Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Hillary's private server

By Donald Sensing

ABC News blog:

This week, we asked Amy Chozick, national political reporter for the The New York Times, who covers Hillary Clinton, about when the former secretary of state might announce her 2016 intentions, her possible competition and one thing that surprised Chozick about Clinton.
And the thing that surprised Chozick about Clinton:
5] Covering Clinton, what is one thing that has surprised you about her? Amy Chozick: Hmm. She likes to drink. We were on the campaign trail in 2008 and the press thought she was just taking shots to pander to voters in Pennsylvania. Um, no.
Leading to this comment on FB: 
When they told her they were putting a private server in her basement, she thought they meant a bartender ...
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Islamist jihadis are mostly well off and educated

By Donald Sensing

The Education of ‘Jihadi John’ - NYTimes.com

These speakers claim to preach Islam, but they peddle a highly politicized, often violent strain of my faith. It is easier than one might think for bright, capable people like Mr. Emwazi to fall for the myopic worldview of the preachers of hate. Young people from relatively prosperous, educated backgrounds have long been overrepresented in jihadist causes.
So writes a former, highly-radicalized Muslim. Read the whole thing.

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A liberal moves to Realityville

By Donald Sensing

Another Obamacare Supporter Just Got A Hard Dose Of Reality

Her blog post ends with this sentiment (emphasis added) -
 
It saddens me to say this, but I no longer believe that the government should mandate health care. It’s not because I’ve abandoned the basic principles behind health care reform. Quite the contrary. But a great idea, is just an idea, if you can’t execute.And the government has proven time and time again, it can’t execute. So I’m over it until someone figures it out.
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Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Is tech making us stupid, demented and depressed?

By Donald Sensing

Is your satnav harming your brain? Scientists warn over-use of modern technology may be linked to memory loss and depression in later life

They even call it "e-mentia." Using tech devices literally changes our brains. And probably not for the better.

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Why Our Children Don't Think There Are Moral Facts

By Donald Sensing

Why Our Children Don't Think There Are Moral Facts - NYTimes.com

The most important training we can give our children is moral training. And school curricula deliberately teach them instead that there is no morality, there is only opinion.

The curricula teach that only that which can be proven is true. But truth is not at all wholly dependent on proof.

For example, it could be true that there is life elsewhere in the universe even though no one can prove it. Conversely, many of the things we once “proved” turned out to be false. For example, many people once thought that the earth was flat. It’s a mistake to confuse truth (a feature of the world) with proof (a feature of our mental lives). Furthermore, if proof is required for facts, then facts become person-relative. Something might be a fact for me if I can prove it but not a fact for you if you can’t. In that case, E=MC2 is a fact for a physicist but not for me.
The curricula insist that anything that is not provable is mere opinion. (That such a claim makes the entire curricula mere opinion seems to have escaped its authors.)
Kids are asked to sort facts from opinions and, without fail, every value claim is labeled as an opinion. Here’s a little test devised from questions available on fact vs. opinion worksheets online: are the following facts or opinions?

— Copying homework assignments is wrong. 
— Cursing in school is inappropriate behavior.

— All men are created equal.

— It is worth sacrificing some personal liberties to protect our country from terrorism.

— It is wrong for people under the age of 21 to drink alcohol.

— Vegetarians are healthier than people who eat meat.

— Drug dealers belong in prison.


The answer? In each case, the worksheets categorize these claims as opinions. The explanation on offer is that each of these claims is a value claim and value claims are not facts. This is repeated ad nauseum: any claim with good, right, wrong, etc. is not a fact.

In summary, our public schools teach students that all claims are either facts or opinions and that all value and moral claims fall into the latter camp. The punchline: there are no moral facts. And if there are no moral facts, then there are no moral truths.
If this sounds like 1984 just remember that we are 31 years well beyond that.

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Monday, March 2, 2015

Question answered

By Donald Sensing


From BOTWT.

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Saturday, February 28, 2015

.-- .... -.-- / .. / -. --- .-- / .-.. .. -.- . / ...- . .-. .. --.. --- -.

By Donald Sensing

You can translate the headline of this post by pasting it here.

For all the grief Verizon gets, in my view it has redeemed itself, at least for some time to come for doing this: Verizon issues statement in Morse code to protest net neutrality ruling

On Verizon's policy blog Thursday, the company posted a statement it titled "FCC's 'Throwback Thursday' move imposes 1930s rules on the Internet."
And here it is, translation below:
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“Today’s decision by the FCC to encumber broadband Internet services with badly antiquated regulations is a radical step that presages a time of uncertainty for consumers, innovators and investors. Over the past two decades a bipartisan, light- touch policy approach unleashed unprecedented investment and enabled the broadband Internet age consumers now enjoy. “The FCC today chose to change the way the commercial Internet has operated since its creation. Changing a platform that has been so successful should be done, if at all, only after careful policy analysis, full transparency, and by the legislature, which is constitutionally charged with determining policy. As a result, it is likely that history will judge today’s actions as misguided.
“The FCC’s move is especially regrettable because it is wholly unnecessary. The FCC had targeted tools available to preserve an open Internet, but instead chose to use this order as an excuse to adopt 300- plus pages of broad and open- ended regulatory arcana that will have unintended negative consequences for consumers and various parts of the Internet ecosystem for years to come.
“What has been and will remain constant before, during and after the existence of any regulations is Verizon’s commitment to an open Internet that provides consumers with competitive broadband choices and Internet access when, where, and how they want.”

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Is Islam the next big thing in America and Europe?

By Donald Sensing

Why the next religious revival in the West may be Islamic

Short version:

But Islam does win converts in the West, and there are good reasons to expect that some of the next great religious awakenings in the Western world will be Islamic ones.

For one, Islam is a living faith, whereas the established Christian churches are mostly dead. Islamic imams make headlines for proclaiming what they believe. Christian theologians and pastors make headlines for announcing what they doubt or no longer believe. 
"Oh, whatever" does not make a successful religious doctrine. Islam is satanically deceptive and is all too easily (and obviously) turned into a cult of death. But what it does not lack is certainty, even in the so-called "moderate" variety. 

Then there is this:
Muslims happily share and teach core texts, sayings, and the history of their faith. These offer consolation, understanding, and a guide to life far more compelling than Western popular culture. By contrast, most Western Christians know very little about their own beliefs.
The vast majority of Christians either do not want to share their faith or do not know how or do not really want to know how, or all three. Muslims know all of these things in relation to their faith. Their reasons are not valid (because Islam is a false religion top to bottom), but they do know them. 

Another factor: for a few decades now, at least, mainline Western churches have promoted a deity whom I called "the metrosexual Jesus" back in 2007:
One of the main thrusts of liberal Bible scholarship over at least the last 40 years has been to devise arguments that the Bible does not really mean what it says.

But what is distinctive about modern scholarship is what one of my colleagues, a Ph.D. candidate at the liberal Vanderbilt Divinity School, observed: In addition to interpreting the Scriptures in ways that suit them (not a new thing at all) liberal scholars have "demythologized" the Bible in radical ways. So radical, in fact, that it is barely recognizable in many of their works as revelatory of the divine.

"Modern biblical scholarship wants to liberate people from the Bible instead of immerse them into it," he said. "The Bible is presented as oppressive, patriarchal, exclusionary and ‘privileging’ certain people at the expense of others. Therefore, scholarship is highly concerned with providing reasons to reject the teachings of the Scriptures rather than embrace them."
I referenceLeon Podles’ book, The Church Impotent: The Feminization of Christianity. Amazon’s book description states thus:
After documenting the highly feminized state of Western Christianity, Dr. Podles identifies the masculine traits that once characterized the Christian life but are now commonly considered incompatible with it. ... He contends that though masculinity has been marginalized within Christianity, it cannot be expunged from human society. If detached from Christianity, it reappears as a substitute religion, with unwholesome and even horrific consequences. The church, too, is diminished by its emasculation. Its spirituality becomes individualistic and erotic, tending toward universalism and quietism. In his concluding assessment of the future of men in the church, Dr. Podles examines three aspects of Christianity-initiation, struggle, and fraternal love-through which its virility might be restored.
A reader comment on the Amazon page made the following point: 
If Christianity keeps appealing to "feminized men" and rejecting the masculine, we just may see a masculine spirituality go hypermasculine to the cry of "Allahu Akbar!
And so it seems. 

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Thursday, February 26, 2015

Nyet Neutrality

By Donald Sensing



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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

When your house explodes

By Donald Sensing

It looks like this.

Fifteen people were injured, two of them seriously, when an explosion ripped through a house in New Jersey on Tuesday.

The blast is thought to have been caused by a ruptured gas main, and seven of the injured were maintenance workers who were trying to locate the source of the leak.

The explosion happened about 90 minutes after police received the first report of a strong gas smell in the area.



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We need more like him

By Donald Sensing


From American Digest.

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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Muslims against Islamism

By Donald Sensing

Having previously praised certain moderate Muslims, here is an interview with M. Zuhdi Jasser, founder and president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD): Muslims against Islamism.

The war against Christians is being waged not just by ISIS but by its ideological Sunni forefathers of the Wahhabi Islamist movement, nurtured by the house of Saud and the Muslim Brotherhood and fed by Islamist benefactors from the Gulf (e.g., Qatar) and beyond. ISIS’s attacks against Christians were simply learned from the ideologies of the Wahhabi militants of Saudi Arabia, the home and the headquarters of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), which sets the tone for the supremacist Islam, or Islamism, promoted across the planet. Saudi Arabia has a long, notorious track record of being one of the world’s worst offenders of religious freedom and notably of Christians, who are not allowed to worship publicly, build churches, or carry Bibles. The fate of Christians is tied to the abysmal fate of all minorities, including dissident Muslims — of all victims of persecution under political Islam and its militant fascist offshoots.
Related: "Nonsense about terrorism's 'root causes'," on CNN no less.
Already a predictable tsunami of nonsense has washed over us about the "root causes" of terrorism. We have heard from Obama administration officials and even the President himself that terrorism has something to do with lack of opportunities and poverty. Obama said on Wednesday that "we have to address grievances terrorists exploit, including economic grievances."
But almost all the Islamist terrorists are actually men and women of the upper half.

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