Saturday, January 29, 2005

Soldier for a day

Historically it hasn't been difficult to enter the military. Waddaya mean, join - armies would be raised by any means necessary, and anybody who didn't work out could be executed.

I have several older relatives who served in WWII, and they noted that physical requirements for the armed services were relaxed during the war. One claimed that the physical boiled down to two questions - could you see lightning and could you hear thunder? Or for the visual exam they'd tell you to read from a chart. You'd look and say "what chart?", and they'd say "you're right, there isn't any chart - you're 1A".

Of course our all-volunteer military is beyond this. They can be selective now, and I mean no disrespect to our armed service personnel when I point out that it hasn't always been so.

But we're about to lower the standards again in Iraq. No boot camp, no career interruptions, no long-term obligations. All they have to do is show up to vote.

IMO the Iraqis know this and will show up in huge numbers. Why not? - the "insurgents" are killing them at random daily anyway, so what's a trip to a polls? This might be the only way most Iraqis can ever fight back, especially the women.

Let's hope that they know that, and deliver.

Tet II

I'm guessing that the timing of the election in Iraq was not chosen because it's an anniversary of the Tet Offensive. But it would be just as well if it were, because IMO there are several parallels:
  1. Attacks will occur all over Iraq
  2. The "insurgents" will be slaughtered and will take years to recover if they get the chance
  3. The press will portray it all as a victory for the "insurgents"

Tuesday, January 25, 2005


Wisconsin's home basketball winning streak ends at the hands of the #1 Illini, 75-65.

Hardy har har

There's no fool like one who thinks he's clever. Glenn Reynolds really blows it here.

Yeah, I know what he's referring to. And perhaps the law professor would like to explain to this engineer exactly what it is that is scientifically impeachable about the stickers some zealot sued to have removed from biology textbooks in Georgia. Never mind what you think their goals are or anything else.

This is what the stickers said:It's not pettifoggery to say that science deals with "observations" and "theories", not "facts". Science is about critically considering theories. Creationism is not mentioned, and the only problem with creationism scientifically is not that it is not true (beats me - I'm agnostic), but that there is no means to test it scientifically. And if you don't know the difference between not testable and not true, you don't understand science, and maybe the concepts presented in that sticker are worthy of more attention in science classes.

(Incidentally, it's not just fundamental Christians who believe in creation. IMO if Muslims made an issue of it the school board would roll right over and put the stickers back, and issue a condemnation of "the Zionist entity" as a bonus).

That which is beyond criticism is dogma. The irony here is that once you treat science as if it yields anything more than theories, you've turned it into a religion.

And IMO for some people that's the whole idea.

Monday, January 24, 2005

Sunday, January 23, 2005

Not totally rhetorical

In further observance of the anniversary of Roe v. Wade let me ask this: did anyone ever grow up and go to medical school with the dream of being an abortionist?

And tell me - what happens to the absolute worst doctors? I could be wrong, but I'd expect to find them working at abortion clinics.

Conflict of interest

  1. SayUncle offers this:

  2. Then we have this:
    The Planned Parenthood Federation of America, the nation's most frequent provider of abortions, is performing more of the procedures than ever -- albeit in fewer clinics -- and relying increasingly on the revenue generated from abortions, according to its Fiscal Year 2004 annual report.

    With other services becoming marginalized in Planned Parenthood's overall business, the organization relied on abortion for 34 percent of its clinic income from July 1, 2003, to June 30, 2004, up from 32 percent in Fiscal Year 2002 and FY 2003
Isn't it about time for a barnburner of a lawsuit?

Two girls from Cambodia

Not just any girls - the kind you can buy as your sex slaves for a couple hundred bucks apiece or less. Nicholas Kristof bought a couple, took them home,'s what happened. - Johnny Carson, 30-year king of late night TV, dead at 79

Right here.

It'll be interesting to see how Leno and Letterman observe this.

Dumb comment

An announcer noted that the NFC championship game was the first in which black quarterbacks had gone head to head.

IMO this is only remarkable to those who might have thought it would never happen. Why would anyone think that?

Does Simon Cowell watch football?

Ye gads, who was it that sang the national anthem before the NFC title game?

Don't be a social outcast

Read all aboutthe oeuvre of Junior Samples so you'll be ready to discuss him intelligently at your next cocktail party.