I'm in VA. Just checking in to make sure there are no "Baldilocks gone" parties happening here. See ya Monday.
I'm in VA. Just checking in to make sure there are no "Baldilocks gone" parties happening here. See ya Monday.
Just a few comments on the hot issues of the day…
Homosexual Marriage: Last month in the State of the Union Address, President Bush warned proponents of homosexual marriage that if they pushed, the opponents would push back. When the president barks, he bites later. Many of his adversaries haven't quite figured this out yet but claim that he's the dumb one.
Wouldn’t this have just been easier (in California, at least) if proponents had simply challenged the constitutionality of existing so-called Defense of Marriage laws in court? Hey, it worked for other groups. What was the rush?
The Passion of the Christ: Haven’t seen it and I’m still undecided as to whether I will (maybe after the furor has died down). About its alleged anti-semitism: Dennis Prager, as usual, has had an even, reasonable take on this subject for months. Of the movie, he says that Christians and Jews are watching two different films: Christians see the Christ allowing Himself to be sacrificed for the sins of *all* mankind; becoming mankind’s Savior willingly. Many Jews, however, see the Jews being blamed for yet something else. Both are understandable viewpoints and I wish that both Christians and Jews would keep this in mind when discussing this subject.
Clear Channel has the right to carry or not carry anyone, Howard Stern. It is a private company. The question is whether your fans care enough about your absence there to make Clear Channel feel the heat. That’s how it’s done, not by whining about “censorship.”
Now, off to
plan and scheme have fun! Have a lovely weekend.
No worries. I'm still here.
Gosh, I feel so out of the loop. It’s not school or work this time. It’s a trip to OTB land. Yes, I’m headed to DC for a
VRWC Meeting an Air Force reunion for some of us who were stationed in Berlin before the fall of the infamous wall. This particular one is held each year, but it will be my first time attending. It’s been some fifteen years since I’ve seen many of these people, so I’ve had to get ready.
I can’t do anything about the fact that I weigh a good twenty-five pounds more than I did in 1990--well I can't do anything about it in two days--but I’m not sweating it. It used to be forty-five. Otherwise, the visage has held up pretty well over the years (I had a facial just to be on the safe side). Black don’t crack.
Serious stuff tomorrow, then I'm off (pun intended). BTW, it will be the first time I've been an airline passenger since well before 9/11.
Here's a little blog-type entertainment for you, to keep ya busy while I work and do my Haiti research. From the comments in my previous post:
With all of the mind numbing "reality" tv out there you pick Sex in the City to rag about? So far the majority of complaints about the show have been with reference to morality. I have news for you. YOUR MORALITY IS NOT THE ONLY MORALITY UNDER THE SUN. The show is meant to be viewed by adults people. If you are that much of a leaf blowing in the wind that you're afraid that an HBO show will corrupt you, well then your "faith" is pretty weak. The show's dialogue was human and diverse which bothers most closed minded people whose general philosophy is that every character on every show should be a protagonist by their own personal moral standards. And Hitler would agree with you.
P.S. #1 "So says the lord" huh? Newsflash: Jesus was closest to what were considered the moral dreggs of society in his day. And do you know why? Because what it all boils down to is the least of us are the same as the most in the eyes of the Lord. Put the stone down sinless. Stop living out the stereotypes of the establishment church consenus and be your own Christian, ya'know like Jesus was when he bucked the system. Befriend a Samaritan today. Enrich your memorized life.
P.S. #2 If you depend on the History Channel to cut & paste all of what you will deem important then you are lost. And the span of your knowledge will depend upon the editorial tastebuds of whoever owns the History Channel. Read, young jedi, read.
P.S. #3 Most sitcoms feature flabby, out-of-shape, balding men in relationships with women who would normally be out of their league. Women usually must be attractive by the male standard to even work on television but you're not blogging about that are you? One pioneering aspect of the show is that it did not accept this chauvinistic standard of American network tv. Oh and chauvinism is a byproduct of religious fundamentalism too so stop being culture terrorists.
It's just TV people. How are your compulsory educated children doing in their joke of an American education system?
Let me guess...don't know...figures.
You should cut down on your caffeine intake or whatever stimulant it is that gets all of these erroneous assumptions raging in your head.
1. I hate reality shows, too. They were next on my list.
2. Hate and fear aren’t the same thing. They can exist for the same item, but they’re not the same thing. For example, I hate sweet potatoes, but I don't fear them.
2. My hatred of the show has nothing to do with my faith. I just found it to be dumb; depicting dumb women who were dumb about their sex lives.
3. So sayeth the Lord? Was there some invisible print in that particular post?
4. Mine isn't the only morality? No? Thanks for the hot news flash. Post yours on your own blog, if you can afford to do so. If it's logical and coherent, I might even link to it. However, my first impression of your ability to be either is not that great.
5. I haven’t watched the History Channel lately. Work, school and blogging, you know.
6. What does attractiveness have to do with what I said?
5. I don't have children.
6. Dude, I was just tired of seeing trivial crap on the news at a time when I wanted to hear about Iraq, Haiti, and the upcoming presidential primaries/election.
7. You’re darn near as obnoxious as I was a few weeks back while I was in the throes of nicotine withdrawal.
8. I pay for this band-width; therefore I will express my opinion on whatever topic that turns my fancy. If you don’t like my take on things, you know where the “door” is.
9. Stuff it.
AFTERTHOUGHT: Was that you in drag David? You know, the one with the curly blond hair with the black roots? If so, that would explain your rather rabid reaction to an innoucuous post. Calm down. You looked beautiful.
Arrrrgh! (With apologies to John.) If I see one more post-mortem of
How to Ho like an Honest Hoochie HBO’s “Sex in the City” on the morning news, there are going to be some problems. Die already!
Back after the gym.
I didn’t pay enough attention to our President Clinton-lead sojourn in Haiti in the previous decade, other than to make a cursory judgment: probably a good thing.
With a civil war brewing there now, I’m doing a little research to find out what our objectives were back then. I’ve more work to do, but I wanted to throw these questions out there to folks who know more about this topic than I do:
Is the present situation in Haiti a result of slipshod or non-existent US effort at nation-building? Had we stayed there for some longer period, would it have made a difference? Or would these events have occurred regardless of what we might have done?
The reason that I ask should be obvious: to attempt to form an opinion about how soon we should extract ourselves from Iraq. Of course, comparing the situation in Haiti immediately after our intervention in the nineties and that of Iraq in 2004 will cause the nitpickers to scream “imperfect analogy”—as if any analogy is perfect.
Be that as it may, shoot me some links, knowledgeable ones, while I look and see what’s out there.
Well, I guess getting chewed out by Him is better than getting a lightening bolt.
This guy will be the real first black president. Mark my words.
Ralph Nader will run for president this year.
Okay. I’m a Republican and even I say that Karl Rove must be lining Nader’s pockets (not that I’m complaining).
That just has to be it. No one could be that egotistically stupid or stupidly egotistical.
One of my commenters, Mike, sends a link discrediting the assertions of this story. I definitely do appreciate the link, Mike. I, however, will not retract anything since there's nothing for me to retract: I did not report what the good governor of California--for whom I voted--did/did not do. The Washington Times did and it is that entity that should issue the retraction.
By the way, Mike, one can't "see fit" to correct something if one doesn't know it's an error. After one finds out that something is an error, then and only then can one "see fit" or not "see fit" to correct it. Is this clear? Good.
I hope that this addendum is everything to which you looked forward, Mike. I aim to please. Usually.
ABORTION CLAIM HITS PRESIDENT
George W. Bush had an abortion?
Ohhh…he knew someone who had an abortion. When? Last year? Five years ago? Bet Laura is PO’d. What? What’s that you say? It was thirty years ago, before he was married and before he became a Christian? Oh, okay then.
But, he should have stopped this woman from having that abortion. After all, abortion is the taking of innocent life.
What? Sheesh, what now? It’s not the taking of innocent life? Are you telling me that a fetus isn’t really a human being and is only a part of a woman's body? Are you saying that a woman has a right to chose what to do with her own body? Oh.
Then George W. Bush should not bear any sort of responsibility whatsoever for this phantom woman’s alleged abortion.
So what's the problem?
Keep trying, feces-slingers. Try using logic next time. (Of course, the pathetic accuser, Larry Flynt, is such an easy target.)
(Thanks to Lucianne.com)
California law strictly bans smoking in offices, bars and restaurants, but Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger a longtime cigar smoker has proposed converting the state Capitol's interior courtyard into a "smoking plaza."
Under the actor-turned-governor's plan, part of the Capitol's roof would be removed to create an area where legislators and other Sacramento visitors could smoke.
The governor's spokeswoman, Terri Carbaugh, explained that Mr. Schwarzenegger wants to create an informal meeting and schmoozing area where he can smoke cigars with lawmakers and other power brokers.Now you’ve done it, Arnold. You’re ready to let the enemy back in the gates? You're a turncoat in the WOT (War on Tobacco). This is Treason! You should know better, Arnold. How long have you lived here?
You know that it’s EVIL to smoke a cigarette or a cigar, i.e. legal commodities by which corporations make a profit. But, of course, it’s perfectly alright here in California to smoke anything—and I do mean anything—else.
According to the left, that is.
(PS: Don't send me anti-smoking screeds. I used to indulge, but saw the error of my ways.)
When someone ticks you off in an email, is it permissible in your response to say “bugger off” in one sentence and then to say “have a lovely evening” in the very next sentence?
I only ask because the obtuse are very often sarcasm-impaired in the bargain.
As for the rest of you, thanks, one and all, for your kind, thoughtful email comments.
Self-education has its benefits; it’s generated by true desire for knowledge, unclouded by the bureaucracy of formal education, uses straight-forward language as its vehicle. Formal education has some good points as well: that degree looks good on your wall. (Calm down, all you PhDs, JDs, MDs, etc.; just yanking your chain. You know that it’s envy. Really.)
While reading The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements , I was struck by several of Hoffer’s observations. The narrative lays out all the ingredients necessary for the success of Mass Movements: the people, the pre-conditions, the attitudes and the actions/reactions. He makes no moral judgments on the phenomenon, but merely lists the pre-cursors for the main event —like listing the ingredients for a main course. Would that I could do better than Mr. Hoffer in explaining the mass movement phenomenon, but I can’t. So here are a few of the statements that had meaning for me.
“A mass movement attracts and holds a following not because it can satisfy the desire for self-advancement [like many practical organizations], but because it can satisfy the passion for self-renunciation.”
The newly poor: “This class has a vivid memory of affluence and dominion and is not likely to reconcile itself to straitened conditions and political impotence.”
The bored: “Where people live autonomous lives and are not badly off, yet are without abilities or opportunities for creative work or useful action, there is no telling to what desperate and fantastic shifts they might resort in order to give meaning and purpose to their lives.”
The inordinately selfish: “The more selfish a person, the more poignant his disappointments. It is the inordinately selfish, therefore, who are likely to be the most persuasive champions of selflessness.”
Self-sacrifice [leading to] united action are the primary engines of a mass movement and must be inculcated into its proponents, says Mr. Hoffer. Sounds like basic training, yes, fellow military persons? (A distinction is drawn, however, between armies and mass movements: one promises “salvation;” the other is mainly used to “preserve or expand an established order.”)
“To ripen a person for self-sacrifice he must stripped of his individual identity and distinctness.” “The fully assimilated individual does not see himself and others as human beings.” Some of Star Trek’s writers must have been reading Hoffer before creating the Borg.
“People who live full, worthwhile lives are not usually ready to die for their own interests nor for their country nor for a holy cause.” Here, Mr. Hoffer is right, but incompletely so. Such people are often ready to die rather that live in a world in which others are ready to take their full, worthwhile lives and turn them into that of a slave.
On hatred, the great unifying agent:
“Hatred is the most accessible and comprehensive of all unifying agents.”
“Mass movements can rise and spread without belief in a God, but never without belief in a devil.”
“Often, when we are wronged by one person, we turn our hatred on a wholly unrelated person or group.” Great and Lesser Satans everywhere, now you know what the jihad thing is about.
The book is fascinating. (Read about leadership as a unifying agent in mass movements. It’s not what you might expect.) Uncluttered by high-sounding concepts using high-sounding words, the anatomy and function of mass movements are made plain. You know the people that Mr. Hoffer observed; at least you do if you’ve been paying attention. You might have caught yourself exhibiting these characteristics a time or two—for good or ill.
Check this one out. And the next summer, when the naked protesters upstate start ugly-ing up the countryside and you ask yourself "why," Mr. Hoffer will have provided you will some plausible answers.
Baldies have more fun.
How will government-sanctioned homosexual marriage cause the downfall of American society as we know it? Who really knows if it will? Hey, it might not. Are you surprised reading that output from the keyboard of a professed Christian? I can’t see why you would be. From a Christian perspective, the mainstreaming of homosexuality into society(ies) isn’t exactly a big surpise.
Claiming themselves to be wise without God, they became utter fools instead. (TLB; Romans 1:22)
Instead of believing what they knew was the truth about God, they deliberately chose to believe lies.
So they prayed to the things God made, but wouldn’t obey the blessed God who made these things.
That is why God let go of them and let them do all these evil things, so that even their women turned against God’s natural plan for them and indulged in sexual sin with each other.
And the men, instead of having a normal sexual relationship with women, burned with lust for each other, men doing shameful things with other men and, as a result receiving within their own souls the penalty they so richly deserved.
So it was that when they gave God up and would not even acknowledge him, God gave them up to doing everything their evil minds could think of. (TLB; Romans 1:25-28)For those of you who haven’t opened a Bible since Sunday School, Paul goes on to give some examples of the products of an evil mind. (I like The Living Bible for its plain, straight-forward language, though some concepts are likely better expressed in the original language written. I wonder if an Aramaic class is available at one of the community colleges around here.)
In the preamble, Paul tells the Romans that all men have the knowledge of God instinctively in their “hearts” and either accept it or reject it. And, like it or not, Paul uses rampant homosexuality as an example--a symptom--of the rejection of God.
The thing is, either one believes this or one does not. Christians believe this is a harbinger of things to come, so why worry about homosexuals marrying? You all knew this would happen if you read the owner's manual. Non-Christians blow it off as superstition or blasphemy, so why worry about it? You don't believe in this stuff anyway.
The way homosexual marriage is being implemented, however, is politically dangerous: judicially-mandated in Massachusetts and executively-mandated from the mayor’s office in San Francisco. This particular slippery slope is more frightening than a couple of old lesbians locking lips after tying the knot. Put a homosexual marriage bill before the good people of Massachusetts and they just might pass it. But we Californians said “no-way, José y Miguel” a few years back with Proposition 22.
Since when did a court/executive decision become equal to legislative action/the initiative process? And what law, palatable or not, will be forced into place next?
Put the decision before us and let us decide.
Secretary of State Colin Powell catches Perdition from both the Right and the Left, but usually keeps his Caribbean cool. However, every now and then, the diplomat veneer is breached and the old soldier comes out. What caused it this time? Why, Reps. Robert I Wexler, (D-FL) and Sherrod Brown, (D-OH) attempted to divide and conquer during the secretary’s testimony before a House session of the International Relations Committee. Bad move, space cadets:
Wexler told Powell he considered him to be "the credible voice in the administration."
"When you reached the conclusion that Iraq represented a clear and present danger to the United States, that meant a lot to me," Wexler said. "But the facts suggest there was a part of the story that was not true."
Powell fielded the assertions calmly, defending the president's judgment and his own.
But when Brown contrasted Powell's military experience to Bush's record with the National Guard, saying the president "may have been AWOL" from duty, Powell exploded.
"First of all, Mr. Brown, I won't dignify your comments about the president because you don't know what you are talking about," Powell snapped. [Bold mine]
"I'm sorry I don't know what you mean, Mr. Secretary," Brown replied.
"You made reference to the president," Powell shot back.
Brown then repeated his understanding that Bush may have been AWOL from guard duty.
"Mr. Brown, let's not go there," Powell retorted. "Let's not go there in this hearing. If you want to have a political fight on this matter, that is very controversial, and I think it is being dealt with by the White House, fine, but let's not go there."That was a nice try, gentlemen: insult the General’s…I mean the Secretary’s…intelligence while trying to kiss his BDU-colored backside using your own ignorance as the pucker. (I'm sure that the General was perfecting the game of "good cop/bad cop" some forty years ago, likely alternating roles.) And the General actually got PO’d! Can anyone imagine that happening? :-)
(Thanks to Instapundit and many others)
I love big dogs: big, loud deep bark, big bite out of your butt--and what were you doing in my backyard/house anyway?--big love puppies, big appetites and yes, big poop machines. I miss my Bouvier des Flandres; Mu was his name--long dead, but not forgotten. He was a big hairy beast—like these, his brethren…
…with all of the above-mentioned attributes. This Newfoundland winner of the Westminster Kennel Club's Best in Show (registration required) reminds me of my old friend.
In 1989, just weeks before I was about to come home from my first tour in Germany, my parents gave me a call. Twelve-year-old Mu had cancer and my mom was torn between waiting until I came home three weeks later (to say goodbye) and putting Mu out of his misery as soon as possible. I told her to go ahead and get it done.
I still remember sitting on the floor in front of the couch. Mu would lay on the floor perpendicular to me, put his front paws under my legs and put his head in my lap.
Love ya, buddy. Dogs pack a lot of that into a short lifetime.
(Bouvier portrait property of Robin Renton)
Okay, I backslid. Happy? I’m sure some of you are gloating right now, but you could at least keep reading to find out how I slipped.
I cannot stop beating my head up against brick walls. I am powerless over the rant.
Kevin Drum of Calpundit made me relapse. Here, he posts a copy of George W. Bush’s Air National Guard point earnings (attendance records) from October 1972 to July 1973. (This page shows only October to May):
Drum: “My guess is the latter: they don't show much of anything related to the National Guard. Rather, they are records of something that counted as drills in the Air Reserve, although it's not clear what.” [Bold mine]BZZZTTT!!!! Your guess is wrong, Kevin. What else would this record be related to besides Guard Service? A point run-down of a game of tiddly-winks? The points listed are for attendance: drill (or Unit Training Assembly as we Air Force Reservists call it; that required single weekend per month) or active duty. In other words, you have to actually be there for something other than a goose egg to be listed under “points.”
Also, the only thing that counts as drill is….wait for it…..drill. However, as mention above, points are also accumulated for the two-week active duty period (fourteen days) that each Guard member/Reservist is required to serve each year. By the way, those fourteen days need not be served consecutively. You figure it out.
Drum: “But whatever they show, both records show the same thing. Even if we're not sure exactly what that is… [Bold mine]
…..the mainstream media needs to at least understand what evidence is currently available and what its possible interpretations are.” [Bold mine]Why am I not surprised to find out that the “mainstream media” cannot manage to dig up one of their number who is/was a Guardsman/Reservist? (I can help them: FoxNews reporter Greg Kelly is a Marine Reservist. Wonder if he’s been asked about this matter? Heh.)
Interpretation? What is there to interpret? The document shown isn’t some obscure scroll written in a long dead language, found during an archeological dig at the foot of the Himilayas. It’s an objective document showing the amount of attendance points that President Bush earned during the last part of his ANG stint--the part that a certain segment of the population just can’t get out of their minds.
Drum: “POSTSCRIPT: By the way, the actual point of Romano's story is that the Defense Department is requesting Bush's payroll records from "a DOD archive in Colorado." Why is DOD doing this? And why just payroll records? Very peculiar.”It’s only seems peculiar if one doesn’t know how things work in the military, as, apparently, you do not, Kevin. Such records are the minimal needed to disprove the assertions that George W. Bush was “AWOL” from or “deserted” from the Air National Guard. Hopefully, after that, people like you will STOP TRYING TO PEDDLE SIMILAR CROCKS OF SHIT TO THE AMERICAN PUBLIC.
There's always hope.
UPDATE: Since a lot of people have sent me the link to this letter—including one fine gentleman named GB who, in spite of the initials, is not fond of George W. Bush, but who is quite fair-minded—I wanted to mention that I had read it and heard it read aloud by Hugh Hewitt (while I yelled, “you go, Colonel!”). It’s great and awesome, but, for those in the tertiary stage of BDS, it won’t make a difference.
Ah, the bogus class warfare battles continue, this time right here in LA (registration required). It seems that nebulous “peace activists” are clueing in those naïve “poor” black and brown high school students and their parents, neither of whom are capable, apparently, of figuring out that the purpose of a military is to fight wars.
My message to these students? Please, don’t join up. Those who actually want to serve don’t want to have to pull your weight. It hinders the mission: protecting your collective butts from enemies foreign and domestic.
"They [military recruiters] tell us, if we're failing classes, we're not going to make it to college," said Banuelos, 17, who wants to go to college. "They say, 'With our help is the only way to get out of the ghetto.' " [SNIP]
Student speakers from Los Angeles Unified School District high schools spoke out against ROTC programs and pressure to join the military. In addition, Fernando Suarez del Solar, father of Marine Lance Cpl. Jesus Alberto Suarez del Solar, who was killed in the Iraq war in March, urged the audience to resist military recruitment programs on campuses.I’m sorry for your loss, Mr. Suarez del Solar. I just hope you’re not letting your grief obscure the honor with which your son lived his life and met the fate which we all have to meet.
"This is a conscious plan on the part of the government to drive our students out of the schools and drive them into the military to take part in the death and destruction," Suarez del Solar said.Oh well, too late. The poor guy doesn’t realize that his anguish is being used. I pity these activists when the gentleman in question finally does wake up.
Arlene Inouye, a coordinator of the event, said students are being sold "myths" that make joining the military seem attractive, such as the notion that it's a good way to travel to other parts of the world. "With all of the casualties of war, it becomes a life-or-death issue," she said.Hey, I guess I didn’t really get to travel to places that I never would have visited had I not been in the military. I suppose that I should believe Ms. Inouye instead of my own experience. I suppose Ms. Inouye spent her entire military career stateside. Oh wait! There’s no mention in that article of Ms. Inouye having actually served in the military.
(Did I do my math right? Have only .03 percent of troops in Iraq, or thereabouts, lost their lives? If so, the last part of Ms. Inouye’s statement would be laughable, if the subject were not so serious. Remember these are Los Angeles high school students we’re talking about.)
Most assuredly, if these students cannot read/write/calculate at a certain level, they will not be allowed to join the military, recruiter enticements notwithstanding. It won’t matter whether one has a high school diploma or not—and GEDs are no longer acceptable.
The recruiters just want to keep the numbers of inquiries high, which is all they really care about. What the military wants are those smart enough to make their own informed decisions and with enough smarts to learn how to properly operate that multi-million dollar equipment paid for by you-know-who. The military wants the ones who could go to college if they so choose.
In short, the military doesn’t want your crack/meth babies....
BTW, there is absolutely no shame in not being willing to put it all on the line for defense of country, BUT don't make it seem as if those who are willing are some kind of dupes for the
rich white man government.
It’s fascinating how the human mind works; how we’re able to block out memories that are too painful. I submit that this ability is a defense against insanity, with which some are more blessed than others.
I think also that some are too “blessed” with this ability. Often, this defense mechanism is so strong, that not only are some able to block out harm inflicted upon them, but harm that they have inflicted upon others.
Sometimes this neat trick of blocking unpleasant facts/occurances is so strong, that some can’t even remember events that conflict with their view of how the world works. If they think all blacks are inferior, they won’t recall meeting the black physicist; if they think all rich people steal from the poor, they won’t remember reading about any self-made millionaires that had a “dream:” a product or a service for which millions of people shelled out money through their own free will.
Amazing, this ability.
A friend who thinks that any occurrance that might work in a given Republican’s favor is some sort of conspiracy, postulated that the recent ricin special delivery to Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist’s (R-TN) office was a plot hatched by the RNC. When I pointed out that the previous senate majority leader, Tom Daschle (D-SD) had also been the recipient of a similar terrorist—yes, terrorist—attack (anthrax) in the immediate wake of 9/11, she, somehow, didn’t remember that.
This good and warm-hearted lady didn’t even remember that three people died as a result of the anthrax attack. Is she a monster? Definitely not. Does she care about terrorists attacking fellow citizens of our country? Most definitely yes. Did she simply forget about it? No. Does she have a poor memory? No.
There was was no "oh, yeah, that's right" moment. The Daschle-postal worker anthrax attack simply no longer existed in her memory. No Democrat senate majority leader had been attacked exactly like the Republican one. The memory was blocked because it conflicted with the Big Concept: the Evil Republicans have their hand in everything.
Observing this phenomenon (yet again) reinforced a lesson I've tried (and sometimes failed) to keep at the forefront of my own mind when dealing with otherwise fine and intelligent human beings that irrationally—as opposed to rationally—disagree with an opinion of mine.
No matter how valid the reasoning nor how provable the item stated as fact, some people simply will not believe what’s right in front of their eyes if it conflicts with their cherished belief(s). Some will hold onto the block for dear life and attack you as if you’ve struck one of their children; for all intents and purposes, you have.
I’ll keep ‘talking’ about my own opinions, but if another’s reason isn’t more valid than mine, I’m not going to beat my head against a brick wall about it; not anymore. If the reasoning is more valid than mine, however, rest assured: I’ll re-think my position.
With the profound display of ignorance of the intricacies of Guard and Reserve service again proliferating, my post from a while back, “Again with this Bovine Excrement,” has been linked anew from all over and, finally, Instapundit-ed (I like that better than 'Instalanched').
Since I close the ability to comment to posts older than thirty days, feel free to comment about the renewed topic here.
There's a very good reason that the (latest) Jackson incident outrages so many, including me; and it has little to do with prudishness. Allow me to ramble until I get to my point.
A child’s father throws him up in the air and catches him. Later on that child is a man and is sure that his wife will be faithful to him, even though she has to go away for six months (surrounded by other men) because she’s in the military.
The child and the man are exhibiting trust, and, in each case, if he’s fortunate and has chosen well, that trust, freely given, will not have been misplaced.
We as individuals and as group members place varied degrees of trust in many things, people and entities. We trust our new car to start and run proficiently. We trust the local grocer not to poison us and our physicians not to butcher us. We trust the US Postal service to keep the mail moving and our president to defend us from enemies foreign and domestic.
We trust the state-wide electrical utilities services to provide electricity to our homes and we trust our babysitters/day care centers to feed, cloth, and protect our children.
Picking but a single example from the above list will demonstrate how often our trust is offered in vain. When those various forms of trust are betrayed, we take a variety of actions, according to our values, temperament, resources, judgment and, most importantly, our self-control. But, often, the unifying factor in response to betrayal of trust is this: we are pissed; often so angry that the aforementioned self-control is straining its leash. Not uncommonly, that leash breaks.
Back to the Jackson/Timberlake incident: many people trusted CBS to present a family broadcast for a traditionally family event and now many people are hot under the collar; oh not necessarily because they’re “prudes” or are “uptight” about nudity. They’re angry because they didn’t make the choice to allow their children (or themselves) to pick what kind of “entertainment” would come into their homes at a given time. They thought they were getting apples and, instead, they got oranges. And now they have to explain to their children just what was up with the “orange” before they and/or the children were ready for that talk.
CBS, MTV, Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake (not to mention Nelly and Sean Combs) “flipped the script” on them without their permission. Oh, surely some of them check out pay-per-view soft- and hardcore-prÖn in the comfort of their bedrooms without the kids present. However, that’s the point: the kids aren’t present.
If I had children, I’d likely be a lot less dispassionate about this particular betrayal of trust. However, I do have nieces and nephews; the eldest, a twelve-year-old boy. I have friends with children. I wonder what my sister might have said to her oldest son about this. I wonder what my friend with two daughters, one seven and one fourteen, might say to his girls about the merits of showing a breast on TV (or anywhere else).
I don’t envy them this task or many others that go along with raising children with the desired values in this era.
I do know this: if I had children, the TV would have gone out of the window as of February 1, 2004. However, I am pissed off for the betrayal of your trust, parents, and ticked off enough to write the offending parties letters regarding this matter. I hope that many of you are doing the same.
And, by the way, keep that self-control on a reinforced leash.
(Okay, I couldn’t resist.)
Aside from showing off one of her mammary glands, Janet Jackson demonstrated something else: that she’s lost ability to judge the tastes and preferences of the average consumer of entertainment.
Who watches the Super Bowl? Why, just about everyone; young, old, rich, poor, conservative, liberal. Your great-aunt (or at least mine) is checking out the clash of a given year’s titans, as is your impressionable eight-year old. It’s not the MTV crowd, so, if you’re an entertainer and you get the grand invite to perform during the Super Bowl’s vaunted halftime show, you adjust your performance accordingly; according to the aforementioned demographic. You do this if you’re smart, forward-thinking, if you have competent advisors and if you’re savvy enough to listen to them.
Janet Jackson--in her decision to follow through on flashing millions of viewers--showed that she lacked some combination of these factors in her life.
Well, at least we know now that she is definitely related to Michael.
UPDATE: Someone with similar bad demographic judgment received a hit from a Patriot.
The other talking point on Monday was the failure of the [Super Bowl] venue's security procedures after a streaker held up the game for several minutes prior to the second-half kickoff.
He was ultimately knocked down by Patriots linebacker Matt Chatham and taken away by security personnel. The incident was not televised.(Thanks to one of Donald Sensing’s commenters.)