Saturday, July 31, 2010

Assimilation/re-education not education

Over at Minding the Campus, there is an article about a woman in the Graduate Counselor Education program at Augusta State University.  Apparently the woman in question is christian and as such, believes that homosexuality is a lifestyle, etc.  She does not believe in foisting her beliefs on others and "affirms the inherent dignity of all persons, regardless of their views or sexual behavior.'

Well, the program professors didn't think that was sufficient and ordered her to take remedial programs in multiculturalism, get some sensitivity training, and attend a gay pride parade.  Note that she has not been accused of trying to push her beliefs onto anyone else but that the program 'suggested' these actions because of her personal beliefs and because she stated that she would not affirm others' morality.

She was going to let herself be bullied into all of that remedial bullcrap, but instead has filed a lawsuit.  Now I have a very big issue with making someone toe a specific ideological line and as long as she, once she graduates, touts herself as a Christian counselor so that people know what they're getting at the start, then I've got no problem that either. 

For the record, I'm of the mind that many counselors need the most help and judging from the actions of the professors in that program and their extreme-guilt-trip life or death statements, I'm getting some anecdotal evidence in that direction.  I don't believe that forcing someone to attend a gay pride parade (and yes, I've attended/marched in a gay pride parade myself with some friends and had a thoroughly lovely time) is really going to change their attitude towards gay folks and their behavior.

I may not agree with her beliefs, but they are hers.  As long as they don't interfere with her job, I don't give a rat's half-eaten ass.  I am getting tired of the PC crowd forcing their beliefs onto others, same as I'm tired of the PC crowd forcing their political machinations onto the American public.  It's just one more symptom of an educational system that isn't--it's a programming/propaganda system that once more has overstepped its boundaries, just as at the University of Illinois.

The problems with anecdotes instead of actual arguments....

So I was reading Big Hollywood's Greg Gutfeld and he has an interesting post about one of the folks that Obama trotted out in order to gain sympathy to get the unemployment benefits extension bill passed.  Much like Sarah McLaughin's commercials about abused animals, the liberals find the few folks that best fit their narrative and display them like side-show exhibits in order to try to appeal to the public emotionally rather than rationally. 

This illustrates two points about those now unfortunately occupying the White House:  first--when you have to fall back to an emotional appeal, it means that you don't have an argument or point that will stand up to scrutiny in the light of day; second--that they just don't learn that maybe investigating or looking closer at someone or an issue is a good thing.  No one bothered to vet the chick mentioned in Gutfeld's article.  No one bothered to watch the whole Sherrod tape.  No one bothered to get the facts in the Cambridge police brouhaha that became 'the Beer Summit'.  If you don't bother to learn from excruciatingly painful mistakes that means that either you can't be taught or you won't be taught.  And the refusal to learn is a very bad trait in someone who is supposed to be a leader.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

A blast from the past... Numa Numa

I'm not sure what brought the 'Numa Numa' kid to mind, but here's an earworm for you....  I remember when this video went viral about five years ago and still laugh when he starts 'breakin' it down'.

Via Breda

 Via Breda.  I'm guessing it was the yoga.  Can't help it, love it.


You are 17% hippie.
 
You're not in the lowest bracket of non-hippie-hood, but you're close.  I advise a field trip to a food co-op or a farmer's market.  Do a few interviews and take notes, because there will be a quiz next week to see if you've learned anything.

Are you a hippie?
Take More Quizzes

Monday, July 26, 2010

A Day at the Ranges...

Went to the range with Mr. B, Og, and Partner yesterday.  Spent quite a bit of time poking holes in paper with my Beretta .22 at 25 yards.  Managed to keep just about everything in the black, which I thought was pretty good considering there was a fairly strong breeze yesterday (Og said it was the perfect excuse should any of us have an off day).  I got to shoot Og's .380 (I told him I'd take REAL good care of it if he wanted to loan it to me for a year or so but just got a look and a shake of the head)--very nice and hardly any kick. 

Once we switched to the bowling pin range, the fun really started.  I like decimating targets but there's just something viscerally satisfying about having something go plunk when you shoot it.  I was 5 for 5 or 6 to 5 in knocking the pins down but just couldn't get them off the table even when shooting Mr. B's .45 (Para 1911, also very nice).  I don't even try my Taurus Millennium Pro at the bowling pin range since it's a double-action and I just can't fire quickly enough with the long trigger pull.

All told, it was a fantastic day to be outside and the only reason we left was that we were out of ammo, and that's pretty cool.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Firefox issues...

Og has conquered his issues with Firefox but Blogger seems to be having some issues now.  If you want to leave comments, I guess Opera or IE are the way to go.  I've got 3.6.8 on mine (Mr. B does as well) and there seems to be a major glitch with comments.  Any solutions out there??  Guess you'll have to email me (it's in my profile) if you have a suggestion (besides moving to Wordpress or exclusively using IE).

Saturday, July 24, 2010

I CAN believe I ate the whole thing.....

Mr. B is a fantastic cook on a regular day, but tonight he truly outdid himself.  On the menu:  grilled sharp (10 year old) cheddar, onion, and mushroom stuffed steaks (13 oz); fresh asparagus tips with a three cheese sauce; and fresh corn on the cob.  The times are not many when my manners completely desert me, but I tucked in like a starving wolf--I think he was scared I was going to attack when he came through the door from the grill with the steaks.  I'm also not one for vegetables generally, but I was scooping up asparagus as fast as I could get my fork to the plate--I actually ate the asparagus first before committing mayhem on the perfectly grilled steak (which he also covered with sauteed mushrooms and onions flavored with garlic and parsley in a butter and bacon drippings sauce--it must be noted that bacon DOES make it better).

After this meal fit for whatever deity you would choose, he hand-fed me cream puffs doused with special dark chocolate sauce.

I can't tell you when I've had a meal of this caliber--EVAH--and I've eaten at some of the finest restaurants in the country.  I'm very spoiled because he carefully crafts meals to my taste......

So now I'm just going to melt into the couch and enjoy the satiation.

Oh, and here's a picture of tonight's culinary delight......



Oh, and the lemonade was home-made also.  The only problem with such a perfect meal is that my conversation was not as sparkling because my mouth was constantly full of delicious bites of everything shown above.



That's how I feel now.....  (this was from breakfast last week, BTW)
 

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Immigration vs. Colonialization

I was reading this post from the Advice Goddess blog and realized something as I was adding my comment (I seem to be doing that a lot lately).  The discussion in question was in regards to burkhas and feminists and religious freedoms and such.  But the comments started talking about France and their ban on the burkha and I had a light go on.  France's reason for passing the ban on burkhas is because they are a symptom of immigrants not assimilating into French culture (along with not speaking the language of their new adopted land, etc.).  And I realized that these communities that refuse to even learn the rudiments and adopt just a few of the cultural norms of the place to which they emigrated are really colonies. 

In the West's zeal for fairness and multiculturalism, they (we) have allowed colonies, some of which are inimical to our way of life, to be set up under our noses.    According to wikipedia (yes I know, not the best source), colonialism is defined as follows:

Colonialism is the building and maintaining of colonies in one territory by people from another territory. Colonialism is a process whereby sovereignty over the colony is claimed by the metropole and social structure, government and economics within the territory of the colony are changed by the colonists. Colonialism is a certain set of unequal relationships, between metropole and colony and between colonists and the indigenous population.
In the case of France as well as the US, we have people coming in and setting up their own communities.  How this differs from immigration of the past, is that formerly, people would come and they would have their own neighborhoods, BUT they would learn the culture and would be able to interact with the larger community.  Now, they don't bother and they want the larger culture to change to accomodate them.

Just something to think about......

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Not terribly surprising....

Via Mr. B...

     Quiz: What Kind of Conservative Are You?

My Conservative Identity:

You are a Free Marketeer, also known as a fiscal conservative. You believe in free-market capitalism, tax cuts, and protecting your hard-earned cash from pick-pocketing liberal socialists.
Take the quiz at
About.com Political Humor

Fishbowl Smart (or not): Smart vs. smart

Borepatch has some thoughts regarding Smart vs. smart and Intelligent vs. intelligent based on a conversation over at Aratae's place.  I made a comment on Borepatch's post but didn't really want to take it political since it's his blog and all.  It seems that a lot of my comments juxtapose nicely with Aratae's blogpost regarding perspective being an important component of actual intelligence (over and above a simple IQ test).  I wrote the following at Borepatch's blog (and yes I know quoting yourself is just bad taste but it is a jumping off point for this post):

So take this a bit further, if you will. You have a bunch of kids who are told they are Smart and are in the exclusive schools and have the grades and the Mensa memberships, which 'proves' they are Smart.

However, they are fishbowl Smart. By that I mean that they are familiar with everything in that fishbowl--they are fed but don't know from where the food comes. They have shiny objects to play with and other fish who are usually just like them or are of similar temperament in order to share that particular fishbowl so their experience is limited to what's in that fishbowl.

The thing they are lacking is perspective. Kellie Pickler, in order to write those songs, has perspective. Lissa, because she's informed and from her comments, empathetic, has perspective. Many bloggers have perspective because they seek to break out of their fishbowl and visit with other fish.

In order to be truly smart, one has to question and to know what questions to ask and to know how to bring all of those things together--that takes perspective, which you cannot gain by being content in your fishbowl. It just makes you a Smart fish in a small bowl.
 I'd like to take this even further now and it's something I've blogged about before.  The eliterati in Washington D.C. right now are fishbowl Smart.  They only know their bowl and the other fish in that bowl, almost to the point of incestuousness.  We are now going to have a Supreme Court that is comprised of people from two 'elite' schools.  Most of the Congressional leadership and the executive branch are comprised of people who also attended those same two schools or had early life experiences that somehow moved them into that eliterati fishbowl--interning in Washington DC, Chicago political machine, etc.

What they lack is perspective--the ability to look beyond their fishbowl and see that there are other ways, other thoughts, that are as valid as those perpetuated in their tiny world.  That's one reason why they are trying to expand the influence of the federal government--a goldfish will grow as big as the bowl that they are in--they are trying to make a bigger bowl.  But just like a fish--anything outside of the bowl is alien and is in the realm of a 'Here Be Dragons"--it cannot be understood and is therefore evil and must either be assimiliated or destroyed. 

Part of true intelligence is knowing that you do not know everything (read Lissa's post linked above).  If you cannot acknowledge that world beyond the fishbowl, then you cannot be thought of to be truly smart.

Friday, July 16, 2010

The Old Spice Guy.....

I think that Old Spice has the funniest commercials out there right now.  I like the Old Spice Guy (whose name is Isaiah Mustafa, BTW).  No, I don't want my man to smell like him or be him, but I do enjoy watching the commercials as well as his new Youtube Channel where he answers tweets from different folks--all in a towel (and that's okay too).  His replies are just too funny and despite it all, I don't get the feeling that he's taking himself too seriously, because that would blow the whole thing.

Here's the Old Spice guy answering a tweet from Gillette Razor for your viewing pleasure (or maybe just mine--it's my blog after all):



Just an FYI--I've accepted nothing from either Gillette nor Old Spice but if either company stumbles across this site, I'd be willing to accept products.

Why it's important to know how to DEFEND yourself....

JayG links to an article from Oklahoma where a victim of a home invasion shot and killed one of the intruders and critically wounded the other.  The kicker to this??  She took NO action and was cooperative until they wanted her to undress.  She was willing to give up her belongings, but to not be raped.

Folks like Daley in Chicago and those who would take away our Second Amendment Rights would just as soon she lie back and take it rather than having the ability to change a situation so that she would not be violated in her own home.  When she pulled her gun, she shot one intruder and the other tried to take it away from her but her boyfriend intervened and 'despite taking several blows to the head' she was able to both hold on to her weapon and to get her shots off --five  in all--and held them at gunpoint until the police arrived.

She obviously knew how to use her gun--it wasn't for show.  She was willing to give up her stuff--it was only when the situation turned personal that she decided to take action--it was a last resort.  Despite her boyfriend being there, it was the gun that turned the tide.  I know that I'm a LOT smaller than most men--Mr. B and I were looking at a picture and I barely come up to his shoulder.  I simply do not have the physical strength and size that would be necessary to fight off any man--even if he's a shrimp like me--the strength ratio just isn't there.  But I am armed and that would be enough to equalize the odds between myself and an intruder who would be armed with a knife or a screwdriver (if they are armed with a gun, it'd come down to speed and accuracy, I guess).

But at least I'd have a chance, which I otherwise wouldn't.

ETA:  Read this post from Tam who discusses the problem of daytime predators in a 'no firearm zone'.   Situational awareness also goes a VERY long way to being safe.  I'm guilty of being fairly unaware once I hit the driveway and need to work on that--can't take it for granted.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

What a tempest the NAACP has started.....

It's interesting that an organization with its base and raison d'etre to perpetuate racism should accuse others of being racist.  Aside from the fact that pulling the race card so frequently makes it lose its sting (and that ticket has been punched so many times in the past year that it has lost all meaning), trying to label a group as diverse as the Tea Partiers under a racist umbrella is almost laughable in its attempts to marginalize what is coming to be most of the country (excluding most of New England and parts of California).  And the MSM is trying to do their level best to aid the NAACP by trotting out lies and those fringe folks that appear at any gathering.

Tea Partiers are united in their wish for smaller government, lower taxes, and more freedoms (free from government interference in our lives).  Are you for smaller government, fewer regulations, and lower taxes?  You're in.  We don't care about your skin tone or lack of it.  We don't care about your background (even Ivy Leaguers are welcome as long as they are for smaller government).

But nice try MSM and NAACP.  Your tactics may have worked ten or twenty years ago, but I think that too many people are actually looking at issues and are not swallowing your words-hook, line, and sinker.  People are starting to think for themselves and are able to find the information they need to actually be informed--you are no longer the Gatekeepers.  You all can bite me--I'll think for myself, thank you very much.

Hmmmm.... Looks like those electrical issues WERE NOT a problem

In this article from the Wall Street Journal, tests performed by the federal government peg most of the issues with unintended acceleration on driver error--at least when it comes to the electronic system in Toyotas.  There were still the issues with the after-market floormats and the sticky accelerator pedals, but the preliminary findings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration basically supports Toyota's assertions that their electronic systems were not at fault.

So it seems that attention-grabbing professor from SIU referenced here was wrong and his rigged system was actually something that couldn't happen unless someone deliberately sets out to create those errors.

He's lucky that Toyota just pulled some folks from advisory committees and dropped some scholarships.  With the harm he tried to do to Toyota's reputation, it could be much worse.

ht:  Mr. B

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The world gone topsy-turvy.....

I wonder if this is actually one of the signs of the apocalypse?  The French are actually making sense and the British come out with some new idiocy almost every day, like knives with no points--literally.  The French parliament has voted to approve a ban on face veils worn by some Muslim women.  They cite issues with assimilation into the french culture and also security issues as their reasons to disallow the wearing of the full veil in public.  And these things make sense to me. 

It's like the woman in Florida who actually had her picture taken in a full veil and then the courts said 'nope, won't fly'-- since that kinda negates the reason to have a picture.  There's nothing in the Quran that necessitates full veils--they are cultural artifacts, not religious (in most Muslim countries, culture and religion are closely intertwined with their political system as well)--the idea of dressing modestly taken that next illogical step.  By separating yourself from the society in which you live by dress or language or whatever, you are not becoming part of that society.  The irony is that most of these folks emigrated from theirplaces of origin because those places were apparently so horrible to them. 

I think France has finally figured out that multi-culturalism just doesn't work-that a house divided cannot stand.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Okay, this makes me feel better.... NOT!

Brought to me by the same guy who sent out a bulk email to my workplace on the day the governor signed the workplace carry law (where you can legally have your gun in your car) stating that my workplace was exempt and they would keep us all safe from harm....

I get an email (again a group email) with a warning from the Chief of Police stating that some wallets have been stolen from supposedly secure locations and for everyone to check their stuff.  The email was nebulous about the location(s) from which the wallets were lifted so I write and ask for some more detailed information.  I get back the name of the institution.  One word.  Thinking that I had not made myself clear, I write and ask specifically, which locations on a very large, multi-building property, were affected.  Again, I get back the same one-word answer.

SO.... I write again asking specifically, was it building A, B, C or multiple buildings since a nebulous warning really does no one any good.

The answer I got I think was worse than the one-word ones I'd gotten previously.

I'm 'informed' that more specific information was not included because they didn't want anyone to feel 'safe' since the bandit was mobile.  My stance is that if we know where this kind of crap happened, then perhaps someone who maybe saw something but didn't think much of it (like folks dressed as janitorial staff going into specific offices or visitors or something) might make a connection that they might not have otherwise.  But then I'm a data person and more data is better than less.

This kind of logic doesn't make me feel safer at work though!

Interesting that these hit pieces on Toyota come out now.....

There are articles in the Chronicle of Higher Education, The Chicago Sun-Times, and a host of other new outlets (the original story looks like an AP release, I think) about the Southern Illinois University professor who basically exacerbated all of the bru-ha-ha about the Toyota acceleration problem (which was dropped by the media amazingly after the California incident was shown to be a hoax).  What's not mentioned, or is downplayed, is that this professor 'rigged' a malfunction and and his results could not be duplicated by other automotive laboratories using the same rigging.

What's most interesting is that the articles referenced above are talking NOW about Toyota's 'retaliation' against the professor and SIU--in February and March.  And they are talking about resignations from advisory groups and the withdrawal of summer scholarship offers as 'retaliation'.  Are GM, Ford, and Chrylser sales still be trampled so badly by Toyota that they are having to bring out this again??  It'll be interesting to see the root-cause of this late-blooming issue/media blitz.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Something is just bugging me about this....

A president of a public university system in Indiana has asked that the American Flag be flown at half-staff to honor the passing of a former president of the university system.  Only the President and the Governor of states can ORDER a flag to half staff, but it can be ASKED to be flown at half-staff by others.  The Flag Code is just a suggestion EXCEPT in the case of government/public buildings.  It has been asked that the flags be lowered to half-staff on state-owned/public buildings.

It might be that with all of our rights for which that flag stands being trampled, I'm getting a bit prickly about things but I'm not sure that the passing of a former university system president who was in service about 11 years merits the American Flag being flown at half-staff.  I could maybe go for the state flag since he worked for a state institution.  As far as I can tell from the official obituary, this person was not a veteran or whomever was writing the obituary didn't feel that military service was important enough to mention (and in any case he did not die in active duty so that's moot).

I'm sure he was a great guy and did great things for the university, but did anything he do merit this honor usually  reserved for the passing of Presidents, Supreme Court Justices, etc.??  I don't think so.

I guess my problem is this....  if something becomes commonplace, then it's no longer the honor that it was, but is just an empty gesture.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Hmmm.... PC trumps academic freedom.... Interesting

Via Big GovernmentAn adjunct professor at the University of Illinois was fired for....  get this... telling students in an email that in Catholic doctrine, there is the belief that homosexuality is immoral.  The professor in question, being Catholic (apparently one who isn't a Sunday-only type of Catholic), also told his students that he agrees with the church's teachings. 

So one of the little PC cops handed the email to the the religion department head who then fired him (note that the little snowflake didn't even have the intestinal fortitude to do so him/herself--s/he went through an intermediary).   Coward.  Gutless wonder.

One of the associate deans of the College of LIBERAL Arts and Sciences (apparently well named--no hiding their ideology) said that the firing was justified because his statement of his beliefs violated "university standards of inclusivity".  I'm pretty sure that she doesn't understand that firing someone for stating their beliefs is hardly being inclusive.

So, another strike against free speech within the university system.  If what you have to say does not toe the ideological line set up by the liberal eliterati, then they'll just can you.  Dissent will not be tolerated.  I wonder if the reaction had been the same if it had been a Dianic Wiccan telling the students that she agrees that men should not be included in rituals to 'correct the imbalance caused by 2000 years of patriarchical rule'. 

Doubt it.

How the First and Second Amendments are Intertwined....

Via Insty, a posting on the Volokh Conspiracy about a sheriff in Iowa  (a discretionary concealed-carry gun permitting state) who denied a man his permit on the grounds that he was exercising his right to free speech but people didn't like what he was saying.  Apparently the man was a vocal supporter of the Osceola County Taxpayer Association.  In this case, a man was denied his Second Amendment rights based on a disregard for his First Amendment rights.  IN this case, the sheriff lost because his only reason for denying the man his permit was because he'd gotten more active in the public forum. 

Most people don't realize that these two are or can be so intertwined--the Second Amendment enforces the First.  If someone uses someone's free speech to deny them any of the other Rights in the Bill of Rights, then they clearly need to go back to school (I think they were going to require that the sheriff take a class on the First Amendment).

Monday, July 5, 2010

Because I'm too tired to come up with anything else....

The only disadvantage to a wickedly productive weekend is that I'm too tired and content to think of anything original.  Please to enjoy "What's Opera Doc" starring Bugs Bunny.  This was my introduction to the world of opera and I haven't gone any further (unless Bugs is in it, I'm not listening).  Thanks to Scott for bringing this to mind.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

A day of much satisfaction and learning

I posted last week that we tend to get more done by 10:00 am then most people do all day and today bore that out.  While Mr. B split wood, I transported and stacked.  I used the new tractor, which had a bit of a learning curve.....  My first trip, I put it in neutral and took off the brake.  I then proceeded to careen backwards down the hill with Mr. B riding shotgun on the side, yelling "brake,  BRAKE!" while I stomped every pedal except for the brake.  Thanks to his quick thinking and turning the wheel at the bottom of the hill, the mayhem was kept to a minimum, although I did need to blot the seat off.  Fortunately I am a fast learner so the rest of the day went without mishap.

Today I managed to stack about a thousand pounds of wood (we're making pieces/parts of the tree that landed on the barn).  My part was easy, comparatively (Mr. B split all of the stuff I stacked with an axe), but now I can look at those ricks of wood and smile with satisfaction.  More tomorrow, but Mr. B has said that he'll make breakfast first!!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Conan the Barbarian, The Musical

From a friend of mine....  I love the refrain on the song....

Please to enjoy: