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Hello, It has been 2 years, 2 months, and 4 days since my last confession. I wonder if some of you are still there. In my mind your RSS alert systems just came to life after years of inactivity- not unlike those tape reels in the bottom of a bunker somewhere in an ’80s movie. Silence…a red light begins to blink…a whirring sound…the tape reels spin…a Kenny Loggins song starts…
I think you get it.
So, where have I been for approximately 794 days? Nation building! As some of you know/knew I had a child. What you don’t know is that Sab and I had another child shortly after Macy was born. Her name is Rebecca. She arrived 13 months after Macy.
I have been busy trying to create the next American Women’s Tennis Champion or Greatest Tea Party Hostess (they are interchangeable at this point) and making Rebecca giggle. Its a full time job. The best job. So that’s where I have been. Moving on…
Whats changed over the last 19,056 hours since we last spoke? A few things actually…I will supply a short list. You are welcome.
- Rebecca Was Born
- SOPA Protest – Largest in History of the Internet
- A silent film won 5 Academy awards (Really?)
- “Gangnam Style” becomes the first video to reach one billion views on YouTube
- Lance Armstrong “apologizes,” loses a ba-jillion dollars, and still comes off like a douche bag
- Anonymous hacked Westboro Baptist Church (Yea!)
- Macy decided that she is a “princess”
- Rebecca likes yogurt
I am sure there were more events than those…however, I can not remember them right now.
This I will construct a more lucid post about something asap. In the mean time, I am taking requests for topics. In the comments, suggest a topic…or demand a topic. I will write about it in my usual, hard to follow, grammatically incorrect manner.
Welcome back, me!
Read that. Please read that. You need to read that- and if it does not piss you off – there is no reason to read my blog anymore.
The link above will take you to a list of 100 people who are “creative” when it comes to business. I read this list and recognized a few names and did not recognize many names. I learned about some cool ideas and the people that made them happen. As I made my way through all 100, I realized I had some names to contribute that were deserving of being cited as creative business person. Here are some of my additions:
- Mark Cuban
- Jeff Bezos
- Jim Clark
- Meg Whitman
- Edward Norton
That is the short list. Do you have any you could add? Post in comments…
Just a quick vid of my new little girl either saying “Hello” or “No more Photos.”
Cute either way.
I am pleasantly surprised when I locate something that is so good and comes from an unexpected place. So, in that spirit, I give you…
(Yes, it is written by the movie review guy and NO, It is not a movie review.)
Put up or Shut up
by: Roger Ebert
We already know the numbers. Pew finds that 18% of Americans believe President Obama is a Muslim. A new Newsweek poll, taken after the controversy over the New York mosque, places that figure at 24%. Even if he’s not a Muslim, Newsweek finds, 31 percent think it’s “definitely or probably” true that Obama “sympathizes with the goals of Islamic fundamentalists who want to impose Islamic law around the world.”
When the focus is narrowed to Republicans, a Harris poll finds 57 percent of party members believe he is a Muslim, 22% believe he “wants the terrorists to win,” and 24% believe he is the Antichrist.
These figures sadden me with the depth of thoughtlessness and credulity they imply. A democracy depends on an informed electorate to survive. An alarming number of Americans and a majority of Republicans are misinformed. The man who was swept into office by a decisive majority is now considered by many citizens to be the enemy. Some fundamentalists believe he is the Antichrist named by Jesus in the Bible.
This many Americans did not arrive at such conclusions on their own. They were persuaded by a relentless process of insinuation, strategic silence and cynical misinformation. Most of the leaders in this process have been cautious to avoid actually saying Obama is a Muslim. They speak in coded words and allow the implications to sink in. I recently watched Glenn Beck speaking at great length about Obama’s Muslim father, but you would not have learned from Beck that the father, who Obama met only once, was not a practicing Muslim in any sense.
Rush Limbaugh has told his listeners he can find “no evidence” that Obama is a Christian. In Paul Krugman’s op-ed column in the New York Times on 8/29, Limbaugh is quoted: “Imam Hussein Obama, is probably the best anti-American president we’ve ever had.” Limbaugh obviously doesn’t believe Obama is an imam. How many of his listeners realize that? Is he concerned that his words will be taken seriously?
These opinions have an agenda. They seek to demonize the Obama Presidency and mainstream liberal politics in general. The conservatism they prefer is not the traditional conservatism of such figures as Taft, Nixon, Reagan, Buckley or Goldwater. It is a frightening new radical fringe movement, financed by such as the newly notorious billionaire Koch brothers, whose hatred of government extends even to opposition to tax funding for public schools.
The money behind the movement has been shaken in its boots by the recent exposure of criminal activities in the money markets. Our economy has collapsed and it seemed clear to many Americans that the unregulated greed of Wall Street trading, especially in derivatives, was responsible. These were not investments in industry, the economy or the future. They were investments in a bold Ponzi scheme which defrauded home owners into fronting for a pyramid of worthless loans. Citizens lost their homes, investment houses went bankrupt, but the criminals responsible continued to pay themselves multi-million-dollar bonuses.
From the same column by Krugman: “Wall Street has turned on Mr. Obama with a vengeance: last month Steve Schwarzman, the billionaire chairman of the Blackstone Group, the private equity giant, compared proposals to end tax loopholes for hedge fund managers with the Nazi invasion of Poland.”
Say what? Proposals to end loopholes? Read that again. Our recession and the collapse of the housing and jobs markets squeezed through those loopholes. And if you agree with the Democratic attempts to close them, you are compared to Hitler? Republicans in Washington vote nearly as a block against financial reform. Shouldn’t the implications be clear to an informed electorate?
This process may soon be arriving at a moment of truth. The new issue of Vanity Fair mentions in its profile of Sarah Palin, as a casual aside, that Glenn Beck has booked the Dena’ina Center, the largest venue in Anchorage, for the date of September 11, 2010. What do you think that means? It could mean Beck simply wants to hold a rally in the home state of the woman who shared his podium on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on the anniversary of Martin Luther King’s famous speech.
Beck says he chose that date without realizing its significance. But it cannot be a coincidence that he has chosen 9/11. Nor does it take special insight to connect that date with Palin’s many statements about the “Ground Zero Mosque” and the even more pointed “9/11 Mosque.” The association is obvious: “9/11″ feeds into “mosque” feeds into “Muslims” feeds into the misperception that Obama is a Muslim. Beck and Palin speak about “taking back America.” The buried message is that they will take it back from Muslims. This is a heartless misuse of the tragedy of 9/11 and its victims.
If Beck had planned to come to Anchorage on another date, it wouldn’t have excited much notice. But any meeting in Alaska on 9/11 without Palin also present will be anticlimactic. It’s too far to go not to feature her. The symbolic date of 9/11 invests this event with the inescapable possibility that he and Palin plan to announce their Presidential candidacy for 2012.
This is their privilege, and is not exactly unexpected. What is inescapable, given the timing, is that their candidacy would benefit from the paranoia already infecting so many Americans about Obama’s fictitious Islamic religion. Palin and Beck have so far both been content to let this process work without specific comment on their part. Their silence is a symptom of a cancer infecting American democracy. Our political immune system has only one antibody, and that is the truth.
The time is here for responsible Americans to put up or shut up. I refer specifically to those who have credibility among the guileless and credulous citizens who have been infected with notions so carefully nurtured. We cannot afford to allow the next election to proceed under a cloud of falsehood and delusion.
We know, because they’ve said so publicly, that George W. Bush, his father and Sen. John McCain do not believe Obama is a Muslim. This is the time — now, not later — for them to repeat that belief in a joint statement. Other prominent Republicans such as Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul also certainly do not believe it. They have a responsibility to make that clear by subscribing to the statement. Glenn Beck, Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh must join, or let their silence indict them. Limbaugh in particular must cease his innuendos and say, flat out, whether he believes the President is a Muslim or not. Yes or no. Does he have evidence, or does he have none? Yes or no.
To do anything less at this troubled time in our history would be a crime against America.
Me: “I wish I was Richard Branson.”
Wife: “Me too.”
Get your Freud on in the comments and interpret that. No really, do it.
I keep seeing headlines like these:
Arizona now has toughest immigration law state
Bill McCollum (R) Defends Change In Stance On AZ Law
and now I see this:
Arizona gov. signs bill targeting ethnic studies in an AP News story.
Well, I can’t just not say anything can I? You know me better than that.
Gov. Jan Brewer has signed a bill that Tom Horne (Az State School Head) has been pushing for for years. Horne has said, well… let me quote the AP article:
Horne, a Republican running for attorney general, said the program promotes “ethnic chauvinism” and racial resentment toward whites while segregating students by race.
Tom Horne is sacred that ethnic studies classes will educate minorities and make life harder for whites? Holy Shit! Where is his clan robe? Look, I live in Mississippi, I know a racist when I see or hear one. Tom Horne…you qualify! Can this man really advocate for the removal of the classes that teach the TRUE history of 56% of the Tuscon SD students’ ancestry? By the way, that’s 31,000 students in the Tuscon School Dist alone. Staggering.
Now I will give you something I found that will blow your mind:
|As a Golden Rule state, I am pleased to present a program that positively recognizes those who “treat others the way you would like to be treated” and who make a difference in Arizona. By using the form below, you can nominate an Arizona resident as an Arizona Golden Rule Citizen! Please nominate people who practice the Golden Rule and my office will mail you an Arizona Golden Rule Citizen Certificate that you can present to the person whom you nominated.
Feel free to contact my office for more information.
JANICE K. BREWER
I found this hypocrisy on the Governor’s own website! I can safely assume ole Jan and Tom will not be getting a nomination anytime soon! If this theory of the golden rule is carried out they way it should be and she is treating people the way she wants to be treated then European History should be shut down. They both look vaguely European. Maybe they need to show some papers. WAIT WAIT WAIT…they are white. OBVIOUSLY AMERICAN!
That sounds ludicrous dosen’t it. Well, you gonna play hard ball…then play hard ball. I can’t believe I live in this country sometimes. I am ashamed of it on, what seems like, a growing number of fronts.
I never thought Mississippi would be more tolerant than another state esp. a western state. UNREAL!
“Religion” is a personal and largely subjective topic for any debate, even for rational people. The raw emotion that comes out is sometimes painful to experience first hand and very difficult watch when it comes from another person whose deep rooted emotions and beliefs are pressed and questioned-even in a non-judgmental manner.
We all have seen friendships tarnished as the result of some religious line of questioning. So, as you might imagine, I refrain from religious debates, discussions, or religious meetings with people I know as a general rule. I think it is better to leave religion to the faithful and, as long as their religion does not interfere with my family or me, live and let live.
That being said, I completely believe that everyone is entitled to their own beliefs-EVEN if I completely disagree or can’t possible understand that belief. I also think that it is your responsibility to validate your OWN opinion regarding your chosen religion by looking at the history, foundations, and tenants of your chosen religion and evaluating those criteria versus your emotional attachment to that religion.
As I typed that last sentence, I realized that if every single person of every religion actually did that, the religions would change almost overnight. If every person really sat down and looked at what their church, denomination, synagogue, strip mall Christian life center, mega church really stood for, donated money to, campaigned for, socially supported, and politically backed I think many sets of eyes would be opened.
Growing up I was reared in a southern baptist church. It was small and traditionally styled. I remember my family in uncomfortable pews, old gospel hymns, mini-saltine crackers, and grape juice in shot glasses for communion on special occasions. Those things make me smile when I remember them. However, There was something else there every Sunday morning. A reminder that if I did not walk the walk and talk the talk like a good Christian should – I was going to Hell. It was made clear to me that this was not a debatable issue. In my young sponge like brain I KNEW that the man quasi-yelling at me in a fervent tone truly believed that I was a damned soul- If I didn’t change my 5 year old ways.
I admit that back then I was too young to understand his point or motivation for scaring people or what was really going on but, I did know some very definite, real things in those early days. Some were:
1) I had the chance to go to Hell or Heaven and God will judge me when I die.
2) If I, a 5 year old, didn’t change my ways, Hell awaited.
3) This man is scaring me.
4) What this man is saying MUST be true because my grandmother, grandfather, parents, aunts, cousins and 50 other people are nodding their heads in agreement with everything this man says.
From early on, I was being shown, by those that feed me and care for me, that what was going on in this church is “right” and “the way it is” because the loud scary man is telling the truth. As I have aged, I believe exposure to different things is vital to become truly intelligent and forming your OWN opinions. Sadly, the opposite is also true and an easier row to hoe. To avoid things because you don’t know anything about them, demonizing opposite schools of thought, or simply doing what you are told and following along limits your ability to grow as a person. I truly believe that. I once heard an intelligent, college educated man say, “I am a Republican because my dad was a Republican.” (NO POLITICAL COMMENT HERE) I think the same thinking goes for religion. Not researching YOUR own beliefs and weighing them against how you feel about the world around you is denying your ability to reason and preventing self determination and that, in my humble opinion, is a waste of a life.
I am not advocating going out and attempting to disprove every religion in the world. I am not saying that there is no truth in organized religion. I am not saying that there aren’t good people doing good work in the name of religions around the world. I am not claiming that religions are corrupt or misleading people.
I am saying that you, as an intelligent person, need to be open to all information and facts and constantly reevaluate your positions and beliefs on EVERYTHING, even religion. If you do not open yourself up to new information and different points of view you will become sedate and stagnant in your intellectual development in regard to whatever issue you choose to put your head in the sand about.
If you are a Christian, know why YOU are a Christian. If you are a Buddhist, know why YOU are a Buddhist. If you are Jewish, know why YOU are Jewish. If you are an atheist, know WHY you are an atheist. YOU are all that matters in the arena of your life. It is your responsibility to learn from those around you, take information from everywhere, research the writings of people you agree with and disagree with, but in the end decide for yourself what you believe and believe in.
It is truly the most important decision YOU can make for yourself.