Saturday, March 22, 2014

"O" told you not to pick your nose while driving!

In Harry Potter, there is a certain very bad man who cannot be called by his name. He is called "He who cannot be named."
We have the same sort of "he who cannot be named" in the Oval Office of the White House. And he is NOT happy with American drivers and what they are costing his insurance extravaganza.
Let's call him "O".
O led the light brigade many years ago on banning texting while driving and has successfully killed more Americans with such laws because those Americans were (surprise) holding their phones down while texting (so police wouldn't see them) and couldn't see the road. Result? More crashes. More deaths. Fewer people needing insurance because they were dead. O's many other edicts have been just as successful, such as forcing Americans to buy his health insurance so Americans could pay a lot more for fixing their bodies. Very successful.
O also decided it was time for America to be the Sesame Street of the world and make everyone, including very bad countries, have fun and be happy with us in the new Sesame world. Result? More terrorism. Russia invades another country. Iran builds nuclear weapons. Afghanistan falls. Iraq devolves into chaos. Israel is all alone against the murderers. Syria slaughters at whim. North Korea threatens Japan and even America.
Again, O has been highly successful in his foreign policy. Fewer people in the world means lower insurance costs.
So, with so many successes behind him, O is considering new bans while you are driving. You will soon not be able to do the following:
1) Sneeze (you have to close your eyes)
2) Adjust your radio (music makes you too happy anyway)
3) Fart (you usually lift one butt cheek to allow proper expunging, and THAT is dangerous)
4) Pick your nose (remember, TWO CLEAN HANDS on the wheel)
5) Look at a pretty woman or handsome man on side of road (first of all, that is simply OBJECTIFYING the opposite sex, and second of all, EYES ON THE ROAD)
6) Blinking (see EYES ON THE ROAD above)
7) Talking (talking means you are not PAYING ATTENTION, and, plus, you may be talking about how much more you're having to pay for health insurance)
8) Singing (what, you think you're WHITNEY FUCKING HOUSTON?!)
9) Yelling at kids (even though O thinks this is generally a good thing, yelling means your mouth is open, and when your mouth is open, your eyes squint, and THAT IS DANGEROUS)
10) Smoking (though O is a smoker and smokes in his taxpayer-provided, bullet-proof limo, your smoking will cost his health-insurance plan shit-tons, and the smoke could make you sneeze, and THAT is not acceptable)
11) Eating (obviously, this will make you fat and cost the health insurance plan MORE money, and that greasy drumstick could cause your hands to slip off the steering wheel and your car may hit a squinty-eyed liberal who votes for him)
12) Everything else (O couldn't think of anything else right now, so he invoked an alteration on the 10th Amendment to the Constitution)
Happy trails!

No news is good news

Planes crash, bridges collapse, thieves steal, Jesse Jackson drools, murderers murder, schools enslave children who feed on each other, unions sleep, presidents rob and smile, natural disasters wipe out villages and take down electricity, the earth warms and cools, fat people don't like to be called fat people, news "anchors" (readers) look VERY serious, weather happens, houses burn down, people text while driving, teenagers have sex (lots of it, sacre bleu!), some businessmen are crooks, terrorists terrorize, Russia invades, liberals confiscate and smile, conservatives secretly watch porn because they've banned it and hate it, politicians lie and smile.
It's called the news. Been happening this way, in one form or another (Caesar didn't have planes, but Jesse Jackson was drooling 2,000 years ago), for thousands of years. The chaos didn't begin when news readers took to the TV with 4.6 pounds of makeup.
I haven't watched the news for over 10 years. I would, if the lovely reader ladies went topless, but then I wouldn't be watching the NEWS.
The news takes away from the good life, from living. Doesn't teach us much of anything -- not the way it is done nowadays. As Don Henley says, "Get the widow on the set, we've got dirty laundry." Dirty laundry ain't fun to watch.
I'd rather be watching a good movie or TV series, or talking with someone, or drinking wine and reading, or playing with my daughter, or planning out some business strategy, or, frankly, watching grass grow.
If you already know what's right and wrong (morality, politics, liberty, productivity, thinking), then the news is a parade of dunces and denizens in real time -- the same ones they had 2,000 years ago, except with different names and bodies.
No news is good news.

Three pounds of "spirituality"

The religious folks like to talk about faith (not thinking) and grace (getting something for being bad) and hope (something bad happens and you hope like hell it stops happening) and prayer (talking to themselves and sometimes, unfortunately, out loud, because we are all, um, bad).
But today's topic is "spirituality."
Ask 10,000 religionists what that is and you'll get 10,000 different answers, but they'll all pretty much agree it's about this (pointing at themselves): being alive and awake and some sort of shit (they don't say "shit") is happening on a major scale in some sort of way that is beyond understanding and it exudes from you and MUST be derived from elsewhere.
We humanists/objectivists call that shit that's happening "the brain" -- which weighs about three pounds in adults. We don't call it spirituality; we call it "that shit that's happening."
It's happening because we THINK. We don't know exactly how that whole neuron network works yet, but we know that if somebody gets Alzheimer's or has a bad seizure or is a liberal that that "shit that happens" pretty much stops happening, pointing to the fact that "spirituality" is physical and not "derived from elsewhere."
The religionists' caveman belief in "spirituality" and its separation from this world and our bodies is called dualism: there's one physical world and then there's that "other world" elsewhere, somewhere, out there, in there, over there. They can't, of course, prove that other world, and they can get downright sniffy if you ask them to, but they KNOW it exists and that when babies are born -- BAM, a spirituality transports in and shit starts happening.
Now, it's pretty damned awesome that that three pounds of meat in your head with trillions of neurons can grasp the extent of the universe, plan 10 years ahead, grab a Frisbee at a dead run, build a supercomputer, paint the Mona Lisa, compose a Ninth Symphony, articulate morality, put a bullet through a quarter at a thousand yards, speak 10 languages, and express love in a sonnet of overpowering eloquence.
But that's what it is, isn't it? That's WHO we are! We are that three pounds, in bodies ranging from 80 pounds to 580 pounds. No matter what we weigh, we are all three pounds. Three pounds of "spirituality," of thinking and doing.
I was thinking of trying to prove the religionists wrong in this post, but have you ever tried to convince the man in the insane asylum that the birds he's talking to AREN'T really talking back? Don't work, and he can get downright sniffy.  

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

BUY Insurance and DON'T BUY Light Bulbs!!

You may have already heard that the 2007 law signed by the idiot savant (without the "savant") George W. Bush that bans all Americans from producing incandescent light bulbs (you remember Thomas Edison, right?) begins today.
You probably already know that today marks the day when The Occupier government takes over health insurance in America and you are required to buy insurance, whether you like it or not.
You MUST buy insurance. You CAN'T buy certain light bulbs.
Welcome to America.
You must pay taxes. You can't buy weed.
You must have a "Social Security" number. You can't buy any gun.
Welcome to America.
You must buy car insurance. You can't drive without a government license.
You must pay for losers (welfare). You can't get drugs without government approval.
Welcome to America.
You must be a hetero. You can't be a homo.
You must school your children. You can't be naked in public.
Welcome to America.
You must be a racist ("affirmative action"). You can't be a racist.
You must honor pets' "rights." You can't honor your children's rights to liberty.
Welcome to America.
You must pay property taxes. You can't own property the government "needs."
You must explain large amounts of cash in your possession. You can't leave America without government approval (passport).
Welcome to Occupied America.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Jesus Christ!!!

A new Harris Poll indicates that the number of Americans who believe in a Big Mystical Kahuna (aka "God") is dropping at 1% a year. It is now down to 75%, from 82% in 2007.
Young people are especially prone to not "believe."
I'd like to think it's because the young people are doing a little beach-reading with the Bible and are dumb-struck by the God-murders (for not being a virgin or cussing at your parents or being homosexual or being the child of a bad person or for not believing or for working on Sunday or for being part of the human race or for lying or for lust, etc.).
But, really, I would imagine the young folks are just bored with it. It gets in the way of Twitter and Facebook and working and playing and, well, you know, LIFE. As a child, only one thing bored me more than "public schooling, and that was the pastor. He was SO serious (I guess I'd be serious, too, if I knew I'd been lusting a little and knew it could mean DEATH). When he smiled, he didn't look happy.
Religion ain't fun. A philosophy of life should be fun. It should be about how to have as much fun as possible in our playground, in our sandbox. It should guide us on how to govern ourselves and treat other people properly so they can have fun in their sandbox, too.
But the Bible is not about sandboxes. It's about Hell and eternal damnation and extraterrestrial whimsy that could allegedly strike you down at a moment's notice for who-knows-what!
Maybe young folks are getting this. Hope so. If so, we might just be outnumbering the mystics in about 26 years.
Can I get a "Jesus Christ" on that?!
Hallelujah!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Chase-ing my tail

So, I'm standing at the checkout counter at Barnes And Noble with my daughter, Livy, and the lady behind the counter says my debit card isn't valid (I got plenty of cash in bank). I said, please try it again.  Same result. Shaking my head, I pay with cash. I figure it's gotta be a BN computer glitch.
I go to Target with Livy. Same thing. I pay with cash. Now, I'm pissed.
I call the number on my Chase debit card. Wait 25 minutes, cussing Chase for the last 20 minutes. POU (person of uninterest) finally says hello. After usual lengthy "verification" of my identity, POU says that 47 million Chase card users' identity may have been compromised by hackers who broke into Target's data system between Thanksgiving and mid-December.
The POU then says that my card may have been one of those cards and that Chase put a limit of $100 ATM withdrawals on my card and $300 in purchases per day. When I asked why Chase didn't tell me about this, the POU says, "We did it to protect you." I said, "Bullshit, my account is insured by Chase on these kinds of issues, and I couldn't have lost one penny, no matter how much was stolen by the ID theft. You guys did it to cover your own asses, and that is fine, but why the hell didn't you notify me by text, like you do on other matters, like when you're fricking sending me advertisements." After drilling her for another minute, she finally (exasperated) said that Chase would be notifying customers "soon."
When I told her I was stranded at BN and Target (had I not had cash), she just says, "Oh, we are sorry you were inconvenienced. You know, you can go to a nearby Chase branch to get a new card."
So now I (more furious) go to a nearby Chase branch (instead of finishing my shopping with Livy), and I get even MORE attitude from the Chase "officer," who tries to feed me the same "protecting you" bullshit. She says I can't get a new card on the spot (though I found out later with the bank manager that I could've gotten one on the spot at another Chase down the street that is set up for just such occurrences). So the officer lied to me.
I ask the "officer" if she's getting attitude with me (she's just staring furiously at me when I'm asking questions). This is what goes down:
Officer: I don't have attitude. It's YOU that has attitude!
Me: I have a right to have attitude here. You have attitude with me.
Officer: So? What are you going to do about it? (smirk on her face)
Me: (while I stand up and lean toward her) Watch.
I find the bank manager, who treats me with respect and apologizes profusely and explains things well and gets me what I should've gotten at the beginning of this debacle.
Then the bank manager asks: "Mr. Elmore ... what do you want me to do with Ruthie (the officer)?
Me: I think you know what I want done. If she were my employee, she would have 120 seconds to gather her belongings and leave forever.
Manager: I understand.
Me: I know you understand. But will you do it?
Manager: I will have a talk with her and ...
Me: So you won't be firing her, will you?
Manager: Mr. Elmore, I'm sure you understand that I can't discuss what the bank will do with Ruthie.
Me. I understand that you won't be firing her. If my customer for my business got treated that way, I would tell the customer that I'd be firing the employee. In fact, I would fire the employee right in front of the customer and ask the customer if he was satisfied, and then I would give the customer a little something extra and free.
Manager: I understand, Mr. Elmore.
Blah blah blah blah blah.
THAT is modern "customer service."
Oh, and Ruthie actually said "happy holidays" to me and Livy as we were leaving the bank branch. Neither Livy nor I looked at her, but I know what I wanted to do to her. I read it once in an Inquisition history book.
But as badly as I imagined some torture, it was nothing compared to what I imagined I could do to the swill-sucking cowards ("hackers") who barged into 47 million lives and stole time and money from innocent people. I have a special spot in the dank torture chambers for such pale scum.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Stardust and our universal playground

Just finished watching the terrific 8-part Discovery series "How the Universe Works."
And I'm currently reading Charles Darwin's second great book: "The Descent of Man" (written after the revolutionary "On the Origin of Species," which I read many years ago).
For 22 years, I've been reading and applying the works of the objective philosopher Ayn Rand (morality is discovered through reason and applied via reason).
I've been studying evolution, astronomy, geology and other sciences for 30 years.
Got me to thinking: Do Christians and other mystical peoples EVER watch and/or read this stuff? Do they CARE to know about reality? Do they enjoy living in the dark? Are they afraid to be human? Do they really think there is a Devil who is horny (has horns).
'Cause if they did read/watch all of the above, and they were honest, they could NEVER be Christians.
Our universe began with a "big bang" almost 14 billions years ago and is expanding rapidly (we have proof of this via the Doppler red shit and blue shift of galaxies and stars that were first discovered by Edwin Hubble).
All early primitive people, including Christians (Jesus included) thought (without proof) the universe was just some "stars" and "planets" hanging a few miles above the Earth), and that was it. They all also thought the "heavens' were fixed into place.
The universe is 13.7 billion years old. (we have proof of this number via photon red shift and exploding neutron stars at different distances in the universe)
Many Christians say it's only 6,400 years old. (no proof). Some don't "believe" it's that old.
Our Milky Way galaxy is 12 billion years old, and our solar system (sun and planets) are 4.6 billion years old (we have proof via elemental half-life dating and samples from our Earth, the moon, other planets, asteroids, etc.)
Many Christians say it's all 6,400 years old. (they say that if you count the generations in the Bible, they add up to about 6,400 years). These myopists think everything only began with some certain people being alive about 6,400 years go.
There are currently trillions upon trillions of events occurring in the universe every second that humans can't possibly detect all at once, including exploding volcanoes ever second on the moon Io around Jupiter, spinning neutron stars, exploding supernovae, millions of neutrinos going through your body as I write this, hydrogen turning into helium inside stars, trillions of comets and asteroids dancing around space, dark matter pervading the universe and causing its expansion and ultimate perishing, black holes spitting out gamma rays, gold and silver being created by exploding giant stars (no, it's not Jews who make gold).
Darwin and subsequent scientists have proved that evolution is real and that humanoid type individuals began separating themselves from apes about five million years ago (small amount of time on the cosmic scale, but a large amount of time for the 6,400ers). Modern humans (home sapiens) have only been around for about 200,000 years. Our paths out of Africa are now well known, via the proof of genetic testing (mitochondrial DNA, etc.).
Please see "myopists" comment above for those zany little Christian beliefs in 6,400.
Home sapiens have a rational faculty that was finally understood by Rand, who discovered that that faculty is capable of understanding everything in the universe, including the rational faculty itself. It is capable of hegemony, of running itself perfectly without the aid or intrusion of an outsider (an alleged greater being). It is capable of understanding its own goals, its own means of achieving those goals, of honoring others' rights to their own goals, of realizing that happiness is supposed to be the ultimate meaning for life, of understanding that all things real and good must have a basis in the facts of life (proof).
Christians, et al, think humans are incapable and "fallen," that they need help, that they must surrender their rational faculty to verbiage written or spoken by an alleged being that has no physical form or proof. They believe life is a train of hopeless transgressions, instead of a series of satisfying accomplishments that were humanly and willfully designed.
When supernovae explode, they create nucleosynthesis and spit out the primary elements (what sane person doesn't love the Periodic Chart?) in the universe that are vital to life: hydrogen, helium, oxygen, carbon, iron, gold, nickel, platinum, zinc, neon, silica, silver, uranium, etc. This is the "stardust" they spit out. The oxygen and hydrogen fuse together and populate the universe with water (usually ice crystals in space), huge amounts of it. These ice crystals (usually in the form of comets) bombarded the early Earth about a half-billion years after formation and gave us our oceans and fresh water.
This is the genesis of life, despite the crude and primitive ejaculations of the Bible.
We are the stuff of stars (carbon, water, iron, etc.). We are stardust. And, as evolved rational animals, the universe is now our playground.
It is not the place of make-believe worlds of "good" and "evil." There are no gods in the machine. Our very old universe couldn't care less about what primitive Christians or any other mystics (Buddhists, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, etc.) have "faith" in. The universe gets the last laugh.
But us rational stardust-folks get to giggle a good bit along the way to the playground each morning when we arise.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Get to high ground immediately!

I was asked to take over a terrific company in April 2011 and then take over another terrific company in January 2013. I'm running two companies.
Ergo, only three blog posts in over two years.
My god I miss it, and my idea banks are filled to capacity and overflowing.
To relieve the memory levies, I must SPEAK. I'll be blogging a lot. The words will flow.
You might want to get to high ground -- for safety's sake!

Saturday, December 07, 2013

Children Have Rights

You and your soulmate are walking in the woods behind your home. She's bitten by a colorful, exotic spider. One hour later, she's woozy. Two hours later, she's almost delirious.
At the hospital, she falls into a coma. It takes doctors 24 hours to pinpoint the illness.
She was bitten by a rare african spider. The implications are awful, say the doctors. After looking at cases in Africa, they give the husband the following prognosis:
Claire will be in a coma or semi-comatose state for one year.
In year two, she'll come completely out of any comatose state, but won't remember anything of her past or anything she ever learned and will have to learn all over again. Her rational mind will begin kicking in again rudimentarily. She'll be able to perceive things and make some causal connections and begin rudimentary speaking. But she'll often attempt to harm herself by arational actions.
From the third to fifth year, she'll begin getting higher concepts and start talking fluently, but she'll have tantrums occasionally because of frustration and will still attempt to do some harmful things.
From year 6 through 10, Claire will learn how to read, do math, wrestle with and digest high concepts, and she will get back almost entirely to where she was when she was bitten, with rare occasions of still grappling with honesty, justice, integrity and pride until about the 12th year -- at which time, she should be fully back to her vital former self.
You and Claire had planned for potential catastrophic occurrences before the spider bite, but neither of you could've imagined such a state of conditions.
You grapple with your values, but you decide, yes, you will care of her during those 10 years, being her caretaker, changing her diapers at first, stopping her from harmful acts, providing tutorials when asked, lengthily explaining causal and moral matters when she's ready and willing, etc.
                                                                             ***
As I'm sure you, my reader, have figured out already, the above scenario is essentially the scenario, mutatis mutandis, of a child in her first 10 years: complete incapacitation to near full mental growth.
Claire would not and did not surrender her individual rights. She ascribed her protection and care taking over to someone she trusted. She would want her soulmate to keep her healthy, stop her from taking action against herself (by retaliating against her to protect her), and provide a moral and robust environment for mental growth.
If she chose not to go to a formalized school, she would not go. Etc.
Children have the same individual rights. Their "smallness" and "babbling" and harmful value pursuits (running into street) do not subjugate them, nor do they mean a surrender of rights, and nor do they mean that they are somebody's property. They are in caretaker status. They will set their own values at an early age and pursue any knowledge related to those values. They are quite ambitious, like Claire, if left alone in value-pursuits.
If they could talk at birth for a brief moment, they might say: "Hey. Howdy. Good to finally see some good lighting. Look, I'm going to need you to please take care of me for a good bit, keep me from doing harmful stuff, clean me up, give me some tasty, nutritious food (that umbilical was getting OLD), and, well, you know the rest. I hope to value you one day, and I know you wouldn't have gone through all this if you didn't think I'd be a high value to you. I'll be calling you mommy and daddy soon. Please be patient. I got a whole hell of a lot of things in this exciting world I'm gonna want to do. I hope you'll honor my right to pursue those things totally. Thanks a lot. See you around."
All children are "Claire."
Her husband would never think of spanking her or hitting her. He would honor her. He would honor her right of self-direction, and when she was "acting like a child," he would gently and rationally help her with explanations -- sometimes for hours, until she figured it out. He would love her, and he would look forward to loving her more, and he would hope that she would love him for his gentleness, his firmness, his values, his morality, his forthrightness.
As I hinted at above, there is never a case for parental/guardian coercion in child-rearing. Coercion is the initiation of force against another human and/or their concrete values (things). It is only when the child takes action against herself (harming herself and harming the parent's value) that a parent can retaliate with mild physical force, if necessary, to stop the destructive action. All such instances are "retaliation," not "initiation" of force. There is never a place for punitive measures with Claire or children. (I'll expand on punitive measures in another post.)
Claire's case (and the case of children) are a special case in coercion because of their caretaker status. Conscious, rational adults can, of course, commit destructive actions against themselves and destroy any value they have of themselves and any value they may be to others. But adults in caretaker status (and children) temporarily convey their hegemony over value protection. This does not undermine their rights, and they are not property. They simply have a rational-mind proxy until they get their own faculties fully formed.
It is not, ipso facto, harmful for a child to choose not to go to school. It is not harmful for the child to eschew any learning that the parent wishes, outside of morality, but morality cannot be force-fed anyway. It has to be practiced by the parent, and it will be absorbed by the child via example and explanation, when she seeks explanation.
All children are "Claire."
They start with nothing but a mental capacity (rationality), and they slowly learn to run it, practice with it, use it well, be happy. Any coercion by a parent, in any regard (even manipulative exhortations to do something the parent wishes), hobbles the child's own value system (I'll expand on this in another post). And, more important, it violates their rights to their own volition, their own body, their own mind.
Children have rights.

Saturday, June 02, 2012

Girl can read!

There are those moments in life when you just stop for a moment and go "Wow!" Well, that happened last week.
I was walking through the living room and saw my daughter, Livy, with five kids books in her hands. (I didn't think she could read. She'd been sounding out words and reading road signs a bit, but not actually sitting down and READING.)
I said, "He Liv, what's you doing?"
"Reading."
"Oh." (pause). "Are you reading those books?"
(Look of incredulity at my stupid question.) "Uh, yeah Dad. ... These are my favorite books."
"Yeah, I know. Those are the ones that I used to read to you when you were, like, three and four and five. Remember?"
"Yeah."
"Will you read them to me sometime soon?"
"Yeah." (nonchalant)
I watched her read for a moment, in wonder at her ability to learn how to read virtually on her own by the age of 8.5 years old, which is what she is now. She, of course, is unschooled, which means no formal teaching and no pushing on my part to get her to read or do anything else she doesn't want to do.
The human mind and volition are wonderful things to behold. And my lovely child likes to read ... sometimes.