Thursday, July 31, 2008

Memories - - The 5th Dimension

When I was in Junior High and Early High School, one of my favorite groups was the 5th Dimension. I used enjoy singing along (as best I could) to some of their songs and I think I wore out a couple of old LPs just listening to them over and over again.

Most young people today may or may not know who they are, but some of their music has turned up in so many places that it may be better known today than they are.

Here is a 5th Dimension Classic

While many of their early songs were about drugs and revolution, they matured as people and artists and by the time their star had begun to fade their lyrics became more mainstream.

Purely as an aside, anyone who thinks that entertainers cannot have successful marriages need look no further than this group. Marilyn McCoo (the tall woman in the black and orange dress) and Billy Davis Jr. (the lead male vocalist) have been married to each other for close to 40 years and that is an accomplishment to proud of. They have also become dedicated Christians and are now involved in a gospel ministry and their personal webpage is quite a place to visit.

It's kind of silly to admit this, but having grown up in an all-white area, I didn't get to know any blacks at all until I was in the military. Watching the 5th Dimension on TV at the age of 13 or so, Ms McCoo was probably the first non-white woman to really make my eyes bug out. She was simply beautiful and you couldn't deny it. Of course as I got to know people of different races I realized that beauty was not a function of skin color. She was also quite attractive when she was on Solid Gold in the 80s and if her picture at her website is any indication, she is still fairly attractive. She is probably also one of the best, and perhaps a bit underrated, female vocalists of my time.

Here is a relatively recent video of her singing the style that she and her husband now sing.

To Him and to Him Alone Be All the Glory for He Alone is Worthy.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Gun, er I mean "Club Control"


My opinion of McCain as a man has just taken a leap upwards. I still feel he is weak on many issues, but strong on a few biggies, and this MAN is a hero in more ways than I knew. 41 years ago today there was an accident on the USS Forrestal and McCain's plane was destroyed due to the malfunction of another plane on the deck of the carrier. McCain first got out of his plane and then attempted to work his way BACK INTO THE INFERNO to rescue others. Ladies and Gentlemen, say what you will about his politics but this guy is a genuine article MAN.

This video shows the accident, and while it is blurred, you can see Lt Cdr John McCain going back toward the fire to try and save his crew mates. A man who will do that for a shipmate is a man I can put some confidence in should a crisis strike.

John McCain, I don't agree with everything you say or do, but you have earned my vote. You have it.

H/T to Gateway Pundit

Does She Have a Clue

I said yesterday that the Dems have had a major fumble and if the GOP will take advantage of it we could see a major change in this country's political dynamic.

From Politico

With fewer than 20 legislative days before the new fiscal year begins Oct. 1, the entire appropriations process has largely ground to a halt because of the ham-handed fighting that followed Republican attempts to lift the moratorium on offshore oil and gas exploration. And after promising fairness and open debate, Pelosi has resorted to hard-nosed parliamentary devices that effectively bar any chance for Republicans to offer policy alternatives.

“I’m trying to save the planet; I’m trying to save the planet,” she says impatiently when questioned. “I will not have this debate trivialized by their excuse for their failed policy.”

“I respect the office that I hold,” she says. “And when you win the election, you win the majority, and what is the power of the speaker? To set the agenda, the power of recognition, and I am not giving the gavel away to anyone.

She is so full of herself that she doesn't even realize the political football is now on the ground.

I am astonished as I must congratulate Harry Reid for at least trying to move half-way on this to avoid a political disaster. I have little respect for him but at least the guy can see that the wind is changing and the desperate cry of "We can't drill our way out" will only carry them so far.

Will it be years before we see results? Yes. But if we'd have done it ten years ago we wouldn't be competing with China and India so much for Arab oil. Ten years ago they used the excuse that we wouldn't see the results for years and now look where that thinking has gotten us.

We need a three pronged approach to energy: conservation, alternatives (nuclear perhaps?), and more domestic production. There is a major faction of the Democratic Party that would prefer to have a two pronged by eliminating more domestic production and they are calling the shots. It seems to me that a few of them would prefer to do it entirely with conservation.

H/T Hot Air

Monday, July 28, 2008

Suddenly It's a Different Ballgame

Picture a football game.

After a horrible series of downs leaving them deep in their own territory and a blocked punt, the team has a goal line defense from the first play.

The offense quickly moves the ball to within inches of scoring and then the ball is snapped again and the players rush into the end zone and start celebrating a touchdown.

But the ref doesn't signal a score. He's in the backfield looking down at the football that is lying on the ground where the quarterback dropped it.

While the offense is celebrating its non-existent touchdown what should the defense do? Logically they should pick up the fumbled football and run it into the other endzone. It is a real possibility especially since the premature celebration has the other team too occupied to notice.

But will they do it?

My own congressman, Dave Camp, has lined up for the run. How about the rest of them.

Update: Yes Worldnet Daily is a reactionary web site, kind of a conservative answer to a lot of supposedly unbiased MSM magazines and sites. But how about one who supported and worked with Bill Clinton? Dick Morris has this to say:

Meanwhile, McCain and the Republicans have finally found an issue — oil drilling — exposing how the Democrats oppose drilling virtually anywhere that there might be recoverable oil. Not in Alaska. Not offshore. Not in shale deposits in the West. The Democratic claim that we “cannot drill our way out of the crisis in gas prices” begs the question of whether, had we drilled five years ago, we would be a lot less dependent on foreign market fluctuations.

The truth is that the Democrats put the need to mitigate climate change ahead of the imperative of holding down gasoline prices at the pump. If there was ever a fault line between elitist and populist approaches to a problem, this is it. In fact, liberals basically don’t see much wrong with $5 gas. Many have been urging a tax to achieve precisely this level, just like Europe has done for decades.

Obama said that he was unhappy that there was not a period of “gradual adjustment” to the high prices, but seems to shed few tears over the current levels. After all, if your imperative is climate change, a high gas price is worth 10 times a ratified Kyoto treaty in bringing about change.

Republicans can drive a truck through the gap between this elite opinion and the need for ordinary people to afford the journey to work in the morning. And, with a 16-state media buy, the Republican Party and the McCain campaign are doing precisely that.

Curious that he used the precise term "We cannot drill our way out".

Friday, July 25, 2008

An Enjoyable Article About Obama

Finally one I enjoyed reading. I was laughing out loud just before 2 AM.

H/T Hot Air

Of course those who believe he is a messianic leader will be offended. Let em be offended.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

This Strategy Could Work (Sad to Say!)

A couple of years ago Chicago won the Oscar for "Best Motion Picture". I kind of wonder why but considering that Hollywood both produces the product and judges it, I really shouldn't. While the performances and cinematography were both very good, the story itself stunk. There was no heroism or even a really a victim and the only person with any decency and obvious goodness in him was a gullible idiot.

A murder trial, and we knew from the very first scene that the woman in question was guilty because we saw the murder committed. But Richard Gere plays Billy Flynn, a slick, slick, slick sleazeball of a lawyer, who specializes in getting guilty women acquitted of murder.

How does he do it?

He uses emotions and outright lies to manipulate public opinion, the press and the jury. He knows what draws sympathy and uses it. He gets the media behind the woman and the rest is easy.

I watch a speech or interview with Obama and I think of Billy Flynn who carefully misdirects people away from troubling facts and plays entirely on the emotions. While McCain is far from a stellar candidate, I think he's being a lot more direct and honest about his beliefs and intents.

Here's Billy Flynn's strategy for winning a trial when he knows his client his guilty. It also matches too many candidates' campaign strategy.

"How can they hear the truth above the roar?"

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Tax Relief For Me but Not For Thee

When McCain asked for a summer gas-tax holiday to give some relief at the pump and a little help for the economy it was derided as a stunt and a gimmick that would not help the economy. At the moment the tax-holiday appears to be dead.

Unless your going to the Democratic Convention in Denver.

They have a deal that will allow them to not pay any gas taxes while they're in town for the convention. This amounts to 40.4 cents per gallon which is about 1/10th the price of gas.

The government will forgo its cut for some of the party favorites, but not for the people who really need it or would benefit from it. Uncle Sam's cut always comes first even if you can't pay your bills.

One of the comments at the link says the GOP is doing the same thing. OK then the GOP legislators had better all vote for a tax holiday for everyone and not insist it's only for them.

Is This Coming to America

Actually it probably already has.

In Australia a Muslim man has two wives and does so on welfare. (Warning: The video is several minutes long.)

A couple of points

His first wife is less than thrilled with the arrangement.

The top Imam in Queensland also condemns him because a) he disregarded local law. b) they are allowed multiple wives if they can afford them and a man on welfare clearly cannot.

Finally he is lying through his teeth to the welfare office as are his wives.

And he wonders why the reporters are getting into his business.

H/T Eurabia

Monday, July 21, 2008

I'm Going to Get In Trouble For This

I forget where I read it but it was a couple of years ago. A group of writers wanted libraries to charge fees for borrowing their work.

I kind of half agree with this.

A book can take hundreds, if not thousands of hours to write and very few writers ever make more than a pittance. The JK Rawlings, Stephen Kings, etc are amongst the very few exceptions.

A writer's royalties will vary from 5 to 25% depending on their contract with the publishers with most averaging to the lower end of the scale. If you get a 10% royalty and your initial run is 10000 paperbacks at about $6.99 each and you sell all of them (a rare event as most first time writers find their books being remaindered) you will make about $7000. If the book took you 1000 hours to write and get published, you made less than minimum wage.

When a book is checked out of a library for free the writer gets only the initial royalty for the copy that is sold to the library. People are using and enjoying their work and not paying for it.

Here's what the above mentioned group wanted to do. Charge a modest fee for library books in which the writer is still alive, and the fee varies with the age of the book.

My suggestion
A book less than 2 years old $1.00
A book 2-5 years old $.75
A book 5-10 years old fifty cents
A book 10-20 years old a quarter.
Over 20 years old would mean no fee.

The fee would be split up with 20% going to the library, 5% being a fee to handle the money, and the remaining 75% would go to the publisher and the writer, divided between them by agreement. If no agreement exists then the split would be equal shares.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

San Francisco Is At It Again

What is it about San Francisco? Is there something in the water there? Or is there some sort of super big magnet in the city that attracts every fruitloop in the country to go live there?

One could argue that prostitution should not be criminalized, however such a decision is to be made at the state level and all local governments are to function under the state law, and the Feds must recognize and respect the state's right to handle this issue as the state and its citizens see fit. A city does not have the right to pass its own laws contrary to state laws.

San Francisco however, seems to see itself as a beacon of enlightenment to all us rednecks in flyover country (which for them seems to begin at the city limits.) No. The enlightened people of the fair and free city of San Francisco must never be restrained by the unwashed masses that are too ignorant to live in their utopian city. Whatever voters elsewhere decide, San Francisco is above it and will set its own course. The rest of the state and country is to stupid to influence them.

San Francisco is going to have a ballot issue on whether or not to decriminalize prostitution, by forbidding its law enforcement agencies from going after them or cooperating with out of city agencies against prostitution. The state law will be meaningless inside the city limits.

Can't let the rest of the country hold the most enlightened city in the world back.

What's even worse is that it would be very difficult under this to investigate and prosecute the horrible underbelly of prostitution - - human trafficking and forced prostitution. The activists pushing this referendum pay lip service to the need to protect these people but then make it nearly impossible to do so.

Maybe San Francisco needs to Secede from the United States and become its own little city state. After all, they are too good to be Americans.

San Francisco is like a bowl of healthy cereal. Just a bunch of nuts, fruits, and flakes.

Thank God I live in flyover country.

Ordaining Women

La Vatican has recently decreed that anyone who ordains a woman as a priest along with that woman will be excommunicated.

Regardless of what one believes about the ordination of women, the Catholic Church has the right to its own beliefs and practices, and membership in it, or any other religion, is dependent on living by those rules. No one in America or the rest of the civilized world is required to belong to any church, let alone a given church.

My own brotherhood also does not ordain women or practicing gays and we seem to have had no problems. But then we don't own universities, hospitals, museums, huge cathedrals and tons of wealth.

That's the real reason they want to stay in the Catholic Church. If they leave because their spiritual position requires it they will abandon the wealth, power, and prestige of the Catholic Church and just become one more denomination. If it were truly a spiritual matter they would have left long ago, as Martin Luther and so many others did.

They don't believe the Pope when he says this is unacceptable so why are they still in that church except for the reason stated above? If it's about serving God they would have left long ago in order to be part of something more pure, if that's what they believe it is.

If you don't like what your church teaches and it refuses to change, go elsewhere. That is my advice to these women.

I have my own differences with the Catholic Church but 1) I recognize that they are fellow Christians 2) they are right on many important issues 3) they have the right to practice their religion as they see fit and those who disagree with them need to go elsewhere.

Like I said, the reason they refuse to leave the Church is because they cannot accept the fact that an organization as big as the Catholic Church does not follow their lead. They cannot accept the existence of something that is as big, rich and powerful as that Church when it will not get with their program. La Vatican has not bowed to the idol of Feminism and that is what is unacceptable to these people.

Friday, July 18, 2008


While just poking around this evening I went to a blog I haven't gone to in some time and I am glad I did. Over at Now for Something Different there is an old video on Freedom vs "isms" and it is brilliant. Take a good look at it and pass it on.

A Psychic Blunder

I do not deny that some people do have a degree of strange abilities ( between some odd natural abilities and some demonic activity) but anyone who gives psychic readings for money sends off serious alarm claxons in my head.

How about this? A mother almost loses her child because of the "evidence" given by an anonymous psychic to a school employee. Fortunately it went nowhere but the psychic who did this needs to be held accountable.

Like I said, I have had dreams that predicted the future (and even more that did not) and have had premonitions (most of which did not materialize.) I do not deny that there are strange things out there, but one should proceed with extreme caution at the very least, if one proceeds at all, seeing as God has told us to seek out Him, and not psychics.

And when they say to you, "Consult the mediums and spiritists who whisper and mutter." should not a people consult their God? Should they consult the dead on behalf or the living? (Isaiah 8:19)

Perhaps one should consider this as well.

"It is not a bad thing to hear voices," said Krag, "but you mustn't for a minute imagine that all is wise that comes to you out of the night world." (David Lindsay, A Voyage to Arcturus.)

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The Hunter Becomes the Hunted

Some people don't like deer hunting and others simply shouldn't try to hunt for deer.

Like this guy.

Maybe he should have stuck to hunting rabbits.

Then again, maybe not.

One of the comments at YouTube asks a very good question. Why wasn't the guy with the camera trying to help his friend?

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

From Congressman Camp's Newsletter.

I am pleased to see that Mike Camp, my Congressman, is pushing for oil exploration and drilling here at home.

From his newsletter.

Dear friends,

With families, employers and many public safety budgets suffering from record high gas prices, it is irresponsible for the Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, to continue blocking votes on recovering more oil and gas from domestic sources.

The Speaker’s position is particularly troubling given the President’s announcement this morning that he will eliminate an administrative ban on drilling in the outer-continental shelf (OCS). That leaves a Congressional moratorium on such leases as the sole hurdle to recovering and producing oil and gas from this domestic source.

Prices are not going to drop over night, but there are steps Congress can and should take to ease prices at the pump. The first step is to lift the federal ban on recovering more oil and gas in the OCS, and that require Congress to act. Doing so would immediately send a strong signal to the market that we are serious about increasing production in this country and it would ease pressure on long term demand.

The ban didn’t make sense when gas was $2.00 per gallon, and it certainly doesn’t make sense now that gas has gone above $4.00 per gallon. Had we allowed domestic exploration in 1995, as I voted to do so, we would not be seeing gas prices this high.

A growing number of Democrats are joining a bipartisan push for greater domestic exploration. The Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call reports today that, “Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) appears intent on preventing votes on opening more areas to offshore drilling despite the stirrings of a revolt by rank-and-file Democrats after months of concerted efforts by House Republicans.”

In what amount to good news for the American public, the article went on to warn that “dissident Democrats predict” Pelosi’s ability to block votes “may not last.”

Dave, I am proud to call you my Congressman. If I were from California, I would be ashamed of the Speaker of the House.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Just a Dumb Post About a Dumb Quiz

I haven't done this in a while, so here is a personality quiz.

You live in the Hundred Acre Woods where Christopher Robin plays, but which one are you?

Take the 100 Acre Personality Quiz!

Perhaps so.

Oh! I'm a man! You know! An adult human male.

So how come, when I see who I'm most like at Hogwarts, I wound up as:

Which HP Kid Are You?

I don't know. Maybe the two characters are alot alike.

Thursday, July 10, 2008


So many terms get labeled as Racist. Some correctly and some absurdly.

Michelle Malkin has a link to a new low (of sorts) in Political Correctness. Things can no longer just disappear into a black hole any more because it's racist. I suppose the correct technical term for a black hole is singularity but how many people actually know what that is? Do you remember the old mediocre Disney flick Singularity?

How about this one?

A gay man is suing, not one but two, Bible publishers for printing Bibles that call homosexual behavior a sin and he's going for tens of millions of dollars. He is basing his argument on the fact that different Bibles read differently and some use the term "homosexual" and others use other terms. He says that the text was changed to specifically to offend gays. I guess he never heard of the term "Version" before as there are several that all read slightly differently but all tell exactly the same story.

By the way, the word in question reads arsenokoitai (in Greek) which is the plural of arsenokoites which is a compound of two words. Arsen (in Greek) means "male" and koitos is still used in English and the gender of the word (masculine) reveals that it is talking about men. One might not like what it says but that is what it means.

Funny thing is this, Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Speech and the Press are specifically enshrined in exact wording of the Constitution while sexual freedom is an artificial freedom twisted out of the Constitution by dishonest judges but never mentioned in the Constitution. Sexual freedom is not enshrined in the Constitution nor should it be. Why are we putting more effort into protecting unenshrined rights than the enshrined ones?

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

My Family Home

One should not take excessive pride in one's ancestral heritage but it's a weak spot for me. I have long known that the ancestors who first bore my surname were knights and minor lords. In fact I have some famous old relatives whose names show up in history books.

But my little brother found a picture of my family's old home in England. It's now part of Britain's National Trust but my distant cousins still dwell there.

Maybe I should pay my distant relatives a visit.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Space Again

There a couple of interesting articles in today.

The first involves sex in space. They say it's inevitable that it's going to happen.

First off, I'm willing to bet my next paycheck that it's already happened. Probably more than either NASA or ROSAVIAKOM cares to admit. It probably hasn't happened with Chinese Taikonauts yet but it's inevitable. When men and women go off for a long time, very few have the strength of character to say no forever.

I suppose it would be fun in zero-G but I don't anticipate having the experience.

But the more important of the two articles is about the uniqueness of Earth as a planet.

First off I disagree with many of my fellow Christians on what is doctrinally a trivial point; I believe that God has filled this universe with life. He didn't make this giant universe to just sit here empty. It may not all be like us and some of it would probably be called impossible by many scientists, but it's there.

But yes Earth is largely unique for a good reason. God has designed it to hold Bios in general and human life in particular. When we studied apologetics (The philosophical, historical and scientifice defense of Biblical Christianity) one of the things that we paid close attention to was how earth seemed to be put together for life.

I am going to say something that will cause narrow-minded people to have conniptions: INTELLIGENT DESIGN!!!! Earth is full of evidence of it.

Are there other planets like Earth?

More than likely.

Are there other species made in the image of God?


But the Bible doesn't tell us about them. There are many things the Bible doesn't tell us. It's purpose is to direct and instruct us in a relationship with God, each other and ourselves, not tell us everything there is to know about God's creation. But the Bible does tell us that there is more to God's creation than we know.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

I knew This Was Going to Happen.

I guess it stood to reason that once guns were outlawed so that only criminals would have them that other weapons would be next.

They've outlawed most guns in Great Britain; now let's get rid of knives. The article says that the goal is not to outlaw knives but simply to remove them. I suppose taking knives from kids would in and of itself be a good thing, but government programs usually don't know when to stop.

At first I thought the article was tongue-in-cheek, but it's not.

Actually I'm not as concerned about this as I am gun rights as weapon-style knives are much less likely to be used in lawful manner. People rarely carry knives for self-defense -- except for Crocodile Dundee,

But that was fiction . . . or was it?

That was a Florida convenience store robbery. I would have loved to have heard the audio of that attempted robbery.

Now keeping weapons out of the hands of bad guys would be a never ending battle but allowing the law abiding citizen to take needed steps to defend themselves is a human right that transcends laws and government. I am less afraid of an AK-47 in the hands of a law-abiding citizen than a slingshot in the hands of a criminal. Criminals will always find weapons and honest people need the means to combat that.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Harry Reid's Answer

Harry Reid not only doesn't want us to drill for more oil, he wants us to quit using any fossil fuels at all.

It would be great if we could go to an entirely solar power economy, but that possibility is still years away, and even then we could not ever depend totally upon it. He is willing to crash our economy for an impossible dream.

Get ready to drill and get ready to refine. That is what I want to hear.