Saturday, March 30, 2013

It Won't Hurt Anyone If Ken And Roger Marry

Seriously. It won't. Individual gay couples marrying won't hurt anyone. In fact, we won't even know it happened.

Similarly, it won't hurt anyone except the baby if Suzy has an abortion*. Indeed, Suzy's abortion, if Suzy is unmarried, will reduce the number of children born out of wedlock by one. That's a stone-cold fact.

So what happened? Suzy was allowed to have abortions and everything went to the dogs. How is it possible that something that individually wasn't a problem ended up helping to fundamentally redefine sexual relationships across society to the point where the Atlantic now publishes anguished articles where women wonder were all the good men went?

How is it possible that our mountain of 55,000,000 corpses of infants, almost all of which would have been born to unmarried mothers, didn't result in a reduction of illegitimate kids, but coincided with a huge increase? Each individual decision went in the "right" direction and there were 55 million of them! It boggles the mind to think that 55 million slain, illegitimate children didn't cut the overall rate.
Let's make my grandparents with their 30+ offspring equivalent to two trannies. We'll never even meet the trannies or know they got married. What could go wrong?
* - This is a gross oversimplification as it harms all kinds of people psychologically, but let's just go with the most trivial premise.

Friday, March 29, 2013

EPL Game Of The Week

I almost forgot this one which will be on ESPN2 at 0530 PT:

Sunderland (31) vs. Manchester United (74): Fresh coffee in my Newcastle United mug? Check. Fried eggs? Check. English muffins with orange marmalade? Check. Our Maximum Leader laying in the room in a languorous fashion? Check.

The Mackems being torn to tiny bits by Manchester United like a stuffed animal toy given to an amped-up, 90# pit bull on Christmas morning*? Check, check and triple check!

This one's going to be fun to watch. The perfect early Saturday morning appetizer for the rest of the weekend action.

* - I've done this one. It was hilarious! Like dropping the stuffed toy into a disposal.

What To Watch In The EPL This Weekend

Thank God, the English Premier League is back in action. I practically died last weekend without it.

Since I normally check out the games at the last minute and then try to decide which ones to watch on-demand while avoiding finding out the scores, I figured I'd get in front of the situation and do a short blog post listing the games in order of how viewable they might be.

I'm only giving you the games available on The numbers in parenthesis are the team's points to date. Higher is better. The three teams with the lowest points at the end of the season will be relegated (demoted) to the league below. This is a very bad thing as it kills their revenue next year. Teams with few points this time of year will play like fiends.

Watch the whole thing

Manchester City (59) vs. Newcastle (33): Man City is supposed to make short work of the lads. Man City is a titan and the Magpies are a MASH ward with more injuries than anyone else in the league. Watch it anyway. It's Newcastle.

Southampton (31) vs. Chelsea (55): Chelsea is always fun to watch and Southampton have overachieved enough to make this interesting. Can they pull off the upset and stun Chelsea? Chelsea needs a win to stay in the last slot for a Champions League berth and Southampton is only 4 points above relegation. Expect fireworks.

Aston Villa (30) vs. Liverpool (45): Can Villa escape relegation? They've had some thrilling come-from-behind wins lately and look to sneak out of danger. Can Suarez score goals for Liverpool and not flop around on the ground in fake contortions of pain and then pout when he doesn't get a penalty called? It's anyone's guess! Also: Liverpool needs this game to stay in the hunt for a European tournament spot and Villa needs this game to avoid relegation. Both sides are going to bring it in a big way.

Watch the last half

Wigan (27) vs. Norwich (34): Wigan is playing for their lives and Norwich can be a bit of fun. If the game turns out to be a stinker with no one doing anything in your first five minutes of viewing, slide to the end and see what happens.

Watch only if there's nothing else to do and you're desperate for just a little more soccer

West Ham (33) vs. West Brom (44): Slightly worse than a rerun of Pawn Stars, but better than weeding the yard.

Don't watch under any circumstances

Arsenal (50) vs Reading (23): Reading is going down and probably won't give Arsenal much of a fight.Since we don't like Arsenal, this game is bound to be a disappointment.

Everton (48) vs. Stoke (34): Never watch a Stoke game unless your favorite team is involved. They are so boring that time will actually move backwards while you watch and the game will never end.

There. That's my handicapping of the weekend fun. Enjoy!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

I Love RealPlayer

... because it turns my Galaxy S3 into an awesome audio program device.

I'm not sure what prompted it, but lately I've gotten back into the old Green Acres TV show. I remember seeing it when it was first on, but not thinking much about it. Some years back, I heard James Lileks call it the most surreal program ever on TV and decided to check it out again. Sure enough, it was sublimely surreal. Eddie Albert is the only sane person on the show and everyone else lives in this strange semi-reality.

I don't have the time to sit and watch episodes these days, but I do have time to listen to them and Green Acres makes for excellent audio comedy-drama. Since I already know the characters and sets and there was very little physical comedy involved, I don't miss much by hearing the episodes instead of seeing them. Creating audio versions of them is where RealPlayer comes in.

When you download the RealPlayer, you get a YouTube video extractor and a media converter as well. After installation, when you hover over a YouTube video, you get a little link above the upper right-hand corner of the video that says Download This Video. Click on that and RealPlayer will extract the video from YouTube and put it on your hard drive. Once completed, you can convert that to MP3 using the RealConverter. With Dropbox, I can make that file available to my phone where I download it and can listen to it while I drive, while I work, wherever.

With all the shows available on YouTube these days, there's no shortage of things you can convert into radio dramas with this process. It certainly breaks up the monotony of music, books and podcasts.

If you've got a better process for doing this, let me know. In the meantime, here's my favorite Green Acres episode of all time, "Old Mail Day".

Equality Now!

I just couldn't resist this one.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Ben Carson, Juan Williams and Gay Marriage

If you are a frequent visitor to The Scratching Post, I just want to say upfront that, no, these posts are not written by a robot that spits out the exact same blog post over and over again with the details changed to match the day's news.

With that one out of the way, on to the same old thing.

I engaged someone on Twitter recently who challenged me to reconcile my Catholic faith's commandment to love my fellow man with my opposition to gay marriage. As I seem unable to use words sparingly, I took a great many tweets to tell him that it is precisely my love for my fellow man that drives my opposition. The traditional, nuclear family is the bedrock of civilization and it should not be equated with anything else. Right on schedule, an interview with Ben Carson and an essay by Juan Williams came along.

Here's a bit of Ben.
(W)hat has made Carson a hero to opinion leaders like Juan Williams and Allen West is his courage — shared by Bill Cosby and Clarence Thomas — to speak honestly about inner cities' most vexing problem: Family implosion. 
Raised by a single mother, Carson says his family situation was the exception to the rule in the 1950s. Today, absent fathers are an epidemic — 80 percent of Detroit children are raised in single-parent homes — at the center of Detroit's pathologies: Child poverty, low high school graduation rates, 49 percent adult illiteracy, sky-high crime rates. 
"It wasn't anywhere near that intense in the inner cities back during the time when you had intact families," Carson says of his childhood. "It didn't have so much to do with the economic status as it did with whether or not you had that intact nuclear family. When you don't have that, you're like a ship out to sea without a rudder."... 
"We've pretty much given away our sense of values for the sake of political correctness," Carson laments. "In a politically correct world, there is no gold standard in terms of a family situation. If (youth) don't have a well-established, intact family with lots of good values, they're going to get them from . . . negative peers."
And now some Juan*.
In speaking about social breakdown in those minority communities, the president put the gun issue in the context of high rates of out-of-wedlock births that lead to high rates of childhood poverty. "I wish I had a father who was around and involved," the president said, in words that echoed loudly through black and Latino neighborhoods nationally because he revealed a pain so common, yet so rarely confessed, among young people of color. 
The shame and silence is enforced by civil-rights leaders who speak in support of gun control but never about a dysfunctional gangster-rap culture that glorifies promiscuity, drug dealers and the power of the gun... 
Almost 50 years ago, when the 1964 Civil Rights Act was passed, the national out-of-wedlock birthrate was 7%. Today it is over 40%. According to the CDC, the out-of-wedlock birthrate for white children was just 2% in the 1960s. Today it is 30%. Among black children, the out-of-wedlock birthrate has skyrocketed from 20% in the 1960s to a heartbreaking 72% today. The Hispanic out-of-wedlock rate, which has been measured for a much shorter period, was below 40% in 1990 and stands at more than 50% as of the 2010 census.
So the experiment is over and we now know that the traditional, married family is the key to civilization. It has no peers. So what are we all in a lather about? Are we shaking our fists and marching for stronger families and a return to traditional values? No. We're prancing about, waving signs, trying to equate gay marriage and traditional marriage.

I dunno, it seems to me that if we wanted to show our love for children, women and minorities, we might want to totally endorse the foundation upon which a stable and productive society is built.

If you really cared about civil rights, you might want to care about everyone's civil rights, not just the gays'.

His civil rights trump yours. If you don't agree, you're a hate-filled bigot.
* - Some Juan, get it? SomeJuan? Someone? Get it? No? Sigh. I thought that was a pretty good one. Oh well, back to the drawing board.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Gay Marriage At The Supreme Court

So, as I understand it, the Supreme Court is deciding whether or not states can define marriage as between one man and one woman.

That means it's possible that they could rule than you can't define marriage that way.

Have we gone completely mad?

Hyaluronic Acid Injections In Cats

Our Maximum Leader has been suffering from painful arthritis in her right elbow for some time. Late last week, the problem worsened to the point where her leg was collapsing under her as she tried to walk or climb small steps. She had changed her gait, trying to reduce the pain and her shoulder was so far out of alignment that the leg couldn't handle the stress.

I thought she might be done for. It was unbearable to see her in such agony.

We took her in to see her normal vet who referred us to a local expert. They injected her with hyaluronic acid* and steroids. The effects were better than could ever have hoped.

At the vet and in great pain.

At home after the injection. Relaxed and happy.
Once the trauma of the visit and treatment had worn off, her mood was about a thousand percent better than it had been in months. She was cheerful and loving. She was back at her normal habits, checking the house and yard for interesting things to do and making sure she was with us wherever we went. She's such a happy cat right now - there's no doubt she remembers what the pain was like and is beside herself with joy that it's gone.

So are we.

* - I'm pretty sure this was the acid. Looking it up, it makes sense. I don't have the treatment paperwork in front of me right now.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Your Father, The Drone

I had a blog post all written with a lead describing the localized descent into barbarism seen in some urban locales, but to tell you the truth, it's getting tiresome to write it and if I'm finding it tiresome, you must be utterly bored with it. With that in mind, I'll just jump to the payoff.

Since we can't expect people to control themselves, the next logical step is drones.

Trying to pick a good quote from that link is almost impossible. It's so chock-full of totalitarian justifications that you really need to read the whole thing to get the sense of what's going on here. In any case, I'll give you a sample.
“Everybody wants their privacy, but I don’t know how you’re going to maintain it,” (New York Mayor Michael) Bloomberg said on his weekly radio show. “It’s just we’re going into a different world, uncharted, and, like it or not, what people can do, what governments can do, is different ... you can’t keep the tides from coming in.”
I love the mood of the statement - it's so relaxed. It's a shrug of the shoulders, a weary shake of the head, a rueful smile and a contract to a drone manufacturer so the police of East St. Louis, Camden, New York or wherever can pick up the latest surveillance tools to watch over a population gone feral.

Here, Sandra Fluke endorses Condor Aerial Optics' line of drones so she doesn't have to deal with the harvest of the lifestyle she endorses.
Mind you, Mayor Bloomberg's neighborhood won't need the drones, the crime isn't happening there. The drones are needed for the other parts of town, the places where moral behavior cannot be expected because ... because .... because Root Causes.

This weekend, Charles over at DDE wrote a fabulous piece comparing the moral foundations of capitalism and socialism. Here's a tidbit:
All leaders are tempted by the easier, "more pragmatic" collectivist path. They are tempted by the proven path of tyranny over the individual.

Dividing individuals from freedom is simple. Use either force or deception.

Where free people are more powerful than the government, interrupt the (sequence of events - see his post for the proper graphic) with wild promises and temptations.
I would add the following: And when the temptations take hold, physically separate yourself from the masses and monitor / control their behavior so you can live in luxury, far from the devastation.

Drones are a godsend to these people.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

We Need 300 Million Different Versions Of "Mein Kampf"

... according to the twerps in academia. They don't quite understand that, of course, but then again they don't understand a lot of things.

Over at Inside Higher Ed, there's a post about white men feeling alienated in academia with this lovely tidbit inside.
The preconceived notions and biases apparent in the reactions of that student's peers spoke to the overall takeaway of Miles, who is university ombudsman at Indiana University-Purdue University Columbus.

“We’re all unhappy – apparently that’s what equality looks like,” she said. “Every other group feels discriminated against as well, and when having these conversations with people who are members of these other groups, it’s important that you understand that.”
We're all unhappy and that's what equality looks like? I guess that for the ethnic studies departments at our major universities, this is success - everyone is miserable and blames everyone else. Let's see, obsessions with racial alienation and endless ethnic classifications, where have we heard that before?

For this fellow, it was a toss up between Reich Chancellor and head of the Aryan Studies Department at Yale.
Maybe we'd be less unhappy about race if we stopped talking about it all the time and just got on with our lives.

Nahhhh. We need more conversations about race. To be specific, we need more conversations about my race and how your race has been screwing mine for years.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

I Don't Know What They're Saying, But All Of The Possible Interpretations Creep Me Out

From our spam mailbag comes this bit of sickening drivel.
Additionally, it features a sailor bandeau top using sailor man skirted base and is particularly more simple as compared to the ribbed edges of fleshlight

Friday, March 22, 2013

In Need Of A Caption

The Creative Cloud twitterers are looking for a caption for this photo:

Here are my entries so far:

  1. Proof positive that graffiti is rubbish
  2. Why Michelangelo didn't work in graffiti
  3. "And then the voices in my head just stopped"
  4. "You were right. It took 4 coats to cover it. I owe you a Coke."
And your caption is ...

She's Just Better Than I Am, That's All

Renee is awesome.

She's an excellent writer - well organized compositions and stylistically solid. I step my game need up to.

Good Lord, she's got me so intimidated that my grammar is falling apart!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Things You Never Want To Hear Said About Your Country

During the Euro 2012 tournament last summer, I made the mistake of rooting for Ireland. They were obliterated in the first round and never gave anyone even a hint of trouble. Leading up to the games, I found an Irish radio station on the Interweb Tubes and tuned in during my daily commute. Yesterday, just for grins, I found an Irish podcast - Today with Pat Kenny - to enjoy on the way home from work.

Pat's show was all about the Cyprus fiasco where a financial bailout of the nation was being predicated on an instant 7-10% levy on all bank deposits. The citizens were being looted without warning and the end result of the plan was a series of bank runs despite the fact that the plan was never implemented. On Pat's show, very near the beginning, we heard this immortal line:
"Technocrats from the Ministry of Finance presented the Troika with a draft plan ..."
They're all screwed. It doesn't matter what follows after that phrase, they're totally screwed.

Here, a family of proles mends clothes while listening on the radio for the latest edicts from the Troika.
The choice of words, the phrasing, the idle manner in which it was said all screamed that you were subjects, not citizens. The Technocrats were analyzing, the Troika was deciding and you were sitting, gape-mouthed and filthy, awaiting their daily decisions. One can just imagine the conversation around the family pot of gruel.
"Mum, I 'ope the Troika give us more gruel next week. We's right 'ungry every day!"

""Ere now, lad, don't go asking for more. Them Technocrats know what's best for the likes of us. We'll get what's proper, make no mistake."
Oh well. I suppose as long as we get our orgasms and weed, we'll be fine. Self-governance is overrated.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Truth About St. Patrick's Day


It's Like Finding A Needle In A Haystack

... or maybe like finding a needle in a big pile of needles. I'm not sure which. Dig these two videos back to back and consider the policing problem.

Man, if only these criminals wore some kind of uniform, kept regular hours, visited predictable places and committed crimes that took a long time to perform, then maybe we could catch them!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

A Brief Note On Cyprus

W. C. Varones has already done a good job on the Cyprus bank deposit seizures here and here, but I thought I'd add my dos centavos.

If you haven't seen the news, the government of Cyprus, with the complicity of the EU, decided to take 6-10% of any deposits in Cypriot banks to pay for another bailout. That is, if you had a savings account in a bank in Cyprus, you woke up with less money in it.

What were they thinking? Where was their moral justification? The only thing I can think is that there was none. And I mean none. This was simply an algebra problem to be solved, equating money taxed to some percentage of money received in a bailout:
ax + b = y.
"We need money. Hmm. There seems to be some deposited at the bank, let's take that." And so they did. That's it.

That's the scariest part of the whole thing to me. The resulting bank runs and chaos in Cyprus will provide a rational reason not to try it again, but there don't seem to be any moral restraints at all on the people in power.

Cheezburger of the Day

Monday, March 18, 2013

On The Importance Of Rituals

It's not a been a good morning. The whole day is going to be ... well, wobbly.

I like to get up a little before 5. I go downstairs, feed our Maximum Leader, brew some java and then surf the web and blog. Around 6, I get our daughter up and the school and workday begins. That hour or more to myself in the morning makes all the difference in the rest of the day.

This morning, my wife nudged me and let me know it was 6:15. I was still asleep. Mornings like this set my teeth on edge. I need my coffee to get going and I need my alone time. It's not a practical thing. I still ended up with my coffee and I can find the same amount of alone time elsewhere in the day's schedule, but I throw an internal tantrum if it's not first thing in the morning.

I know what you're thinking - set your alarm, dummy! Irrational tantrum #2: I don't like to set my alarm. If I do and I wake up in the middle of the night, I lay there calculating how much time I have left before the alarm goes off and can't get back to sleep.

Everything in the morning has to be just so. It's a sacred ritual. An irrational, sacred ritual.

My ritual works almost every morning, but when it doesn't the day begins under a cloud.

The best part of waking up is Folger's and the Interweb Tubes.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Mary Mitchell, Jonylah, Lupe Fiasco, The National Debt And John Kerry

How's that for a combination?

Jonylah is the name of a 6-month-old baby who was shot and killed in Chicago, collateral "civilian" damage on the front lines of the city's gang war quagmire. Mary Mitchell, writing in the Chicago Sun-Times, laments that the child's death didn't result in marches, protests, speeches and riots while a police shooting of a young black man did. Mary is outraged that blacks killing each other is implicitly acceptable to the city's black leaders.

Lupe Fiasco is a rapper who penned the following lyrics in memory of the dead child: "How about them bullets that slow you up? You ain’t really die, we watched you grow up." A very cursory and incomplete viewing of Lupe's rapping reveals some excellent work such as Bitch Bad, a song about little boys developing their view of women from the language they hear. "Bitch bad, woman good, lady better" is repeated throughout the song. Lupe is trying to make things better, at least some of the time.

Going back to one of my favorite widgets, here's the national debt.

Learn more about us debt.

John Kerry, now our Secretary of State, is a progressive of spotless credentials. Tax the rich, feed the poor, stop the war, marry the gays, save the planet, the guy is on the progressive side of every issue. He is a True Believer if ever there was one. John is also very rich. He bought a yacht and instead of paying huge taxes on it in Massachusetts, he registered it in Rhode Island where the bill was much, much less.

On the plus side, it still has an American flag. Source.
Mary Mitchell is right to be incensed about the lack of outrage over Jonylah's death. Black political leaders are so invested in the racial grievance industry that they dare not speak of Jonylah for fear of diluting their message of white oppression. Still, I would suggest that Mary is just noticing the tip of the iceberg.

To me, Jonylah's martyrdom on the altar of black racial paranoia was nothing new. It happens almost every day in Chicago. Dead blacks only matter when their deaths can be blamed on racism. What jumped out at me were the lyrics to Lupe Fiasco's song.
You ain't really die
You ain't really die? Really? Each one of us is carrying around our very own $52,000+ national credit card bill. If you can't pay yours, mine is going to go up. When I read lyrics like, "You ain't really die," the first thing I think is that my portion of the bill is going to be huge. Illiterate people don't earn enough to take care of themselves, much less service a $52,000 bill. Hoping they'll be able to pay it down is delusional fantasy worthy of entrance into a mental ward.

Mary Mitchell needs to start thinking bigger. A lot bigger. Why should I and why should my children stick around to pay this bill when our fellow citizens are shooting each other and penning lines like, "You ain't really die?" People from a violent culture whose poets are marginally literate have no chance at all to earn what's required, leaving the rest of us an easy choice between being buried alive by debt and getting out. If you think that's selfish, hearken back to John Kerry and his yacht. If a filthy rich True Believer isn't going to pony up, I'd have to be a total chump to pay my "fair share." I'd have to be an even bigger chump to pay for people who blame me for their problems as an institutional core belief.

What's the gang war going to look like when the productive class has left? When that wave of emigration begins, Jonylah's going to have a lot of company. See also: Detroit, collapse of.

Immigration ebbs and flows. Middle class Californians are escaping to Texas where it once went the other way. In the 1800s, Europeans came to America to escape national woes. When American cultural decay and fiscal collapse becomes national, the immigration won't be from state to state, it will be nation to nation. The people left behind will be in a world of hurt.

Mary is a good person and she's righteously outraged. She's also thinking about a month into the future. She needs to be thinking a decade into the future. Mary ought to start sounding the alarm about the dwindling reasons for productive people to stick around. Otherwise, she's going to be left behind with "them bullets that slow you up," whatever that means.

Broken Record Department: I've blogged about this here, here and here.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Cheezburger of the Day

Not just the Cheezburger of the day, but perhaps the last Cheezburger ever?


H/T: Mut.

Friday, March 15, 2013

My Face Is Chapped

My ASUS G73 laptop, nicknamed "The Lamborghini" or "Lambo," died recently and I just replaced it with an ASUS G75. Specs: Intel i7, 12 GB RAM, etc. The thing came with Windows 8 - an operating system which is truly a crime against all humanity, but more on that in another post.

Despite ASUS trying to lock the thing down, I was able to change some BIOS settings and install a clean copy of Win7 on a brand-new solid-state drive, preserving the original Win8 hard drive as possible evidence should Microsoft be brought to trial for inflicting that travesty on the world.

The new laptop, named Lambo7, is now up and running. With a clean copy of Windows 7 and an SSD, that little* ASUS G75 feels like this:

Running flat out, the skin on your face will dry up and flake off in 12.3 seconds.

* - OK, truth be told, it's not really "little." Naming it the Lambo7 is even more appropriate than it might seem. With a 17" screen and no performance sacrifices made for weight, it's somewhat like having a real, live Lamborghini on your lap.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Your Mathematician Joke Of The Day

As a recovering mathematician, I loved this one.
An infinite number of mathematicians walk into a bar. The first goes up to the bartender and says, "I'll have a pint of lager, please." Each next one says, "and I'll have half of what he's having." The bartender says, "You're all idiots," and pulls two pints.

Another Reason To Love Pope Francis

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

I Love The Choice Of Pope Francis

He's from South America, he's a Jesuit, he chose the name of St. Francis and he's a moral traditionalist. What's not to love?

As I awaited the choice, my dread was that they would pick someone who was more "in tune with the times." As someone who believes the Church defends eternal truths, change in moral standards is unwelcome. Moral fashions come and go. One of the most important roles of the Church in the world is to provide a permanent set of standards. If the Church wavered, it would be as if the Earth was spinning off its axis.

On Twitter, when he was announced, there was this wave of fear because he was a Jesuit. They've earned a reputation as a bunch of loose cannons. Not all of them, but enough to make the reputation justified. Instead, Pope Francis seems to combine the best aspect of the Jesuits - learning and deep thought - with the traditionalism of the Church.

I'm happy. God bless Pope Francis.

Updates: Here's an excellent take on the new pope from a blogging priest.

Here's the pope's speech in English.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

My Family Members Say The Same Thing

From our spam mailbag comes this tale of familial friction.
My family members always say that I am wasting my time here at web, except I know I am getting experience everyday by reading these good posts
 So do ours, anonymous spammer. I guess we have something in common after all!

Monday, March 11, 2013

The Girl Scout Fallacy

Yesterday's 11 AM Mass included a blessing of the Girl Scouts and Brownies from our Catholic grade school. It was a lovely event and the front pews were overflowing with bright and cheerful young ladies. Across the way, I spotted a woman wearing a t-shirt with this slogan.
As a blogger and natural curmudgeon, it actually bothered me. It's uplifting, empowering and encouraging, but it's not true.

Girls can't do anything. Witness the six billion people in the world, each of them created with the help of a man. How about NFL linebackers? No girls there. I'm not trying to pick nits here, I think there's something deeper going on. It's a current running through modern culture: the fallacy that women don't need men.

I'm not singling out the girl scouts here. "Girls don't need boys" is not something they invented and it doesn't live by itself. It's part of our societal feedback loop which includes easily available porn, acceptance of illegitimacy, lower standards for manhood, decreased importance of having children and general cultural sloth. If all the available boys are slackers, then it's best to teach your girls independence.

... and if girls don't need boys, chivalry is a pretty hard sell.
Like I said above, the thing that bugs me the most is that it's not true. A culture that embraces a foundational principle that is untrue is in for serious trouble.

After church, my wife and I talked about it and she had a similar reaction. She's much more accepting of the slogan, but she hoped it wasn't taught exclusively. That is, girls should be able to do anything, but it's still OK to need boys. I'd go beyond that.

If I'm going to be the best version of myself, I need my wife. I need her in a chivalrous, courtly love sense. I need her as an inspiration and a motivation. When I sin, the thing that bothers me most is that I am less worthy of her. That's absolutely crucial to me and it defines me as a man. If I thought that she didn't need me, I'd be done with the whole thing. Newcastle beer, British soccer and total sloth would be my daily diet. I'd still go to work and do what I needed to do to survive, but my standards would be about 1/4 of what they are right now.

That can't be wrong. Classic literature is filled with stories of men striving to be worthy of the women they love. It spans all cultures and all generations. It's a constant within the human race. I get that the modern world and 21st Century Western culture has frayed the traditional bonds between the sexes, but is that something we want to continue to reinforce?

The Arms Race Has Quickened

Our Maximum Leader has just now discovered that if she pushes the door to our study open all the way, its doorknob will hit the wall with a resounding "THUD." More noise means more attention and more attention means more food.

She used to be content with pawing at things or plucking the carpet, both capable of waking me up, but leaving everyone else asleep. Today's dramatic advance in early-morning feline weapons technology does not bode well for the rest of the family.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Why Is Miss America Sexist, But Beyonce Not?

This girl expects you to wear a suit or tux, take her to a fine restaurant and behave like a gentleman. She is a symbol of retrograde America sexism.
This girl would be equally satisfied with a gangsta, a biker, a drug addict, an electronic toy or a roughly humanoid primate. She is being monitored by the Center For Disease Control. She is a "strong woman."

Saturday, March 09, 2013

Image And Link Of The Day

I've said it before and I'll say it again. Blogs like Tim's are the reason the Interweb Tubes were invented.

Simply gorgeous.

You Can Do Better Than That

In retrospect, adding that Blog Post Quality Meter to my PC may have been a mistake. Our Maximum Leader now expects Amazing work every time!

Friday, March 08, 2013

Image of the Day

I LOL'd at this one.

H/T: Father Chip Hines.

Cruising Off San Diego

I took this shot from Cabrillo National Monument the other day. The weather was perfect, the ocean was calm, the boat was moving fast and I was jealous. I left the photo reasonably large, so it might be worth a click.

Thursday, March 07, 2013

A Cheezburger For Dean

... with a big :-)

Bloggers Overreact

... because that's just what we do. We fume and fulminate and fret. And alliterate. A lot. Universities, on the other hand ...

Ohio liberal-arts school Oberlin College has been plagued recently by an uncomfortable amount of hate-speech incidents, mostly in the form of ugly graffiti, but it was the eyewitness account of a person in a KKK-like outfit that put things over the edge: Classes were canceled and “A Day of Solidarity” arranged instead. “We have made significant progress in the investigation of these instances,” school president Marvin Krislov told students yesterday, but the local Chronicle-Telegram reports a more innocuous explanation: “Oberlin police Lt. Mike McCloskey said that authorities did find a pedestrian wrapped in a blanket. He said police interviewed another witness later in the day and that person also saw a female walking with a blanket.”
Here's more on the Klansperson sighting.
There were few details of the sighting, which occurred at 1:30 a.m. on Monday, Mr. Wargo said. The person who reported it was in a car “and came back around and didn't see the individual again,” he added. 
It turns out that the two students behind the graffiti have been expelled. The person in the "KKK robe" seen at 1:30 AM looks to have been some woman in a blanket. Was that worth canceling classes? Oberlin has about 2900 students. Assume the Klanscreature wasn't just some woman in a blanket and they were real. What were they going to do against 2900 students, burn a plus sign on the lawn?

Oberlin ought to close itself down completely. If it's students aren't being taught to handle a situation where they outnumber their adversaries 2900-1 without a complete shutdown of facilities, then what good are they? Who would want to hire an Oberlin grad who's going to freak out every time someone disagrees with them in a meeting and demand the whole company be closed for a Day of Solidarity?

Geeze, guys, get a grip.
Little known fact about Woodstock: There were Klansmen everywhere.

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Investment Chart Of The Week

Dig this.

Read the associated article here.

Heretics And Redistribution

About two years ago, I read St. Augustine's Confessions and then listened to the first third of The City of God. St. Augustine lived around the year 400 and when you read his work, one of the things that strikes you is how constant the human condition is. He had to deal with the same things we do and his observations are just as valid today. Tablet computers don't change the human heart.

I just finished G. K. Chesterton's Heretics (1905) and am working my way through William F. Buckley's God and Man at Yale (1951). Both deal with assaults on religion and Bill Buckley goes on to deal with academia's attacks on capitalism.

Everything old is new again in our dealings with the ivory towers of the universities.

The attacks on religion haven't changed much in the last 120 years. Richard Dawkins' smug insults are poor copies of George Bernard Shaw's clever witticisms. After reading* Chesterton's excellent ripostes against Shaw, mentally dealing with Dawkins is trivial and dull. And if Dawkins is boring, Buckley's Yale atheists of the late 1940s are positively coma-inducing. The tide of atheist creativity ebbs and flows, I suppose.

Going on to the economics portion of God and Man, it's another case of mankind retreading the same ground. The collectivist economics texts taught at Yale** decry income inequality, just like our favorite little fascist, Robert Reich. So the statists have been crying out against income inequality for decades while government has grown, grown, grown with no positive results.

We must do more to fight for Social Justice!
If government programs were going to lessen income inequality, wouldn't it be working by now?

* - Is reading the right word here? It's a book, but I listened to it. I always claim I read these audio books, but is that the correct term? I heard the book never seems quite right.

** - You heard that right. In 1951, academia was leftist, socialist and agnostic at best.

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

Investment Video Of The Month

I thought this was great. It's worth watching the whole 9 minutes.

A Grub

... and a hideous one at that.

Gardening this weekend, my wife and I found a bunch of these little devils lurking in the soil.

First off, it didn't like being on its stomach. When I turned it onto its belly, it would angrily roll over and try to scoot off to safety, undulating on its back. It has a top speed of 5" per 10 seconds or 0.0284 MPH. It was also quite an unpleasant character, snapping its mandibles at me with undisguised ferocity. Clicking around the Interweb Tubes, it looks to me to be the larva of either a June Beetle or a Japanese Beetle. Whatever they were, we carefully combed through the soil, trying to get every last one.

Horrid things. I don't like them, not one little bit.

Monday, March 04, 2013

The Prayer Of St. Grumpus

I went to Confession on Friday night. I don't call it Reconciliation like all those modern Catholic hipsters do, by gum, it's Confession. I have sinned and I need to confess.

Amongst my acts of penance, the priest gave me the Prayer of St. Francis as a focus of meditation. When I read it and thought how it applied in my life, mostly where I had fallen short, I had to laugh. As I sat there at Adoration, in the presence of Christ, reading those beautiful and timeless words, I came up with this bit of doggerel.

The Prayer of St. Grumpus - Patron Saint of Socio-Econo-Political Bloggers
Lord, make me an instrument of gloomy thought.
Where there is hatred, let me sow snark;
where there is injury, indignation;
where there is doubt, gloom;
where there is despair, more despair;
where there is darkness, anger;
and where there is sadness, resignation.
I cut the prayer short because this is a blog and everything needs to be concise. Save your comments about the meter, I already know it doesn't work like it does in the original.

I blame the progressives and libertines.

Sunday, March 03, 2013

Obama And The Press Hold A Brainstorming Session

This is one of the strangest presidential press conference videos I've ever seen.

When I saw it, all I could think was that they were going to turn off the cameras, form up small working groups and start putting yellow stickies on the walls with their ideas. There was such synergy between the press and the president it was as if they were all one team trying to figure out how to deal with those crazy Republicans.

Which they are.
"Give me an example of what I might do." Why, what else could he do? I mean, what could any reasonable person be expected to do that he hasn't already tried? 
"What more do you think I should do?" Golly, Mr. President, I can't think of anything! 
"This is a room full of smart folks!" Gee willikers, President Obama, we're nothing special. (Digs toe in carpet, looks down and blushes.) We could never hold a candle to you and your team of brilliant experts. If you're stumped, then by gosh, so are we!
I think I'm going to be sick.