Days of Change

The Buddha and Pat Buchanan

August 18, 2014
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It is truthful to say that although kids and adults have gotten worse with each generation, the same things were said as far back as Socrates about the kids of his day. The danger is not in the end of human existence, but the end of Western culture. Pat Buchanan has remarked on this for decades and in the generation since, the family unit has gotten weaker and the influence of other cultures has gotten stronger. Buchanan wrote about the death of the West over a decade ago, pointing out that modern cultures are not replacing their current population levels, while Muslim countries are growing in population. In fact, Europe and the US populations are being back filled by non-Western cultures.

I’ll use myself as a case in point. One side of my family is made up of five living generations going back almost 100 years. The oldest were a set of siblings born in the second decade of the 20th century. Two out of the six children died, as was all too common in that time. Of the four adult children, all were married, but only two had children. One had children late in life. His children are in their 30s and unmarried, no children.

His sister had two daughters, one of whom had no children. The other had two children. One is in her 40s and unmarried, no children. The other, however, now has five children. One of his children has a child, but no husband. In some ways, this side was ahead of the curve, with many branches not having kids. The other side of my family all married and had children in their 20s, even if the marriages didn’t last.

My speculation for the why has to do with the essential nature of human beings. Agenda 21 was a book where humans faced with an intrusive government could no longer conceive children at an effective rate. My observation is the opposite. It seems that the greater hardship is, the more family becomes a refuge from the world. Going head to head, life in Egypt or Saudi Arabia sucks ass compared to the United States, but they are having more kids.

Buddha wrote about the nature of suffering. Life is suffering, but the burden is added to by the desire for things and new experiences instead of life, work and duty. Earlier generations could look forward to having children and seeing them have children. They might see and do other things, but family was their life. Three generations of my family used to live in the same house, now I get antsy spending a few hours with relatives.

America exists (Europe is already past this point) in a state where it is considered desirable to leave home after high school, go away to college, move to another city to start your career and see your parents a few times a year. Parents are supposed to retire on their pensions and go on vacations and do crafts for their rest of their lives, leaving their kids the house when they die.

The definition of a career is to do so much work that you are on-call all the time. Getting married is something you do after your biological urges get the best of you and you’ve had a child or two beforehand. It’s also okay not to have kids, because you can go on vacations and adventures without having to take care of a child. Just make sure you have enough in your retirement account to not end up eating cat food in a run down tenement.

If Western culture dies, something will take its place. There is no guarantee that the replacement will be more fair or enlightened. We should think about the legacy we’ll leave our children, but fewer of us are in that situation anymore.


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Beat the Press

August 17, 2014
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NBC has again decided to switch horses at their long-running Sunday morning political show Meet the Press. David Gregory’s two decades at the network have essentially ended with his perceived failure at Meet the Press. Chris Matthews, the other bloated Irishman after Tim Russert. will most likely never get the gig. NBC ended his syndicated show which went from being my favorite round table program to an all-you-can-eat Obama ass kissing festival.

Chuck Todd will be the next sacrifice to the NBC news gods. He has been a fixture on MSNBC and yet another White male with a show on the network that celebrates diversity by claiming Fox News has none. Todd is relatively young, bland and boring and only somewhat liberal on-air. Unfortunately, Sunday morning news interview shows are something of a dinosaur and a few Twitter posts or an app won’t fix it.

Some people think Sunday news programs ended with Tim Russert. I think they ended with David Brinkley. When he retired from ABC’s show, they never got the magic back. Interviews are controlled indirectly from the White House and the round table panel rotates through a bunch of party hacks and liberal columnists. It turns out I have better ways to spend my time.


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Sort of Back on the Grid

August 16, 2014
2 Comments

Rick Perry trying to get rid of drunks in office is a crime now. Good to know.


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Off the grid

August 15, 2014
1 Comment

I am on restricted internet this weekend but I just wanted to check in


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The Post Racial Post

August 14, 2014
1 Comment

Ferguson, Missouri is turning out to be a place where the race industry is having trouble going with a single narrative. A young Black man was shot to death by a police officer. Although we don’t know the identity of the officer, the assumption is that he is White. Even if he isn’t, it is still racism because it seems everything bad that happens to Black people is racism.

Breitbart.com has been publishing stories about how this incident has not taken the same form as the Trayvon Martin shooting. Al Sharpton rolled into town, but he is talking about restraint. He wants the rioting to stop until they can put together a narrative of whom to blame. One of the things that did dull the fiery speeches of race hustlers is the fact that Ferguson went into a vandalism and theft based riot almost immediately.

Conservatives have also helped to change the situation by not automatically siding with the police. Police departments have gotten more political over the years, supporting any liberal policy that increases their budget and trying to get guns away from citizens. Some on the right are tired of police state tactics and are tired of being scapegoats for racial animus by supporting a group who doesn’t always support conservative goals.

The media has also gotten push back. Two reporters who were arrested for loitering at a McDonalds as if it were a remote office ended up being mocked instead of lauded for their whiny, calling mommy and daddy response to being rousted like the squatters they were. The fact that this situation is such a mess may actually lead to real results, like legal investigations and actual reporting.

It has to happen at least once in a while.


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Math is Hard (and Worth It)

August 13, 2014
2 Comments

A Breitbart.com story┬áreferences an interview where the president of Clear Channel Networks determined that the majority of online demands for boycotts of Rush Limbaugh originate from just 10 activists. All of them knew they were either creating puppet social media accounts or coordinating them. The fact that they were a minority was meaningless. Their equation was that the anger of one outweighed the support of one million. The strategy was dishonest from the start, cost a lot of people money and only increased Limbaugh’s profile.

It doesn’t surprise me that openly propagandist site vox.com posed the question of why the US needs to be good at math. Apparently, our standing in the world’s economy has not been diminished by our low test scores. To use a field they are more familiar with, there is an axiom that in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king. Just because we are better doesn’t mean we are good.

I have a special relationship with math. I never got past the whole ideas of theorems and proofs and complicated formulas that replaced actual numbers with Greek symbols. Still, I always excelled at all the basic types of math, can do calculations faster than a person with a calculator and regularly memorize hundreds of numbers at work ranging from a few to almost 10 digits. math is a language all its own and thinking about things mathematically is an interesting way to view the world.

This is why math is the enemy of the left. Literature, philosophy, psychology and art are all about interpretation. There is another level of reasoning involved, but it can have the drawback of being too broad. These things can be argued in different ways. Math is more uniform. Its rules are consistent. Math is the language of science. Theories are interpretation, but math is where they are tested.

When the left uses interpretation to explain science and human nature, they are teaching to the test. They have a desired outcome and they need to reason a bridge that joins that outcome to reality. That bridge is soft and flexible. It is also unstable compared to cold, hard data, If people don’t use math, they lose the critical thinking and reasoning that comes with it. When you can’t counter an argument with logic, the one with the loudest voice (or the most puppets) wins.


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Another Reason Why I Don’t Like Atheists

August 12, 2014
2 Comments

A large number of people reacted to the death of Robin Williams over the last day or so. Some, like myself, considered it more wasteful than sad. Then there are the idiots who used it as an excuse to perpetuate their agendas. Mediaite tweeted out a Fox News video about Williams. This is a website who used to have an editor appear on “Red Eye” regularly. Then there’s the hilarious blog post mostly brought to light by famous atheist Richard Dawkins. In this case, he wasn’t very happy because it made atheists look bad.

The post claims that the media was on the verge of reporting on Michael Brown, the man who was shot by a police officer in Missouri. Then Robin Williams died and they could go back to ignoring the story. There’s a tirade about white versus brown people and the epidemic of violence. Rather, rinse, repeat. This tells me that the atheists community is reaching a point where liberal atheists and conservative (or libertarian) atheists are going to fight it out.

It also indicates that atheists are not inherently any wiser than the general population. The government and police have been abusing their authority in the name of security, but black people don’t have to worry about cops as much as their own communities. Conservatives have frequently countered White (or White-Hispanic) on Black crime with statistics of Black on Black crime that dwarf those incidents.

 


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Tortured Idiots

August 11, 2014
3 Comments

Robin Williams has joined a club of celebrities who apparently dealt with demons through their career and finally succumbed to them. Williams was a little older than most, having at least been in his 60s when he committed suicide. My earliest memories of him were from Mork and Mindy, a staple of my generation. I continued to watch any number of movies with him. I didn’t really see many of his non-comedic performances and despite the reviews, I never thought that was his thing. My favorite movie of his may still be “Club Paradise,” a little-known 1986 movie heavy with SCTV alum and Peter O’Toole.

Despite my feeling about his work, this tortured genius crap has got to stop. We continue to worship people who show up on TV and the movie screen as if they are singular talents. Actors were all over the place before movies and even the greatest actor in the world was going to be seen by very few people. At the same time, we also put too much pressure on people who already have personal issues. I can’t be that sad about Robin Williams. There are people with real problems.


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Supermoon

August 10, 2014
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While this is supposedly not an astronomical “super moon,” the largest and closest moon of 2014 will be cool and probably the most photographed in history. Good Morning America promoted the hashtag of #selfiemoon.

It’s nice to know some things are constant.


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Another Reason Not to Like Libertarians

August 9, 2014
1 Comment

Adam Carolla is radio personality, a television host an author and an entrepreneur. I saw him back when he was hosting MTV’s version of Loveline and on Comedy Central’s “The Man Show.” Most recently, he has become known for his decidedly free market views. He’s a frequent guest on Bill O’Reilly’s show. Much of his time is devoted to his business, a podcast that actually seems to make money. It also led to a lawsuit by patent trolls claiming they have the copyright to the concept of podcasting.

I like Carolla. He escaped his liberal soul-sucking family life by rebelling and becoming as normal of an all-American kid as possible. He’s outspoken and he mostly wants to keep government from growing into a soul-sucking monster. However, I don’t much care for the company (or what his company) keeps.

Carolla Digital has recently added Jesse Ventura to his lineup of podcasters. Ventura is also a man of many professions, including governor of Minnesota. He was the only politician to ride the wave of the Ross Perot Independence Party. Whatever happened after turned him into an anti-government nut. He grabbed more attention this week by winning a lawsuit against a man who had died before the end of the lawsuit. There’s even more stuff that makes him an idiot.

I just wish Carolla wasn’t so open to ideas that he can’t look at Ventura as a terrible person regardless of political views (which are also awful).


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