No doubt the three of you left reading this regularly have noticed that I’m not posting much anymore. For whatever reason, I don’t feel like writing about current events. I like writing (you can’t have over 2,000 posts and not), but I have no desire to say anything about the economy, health care, climate change, or even religion (which is sort of frightening). It’s not that I’m happy with things now that Obama is president; on the contrary, he’s been pretty terrible on the legal issues surrounding the war on terror and the health care bill will be a marginal improvement at best.
Anyway, the point is: this blog is effectively dead, but I still feel vaguely obligated to post to it semi-regularly and this is my attempt to end that. It’ll still be around (unless I become unable to pay for hosting) and it’ll reanimate itself now and again when I get pissed off or have something vaguely interesting to note. But for all intents and purposes, it has ceased to be. It’s an ex-blog.
Or maybe it’s just resting.
If there’s one thing Alex Jones is good for, it’s entertainment. I haven’t heard a fluoride in the water rant like I did on the radio this weekend in forever. He also thinks we’re being sterilized by basically everything. It’s a wonder we have fallen into some sort of Children of Men-like apocalypse.
Well, last week was fun, wasn’t it? Obama won a Nobel prize for no reason and conservatives went nuts. Which is entertaining and all, but then groups like the DNC and Media Matters attack them as unpatriotic and siding with terrorists. Which is absolutely vile and one of the reasons the last administration and its defenders were so odious.
By the way, what kind of joke was that? A Nobel Peace Prize? Are they high?
Then there’s this, another tactic I hated from the last administration (bear in mind that I’m not accusing Republicans of inventing it, just that I associate it with the Bush administration because that’s when I started paying attention). Picking out bits of larger legislation and accusing a person of being against something was a significant part of the anti-Kerry attacks in 2004. It wasn’t pretty then and it’s not pretty now.
Or I guess you can say that anyone who’s ever opposed an omnibus spending bill hates the military, schools, seniors, etc. How fun.
A health care bill banning rescission, disallowing coverage refusals due to pre-existing conditions, eliminating the wasteful Medicare Advantage program, and expanding coverage to 94% of the country seems like a step forward.
Then again, it’s a giveaway to teh evil corporations, so I’m clearly some sort of non-sentient shill. But the alternative is being complicit with murder, so hello persistent vegetative state.
How is this not awesome? Conservapedia has a Conservative Bible Project going. Because the people who do the NIV translation are a bunch of feminist liberals. Seriously. So they’re going to translate the KJV into more modern English.
For example, one of their suggestions from Mark is to replace Pharisees with “intellectuals” or “skeptical teachers.” One instance:
Jesus perceived immediately what the intellectual types were thinking, and he asked them, “Why are you so hostile to this?
If one of your goals is to enhance the intellectual force of the Bible, the phrase “intellectual types” isn’t helping.
(for reference, here’s what the NRSV translation is: “At once Jesus perceived in his spirit that they were discussing these questions among themselves; and he said to them, ‘Why do you raise such questions in your hearts?”)
This is also an obvious example of the flaws in what they’re doing (flaws? no way!). The fact is that Jesus’ conflict with the Pharisees is a conflict with a conservative religious establishment. The Pharisees are representatives of the ruling priests (from what I’ve read, anyway). Jesus’ is rebelling against a religious establishment, which is not a particularly conservative move. Characterizing the representatives of that establishment as “intellectuals,” which undoubtedly conjures up an image of anti-capitalist radicals in academia who want to destroy the very foundation of our country in their minds, is a bit misleading. Jesus is rebelling against tradition and is trying to shake the foundations of the contemporary religious establishment. You can make a better case that he’s analogous to their view of intellectuals. It would be stupid to do so, but less so than the Conservapedia alternative.
That’s not to say that verse is inconsistent with conservatism, just that using it to score conservative points obscures what Mark is describing. The world is too complicated to impose narrow ideological categorization on every event. Conservapedians, can’t handle that.
But we really already knew that, didn’t we?
Apparently. Did you know this person at The Corner can’t read her own chart? It’s true. Just look at the giant bar in the middle (2008’s projected budget deficit) and try to square it with “[e]ach year under Obama is worse than any year under Bush.” I’m pretty sure Bush was president last year.
This also invalidates her second point, but less humorously so.
UPDATE: This is what I get for ignoring how easy that was. Dave points out in comments that the graph is mislabeled and 2009 is the big bar in the middle. Of course, you can still point out that FY2009 includes TARP and the Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac subsidies, both of which were Bush policies and a substantial portion of the projected increase. Not to mention the general economic deterioration which is difficult to blame on anyone. But that still means I should pay more attention.
I wonder if replying to emails I get at work with a Snopes link would cause problems.
In other news, you should read this. Of course, I’ve never read any Ayn Rand, so maybe I should shut up. I’ve sort of half meant to read a book of hers, in the same way that I half consider reading a Twilight book: I would feel better about considering them dreck. Alas, I have better things to do.