Tuesday, December 31, 2019

When To Ditch A Business Line

I don't recall who said it, but I've always loved this maxim: If you're not going to be #1 or #2 in a business area, then cut your losses and get out. I think it was Jack Welch, long-time CEO of GE.

Now dig this tweet.

Let's look at the list and see if the Catholic Church has any hope of being first or second in any of these business areas.
  • Freedom of religion (YES)
  • Climate change (NO)
  • Media freedom (NO)
  • Modern slavery (MAYBE with a lot of our dwindling resources invested)
  • Conflict resolution (NO)
  • Sexual abuse (MANDATORY after acknowledging this was the Church's Stalingrad - a bad idea that has bled us almost to death)
  • Fake news (NO)
The list is also a hodgepodge. If I had to characterize it, I'd say it's a grab bag of progressive causes. It's also a total luxury for the Church which is experiencing massive, simultaneous personnel, customer and financial crises. Imagine JC Penney, near the end of its run, pouring resources into climate change and fake news.
Leaderless, $4 billion in debt and with a stock price below $2, the besieged retailer faces an uncertain fate after posting its latest round of dismal earnings.

"They're in a leaky boat that eventually will sink," said Mark Cohen, the director of retail studies at the Columbia Business School and a former CEO of Sears Canada and other department stores. "The prognosis for the future is not happiness."

...Penney finds itself weighed down by years of errors, failed CEOs and muddled attempts to establish a clear identity with shoppers.

Penney closed 141 stores last year is closing eight more this year. It has more than 860 left, but hundreds are in troubled malls, with leases that prevent Penney from escaping...

Analysts say the company lacks the cash and focused strategy to compete against big box sellers Target and Walmart, which are battling for every inch in stores, and Amazon, which is gobbling up digital sales.

Penney is plagued by a "lack of understanding about what it is, what it stands for, and who it wants to serve," said Neil Saunders, an analyst at GlobalData Retail.
That sounds like the Church all over - a lack of understanding about what it is, what it stands for, and who it wants to serve. So now what do we get? Climate change, media freedom, fake news and undoubtedly a future push against white supremacists, all seven of them.

Nigel Fairservice responded particularly cogently. "Catholicism used to be about saving souls for Jesus. You fail."

Say, don't we have a parish or two that's doing the same thing? Maybe we should talk more about plastics in the ocean.

Monday, December 30, 2019

How Compatible Are Christianity And Socialism?

A priest I follow on Twitter said today that if Bernie was pro-life, he'd vote for him. That made me wonder about the whole socialism-Christianity thing.

How much charity can you show under socialism? Wouldn't the enforced "giving" of socialism strip all the goodness from the act? How much joy would you feel if you gave to the poor so the police wouldn't show up at your door and arrest you for tax evasion? I suppose you can still express charity through acts, but a whole class of charity would be eliminated by government enforcement.

Frankly, I'd have a hard time doing things for others if almost everything I earned was taken from me and given to them already.

On the receiving end, it doesn't seem like there's a whole lot of gratitude when it comes to entitlements. On the other hand, if I'm in dire straits and someone pays off my credit card out of the goodness of their hearts, you can best believe I'm going to be very grateful indeed.

Finally, it seems to me like socialism puts an end to evangelization. Like what's the point then? How do you follow Pope Francis' call to keep your mouth shut about your faith, but express it through actions? Actions like what? The government is going to do those actions in your name whether you want them done or not, so why bother?

All good works, for that matter, require choice in order to be good. Coerced charity isn't charity at all.

In the end, I guess it all depends on whether or not you want to perfect the world through force or if you'd prefer to evangelize and let people practice their newfound faith on their own. I think the latter gives everyone a lot more opportunities to love their neighbors even if the results are less uniform.

And my goodness, but the socialists love their uniforms.

Sunday, December 29, 2019

Martians And The Warsaw Uprising

An alliance between all peoples of the Earth to defend ourselves from Martians is what we need now. There is no time to be fighting among ourselves when the real threat, Martians, is so clear and obvious!

That's what I thought when I saw this tweet from Erin Biba.

H/T: Andy Ngo.
Erin describes herself thusly.
Freelance Science Journalist - National Geographic, BBC, Scientific American, NBC News, PopSci, Gizmodo, Earther, Dame, WIRED and others. Fact Checker.
She's clearly no slouch. However, she has fallen prey to the narrative of white supremacists as a threat. I don't believe they're a threat to anyone. In fact, I would bet that there are more academics and journalists studying them than there are actual supremacists. Kind of like the population of some rare songbird compared to the population of birdwatchers looking for them.

The killer argument is in Erin's tweet.
"What we need right now is a way to find solidarity with each other against our shared enemy of white supremacy."
Did the Jewish insurgents in the Warsaw Uprising need a way to find solidarity with each other? Within that community, you know there were mortal enemies. Business deals gone wrong because of lies and cheating, marriages wrecked from adultery, parents whose children had been bullied severely, there simply had to have been Jews in Warsaw who had good reason to hate each other. That's part of the human condition. And yet, the Jews in Warsaw, when they got their hands on weapons, didn't use them on each other. The threat posed by the Nazis was obvious.

The threat posed by white supremacists isn't obvious because it doesn't exist. If it did, alliances between victim groups and within victim groups would naturally arise. You wouldn't need to talk them into being.

On a related note, Baltimore saw it's per capita murder rate record broken yesterday. No white supremacists were involved.

Again, if the external threat was really there, would the members of the oppressed groups be killing each other?

Saturday, December 28, 2019

You Know You're Crazy When

... you're in the garage at 1:30 AM, plugging up a ruptured fuel line in an MGB that hasn't been driven in months the day of your mother's funeral after several nights of almost no sleep.


I'm too busy today with the funeral and the strong chance for a massive family blow up at the church to go into the details of this particular adventure. Feel free to fill those in from your imaginations. They probably won't be far wrong.

Sincerely, I hope you have a great day. I'll be glad when this one is over.

Also, geaux Tigers!

Friday, December 27, 2019

Francis Is The David Shula Of Popes

Buckle up, kiddos. This one is going to get a bit bumpy. I agreed to Deano's request that I fill this blog post with sports analogies and tortured metaphors and, being a cat of my word, I'm going to do just that.

Dean had the best response I've yet seen to the Pope's audience with the high schoolers where il Papa told them to shut up about the faith.
This is David Shula.
David Shula -- Shula, Don Shula's son, is proof that sometimes the apple does fall far from the tree. So far that the apple can then also roll down a muddy hill, and then across a ditch and onto a road, where it is run over by a steamroller and a marching band, its splattered chunks rotting in the sun as they are picked at by vermin. That was David Shula's NFL coaching tenure. Hired by the Bengals at age 33 in 1992, he coached four and a half seasons and finished 19-52.
Pope Francis as David Shula is actually a decent analogy. First off, Francis is a major loser. Last I heard, we drop 6 1/2 Catholics for every person that joins the Church. That's the equivalent of losing every game 45-7. How do you get that bad? Consistency, consistency, consistency! An anemic offense and no defense.

First, we've got a Pope who tells his most passionate young people to keep their big traps shut. Do not evangelize anyone! In effect, he's punting on second down. Rely on actions only! Oh yeah, that's going to work. Imagine what an effect it will have if you, a practicing and quiet Catholic, help a buddy move and on the way to his new house, the radio plays a news report about a pedophile priest. Yes, you gained 3 yards on a run up the middle, but the Church got called for unsportsmanlike conduct and your +3 play turns into a -15 loss.

As for defense, almost all of our losses are coming from young people. You know, like the ones the Pope told to stop bugging him. Lots and lots of those young people go to Catholic schools. Do we teach apologetics? Do our universities have mandatory classes in Catholic responses to common criticisms? No. Instead, our theology professors teach Nazi Race Theory.
At present, Dr. Teel’s primary research concern is to bring Christian theological anthropology (the study of what it means to be human, in Christian perspective) and Christology (the study of Jesus) into critical, creative engagement with the ongoing problems of racism and white supremacy in the United States and beyond. To this end, she often works with contemporary theologies from traditionally underrepresented groups, particularly black and womanist theologies, as well as with literature from relevant fields such as critical whiteness studies and critical race theory.
I'm guessing it would be too much to ask to have Frau Teel give her lectures in shouted German. Think that's too critical? Dig this.
She is now writing a book entitled The Unbearable Whiteness of Jesus.
For God's sake, who thought this race-crazed maniac was a good hire? Oh, wait. Our leadership did. I think we've discovered why our secondary gets torched over and over and over.

So while the Pope is shutting down the offense, the schools aren't even trying to play defense.

And that, my friends, is how you get stomped every game.

This is what 45-7 looks like, just in case you don't hang out with a lot of Catholics.

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Pope Francis: Being Catholic Is More Work Than It's Worth

My man Deano summed up a recent interview with il Papa with this pithy tweet.

Here's the context from Life Site News.
ROME, December 23, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — In an apparent repudiation of the Great Commission to baptize and teach all nations (Matthew 28:16-20), Pope Francis has recently told a group of high school students in Rome that speech should never be used in order to convince a non-believer of the truths of the Catholic Faith.
Father Matthew Schneider, a Catholic priest with whom I almost always agree, penned a defense of the Pope's comments. Here's his excerpt from the Pope's answer to the question of conversion.
[Pope Francis Answers:] [He begins describing how he lived in school in Argentina, then he notes,] This kid was Muslim, that kid was Jewish… but we all played soccer together, we were all friends. This has taught me so much, that we are all the same, all children of God and this [comradery] purifies your gaze, it makes you human. […] You must be consistent with your faith. It didn’t occur to me and it doesn’t have to be like saying to a boy or a girl: “You are Jewish, you are Muslim: come over here, get converted!” You should be consistent with your faith and that consistency is what will make you mature. [A mature Christian as he has said before, is one whoa ttracts others to Jesus. Thus, consistency in faith is a way of sharing the Gospel.]
The Pope then goes on to tell the students not to threaten to stab people with swords if they don't convert. I'm not sure how that suggested itself to His Holiness, but it did. In any case, here's part of Fr. Schneider's argument.
(W)e have to look at the context. Pope Francis is speaking about a fellow student who is an atheist. In a similar situation, think of two coworkers: one spends lunch hour preaching to you and your coworkers, and another does simple things like prays before meals but you also see joy and authenticity in him. Most of us will tune out the former. On the other hand, you would likely ask the latter about their life, which would include their faith.
First off, what is with all these straw men? "Don't threaten to slaughter unbelievers like the Crusaders did." "Compare the guy who rants at you at lunch with the guy who buys you a Diet Coke when you forgot to bring your wallet." I get it already. You're trying to discourage us from talking about the faith because, left to our own devices, we'll be violent, raving maniacs. However, that's not the real problem.

The real problem lies in this sentence and it's one the Pope has repeatedly said.
It didn’t occur to me and it doesn’t have to be like saying to a boy or a girl: “You are Jewish, you are Muslim: come over here, get converted!”
Turn it around, use it on the Catholic students and what do you get? If you don't have to be Catholic, why do I have to be Catholic? It's a lot of work with all the Holy Days of Obligation and the sexual teachings and the nonsense about hating gays we have to endure. What's the payoff?

I always get the feeling that he's telling me to shut up and I'd be just as good if I was anything from an atheist to a Muslim. Like, whatever, man, it's all the same.

There are two other huge problems with what he said that I'll address in future blog posts. For now, this controversy was more of the same from Pope Francis.

It's like the Pope feels as if he's been given the Bengals' head coaching job. He takes a look at us and shakes his head in disgust, wishing he was Episcopalian or something. Geeze, dude, I'm sorry we're such a disappointment.

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from a rainy San Diego! Here's hoping you get all the love and kindness you need today.

Out here in sunny (?) SoCal, Jose Jalapeño* wishes you a Merry Christmas, too and would be happy to donate some delicious and tangy peppers to your holiday feastings.
* - Jose Jalapeño works better than Joaquin Jalapeño, I think. I just came up with his name right now. Or is it a she? Since it bears lots and lots of fruit, maybe it should be Juanita Jalapeño. Hmm. No, I like Jose Jalapeño best.

Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Making The Infinite Comprehensible

... is part of what we celebrate tomorrow on Christmas. I think it was Hans Urs von Balthasar* who said that without Jesus we would have no way to comprehend or even approach God. God would be this infinite, unfathomable being. In Jesus, we have God as Man.

I'm grateful for that. I hope you have a very merry Christmas.

The Big Guy as a Tiny Dude.
* - Is Hans Urs von Balthasar a great name or what? Supervillian? Crazy, scientific genius? King of Prussia? It works in so many ways.

Monday, December 23, 2019

I Want A Sandblaster For Christmas

Wife kitteh made homemade pizza last night, using her own dough for the crust. It was delicious, as always and, as always, the pizza burned like a beast onto the cookie sheets. She also had the oven up too high, so the burned-on pizza was even more burned-on than usual.

We're about to throw out two of the sheets, deeming them irredeemable. As I scrubbed and scrubbed and scrubbed, trying to save them, I realized that a sandblaster would do the trick perfectly. A little bit of WWHHHIIIRRRRZZZZZZZSHSHSHSSHSHSZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ and you'd have perfectly cleaned cookie sheets.

Since we aren't likely to get a sandblaster, here's another idea. I haven't tried it yet, but I'm going to give it a go.

Warning: The dude has a massive sink which allows the cookie sheet to rest at the bottom. Pure fantasy! No one has a sink that big!

Sunday, December 22, 2019

There's No Substitute For Beer

I'm back into weightlifting. I'm an older dude, so I can't go at it like I used to, but I love the way I feel when I'm a bit more buff so I'm hitting the gym again. I managed to make my goal of 6 days last week. I'm very happy with that.

I've also got a spare tire to lose. I'd love to drop 15 pounds, so I spent some time surfing around, looking at weightlifting weight loss plans. What's missing for me is cardio and diet.

I hate cardio. I just hate it. Even with a good book or playlist, sitting on a bike pedaling to nowhere drives me bonkers. I'm fine lifting for over an hour, but I can't do much more than ten minutes of cardio before I want to hang myself. It also seems like a total waste of time. Dig this chart. Here's the payoff comparison.
  • Elliptical, 1 hour = 365 calories burned
  • Walking, 1 hour = 314 calories burned
Are you kidding me? I only pick up 50 calories over walking on that thing?

Besides, my problem isn't calorie burning so much as it is calorie intake. Looking at various nutritional advice, I find that carbs, fats, sugars and alcohol are problematic. I have no great passion for sugar or carbs, so those aren't a problem. I love to cook Southern food, so fats are a weakness, but I can work those out of my cuisine fairly easily.

It's the beer that's killing me.

One Lagunitas IPA has 180 calories. 3 of them have 540. That's about 90 minutes of walking. That's not going to happen so the beer has to go.

I've heard people say that a good way to give up a vice is to substitute something else for it. That's nonsense. It's never worked for me. "In exchange for giving up beer, I'll reward myself with (something)." I've yet to find the substitute for beer. That's because it doesn't exist. I love the taste of a good IPA or double IPA as well as the buzz from the alcohol. You aren't going to replace that with some crackers and cheese.

Nope, you just have to set your jaw and grimly fight the impulse to pop open a cold one. Every day.

Yurgh. What a pain. Looks like I need to channel my inner Stonewall Jackson.

Saturday, December 21, 2019

The Freedom Of Atheist Dictatorships

... to do whatever they like is their greatest strength. Dig this.
In November, various Western media outlets reported that Han Chinese men had been assigned to monitor the homes of Uighur women whose husbands had been detained in prison camps.

The reports came out after an anonymous Chinese official gave an interview with Radio Free Asia, confirming the program but denying there was anything sinister about it.

As part of the “Pair Up and Become Family” program, Han Chinese men stay with and sleep in the same beds as Uighur women.
This is a classic strategy for dictatorships. You conquer a people, slay, imprison or enslave their men and then turn their women into concubines or "wives" for your men. It's been done by primitive societies for centuries.

It's also evolutionarily superior. For all the atheists out there, you're going to need to tie yourselves into even more complicated intellectual knots than usual to explain why this isn't a superior behavior over any other the Chinese might contemplate. Generations from now, the Chinese will have expanded their culture and Uighurs will not. In fact, if things go according to the tried and true script, the Uighurs will simply vanish.

But hey, what's the big? All cultures are equally valid and the Chinese are just being their authentic, tyrannical selves, right? Who are you to judge?

Over and over on this blog, I've claimed that we are in the middle of a 3-way war. That idea was far too Western-centric. Instead, the war is really 4-way. Here are the teams:
  1. Christians, Catholics and Jews,
  2. Secular lefties,
  3. Muslims and
  4. Atheist dictatorships like China.
The Secular Left cannot comprehend the threats posed by either the Muslims or the atheist dictatorships. They don't even acknowledge those threats exist. Catholics, whom I use proxies for the rest of their team, do not understand the war is even happening and continue to try to make nice with everyone.
The Vatican said Saturday that it had reached a provisional deal with the Chinese government to end a decades-old power struggle over the right to appoint bishops in China. It was the Communist country’s first formal recognition of the pope’s authority within the Roman Catholic Church in the world’s most populous nation, Vatican officials said.

Under the deal, Pope Francis recognized the legitimacy of seven bishops appointed by the Chinese government. Because they had not been selected by the Vatican, they had previously been excommunicated.
Just what kind of a deal can you make with an atheist dictatorship?

For both the Secular Left and the Catholics, it's pretty hard to come up with a strategy for success when you're blind to the contest at hand. The other two teams, meanwhile, are playing to win.

Exit question: How will the Muslims respond to the annihilation of the Uighurs? Do the Uighurs have any allies within the faith?

Sadly, Pope Francis was facing the wrong way and never saw the Chinese bus that ran him over.

Friday, December 20, 2019

Can A Subjective World Be Made From Only Objective Components?

Note: I'm just trying to work out an idea with this post. You'll see that it's disjointed and really made up of two, semi-connected concepts. Oh well.

There are a couple of Catholic commentators who are driving me batty right now. Their essays are well-written and logical, but they're fighting individual orcs instead of throwing the ring in Mount Doom. They're Doomed to fail, if you will.

There, that's enough with the LotR metaphor. On to the substance.

My argument: Almost no one on the Christian side of the war understands the war or who is fighting. Until we understand that, we will lose bigly.

When Catholics used to argue with Protestants or Muslims, the argument was about the nature of the Truth. The Pope? Mohammed? Sola Scriptura? When we argue with the Secular Left*, we're facing an enemy who is saying that there is no Truth at all. Without a general agreement that there is such a thing as Truth, universal ideas that exist everywhere at all times for all people, then Jesus died for nothing. There is no sin since we all have our own truths and can rationalize away our sins.

A culture that embraces subjectivity is fatal to the Church.

An argument in favor of the the existence of the Truth: If you are a secularist, you believe that the physical world is all there is. The physical world, however, is made up of objective things. That is, there are laws of physics and chemistry that apply everywhere at all times to all things. There are zero degrees of freedom, if you will, in the components of reality.

If there are zero degrees of freedom in your components, you can't get to the total freedom of subjectivity. At least that's my thinking.

Of course, I used logic, which itself is colonialist, racist, patriarchal and all the rest of that rot. At least I'm dealing with the root problem and not a symptom.

Brilliant Catholic Thinker: My essay proves that you must put away that red Lego brick over there.
Secular Leftists: What this place really needs is for me to dump out a randomly selected box of toys onto the floor.

* - Yes, it's the left. There is a Secular Right, but it's quiet about its secular nature and doesn't have the culturally violent tendencies of the Secular Left.

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Impeachment Is A Tax On The Stupid

So San Fran Nan and her crew of loons impeached President Trump because he was a clear and present danger to the nation. There was great rejoicing from across the progressive land!

Now we come to find out that the crisis is so immediate and the Orange Man is so clearly present, that we may have to wait a while before the impeachment paperwork is sent on to the Senate for a trial.

I don't know about you, but this looks like a good time to send out the fundraising emails to all the zealots.
Dear Zana, Even though we impeached the Orange Man, who is very bad, now is not the time to let up. We face a tough road ahead in the Senate where we won't be able to make up the rules to suit ourselves. Can we count on you to support our efforts? For a mere $150, you can make sure the voice of the people is heard by the people who need to hear people voices!
It's also a good time to continue recruiting airheads to march in the streets and volunteer on phone banks to annoy everyone in sight.

Yay! Winning!

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

When Do You Need To Pray?

Since the previous post for today was a mostly incoherent rant, I figured I'd balance it out with this one.

I struggle with prayer. Simply put, I just don't feel like it most of the time. However, I still need that connection with the divine and direction from The Big Dude. Mostly, I need it when I get up and then again around 4 PM. Those are the times right before when I'm most likely to go sideways and do things I don't want to be doing.

In the morning, I want to vow to dedicate my life to doing His will. At night, I want a course correction from what I've done during the day as well as some kind of restraint with the evening's relationships, including my relationship with the contents of the fridge in the garage.

I'm also not a big fan of prayers found in books. I've bought a ton of them and I'm enough of a rebel that almost all of them make me roll my eyes. Instead, I find it a lot more rewarding to talk to The Man. That's where I get the best feedback and suggestions.

So there's that. A much better blog post for today.

Reaping The Whirlwind

... is what happens when you deliberately sow the seeds of ignorance in your schools.

Dig this.
PARIS (AP) — French union activists cut electricity to nearly 100,000 homes or offices. Eiffel Tower staff walked off the job. Even Paris opera workers joined in Tuesday’s nationwide protests across France, singing an aria of anger as workers rallied against the government’s plan to raise the retirement age to 64.
The French aren't having babies and they haven't been having babies for a long time. That means there aren't nearly enough workers to support all the retirees under the current system. They have three choices.
  1. Raise the retirement age.
  2. Cut retirement benefits.
  3. Riot in the streets until they experience and Venezuelan financial collapse.
Just like the idiots running our own education industry, the French have taught their children nothing of value when it comes to economics and so they riot.

I seriously doubt French or even our own academics can tell you what the problem is. Ours would say it was racism.

Meanwhile, the bills will be paid until they run out of money. After that, the whirlwind will be upon them.

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Dying Is Incredibly Inconvenient

... for your survivors.

I've spent a ton of time dealing with paperwork and forms and mailings and lawyers since mom died. You know, if she'd been a thoughtful, loving person, she'd have taken care of all of this before she went.

Some people are so inconsiderate!


Monday, December 16, 2019

When Atomic Lawyers Attack

... you're screwed. Especially when it's your own lawyers.

Amidst all the impeachment madness and the IG testimony, an atomic bomb went off unnoticed. From the IG's testimony, we learned:
  • The first FISA warrant was more or less legal and appropriate.
  • The first FISA warrant was reviewed by FBI lawyers.
  • All of the FISA renewals were fraudulent.
  • None of the FISA renewals were reviewed by FBI lawyers.
That is mind-blowingly bad for the Comey Cabal and I don't see anyone talking about just how bad it is.

A corporate legal team exists to protect the organization and its employees in court. For that to work, you have to keep your lawyers in the loop if you're doing anything that might end up there. They are paid to give you legal advice that will keep all of you out of jail.

If you knowingly do illegal things in your capacity for the organization and you keep your lawyers in the dark, they will all turn on you like rabid dogs. No one understands legal jeopardy better and no one is more paranoid than your lawyers. If you commit a crime while deliberately hiding it from them, they will immediately go into self-preservation mode and throw you under the bus to protect themselves.

In this case, the FBI lawyers were completely innocent. Because they had nothing to do with the FISA fraud, when the Comey Cabal goes to trial, they will be witnesses for the prosecution. They will be free to tell the court that they would have followed all procedures and all ethical standards had the Cabal come to them for advice. They have nothing to gain from protecting the Cabal and everything to lose.

On top of that, all employees, especially the lawyers, for a government organization are obligated to report corruption as soon as they see it. There is no way on Earth the FBI lawyers are going to tell a court that they knew anything about it. They will all say that had they known what was going on, they would have done their best to stop it. I'll bet that most of the FBI lawyers hope to have jobs there for several more years. They won't want to see their careers destroyed for the sake of a pack of criminals who deliberately put them in jeopardy by keeping them in the dark.

In short, just think about what it would be like to go to trial for corporate malfeasance and have your corporation's lawyers testifying against you.


Sunday, December 15, 2019

How You Can Tell That Iran Is Running Out Of Money

... the only American media they can afford to buy is Newsweek. Dig this.

Far from bringing peace to the Middle East, however, a significant escalation of demonstrations shaking Iran or any major foreign intervention could end up empowering an even greater enemy—the Islamic State militant group.
LOL! Golly, you mean if we keep the pressure on the mullahs, we might end up trading a nuclear-ambitious, regional hegemon with medium-range ballistic missiles for a pack of ignorant goat-rapers who can only terrorize things in visual range? Boy, we'd better pull back now!

Compare the Iranians with the Chinese. The Chinese have bought the NBA and Hollywood like the amoral prostitutes they are. Heck, the Chinese were able to buy Time magazine with change they found under their sofa cushions.

Hmm. I don't see the Hong Kong protesters on that cover. I do see a spoiled brat who screams at the West for Earth-crimes committed by the Chinese.

Meanwhile, the best the Iranians can do is Newsweek. Pathetic.

Saturday, December 14, 2019

Did The Unconscious Bias Researchers Suffer From Unconscious Bias?

Unconscious Bias is where you think racist thoughts but you don't even know you're thinking racist thoughts. These racist thoughts can only be detected through unconscious bias testing.

What if the people who came up with the test had unconscious bias? What if what really turns us off isn't race, but is odor or accents or vocabulary?

Unconscious bias test 1: All other things being equal, are you more likely to hire a person with a 3,000 word vocabulary or someone with a 20,000 word vocabulary?

Unconscious bias test 2: All other things being equal, are you more likely to hire a person with a Hungarian accent so thick that you can only make out 3 words in 10 or someone with one of those lovely, French-influenced, West African accents and perfect diction?

Unconscious bias test 3: All other things being equal, are you more likely to hire a person who smells like the underside of a swamp mangrove or someone who is clean and fresh?

By the way, no matter how you answered any of those questions, you're still a bigot.

But then you knew that already.

Friday, December 13, 2019

Cooking Notes - Coffee Rub And Fried Chicken Coating

I've started to play with my own recipes for things instead of just taking something out of a beloved cookbook or website. I've also started trying some wacky things I've found online. This post deals with one of each.

I want to make my own fried chicken seasoned flour mix. I like the sophistication of thyme or savory as well as the kick of cayenne, so I tried this one recently.
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp cayenne (red) pepper
  • 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp savory
I liked it, but it needed more kick. Next time, I'm going to double the cayenne to 2 tsp.

As for the coffee rub, dig this crazy recipe for steak seasonings.
  • 2 tbsp chili powder 
  • 1 tbsp sugar 
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt 
  • 1 tbsp finely ground chicory coffee 
  • 1 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
Coffee on a steak? Madness! I tried it anyway and I thought it was great. Our guests, given an out with alternate steaks where only salt, pepper and garlic powder had been applied, loved it. I didn't have any chicory coffee, so I used espresso instead.

So there you go. Bon apetit! 

As Chef Jacob always said, it's all about the taste!

Thursday, December 12, 2019

I Needn't Have Worried

When I started my tobacco-growing experiment, I figured the plants would get about 75% to full-grown and then stall out because I was so late in the year. Cold weather and the lack of sun would stunt their growth.

I was wrong.

The biggest are now a full 6' tall and the others aren't far behind.

The plants are also blooming.

I harvested one leaf which was yellow and ready to go, a Tennessee varietal, and have hung it up to dry in my garage. Results to follow.

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

The Lizard Empire Strikes Back

Paul Joseph Watson, @PrisonPlanet on Twitter, helped publicize No Nut November which suggested to men that they voluntarily abstain from porn for the month of, you guessed it, November.

That seems pretty innocuous, right? It's voluntary and porn isn't exactly pro-woman, you know. Who could object to that?

It blew up. Watching the replies on his videos and tweets, the majority of responses were highly negative. He was attacked for all kinds of things. Dig his video response which includes several examples.
Note: It's NSFW. I removed the embed from the post because I don't like that sort of thing on my blog, but it's still illustrative.
What on Earth was that? Why would voluntarily abstaining from porn cause such outrage?

It's because Paul was trying to redraw the borders of the Empire back to Italia, leaving lots of people outside the boundaries of acceptable behavior.

  • Rome is all acts acceptable to the Catholic Church.
  • Italia is all acts acceptable in America, circa, say, 2000 AD.
  • You, a person who likes to watch abusive threesomes online, are somewhere in Aquitania.
  • Epstein is just barely beyond the border of Dacia. When ABC spiked the Epstein story three years ago, that was an attempt to conquer that territory and make Epstein acceptable.
  • Trannies in the library are Brittania.
  • Desmond is Amazing, the 11-year-old who dresses in drag and performs in gay bars, is Mauretania.
  • Allowing children to choose their gender is Assyria.
It didn't matter that it was voluntary. It didn't matter that it showed respect for women. It didn't matter that it was an act of self-control. It only mattered that it reflected badly on the behaviors of the people objecting. It implicitly passed judgment on them, suggesting that there was an objective standard for behavior and porn was outside the boundaries.

The mere suggestion of any objective standards for sexual relations was unacceptable. That's why Paul and everyone choosing to participate in No Nut November were attacked.

The war that American Christians face, probably that Christians in the West as a whole face, is against moral relativism. Moral relativism dissolves the Christian faith since it makes Jesus' sacrifice on the cross pointless. I can't speak for my protestant and Jewish comrades, but as far as I can tell, the Catholic Church is completely unaware that this war is even happening.

It's kind of hard to win under those conditions.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

A Swing And A Miss From Peter Heck

Noble Pete, writing at the excellent DISRN website, penned this op-ed. It discusses abortion, specifically Liz Warren's answer in some yackathon with the mouth-breathing troglodytes who didn't go to Ivy League unis like she did. She tells the gathered peons that pre-Roe, women got abortions anyway and some were injured in the process. Here's Peter's payoff graf:
She is smart enough to know what we all know, that this issue comes down to a singular question: what is conceived in the womb? It's all that matters in this debate. If what is in the womb is a living human being, then every advocate for legal abortion necessarily becomes an advocate for legalized murder.
No, Pete, that's not the core issue here. The core issue is this: In modern, secular America, there is no such thing as objective truth. There is your truth and my truth and we can't pass judgment on each other because even Fauxcahontas can't walk a mile in your moccasins.

Let's rewrite Peter's payoff paragraph with perfectly pitched postmodernist panache.
She is smart enough to know what we all know, that this issue comes down to a singular question: what does the pregnant woman think is conceived in the womb? It's all that matters in this debate. If what she thinks is in the womb isn't a living human being, then every pro-life advocate becomes an advocate for tyranny.
Fight the abortion debate with logic all you want. It will be like using those horrid ellipticals at the gym. You'll spend lots of time getting nowhere until you just give up and go home.  You'll have exercised your brain and developed clever retorts to use in debates, but until we ditch the concept of subjective reality, you'll get nowhere.


Related: Without objective reality, there was no point to Jesus's death on the cross. Good luck getting people to come back to church under those conditions.

Monday, December 09, 2019

Diversity Is Crucial

... to diversity activists.

Dig this.
Forty-seven percent of black voters said Biden was their first choice and 12 percent said both Warren and Sanders. Only 4 percent said Harris.
When Harris dropped out of the race last week and as Booker and Castro struggled to qualify for the next debate, the airwaves and inkpots reverberated with accusations of racism and cries for more diversity. Just who were the screamers representing?

If People of Color (PoC) really cared about Candidates of Color (CoC) because of their Color (C), then CoC would poll higher with PoC. They don't. PoC clearly don't value "diversity" as highly as the Really Smart Important People (RSIP) in the media.

It's almost like PoC are independent individuals and the RSIP are imbeciles.


Sunday, December 08, 2019

The Epstein Library Empire

... is like the Roman Empire, only for sex.
Update: I have since renamed this the Lizard Empire after our lizard-brain limbic system.
Here is a map of the Roman Empire at its height. You may have to click on it to read the labels.

One of the reasons the Romans liked a big empire was that it pushed the borders, where lived dangerous barbarians, far, far away from them. The larger the Empire, the safer you were, no matter where you were. I'd like to suggest that Jeffrey Epstein, children in drag and trannies in the library are all part of the modern-day American cultural Empire. That is, acceptance of their behavior expands the empire by normalizing ever more degeneracy.

Remember, your behavior might be degenerate under some definition, but the farther out the borders go, the less degenerate you look.

Let's create a mapping for the map.

  • Rome is all acts acceptable to the Catholic Church.
  • Italia is all acts acceptable in America, circa, say, 2000 AD.
  • You, a person who likes to watch abusive threesomes online, are somewhere in Aquitania.
  • Epstein is just barely beyond the border of Dacia. When ABC spiked the Epstein story three years ago, that was an attempt to conquer that territory and make Epstein acceptable.
  • Trannies in the library are Brittania.
  • Desmond is Amazing, the 11-year-old who dresses in drag and performs in gay bars, is Mauretania.
  • Allowing children to choose their gender is Assyria.
Let's further postulate that you are secular or belong to a progressive faith not bound by any objective, religious dogma about sex.

Are you really bothered when Good Morning America fetes Desmond and the Empire conquers northwestern Africa? Does it matter to you that librarians are inviting trannies to read to children and Brittania is invaded? How about the progression below of the invasion of Brittania, all of which have happened?
  1. It's OK for men in evening gowns, heavy makeup and heels to read to children.
  2. It's OK for men in evening gowns, heavy makeup and heels to teach children how to twerk.
  3. It's OK for men in evening gowns, heavy makeup and heels to read to children while the children sit on their laps or lay on top of them.
Here are the next offensives, probably already under way.
  1. It's OK for men in evening gowns, heavy makeup and heels to twerk while children sit on their laps.
  2. Since it's OK to let children choose their genders, children choosing to engage in sex play with adults is OK.
  3. Since it's OK for Desmond to take money from gay men for his performances, it's OK for Desmond to give lap dances for money.
  4. Since it's OK to get paid for porn performances, prostitution is OK.
  5. Combine all of these and you get: Paying to have sex with children is OK so long as the child consents.
By the way, I read somewhere that in some parts of England, the police have given up pursuing child pornography convictions since the practice has become so common.

For the secularists and progressive religious out there, tell me why any of those things are wrong. Where would you draw the borders of the Empire and with what justification will you sell those borders to the public?

Saturday, December 07, 2019

Saturday Night Tidbit

I've had a busy day and didn't have time to jot down any thoughts. Instead, I'll share this bit of wisdom I found on Twitter, of all places.

Friday, December 06, 2019

Behavioral Mimickry In Atheists

This has got to be one of the greatest articles of 2019.
As a therapist, I’m often asked to explain why depression and anxiety are so common among children and adolescents. One of the most important explanations—and perhaps the most neglected—is declining interest in religion. This cultural shift already has proved disastrous for millions of vulnerable young people.

A 2018 study in the American Journal of Epidemiology examined how being raised in a family with religious or spiritual beliefs affects mental health...

Children or teens who reported attending a religious service at least once per week scored higher on psychological well-being measurements and had lower risks of mental illness...

I am often asked by parents, “How do I talk to my child about death if I don’t believe in God or heaven?” My answer is always the same: “Lie.” The idea that you simply die and turn to dust may work for some adults, but it doesn’t help children. Belief in heaven helps them grapple with this tremendous and incomprehensible loss.
Is that fantastic or what? Erica Karr, the chick what wrote the article, is sharing an evolutionary advantage with fellow atheists. Temporarily and partially mimic the inferior, benighted believers to help your children get through their early years until they can become completely governed by rational thought.

And why not? Angler Fish do it and look how it turned out for them!
The article shows you how to eliminate one of the primary disadvantages of atheism - the lack of meaning that comes from knowing you're nothing more than a bag of molecules - and postpone that until a time when that lack of meaning can be turned into something fun like the ability to indulge every conceivable fetish without guilt. Did you think you were going to rationalize dressing up in satin evening gowns and twerking in front of second graders in the library any other way?

Goodbye childhood existential despair, hello unrestrained orgasms! It's a win-win!

Now sadly, the atheists commenting on that WSJ article don't get it at all.
Future project reminder: Figure out a way to help atheists figure out what their worldview actually means.
First, they whine about lying to their kids and yap about how hurt the tykes will be when they discover the "truth." Like what's the problem there? Once they're old enough to accept your rational view of the world, they will thank you for your Darwinian approach to their intellectual stability.

Second, they indulge in the old "morals and meaning don't come from God" blather. What a waste of time. Once you accept that you're nothing more than an animal an you look around to see animals eating each other alive without remorse, you'll get over the whole morals and meaning thing. And if you don't, as religion is rightfully eliminated from society, you'll eventually meet someone who has gotten over it.

At that point, you'll be dinner for the Angler Fish. And then it won't matter any more, will it?

Thursday, December 05, 2019

Laugh At Yourself

... it's the key to beginning a workout regimen.

From January to June of this year, I was hitting the weights regularly. By May, I was pretty happy with the results and friends and family said they could notice a difference.

Yes, I did it for cosmetic reasons. Let's be honest here, you lift weights to stroke your ego.

Anywho, we then went on vacation in Spain and came back to nurse my mom who was growing increasingly frail. That put an end to the workouts.

My mom passed away almost two weeks ago and I just recently started going back to the gym. I've put the weight back on and then some and I'm as weak as I was when I started. Who cares? I now find it hilarious that I'm back to lifting what the girls lift. Well, the strong girls, at least. I also find it funny when my muscles cramp up and I have to quit early or when I'm so sore that I can't do any crunches at all. I don't focus on how it might look ridiculous to others, I focus on how ridiculous it looks to me. And I laugh.

That's a key point about starting. Exercise is all about coming back and exercising tomorrow. Today is fine, but tomorrow is always the key. If you don't feel embarrassed by your poor performance or poor appearance because you can laugh at yourself, then you'll feel less like skipping your workout tomorrow.

At least that's my theory.

This is the look I'm trying to get. Well, without the beard, that is. I can't grow any decent facial hair. It all ends up indecent, no matter what I do.

Wednesday, December 04, 2019

A High School Diploma

... is meaningless because it's meaningless.

I spent a little time clicking around the Great Schools website, testing various hypotheses. In the process, something jumped out at me. Take a look at this data, taken from three large, public, California high schools and see if you see the same thing.

To me, this screams out that there is no correlation between competence and graduation rates. The students from the school in the middle are functionally illiterate and yet they graduate at almost the same rates as the other two. You'd have to conclude that the same thing happened from Kindergarten on to high school. They couldn't master the material, but they were still promoted.

I saw this same thing in the data from every school in every state that I sampled. No one cares. That may seem harsh, but no one is talking about it so that tells me no one cares. By the way, Trump made a phone call.

California spends a ton of money on education, so money isn't the issue. The cities where these schools reside are all run by Democrats as is the state, so the problem isn't mouth-breathing, racist rednecks. The center school comes from the most progressive location of the three.

I would argue that American Elites - political, media, entertainment, academia - no longer know how anything works, they only know how things feel.

Update: I didn't look at the data, but knowing the neighborhoods, it's a safe bet that the SAT college readiness rate correlates very strongly with illegitimacy rates. Duh.

Tuesday, December 03, 2019

All Rise

... and ...

Well, you'll see.

Chesa Boudin, the new San Francisco DA, has said that his office will no longer prosecute "quality-of-life" crimes such as relieving yourself in public. He has effectively decriminalized laying waste, as it were, to the sidewalks and other parts of the city. After all, why should the less fortunate, victims of an unjust system that they are, be punished for the same bodily needs we all share?

Wait, who are the less fortunate? Who are the victims of the unjust system? I would bet that each one of us, if we tried hard, could shoehorn ourselves into those categories without too much trouble. After all, how many people don't have some disadvantage they've had to overcome?

That means that when we visit SanFran or if we are dimwitted enough to live in that benighted metro, we should do like the natives do and ...

Well, you'll see.

Imagine how this might work. Let's say you're at a hearing and the judge walks into the room. The bailiff, or whatever that person is called, says, "All rise!"

He then adds a hearty, "... unzip and let 'er* rip!" And then, from across the room, almost in unison, you hear, "Zzzzzzooop! wssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss" followed by a loud cheer from everyone. Hooray! We're all ... all ... all ...

... err ...

We're all swine.

Don't judge.

What's, um, sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander, no?
* - As "'er" is a contraction for "her," the bailiff, or whatever that person is called, is later prosecuted for hate crimes against the differently gendered.

Monday, December 02, 2019

High Praise For The bhyve Irrigation Timer From Orbit

I bought the 4-zone model from Home Depot the other day to replace an utterly inscrutable, ancient irrigation timer / controller that I'd had since I bought this house 10 years ago. I love it. It was trivial to wire, the thing is as light as a feather so mounting is easy and managing it through my phone is a piece of cake.

Best of all, it's on the Internet through our wifi and checks the weather regularly. It won't water if rain is coming or has just happened. Here in San Diego, that's a big deal. If I recall, I paid about $50 for it. It will save me that much in water bills in 2 months, no doubt about it.

bhyve for the win!

Sunday, December 01, 2019

Was Jesus Just Wasting His Time?

Jesus died on the cross for our sins.

In modern, American culture, "sin" is defined subjectively just like "truth" is. I have my truth and you have your truth, so I have my definition of sin and you have yours. As President Obama said, for each of us, sin is being out of alignment with our individual values.

Nothing the Nazi regime did was out of alignment with Hitler's values, ergo, Hitler didn't sin.

If Hitler didn't sin, then I certainly haven't either, save for some very minor exceptions like when I looked at porn when I was 15 or drank too much last weekend or spread gossip about someone.

Jesus, therefore, died for those little sins. In essence, He paid my parking tickets.

Mass is the celebration of Jesus dying to pay our parking tickets. No wonder no one goes any more.
Without objective reality and rational thought, what is the purpose of the Catholic Church?