Sep 302010
  • Hey, who wants to hear a bunch of obnoxiously self-centered flagellation about how fat I still am?  (Just kidding.)
  • My new motoring enemy is the oblivious jackass on the phone who drives slowly enough, and therefore far enough away from the driver in front of him, to prompt the traffic signal sensor to lay the yellow in front of him.  Then he sails through, and I stop at his red light.  (I long ago jettisoned any illusion that people like this have even the slightest perception of such driving subtleties.  Things will be very, very different in Bozekistan.)
  • Our boys really are well-behaved, and compared to what some parents must handle, we have no significant complaints at all.  But Aaron has this persistent idea lately that Lea (always Lea, not me) is supposed to wait on him.  It’s never a big deal to gently correct him and get him to take care of whatever it is he wants for himself, and I’m not worried about it long-term, but I do find it interesting that the notion developed at all.
  • Speaking of Aaron, that kid is holding onto his baby teeth well past the time when they should be falling out.  Hasn’t lost a one.  You ever hear of such?  I hadn’t.  Our dentist isn’t worried about it, so I’m not worried about it.  (You know, much.)
  • I had my first Red Bull not long ago.  It was also my last.  That is absolutely godawful.  What the hell are you lab rats people thinking?
  • Lea’s van is away at the paint shop to address a factory defect, which puts her in the Technical Writing Express and me in the truck.  I got a scoop of dirt in the truck bed several weeks ago for yard maintenance and only used about half of it so far, and there the rest sits.  So I’m currently commuting in a half-ton, crew cab, 5.4L V8-equipped pickup with 500 lbs. of dirt in the bed.  Just think of it as the anti-Prius.
  • The best David Lee Roth-era Van Halen album is the self-titled debut, by half a hair over Fair Warning.  Then it goes Van Halen II, Women and Children First, 1984, and Diver Down.  The best Sammy Hagar-era Van Halen album is 5150, followed by For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge, OU812, and Balance.  Please assume Van Halen III doesn’t exist, and I have low expectations for anything the current incarnation of the band may produce.  There’s your buyer’s guide, if you need one.
 Posted by at 10:10 am
Sep 292010

The largely successful demonization of “the rich” is unfortunate and extremely destructive.

(Note:  if you make $249,999.99 annually, you are not rich.  If you make $250,000 annually, you are.  I hope you find this helpful.)


The government destroys wealth.  Private citizens create wealth.

One big way they do this is by employing other private citizens.  They can’t employ other private citizens without starting a business or expanding an existing one.  They won’t start a business or expand an existing one with a president so philosophically hostile, and a Congress so legislatively hostile, to commercial interests.

That is why many individuals and companies are sitting on many billions of dollars, instead of growing businesses (and improving the employment picture) with it.  See, right now, at least they have the cash.  They’re getting next-to-nothing return on it, but they have it.  Why would they risk it in such a tax- and regulation-happy environment?  They’re waiting the Obama administration out.

That is one big way our Congress, and our president, are prolonging the current economic malaise.

That is one big reason you should vote them out.

Beyond that—and carry this forward with you for the rest of your days—stop demonizing “the rich.”  Cutting their throats is cutting all of our throats.


 Posted by at 7:26 pm
Sep 282010

On the last play of a high school football game in Snohomish, Washington last week, 17-year-old Ike Ditzenberger, who has Down syndrome, “scored a touchdown” as the opposite team pretended to try to tackle him.

So lying is all right, if the person you’re lying to has Down syndrome? Is what I’ve described any more complicated than that?  Hey, let’s take an airplane trip with him and tell him that he’s making the plane fly with his mind.  What’s the difference?

I suspect everyone’s heart was in the right place. But how carefully was this considered? Is bending reality for this young man truly in his interest? Moreover, apparently his mother is actively stoking his desire to play college football, which, absent similar systematic deception, is clearly ridiculous.

I want a person with Down syndrome to experience all he can, and as people like John Mark Stallings demonstrate, that can be quite a lot. However, I have serious reservations about whether that should extend to his family and friends deceiving him about what he can do, and thereby actively distorting his understanding of success.  Also, I certainly don’t think his mother should be talking college ball up to him, when the chance that will have a cruel end is so high.

I think it would be more dignified, and more importantly much kinder, to find him a role with the football program in which he can actually contribute. That’s valuing him, not patronizing him.

As a society, we talk quite a bit about those with challenges deserving inclusion and respect, and I’m all for that. But I think if we’re really trying to do that, we genuinely include them, not lie to them. We have one world.

 Posted by at 8:06 pm
Sep 272010
  • Folks with pre-season doubts about Alabama’s defense were right.  It’s hardly all bad, but clearly there’s still a lot of growing up to do in the secondary.  Young and inexperienced special teams players have been more solid than not, and for that I’m thankful.
  • Mark Ingram’s first touchdown Saturday was one of the prettiest runs I can remember seeing.  Glad to get out of Fayetteville with a W.
  • I’m interested to see what Auburn does with the Ryan Mallett attack.  Have to wait until October 16.
  • All right, Boise State beat Oregon State.  Now let’s everyone not talk about them again until they get to a BCS bowl game they’d rather not be in and beat an opponent who would probably rather not be there either.
  • I can’t remember the SEC East ever being such an unpredictable mess.  Conditions to dethrone Florida might be as favorable this year as they’re ever going to be, but does anyone want it?
  • Not Georgia.  I thought Mark Richt would be fine this year, but now that the Bulldogs are eliminated from the SEC race in September, I’m not so sure.
  • Ditto the Big 12 South.  Almost anyone’s title there too.
  • Charles, my long-suffering ACC apologist friend, I try every week to look for the bright spots in your conference, but I think it might be harder this year than it’s ever been.
  • Congratulations to #25 Nevada, who is ranked for the first time since 1948!
 Posted by at 12:15 pm
Sep 262010

(Kitzhaber has been governor of Oregon, and is running again.)

Wow, those Democrat activists don’t kid around.  I’m so glad to see a no-nonsense approach to keeping order at these “open to the public” meetings.  It’s far overdue, don’t you think?  Assault and battery?  Pish-tosh.

Remember, though, it’s those fringe lunatics in the Tea Party movement who are so enamored of violence at their events.

Now, suppose this was a Republican candidate’s event, and three people affiliated with Republican activist groups behaved this way toward an event attendee.  Do you think there would be a difference in the level of media coverage?

How many news cycles would it lead (or at least be prominently featured in)?  How much nonsensical hand-wringing from sociologist types would we have to endure about the right wing harboring a propensity for this behavior?

Democrat?  No problem.  Move along.

And turn that damned camera off before I pop you in the face with it.

 Posted by at 7:39 pm
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