Thursday, December 20, 2012

Ready for Christmas, I Guess

Damned shame the world is ending tomorrow, ya know?

A glass room is the perfect environment for a Christmas Tree

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Forget Politics, Obama is Just a Bad Value

The 50 years of the Cold War is estimated to have cost the US in the neighborhood of $8 trillion (I’ll stipulate that I have no idea if that’s adjusted for inflation) with historically low deficits, meaning it was pretty much “paid for”. Thus far, Obama has amassed $6+ trillion in deficits alone, in his first four years.

At least we had some very cool hardware, and the most lethal military in the history of the world to show for our Cold War expenditures, 
what do we have to show for the Obama years, friggin' ObamaCare?

Birds of a Feather

This certainly isn't the first time that the American Left has found common cause with an authoritarian Communist regime, is it?

The official Chinese government news agency, Xinhua, has demanded the US immediately adopt stricter gun control measures to reduce the number of firearms the US populace is permitted to possess. 
The Chinese state-controlled media’s statement, titled “Innocent Blood Demands No Delay for US Gun Control,” is primarily focused on the Newtown tragedy in which 26 Americans were killed by a mad gunman. Twenty of the victims were young children. 
The Chinese government stated, “Their blood and tears demand no delay for the U.S. gun control.”
I'm sure their only concern is for the safety of Americans, Right?

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Islam: Depravity, Redefined

Much as early Christians “imprinted” holy days upon existing pagan rituals, I believe Muslims have “imprinted” Islam on man’s worst instincts as exhibited by the criminal class. It doesn’t challenge you to forswear abhorrent behavior, just change it’s name and purpose.

The longer we deny what should be obvious to anyone with a modicum of reason, the more we will pay the price for our self-imposed ignorance.

The Inevitability of Tragedy Opportunism

I simply can't help mentally profiling this group, ya know?

Substantially more gun control is in the offing and the best we can hope for is mitigation. Most people are seeing this through emotional eyes and the gun control people are seeing it through opportunistic eyes. 20 dead first graders evokes a far deeper response than a comparable number of teenagers or college students. I disagree that this will go away any time soon; Obama and the gun control lobby will ride this toward sweeping weapons legislation and it matters not that said legislation will be meaningless and ineffective. What will matter is that they’re “doing something”.

Some think it’ll never make it through Congress -- picture on one side of the screen, the nebulous “assault rifle” and on the other side of the screen, pictures of the dead children, does anyone really think arguments based on logic and/or facts are going to win the day? Did arguments based on logic and/or facts with the election? When was the last time we won a single argument based on logic/facts?

Friday, December 14, 2012

Eaten Up With Race

I'm not personally familiar with ESPN commentator Rob Parker.  The only time ESPN is on in my house is when there's a game of particular interest being shown, so I've no knowledge of their on-air personalities (or, in the case of Mr. Parker, lack thereof).  I will say that I have no use for sports commentators who feel that people who turn to sports as a respite from serious issues should be regaled with political or social opinions as Bob Costas did earlier this month.

This week, ESPN's Parker decided to weigh in on the 'black authenticity' of rising NFL star Robert Griffin, III, (known as RGIII) a black man who is engaged to a white woman (which seems to be an issue to Parker), who has publicly stated that he chooses not to be defined by his race and (gasp!) may, just may have right-of-center political beliefs:

I talked to some people down in Washington, D.C. … friends of mine who are around at some of the press conferences, people I’ve known for a long time. But my question, which is just a straight honest question, is he a brother, or is he a cornball brother? … He’s not really, he’s black, he kind of does his thing, but he’s not really down with the cause, he’s not one with us, he’s kind of black, but he’s not really like the guy you want to hang out because he’s off to something else ….
I don’t know because I keep hearing these things. We all know he has a white fiancĂ©e, there was all this talk about he’s a Republican, which there’s no information at all. I’m just trying to dig deeper into why he has an issue. Because we did find out with Tiger Woods, Tiger Woods was like, ‘I got black skin, but don’t call me black.’ So people got a little wondering about Tiger Woods ….
To me, [his braids are] very urban, and makes you feel like, I think you’d have a clean cut, if he were more straitlaced or not like, wearing braids, you’re a brother, you’re a brother if you’ve got braids on.

So, RGIII, to his enormous credit, chooses to be judged “on the content of his character rather than the color of his skin” and he’s considered “inauthentic” by this talentless hack, Rob Parker?

So, who are the “authentic” blacks, the gangbangers, the wife beaters and misogynists, the crack-addled, the 13 year-old rapists, armed robbers and murderers?

How about the NFL player who murdered his girlfriend, the mother of his child, then committed suicide in front of his coach? Is HE an "authentic" black man? How about the NFL player who, while driving drunk, killed his teammate in an automobile accident? Is HE "authentic"?

RGIII is a huge bright spot in an increasingly troubled “black community” (oh, how I hate that term) and Parker and his ilk are too vested in their own racism to recognize the value of RGIII, not only to blacks, but to everyone. Too bad our President didn't choose not to be defined by his race.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Oh, What Fools These Mortals Be…..

Obama and the Democrats are treating the American public as exactly what they’ve become; one dimensionally thinking children with limited attention spans -- the electorate has appropriately rewarded them. We have staggering economic woes, foreign policy blunders galore and yet, we discussed crap like “the war on women” and Romney’s income through much of the campaign…now, we’re (reluctantly) beginning to discuss these issues and the bleating, quivering, over-gorged and under-informed masses, better known as the American people nod in agreement like the mindless bobble heads they have become.

Republicans tend to infer some sort of responsibility among the populace and try to impart some sort of useful information regarding our impending demise and the bobble heads are unimpressed, unmoved and, for all appearances, utterly confused.

We’ve assumed minimal maturity and a modicum of common sense in our message and, for all the intellectual impact we had, we might as well have been giving a dissertation on quantum mechanics… least then, they could have, maybe, related to Star Trek.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Sunroom Christmas Tree

A rather interesting effect with the glass ceiling and all of the windows.  I think it'll look even cooler with ornaments.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Republicans Aren't the Problem, Your Neighbors Are

What Americans must understand is that the Democrats don’t simply want to defeat Republicans, they want to kill and bury us as a party then salt the Earth where we once thrived…and they won’t rest until that has been accomplished. They will lie, cheat, steal and have no qualms against permanently slandering a good man’s reputation, as we saw in this cycle, to get what they want. We’ve had nasty politics in this country since our founding, but instantaneous modern communication, the inherent vulnerability of electronic voting systems and “data mining”, which the Obama campaign almost pioneered, and definitely perfected (to the delight of Democrats, everywhere), “nasty” has been raised to a level heretofore unknown.
This isn’t about simple mudslinging, it’s about permanent scarlet letters tattooed upon the foreheads of anyone who dares to oppose them. There are those who advocate our descent into the muck and matching them handful for handful, but I’m not convinced that’d work, even if I could convince myself to support a candidate who could excel at such woeful behavior. The Obama campaign ran one of the most vile, negative campaigns in memory, then had the temerity to tag Romney’s campaign as negative….and it stuck!
We can talk all we want about the “messiah” schtick, and it’s absolutely pivotal, but we must talk about how he was able to sell that schtick in the first place as well as the gullibility and low self-esteem of the majority of voters that bought it two cycles in a row.
This isn’t a problem so much with Republicans as it is with the American electorate. Yeah, we’ve had some real duds, but the Democrats haven’t exactly been producing stellar examples of statesmanship either (Elizabeth Warren? Really?). Hell, Obama himself is an urban myth (and yes, I meant that just the way it sounds), wrapped around a set of grievances and sold as a savior -- and people not only bought it, they practical pee on themselves in his presence!
We’re definitely in “Brave New World” territory here -- with the country in shambles, demonstrably worse than when he took over, no president should have been reelected. Again, ascribing this phenomenon to the messiah schtick is only half of the problem, even “messiahs” need loyal followers and in this case, they’re the real issue.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

New Shutters in the Sunroom

I eschew personal stuff on this blog, preferring to concentrate on political and cultural observations, but I wanted to share some photos of the plantation shutters I had installed between the house and my sunroom (my favorite spot in the house, particularly during the depressing fall/winter months).

They open entirely, as you can see, to give me an enormous opening yet close to darken the inside when needed.

The roof of the sunroom is entirely glass and is about 550 sf.  That's my lovely wife in the bottom picture.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Showing the Romney/Ryan colors…

I picked up a sign, some bumper stickers and a button yesterday while making a donation to the cause.

You need to do whatever you can do, people!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

About that "High Road"……

These days the “high road” is a treacherous one, increasingly difficult to negotiate. Oncoming traffic is generally reckless and contemptuous of previously agreed-upon rules of the road.

Be careful out there.

Romney/Ryan 2012

I can’t speak for anyone else, but I’m not particularly in love with Romney (I don't do the "cult of personality" thing), but I do think he’s a highly competent individual and as close to morally impeccable as you can be after 65 years on this Earth. Op research has been digging for years and all they could come up with is some story about his dog, in a carrier being strapped atop his car….I wish my list of misdeed were that short.

He has all of the tools to begin to repair our damaged economy and the experience to use those tools effectively. His professional life is one of success at pretty much everything he’s tried and, in his spare time, he seems to genuinely enjoy “serving his fellow man”. As I said on a different thread, disagreements on policy details are part of the process, but I can’t think of a more decent human being ever seeking the office.

Alas, history has a funny way of changing the landscape, as happened on 9/11/01. We’re one domestic terr
or attack from putting the economy back on simmer and foreign policy on the front burner. Few presidents come into office with experience in foreign policy, so on that, one just has to listen to what they say and determine where their core loyalties lie and how they will pursue those loyalties. Romney’s an adamant friend of Israel, check. He recognizes the policy implications, of China’s deplorable business behavior, check. He sees Russia as a geopolitical problem yet unresolved, check. He sees Iran, particularly a nuclear Iran as a dire threat to our security, check. I can’t project how Romney would handle any given crisis, no one can, but I’ve seen how Obama has handled the crises on his watch and (aside from the prolific drone strikes), I have not been pleased. He’s projected diplomatic weakness, looked like an appeaser to our enemies and lukewarm to our friends.

Again, I speak only for myself, but that’s why I’m foursquare behind Romney/Ryan.

Friday, October 12, 2012

A quick thought about Biden vs. Ryan

I’m sure that Biden’s schtick plays real well over a few beers in a union hall, but that’s a dying breed — literally and figuratively. The generational chasm in ideology was never more striking than it was last night.  Increasingly, the Republican ticket (despite Romney being substantially older than Obama) is looking like a shiny new iPhone 5 while the Democrat ticket resembles an 80s brick phone.

Monday, September 24, 2012

What's the real question?

I wonder if it’s not as much about Obama or Romney as it is about the liberal/socialist need for a political godhead. It’s not about Obama’s perceived “greatness”, it’s about the liberal philosophy’s "smallness".

Out of Outrage

What we have with Obama is a level of daily incidents that produce constant level of outage that, after four years, the populace at-large has become all but numb. That’s why his poll numbers are inexplicably high; it’s like living in the approach of an airport, after a while, you don’t even hear the aircraft.

In the eyes of the Obama campaign, that's a feature, not a bug.

At this point, isn't "Undecided" another word for "Clueless"?

The best parody has a small kernel of truth at its heart.


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Stay Angry, My Friend

David French on the National Review website this morning:

9/11: The Case for Controlled and Sustained Rage

Every year on the eve of 9/11, my wife and I show our older kids pictures from the day. And every year I feel a fresh sense of rage at the attack. It’s a puzzling phenomenon of politically correct American life that almost immediately our media and national leadership began a long process of emotional de-escalation, a process that continues even after eleven years of war and continual, wholesale atrocities from our enemies. While nothing could shield the families of the fallen from the pain and reality of their loss, the networks “spared” the rest of us the worst of the images. And they “spare” us still today.

I’ve said this before, but if there is one lesson I learned during my own deployment, it’s that our enemy is far more evil than most Americans imagine. Their evil should trigger rage — a controlled rage — and it certainly does for our soldiers downrange. A morally depraved country attacked like we were on 9/11 would lash out wildly and indiscriminately, annihilating its enemies and anyone in their proximity. A morally weak country would shrink back, timidly, complying with terrorists demands. But our nation has largely responded in the right way, with a righteous anger that has in part sustained us through eleven years of continual conflict — a war that represents the most focused application of violence in the entire history of warfare.

Every September 11, I’m proud of my country. I’m proud of the men and women who sacrificed themselves on Flight 93 — our first counterattack in the War on Terror. I’m proud that the entire day of September 11, 2001, was marked and characterized by profound examples of American heroism, compassion, and decency. I’m proud that our nation has fought longer — with an all-volunteer military — than the jihadists ever thought we would (turns out we’re not so “soft” after all). And I’m proud that throughout that very long war, we’ve been neither depraved nor weak, but have focused our attacks on our enemies while sacrificing to defend the defenseless, at home and abroad.

On this eleventh anniversary, take a moment to view once again the images not just of that terrible day but also of the war that has followed. And when you do, remember that you are right to be angry — and that anger should renew your resolve.

Sadness and commemoration have their place on this day, but our righteous outrage keeps us focused.

Never forget, never forgive

As Americans, we all have scars, some small, some large and very personal. To those who lost friends and loved ones, I offer my prayers, to the rest of us, let us not think that distance absolves us from the struggle against abject evil that was handed us 11 years ago this morning.

Forgiveness can only come after remorse and restitution, all I've seen from the Muslim world at-large is triumphalism and the promise of more attacks.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Another Day, Another Story of Government Excess


These stories of foolish excess, from the Federal level to local governments, are becoming more frequent by the day (that the automobiles always seem to be GM products is a matter for another discussion). Even in the face of these revelations, any attempt to so much as cut the rate of increase is met with howls of "YOU WANT TO STARVE GRANDMA, AND CHILDREN, FIRE ALL THE COPS, AND TEACHERS, AND FIREMEN….bla, bla, bla."

What happens in Colorado is up to Coloradans, but at the Federal level, BEGIN by IMMEDIATELY cutting operating expenses of ALL Federal agencies by 20%-30% (private companies do this all of the time), then cut the salaries of $100K+ federal employees by 1/3. Sell off some of the enormous amount of land that's owned by the government and lease large swaths of other land holdings for oil exploration. That's a start, once that's in place, start looking at how many billions are being pissed away in entitlements….does anyone doubt that a SUBSTANTIAL portion of entitlement spending is either fraud or just going to undeserving individuals?

Monday, August 06, 2012

Congratulations, NASA/JPL!

Safe and sound on Mars; it's an even better day to be an American than usual!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

1980 vs. 2012

With deference to the Blogmocracy discussion on the same subject

First of all, I don’t think there is such a thing as a “template” in modern American politics, or in politics in general. Demographics change far too quickly for “templates” to develop. That said, there are “similarities” between 1980 and 2012; a Democrat president “in over his head” both domestically as well as in terms of foreign policy, an economy in tatters, and a Republican candidate who’s largely unknown outside the liberal picture that has been painted of him. In the summer of 1980 Reagan was still behind in the polls and it looked as though Jimmy Carter would probably win. All that said, the “first black president” thing is hugely potent and is effectively immunizing Obama from direct responsibility for any of these things. Guilt makes people do stupid things and the election of Obama is testament to that fact. Thank God though, stupid’s not permanent. History has shown, however, that it is very damaging to the Republic and repair requires unity, resolve, and is not at all easy.

I think Obama will wave the “Black Talisman” furiously but, in the end, he will fail in his bid for reelection. We’ll soon be entering a period, assuming that Romney wins and I believe he will even by a narrow margin, a period of “reconstruction”. Considering the American people’s recent history of stupidity, I’m not as concerned about the leadership of a potential Romney administration as I am about the American people’s capacity to do what needs to be done.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Jeff Dunham at The KFC Yum! Center in Louisville

Last night, we attended Jeff Dunham's "Controlled Chaos" show here in Louisville.  While the show started a bit late (about 30 minutes, or so) it was well worth the wait.  We were seated in the floor section, about 13 rows from the stage, though with the giant circular screen (shown below, from my seat), there were likely no "bad seats".

Dunham, and his hilarious cast of characters, constantly showed an appreciation for local flavor, having a bit of fun with the pronunciation of "Louisville" (a local joke) which was well received by the very large crowd.   There was a lot of new material, much of it apparently from his new special and DVD coming up this fall called "Minding the Monsters".  The characters were in Halloween costume and that was the overall theme.  There was not that much of the "old standby" material (particularly from Achmed), but, let's face it, you can see all that stuff on YouTube - you pay money to see fresh material.

Achmed was in drag (his Halloween costume) which somewhat dulled the character (I'm a bit of an Achmed purist), but I found it hilarious, nonetheless.  The show started with Walter, who was in fine form last evening, and consisted of him, Bubba J, Peanut and Jose Jalepeno, and ended with Achmed.  Bubba J appeared to be the weakest and the Peanut/Jose segment was probably the strongest.  It was very entertaining and well worth the price of admission.

If he comes to your area, I'd highly recommend that you get tickets.

For me, however, one of the most exciting parts of the evening was the venue, The KFC Yum! Center.  This arena opened in the fall of 2010 as the new, $238 million home of the University of Louisville Cardinal Basketball Team.  I had not yet had the pleasure of visiting this new jewel, but it was well worth the wait.  What a spectacular place!

I really couldn't resist taking some iPhone pics of the place.  (No, I didn't even try to take any pics during the show; they asked that you not do so and I complied.)  Enjoy.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Not Just Presbyterians With Turbans

Note:  The following essay was written in April of 2004.

It is not the intention herein, to profess or promote hatred or violence. On the contrary, it is an attempt to examine Islam from without and recognize the purpose of their virulent hatred of Jews and Christians. The violence against these specific groups appears to be the most prominent feature of modern Islam and a central doctrine to millions of its adherents. Indeed, this hatred seems to be profoundly animating considering the rampant growth in Islam that has corresponded with the increased violence in its name. This is written from the perspective of a layman who claims not academic credentials, theological or otherwise. It is stipulated that an understanding of Islam is not the purpose, as understanding it is not the issue at hand.

This is written from the perspective of one who, not unlike you, could lose one's life in the name of Allah. Seemingly, we are all targets. Those innocents who have died in the name of Allah have not done so not because of their lack of understanding of Islam, they died as a result of their lack of submission to it. This is written not in an attempt to understand Islam for understanding is not what they seek. This is written in an attempt to recognize the real motivator behind their war on our civilization.

Many Americans feel the war began in the fall of 2001. It did not. That day was simply the day of our awakening to the awful fact that there are those filled with such hatred for us that our death and that of our civilization is all that will satiate their thirst.

The very concept of random murder in the name of God should be repugnant to all but the most savage among us. The modern Islamic onslaught against civilization, beginning with the Munich Olympic massacre in 1972 has not only continued, but has become more pronounced and more violent with time. Regular attacks on civilians in Israel, September 11, the one the year before last, last year, last month, last week, yesterday. Pick one. These events are, and should be deeply troubling to any civilized human being. From one end of the Earth to the other, from Jerusalem to Bali, from New York to Madrid the numbing drumbeat continues as the soundtrack to this insidious march of death. One after the other, each incident unfolds before us in ghastly detail. The inhumanity, the suffering, the senseless and random murder of innocents is part of our daily primer on Islamism.

Behind each of these incidents are found Muslims. Why does Islam stand at the epicenter of most the world's turmoil and cruelty?

One tries to accept the fact that each man has a right to his or her beliefs. Surely God would expect us to respect all of his children and not turn away from an entire group due to the actions of a few. Surely each individual worships God in his or her own way. We try to convince ourselves that surely this must be the work of only a small group of extremists and these extremists do not necessarily speak for all of Islam. We wait, and still wait for the universal chorus of condemnation from all corners Islam throughout the world that is merited by the continuous brutality. Anything close to a plurality among Islamic clerics would be acceptable. All that is apparent is a muted, limited and lukewarm disapproval, if that, and always accompanied by some form of justification.

There is a pathological aversion to any manner of internal or external criticism, of Muslims in specific or Islam in general, that is simply not found in other religions.

Radical Jews have, on occasion, resorted to religious violence and murder though these incidents are so rare that only one comes immediately to mind; that of one man shooting 29 Palestinians in 1994. Repulsed by those who would do them harm; people such as he become what they hate the most. They choose death as a means to honor God, the giver of life. Although events such as this have been extremely rare, when they do occur the Jewish religious community expresses universal outrage rather than gleeful satisfaction or smug indifference. This is what one would expect from a righteous and God-fearing people.

There also have been Christians who, so offended by the practice of abortion, chose murder as a solution. Their quest for, and their devotion to the sanctity of life became perverted and transformed into a grotesque evil. They, too, chose death as a means to honor the giver of life. Again, on these rare occasions the Christian religious community expresses outrage and makes clear the abject immorality of murder, and reaffirms the sanctity of life, even that of an abortionist. This is another example of what one would expect from civilized society in general and God-fearing people in particular.

Even during the years of IRA violence in Northern Ireland, mainstream religious groups, both Catholic and Protestant, publicly denounced and lamented the violence. Admittedly though, many of them may well have been privately funding the IRA, particularly those churches in the United States. This conflict was often described as a "religious war" between Catholics and Protestants, though at its heart, it was actually a war of independence between secessionist Irish Catholics who wanted a united and independent Ireland, and Protestant Northern Irish loyalists who wished to remain part of Great Britain. It was not specifically about religion at all. It was simply an extension of the extreme animosity that the Irish (Catholics) have had for the British (Protestants) which has existed since the 17th century with religion being used as a means of differentiation.

As for the people, even among those who support Irish independence, the IRA eventually has come to be considered little more than an organization of gangsters and thugs and is now trying desperately to retool its image. It should also be noted that the violence in Northern Ireland has all but ceased in recent years.

Among Christians and Jews there are simply no religious groups, that could even remotely be called "mainstream", that do not vociferously denounce any form of violence in the cause of their faith.

Violence is part of the early collective and separate histories of Christians and Jews. It is instructive to note however, the time frame in which these incidents occurred. Throughout the majority of human history, the status quo was one of cruelty, violence and chaos. Religious history is no exception. While stipulating that both Christians and Jews are not without violent chapters in their history and have not emerged from that history with a certain amount of blood on their hands, there is also much to be said of the civilizing effect that Judeo-Christian philosophy has had on mankind. It would also appear that the more time that has passed, the more pronounced this effect has become.

It is clear that though the past is indeed checkered, the positive effects that Judeo-Christian philosophy has had on mankind far outweigh negative intervals in its collective history.

Moreover, Christians as well as Jews have been killed in the past and in many parts of the world are still being killed simply because of their faith. In modern times though, it is rare indeed to find incidents of Christians or Jews killing others as a result of their or others' religious faith.

Let us turn, once again, to Islam. There is no denial of the practically daily incidents of violent attacks, almost always against defenseless and innocent civilians, carried out by Muslims, in the name of Islam. These attacks are persistent, regular and occur in all parts of the word. Muslims did not invent terrorism, but they seem to have made it part of their doctrine. There is also no denial of the widespread approval of such actions among many average Muslims in many parts of the world, even to the point of jubilant celebration. The celebrations seem to increase in proportion to the death toll. Again, as to an outcry against such atrocities by Muslim clergy, there is either deafening silence or apologist pleas for understanding of the "plight of their people." All too often there is neither silence nor apologies from these alleged "men of God", but overwhelming support for the Islamic sacrament of death.

In view of this, one is compelled to question how service to God can include the wanton and random murder of innocent people. One has to question a faith that incites revelry as a reaction to the death and destruction of random innocents. One has to question a faith whose clerics stand silently as these abominations occur. One has to question a faith that treats women as though they were animals. One has to question a faith that offers not oneness with God as a heavenly reward, but sexual gratification with dozens of partners. One has to question a faith that specifically targets Jews and Christians as objects of scorn, not to mention murder and destruction.

As was said at the onset, one endeavors to accept these horrible acts as the product of a select and very disturbed minority. This is all but impossible as they are far too widespread and frequent. One desperately wants to believe in the natural goodness of anyone who sees any religious faith as a path to God, even though his or her faith is different from our own. With each item read, with each fact processed, there is an increasing awareness that Islam is not a vehicle to serve God. The master whom Islam serves is a very different master indeed. God's offer to us is spiritual peace and an unfettered oneness with Him, a raising-up of our souls. Satan's offer is a physical one of worldly gratification and satiation of the flesh, and this seems oddly parallel with the promise of modern Islam.

Were Satan to reveal his true spiritual nature, man would be repulsed. Satan corrupts surreptitiously. He does not reveal his true character to man, he often deceives us by subtly appealing to the darker sides of our nature. He often rewards our devotion to those baser impulses with success in our craven pursuit of goals such as pleasure, power or wealth. As our souls become increasingly empty, we increase our attempts to fill the emptiness with increased physical gratification. The end result of this cycle is the complete corruption of the soul. A corrupt soul can no longer distinguish between good and evil and invariably chooses the latter. Physical rewards are all that Satan can offer us for his power of deception exists exclusively in this world.

By far the most effective means of corruption is for Satan to masquerade as God himself. In this way the target of the corruption is convinced that the entity who directs him is, in fact, God. Unaware of the true nature of the "god" he serves, the subject descends into a quagmire of iniquity while totally convinced of his righteousness. Man will do things in the service of whom he believes to be God that he will do for no other reason.

Devotion to God is the ultimate motivation. For Satan though, it is the ultimate opportunity for deception.

There are numerous examples of this phenomenon particularly in the fairly recent past. Most notably Jim Jones and the Heaven's Gate cults are examples of people who, in their zeal to serve the master they believed to be God, chose to worship at the alter of death, willingly causing their own and/or that of others. They were not slain for their beliefs as martyrs, they chose death as part of their belief.

In the instance of the Jim Jones cult, those who would not or could not choose death, such as children, had the choice made for them. The process was triggered in the Jones case by the cold-blooded murder of a U.S. Congressman. This is clearly an example of people in the grips of a demon they sincerely believed to be God. Heaven's Gate appeared to be some sort of belief, based on science fiction that could only be described as theology in the broadest definition of the word.

The Jonestown group was indeed a quasi-Christian cult.

Another quasi-Christian cult was David Koresh and the Branch Davidians, the details of whose deaths are still a matter of intense controversy that will not be reopened here. At the very least though, they were a group that was massively armed and clearly ready for mortal conflict. While the actual circumstances of their deaths has been the source of speculation on a number of fronts, the Branch Davidians were neither embraced nor claimed by mainstream Christendom. They were considered to be what they were, a dangerous cult and in no way representative of Christian theology. David Koresh was considered to be, like Jim Jones, a profoundly disturbed individual that was by no means inspired by God.

These are rare instances and it is illustrative that their notoriety is a result of their extreme rarity. Modern Judeo-Christian theology is simply not given incidents such as these.

On the other hand, atrocities in the name of Allah are so widespread and occur with such regularity that they are all but invisible. Much like a person who lives near an airport approach subconsciously "tunes out" the sound of the jets, the drone of senseless death at the hands of Muslims has been "tuned out" by civilized people. It is time to shake ourselves out of the stupor and truly listen to the world around us. We must examine these actions and see the evil that lies within them.

We must scrutinize Islam and seriously question it's relationship with God. We must determine whether Islam is theism or diabolism.

Are we to believe that God wants bus after bus loaded with innocents to be murdered by Muslims on the streets of Israel in His name? Are we to believe that God wanted more than 3,000 innocent people to be randomly murdered by Muslims on September 11, 2001 in His name? Are we to believe that God wanted 200 people murdered on the streets of Madrid in His name? Are we to believe that God directs Muslims to commit repeated and ceaseless acts of random murder in His name? Are we to believe that God guides His people to either condone or actively support these heinous acts? Are we to believe that God, acting through his clerics, at best infers and at worst proclaims His approval? Are we to believe that God is directing the increasingly rapid spread of Islam through the world and it's increasing levels of violence?

The relationship between violence and Islam is by no means a recent development; the history of Islam, both past and present, is drenched in the blood of those who have dared to stand against it as well as those who have simply tried to coexist with it.

This is not a profession of hatred for Muslims per se, though hatred of evil is our duty. Recognition of evil is the only way to avoid it and to eventually defeat it. The only way to recognize evil is to see it for exactly what it is. By it's nature though, it avoids recognition. If we continue to view Islam as a theology, we become blind to its true purpose.

Without question there are indeed peaceful Muslims who believe themselves to be righteous in the eyes of God. While these peaceful people are not actively embracing the evil, they have made a most unfortunate choice. We cannot know the mind of God, so it is unknowable as to how such people are viewed by Him. Such people should be shown mercy by man in the hope that they will eventually know the true nature of he whom they call Allah and reject him.

The discussion of subjects such as evil makes one naturally uncomfortable. The very concept of "evil" is one with which many people have trouble. Mel Gibson recently stated, in speaking about "The Passion of The Christ", that evil's first job is convincing you that it doesn't exist. Perhaps this is true. This word and concept is one that President Bush has invoked on numerous occasions in the years since September 11, and has often been roundly criticized as a result. How else does one describe these acts? Islamic murder is no more an isolated instance of misguided theistic fervor than Nazism and the Holocaust was an isolated instance of misguided political fervor. Each is an example of complete and irrevocable corruption by a manifest evil that imbedded itself in, and became indistinguishable from, the host. Calling it by any other name allows it to survive undetected thus effectively convincing us that it does not exist.

Again, we must ask ourselves if Islam is theism or diabolism. To answer this question we must examine, albeit briefly, the roots of monotheism; Judaism and by extension, Christianity. The God of Abraham is the basis of belief shared by both Judaism and Christianity. In the Old Testament, God was revealed to the Jews alone. Judaism was not evangelistic, so there was never any issue of spreading the faith by any means other than the propagation of the Jews themselves. "The Covenant" existed exclusively between God and the Jews. The appearance of Jesus signaled the extension of God's covenant to include all of mankind. Whereas the "Old Covenant" required bloodlines as well as faith, the "New Covenant" requires faith alone. 

Unlike its precursor, Christianity was evangelistic. Conversion "by the sword" was, unlike in the case of Islam, never a method of spreading Christianity during its rise. Key hallmarks of Christianity are the concepts of non-violence, peace and love of one's fellow man. Jesus' own words and deeds during His life consistently bear this out. Indeed, a history of the early Church is replete with martyrdom of followers at the hands of those who sought to destroy the movement. As stipulated before, Christianity is not without historical periods of violence and persecution against non-Christians. These actions were not however predicated on, or justified by, scripture or any basic canonical precepts of Christianity in general or Catholicism in specific. The New Testament, in particular, may well be the most pacifist tome in history.

Let us again turn to Islam. There is violence in the name of Allah continually perpetrated by men quoting the Qur'an, literally justifying their actions by the scriptural foundation of their faith. Historically, just as peace and love of one's fellow man is a hallmark of Christianity, violence and death have been the hallmark and the legacy of Islam. In fairness, Islamic scholars differ on the meanings of these verses, as the document is somewhat ambiguous in a number of areas leaving it open to wide variations in interpretation. This very ambiguousness however, tends to engender and codify the wide range of malevolent behavior in the service of Allah we have seen and continue to see.

The ambiguousness of Islamic scripture lies at the heart of Islam's blindness to its true mission, service to God. Islamic clergy are so splintered that they are unable, or unwilling to proclaim the immorality of actions as heinous as mass murder. Both the scriptural basis, and the administration of Islam appear to be spiritually and operationally defective and this defect has caused it to diametrically oppose the interests of God.

Cannot an unworldly devotion that is opposed to the interests of God be accurately described as evil?

Whether Islam was a vehicle of evil at its inception, or was co-opted at some point since, it's actions today most certainly serve an evil end and its abject refusal to self-criticize serves to excuse even the most horrible crimes against God and man.

It is estimated that, worldwide, followers of Islam total more than I.2 billion worldwide. Islam is, by far, the fastest growing of all the world's religions.

In 1941, Germany had a civilian population of approximately 70 million. Were all 70 million Nazis? Certainly, they were not. Only a small percentage of even the military were actually Nazis and, in all fairness, all of the Nazis weren't the genocidal maniacs of whom we get a mental image when we hear the word "Nazi". The human cost, civilian and military, of the war in Europe alone, is estimated at 29 million deaths. A small minority, within country of 70 million, was ultimately responsible for the deaths of 29 million people.

While "all Germans" were not responsible for the horrors that define Nazi Germany, it was eminently necessary to defeat Germany as a nation in order to bring the horror to an end.

As for the estimated 1.2 billion Muslims, it is statistically unknown exactly how many either condones, financially supports, emotionally supports or actually engages in or plans acts of murder and destruction. If only 10% fall into any one of these categories, there are 120 million people who have freely accepted random murder to be a legitimate part of their service to God.

Whatever the percentage is, they have proven to be a formidable enemy and it is important to use that word in describing them - enemy. They are enemies, not by our choice, but by theirs. They abhor all that we value and they value all that we abhor. They have no intention of coexisting with us, and anyone who thinks they do is simply not paying attention.

Because Islam is not a country does not make it any less an enemy, in fact it's lack of defined geographic boundaries may well make it all the more pernicious. Its religious status inoculates it from outside questions as to the relationship between Islamic doctrine and acts of violence.

The basic sense of fairness and charity that we have in the United States is often used as a weapon against us. How can a country, that legally, gives Satanism the same weight as mainstream theisms, protect itself from evil? How can a country that has elevated "diversity" as the ultimate virtue even recognize true evil when it appears, much less take action against it?

A friend once said that "Diversity is the modern equivalent of The Tower of Babel" and that is a good point. We have accepted so many versions of normalcy that, like in the story of The Tower of Babel, we no longer have a common cultural language. We have been so averse to what we perceive to be "discrimination" that we are unable to make any sort of judgment on anything whatsoever. As in the story of The Tower of Babel, confusion reigns and destruction must surely follow.

In an age when "pushing the envelope" has become sport, every idea that one can conceive, no matter how bizarre, is put forth by its conceiver demanding the mantle of legitimacy in the public realm. If, at first, the bizarre idea is not freely accepted into the halls of normalcy, those who see the bizarre idea for what it truly is are branded as narrow-minded bigots. Legal action is generally a key component in the process, thereby subverting the law as well as the culture. Soon, fearing the eventual destruction of their reputation, the resisters quietly withdraw their objection and the bizarre becomes normal. This cycle continually repeats itself thus causing the very concept of normalcy to be unacceptable.

We are particularly averse to passing any sort of judgment on religious beliefs lest we be thought to be exhibiting some manner of "phobia". Our ever-expanding universe of acceptance has literally rendered the concept of judgment to be socially undesirable.

Immediately after the attacks on September 11, 2001, The American public was admonished to not be judgmental of Muslims in particular or Islam in general. Every one of these killers was a Muslim. Islam and Islamic doctrine was interpreted by these men and used as a pretext for the attacks. Yet, prior to the first body being pulled from the burning rubble, Muslims were immediately portrayed as victims and the very discussion of possible causation being found within Islam itself was deemed patently offensive.

Contrast this attitude with the handling of the pedophile scandals in the Catholic Church. Statistically, the incidence of Catholic priests engaging in pedophilia is extremely small, though admittedly, there is certainly no acceptable level for this manner of behavior. Though initially slow to react, the Church has, in no way condoned these despicable acts, and none of these priests have referenced Scripture as justification for their actions. The reaction from the general public and media however, has been a full frontal assault on the Church and its underlying principles and traditions.

Islam simply forbids any criticism from within or from without and we honor their wishes as though were compelled to do so by their prelates or bound by their dogma. No matter how murderous their actions, no matter how vehemently they quote the Qur'an in justifying their actions, no matter how many are killed in the name of Allah, we avoid even the appearance of disapproval.

It is not blindness from which we suffer; it is a refusal to see.

In the 1930s, Winston Churchill spoke eloquently of "The Gathering Storm" in Europe. He could see that Hitler's relentless march across Europe, aided by Chamberlain's appeasement, was a cancer that would eventually destroy Europe and the world. He instinctively knew that the time to stem the Nazi tide was sooner rather than later. Europe, England and the world at large refused to see and allowed the malignancy to metastasize, increase its power and expand its sphere of influence. They averted their eyes in the hope that the horrors being visited upon the Jews and Eastern Europe would surely stop there. They were horribly wrong. The cost, in terms of death, suffering and resources for this willful myopia, was one that had not been seen before and has not been seen since.

Once again, a storm is gathering. Once again, the forces of death rise like a malevolent Phoenix. Once again, we are challenged to recognize and confront the forces of evil but we are overwhelmed by the urge to turn away.

Once again, the most difficult step in the defeat of these forces is also the most decisive; the recognition of them for what they truly are.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Romney Endures Quadrennial Republican "Bitch Slapping" at NAALCP Convention, Survives

Mitt Romney, fulfilling his responsibility as the Republican Presidential Nominee, appeared before the NAALCP Convention for the much anticipated, quadrennial "Bitch Slapping" in Houston, TX.  Mr. Romney's background as a venture capitalist uniquely qualified him as "The Man", which made the Bitch Slapping all the more appreciated by the throng.

Mr. Romney endured his Bitch Slapping with dignity, even voicing his intention to repeal ObamaCare which, predictably, elicited boos - thus breaking the monotony of "polite applause" and allowing the group to better voice their acrimony.

A point of contention between Texas and The NAALCP is the subject of "voter identification" which, according to many members of the NAALCP, is unreasonable to expect from black people since IDs are not issued to blacks, or any other minorities.

While Romney did not, specifically address this issue, Attorney General Eric Holder (an affirmed black man) was quite adamant, saying on Tuesday before the august body of apparently unidentified black people:
“We call those poll taxes,” Holder added spontaneously, drawing applause as he moved away from the original text of his speech with a reference to a fee used in some Southern states after slavery’s abolition to disenfranchise black people. 
The 24th amendment to the constitution made that type of tax illegal. Holder insinuated the voter ID laws were racist numerous times throughout his speech. 
“I will not allow the Texas Voter ID law to happen,” said Holder.
Romney, in an extraordinary embrace of diversity (for a rich, white man), did not ask for identification prior to the Bitch Slapping and, more importantly, did not request any fees from the assembled black people.

Thursday, July 05, 2012

Netanyahu Gets It, Why Doesn't Obama?

Israeli PM delivers Independence Day message to the United States.

His message is inspiring and conveys genuine affection for our country and her people, while Obama becomes more self-reverential and sanctimonious by the day.  Netanyahu understands America and her place in the word; Obama doesn't seem to even be interested.

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Didn't That Mouth Come With Volume Control?

You know who you are and you need to pipe down, the cacophony that is the public square is becoming unbearable.  No, I'm not referring opinions being disseminated on the Intertoobs, I'm referring to the teeming masses that have become the screaming masses.

Some requests, if I may:


  • The rest of us don’t care to hear your portion of a cell phone conversation. The microphone is an inch from your mouth – don’t worry, they can hear you all too well at the other end. 
  • There’s something called “conversational tone” which is to be used when having a conversation – practice it. Stop shouting! That person to whom you’re speaking can hear you – I’m 30 feet away and I can hear you, and it’s not at all interesting. 
  • Your children, they’re adorable. They can also shriek in frequencies and volumes that, if used on POWs, would be a war crime. You have probably long since tuned out their annoying and alarming squeal, but we haven’t. The most important part of parenting is socialization and no, that has nothing to do with Obama administration’s approach to just about everything. 
  • Stop shouting across the store to get someone’s attention unless there’s some sort of emergency, or that screaming banshee of a child is wandering off. As an ancillary to that would be to please stop carrying on conversations with people halfway across the room in a public space - walk over and talk to them, we can all use a bit of exercise, no?

Monday, July 02, 2012

Foolish Old Man….

Look at this picture.

Does it look like  a) a happy couple looking forward to a life of marital bliss, or b) a middle-aged man gloating about his young trophy hottie and a woman who's already planning how to suck him dry?

From Fox News:

Alec Baldwin and his yoga instructor fiancee tied the knot Saturday in a New York City church, with a guest list that included family and famous Hollywood pals.

Baldwin, 54, and Hilaria Thomas, 28, married at St. Patrick's Old Cathedral in a Catholic ceremony performed by the Rev. George Deas.

Monday, June 18, 2012

How's This for Perspective?

Ultimately, they'll hold their own children hostage to their own ends, clearly using OUR CONCERN for THEIR CHILDREN as a weapon AGAINST US.
Taliban to U.S.: End drone strikes in Pakistan, or no more polio vaccines 
Islamabad, Pakistan (CNN) -- A Taliban commander in northwest Pakistan has announced a ban on polio vaccines for children as long as the United States continues its campaign of drone strikes in the region, according to a statement by the Taliban. 
"Polio drops will be banned in North Waziristan until the drones strikes are stopped," said the statement, released Saturday. "Almost every resident of North Waziristan has become a mental patient because of the drone strikes, which are worse than polio," the statement continued. "On one hand, the U.S. spends millions of dollars to eliminate polio, while on the other hand it kills hundreds with the help of its slave, Pakistan." 
Pakistan remains one of only three countries that have yet to eradicate polio.
If there's another way to interpret this, feel free to enlighten me.

Pond and Fountain World: Customer Contempt

In June, 2011, I purchased a three-tiered fountain from Pond and Fountain World, 11816 Shelbyville Road, Louisville, KY  40243.  My salesperson was Paul Peterson, a more worthless individual I've not had the misfortune of meeting.  I chose this company on the assumption of quality and service yet it's clear my assumption was invalid.

Due to the size of the fountain, and due to my own physical liabilities, I chose to have the fountain professionally installed by Pond and Fountain World.

During the installation, I noted that the top tier had been broken and repaired.  The installation personnel agreed and they proceeded to call Mr. Peterson who relayed that the broken piece would be replaced.  That fact was noted on our receipt.

I waited and, upon hearing nothing regarding the replacement part, called Pond and Fountain World to follow up.  I was told someone would look into it and call be back.  No one did.  Again, I called, relayed the story and was told that someone would call me back and, again, no one did.

In the fall (September, 2011), I spoke and corresponded with Mr. Doug Stovall who was the first person with whom I spoke who seemed to have a genuine interest in resolving the issue.  We discussed the fact that the season was winding down and it would be best (for THEM) if the replacement part in question was shipped along with other parts , but that could take months.

Foolishly, I agreed to wait until spring to have this resolved.  I thought my reasonableness would be rewarded but, alas, it was just another stall.  In March, 2012, I contacted Pond and Fountain World, asked for Mr. Doug Stovall and was told that Mr. Stovall was no longer with the company.  Once again, I told my story (this time to a fellow named “Mike”, and once again, I was told it would be handled.

In April, 2012, I unexpectedly received a small palletized shipment at my home which proved to be the replacement part.  As I was involved in other matters, the skid sat, literally untouched in my driveway until June 17, 2012, when I opened it and prepared to replace it and, nearly a year after its installation, finally have it complete.

The part in question was broken.

I called Mike on June 18, 2012, relayed the information and my profound disappointment in same.  I proposed that the company offer me an adjustment as, after the time and effort, I had decided to resign myself to settling on a two-tier fountain.  Mike’s response was to tell me that they did what was expected and to essentially tell me that their responsibility has ended.

I guess that’s my reward for being reasonable in the fall and not having been more demanding.

He did say that he would pass this along to “his supervisor” but, like every other time they said that they'd "get back with me", they didn't.

Not returning a call or two is a mistake and to err is human.  Continually being ignored by multiple individuals is indicative of a fundamental dysfunction at the corporate level.

I must say that I cannot recall having done business with another entity quite like Pond and Fountain World.  In 58 years, I have never had the occasion to write a letter such as this, but if there were ever such an occasion, this is it.

Do business with these rogues and charlatans at your own risk.

Monday, June 04, 2012

When The Truth Is Found To Be Lies…..

According to Gallup, via Garance Franke-Ruta of The Atlantic, a substantial portion of the American people believe that some 25% percent of our population is gay. The real number is somewhere between 2-5%, depending on your source, which seems reasonable to me. We've become a nation of oppressed minorities competing for the nation's attention ("awareness", as it were) and the largest and/or most oppressed minority gets attention in this cacophony of awareness.

 Making your minority seem larger, or more oppressed than rival minorities garners more attention and thus, more sympathy.  Sorry, but this practice is not only wrong, it's a selfish distraction from issues that actually deserve attention.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

"Youth" Means "Not Done Yet"

Ever since the 60s, our society has worshipped "youth" as though they were imbued with an intelligence that, somehow, fades with actual life experience. In fact, the only traits "the young" possess in more abundance than their elders is energy, hubris and hormones, all of which are overrated. The 19 year-old that you wouldn't think of trusting for a week with the house, the American Express and our new car has long since become our seer and our advisor. Sorry, but "fresh eyes on the subject" is a handicap, not an advantage when the subjects include questions and problems as old as mankind itself.

Is Jonah Goldberg correct that young people are "friggin' stupid"? Yeah, that's a fair statement:

Monday, May 28, 2012

Seriously, THANKS!

And this also goes for German, Japanese and, alas, proper English.
Courtesy, IMAO.