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God Forgotten

A Christianity which is not basically mystical must become either a political ideology or a mindless fundamentalism.

Quoted from: Behold the Spirit by Alan Watts

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Nazi Technology

German engineering is not always brilliant. I can imagine this “Rail Zeppelin” was a work of machining art. But a giant propeller whirring right beside passenger platforms did present a safety challenge.

Propeller-driven railcar beside passenger platform

The Wired Magazine article on this one-off wonder makes an interesting point:

The concept and execution of Schienenzeppelin (“Rail Zeppelin”) predated the Nazis by years. Like quantum physics, Bauhaus architecture and Marlene Dietrich, it was a product of the Weimar Republic. All the Nazis contributed was the loco’s eventual dismantling to turn its aluminum into Messerschmitts.

Nazis get more credit than they deserve for technological advancements. They were the first to field jet fighters and guided missiles. They produced motor fuels (gasoline and diesel) from coal. The Allied powers were concerned about their potential development of nuclear weapons. But all those were applications of ideas already exisiting when the Nazis gained control.

What Do You Call a Racist Muslim?

Congressional hearings on the threat of radical Muslims have renewed accusations of racism and Islamophobia. A doubt about Muslims anywhere is an attack on Islam everywhere. At least in the eyes of our xenophile Progressives and Democrats.

One thing I find interesting about the multiculturalists is that the liberals and leftists who are most likely to be grounded in the actual realities of countries like Egypt and Turkey are those who are giving advice about them to travelers. They cannot adopt the “West bad, everyone else good” attitude that most leftists seem to have, because it can be dangerous. They need to give advice that is based on the realities of the country they are giving advice about.

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We Gonna Do What They Say Can’t Be Done

The spirit of America was still alive in 1977.

It was O.K. to feel good and make a little mischief. And diesel fuel was 47.9¢ per gallon.

I want my country back.

H/T: A Facebook pally.

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Reactionary Radio

Perhaps it is an example of Yin and Yang chasing each other around the wheel of life. Those who successfully speak truth to power become power. What was once novel and avant-garde is accepted as status quo.

Cobb spews a bit about NPR’s evolution toward irrelevance:

By the time NPR fired Juan Williams, I was too through with them and really expected nothing more. But you can't stay mad forever. So I have found myself turning back, begrudgingly. It's rather a different beast. Now there are commercials all the time, and there are a bunch of names I don't recognize reporting, only showing how strange it is to realize that NPR is essentially about 30 people. And even what they do is getting, well. How can I say it? NPR just can't compete with some really good podcasts - they just don't geek out enough. NPR is about flavor and style. It's not cutting edge anything. It's just like HBO. I don't mean to say that it has the amoral in-your-face-ness that was HBO when I stopped watching several years ago, but that it has become something of a parody of itself having become predictable and no longer being the best at what they do.

Somewhere—probably via Robert Anton Wilson—I recall a theory that information is that which you cannot predict.

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Style Over Substance

Minnesota lefties are quick to profess shame and outrage that Michele Bachmann represents their State in Congress. She’s our little Palin.

Both local and national lefty radio had their dander up when Bachmann gave a TEA Party response to the State of the Union. It didn’t strike me until I read this, but much of lefty radio is just pretend-smart gossip:

Howard Kurtz makes fun of MSNBC complaining about CNN airing Michele Bachmann's response to the State of the Union and then spending several days talking more about Bachmann than about Paul Ryan's official GOP response. Ridiculing Bachmann is much easier and more entertaining to the people at MSNBC than actually tackling the issues raised in Ryan's speech.

Rachel Maddow or Nancy Nelson talking about Bachmann isn’t much different in depth or import than TMZ talking about Lindsay Lohan.

We Are Free Enough

Ann Althouse (lifted directly from Borepatch):

Remember when lefties were all about free speech? When did that change? Why did that change? Perhaps the answer is: Free speech was only ever a means to an end. When they got their free speech, made their arguments, and failed to win over the American people, and when in fact the speech from their opponents seemed too successful, they switched to the repression of speech, because the end was never freedom.

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Unbalanced

Gabrielle Giffords is not the only person in service to the United States who has been shot in the head. Does she merit daily—almost hourly—updates on her condition?

She is alive and progressing because her surgeon got many opportunities to practice on soldiers wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan. The public is seldom told of the medical miracles performed on, and the courage exhibited by those troops. Big Media gave us only a daily body count.

It irks me.

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The Dream Went Down to Georgia

Globalistical warmening has left too much snow in Georgia. So much that the kids haven’t been able to get to school. They’ve lost nine class days in some districts.

School officials suggested turning MLK Day into a school day, to make up for lost learning time. The race pimps were having none of that:

The superintendents from the districts said they had little choice to start making up for nine days missed because of the foul winter weather this school year. But civil rights leaders said the decision was an insult to King and shows disrespect for the holiday in his name.

"It's an opportunity for people, black and white, to reflect on what King's dream meant for blacks and whites," said Georgia State Conference NAACP President Edward DuBose. "And it's humiliating to hear that school districts want to take a snow day rather than to honor Dr. King's legacy."

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To Those Calling for Civility

Fuck off.

Fuck that
I’ll say what I want to say
the First Amendment made it that way


Sure
It would be nice to eliminate violence
but you can’t
so you must get it straight
and I hate
when people try to block it out
ignore a situation
you know what I’m talkin’ ’bout

Ironically, the video is set to a censored PG-13 version of the song. The real version does not hold back.

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One of Us Has to Go

It’s been a busy day on the intertracks. The TJIC spur saw a wave of new visitors not in tune with the anarcho-capitalist ranting usually found there.

Regular TJIC rider “eddie” collected all the appeals to authority against the operation there:

“Shouldn’t the FBI or Secret Service look into this?”
“i have blocked and reported @tjic: to twitter”
“Well I just gave the FBI his twitter ID and a link to his website”
“I just reported you to the Washington field office of the FBI. You are worth checking out”
“I will make sure the FBI has your number. You belong behind bars”
“Feel free to FW this to a Homeland Security or FBI. Vilest #rwnj blog found (yet)”
“I’ve been grabbing screen-snaps of your site all ding dong damn day.”
“This dude needs reporting early and often for hate speech”

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A Sketch of a Shooter’s Mind

As a nice contrast to the factional finger-pointing today’s assassinations murders killings have inspired, Shannon Love predicts the shooter’s psychological profile:

The shooter’s outward and inward life has been dominated by the disconnect between his perception of his own worth in the world and his real accomplishments.

He believes himself more intelligent, more knowledgeable and more skilled than he actually is. He is incapable of accepting responsibility for the consequences of his own foolish actions. This exaggerated sense of his own worth leads him expect far greater rewards in all areas of life than he actually receives. He does not get the jobs, pay, authority, awards, social circle, romantic interest and overall social status he believes that he justly deserves.

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Goodbye 2010

It’s time to start a new calendar. We look at that arbitrary event as a fresh beginning. But I have the same pile of dirty laundry as yesterday. The same aches, the same frustrations, and the same opportunities.

If there was a change to be made in how I lived, why wait to make myself or my world one step better?

But attitude matters. So to those who like to use the calendar as motivation, a new year does make a difference. A vital bit, then is to keep the fresh viewpoint alive long enough for whatever real changes we make to take hold.

Don’t let the someone else’s sour view of their world take your optimism away:

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Hippie Mousetraps

I’m annoyed by the relentless greenwashing of every product offered for sale. I don’t care if your factory is powered by unicorns. Tell me that your stuff is good and a good value. If your primary market advantage is that your workers don’t use very much soap, you should probably spend less time giving yourself virtue awards and improve your product.

Cutting short what might be a therapeutic rant, consider this perspective from an amazon.com customer review of The Market for Virtue: The Potential And Limits of Corporate Social Responsibility:

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Not Too Late

Having one of those moments common to most of us:

The intertracks have just called to my attention that Frederic Bastiat, the economist who inspired this little project (the NRR), started studying the dismal science at the age of 43.

I think I am 44 right now. There is time…

All Aboard!

Honoring Excellence in the SponsorDome

If you like football, read this piece by Gregg Easterbrook. It’s long, but it is worth your time. It’s called Tuesday Morning Quarterback. He writes one these every week…wow.

If football isn’t your thing, he tucks in some other commentary. Like this:

Ships, bridges, spacecraft -- they should bear inspirational names of great men and women, leaders and artists, or of important historical moments. Instead, increasingly they bear the names of insiders and political hacks.

Homeland Security

The United States can be attacked, but it cannot be conquered. As the Japanese Admiral who led the attack on Pearl Harbor is often (mis)quoted, “You cannot invade the mainland United States. There would be a rifle behind every blade of grass.”

Yamamoto was correct:

Over the last two months, the eighth largest army in the world – more men under arms than Iran; more than France and Germany combined – deployed to the woods of a single American state [Wisconsin] to help keep the deer menace at bay.

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Bristol’s Shine Reflects on Sarah

A few posts back, I wrote about Sarah Palin improving her brand by letting people get to know her better:

Even better if the whole family shared some camera time to help take away the “otherness” in her negatives.

Maybe even have one of the kids solo in the spotlight for while. Say, in a competition to show how values and character and spirit were transmitted from mother to child.

That same day, this appeared on Bristol Palin’s Facebook page:

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Delusion and Denial in Powderhorn

A south Minneapolis neighborhood’s namesake park was the scene of two rapes last Wednesday:

The four boys in custody — two are 14, while the others are 15 and 16 — could face felony charges of robbery and criminal sexual conduct, though charges are still pending, [police spokesman] Garcia said.

The first assault occurred about 6:30 p.m. Wednesday in Powderhorn Park in South Minneapolis. It began as a robbery and escalated to rape, according to police.

A mother was cross country skiing through the snowy park with her 13-year-old daughter and 10-year-old son when a group of juvenile males accosted them.

One had a handgun, police said.

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Filling or Fulfilling?

Pleasure vs. Satisfaction

Pleasure is a transitory feeling. It persists only as long as those conditions which produce it survive. Satisfaction is an enduring state. Once a need is fulfilled, it is extinguished.

Eating a fine meal pleases the senses while satisfying a biological need. But biological needs are in the baser realm of human experience. The ability to procure, prepare and provide a meal has meaning beyond each instance of the act. All the steps may not be pleasant, but in them we find satisfaction.

Similarly, volunteer work is only sometimes pleasurable. But the satisfaction that comes from working with and for things larger than the self outlast any suffering endured in service.

H/T: ChicagoBoyz commenter “Joseph Somsel

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