Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Ending innocence

Australian photographer Bill Henson's exhibit in Sydney was recently shut down and raided amid charges of child porn. Henson photographed children as young as 12 in the nude.














(image from "Pretty Baby," directed by Louis Malle, courtesy of www.road-dog-productions.com)

Mankind (and emphasis on "man") has always been fascinated with young girls. I have a feeling it has to do with their innocence, their freshness, with possibility. It's no good to deny these sexual feelings toward pre-pubescent children, because they're there. Just witness the recent polygamy scandal.

However ... to acknowledge a fascination is not to legitimize it. It is at precisely this crossroads that childhood and adulthood diverge.

At some point humankind decided to elevate itself above its base urges. At some point it recognized that some urges are counterproductive, and must be disciplined and redirected. The desire for sex with children is a textbook case. (Along with murdering someone because they piss you off.)

I abhor limits on art. To censor creativity is to consign yourself to oblivion. But in this case, I think it's crossed the evolutionary line. I think the onus is on artists to find safer ways to explore this kind of sexuality than to exploit children.

Children's development -- especially the important transition into adulthood that pre-pubescence represents -- is very fragile. Children are simply not ready to integrate the mature sexual feelings that being photographed nude asks of them. Adults, on the other hand, know what they're doing. And to use these children to gratify their urges -- whether sexual or artistic -- at the cost of traumatizing children's personality development -- is willful to say the least, and obscene to say the worst.

I'm afraid I'm on the side of law and order -- more specifically, human decency -- on this one.

(hat tip: Andrew Bolt)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

What should Hillary do after losing the Democratic nomination?
















(image credit: http://bp2.blogger.com/_P9Vwh56H92U/SDyrj_5NPTI/AAAAAAAAAHg/uGoUv1Uw7u0/s320/Hillary95.jpg)


Well, some commenters on The Cafferty File, a CNN blog, have a few suggestions (in their intact, cut-and-paste syntactical glory):

***

Brian from Fort Mill, S.C. May 27th, 2008 2:21 pm ET

Beg and plead for the VP slot. If she’s lucky, she might be picked for Secretary of Defence, now that she has experience with sniper fire!

***

(and another Brian from Fort Mill, S.C.)

She could become the next FEMA director. After all, her campaign was a disaster!

***

Dave P. May 27th, 2008 2:25 pm ET

Jack,

She is entitled to so many things how can anyone choose???

***

mitch martin arkansaw May 27th, 2008 2:30 pm ET

she should apply for a job as white house chief of plumbing.she knows all the intricate details of kitchen sinks,including how to toss them.

***

John in San Diego May 27th, 2008 2:31 pm ET

She should sell pant suits on e-bay.

***

Raj, Toronto May 27th, 2008 2:34 pm ET

She should have a couple beers with Bill and discuss how they blew it.

***

John from Boston May 27th, 2008 2:36 pm ET

I see the Obama administration offer her an Ambassadorship… In Bosnia!

***

John (Topock, AZ) May 27th, 2008 2:45 pm ET

Dear Santa,,

It sure would be nice if sometime between now and Halloween Hillary and Bubba just went away (and stayed away).

***

Jerry Roselle, Illinois May 27th, 2008 2:53 pm ET

She should put on those magical Red Shoes and follow
The Yellow Brick Road back to Kansas , Arkansas. Illinois
or where ever she says she’s from.

***

Ethan May 27th, 2008 3:20 pm ET

She should try out for the NFL as a kicker. . . She has shown a lot of skill in moving goalposts.

***

Monica May 27th, 2008 3:20 pm ET

long walk..short pier comes to mind

***

Doris,Memphis,TN May 27th, 2008 3:21 pm ET

Hillary should call Aretha Franklin and tell her she has lost all of
her r.e.s.p.e.c.t.

***

A Latte Lover, Seattle, WA May 27th, 2008 3:53 pm ET

After last Friday’s RFK comment, I’m not sure. Maybe she could run to be Queen of WV, KY, and PR.

***

Uncle Sam May 27th, 2008 3:54 pm ET

A year ago, I wanted Hillary to be the next president, partly because I have 2 little girls.

A couple months ago, I wanted Hillary to be VP.

Now I just want Hillary (and Bill) to be a bad memory.

***

Jerry Eiserman May 27th, 2008 3:58 pm ET

Send Ted Kenndy a get well card and invite Al Gore to lunch to chat about what might have been.

***

Don May 27th, 2008 3:59 pm ET

Leave the country, and take Bill with her!

***

frankie May 27th, 2008 4:14 pm ET

First he needs to quite, then she needs a nice long vacation.

***

Jamey from KY May 27th, 2008 4:17 pm ET

Agree to jump a shark on water skis in South Florida to help pay for campaign debts.

***

Mark-NYC May 27th, 2008 4:39 pm ET

She should move to Tibet and live out her days with the monks who took a vow of silence.




(image courtesy of http://www.zombietime.com)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Real science versus Chicken Little

Remember when eggs were bad for us? Back in the '70s, a whole bunch of scientists bleated loud and clear that eggs will harden our arteries, bloat our livers, shut down our immune systems and kill us like the brutally overfed geese raised for pate de fois gras.

Well, guess what. Eggs are good for us.

How about fluoride? Keeps ours and, more importantly, our children's, teeth healthy, yes? Well, maybe not.

Now we're told that global warming (oops! "climate change") is the next apocalypse.

I earned a bachelor's degree in science from Pennsylvania State University. The foundation of this was a recognition and mastery of the scientific method in examining or challenging any theory or assumption.

The scientific method.

Once upon a time, the scientific method held all research in a stranglehold until something was proven BEYOND ALL REASONABLE DOUBT.

In a court of law, someone is guilty when s/he has been proven beyond A reasonable doubt. Not beyond ALL reasonable doubt. This means that you're not guilty of a crime if ANY reasonable doubt exists that you did NOT do it.

Science demands stricter controls. It demands proof beyond ALL reasonable doubt.

Or, at least, it used to.

Today, we're given computer models as proof that we're all going to die in agony because of 20-foot rises in sea levels, drought, famine, etc. ad nauseum. (Al Gore said so, and we all know he's an authority, because he became the president of the United States! Oh, wait ...)

And that is the result of the
"consensus" of "thousands" of scientists.

"Consensus?"

Fact: Carbon emissions FOLLOW temperature changes. They do NOT CAUSE THEM.

So -- the entire premise of this ridiculous hoax foisted on us -- at a time when we're already dealing with the ridiculous hoaxes of "terrorism" -- is WRONG.

As a graduate of the scientific method, I recognize right from wrong, though I might miss nuances of selectivity. The acid test is always: It's either done right, or it's not. And global "warming" or "climate change" is nothing more than a hysterical fraud which, at best, encourages reducing pollution (which I applaud) or, at worst, fosters a whole new industry (like the Federal Drug Administration) that makes money off of people's fears.

Just like eggs. In today, gone tomorrow, back in next week. According to whom it benefits.

Wake up, my friends ... this is no way to live. Letting garbage dictate garbage? Use your heads. Think. Be aware. Live.

If necessary, quietly rebel. You'll find you've got lots of friends.

Me, for one.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Just ............. no.


















UPDATE: Okay. I wasn't going to say anthing more about this ... person ... beyond the photo. In Clinton's case, I think a picture truly does say a thousand words. But in light of her recent gaffe, I just couldn't resist.

Full disclosure: I'm a Ron Paul supporter. No way will I vote McCain, and probably not Barack Obama. (Although I think -- even though he has ZERO qualifications -- he's still a much classer act than any of the other idiots.)

Even fuller disclosure: I've hated Hillary Clinton ever since I first heard of her. Why? It's a combination of avowed Marxism (carefully massaged and "center"-ized for the current election) and naked ambition; coupled with dubious, to say the least, history.

The Clintons (and you don't get Hill without Bill, and vice versa) have always been about themselves -- NOT the American well-being.

So ... yet even FULLER disclosure -- I am rubbing my hands with schadenfreude-fueled glee that she stepped onto the assassination mine. Ka-boom! Let's hope it does away with the Clinton bad-penny syndrome for good.


Image from: albanysinsanity

Monday, May 19, 2008

The times, they are a-changin'

The Drudge Report is a valuable and fascinating site. Matt Drudge, founder and operator, dishes up a wonderful and varied mix of news each day, constantly updated. In the political world, he's considered something of a kingmaker (it was he who first broke the Monica Lewinsky scandal).

The fare he offers up is, as I say, a smorgasbord of variety. Every now and then, however, like today, you notice that several items share a common thread. I don't know how to do screenshots, so I'll have to explain lo-fi.

At the top of the page is a story about Britain's parliament giving the go-ahead for scientists to create human-animal hybrids. Then there's the pregnant man mowing his lawn. Two men solving an argument with tasers.

And finally, France mulls whether to ban happy hour in bars. (France?!? Quel horreur!)

The common thread? All of these events would have been unthinkable as little as 10 years ago. The times are not only a-changin', they're a-changin' faster and faster all the time.

Of course, that owes much to the "jumping Jesus" phenomenon. Information itself is expanding exponentially.

But on second look, perhaps it's human business as usual.

The effort to graft humans and animals is motivated by a search for cures for disease. The pregnant man, like anyone else, longs for offspring. The taser dudes were simply using new technology to settle the age-old fistfight. And France's youth, alas, have discovered the dubious joys of binge drinking just like our own here in the States.

Still ... it makes you think. Are we rushing headlong into a yawning chasm of technological oblivion? Or are we simply adapting to business as usual?

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Stockpiling food

Should we all be stockpiling food?

Well, YEAH, given what's going to shift come 2012 --

The thing is, contrast the stockpile mentality with this.

My take -- stockpile. And stop wasting.

hat tip: boingboing.net and pajamas media

Thursday, May 15, 2008

"Dress right. Think left."

The end -- or the beginning -- of a fine person.

Meet 'Muto'


MUTO a wall-painted animation by BLU from blu on Vimeo.

Via boingboing.net --

'Debcha sez, "This is an incredibly arresting stop-motion video, both in technique and content. Entirely composed of paintings on public walls, sidewalks, and other spaces, it follows a creature as it undergoes a mindbending series of transformations - mating, mutating, and mitosing through multiarmed monsters, scuttling spiders, a herd of teeth, and more. Considerable visual wit is in evidence, as the paintings interact with their substrates - a trompe d'oeil brick falls out of a wall, pieces of paper are snatched with a froglike tongue, and hiding places are found in the corners of crumbling walls. Watching and re-watching it consumed way too much of my time today. (and it's CC-licensed - share and enjoy!)"'