Misplaced criticism

of Planned Parenthood

“The head of the House Oversight Committee is accusing Planned Parenthood of misspending more than $40 million in federal dollars on ‘lavish’ travel, theme parties and a costly Manhattan office.”

There’s no problem with that. Let them spend every dollar they get on champagne and caviar.

“‘That’s money that’s not going to women’s healthcare,’ [Rep. Jason] Chaffetz said.”


The clock

This Is Ahmed Mohamed’s Clock.” The boy didn’t build a clock, he took a clock apart, wired it up, and then put it in a box. There is no way a reasonable person would think this was merely an innocent electronics project.

UPDATE 19 September 2015: Says Jerry Pournelle, “There was no reason to handcuff him, but we had that in Los Angeles 20 years ago: officers had discretion on handcuffing people, and got pummeled because they handcuffed more Blacks and Latinos than White, and the Department took the discretion away: now everybody gets handcuffed, even though the cops find it absurd in many cases. On the other hand, there are plenty of cases where it’s a wise precaution, so if it’s handcuff everyone or handcuff no one, it has to be everyone, absurdities or not. I suspect it’s that way in Texas, too. One of the joys of diversity.”

Kim Davis

In contemporary America, Judges are always declaring things to be so when they are not – deeming things. It might seem the judge in Kentucky could do that now, and just declare that the marriage licenses were valid without the clerk’s signature, or more boldly just say that Kim Davis* was deemed to have signed the marriage licenses. Then the happy couples could celebrate their union, sharing a fancy cake with all their friends. But that misses the point.

The point is not that the happy couple should be able to marry and celebrate, but that Kim Davis must be compelled to sign against her conscience or, second best, be forced to quit her job.

*UPDATE: It’s worth noting that Kim Davis is a Democrat.

Planned Parenthood

Vivisection is not something about which reasonable people disagree. You don’t say, “If you don’t like vivisecting, don’t do it.” You can’t say, “My body my choice,” because the “women’s healthcare provider” isn’t cutting out your brain while your heart is still beating. Vivisection is evil and insane, and yet here we are. The abortion supporters are trying to deal with it as a public relations problem. Many of us, I suspect, can hardly bear to think about what happens routinely to maintain “reproductive choice.”

That’s an advantage to Planned Parenthood, that the videos, even when not graphic, when they’re just a couple of ladies talking business over a nice lunch, are so horrific in content that many people are reluctant to talk about them, and don’t even want to know about them. One of the procedures described in the latest video is simply vivisection of a human child. Even if we force ourselves to acknowledge that such things go on, what can we say? How can we argue reasonably with people who think it’s okay as long as the child’s brain isn’t sold above cost? From what common premise can we begin?

Hillary Clinton’s server

It was wiped, they say. What’s puzzling is why go to all that trouble? It would have been easier to just install a new blank hard drive. Then take it down to the FBI office: “Here’s the server, as requested.” I mean, it would be a lie, but…

Or, get a new hard drive, and write it full of random data. Tell them it’s encrypted, and Bill lost the keys. Bill says Hillary never gave him the keys? Then it’s he said/she said. Plus, that nobody can break the “encryption” shows the material was well secured.

Thought for the day

“Then it came burning hot into my mind, whatever he said, and however he flattered, when he got me home to his house, he would sell me for a slave.” — Faithful, in Pilgrim’s Progress.

Random Updates

The upgrade from Windows 8.1 to Windows 10 went okay. It took a minute or two to go though “custom” settings and select more sensible options than “express” offers. The only thing so far is the mouse pointer often goes into its “working” blue-circle state, and it’s even more pesky and intrusive than 8.1; just now it was bugging me about logging onto their X-box scheme so I could play solitaire. On my other machine I have Lubuntu, which has been trouble-free.

I’ve been using SpiderOak in preference to Dropbox for a while now. It works well and has better privacy features, though it is a bit slower. They say everything is encrypted, but I don’t think all of the source code is available for audit and review. They also have a password manager, Encryptr, but I’ll stay with Keepass for now.

Finished Seveneves by Neal Stephenson. It’s solid hard science fiction, mostly excellent, but I kept thinking to myself, “five thousand years is a long time.” I have no complaints about the physics or biology, but the anthropology and sociology strained my capacity to believe.

This gingerbread was not hard to make, and came out well.

The exercise program for the summer has mostly been swimming laps, lifting weights, and mowing the yard every four or five days. Last winter I hit a heavy bag once or twice a week. It’s a good cardio and strength workout, but too hard on my hands to do year round.

Bees have built a nest out back, in the underground remains of a tree stump. They haven’t caused any trouble except when I have unknowingly run the mower over them. I’d rather not exterminate them if there’s a way to live with them.

Doc Rampage has a thought-provoking post up about anti-Christian religion, Science and the post-Christian trinity. Lately I’ve been going the Baptist church, with occasional visits to the Episcopal church. This suggests some incoherence in my understanding of theology. Maybe next week I’ll see what the Methodists are up to.

Here’s something to think about: Look at the schools, the federal government, the mainline churches, the news, the movies: except for the UN, have liberals made every institution what they said it was in 1968?