving him as much positive press as possible.
* And most importantly, he would be helping the very environment that he claims to care very much about.

You'd think that Gore, at least, would follow Bush's example- if for no other reason than to live up to what he expects the rest of us to live up to. But that's just plain logical, and we can't have that nowadays, can we?

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Old Star Wars art

Recently when digging through old papers, I came across some Star Wars art that I had done back when Star Wars wasn't relabeled "A New Hope" and it was still the first Star Wars. Anyway, I did this art when I was a teen and before I had ANY art training - so it looks like the art of a teenager before he had any art training. It ain't pretty, in other words. I had to slightly "Photoshop" it in order to show the pencil strokes, because the passage of time had faded the art somewhat.

Anyway, here's one artwork of Princess Leia:

Can't figure out what that is from? Actually, it's from The Empire Strikes Back. Below is a pic of Leia in that costume that I'm supposed to be drawing:

So what do you think? I suppose, considering that it's done by someone with no art training, it's actually not bad. But he does need some art training to get better. And why am I referring to myself in the third person?

Later this week I'll post another Star Wars art. It's one of the few color art that I've ever done, and I'm surprised that I had the patience to hand color it, especially when I was a teenager.

I think I'll also dig out other old art and let you try to figure out what I was supposed to be drawing back then. By the way, I also had a full head of hair back then. Ah, where have the years gone?

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Keep an eye on Opinion Dump

Keep an eye on upcoming entries to this blog: Opinion Dump

I'm a regular reader, because JB has a talent for explaining even complex stuff in a way that is simplified without being simplistic. And he adds a touch of humor as well. :-)

Now he's taking on one of my recommendations, and has a good start. Stay tuned to what follows!

Friday, March 23, 2007

Inclusiveness luncheons and dinners

Once in a while, I see ads and promos about "Inclusiveness Luncheons" and "Inclusiveness Dinners" and other such gatherings to promote inclusiveness and diversity and such.

I recently noticed that many of these inclusiveness affairs charge to attend their gatherings. That got me to thinking: What if the person couldn't afford to pay? Would they exclude that person from attending? That is, would this person be excluded from attending this inclusiveness gathering? Doesn't that defeat the purpose of having an inclusiveness gathering?

What if the person was a vagrant? What if the person had horrible body odor? What if this person tended to scream obscenities out loud for no apparent reason? What if they were nude? What if they had radically conservative views, and weren't afraid to let everyone around them know about it? What if it was a KKK member fully attired? Theoretically, they'd have to let all these people in to be true to the concept of inclusiveness, wouldn't they?

I wonder if the planners of those inclusiveness events ever think about that; how they might actually be going against the ideal of inclusiveness by preventing (whether intentionally or not) some interested parties from attending? You know what I'd like to see? I'd like to see one of these inclusiveness events have this in their promos:

"Come one, come all! No charge! No restrictions! No kidding!"

It would be interesting to see who shows up.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Carbon Offsets: Con job?

Three familiar phrases come to mind when it comes to global warming activist Al Gore. One is "Practice what you preach." The other is "If you can't walk the walk, then don't talk the talk." Last is: "By their fruits you shall know them."

This is in reference to the news report of Gore's Tennessee home being outrageously energy consumptive at a time when he's criticizing the rest of us for wasting energy. When offered the chance to live up to his ideals as an example for others, Gore refused at the time that this story ran. There's a word for such a person, and the first syllable rhymes with hippo and the second syllable rhymes with grit.

But this blog entry isn't so much about Gore as it is about the concept of "carbon offsets". Gore explained that his actions in the cause of global warming offset what he doesn't do to make his home energy efficient. However, doesn't it ever occur to him that his dire words of warning would ring much stronger if he also made his home energy efficient?

The credibility gap is the size of the Grand Canyon, because if global warming is genuinely the threat that Gore makes it out to be, then he'd be doing his best to live up to the very standards that he expects the rest of us to live. In other words, if he's not concerned enough about global warming to make his own home energy efficient, then why should the rest of us be concerned about global warming?

But then there's the concept of carbon offsets. Basically, if you're the type that is environmentally concerned but lack the ability to make the necessary changes to your lifestyle to help the environment (we would normally call this "being too lazy to do the work", but that would be calling it what it is, and we just can't have that), then your tortured conscience can find solace in carbon offsets. Basically, if you do things like fund programs to plant trees, recycle used oil or other such environmentally friendly actions, then you "erase your carbon footprints."

Doesn't that sound lovely? Boy, I feel good just thinking about that. I wonder if hugging a tree counts as carbon offsetting? Hugging makes the tree feel better about itself, right? And happy, friendly trees no doubt make for a better environment for us all. But I'm digressing here...

Anyway, carbon offsets are basically a metaphorical broom for the metaphorical footprints that you leave behind with your environmentally hazardous behavior (shame on you!). In theory, they sound like a great idea, but in practice, the abuse of it is way too easy. A given major polluter could "offset" his pollution by environmental donations while he kept on polluting unabated. So I ask, what's the incentive for the polluter to change his ways?

This sounds more like a scheme for environmental groups to obtain funding for their cause while allowing polluters to give the appearance that they're doing something about their polluting when they are not. The phrase "selling out" comes to mind for some reason. So does the word "enabling". So who benefits from this little arrangement? The environmental groups get their money, and the polluters get a shiny star to wear while they keep polluting. In the meantime, the environment suffers.

So if Al Gore and other environmental groups want the rest of us to get on board with environmentalism, perhaps they need to get on board first.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Ads in my blog

Some of the more observant of you may notice that there's some ads in my blog. Bascially, I'm checking to see how much it actually brings in to me. If the monthly "take" is anything substantial, then I might make it a permanent thing, for your favorite blogger is not financially independent by any means. However, if having ads is more trouble than it's worth, then I'll just go back to having an ad-free blog.

Also, I don't have direct say-so on what shows in the ads, so you might see stuff there that might suprise you. I've already e-mailed the org in charge of the ads about not having ads that endorse a candidate for office or support some social or political cause. Basically, I don't want anything that might give you good folks any sort of impression that I support this cause or that candidate because their ad happens to appear in my blog.

I told the powers-that-be (PTB) that I want all the opinionating and endorsing to come SOLEY from yours truly, and NOT from the ads on my blog. Right now, there are ads in support of Barack Obama even though just yesterday I said that I would not vote for him. Let me say again: I DO NOT support Obama, nor do I support his views. If the PTB can't comply with my request to block ads that endorse a candidate or a cause, then I'll just drop having ads on my blog - so determined am I to not give you good folks the wrong impression about me.

If you have questions about any ads that appear in my blog, please don't hesistate to ask. Like I said, if this becomes more trouble than it's worth, then I'll just drop it. I'll end this entry with this disclaimer:

Views expressed in the ads of this blog do not necessarily reflect the views of the author

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Is Barack Obama black enough?

Of all the inane arguments to be bringing up in this day and age - especially since we have allegedly moved on from our racist past - is the issue of whether Democratic candidate for president Barack Obama is "black enough" to represent the interests of the black community. This question is asked because Obama is what is referred to as "mixed heritage"; that is, he has one black parent and one white parent.

I'll say this: If Obama had lived in the ante-bellum South, he would have been TOO black. I'll also ask this: What exactly was Dr. Martin Luther King talking about when he said the following in his famous I Have a Dream speech?

" I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. "

The line above embodies the very gist of Dr. King's hope of our nation one day rising above skin color, which was necessary to bring up at that time because of all that blacks had endured in this country. So in light of this, why is Obama's skin color still something that he has to explain, much less defend?

Part of the reason is that his critics don't feel that he experienced the "African-American" experience of growing up black in the U.S. This is what I say: His father is African. His mother is American. Thus, Obama is "African-American" in a way that even his critics aren't. But such labels goes against what Dr. King had wanted. I can't see Dr. King bringing up such criticisms - that's not what he was about.

Another way to highlight the short-sightedness of asking if Obama is black enough is to see it this way. What if Obama was a Republican, and the GOP was asking if Obama is white enough to run for office? After all, whites are the majority in this country; so would white America be willing to elect a candidate who was only half white? Can you imagine the uproar that asking such a question would raise? So if it's wrong in that instance, what makes it right in the opposite instance?

My last point on this issue is to state this: I won't be voting for Barack Obama. It's not because he's not black enough, or too black, or not white enough, or too white. Rather, I won't be voting for him because I don't agree with the stands that he's made so far. And I would disagree with them regardless of whether he's "mixed heritage", or fully black or fully white or whatever labels one wants to stick on him. I wouldn't vote for him even if he was Hispanic.

In other words, his skin color has nothing to do with it. And in truth, the skin color of the candidate shouldn't mean a thing for ANY candidate. It's not what's on the outside that makes a man or woman a good president, it's what's on the inside - the content of his or her character, in other words.

That's what Dr. King had spoken about, and that's what we should be applying today to all candidates for office. So be a part of Dr. King's dream and vote the way he would have wanted you to vote: by the content of their character.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up: YouTube Weekend

Yep, it's time for the second installment of the Weekend Wrap-up YouTube Weekend! Basically, they're links to YouTube that were sent to me by e-mail, and for which I saved until I had enough links to make another YouTube Weekend. Enjoy!

This first one is of a squirrel that had a little too much to drink. The only thing he didn't do was puke his guts out.

This second one comes from Japan, and it's of the world's longest slam dunk. Ah, if only he could do that without the trampoline - then the NBA would be all over him like creepy on Michael Jackson.

This one brought back memories. It's of MacIntosh's introduction back in 1984. I hadn't seen that commerical in years. It's funny that, back then, we were worried that we would end up like the USSR. Little did we know that the USSR was in its death throes, and needed only a little nudge to make it collapse.

Here are two videoclips of a dude with a talent for bouncing coing into a glass. First one is Get a Girlfriend, the second one is Got a Girlfriend. While his ability to bounce coins into a glass obviously took some practice and is impressive, I still think his next video clip should be Get a Life.

No doubt you've seen those touch-free towel dispensers in the public bathrooms. There's also touch-free faucets as well as touch-free flushing. I thought that the last thing left was touch-free soap dispensing (which someone claims to have seen), but I was wrong. No doubt coming soon to a bathroom near you is touch-free toilet paper dispensing.

And last, some stop-motion animation of the familiar Star Trek characters. This one's called Spock's Crib. Spock talkin' like a homey had me rolling.

And that's it for now! At least until I get enough other links to YouTube.

Have a great week, folks!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Sean Hannity loses it

I've listened to Sean Hannity before in regards to his views on birth control and the Catholic Church, but after seeing this particular segment in which he discusses it with a priest, I've lost all respect for the man.

Hannity is so wrong in so many ways, and he doesn't even see it. First, what he believes about what the Catholic Church teaches is not what the Catholic Church teaches. He uses arguments that he SHOULD know the answer to, and for him to even bring it up suggests that he's either amazingly ignorant for a man who claims to be informed and knowledgeable, or that he is simply covering up for what he knows is wrong. Either way, it's not a respectable thing for him to do.

I think that Hannity shouldn't even bring up his Catholicism anymore, because based on what I've heard so far, he isn't Catholic anyway. There's plenty of Protestant churches that are more in line with his current views. The priest called Sean a hypocrite, and I agree.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Michael Jackson: Muslim?

In a news story qualified for the "Truth is stranger than Friction" department comes this article that Michael Jackson may convert to Islam.

I thought it was a joke or an "Onion" article, but it turns out to be for real. It seems rather odd for a celebrity like Michael Jackson to be interested in Islam. Most of the time, celebrities become Buddhist or Kabbalah as a way to say that they're "spiritual" without being Christian.

Am I suggesting that such celebrities join these other faiths or belief systems partially as a protest against Christianity? Yes, I am. I say that because if it was truly spirituality that they were interested in, then they would consider Christianity as well. Some celebrities do convert to Christianity, and this is also not to suggest that those who chose Buddhism or Kabbalah didn't also look at Christianity, but that - as a career move - choosing Christianity isn't good for someone like Michael Jackson or Madonna (a Kabbalah follower). Their left-wing secular friends and business people would frown on a conversion to Christianity.

This is also not to suggest that Christianity is the way to go. I believe it is, just so you know (for the record for those of you who don't already know, I'm Catholic), but I also know that the best converts are those that come into it willingly, rather than those who came into it against their will. For well-known celebrities, however, having it known that you are of a particular Christian faith is pretty much a death knell for your career. Even for someone like Mel Gibson, who has enough power and influence to continue his career in the movie business, he is going to encounter resistance from others in the business so long as he stays in the business. The outspoken resistance to his 2004 Passion of the Christ is an example of the kind of resistance that can mobilize in a heartbeat against members who take up Christianity.

People like Michael Jackson and Madonna made their careers being counter-cultural, and part of being counter-cultural is being anti-Christian. Thing is, anti-Christian rhetoric got old a long time ago, so it's past stale today. And yet, it continues. Granted, there are also anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim rhetoric out there among the secular elite left, but there's a limit on how much even they can get away with statements that go against these other faiths. Being anti-Christian for them is still "the way to go".

But I have to ask: Why? I especially ask this because the secular elite left is supposed to be about open-mindedness, tolerance, and diversity. They're supposed to be enlightened and in full support of allowing one to live "according to the dictates of their conscience." However, their anti-Christianness makes them look as bad as any Christian fundamentalist. Granted, Christian fundamentalists also make it a habit to bash Catholicism, but fundies don't make claims of being enlightened and open-minded, so at least their actions are consistent with their words.

And that's the whole crux for me on this: consistency. Claims to open-mindedness and shows of the worst kinds of anti-Christian venom in the same group of people fly in the face of logic. This is especially in light of the fact that not all Christians are of the fundamentalist stripe. In fact, very few Christians are of that extreme point of view. There are even some Christians that are virtually as "enlightened and open-minded" as the secular elite left. But in their hatred of all things Christian, the lefties tar all with the same brush. And with such actions, they lose potential allies. Such is their loss.

By the way, the term, "secular elite left" suggests that there's a "religious elite right". Indeed there is. However, they make no claims to open-mindedness and tolerance, so while they can be as unpleasant and unforgiving as their ideological and spiritual opposites, at least they are consistent with their views. For the secular elite left, the way they need to show consistency is to be tolerant of even the intolerant. Being intolerant of intolerance goes against being tolerant, and their credibility goes downhill from there. Maybe if enough of them read my blog, they'll see the errors of their ways. I'll be praying for them.

Oops! I hope I haven't offended them by saying that!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Dallas Mavericks' win streak ends at 17

Well, we knew that it had to end eventually. I mean, yeah, I hoped that the Mavs could just keep on winning, but as of last night the win streak is over.

I WILL say this, however. If this streak had to end, I'm glad it was against the Golden State Warriors and former Mavs coach Don Nelson. If it had been the previous night with the LA Lakers - and especially if Kobe Bryant had a good night - then the media would be gushy with praise. When Kobe scored 60 points against the Mavs a year or so ago, the media went all ga-ga over it, and it was a topic for days.

It's really embarrassing to watch grown men get all giddy like little schoolgirls over an athlete, but when it comes to certain athletes, that's how they act. One example that comes to mind is the former San Franciso 49ers QB, Steve Young. Man, week in and week out, it was a lovefest with the sports shows over that guy. I wouldn't doubt if they had a framed picture of Young in their bedrooms, it was so bad. In the meantime, Troy Aikman and the Dallas Cowboys were winning Super Bowls. Young was a great athlete, but I was glad when he retired.

And I thank the basketball gods that it wasn't the Lakers who ended the Mavs' streak. Otherwise, we would have heard about it for the rest of the week!

Now the Mavs have the pressure of keeping the streak going off of their shoulders, and they can concentrate on playing basketball again. This could end up being a good thing.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up 3-11-2007

These Weekend Wrap-ups seem to be coming on a bi-weekly basis now, huh? Oh well.

Spring forward
Did you remember to spring forward last night? If not, you'll have to wait an hour before you can read this entry. But I bet that if you go right now and set your clock, an hour will go by just like that. Try it. If you don't remember last night, then I might be able to excuse you this one time. Just don't do it again.

A solution to the Bush/Chavez situation
It's no secret that Venzuelan leader Hugo Chavez does not like George Bush. No doubt the feeling is mutual. However, I bet you are like me in that you're tired of hearing about how they don't like each other. I bet you are like me in that you wish they would just settle this already. Either find a way to get along, or have at it and then shut up. Well, I have a solution, and it's based on this news report about Donald Trump. On April 1's WWE Wrestlemania, "The Donald" and WWE owner Vince McMahon are having a "hair match" in which the loser loses his hair. (Honestly, I hope Trump loses, because he's had that ridiculous haircut for years).

I think that Bush and Chavez should also have a hair match at that same wrestling event. Can't you see those two going at it, not just as Bush and Chavez, but also as symbols of conservatism and liberalism? "The right wing nut job vs. the left wing looney". But they have to take it serious. No sissy slapfests, I want to see body slams, pile drivers and the works. THEN they both have to shut up about their feud, or they'll have to wrestle again. And again. And again, until they shut up about thier mutual dislike. And each time, the stakes will be raised. Maybe for the second match, it will be the wives' hair that will be put to the razor. I betcha that the ladies will get their husbands to shut up! Write your congressman today!

Celebrity imprimatur
The concept of imprimatur comes usually from Catholicism, but in recent years in news reports, issues aren't settled until a celebrity has spoken up on it. After that, it's beyond discussion - although the more stubborn among us persist for some reason. I got to thinking about this when someone had asked me about the Dixie Chicks winning all the Grammys that they had been nominated for. Basically, they wanted to know whether I felt that the Grammy sweep meant that the Chicks were vindicated after their negative experiences from criticizing Bush some years ago. My response was to ask how it qualified as vindication. The Grammy judges voting for the Chicks was like the National Rifle Association voting for an award for Charlton Heston. In other words, how in the world is this unexpected?

It's hardly a secret that the left wing hates Bush, and a great deal of left-wingers work in the entertainment industry. So how is it a surprise that a group that made news criticizing Bush end up sweeping awards from another group also known to harbor hatred for Bush? Honestly, it was a surprising as Al Gore getting an Oscar for his film, An Inconvenient Truth. Ah, and there's another one. Somehow, Gore winning an Oscar means that his statements about global warming are true. Again, it's a group of similarly-minded people drooling over one of their own.

And of course is James Cameron (whom I discussed in a previous blog entry), who somehow is qualified as an authority on the bones of Jesus (AND his wife. AND their son) because he is the director of Titanic. Whenever any celebrity is given any credibility over their statements by virtue of their status as celebrities, it makes the media industry look stupid. I mean, c'mon! James Cameron, for cryin' out loud! Of course, it also helps if that celebrity just happens to be of a left-wing slant - and then by golly, their word is golden, and they can walk on water!

It's no wonder that the mainstream media is losing readers and viewers to the Internet.

Gum spelled backwards
I just noticed that gum spelled backwards is mug. That's not quite a palindrome, which is a word that is the same spelled backwards or forwards, like radar. See? Flip radar over and it's still radar. Gum and mug spell words backwards or forwards - just different words. I guess that makes it a pseudodrome.

Yeah, I just made that up.

And no, I don't know what that has to do with anything.

Spring Break
Yes, it's that time. I hope you're having fun. (why do I suddenly feel the urge to follow that with "Baaand on the run"?)

Have a great week, folks!

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Editorial Statment for March 2007: Be Yourself

Last year when the Fort Worth ISD had announced that it was going with uniforms in all its schools, the expected outcry came from the students about the uniform policy “stifling their individuality and creativity” and other such blather. I say “blather” because these teens were all expressing their individuality in exactly the same way: They’d all wear tattoos, body piercings, pants that were several sizes too big so that half their underwear showed and a tennis visor that they’d wear upside down and either to the side or backwards. Had they really given it any thought, they’d see that they were dressing pretty uniformly already.

To be fair, teenagers have always expressed their creativity through dressing exactly like their peers, so their outcry was hardly unexpected. But the pressure to conform is very strong, even when one moves from adolescence and into adulthood. After graduation, we all have to go to the right college, get the right job, find the right person to marry, get the right house, the right car, the latest tech, and so forth and so on. While the call to be yourself is still out there, it takes a strong person to do just that.

Most of us outgrow the need to “express individuality by dressing like everyone else”. However, one of the outgrowths of our increasingly politically ideological society is that the pressure to conform is probably stronger than even the legendary 1950's era of conformity, which is a tad ironic given that it was followed by the 1960's era of "fight the establishment". It's even more ironic in that these 1960's non-conformists then became the establishment, and are currently trying to institutionalize their form of rebellion, ignoring the fact that institutionalizing and rebelling are opposite concepts. Their ignorance - or apathy - of this dichotomy means that the onus is on us to be the ones who rebel against the ones who once were the rebels.

This is where "be yourself" comes in. We also arrive at one of the reasons that I started this blog. I hope to be setting an example for others to follow that it's not only okay to rebel when "our betters" are wrong, it's actually expected (and many times, required) that we rebel. It's easy to rebel when we have nothing to lose - it's much harder when we have a good paying job, a family and kids, house, car, etc. that we could stand to lose if we rebel. I can't provide a matrix to say when to rebel and when not to rebel - that has to come from you. However, what I CAN do is to explain how I got to be where I am today in regards to holding the views that I hold, and perhaps from that you can find the strength to also be yourself.

My main objective for this blog is to at least make you think whether there is a better way of doing things. Almost always, there is, but we lack the courage to do the right thing. Early on when I got into this opinionating thing, I was made to feel that I either had to be a liberal or a conservative, and whichever side I chose, I had to also agree to the usual slate of views that goes along with that side. My response was: Why? Why do I have to choose just one side? A third alternative was to take the middle ground between them, often referred to as "moderate". On the surface, finding a middle ground betweend the two sides sounds like a reasonable compromise, but below the surface it becomes obvious that "moderate" is basically another way of saying "indecisive".

The fourth alternative is the one I ended up choosing, and that's to basically ignore the labels usually attached to the various stands on issues and to take those stands, regardless of where on the ideological divide they happen to fall on. That's how I can be both anti-death penalty (a "liberal" view) and anti-legalized abortion (a "conservative" view). The term I chose for my way of thinking is "independent". I was hesitant to say "independent" because that's often considered another way of saying "liberal" - a lot like when a liberal will instead call himself "progressive" rather than liberal (which fools no one but the liberal). However, "independent" comes closest to describing my way of thinking, because it's independent of the liberal, conservative, OR the moderate point of view.

So that's my challenge to you folks: Be independent as described above by being yourself. After all, it takes no courage to think like everyone else. Teenagers do as much, so what credit is there for you if you still do the same thing as an adult that you used to do as a teenager?

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Dumb sports ideas

Here's a couple of dumb ideas involving school athletics that I just gotta comment on.

First is the proposed booing ban in Washington state. Yeah, you read that right. They want to ban booing at high school games. Their explanation is that they want to cut down on boorish behavior, but we all know that Washington is one of those so-called "blue states" and that they frown on such things as competitiveness because there will be winners, which means that there will be losers, who will be hurt and traumatized for life and will have to spend thousands of dollars for therapy for the rest of their life and so forth and so on and blahblahblah. Well, of course we just can't have that.

What a dumb idea. What a stupid idea, actually. Booing is part of the game. If you're the home team, booing can motivate you to do better. After all, the best way to make the boobirds shut up is to turn things around. Even a good effort will often be enough to stop the booing. If you're the visiting team, then booing will motivate you to win as well, if for no other reason than to stick it to the home fans. For the visiting team, when you make the home team go silent, then it's a beautiful thing. You don't want the crowd to be silent because they've been banned from booing. Booing sends a message, and whether you're the home team or the visitors, you take that message and respond to it. I hope this idea is fought stubbornly and ferociously. In a real sense, this is a form of restriction of free speech. So I say to these bozos: BOOOO!!!!

Next up is another idea thunked up by those who have no idea what they are doing. In this instance, I refer to the NCAA's Committee on Women's Athletics, which is proposing to ban the practice of women's basketball teams practicing with men (usually not the men's team, but a group of volunteers), because they feel that the usage of such men sends the message to the female bench players that they aren't good enough to practice with the starters. The coaches of these teams aren't complaining about this practice, nor are the players involved. The only ones seeing discrimination is this committee. No one asked them to step in - nope, just like in Washington state, a group of "our betters" simply decided that they need to tell us what to do.

The women basketball players benefit from practicing with men, because men give them a different challenge than does practicing with other women. Plus, who says that the starters aren't ALSO practicing with the bench, AND that the bench isn't likewise practicing with men? No one is being robbed of anything - rather, this is to the benefit of all. While trying not to sound sexist, women's basketball is boring when compared to men's b-ball. Men's b-ball is fast and furious and exciting to watch, with the bullet passes and dazzling dunks and all. By comparison, even the women's pro leagues look like high school basketball by comparison.

You ask me, women's basketball needs all the help it can get. So rather than banning the use of male volunteers, the NCAA should be ruling the useage of men practicing with women in ALL colleges and universities. If the NCAA (and whoever else came up with this clueless ban idea) really wants to help women's athletics, maybe they should ask the women themselves what they want instead of deciding for them. What this NCAA ban idea - along with the Washington state idea - actually represents is a form of social engineering by people who think they know what's better for us. I say we tell them to take their bans and shove it! Keep your social experiments out of our arenas!

Steven Wright one-liners

From an e-mail:

If you're not familiar with the work of Steven Wright, he's the
famously erudite scientist and comic who once said:

"I woke up one morning and all of my stuff had been stolen and
replaced by exact duplicates."

His mind sees things differently than most of us, to our
amazement and amusement.

Here are some of his gems:

1 - I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize.

2 - Borrow money from pessimists -- they don't expect it back.

3 - Half the people you know are below average.

4 - 99% of lawyers give the rest a bad name.

5 - 82.7% of all statistics are made up on the spot.

6 - A conscience is what hurts when all your other parts feel
so good.

7 - A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.

8 - If you want the rainbow, you got to put up with the rain.

9 - All those who believe in psychokinesis, raise my hand.

10 - The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse
gets the cheese.

11 - I almost had a psychic girlfriend.....but she left me
before we met.

12 - OK, so what's the speed of dark?

13 - How do you tell when you're out of invisible ink?

14 - If everything seems to be going well, you have obviously
overlooked something.

15 - Depression is merely anger without enthusiasm.

16 - When everything is coming your way, you're in the wrong

17 - Ambition is a poor excuse for not having enough sense to
be lazy.

18 - Hard work pays off in the future. Laziness pays off now.

19 - I intend to live far, so good.

20 - If Barbie is so popular, why do you have to buy her

21 - Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet

22 - What happens if you get scared half to death twice?

23 - My mechanic told me, "I couldn't repair your brakes, so I
made your horn louder."

24 - Why do psychics have to ask you for your name?

25 - If at first you don't succeed, destroy all evidence that
you tried.

26 - A conclusion is the place where you got tired of

27 - The hardness of the butter is proportional to the
softness of the bread.

28 - To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism; to steal
from many is research.

29 - The problem with the gene pool is that there is no

30 - The sooner you fall behind, the more time you'll have to
catch up.

31 - The colder the x-ray table, the more of your body is
required to be on it.

32 - Everyone has a photographic memory; some just don't have

33 - If your car could travel at the speed of light, would
your headlights work?

Monday, March 05, 2007

I think that I shall never see...

I made an artwork with that virtual dry erase board.

See what you think of this: TREE

I like the way it draws itself. :-)

If you also make any artworks, send them my way and I'll post them. If I get enough of you sending artworks, maybe I'll have an online artshow, along with artsy-fartsy sounding critiques.
If you have any questions about how that program works, let me know and I can tell you what I've figured out so far.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

New look for blog

I checked over the new templates for this blog, and the one you're seeing now is what I came up with. Let me know what you think. If most of you prefer the old look, then I'll switch back to it. It's been a whole year since I started blogging, so I thought that I'd try a new look. Maybe I'll make this a yearly event. :-D

Anyway, I'll try to post something later, because there's stuff I wanna talk about with you good folks. Stay tuned!