November 14, 2006

Reading Quiz

Via LlamaButchers:

What Kind of Reader Are You?
Your Result: Dedicated Reader

You are always trying to find the time to get back to your book. You are convinced that the world would be a much better place if only everyone read more.

Literate Good Citizen
Obsessive-Compulsive Bookworm
Book Snob
Fad Reader
What Kind of Reader Are You?
Create Your Own Quiz
Posted by Owlish at 02:06 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

November 12, 2006

Iraq Policy

What we should be doing.

What we may end up doing.

Even if we don't cut and run in Iraq, I think our current government doesn't have the balls to keep Iran from getting nukes, and I don't think Isreal has the capability.

I think within a couple of years, the state of Israel won't exist. And maybe that's being really pessimistic, and certainly no one that I have personal contact with believes it. But I don't see anything that's going to stop it.

Update: see this. H/T: Instapundit.

Posted by Owlish at 08:35 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Brokeback on Ice?

This may be the gayest thing I've seen in quite a while. Safe for work, apparently broadcast on A&E.

With a wildly NOT SAFE FOR WORK H/T: QueerClick. [I read it for the articles :)]

Posted by Owlish at 08:22 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

November 06, 2006

Ted Haggard

In case you live in a cave, Ted Haggard is an anti-gay pastor who now admits that he hired a gay escort for a massage [the escort reports they had sex a few times]. Haggard also admits he had the escort obtain some meth for him, but reports he threw it away [not impossible, but impossible to know].

The Houston Chronicle headline is Pastor admits 'sexual immorality'.

Haggard said he will never return to leadership at the church and will be working with Focus on the Family founder James Dobson, a psychologist, as well as pastors Jack Hayford and Tommy Barnett on a healing and restoration plan for him, his marriage and family.

Translated: look, fully straight guys don't suddenly decide they need to get plowed by some muscle guy, any more than I'm going to decide that what's missing in my life is a little muff diving. So, he can try to suppress his gay or bi tendencies with 3-4 hours of daily therapy. Or, he could castrate himself, or if he was really lucky, he could find a doctor who was willing to do a reversible chemical castration.

Or, he could take a big step, and decide that yes he is gay, God made him that way, and ex-gay therapy isn't going to change that, any more than amputating his hands isn't going to keep him from wanting to masturbate.

Take a guess what I think would be a more positive step.

Posted by Owlish at 10:03 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Election Predictions

TCS Daily has an article with predictions of how tomorrow's elections will turn out.

Fun Quotes:
RALPH KINNEY BENNETT [talking about his rural neighbors]
"...they are leery of the Democrats. Afraid they will begin taxing again. Afraid of what they may do (or not do) about the war, and generally uneasy about the Pelosi Party's never changing I-know-better-than-you-how-you-should-live attitude. So, despite all the confident predictions of the pollsters and the delight of the Demo-sniffing media, we may come close to the wise hope expressed by my dentist when I was in for a check-up last week: "The best good people can hope for now is gridlock," he says. "That's what I'm hoping for - a gridlocked government that can't do anything worse or anything more." "

MELANA VICKERS [discussing Iraq]
"Instead, there's no clarity on whether the Republican Party favors staying and meddling in Iraqi domestic politics, increasing troop numbers or diminishing them, taking sides in a civil war/partition, or holding its breath in the hopes that somehow things will change. The Dems look even worse, though, not just because they offer no clear path out of Iraq but because they're wobbly on the war on terror, distracted as they are by civil liberties issues and petty criticism. With the party's defense-related talent being limited to John "stuk in irak" Kerry, voters with Iraq and the war on terror foremost in their minds won't make the mistake of choosing this even-weaker team. "

We'll see.

H/T: Instapundit.

Posted by Owlish at 09:33 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Tie Dye and Politics

Last weekend some friends had a tie dye party. It worked fairly well, from what I could tell- the little kids had fun, the adults drank beer and talked, and in between it all some really nice shirts got made. I did a few shirts and a small wall hanging. One shirt with a chevron came out really well, nothing was horrible.

I had 2 conversations that are worth noting. In one, I [probably for the first time] came out to a complete stranger. It went fine, and probably was a good thing, since she was thinking of introducing me to a female friend.

The second conversation was a political discussion with 2 other guys, [well, 3, but one mostly vegged during it]. One was a NW coast liberal who was bemoaning the lack of neighborhood grocery stores and shoddy construction on the nearby townhomes, and was insisting the best solution to these problems was government intervention. Another guy and I were taking the tack that more government regulation would lead to worse problems. Unfortunately, that guy's straight. :)

Anyway, I think the first guy was flabbergasted that anyone would take the stance that we were. And we didn't even get into the war.

In all, a fun day.

Posted by Owlish at 09:02 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

November 03, 2006

Calculating God

Calculating God is a novel by Robert J. Sawyer, that was recommended to me by a friend. Somewhat interesting review here.

I'm trying to figure out what I think about this book, so skip ahead if you're bored.

This is, at the most basic level, a first contact novel. An alien ship has been puttering around the galaxy in the last few years, looking for information about God. They've got a slower than light drive, and a lifespan similar to humans, so they've been examining stars nearby. They've found several abandoned planets that once had intelligent life, as well as another intelligent race.

These aliens have several bits of information. Both of the alien races experienced planetwide extinction events at the same time Earth did, 5 in all [think: dinosaurs]. They have evidence of 8 previous universes existing before our current one did. And this current universe seems impossibly tuned to support life.

What they seem to believe is that during the last universe an intelligence was formed, that has been guiding this one since our universe's creation. This God is powerful but not omnipotent, very knowledgable but probably not omniscient. If he acts at all, it's on a stellar or planetary scale, not a personal one. And we find out at the end that he has a purpose [although, it makes no sense whatsoever to me].

So. The aliens have discovered at least 3 different planets that had intelligent life, that either destroyed themselves or possibly downloaded their brains to computers. This appears to have happened within a few centuries of developing radio.

The aliens make the point that they posses insane or destructive individuals, and that as technology progresses individuals have more and more ability to do damage. And we have a couple of fundamentalist Christians [the book was writen pre 9/11] who have blown up an abortion clinic and try to destroy a museum paleontology exhibit.

Applying these kinds of ideas to the post 9/11 world, we get: terrorists are just bad people. We can try to help them, or kill them, but even if we destroyed every Islamic terrorist we can't find every dangerous crazy wacko. And as tech advances, possibilities for greater destruction continue. Everyone seemed to assume the obvious route is limited personal immortality through braintaping rather than colonization of outlying planets. Why, even though DNA is apparently universal [the aliens not only have DNA but their DNA codes for the same amino acids as ours], isn't clear.

In summary: a view of the world that isn't mine. And a view of God that as far as I know fits no major human religion [not omnipotent, but singular, no balancing evil or chaotic half]. I wonder what my friend's book club is going to think.

Posted by Owlish at 06:30 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

November 02, 2006

John Kerry, Meatsickle

By now you've probably heard the excerpt from past Democratic party Presidential Candidate John Kerry's speech. Do I believe his apologies? Nope. I think he sincerely believes the military is full of uneducated minorities who have no other possible career because of discrimination against them.

But I really like Chuck's rebuttal. An indication of what's coming:

Like I said, I'm educated. I can fully and completely express myself without cursing like a drunken sailor with tourettes. But it's just too much fun sometimes.

H/T: Not Exactly Rocket Science

Posted by Owlish at 11:38 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack