If I was working in Sonoma County, I'd employ him in a shot.
LINKS: Fine Carpentry - Mark D. Firestone
. . . promoting capitalist acts between consenting adults.
Irreducibly complex systems appear very unlikely to be produced by numerous, successive, slight modifications of prior systems, [says Behe] because any precursor that was missing a crucial part could not function. Natural selection can only choose among systems that are already working, so the existence in nature of irreducibly complex biological systems poses a powerful challenge to Darwinian theory.It poses neither challenge nor problem to Darwin's Law of Evolution, as Darwin himself pointed out when evolution was only a theory. Said he:
If numerous gradations from a perfect and complex eye to one very imperfect and simple, each grade being useful to its possessor, can be shown to exist; if further, the eye does vary ever so slightly, and the variations be inherited, which is certainly the case; and if any variation or modification in the organ be ever useful to an animal under changing conditions of life, then the difficulty of believing that a perfect and complex eye could be formed by natural selection, though insuperable by our imagination, can hardly be considered real.Indeed. Perceptive readers will notice that I discussed this in Part 2 of last year's three-parter on the shibboleth of Intelligent Design. For those who did notice, then as a reward you might like to see the point demonstrated in a short four-minute video presented by Swedish scientist Dan-Eric Nilsson, demonstrates one possible straightforward evolutionary path. [ Hat tip, again, to S. Hicks, Esq.]
With a starting offer of just one cent, brisk bidding for the prime chunk of South Pacific real estate quickly boosted the price to 3,000 Australian dollars (US$2,330) before eBay pulled the plug on the auction this week." Clearly New Zealand is not for sale," eBay Australia spokesman Daniel Feiler told the New Zealand Press Association, adding that 22 bids had been made before the company acted. The trader has not been named, but apparently was unimpressed with the country he was trying to sell."Very ordinary weather," was one of the trader's stated complaints. This may perhaps have put off some buyers and brought down the price of the bids for its withdrawal, although a few prospective purchasers did say they were concerned that the NZ Government would 'unbundle' the purchase once completed.
based on the idea that for every human concern—from personal matters to foreign policy, from the sciences to the arts, from education to legislation—there are demonstrably objective standards by reference to which we can assess what is true or false, good or bad, right or wrong. The purpose of the journal is to analyze and evaluate ideas, trends, events, and policies accordingly.Its first posts include commentary on United 93, a critique of the altruist Presidency of GWB, and a welcome dismissal of the "widespread and dangerous misconception that the United States was founded as a Christian nation." Good objective reading.
a) she's single; andHold the phone!
b) she is presently revelling in spontaneous and enjoyable sex.
I told her that the book argues that we would be better off if the previous welfare systems had been allowed to develop instead of being replaced by the welfare state. She announced, "You must suggest an alternative. If you say the welfare state is no good, you must suggest an alternative."She's right you know, and not just about the welfare state. Just as it's important to argue the ethical issues underlying political principles -- in this particular case the ethic of altruism and of enforced moral cannibalism -- so too it's important to clearly set out the direct you propose. No dissembling; no prevaricating; no fudging; just clearly and consistently setting out the goalposts you intend to push towards: Because if you don't point out those goals posts, then no-one else is going to do it for you.
I have agonised about this before in a previous entry on this website. I said to her that it would be a big job, requiring a lot of research and I doubted people would want to read my particular blueprint. She was having none of that, saying words to the effect: "If you can't think of a good way of communicating it, then you must find a way of communicating it."
I felt like a junior minister being given his instructions. I could see the logic of what she said - all too clearly.
We shall not get rid of pauperism by extending the sphere of state relief; on the contrary, its adoption would increase our pauperism, for, as is often said, we can have exactly as many pauper as the country choose to pay for.Whether New Zealand will ever by cured of the disease of welfarism is a moot point. Its economic untenability is now widely recognised, but its moral untenability is not. State welfare is nothing less than moral cannibalism: the insistence at the point of a gun that Peter pay for Paul and Carol pay for Cathy -- something naturally for which Paul and Cathy are happy to express their support, when they can rouse themselves.
Labels: Cue Card Libertarianism
Far from optimistic, the documents captured in an April 16th raid reveal frustration and desperation, as the terrorists acknowledge the superior position of American and free Iraqi forces and their ability to quickly adapt to new tactics... [These documents show] that we have just about triumphed over the AQ network in Iraq, and AQ knows it. Hopefully, the American media might finally start reporting it.Some are. And even one NZ media outlet.
There were two hijacks on the morning of 9/11 [suggests 'United 93' director Paul Greengrass]. There was the hijack that we know about, the hijack of the airplanes, of the innocent people, that flew into the buildings and all that terrible death and destruction that occurred as a result.So says the director of United 93 Paul Greengrass, to which Jihad Watch responds, that this "is still the prevailing mainstream view. But it is founded on a fiction.":
But there was a second hijack that took place that day. The hijack of a religion by a bunch of young men who twisted and perverted it in order to create a creed and an ideology to justify the slaughter of innocent people, and that's a hijack that is still out there today. It's still going on today, and it's going to be very hard for us to work out what to do to deal with that..."
I firmly believe that women are our best hope in dealing with the Muslim world, because they have so much to gain from modernization..LINKS: Muslims get tits in a tangle - Not PC
Labels: Ban Bans
Human thought, in changing its form, was about to change its mode of expression; ... the dominant idea of each generation would no longer be written with the same matter, and in the same manner; ... the book of stone, so solid and so durable, was about to make way for the book of paper, more solid and still more durable. In this connection the archdeacon's vague formula had a second sense. It meant, "Printing will kill architecture." ...The great accident of an architect of genius may happen in the twentieth century, like that of Dante in the thirteenth. But architecture will no longer be the social art, the collective art, the dominating art. The grand poem, the grand edifice, the grand work of humanity will no longer be built: it will be printed.At least one architect of genius did appear in the twentieth-century who understood what Hugo meant, and he put it much more simply: "Architecture is the scientific art of making structure express ideas." Architecture may never again compete with literature for pre-eminence in the expression of ideas, but it behooves both the reader of literature and the student and practitioner of architecture to understand how architecture can and has expressed ideas in the past, and how it still does just occasionally.
And henceforth, if architecture should arise again accidentally, it will no longer be mistress. It will be subservient to the law of literature, which formerly received the law from it. In India, Vyasa is branching, strange, impenetrable as a pagoda. In Egyptian Orient, poetry has like the edifices, grandeur and tranquillity of line; in antique Greece, beauty, serenity, calm; in Christian Europe, the Catholic majesty, the popular naivete, the rich and luxuriant vegetation of an epoch of renewal. The Bible resembles the Pyramids; the Iliad, the Parthenon; Homer, Phidias. Dante in the thirteenth century is the last Romanesque church; Shakespeare in the sixteenth, the last Gothic cathedral.
Thus, to sum up what we have hitherto said, in a fashion which is necessarily incomplete and mutilated, the human race has two books, two registers, two testaments: masonry and printing; the Bible of stone and the Bible of paper. No doubt, when one contemplates these two Bibles, laid so broadly open in the centuries, it is permissible to regret the visible majesty of the writing of granite, those gigantic alphabets formulated in colonnades, in pylons, in obelisks, those sorts of human mountains which cover the world and the past, from the pyramid to the bell tower, from Cheops to Strasburg. The past must be reread upon these pages of marble. This book, written by architecture, must be admired and perused incessantly; but the grandeur of the edifice which printing erects in its turn must not be denied.
When it comes to dealing with healthcare and education costs, we are still mired in a Marxist swamp.For 'we', read all countries with centralised, state-delivered schools and hospitals. Read his whole argument here.
Cultures are not museum-pieces. They are the working machinery of everyday life. Unlike objects of aesthetic contemplation, working machinery is judged by how well it works, compared to the alternatives. The judgment that matters it not the judgment of observers and theorists, but the judgment implicit in millions of individual decisions to retain or abandon particular cultural practices, decisions made by those who personally benefit or who personally pay the price of inefficiency and obsolescence. That price is not always paid in money but may range from inconveniences to death.Here's the most ludicrous defence of the idea that women should sit at the back of the room so as not to insult the terminally sensitive: "It's not denigrating women, it's protecting them." That's like saying being forced to wear a burqa makes you sexy, isn't it?
In February, I went to the Aussie Rules at Wellington Stadium, and it was a fantastic spectacle with the Brisbane Lions running over recent champions the Adelaide Crows. We saw high marks, running football, precision kicking - and one or two great shirtfronts. Parked outside was a Ford Falcon painted up by local clubs with the slogan: 'Aussie Rules! What Rules?'Read on here. And read here for a report on how rugby is trying to reduce its own rulebook to make the game better, faster and more understandable for everyone. Summary of the proposed 'Stellenbosch' rules here and here. Said Rod MacQueen about the proposals after a week of trial games with the proposed new rules in use, "The ultimate aim of these experimental laws is to allow for more creativity by the players and this week there were encouraging signs such as clarity of decision-making, less confusion among players at the breakdown and reduced law subjectivity."
Now, to most people's surprise Australian Football DOES have rules - simple rules based on the principle of keeping the game going, and which don't encourage umpires to grandstand. (In fact, most Australians would be hard pressed to name an AFL umpire. They refer to them simply as: 'white maggots'.)
Aussie Rules' rules are actually quite simple - as they need to be for Australians to follow them - and are designed around three basic principles: to keep the game going, to protect the guy going for the ball, and to stop anyone initiating force against anyone else (while anybody's looking). And they work very well; in fact, in a two-hour game of footy, you have two hours of footy.
The rulebook is barely 30 A6 pages, with almost two thirds of that detailing how tribunals, national bodies, and ground marking are done. The guts of it is the 'Spirit of the Laws' which is barely fifty words. Simple rules for a fascinating game. The book is small enough to stick in your pocket - so that even white maggots and Collingwood fans have no excuse for not knowing the rules.
I draw four pretty simple conclusions from this: the fewer stoppages, the better the game; protection of individuals is a good basis for keeping things flowing; the fewer interventions from maggots the better; and, all else being equal, simple is usually best.
Someone observed once that the Ten Commandments was supposedly written on one piece of stone, the US Constitution on ten pages of parchment, but that European Union regulations on bananas are smeared across four volumes - and no one, not even the bureaucrats - and especially not the banana growers - can understand them. We're not much better here in this country, with about 4000 pages of new regulations introduced by our trigger-happy parliamentarians every year. We're going wrong, and it's time to stop it.
Good law, I suggest, is not pages and pages of empty verbage, but is clear, and terse, and based around simple, easily understandable, objective principles. Simple principles that recognise each individual's right to live and to act for his own sake, and that stop anyone initiating force against any other individual. Something like this...