Friday, October 24, 2008

The National IQ Test

"We've arranged a civilization in which most crucial elements profoundly depend on science and technology. We have also arranged things so that almost no one understands science and technology. This is a prescription for disaster. We might get away with it for a while, but sooner or later this combustible mixture of ignorance and power is going to blow up in our faces."
-Carl Sagan

"It is not always easy to diagnose. The simplest form of stupidity - the mumbling, nose-picking, stolid incomprehension - can be detected by anyone. But the stupidity which disguises itself as thought, and which talks so glibly and eloquently, indeed never stops talking, in every walk of life is not so easy to identify, because it marches under a formidable name, which few dare attack. It is called Popular Opinion..."
-Robertson Davies

"There are two things which cannot be attacked in front: ignorance and narrow-mindedness. They can only be shaken by the simple development of the contrary qualities. They will not bear discussion."
-Lord (John Emerich Edward Dalberg) Acton

"Wanting to be right so badly that you come to actually believe that you are right, is not the same thing as actually being right.
If you can't tell the difference, you're hopelessly lost, and no-one can help you anymore."
-St. Brian the Godless

The National IQ Test

Watching the McCain-Palin campaign in action has made me realize that this isn’t just a contest between Republicans and Democrats, it’s a contest between the belief-based mentality and the thought-based mentality. It is a contest between those who do not habitually question things deeply to determine their veracity, and those who do.

It is a contest between those that think the cherubs are soap, and those who can tell that they’re plastic. (See previous post)

Now I don't know about you, but when I watch politics I pay attention not only to my candidate’s statements but also to those of his or her opponent’s. I look into the statements of the opponent deeply, to make sure that I’m backing the right person. I seriously consider the possibility that the opponent may be telling the truth, so I look their statements up on the web, read a lot of (often conflicting) data about them, and check out independent sources as well as my candidate’s rebuttal. I watch various sources of cable news. I read many different websites. I make every attempt to stay informed about both sides of every issue and even the related issues, and then I decide who’s telling the truth and who isn’t. By then it’s usually pretty obvious. And if the other guy isn’t telling the truth and my candidate is, this is not only a plus for the credibility of my candidate in my mind, but a minus for the other guy.

Now to my mind, there’s no other way to be. How else can one cut through the “spin” and see the substance other than by being a hypercritical skeptic? But to many people it’s a lot easier than that. They go with their “gut” instead. This is another way to say that they vote based on belief and emotion rather than on careful and unbiased thought. And they are legion.

How else to explain the fact that McCain-Palin is even close in the polls to Obama-Biden when by all rights with the vast amounts of easily-detectable distortions and outright lies that they’ve been tossing out there at their opponents they should be national laughing stocks by now? Not to mention the difference in message, and the obvious difference in the intelligence and judgment of the candidates? And the obvious fact, the undeniable reality that Sarah Palin is not anywhere near being ready to be president of this great country, and never will be, and that her selection was a mockery, a slap in the face to thinking Americans everywhere.

Apparently there are an incredible number of people in this country that do not see the value of skepticism and penetrating thought.

Oh, I see that Sarah Palin is finally getting close to being a laughing stock. About time. I was laughing at her the day she was introduced as candidate and have only stopped to vomit occasionally since. How long do some people take to see through such an obvious total and complete lie? Her entire persona is a carefully constructed fabrication. She lives the lie. She is the lie. She’s a puff of smoke in front of a mirror. A piece of eye-candy with an arsenic center. It worries me that people have been taking so long to see through her, though. She’s not a very good lie. She’s on the level of the toddler that says they didn’t eat the cookie with crumbs still on their lips. Transparent as glass and thus all the more appalling that some people can’t see through her at all, and that they can vote.

But good old John McCain is apparently a better lie. Oh, I assure you that he is now indeed a lie, as much as Sarah Palin is. He just has his past honor and glory and “maverickiness” to fall back on to make the lie seem more real.

(Hey, it worked when he was running for senate)

When you consider how much he’s broken from that past recently, how much he’s changed, it’s hard to believe that anybody would fall for it, but they still do. It’s sad, actually. He used to have a modicum of honor, but he traded it all for a chance at the prize. He’s sold his soul as much as Judas ever did, seeking to trade his honor and glory for power and fame. How is this not obvious to all? The man’s an open book, for all that have eyes to see.

Neither John McCain nor Sarah Palin is a very convincing lie, as lies go. Neither one is very hard to see through, if you’re a thinking individual. They’re not hard to judge as people. They’ve made it very easy, in fact. They practically dare us to spot them. They’re laughably obvious. Ms. Palin in particular is a caricature of vicious stupidity coupled with an egomaniacal drive. If people looked on the outside as they really are on the inside she’d look like Quasimodo instead of a pageant winner. The loathsomeness virtually drips off her. Just look at what she inspires among her base. She has the basest base in the country. When she called herself a pitbull with lipstick, I really didn’t think that she meant it literally. As in, she’s one vicious bitch if ever there was one.

Why aren’t more of us laughing? They're both very funny! Why do any of us even consider voting for them, when our only reaction should be amusement at their pathetic, childish attempts to fool us into thinking that they're competent when they're so clearly not?

I have to put this thought out there: If so much of the Republican Party wasn’t so religious, I don’t think they’d be so gullible and willing to just believe in someone without adequately examining them based on a few claims that appeal to them. They’ve been conditioned to have faith and believe in things without proof or evidence, as long as it “feels right.” And it “feels right” when it agrees with their preconceived erroneous worldview that they’ve been conditioned into in the first place. It even seems that some of them have little regard for the truth anymore, as in, they can’t even tell it from the lies, and don’t seem to see the importance of trying to. To them, the truth is whatever they believe it to be.

And of course, McCain’s white. That figures in here heavily as well, I’m sure. More ignorance at work.

This election is an important test. It is an IQ test for the entire nation. And it’s not like the usual IQ test. It’s not scored. It’s “pass or fail.” It’s “are we too ignorant as a country to merit survival as a world leader or even as a country, or are we worthy to be that "Shining City on a Hill" for the rest of the world once again?

If we fail, unfortunately we will deserve the consequences. And I fear that they will be dire.
________________________________

More ancillary stupidity:

-Apparently a McCain volunteer carved a “B” into her own face and tried to say a black Obama supporter did it after he mugged her. She just admitted the hoax after a polygraph. How stupid was she? The "B" was reversed on her face, as in she carved it as it looked in the mirror. Drudge jumped all over it of course, since it showed how hateful we Obama supporters really are… And the right had a field day talking about it, how maybe it meant that people should think again about voting for Obama... The little psycho even got a call from the Queen Psycho herself, Sarah Palin!

Now with the truth out there, it only shows how psychotic McCain supporters can be and how rabid their campaign has become. Nice going there Matt Drudge, on vetting your sources or even caring about the truth. Nice going there McCain campaign for trying to foment hatred when you thought you had a chance. Too bad it backfired like that. Guess that's the risk you take when you try to appeal to American's nutcases.

-Also, Joe the Plumber was formerly Joe the Alaskan. He used to live there. Do you smell a rodent yet?

-And Sarah Palin just bought more clothes Monday. That’s in addition to the 150k that the republicans have already spent on her. She’s an expensive lie, apparently.

In never rains but it pours.

195 comments:

  1. She’s a puff of smoke in front of a mirror. A piece of eye-candy with an arsenic center.
    ---------

    This should be sung to the melody of 'Mr Grinch'.

    Obviously, I could not agree with you more. But as long as the majority of people accept the sound byte marketing approach to all things and believe that 'fairness' requires all viewpoints to be considered as equal, we will continue to spiral down.

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  2. Funny thing is that McCain was never really a "maverick": he was just your typical politician who realized that he could gain credibility and fame by voting along with the Democratic side of things periodically on things that the should really never have been up for debate anyway (in addition to throwing his father's reputation around in order to get name recognition). Oh, except for his voting against torture, that was probably genuine. Hardly a "maverick" move, all things considered, however.

    And, now, he's found that he is well known enough that he doesn't need to be an attention whore anymore. So, he can now fully cater to his Republican masters, while simultaneously coasting along on his alleged "maverickocity" [my wording] in order to allow him to have his bipartisanship cake, and stomp all over it too.

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  3. "And the obvious fact, the undeniable reality that Sarah Palin is not anywhere near being ready to be president of this great country"

    What makes you so sure that Obama is ready? The =only= real difference between Palin and Obama (besides the fact that Obama, unlike Palin, is at the top of the ticket) is at the is that Obama has been at the 'running for national office' process for a much longer time than Palin, and has had much more time to memorize what his handlers have taught him. Obama has no foreign policy experience to speak of (which is why he chose Joe Biden); no executive experience to speak of; no business experience to speak of; no serious legislative accomplishments to speak of; no private sector accomplishments to speak of; no important examples of independence from straight-down-the-line party politics to speak of; and so on.

    ***In short, the =only= thing Obama has shown that he's good at is persuading people that he is competent in areas in which he has demonstrated no competence***.

    A difficult skill, no doubt; but does it make him worthy of the highest office in the land?

    Face it: you've been taken in by a smooth talking =politician= with a good memory. I'm sorry, but that's all there is.

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  4. I believe that McCain's choice of Palin as VP speaks volumes about who and where he is in the political process. She was at once his "caving in" to the one issue voters and far right wing of the party, who were clearly underwhelmed by his candidacy until then. Of course,as a "born again", she effectively galvanized this far right group into more energetic support for his candidacy, but McCain also expected her gender to attract significant numbers of undecided women and even disappointed Hillary voters to his side. Fortunately, it appaears that many more female voters see Palin as a demeaning attempt to woo them and a "slap in the face" than are attracted, especially since McCain had several highly regarded and much better qualified females to choose from (even a certain African American one). Whether or not she is all that "evil" underneath the cheerleader exterior is, I think, both open to question and probably irrelevent. She would, however, be totally subject to "back room" control by high ranking Republican members of a McCain administration, if and when he succumbed to his age or many serious malignancies, whereas most of the other, well qualified and experienced possible VPs would not.
    Seeing this as an IQ test is a very interesting take, but inasmuch as the right to vote has never been based on intelligence, I think it is more the case that the American electorate usually chooses the quality of leadership that it deserves at various times in our history. Fortunately, we do not need everyone to "deserve" the intelligent and apparently reparative leadership that we hope Obama can provide; only enough of us who are appalled by what another few years of the last two administrations would mean.

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  5. It is rumoured that the ancestors of all the candidates are the same ancestors as those of the great apes!

    Ah, but the Christians tell us that they teach people according to their ability to learn!

    The question is, does, "God did it!" trump, "Bush is an a-hole!"?

    You know, given the fact that all the candidates are following the party line, Bush being an example of what to expect if McCain/Palin win, as eric says!

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  6. Nostradamus said, "The body without a soul is no more in sacrifice.
    Day of death put for birth:
    The divine spirit will make the soul happy,
    Seeing the word in his eternity."

    There you have it, the USA will be out of the clutches of the neocon blood suckers!

    It has been predicted!

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  7. Another random Nostradamus quatrain quote from-

    http://www.nostradamus.
    org/qbrowser.php


    "Quite another one will attain to the great Empire, Kindness distant more so happiness: Ruled by one sprung not far from the brothel, Realms to decay great bad luck."

    Who is this "quite another"?

    Obviously Obama!

    "Ruled by.."(past tense) obviously Bush!

    Bush's 'bad luck' decays!

    This is too easy!

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  8. I have noticed that "gut-thinkers" and belief based people have such a dismissive attitude towards the importance of education. It's an interesting phenomenon that the more highly educated and reality based thought you engage in, the more you know what you DON'T know. Which leads to critical thinking and investigation, learning, and more in depth knowledge. Many gut and belief based people already think they know it all, and have no qualms about ignoring advisors, facts, new information, etc. (I'm thinking Bush here.) I had an argument with JaneSophie (omg, who hasn't) in which she called me elitist - and said that Obama's Harvard education had NO merit, and it didn't matter that Sarah Palin has a BA in journalism. It does matter. I want the best, the brightest, the most highly educated person available to be in the White House. Even McCain barely made it through the Naval Academy. A great education doesn't mean ALL, but it is a stunning indicator of one's ability to learn, reason, navigate,
    understand, and have a broad view on many issues. Eric says Obama hasn't proven anything, and he is wrong. NO ONE, not even McCain, could possibly know what the presidency holds. NO ONE has the experience until they are in there. Obama has proven he has a steady hand and even temperament, great intelligence overall, an ability to see issues rationally, a person who can make decisions and adapt to new information or changing circumstances. Sarah Palin is so misinformed, and uninformed that it is scary. She doesn't even know what she does not know, and that is disasterous. She has said twice now that the VP runs the Senate. It's not a gaffe. It is a missing education link. She will continue to make mistake after mistake because she has no knowledge or education about the US Government, policies, laws, constitutional law, international relations, etc. And she doesn't think it's necessary because she knows it all. Just the other day she was dismissive about spending on fruit fly research. That pesky science stuff. She doesn't pay enough attention to science to know that advances in research into many human conditions and diseases are beginning to be understood by studying fruit flys at the cellular level. And with that research and knowledge comes cure and treatment of suffering people.
    As to the lying....it's incredible. Is it a memory problem? They don't remember what they said on film 2 weeks ago? John McCain was outraged on film in 1996 about campaign funds being used for "tuxedos". Now Palin needs clothes. Sarah Palin did not want to be labled a feminist 2 days ago, but 2 weeks ago (on video) she said she is a feminist.
    Sarah Palin is becoming more and more of a "non-person" to me. She's not real, she has no substance, depth, character, or inner core. She is, on any given day, who they tell her she is.

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  9. Eric,

    Funny joke, but be serious here. We're talking PALIN, not someone with a brain or even half of one.

    Obama graduated top of his class, and McCain at the bottom. First black president of Harvard's Law Review. Amazing mind. A genius, to be sure. Even-tempered and cool, and brilliant. A perfect choice. McCain's a washed-up has-been, if he ever even was anything in the first place. We've seen how they deal with problems and difficulties in the two years of this election, and frankly it's even obvious that Obama's more qualified than MCCAIN is. never mind Palin. Palin's a total and complete drone. A "palin-drone."
    Plus all the divisive hateful crap from McAsshole is enough for me. I don't do hate politics well. I tend to hold it against the hater and not the hate-ee.

    Are you telling me that you're ACTUALLY one of those not intelligent enough to see this? You think McCain to be even a fraction of what Obama is? REALLY? Seriously? I mean, it's like comaparing Barney Fife to Carl Sagan. Fess up now... Stop the fibbing

    Be serious next time. No need to be so silly. We're all friends here. You can tell the truth.

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  10. ***In short, the =only= thing Obama has shown that he's good at is persuading people that he is competent in areas in which he has demonstrated no competence***.
    ---------------------
    You're smarter than this, Eric.

    Obama beat the Clintons. BOTH of them. And he's cleaning McCain's clock. His organization is astounding, he's changed the electoral map, and his choices for advisors amazing, not the bunch of ex-rovian neocons and lobbyists that McCain has. He's more qualified for the job of president than McCain is. Much more so in fact. McCain's a moron in contrast. A mouth-breather next to Obama. And I haven't been deluded. I'd say that you have been, if I even thought that you believed what you're saying. You can't. You're too smart to.

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  11. Eric, if you really think that Palin's even close to being qualified, I totally lose all respect for your mind. Seriously. I mean, that's practically the whole point of my post, the sheer RIDICULOUSNESS of her as VP.

    Nest you'll tell me that a trained cocker spaniel would be fine as VP. I mean, get serious here.

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  12. Plus, McCain lies a LOT more, and they're a lot WORSE lies.

    In fact, most of Obama's "negative ads" are rebuttals to McCains much more scurrilous lying negative ads. Bill Ayers for instance. How retarded that was! AS IF we're that STUPID. As if we can be "sicced" on Obama like a pack of dogs by standard neocon lies like that. Boring...

    Now Obama's a socialist. Er, no Mr. McCain, you're just a really old, really stupid, really unqualified fool who likes to yell slurs because he's out of ideas.

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  13. As a skeptic I sometimes find myself being skeptical of my own skepticism (do that in Versailles' hall of mirrors and see how many times you end up doubting yourself...). I really don't care for McCain/Palin but recall a time when I had a positive opinion of McCain. What changed? Is he really any different from the way he was before? Were my earlier perceptions just based on a casual understanding of the man because it really had no bearing on my life (he wasn't my senator)? Or do I find myself now loathing the man because of the 'availability heuristic bias' I associate with the GOP's record, the Bush administration, and Karl Rove? (I spit on the ground. I recommend that we all spit on the ground when that vile name is uttered. It's an ethnic thing I inherited.)

    I assume, because of 'Rove availability' that he is lying and behaving deceitfully because of the people he has chosen to use in his campaign. I try to not vote so much from the gut but I find myself realizing that almost anyone the GOP would propose would fail muster because of the record of the last 8 years. That makes me wonder whether I have become just as knee-jerk and polarized as I rail against die-hard right-wingers for being. If that is true I'll need to enroll myself in skeptic rehab (hey there's an idea...).

    As for Palin I know that her being a fundamentalist colors my perceptions of her in a way I have a hard time mitigating. It doesn't help that every word out of her mouth seems to me (and I admit I may be predisposed to see it that way) to show animosity toward the things I hold dear - education and enlightenment. Is her apparent smug ignorance and superior attitude really her or is it my jaundiced view. She may love Joe six pack, but Joe rarely is the guy who comes up with new ideas, creates jobs, makes new discoveries, pushes the social envelop, and takes a positive attitude toward the future that drives a nation forward.

    By the same token I realize that my support for Obama is affected by the nature of what his Presidency may mean for the nation as much as it is for the man himself. Even if all he were to offer is simple hope and the possibility of something different at this point in history that is enough for me. I realize that I may be guilty of falling for the cognitive bias of availability (Obama=hope) in this case, but the opposition has failed to provide me with a better alternative. Their slogans don't stick in my mind - they just stick in my craw.

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  14. Palin made fun of fruit fly research the other day in front of an autism group. Of course she didn't know that said research has provided results in the search for the cure for autism. She didn't know that the "fruit fly research" was related to autism. She had no idea that the humble drosophila melanogaster is the single most important test animal for genetic research due to the large size of their chromosomes. She didn't know. Nor did anyone advising her. She just saw something that she thought she could make fun of safely. Not knowing anything abot science and all....

    HOW IS THIS PERSON QUALIFIED IN THE LEAST? Eric? You there? I wanna know what you think you see in her. Is it her legs or her tits that you think most qualify her for the job, or is it both?

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  15. This just in. Found it on the web.

    "Barack Obama added another "first" to his already notable list yesterday: he became the first U.S. presidential candidate -- and, I'm guessing, the first high-level elected official in any country -- to have a ready answer to a standard Google engineering interview question. Asked by Eric Schmidt about "the most efficient way to sort a million 32-bit integers," Sen. Obama replied that "the bubble sort would be the wrong way to go." Though some might view this as shameless pandering to the bucket-sorting community, others will see a bold pragmatism."

    Eric, let's ask Sarah Palin the question too. Whaddaya say? I bet she blows bubbles out her bucket.

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  16. And another thing, while I'm on a tear...

    Wanna know why Obama gets all the good press? It's not favoritism for Obama, it's "anti-favoritism" for the spectacular wrongness of the McCain campaign. When you're the one doing bad things, you're the one that get's the most bad press. That's how a fair press is supposed to work. It's not favoritism, it's reporting.

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  17. "And the obvious fact, the undeniable reality that Sarah Palin is not anywhere near being ready to be president of this great country"

    What makes you so sure that Obama is ready?
    ---------------------
    Even if I didn't have a hundred reasons why I know Obama is as ready as anybody and more ready than most (Colin Powell comes to mind as one of the hundred)(And so does the Obama Campaign's STELLAR performance over the last two years)(Obama's scholastic record and his record as a state senator isn't bad either) I'd still be able to tell that Palin is so much LESS QUALIFIED than Obama is, just from her decidedly unintelligent way of speaking, her vocabulary or lack thereof, and the pathetic WRONG answers that she gave to certain questions. She couldn't even come up with the name of a magazine! Oh, and her WRONG answer to the VP Job question, twice, frankly horrifies me, given what Cheney's done with the office. She sounds wishful and hungry for it. For the POWER she sees possible to have in that office, since Cheney paved the way. Oh, and she's a fundie lunatic glossolalist that doesn't know anything nor care anything about science, which is HUGE for me, as it should be for you. And she's a hate-monger as well. She loves the roll of attack bitch.

    And another thing. Since I just made an intentionally sexist-sounding comment, it reminds me that Sarah Palin is accusing those that are appalled at the 150,000 dollar wardrobe of being sexist. REALLY? SERIOUSLY?

    How pathetically transparent of you Sarah. And how dumb you must think we are.

    AS IF we wouldn't be eqally appalled at a man spending 150K on his wardrobe. Look at John Edwards. Were we sexist to think that a 400 dollar haircut was too much? Because I admit that I did. And last time I looked, I'm male. So how was I a sexist? 150K is inexcusable. Period.

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  18. Pliny, I like your way of seeing things. Very reflective. We need more reflective people. More people willing and even eager to self-examine and reality-check.

    I think it's a sane response to assess fundamentalism, in any religion, as defective thinking. I think you're right in doing so. Ms. Palin is a fundamentalist. That alone disqualifies her for the job, and then she had to go and add in SO MUCH MORE that disqualifies her. But it's all related to her ignorance and egotism, the standard end-product of fundamentalist thought.

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  19. The McCain-Palin campaign reminds me of a quote from a famous Christian:

    "A little jargon is all that is necessary to impose on the people. The less they comprehend, the more they admire."- St. Gregory, 4th century Bishop of Nanianzus

    Those early Christians sure knew how to fool people...

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  20. I liken my choice of candidate like I do life.

    Who do you think will take this position:
    #1
    "I don't know the answers to the difficult questions we are faced with, so I am going to gather many informed, intelligent and educated people and discuss all possible solutions until we can arrive at a consensus that will best fit the scenario and give maximum benefit to all citizens equally."

    #2
    "I'm going to go with my gut on this, oh and what ever my advisers tell me I should do, after all what matters is who has paid for my vote and what they want.

    I just can't see McCain gathering educated, intelligent minded people together for a convo.

    It seems he is a lot like Bush, doesn't want anyone else in the room that might remotely be higher on the intelligence scale than he is.

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  21. Pliny - I am in the same boat as you. A little knee jerk. An R next to the lever means no vote from me. But, as Brian says, you are reflective. You do think about it. That's the difference. I'm sure if a new issue came up, one that you didn't fully understand the complexities of, you would look it up. And, chances are that you will still side with the Democrats. The Dems reflect the core of your beliefs on most issues. So I don't think you need Skeptic Rehab services. LOL. I think it's true of most Dems. We don't fall into lock-step with our party ALL the time. We do criticize our own elected officials. If they do something shady or wrong, we say it. I said Clinton was the dumbest ass ever for the Monica thing, but I thought he was a great president. We don't make excuses for them or parrot theirs. (IE: Hey, the guy just has a wide stance!!! That's our story and....)
    As to Sarah's scary dumbness. That TWICE not knowing what the VP does thing... she showed brains by asking once "What exactly does the VP do?" But, she still doesn't know. She was either told and does not remember. Or she was told and thinks that wouldn't apply to her, she can make her own rules. Or she was never told, and has shown total non-curiosity or care enough for the answer to ask again. Or she lacks initiative to go seek answers to very important questions on her own. I can't think of another single reason why she doesn't know, and any or all of the above reasons make her not ready to hold any office. Don't get me started on the fruit flies again, Brian. LMAO (How come we know about them, and she doesn't?)

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  22. Yeah Jude, I guess we're qualified to be president then.

    Except I don't seem to have the appropriate wardrobe. It's my only weakness. Do you happen to have a spare 150K on you?

    I shall gladly pay you Tuesday for a wardrobe change today...

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  23. Let's look at a few of the claims that have been made here.

    First, it's patently absurd to argue that Obama's nomination is evidence that he's qualified to be president. If that were so, then every person who has ever been nominated by a national party to run for president was qualified by virtue of the nomination. I'm going to coin a name for this sort of fallacy: reductio ad Bushum, or a reduction to Bush. It only works against Democrats, but it's pretty effective since it shows that by parity of reasoning George W. Bush was qualified to be president. (Also, it's simply obvious that the sort of skills it takes to persuade others that you're up to a job are not necessarily the same as the skills required to do the job.)

    Another example of the reductio as Bushum can be seen with the claim that Colin Powell's endorsement entails that a candidate is qualified.

    Yet another example of the reductio ad Bushum is the notion that someone who has attended elite institutions is qualified to be president. Bush attended Phillips Academy, Yale and Harvard. Sure, he wasn't as good a student as Obama, but he was as good as the likes of Gore and Kerry.

    It seems to me that those three arguments fail if you're a Democrat because they lead to the conclusion that Bush was qualified to be president -- something I seriously doubt any of you want to concede.

    Now we can look more closely at the 'intelligence' qualification.

    Obama is damn smart, no doubt about it, but let's not get carried away. He performed very well in school, but then again, he has no major academic achievements (understood in terms of research, publications, etc.; in other words, in terms of the =real= academic work that starts when school is over).

    That aside, what does history have to tell us about outstanding intelligence and the presidency? I'll start off with a surprise (for many of you): Do you know who one of the smartest presidents since WW2 was? Answer -- Richard Nixon. No BS. Even Nobel Laureates have spoken glowingly about Nixon's extraordinary mind.

    If we look at every man who has ever served as president, one who clearly stands out in terms of intelligence above every one but a select few is John Adams. The debate is usually whether Adams or Jefferson was the most intelligent man ever to serve as president; Jefferson always wins in terms of the breadth of his mind, but Adams nearly always wins in terms of depth. However, if you know anything about American history, you know that Adams's administration is judged to be among the least successful.

    Contrast Adams with much less intelligent men such as Washington and Lincoln, who are judged to be among our most successful presidents (note, I'm not saying that Washington or Lincoln were stupid; I'm just saying that, although they were very intelligent, they were no where near Adams). So, while a certain level of intelligence is no doubt necessary, it's not at all clear that brilliance (assuming, for the sake of argument, that Obama is in this category) gets one that much further.

    Finally, when it comes to the 'qualifications' question, don't listen to me, or to any Republicans: listen to Obama's running mate, or to the Clintons. Before Obama won the nomination, they all argued that Obama is not qualified; after he won, they're singing a different tune, not because they've suddenly seen the light (you've got to be deluded to buy that), but for the good of the party. Surely, you're all intelligent enough to realize that if Obama's strongest supporters were making the same claims the Republicans are making about Obama's lack of qualifications before Obama won the nomination, then you have a choice: either they were lying before his nomination, or they're lying now. It's much, =much= more plausible that so many Democrats were making the same argument the Republicans are making now because its conclusion is true. (And talking about Democrats and Republicans making the same arguments, Hillary Clinton brought up William Ayers long before the McCain campaign.)

    I know that I haven't addressed your claims about Palin yet, but I'll get back to it; I've just written a long post, and I don't have any more time right now.

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  24. Eric:
    "Another example of the reductio as Bushum can be seen with the claim that Colin Powell's endorsement entails that a candidate is qualified."

    I believe it would be more to the point that a person of Powell's stature, with extensive experience in an administration he now admits was seriously off-base in many aspects of governance, is saying that Obama is the better qualified of the two candidates to try to lead us out of the morass we have fallen into. He certainly knows McCain very well and apparently does not see him as able to depart from Bush's disastrous policies.

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  25. Yet another claim is that the merit of experience somehow is proof that their policies make sense. The only qualifications that I could want for a President is for him to be able to know what he is doing, and for him to be sane enough to do what is best. I am honestly not sure what kind of "experience" could make someone get this kind of perspective if they don't already possess it, and I don't know why having a longer history, no matter how erratic, no matter how divergent it is from your actual performance in modern times, necessarily makes them a better candidate. Every president who enters the Oval Office is inexperienced in the one role that matters for them at the time: being president. There just isn't a hell of a lot you can do to mitigate that.

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  26. Whoaaaaa! Rogue Palin is out in full force. The crazy is showing big time, and I hope you all are reading Huffington post. I'm really glad that McCain's handlers can't keep her in check. I don't think they had a clue as to what they were getting with her, and boy is she letting them know now. The more we hear her speak, the better, IMO. Let ALL the crazy out, Girl. We need to know how low you go.
    Her latest is that an Obama tax plan would turn us into a nightmare communist state. Not just socialist anymore. Communist. That the big gov't. would step into our lives and take over, and we would no longer be free. Because of a tax plan. Oh, like having the gov't. listen to private calls? Strip you of your rights of habeas corpus? Legislate who you can marry, decide when you have to have a baby or when you can or cannot pull your plug? That kind of not free? I think I'm going to go ahead and give Sarah credit here for single handedly tearing down the Republican party as we know it. When she is done, they will have to do something about their lunatic fringe, re-group, and try to salvage a rational party. She is making them look both silly, and dangerous at the same time. The moderate Republicans are jumping ship - this is good for everyone. Perhaps the glimmer of getting rid of religion being so heavily injected into their platforms? Would be nice. Keep talking, Sarah!!!

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  27. nice post brian!

    has anyone here read the rolling stone article about john mccain? the man is a pig! the way he treats women is disgusting and he is incapable of having an original thought. everything he does is done to the tune of his mantra, "anything to get ahead, me, me, me!"

    for anyone who has not read the article and would like to, here is the link:

    http://www.rollingstone.com/news/coverstory/make_believe_maverick_the_real_john_mccain

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  28. Jude: The GOP is feeling so pushed to the wall it is only a matter of time before they claim 'the scoobie-Doo' senario - that Obama is Osama in disguise. Oh wait, They already have tried that one.

    You have to wonder where the ultra-right thinks the government's money comes from. Do they really believe that we can address the counties problems and debt load without raising taxes to some degree? And you have to love the gov. of a state where everyone gets their oil checks lamenting sharing the wealth...

    Richelle - I did read the RS article (lamenting the move to the smaller magazine format...).

    I also have to admit that McCain having been witnessed calling his wife the 'C-bomb' did not raise his stock with me (separate source). I cannot imagine any circumstance that would warrant that language for one's spouse.

    That article was one of the reason's I started to look back at what had made him seem ok to me in the past. It reminded me that what I might ignore in a Senator from another state, was a lot more than I can ignore in a Presidential candidate.

    Jude and Brian - thanks for the kind words though on some days trying to be fair is a lot harder than others ...

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  29. Eric said:
    Let's look at a few of the claims that have been made here.
    -Yes, let’s…

    First, it's patently absurd to argue that Obama's nomination is evidence that he's qualified to be president.
    -I didn’t mean that. It’s not merely the fact that he was nominated. I meant that the last two years has allowed us to see his ability in planning a campaign, and that he’s done an incredibly good job. He beat the Clintons in the nomination, and that’s nothing to sneeze at. And more recently his campaign has been almost flawless, as compared to McCain’s which is haphazard and inconsistent.

    If that were so, then every person who has ever been nominated by a national party to run for president was qualified by virtue of the nomination.
    -You’re being silly now.

    I'm going to coin a name for this sort of fallacy: reductio ad Bushum, or a reduction to Bush.
    -You want to coin a name for something that isn’t applicable. Okay, whatever.

    It only works against Democrats, but it's pretty effective since it shows that by parity of reasoning George W. Bush was qualified to be president. (Also, it's simply obvious that the sort of skills it takes to persuade others that you're up to a job are not necessarily the same as the skills required to do the job.)
    -GWB got in because of the Christians voting like ants at a picnic, not due to any great genius on his part. Rove got him in with the politics of hatred and separation. To me, it invalidates his entire presidency.

    Another example of the reductio as Bushum can be seen with the claim that Colin Powell's endorsement entails that a candidate is qualified.
    -Powell means a very respected military man thinks that Obama is qualified. That is a plus for Obama. Not that Obama IS qualified, but that a former general thinks that he is. I don’t see Powell endorsing someone that isn’t prepared. It would reflect badly on him. Powell has more gravitas than most former military people. Furthermore when he listed his reasons, they were the exact same as mine, to the letter.

    Yet another example of the reductio ad Bushum is the notion that someone who has attended elite institutions is qualified to be president. Bush attended Phillips Academy, Yale and Harvard. Sure, he wasn't as good a student as Obama, but he was as good as the likes of Gore and Kerry.
    -Again, it’s not that Obama attended, silly. It’s that he ACED HARVARD!!! Are you mental or something? That counts for a LOT! He was their very BEST STUDENT. GWB was an idiot in school, a “C” student, and McBrainless finished in the BOTTOM 5 of his class. Only a bona-fide genius can ace Harvard Law. And I want a genius in the oval office for once. Sheer intellect isn’t everything, but it’s necessary. Very necessary.

    It seems to me that those three arguments fail if you're a Democrat because they lead to the conclusion that Bush was qualified to be president -- something I seriously doubt any of you want to concede.
    -Laughable, yes. Of course he wasn’t. He got in due to Rove.

    Now we can look more closely at the 'intelligence' qualification.

    Obama is damn smart, no doubt about it, but let's not get carried away. He performed very well in school, but then again, he has no major academic achievements (understood in terms of research, publications, etc.; in other words, in terms of the =real= academic work that starts when school is over).
    -Uh, he went into politics, not research. I’d say that getting the residential nomination in four years is a pretty good accomplishment, and he did it through sheer ELOQUENCE coupled with a real VISION for the country.

    That aside, what does history have to tell us about outstanding intelligence and the presidency? I'll start off with a surprise (for many of you): Do you know who one of the smartest presidents since WW2 was? Answer -- Richard Nixon. No BS. Even Nobel Laureates have spoken glowingly about Nixon's extraordinary mind.
    -Nixon perhaps had the mind, but lacked the vision. He was in it for himself. Like Bush was, and McCain is!

    If we look at every man who has ever served as president, one who clearly stands out in terms of intelligence above every one but a select few is John Adams. The debate is usually whether Adams or Jefferson was the most intelligent man ever to serve as president; Jefferson always wins in terms of the breadth of his mind, but Adams nearly always wins in terms of depth. However, if you know anything about American history, you know that Adams's administration is judged to be among the least successful.
    -Again, intellect with no vision for the country is impotent. Sometimes very smart people use their brains to further their own agenda with no concern for the people. I don’t see Obama doing that, though. I don’t see it happening.

    Contrast Adams with much less intelligent men such as Washington and Lincoln, who are judged to be among our most successful presidents (note, I'm not saying that Washington or Lincoln were stupid; I'm just saying that, although they were very intelligent, they were no where near Adams). So, while a certain level of intelligence is no doubt necessary, it's not at all clear that brilliance (assuming, for the sake of argument, that Obama is in this category) gets one that much further.
    -But idiocy gets much LESS further every goddamn time, and McCain’s clearly an idiot, even when not compared to Obama. Hell, he picked Palin. Case closed.

    Finally, when it comes to the 'qualifications' question, don't listen to me, or to any Republicans: listen to Obama's running mate, or to the Clintons. Before Obama won the nomination, they all argued that Obama is not qualified; after he won, they're singing a different tune, not because they've suddenly seen the light (you've got to be deluded to buy that), but for the good of the party. Surely, you're all intelligent enough to realize that if Obama's strongest supporters were making the same claims the Republicans are making about Obama's lack of qualifications before Obama won the nomination, then you have a choice: either they were lying before his nomination, or they're lying now. It's much, =much= more plausible that so many Democrats were making the same argument the Republicans are making now because its conclusion is true. (And talking about Democrats and Republicans making the same arguments, Hillary Clinton brought up William Ayers long before the McCain campaign.)
    -Yes, and they were stupid to do so. Obama was so strong that all they could hit him on was his experience. They wanted to WIN and let it get in the way of their better judgement. And I think Biden thinks better of Obama now that Obama won the nomination. I KNOW that the Clintons think better of him as an opponent now. Since they lost to him. Besides, McCain is supposed to have ALL the experience in the world and he handled the financial crisis like a petulant child.

    I know that I haven't addressed your claims about Palin yet, but I'll get back to it; I've just written a long post, and I don't have any more time right now.
    -I can’t wait. Dying to hear how she's qualified for more than a Mary Kay cosmetics representative. :-)

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  30. Hi Brian, hi all,
    In talking about Obama's inexperience or McCain's lack of economic or understanding the average American I have to say based on what has been said on both sides that Obama is the candidate who has shown more compassion to America's woes.
    McCain hardly mentions the middle class, nor has he even touched on education or talked about preventative health care as Obama has spoken of. It is true that if you educate Americans on obesity, heart diseases and diabetes you in the long run will bring the cost of health care down dramatically. One million Americans die from heart disease and about 70 million live with conditions such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol that are main causes of heart problems. Yet we spend 50 x more government funds to fight terrorism in 2 counties and not focusing on terrorist groups that function in different countries throughout the world, something McCain hasn't mentioned once. The war on terror is like the war on drugs, you can't pinpoint it to a certain location as it is broad and wide spread, something Obama mentioned and McCain hasn't.

    McCain also doesn't deem the education of America's children important, sort of expected when you hardly graduate. When Bush was elected in 2000 and in 2004 intelligence didn't seem to be in a factor since the country was in good standing. But now that we are in peril most people are really focusing on the differences on education, despite Obama's lack of experience. Education creates innovations, something foreign countries are excelling at while we topple to the bottom with high drop out rates and accepted mediocrity of our graduating children.

    I also need to mention that in one of my trips to DC last month I met an interesting author, lawyer James Turner who works on the hill and who served in the navy alongside McCain. He said McCain was more of a reckless man rather than the maverick all make him out to be and thanks to his admiral father most were afraid on reprimanding his recklessness. Turner wrote a book who both Schwarzenegger and Obama read called The Voice of the People, The transpartisan imperative in American Life. McCain got a copy too but never a response if he read it or not. It talks about opposing parties finding what they have in common in order to bring them to the table to negotiate decisions on important issues rather than arguing the differences on education, healthcare, foreign policy and other issues. He also wrote the Nader report on food protection at the FDA, which Time magazine called a devastating critique of the FDA. Very intelligent man, you guys should read the book.

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  31. I'm disappointed in you eric. You seem to me like a very deliberate person.

    I think that it is fairly obvious that Brian's post is about a comparison between the two sets of candidates.

    You seem to think that you can alter this to a comparison between Obama and Bush, then Obama and a shower of past presidents and that no-one will notice.

    I think that you ought to be ashamed of yourself for this comment and to atone for it, you ought to cast your vote for Obama.

    I imagine that you watched the debates. Do you honestly want an old fool who uses the age old argument that (shock-of-shocks!) Democrats are more to the left than Republicans together with that 'Joe-the-plumber's assistant-who-has-dreams-of-one-day-making-a-net-profit-of-over-$250,000-per-annum' "SCHTICK!"

    Is this the kind of reasoning we might expect from John McCain for four years if he doesn't become too ill?

    Oooo.. "absurdio ad Bushim" paints Obama as Bush all right(harrumph, harrumph) but you "forget"(or do you) that it is McCain that is the Bush-clone and NOT Obama at all.

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  32. Also to touch on Palin's comments on how small town American values are so great someone should tell her about the article written by Steve Chapman who says
    "a survey of 8th graders by the Monitoring the Future project at the University of Michigan found that country kids were 26 percent more likely to experiment with drugs than middle-schoolers elsewhere. Overall methamphetamine consumption among adults and teens is more than 50 percent higher in the country.

    The story with alcohol is worse still. "Relative to their urban counterparts, rural youth ages 12 to 17 are significantly more likely to report consuming alcohol," says a 2006 study by the Carsey Institute at the University of New Hampshire. Excessive boozing among adults, it noted, appears to be no less widespread in Mayberry than in Metropolis.

    Nor is the countryside exempt from social problems often associated with the inner city—such as, if you'll forgive me, out-of-wedlock births. The federal government apparently doesn't tabulate these births according to whether they occur in urban or rural areas. But it does break them down by state, and wide-open spaces are no guarantee of responsible sexual behavior.

    The highest rates of births to unwed mothers are in Mississippi and New Mexico, both of which have high rural populations. The most urban states, New Jersey and California, do better than the average in out-of-wedlock births."

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  33. Hey Brian,
    why did you change your pic?

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  34. Goddess said...
    Hey Brian,
    why did you change your pic?
    ---------------------
    The pic at the top right of the page is new. The old one was a blue fractal star. The new one is still a fractal but is also an optical illusion. I really like it. It screws up your eyes when you stare at it.

    If you were talking about my personal pic which used to be of me and my pug dog, I changed it because I decided that I didn't want an actual picture of myself on my blog, and the one that I chose is the hebrew tetragrammaton, the four letters of the holy name of God in the old testament, but arranged vertically which coincidentally form the stick-figure of a man. So God in Man, or God as Man... I like the symbolism.

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  35. All:
    Now that the mainstream Republicans are apparently forced to try to "rein in" the attack dog with lipstick, my recent post on this blog takes on even more meaning, I think. She is clearly not only unqualified; She is a loose cannon who is now demonstrating beyond any doubt what a disaster she would be as VP, let alone what terrible trouble she might unleash when McCain's health or age in general gave her (God Forbid!!) the reins of this country. I certainly agree that when the election is over, the Republican party will need to lick its wounds and recognize how short sighted they were to allow the fundamentalist ultra religious to take over their platform. See where it got us during the last two administrations!!

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  36. And Eric, if there is a field of contenders for the party nomination of their candidate for President and one has been in politics the least amount of time, of course the others will hit him on his perceived lack of experience to try to win it for themselves, especially if there's not much else to hit him on. Time-wise it's true enough, after all. But the thing is, Obama was and is a lot smarter then they were, and so his learning curve was through the roof. So yes, in a way, they did lie when they said that he isn't experienced enough, since even a modest amount of experience when you[re dealing with an otherwise brilliant person, can be enough in the sense that the brilliant person can make better decisions based on his or her lesser experience than the others can even with all of theirs.

    For instance:

    Obama voted against the Iraq war. McCain voted for it.

    Let me say this again. McCain voted FOR it. With ALL of his experience, he made the ABYSMALLY WRONG call. On the most important vote of our times.

    Because he's just not very bright. No amount of experience can make up for inherent stupidity. In fact, the more experience a stupid man gets, the more set in their stupid ways they become.

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  37. Hillary voted for the Iraq War as well, and it killed her. Her campaign, I mean. As it should have. It was a stupid call. One that Obama wasn't stupid enough to make.

    So if your "experience" is all in making the dumb calls for the country because at the time you think it helps your carreer the most, that's experience that We the People can live without.

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  38. Another quality that Obama has besides his sheer stunning brilliance, is what Goddess mentioned. His EMPATHY.

    Empathy is so impportant that I just realized that I need to devote another blog to it entirely. Which I will in the near future.

    Empathy is one of the most redemptive qualities that a person can have. Genuine empathy is also the key to self-improvement, since once you indeed can empathize with others, you can start to see things through their eyes, including their view of YOU. Once you can see how others see you, you have the key to self-improvement in your hands....

    But as to Obama's empathy, yes, it's definitely there, and it's genuine. It was there in his speech to the Democratic convention four years ago, and people saw it and recognized it, and thet's why he's here today. I saw it then, and I have to admit that I choked up, more than a little. After not hearing the voice for so long, for all my life really, there it was at last. A man that cares about other people just because they are other people. (I of course didn't allow emotion to sweep me away. I have paid attention keenly to his rise, and I have seen nothing in it to counterindicate the accuracy of my initial impression)

    The republicans love to talk about Jesus, but in Obamas actions and words I see much more of the goodness and hope and love of that type that is often associated with the Son of Man and what he preached to us, how he wished us to act in the world, than I do in McCain or Palin, or really any of the other Republicans of today. It makes me think that the Jesus that the Republicans follow must have been some other Jesus. Was it a common name at the time, I wonder?

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  39. Empathy... Compassion... Another thing that Nixon completely lacked. And GWB? Hell, his personal philosophy is "I don't give a f*&@."

    Does McCain have empathy and compassion? Does Sarah Palin? Genuine, I mean? Not contrived?

    None that I can see.

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  40. I have to admit I read the entire article that Richelle cited in her post.

    Wow.

    I sent it to my dad, not that he will read it, but I hope he does.

    He always sends me blather about Obama, and it is always blather. That Rolling Stones piece was something more than just a little blather.

    Scary is what it really is. I would be afraid of world war III if McCain gets elected.

    My dad sent me a note warning of a civil war if Obama gets elected - I'm not sure what he was referring to with that one though, most likely it was a racist remark.

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  41. On the subject of empathy, I don't really feel that George W. lacks it. He just can't show empathy in the subjects that matter because it is an acknowledgment that he f#$%ed up (and "denial" and "avoiding blame" are the best words to sum up this administration). And also because showing that you care about other people isn't manly, and would perturb the manly men from the land of manhood that make up his loyal base. You can't be electin' no compassionate pansy as our cowboy-in-chief.

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  42. "Again, it’s not that Obama attended, silly. It’s that he ACED HARVARD!!! Are you mental or something? That counts for a LOT! He was their very BEST STUDENT. GWB was an idiot in school, a “C” student, and McBrainless finished in the BOTTOM 5 of his class. Only a bona-fide genius can ace Harvard Law. And I want a genius in the oval office for once. Sheer intellect isn’t everything, but it’s necessary. Very necessary."

    Again, let's clear something up: You cannot claim that Obama was graduated first in his class at Harvard Law, and for good reason: top law schools like Harvard stopped ranking their students at graduation a long time ago; the notion that he was graduated 'first in his class' is simply false. He was graduated magna cum laude, but that puts him among roughly the top 55 or so. (When you add to that the fact that there are a group of law schools that are either just as or more prestigious than Harvard -- Yale, the top law school, and Michigan, Stanford, Chicago, etc. and you get literally hundreds and hundreds of comparable graduates each year.) If he had 'aced' Harvard Law, like you suggested, he would've been on of the rare students who graduates summa cum laude (roughly, only one student every five years manages this). Also, the Law Review instituted a writing contest with the explicit aim of providing an opportunity for minority students to make it as editors, so we cannot conclude that Obama was chosen only because of his intellect (I'm sorry if you don't like this claim, but it's entirely fact based). Finally, Obama *did* go into academia after graduating -- he taught at the University of Chicago Law School for twelve years, and in that time was only promoted from Lecturer to Senior Lecturer. Sure, he was elected in 1996 to the Illinois Senate, but it's still a fact that he was in academia and never produced any significant scholarship. (By comparison, Oliver W. Holmes Jr. was a full time laywer and still produced an extremely important work of legal scholarship, 'The Common Law.')

    Now, McCain may not be a smooth talker, but he's =far= from a 'mouth-breather.' According to his military records, he has an IQ of 133, which places him among the top 2% of the nation. We don't know what Obama's IQ is, since he won't release those records (why not?), but, based on the results of other standardized test scores he's taken, it's estimated to be around 116. Now, this is only an estimate, and may be way off, but that's largely Obama's fault, since he won't provide us with the data (people who are perceived as being extremely smart, like Obama, usually don't want these records released because the scores don't meet the expectations).

    "Obama voted against the Iraq war. McCain voted for it."

    McCain voted for the same authorization that Biden, Clinton and nearly every other Democrat voted for. And Obama wasn't even in the Senate in 2002, so I don't understand how in the world you can claim that he voted against the Iraq war. Again, your claims are just plain false.

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  43. Read the Rolling Stones article, Eric.

    Just read it.

    You think Clinton was immoral when it came to women? McCain could probably match him.

    As far as backing the military? You need to read the article.

    It was very informative and speaks about his motives - not very altruistic and definitely not country first.

    I tried to give him the benefit of the doubt as I do everyone, but it wasn't warm and fuzzy that I was feeling when I read it.

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  44. Now, McCain may not be a smooth talker, but he's =far= from a 'mouth-breather.' According to his military records, he has an IQ of 133, which places him among the top 2% of the nation.-Eric

    His IQ is based on military knowledge, not general knowledge. It is obvious from McCain *mouth-breathers* and his choice of Palin for VP that he is not that bright.
    For starters in his autobiography he claims that a couple of the accidents were caused by engine failure. Fact is, the Naval Aviation Safety Center investigated the first accident, in March 1960, was caused exclusively by pilot error. Why is he lying?
    Mccain didn't know the difference between a sunni and a shai
    He also said "Well, it's common knowledge and has been reported in the media that al-Qaeda is going back into Iran and is receiving training and are coming back into Iraq. That's well known and it's unfortunate."

    Meanwhile it is known that Iraqi insurgents were being trained by Iran, not al-Quaeda. Big mistake to make for any future commander in chief. What ever happened to knowing your enemies? When it comes to war you better know damn well who your fighting and what your fighting for. Most importantly, know where you are fighting, McCain might not have a clue since he thinks Iraq borders Pakistan.
    How about This : “I believe that it’s not an accident that our hostages came home from Iran when President Reagan was president of the United States. He didn’t sit down in a negotiation with the religious extremists in Iran, he made it very clear that those hostages were coming home.'’-Mccain
    Did he forget the Iran-Contra affair? Where is his experience there?
    How about his multiple references to Czechoslovakia, a country that doesn't exist anymore?
    He also said he'd meet with the Pharaoh of Egypt!

    Sure I can also name Obama blunders but my point here is to claim Obama has no experience, is BS,.
    First of all he is a lawyer, he understands law in its written form and wouldn't need interpreters, as McCain would. In a country where legislation rules the land, and where special interest groups get really crafty at writing it I doubt much would get past him, as did all those deregulation acts that got passed Clinton and Bush. Half the house and senate don't know what they're signing into law fro crying out loud! It’s the lobbyist lawyers that do all the fancy footwork.
    Secondly, 11 years in public office is experience, no matter how much you try to knock it down.
    During his service in the Ill statehouse he sponsored over 800 bills, not all of them passed but he did:
    Reformed death penalty legislation in Illinois
    Immigration reform
    An environmental bill that required utilities to buy renewable energy
    Passed a bill that prohibited lobbyists gifts
    Obama was lead sponsored S bill 2125 to provide relief and promote democracy in the Democratic Republic of Congo
    Wrote legislation to prepare for avian flu pandemic
    Backed the creation of an independent “Office of Public Integrity” that would investigate congressional ethics cases
    Passed a bill that required police interrogations to be videotaped
    Passed a bill that established rehabilitation programs for juvenile offenders
    Extended healthcare for over 150,000 poverty stricken Illinois citizens and 70,000 children
    In the US senate he has sponsored 130 bills, not all have been considered but they're there. It's not like he's been twiddling his thumbs the last 3 years. Including current bills agreed by the senate to help veterans with head injures who were discharges SB 4330 in 3/08 , bills to expand science educations and many bills that support renewable energy and the veterans from Iraq. Look it up on THOMAS. His bills have been exactly what he has advocated in his campaigns and his debates, healthcare preventative measures, education and energy.

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  45. Pliny said,
    "That makes me wonder whether I have become just as knee-jerk and polarized as I rail against die-hard right-wingers for being."

    I've been saying this for a long time. I watched the premiere of "D.L. Hughley Breaks the News" on CNN last night. The simple questions he asked the folks he interviewed on the college camps (Eton College? I don't remember...) were completely beyond the average college students. If you didn't get to see it, see if there's a repeat and DVR or TiVo it. It's worth the watch. The point is that there are huge numbers of young voters out there who, while they may not be MISinformed, are at best UNinformed about the issues, the candidates, and ploitics in general. Most of these people (college students) will end up voting for Obama, not because he's the better candidate (he may BE the better candidate in reality, but I'm still not convinced), but because he's NOT REPUBLICAN.
    Throughout most of this campaign, I've seen the media treat Obama as their darling, heard people almost refer to him as a 'savior', but when you LISTEN to the things he says in his speeches, it's all a bunch of neutral rhetoric. He's a politician, after all.

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  46. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n3aagEP-G9Q

    Go to 2:40 in the video.

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  47. eric,

    i'm curious about your iq figures.

    first of all, where do you get this 116 number for obama? if it's based on that blog by that vox dude on blogspot i wouldn't say that's a very reliable source. he's obviously leads a very anti-obama blog. if you read the article that guy was responding on it says his iq can be estimated to be around 130-148, but vox wants to factor in affirmative action to lower it to 116. that's kinda silly.

    and when was mccain's iq test taken? the only year i was able to find was in 1984 and that was with the 133 score. if he hasn't had a more recent test since then i'm going to assume that his score has dropped due to his old age.

    the relevance of an iq score only matters to the point where we know someone is intelligent enough to lead this country. so somewhere above average would suffice (115-130).

    jfk's iq was something like 118 and he handled the cuban missile crisis very well and kept us from becoming involved in a nuclear war with russia.

    nixon had an iq of 147 and look at what he did.

    i don't care if mccain had an iq of 150, he's a fucking prick. he is a dirt bag who does not respect women and he has proven that numerous times. he has no respect for either of his wives so how can we expect him to give a damn about the american people? all he cares about is making it to the top. he doesn't want to earn anything, it should all just be handed to him.

    john mccain is an over sized infant who cries and throws a fit when he doesn't get what he wants.

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  48. On the other hand, I agree with most of the assessments I've heard regarding McCain & Palin.

    I won't be voting this time.

    There aren't any candidates worthy of my support this time.

    (Don't fret- I live in Michigan, a state McCain conceded to Obama several weeks ago, since Obama was sporting a double-digit lead here, even before the lipstick-smeared bite marks.)

    Obama IS the perfect 'candidate', from the POV of the Democratic Party:

    a) he's a minority.
    b) he's African-American, but not ALL black.
    c) he's suave, and well-spoken (which says nothing about content).
    d) he's young.
    e) he's got the support of the liberal media.

    Smart isn't everything. Jimmy Carter was alleged to have been an extremely smart individual, but look at his presidency.

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  49. Hi Richelle!
    How's it going, how is Danny?
    Thanks for posting that rolling Stone article. I never read rolling stone but I must say that is a well put together piece. I've send it to those friends and co-workers who are thinking about voting for McCain! I also went on a rampage and osted it on other AOL blogs. That was fun! Sure they'll get a kick out of it!

    I had met an author in DC who served in the Navy with McCain and claims he was a reckless asshole who got away with murder thanks to daddy. Now I know he isn't lying.

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  50. Talking about Barack's intelligence versus that silly old fool McCain's(I'm not biased, hehe), I think that that last debate cleared up who ought to be in the highest office in the land, don't you?

    It's one thing to smile confidently as you lay out your plans and another thing entirely to sneer at your opponent while laying out 'poor' Joe the plumber's assistant's imaginary plight if he could swing a sub-prime loan large enough to buy a business that could be expected to swing a quarter of a million dollars profit per annum.

    I really don't think that McCain ought to be encouraging a guy earning forty grand a year to gamble like that.

    Perhaps Sam "Joe" 's first step in his 'plan' was to win the lottery?

    Back to the debate, perhaps McCain was simply misinformed or uninformed about "Joe" and perhaps "Joe" was simply asking a 'hypothetical' question to trap Obama in the first place, but this 'badgering' of Obama goes to the intent of "Joe" and the intent of McCain.

    Even if McCain believed 'in' "Joe's" predicament, that is, that we should 'grieve' for "Joe" if he ever made a profit of over a quarter 'mil' he would be being taxed an extra 3 percent on anything 'over', it just makes "Joe" out to be a greedy-fucking-asshole and McCain to be in support of "Joe's" pure and simple greed.

    Hey, maybe "Joe" WOULD shovel that extra money into the Hoover Institute(or whatever) to help support Dinesh D'Souza's lifestyle!

    I don't see that as a 'plus' tho'.

    ReplyDelete
  51. "e) he's got the support of the liberal media."

    and you forgot 'f)' Ed..

    f) and he's shaking off the right-wing media's shit-throwing like a born-again 'shaking the dust from their feet'.(when he/she realises that he/she is talking to reality-based people)

    ReplyDelete
  52. I guess all I'm really trying to get across here is that those of you who may be hoping for some quasi-magical turnaround in this country's basic government (i.e. "Washington D.C.") are most likely going to be disappointed. Things aren't going to change overnight, and may never change. Spell it 'Democrat' or 'Republican', it still reads "Establishment". They're never going to re-empower the People.

    ReplyDelete
  53. You may well be right, Ed, but if there's a chance, it's with Obama...

    ReplyDelete
  54. Now that's the fairest assessment I've heard yet. Thanks, Bri.

    ReplyDelete
  55. "If people looked on the outside as they really are on the inside she’d look like Quasimodo instead of a pageant winner."

    Proof of the old adage "Beauty is only skin deep, but ugly goes clear to the bone."

    ReplyDelete
  56. "Wanting to be right so badly that you come to actually believe that you are right, is not the same thing as actually being right.
    If you can't tell the difference, you're hopelessly lost, and no-one can help you anymore."
    -St. Brian the Godless

    ----------------------------
    Who would want to be right bad enough that they would actually believe a lie, knowing the lie it self is un-true.

    There is a difference in knowing fiction from nonfiction, and believeing nonfiction / fiction.
    It really depends on the subject.

    Take the God existance for example.
    If people would apply logic to the creation story they would have to admitt, that God is the only logical answer. It is mathmatical impossible for any other explaniton.

    ReplyDelete
  57. Hey, they're politicians, so nothing's for sure. Obama could be a complete fake. I have to admit that there's no way to tell.

    But looking at the two of them side-by-side I have to choose Obama. There's no comparison, really, and while they might both be liars, there's no point in voting for the OBVIOUS liar, IMHO. I don't see it as you do. They're not the same.

    If nothing else Obama will lend this country some CLASS. We're the troglodytes of the world lately.

    ReplyDelete
  58. What's the highest math class you've taken, Obs.?

    ReplyDelete
  59. I don't think they're the same-but I do think the Dems have a core policy that, if implemented to the fullest of their desires would create a culture of dependency in this country.

    Slavery is still slavery, even if the chains are covered in velvet.

    ReplyDelete
  60. Who would want to be right bad enough that they would actually believe a lie, knowing the lie it self is un-true.
    -----------------------
    No, the point is that many people believe that they're RIGHT so intensely that they become convinced of it, and they're still wrong, since they only believed rather than THOUGHT that they were right, they didn't CHECK reality or themselves, weren't SKEPTICAL enough. That was my point anyhow. Whether it's that God is real and even maybe speaks to them or that evolution is false, or whether it's just that they're smarter than everybody else, or even that they're inferior, the oposite kind of belief... false beliefs tend to stick, since they believer isn't in the habit of self-examination.

    ReplyDelete
  61. Check this out:

    http://news.aol.com/article/feds-bust-skinhead-plot-to-kill-obama/227448

    Incredible.

    ReplyDelete
  62. Hey Ste B. please come and critique my latest rant when you get a second. I am interested in your take on fear mongering.

    ReplyDelete
  63. Heh heh...just blogged about that story Ed. Coincidence? (Probably not....high profile story.)

    Crazy guys. All they were missing was a talking zebra and a sky diving accident and they could have been excellent absurdist fiction writers. Unfortunatley, they aren't creative, just hateful and deluded.

    ReplyDelete
  64. "Even if McCain believed 'in' "Joe's" predicament, that is, that we should 'grieve' for "Joe" if he ever made a profit of over a quarter 'mil' he would be being taxed an extra 3 percent on anything 'over', it just makes "Joe" out to be a greedy-fucking-asshole and McCain to be in support of "Joe's" pure and simple greed."

    Quoted for bucketfuls of pure, refined, liquid-metal truth.

    ReplyDelete
  65. Seeker,
    Check out pliny's blog about the s'Noah ball, I nailed that one, too. The post about the two guys from Tennessee came before I saw the news article, LOL.

    :o)

    ReplyDelete
  66. If people would apply logic to the creation story they would have to admitt, that God is the only logical answer. It is mathmatical impossible for any other explaniton.
    -Observant
    ------------------
    Dude, how do you always get this exactly 180 degrees wrong like that? :-)

    Now you're trying to use math to prove God. Ain't gonna happen my friend. To me, the math suggests otherwise. Precisely otherwise.

    ReplyDelete
  67. Pliny, I just skimmed your post, and I'll get to it later in depth. At least, as much depth as I can muster... :-)

    It all does seem to go back to the general lack of critical thinking ability. And I tend to trace that back to religion, at least as a contributing factor.

    ReplyDelete
  68. Ste BG,

    It is an interesting chicken vs egg thing: Is religion the source of noncritical thinking in people or is it merely one aspect that benefits from it? Maybe a little of both?

    ReplyDelete
  69. That Rolling Stone hit piece was absolutely pathetic. It was a silly piece dripping with vitriol that comprised little more than hearsay, unnamed sources (reminded me of the National Enquirer, only with even worse writing, in places), unsubstantiated charges, tasteless attempts at humor, out of context quotes, some of the silliest arm-chair psychoanalysis I've ever seen, a purposely misleading selection of partial-facts, blatant contradictions that only a complete moron could miss, outright lies that anyone with a modicum of information could expose, and exceedingly annoying attempts, by the writer, to seem 'hip.' Only a 'mouth-breather' would judge this piece to provide anything of worth beyond the use it may serve those of us who own pets.

    You do know that Dickinson was at Mother Jones before Rolling Stone, don't you?

    Imagine if a former National Review or Weekly Standard -- or, better yet, an American Spectator guy did a similarly ridiculous piece on Obama for Rolling Stone. You'd all be up in arms about it.

    Man, do you people ever check your sources, or read a piece critically? I know middle school students taking a journalism elective who could've torn that piece apart with minimum intellectual effort.

    ReplyDelete
  70. Or maybe a trained, sky-diving zebra.

    ReplyDelete
  71. "Now you're trying to use math to prove God. Ain't gonna happen my friend."

    Check this out. It's by Godel, one of the greatest mathematicians of the twentieth century.


    http://hroman.wordpress.com/2006/10/01/kurt-godels-mathematical-proof-of-the-existence-of-god/

    ReplyDelete
  72. a bim beri glassala
    glandrid e glassala
    tuffm i zimbra

    ReplyDelete
  73. http://www.stats.uwaterloo.ca/~cgsmall/ontology.html

    provides a very nice discussion of the Ontological argument of Anselm and Godel's modifications. The assumptions made in this argument are certainly not as rigorous as those associated with his well known work in mathematics.

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  74. And if Godel had succeeded in mathematically proving God, then why is the issue still in doubt?

    (I'm sure in your mind Eric, it's not)

    And if Godel proved God with math, which God did he prove I wonder?

    ReplyDelete
  75. Man, do you people ever check your sources, or read a piece critically?
    ---------------
    You are the one defending the McCain Palin ticket in the face of it's patently self-evident idiocy. You can refer to Godel, Escher, Bach and anyone you want to, but you're still going to be the one defending the obvious liars. You can cull minutia from the vaults of your memory all you want to, but you're still the one on the side of the backwards-looking fundamentalists and homophobic ignoramuses. Why bother? It's like being the only 7-foot tall male former NBA all-star player on a middle school girl's basketball team. You're a star yes, but made silly looking by comparison with the rest of your team. Why not argue for Obama instead, and clear your soul for once? You'll be able to look at yourself in the mirror when you shave...

    Reminds me of Dinesh, in fact...

    ReplyDelete
  76. "And if Godel had succeeded in mathematically proving God, then why is the issue still in doubt?"

    I never said that Godel succeeded; I merely pointed to a prominent mathematician who apparently didn't think it as prima facie ridiculous as you apparently did that mathematics might be used to show god's existence.

    Aside from that, we all know how resistant many people are to arguments and data supporting conclusions they reject -- just look at how many people reject the factuality of evolution, a theory that is as solid as any in science.

    "(I'm sure in your mind Eric, it's not)"

    Of course it is. You must stop applying this conceptual caricature of a brainless fundamentalist to just about every theist you encounter. Here's a quote from Oxford theologian Alister Mcgrath:

    "Doubt is probably a permanent feature of the Christian life.
    It's like some kind of spiritual growing pain."

    Here's another quote from Notre Dame's Alvin Plantinga:

    "For me, as, I suppose, for most others, spiritual life is an up and down proposition, with what one hopes are the consolidation of small but genuine gains. Sometimes I wake in the wee hours of the morning and find myself wondering:
    can all this really be true? Can this whole wonderful Christian story really be more than a wonderful fairy tale? At other times I find myself as convinced of its main lineaments as that I live in South Bend."

    Here's C.S. Lewis:

    "I think the trouble with me is lack of faith. I have no rational ground for going back on the arguments that convinced me of God’s existence: but the irrational deadweight of my old sceptical habits, and the spirit of this age, and the cares of the day, steal away all my lively feeling of the truth, and often when I pray I wonder if I am not posting letters to a non-existent address. Mind you I don’t think so–the whole of my reasonable mind is convinced: but I often feel so."

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  77. Eric,

    Your last post is an extremely interesting one. I don't know you so forgive me for asking. Do you personally feel that retrospection of belief is healthy to faith? It seems like that is your position in the last post. If so it isn't all that different from many of us here although our final conclusions on the matter differ.

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  78. "you're still the one on the side of the backwards-looking fundamentalists and homophobic ignoramuses."

    To take the latter issue, neither McCain nor Obama support gay marriage; and both McCain and Obama oppose a constitutional amendment banning gay marriages. Their positions are essentially the same on the issue (though they differ on other related issues, e.g adoption and 'don't ask/don't tell'). So, if McCain is a homophobe, so is Obama.

    "Although Barack Obama has said that he supports civil unions, he is against gay marriage. In an interview with the Chicago Daily Tribune, Obama said, "I'm a Christian. And so, although I try not to have my religious beliefs dominate or determine my political views on this issue, I do believe that tradition, and my religious beliefs say that marriage is something sanctified between a man and a woman."

    Wow, not only is he a homophobe, he's a backward thinking fundamentalist Christian homophobe! The shock! The horror!

    ReplyDelete
  79. "Theorem 2. If x is God-like, then being God-like is the essence of x."

    Since there are no gods, not even one, then nothing, not even x is god-like.

    Now, you and I both know that although mathematics may be logical, logic is NOT mathematics, right?

    How is it eric that you can see 'the devil in the details' when you want to eric, but the details fly under your radar when that is convenient?

    @ Observant.

    What on Earth are you on about 'the Creation' being the only logical answer?

    We don't need God for logical answers although you guys keep injecting God in there as often as possible.

    1+1=2 whether there were gods or not.

    D'Souza tries to 'scientifically' inject God as per his 'fine-tuning' argument but he has to inject God in, as in, "Imagine God sitting at the dials..."

    If atheists say that there is no reason to inject God into reality, D'Souza turns that into, "I see, so you guys HATE God then.", injecting God right back in.

    The notion of God and gods is completely unfalsifiable!

    If God or God as Jesus shows up and starts ruling the World, or shows up at the foot of my bed and produces some I.D. then and only then, I'll start believing.

    If you imagine that I ought to have faith that the Gospels are 'truth' then fine, Jesus showed up to a crowd of over 500 people after he was dead, I'm not even asking 'him' to go public.

    ReplyDelete
  80. "Do you personally feel that retrospection of belief is healthy to faith?"

    I would agree with this, but with one emendment: it's healthy for 'truth.' My goal isn't faith, bu truth. If I am ever persuaded, by force of reason, that Christianity is false, I'll drop it immediately and never look back. I agree with Lewis here:

    "I am not asking anyone to accept Christianity if his best reasoning tells him that the weight of the evidence is against it...A sane man accepts or rekects any statement, not because he wants or does not want to, but because the evidence seems to him good or bad. If he were mistaken about the the goodness or the badness of the evidence that would not mean he was a bad man, but only that he was not very clever. And if he thought the evidence bad but tried to force himself to believe in spite of it, that would be merely stupid."

    I may not be very clever, and I may have evaluated the arguments and evidence poorly, but I'm not 'merely stupid' and trying to force myself to believe what I know to be false.

    ReplyDelete
  81. C.S.Lewis said, "..often when I pray I wonder if I am not posting letters to a non-existent address."

    Apparently this address exists outside of time and space, outside of the Universe, outside of existence.

    Are you not confused by this eric?

    ReplyDelete
  82. "Theorem 2. If x is God-like, then being God-like is the essence of x"
    "Since there are no gods, not even one, then nothing, not even x is god-like...How is it eric that you can see 'the devil in the details' when you want to eric, but the details fly under your radar when that is convenient?"

    Hmm, did you notice the all important *if* in the antecedent? After that, you have no right to talk about details, at least for the next five minutes...

    "Now, you and I both know that although mathematics may be logical, logic is NOT mathematics, right?"

    Of course mathematics cannot be reduced to logic -- showing that this is true, and that Russell/Whitehead's attempt to do this in the Principia was impossible is Godel's best known accomplishment.

    That aside, you can recognize that Godel's proof *is* a mathematical argument, can't you? As someone said earlier, it obviously isn't as rigorous as his other work, but that says nothing about the *nature* of the argument.

    ReplyDelete
  83. I would agree with this, but with one amendment: it's healthy for 'truth.'
    --------
    I would agree. My bad for the original wording of my question.

    ReplyDelete
  84. eric, you say, "Hmm, did you notice the all important *if* in the antecedent?"

    But the 'if' wasn't questioning the possibility of something being 'God-like', it wasn't questioning whether something COULD BE 'God-like', it was setting up the premise that x IS 'God-like' to expound on x AS 'God-like', and you KNOW THIS, you deceitful bugger you!

    This is where Godel is injecting GOD(as God-like) into the mix.

    Oh, yea, I imagine you deceiving yourself as much as everyone else, not so much deliberately trying to deceive just us, although I do ponder on such things occasionally.

    Hmmm?

    ReplyDelete
  85. "But the 'if' wasn't questioning the possibility of something being 'God-like', it wasn't questioning whether something COULD BE 'God-like', it was setting up the premise that x IS 'God-like' to expound on x AS 'God-like', and you KNOW THIS, you deceitful bugger you!"

    This is flat out wrong. We frequently use implications in valid argument forms, such as modus ponens and modus tollens, that in no way posit the truth of the antecedent, hence the *if*. The whole point is to work out what logically follows from the implication, and the point of the implication is to set up the all important necessary and sufficient conditions. Frequently, these argument forms are used to show the =falsity= of the implication, not its truth. (For example, suppose someone argues along the lines, "If evolution is false, then we'd find complex life forms in pre-cambrian geologic strata." Clearly, a defender of evolution could -- and they frequently do -- assert an implication like this =without believing that evolution is false=.)

    ReplyDelete
  86. If x is God-like is the EXACT SAME THING as saying:-

    If it looks like a duck...

    No-one, reader or writer is supposed to be questioning the existence of DUCKS because the premise starts with an 'if'.

    .. and if it walks like a duck..

    Once again, we are not being asked to question the reality of DUCKS.

    .. and if it quacks like a duck..

    D'you see the difference here?

    ...it is most likely a duck!

    So, this is exactly the same argument with x replacing 'it' and general imaginary attributes of gods replacing actual attributes of ducks!

    Admit it, Godel injected God into his argument, didn't he???

    ReplyDelete
  87. "If x is God-like is the EXACT SAME THING as saying:-
    If it looks like a duck...
    No-one, reader or writer is supposed to be questioning the existence of DUCKS because the premise starts with an 'if'."

    Try this one: If x is unicorn-like, then x is both horse-like and has a single horn.

    This is true, isn't it? But, does the truth of the implication =in any way= presuppose the exsitence of unicorns? Honestly Floyd, this is pretty damn obvious. I could come up with a ton of similar examples, and so could you.

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  88. No eric, you say, " "If evolution is false, then.." is somehow equivalent to, "If x is God-like..".

    In your example there is the possibility of evolution being true or false because truth or falsity are not being thrown out there as part of the 'if'.

    "If reality is evolution-like...", would be closer but still not close enough because the x is an unknown, given a 'God-like' attribute by Godel and reality(by definition is real) would be being tested for evolution-likeness and not just given the attribute of being evolution-likeness.

    You KNOW this! I'm starting to think that you ARE trying to be deliberately deceitful now.

    ReplyDelete
  89. Yes, yes eric..

    "Try this one: If x is unicorn-like, then x is both horse-like and has a single horn."

    This is exactly why Godel couldn't word his premise like that. If yours isn't implying the reality of unicorns then his isn't doing anything at all for the reality of God.

    Since his argument is supposed to BE an argument for God then Godel is just chasing his tail here, he is begging the question.

    ReplyDelete
  90. Floyd, any proposition of the form, "If S, then P" says nothing more than that S is a sufficient condition for P, and that P is a necessary condition for S. It says nothing whatsoever about the existence or nonexistence of S. If you doubt it, see my unicorn example, or come up with one on your own. Honestly, this is so basic and so uncontroversial that I don't care to waste any more time debating it.

    ReplyDelete
  91. Come on eric...

    You say, ""If S, then P"" as if it we the same thing as, "If x is God-like.."

    "If x is God-like.." doesn't even get as far as the 'then' but it is injecting 'God-likeness' as if there were such a thing.

    I pointed out that since there were no gods then 'God-likeness' makes Godel's argument silly.

    Now, I pointed out that not only is it silly, it makes his argument circular.

    Now you don't want to 'waste time' debating.

    You are a sad shadow of the eric that I knew, eric.

    ReplyDelete
  92. I can't get over this eric, what has 'S' being sufficient condition for 'P' got to 'say' about Godel's argument except that it IS circular!?

    "If x is God-like.."

    Well strap me down and cover me with peanut butter in the gay district if this premise could be construed any other way than circular.

    Indeed if x is God-like THEN there are 'God-like' x's.

    Since only God is God-like x must be a God! LMAO

    Godel might have been a genius when it came to math but injecting 'mathematical' into this circular argument is disgraceful, nothing short of disgraceful!

    ReplyDelete
  93. "If x is God-like.." doesn't even get as far as the 'then' but it is injecting 'God-likeness' as if there were such a thing."

    Can we define what a non-existent entity is like? Of course we can: Unicorns have one horn, and Hamlet is indecisive. If we can define non-existent entities, then your argument here collapses, since the antecedent, "If x is God-like" *only* presupposes that god is defined in such a way that he possesses certain attributes, *if he exists* (as with the unicorn or Hamlet).

    "I pointed out that since there were no gods then 'God-likeness' makes Godel's argument silly. Now, I pointed out that not only is it silly, it makes his argument circular."


    Nonsense, since the premise doesn't suppose that god exists, but only deals with x if it were god-like. You're confusing the premise with the conclusion, and on the basis of this faulty observation, accusing Godel of confusing the premise with the conclusion (which is basically what it means to call an argument circular).

    The argument may very well be circular, and it may even be silly, but it is neither on the basis of your faulty evaluation.

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  94. Proof
    Axiom 1. (Dichotomy) A property is positive if and only if its negation is negative.
    Axiom 2. (Closure) A property is positive if it necessarily contains a positive property.
    Theorem 1. A positive property is logically consistent (i.e., possibly it has some instance.)
    Definition. Something is God-like if and only if it possesses all positive properties.
    Axiom 3. Being God-like is a positive property.
    Axiom 4. Being a positive property is (logical, hence) necessary.
    Definition. A property P is the essence of x if and only if x has P and P is necessarily minimal.
    Theorem 2. If x is God-like, then being God-like is the essence of x.

    [Definition. NE(x) means x necessarily exists if it has an essential property.
    Axiom 5. Being NE is God-like.]

    Theorem 3. Necessarily there is some x such that x is God-like.
    (qed)
    -----------------------------------
    Here's the easiest way I can think of to show you how absurd your reasoning is. If your critique of the argument is correct, then Theorem 3 follows from Theorem 2, and we can do away with the bracketed Definition and Axiom 5.

    *Now* can you see that if you remove the bracketed portion, the conclusion in no way follows? Yet, if your claim were correct, and if Theorem 2 presupposed the conclusion (i.e. the argument is circular), then we could do away with the bracketed portion with no problem. Surely, you can see that this isn't the case, can't you?

    ReplyDelete
  95. Sorry, thought you were done.

    You say, "If we can define non-existent entities, then your argument here collapses.."

    Not true. We can make-believe all we want, but Godel isn't allowed to. Not if we are expected to take him seriously.

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  96. Here, in his first 'theorem'(LOL), Godel simply DEFINES God into existence.

    All that tap-dancing around with the God-likeness is horse-shit!

    You know it!

    I know it!

    I know that you know it!

    .. and so on.

    ReplyDelete
  97. And eric, if you say that we know what God-likeness is because it explains, in detail in those 'God-inspired' booklets, which no doubt Godel imagined, then that is circular too.

    ReplyDelete
  98. eric, you say, "then we could do away with the bracketed portion with no problem.."

    But the bracketed portion is just Godel 'defining' away.

    I could define your head as a potato, so what?

    You could have that definition chiselled in stone then gold-plated, it makes no difference, it is just NOT TRUE!

    Axiom 3. Being God-like is a positive property.

    Says who? Being God-like is an imaginary property.

    ReplyDelete
  99. God exists because being a god means having all properties, of which existence is one of them. How clever. Calling reality itself "God" like that.

    ReplyDelete
  100. eric, you said, "You're confusing the premise with the conclusion, and on the basis of this faulty observation, accusing Godel of confusing the premise with the conclusion (which is basically what it means to call an argument circular)."

    A circular argument is not an argument 'confusing' the premise with the conclusion and you KNOW that.

    A circluar argument has the conclusion AS a premise.

    1)... if x is god-like then x must be God because God is the only God-like and so..1)

    Are you denying that God is God-like eric?

    Are you suggesting that anything else than God might be God-like, eric?

    Then x being God-like must be God, except there are no gods, not even one, eric.

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  101. P1: God-like is an attribute; intangible.
    P2: God is alleged to be a supreme being.
    C. God-like does NOT equal God.


    So there

    :oP

    ReplyDelete
  102. Can we define what a non-existent entity is like? Of course we can: Unicorns have one horn, and Hamlet is indecisive.
    ------------------------------
    No we cannot. Not without FICTION.

    ReplyDelete
  103. goddess,

    hey! i'm good, danny's good! we're living together in texas and we're actually engaged now. lol pretty crazy right?

    ReplyDelete
  104. If X is god-like, it might just be old satan foolin' ya...

    (I can't get Palin's "Fargo" voice out of my head...)

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  105. And what if God decides to not act god-like for a while. He's still God, no? So God-like definitely doesn't equal God.

    If Satan were to pretend to be God in order to fool some unsuspecting human, he'd be acting "god-like" in order to do it...

    Heck, if I were to say something like "I am the prime mover, the Alpha and the Omega, eternal and self-begotten" while wearing a God holloween costume, I'm acting "godlike" aren't I? Does it make me God?

    This seems too easy. There must be something I'm missing.

    ReplyDelete
  106. "Here, in his first 'theorem'(LOL), Godel simply DEFINES God into existence.

    All that tap-dancing around with the God-likeness is horse-shit!"

    i see it pboy. i don't think eric does though.

    the problem is we're assigning a term ("god-like") to an argument. but at the core of this term ("god") all we have is a concept. so even if this argument did, in fact, prove the existence of "god" we still don't know who's concept is right and we're back at square one.

    ReplyDelete
  107. "goddess,

    hey! i'm good, danny's good!"

    We haven't had a chance to check out this 'danny' to ascertain his credentials viz-a-viz his potential to make you happy.

    I'd like to voir-dire this witness.. ahem.. fiance.

    If you could put HIS pic up for us to determine whether you guys even 'look' compatible.

    I'm sure that we are qualified to do this since we've all seen those eHarmony commercials!

    :O)

    ReplyDelete
  108. It may be time to trot out my Anti-Pascal's wager...

    ReplyDelete
  109. So, anyone..

    What is God like then?

    Is HE jealous?

    Are we in any danger of HIM 'coming down' and smiting us with a curse?

    Does HE 'rest' or does HE not need 'rest'?

    ReplyDelete
  110. Mathematical proof of God.

    1+1=2

    (divide by 0)

    God = God

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  111. that which is is that which is not is not is that it it is

    Punctuate to learn meaning of existence...

    ReplyDelete
  112. Eric:

    What do you think God is like? The Christian version? The God of C.S. Lewis?

    Seems kinda narrow, if that's what you're going with here.

    I mean, here you are trying to prove God mathematically and you aren't addressing the dilemma of what you'd do after you proved Him. How do you ever get from "We've proven that there is a God" to "The existing God that we've proven is definitely the Christian version?"

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  113. I mean, the God that Godel was trying to prove could be any god, no? Or even my Big Brain speculation perhaps? (I'm not familiar with the Godel equations so I'm not sure of this)

    Does Godel purport to prove the Christian God as the one and only real one? Or just that some God must be real?

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  114. All:
    Having taken Boolean Algebra and Representational Logic for my entire senior year in college (albeit 48 years ago), I can actually follow the equations being discussed here. However, I stiil fail to see the point of all this. God is, by every definition I have ever seen, a matter of faith, not logic. Incidentally, if one believes that God created everything (and it was "perfect" before Adam and Eve screwed it up somehow), logic would be included in everything. St Thomas Aquinus, perhaps the most brilliant Christian apologist, said that if one had a kernel of faith, he could then logically make all of Christianity hang together (I paraphrase). Without that tiny bit of non-logical belief, all arguments regarding the existance or reality of any Deity are futile. Ergo, although these lengthy discussions may make for an interesting discussion as to the validity of alternative arguments, and even if the "logic" is flawless, the most that one could hope to prove is the possibility that a God exists. Clearly, one can posit this even if one is a devout atheist, rather than a wishy-washy agnostic like me, without even beginning to accept the possibility that any such "Deity" did, in fact, have anything to do with our present existance, let alone deserve or require any activities or modifications of our behavior on its behalf.

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  115. Come and see my new new post at..

    http://absenceofgood.blogspot.com/

    Come to the Sabbat, come to the Sabbat, come to the Sabbat, Satan's there!

    Bwahahahahaha!

    Oh, and SAY something, you ungratefule Philistines, you!

    ReplyDelete
  116. that which is, is. that which is not, is not. is that it? it is!

    ReplyDelete
  117. C'mon, Brian, give us something more difficult than that...


    :o)

    ReplyDelete
  118. You got it wrong, Ed.

    You forgot to capitalize.

    :-)

    ReplyDelete
  119. You said, "Punctuate to learn meaning of existence...". I didn't see anything about capitalization. Just being hyper-literal here...

    ReplyDelete
  120. Nit picker.

    It would have looked a lot more correct if you'd capitalized. I had no idea that you were so lazy, Ed.

    ReplyDelete
  121. But do you hate proofs?! I just posted my take on Pascal's wager!

    ReplyDelete
  122. New comment by stock traders:

    "Keep the cheese; I want out of the trap"

    Today was a good day at the market. Let's see what tomorrow brings.

    ReplyDelete
  123. Ed's stock tip of the day:

    First thing in the morning after a 400+ point drop, buy all the Ford stock you can afford, then sell just before the close. You should earn close to 20%.

    But then again, what do I know, I'm just a GearHed....

    ReplyDelete
  124. Uh, you guys didn't actually spend your day signing onto eTrade and investing in Ford, did you? I was just kidding....

    ReplyDelete
  125. Besides, anyone who really knows me knows I'm a Chevy guy.

    :o)

    ReplyDelete
  126. Besides, anyone who really knows me knows I'm a Chevy guy.

    ----------------

    i'm relieved to hear that ed. it's so hard for me to take ford people seriously.

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  127. "i'm relieved to hear that ed. it's so hard for me to take ford people seriously."

    I take offense to this. I call a motor jihad! For the Ford(e)!!

    Oh, on an unrelated note: anyone hear anything from mac or botts lately? They have been on any of these blogs lately (including his own in botts' case). They just weekend posters?

    ReplyDelete
  128. i'm curious what everybody thought of the obama ad that aired last night.

    personally, it exceeded my expectations. i give obama a lot of credit for not using the time to talk trash about mccain and the gop. we've had enough mudslinging from the mccain campaign to last 5 more elections. instead the ad focused on the most important part of this, and any, election: the american people. obama clearly showed that he not only realizes, but can relate to, the struggles of the average american.

    which brings me to a suggestion:

    brian,

    with so much discussion on this blog about the iq of the presidential candidates and the role it plays in the election, maybe you should post a blog about something that may even be more important than iq alone.

    eq - the emotional intelligence quotient.

    a person's eq demonstrates their ability to empathize. and while we don't have eq scores for obama or mccain (i doubt either have taken an eq test) it doesn't take a genius to figure out who would score higher.

    after all, someone may have an iq of 150 and be a sociopath while another person has an iq of 120 (still above average) and genuinely cares about other people and can empathize with them.

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  129. Richelle,
    The Obama ad had surprisingly crisp production values for a political piece. I'm relieved it wasn't a soapbox slander-fest, not that I ever expected it to be. I'm curious what a McCain program would look like. All that comes to mind is the out-of-place thumping Latin music he used when he made that ad to try to appeal to Hispanic voters.

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  130. Richelle, I agree that EQ is important. I see it as empathy though. And I want to do a post on empathy in the near future anyhow.

    The Obama infomercial was really well done. I liked it a lot. I think it will make a difference. And the Obama-Clinton rally afterwards was spectacular. Obama said manhy of the things that I was hoping that he would finally say.

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  131. The Obama ad had surprisingly crisp production values for a political piece.

    ---------------

    What do we expect from a celebrity, rock star with all of Hollywood on his side (well Spielberg at least ;))

    or so says the R.

    ReplyDelete
  132. I really hope Obama wins...

    Because today my wife got the results of her blood test back, and we're pregnant!

    ...and I don't want to raise a child in a neocon world.

    ReplyDelete
  133. "All that comes to mind is the out-of-place thumping Latin music he used when he made that ad to try to appeal to Hispanic voters."

    LMAO

    yeah, that mccain, he really knows how to reach people.


    brian,

    i'm really glad to hear you'll be doing a post on empathy. it's something that transcends political ideology or religious beliefs to get to the true heart of a person.

    ReplyDelete
  134. 2 things - one: empathy is probably the only thing that can save us from ourselves and 2: Congratulations! As a father I can honestly say having kids makes the world worth fighting for.
    be careful though - they tend to emulate you very early. And a smart ass irreverent 4 year old can be a handful - trust me on that one... ;)

    ReplyDelete
  135. Mazel Tov!
    Hey, maybe its middle name should be "Obama", to celebrate the new future!

    ReplyDelete
  136. "I don't want to raise a child in a neocon world."

    Don't worry, a neocon world is a world perpetually on the verge on armageddon. So, you won't have to raise a child at if that happens.

    As for a neocon nation...there's always Canada. The last refuge for those beleaguered by the Totalitarian Party.

    ReplyDelete
  137. Also: Congratulations.

    Make sure to spare the rod and spoil the child on behalf of all of us mischievous heathens.

    ReplyDelete
  138. "What do we expect from a celebrity, rock star with all of Hollywood on his side (well Spielberg at least ;))"


    and don't forget, er hat zie germans as well.

    oh, and apparently he is a rock star among the mentally disabled as well. a republican representative from california wants an investigation into the assisted voting of a group of mentally disabled individuals. all but one voted for obama so, of course, they have to try to throw the ballots out.

    ReplyDelete
  139. Make sure to spare the rod and spoil the child on behalf of all of us mischievous heathens.
    ------------------------
    Thank you! I shall! :-)

    (Offers a metaphorical cigar)

    ReplyDelete
  140. Not to be insensitive to victims of mental disease, but I would've expected them to vote the other way...

    ReplyDelete
  141. Just goes to show you that even the mentally impaired can see the difference between Obama and McCain. After all, all you need is love, in the sense of empathy, really, to see the difference. And no biases. And no programming. So it makes sense that they'd vote for Obama.

    ReplyDelete
  142. "Not to be insensitive to victims of mental disease, but I would've expected them to vote the other way..."

    Yeah, it's kind of funny. The right is chockful of the mentally ill. But, I guess the ones who actually need help, and can't "pull themselves up by the bootstraps" are willing to vote for the party that will actually help them. You know, instead of the party that understands autism due to the V.P. having a Downs' baby.

    So, I invite the mentally ill to help themselves, by helping us help them. 'Socialism' is confusing, I guess...

    ReplyDelete
  143. CONGRATS BRIAN!!

    having my son changed my life for the better and i know you will appreciate all the rewards of being a parent.

    and it's nice to know there will be one more child brought into this world fortunate enough to be free from religious brainwashing by his/her parents. if only they could all be so lucky.

    :)

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  144. Don't forget my personal favorite - In the papers yesterday - Republican's were a bit embarrassed by accusations of voter fraud for a registration signed 'Duran Duran' - Until the guy named Duran Duran showed up and proved his identity.

    LOL!

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  145. "pull themselves up by the bootstraps"

    -------------
    one more example of the Republican war on science. Having a slogan that is physically impossible.

    ReplyDelete
  146. has anyone here figured out what their "mccain label" is? ya know, like that douche joe the plumber? how can we possibly vote if we don't have the "single name + occupation" as our identity?

    ReplyDelete
  147. Blogger Richelle said...

    has anyone here figured out what their "mccain label" is? ya know, like that douche joe the plumber?

    -------

    I call dibs on the label 'smart ass' before the rest of you obvious contenders call it! ;)

    ReplyDelete
  148. haha i knew that would be the coveted label of this group

    ReplyDelete
  149. in one of his little speeches earlier today mccain actually called senator biden "joe the biden"

    clearly this has gotten out of hand.

    j-lo is gonna have to upgrade to jennifer the lopez now. and brangelina will have to become angelina the pitt.

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  150. What's this latest thing from John the McCain? Something about Obama being shielded by the LA times - I think they are saying he was seen drinking the blood of innocents or something equally credible.

    ReplyDelete
  151. Why do you have to leave out the important people, like Bob the Builder, Dora the Explorer, Conan the Barbarian, Hagar the Horrible, Jack the Ripper, Thunderlips the Ultimate Male, Toad the Wet Sprocket, Lancelot the Brave, Galahad the Pure, and Sir Robin the Not-Quite-So-Brave-As-Lancelot?

    ReplyDelete
  152. A McCain "name" the "occupation" title? Well, I guess I will have to go with "Manfred the Masticator". Because, you see, I am paid to chew food for the obscenely wealthy. It's a living...

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  153. Well done Brian..

    ... actions speak louder than words! I hope that your baby gets to grow up in a happy world.

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  154. Manfred, do you spit the food into a dish for them or right into their mouths, like a mommy bird?

    ReplyDelete
  155. Cthulhu awaits - since G-H-E sort of ruined my surprise I went ahead and posted tomorrows Lovecraft Homage?

    I feel like Charley Brown getting a rock in my Halloween bag.

    ReplyDelete
  156. 1st - congrats Bri, as a mom of two wonderful kids
    -that pay me advertising fees -actually just my 16 yr old the sarcastic/laid-back genius who is an old soul in the form of a teenage boy.
    -the JWU honor student actually is wonderful, but she knows it and this is a problem.

    My only advice to your wife, if you are lucky enough to have a girl - just remember you are her mother, not her best friend and it's okay if she hates you when she's twelve - they all do. Oh, and that's another thing - as much as they say they hate you, they really don't they just hate that you are always right.

    Enjoy every moment, write down the hard times - ammo for when they start to talk back to you.

    Kids - they are a curse to your body, a blessing to your soul, they force you to remain young yet at the same time remind you that your are old.

    You will remain in my thoughts, I know you will keep us updated on her progress - you will have so much to experience - I hope it is entirely good, even when it might not be.

    Do not take pics of her throwing up or looking anything but glam, women remember these things and they will come back to hurt you - usually while you are asleep.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I read this:
    "Who would want to be right bad enough that they would actually believe a lie, knowing the lie it self is un-true."
    Observant
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I just can't believe he wrote this - this is too funny, can no one else see the irony?

    And the moniker: Observant
    That would lead you to believe that he would actually want to observe something, not just take what amounts to hearsay as virtual fact. I've never understood this about him. I never will.

    It isn't about thinking that everyone should think the way I do. I have to state what I have observed: All the believers I have ever spoken to admit that it comes down to belief, not about fact, not about proof, but about faith - intangible feelings that they have that makes them feel comfortable in their belief.

    I have observed that when pressed, the believers will fall back on the "I just want to think that there is something more."

    It is a want, not an I know, or I trust, but an I want.

    Just my observations.

    Oh, and I take credit for those wonderful kids of mine - I did that, it wasn't easy, hell sometimes I wondered what the hell I was thinking - I still do, but I take full credit - well, me and their Dad, he has always been there for them, loves them unconditionally and without restraint because that is the only way he knows. That's why I'm still married to him after 20 years - that and I told him if he ever wanted to divorce me - he would have to take the kids and the dogs, but leave me the house. We love our house - he won't move out. lol - just kidding!!!!

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  157. "But to many people it’s a lot easier than that. They go with their “gut” instead. This is another way to say that they vote based on belief and emotion rather than on careful and unbiased thought. And they are legion."

    Sounds to me more like voting on instinct. In the words of the great Jim Jamison:
    In us we all have the power
    But sometimes it's so hard to see
    That instinct is stronger than reason
    It's just human nature to me
    Don't you worry
    It's gonna be alright
    'Cause I'm always ready
    I won't let you out of my sight

    ReplyDelete
  158. tj said -I have observed that when pressed, the believers will fall back on the "I just want to think that there is something more."
    ------------------------
    It would appear you have been talking to the christins who have no sunbstance.

    They believe in the ideal of God with there mind, like believing in evolution and the big bang theory.

    ReplyDelete
  159. And you use something other than your mind to believe in your God, so it's okay, huh?

    Interesting.

    ReplyDelete
  160. Observant, I think you're illustrating my perennial point about belief versus thought.

    Still love you dude, but from where I sit, you look rather misguided. You've had an "experience" of your God and you believe it to be real rather than something that you manufactured. So be it. But it's definitely your mind that's believing in it, make no mistake.

    ReplyDelete
  161. You mentioned him and he appeared. How do you guys do it? I don't think internet folk appreciate being mystically summoned at our beck and call.

    Also: dish.

    ReplyDelete
  162. I've been having a hard time putting why I don't like Palin into words, but you've basically done it. Kudos, I guess.

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  163. Congratulations to you and your wife, Brian! It will rock your world.....in the best possible way.
    Sounds like you will have a treasure trove of experienced friends here who will be able to give hints, tips, empathy and cheerleading on your journey should you ask or need it. I offer my parenting expertise in the curse of colic. LOL

    ReplyDelete
  164. My parenting expertise in Colic, btw, mostly consists of the "Farm Tour" method. Which is strapping the baby in the car seat and driving until your tires go bald. Didn't want you to be expecting too much.... LOL

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  165. Jude - the farm tour method also is great for over-tired babies who refuse to g to sleep - car vibration and noise is better than a rocking chair!

    ReplyDelete
  166. you guys just made me have a colic flashback.

    what a horrible experience that was.

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  167. Yeah colic is one of those words or phrases like 'hot flashes' that really fails to convey the true misery thus associated.

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  168. Happy All-Hallows Eve!

    Be careful out there. If you dress your daughter up a witch, Palin's pastor is out ther looking to smite her with righteous wrath.

    ReplyDelete
  169. http://denver.yourhub.com/Longmont/Stories/News/Politics/Story~542559.aspx

    http://denver.yourhub.com/Longmont/

    Stories/News/Politics/Story~542559.aspx (If this link gets cut off)

    Scientists back Obama!

    Enough said.

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  170. Just read about the new baby, Brian. Awesome news! Congrats from everyone here, too!

    ReplyDelete
  171. Thank you Ed, and the rest of you! I appreciate the support!

    It's weird how we're all friends, sort-of, having known each other for some time and yet having never met, nor are we likely to. Something not possible before the internet. The internet is like the new nervous system of mankind, and it's only just growing into it's own. It gives me hope, since there's never been anything like it before. It may be the one salient thing that may allow us to know world peace someday, when you think about it. After all, in the face of free flow of information, ignorance dies. It may just take a while.

    Obama getting in would definitely be a step in the right direction, too...

    C'mon.... c'mon.... How many hours left? Shit... Are we there yet? Now? Every second is an eternity.

    ReplyDelete
  172. Well put Brian

    The Internet really has broken down a lot of prejudices. The first time you interact with someone in these blogs you have no idea what they look like, what gender they are, what ethnicity? Many of the things that separate us in the real world only become known long after we have learned to appreciate the minds and then the rest becomes unimportant. Now if we can carry this over into the real world...

    I'm with you - GET THIS ELECTION OVER~! The waiting is killing me!

    ReplyDelete
  173. At this point in time, does it really matter who wins? As long as they do a good job of the economy, right? But I guess I don't really know too much about politics, so...

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  174. Cogs, it matters who wins only if you want to see this country take a huge turn for the better or take a U-turn to the distant past. I want to be alive to see it get better. Call me silly.

    ReplyDelete
  175. I would have agreed with cogs around May. As of right now, we have seen a campaign where McCain has stood before us trying to toss labels at Obama to see what sticks, running around frantically and impotently when the economy hits a snag, naming a relative unknown ( and now known far-right wing, hyper-religious moron) as his running mate in desperate hopes to get some former Hillary voters, and joyfully running on a history of bipartisanship that he has long since abandoned. This is not the McCain we knew and loved. The McCain who jovially frequented the Daily Show, who reached across the aisle, who was willing to grin and bear it when subjected to worst smear tactics by Bush in the 2000 elections. Who didn't use the fact that he was tortured as a resume builder. Who actually showed an ability to think beyond repeating talking points in rote. He has given all that up, most of it before the election even started. And as it has progressed, McCain has shown how far he has fallen quite clearly, in both moral and mental respects.

    He may not be Bush, but he is showing all the signs of being brainwashed by the party to the same degree as him. I do not know that Obama will do better. But I honestly feel that it was worth a shot, because staying the course has looked like an increasingly bad option since, well, since they started saying the phrase "stay the course" over and over.

    ReplyDelete
  176. And let's be real about McCain and the POW thing.

    The best pilots made it home. More or less. Just sayin', is all. And it's not as if he hadn't crashed a jet before. So I don't see the honor there. He fucked up.

    Being taken prisoner is horrible, no doubt. And the torture, horrible. I feel for him for going through all that. It would break many a man.

    (Maybe it broke him, in a way. He can't seem to let go of Vietnam.)

    However, it doesn't mean that all the other people that were taken prisoner and tortured are thus automatically qualified to be President, either.

    He's palavered that experience into a senate career. And he's still palavering...

    It's apparently all he's got. The MYTH of John McCain. Not a maverick, but just angry and frustrated and VOLATILE. Not honorable, just using the appearance of honor for gain. And certainly not a good or even a mediocre choice for President. A disaster waiting to happen to us, if we let it.

    ReplyDelete
  177. john mccain had no business being a pilot and he knew it. i don't say that just because he was shot down in vietnam. he had demonstrated his inability to fly planes several times prior to his being shot down and taken prisoner.

    mccain's co's knew he shouldn't be flying planes either, but they had to keep letting him fuck up over and over because mccain would use his name as a free pass. there's nothing honorable about that and if he truly wanted to put "country first" he would have realized that and gotten his ass out of the cockpit.

    ReplyDelete
  178. PALIN STUPIDITY ALERT!!!
    RED ALERT! RED ALERT! RED ALERT!

    PALIN PRANKED!

    You have to see this if you haven't already. Eric, if you're out there, explain this unreal level of stupidity please.

    I'll publish the link in two parts since it seems that links get cut off here:

    http://voices.washingtonpost.com/the-trail/2008/11/01

    /palin_pranked_by_sarkozy_imper.html

    ReplyDelete
  179. I hate to inconvenience my audience here, but if you haven't heard the audio of Governor Palin getting a call that she THOUGHT WAS Nicolas Sarkosy, President of France, then you NEED TO.

    It's funny beyond belief.

    (Link on my previous post)

    ReplyDelete
  180. Or if the link for some reason doesn't work, just google "palin pranked" and pick a link...


    This is TOO GOOD FOR WORDS!

    I need to change my BVDs....

    ReplyDelete
  181. November Surprise: Palin easy to trick with bad accents. Could be tricked into thinking that al-Qaeda members are from Brooklyn. Abort candidacy. Repeat: abort candidacy.

    ReplyDelete
  182. OMG, when he said "I can see Belgium from my 'ass' ", I laughed so hard the dogs were howling. ROFLMAO After all the horrible things she has said, I'm having trouble feeling sorry for her, is that a character flaw on my part? Naaaahhhhhhh ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  183. Republican Niceness:

    GROSSE POINTE FARMS, Mich. (AP) A sign outside Shirley Nagel's house in suburban Detroit had this Halloween warning: "No handouts for Obama supporters, liars, tricksters or kids of supporters." She gave out candy only to pro-McCain-Palin kids. When asked about children who were turned away empty-handed and crying, Nagel said: "Oh well. Everybody has a choice."
    http://www.kxmc.com/News/291928.asp

    ReplyDelete
  184. "Oh well. Everybody has a choice."

    You can always depend on the douchebaggery of neighbors...

    I love how supposedly giving naive, uninformed children a choice to support a specific political ideology or not somehow warrants you to be a dick if they choose wrong. But, apparently, it's what Jesus would do...

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  185. A final note to the National IQ Test:

    WE PASSED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    (Who knew we had gotten smarter?)

    ReplyDelete
  186. The Flynn effect at work.
    Odd, because I really was a firm supporter of the Idiocracy Hypothesis...

    ReplyDelete
  187. Me too!

    Well, thre's still no shortage of Idiots.

    The Gay Marriage Ban passed in California due to the fact that so many blacks voted for it while they were there already, voting for Obama....

    So blacks got their Big Day, and while they were getting "un-oppressed" they decided to start oppressing others.

    And when asked why, it all came down to their religion.

    I'm so pissed at them. So stupid.

    It's like when the Romans stopped feeding the Christians to the lions, the Christians immediately went from the arena to the stands, so that they could have the new "freedom" to watch other people get fed to the lions.

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  188. Well, I guess they just elected to make gay the new black. Letting us fair-minded egalitarians stare in awe as the religious once again tread on another minority. The best part is that I can already foresee the religious taking credit for giving homosexuals equal rights when they are eventually forced to give in. How progressive of them to finally give up their religiously justified hatreds after innumerable decades...

    Oh, and that is the optimistic expectation. Rather telling...

    ReplyDelete
  189. Thank you for these very information.The were useful for me. Looking forward to read your next post. iq test

    ReplyDelete