Archive for the ‘News Rants’ Category

For those of you who think that American government has now achieved Orwell’s “Big Brother” status,  I think you should contemplate the quote from the excellent article on this subject appearing the the June 19 edition of Newsweek, authored by Michel M. Moynihan:

“If you are invoking ‘1984’ in a country which ‘1984’ is available for purchase… you likely don’t understand the point of 1984”

In other words if our government had achieved “Big Brother” status, you would not be able to buy the book, like you still cannot in such countries North Korea and where unable to get it legally in the USSR until the fall of the Berlin wall.
Mr. Moynihan goes on to write:

“In 1959, just five years after the death of Joseph Stalin, Soviet cultural officials praised Orwell’s Anti-Soviet masterpiece.  The Book wouldn’t be legally available in the Soviet Union for another 30 years — it only existed in samizdat form, translated, typed, and copied by dissidents — yet Kremlin propagandists recast the story of Winston Smith’s futile revolt against “Big Brother” as a premonition of “America in 1984.”

Mr. Moynihan also states the irony of Mr. Snowden — the leaker of the moment — first fleeing to China and seeking asylum in that “free society”, and when that didn’t work, flew to Russia — while not quite the perfect model for 1984 that the former Soviet Union was, certainly not a bastion of the free press and freedom of information,  and then to finally request asylum in that bastion of freedom Uruguay, where they are staunch supporters of whistle blowers — as long as they are blowing their whistles about the US or its allies, but who have an iron hand wrapped around their own dark secrets.

All that being said, I am not sure that in a sense, we are all(the entire world) under the thumb of big brother in the form of big business — the banks, energy companies, etc.

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… do not in any way compare to the comments of rush about Sandra Fluke.  Maher’s comments about Palen, Bachman woman did not attack them as woman, but for their right-wing and often clearly stupid and uniformed comments.  Those two — The views of  Bachman and Palen, along with rest of the right wing-nuts are in my opinion themselves misogynistic.

…I would love to discuss with the Supreme Court before they make their decision after their current re-examination of  Citizens United  during which they will decide once and for all whether corporations should or should not be given the same rights as people — that corporations are actually people.  I maintain that in at least one vital aspect, I do not believe that corporations merit human status.  In my view, the most important thing that makes one human is a conscience or at least the capacity to develop one.    Not having a conscience is in-human.   We often hear such individuals as Stalin, Hitler, Bundy and Dahmer referred to as in-human precisely because they all were sociopaths — did not have the capacity for conscience.

Corporations also have no capacity for conscience.  Of course individuals within corporations can act with conscience, but decisions about operation of the corporation are made based on the bottom line — profit — always.   In fact  the characteristics of a sociopath that are defined in the DSM IV(Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fourth Edition) , the official journal that that has an extensive list of mental disorders.  The characteristics of this disorder are listed and they look like a list of normal corporate activities to me.  instead of sociopath, the official term for the disorder is  antisocial personality disorder is used and according to the manual this disorder is characterized by the identified existence of at least 3 of the following:

  1. Callous unconcern for the feelings of others
  2. Gross and persistent attitude of irresponsibility and disregard for social norms, rules, and obligations.
  3. Incapacity to maintain enduring relationships, though having no difficulty in establishing them
  4. Very low tolerance to frustration and a low threshold for discharge of aggression, including violence.
  5. Incapacity to experience guilt or to profit from experience, particularlypunishment.
  6. Markedly prone to blame others or to offer plausible rationalizations for the behavior that has brought the person into conflict with society

Corporations continually break the above rules, often all of them simultaneously.  I therefore strongly insist that Justices Kennedy, Scalia, Thomas, Kagen, Roberts, Ginsberg, Soto-mayor and Burger find that corporations are not people.  If any of them do not, then it will confirm my worst suspicions that at least three if not four of these judges are squarely in corporate pockets and have questionable human status as well.

Hey Folks,

Just thought I would write a blog that gives a short description of the more than fifty blogs I have written so far.  My blogs are divided into categories, so I will arrange this blog in the same way.  Note that some of my blogs fall into more than one of my categories, but they will only be chronicled once below. The blogs are listed in each category in chronological order from the oldest to the newest.

ADVENTURE:
In “The Mexico Expedition“, I tell about an expedition my father and I went on in the jungles of Mexico. In “Shrimp Boats” Although the next blog, entitled “Grand Canyon” is yet unfinished, I published it anyway and at some point will finish this massive blog about the fun-filled trip to the Grand Canyon with the family of my best friends.  Economizing Words details a four-day conference I attended on Long Island, where I began to learn techniques for teaching mobility skills to persons who are deaf-blind.

HUMOR
This category has several entries, but two are rather silly like, “Anti Aging” “Cream” which does not deserve an explanation and “Lovesick Squirrel“, which is also rather weak. I do think that my blog about “The Empty bus“, which details my most embarrassing moment is, if I do say so myself, pretty funny. In “No Virginia“, I shared one person’s(was unable to find who this piece originally came from) scientific analysis of the impossibility of the existence of Santa. In “jokes” I add a few favorite jokes I have received from hyper space over the years. In “National Bake Sale” I make my own tongue-in-cheek “modest proposal” as to how to solve our national debt crisis.

 Miscellaneous World Blogs
In “The Big Ponzi Scheme“, I explain why I think the free enterprise system is one giant Ponzi Scheme.  In “Taxes 101“, I decry America’s aversion to paying taxes.  In “Wiki leaks Realization“, I applaud how these revelations reveal just how stupid our world leaders (mostly men) are.  “Don’t ask Don’t Tell” is just one of my several blogs that attack the moronic bigoted behavior in the world.   In “The Wal-Marting of America“,  I talk about how China has adopted a similar policy of that adopted by Wal-mart to economically crush everyone but them.  In ‘A Letter to the Rich“, I send these sycophants a warning.    In The God of Abraham VS Spirituality,  I detail reasons why belief in this god,  contradicts its adherents claim to spirituality.   “Jesus“, is another of my polemics against bigotry.  In “The Age of Stupid“, I mourn the current anti-intellectual climate fostered by the right wing-nuts of the republican party.    In “Inherent Bigotry“,  I detail how I think the bigotry is inherent in the three major religions that dominate the world today — Judaism, Christianity and Islam.    In” There is a fine“,  I talk about why parents — not teachers — are the ones who are really the ones responsible for the education of their children.   In”I’m Tired of the Bleeping Censorship“, I point out how silly trying to control media language with “‘bleeping” offensive language is.   “Are the Republicans the New Sodomites?“,  is not actually one of my blogs, but was a New York Times OP:Ed in which Nicolas Kristoff, gives an amusing quiz that points out just how out of touch with reality the Christian right are.   In “Corporate Person-hood“,  I decry the supreme court’s decision that gives corporations the same rights as real people and I make an argument why they are not at all human.  in “Good People“, I give my opinion on what it takes to be a good person.   In “Not for Profits Please” I give my argument why these entities are a superior way to proceed in the future.   In “In the Tradition of Tomas de Torquemada” I decry the religious zealotry of Rick Santorum.    And finally in this category, I wrote two companion blogs,  “Racism is …“, which explains why we should stop using this archaic word and “Ethnic Bigotry is caused by?“, which details what science has discovered about the sources of bigotry.

NEWS RANTS
In “My Take on Egypt” I talk about what I think really spurred the Arab Spring.  In “McCarthyism Reincarnated“,  I make a short comment on the ravings of Ann Coulter.  In “Nuclear Lies“, I argue that no matter what we do with this form of power, it will never be safe.  In discuss the meaning of “Cults“, and in Bill Maher’s comments about conservative woman… I argue that Mr. Maher’s comments is neither a sexist nor misogynistic.  In Here’s Something I rant about the Supreme Court decisions on corporate person-hood.

PICTURES
 In “Pictures“, which is not really a blog in my list, but a menu item at the top of my blog, I display some of the favorites from the pictures I have taken.   I display some pictures of my master in “My Cat: Wheatina Turdmonky“.  Lastly in this category, I chronicle the tragedy of  “A Green Heron Saga”

WEIRD
This category had a few entries, but the others have already been mentioned in other categories, so there is only one left.  “A Mystery Noise”  Tells about an actual, very frustrating experience I had in my home one long night.

SHORT STORIES
I have two short stories of my own in this category, “Symbiosis” a completely fictional short short story about an encounter with an unusual individual and “Words in Time“, another short short of mine with time travel as its theme.  And finally in this category, I put in one that is not mine “The Story of an Hour“, by Kate Chopin.  Although only one page long,  this is one of the most powerful short stories I have ever read.

WORDS
In this final category, I offer on blog that lists some of my favorite “aphorisms” in general and then two more that deal specifically with “Death” and “Ennui”  I also include a list of “Aphorattemts” which lists some original quotes of mine.

In my ‘Racism Is’ Blog, I argue that racial bigotry is an inaccurate characterization and the term ethnic should always be used in place of racial.   But, what about the cause of ethnic bigotry?  Where did it come from?

The conventional wisdom has been that parents who are bigots teach their children to be bigots by modeling bigoted behaviour, but science has now shown us that while such parents do foster bigotry, and they are in fact the initial cause of it, the mechanism for ethnic bigotry comes into effect days after birth and parents are unaware of it.  In his excellent book The Hidden Brain: How Our Unconscious Minds Elect Presidents, Control Markets, Wage Wars, and Save Our Lives,  the author, Shankar Vedantam shows through multiple rigorous studies that children all over the world consistently prefer their own ethnic group over others from the earliest age.  He attributes the cause to infants being able to recognize certain facial features, especially the eyes and the nose — features you will notice that are the major identifiers for the differences between ethnic groups.

So practically all children in the world pretty much start out with ethnic bias and according to Mr. Vedantam, regardless of the attitude of parents in such matters these biases will continue until about age twelve, when they will either become stronger or weaker, depending on the influence of significant others after that.

. . . racist.   Let me explain my point of view on this subject.

For at least the past one hundred years it has been known by those who bothered to use their brains as opposed to their indoctrinated prejudice to examine the subject, that there are no races of humans beyond the basic human race – all living humans belong to the same hominid subspecies, Homo sapiens sapiens.  For example, not only is there no white (Caucasoid), or black (Negroid) races, there are not even such pure people on this planet.   Take a sample picture of the whitest skinned Albino who ever lived and lay that picture on a pure white surface and you will see it is far from white and conversely a picture of darkest skinned person ever recorded and compare that to pure black and see that they are quite discernibly different .

Created in the nineteenth century by off-white people, the concept of race was an attempt to define people by superficial characteristics, with the sole purpose of showing how these off-white people were superior to all of those with darker coloring.  Superficial characteristics, such as skin color, hair type and color, facial features, clearly do not define us as humans.  These are simply superficial characteristics that have evolved over the roughly one hundred thousand years that homo saps have been roaming the earth.  This ethnic evolution process should not however be confused with natural selection, because it is far from that — this process took thousands as opposed to many millions required by natural selection to produce homo sap.  It is now believed by those that actually study these things, that the causes of these ethnic differences between various groups was caused by two factors:

  1. Positive assortative Mating — the phenomenon where a sexually reproducing organism chooses to mate with individuals that are similar(positive assortative mating) or dissimilar (negative assortative mating or disassortative mating).  In other words, people — and life in general for that matter — pick mates that look like them and reject potential mates that don’t look like them.  For example, any Canine — Wolves, Foxes, Coyotes, or any species of dog can produce offspring if they mate, but in general, Foxes choose Foxes and Wolves choose Wolves.
  2. Environment — The types of food available to a given group and the climate that they must endure can effect which individuals survive in that group, for example those who evolve in a hot sun-filled environment, such as central Africa, stand a better chance of surviving due to larger amounts of Melanin (pigment) that helps protect from the Sun.

So come on folks.  Lets stop using that stupid word.  Still, there has to be some way to talk about bigoted people, so I  will coin the word  Ethnicists, to refer to them.  It is more accurate word, but it does not change the fact that it is at its core wrong —  groups of people cannot be correctly defined by superficial characteristics.   This has actually been proven again and again through countless studies that have shown that:

When comparing any two statistically significant(large enough) groups, the differences that exist within either group, far outweigh any differences that can be identified between the two groups — if any can be identified at all.  In other words and statistically significant group will have every type of human in it — Fat, thin, introverted, extroverted, short, tall, killers & saints — all in roughly the same proportion in either group.

So, since just using the word lends credence to the idea that races of human beings actually exist — again, they do not —  can’t we all just stop this raci… er ethnisist – crap.

When I heard about Rick Santorum’s comment about President Kennedy’s 1960 speech on separation of church and state — he stated that he, “almost threw up” after reading the speech.  Mr. Santorum, apparently read the speech quite some time after President Kennedy made it, because Rick was two in 1960 when the speech was given, but anyway when I read of him saying that I did wonder:  What went through Rick’s mind when he read that piece?

Did he imagine himself someday morfing into a modern day Torquemada, leading a patriarchal legion of the righteous ( an army of Buffy’s and Van Helsing’s) in wiping out various demons, vampires, zombies, homosexuals and woman who have the audacity to want to be in control of their own birth processes?