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.
That's an assertion by AVI, but I don't know whether he refers to high school or college students. Presumably every college-bound kid would have taken Alg ll in high school, if not AB Calc. He also says:
The math that the other 90% are going to need, day in and day out, to understand the lives they are going to be living, are probability and statistics.
I'm not sure what I think about this. How much math is enough to make a person functional and numerically-literate, and how much to be considered well-educated? I think all of these areas are excellent training for rigorous and critical thinking. It's basically a logical language, and seems best approached that way.
Whereas the immigrant senses the fact that millions of people seek northward passage, while almost no American citizen seeks to immigrate southward — wealthy retirees excluded — the ethnic industry apparently does not. The advocates of illegal immigration almost never explain why there is illegal immigration in the first place. Instead, their politics assumes resentments and claims against the majority culture and politics of the United States. Given that incoherence, it is no wonder that the majority of Americans oppose illegal immigration and the assorted amnesties that are offered as its remedies.
The incoherent message of far too many open-borders advocates distills down to little more than this: “Millions have fled Mexico to America — historically an insensitive, racist and unfair place. Yet it nonetheless must extend amnesty to millions of Mexican nationals who prefer the morally suspect United States over their native Latino culture in Mexico.”
What the immigration debate is not about is ensuring that illegal immigration ends and that legal immigration becomes liberal, meritocratic, and ethnically blind.
Remember that, and all the absurd rhetoric of the upcoming 2014 debate will make sense.
(Receptionist) Hello, Welcome to ObamaFlowers. My name is Trina. How can I help you?
(Customer) Hello, I received an email from Professional Flowers stating that my flower order has been canceled and I should go to your exchange to reorder it. I tried your website, but it seems like it is not working. So I am calling the 800 number.
(Receptionist) Yes, I am sorry about the website. It should be fixed by the end of November. But I can help you.
(Customer) Thanks, I ordered a "Spring Bouquet" for our anniversary, and wanted it delivered to my wife's work.
(Receptionist Interrupting) Sir, "Spring Bouquets" do not meet our minimum standards, I will be happy to provide you with Red Roses.
A "person of some authority" mentioned last week that he was not bothered by the insincerity of the central claims for the ACA being revealed as we went forward. "Everyone knew that. But they had to say those things to get it passed. It's one of the finest pieces of legislation in our lifetime. Not for what it is, but because of what it will lead to." Someone worried that it wouldn't work, and much of the system collapse. "So much the better," he said. "It will get us there quicker." He looked positively giddy saying this.
The government thinks they know how to practice medicine better than we docs in the trenches do. They have no clue.
I'll admit that some of what doctors do, many expensive things, are purely defensive medicine. Lawsuits are inconvenient and no fun, but we all get sued. Most of the time, we either win or our insurers pay them to go away, but it's a major interference with our work and our mental bandwidth.
Each and every medical decision can be questioned, because it's all an individualized art requiring individualized judgements.
Christmas Eve supper is traditionally fish. We tend to make poached salmon with yoghurt-dill sauce. Usually asparagus and some potato on the side. It's ready when we all get home from Christmas Eve church.
Christmas Day dinner is the major feast. We often join relatives for this, but sometimes we host. Our relatives tend to make filet, which is always good. Our greatest success, I think, was Stuffed Crown Roast of Pork. If you don't stuff it with apple/cornbread stuffing, you can serve that on the side, with applesauce, mashed taters, and some root vegetables.
Regular Roast Beef is great, of course, but a Beef Wellington is even better if you don't have too many guests. It's easy:
Remember when liberals, including David Brooks, advocated for a weaker Chief Executive while Bush was in office (and will surely do the same if a conservative wins in 2016)?
He actually said this: "We don’t need bigger government. We need more unified authority."
Maybe you need unified authority, David, but I do not. In fact, I find that to be a profoundly weak and pathetic thought, unsuitable and inappropriate for a hearty American citizen. That's not how Americans roll. We distrust authority, instinctively. It's an American gene, and a healthy one.
The American spirit is that government and politicians are our employees, not our "authorities." We, and God, are our authorities.
Whence this desire to submit to authority? It feels sort of perverted to me. We have no "moral and intellectual superiors." In fact, our "leaders" tend to be our inferiors. Why else would they do those jobs instead of doing something useful and productive?
When I take those online ADD screening tests, I come out as "ADD Likely." I have always been impatient, physically restless, and had trouble concentrating on dense material even though I got a B+ in Physical Chemistry (the best, toughest course I took at U Mass). I don't think I'm on the thin end of the Bell Curve.
This article in the NYT makes no distinction between ADD and ADHD, but it seems to me that there is a big difference: The Selling of Attention Deficit Disorder -The Number of Diagnoses Soared Amid a 20-Year Drug Marketing Campaign.
Anyway, all of us at MF have untreated ADD. Are amphetamines performance-enhancers? Of course.
1:39 In those days Mary set out and went with haste to a Judean town in the hill country,
1:40 where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth.
1:41 When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the child leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit
1:42 and exclaimed with a loud cry, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb.
1:43 And why has this happened to me, that the mother of my Lord comes to me?
1:44 For as soon as I heard the sound of your greeting, the child in my womb leaped for joy.
1:45 And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her by the Lord."
1:46 And Mary said, "My soul magnifies the Lord,
1:47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
1:48 for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant. Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
1:49 for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name.
1:50 His mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation.
1:51 He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts.
1:52 He has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly;
1:53 he has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty.
1:54 He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy,
1:55 according to the promise he made to our ancestors, to Abraham and to his descendants forever."
Image: Fra Angelico's The Visitation, 1432 (tempera on panel). For those unfamiliar with these terms, "the visitation" refers to Mary's visiting her cousin Elizabeth following the annunciation (see section from Luke Ch 1, on continuation page below). Only Luke presents the speculation, or myth, of Christ's cousin relationship to John the Baptist.
I enjoy a nice party despite my natural shyness. The festivities began this week in my neck of the woods. I was at a fairly good one Friday night, and two last night. Some nights one has to party-hop, which I think is rude to do but also rude not to show up when invited. Not my fault that I am so popular... Yes, they had the traditional soft-boiled quail eggs on toasts with caviar on top. Dynamite.
I got this snapshot last night at a hot party before I was overwhelmed by lonely, hot, nubile females. Saturnalia, Bacchanalia, Holiday Season - whatever you call it. A good female:satyr ratio as you can see.
It's time to review mincemeat pies. I just bought a bottle of decent French brandy for the purpose.
Regular readers know that the history and the making of mince pies is a favorite winter hobby down at Maggie's Farm. They were once banned in Boston - as was Christmas itself. I make it with lard, of course, and preferably venison (I am using local venison shank this year), well-aged with brandy.
Favorite mincemeat pie quote: "Dad, what's a mince?"
It's a savoury pie, not a sweet pie. Here's a photo one of ours from last Christmastime. I use cranberries in it along with raisins and currants. Serve warm, with vanilla ice cream or hard sauce.
The Englishman posted his favorite recipe. The filling must be aged, weeks or a month, but it will work fine with a couple of weeks of aging. Yes, a pottle of apples.
...how heartening, as one watches the viral video of Obama droning on while a mere foot and a half away Mr. Jantjie rubs his belly and tickles his ear, to think that the White House’s usual money-no-object security operation went to the trouble of flying in Air Force One, plus the “decoy” Air Force One, plus support aircraft, plus the 120-vehicle motorcade or whatever it’s up to by now, plus a bazillion Secret Service agents with reflector shades and telephone wire dangling from their ears, to shepherd POTUS into the secured venue and then stand him onstage next to an $85-a-day violent schizophrenic.
All year the flax-dam festered in the heart Of the townland; green and heavy headed Flax had rotted there, weighted down by huge sods. Daily it sweltered in the punishing sun. Bubbles gargled delicately, bluebottles Wove a strong gauze of sound around the smell. There were dragon-flies, spotted butterflies, But best of all was the warm thick slobber Of frogspawn that grew like clotted water In the shade of the banks. Here, every spring I would fill jampotfuls of the jellied Specks to range on window-sills at home, On shelves at school, and wait and watch until The fattening dots burst into nimble- Swimming tadpoles. Miss Walls would tell us how The daddy frog was called a bullfrog And how he croaked and how the mammy frog Laid hundreds of little eggs and this was Frogspawn. You could tell the weather by frogs too For they were yellow in the sun and brown In rain. Then one hot day when fields were rank With cowdung in the grass the angry frogs Invaded the flax-dam; I ducked through hedges To a coarse croaking that I had not heard Before. The air was thick with a bass chorus. Right down the dam gross-bellied frogs were cocked On sods; their loose necks pulsed like sails. Some hopped: The slap and plop were obscene threats. Some sat Poised like mud grenades, their blunt heads farting. I sickened, turned, and ran. The great slime kings Were gathered there for vengeance and I knew That if I dipped my hand the spawn would clutch it.