Saturday, June 6, 2009

Christian Pastor Offended by Prop 8

Rev. Art Cribbs, pastor of a Protestant denomination in California, recently came out on the side of the legal challenge to Proposition 8, which is supported by hundreds of religious organizations, civil rights groups, and labor unions, along with numerous California municipal governments, bar associations, and leading legal scholars, who have collectively urged the California Supreme Court to strike down Proposition 8.

Pastor Cribbs stated:

“As an African-American pastor with the United Church of Christ in San Marino, I am particularly troubled by Prop. 8’s impact on people who are hurt by its passage. I am reminded of the struggles black communities have faced and continue to face in this country. I am reminded of the damage a majority can and has sometimes inflicted against groups in the past. And I am reminded of the need we all have for equal protection under the law.”

The complete statement is available here

Surely those who follow this blog would not be surprised to learn that certain fundamentalist christians have their panties all in a knot over Prop 8. These bigots decry homosexuality as against bible teaching. They are, of course, a sorry lot, who attempt to rest their own personal fears of something outside of their comfort zone by condemning an entire group of people. They use old testament bible passages as shields to protect themselves from accepting that reality that people of the same sex can love one another. Like voodoo, they chant biblical phrases hoping that the incantations will stop the reality before them. They never want change; the past is always better than the present.

Sadly, these bigots also implicate Jesus and drag his name into their skewed fantasies, as if Jesus would condemn a loving couple. Hell, he wouldn't even condemn prostitutes or Samaritan women. Nonetheless, these faux christians pimp Jesus by suggesting that He would be as bigoted and narrow-minded as they are.

So goes life in the odd world of the fundamentalist christians.

MSNBC's Joe Scarborough Represented Abortion Doctor's Killer

TPM Muckraker reports:

In 1993, David Gunn was killed in Pensacola, Florida, and Michael Griffin, an anti-abortion zealot, was accused of the crime. (Griffin was later convicted and jailed.) And Joe Scarborough -- who the following year would run for Congress as a Republican abortion foe -- made several court appearances, pro bono, on Griffin's behalf.

Scarbourough, host of Morning Joe, never mentioned the recent physician's murder, Dr. George Tiller, and he didn't mention having represented Griffin back in 1993. Rather, he said he was asked by Griffin's family, who knew his own family, to find a lawyer for Griffin.

Very interesting. So it seems that the often righteous TV pundit was much more involved in the murder case than he led his audience to believe. The TPM story goes on:

("The family hired me and they wanted me to find him a lawyer, to make sure he didn't use the Bible as his self-defense in court," he said) He implied that a number of people expressed interest in taking on the case in order because of its political implications ("for all the wrong reasons") and that he was wary of such people. Eventually, he said, he found a "progressive, pro-choice" lawyer who nonetheless understood that everyone has the right to counsel. Scarborough went on to talk about the need to return to civility in American politics.

I wonder if this episode is included in Scarborough's new book? Probably not. Once a slick politician, always a slick politician.

MSNBC 'balances' its left-leaning programming with the Morning Joe spot early in the morning. Later in the day, hosts Matthews, Schultz, Maddow and Olberman swing the network way left. I've come to listen to all of them much less as the ravages of winter recede from my memories, yet Morning Joe fits my morning schedule quite well. Still, I have grown tired of him and his puppet mistress Mika. His overt righteousness and her role as shocked side-kick have become a hackneyed, trite show. I often flip it off at the last sip of my morning coffee.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Easily Grossed Out? You Might Be A Conservative!

ScienceDaily (June 5, 2009) — Are you someone who squirms when confronted with slime, shudders at stickiness or gets grossed out by gore? Do crawly insects make you cringe or dead bodies make you blanch? If so, chances are you're more conservative -- politically, and especially in your attitudes toward gays and lesbians -- than your less-squeamish counterparts, according to two Cornell studies.


Well, well, will ya look at that new bit of scientific/psychological reality? Conservatives are squeamish! Poor things. Is that why they send other people's children to war?

"and especially in your attitudes toward gays and lesbians." So they really aren't BIGOTS after all? Just squirmy cowards who never grew up?

Who coulda believed it, eh??

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Onward Christian Jihad....

This is an television ad that is being broadcast by the group Answers in Genesis.
Here is how they describe themselves:

An apologetics (i.e., Christianity-defending) ministry, dedicated to enabling Christians to defend their faith and to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ effectively…we also desire to train others to develop a biblical worldview, and seek to expose the bankruptcy of evolutionary ideas, and its bedfellow, a “millions of years old” earth (and even older universe).

They probably aren't meaning to imply in their ad that an athiest is going to take a gun and shoot some one in the face, but it makes a striking image, doesn't it?
Supposedly, their beef is concerning Darwinism and the idea of evolution, but how is that related to the image in the commercial?
What is implied is that a person who doesn't accept their creationist doctrine and chooses not to accept their beliefs is apparently with out morals, outside the law and could go on a killing rampage.
They have been using the image of the boy with the gun on billboards, as well.

Afer the murder of Dr. George Tiller and the rationalized gloating over the act by the evangelical fundamentalists, perhaps, Answers in Genesis needs to rethink their approach before someone interprets their message the wrong way and uses it as a justification to prove their faith.........

The Resurrection Of The Christ Within You

Book: The Second Coming Of Christ: The Resurrection Of The Christ Within You, A Revelatory Commentary On The Original Teachings Of Jesus.

Here is a critique of the work:

"The Second Coming of Christ" takes the reader on a revelatory journey through the four Gospels, verse by verse, into the real meaning of Jesus' long misunderstood teachings.

The most eagerly awaited book from Paramahansa Yogananda in over 50 years,'The Second Coming of Christ' takes the reader on a revelatory journey through the four Gospels, verse by verse, into the real meaning of Jesus long misunderstood teachings. Dispelling centuries old misconceptions and dogma, this monumental work is destined to leave an indelible mark on the way the world views the teachings of Jesus Christ.


I was toying with an alternate title of this post, something like:  The Dozen Dullards of Jesus, or, The 12 Cretins of Christ.  They were an ignorant lot, weren't they? Only Judas seemed to have 'a clue' about what the gig was all about- and he was demonized for it.

Today, some 2000 years later, there still are Cretins of Christ all around us, even living in our neighborhoods!  They, like the 12, cannot comprehend the real message that Jesus of Nazareth spent his last three years trying to communicate:  the "Resurrection" is within you. 

He said it.  Several times.  

Paramahansa Yogananda, as his name indicates, is from India. He believes that Jesus visited India in those 'hidden years' between age 12 and thirty. Surely he also visited Egypt- beyond his cameo appearance as a child. To which other places he traveled is only conjecture but, clearly to those who 'see,' his spiritual sense was most certainly broader than that available to the residents of Galilee.

Here's the conundrum, though.  Why on earth did he pick those twelve dullards as companions along the journey?  They were as dumb as dirt.  They never 'got it.'  They had no clue what Jesus was talking about.  

My newly formed hypothesis is that Jesus used them as thugs- for self-defense- body guards. 

Radical idea?

If so, then, why were the dimwits 'chosen' by Jesus.  He spent three years, 24/7 with them, 1000 days and nights and look what they 'learned' during their close encounter with 'the master.'

Nada. Zero. They failed the 'proficiency test' miserably.

Body guards.  Think about it.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Left-brained Dominance is Passe

Lawyers. Accountants. Computer programmers. That's what our parents encouraged us to become when we grew up. But Mom and Dad were wrong. The future belongs to a very different kind of person with a very different kind of mind. The era of "left brain" dominance, and the Information Age that it engendered, are giving way to a new world in which "right brain" qualities-inventiveness, empathy, meaning-predominate. That's the argument at the center of a provocative and original book, which uses the two sides of our brains as a metaphor for understanding the contours of our times.

Daniel H.Pink is the author of the book, A Whole New Mind. It's subtitle is, 'Why Right-brainers Will Rule the Future.'  And here's why:

Pink references three prevailing trends pointing towards the future of business and the economy: Abundance (consumers have too many choices, nothing is scarce), Asia (everything that can be outsourced, is) and Automation (computerization, robots, technology, processes).

All of  past 'success' was developed from left-brain thinking.  The future lies in creativity- right-brain thinking. 

Pink outlines six essential senses:

Design - Moving beyond function to engage the sense.
Story - Narrative added to products and services - not just argument. Best of the six
Symphony - Adding invention and big picture thinking (not just detail focus).
Empathy - Going beyond logic and engaging emotion and intuition.
Play - Bringing humor and light-heartedness to business and products.
Meaning - Immaterial feelings and values of products.

Try to discuss this in the Board Room and they will think you're nuts. Yet, look what has just happened in the General Motor's Board Room. Old, left-brain thinking. Dead enders, as Rumsfeld often said.

Is America ready for the right-brainers to 'take over?' Clearly our political system is not- way too much left-brain bloviation. And not the church either- too steeped in past glory and ancient texts. Schools? Well, there's an interesting concept way-too late for its time. Innovation in schools has historically been frowned upon by the tight-assed conformists who believe the old canard that begins, "It was good enough for me..."

As Barack Obama is left-handed, he is naturally right-brained. One wonders if his brain-style will catch on here in America which may promote Mr. Pink's six essential senses. However, he will be met by much resistance to any divergent thinking. He already has. Yet we can always hope. After all, look at what recent left-brain 'leaders' have gotten us into.

My Unauthorized Biography

I am clearly flattered that people have begun my biography while I am on this side of the grass. Interestingly, the authors do not know me, nor have we ever spoken. I would welcome a biographical piece from family members or close friends, although to my knowledge, it remains yet unwritten.

What can one know from reading blog posts and comments? Blogging often reveals mere wisps of information about the author, ideas and fantasies which swirl around in one's head. In fact, I find that blogging customarily releases one's learned inhibitions, much as does a shot of gin or a puff on weed, neither of which I have attempted. There are as many varieties of blogs as there are authors thereof; some are crisp and interesting, while others fester in idiotic personal minutia and parochial subject matter.

Why do people choose to read a blog, this blog? Beats me all to hell. I dabble in the blogosphere much like smorgasbord-ing, tasting, rejecting, and occasionally returning. Mostly, I confess, singular visits.

When I was directed to a blog which I seldom visit any longer and found a rather personal dossier about me, I was stunned. At last check [haz-mat protected, of course] there were 19 comments under a thread dedicated to me. Isn't that special.

Did you hear the one about the three fundamentalist christian ladies who walked into a bar? Well, i can't remember the punch line but 'the exits' sticks in my mind.

I am being skewered by the Righteous Sisters, no relation to the brothers. Who knew? It's all quite hilarious- it always is when one fundamentalist christian opens her mouth, but can you imagine the comedy routine when all three are ad libbing? I never knew so much about myself until I went [nose plug] there. My sinfulness was on display, like a B-movie. I have sinned exceedingly in thought and word; I am to spend all of Eternity not being consumed by the fires around me, while the trio look down from their heavenly perch and, with a Cheshire grin,  give me the finger.

So goes life in the big city. Another day, another sinner damned to Hell.

Deo gratias.

Oh, thou yeasty knotty-pated moldwarp!

"Oh, thou yeasty knotty-pated moldwarp! Come hither that I might foul thy ruttish whey-face!" - Act 3, Scene IV, Morello.

Shakespeare clearly knew Elizabethan English well and could hurl insults with artful vocabulary which, today, is fairly obscure. Nonetheless, the sound of it shouts mastery.

Words like 'pribbling' and 'qualling' drip with feistiness as do 'lumpish' and 'gorbellied.' When Shakespeare needed just the right word for his character to say, he invented it. Some have stuck, others not. 'Lumpish' did, but lo, not the other three.

Language is nicely malleable, although for the tight-assed purists, it remains frozen in time. Frozen, one might note, in irregularity and daftness. Take the phrase, "If you was going..." To most, it cringes the ear like ill-angled chalk upon the blackboard. Yet, in Shakespeare's time, that phrase was commonly used. It, in fact, follows the rules of grammar perfectly. 'You' in the above phrase is singular as is 'was.' Thus when 'you' and 'were' are joined, the 'rule' is broken.

How about the following: "I'm sloppy, are I not?" 'Are' is plural while 'I' is singular. Quite right and clearly a grammatical error. Except that it is perfectly 'right' to say, "I'm sloppy, aren't I?"

Rules or commonly-held colloquialisms. Which is correct? Or does 'correctness' lie in one's common use of the language? Here in northern Ohio we often drop the preposition 'to' in spoken English. My mother would commonly ask me to "go the store" for her. 'Can' rather than 'will' as well as 'might' rather than 'may' are two other colloquial norms here. 'Greasy' is pronounced with an 's' sound here, but 50 miles south, near Lima,Ohio, it is a 'z' sound.

"It's your turn to do the dishes." How does one 'do' dishes? Residents of the city, Toledo, most often say the name with two schwa sounds for the o's and a long vowel sound of the 'e,' rendering something like Tuh-lee-dah. We sweep the dirt with a broom or we 'va-kume' it up. Apparently the word 'vacuum' both a noun and verb but 'broom' is only a noun. Here we use buckets of water rather than pails and we fry eggs in pans, not skillets. We sound the 'e' in eggs 'eh' rather than 'ag.' We do not distinguish the sound of 'Mary,' 'marry,' and 'merry,' but there is a clear difference between are and hour. We note the silent 'g' in singer but often slide over the articulated 'g' in finger. For breakfast we drink orn-jews, enough is commonly, ah-nuf and Tuesday is tooz dee.

Anuf of this.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Our Country Deserves Better

"Our Country Deserves Better" is much more than a trite shibboleth- it is a newly formed political action committee. Nice name, great idea and surely a concept at which few would find fault. Politicians have always been a motley crew, a dicey junta who purport to do good but who, all too often, end up doing what's best for their reelection campaign treasure chest.

Enter this new political PAC with a hopeful name. But wait! There is already one problem- it is a Republican PAC. Nothing wrong with a group of Republicans wanting to fumigate Congress except [and pathetically] they want to focus their fumigation hoses exclusively on Democrats.

Yes, its the dastardly Democrats who deserve extermination while the same class of Republicans will receive donations to their election war chests. goes politics in America.

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