Jillian’s Choice

Ever see the 1982 film Sophie's Choice? Try this real life account: For Australian mother-of-two Jillian Searle, who let go of her older son Lachie, 5, in a life-or-death decision as the wall of water struck, there was a happy ending. Lachie was found alive about two hours later clinging to a door and, though traumatized by his ordeal, looked uninjured as his mother spoke to reporters on arrival back in Australia. "I knew I…Read More

A Welcome Word

I received an email from my cousin George, still on the scene in Phuket. Ok, here's the scoop. All is not well. The coastal areas are smashed, including our little ton sai beach. Beth & Annie were in hammocks at Freedom bar and I was 200 yards down the beach warming up on an easy climb. The tide was at max high, so we had to skip around to climb, if ya know what I…Read More

Real and Sobering

I’ve not much to say about the horrific disaster in southeast Asia. It’s all been said. What makes it real for me is that I’ve been to a lot of those places. I spent months in Thailand in the late 80’s and have vacationed in Phuket twice (note to media talking heads: it’s pronounced “p-hoo-ket,” not “fooket”). I’ve sunbathed and swam the waters of Patong Beach. I was even there over a Christmas holiday, 1990.…Read More

Rotor Merry Christmas

Here's the photo on the Christmas card my wife sent out this year (to those who know Rotor, anyway). So, Rotor (and Beatrice and I) wish you and yours a Merry Christmas and a Happy New year. I also offer you a sincere hope that you endeavor to make of 2005 something more than you made of 2004, along with a wish for the prosperity on all levels that's sure to follow.Read More

Merry CHRISTmas

That's right, it's Christmas, not "Xmas" and all that other rot. If you're telling people "Happy Holidays" because you're embarrassed to say "Merry Christmas," or paralyzed by over-sensitivity, just get over it and let yourself go. Trust me. You'll feel much better. Go. With. Christmas. Christmas is such an event in Western Civilization because it's a recognition and celebration of a set of core values and beliefs at the very root of this great civilization,…Read More

Be Afraid

Since I respect the individual freedom morally implicit in the recognition of individual rights, I have little problem with most "values" people choose for themselves, to include the pursuit of almost no value other than basic subsistence. I'll condemn them as stupid, having no class or sense of splendor, but as the one says whom I credit below, "everyone gets to go to hell in their own go-cart." I agree, and I often have to…Read More

All Very “Interesting”

This is all so very "interesting." Here, too. This is just sure to be one big nightmare over the next few years. Count on it. If any “reform” does come out of it, you can be sure that it will be so convoluted and full of qualifications, exceptions, safe havens, minimum return guarantees, and compromises that it will be no real “improvement” over what’s currently in place. So, stand by. The democratic political process is…Read More

The Nature of the Thing

Things exist in accordance with their natures, and to the extent they act, they act in accordance with their natures. So... We have a generation of politicians, of both parties and of whom Thompson is symbolic, who want to say "yes" to voters: Yes, you can have what you want, and you can have it now. The solution to this problem requires leaders to say "no" to voters: No, you cannot have all the retirement…Read More

Busybodies

I hate busybodies. I suppose it’s because that of all the hypocrisies we’re guilty of at times throughout our lives, being a busybody has never been one of them, for me. I loathe them so because I can do so guiltlessly; because the farthest thing from my substantial sphere of interests are those ridiculous values and actions of others that cause me no harm. Most laws are a product of busybodyism, designed to make people…Read More

Dropped Context

The difference was that everyone was aware the bloggers were biased, while the Argus Leader pretended otherwise This is known as the dropped context in all the rot you've ever heard about talk radio and the blogosphere. (link: Keith Burgess-Jackson)Read More

Of the People

For all you who went out and voted last November, here's the government "of the people" your participation sanctioned. Do those look like any people you know?Read More

On Genuine Charity

Google's notion is a truly amazingly wonderful thing, a true milestone in the ascent of man. I deeply despise the kind of indiscriminate charity undertaken by the likes of people like Bill Gates, a niggardly largesse devised to bribe away the resentments of the vicious. But this is the kind of great achievement only great wealth can achieve, and this is the kind of irreplaceable gift to all of humanity that only great-spirited men of…Read More

Think YOU had a bad day?

Check out this series of images. Now, for those who think the photo series is real, and those who think it's fake--you're both wrong. Actually, the first ten images are real. The last one is doctored . See here, under the sub-heading "End of Season." See also here.Read More

Fiction

After 15 years of reading almost nothing but non-fiction, I've delved into a few novels lately. A few months ago, I jumped on the popular bandwagon to see what all the fuss over The Da Vinci Code was about and, frankly, enjoyed the hell out of it. Then, I plowed through Dan Brown's 500 pages of Angels & Demons in a day and a half over Thanksgiving. Though written before The Da Vinci Code, it's…Read More

Married for Money

Since sports analysis bores me to tears (no offense, Chris; chocolate & vanilla, eh?), I'm left only with political analysis to satisfy that...whatever. Anyway, Peter Mulhern is a guest every now and then on a local talk show I listen to sometimes. He blogs now, and some of his analysis is pretty keen. Check out why he thinks the Dems are a bit stuck, just now.Read More

Wimps and Victims

A big thanks to John Venlet for pointing the way to this Psychology Today article, A Nation of Wimps. Everyone should take time to read it. Though I'm not a parent, I do observe a lot of these things, so it rings true to me. Also, I was a kid once, and I appreciate the environment I grew up in more than ever. I grew up outside the city of Reno, Nevada on a 10…Read More

Sir Winston

Sir Winston Churchill on Islam, and war: "How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy. Improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture, sluggish methods of commerce, and insecurity of property exist wherever the followers of the Prophet rule or live. A degraded sensualism deprives this life of its grace and refinement;…Read More

Oh, Joy!

Hey, I just found out that if I'm "lucky enough," exercising my freedom to ride my Indian Chief motorcycle and fly my two hang gliders will automatically deny the freedom of anyone who sells health insurance to choose not to sell it to me and create for them an obligation to pay for any injuries that may ensue, whether they want to or not. Isn't "freedom" grand!?Read More