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Tuesday, June 18, 2013
Quote of The Day
My comment on the question asked of Marissa Powell, Miss Utah in this year's Miss USA pageant:
"She had the right answer to the wrong question. Unemployment in general suffers because there's too many damn monkey wrenches in the way of business creation and expansion."
My Father's Day post of 2007 is now an annual blog tradition. It has applications for the relationships revolving around both our earthly fathers and our heavenly Father.
Most Christians have no problem getting along with non-Christians. This may seem confusing to some; after all, Christianity teaches that those who are not reconciled with God will not receive salvation. Why care about people who aren't going to Heaven?
One could say that while a particular non-Christian is alive we really don't know that that person's eternal destination won't make a course change at a later date. That's a valid observation, but not the real reason.
Christianity makes a radical claim about the relationship between believers, nonbelievers and God: we're all family. God created the souls of all, thus he is the father of all, believers and nonbelievers alike. All of the children have gone astray - but some have reconciled with him while others have not.
When one is faced with the earthly parallel - being in good standing with Dad while some of the other siblings aren't - one is charged with three tasks: to build and maintain the relationship with Dad, to build and maintain the relationships with the wayward siblings without doing anything that interferes with the paternal relationship, and to act as a bridge between the wayward siblings and Dad. That third task is tricky; there will be occasions to discuss the rift outright, but most of the time it involves nothing more than being a positive influence to that sibling.
Christianity works the same way. Loving God doesn't mean giving up on non-Christian friends. We may have to reassess what kinds of "fun" we pursue with them, though. (Heck, sometimes we have to reassess the "fun" we pursue with fellow Christians.) Witnessing to nonbelievers isn't all Amway sales presentations. Most of the time it's just bringing good to someone's life.
The hardest part of doing good to others is when it requres criticism. We see them doing something destructive, and we want to help. We need to effectively communicate what the problem is, how it hurts that person, and how the future can be better when that problem is dealth with.
Most Christians grasp all this, even if they haven't thought it out as thoroughly as outlined here. They care about both believers and nonbelievers out of the same human motivations that drive us all, and because they believe in a God who values everyone.
Revolutionary War (1775-1783)
Wars on the Barbary Pirates (1801-1805, 1815)
War of 1812 (1812-1815)
War Between the States (1861-1865)
Spanish-American War (1898)
China Relief Expedition (1900-1901)
Pacification of Nicaragua (1912-1913)
Interventions in Mexico (1914-1917)
World War I (1914-1918)
Pacification of Haiti and Dominican Republic (1915-1918)
Allied Intervention in Russian Civil War (1918-1920)
World War II (1939-1945)
Korean War (1950-1953)
Vietnam War (1964-1973)
Hostage rescue mission in Iran (1980)
Lebanon peacekeeping mission (1982-1984)
Counterinsurgency mission in El Salvador (1980-?)
Liberation of Grenada (1983)
Invasion of Panama (1989)
Iraq War (1990-1991, 2002-2011)
Somalia peacekeeping mission (1992-1994)
Hezbollah Al-Hejaz attack on Khobar Towers, Saudi Arabia (1996)
Egyptian Islamic Jihad bombings of embassies in Kenya and Tanzania (1998)
Al-Qaeda attack on USS Cole (2000)
Afghanistan War (2001-present)
Ansar al-Sharia attack on consulate in Libya (2012)
On 9/11 Todd Beamer led several ordinary citizens to thwart the objective of the hijackers of United Airlines Flight 93. Last Wednesday, two jihadists hacked to death Drummer Lee Rigby of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers - and stayed at the scene for 20 minutes as passers-by stood around and did nothing.
How did British citizens become such a passive lot? How can they rediscover their inner Todd Beamer? Changing a culture is a long drawn-out process, but I have one idea that might contribute a little spark.
A few months ago, I ran out of gas, conveniently across the street from a gas station. I bought a 1-gallon plastic gas can and a gallon of gas. It took over 10 minutes to empty that gas can because of the incompetent design. Just the other day I Found out that the incompetent design is a government mandate:The gas gauge broke. There was no smartphone app to tell me how much was left, so I ran out. I had to call the local gas station to give me enough to get on my way. The gruff but lovable attendant arrived in his truck and started to pour gas in my car’s tank. And pour. And pour.
“Hmmm, I just hate how slow these gas cans are these days,” he grumbled. “There’s no vent on them.”
An ominous regulatory announcement from the EPA came in 2007: “Starting with containers manufactured in 2009… it is expected that the new cans will be built with a simple and inexpensive permeation barrier and new spouts that close automatically.”
The government never said “no vents.” It abolished them de facto with new standards that every state had to adopt by 2009. So for the last three years, you have not been able to buy gas cans that work properly. They are not permitted to have a separate vent. The top has to close automatically. There are other silly things now, too, but the biggest problem is that they do not do well what cans are supposed to do.
Attention All Agencies Of The Obama Administration
For those unfamiliar with Rush (the band), the Starman logo first appeared on the back cover of the 2112 album. The title song (which comprises all of Side 1), is an allegory of the totalitarian state. Neal Peart said of the logo, "All (the naked man) means is the abstract man against the masses. The red star symbolizes any collectivist mentality."
Hot Air reports ten types of questions that were asked of "tea party" and "patriot" groups filing for tax-exempt status. The last one is barking insane - officials asked some groups to project future revenues and expenses for the next three years. The Office of Management and Budget can't even make those kinds of projections - you expect average citizens to do any better?
One of the lefty excuses for dismissing the Benghazi scandal is that it happened a long time ago. Didn't they pursue Iran-Contra for years and years after it became "a long time ago?"
And the funding of the Contras ultimately saved lives. We don't know how many, but we do know the murderous legacy of Communism.
Gluten-free foods are not for weight loss. The only people who benefit from them are the gluten-intolerant.
Here's the money quote:
When manufacturers create a gluten-free product, they remove the wheat protein from the food by swapping wheat flour for another flour such as almond, rice, corn or even bean.
However, this missing gluten makes it difficult for breads and bakery products to retain their shape and softness as they cook.
To alleviate this, additives (such as xanthum gum and hydroxypropyl methylcellulose) or corn starch are introduced. Extra sugar and fat are also added to the products to make them tastier. The result is that gluten-free bread can actually add pounds to your waistline.
The only benefit of gluten-free foods is that the gluten intolerant can tolerate them. For pure dieting, stick with wheat flour and other natural gluten sources. Just eat less of it, because most dieters need to cut carbs.
Missouri Governor Jay Nixon repeatedly denied knowing anything about Missouri illegally sharing its citizens private CCW information with the federal government, even after his own head of Missouri Highway Patrol contradicted him in a public hearing. Now we’ve learned that Nixon not only knew about the violation of Missouri law, but he was thanked in a letter by Janet Napolitano:
Here's a snippet from her appearance on "Firing Line" with William F. Buckley Jr. The subject: "What Have We Learned from the Failure of Socialism?"
The Guardian published a few choice quotes, including this, which ties in with the topic of the "Firing Line" discussion: "It is ironic that just when those countries such as the Soviet Union, which have tried to run everything from the centre, are learning that success depends on dispersing power and decisions away from the centre, there are some in the community who seem to want to move in the opposite direction. We have not successfully rolled back the frontiers of the state in Britain only to see them reimposed at a European level with a European superstate exercising a new dominance from Brussels." ("Bruges speech", 1988)
This Is Idiotic. Dishonest. Brazen. And Barking Insane.
Obama says Adam Lanza had a fully automatic weapon. Really. Exact quote: "I just came from Denver...[to] make sure that we don’t have another 20 children in a classroom gunned down by a semiautomatic weapon — by a fully automatic weapon in that case, sadly."
Someone found a green meteorite, which some theorize to hail from Mercury. Yeah, Mercury. That's it. No way it could have traveled halfway across the galaxy from that doomed planet Superman says he's from.
Statistically speaking, is a murderer more likely to be a member of the National Rifle Association, or the Screen Actors Guild?
Update: And a related random thought: how is it that so many actors and musicians, members of industries rife with illegal narcotics, can come to the conclusion that gun control will keep guns out of the hands of killers?
Back in January, the Daily Mail reported that the Met Office (the UK's national weather service) had revised its global warming projections, predicting a flat trend until 2017 - which started in 1998. A March 16 article displays a chart that shows how far-off the warming projections have been.
In May 2008 I blogged on a Telegraph article about global warming revisions of that day: "Noel Keenlyside of the Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences, Kiel,
Germany, said: 'The IPCC would predict a 0.3°C warming over the next
decade. Our prediction is that there will be no warming until 2015 but
it will pick up after that.'" Well now. Back then the Germans were right about the trend (up to present). Wonder what they're projections are now?
There's not much to the article, really, but it raises one vital principle: don't treat enemies as friends:
To implement [increased minority outreach], RNC chairman Reince Priebus has promised to establish dialogues with groups such as LULAC, La Raza, and the NAACP, which strikes us as unhelpful and willfully blind to the fact that such groups are ideologically opposed to Republican principles. A truly conservative minority-outreach strategy would severely weaken these groups by challenging their claims to represent their respective ethnicities.
What conservatives (and libertarians) need to do is to illustrate how the policies of LULAC, La Raza, and the NAACP are detrimental to the interests of their nominal constituencies.