Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Thanksgiving, again and always

Psalm 107, NASB (via Bible Gateway):

1 O give thanks to the LORD, for He is good,
      For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
2 Let the redeemed of the LORD say so,
      Whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary
3 And gathered from the lands,
      From the east and from the west,
      From the north and from the south.

4 They wandered in the wilderness in a desert region;
      They did not find a way to an inhabited city.
5 They were hungry and thirsty;
      Their soul fainted within them.
6 Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble;
      He delivered them out of their distresses.
7 He led them also by a straight way,
      To go to an inhabited city.
8 Let them give thanks to the LORD for His lovingkindness,
      And for His wonders to the sons of men!
9 For He has satisfied the thirsty soul,
      And the hungry soul He has filled with what is good.

10 There were those who dwelt in darkness and in the shadow of death,
      Prisoners in misery and chains,
11 Because they had rebelled against the words of God
      And spurned the counsel of the Most High.
12 Therefore He humbled their heart with labor;
      They stumbled and there was none to help.
13 Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble;
      He saved them out of their distresses.
14 He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death
      And broke their bands apart.
15 Let them give thanks to the LORD for His lovingkindness,
      And for His wonders to the sons of men!
16 For He has shattered gates of bronze
      And cut bars of iron asunder.

17 Fools, because of their rebellious way,
      And because of their iniquities, were afflicted.
18 Their soul abhorred all kinds of food,
      And they drew near to the gates of death.
19 Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble;
      He saved them out of their distresses.
20 He sent His word and healed them,
      And delivered them from their destructions.
21 Let them give thanks to the LORD for His lovingkindness,
      And for His wonders to the sons of men!
22 Let them also offer sacrifices of thanksgiving,
      And tell of His works with joyful singing.

23 Those who go down to the sea in ships,
      Who do business on great waters;
24 They have seen the works of the LORD,
      And His wonders in the deep.
25 For He spoke and raised up a stormy wind,
      Which lifted up the waves of the sea.
26 They rose up to the heavens, they went down to the depths;
      Their soul melted away in their misery.
27 They reeled and staggered like a drunken man,
      And were at their wits' end.
28 Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble,
      And He brought them out of their distresses.
29 He caused the storm to be still,
      So that the waves of the sea were hushed.
30 Then they were glad because they were quiet,
      So He guided them to their desired haven.
31 Let them give thanks to the LORD for His lovingkindness,
      And for His wonders to the sons of men!
32 Let them extol Him also in the congregation of the people,
      And praise Him at the seat of the elders.

33 He changes rivers into a wilderness
      And springs of water into a thirsty ground;
34 A fruitful land into a salt waste,
      Because of the wickedness of those who dwell in it.
35 He changes a wilderness into a pool of water
      And a dry land into springs of water;
36 And there He makes the hungry to dwell,
      So that they may establish an inhabited city,
37 And sow fields and plant vineyards,
      And gather a fruitful harvest.
38 Also He blesses them and they multiply greatly,
      And He does not let their cattle decrease.

39 When they are diminished and bowed down
      Through oppression, misery and sorrow,
40 He pours contempt upon princes
      And makes them wander in a pathless waste.
41 But He sets the needy securely on high away from affliction,
      And makes his families like a flock.
42 The upright see it and are glad;
      But all unrighteousness shuts its mouth.

43 Who is wise? Let him give heed to these things,
      And consider the lovingkindnesses of the LORD.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

a matter of faith

really, in these modern times, does anybody still actually believe there's such a thing as an animator? this is just a bunch of random bits that organized themselves into a video.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

more hints

I'm reposting my list of Child Safety Hints - with two new additions at the end of the list which were inspired by the Distracted Interstate-Driving Dads' League:
1) When seated in your vehicle, you may notice that there are several large pieces of glass all around you. These are designed to afford clear visibility to the outside world. When traveling, please use these "windows" to observe the actions and reactions happening all around you.

2) Through all of your vehicle's windows, you might observe other vehicles which appear to be growing larger. You need not be frightened, this is merely a useful illusion, one that indicates you should not get much closer. The speed of this illusion will indicate its importance. Also, it is certainly not safe for your vehicle to move in perpendicular or opposite directions to those other cars at the same time.

3) If you happen to hear a loud sound (such as a "honk"), that is often an indication that a nearby driver thinks that you should get out of his or her way. If it is safe, you should try to get out of his or her way, no matter whether you think the other driver's opinion is justified or not.

4) Please do not be confused by the varied and numerous lights around you; they are designed to help you and your precious cargo travel in safety.

4a) Through the front window, you might observe red lights, either on vehicles or on poles of various design. Please interpret these lights as indications that you need to bring your vehicle to a stop, not as indications of sale specials of limited duration.

4b) Also through the front window, you might observe green lights on poles. These lights generally indicate that it is safe for you to proceed in your travels; please do so in a timely fashion, so that others may enjoy proceeding in theirs.

4c) If you are observant, you will see many other varieties of lights and signs as you travel. Please familiarize yourself with the meanings of these lights and signs, and how to discern which ones represent laws to be obeyed. There are many resources that can help you learn, such as libraries, police and highway departments, and reputable websites. If you refuse to learn, there will be a pop quiz administered by local officers - an expensive quiz that you will fail miserably.

5) Family communication is important, but it is much less important than keeping your children safe. Please refrain from using your cellphone while driving. You might be surprised how difficult it is to communicate over the wail of sirens, or while breathing through a tube.

6) When an event occurs in the back seat which requires your immediate attention, please bring your vehicle to a safe and complete stop out of traffic before attending to that event. If your vehicle continues moving without your full attention, you will soon find your daily routine impacted by unwanted outside events.

7) There is a little-known law that can greatly increase the safety of you and your child(ren). Please set a good example for everyone by staying in the right lane except for the brief times you need to pass someone - even if the view on the left side of the road is more interesting.

8) For all you "hipster" parents wanting to appear "cool" to your child(ren), please know that it is inherently impossible for any child under the age of thirty to consider their parents as cool. Any entertainment you provide to the child(ren) in your vehicle should not interfere with your primary task of driving. Please do not attempt any of the following while the vehicle is in motion:
  • letting your child(ren) decide which lane(s) to occupy,
  • retrieving objects that child(ren) have thrown to the floor,
  • spoon-feeding your child(ren),
  • playing a guessing game of "how fast am i driving now?", or
  • playing any other games such as "pattycakes", "peekaboo", "this little piggy", "tic-tac-toe", "backgammon", or "twister".

Wednesday, November 10, 2010



free solution.

pay solution?


...or an unreasonable facsimile:
We are all supposed to be androgynously egalitarian in our attitudes, for to be otherwise is to discriminate, and everyone knows that discrimination is wrong.

To adapt a phrase from a Rodgers and Hammerstein musical, “You have to be carefully taught” such beliefs, and we have been taught quite carefully indeed. The de rigueur denunciation of sexism, like the de rigueur denunciation of racism, is a conditioned response, a Skinnerian reflex. Anyone who critically examines these reflexes — who disassembles them into their component parts and asks why we react this way — can expect to be indicted for these Deadly Sins of the Post-Christian Era merely for questioning the categories.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

mystery missile

insecurity defined: "When someone makes an unannounced launch what looks to be a ballistic missile 35 miles from the nations second largest city (at sea in international waters), and 18 hours later NORAD still doesn’t have any answers at all – that complete lack of information represents a credible threat to national security."

i agree with the somment, not the post: "If it was a contrail from an airplane, don’t you think the military would have cleared it up by now?"

Monday, November 08, 2010

out since wednesday...

...sitting in the hospital with dad and his busted hip. he'll be okay in a couple of days; i just need to catch up on some sleep...

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

where are the mammoths...

...when we need them?
It was probably a lot easier back in ancient times to figure out who the stupid people were. They were the ones who did things like taunt the mammoths. And they were pretty easy to identify because their heads had been crushed by mammoths. No one ever even contemplated putting them in charge. Then again, back in that time, there wasn’t really any need for Stephen Hawking-level intelligence either, since there was no such thing as theoretical mammoth hunting studies.

Eventually civilization arose, and intelligence became more treasured. Ironically, this created opportunities for morons to thrive. No longer threatened by mammoth crushings, idiots survived and eventually evolved, developing a form of camouflage. Basically, they learned to appear to be smart while in fact being completely useless to society. We know these idiots today as intellectuals.
read the rest, and a few of the comments are interesting too, like this one:
Complex civilizations such as ours typically don’t respond well to the ideas of the Wishful Thinkers and Coercive Utopians who comprise the bulk of the modern American Left. Real trouble begins when the former two sort enable the Lord of the Flies types. Then civilization collapses in a “spread of ruin and slaughter” as Ayn Rand once put it.

We forget that the Western civilization we currently enjoy came to us at great cost, and that most of human history has been one of conflict and misery for all but an elite few.
The Islamic conquest of India is probably the bloodiest story in history. It is a discouraging tale, for its evident moral is that civilization is a precious good, whose delicate complex order and freedom can at any moment be overthrown by barbarians invading from without and multiplying from within.

–Will Durant, The Story of Civilization
Durant’s quote applies to us, and to America in particular. We need to recognize the enemies of civilization for who and what they are. Our failure to do so and to act accordingly presents the greatest danger to all that we hold dear. Our latter day barbarians – Islam from without and the anti-intellectual, cruel and sadistic will-to-power driven monsters from within – are the enemies of Western civilization. And neither peace nor copmpromise can ever be made with them – that’s precisely the point of Lee Harris’ Civilization and Its Enemies. This is a ‘must read’ for anyone who cars about the fate of the West. Harris concludes his work with this:
...we must all struggle to overcome the collective tendency of civilized men and women to forgetfulness. For that, in truth, is the ultimate question facing us today. Can the West overcome the forgetfulness that is the nemesis of every successful civilization? If it can, then there is hope that mankind will be able to move forward to a higher stage of historical development. If it cannot, then the next stage of history will be one that we once hoped never to see again.
Unfortunately, I do believe that we will see it again. In this last century – and now, in this one – socialism, communism and all of the various totalitarian ‘isms’ provide nothing more than the framework for the exercise of power – absolute power. Absolute, murderous power, as history has so clearly shown. So, no – they don’t work, and they were never intended to ‘work’ – outside of the minds of fairy-dust wishful thinkers and coercive utopians. The ideologies represented by the totalist ‘isms’ are... responsible for the slaughter of over 200 million people over the last 100 years or so – and the impoverishment and enslavement of hundreds of millions more.

Those driven by the will to power have never given up and the very bad ideas that have animated them have never gone away. And they’re not going to shrug their shoulders and quietly walk away once a few of them are removed from positions of power.

election pre-summary

Rightwingsparkle is:
one of those people who don't count their chickens before they are hatched. That is why I haven't been gloating or gone overboard on predictions.

The most amazing thing about these elections is the fact that candidates, who fought against both parties, may actually win. When was that last time that happened? Has that ever happened? Not in my lifetime. That should be the story of this year.

I think most of us would be glad to see the last of Barney Frank, responsible for so much of the debacle of FreddieMac and FannyMae. Who really wants to continue to watch the arrogance of Barbara Boxer? Who wouldn't want to see the last of Harry Reid, the epitome of a Washington insider? Then you have the Alaska dynasty of Lisa Murkowski, whose father handed her the seat she felt entitled to, even when the people of her party voted that she wasn't. All of these career politicians may be gone thanks to a historic citizen-based revolution called The Tea Party...

The GOP may be celebrating tomorrow night, but truth is that they really didn't win, the Democrats just lost. In other words, we only voted for you because you were better than the Democrats, but that ain't saying much...