Saturday, April 02, 2011

Kurt Harris, Paleo 2.0 - A Diet Manifesto and Why Paleo 2.0?

SF sniper course

Tactical Life: Sneek Peak: XM25 (video)
Today there was a special Ching Ming Mass sponsored by the SJCCC at Gate of Heaven Cemetery.

The chapel at the cemetery is all right; the interior resembles colonial Spanish architecture. Behind the altar is a sculpture of the resurrected Christ, which was modern but ok; still, there is no crucifix. Having both would be ok, if they matched, unless there is a prohibition against having the depiction of the resurrected or glorified Christ. (And there isn't.) The Stations of the Cross are simple, and only Christ is depicted. The added benefit of the sculpture behind the altar is that it can serve as the final station? I should take some photos next time I am there. The monthly Mass for the dead is next Saturday.

At the end of the liturgy was a rite for the veneration of ancestors. The priest offered incense, flowers, and wine. (No comment about the lay ministers present.) The liturgy was a mix of the good and bad in contemporary Mandarin Chinese liturgical worship. I've attended worse Mandarin Chinese liturgies. An example of the bad would be the Communion song -- typical contemporary Mandarin Chinese worship music? "I will love Jesus forever." A bit presumptuous, and could be (semi-)Pelagian.

There was a nice reception after the Mass, and I saw Mr. W (the husband of my mother's friend); he was there along with his two sons, the second daughter-in-law, and his daughter. I hadn't seen him during Mass (I think his family was sitting outside in the foyer to the chapel). I thought about approaching him and his family but my mother had already met with them and she was in a rush to get home. (She's off to babysit for my sisters.)

Someone bought "organic" soda (organic sugar cane sugar instead of HFCS) from Costco? I haven't tried it yet, but I suspect it won't be much different from Hansen's. How much is a case? (100 pack?) Sandwiches and egg rolls were from Lee's Sandwiches -- sufficient to satisfy my craving for a sandwich.

Their idea of an April Fool's Joke

But almost anything would be better than the current regulations: Stetson hat to be new Army standard headgear. Army Cav still wears such hats?

Whose dream job?

Tactics training

Tactics training

Michael Pannone, a former Marine and U.S. Army Retired Special Operations Force soldier and now a professional firearms and tactics trainer, teaches a class to scouts with the 82nd Airborne Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team March 21-24, 2011, at Fort Bragg, N.C. Pannone, who is donating a week of his time to train several dozen paratroopers, emphasizes knowing the capabilities of one’s tools, knowing the desired end-state, and modifying generic solutions one has learned to create a dynamic solution that best fits the situation. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Michael J. MacLeod)

Friday, April 01, 2011

California Catholic Daily: Recorded during long and violent storm
Norbertine Fathers of St. Michael’s Abbey produce soon to be available third album


Lydia McGrew, Shouldn't We All be Propositionalists:

So after the manner of boring analytic philosophers the world over, I propose that we disambiguate the term, separating it into propositionalism1 and propositionalism2. I say that propositionalism1 is naive and foolish while propositionalism2 is sensible and importantly right. Here we go:

Propositionalism1 includes, but may not be limited to, the following theses:

1. All groups of people the world over, regardless of ethnicity or cultural background, are equally likely (or approximately equally likely) to produce good naturalized American citizens.

2. All that is necessary to turn people into good naturalized American citizens is to teach them certain propositions about the nature of politics, freedom, and the like, which they will eagerly embrace as soon as they understand them.


3. It would be wrong to discriminate in any way in immigration policies on the basis of ethnic or cultural background.

4. The success of the American form of government can readily be repeated in other countries with vastly different cultural backgrounds from America's.

Propositionalism2 includes, but may not be limited to, the following theses.

1. America has become great in no small measure because of the nature of the form of government put together by America's founders, who were right in their propositional ideas concerning the wisdom of the details of their system--e.g., checks and balances, separation of powers, freedom of religion, and the limitation of federal powers to those enumerated.

2. There is another set of important ideas presupposed by the American form of government which are not, unfortunately, exemplified in all other countries of the world and are centrally important to America's greatness. These include the evil of government corruption, the equality of persons under the law, the value of honesty and hard work, and the importance of the rule of law.

3. An understanding and love of the ideas in #1 and #2 is a crucial part of being a good American citizen.

4. It is not only theoretically possible but also a live, practical possibility that some people not born in America will develop this understanding.

5. If people can come to embrace these ideas, there is a good chance that they will make good naturalized American citizens. In fact, Americans born in America from generations of American citizens who scorn these ideas may be worse and less loyal citizens than those naturalized who have a deep understanding and love for these ideas. Those who have no concept of these ideas have suffered from a sad gap in their American civics education which should be remedied if and when at all possible.

6. Being of non-Caucasian lineage is not by itself sufficient to make it so highly unlikely that one will embrace these ideas and become a good citizen that all persons of non-Caucasian lineage should be debarred from coming to the United States and attempting to become citizens. While race and ethnicity are closely bound up together and can be important cultural markers, race by itself is not everything and does not automatically designate cultural fitness or unfitness for presence in the United States and future good citizenship.

7. Loving one's soil and kindred is not enough to make one a good American, per se, as opposed to a patriotic citizen of some country (any country) or other.

Is AMC that desperate for revenue?

Their MovieWatcher program is being replaced by AMC Stubs -- sure there are some improvements, rewards expire after 90 days instead of 30, and so on. But customers have to pay an annual fee of $12 to be a part of this program. ($6 if they sign up now!) Unbelievable.


The movie about a teenaged-girl raised by her burned spy father to become an assassin who avenges the injustice done to him. I did not watch the trailer when it first came out; I saw it only a few months ago, and didn't think much of it. Recently, it struck me that this was similar to the story of the "heroine" of Kick-Ass. This is "girl power" magnified with "girl" being taken literally; it is not so different from a live-action version of The Powerpuff Girls.

I find this sort of depiction to be rather twisted; who wants to watch little girls able to do such things? What kind of male would enjoy such a spectacle? (It's different with Cynthia Rothrock or Michelle Yeoh doing the ass-kicking, or contemporary Uhmerican heroines.) Are there some pervs out there who sexualize such girl characters? (It would be more creepy with respect to Kick-Ass, since the girl wonder is barely a teenager.)

I think the movie will bomb at the box office.

The Spearhead: Little Lies

I didn't now this about the "star" of Kick-Ass: 'Kick-Ass' star Johnson, 19, says pregnant girlfriend, 43, is 'fantastic mother'

I had a craving for an Italian sandwich

and cold cuts yesterday. A timely piece from Mark Sisson: Meat Musings: Are Cold Cuts Primal? I might have needed it yesterday, when it was published, but I had already decided I wasn't going to spend the money at Togo's.

Items of Interest, 1 April 2011

Scott Richert, Fool for the Truth
Thomas Fleming, Ancien Régime III, 1-3 and Book Diary

Paul Craig Roberts, The New Colonialism
Alexander Cockburn, Battling the Beast
NYT: C.I.A. Agents in Libya Aid Airstrikes and Meet Rebels

Kevin Carson, To Solve the Problem of Money in Politics, Just Get Rid of the Politics — and the Money
NLM: Creating an Icon of a Modern Saint by Aidan Hart

Thursday, March 31, 2011

NLM: An Important Liturgical Reform of the Eighth Century

What is the ratio for abstaining from the celebration of the divine liturgy during Lent?

The ordination of Joseph Ratzinger to the priesthood

(via NLM)
Chronicle of Higher Ed: Yale and National U. of Singapore Set Plans for New Liberal-Arts College

Aristotle Meets Confucius

Asian universities, by contrast, have traditionally stressed specialized, career-focused training. But the idea of a liberal-arts education, with an emphasis on critical inquiry, has begun to gain traction across the Asian continent, and Mr. Levin said he hoped the Yale-NUS collaboration could prove to be a model for the region.

That would be in keeping with Yale's history as a leader in the development of American liberal-arts education in the early 19th century, Mr. Levin said. This new breed of liberal education will marry Eastern and Western intellectual traditions and cultural perspectives. For example, Mr. Levin envisions a course comparing the works of Aristotle and Confucius, who lived less than two centuries apart.

Returning to Yale's roots as a liberal-arts innovator was "irresistible," Mr. Levin said, adding that Yale had passed on other offers of international partnerships.

But if employers don't respect the degree, will anyone enroll in the program?
AICN: Here's a trailer for CRISTIADA, a period war flick starring Andy Garcia and featuring the great Peter O'Toole!

I can't tell if Andy Garcia's character is supposed to be more liberal than Catholic. I haven't seen his movie tribute to pre-Castro Cuba, The Lost City.
Transition Voice and the author of the blog introduce Lindsay's List: "It’s a blog mostly geared toward women because we make the majority of buying decisions in a home and are therefore more likely to influence the material values of a family. But that doesn’t mean there won’t be things for the guys, too."

Ralph Nader on nuclear power

Obama’s March madness

Obama’s non-plan for reducing oil dependence
Lou Grinzo, The Cost of Energy

JMG advocates... the use of railway

Just like James Howard Kunstler... Too Much Energy?

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Yesterday afternoon, I attended the viewing/wake of my mother's friend. Again, rather unreal to see the body of the deceased -- it just isn't the same as the living person you once knew. It isn't surprising that some think of the body as just a shell, as that the reality of the person is no longer present even though the body lies before you. While I was there I did what I could to honor and pray for her, but I couldn't really express sympathy and my condolences in words. A long day at work? Impairment of my mental faculties? Or I was just being shy and awkward. Hard to say... I think the family was appreciative that I was there nonetheless...

Are we too much of a stranger to death? That is to say, we lack enough personal ties to others in our community that we do not have to suffer the death of others except infrequently, until we get older? What sort of impact does this have on our maturation (confronting death and becoming aware of our own mortality can be the starting point of conversion).

I have to say that it was fun having a police escort this morning for the funeral procession. The funeral banquet was held at Fu Lam Moon in Mountain View... too much rice for me! I had a carb coma this afternoon, and I did not feel good when I woke up from my nap.
Fr. Edward McNamara on Why Dates of Easter Differ And More on Ash Wednesday

Breaking free from factory farms by Joel Salatin

Breaking free from factory farms by Joel Salatin (EB)

Getting the President to laugh
Gene Logsdon, The Contrary Farmer

To be able to get the president of the United States to laugh like that in front of the whole world in these awful times… well, that’s a real accomplishment. I am not surprised, however. If you know Wendell [Berry], he can make very funny remarks at the most unexpected times. I asked him what he whispered to the president but he’s not talking. Says he can’t remember.

His message, now and always, is that society is ignoring and abandoning ecological and economic common sense and we will pay for it. Is he right? Look around you.

Dr. Fleming's latest installment on jerks

Land of the Rude, Home of the Jerk

According to Robert Axelrod’s Theory of Cooperation, most people can be expected to play life’s little games by the rules, so long as they count on interacting in the future with the same people. But, if you are leaving town—or have even thought about leaving town—the incentives to cheat rise quickly. You can bounce a check, defraud a partner, abandon a wife and escape at least the social consequences by skipping off to greater Los Angeles.

Jerks are not tolerated in small-scale societies: they are talked about or driven into exile or sent to Coventry. But imagine if you constructed a city of 10 million people, most of them from out of town, who spend a good part of each day in the company of total strangers they will never see again. This city would not operate according to a single moral code, because it would include large numbers of Catholics and Protestants, Jews and Muslims, atheists and skeptics. There might be some common agreement against murder and theft but not on such large social issues as marriage, divorce, and abortion, much less on public drunkenness, proper behavior in public places, and the tone and volume of conversations in a restaurant.

Mark O'Connor lecture

Mark O'Connor, A lecture on American Classical Music From Schoenberg Hall at UCLA

Mark O'Connor, A lecture on American Classical Music From Schoenberg Hall at UCLA from Jimmy Collins on Vimeo.

Update on Whit Stillman's latest

Criterion Collection: Whit Stillman Is Back
Patrick Owens, The Pope Renews his Encouragement for Spoken Latin
MNN: Alice Waters: Eat local

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Mildred Pierce

NPR: 'Mildred Pierce': A Masterpiece Of Modern Film Noir


After I read this review, my initial impression seems to be confirmed: it is unclear whether this production is supposed to give comfort to feminists.
NPR: Timothy Olyphant: 'Justified' In Laying Down The Law

The cluelessness of the one

I had plenty of reactions while listening to part of the Univision townhall meeting, but I remember this one right now. Obama claimed that we need more male teachers, and yet he is the feminist-in-chief who supports a misandrist system. Tell me, how exactly is he going to make teaching more appealing to men, if they realize how misandrist public education is? And then we can mention the social dynamics of the workplace, which would repel normal men, along with the expectations of women they may be dating. Self-proclaimed elietes may spit out all sorts of suggestions for reforms, but usually they don't know because they lack true knowledge. If this is true of education experts, then it is probably even more true of someone who isn't one, and can only fall back on ideology and the assumptions of leftists.

Video of the event. The White House transcript. (via Guanabee)

Obama tries to explain himself

Paul Craig Roberts, Obama Raises American Hypocrisy to Higher Level
Andrew Levine, On Libya, Who Does Obama Think He is Fooling?

The president also appeared on a live "townhall meeting" on Univision last night. More kissing up to one of his constituencies.

To be discalced

More on the taking off of shoes at The Thinking Housewife.
The economics of happiness (EB)
Carl Etnier, Equal Time Radio

The Economics of Happiness, which argues that rebuilding our local economies not only keeps money in our communities, but also leads to more happiness. (mp3)

Monday, March 28, 2011

The Loss of Guy Space

iirc, there has been some discussion of this at the Thinking Housewife and Dr. Helen; Jack Donovan recounts his own experience with women who sought to prove themselves at the expense of guy space: The Soft Shutdown. A good woman will respect the fact that her man needs to spend some time with other men, because men and women are different, and the claims of husbands and wives being "best friends" notwithstanding, there are some conversations and activities men can effectively have only with other men.

Items of interest, 28 March 2011

A successful defense of the Puritans?  A City upon a Hill, by Mark A. Signorelli

More on Fukushima:
Chris Busby, Deconstructing Nuclear Experts

Mike Whitney, Is Fukushima About to Blow?

Dr. Helen Caldicott on the nuclear disaster in Japan (EB)
Alex Smith, Radio Ecoshock (mp3)

Curtis Doebbler, Why the Attack on Libya is Illegal

PJB, How Killing Libyans Became a Moral Imperative and Obama Goes to War

Naturally, Daniel Larison has written much on the topic.

Unpacking for a disaster: What you need to survive the unexpected by Rebecca Solnit, TomDispatch (EB)

Rob Hopkins, Film review: "The Economics of Happiness" (EB)

Commentary: Restrictions on world oil production by Robert L. Hirsch

Plastics now and forever! by Daniel Pargman, Life After Oil (EB)

A question I've thought about...

Dalrock: Should you game your prospective wife into submission?

Should one try to reason or persuade a woman to (radically) change her ideas regarding married life, or should he instead rely upon oxytocin and the use of game to change her "mind," despite her stated beliefs before marriage?  I'm leaning more towards dealing with women as adults who know what they want and taking them for their word.
Yes! Magazine: How to Eat Animals and Respect Them, Too
Why farmer Joel Salatin believes sustainable farming includes meat.

by Madeline Ostrander
First Things: Restoring the Village
The defense of our liberties requires the courage and strength of bands of brothers
Anthony Esolen
(via Mark Mitchell)

Alison Krauss & Union Station - Paper Airplane [OFFICIAL]

The Water Is Wide by Rhonda Vincent & The Rage 3/12/2011

Sunday, March 27, 2011

From 2005: Gary Potter, Catholicism and the Old South (via Fr. CS)

More Propaganda

(via Centcom FB)
"Master of the Sacred Palace" trailer

"Master of the Sacred Palace" trailer from Province of Saint Joseph on Vimeo.

Ancient Futures

Not Jeremy Renner

Inside look at Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Specialist (89D)
Managing the 21st century’s sustainability crises (program 192) Video (EB)

“There are no real solutions, there are only responses.” So say the expert contributors in The Post Carbon Reader, pointing to society’s complex, interdependent systems squeezed by growing demand and declining resources. Co-editor Daniel Lerch tells us renewable energy will never be able to replace fossil fuels. Thus resilience — the capacity of a system to withstand disturbance while retaining its fundamental integrity — needs to replace sustainability as a guide to action.


The impulse to vulgarity in the name of creativity

Peter Hitchens:

The BBC won’t rest until we’re all talking filth

In the superb recent remake of True Grit, I don’t think there was a single four-letter word.

Yet it was a perfectly credible portrayal of the lives of fierce and often violent men in a cruel, half-civilised time.

In fact, half the pleasure of the film was the almost biblical English, spoken naturally by everyone – slower, clearer and a hundred times more powerful than the slurred, jerky newspeak of our day.

But don’t expect the BBC, that propaganda organisation for avant-garde muck, to learn any lessons from that.

Fresh from ruining Winifred Holtby’s thoughtful classic South Riding on TV, the Corporation now plans to insert four-letter words into a dramatisation of Wuthering Heights on Radio 3.

Partly this is attention-seeking, and I know they are hoping for condemnation from people such as me. But that is because they are immoral and cheap.

Many people still loathe swearing and are made unhappy by it. For instance,
a grandparent trying to listen to this classic with a grandchild could not do so without great embarrassment.

The BBC knows this, thanks to the many complaints it gets about on-air swearing. It still does it because it is biased against the older Britain where swearing was done only under strict rules.

Its executives and journalists use four-letter words in front of their own children, and think it fine to use them in front of yours, too. They think you’re backward and repressed for not doing it yourself.

The same impulse lay behind the needless four-letter scene in that overrated film The King’s Speech. Fashionable liberals despise restraint and take special delight in debauching innocent and kindly things.

It is quite important that this dramatisation fails and is seen to fail, and that it receives a large number of complaints when it is aired. If they can get away with Wuthering ****ing Heights, it won’t be long before we have David ****ing Copperfield, Vanity ****ing Fair, Romeo And ****ing Juliet, Paradise ****ing Lost, Gray’s ****ing Elegy written in a ****ing Country Churchyard, Tennyson’s In ****ing Memoriam, Brave New ****ing World and, before you know where you are, Alice In ****ing Wonderland, Lord Of The ****ing Rings and (of course) Harry Potter And The ****ing Goblet Of Fire.

For goodness sake, we already have Martin Amis if you want this sort of stuff.

I am envious of those who can speak slowly (and also authoritatively). Wendell Berry might be an example. He speaks without the appearance of being mentally challenged, though this is what some Uhmericans may assume when they hear his accent and learn of his background. Speaking slowly and deliberately -- this is not an affectation -- it might reflects the fact that the gears in the head are turning. Cantonese speakers are often fast talkers, but the ones I admire in film speak slowly (Maggie Cheung and Tony Leung in In the Mood for Love; actors in TVB dramas tend to speak more slowly than MCs and hosts of variety programs). People may talk fast, but often they have nothing to say. It's just gabbing in the worst sense. (I couldn't think of a better onomatopoeia.) The conversation revolving the most inane of things.

I would like to speak with correct grammar; thinking before one speaks, not just with respect to content but also to rules of grammar might be the stage of a beginner, but I'll admit that my speaking skills aren't that great. Is it another symptom of internet-induced ADD/memory impairment/mental diminishment?
Elusive Wapiti, How to Tell If You're In A Patriarchy (cross-posted at The Spearhead)

(See also the article on the Na, or Mosuo.)

Sir Kenneth Robinson on modern mass education

(via Elusive Wapiti)


His website. profile
Huffington Post
Sir Ken defines 'personalized learning'

A little too late? One would think that (public) mass education would be one of the first casualties of the fall of industrial economies.

The Barefoot Movement



There is an interesting discussion over at The Thinking Housewife on whether guests should take their shoes off when entering another person's home, when that is the custom there: From Chaos to Order. (The original blog entry was on Japan and how Japanese people behave at a evacuee refuge.) I am thinking that the people who are writing in are white. These days, when I take my shoes off at home, I think more about being barefoot than reasons of hygiene...