We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Monday, July 27. 2015
We Can Complain Because Rose Bushes Have Thorns, or Rejoice Because Thorn Bushes Have Roses
Often attributed to Abe Lincoln, probably wrongly
Image via Moonbattery
If Male Musicians Were Described The Same Way As Female Musicians
Woman who shot alleged attacker may have slain a serial killer, police say
NASA estimates 1 billion ‘Earths’ in our galaxy alone
Where Does the Bible Say Extra-Marital Sex is Wrong? The big picture of God's design for sex.
Call off the bee-pocalypse: U.S. honeybee colonies hit a 20-year high
Honeybees are not native to North America
When I worked at Marxism Today, my desire to
At Anti-Bullying Conference, Middle Schoolers Learn About Lesbian Strap-On Anal Sex, Fake Testicles
The New York Times' Nail-Salon Exploitation Narrative Is Falling Apart - Another case of advocacy journalism proving full of factual inaccuracies.
"... why stop at Jefferson and Jackson?"
Supremely Naive: The Impact of Southworth on the "Marketplace of Ideas"
Charles Murray’s Prescription for American Government
Obama Admin Plans More Executive Action on Immigration
Democrats’ handout strategy is failing
Carly Fiorina Shows Us How It's Done
As Hillary! Craters, Democrats Search for Panic Button
As Military Strength Plummets, the New York Times Cheers Cutbacks
Hungary’s Orban Urges Hard Line Over Migrants in ‘Broken’ Europe
Iran vows to bar international inspectors from military sites
Iranian FM: Using Ballistic Missiles No Violation of N. Agreement
Sunday, July 26. 2015
I just received the following email, and the link to the video.
For myself, I'd add, that could be my son disarmed and allowed to be murdered by a jihadist right here at home in the USA, and that girl murdered in downtown San Francisco could be my innocent daughter murdered by an illegal immigrant criminal allowed to roam free by "sanctuary" liberals, but President Obama acts like he could care less, while instead rousing hatred and street violence by he immediately mourning street thugs who happen to be Black.Re the Chatanooga shootings:
I was at the airport as they offloaded Lcpl. Skip Wells's body and proceeded with appropriate respect to the funeral home. The Patriot Guard (with whom I used to ride until my knees became so untrustworthy that I was afraid to ride a Harley), the Legion Riders, police scooters from Atlanta, DeKalb Co., Cobb co. and other places, along with many other folks, led the hearse away to the funeral home. I pulled over to the side of the rode overlooking the exit from the cargo area, unfurled my flag that usually flies on the front of my house, waited for them to pull away, and did my best attention, saluting--uncovered!--as the entourage and Skip's body passed by.
Tears were rolling down my face. There were hundreds, maybe thousands of people all over Atlanta who stopped to honor the procession, something that really made me feel good. I didn't cry for my brothers who died when I was young, but lots of things bring tears to my eyes these days. I must be getting soft in my dotage.
I do not know why this latest shooting event has touched me so, but it has really bothered me. I think Obama's refusal to lower the flag until pressure mounted helped.
ASIDE: Monday morning, I went to work (I teach part-time at the local technical college, GED classes), went to the security guy who usually raises the flag, and took it along with a police academy guy, raised it and lowered to half-mast. I told them to tell anyone who complained that I did it. Turns out the police wannabe guy was a Marine, too. We did out best at "Colors." I saluted--uncovered--because I thought I should.
His mother was in a following hearse, and she blew a kiss at us out of the window.
After the procession passed, I went to the international terminal with my wife and two grandsons to meet Kyle as he arrived on leave from Germany. He is fine. He is scheduled to be deployed to Egypt in the fall.
Take a look at the video to see the procession.
I am no expert, so take with two grains of salt - it is just what I have learned. This is regarding maintaining recreational fitness, ie "Ordinary Fitness for Life" - not serious athletic training or serious muscle-building.
Below average = "weak." Nobody, male or female, wants to be weak or below average. Average is good for a starting target or even an endpoint (Average fitness is my personal endpoint). This isn't about body-building but just about maintaining good, versatile functionality in youth, or later despite aging. These things are not a complete fitness program by any means, just a few rough indices of average American decent fitness because they involve so much of one's physicality.
- Fitness entails, requires, not being fat. Nobody needs a silly BMI to know when they have unpleasant and unnecessary flab. You can feel it with your hands. Lard slows us down with everything in life because our hearts are forced to pump blood though it when we have other things to do. It's dietary.
- An average fit woman can expect to deadlift 100 percent of her body weight. Average fit males can deadlift roughly 150 percent of their body weight.
- Barbell squats for leg and core strength are roughly the same as above. (For me now, three sets of 25 deep squats without weights is challenging, and torture with plain kettlebells or clasping a heavy ball. I like to do squats combined with light dumbbell military lifts. A full-body engagement but not stressful enough for my fitness trainer who considers it an exercise for nursing homes. I doubt that I will ever get to dumbell squats, but who knows? I may die first.)
- The average fit male should eventually be able to bench press 1 x body weight for a solid set - or at least once. Average fit female can press around 80-100 lbs. They say it's good for boob-fitness too.
- For push-ups, the average fit male can do 25-40. The average fit female can do 20-25 knee-push-ups. (Many exercise trainers feel knee pushups for women are worthless). Push-ups are about muscle endurance, not so much strength. Lots of people do them as part of their morning or bedtime rituals. (I have trouble doing them due to an old right shoulder injury - once body surfing, and again skiing, and then I totally destroyed it for good doing flies. Every middle-aged person has a handicap or two if they have lived life off the chair or sofa, but it's no reason to give up on vigor)
- An average fit person can run a mile in ten minutes or less without dying.
- Elbow Planks - A core exercise. Fit men and women can do 2 minutes or more. My boss puts weight plates on my back to save time. Sheesh. More weight, dude. I can do it. Why not just jump on my back? Sweat drips. I alternate with push-up-style planks and sometimes with one-handed planks.
Physical conditioning is humbling for the middle-aged. Age, joint issues, and body type alter things, eg short people with short arms have shorter and thus larger muscles and can naturally bench more than lanky people - and often average people over 55 need lowered expectations.
In the end, I guess you use good form, do what you can do, and build up from there without obsessing about the numbers as long as they improve. As I said, conditioning is not all resistance, but without rigorous muscle work you can't do all of the other exercises to the max, or all of life as vigorously as one might like. The goal is to maximize ordinary life and your ordinary recreational sports. I assume most of our interested readers do some sports, but perhaps not. Exercise is for life utility. If your day job is physical, lucky you. All of our day jobs were physical a generation or two or three ago, females included.
Your views and opinions welcome -
Loneliness is a painful state. Social isolation feels terrible. Most people need friends and family around for company. It's a true cliche that alone in the city can be the worst.
I agree with Schneiderman that, no matter how much of an outsider somebody is, if you get involved in things sooner or later some kindred spirits will be found: The Loneliness of the Outsider
Fun with Math. A prodigy grows up to become one of the greatest mathematicians in the world.
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 07:03 | Comment (1) | Trackbacks (0)
2 Samuel 11:1-15
Saturday, July 25. 2015
How to survive a post-truth society. She says we like pretty lies.
Man, I love this amazing city with one surprise after another.
Citibike (subsidized, I believe) price is good, but I constantly wonder about this: Financial Prices Should Be Discovered, Not Administered. Central bankers think they are smarter than markets. They should be abolished.
Mayor DeBlasio hates Uber, as does Hillary!. Everybody else loves it. Let the market (the people) decide: Uber Wins a Battle With New York, Now It’s War. What an arrogant jerk, just like our last mayor. Not enough government controls on enterprise?
I am out on the town tonight, boating and fishing next weekend. Life is good here, despite all the political frustrations. NYC in summer is good stuff, beautiful, intelligent, ambitious, fun people everywhere you go. Just say "Hi." The annoying people are in the Hamptons. Trump for Mayor!
Addendum from the Editor below - could not resist -
Most foods have little resemblance to their natural origins. They have been domesticated and are "unnatural." Human genius defeating a cruel nature.
A book I'd like to read: Maize for the Gods: Unearthing the 9,000-Year History of Corn
Wild maize is a grass, with the fruit/seed about an inch long. Were it not for those ancient Central American genetic engineers, we'd have neither grits nor polenta.
Photo is teosintas, ancestor of domestic maize
We Are Told Jazz Jennings Is a Girl, yet Boys Aren’t Biting
Rutgers Professor: White People Are “The Face Of The Oppressor”
All the Illegals Get to Stay
Anthem to buy Cigna — and then there were three: 7 key points
Colorado Nuns Appeal Birth Control Ruling to Supreme Court
New York Times alters Clinton email story
HILLARY PUTS ‘FUN CAMPS’ ASIDE TO PROPOSE ‘CARING CORPS.’
Sheesh. She should run on the Fun Camps thing. A winning issue.
Walker is not anti-union. He is anti-government employee unions. So was FDR. The real reason he is dangerous is because he rides a Harley, while Hillary! can't drive a car.
Italians Finally Rise Up Against ‘Migrants’ - Slow-motion but steady invasion of Europe by Africa and the Middle East gets some pushback.
From Foe to Frenemy - Why the United States is Courting Vietnam
Hungary expects to complete Serbian border fence by November
Get Ready, Japan: Russia Has Its Own Island-Buildup Project
Amnesty protests 'staggering execution spree' in Iran
Mission to Purge Syria of Chemical Weapons Comes Up Short
The President’s Preferred Bad Deal
Salman Rushdie on Islam: 'We have learned the wrong lessons'
We Are Told Jazz Jennings Is a Girl, yet Boys Aren’t Biting - See more at: http://moonbattery.com/?p=61094#sthash.L7S0XnqV.dpuf
A sonnet from Rime in vita e morte di Madonna Laura.
Era il giorno ch'al sol si scoloraro
In direct sun, there is a greenish cast but in shade or lower light they appear black. Except for a little old rust pitting, they look almost brand new. You can now read on the underside that they were made in Bridgeport.
Besides rusting to bits, another reason why these sorts of things are so scarce is because of iron-collection drives during WW1.
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 04:04 | Comments (8) | Trackbacks (0)
Friday, July 24. 2015
Any time diagnostic criteria change, the incidence of the thing changes. Obviously.
The bubble. Higher ed has been a booming industry since they lowered standards and since government began subsidizing them with loans, grants, etc.
What percent of colleges are glorified high schools, selling degrees? Too Many Colleges?
Politicians want to be important people, right? Somewhere inside their souls maybe they feel small, but have dreams of greater significance and appreciation despite often lacking ordinary life talents and skills other than a compulsion to shmooze and suck up to people.
Above all, they need validation, and the power and money are tied for second. Third comes job security. Not all of the time, but most of the time.
Forget campaign finance reform and all that. The old saying is "Politics is the Hollywood for unappealing people." To level the playing field, to lend some humility to politicians, and to put the process into perspective for the citizens, I propose that anyone running for any public office in the USA must be required to wear the Official Campaign Uniform on the right while campaigning.
That way, we the people will know who they are and know that they are special.
Helicopter Parenting is Mandatory Now
Index Funds May Work a Little Too Well
The World's Biggest "Hedge Fund", $30 Billion Bigger Than Bridgewater, Remains Mysterious As Ever
You Have a Right to Buy and Sell Sex. Will the Courts Protect It By Legalizing Prostitution?
It's immoral, but why illegal? It's victimless.
Global warming team iced in
NYT-CBS Poll: Race Relations Bad, Getting Worse
Not in my life, they aren't
Planned Parenthood Pulls Names of Corporate Donors After Coca-Cola, Ford and Xerox Object
In Texas, an illegal immigrant crime wave
Obama Admin Plans More Executive Action on Immigration - Proposed rule expands number of illegal immigrants allowed to stay in country
How Our Current Immigration System Impedes Black Progress - African-Americans lose out when immigration favors low-skill labor.
Clinton on candidacy: 'One of the merits is I am a woman'
One, or the only?
Swedish Countermoonbats Plan Gay Pride Parade Through Muslim Zone
"Refugee Children" Invade Sweden
Iran's Prison Archipelago
PA education: A recipe for hate and terror
Secret Iran Deals Cover Military Site, Other Past Arms Work
Wellfleet. I'd like to be there today. Wouldn't you?
Thursday, July 23. 2015
My son just showed this to me at a news site. A gamer in Russia caught the so-called "rebels" that have broken away eastern Ukraine, actually the Russians and their stooges, trying to accuse the U.S. of supplying Stinger missiles to the Ukranian government. What they actually showed was a replica of a Stinger missile taken from the game Battlefield 3. Remember, all evidence shows that the Russian stooges shot down a civilian airliner, killing all aboard. Their excuses didn't hold water, and this poor propaganda doesn't pop either.
Go to this link for the whole story in English, and click on the Youtube uploaded by the Russian gamer today.
Scarpetta. Give it a try. As a matter of fact, she is taking a BD daughter to dinner there tonight after the new Annie Baker play. (They are Annie Baker fans after loving Flick a while ago.) She says their pastas are amazing but our advice is to always skip pasta in good Italian restaurants. Why dine on starch, when there are so many other better flavors in antipasti and secondi?
I'll make exceptions for Pappardelle al Funghi with wild mushrooms, or Fois Gras Ravioli with Black Truffle.
Looking back, thus far, for Italian, we have also recommended Barbetta, Giovanni, Macelleria, - and Bar Eolo for genuine Sicilian. Only Barbetta is a jacket and tie joint, but for Giovanni a jacket is appropriate.
“Only the disciplined mind can see reality, Winston. You believe that reality is something objective, external, existing in its own right. You also believe that the nature of reality is self-evident. When you delude yourself into thinking that you see something, you assume that everyone else sees the same thing as you. But I tell you, Winston, that reality is not external. Reality exists in the human mind, and nowhere else. Not in the individual mind, which can make mistakes, and in any case soon perishes: only in the mind of the Party, which is collective and immortal. Whatever the Party holds to be the truth, is truth. It is impossible to see reality except by looking through the eyes of the Party.”
George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four (1948), as quoted in McCain's Feminism as Totalitarian Ideology
Praise music: AVI on Church Music
I find it embarassing
Liberals have won a series of victories on social issues. Most Americans aren’t thrilled about it.
OBAMA’S ICE DIRECTOR: NO IMMIGRATION ENFORCEMENT UNTIL AMNESTY IS PASSED
Unions vs. Obamacare
Three Huge Reasons Why the Fed Cannot Let Rates Normalize
Wouldn't that be good for Gaia?
Kirsten Powers: Crush Planned Parenthood
Planned Parenthood videos should appall even pro-choice advocates
In defense of PP: The Campaign of Deception Against Planned Parenthood
Venezuelan farmers ordered to hand over produce to state
How Goldman Sachs profited from the Greek debt crisis
The squid never rests
Army chief Odierno, in exit interview, says US could have ‘prevented’ ISIS rise
Iran Nuclear Agreement Meets With Public Skepticism - Little Confidence in Iran’s Leaders to Live Up to Deal