The curse of the Golden Gopher

Just in case you wonder why I don’t follow NCAA football:

The Red Raiders spotted Minnesota a 31-point, third-quarter lead, then rallied for a stunning 44-41 overtime victory in the Insight Bowl Friday night, the largest comeback in Division I-A bowl history….

Tech (8-6) appeared finished after Minnesota (6-7) took a 38-7 lead with 7:47 to go in the third quarter. But the Red Raiders mounted a furious comeback, scoring 31 unanswered points in less than 20 minutes.

Obviously, this is new, being a new bowl record. But it’s part of a theme… I used to go to Gopher football games back when they still played outside, on campus, but I’ve never attended a single game in the wretched Metrodome.

If you think being a Vikings fan is difficult, then stop and consider that this die-hard Vikings fan won’t even think of following Gopher sports because it’s far too painful. The one time the basketball had success back when I was following it – the 1976 Mychal Thompson team that went 24-3 and won the Big Ten – had all of its wins stripped and its title revoked for a minor violation that I can’t even remember.

Sure, the hockey team has won five national titles, but as the Fraters Libertas can – and will, in great detail – testify, they probably should have won twice as many considering how much hockey talent they’ve possessed.

Anyhow, this is just the latest salt in the wound. I’ll stick with the Vikes, even though they’re sitting home again this offseason with a coach who may be the reincarnation of Les Steckel. I hope not, I don’t think the evidence is fully in yet. But it doesn’t look good, that’s for sure.

The failed anti-Semite

The most damning thing about the Angry Left isn’t that they are maleducated, ignorant and unintelligent, it’s that they are, and have always been, the most blatant of liars. And when someone lies about you, that’s a pretty good indication that they are lying about other things as well, which is why I thought I’d call this lunatic on his bizarre “I’m telling the Jews” claim:

We’re gonna fuck the nasty little runt fascist [Vox Day]. I’ve already notified the ADL and JDL about him. Surprise surprise, they already know about him.

I’m sick of these cocksuckers.

They’ve talked about the Angry Left for years. See how they like rage.

Now, I’m not a fan of Abe Foxman or many of the actions of the organization he fronts, but I have no problem with the Jewish Defense League, so I sent them the following email and received an amusingly dry reply:

Dear JDL,

A reader happened to forward the blog link below to me recently, and it made me curious to know what, precisely, your organization happened to “already know about” me. As I am neither a little runt nor a fascist, neither anti-Semitic nor anti-Israel, I am wondering what the [individual] was told by a representative of your group that satisfied him.

With regards,
Vox Day

Wow. Someone doesn’t like you. Don’t know what that feels like. Seriously, we maintain no files on you. I tried to check old email and cannot find any reference to either you or your blog.

Best wishes for a happy new year,
Jewish Defense League

It looks like you can add “failure as an anti-Semite” to that little list of my failed endeavors. As always, simply shine the light and the cockroaches scurry.

Fun with Google

I don’t know what to do with this information, except perhaps cringe a little.

On the other hand, it’s nice to see that Michael Medved is blogging again.

And on an unrelated note, the Sports Gal never fails to amuse with a heartfelt rant:

I have a bone to pick with the NFL: It’s totally unfair to play Sunday and Monday games when they fall on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. How is it right to give every man in the country a free pass on two of the most hectic days of the year….

So thanks, NFL, for ruining the 2006 holiday season. Maybe next year you can schedule the Super Bowl on my birthday or Valentine’s Day.

Feminism kills

Out of all of the activities, only housework significantly reduced the risk of both pre- and post-menopausal women getting the disease.

Housework cut breast cancer risk by 30% among the pre-menopausal women and 20% among the post-menopausal women.

The women were studied over an average of 6.4 years, during which time there were 3,423 cases of breast cancer.

Perhaps it is the specific form of light exercise that housework offers. More likely, women who live the sort of traditional lives that involve running a household and doing housework are less likely to do the sort of things that spark breast cancer, unlike your average post-feminist skank with a career and a gym membership.

Because dosing yourself with estrogen daily and having abortions can’t possibly be related to anything bad, like breast cancer, oh no. That’s just the Patriarchy’s mysogynistic scientists trying to keep women oppressed, barefoot and doing the dishes, a proper feminist science wouldn’t be allowed to publish anything that a woman doesn’t want to hear.

I’m down with that

From: Gloria Steinem
Sent: Friday, December 29, 2006 11:14 AM
To: Kathryn Lopez
Subject: Holiday Message from Gloria Steinem

Dear feminist activist,

Imagine being confined to a cell for 17 hours a day, with little or no access to reading, writing, or learning – or talks with friends.

Imagine that the Bible is the only reading material you are given. When there is a copy of a magazine, imagine that you have to share it with 699* other women.

Now imagine receiving your own personal copy of Ms. Magazine, knowing someone on the outside cared enough to send it and that more will come.

You can make this happen with a tax deductible gift to the Ms. Magazine Prison and Domestic Violence Shelter Program, a fund dedicated to creating a link with women who are isolated in prisons, or in domestic violence shelters where there is safety but rarely access to supportive books, magazines and words of understanding from the outside world.

Oh, sorry, I thought they were proposing jailing all the feminists, which was why they’d have to send Ms Magazine…. Never mind.

Anyhow, if women in jail are like all the normal women outside of jail, they’d much prefer Us Weekly and People to Ms. Come to think of it, I’d prefer Us and People myself.

Whatever will that rascal George Clooney do next?

Sometimes you wonder

Fred Taylor doesn’t seem to have been paying much attention from the sidelines:

Fred Taylor, who is under contract for the 2007 season at a $2.55 million base salary, said Thursday he wants a contract extension in the $5 million range. Taylor said he won’t happy if the Jaguars want him to play out the final season of his contract. As a last resort, if he doesn’t get a new deal, he said, “I’d ask to be traded.”

Given the way in which Maurice Jones-Drew made a very serious run at Offensive Rookie of the Year this season, I can only hope that Freddie sees the writing on the wall and is attempting to put a proactive spin on things. I can’t see any way that he gets that sort of extension from the Jags, in fact, I didn’t expect him to be the starter in Jacksonville next year anyhow.

Only US Senators with presidential ambitions and Hollywood actresses seem to have more distant relationship with reality than NFL players.

A wise course of action

Hans Zeiger puts down the pen:

For awhile I have contemplated writing this column but haven’t had the full sensibility to do it yet. I began submitting columns online at age 17, back in the year 2002. I began the process with the hubris of a budding pundit and kept the habit until now, with a declining sense of the value of this kind of writing. Now I am 21 and about 21 percent half-educated.

I now know at least this: I don’t know enough to be weekly offering my opinions as though possessed of some eminence. There is a thousand times more sense in one of Seneca’s ancient moral sketches or Joseph Addison’s essays 300 years ago than in the freshest columns I could put forth on any topic. Wisdom is better nurtured in the memorization of Solomon’s Proverbs than the attempt to produce new proverbs for the age of YouTube and iPod. The Bible is better for the soul than the morning newspaper.

Hans Zeiger isn’t the first young pundit to realize that he is merely regurgitating conservative talking points and doesn’t really know what the Hell he’s writing about. Kyle Williams came to the same conclusion last year and to his credit, also decided to stop committing punditry while clueless.

Here’s hoping that the Littlest Chickenhawk soon sees a similar light. It would be unfair to suggest that Me So Michelle would do well to do likewise, in her case, we’ll merely encourage her to RTFRHD* prior to writing a history book.

* this is an acronym similar to RTFM, only it refers to the Relevant Historical Documents. I was amused to read the following in Paul Johnson’s “Modern Times”, published in 1983: “After the initial operations were completed, there was a theoretical intention to move against India and Australia. But there was no plan at all to invade America, knock her out of the war or destroy her cpacity to wage it….

“Colonel Iwakuro, a logistics expert, told one of the regular ‘liason conferences’, where the top military and government met, that the differentials in American and Japanese production were as follows: steel twenty to one, oil one hundred to one, coal ten to one, aircraft five to one, shipping two to one, labour force five to one, overall ten to one….

“The Emperor had been told that the war could not be won as early as February 1942.”

There are worse ways…

… to spend an evening than drinking the “Naturally Australian” cab-shiraz blend. It’s cheap, but really good as a table wine. And while I’m normally loyal to my Italian merlots, proseccos and lambruscos, it was a rather nice break from the alchohol routine.

And there’s nothing like a proper, well-steamed cappucino with a healthy shot of Bailey’s added to top off dessert.

Unless, of course, it’s figuring out a new way to set up the projector with the XBox 360. You haven’t played Call of Duty until you’re comfortably ensconced ten inches off the floor (on the Super Lowrider Maxi-Comfort exercise bike) in front of what is effectively a 90-inch screen. Now I just have to dig up an old Thrustmaster, figure out how to get Wing Commander running in DOSbox, and I’ll be Living The Dream.

And they wonder why I never leave the house….

Mailvox: three questions

Thimscool poses a triad:

1) Atheism has not been a significant political force for very long, so it’s hard to say what the empirical evidence will be two thousand years from now.

Agreed, but its track record thus far is astoundingly appalling. Given that the first formally atheistic government produced The Terror, the second one produced the Leninist and Stalinist slaughters, the third launched a vicious persecution that sparked the Cristero rebellion and gave birth to the fascistic PRI that ruled Mexico until very recently.

One would be irresponsible to leave out the massive atrocities under the officially atheist governments of China, Vietnam and the Khmer Rouge as well. Indeed, it is hard to think of an atheist government – as opposed to a merely secular one – which doesn’t occasionally slaughter a significant percentage of its people.

I note that the Scandinavian countries which are famously populated with atheists have never had atheist governments, for example, the Lutheran Church of Sweden was the state church as recently as 2000.

2) Atheism, by itself, offers very little support upon which to build a cohesive society, much less a civilization. Atheism was a tenant of communism, but atheism does not imply communism, or nihilism. It simply doesn’t have much to say. The point of secular humanism is to construct a ‘religion’ or a way for society to organize, based in part on atheism.

Agreed, for the most part. However, atheism certainly does imply nihilism, it’s worth recalling that Nietzsche derived his philosophy of nihilism from the postulate that God was dead. Given the millenia of philosophical recognition that civilization requires a basic belief in some form of deity in order to thrive – recognition which includes Christian, pagan, agnostic and atheist philosophers alike – the burden is on the atheist to demonstrate that this is not the case.

I have yet to see anyone even begin to build a reasonable case for it. Given that the most famous atheist philosophers, Nietzsche and Sartre, argue to the contrary, I think this would be a difficult task. Certainly I was unable to do so during my years as an agnostic.

3) I am still curious what you think about Kant’s system, and its consistency (or lack thereof).

Not much. I’ve read two of his works and if I recall correctly, I found them to be consistent but largely beside the point. Given that I believe there is a surfeit of empirical evidence demonstrating that Man is not a rational animal, I consider the concept that reason can be relied upon to provide a universal basis with which to dictate behavior to be fallacious. Kant came up in a discussion a while back; the White Buffalo performed a pretty amusing demolition of the Categorical Imperative that some regulars here will remember.

I don’t remember much about how it went, except for the funniest moment when an atheist Champion of Reason finally lost it and posted something that can be summarized as: “If you don’t stop pointing out how my morality is reducible to might makes right, I’m going to break your teeth with a rock!”

Anyhow, the WB’s brother-in-law is writing his PhD thesis on Kant, perhaps he can take a break and enlighten us with his thoughts on the matter one of these days.

The cricket, she chirps

Bobert expresses the ontological argument for a universally applicable atheist morality, sparking the obvious response:

Get a grip… even athiests and us agnostics can have a real solid understanding on what is right and what is wrong.

Okay, that’s fine, but do explain how. First give me a single example of what is right, then one of what is wrong.

Second, explain why the first thing is right, then why the second thing is wrong.

I hope you won’t equivocate or go silent, as this should be trivial for any atheist or agnostic with a real solid understanding of right and wrong. Any Christian, even a barely literate one, is easily capable of doing this.

And, as one has come to expect, there is still no response to this point. Unfortunate, but hardly surprising. Garlic Powder, on the other hand, at least tries to answer the question:

Because I would not want to be raped, so it would be wrong for me to rape someone else. Most laws can be traced back to the golden rule. For the religious, please don’t cite any more examples of God’s laws that are really nothing more than the golden rule.

Of course, this fails the universal applicability requirement twice over, because it is dependent upon A) what Garlic Powder happens to want, which is likely different from what individuals X, Y and Z want, and, B) assumes that morality hinges upon the Golden Rule. (GP also confuses legality with morality, but that’s a common mistake and irrelevant here.)

God’s Law is not the Golden Rule. The latter is only a subset of the former, the annotated version. The fundamental flaw in the Golden Rule is obvious, as it provides one free rein so long as his actions are in line with his reciprocal desires. So long as I wouldn’t mind a swimsuit model crawling into my bed unannounced, it is completely moral under the Golden Rule for me to crawl into hers without warning.

However, GP is partially right. God’s Law can certainly be seen as arbitrary, given that it hinges completely upon His Will. It is, however, universally applicable and rather less arbitrary than a moral “system” which varies completely from one individual to the next.