Monday, April 30, 2007
Sunday, April 29, 2007
Horner states that, yes, the Earth is in a warming period, but that is to be expected following the cold period known as "The Little Ice Age." The Little Ice Age was a general cooling of the climate between the years 1150 and 1460 and a very cold climate between 1560 and 1850. This period was devastating to many people in Europe, as the colder weather impacted agriculture, health, economics, social strife, emigration, and even art and literature. Increased glaciation and storms resulted from this cold climate.
Climate change alarmists like to note the striking increase in temperatures over the past couple hundred years, but don't tell you that the temperatures are merely returning to "normal" (if there is such a thing in climate) following an unusually cold period. This misrepresentation is akin to noting the cold weather of January, then in July noting that the temperature has increased by, say, 30 degrees and then extrapolating that rate of increase to December and concluding that mankind will fry like eggs by Christmas. Such a scenario is nonsense because it does not take into account natural variability of climate and its cyclical nature. Yet alarmists regularly employ such subterfuge to find the "facts" that support their predetermined conclusions. The truth is that warming and cooling periods are cyclical and not caused by variations in CO2 levels.
Horner notes that historically, warming periods bode well for mankind, because it increases the food supply and fewer people die from inclement weather. Yes, very hot weather kills people, but very cold weather kills many more. Warmer is generally better for life on Earth.
Prior to the Little Ice Age, there was a medieval warming period in which the temperatures were significantly higher than they are today. Instead of being catastrophic, this warmth created a golden age for agriculture, innovation and lifespan.
I'm more than halfway through Horner's book, but so far he has dealt devastating blows to the myth of manmade global warming. He notes that the warming isn't even global - it is occurring in the Northern Hemisphere but the Southern remains static. He also notes that the warming is neither catastrophic, unusual or man made. Most of the hype comes from the media who want to sell newspaper and magazine articles. But it is only hype.
The truth is simple: there is no credible proof that man made greenhouse gases have any significant impact on world climate. We are in the midst of one of the biggest hoaxes in history. The question is, why?
I'll deal with that in a later post.
Saturday, April 28, 2007
Thursday, April 26, 2007
Nevertheless, I think Kevin Tillman (Pat's younger brother, also an Army Ranger) is something of an asshat. He has been spouting leftwing B.S. ever since, disparaging the cause that Pat Tillman went to war to fight for, and in the process, dishonoring his own brother. Kevin also has posted anti-American B.S. on leftwing websites.
Here's what Powerline had to say about the hearings of the past week in which it was claimed that a government conspiracy attempted to cover up the true facts of Pat Tillman's death.
There is no question that the initial misreporting of the circumstances ofSo the Army waited a month after Pat Tillman's death to determine the facts and report that he was killed by friendly fire. Some coverup. Some conspiracy.
Tillman's death was stupid and improper. The claim of a government
conspiracy to cover up the facts, however, is ludicrous. If you read the
fine print in the article linked above, you find that Tillman died on April
22, 2004. His family was told that the cause was friendly fire on May 29,
2004, barely a month later. The same day, the Army publicly announced
that friendly fire was the apparent cause.
So once the facts became clear and the matter rose to a level above the
commanders in the field, the Army publicized the result of its investigation.
For the Democrats and Kevin Tillman to try to make political hay out of this
one-month delay, three years after the fact, casts them in a worse light than it
does the Army.
Some advice for Kevin: Shut the Hell up, Kevin. You're an idiot.
Wednesday, April 25, 2007
I am now wading my way through "The Life of Mahomet" by William Muir. Muir wrote this weighty tome in the 19th century and it has a lot of antiquated language. Nevertheless, it is a detailed account of Muhammad's life and how he established Islam. Muir discusses all the facts and players in the development of Islam, and he does it in a scholarly way. He obviously spent years researching the subject matter. He also speculates about what Muhammad's thoughts and motivations might have been, but he never passes off his speculation as fact.
Muir believed that Muhammad was originally sincere in his desire to find a path to God and to raise Mecca out of the superstition and darkness that enveloped it. However, ignorance and self delusion were factors in Muhammad's rise to power.
Sunday, April 22, 2007
Gun advocates (of which I'm one) argue that the Virginia Tech maniac was bold in his homicidal rage because he knew that Virginia Tech was a "gun free zone" and that none of his victims would be able to shoot back. If right to carry laws existed at Virginia Tech and handgun ownership was common there, would the maniac have been so lethal or so brave? Perhaps, but the odds are that he would have been dead much sooner, and not by his own hand.
As a conservative with a convoluted way of thinking, it seems to me that liberals, in order to stop predators from killing people, seek to disarm their prey, thus rendering them defenselses and making the killer's mission that much easier. In other words, if bad guys have guns, let's redress the situation by making sure good guys don't.
Of course, if guns were completely absent from our society, there would be no gun deaths. Is such a thing even possible? The government could confiscate guns on sight and outlaw gun manufacturing and import, but illegal guns could (and would) continue to come into the country, just as cocaine and marijuana and other illegal items. It isn't possible to totally eradicate guns.
But let's say all the guns were substantially eliminated. Now robbers and thugs and maniacs would have to find other ways to kill efficiently, but it is doubtful there is anything as efficient as handguns. They are easily transportable, easily operated and easily concealed. Also, operation is fairly simple, just point and pull the trigger. Would violent crime decrease with the absence of guns? Or would it increase because now robbers and thugs and maniacs know in advance that storekeepers and homeowners are disarmed and easy prey?
Guns are a great equalizer. If some burglar or would-be rapist breaks into a house and confronts a smaller and weaker woman, she has the power (via her handgun) to equalize or neutralize the difference in body strength and size. That's one of the good uses of guns - saving innocent lives, both through correct usage and through deterrance: if a thug knows that you may be armed, he probably won't try to make you his victim.
Then there's the use of guns to deter tyranny. Considering the number of groups who hate American democracy and wish to replace it with some tyranny (Communism, Sharia, or what-have-you), I take comfort in owning a handgun. It is my protection against sudden-Jihad syndrome.
I take my handgun very seriously. It's an old 1911 Army Cold 45. It's black and looks just like the one Al Pacino was playing with in Scent of a Woman. It is heavy and cold in my hand and it is lethal as hell. I have never pointed it at another human being and would only do so in a situation where my life was threatened. I am totally aware that pulling the trigger is an irreversible act. If you shoot someone, you can't take it back. I value human life very deeply so I look at my handgun as a tool of last resort. Holding it doesn't make me feel like Rambo - if anything, it fills me with dread. I hope I never kill another human being. It would be a heavy burden for my soul to carry. Yet, if some maniac starts shooting in my direction, well then it's better him than me.
There's a saying among gun owners about the use of deadly force against an attacker: "I'd rather be judged by twelve than carried by six."
I bought my gun lawfully in California. I had to take a test on gun laws and gun safety and undergo a background check before I could get my handgun. To prepare for it, I read a book on California's gun laws - and they provide for heavy penalties for violations of the law. Do you know that flashing a gun at another driver on the road is a felony in California? So if someone cuts you off on the freeway, flip him the bird instead. That's still legal, as my sunburned middle finger will attest.
My feeling is that gun control is not the answer to random acts of violence like the Virginia Tech shootings. Gun education, training and licensing is. Every adult should be trained in the use, maintenance, safe operation and storage of guns, both handguns and rifles. It should be a required course in school. I would venture a guess that most gun deaths occur from accidents and gun ignorance than by deliberate acts.
If you know all about guns, they lose their mystery while instilling respect. More gun education is needed, including some hours loading and shooting them at a gun range. I would also like to see a gun ethics program instituted to go along with the operational and safety training. What are proper uses of guns and what are not? The answers may seem inherently obvious to most of us, but it is dangerous to ever assume anything. Let's spell it out for gun students, including the reality that guns are not a more realistic video game. The people or animals you may shoot with a gun don't reboot for the next game. Reality must be drummed into the heads of those who want to own and operate firearms.
In short, the way to tame the gun beast is to embrace him, understand him and learn to ride him. Fear and ignorance in this area are counter productive and can be lethal.
A well-armed society is a polite, tolerant and free one with a lower crime rate. And that's not a bad thing.
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
I can only imagine how parents and family are feeling today. My own son was a college student at UC Santa Cruz, and I know how precious he is to me, how innocent he was when he went off to school, how much I yearned to protect him from all of the dangers of chance while knowing that it was not possible.
That kids can be killed in an American university is truly appalling. How can you protect yourself against such wild machinations of fate? The truth is, you can't, anymore than you can protect yourself from earthquakes, tornadoes or lightening strikes. Life and circumstances are largely unpredictable.
My heart goes out to that community.
Sunday, April 15, 2007
Cheney compares today's Democrats to the 1970's when they chose George McGovern for their standard bearer on a platform of high taxation and retreat from American commitments in the Cold War. The result was that the Democratic Party suffered an historic defeat at the polls.
Today the Democrats are trying to raise taxes significantly on small businesses and the middle class and bring back the death tax from 0 to 55%. They are also trying to withdraw from the modern counterpart to the Cold War, the War on Radical Islam. To sum it all up, with Democrats you get high taxes and less protection from the tyrants who want to kill us or subjugate us.
Cheney deals with the Democrat fiction that the War in Iraq has nothing to do with the "War on Terror." The VP quotes Osama Bin Laden to make his point:
Do read all of Cheney's remarks here.
...now we hear almost daily the claim that the fight in Iraq has nothing to do with the war on terror. Opponents of our military action there have called Iraq a diversion from the real conflict, a distraction from the business of fighting and defeating Osama bin Laden and the al Qaeda network. We hear this over and over again, not as an argument, but as an assertion meant to close off argument.
Yet the evidence is flatly to the contrary. And the critics conveniently disregard the words of bin Laden himself. "The most serious issue today for the whole world," he said, "is this third world war [that is] raging in [Iraq]." He calls it "a war of destiny between infidelity and Islam." He said, "The whole world is watching this war," and that it will end in "victory and glory or misery and humiliation." And in words directed at the American people, bin Laden declares, "The war is for you or for us to win. If we win it, it means your defeat and disgrace forever."
This leader of al-Qaeda has referred to Baghdad as the capital of the caliphate. He has also said, "Success in Baghdad will be success for the United States. Failure in Iraq is the failure of the United States. Their defeat in Iraq will mean defeat in all their wars."
At the same time, their speaker Nancy Pelosi has seemingly formed a shadow presidency, creating its own foreign policy initiatives and attempting to negotiate with foreign tyrants in violation of the Logan Act. It seems Presidential style airplanes are not the only evidence of Pelosi's delusions of grandeur.
Unless you value your money, your life and your freedoms, you should do all you can to defeat the Democrats in 2008.
Saturday, April 14, 2007
If you think I'm exaggerating, a few years ago some local governmental official was fired after using the word "niggardly" in a speech. Some blacks thought he was using a racial slur. Ridiculous. It's time to call a halt to this race-baiting madness.
Imus appeared on Al Sharpton's radio show to apologize to Sharpton, who once instigated a racist riot in Crown Heights that left a Jewish student dead. He did the same thing to the Jewish owners of Freddy's Fashion Mart, leaving seven employees dead. But was Sharpton ready to extend his bloadsoaked hand to Imus and forgive? No. Sharpton obviously concluded that, with the racism in Crown Heights and Freddy's Fashion Mart, we've seen too much of this racial insensitivity to be forgiving. It's time to punish this kind of behavior. Sharpton then called for Imus to be fired from his job.
After Imus personally met with and apologized to the Rutgers team, they forgave him and some idiot said, "Now the healing can begin." What healing? Don't you have to be injured first before you "heal"? Oh wait. Imus called them "nappy-headed hos." If someone called me a nappy-headed ho, I'd be in therapy for years, wouldn't you?
I'm joking. If anyone called me a nappy-headed ho, I'd reply, "That's me baby. Come and get it while it's HOT!" But that's just me.
Nappy means "kinky", i.e. tightly curled (I looked it up). Well that's a fair representation of many black women, it's a natural thing, something called "genetics." (It was not particularly true of the pretty Rutgers girls, judging from their pictures - they've obviously discovered curling irons). "Ho" is short for whore, and not to be taken literally since "Ho" is black underclass street lingo for woman. Black rappers use the term frequently, as in "the bitches and the hos." Not to be confused with "Ho-Hos," which is a kind of pastry. No doubt some day some black women rappers will rap about their boyfriends as "the bastards and the pimps." Now that would be poetic justice. One can only hope.
Imus did not mean his remarks in a hateful way, nor did he intend for them to be demeaning. He was trying to be "edgy" and cool. However, context means nothing, intent means nothing, actual meaning (as in that "niggardly" thing) means nothing. The only thing that matters is that some black person, somehow, somewhere, took offense. Stop the world.
Perhaps Imus should have used different descriptors for the Rutgers girls, such as saying they are "melanin-enhanced epidermally." That is generally accurate of black people and not previously copyrighted by black rappers (any rappers out there are free to use this term if they like, but please give me credit). But I digress. The truth is, the race of the Rutgers team was not important and should not have been introduced unless it was relevant to the discussion. Not to be compared with the time a journalist for a national newspaper described Michelle Malkin as a "Filipina Firecracker." Now that was relevant to the discussion, because Michelle Malkin was writing about fireworks in the Philippines. Oh wait, no she wasn't.
However there are a couple of reasons why the liberal-left cannot allow an innocuous remark like "nappy-headed hos" to pass with merely a groan instead of near-revolution. First, it is important to underscore the constant victimhood of black people and how racism is everywhere. Yes it's true, even my Cocker Spaniel is racist. He barked at a black person once. Would he have barked had that person been white? I rest my case. And the only way to protect black people from this omnipresent bigotry is to vote for Democrats. They will then vote for billions for quotas, affirmative action and racial set-asides, whatever those are.
Second, any innocuous remark with even a hint of racial overtones is a golden opportunity for Democrats, liberals and college students to engage in some soul-satisfying posing, posturing and moral exhibitionism. One can tell how enlightened you are, and how sensitive and devoid of hatred, by the decibel level of your howls of indignation in light of such an outrage. Public indignation is a kind of cultural ritual among the left, or some kind of coming of age ceremony, like tribal circumcisions, debutante balls or maybe poo-throwing by Zoo Gorillas. Anthropologists are still studying it and a precise classification of this behavior is not yet available, but you get the idea.
Third, there is money to be made when rude comments or other otherwise meaningless phenomena can be transmogrified into racism. Jesse Jackson has been doing it for years with his "Rainbow Coalition." He goes around to big corporations and says, how come there are no XYZ dealerships owned by black people? You must be racists, but for ten gazillion dollars and a dealership for my sons, I will be your consultant on how to de-racify your establishment. Or, if you refuse, we will picket you night and day and call you "racist" and you will lose millions of dollars and suffer enormously bad publicity. Talk about playing the race card.
Some folks would call this "blackmail." Since that word has "black" in it and is used to describe a crime, it is quite clearly racist and can be summarily disregarded.
There's a book about Jesse Jackson's methods called "Shakedown." I don't want to get into that though. Shake-down must be like "gettin' down," and I'm not about to comment and get into trouble like Don Imus did. How Jesse Jackson boogies is just not relevant to the discussion. And if there is any black person anywhere who was offended by this post, I promise to go on Al Sharpton's radio show and commit ritual hari-kiri. I will even bring my own dagger and mat.
Thursday, April 12, 2007
Don Imus, a radio and television talk show host, has been fired from both his radio show and his television show. His crime: while bantering with a guest on his radio show, Imus referred to the all black women’s
But no, he had transgressed. For many years, popular culture has set black folk in America apart, placed them on a high pedestal where they are to be exempt from outside criticism, rude language and bad taste. The penalty for transgression is public humiliation, severe social ostracism and the loss of one’s livelihood.
If Imus had offended any other group, the Irish perhaps, he could simply say, “Oh I’m sorry, I really meant no offense,” and the incident would be instantly forgotten. But black people are not just any other group. They are the high priests of victimhood for whom the apologies must never stop and for whom great deference, respect and reverence are due now and forever. If any (non-conservative) black person in America is ever offended by anyone or anything, for any reason, great wailing and gnashing of teeth is the order of the day, followed by wild paroxysms of moral indignation, foaming at the mouth, grand mal seizures, and capital punishment for the offender (well, socially anyway).
I am not saying Imus’s remark was inoffensive or rude or in bad taste. Of course he should apologize. But the reaction to it was way over the top and Imus’s punishment and ostracism are way out of proportion to the actual offense.
Yes, black people are not treated like other people in
Sunday, April 08, 2007
I love the above quote by John Stuart Mill because it speaks truth to me. Britain has recovered her hostages, but many in the West are saying the behavior of the Royal Marines was despicable, even cowardly. Perhaps it reflects the current state of mind of Britain, who is now downsizing her Navy and fading as a world power.
War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.
--John Stuart Mill
Socialism does that. Socialism is a form of government that robs men of their will to survive. The greater the degree of Socialism, the weaker the nation who practices it. Citizens become increasingly dependent, increasingly bereft of self-esteem and self-confidence. In Britain, we are witnessing the slow death of a once great nation.
Or so it seems to me.
Saturday, April 07, 2007
So I have to put my programs back on and I will do that today.
Monday, April 02, 2007
Unfortunately, I have been receiving veiled threats from a leftwing blogger. That fact has forced me to activate the moderation filter for posting to this blog. I have never filtered comments before, believing that this would stifle comments. But, before I met the kooks at the Historians blog, I never deleted comments before nor had I ever banned anyone from posting. The obnoxious efforts of these people have forced me to change my policy.
Here are the new rules for posting messages to this blog:
You may not post the address, phone number, unpublished email address or actual identity (if the poster uses a log-in name) of any other poster. If you do, your message will be either edited or deleted. The reasons for this are obvious: to protect anyone who posts from physical harm from kooks of whatever political or religious persuasion, and to protect their privacy from unwanted phone calls or unwanted Google searches by potential employers or customers.
You may not be a troll, i.e. one who posts only ridicule and sarcasm for the purpose of annoying me. You must address a point or give an argument or an opinion.
Otherwise, there are no rules. I will post all other messages regardless of how insulting they are to me personally.
Sunday, April 01, 2007
The West has become weak, decadent, and indecisive from too many years of liberal rule and the self-hating leftwing politics and culture that infest our media and universities. It is time we cleared this dry rot from the foundations of our civilization and replaced it with an iron resolve.
Today the Iranian despots are staging "angry" demonstrations at the British Embassy in Tehran and British officials are telling families of the kidnapped Brits to be ready for the long-term captivity of their loved ones. The Iranians, knowing full well that the weak and decadent West will not attack them, will milk the captives for all of the propaganda they can get.
Rabbi Aryeh Spiro shares my gloom (hat tip Jawa Report). He writes:
This war has become demoralizing because of repeated incidents of this nature: the unwillingness of Western powers to crush the enemy even in service of defending our own people. We have allowed the enemy to think he is braver than us. We have, thereby, emboldened the enemy and made things tougher for ourselves, not easier.Amen brother. I don't care a damn about Muslim pride, as if so murderous a culture could engender such a feeling. For despots and tyrants, let there be no refuge, not even that afforded by a "holy" book or barbarism masquerading as religion. I look forward to the day when Western bombs will begin falling on Iran, reducing that tyranny to rubble.
We fire not on their fortress mosques, nor on their ships, nor during their holy days, nor in their holy cities, nor at their “holy men.” We dare not humiliate. Instead, we allow ourselves to be forever humiliated and forfeit our men and women. So concerned are we about not offending Muslim pride we have thrown away our own. The West has decided that all things Islamic are to be granted a reverence we no longer grant ourselves. The sand and plaster of the fortress mosque seems to carry more importance than even the flesh and blood of our own soldiers.