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Saturday, February 18, 2006

A Short Photo-Essay by Me

Oh boy! A new toy! Lookie all the neat things I can cook!
Just looking at the box makes me hungry...



Okay, What first? Hmmm... Looks complicated.



Step 1. Take the grill out of the box. Okay...



Step 2. Employ all them "hunter-gatherer" genes
and go find yourself victuals to cook up. Okay...



Step 3. Throw raw protein at the grill.
Wait a while. Serve with cheese.



Step 4. Eat. You may want to give the paramedics a "heads up"
about that pesky heart condition...


Yes, in case you're wondering, that's a couple sandwiches.
Fried ham with a fried egg on top with cheese and bacon on English muffins.
Oh boy! Mighty tasty indeed!


The more I read...

The more I read other people's blogs, the more I realize that I spend an inordinate amount of time sitting unshaven in my bathrobe taking pictures of the cat. There are intelligent people out there that are really and truly thinking, using the gray matter, writing things that make my brain sweat. Conversations are being held about issues that really matter. It's a beautiful thing! And here I sit in my bathrobe...

A few things I've read lately that have left me scratching my head in bewonderment:

The great psychologist Abraham Maslow developed this hierarchy of needs based upon observations of monkeys. Simply put, he noticed that some needs take precedence over others. If you are hungry and thirsty, for example, you will tend to try to take care of the thirst first. Because you can do without food for weeks, but you can only do without water for a few days, thirst is a stronger need than hunger. Likewise, if you are very thirsty, but someone has put a choke hold on you and you can'’t breathe, which is more important?

Maslow took this idea and created his now famous hierarchy of needs. Beyond the details of air, water, food, and sex, he laid out five broader layers -- the physiological needs, the needs for safety and security, the needs for love and belonging, the needs for esteem, and the need to actualize the self, in that order. - Intellectual Insurgent, in the post Maslow'sHierarchyy

The author of the above-mentioned blog went on to describe Maslow's hierarchy in depth, then took it a step further and applied those five layers of need to society in general. In part two of the blog, the author relates this to self-actualization. It doesn't sound like politics, but we need to be aware of this sort of stuff in order to vote intelligently. And it's just plain fun to read, to be honest.

Or, something completely different from The Daily Curmudgeon:

When Muslims are murdered by Muslim suicide bombers at mosques, funerals or markets not a word. No riot. No bounty. No nothing. When a guy draws a bad cartoon in an obscure Danish newspaper - death bounties are issued, violent riots (as opposed to peaceful riots) lead to death and destruction all to protest the cartoons which depicted the religion as condoning violence. Makes sense to me as much as a country producing nuclear weapons that can't feed, educate or care for its own people. - Crankyboy, in the post Nukes Before Toilet Paper

Both of the posts listed above have intelligent comments to read as well. And most of the people who leave the comments have intelligent blogs to read, too. Just follow the links...

But the must-read, in my opinion, is a rather longish article (not blog) that was first seen in Esquire, believe it or not. A few paragraphs:

And, finally, in August, the cover of Time - —for almost a century the dyspeptic voice of the American establishment - clears its throat, hems and haws and hacks like a headmaster gagging on his sherry, and asks, quite seriously: "Does God have a place in science class?"

Fights over evolution —- and its faddish new camouflage, intelligent design, a pseudoscience that posits without proof or method that science is inadequate to explain existence and that supernatural causes must be considered - —roil up school districts across the country. The president of the United States announces that he believes ID ought to be taught in the public schools on an equal footing with the theory of evolution. And in Dover, Pennsylvania, during one of these many controversies, a pastor named Ray Mummert delivers the line that both ends our tour and, in every real sense, sums it up:

"We've been attacked,"” he says, "“by the intelligent, educated segment of the culture."

And there it is.



After a few more paragraphs, the author continues...

How does it work? This is how it works. On August 21, a newspaper account of the "“intelligent design" movement contained this remarkable sentence: "They have mounted a politically savvy challenge to evolution as the bedrock of modern biology, propelling a fringe academic movement onto the front pages and putting Darwin'’s defenders firmly on the defensive."

A "politically savvy challenge to evolution"” is as self-evidently ridiculous as an agriculturally savvy challenge to Euclidean geometry would be. It makes as much sense as conducting a Gallup poll on gravity or running someone for president on the Alchemy Party ticket. It doesn'’t matter what percentage of people believe they ought to be able to flap their arms and fly, none of them can. It doesn'’t matter how many votes your candidate got, he'’s not going to turn lead into gold. The sentence is so arrantly foolish that the only real news in it is where it appeared.

On the front page.

Of The New York Times.

Within three days, there was a panel on the subject on Larry King Live, in which Larry asked the following question:

"“All right, hold on. Dr. Forrest, your concept of how can you out-and-out turn down creationism, since if evolution is true, why are there still monkeys?"

And why do so many of them host television programs, Larry?


The article isn't all about Evolution, though...

First, he [U.S. President George W. Bush] compared the violence surrounding the writing of an impromptu theocratic constitution in Baghdad to the events surrounding the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787. Undaunted, he later compared the war he'’d launched in Iraq to World War II. And then he compared himself to Franklin Roosevelt. One more public appearance and we might have learned that Custer was killed by Hezbollah.

Finally, we saw the apotheosis of the end of expertise, when New Orleans was virtually obliterated as a functional habitat for human beings, and the country discovered that the primary responsibility for dealing with the calamity lay with a man who'’d been dismissed as an incompetent from his previous job as the director of a luxury-show-horse organization.

And the president went on television and said that nobody could have anticipated the collapse of the unfortunate city'’s levees. In God's sweet name, engineers anticipated it. Politicians anticipated it. The poor bastards in the Ninth Ward certainly anticipated it. Hell, four generations of folk singers anticipated it.


The article, written by Charles P. Pierceb, can be found in its entirety HERE. It's well worth reading!

You see, these people think. It gives me faith in America. We are more intelligenter than some peepul think. Freedom of the press is only true when you own the press. Newspapers can't really write everything they want to - they need to cater to those that pay their bills. Same for TV. But the Internet, now... That's a different story altogether. When you see something intelligent on the net, pass it on - Lord knows you won't see it on Fox News, and you won't hear it from Scott McClellen, either.

Okay, I'm done now. Anyone know how to get down off this soapbox...? (And yes, I really am in my bathrobe. And no, it's not a pretty sight.)

3 Comments:

Blogger Intellectual Insurgent said...

Very well written. Especially the critique of the analysis of the intelligent design debate. There are intelligent people out there and thank goodness for the internet or it would be tough to find them.

Check out www.democracynow.org and www.antiwar.com for news. They have great stuff.

10:13 PM  
Blogger Intellectual Insurgent said...

By the way, I think I gained 10 pounds just looking at the pictures of the food you got.

10:14 PM  
Blogger mwd said...

Very nice piece. Greatly appreciated your thoughts.

12:57 PM  

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