Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Avatar's Green Agenda

While I must admit that I have not watched the movie Avatar, there is ample evidence that this movie is promoting a green agenda. I myself am an anti greenie. Why? Because I am an evil capitalist who wants to destroy the earth starting with the polar bears? No. What I don't like about greenies is there extreme ideological stance that is not based on reality and plays into other ideologies that are not necessarily linked to a healthy environmental awareness.

First, let me way that I a a big fan of the planet earth and seeing it polluted the way it often has been does not make me happy. Is this the result of capitalism? Sure, greed makes people do some bad things but isn't that why we have regulation? I also don't totally buy into the belief that the earth is on the edge of the abyss and that within a few years we are going to be plagued with massive hurricanes and massive increases in the sea level just to mention a few of the warnings that are almost routinely spouted by greenies with a sickening glee. Truth is, the science of climatology is an inexact science and there is more than enough wiggle room for debate here. Let's also not forget that it was not that long ago that the earth was going to go into another ice age. Remember the movie, very dramatic but totally false. So first, lets use good science not Gore style fear mongering.

Second, the greenies believe that the earth can be saved by windmills and solar panels. Perhaps a long time in the future this might be true but the technology is just not there for this to be a reality for the average family household or for large scale energy production. Nuclear energy was almost completely shut down by a Hollywood movie by a actress who felt it justified to support the enemy while men where dying in Vietnam. Nuclear energy does come with it's risks but why not discuss ways of dealing with these. Nuclear energy has worked will for France and can for the United States and make us energy independent not to mention greener than Al Gore ever could imagine. It would also put a lot of people to work and last time I checked, that was a good thing.

I also see the argument for global energy standards an agenda that has more to do with a global redistribution of wealth than anything else. If we are going to reduce pollution in the world then every nation has to share in this effort. I question the motives of those who accept uneven rules for each nation penalizing the industrialized nations.

On a final note. It would be nice if we could all be like the aliens in Avatar and live a green existence. Perhaps, there was a time that this might have happened for this country. Certainly the American Indian did seem to have a closer connection to the land but they also drove thousands of buffalos off of cliffs. OK, so that are not as cute as polar bears but they were also not perfect. They also burned fires. The truth is that perhaps with the right culture, we could have a much more environmental friendly world but the truth is that the world has a large population living in sometimes complex economies. These realities can be ignored. In the end, if you save the polar bears but people are starving I don't see this as a win.

The truth is that underlying the agenda of the greenies is a Darwinian belief that man is no different than any other animal. Greenies and animal rights activists are often cut from the same political clothe. I for one believe that mankind is unique among all the animals. Does that mean that man should be free to pollute the earth to the point of threatening our survival and the survival of many species? No, of course not but I do believe that decisions regarding the environment should not be divorced from decisions about human beings. Human beings are not as some of the Obama administration claim, a virus.

So yes, I am not a greenie but don't call me anti planet or anti environment because I am neither. I also believe that capitalism if regulated at times, can work very well and can take into consideration environmental concerns.

So if you want, call me an evil capitalist but beware of the road that those who are green may want to take all of us. It may not be as rosy and many believe.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The Science of Intimidation

When I grew up, I remember the scientific method being pretty simple. Experiments were used to confirm scientific theories and usually, within the limits of the accuracy of the measuring devices, theories would be confirmed . With global warming, now we have moved into a new type of science which claims to predict the future, specifically, the science of global warming.

In the related science of meteorology there is about about a 5 day window in which predictions about the future work reasonably well. However, there have been days when the weatherman said it would rain and a mere look out the window confirmed the contrary. Even short term theories about the weather seem often more to be educated guesses. With theories about global worming , some sciences and certainly Al Gore claim to know what will happen to the climate years down the road. Al Gore recently claimed that in 5 to 10 years the ice caps will melt. I have never known climatology to be so accurate.

Call me a radical, but I suspect that the ice caps will not melt in 5 or even 10 years and that Mr. Gores claims, have more to to with hype than actual science. I frankly don't see a lot of science in Al Gore's dire predictions. He seems to believe that the mere fact that he makes a claim should inspire complete confidence that he know what he is talking about. Sorry if I don't have that much confidence in Al Gore predictions and frankly, don't understand why come claim I should. Even Al claims that those who disagree with him are the modern day concept of flat earthers. Well Al, I don't believe that I am going to fall of the earth if I go to far any more than I beleive that the ice caps will melt in 10 years, sorry if that offends.

Perhaps Al Gore should go back to school and learn more about the scientific method before making such dire claims. I am a realist. Do I want to see our planet ravaged by pollution? No, and I endorse reasonable effects to reduce pollution but if science becomes more about fear than verifiable results then it stops being science and Al Gore actually contributes more to global warming by his hot air than anything else.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Pipe

Having worked in the financial field for a number of years, one thing I learned was a simple principle, anything to do with money is like a pipe, what goes in one end has to come out the other.

Lately, I have seen a new kind of ecomonics that claims to create money where it does not exist. For example, claims that putting more people in the health care system but actually reducing costs and lower the deficit. Clearly, the current administration has no interst in lowering the deficit. Even China, who basically owns the United States, no doubt indicated by Obama's less than friendly treatment to Tibet, has warned the president to stop increasing the debt.

Truth is that like credit cards, debt has to be paid and yes, you can print more money but all t hat does is strech the pipe, it does not actually create money. Think of four poker player who are each given chips which are valued at one hundred dollars. If each of the four players is playing for a share of a common pot, say $400, and you double each of the player chips you still only have $400 to distribute.

The $400 is like our GDP. Its not determined by how much money the government prints but what America produces and how much it gets for those products. Now government spending will also increase it but it does little to help that number to go up other than artificially proping it up with jobs. I can, for example, employ a young naive student out of college to count polar bears and prayer 5 times a day in the direction of Al Gore but that does little to help create jobs making products that are going to compete on a global market.

Look at it this way. If you put 10 liberals on an island and they sit around talking all day about everthing they need to survive but never actually do it (such as produce products), then they will starve or be killed in the next storm because they had no shelter.

Labor unions want higher wages and benefits but they complete on a global market. This can't be sustained unless you do what the goverment probably plans to do with GM which is continue to pump money into it. Besides, who wants to buy cars that run on pedal power.

There is clearly no doubt that health care could use an overhall but having worked with people in that field I would suggest somethng radical, let them figure out a solution rather than relying on starry eyed liberals who hang up pictures of Mao. The truth is that tort reform is the only real meaningfull way to reduce costs because money is wasted on doing tests which are merely defensive and trying to keep the ambulance chasing lawer away.

Reducing the number of mamograms and pap tests is called rationing. Obama knows that the easy way to reduce costs is rationing but sorry folks "he lies". Yes, that evil man who said that was telling the truth. Truth, remember that one. I think sometimes our government should try it.

Friday, November 20, 2009

The Whole Picture and the Hollow President

Many of those who may from time to time, when truly bored, read by blogs. I never really set out to be a blogger but from time to time I like to get my thoughts into words and for those who want to read them, make them available.

I suppose my tweets of twitter and even this blog itself seems a contradiction. A conservative Catholic who writes about Tangerine Dream, Pink Floyd and at the same time, Catholicism and conservatism. Perhaps, many see these as contradictions.

In my spiritual journeys in life, and there have been many, I came upon a wonderful spiritual practice, Zen Koans. Koans were written by Zen Buddhist monks to break the back of logic. To present to the mind what might seem like a contradiction to bring about the knowledge of a greater truth.

I suppose that is what I am trying to do. I like Tangerine Dream and Pink Floyd because frankly, since I was a naive young kid I loved synthesizers and electronic music. My first electronic Album was Morton Subotnicks "Sidewinder" in vinyl which I still have today and probably has thick grooves in in from being played so many times. Later in life I discovered Floyd and then much latter, Tangerine Dream. I continue my love of electronic music now by writing it myself.

As I have stated before, I understand that both of these bands are associated with a certain drug culture. Let me state again that I am extremely anti drug. I have seen the damage that drugs and alcohol do and I do not want to see anyone go though that hell on earth that is addiction.

That said, what I like about these bands is their creativity and artistry which I find sadly lacking in much music today and why I like to support new artists who follow their own drummer. I have reviewed their music on my music blog.

As for me, I also have my own drummer. I see all beauty as a reflection of God's creative work. I find sound beautiful and I know that its created by God so if it comes from the wind blowing thought he trees or the circuits of a Moog Voyager, I know that its all part of the same creation. Music is to be, a way of participating in God's creation, to praise God by praising the ability of my mind to order and structure sound to make music. Like Olivier Messiaen, who I very much take as a role model musically, I do not limit my music to what one might hear in a Church but rather, express my feelings in my music much like David did when he wrote some of the psalms some of which are to be played with harp accompaniment.

So is some of my music theological? Sure, some of the ideas I have that lead to ideas about sound that lead to pieces of music are.

So that's the "whole picture", onto the hollow president. Much of what I believe about God effects how I see the world. I believe that God gave us all freedom so we can create but create responsibly. So when I see that freedom being curtailed, I get a bit upset.

The funny thing about change is that sometimes, it does not come up to us and tell us its there. I remember when Barack Obama ran for president and how he spoke about being transparent. Truth is that he has been the least transparent president who probably has ever been in the White House. S..E. Cupp recently eluded to him being like an "empty veseel". I see him as the hollow man. In some ways, perhaps he is transparent, in that we see through him and don't see him, who he is and what he really believes.

The truth is that Obama seems to be like a puppet for a cause that is dark and sinister. Now I am sure that that makes me sound like a radical tea party person who is ignorant and wants to save the world for guns and bibles. OK, well I don't own a gun and yes, I have a bible, a few of them actually, and a Catechism of the Catholic Church which to some may make be a papist I suppose but I also have a bachelor's degree and two masters degrees so ignorant? Well, you decide.

What I see in the latest bills that seem to weigh enough to bend any table they are on, is hollow bills, transparent bills, bills that are not what they seem. it seems to be that change is not what many Americans think it is. I fear that one day we will wake up with the government controlling every aspect of our life and Orwell's 1984 or Huxley's "Brave New World" will sound like the news of the day. Net neutrality for example sounds a lot like Orwell's newspeak.

A wise man once said that those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. I guess don't want to see some rather ugly periods in the 20th century repeated. For those who don't study history, you might learn from this:

and this:

which banned a lot of music.

Truth is, I like to practice my faith and make my music and yes, talk to people about God. I am not sure that I will be able to even make posts like this soon and will have people at the door coming to take me to a re-education camp. I feel the Autumn winds of change and a winter storm coming but perhaps, I have just been drinking to many tea or perhaps, that terrible book that is on my shelves is right when it says this:

"no wonder, for even Satan masquerades as an angel of light. So it is not strange that his ministers also masquerade as ministers of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds." (2 Cor 11:14-15).

Perhaps with transparency also comes a certain degree of light and darkness or perhaps, I have just drunk to much tea. Perhaps, I need the government to tell me how much I can drink, after all, we have to save the polar bears don't we?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Ft. Hood - The Three Monkeys

Many have probably seen images of the three monkeys embodied i the phrase: "see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil". I wonder if they are however familiar with a forth monkey from the same proverb: "do no evil".

We live in strange times. What has saddened me over the last few days about the terrorist attack (yes terrorist) at Fort Hood is that so many have wanted to deny what is so obvious to me, that the actions of a militant Islamic terrorist are evil and premeditated. Instead, those like Dr. Phil would rather excuse them as a temper tantrum of a frustrated solider. Perhaps, Dr. Phil and those like him would rather give terrorists a time out and a good dose of Ritalin rather than deal with the underlying cause, evil.

Enter now the PC wing of the military who certainly should be more than aware of the evils of this world who chose to worry more about backlash against Muslims. Their fear and innaction typify the three monkeys and ignore the forth: "Do no evil". Evil that is ignored or swept under the rug in the name of political correctness is in fact an evil in itself and perhaps, at times, as great as the evil that is being denied. Consider the Jews in Germany who were sent in trains to death camps. No one protested because it was easier to shut ones eyes.

Perhaps, when a child is afraid of the boogie man it makes sense for them to close there eyes and tell themselves there is nothing to fear in the dark. The truth is that there is something to fear in the dark, the darkness of evil. Islamic radicalism is evil. Not misguided, not he product of repressed anger as Dr. Phil would have us believe but yes, evil.

The solution. Perhaps the forth monkey can tell us: "do no evil" or perhaps, find ways to do good. The truth is that along with the evil that has been perpetrated at Fort Hood, there are also stories of heroism as there were after 9/11. I have always affirmed the basic goodness of people because I have seen it time and tme again and gratefully, more than I have seen evil. Those who fear the violence against Muslims forget that it was our government that sent innocent Japanese Americans to camps during World War II and the government that dropped not one but two nuclear weapons on innocent people. Was there violence against Japanese during World War II? Yes, some because guess what, evil exists. But overall, I would rather trust in the goodness of the American people to trust that they know the difference between an innocent Muslim and and evil one and to not hide our eyes and having the courage to foil evil plots to kill people even while they do take place in the name of religion.

And as for doing good. The truth is that religion has been far more the cause of good being done in the world than evil. It is not religion that is evil but those who twist it to commit evil acts. Islam is at a turning point where it must decide if it is to join the ranks of the religions of the world that are forces for the good or be taken over by radicals who only want to hate and kill.

As for Americans, I trust in that basic goodness that happened after 9/11 and I pray that our government empowers Americans to do good and to root out evil rather than closing its eyes to the fact that yes, while they may not be a boogie man under the bed, that evil does exist and it is the right thing to do to see that it does not grown stronger. If we close our eyes and tell ourselves its not there, this is exactly what will happen. Yes Virginia, there is a boogie man and even if you close your eyes, he can hurt you.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Demonization of America

I realize that this might be somewhat of a repeat of my last post but once again I find myself outraged that many people would consider me a monster because I am a capitalist who eats meat and does not believe that the end of the world is just down the corner if we don't do everything that Al Gore tells us (obligatory bow to the general direction of Al Gore - protector of earth mother). What has inspired my ire? Apparently Natalie Portman considers me and all people who are not vegans to be rapists. I did not read her entire article because frankly I got tired of Hollywood types claiming to be the saviours of mankind since Oprah declared her supremacy in the Pantheon of celebrity Gods who tell us what to do.

However, I believe the article talks about the maltreatment of animals in slaughterhouses and so on and so on. Point taken and I am not without compassion for animals but here is the apparent irony that I find so hard to reconcile. I have no doubt that Ms. Portman worships at the altar of political correctness on a regular basis. While I have no confirmation, no doubt the outraged Portman would have no problem partially delivering a child and then sticking, for lack of a better word, an ice pick in the back of its scull and then delivering the no doubt tortured and lifeless corpse. Our beloved president (again, bowing in his general direction chanting yes we can, yes we can), has no problem taking the child resulting from a failed abortion and allowing that child to die in the back closet of a hospital or better yet, finding a public iceberg to send our beloved seniors off to their death, morphine drip provided by uncle Sam (of course, death panels are really just the same as the tooth fairy - they don't really exist right?).

So what is the problem? In a word, hypocrisy with a capital h.

Now as for Mr. Gore (obligatory bow). A few problems here, nuclear energy, offshore oil and natural gas. Truth is there are lots of energy solutions but some would rather have us that to move in any direction that would actually help the environment is also not environmental so we are left with a quixotic dream that windmills will save us (well, as long as we chant yes we can). Or better yet, we can just plug our cars into the liviing room wall at night. Hmm, I wonder what produced that electricity? Logic, nah, we don't need no stinking logic, only Al's smiling face.

And then of course I have Michael Moore telling me that the very system that made him rich is wrong. But guess who will not be waiting in mile long lines for a block of government cheese and moldy bread when hyperinflation hits (but we did need to fund studies on the Siberian snipe did we not?) OK, I jest but the logic confuses me. I guess I think one and one have to add up to two. In the world of Ms. Portman, Mr. Gore and our beloved saviour and self proclaimed big brother you only need to say change and smoke some of that medical marijuana so that when you are waiting for soylent green because the economy has collapsed you will not feel anything even if soylent green is people. I guess the good thing is that soylent greeen will not be animals and Ms. Portman can continue to wallow in her cloud of illogical and idealism with her Hollywood paid doctors while the rest of us will go to the slaughterhouse (oops, sorry I meant hospice) when we get old.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Shoot Me I Am a Captislist

I have been debating for a while to enter into the political foray on my blog. Politics often creates much stronger emotions than musical things which I have found tend to bring people together. Then again, I have been seeing my country change around me and frankly, I feel a bit queasy lately like the rug is being pulled out from under me.

I also realize that many who follow me here might not agree with what I say here. That is your right but I ask that you respect mine as well. The right to make my music, practice my faith and speak my mind. I don't want to wake up in a world where all of those are denied by the government that claims to be looking out for my interests.

My Grandfather fought in WWI and my father in WWII and the Korean war. They fought for freedom. It seems to me that that is what is at stake right now and very few Americans even see it and that bothers me even more.

Lets bring music into this. We have so many great bands, musicians, composers, musical instruments, synthesizers, you name it, because people had the freedom to make them. No one asked if they were green or politically correct or if they made Barack Obama smile. Now my president is CEO of GM who will be forced into mediocrity. Sure, the unions will be happy, or perhaps, only for a while. But I guess that there is a cost to a massive campaign war chest right? Political friends have to be paid off, its the Chicago way.

So what makes for good products. Innovation. Is that bad? I don't think so. Michael Moore apparently thinks so but I guess I agree with John Lennon. "If you are going to go around carrying pictures of Chiang and Mao you ain't going to make it with anyone anyhow". Seems to me that there are people in high places that admire Mao who are called czars arn't there. I guess I just call them a shadow government but that just me. Him, I guess they missed the tanks in the square all those years ago. That's just history anyway and we can rewrite it. Maybe the czars need some new history books.

I really love the movie Wall Street, Gecko in his slogan for runaway capitalism, greed is good. Truth is, Michael Moore is right in that that kind of greed is not good. I saw him on Fox recently and agreed with much of what he said (suprise!). Truth be told I am not a big fan of the kind of capitalism that is only about making money. But those who have watched the movie might recall the father of Gecko's naive apprentice? Keeping companies alive is what is important. Companies that employ people. The same ones that Barney Frank wants to line cmpanies against the wall to be slaughtered by his panel of economic death panels. Frank who wants to be the self appointed substitute for the free market system. Hmm, dont' remember him winning the Nobel Prize in ecomonics but...

I guess this is all I am saying. The next time you turn on your car, light bulb or play a CD or MP3, realize that it came from capitalism. Is greed good? No, but wanted to make a good product, well, it seems to be that's a pretty good thing right?

It seems to me also that we are a generation of self indulgent children who are now tired of playing with our toys and want to throw all of them out and get new ones. I guess its time to take the cross of the wall and replace it with a picture of Mao, Stalin, Lenin, Pol Pot and let our children sing us songs to lull us to sleep, Obama's going to change it, rearrange it, catchy isn't it? If you want the words just ask your child's school teacher. I did my hat to the new constitution, "yes we can" but I guess I also realize like the Who that "I pick up my guitar and play. Just like yesterday, and I get on my knees and pray, we dont' get fooled again". But in the end, I guess the question is should we change? Is change always good? If not, what kind of change is good? I think there are ways to find out right? Shouln't our children be taught philosophy and logic and all those things that can help us find out? Or perhaps, we can sing our little indoctrination song and fall fast asleep. Perhaps my father and grandfather who fought for their country and freedom might see things a bit differently than those who have lost a sense of real history.

If I have offended, go back and sleep and wake up in you bed in the morning and believe whatever you want but make sure that your president appoves.