Sunday, December 26, 2010
Friday, November 5, 2010
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
One: divided government is the best we can hope for -- it mitigates the damage any party can do.
Two: If the Tea Party sticks with economic conservatives, they will win, if they choose wacky social conservatives, they will lose.
Three: You can't buy your seat (Whitman, McMahon, and Fiorino).
But yes, most of all, hooray for divided government.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
Monday, October 18, 2010
Saturday, October 16, 2010
Thursday, October 7, 2010
Sunday, September 5, 2010
Thursday, August 26, 2010
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
I want something suited to my special needs
I want chrome hubcaps, pin-on attachments
and year round use year after year
I want a workhorse with smooth uniform cut
dozer blade and snow blade & deluxe steering wheel
I want something to mow, throw snow, tow and sow with
I want precision reel blades
I want a console styled dashboard
I want an easy spintype recoil starter
I want combination bevel and spur gears, 14
gauge stamped steel housing and
washable foam element air cleaner
I want a pivoting front axle and extrawide
I want an inch of foam rubber inside a vinyl covering
and especially, if it's not too much, if I
can deserve it, even if I can't pay for it
I want to mow while riding.
Thursday, July 8, 2010
Sunday, July 4, 2010
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
The author of my favorite super-hero novel has a few interesting comments here.
If anyone could pull off a decent Avengers movie, it'd be Whedon.
Sunday, May 2, 2010
Monday, April 26, 2010
Friday, April 23, 2010
It is nice to know that YouTube wants to protect the dignity of old Adolph this way. He would have been pleased and proud.
/Hat Tip to Vox Day!
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Sunday, April 18, 2010
Eternal God, unchanging
Mysterious and unknown
Your boundless love, unfailing
In grace and mercy shown
Bright seraphim in ceaseless flight around Your glorious throne
They raise their voices day and night in praise to You alone
Hallelujah, Glory be to our great God
Lord, we are weak and frail
Helpless in the storm
Surround us with Your angels
Hold us in Your arms
Our cold and ruthless enemy, his pleasure is our harm
Rise up, O Lord, and he will flee before our sovereign God
Let every creature in the sea and every flying bird
Let every mountain, every field and valley of the earth
Let all the moons and all the stars in all the universe
Sing praises to the living God who rules them by His word
Thursday, April 15, 2010
Noted atheist-turned-theist Antony Flew dead at 87.
His conversion was somewhat controversial, as is his book, There Is a God: How the World's Most Notorious Atheist Changed His Mind. Richard Carrier certainly thinks so.
I read his book and enjoyed it for what it is, a rather subjective work about a man's eventual coming to faith after a lifetime of pondering. With him it was mostly a form of the argument from design, but as with most people, there's more to it than that. It's well worth following his trains of thought.
I also enjoyed reading the internet hysteria over his conversion. Just follow the links and google away. Is a man's death worth a few googles?
Either way, you know the truth now, old dude. Be seeing you.
Monday, April 12, 2010
I'd say I am closer to P.J. O'Roarke than anyone else on this show in my general outlook, although any of them are advocating an improvement from the statist quo. I think libertarians could learn a lesson from the radicals of the past. Let's do it through incrementalism.
We need our radicals to hold out the edge, but we need our libertarian moderates to actively pursue policies and candidates that can win. I can see that happening when I watch shows like this and scan the various libertarian and classical liberal sites.
I also want my word "liberal" back, because that is all we really are. Liberal used to mean we who believe in LIBERTY, but today it means those who are liberal with other people's money.
“In the technical sense, in the economic definition, he is not a socialist,” the Texas Republican said to a smattering of applause at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference.
“He’s a corporatist,” Paul quickly added, meaning the president takes “care of corporations and corporations take over and run the country.”
He makes a fair point. Obamacare, which is really just corporate welfare for the insurance industry at the expense of the people, looks much more like Mussolini's corporate statism than any real Marxian socialist program.
Sunday, April 11, 2010
I find both views somewhat flawed. If one wishes to believe what the Bible says, it seems there IS a place that we can call Hell, the Lake of Fire, a place of burning and torment -- so it sounds like Gary is off there.
However, I do not believe it is eternal in the sense of forever. There are enough instances where it does say that eventually ALL will be saved, so I am satisfied that "Hell" is a place of separation, testing, burning off one's imperfections, and readying oneself for the wonderful relationship with God that Dr. Walls speaks of.
I believe we ARE free, but God's love is ultimately irresistible.
Hell is a place we are always free to leave when we are ready and after we have faced God's PERFECT justice -- and that justice is REDEMPTIVE, not punitive.
Listening to the two though, I think with a gentle nudge they can end up believing the same thing.
Saturday, April 10, 2010
I also like his take on how economic liberty produced the abundance that helped destroy it.
However, I see libertarianism growing everywhere among the people. People are learning elsewhere the things school should have taught them. Rand's sales are as high as they ever have been. More and more people on the left, right and center are getting interested in libertarianism. This makes me a bit more hopeful and optimistic than Stefan.
Nice how he shows that NO CONSPIRACY IS NEEDED, just a social dynamic of bankrupt philosophy that believes force and violence are the proper ways for humans to associate and that the immorality of modern liberalism and modern conservatism are all that is needed to destroy us economically.
Once again it shows how much we need real change, not the statist quo of Obama-ism.
/Hat Tip to my e-friend OrdoAbChao!
Friday, April 9, 2010
I know and hear of people obsessed with material things, but in my entire life I can only think of a few people who are really like that. By far the vast majority of people I see or read are seeking other things for their bliss: love, children, Friendship, community, God, all sorts of spiritual paths, fitness, and many things that can be facilitated by material things but they show that these material things do not satisfy.
Just look at how we frame most of our debates: take health care.
It is not a materialistic at its root. I feel it is about two ideological concepts that are hard to pin down, but neither is particularly materialistic. Broadly, it is a debate over altruism or liberty. One side would rather give up some political liberty for the sake of the common good, others believe that the sacrifice of liberty is too great and/or the common good is hurt by government funded or run health care.
Look at the abortion debate: one side believes in a woman's control over her own body vs the the other side, which values the fetus's right to life. It is an ideological, spiritual debate about self ownership and personhood.
Now granted, opposite sides often want to impugn motives -- it's easy to attack the other guy if he is a bad guy, so on both sides one will see one side saying they are doing what they are doing for greed -- but really, mostly, this is honest people working toward honest, non-materialistic goals of either doing God's will, serving their fellow man, and so on.
I see people from other countries behaving no differently -- they are as materialistic as anyone else, and the fights over there are framed similarly.
It seems everyone is somewhat materialistic, but no one wants to admit it and is perfectly willing to attack the other guy for it. I don't believe that any societies on earth are truly obsessed with it, however.
Now, if true, what might cause this social dynamic? Perhaps it is that the more abundance we have, the more we seek "higher things" a la Maslow. I tend to think it is a mix of envy and the simple human desire to think of oneself as a better person. If some dude or nation is richer than me, well then it MUST be because he is more materialistic.
I think it would do us all some good if we realize without a body there is no mind or soul, and without a certain amount of stuff we die. However the stuff isn't an end in itself for most -- we are seeking bliss and most of us find it in things more precious than stuff.
Sunday, April 4, 2010
Now after the Sabbath, as the first day of the week began to dawn, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb.
And behold, there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat on it.
His countenance was like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow. 4 And the guards shook for fear of him, and became like dead men.
But the angel answered and said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified.
He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. And go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead, and indeed He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him. Behold, I have told you.”
So they went out quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to bring His disciples word. (NKJV)
Monday, March 29, 2010
Sunday, March 28, 2010
It is interesting to note that he would find a similar thing at his local Borders, and perhaps B & N. No Young's, Yes to Hell Under Fire (currently out of stock at my store but it IS carried), yes to the Barclay Bible studies.
I seem to remember years ago they DID carry the Young's Concordance but no longer do.
Obviously you can get them all on the website.
I would tend to think it's less of a case of censorship than it is of low sales. We who subscribe to Universalist beliefs are in the minority, so it's harder to find our books. As a fan of the weird, I'm used to it. No conspiracy needed.
We freaks have been switching over to the internet, so there is no reason to carry the things that are out of the mainstream; however, it is good to note that you can still find a bunch of the other books that he liked at your average Borders.
In 2008 when he did this video, Borders carried even MORE of his titles. I consider that a bummer but far from an anti-Universalist hit squad. They just don't sell as much as the eternal torment stuff, so they are no longer on the shelves.
I'm thinking I showed this when it came out, but who cares? That was a while ago.
I was just playing my Mastermind who just might go for that redemption and salvation stuff -- but then again...maybe not. Either way it is one of the few game things happening that makes me the least bit excited. Chatting with Neil a bit in the last post got me thinking of imaginary societies (something I enjoy pondering as an idle pastime), and in this case, it's Praetorian earth -- the one in which the Statesman, Paragon's greatest hero is the villain the Tyrant. He rules his "utopia" with an iron fist.
A world in which Dr. Helios, a mad scientist who use his wife in his own experiments, might just start the battle to win her back. Or perhaps not. The Great Work or the woman?
Then there is Mister Apex, the man who through selective breeding with gods and men has been designed by a secret society to rule our world, but rejected that path and became a hero -- perhaps he will flip and seize what is his "destiny."
City of Heroes is not the best game, but it is really cool that they have continued to add to it. It makes me happy and it is always a nice diversion when I get tired of WoW or sick of the klugey mess that is Star Wars Galaxies.
Check it out.
Friday, March 26, 2010
However, it's patently false overall. I myself have been convinced by arguments and facts to change many of my views. I always "believed" in "freedom" as I understood the notion at the time, but as a boy, I was what one might call a "default liberal." My parents were liberal, almost everyone I knew was a liberal, so I absorbed the liberalism around me.
Also, somewhere in there I became an agnostic/weak atheist.
Today I am a Christian with Universalist leanings and a pretty hardcore libertarian. Those shifts came almost purely from people who proved me wrong, showed me up, and convinced me to change my views.
Some came from just reading, like when Atlas Shrugged punched me in the gut showing me where modern "progressive" thought takes us. Most however, came from simply discussions with intelligent, thoughtful people who felt my brain was worth the time to change -- and then me checking out the facts on my own.
I have seen this happen with many others. I myself have watched people go from liberal or conservative to libertarian through the force of simple persuasion (as well as time and facts of course). I've had a hand in it -- I know for a fact it happens.
History shows this is also the case. As far as I have been able to see in history, MANY folks change through arguments and learning.
Pretty much every Christian I know who came to faith late did so through a process of simple persuasion, and almost every libertarian I know changed from either liberal or conservative in exactly the same manner -- I know of no libertarians who were "born into it."
I'm not going to go into a detailed account of the famous people in history who have changed their opinions and worldview, since I am not actually trying to convince anyone on this point -- I am merely making it to make another psychological point -- but one could simple play with wikipedia biographies and see what I am talking about. The idea that you really can't change someone's mind with a persuasive argument is incorrect.
Now, assuming that it IS incorrect and quite easy to see that it is, why would someone either lie, delude themselves, or simply decide that one can not convince people with the power of argument?
Could it be, possibly, that they want to make sure that they emotionally removed their intellectual liability to convince and are about to advocate force to achieve their ends?
I don't know, but the more I observe modern liberals and social conservatives who use this falsehood, the more I see it used in the context of them advocating using force against their fellow human beings while I am arguing against that concept.
They obviously believe that I can't be convinced (I can be, any time -- just make the case and prove me wrong and I will change on a dime. I always have) and that I must be forced to do their will. Meanwhile, I always hold out hope that one argument, one fact, or hopefully, time will change them.
I have faith in them and in reason. They seem to have faith neither in other people nor in the power of reason. Thus they advocate force.
I am highly uncertain of this idea, but I've been personally seeing more and more evidence for it -- the ones who say people can't be convinced are the same people who want to use violence or the threat of violence to attain their ends.
Monday, March 22, 2010
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Sunday, March 7, 2010
Sunday, February 28, 2010
Monday, February 15, 2010
/hat tip to smokemonsc over at MMORPG.com for sharing this with me.
Friday, February 12, 2010
Wednesday, February 3, 2010
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
It's the best we can hope for in a bad situation.
Plus, his daughter Ayla is a hottie with a very Star Warsy name :)
Although I must admit, Blue Twi'leks with lightsabers are more my style...
And said blue babe spells it Aayla (I imagine Ms. Brown got her name from Clan of the Cave Bear). Either way, if any story ever has a Star Wars hook, you know I'm gonna find it!
Sunday, January 17, 2010
Dear Pat Robertson,
I know that you know that all press is good press, so I appreciate the shout-out. And you make God look like a big mean bully who kicks people when they are down, so I'm all over that action.
But when you say that Haiti has made a pact with me, it is totally humiliating. I may be evil incarnate, but I'm no welcher. The way you put it, making a deal with me leaves folks desperate and impoverished.
Sure, in the afterlife, but when I strike bargains with people, they first get something here on earth -- glamour, beauty, talent, wealth, fame, glory, a golden fiddle. Those Haitians have nothing, and I mean nothing. And that was before the earthquake. Haven't you seen "Crossroads"? Or "Damn Yankees"?
If I had a thing going with Haiti, there'd be lots of banks, skyscrapers, SUVs, exclusive night clubs, Botox -- that kind of thing. An 80 percent poverty rate is so not my style. Nothing against it -- I'm just saying: Not how I roll.
You're doing great work, Pat, and I don't want to clip your wings -- just, come on, you're making me look bad. And not the good kind of bad. Keep blaming God. That's working. But leave me out of it, please. Or we may need to renegotiate your own contract.
LILY COYLE, MINNEAPOLIS