Between being played for a sucker by the gay community, Norman Mineta's Minions arbitrarily issuing fines for free speech, John Kerry's screaming meanies hollering about the 'injustice' of people questioning his senatorial voting record, etc., I'd just about had it with the world. Screw this, get rid of the world, time for Argmageddon, bring it on, God! I plop my self on the sofa in a fit of pique, open the bible for some good news.
The bible opened automatically to Amos and my eye went straight to 5:18:
"Woe unto you that desire the day of the Lord! to what end is it for you? the day of the Lord is darkness, and not light."
I didn't really want to post about gay marriage but I've read so much pernicious nonsense on the subject I guess I must. I've got errands to run this morning, tho, so it will have to wait. But briefly:
A right is an individual thing. Marriage, by definition, involves more than one person. 'Right,' as applied to marriage, is a non sequitur.
Marriage, for thousands and thousands of years, has meant the permanent union between a man and a woman. There can be no such thing as gay marriage, unless you want to start mucking with the English language. There has already been much mucking with English, to the point where it is scarcely possible for us to communicate with each other. This is a Bad Thing.
In its current state, from a political/social level only, marriage is a short-cut way to enter into a state-recognized contract.
Government in the US is set up to have 3 different branches, each branch having its own role but having equal prominence and authority with the other two. These three branches are executive, judicial, and legislative. It is the legislative branch that makes laws. When executive and judicial branches start making laws, we are looking down the maw of tyranny.
Freedom of assembly IS a right. Freedom to contract is arguably a right under amendment IX if nothing else; whether it classifies as a 'right' or not it's certainly a needed part of free enterprise and free assembly.
If you are gay, and you want the support of this 'thinks Rush Limbaugh is a little on the liberal side," gunnut libertarian, here's how to get it:
In the interests of clarity and decency, come up wiith another name for gay marriage. Some suggestions will follow in a later post, unless I get lazy.
Consider that there are sexual arrangements other than your own. If we toss out the meaning of marriage altogether, as (some of) you would have us do, we've tossed out all boundaries. I keep hearing that you just want to be responsible etc, but I don't see much action that supports it. When heteros or people with concerns about polygamy, bestiality, child abuse, bring up these concerns, it would behoove you to pay attention and prepare a thoughtful response, and not just shriek "wah! wah! you don't like me!" Lawsuits by polygamists have already been filed, based on the changes due to gay rights activists. Pedophiles are starting to form groups for PR and government petition, based on changes mades due to gay activists. It's not paranoia, but reality. Get your head out of the sand and start thinking about these issues like an adult.
Read up on the unique governmental structure of the United States. Understand how it (is supposed to) works amd why. YOU, gay people, are the ones who want this change; it is up to you to follow the rules in place and create and propose some workable solutions.
What is happening in SF is untenable. The couples that participated have stated, by their actions, that they are willing to piss away their rights, mine and yours, for the sake of meaningless feel-good. Whether they are fools, knaves, or both, I cannot tell, but their actions are childish and dangerous.
The citizen has a natural and inalienable right to self defense and to the means of self defense.
The possession of arms distinguishes the free man from the slave.
The possession of arms breeds independence, self-respect and civic responsibility.
An armed citizenry reduces the incidence of criminal activity.
The armed citizen is not compelled to rely upon the assistance of the State for all protection.
The armed citizen forestalls the rise of a tyrant from within the State.
A citizenry accustomed to the use of arms and provided with their own personal weapons can come to the assistance of the State as a militia, either to subdue domestic turmoil or to repel a foreign invader.
The Second Amendment is not an Archaism
Update: I like to think that all US citizens know what a restrictive clause is, but in case you don't, or are not from the US but are curious, here is my Jan. 14th post on Declaratory and Restrictive Clauses. I really, really want every US voter to get this planted firmly in his, her or its head.
Yeah, I know I am once again 3 weeks behind the cool people . . . just leeme 'lone, ok?
Anyhow, some poor soul at kuro5hin went off his rocker and exploded in a fine fury of colorful but silly epiteths in what appears to be an attempt to protest the proliferation of blogs in general and the presence of blogs on google in particular. Mr. James A. C. Joyce (no pre10sions there, eh? poor guy) refers to bloggers as 'Pretentious Twats' and is then kind enough to list the specific qualities that really, as they say, 'chap his hide:'
* latte sipping
* IMac using
* Movable Type using, with trackbacks! eeeeviiillll! * tertiary industry working (my personal favorite) * WASPs
According to Mr. Joyce, some of us have sunk so low as to use words like "blogosphere" and "blogroll," and even, if the rumors are true (I hope not), punning! Oh, the shame!
John of ARRGGGHH!! was thoughtful enough to prepare a Pre10tious Twit Net Ring. I drink single bean coffee and single malt whiskey, use a PC and blogspot, so I fail 50% of Mr. Joyce's test. Luckily, however, these twits may be pre10tious, but they're not exclusive! I'm in! I am proud - nay, honored - to be a member of the Pre10tious Twit Net Ring and I feel sure, my fellow Twits, that one day this will be a world where we all know how to use a trackback, mow our suburban lawns, and turn on the Sports Channel to watch the Washington Wasps football game while sipping our latte/mocha/single bean/diesel, in peace and harmony.
So I put my income tax return in the mail today. I wouldn't actually mind paying so much to live in a free country, but I resent paying that kind of money out so I can get busted for not wearing a seat belt, for pete's squeak. C'mon, is there anybody out there, really, who actually thinks not wearing a seat belt should be an offense? a crime? WTF?
Anyway, I figured, hey, as long as I'm doing my own return I may well do the returns for my imaginary friends while I'm at it.
I have three imaginary friends, Betty, Jack, and Jill. Betty is single but Jack and Jill are married to each other. They each make $50,000 a year. None of them have a lot of stuff to itemize for deductions.
So Betty had a standard deduction of $4750.00, and 1 exemption @ $3,050. These brought her taxable income down to $42,200. According to the tax table, Uncle Sam gets $7,316.00 from Betty.
Jack & Jill, married filing separately with standard deductions only, each have the exact same deductions, taxable income and taxes due as Betty - Uncle Sam gets $7,316 apiece from Jack & Jill ($14,632 collectively).
To make sure Jack & Jill didn't pay more than they have to, I also figured it for them married filing jointly. In this case, their income was $100,000.00, standard deduction was $9,500, and they had 2 exemptions at $3050 each (total $6,100). These deductions and exemptions brought their joint taxable income down to $84,400, putting Uncle Sam's slice at $14,714. This is $82 higher than if they'd filed separately, or $41 higher apiece.
So far I am failing to see any marriage penalty.
BTW, Uncle Sam's friendly advice regarding Line 3 of form 1040 (see page 20 Package 1040-1, 20031040 Forms and Instructions) says "If you are married and file a separate return, you will usually pay mor tax than if you use another filing status that you qualify for." How coy, the way they don't specify what this other filing status may be. For Jack & Jill, however, filing separately seems to be the way to go.
Anyway, just to take good care of my imaginary friends, I thought I'd better do Jack & Jill's return with itemized deductions as well. Frankly, this was the point at which I burst into tears. I probably could have handled it if I'd started with 'married, filing jointly with itemized deductions,' but I started with married, filing separately. Line 36b did me in.
The instructions on form 1040, line 36b, say:
"If you are married filing separately and your spouse itemizes deductions, or you were a dual-status alien, see page 34 and check here."
Page 34, 20031040, says:
"If you checked the box on line 36b, your standard deduction is zero."
That didn't seem right, so I went back to the Spouse line, 6b:
"Check the box on line 6b if you file either (a) a joint return or (b) a separate return and your spouse had no income and is not filing a return. However, do not check box if your spouse can be claimed on another person's return." (page 21, 20031040).
OK, one person shouldn't be deducted on two returns; fair enough. But that poor one person ought to be deductible somewhere! Maybe what the instructions for 36b should say:
"If you are married filing separately and your spouse itemizes deductions and claims you as an exemption or dependent, or you were a dual-status alien, see page 34 and check here."
I'm too tired to figure this out right now - but I do know why 'spouse' rhymes with 'souse.' It's because whoever invented the English language knew those who are espoused would have to get soused to deal with the IRS.
Apparently, during the medieval times when nastiness was the Western norm, some priest(s) decided jews should bear the sole responsibility for Christ's death. How they figured that by reading the scriptures is beyond me, but they managed. The last official date I've seen referenced is 1539, which is not to say there haven't been some nutcakes since then. I dunno, it's (it was) an Official Church thing and I don't pay much attention. Anyway, apparently these decidedly distasteful memories have jewish folks a little on the paranoid side.
On the other hand, Jesus was jewish, in a jewish town, with jewish leaders under Roman control, so, yeah, lots of jews come in to play in the gospels. I don't see how one could possibly remove jewish references from a Passion Play, since both the good guys and the bad guys were jewish.
About all I can say is, I won't hold you personally responsible for the crucification if you don't hold me personally responsible for the inquisition.
If you want to know who killed Jesus: I did. & I have a nasty feeling that every time I get into one of these pissing matches, I'm throwing another stone at Him.
On another level, you could say Jesus committed suicide. He died willingly, the sacrifice for our sins.
But everybody who watched the grammys still sucks. is dreadfully short-sighted.
(2) One of the comments on another blog* spewed out this slander:
"With Mel Gibson's new movie, The Passion of Christ set for release any day now, I really fear an even greater rise in anti Sem not only in Europe, but here in the States too. I cannot understand Gibson's motivations for this movie. I haven't seen it but from what I read it will foster anti-Jewish feelings. It is not only Jews who have come out against the movie, but many Catholics too."
So I sent the person a private e-mail:
You said: "With Mel Gibson's new movie, The Passion of Christ set for release any day now, I really fear an even greater rise in anti Sem not only in Europe, but here in the States too. I cannot understand Gibson's motivations for this movie. I haven't seen it but from what I read it will foster anti-Jewish feelings. It is not only Jews who have come out against the movie, but many Catholics too."
I would appreciate it very much if you could avoid saying things like that in the future, at least until after you've actually seen the movie. I'm not anti-Semitic yet, but I'm about 5 more comments like that away from becoming so.
The rumors of Mel Gibson's 'evilness' are based on a stolen, pre-worked draft. Mr. Gibson has been working closely with various parties to vet the movie for alleged anti-Semitism.
A lot of Christians have worked hard to keep anti-Semitism down. In WWII, quite a few lost their lives for it. Too much of my tax money has been forcibly taken from me, to be given to 'artists,' to blaspheme my Christian God - and nobody cares but us Christians, and the ADL won't speak up for us. Gibson's movie was privately funded; it's no money out of your pocket. & you haven't. even. seen it.
It's another thing entirely if you've seen the movie and can point to something specific. But to denigrate something you haven't seen based on a rumor based on a stolen script that was never intended to be the final - shame!
We (Christians) are constantly assaulted in our beliefs - Piss Christ, The Last Temptation of Christ, the Virgin Mary covered in animal dung . . . now all we're asking is to be able to watch ONE STINKING MOVIE in peace.
I got this back:
"My gut reaction to your tirade is Jesus Christ!@ I was NOT condemning your God or Christianity - for fuck sakes Christ was a Jew if you recall and I have nothing but respect for other religions. There are millions of evangelical Christians for example who have supported Israel through good and bad.
I work for Jewish institutions and I respect the pronouncements of these groups and my peers. I will see the movie and make my own final decision, but I don't see the hooplah in expressing my FEARS that the movie might incur a new wave of anti-Semitism. You seem a little confused - to say you are a few degrees from being an anti-Semite, well, that in itself doesn't say much for you I'm afraid. You have overreacted to put it mildly. But hey, this is America, and you're entitled to your opinion."
"PS what is this about the Virgin Mary covered in shit???? Just curious! And in rereading your letter, I find it frankly humourous of you to suggest that your religion is being persecuted!"
I won't be sending this person any information about the Virgin Mary 'piece.' Let this cretin find its own amusement.
Tennessee Woman Drops Lawsuit Over Jackson's Breast-Baring Stunt During Super Bowl Halftime Show
reprinted in its entirety because ATT/AP don't provide permanent links
Less than a week after filing a class-action lawsuit because of her outrage over Janet Jackson's Super Bowl stunt, Terri Carlin believes she's made her point.
The Knoxville banker is withdrawing the suit filed last Wednesday in U.S. District Court against Jackson and Justin Timberlake, along with MTV, CBS and their parent company, Viacom.
I believe she is actually a bank teller. 'Banker' sounds so high-falutin', doesn't it?
The lawsuit had sought billions of dollars in compensatory and punitive damages.
it sought reimbursement of that portion of the cable bill wasted in watching the super bowl, times the number of watchers.
Carlin alleged that she and others who watched the show during the Super Bowl were injured by the performers' lewd actions when Timberlake tore off part of Jackson's costume, exposing her right breast.
The notice of dismissal filed in federal court says Carlin wants to see if "remedial measures" announced by federal regulators and the companies involved succeed in preventing similar stunts.
so does that mean she can re-file if it happens again? Ya wanna bet, CBS & co. are too stupid to realize it wasn't just the breast? The boob was only the last straw; the culmination of a long list of grievances.
Carlin and attorney Wayne A. Ritchie II, who filed the lawsuit on behalf of Carlin and has represented her for free, have received phone calls and mail from hundreds of supportive parents from across the country who wanted to be included in the suit, the notice states.
In the lawsuit filed on behalf of "all Americans," Carlin charged that Jackson's exposure and "sexually explicit conduct" by other performers during the halftime show injured viewers.
Jackson apologized for the incident, saying a red lace garment was supposed to remain over her breast when an outer garment was ripped away.
so does that mean I can stick a knife in Timberlake, and as long as I apolgize later, it's ok? no, didn't think so.
Something New Something old
My feet are cold
I've been reading Publicola, Candy Universe, and Ravenwood for ages now, guess I may as well blogroll them. Publicola and Ravenwood are good guardians of Freedom. You may step away from their sites feeling a little grouchy, but you will be better informed! Candy, befitting to the name, is lighter fare.
Coyote at the Dogy Show points to a Fox News article on the mean things that crawl upon the earth, although his stance is certainly different from mine. I say, gibbets and crows for Martin Kaplan, who said "people have not grown up enough to make a distinction between artistic expression and vulgarity for profit." Fuck you very much, Mr. Kaplan. I got your artistic expression right here.
ooooooo! Tee hee hee! Look at me! I said 'fuck.' oooooo! I am so artistic!
It's 4 a.m., I'm in front of my computer with a cup of tea, a cigarette, and Elvis Presley is singing Heartbreak Hotel.
There is something so bleak about that sentence! I feel constrained to continue in a film noir flavor . . . .
It'd been a long day and a long, hard night. Tomorrow wasn't looking any better. The case I was working on had more curves than Marilyn Monroe dancing the watusi on San Francisco's Lombard Street.
It all started at Spike's Neon Cat Cafe. I was nursing a beer and a headache when the blonde walked into the room like trouble on an east-bound train.
She stopped at my table. "Mr. Sullen?" she breathed. "May I sit down?" She didn't wait for an answer and she didn't wait for me to stand up and pull out her chair. So she was a pushy broad, but a dame with her looks could push me pretty hard. I was in no condition to stand up anyway.
"I'm Sullen." I signaled Spike over to the table. "What can I get you, Miss - ?" I asked, as Spike gave her the once-over twice.
"Glenfiddich on the rocks, with a lime. Thank you." She took the drink, but she didn't give a name. "They told me I could find you here." she said, as Spike reluctantly walked away.
"You'll have to tell me who They are, so I can thank them."
Then what? Why won't she give him a name? Who are They? What's Mr. Sullen's first name? Do you think boxing and fixed fights will come into this story eventually? Or maybe a Red Cross scandal or - oooooh! a TSA scandal! If I have something as modern as TSA, can I still use Marilyn Monroe or do I have to switch to Demi Moore?
The Sewage Bowl is yesterday's news (ok, last week's news), but that's me, a day late and a dollar short. Anyway, it took me this long to settle down enough to post about it. I don't watch a lot of TV and I never watch football, but obviously I couldn't avoid hearing about Justin, Janet and jerks.
I never want to hear the following phrases again:
"I'm no prude, but . . . "
"lowest common denominator"
"I'm no prude, but . . . " WHY aren't you a prude? What's wrong with being a prude? Say it loud, I'm a prude and I'm proud!! There are worse things, you know.
YES! I know the difference between good and evil, and I strive to choose, support and promote the former. I am not ashamed of this. I think a man who rips off a woman's shirt in private in bad enough; a man who does it in public is utterly beneath contempt. A woman who willingly allows this to happen should be quietly taken to the north 40 and shot for her own good - not to punish her, simply to put her out of her misery.
Fer cryin' out loud - if a Justin Timberlake fan is raped, does she bother to prosecute? Or does she not see anything wrong with it? If she does think that rape is a problem, why is she a Justin Timberlake fan? If Janet should be quietly shot, Justin should be slowly tortured and hung in a gibbet alive, for the crows to pick at his eyes and liver.
"lowest common denominator" Horsefeathers. A common denominator is an element or subset shared by all parties. The half-time show presented by the Caligula Broadcasting Network did not appeal across-the-board, obviously. The acceptance of public sex, especially violent sex, is not common.
& then this utterly weird argument by some critter named 'Kimberland' on rightnation. First, that we are all prudes and overreacting. We should, by this creature's logic, be HAPPY to expose our children to the unacceptable so we can tell them it's unacceptable, but for some reason, it's wrong to actually DO anything about it. No kimberland you moron, once you start accepting the unacceptable, it becomes accepted. If behaviour is unacceptable, reject the behaviour.
Kimberland's utter, illogical, self-preening weirdness is not unique. It's repeated all over the Internet. As if people really do not know the difference between good and evil, right and wrong.
How does that bit in Genesis go? Taste of the apple, and know good and evil, and be as gods.
If not knowing the difference between good and evil is what makes Eden, I reject Eden. I will embrace my original sin, and discriminate, and rise above the mean things that crawl upon the earth. Mean things like Justin, Janet, CBS, MTV and the NFL.
Really, I cannot think of a better description for Justin Timberlake than a 'mean thing that crawls upon the earth.' If that's what you want, you can have it. But I warn you - it is indeed low, but it is most emphatically not a common denominator.
However, we CAN all get along. Here's the deal: fans of Justin Timberlake and his ilk will please identify themselves by wearing T-shirts that say "Justin TImberlake Fan. OK to rape." Rapists and other thugs can then identify victims that won't make a fuss. Timberlake fans have their entertainment, rapists have theirs, and I get left out of it.
Suits me fine.
Update: Instapundit points to The Smoking Gun, which has a copy of a class-action lawsuit filed against Jackson, Timberlake, CBS, Viacom, and MTV. Smoking Gun also has, of course, a picture of the boob showing her boob. We could have done without that picture, Mr. Gun.
I am sooooo pleased by this suit. Unfortunately, there is no legal fund to contribute to. But I hope it wins, and wins big time. ENOUGH!
OK! So maybe I don't feel like posting!! I'll just hi-jack this quiz from Sugar White Sand, instead.
I haven't been sleeping, so now I'm rather dazed. I keep waking up in the night, presumably from a dream I can't remember, thinking "This is of great import and must be tended to immediately!!" But then in my waking state I can't think of anything all that important . . .