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WARNING: THIS SITE FEATURES ORIGINAL THINKING...Jim Croce once sang Don't tug on Superman's cape..., which seems like reasonable advice should we not wish to anger the supreme powers. We do have this duality in our culture: the Superman that is the state collective, the leftist call to a politics of meaning managed by the state, the deification of "we're from the government and we'll take care of you" - versus the Superman that celebrates individual freedom, private property, freedom of conscience, free enterprise, and limited government. We humbly take on the latter's mantle and, eschewing the feeble tug, we dare to PULL, in hope of seeing freedom's rescue from the encroaching nanny state. We invite you, dear reader, to come and pull as well... Additionally, if you assume that means that we are unflinching, unquestioning GOP zombies, that would be incorrect. We reject statism in any form and call on individuals in our country to return to the original, classical liberalism of our founders. (We're also passionate about art, photography, cooking, technology, Judeo/Christian values, and satire as unique, individual pursuits of happiness to celebrate.)

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Superman's product of the century (so far):

December 07, 2005
Remember Pearl Harbor
Filed in: Current Affairs, Politics

This is the day that we memorialize the attack on Pearl Harbor by Japan - the "Day of Infamy" that drew the United States into World War II.

We have few suriving heros of that day left alive. If you know one (I have an uncle who was stationed at Scofield Barracks) please let them know how much you value their service. If you don't know one of these veterans directly, please say a prayer of thanks for their service and remember all of those who lost their lives that day - paying Freedom's dear exacting price.

It's also instructive to remember that Japan - in the space of 60 years - has been transformed from an arch enemy into a powerful ally. Their embrace of free markets and repudiation of the inculcated emperor cult that they had fallen prey to has resulted in the world's second largest economy and a free people.

Something to keep in mind while we assist in the birth of freedom in another distant land.

Pulled by Emcee on December 7, 2005 at 07:36 AM
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What happened to the Baby Jesus?
Filed in: Current Affairs

Someone stole a life size baby Jesus from a nativity scene in Huron, Michigan.


It's certainly sad to see a nativity scene missing the baby Jesus.

Maybe someone needed him for their own nativity scene?

I started thinking that I remembered seeing one recently - where was that?


Oh, yeah, it was over at K's. Seems like she was missing the Baby Jesus too.

So I asked a friend to drop by over at K's and they took a new picture of the nativity scene...

...Continue reading "What happened to the Baby Jesus?"

Pulled by Emcee on December 7, 2005 at 01:06 AM
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December 06, 2005
So these should probably be illegal
Filed in: Current Affairs, Good eats


Whatever you do, please do not send me any of these. I will eat them and get arrested.

Pulled by Emcee on December 6, 2005 at 11:33 PM
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Science issues primal scream...
Filed in: Civil War, Politics, Science

Back in August after Time magazine published this cover:


I suggested in a satirical piece that an organization representing the grand poo-bah of science in mechanistic Material Nature would have preferred a cover like this:


I did so because this is the actual kind of dialog that is currently conducted by those who call themselves 'scientists'. Instead of actually having a discussion about scientific ideas offered by dissident scientists, the mainstream scientists have punted on discussing science and instead just offer fear mongering and ad-hominem attack. It's really indistinguishable from political moonbattery.

Don't buy that this is the way it is? Well, as it is said, truth is stranger than fiction. I've already pointed out an analysis of the TIME image that castigates TIME magazine for going so far as to actually allow that there is a debate.

And now, the November issue of SEED magazine features this cover:


Apparently, the editors of SEED got the letter - not mine - the real letter that went out.

This iconic image serves to represent how 'science' has approached the controversy in the public square. The chimpanzee represents the accepted assertion that humans descended from non-human ancestors (this despite the fact that no one, not even evolutionary gradualists believe that humans descended from chimpanzees. It is asserted that they have a common ancestor - one which we have no evidence or proferred model for.) and that such facts (representing the entire scientific community) are enraged, incredulous, and frustrated with the co-opting of 'science' by the disguised thumpers. And there's no worry about the relative positioning of science and God in this image - there is only science - nothing else.

So this is it, Public Square:

ID Scientist: So, can we discuss, say, irreducible complexity?

Scientist: Of course not, I won't even participate. You are just trying to sneek in the baby Jesus.

ID Scientist: No, I mean can we talk about several examples of organic structures, like flagellates, the mammalian eye, and components of living cells that have interdependent macro structures which are problematic for an explanation that involves gradual additive actions over a period of time.

Scientist: No, look, Intelligent Design equals the baby Jesus. Irreducible complexity is the baby Jesus.

ID Scientist: Well, can you proposed a model, a theoretical model that accounts for interdependent organic macro structures developing over time?

Scientist: Baby Jesus! Baby Jesus! You are forcing me into Sunday School!

So much for the practice of science. Science is supposed to reflect a process of thesis-antithesis-synthesis. Instead we get demagoguery.

Curiously, SEED asserts in this issue that it (the magazine) has a new design. The editors have intelligently realigned layouts and content in the magazine to make it more likely that it will survive in the plethora of magazine species. Using the current logic of science, it would be reasonable to suppose that if we were to peel back that top right hand corner, we'd see a picture of the baby Jesus.

(Actually, it's a picture of the Dahli Lama holding a baby Buddha* - just shows the stretch that science is making to confront the numinous - but that's another story.)

*I mean figuratively - there is an article touting the scientific value of Buddhism in the issue.

Pulled by Emcee on December 6, 2005 at 12:35 AM
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December 05, 2005
Malaysian Airlines billboard seen just East of LAX on Century Boulevard - a nano-analysis of advertizing that works:
Filed in: Current Affairs

Taipei personality?

Relax with the best flight staff in the sky. Malaysian Airlines.

So, surely I have some business to close in Malaysia.

Pulled by Emcee on December 5, 2005 at 12:04 PM
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December 03, 2005
Please join in...
Filed in: Current Affairs, Politics

Conservative radio personality Kevin McCullough has begun a worthy campaign:

"Wishing You Merry Christmas"
125 Broad Street
18th Floor
New York, NY 10004

Please join in!

Pulled by Emcee on December 3, 2005 at 11:18 PM
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December 02, 2005
The first snow of the season...
Filed in: Current Affairs, Photography

We caught a little snowfall in the western foothills of the Cascade range last night. Probably got about six inches. It's pretty wet so I went out to catch a few pictures this morning fearing that it might melt off today (the weather folks are calling for more - but possible rain as well)...


The snow turns ordinary objects into something new and fresh. The bird bath holds a 'snow tire'...

...Continue reading "The first snow of the season..."

Pulled by Emcee on December 2, 2005 at 01:23 PM
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December 01, 2005
Gift wrapping advice...
Filed in: Current Affairs

Ace photographer Jan sent this along. Seems useful.

This the time of year when we think back to the very first Christmas,when the Three Wise Men - Gaspar, Balthasar and Herb - went to see the baby Jesus, and, according to the Book of Matthew, "presented unto Him gifts; gold, frankincense, and  myrrh."  These are simple words, but if we analyze them carefully, we discover an important, yet often-overlooked, theological fact: There is no mention of wrapping paper....  If there had been wrapping paper, Matthew would have said so: "And lo, the gifts WERE inside 600 square cubits of paper.  And the paper WAS festooned with pictures of Frosty the Snowman.  And Joseph WAS going to throweth it away, but Mary sayeth unto him, she sayeth, 'Holdeth it!  That is nice paper! Saveth it for next year!' "And Joseph DID rolleth his eyeballs.  And the baby Jesus WAS more interested in the paper than, for example, the frankincense."

But these words do not appear in the Bible, which means that the very first Christmas gifts were NOT wrapped.  This is because the people giving those gifts had two important characteristics:
1. They were wise.
2. They were men.

Men are not big gift wrappers.  Men do not understand the point of putting paper on a gift just so somebody else can tear it off.  This is not just my opinion: This is a scientific fact based on a statistical survey of two guys I know.  One is my son, Rob, who said the only time he ever wraps a gift is, quote, "if it's such a poor gift that I don't want to be there when the person opens it."  The other is my friend Gene W, who told me he does wrap gifts, but as a matter of principle never takes more than 15 seconds per gift.  "No one ever had to wonder which presents dad wrapped at Christmas," Gene said.  "They were the ones that looked like enormous spitballs."

I also wrap gifts, but because of some defect in my motor skills, I can never COMPLETELY wrap them.  I can take a gift the size of a deck of cards and put it the exact center of a piece of wrapping  paper the size of a regulation volleyball court, but when I am done folding and taping, you can still see a section of the gift peeking out. (Sometimes I camouflage this section with a marking  pen.) If I had been an ancient Egyptian in the field of mummies, the lower half of the Pharaoh's body would be covered only by Scotch tape.

On the other hand, if you give my wife a 12-inch square of wrapping paper, she can wrap a C-130 cargo plane.  My wife, like many women, actually LIKES wrapping things. If she gives you a gift that requires batteries, she wraps the batteries separately, which to me is very close to being a symptom of mental illness.  If it were possible, my wife would wrap each individual volt.

My point is that gift-wrapping is one of those skills - like having babies that come more naturally to women than to men.  That is why today I am presenting: GIFT-WRAPPING TIPS FOR MEN:

.....Whenever possible, buy gifts that are already wrapped.  If, when the recipient opens the gift, neither one of you recognizes it, you can claim that it's myrrh."

.....The editors of Woman's Day magazine recently ran an item on how to make your own wrapping paper by printing a design on it with an apple sliced in half horizontally and dipped in a mixture of food coloring and liquid starch.  They must be smoking crack.

.....If you're giving a hard-to-wrap gift, skip the wrapping paper! Just put it inside a bag and stick one of those little adhesive bows on it.  This creates a festive visual effect that is sure to delight the lucky recipient on Christmas morning:

YOUR WIFE: "Why is there a Hefty trash bag under the tree?"
YOU: "It's a gift! See? It has a bow!"
YOUR WIFE (peering into the trash bag): "It's a leaf blower."
YOU: "Gas-powered! Five horsepower!"
YOUR WIFE: "I want a divorce."
YOU: "I also got you some myrrh."

In conclusion, remember that the important thing is not what you give, or how you wrap it.  The important thing, during this very special time of year, is that you save the receipt.

Pulled by Emcee on December 1, 2005 at 01:19 PM
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Top Ten List: Caddy Responses...
Filed in: Current Affairs, Sports

My dad is playing David Letterman this week - and sent this along. This time of year, I can only dream of the Palm Desert, Phoenix, maybe Vegas. They're still playing down south ...

#10 Golfer: I think I'm going to drown myself in that lake.
Caddy: Think you can keep your head down that long?

#9 Golfer: I'd move heaven and earth to break 100 on this course.
Caddy: Try heaven... you've already moved most of the earth.

#8 Golfer: Do you think my game is improving?
Caddy: Yes sir, you miss the ball much closer now.

#7 Golfer: Do you think I can get there with a five iron?
Caddy: Eventually.

#6 Golfer: You've got to be the worst caddy in the world.
Caddy: I don't think so sir. That would be too much of a coincidence.

#5 Golfer: Please stop checking your watch all the time. It's distracting.
Caddy: It's not a watch sir, it's a compass.

#4 Golfer: How do you like my game?
Caddy: Very good sir, but I prefer golf.

#3 Golfer: Do you think it's a sin to play on Sunday?
Caddy: Sir, the way you play is a sin on any day.

#2 Golfer: This has got to be the worst course I have ever played on.
Caddy: Sir, this isn't the golf course. We've been off of it for about an hour now.

And the number one caddy response is....

...Continue reading "Top Ten List: Caddy Responses..."

Pulled by Emcee on December 1, 2005 at 01:08 PM
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Three Wise Guys
Filed in: Current Affairs, The Armadillo Conceptual Series


You know what this means don't you?

Fodder, like the enormous turkey dinner you ate on Thankgiving is fodder.

I have it on good authority that Jeff got Judd the gig.

Me? I'm looking for the armadillo scene. It's an homage...

Pulled by Emcee on December 1, 2005 at 11:02 AM
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Ron L - Wisconsin election watchdog and hilariously fun grandpa.

James Pell - Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class - American hero with stories to tell about Iraq, Kosovo, and Bosnia.

Emcee - "Don't encourage him!" Jeff Goldstein

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