April 26, 2015

Sunday verse

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
~Phillipians 4:6

April 25, 2015

Saturday Learning Series - Master of the Universe (Part 1)

A documentary on the thinking of Stephen Hawking.

As an introductory bonus video, here's A Brief History of Time.

And now, part 1 of Master of the Universe.

Part 2 next week.

April 23, 2015

Thursday Hillary Bash - Fatigue

I haven't commented about Hillary Clinton's declaration that she's running for president.  It's not because it was a foregone conclusion and therefore a non-event. And it was not because I haven't  had as much time to blog this year compared to years past.  Both of those points are true to some extent but they are not the reason for a dearth of Hillary bashing from me.  The real reason, is that after years of Thursday Hillary Bashes, I'm bored of her.  Call it Hillary fatigue. Should she become the next president there will be a wealth of problematic issues about which to blog. I'm not sure I'll be able to muster the desire to do so, though nevertheless, I will.  But my desire is not to continue to chronicle ineptitude in the White House, but rather to remove it, and take part in the discussion about a real, worthwhile way forward.

All that aside, there is a political consideration worth mentioning concerning Hillary Clinton and fatigue.  If I were a GOP strategist, I would harp on the notion of Hillary fatigue.  She's old. Remember the Democrats harping on the age of  Ronald Reagan?  Sure, they were unsuccessful, but the electorate today is younger in large part.  Obama youth can be turned off of Hillary Clinton. That's important from an electoral viewpoint.  And it's arguably different from turning them off of voting and civics. She does not equate to that.

Hillary Clinton will show flashes of energy and vibrancy in her candidacy.  But she will also show signs of fatigue.  That should be highlighted.

More importantly than her age, is the fatigue associated with her ideas.  They are stale.  They are tried and failed. They offer no way forward, only more of the same as from Obama.  Then there's scandal fatigue. That too should be a major theme.  

Strategy aside, I have to wonder if others might feel the same about her. Particularly in the media.  They abandon her surprisingly quickly in 2007/2008.  While they may be back on board for now, I bet a challenge of any strength from another Democrat with any sort of interest factor for them would have the same result.

Hillary Clinton fatigue might just save the nation.

April 21, 2015

Where would a conservative come down on the notion of immortality?

The day-to-day political machinations of the two parties are of late, pretty banal. I've started thinking more about the future of conservatism as it relates to issues that are not yet fully formed.  In particular, what might conservatism's views on extending the human lifespan be?  Relatively recently Google announced it was trying to develop a fountain of youth.
...Google announced it was forming new subsidiary company known as Calico that “will focus on health and well-being in particular the challenge of aging and associated diseases.” The exact whats and hows of Calico haven’t been made public, but the current Time magazine cover story, “Google vs Death,” describes it as a project that will “seriously attempt to extend [the] human lifespan.”

Immortality would certainly be in line with other big-idea "moonshots" such as self-driving cars, flying turbines, or free global Wi-Fi provided by balloons. While Calico will not be part of Google [X], the lab run by Sergey Brin where most of Google's more ambitious programs are born, CEO Larry Page commented, “Illness and aging affect all our families. With some longer term, moonshot thinking around healthcare and biotechnology, I believe we can improve millions of lives."
Trying to determine a "correct " conservative viewpoint on the issue is foolish.  After all, a faith-based conservative might view it as sacrilege. However, a national security focused conservative might have an entirely different view, as would an economics-based conservative.  And with rare exception, no conservative is entirely a conservative of a single strain but rather a mixture of different conservative, libertarian and sometimes even liberal beliefs.

But the question of immortality, be it through genetic manipulation, or artificial intelligence/life or other means carries with it a host of ethical, spiritual, cultural, philosophical and personal questions.  For example, is it ethical to manipulate DNA? If the technology were available to extend our lifespan for centuries or even indefinitely, should it be available only to those who could afford to purchase it? Would that be 'fair'? And what about the impact on social services?  With more people being born and fewer people dying, what happens to social security?  Do we end up being employed for life (assuming we are and remain employable that long). What does it mean for us to play God? And who makes those decision, and based on what criteria? Do we actually end up with death panels?

The questions are too numerous and I've just started thinking about them in the last few moments. But the questions, like many others go far beyond the scope of current law.  They require a lot of consideration.  That said, they do not necessarily extend beyond the scope of the Constitution, and looking there (along with the Bible, should you be so inclined) is probably where most conservatives should think about starting as they search for answers.  That, and possibly consideration of  the inverse of "what wouldn't a liberal do?"

April 20, 2015

Is Obama anti-Christian?

I know a lot of people who think Obama has an anti-Christian agenda. Some even think he's pro-Muslim.  Personally I don't buy it.  I think he's a secularist, who used Christianity (not very effectively considering his choice in pastors) as a cloak during his campaign to help win the election.  That doesn't mean he won't do things to subvert Christianity whenever possible, but I don't believe it's a major thrust of his agenda, which is socialist in nature.

But I don't want to be dismissive of those who believe he's got a different agenda, because for all of us, it's speculation. so in the spirit of open discussion let me post something for your consideration.

Here, no less than Alfonzo Rachel ruminates on Obama's seemingly pro-Muslimness.

April 19, 2015

Sunday verse

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
~Jeremiah 29:11

April 18, 2015

April 17, 2015

April 12, 2015

Sunday verse

But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
~Matthew 6:33

April 11, 2015

April 10, 2015

Friday Musical Interlude - Two from Kim Carnes

Two from Kim Carnes, one was a hit most people seem to have forgotten.

First, the obvious, Bette Davis Eyes:

Next an earlier hit, More Love. Not the greatest quality of video, but it is the video for the song.

April 7, 2015

First in the water - Rand Paul

Rand Paul is in for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination.

I wouldn't say that Paul would be my first pick, but I would not be unhappy if he won. Now what we need is a fleet of establishment-backed RINOs to cancel each other out so that the real conservatives like Paul and Jindal (for example) can have at each other and not see a Mitt Romney sneak through again.

But I'm not holding my breath.

The Iran deal in pictures

My thoughts, pictured below (also applies to Cuba).

April 6, 2015

Monday Thought Bubble

President Obama's reign of error has seen labor force participation rate (above) decline (~4%) by almost as much as president Bush's entire unemployment rate in 2006 (below) at approximately 4.6%.

Think about it:  Under Obama, almost as many people have left the job force entirely, as were unemployed under president Bush.

April 5, 2015

Sunday Verse

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
~Proverbs 3:5

Happy Easter, Happy Passover

Wishing all my fellow Christians a happy Easter, and all of my Jewish readers a happy Passover.

April 4, 2015

Saturday Learning Series - Flatland

The movie of the book Flatland, a treatise on dimension, as fiction.

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