Principled Politics vs the Politics of Self

If there is such a thing, I would call it principled politics.

And here is the difference: speak to someone who has next to nothing as it relates to assets and worldly possessions. If they are a Conservative, they will speak convictions that have little or nothing to do with their station in life.

Liberals cannot understand a man who has nothing but the clothes on his back defending such things as smaller government and professing reductions in social services. The simple reason is that the Liberal votes with his pocketbook… what is best in his mind for his particular situation. He cannot grasp a man of tenuous economic status who promulgates limited government. It seems illogical, if not insane, to him.

Conservatives, on the other hand, seem to have an ability to support what is Good & Right, without regard for their specific personal welfare.

These are distinct worldviews. One is focused on the self. One is focused on what is objectively right and what is objectively wrong without regard to self.

There is something to this. Ironic though it may seem, perhaps, the Conservative is by definition more concerned with the General Welfare than the Liberal… whose opinion usually hinges on his calculation of what is best for himself.

I used to think it was a simple situation of Envy. But as I grow older, I see that it is Envy and Selfishness that drives the Mainline Liberal.

An example. In witnessing the recent happenings in Wisconsin, it is clear that the Liberal Unionistas and Teachers have shown us their real colors: they don’t give a damn about the Children, the State of Wisconsin, or the amount of Services they can provide… they care about what is in it for them… budgets and taxes be damned.

That there are perhaps 10% of Teachers that are of the opposing point of view – who, despite what is seemingly best for them personally – are willing to concede that the State of Wisconsin cannot sustain the incredibly lush provisions they have enjoyed throughout the last 30 years – defies complete sanity in the minds of the Mainline (Liberal) Teachers.

“How can you vote against your own personal benefit?” they ask.

The Conservative replies, “How can I not?”

Posted in Too Lazy to Categorize | 3 Comments

Digging in the Dirt

CLEANING OUT EMAIL – FOUND THE FOLLOWING.

On Sun, Oct 11, 2009 at 1:37 PM, wrote:

All –

I am probably missing some people on this email. If you notice someone missing from it that should be included, please feel free to forward it at your discretion.

I want to first mention that of course James’s passing is a big shock. A man such as James taken at such a young age (I think 40 is now the “new 30″) is a real tragedy. And the fact that he leaves behind 3 kids and a young wife behind only compounds the heavy heart.

As you all know, I met James in 7th grade while attending a most awful private school. James had been expelled the year before I arrived, but eventually the Powers That Be showed some clemency. For my part, it was my first and only year there. And, as you can imagine, James and I, though if memory serves did not get along at our first meeting, eventually came to see one another as remarkably similar for being so very different from one another. Specifically in the following sense: we both hated authority.

Now, one can downplay the significance of what that means/meant. One can chalk it up to rebellion of youth. But that would be to simplify it and miss the point entirely.

If you notice the people on this list – you may see a pattern emerge. James respected most those that would not be cowed. He saw it as more than a simple personality trait. He saw it as a sign of spiritual maturity. Because the Spirit cannot be squashed unless the individual permits it to be. And because he knew very well that what we all really desire most in this life is something that is in very short supply: namely, as a friend of mine reminded me this morning, Peace.

In James’s view of the mechanics of the cosmos, and more specifically, the actuality of the Human Person, we souls chose to be manifest on this plane of existence. And, in his view, we souls chose to enter into this awful physical realm in order to have an opportunity to break free of this physical and metaphysical plane. In his view, what we can observe with our limited senses (the 5 senses we learn about in school), we are given to certain perceptions about the cosmos that are absolutely illusory.

For him, existing as both physical and spiritual being was a bummer. In his view the physical was nothing but a cell within which the soul was imprisoned. This does NOT mean he didn’t enjoy his existence here. He took pleasure in all of the little and big miracles of this life experience – just like the rest of us. But he DID believe that his mission here on earth was to evolve in such a way as to be permitted to escape the confines of the physical. Yes – he believed in reincarnation. And, no, he was not real eager to spend more lifetimes in what he saw as the great wheel than he had to. So, for him, it made sense that he needed to spend as much time working on the Spiritual aspect of self as was possible.

James did not believe that the Spirit could/would end up in hell – as we typically envision it. But he DID believe in a Creator God. He was NOT a polytheist. But he also did NOT believe that he had found one religious tradition that adequately represented God Creator. In this sense he was very much Buddhist: once we try to describe the Cosmic Oneness (God), we are further from understanding the actuality of God that before we set out to explain God. This does NOT mean he thought we could not sharpen our insights about what/who/why/how of the Creator God and Creator God’s Creation – the Cosmos. Far from it: he spent his life trying to peek behind the curtain, so sure was he that there were glimpses of the Divine to be discerned.

It is important for me to communicate this to you. For a couple of reasons.

1) James has either broken free of this plane or not – if you tend to agree with his view of the Cosmos.
2) If you see the Cosmos through the prism of Christianity, on the other hand, I am encouraged that James has met his reward. He really did believe that the Christ was a Bridge. He really did believe that if you walked the path of Christ, you would find God. What he disagreed with was what he saw as the bastardization of the Christ Story – the manipulation of it throughout history for political gain. If you know me at all, you would see this as a major divergence in belief between James and myself. And there were plenty of these.
3) If you do not believe in existence after death – then James is gone. Both physically and Spiritually. And none of this matters. For you, I would suggest that you reconsider.
4) James LOVED to talk about the Cosmos – all of it – and the economy of souls! He loved it because for him nothing raised to the same level of worthiness – he was always ready to share his ideas with others and to hear theirs. To exchange insights.

So, this is his gift to you and very much to me.

Always ask questions
Ask follow-up questions
Read, study
Contemplate
Pray
Meditate
Introspect
Visualize
Realize

REBEL – DO NOT BELIEVE WHAT THE THEM TELL YOU – DO NOT BELIEVE THE SLOGANS – DO NOT BELIEVE THE CHOICES YOU ARE PRESENTED WITH – ALWAYS ASSUME THERE IS MORE THAN YOU ARE SENSING – NEVER, EVER CAPITULATE OR ALLOW YOURSELF TO BE INTIMIDATED. FIGHT LIKE A MOTHER FUCKER.

MANIFEST the person – SPIRIT – you are called to be.

The rest, James would tell you – the physical, material – is, was, and ever will be “complete fucking bullshit.” – A distraction.

And most of all – he would implore you, in a war-like manner, to LOVE and PEACE of your fellow… to the best of your ability.

Please join me in a song of prayer for his rapid passage and celebration of the wonderful soul we, his beloved friends, had the gift of knowing.

Ill let you know when plans are ironed out.

Posted in God Bothering | 1 Comment

Teh Gays and Teh Fashion of Starvation

I will begin with the obligatory statement that I love homosexuals. I have no problem with them. As a Catholic I am called to love the sinner and hate the sin. But this post is not about homosexuality per se.

Numerous times in the last couple years various web publishers have pondered how the more womanly (shapely, curvacious) pin up girl of prior generations have come to be supplanted by “waifs” and women with the so-called “Athletic body type” as the archetype of what is physically desirable.

A well-known expert on the topic of eating disorders and the modeling industry, MamaV, happens to be a friendly of mine in meat space. She and I talked about this very topic last year. Her site chronicles the struggles many women in and outside the Industry have with eating disorders. You can read her blog on Women Body Image & Eating Disorders here.

As a father of 3 girls, two of which are teenagers and one of which has had a brush with an eating disorder, MamaV and I have discussed the topic at some length.

The last conversation we had (last year, perhaps?) we went down the rabbit hole and covered the more commonly identified antagonists… the media, Hollywood… the unrealistic images of women plastered in magazines and consumed voraciously by young impressionable girls. We covered these more obvious themes. I still believe there is some merit to placing the blame for our cultural frenzy over the unattainable – as in, air-brushed 12 and 13 year olds being passed off as twenty something corporate go-getters in the pages of Mademoiselle for instance.

Do I think Fashion Publishers and Hollywood are worthy of some blame as it relates to the corruption of body image and the bastardization of what is “beautiful”? Yes. Absolutely. To profit from advancing an unreal-istic goal… by selling fiction as achievable is scandalous and damaging.

Yet, the question we are treating on relates to the morphing of what is considered beautiful in American Pop Culture.

How did it happen that Monroe became “plus sized” and that people like Keira Knightly became the goal?

Also not at all offensive to me.

BTW – Full Disclosure: I like women of mostly all shapes and sizes (within reason), but do have a preference for so-called “Athletic” body typed women like Keira Knightly. I like em long and lean. But I have no problem appreciating the more voluptuous body types either. It really is sort of a case-by-case basis for yours truly. Point being, I do prefer to look at more slender women. But even so, there is a point at which someone looks sickly. If someone is too skinny for what they are natively apt to be, it is as off-putting as someone who shaves off their eyebrows and replaces them with tattooed ones in my book.

Back to the topic at hand.

When speaking with MamaV it occurred to me that perhaps the domination of the Fashion Industry by Gay Men has a great deal with today’s “perfect body”.

It makes a great deal of sense that men who prefer men would think that less-curvy women are more attractive.

Lots of Stuff to Contemplate.

Let me put it this way: if you’re not into hips and boobs… if you prefer the “perfect male physique” (different topic), it makes sense that you would find women with narrower hips and smaller boobs relatively more attractive than the chick on Mad Men. You know, the one with the abundance of outstanding assets.

Someone will accuse me of Homophobia or something for writing this. But I am sure it is not a novel line of thinking. I just haven’t encountered this hypothesis before.

Odd to think that perhaps women are being pressured to look more like boys by people who prefer “boys/men”.

Then again, I am a middle-aged, overweight lump whose fashion hasn’t changed substantially since the Nineties. What the hell do I know? Not much.

UPDATE: Thx to Stacy at TheOtherMcCain for the linky love!

Posted in Celebretards, Ni Una Idea | 15 Comments

Cruise Ship Tragedy & Bain Capital

Survivors of the horrific Italian cruise ship tragedy are purportedly being forced back onto the crippled ship.

Says Newt Gingrich, former GA Congressman and current presidential hopeful,

“Look. What happened in Italy is a tragedy. Here we have several people who lost their lives and we have survivors who did not. How is that fair? It’s not. It’s shameful and wrong.”

When pressed on this bizarre stance and the even more bizarre insistence by Italian authorities that the survivors return to the doomed vessel, Gingrich added,

“The Italian Authorities have made the right call here. If that ship is doomed, we must get those survivors back onto the ship before we commit a flagrant act of choosing winners and losers.”

He went on to add,

“That a ship could run aground in this day and age is unforgivable. I bet we’ll find that when the Captain knew the vessel was in trouble, he started getting lifeboats ready to evacuate the passengers. But if he was aware he couldn’t get ALL of the passengers off the vessel safely, he should have ordered his crew to scuttle the lifeboats instead.”

Posted in Too Lazy to Categorize | 2 Comments

The Mansion of Your Life (an open letter to Grandchildren)

Essay by Daniel P Collins, Sr, Naples Florida

The famous author, James A. Mitchner, in “The Fires of Spring” announced authoritatively:

“For this is the journey that men make: to find themselves. If they fail in this, it doesn’t matter what else they find.

Money, position, fame, many loves, revenge, are all of little consequence. And when the tickets are collected at the end of the ride they are tossed in a bin marked FAILURE.

But if a man happens to find himself – if he knows what he can do; the limits of his courage, the position from which he will no longer retreat… the secret reservoirs of his determination, the extent of his dedication, the depth of his feeling for beauty, his modest and unpostured goals – then he has found a mansion which he can inhabit with dignity all the days of his life.”

Inspirational, striking words; but allow me a few criticisms.

One does not just “happen” to find the code of conduct chronicled. Mitchner does not tell the reader how to achieve these virtuous characteristics.

Fortunately for you, beloved grandchildren, Grandpa will explain what tools and resources are at hand to build your Mansion.

Of course the most essential is the Foundation: hence the name, and in life the Foundation is Moral Truth. The Truth is essential to all Human endeavors. First, you must find it. Then, you must defend it and be faithful to it.

Let’s start our search with “Natural Law”, a concept that spans from the ancient Greek philisophies, honored by the Church, acknowledged by the founder of the Republic. Philosophers recognized that things of nature had characteristics that were inherent, essential to their function and could not be removed (ie. water freezes and boils at fixed temperatures). Humans also have rights and moral knowledge. These were listed in the Declaration of Independence as unalienable; “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness”.

According to Catholic teachings, you are created “in the image and likeness” of God and since God is Pure Love and All Good, He has engraved this knowledge on your heart and conscience.

The other unalienable rights, “Freedom and Pursuit of Happiness” (ie. private possession are to be “ordered” (ie. dependent on Tuth)). Blessed John Paul II states “Authentic, ordered freedom is ordered to truth”. (Veritas Splendor Enciclical) Truth is ONE, what is philosophical and theologically true will not conflict with schientific truth. Truth is now a matter of consensus; Truth is Truth even if no one believes it; and false is false even if everyone believes it to be true. It’s not enough to have a hunch or possible, probable, or even beyond a reasonable doubt. You must have certitude: Truth is unchanging.

So, starting with Natural Law, add Reason and Scripture, the inspired word of God indirectly given through Prophets and directly through Jesus who is Truth. Reason validates the Ten Commandments but accepting the Truth of the Beatitudes because of their paradoxical confrontation of worldly values requires the final Finishing Fool: Wisdom. The Sapiential Books (Books of Wisdom) of the Bible proclaim “Fear of the Lord is the first step to Wisdom”; God’s plan of conduct that allows us to “live life more abundantly”. Fear does not mean “subservient slave-like fear” but a healthy awareness of God’s awesome power as manifested all around us and how inconsequential we would be except for His magnificent, majestic, unending, unconditional Love.

This will not only lead you to the Mansion portrayed by Mitchner, but to one that will reduce it to a birdhouse or a toy in a box of Cracker Jack.

We hope you will understand we write of these things not only out of our love for you, but also as a responsibility as stated in Psalm 78.

3 What we have heard and know;

things our ancestors have recounted to us.

4 We do not keep them from our children;

we recount them to the next generation,

The praiseworthy deeds of the LORD and his strength,

the wonders that he performed

5 God made a decree in Jacob,

established a law in Israel:

Which he commanded our ancestors,

they were to teach their children;

6 That the next generation might come to know,

children yet to be born.

In turn they were to recount them to their children,

Posted in God Bothering, Too Lazy to Categorize | Leave a comment

Sole Saves Soul

Essay by Daniel P Collins, Sr. – Naples, Florida

My dad was a fireman in downtown Chicago for forty-three years. His rise from fireman to Division Marshall over the politicians determined obstructions was aided by the prayers of his favorite charity; The Little Sisters of the Poor. Sister Bertha and Sister Brigid would show up on pay day and dad would “encourage” all to contribute.

On a freezing Winter day, the nuns came in and Dad told them to warm their feet at the glowing pot belly iron furnace. When they put their feet out to warm their toes, Dad noticed each had large holes in the soles of their shoes. He called his Jewish friend Harry Gold… “Harry, I’ve got two nuns over here with holes in their shoes. If I buy one pair, will you pick up the other?”

“Bring them over, Chief”, said Harry the shoemaker.

This inaugurated a bi-weekly tradition. The nuns would visit the firehouse, Dad would ask what happened to their new shoes. The nuns would reveal they had given the new shoes to “someone who needed them more”. Dad and Harry would split the cost. And Harry never hesitated.

Do I think this son of Jacob “has a place in Heaven? You bet. I think he’s a “shoe-in”!

Posted in God Bothering, Too Lazy to Categorize | 2 Comments

“High stakes” testing and high school diplomas

I’m very pro-standardized testing…if the tests are good. [and this reminds me, I need to order the end-of-year tests for Bonnie & Mo]

So it was with interest that I read the account recently of a school board member in Florida sitting down to take some of the “high stakes” tests that the students in his district have to take:

A longtime friend on the school board of one of the largest school systems in America did something that few public servants are willing to do. He took versions of his state’s high-stakes standardized math and reading tests for 10th graders, and said he’d make his scores public.

By any reasonable measure, my friend is a success. His now-grown kids are well-educated. He has a big house in a good part of town. Paid-for condo in the Caribbean. Influential friends. Lots of frequent flyer miles. Enough time of his own to give serious attention to his school board responsibilities. The margins of his electoral wins and his good relationships with administrators and teachers testify to his openness to dialogue and willingness to listen.

…..
“I won’t beat around the bush,” he wrote in an email. “The math section had 60 questions. I knew the answers to none of them, but managed to guess ten out of the 60 correctly. On the reading test, I got 62% . In our system, that’s a “D”, and would get me a mandatory assignment to a double block of reading instruction.

He continued, “It seems to me something is seriously wrong. I have a bachelor of science degree, two masters degrees, and 15 credit hours toward a doctorate.

The thing is, this sort of stunt happens every so often. And I wonder about the credibility of the person taking the exams, especially if he said he guessed on all the math problems. Is it really written that poorly, and nobody noticed til now… or is it that this guy sucks at math and does not think “Hey, perhaps people getting a HS diploma should actually know more than I do”?

In comments, MRW pointed to a public release of the test in question, and having looked at the tenth grade math items, I think what I said was unfair. While we have our share of students who struggle with basic algebra, I’m pretty confident that they would pass this test.

Just for fun, here’s a selection of a few of the problems from the 2006 math test given to tenth graders, the one where Mr. Roach didn’t know how to answer any of them, and “Not a single one of [his friends] said that the math I described was necessary in their profession.” See if you’re smarter than a Florida school board member:

[go to link to look at the questions... most of these I could do by 5th grade, btw]
….
Now, of course, I’ve cherry-picked these questions, to enable maximum snark, but you can look at the test for yourself at the link above, and see for yourself that the math involved is not terribly difficult. And, in fact, the test writers have done a pretty good job of putting the math into a useful (if occasionally a bit contrived) context, to demonstrate what it’s all for. Maybe whoever selected the questions for him to take pulled out only the most abstract and difficult questions from several years’ worth of tests, but that doesn’t seem terribly likely.

This is yet another demonstration of a problem I’ve been banging on about for years: the innumeracy of intellectuals. Mr. Roach holds three college degrees, and clearly considers himself an educated person, but even a lack of practice at taking tests can’t really explain this level of failure.
….
Mr. Roach’s failure to score at a reasonable level on this test is something that ought to embarrass him, not the educational establishment. As much as I have problems with the notion of high-stakes testing, I have an even bigger problem with people who believe– and teach our kids– that basic mathematical competence is not a necessary component of education.

Now when I had seen the info about his multiple degrees, and his inability to do well on very basic math, I guessed that those degrees were in subjects with the word “education” somewhere, which are some of the most degraded degrees out there. This would be ironic, unless you understood how the current education industry “works”: you get raises, promotions, etc. as a public school teacher for these degrees. The college and universities granting them get lots of money. And there’s no external check on whether those holding those pieces of paper actually learned anything other than how to work the system.

So let’s see if I was correct about Mr. Roach:

The man in question is Rick Roach, who is in his fourth four-year term representing District 3 on the Board of Education in Orange County, Fl., a public school system with 180,000 students. Roach took a version of the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test, commonly known as the FCAT, earlier this year.

….
Roach, the father of five children and grandfather of two, was a teacher, counselor and coach in Orange County for 14 years. He was first elected to the board in 1998 and has been reelected three times. A resident of Orange County for three decades, he has a bachelor of science degree in education and two masters degrees: in education and educational psychology. He has trained over 18,000 educators in classroom management and course delivery skills in six eastern states over the last 25 years.

To be sure, I had these links before I wrote this post, but I’m sure the idea popped in many minds when hearing about those degrees (and I definitely thought it when I heard the credit hours towards a doctorate). Mind you, I’m not calling all education programs to be phony, but ever heard of Gresham’s Law?

Bad money drives out good.

This goes for credentials as well. The economic forces as well as the lack of any controls means that there has been a slide downward not only in the meaning of a high school diploma, but also education degrees.

I have written about this dichotomy of what is considered educated, in how much humanities, and at what level, one must take in college compared to math and science. Well, that was college, and here are two posts (post 1 on Cathy Seipp, post 2 on Richard Cohen) of me bitching about people who considered themselves educated, who would also needed to have guessed on that math exam….and trying to make up excuses that it’s okay to be that ignorant in math and call one’s self educated.

Look – would you consider someone educated who could not write coherently? Who could not read great literature (the accessible stuff, not when it was a virtue to be only for the elite) and comment on it?

I really have nothing to this statement from my Seipp post:

Exit exams need to mean something, or high school diplomas will continue to mean nothing. The only reason so many people feel the need to go to college is because a high school diploma means only that you showed up often enough that they gave you a diploma. If you’re getting good grades in math from grades 9-12, but can’t pass a 9th grade-level exam — that should indicate to you that your grades are meaningless. I ran into this problem once before: when I taught calculus at N.C. State. There was a reason they had a pretty strict requirement on placing out of Calculus I. Because over half of the freshman class had had Calc I before and claimed to have gotten decent grades in Calculus the year before… and yet, they didn’t even know how to give the equation of a line. Or what the area of a circle was.

So the question is: are people happy that high school grades and diplomas are credentials with no credibility? If they’re not happy, you’ve got to have some kind of do-or-die certification. Having “alternatives” where people can opt out of basic math knowledge or literacy is not a good way to shore up the credential.

These “high stakes” exams do tend to be relatively low level, especially in math. I think it’s reasonable to set a high school diploma at Algebra I.

Of course, there will be students, diligent and following the rules, who can’t clear that hurdle. It is not kind to anybody to lower the standard such that the HS diploma is merely an attendance certificate. For those who accomplish that, give them the attendance certificate. Don’t lie to them that by merely showing up they accomplished something academically.

One of the perspectives I’m coming from is that of special education — if those students can’t demonstrate that basic level of knowledge and application, then don’t give them a diploma, pretending it means something. What you’re doing is giving everybody a meaningless piece of paper just so that some people supposedly won’t feel bad. Some of those special ed students may very well be able to clear the same minimal hurdle everybody else does, and they should have something that indicates that. I’m also fine with an “honors certificate” above and beyond the minimal HS requirements. Or vocational credentials, if that’s the route they go.

The point is to change high school from a holding pen for teenagers on the way to the “real” credential of college, which will cost many people in money and time lost on wasteful activities….and find they’ve got yet another meaningless piece of paper, and many times, not even that.

Posted in Invincible Ignorance, Number Crunching w Meep | 2 Comments

Of Owls and Black Babies

I keep threatening to write a book about what I have referred to as “Luxury Politics”. These would be the politics of a leisurely society whose comfort and lack of immediacy enable it to call “Sacred” things that are profane.

Perhaps no situation causes me so much frustration as the treatment of animals as if they were akin to children. Often times better. Each of us has a friend or relation who claims without reservation that their dog or cat is no different in import to them as a child is to a parent. Each of us can probably point to pet owners who shower their possessions with better medical care – including prescriptions and operations, pathology and preventative care – than is defensible for a lower creature whose value is arguably more than a snail, but less than a goat.

It is common for me to come across stories wherein we are reminded of how morally bankrupt we have become. Few instances demonstrate this better than a couple which come immediately to mind.

A more helpful post here.

Let us mention here a situation near to me involving a wonderful friend, James Shore, whose life was cut short by a certain James Arthur Ray. Ray, convicted of 3 counts of negligent homicide, received 3 concurrent 2 year sentences in Arizona for his crimes.

In contrast,

“On December 10, Vick appeared in U.S. District Court in Richmond for sentencing. Judge Hudson said he was “convinced that it was not a momentary lack of judgment” on Vick’s part, and that Vick was a “full partner” in the dog fighting ring, and he was sentenced to serve 23 months in federal prison.”

For…

“being involved in the destruction of 6–8 dogs, by hanging or drowning. The “victimization and killing of pit bulls” was considered as aggravating circumstances that led prosecutors to exceed the federal sentencing guidelines for the charge.”

But a far more disturbing pattern has emerged over the past couple decades in respect to Human Life and Society’s valuation thereof.

I could cite a newborn human baby being drown at a high school dance.
I could cite a certain mother driving her car into the drink, getting out, and watching her 3 children drown.
I could cite all of the “missing” toddlers and related cases.

But why cite National stories when I could cite the happenings in Milwaukee, Wisconsin?

Oddly, a new, heretofore, unknown cultural by-product has become a regional rage: namely, what has been euphemistically-coined “co-sleeping death”. In a nutshell, it appears to be a sort of condition whereby inner-city Black Human Babies go to bed alive only to be smothered by the mother or aunt, father or sibling.

There have been some 10 of these “accidents” in Milwaukee, WI, over the course of the 2011 calendar year. Oddly, no such occurrences were reported in 2011 for Madison, WI or Green Bay, WI. Or, for that matter, anywhere else in WI. My search was not exhaustive. But, at least anecdotal-ly speaking, this trend seems to be isolated to inner-city Black Milwaukeean Families.

So, what gives?

The death is at least the 10th this year of a baby who was either co-sleeping with someone or who was in an unsafe sleeping environment. The girl’s mother, who is 22 and unemployed, has two other children who live with their father.

No worries… the City of Milwaukee is on it!

Let me take you to November the 9th of this year,

Minutes before city officials unveiled a new safe-sleep advertising campaign Wednesday, the medical examiner’s office announced that a 7-week-old baby was found dead on Milwaukee’s south side after co-sleeping with his or her mother.

The best part of this campaign is that it speaks directly to the highest risk families, doesn’t kowtow to Political Correctness by say showing a White Baby in its ads, even though there is zero evidence this trend has been picked up by the milk toast denizens of this city everyone in Milwaukee feels much better now knowing that:

1) Milwaukee is all over this!
2) Some Ad Agency is employing a couple more White Agency Rookies to get the message out!

Granted, babies are kind of boring. Especially expendable are Black inner-city babies. An Owl stolen from its cage and let loose to fend for itself? Now that’s newsworthy shit. Something any compassionate Homosapien can sink his energy and emotion into. Thankfully he (Dakota the Owl) took a crap today and is now eating solid foods.

Let’s put this spike in co-sleeping deaths in Milwaukee in a statistical perspective:

According to the CPSC, at least 515 deaths were linked to infants and toddlers under 2 years of age sleeping in adult beds from January 1990 to December 1997:

121 of the deaths were attributed to a parent, caregiver, or sibling rolling on top of or against a baby while sleeping

WTF is happening in Milwaukee?

Really, really sick and twisted priorities. And what’s worse? I am not sure there isn’t a much more nefarious motive behind these snuffications. Head. Sand. Nothing to see here.

Manimals: I am talking to you. Viva Dakota! Olvide Los Sin Nombres!

DOUBLE-EFFECT WARNING: Enoch_Root (a White guy) is drawing attention to deaths of Black Babies in Milwaukee. And further, he is suggesting that statistically-speaking, all of these cannot be “accidents”. Further, Enoch_Root is accused of butting in to the affairs of a certain minority community. Clearly, his not-so-subtle conjecture is that this is some sort of cultural phenomenon occurring in said minority community. This is clearly a racist piece. He has been denounced in advance.

a more helpful post, here

UPDATE: 1/3/2012 – Another Dead Black Baby.Where’s the outrage?

“At approximately 9:47 a.m…the 22-year-old aunt came out to the living room to check on the children and noticed that [Gilmore] was lying supine next to the 10-year-old aunt and was unresponsive.”

Posted in Hypocrisy, Invincible Ignorance, Rants, Tavis Smiley & Company | 3 Comments

Prayers Are Good Tidings

Each Christmas I am faced with the conflict. On the one hand, with children in the house we feel obliged to do silly things like purchase gifts and prop up Santa Claus. But another part of me realizes that this is silly and a horrible distraction. Nevertheless…

In terms of end of year tidings, one is relieved to have Christmas in the rear-view mirror. One looks forward, mostly, to a new chapter. It is a very pagan way to go. Out with the old and in with the new. XTC has a great song to this effect.

Fire they cried
So evil must die
And yields are good
So men pull back hoods and smile
The scapegoat blood spilled
Spittled and grilled
it crackled and spat
And children grew fat
on the meat
Change must be earnt
Sacrificial bonfire
must burn
Burn up the old Ring in the new
Assembled on high
Silhouette against the sky
The smoke prayed and pranced
And sparks did their dance
in the wind
Shadows wore thin
with less and less skin
And the clothes that were draped
Was all that told man from ape
Change must be earnt
Sacrificial bonfire must reign
Reign over good
Banish the bad

It is interesting to note that Christmas itself, to the Christian, marks the very point in history when Mankind’s bondage was in jeopardy of being remanded. If you will, it is the point in history where the Scapegoat is introduce to the storyline.

We wait for Good Friday to spill the Blood of the Lamb, of course, but the fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecies is nigh. Predestined history unfurls from this point at a relatively rapid pace. All Systems of Men are put to shame in the ensuing times.

This Singular Cosmic Shift – the Birth of the Christchild – the Advent of Emmanuel – God Among Us… culminates in the Greatest Event the world has ever witnessed; whereby God reconciles His Creation to Himself through the Paschal Sacrifice of Himself on our behalf to Himself for expiation of all Sin past, present, and future.

This is a really, really big deal.

What the Great Pagan Philosophers discerned without the Light of the Holy Spirit – and what was known to the Jews through revelation and guarded so jealously – was confirmed. From there, Pagans and Jews alike were presented with another amazing Gift – the first being Redemption – for the taking.

That second gift is the Gift of Hope.

It seems to me that the idea that we exist and then do not exist is so much crap. That we exist and then seize to exist is goofy. How were the Pagan Scholars of Note able to divine an afterlife without the Holy Light of Grace? They did so using Reason as their guide. It is no different today. But that we had only Reason as our guide – without the Advent of the Lamb of God – and possessed the same towering intellect as the Greats – would we not come to the same conclusion? Yet, we have the extra benefit of an Singular Occurrence that they did not. So, perhaps our rather smallish abilities are brought on par with those who fumbled in the dark and arrived at the conclusion that Man is so distinct, so Unique, so Superior in species, that the natural ends of squirrels and birds is not equivalent to what awaits the Human Being.

Right now, many of our cyber-family, our modern-day neighbors, are suffering terribly. On the threshold of Death itself.

There is no need to name them, as most of you know in your hearts who these Souls are.

In the New Year, we are likely to lose some of them from this physical world.

We have Hope. Let us pray that all of these – those who will find physical health again and those that will be liberated from this physical reality – are buoyed in the knowledge that there is so much more behind the veil that awaits them.

Paradise awaits those who desire it with a contrite heart – and burn with Hope in anticipation of the Eternal Vision of God’s Face for Eternity.

The body will fail. But we are free. Free to pray for the Souls at Death’s Doorstep. Free to pray that our neighbors suffer with purpose and realize the benefits to be had as they pick up their cross and follow the Christ to Calvary – and ultimately Golgotha. Free to pray that they demonstrate Fortitude in their sufferings and grow ever closer to the Christ by mimicking his trials.

Let us pray for these, our brothers and sisters. Let us pray for those Dearly Departed in Purgatory and those Militant who are set to join them this year.

May God bless them and keep them and have Mercy on them today, tomorrow, and for all Eternity.

May they in turn pray for each of us from On High in our hour of need.

Happy New Year. God Speed, Faithful Pilgrims.

Posted in God Bothering | Leave a comment

“fairness” and “charity” and “Charity” – Cookies Part I

Charity:

Kid 1 sitting at the lunchroom table.

Kid 2 sits next to him.

Kid 2: No way! You got cookies?

Kid 1: Yeah. My mom made these last night.

Kid 2: Ugggh. My mom never bakes cookies.

Kid 1: Would you like one?

Kid 2: For real?

Kid 1: Here.

Fairness:

Kid 1 sitting at the lunchroom table.

Kid 2 sits next to him.

Kid 2: No way! You got cookies?

Kid 1: Yeah. My mom made these last night.

Kid 2: Ugggh. Not fair! My mom never bakes cookies.

Kid 1: Would you like one?

Kid 2: One? You have three.

Kid 1: Here. Have one.

Kid 2: It’s good. We should split the 3rd one.

Kid 1: Ummm…

Kid 2: How is it fair that you get two and I only have one?

Kid 1: I just gave you one.

Kid 2: I am just sayin’. It hardly seems fair! If you don’t share I’ll tell Mrs. Engels!

Kid 1: I did share! And I didn’t have to. Jeez…

Kid 2: It’s not fair.

Kid 1: Life isn’t fair.

charity

Kid 1 sitting at the lunchroom table.

Kid 2 sits next to him.

Mrs Engels walking past table.

Mrs. Engels: whatcha got there, Kid 1?

Kid 1: Huh?

Mrs. Engels: Let’s see what you got. Ahhhh, cookies. Those look good.

Kid 1: My mom made a bunch of them for her Church group. She put some of them in my bag.

Mrs. Engels: Well, isn’t that nice for you!

Kid 1: Yeah.

Mrs. Engels: What about you, Kid 2?

Kid 2: I don’t have any cookies.

Mrs. Engels: Hmmmm.

Kid 2: It’s not fair.

Mrs. Engels: Well, I’d have to agree. Kid 1, give Kid 2 some cookies. It’s only fair.

Kid 1: Huh?

Mrs. Engels: Your a Christian, after all. Give Kid 2 some cookies.

Kid 1: I gave him a cookie yeasterday. But then he argued with me about how it was unfair that I had two left and had only given him one. He wanted me to give him another.

Kid 2: No! I wanted you to give me half of the other, so it would be fair. We’d each have had one and a half cookies then. Instead of you having two and me only getting one.

Kid 1: I didn’t have to give you the first one.

Mrs. Engels: I though Christians were supposed to be Charitable. Now give him one and you keep one.

Kid 1: What?

Mrs. Engels? C’mon. What would Jesus do?

Kid 1: Ummm…

Mrs. Engels: Now do it.

Kid 1: Okay, I guess.

Kid 2: Hey! That leaves him with two and me with one!

Kid 1: But my mom packed those for me!

Mrs. Engels: You mean to say their yours, right?

Kid 1: Well I guess.

Kid 2: You’re greedy!

Kid 1: I just gave you one.

Kid 2: Only because she made you. And it’s still not entirely fair.

Mrs. Engels: He’s got a point. Here, let me take that third cookie.

Kid 1: But… hey!

Kid 2: Hey!

Mrs. Engels: Now it’s fair. These are good.Kid 2, you happy now?

Kid 2: I guess.

Mrs. Engels: This way everyone is happy!

Kid 1: What?

Kid 2: Hey, whatcha bringin’ tomorrow for me?

Posted in Series of Unfortunate Posts | 1 Comment