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Monday, May 31, 2004

Steven continues on the subject of press bias and touches upon the issue of checks and balances. At one point he suggests that reporters may be perceived as being more left leaning than they really are because they depend on left leaning sources. So does that mean the UN - oil for food story is being buried because sources are not available? Or do reporters not see it as a big story?

People reading, hearing or seeing the news want factual information. Well, some might just want justification for their own positions rather than to hear the truth I guess, hard as that is to understand. Personally, when I'm wrong I want to hear about it as soon as possible so I can correct my position. But in any case, the press is motivated by something else, generally advertising revenue... which seems totally divorced from the need to report the truth. So what solution would provide a balance to keep bad reporting in check?

For people that get there news from Jon Stewart and Jay Leno there may be no hope.

Sunday, May 30, 2004

So an Iraqi Lt. Colonel was involved in the planning of 9-11? How come this is no surprise to me?

Why not just say everyone blogs for there own personal reasons and leave it at that?

Saturday, May 29, 2004

Is the Belmont Club, or rather the Colonel quoted, dismissing Sun Tzu too quickly? It seems to me that the urban battlefield was the environment of the spy and assassin and was addressed by Sun Tzu... and I'm afraid the enemy does understand this.

As for the theater level campaign no longer being relevant... hold on, I live in the theater. I find it very relevent indeed. I hate to be looking one way when the Chinese orbital nukes come tapping on my shoulder.

But these are just quibbles... the real meat of the article is what defines war today.

I'm Going off half cocked because of this posting about press bias.
SDB is pushing my buttons and pushing them hard. I can't even read the full article (I will later.) I've got to say my piece now (and find out that Steven covers it later and better in this same post?) The idea that any news reporter must be detached is total bullshit. The idea that anyone could or should cover something without bias is again bullshit, bullshit, bullshit. It results in nothing but lies. The solution for the problem of bias is not for the source of the bias to pretend they aren't. The solution is for opposing points of view to have the ability to effectively compete in the marketplace of ideas. The problem is that the marketplace must allow for free and open competition. We also need the bias itself to be reported so we can understand the filtering process that is happening to the news we see. Denials should not be tolerated but name calling shouldn't be tolerated either. Bias should be acknowledged and everything can go forward from there.

Monopolies happen. That's why we have antitrust which is not so much about breaking up big companies as it is about protecting the publics access to free and competitive markets.

Perhaps the real problem is years of lead in gasoline that stupified a nations ability to reason?

Politicians engage in the big lie. Politically leaning news organizations support the big lie. Everybody yells and nobody is listening. Journalism should be all about combat against every instance of the big lie when it appears. One of the things I like about Ann Coulter, looking past her outrageous sense of humor which I mostly enjoy, is that she often engages in combat against the big lies of the day. You may not agree with what she says, but she provides the reasons and facts to support her arguments, unlike others that throw facts like mud against the wall for political purposes and hope some of it sticks.

Ok... I'm becoming calmer now... I can go and finish reading Steven's article.

Wait... there's still more I need to say... In a few cases I've had the enlightening experience of being an eyewitness to some of the facts behind a story that was reported in some newspaper. My intuition is that reporters are generally not going to get all the facts right even with the best of intentions. Distortion and outright ignorance of the facts will often find it's way into an article. I would guess that more often than not these facts never get corrected. But as long as enough people engage their common sense I don't see that as a big problem.

I also want to add that the solution to the problem of lack of competition when it exists is not to force one party to be fair. The solution is to tear down any regulatory roadblocks that could unfairly muzzle the opposing viewpoints. The public should be trusted it figure things out for themselves if they have access to opposing viewpoints.

I'm looking forward to the day when hundreds (Thousands? Millions?) of citizens can produce their own network news in the same way we blog today. Of course, there is the danger of events only being seen (scene?) thru the camera lens in such a way that distorts the truth (million anything march... yeah, right!) or (the country is in flames... see all the camera angles on this one building?)

Yes the world is filled with morons, but are they the majority? Is there any hope left?

Ok, really, I need to see what Steven says now... You too!

Read the last paragraph... "Some will say that the general tendency of individual news organizations to move from objectivity to bias can be handled through competition between independent news organizations, but...[snip]...that kind of competitive system is unstable"

Yeah, he's probably right... is there a solution?

Thursday, May 27, 2004

It's not a movie!
By the comment from this student...

"It's not that big of a deal. People show stuff this violent and horrible all the time."

Perhaps that's out of context... either that, or this kid is looking at the pictures without understanding what he's seeing.

Is this the match?
Many people give little regard to China because on average it's a very poor country. I think people are greatly misjudging the potential of this country. I also think the terrorist threat may lull us with regard to the threat China may represent.

We shall see...

Baldilocks in reference to Al Gore
I almost said 'on Gore' but on reflection decided that just doesn't work... Anyway, it would be easy to dismiss these political speeches (Rachel Lucas has link) because they really are so blatant, but then I think of that great orator of the 1930's... You know, that charming little fella with the funny mustashe... and how the masses followed him. What is it about people that they would rather follow liars, true liars not the ones that might just be misinformed, than to believe the truth?

The fact is some politicians repeatedly use a method the little tramp recommended himself... known as the big lie. If you attribute something to your opponent and say it loud and long enough people will start to believe that it is what was said or done. Unfortunately, most people and very definitely including myself, often can't remember where they heard something or find a reference to it to refute the liar. All I can say is thank goodness for a host of bloggers and not to forget... Ann Coulter.

If architects worked like programmers...
After the building was up they'd have to add a new third floor and make the fifteenth floor three times as wide.

Peeves... at Work
Read that title in a strong announcers voice (yeah, it's fun that way.) Sometimes procedures need to come from the top (or am I wrong for not just implementing something like the procedure myself and hoping others catch on?) Here's the issue. I work for a software company that likes to shoot from the hip. Our 'designer' says it takes him too long to write things up and he'd rather just explain code changes over the phone. I see a lot of problems with this, but my argument falls on deaf ears.

Now I do push to have everything documented in a bug tracker (which some people still feel takes to much of their time) but that doesn't address the issue of my peeve.

My contention is that we should have two documents that currently don't exist. The most important is a change by functional area doc. The idea being that this would provide an evergreen document that both programmers and support/testing personnel can reference as a standard for how things should work (that everyone can agree on, program for and test against.) By writing it functionally (with crossrefs where appropriate) rather than strictly chronologically we have less chance of things falling through the cracks.

It should include not only how things should work, but an explanation of the reasoning behind why it should work that way. These reason's should be a summary of the reason's given in a second document that is chronological. This second doc would have the change request with following commentary by at least the programmer that will be assigned to implement (the team would be better) and by the support personnel that get the best feedback from customers.

Hmm... I think I've convinced myself to take on this first document just for myself and see if I'm not being practical... which is the argument I keep bashing my head against.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Why mob rule is bad -or- opinion polls are not distilled wisdom.
I know I should provide a link, but I haven't been posting lately. Is it true the US is planning to destroy one prison just so we can build another? Let the Iraqis decide what to do with it. Their lives require them to be a little more practical.

Thursday, May 20, 2004

Which point?
Rand says this article misses the point.

With regard to it he writes, "The problem with this, of course, is that it presumes that the only goal is to go to Mars. He seems to recognize no intrinsic value in returning to the moon, or in establishing a base there."

Certainly food for thought. Here's my take.

If we have an objective in going to the moon, then that's a separate mission to be evaluated for its own sake. The thrust of the article seems to be pointing out the very plain truth that if going to Mars, the Moon is a costly sidetrack. While it's true that some things may be dual use, and we certainly would want to take advantage of that, we don't want to create fictictious justifications for going to the Moon in regard to a Mars mission that don't pass the laugh test.

Many people that agree that we should be a space faring civilization, disagree about the means of achieving that. It's a question of what should we do in the short term that gives us the best long term advantage. It's sort of like one of those old strategy games where you have many options but few are optimal.

It would be plain stupid to attempt to go to Mars without first going to the Moon... but we've been to the Moon folks. I would also submit that the cost of a base on the Moon will cost more than the cost of a base on Mars. The reason I believe that is incentive, the real mother of invention. Very little manufacturing is going to happen on the Moon in our lifetime. Anything they need is easier to order from the Earth. On Mars I believe things will be different. One of the reasons why is because I advocate that the trip be one way, keeping an option available for any that wish to return. Put twenty people on the surface of Mars, with various specialties represented, and you have a colony. The Moon is a likely vacation spot, but Mars is a likely home.

What about O'Neal colonies instead? Look at the ISS, that's the state of the art today. O'Neal colonies suffer some of the same drawbacks as the Moon, perhaps more.

Eventually, we may do everything. Today however, the next baby step is Mars.

Another State vs. DOD post.

U.S. Raids HQ of Iraqi Politician Ahmad Chalabi
Earlier I wondered why Bremer seemed to be stonewalling the 'Oil for Fraud' investigation. This article doesn't shed much light on it, but does suggest things are happening behind the scenes. Is there a fight between the state department and the pentagon that's being fought by proxy in Iraq?

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

Important and Strange...Goodbye sunshine

Now that wasn't so hard, was it? Amateur rocket fired into space

Sunday, May 16, 2004

Incredible stories require substantial credible supporting evidence not to mention careful consideration of discrediting evidence. The main risk with incredible stories, if they happen to be true, is that people dismiss them out of hand without really digging into the evidence.

Why do people believe in any story about the Noah's Ark, even a regional one? Because there is supporting evidence beyond the record in the bible. After four thousand years, what kind of evidence might survive? It may be coincidence that the oldest living trees are about that old. Stories of the flood are not just regional, cultures around the world contain elements of the story suggesting they have a common source.

What is it about the ark story that makes it hard to believe? Eight people living on a boat for a year with a bunch of animals? That's not that incredible at all. You can certainly adjust parameters so that it's not possible... too many animals and not enough space for food, but you can also assume parameters that would allow for a years stay. Is it incredible for it to rain for 40 days? Not to me, I lived in Seattle. No, the only incredible part is the levels the water reached, covering the whole Earth and the question of where did the water go if it did happened.

Ask yourself a childs question with your adult mind. How much does a cloud weigh? Now how much water could the thermosphere hold? What would be the effect on geology if that much water were released in a short period of time? I admit, I don't know.

Most geological events happen over a long period of time and from a human perspective seem to change hardly at all, but sometimes things happen a lot faster (ask Pompeii.) It happens we do have evidence of a worldwide upheaval. There is a worldwide layer of iridium. This might be the result of a large meteor strike, but it could have also come from the Earths mantle if the plates of the crusts were being pushed around, churning up some of the metal found at the base of the crust.

As an aside, as I'm writing this I watching a discovery channel investigation of another incredible story about the Trojan horse. How did a couple of dozen infantry have any effect on a battle where thousands were behind the walls of Troy I wonder? Anyway, back to the flood.

The only way I can see the account being true is if before the flood the oceans were shallow and the mountains were not pushed up as they are today. Of course, the fact is they are as tall as they are and considerable force WAS involved in pushing them to the levels they are currently at. If spread over a year, the tallest mountains on earth would require about 50 feet per day to grow from sea level to the present height. We could assume they started out above sea level and grew for over a year, which reduces the growth to less than 50 feet per day. In any case, it's possible as far as I know.

Moses wrote the story of the flood from handed down stories (he wasn't alive at the time for a personal account.) So even if you agree that he was an honest source (considering how candid he was in recording even his own faults) you might question the accuracy of a story that passed from one generation to the next.

To answer VR directly... yes, I do believe this incredible story is true, although I don't know the exact details. I believe it was more than a regional event for a number of reasons... one being that I don't believe a year in the ark would be required if it were anything less. But more important is that I have come to trust the credibility and authority of bible and it's stories, which continues to find new support from modern scientific discoveries.

In other words, if you ignore the story of Noah for a moment and look at other biblical stories, what direction has archeology and other science tended toward with regard to biblical stories. Let me just assert for brevity that we continue to discover things that support the veracity of recorded history in the bible. I tend to trust sources that are trustworthy... I find the bible to be considerably trustworthy and more so with the passing of time, which I understand to be contrary to what many people believe. Then again, if you only have biased sources, are you likely to believe what's true. Have you ever read a newspaper account of an event that you had personal info about? How's the media doing with Iraq these days? In my experience, journalism is generally of very low quality, but I don't think it has to be that way.

I also believe stars exist which have diameters that would swallow the orbit of the Earth... now that's an incredible story!

Friday, May 14, 2004

The David Crockett I never knew.

One day in the House, a bill was taken up appropriating money for the benefit of a widow of a distinguished naval officer. Several beautiful speeches had been made in its support. The speaker was just about to put the question when Rep. David Crockett arose:
"Mr. Speaker--I have as much respect for the memory of the deceased, and as much sympathy for the suffering of the living, if there be, as any man in this House, but we must not permit our respect for the dead or our sympathy for part of the living to lead us into an act of injustice to the balance of the living.

"I will not go into an argument to prove that Congress has not the power to appropriate this money as an act of charity. Every member on this floor knows it. We have the right as individuals, to give away as much of our own money as we please in charity; but as members of Congress we have no right to appropriate a dollar of the public money. I am the poorest man on this floor. I cannot vote for this bill, but I will give one week's pay to the object, and if every member of Congress will do the same, it will amount to more than the bill asks."

Davy knew that to take money without consent was to be a thief. You can have a legit government without consent (otherwise it would be impossible to have any government at all) but you can't act immorally and claim to have morals.

Is it time for a scare quote collection USS Clueless

This may become a list or not, we shall see...
CNN.com - Fake abuse photos: Editor quits - May 14, 2004

I guess I haven't been looking that hard?...
ABCNEWS.com : Bush to Present 'Clear Strategy' on Iraq

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Perhaps junk DNA isn't?

Army Spc. Joe Roche asks us to be brave.

How to teach a boy.

Volokh talks about Rumsfeld stripping the rights of Americans and asks how we can trust him to preserve the rights of Iraqis. Since the Geneva conventions only apply to those enemies that abide by them, what rights do these hate filled enemies of civilization have? Is it possible by their actions they have waived certain rights, like life, liberty and the pursuit of butchery?

Steven shows us how to test what appears to be an untestable question...

"To settle the question of reliability, the Royal Asiatic Society in 1857 sent a newly discovered cuneiform inscription to four experts, Rawlinson, Hincks, William Henry Fox Talbert, and Jules Oppert, with the request that they work on it independently. The sealed envelopes containing the four solutions were opened at a formal meeting. In all essential points their translations agreed."

Then points out why some are not willing to submit to such a test.

Why would Bremer Cuts Funds for Investigation into the oil for fraud scam?

The Lessons of Enemies

All I can say is... Yes.

From Nick Berg Death *WORSE* Than Video - Throat Cutting Scene Edited a commentor made this suggestion:

IDEA:
The people who beheaded Mr. Berg were wearing hoods. Let's shoot anyone wearing a hood on sight. Then take the hood off and say: "Nope, wasn't him." Repeat as necessary.


My question to all... are we at war or are we not?

Monday, May 10, 2004

An idea whose time has come...Iraqi Court TV

A question of standards
I've got 3 klunky old computers I've collected over the years at home. One that my wife and son shared with a dial up connection which every few months I'd have to reformat because they've gotten adware, spyware, virii and so many popups per second that the poor thing would become unusable. Then I've got the two old machines I use for work. Since I work remotely I can't afford to be without, so I had one as a spare which I'm now using because my main computer had a harddisk crash... in the boot sector of course, so while I may be able to recover much of the 80G of data, I can't load an OS on it.

I bought a copy of XP for one of these machines, but have since lost the registration numbers, so that disc is a coaster. I put Win98 on my two backup machines and hope my XP machine keeps running (but it's making funny noises and the 3.5 diskette drive no longer works.) My wifes decided she wants me to buy her a laptop.

I decided to make a few purchases of my own... a rare treat... so I bought another hard drive, a wireless router and Norton Ghost. Yeah, I've been doing all of this without Ghost which brings me to the reason for this post.

Why are hardware drivers separate from the hardware? Three reasons are usually given. First, because they may need to be upgraded, but is that a reason to not have an initial driver built into the device? Second, because of cost, but I think memory is cheap enough and drivers are small enough that it doesn't make as much sense as it might have at one time. Third, different OS's require different drivers... but that's just the second issue with added memory.

The real reason is the fourth reason... the manufacturers don't count my wasted time, which may only be a few hours (or days) every year, but multiplied by all the others that go through these same hassles probably costs millions in aggravation alone.

Then the fifth reason, nobodies sat down and figured out a standard (plug and play, are you kidding?)

Well, I did a google on "Ratification by plebiscite" and found this interesting article... A Brief History of Texas. I wonder what this is all about?

Everybody reads things through the lens of their own perceptions. I personally have a very lateral thinking way of looking at things, very odd from most peoples perspective. Ironically, it takes an atheist to help me to appreciate some biblical thoughts. In the past, SDB has given me insights into the king of the north and the king of the south, althought this was not his intention and I'm sure he was completely unaware that his comments touched upon biblical prophecy. This article also reflects biblical thought in that the bible is very supportive of men and woman being what they are, and strip joints not withstanding, strongly supports the physical and emotional needs of both. However, it was his comment regarding the difference between latino's and anglo's that got my attention.

I think his perception is generally correct, which leads me to ask myself, what could possibly account for this? So now, lets go down the rabbit hole and I will share the thoughts that occured to me...

Biblically, there is an unseen realm that exists and has order. The bible states that Satan is the ruler of the earth (contrary to the generally held view of most of those that call themselves christians.) It also suggests that angels (demons under Satan) have jurisdictional control of cities and countries (it refers to battles taking place between angels with regard to cities.) In other words, there is a hierarchy of governmental control of the earth down to at least the city level, filled with demons under Satans rulership. Evidence of this can also be found in that heads of state often refer to this influence, from the Czar's to Hilter and even first ladies (both Hillary and Nancy) have accounts that appear to be influence from the supernatural.

So, is it possible that the demon in charge of the USA wants the most powerful nation on earth to be filled with emasculated men? I wonder if an atheist could fit this into some holistic model?

I have no idea what The Book Thing is all about even having seen it in quite a few sights, but I don't see the harm, so...

1. Grab the nearest book.
2. Open the book to page 23.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the text of the sentence in your journal along with these instructions.

"Ratification by plebiscite or representative conventions can provide an effective rule of recognition to the population and can help to attain a general acquiescence to the constitutional regime, though these procedures are far from indispensable." --Restoring the Lost Constitution: The presumption of liberty, Randy E. Barnett

This book was an eye-opener for me. Even though it really came as no surprise, it seems the people in government who should know better have been ignoring the meaning of the written constitution at the cost of liberty and the 9th amendment.

Saturday, May 08, 2004

Ok, so we know that a kids brain is not fully cooked. Parents naturally take this into account when raising a child. However, to say someone is not fully mature just means that the parents share responsibility for a childs actions (and maturity doesn't magically happen at the age of 18 or 21.) When the government interferes with the parent, then the government takes on some of that responsibility... but who exactly is the government? How does it assume it's responsibility? How is it held accountable? Certain acts can't be allowed to have such a fuzzy determination of responsibility and I think murder is one of those acts. The person committing murder is responsible regardless of age (because murder, which is not the same as manslaughter, involves intent.)

Programmable DNA

Talk about one small step.

Friday, May 07, 2004

It's like that TV gameshow The Weakest Link, the strongest never wins... why? Because the weaker players will always vote them out of the game first. Now imagine this game were played between nations. Every country in the world were asked to select the U.S. president. Who would they choose?

This article again makes me ask, how did our own state department get to be the enemy and when are we going to fix it?

Thursday, May 06, 2004

permalink It's about time I figured out how to do permalinks. If anybody cares to enlighten me, your help will be appreciated. This isn't doing what I want.

I just had an AHA moment thanks to Michael Williams.

His discussion of music and sports could have been my own, except I imagine he functions on a much higher level than I do. Fat as I am, I enjoy playing sports, but to sit in front of a TV and watch is my idea of torture. While I enjoy music, almost any flavor will do, whereas my wife has very refined tastes.

But that's a sidebar, the real AHA was in noticing how certain people seemed to want to proclaim to all, "me too, I'm Sparticus!... er, I'm a holistic thinker." Years ago, when I discovered I had the INTJ personality type, it was a revelation for me. Before that, I always thought, "why am I so different from every other person I've ever met. My thinking process did not seem to work like anyone elses. What's wrong with me?" It turns out there was nothing at all wrong with me. I just have a personality type that is less represented in the population... perhaps 2%. Perhaps even more rare, because I was the only non-SP to understand a scenario presented in the management seminar I attended in the same way the SP's did.

Now if you have a personality type that represents 10% to 20% of the population you're much more likely to find people that get what you mean. OTOH, looking for that 1 person in a hundred that thinks like you do... and then on top of that, shares some of your core values... well, that can be a lonely thing.

Michael talks about a missing empathic connection for some type of aberrant personality types, but in some limited ways that could be preferred to having empathy, but being unable to effectively convey your thoughts and perceptions to other people. Ignorance is bliss? The internet provides a way for those outlier personalities to connect, where a few percent of millions of people can be quite a large group. Will this change the dynamic of things? Will we eventually reach a tipping point? Is it important? I think it is, because democracy may depend on it.

Has anybody done a study to determine which personality types are most effective in spotting the liars among us (those seeking or holding public office for example?) I think I'm fairly good at it, and I think other people are good at it, but I see a vocal group that doesn't seem to be able to do it all or in a very limited way. Objectively, this vocal group does present a certain level of intelligence, but seem to lack the ability to concentrate on a single point long enough to determine the trueness of it. Or they focus on one point that seems to buttress an argument and totally ignore a mountain of other evidence that denies the argument.

For this I have no AHA because frankly it confuses me.

How important is it to get it?

I was watching THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION the other day. A great movie on several levels, but if you've read the book it's based on first you would wonder how anyone would consider Tim Robbins for the lead part. On the other hand, Morgan Freeman seemed perfect, even though he is representing an irishman from the book (a detail I never noticed when watching the movie!) Toward the end of the movie, Andy (played by Robbins) after many years in prison, learns information that may prove his innocence and brings this to the attention of the warden. The wardens response is to put Andy in isolation for a month and kill the inmate that would testify to the new information. After the month, the warden appears and lets Andy know he's going to stay in isolation for another month. Earlier in the movie, Andy has shown isolation of a few weeks to be a cake walk because he has music stored away in his mind to keep him company. However, these last two months take their toll leading to the resolve to finally act to redeem himself.

What is it about isolation that harms us?

Steven Den Beste has a great post about what frustrates him in the way some readers respond to his posts with the conclusion that some people just don't get it (Forests and Trees) because they pay attention to unimportant details rather than perceiving the whole of the argument.

One of SDB's other devoted readers point out how holistic thinkers confront details with respect to the models they've built in their minds...

1. It fits into my model in a way which wasn’t at first obvious to me.
2. I must revise my model to account for this detail.
3. It isn’t relevant to my model.
4. It refutes my model – i.e. my model is wrong.

Of these four, the third is the type of detail that SDB (and humanity in general I think) finds annoying. The others three actually are welcomed and add to his energy levels.

SDB says the thing that gets him down is...

"I won't reach every reader no matter how hard I try. I don't even expect to reach the majority. But if nearly all the mail I get about a specific post is pedantic, then it suggests that I didn't reach hardly anyone. If that goes on and on, post after post, it makes me feel as if I'm not succeeding overall in what I'm trying to do when I write for this site."

Some people act as if intelligent people are somehow anti-social, but this passage hints at the falsity of that assumption. Steven exhibits social behavior in wanting to reach out and communicate his thoughts to people and is frustrated when people seem not to get it. My response to Steven's frustration is a desire to express compassion and understanding, but this is likely to be frustrating for me. First because his far reaching intellect is not likely to have missed the points of understanding that I might contribute (I suppose this is the unspoken fifth item in the list above and could be added to the third in being mildly frustrating.) Second because compassion itself is unwelcome in many cases... when it's out of proportion to the need, or comes from a strange source (a stalker perhaps?)

All humans have a rather limited mental capacity.

It may be said that everything that is, is part of the whole so that no detail is unimportant... but that misses the point that the abstract models that we fashion for understanding require that we leave out details... or as Steven points out a tree being a beech or aspen has no relevance to the forest, when it's the forest he's focusing on.

Steven ends by saying "Perhaps it meant that the forests I've been describing weren't really very important, or weren't there are all. Perhaps I failed to write well enough about them to make them real for my readers, and all they could see was trees. If nearly all the comments I receive about some article are nitpicks, it means that article failed. If that goes on day after day, post after post, then I'm failing as a writer."

No Steven, get that idea out of your head... there is absolutely no way you could ever fail as a writer, with the possible exception that you stop writing... in which case the townspeople are going to grab their pitchforks and light their torches and storm your castle... yeah, lot's of email!

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Greed and Envy are not economic considerations The Angry Economist points out.

I would like to add that the rich can be envious and the poor can be greedy and a single person can easily be both. Actually, I suspect it's fairly common for those that have the one emotion in abundance are likely to also have the other. What I find interesting (although that word doesn't do it justice) is how people allow their emotions and self-interests to so completely blind them to elements of the truth. I guess that's why the bible says for some, the truth is not in them?

I'm also jealous that he has such a perfect tagline... "You can ignore economics, but economics isn't going to ignore you."

I agree with this conclusion regarding Representative Charles Rangel although I find it difficult to use John Kerry's middle name to describe his veracity... but it is certainly well said, as is the entire article.

What Jen's brother told her...

"He told me even if he knew for a fact that he was going to die, he'd still go. He then explained that there is this bond in the military where a leader would do everything in his/her power to make sure everyone makes it home, even if they had to die. You'd give your life just to ensure the soldier next to you, just recently married and has a young child at home -- makes it back alive."

This man loves his neighbor and this neighbor, for one, thanks him.

Monday, May 03, 2004

One of many gems found and worth repeating...

Rand points out that purple hearts are only valid for enemy fire. Although, since JF'nK technically is the enemy, I'm not sure this is true.


Mad Cows and Illegal Aliens
'Is it just me or does anyone else find it amazing that our government can track a cow born in Canada almost three years ago, right to the stall where she sleeps in the state of Washington. Also they track her calves to their stalls. But they are unable to locate 11 million illegal aliens wandering around our country.'
--Unknown

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