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Archive for the ‘Daily Life’ Category

What the hell is wrong with us? Our government is considering passing a non-binding (pun intended?) resolution demanding that Japan apologizes to China and Korea because they used Chinese and Korean women as sex slaves in the 1940’s? Christ, is there any limit to our involvement. It’s so pedantic! Therefore, I’ll offer a solution. To hell with Japan, China, and Korea. It’s not our problem. See, that was easy. Now, can we concentrate on the the environmental, educational, immigration, and health care issues that are plaguing this country? Sorry, had to ask.

Moreover, before we demand that other countries apologize for slavery, wouldn’t it be logical that we would apologize for our own? Yet nothing our government does is logical and the refusal of our legislators to unabashedly and officially apologize for ours while demanding that of other countries is hypocritical. Thus is the arrogance of America and why we’re hated so fiercely around the world.

Japan’s PM apologizes to WWII-era sex slaves
“Abe’s earlier denial of coercion drew intense criticism from Beijing and Seoul, which accuse Tokyo of failing to fully atone for wartime invasions and atrocities.

The issue also has stirred debate in the United States, where a committee in the House of Representatives is considering a nonbinding resolution calling on Tokyo to fully acknowledge wrongdoing and make an unambiguous apology.”

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Lately, I’ve noticed that there have been a lot of search inquiries to the phrase “De Omnibus Dubitandum,” which so happens to be the title of this blog, and it has lead a lot of people here. To their misfortune, however, the meaning or translation of that phrase is nowhere to be found… until now.

De Omnibus Dubitandum means “All is to be doubted.” It’s Latin of course, and the phrase is attributed to Rene Descartes (1596-1650), the notable French philosopher.

I’m quite fond of the phrase because it serves as the foundation for those with a skeptical, independent, free, and inquisitive mind. Some of us have this by nature, an innate desire to demand proof and evidence before latching on to a belief system or ideology. In others, this desire needs to be cultivated.

Unfortunately, the struggle between society’s demanding of conformity and the individual’s desire to live freely causes great stress in the lives of all of us. That stress varies in intensity whereas some barely notice the symptoms while others develop a kind of neurosis. Regardless, doubt, doubt, doubt!

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I’m quite bored right now, so I’ve decided to post some random thoughts on this blog. Trust me, there will be no direction or focus, only a little something to pass the time by. The most fun I have when writing is when there are no parameters, which is rarely the case.

Wednesday night was the first episode in the new season of South Park and it was quite a success given that CNN covered it. I’m not sure if it’s a record for a television show (cartoon or otherwise), but the four young-ins from Colorado, and other show characters, managed to use the dreaded “N-word” over 40 times. Granted, the context was different than one might expect, but I find it encouraging that the creators of the hit series haven’t lost their motivation to offend, shock, and offer a moral all at the same time. How could anyone not love this show?

Work is pretty much at an all time low; there seems to be a dark cloud of demonic hell-dust covering this place. Barring complete employicide, I don’t see any way to change the corporate culture here. Back-stabbing, lying, cheating, and general nastiness is rewarded, while compassion and generosity is chastised. I’ve tried for 8 years to figure it all out, and I’ve given up. Now, I go to work with no concern over what happens while I’m there.

The school semester is almost over, and I hope to finish my last assignments this weekend. I’m kind of bummed though that the Philosophy class had to end. It’s a great subject (my favorite!) and reading Thoreau again made me want to spend two years on a pond in seclusion, living the simple life. But, this isn’t to be; instead I’m mired in corporatism, which is essentially a dung-hill.

Finally, my newest guitar showed up yesterday. It’s an Ovation CC057: sunburst-cherry red, Spruce top, maple neck, rosewood fingerboard, with diamond and dot inlays. Prrrr, prrrr, prrrrr. I immediately mineral oiled the neck with GHS Fast Fret, buffed the frets with Planet Waves Fret Polishing System, Polished the top with Ernie Ball Polish, and restrung it with D’Addario EJ11 80/20 Bronze Strings (Gauge: .012 – .053). This guitar plays so beautifully that’s it difficult to describe. The tone is exceptional over lows, mids, or highs. Also, the shallow-bowl composite back fits perfectly with my skinny self (149 lbs as of this morning).

And last but not least, the latest headlines read that the FBI abused the Patriot Act and spied on American citizens. Like duh? Who didn’t know that was going to happen? I still find it funny though that the sheeple don’t understand that the Patriot Act in and of itself is an abuse.

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My wife and I saw Breaking Benjamin (2nd time) at Cattle Annie’s in Lynchburg, VA on 2/6/07. The first time we saw them play was at The Nation in D.C. during one of the Jagermeister tours. We liked what we saw the first time and were anticipating the second show considerably, especially since BB hadn’t yet released We Are Not Alone and Phobia the last time we saw them.

I talked to the club owner the morning of the concert and he told me the show was sold-out and that doors would open at 5:00 pm for those people who wanted to eat prior to the concert. He also said that the club had a dress code and that “Jackets wouldn’t be allowed in the building. You will have to check them at the door. Also, no hooded sweatshirts, athletic apparel, baggy jeans, or beanies. T-shirts have to be tucked in and any baseball hat had to be worn with the bill in the front.” After his dress code diatribe, I wasn’t sure if I was going to church or to a rock-n-roll show. Earlier, I was planning to wear my black hoodie, but I ditched that and ended up wearing a long sleeve t-shirt with a short sleeve t-shirt over that.

The food before the show sounded like good idea as we wouldn’t have to stop before we got there, so my wife and I took off of work early and arrived at Cattle Annie’s at 5:10 pm. When we got there, there was approximately 20-25 people in line, but the doors hadn’t opened yet. From outside we could hear the band doing a rehearsal and not a sound-check, which seemed strange since they hadn’t been on tour for three months.

At 5:30 pm it started snowing and as the sun began to set, it got extremely cold. It was worse than usual since no one was wearing a jacket. The club manager came out around 5:45 pm and said that they would not be serving any buffet and wouldn’t be opening the doors until 6:30 pm. My jaw hit the floor. We would now have to stand outside in 20 degree weather for 1.5 hours in nothing but t-shirts?!?!?! What the fuck! We begged to be let in even if we could just stand inside the restaurant, but the manager said that no one would be allowed inside until after the sound check. (It wasn’t a sound check, but a rehearsal.). The crowd outside was getting ready to riot. Most were standing there shivering to death, noses running, and faces flushed.

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Dr. Laura Schlessinger is a radio personality who dispenses advice to people who call in to her radio show. Recently, she said that, as an observant Orthodox Jew, homosexuality is an abomination according to Leviticus 18:22 and cannot be condoned under any circumstance.

The following is an open letter to Dr. Laura penned by an east coast resident, which was posted on the Internet. It’s funny, as well as informative:

Dear Dr. Laura: Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God’s Law. I have learned a great deal from your show, and try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can.

When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind them that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination. End of debate.

I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some of the other specific laws and how to follow them:

When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a pleasing odour for the Lord – Lev.1:9. The problem is my neighbours. They claim the odour is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them?

I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price for her?

I know that I am allowed no contact with a woman while she is in her period of menstrual uncleanliness – Lev.15:19- 24. The problem is, how do I tell? I have tried asking, but most women take offence.

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I have had the privilege to debate a lady recently who chastised me for my use (and advocacy) of logic and reason when drawing conclusions about various claims. In her rant, she stated that people who thought creatively  would suffer “under my regime” as I would “squash them like a bug,” which I interpret to mean that I allegedly stand in opposition to anyone who doesn’t use reason and logic as the method of choice for truth discovery, investigation, and in constructing paradigms.

When she made the remark, it occurred to me like a lightning bolt from the heavens that creative thinking should never supplant critical thinking because creative thinking is not a method; it’s expression. Critical thinking is the method we use in making determinations, while creativity is used in the expression of those determinations.

All of this came about due to my rebuttal of her claim that the afterlife exists because it’s “too radical [of an idea] to dismiss.” My argument consisted of saying that a statement like that isn’t based on reasoning, logic, scientific investigation, etc., and is mainly an intellectual flight of fancy. Moreover, I stated that most people offer some reference when making a truth-claim, either by appealing to authority (argumentum ad verecundiam) or even utilizing something as shallow as anecdotal evidence, but at least they’re offering something.

Never in  all of my years had I heard someone say that something must be true because the idea was “too radical to dismiss.” That concept is devoid of all reason and shifts the veracity and validity of claims to the level of absurdity rather than to the arena of scientific and independent investigation. My frustration led me to say “If we apply the same logic, we also have to confirm as true that sticking a hot poker in your ass during sexual intercourse produces heightened orgasms” because the idea is “too radical to dismiss.” After all, it’s a radical idea, is it not?

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matrix.jpgThis weekend, while unsuccessfully searching the local bookstore for a copy of The Reason Driven Life, I browsed the Philosophy section looking for a good weekend read. Behind four entire rows dedicated to religion and Christian fiction (I don’t think the authors see the irony in that classification) I finally found a few shelves whose purpose was to advance reason and logic.

(To digress, Point of Inquiry had an interview with the above titled book’s author, Robert Price, which motivated me to get a copy of this book. I’d encourage anyone to download and listen to the interview from http://www.pointofinquiry.org.)

Let’s see now, a few shelves versus four book sections; if the theory of supply and demand is true, than the small town I live in is in trouble. The sheer volume of books available for “the faithful” is eternal (pun intended), but for those that want enlightenment through reason – in this instance via philosophy – they have a harder road ahead of them. Philosophical books exist, but the immediate choices in selections at the stores I’ve visited are few. Worse yet, at this bookstore, Western thought and philosophy were limited to eight books on a single shelf, while the majority were Eastern: Zen, Taosim, and Buddhism. As I was getting ready to leave, however, my eye caught one book: The Matrix and Philosophy. While I’m not a fan of pop-culture in general, I’ve seen the movie and am familiar with some of the philosophical concepts that are present in it. I proceeded to the checkout line after picking up a grande mocha (I can’t help it; I’m an addict) and left with my new book and cup of coffee.

Digg!

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