THIS JUST IN

Tuesday, February 2nd, 2016 | Uncategorized | 13 Comments

“Funny” hasn’t changed much:

The world’s oldest recorded joke has been traced back to 1900 BC and suggests toilet humor was as popular with the ancients as it is today.

It is a saying of the Sumerians, who lived in what is now southern Iraq and goes: “Something which has never occurred since time immemorial; a young woman did not fart in her husband’s lap.”

COGNITIVE DISSONANCE

Monday, February 1st, 2016 | Uncategorized | 51 Comments

Leftist heads to begin exploding in three, two, one…

Donald Trump is so fiercely opposed by the Koch brothers network that some donors believe the powerful group will intervene to stop the billionaire if it looks like he could win the Republican presidential nomination.

“They are always very hesitant to get involved in a primary, but I think if they were going to do it, this would be the time because they just hate the guy,” said a donor who attended the Koch network’s winter retreat, held over the weekend at a luxury resort on the edge of Coachella Valley.

Both officials and donors within Charles and David Koch’s powerful group hope the real estate tycoon’s White House bid dies a natural death so the group can avoid spending a penny of its $889 million 2016 cycle budget against him. But the Koch network’s conversations over the weekend concerning what to do about Trump were more detailed than previously revealed.  

On the eve of the Iowa causes, Koch network officials revealed in a private meeting with donors that they had commissioned focus group research to identify Trump’s vulnerabilities. 

And some influential figures in the group — which held its largest gathering ever, with 500 donors attending the weekend gathering — believe that action against Trump would be needed if he emerges dominant out of the Feb. 9 primary in New Hampshire, where he holds a commanding lead in polls.

YOU SAY YOU WANT A REVOLUTION?

Sunday, January 31st, 2016 | Uncategorized | 39 Comments

If you’d really like to terrify the American political class, both right and left (along with their news media enablers), down to the sub-cellular level, forget trivialities like Donald Trump and get one of these going:

Governor Greg Abbott today delivered the keynote address at the Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Annual Policy Orientation where he unveiled his Texas Plan to restore the Rule of Law and return the Constitution to its intended purpose. In his plan, Governor Abbott offers nine constitutional amendments to rein in the federal government and restore the balance of power between the States and the United States. The Governor proposes achieving the constitutional amendments through a Convention Of States.

“The increasingly frequent departures from Constitutional principles are destroying the Rule of Law foundation on which this country was built,” said Governor Abbott. “We are succumbing to the caprice of man that our Founders fought to escape. The cure to these problems will not come from Washington D.C. Instead, the states must lead the way. To do that I am adding another item to the agenda next session. I want legislation authorizing Texas to join other states in calling for a Convention of States to fix the cracks in our Constitution.”

What does the Governor have in mind?

Governor Abbott offered the following constitutional amendments:

  1. Prohibit Congress from regulating activity that occurs wholly within one State.
  2. Require Congress to balance its budget.
  3. Prohibit administrative agencies—and the unelected bureaucrats that staff them—from creating federal law.
  4. Prohibit administrative agencies—and the unelected bureaucrats that staff them—from preempting state law.
  5. Allow a two-thirds majority of the States to override a U.S. Supreme Court decision.
  6. Require a seven-justice super-majority vote for U.S. Supreme Court decisions that invalidate a democratically enacted law.
  7. Restore the balance of power between the federal and state governments by limiting the former to the powers expressly delegated to it in the Constitution.
  8. Give state officials the power to sue in federal court when federal officials overstep their bounds.
  9. Allow a two-thirds majority of the States to override a federal law or regulation.

Sounds good to me.  And the idea is perfectly Constitutional.  Article V.

The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress;

Is it going to happen?  Probably not unless President Trump manages to piss off the base in the first month after his inauguration which case, Katie bar the door.

BLOGGING 101 – CHOMPERS

Saturday, January 30th, 2016 | Uncategorized | 25 Comments

Hate mail is not necessarily a bad thing.  Case in point: this was a long time ago so don’t bother looking for it.  But pretty much the highlight of my blogging career was my saying something nasty about Noam Chomsky and pissing off a couple of his acolytes.  That e-mail battle lasted a month or two.

Good times:

But Chomsky, who is regarded by some as one of America’s foremost leftist intellectuals, isn’t discussing the “horrors”U.S. foreign policy, as he normally might. This time, he’s advising that people vote Democratic in the upcoming presidential election, including even for that pillar of establishment politics, Hillary Clinton.

In the interview, Chomsky cites what he calls “enormous differences” between the two parties, especially on the issue of climate change. “I’ve always counseled strategic voting,” he says, “Meaning, in a swing state… if there’s a significant enough difference to matter, vote for the better candidate—or sometimes the least bad.” Republicans, who are either “climate change deniers or…skeptic[s] who [say] we can’t do it” pose a “serious danger to human survival,” Chomsky says. His solution? Vote Hillary!

But with this quasi-endorsement of Clinton—done largely, it seems, on the basis of the former secretary of state’s supposed inevitability and her stance on global warming—Chomsky could be vulnerable to the charge that he’s avoiding discussing his deepest priorities and convictions in order to legitimate maintaining his long-held contempt for the GOP.

Yeah, them were the days.

BREAD THOSE SUCKERS UP

Wednesday, January 27th, 2016 | Uncategorized | 19 Comments

I always wanted to start deep-frying but I never had an excuse to.  Until now:

A recent study at the University of Granada in Spain has found that frying vegetables in extra virgin olive oil changes them for the better, adding phenolic compounds, which have antioxidant properties. Boiling and other methods of cooking veggies have no such benefit.

Phenolic compounds are substances produced by plants, and as such are present in many of the foods we eat. In plants, they can serve as a sort of protection against insects or other pests, and they also add color or flavor to the plants. And when we humans eat plants, we reap the benefits of the phenos’ antioxidant properties, which have been associated with reducing the risks of certain diseases.

To determine the superiority of frying, the researchers cooked potato, tomato, eggplant, and pumpkin using four different methods: deep frying, sautéing, boiling in water, and boiling in a water-and-oil mixture. Then, the cooked vegetables were analyzed for fat content, moisture, and total phenols. Deep frying and sautéing in extra virgin olive oil, as you might expect, increased the fat content, but the total phenolic compound levels also increased, while the boiled vegetables either had very similar or lower phenolic compound levels when compared to the raw veggies.

The SCIENCETM is settled.  Bitches.

VULTURES

Tuesday, January 26th, 2016 | Uncategorized | 10 Comments

Kansas City Chiefs?  Thanks but no thanks:

If you missed it, the Kansas City Star ran a story the other day, revealing the Chiefs’ interest in cultivating football fans in St. Louis that may want to adopt another team after losing Team Kroenke to Los Angeles.

According to KC Star sportswriter Terez A. Paylor, the Chiefs are planning a “strategic” approach to St. Louis. But Chiefs president Mark Donovan won’t be pushy about it, citing the STL’s trauma of losing the Rams after a 21-season stay here. The football Cardinals moved to Arizona in 1988, and in the NFL losing two franchises in 28 years almost certainly means  two  strikes and you’re out.

“I’ve gotten texts and emails from (St. Louis) fans saying I’m now a Chiefs fan, and we appreciate all that,” Donovan told the KC Star. “But we’re going to take a strategic approach to that — we’re going to be respectful. They’ve been through a really tough process.

The Indy Colts also want in.

The Indianapolis Colts have also signaled that they’d like to have a relationship with St. Louis fans. The Colts already have made inquiries about the possibility of airing the team’s radio broadcasts in STL. But because Kansas City and St. Louis are in the same state, the Chiefs may have territorial rights to this market.

Yeah, KC, Indy?   Here’s the deal.  We appreciate the sentiment, we really do.  But unless you’re willing to change your team names to the Midwest Colts or the Missouri Chiefs AND play half your team’s regular season schedule in St. Louis, we’re not interested and we’re never ever going to be.

Know why?  Because the Chiefs belong to Kansas City and the Colts to belong to Indianapolis and neither town should have to share their team with anyone.  For my part, I’d rather go without any NFL team at all rather than screw over another town the way the NFL screwed over this one.

Twice.

THE ANTHONY OPTION

Tuesday, January 26th, 2016 | Uncategorized | 17 Comments

The Spectator thinks that Europe ought to be liberal enough to tolerate certain disagreeable opinions.  Guess which ones.  Here’s a hint; if you’re reading this, you probably already hold them:

Given how apocalyptic the predictions were, Anglicanism’s make-or-break meeting about issues of human sexuality last week proved something of a damp squib. The Anglican Communion was supposed to be rent asunder. Upheaval was imminent. Schism was certain. Conservative African Archbishops were going to be tripping over their cassocks in the rush for the door. In the end, however, unity prevailed and the status quo was (boringly) upheld as the 36 primates gathered here together voted overwhelmingly to stick to the church’s traditional view of marriage. Nothing really changed: Anglican HQ merely recognised formally the break its American division has been boasting about for over a decade. So the summit ended not with a bang but with a whimper.

It is surprising, then, that the whimper has occasioned such a hue and cry. On Thursday the Labour shadow cabinet minister and former Anglican priest, Chris Bryant, declared he had left the Church of England for good. The Church’s decision will one day ‘seem [as] wrong as supporting slavery’ he tweeted. On Saturday the Times published a full-blown invective. The Church has no right, the editorial claimed, to maintain its traditional doctrine of marriage.

The outcry is indicative of a profound shift. Institutions founded on certain precepts to which its members are expected to subscribe shouldn’t be allowed to act on them if those precepts don’t square with a prevailing agenda. Back in 2013 advocates for same-sex marriage argued that the church’s beliefs about sexuality shouldn’t be imposed on the rest of society. That makes sense. But now the church is being told it shouldn’t hold those beliefs at all.

Rod Dreher?  I love you, brother, but the Benedict Option is fast becoming yesterday’s news.  Before you know it, those of us who hold to the faith once delivered are going to be out in the timber somewhere.

Not that that’s a bad thing, mind you, since God can create far more awesome cathedrals than men can ever hope to.  Ever been to Zion National Park?  It just is what it is, as the kids say.  And I hope that you’re ready for it.

RIGHT ON SCHEDULE

Saturday, January 23rd, 2016 | Uncategorized | 38 Comments

Mike Curry plays the “legality” card:

The Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church in the United States, the Rt Revd Michael Curry, has emphasised the autonomy of the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC), in the wake of the Primates’ decision to censure his Church.

At their meeting in Canterbury earlier this month, the Primates’ required the US Episcopal Church to no longer represent them on ecumenical and interfaith bodies, not serve on the Primates or ACC standing committees, and not vote on matters of polity and doctrine at the ACC for a period of three years, as a consequence of its support for same-sex marriage.

The Primates’ gathering, however, has no official executive status. The authority to enforce such steps rests with the ACC itself.

Bishop Curry was asked directly whether he would contest these “consequences” at the next meeting of the ACC in April. On Wednesday, he would say only: “The ACC is the only formal constitutional body of the Anglican Communion and it will decide what it will do. Our representatives from the Episcopal Church look forward to being there.”

There is that.  The Anglican primates can decide anything they want to decide but will the Anglican Communion’s machinery actually carry out their decision?   There’s absolutely nothing that forces them to.

Except for this.

Justin Welby knows, or should know, that if the primates are defied in this matter, he will never again be able to call another primates meeting, never mind another Lambeth Conference, and that the Anglican Communion will be well, truly and finally dead.

And Justin Welby will be credited for having killed it.

ON A ROLL

Thursday, January 21st, 2016 | Uncategorized | 52 Comments

Donald Trump has to be the luckiest sumbitch ever to walk the Earth:

Dozens of celebrities and activists have joined a new campaign aimed at derailing the presidential prospects of Republican frontrunner Donald Trump and the “politics of hate and exclusion he represents.”

What sorts of celebs are we talking about?  Toby Keith?  Stacey Dash?  People who actually love this country?  Not so much, no.  The campaign consists of fervent, patriotic Americans like these ones here.

Michael Moore, Kerry Washington, Rosie O’Donnell, Harry Belafonte, Jane Fonda, Dylan McDermott, Roseann Barr, and Lily Tomlin are among the film and television stars who have pledged to “speak out in every way possible” to prevent Trump from becoming the next President of the United States as part of the new “Stop Hate Dump Trump” campaign.

In a statement on its website, the group says it believes Trump is “a grave threat to democracy, freedom, human rights, equality, and the welfare of our country and all our people.”

And the last eight years were what?  Millard Fillmore II?

THE END FROM THE BEGINNING

Monday, January 18th, 2016 | Uncategorized | 88 Comments

Some of you have noticed that I haven’t written anything at all about the Vitally Important Anglican Meeting That May Decide The Future of Contemporary Anglican Christianity As Well As The Anglican Tradition ItselfTM that just finished up in England.  That’s because I’ve decided to save time and write about them when they’re done rather than wasting time reading Anglican really-high-end Earl Grey tea leaves.

Been there, done that WAY too many times.

I’ve decided to do what I generally do with Major Roman CatholicTM stories.  A lot of people are unaware of this fact but Unnamed Vatican SpokespeopleTM actually do not speak ex cathedra.  So I generally wait up to a week for people who know what they are talking about to weigh in before boring the readership with my own two cents.

:-) Because long-time readers of this site know that I’m perfectly capable of sounding like a complete ass entirely on my own, thank you very much.

So who won the meeting?  On points, you’d have to give it to the GAFCON/Global South group since those primates didn’t get rolled this time and actually managed to piss off the Americans.  Here’s the nut graf of the primatial statement:

It is our unanimous desire to walk together. However given the seriousness of these matters we formally acknowledge this distance by requiring that for a period of three years TEC no longer represent us on ecumenical and interfaith bodies, should not be appointed or elected to an internal standing committee and that while participating in the internal bodies of the Anglican Communion, they will not take part in decision making on any issues pertaining to doctrine or polity.

Weak tea, according to Matt Kennedy.

The “sanction” of The Episcopal Church (at least what we know of) is not biblical discipline by a long-shot. It is perhaps a bit more than a mere wrist slap…a rap on the knuckles with a ruler by an angry nun perhaps.

Entirely true but, at this point, completely unrealistic.  I don’t think that much of anybody seriously expects “biblical discipline” from the Anglican Communion right now.  And whether Welby can (or wants to) deliver even this remains to be seen.

If the comments by the habitués of this Daily Naughtonian post are any indication, the Anglican left is seriously bent; some of those people are already thinking about shaking Canterbury’s dust from their feet and they’d have more than a little British support if they did.

Are we witnessing the birth of the Episcopal Communion?

The Guardian managed this howler.

Some African Anglican churches have been vociferous in their support for the criminalisation of homosexuality. The Ugandans and their apologists are anxious to point out that they never supported the death penalty for “aggravated homosexuality”, only life imprisonment. In any event, the Ugandan church leader, Stanley Ntgatali, was the only one to leave Canterbury early, in disgust that the American liberals were not decisively excluded. In a more stable organisation, such reactionary opinions would be balanced against the American enthusiasm for same-sex marriages, but that is not what has happened. The Americans will suffer institutional consequences; the Africans will not. They have the votes.

See the Episcopal Organization, 2003.  “Having the votes” is a wonderful thing as long as the right people have them.

So where are we?  Nowhere in particular except that GenCon 2018, still inside TEO’s suspension period, should be interesting.  Mike Curry has already indicated that the primatial demands are a non-starter.

This has been a disappointing time for many, and there will be heartache and pain for many, but it’s important to remember that we are still part of the Anglican Communion. We are the Episcopal Church, and we are part of the Jesus Movement, and that Movement goes on, and our work goes on. And the truth is, it may be part of our vocation to help the Communion and to help many others to grow in a direction where we can realize and live the love that God has for all of us, and we can one day be a Church and a Communion where all of God’s children are fully welcomed, where this is truly a house of prayer for all people. And maybe it’s a part of our vocation to help that to happen. And so we must claim that high calling; claim the high calling of love and faith; love even for those with whom we disagree, and then continue, and that we will do, and we will do it together.

Which leaves us where?  Justin Welby can wake the hell up and close down the whole Anglican Communion.  Lord knows why he wants to keep it alive; crap on a stick, the whole enterprise only dates back to 1868.

Bitches, that’s not even two hundred years ago.

News flash, Anglophiles.  Those feet in ancient time did NOT walk upon England’s mountains green.  And the Holy Lamb of God was NOT upon England’s pleasant pastures seen.

You’re not an “apostolic” church and you never were.  Sack up and deal with it.

DEAR CANADIAN FOOTBALL LEAGUE

Wednesday, January 13th, 2016 | Uncategorized | 37 Comments

Um…hi.

Uh, yeah, we’re St. Louis, Missouri, south of the border, hard by the Mississippi River and stuff.  Gateway to the West, the most important town in what was Upper Louisiana, you may have heard of us.  The Cardinals, the Blues, toasted ravioli, Rigazzi’s fishbowls, bocce, brain sandwiches, the MCJ, that kind of thing.

Anyhoo, we just wanted to let you know that if you’re thinking of expanding south of the border again (we know it didn’t work out too well the last time you tried it but if at first you don’t succeed, am I right?) or if one of your current teams wants a new yard, that team could get a REALLY sweet rental deal at the Edward Jones Dome.

And considering the way that this town currently feels about the NFL, your guys would have a much better than even chance of selling out the entire first season.

As many of you know by now, The NFL Team That Shall No Longer Be Named (TNTTSNLBN) has decided to leave St. Louis and move back to Los Angeles and folks around here are pretty pissed off about it.

Are we mad at LA?  No, at least I’m not.  LA didn’t go out of its way to entice TNTTSNLBN west; the TNTTSNLBN decided a long time ago that it wanted to move west.

At who are we pissed?

We’re pissed at the NFL for four words.

The fix was in.

Put simply, it didn’t matter in the slightest and wouldn’t have mattered what St. Louis’ stadium task force came up with.  The NFL would have found fault with it since it was determined that TNTTSNLBN owner Stan Crack Whore Kroenke should move his team to LA.  Bernie Miklasz:

The NFL’s relocation guidelines. The NFL’s integrity. The NFL’s fairness. Roger Goodell’s word. Stan Kroenke’s word. Kevin Demoff’s word. The influence of the NFL’s “Los Angeles” committee. Eric Grubman’s objectivity and impartiality.

The NFL’s cross-ownership rules that were ignored to accommodate Kroenke, the first indication that the league executives would shine his shoes when ordered to do so.

The longstanding belief that the NFL owners would give the first shot at LA to San Diego Chargers owner Dean Spanos who had waited in vain for a new stadium in San Diego. His Carson partnership with Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis and Iger was DOA when the owners cut their back-room deal with Kroenke, who had the most money — and therefore the most power. Meaningless: the personal conduct of an NFL owner (Kroenke) in his market. Meaningless: the hideous performance of the owner’s team in his market. Worthless: the concept of holding an owner accountable. Meaningless and worthless: the NFL’s respect for the relentless and remarkable effort by the St. Louis task force that raised at least $400 million in public money to fund a new stadium for a franchise and a league that didn’t appreciate it or deserve it.

I’ll never understand why the NFL shamelessly encouraged Dave Peacock and Bob Blitz and Gov. Jay Nixon to continue pressing to complete the funding for the proposed north riverfront stadium when the league had absolutely no intention of giving St. Louis a fair and honest process that would keep the Rams here. If the cartel wanted to get Kroenke to LA, then be done with it. The anti-STL fix was in; this was a competition that St. Louis had no chance of winning. So why put the STL leadership through a charade, send them through a maze of glasshouse mirrors, squander money that was used to prepare the riverfront stadium site, and waste the time and energy of men of many individuals that tried in earnest to satisfy the league’s directive for preserving NFL football in St. Louis?

I don’t understand (OK, actually I do) why Goodell throw a tantrum when league finance chairman Bob McNair pledged an extra $100 million of league money for the STL stadium project in exchange for a ticket-tax abatement for the team? Goodell made it clear the $100 million contribution wasn’t going to happen for St. Louis  … only to turn around Tuesday and give the Chargers and Raiders $100 million apiece for potential stadium solutions in their current markets. The hypocrisy — even by NFL standards — was appalling.

Why did St. Louis — the only at-risk market that made the effort to come up with at least $400 million in public money — get crushed and swept aside by the league, when Oakland and San Diego didn’t even bother to file an actionable stadium proposal by the league’s Dec. 30 deadline? How could the one market that tried to satisfy the NFL’s demands get blown away in favor of two markets that did nothing to remedy their severe stadium problems?

When you have two California-based teams that play in the two worst stadiums in the NFL and were willing to partner in a Carson project for a long overdue new stadium, why would you choose to fill the LA void by yanking a team from the Midwest and the only market that made a legitimate, money-backed attempt to save its franchise? How is that fair? (Well, it isn’t. And we knew that already. And we knew that the relocation guidelines are worthless.)

So there we are.  St. Louis produces a plan for a new stadium that is, mirabile dictu, proclaimed unacceptable to the NFL.  Oakland and San Diego get another year to work stadium matters out, along with one hundred million NFL dollars each to help them along.  The same hundred million dollars that lying crapweasel Roger Goodell said was unacceptable to give to St. Louis.

The fix was in.

So what if the Chargers decide that they’re not going to get a new stadium from St. Jimmy, figure out that second fiddle in LA is not for them and opt for moving to the Lou while the Raiduhs move to LA for the second time?  We’d have the Chargers, whose ownership and players have absolutely no links to this area.  And we’d have them at least until such time as San Diego built the Chargers a new yard back home in which case we’d lose a third NFL team in less than a century.

We have a professional baseball team in this town whose origins go back to the 1870′s and who have won eleven world titles, the second most after the New York Yankees.  We also have a professional hockey team here that has never won a Stanley Cup final game and hasn’t even been in a Cup final since 1970 but we love them anyway and have passionately loved them ever since.

Do the math.

Dale?  I hope you’re not too attached to the Lions.  Because Pharoahs which knew not Joseph arise all the time.

NON-HABIT-FORMING SLEEP AID

Tuesday, January 12th, 2016 | Uncategorized | 65 Comments

I hope this helps any of you who are currently fighting insomnia:

This week, the Anglican Communion may fall apart.

“May” fall apart, limey?  For most thinking Christians, it fell apart eight years ago.

The stated reason is disagreement about homosexuality. Liberal whites, especially in North America, support gay sex acts and same-sex marriage. African Anglicans oppose them because they go against what the Bible and Christian tradition say. This is a serious issue in its own right, but it does not fully explain the animus within the Communion.

Some people go to sleep by counting sheep.  Me, I go to sleep by counting Vitally Important Anglican Meetings That May Decide The Future of Contemporary Anglican Christianity As Well As The Anglican Tradition Itself.TM

The Anglican Communion exists because the Church of England spread through the British Empire. So it is, in the post-imperial world, the church equivalent of the Commonwealth. Like the Commonwealth, the Anglican Communion wants to retain former colonial links but does not take kindly to white people telling black ones what is good for them.

Ain’t stopped ‘em yet.

Modern liberal sexual morality has been invented and propagated almost exclusively by white people.

Nailed it.

So while we in the West might regard it as a liberation, many in Africa and Asia see it as an imperialist attack on their indigenous culture.

Pretty much, yeah, even though I can’t make myself begin to care any more.  So here’s some random Captain Beefheart lyrics for no reason at all.  “Pappy with the khaki sweatband bowed goat potbellied barnyard that only he noticed.  The old fart was smart.  The old gold cloth Madonna.”

Modern African Christians look with horror on Bishop Gene Robinson, the American bishop who is a gay alcoholic and is now married to a man (having divorced a woman), rather as our missionary ancestors were shocked by tribal chiefs who had lots of wives and a regrettable tendency to eat their enemies. They do not believe they can be in communion with the Church which lets him continue in his ministry. To them, Bishop Gene is a symbol of imperial oppression.

You’re getting sleepy.  SLEEEEEEEEEEPEEEEEEEEEE!!

One piece of Biblical teaching is that men should take their hats off in church (see St Paul’s First Epistle to the Corinthians, 11:4). Although few men wear hats nowadays, I have noticed that many of those who do no longer remove them. I dropped in on St Martins-in-the-Fields last week and noticed about six men so clad, none of them having the excuse of being bewildered vagrants. It seems sad – this small sign of respect costs nothing, any more than does removing one’s shoes in a mosque. It also creates a problem if one is bothered by it: does one politely ask the wearer to observe the rule, or try to ignore it? In the past, I have slightly bossily done the former; now I rather weakly do the latter. Neither course feels right.

When I snap my fingers, you’ll fall into the best night’s sleep you ever had.  When you wake up, you’ll immediately log on to the Internet, purchase a box of New York Strips from Omaha Steaks and have them sent to Your Beloved Editor.

SNAP!!

LAST MEAL BEFORE THE EXECUTION

Saturday, January 9th, 2016 | Uncategorized | 20 Comments

On the other hand, if I’m checking out soon, I’m checking out happy:

The federal government on Thursday told Americans not to worry so much about cholesterol in their diets, that lots of coffee is fine and that skipping breakfast is no longer considered a health hazard.

The recommendations were part of a new “Dietary Guidelines for Americans,” the influential nutrition advice book that, updated every five years, expresses official thinking about what constitutes a nutritious meal.

In what may be the most striking change, the new version drops the strict limit on dietary cholesterol, stepping back from one of most prominent public health messages since the ’60s.

But there were several other notable changes. Salt limits were eased, if only slightly, for many people. Coffee won official approval for the first time, with the book saying that as many as five eight-ounce cups a day is fine. And apparently, skipping breakfast is no longer considered a health hazard: While the old version of Dietary Guidelines informed readers that “not eating breakfast has been associated with excess body weight,” the new version is silent on the topic.

UH-OH

Friday, January 8th, 2016 | Uncategorized | 23 Comments

Want to know what my life consists of these days?  Sure, we all do.  Ever since I got rid of the truck I could no longer afford to keep running and ever since my income was reduced to subsistence level, most of my world consists of about a half mile north, south and west of where I live (two markets and a pharmacy).  If the need arises, I can walk farther than that but I haven’t done it very often lately.

I don’t directly interact with people all that much.  It’s not that I don’t like it; even though I know that it will cost me money that I no longer have, I look forward to my occasional cab rides to the doctor or wherever because it’s something different.  It’s just that I have never been much good at human interaction.  Sometimes, the idea terrifies me and that’s been pretty much from day one if my mother was right.

Just about everybody around here that I used to consider a friend has left my life.  I still interact with my siblings now and then, mostly with text messages.  So if this report is right, I should be dropping dead any day now:

Feeling lonely can ‘vastly elevate’ a person’s risk of heart disease, stroke and cancer, scientists warn.

Lacking a network of friends or family is as dangerous to your health as a lack of physical inactivity in youth or diabetes in old age, their research found.

Scientists from the University of North Carolina examined the association between relationships and healthiness across each life stage.

They determined that weak relationships in younger years can increase your risk of inflammation – at the same rate as lack of exercise.

Furthermore, hypertension in old age is more likely to occur as a result of loneliness than clinical risk factors, including diabetes.

Yet, people who have the support of loved ones are less likely to develop health conditions – and more likely to have a longer life expectancy.

Dr Kathleen Mullan Harris, of UNC and the Carolina Population Center, said: ‘Based on these findings, it should be as important to encourage adolescents and young adults to build broad social relationships and skills for interacting with others as it is to eat healthy and be physically active.’

WHAT’S NEW AT MIZZOU?

Tuesday, January 5th, 2016 | Uncategorized | 29 Comments

Pushback:

The University of Missouri professor who called for “some muscle” to toss a reporter out of a demonstration on public property could be the one who gets bounced, after state lawmakers on Monday demanded that she be fired.

Communications Professor Melissa Click made national news in November, when she tried to have a student reporter on assignment for ESPN thrown off the quad during a racially charged protest.

“Who wants to help me get this reporter out of here?” Click yelled out after reporter Tim Tai refused to leave in an incident caught on video. “I need some muscle over here.”

Now, more than 100 House Republicans and 18 Senate members from the state Legislature have signed a letter to the school’s board of curators demanding Click’s “immediate firing.”

“The fact that, as a professor teaching the communication department and the school of journalism, she displayed such a complete disregard for the First Amendment rights of reporters should be enough to question her competency and aptitude for her job,” reads the letter, penned by Rep. Caleb Jones and Sen. Kurt Schaefer.

Causing the Kansas City Star’s Barbara Shelly to collapse on her fainting couch.

One is Melissa Click, the University of Missouri assistant communications professor who created an ugly scene while trying to keep journalists away from student protestors during the emotional demonstrations in November that resulted in the resignation of university system President Tim Wolfe.

More than 100 state House members and 18 senators have signed a letter to the University of Missouri Board of Curators, demanding that Click be fired.

“As a professional representing our university, Click failed to meet the obligation she has to her supervisors, fellow professors, university students, and the taxpayers of Missouri,” the letter said. 

Click was unprofessional and wrong. She called for “some muscle” to help her confront one journalist, while ignoring the fact that the university quad, where the protests were ongoing, is a public space and therefore open to the media and others.

Maybe she should be fired. Or maybe the greater body of her work argues in favor of her remaining on the faculty. I really don’t know. Neither do most of the legislators who signed the letter.

But the purpose of the letter isn’t just to get Click fired. It is to tell the University of Missouri system that the state legislature is prepared to meddle in personnel matters and other internal affairs that shouldn’t be the jurisdiction of politicians.

And the not-so-implicit threat is always this: We fund you, so do what we say.

See if you can get your mind around that concept.  A taxpayer-supported university either having to account for the tax money it spends or getting a whole lot less of it.  None of this Charles I v. Long Parliament vote-funds-and-shut-up crap.  We here in Missouri want to know where that money’s going and what it’s going for.

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