Best Reads (for June 2014)

I know what you’re thinking… I got lazy.  You’re correct.  And the weather has been WAY to nice to of kept up with the posting.  I know what else you’re thinking… these articles must be outta date.   Old news.  Thats where you’d be wrong. 😉



Quiz:  What does this graph represent?  Answer: at the bottom of the post.   hint: It’s  a (the real?) hockey stick.






Even If You Could Careless About Soccer:

50 Things … You Didn’t Know About the World Cup from the Wall Street Journal was fun to read.

#10. FIFA ran a contest before this World Cup to let fans choose the slogans on each country’s bus some of the best were…

#16. Spain took home $30 million in prize money for winning the 2010 World Cup. This year’s winner will earn $35 million, nearly three times more than Brazil in 2002.

#34.  The longest national anthem at the 2014 World Cup will belong to…

#43. The winning team, of course, earns a trophy that is made mostly of solid gold. The second and third teams get medals. Fourth gets you a…




Trading the Bikini For a Habit:

A little Nun humor for you there! Get it?  A habit:  a long, loose garment worn by a member of a religious order or congregation.  I loved reading about, “A Spanish actress and model, Olalla Oliveros” who said, “I grew tired of a world of lies, appearances, falsity, hypocrisy and deception, a society full of anti-values that exalts violence, adultery, drugs, alcohol, fighting, and a world that exalts riches, pleasure, sexual immorality and fraud,” Perez shared. “I want to be a model that promotes the true dignity of women and not their being used for commercial purposes.”  Talk about a change of uniforms.  Picture:  is from one of my top 5 all time movies, “Wallace and Gromit ‘the Curse of the Were-Rabbit“.






The Best Graduation Speech Ever?

Adm. Bill McRaven’s commencement speech at the University of Texas.  Start with, “Make your Bed” and goes up from there!  Full Text.






Smarts… This Quiz Hurts!

I had fun playing (until till my 9th wrong answer in a row), “How Wrong You Are”.  The quiz assumes you’ll get the answer wrong.  How’s that for encouragement!


Speaking of Clueless, here is the classic Christopher Hitchens piece on “Clueless Joe Wilson” one of history greatest dupes.  I miss Hitchens writings.  Agree or disagree with him, he was a marvelous word smith.




Regardless: Snow, Sleet or Hail, the Mail May Be Done.

Why isn’t there innovation in government?   Meet two entrepreneurs who wanted to help the U.S. Postal Service digitize mail. Some local postmasters liked it. Washington didn’t.  From the Wall Street Journal.





Could This Be The Last Honest Reporter?

We got rid of cable TV and went to Apple TV this year.  I thought I would miss watching the news and sports.  Not so much.  I read more than enough news (in case you haven’t noticed) and keep up with the scores online.  As far as TV news (cable and network), I lump Fox in with MSNBC and everything in between together.  Shows (that get passed of as “News”) are all most all ratings driven (i.e. “how can we entertain and pass it off as ‘News'”).

I was first intrigued by Sharyl Attkisson leaving CBS News because of what she claimed was the networks lack of interest in the digging she was doing on the Benghazi and IRS stories.  Reading her website I can see why she won an Emmy as an investigative reporter.  She asks GOOD questions that people who care about an open government should be curios to find out and the answers ought to be available (despite the Presidents claims that “My Administration is committed to creating an unprecedented level of openness in Government” even the left leaning ‘The Atlantic’ isn’t amused anymore).  Here is a good example of her thoughtful questions.  Cheers to one of the last honest reporters.

Speaking of bias and the media, this is the best article I’ve read this year on subject.  It’s a short one from ‘Commentary Magazine’ called, “The IRS Scandal & Media Bias”.




Everyone Is Welcome!  …(did we say everyone?  well almost everyone):

Ahhh… the beauty of freedom loving Americans.   Especially those that have fought so hard to have their diversity celebrated!  Now that they  can have their parade they can be bigoted too!    You can’t make this kind of irony up, from the opening of the San Francisco CBS website: “Organizers of San Francisco’s pride weekend festivities have yanked the welcome mat away from the National Guard, voting to ban the Guard from setting up a booth at the festival… The board of the San Francisco LGBT Pride Celebration Committee rejected a request from the Guard to set up an informational booth at Civic Center Plaza during Pride Weekend… Last year, the National Guard had a booth at Pride Weekend for the first time – staffed by gay soldiers”

So until the National Guard is willing to say “YES” to EVERYTHING on the LGBT(QIA) agenda, then the  diversity crowd can’t tolerate the National Guard.    If you’re not confused by that logic… you oughta be.




The World Doesn’t Need Anymore Children!

Does the world really need more kids?  I mean think of all the troubles in the world and it seems to be getting worse, not better so why would you want to bring kids into this world?  What about overpopulation?  Aren’t there enough unwanted kids already?  And what about world hunger, why not feed the already malnourished kids in the world?  Good arguments, BUT everyone is thankful that THEIR parents WERE NOT swayed by these augments!  Everyone I know wants to contribute to make the world a better place.  Adoption and becoming a foster parent are great contributions to this end.  I regularly tell people that I have learned more about myself  and God from being a parent than from any other experience I’ve had.  In fact nothing else even comes close.  In fact i’d include the pregnancy as part of the adventure.  And it often proves to be the best adventure in life for many people so it’s no wonder why this Coke ad went viral.  It captures the joy and the chaos of the journey.  One that you can only experience from… uh… doing it.   This article from ‘The Week‘ resonated with me too called, What being a father taught me about God.”

Speaking of children, the Pope weighed in on the subject!  Dennis Prager wrote an OUTSTANDING article on the speech from the pontiff and I wrote a blog on the subject too.




If All Fails (or we quit the field and go home) Call The Russians!

In what seems to be an odd twist the Iraq government contracted with the Russians for self defense against the ISIS terrorist.  Why deal with the Russians?  The Iraq Prime Minister,  Maliki criticized the process of purchasing US jets as “long-winded,” adding that the radicals could have been repelled if Iraq had proper air defense. “I’ll be frank and say that we were deluded when we signed the contract [with the US],” Maliki said. “We should have sought to buy other jet fighters like British, French and Russian to secure the air cover for our forces; if we had air cover we would have averted what had happened,”.  Ouch.  But the stark truth on the mess is hard to deny, if Iraq is collapsing, we have to assume that this is a result the administration was happy to accept, because they never lifted a finger to stop it.”, from the outstanding Federalist article Obama’s Wish-Fulfilling Prophecy in Iraq“.




I Love Hoover (Not The Dam):

President Hoover that is.  Yes the one that gets blamed for the Great Depression (oh and you forget that  he also saved more people than anyone else who has ever lived – ok other than Jesus, but He’s God so that’s not really a fair comest.)  His legacy is not a Presidential library but the Hoover Institution on the campus of Stanford University.  They just started an new journal focusing on immigration called, “Peregrine“.  It’s insightful.  Here are few interesting charts from the first edition:

SafariScreenSnapz001   SafariScreenSnapz002

speaking of Hoover Fouad Ajami passed away this week.  Certainly among the most aticualte spokesman on any topic regarding the Middle East.  Here is the outstanding 2006 Charlie Rose interview discussing his book,The Foreigner’s Gift: The Americans, the Arabs, and the Iraqis in Iraq“.  While on the topic of the Iraq and the Middle East here is more from my ‘Love / Hate’ relationship with Thomas Friedman.



At Least He’s Got A Collar:

The Bishop of Durham (formerly held by N.T. Wright) is no lightweight himself (I guess thats how you get to be a “Bishop”).  Now I fully confess that I’m jealous that Mainline church guys (now girls too) get to wear a collar.  I admit that they look funny and I wouldn’t wear on if I could, but that just it… even if the collar looks lame, at least they get to wear a uniform!  Evangelicals have no uniforms!  I mean we just try to look coffee-shop-hip, but then again so do all the 28 to 46 year old males in america.  My point is a uniform would surely make us look more distinct.  Enough of the uniform jealousy rant… here is the article on said Bishop talking about how social media is ruining introspection in the western world.  While I don’t think social media is to blame… it’s not helping either.




The Redskins & Racism:

A small collection here.  First from the Washington Examiner, you WON’T BELIEVE some of the names that are trademarked and they say that ‘Redskins’ is offensive!   Next is a clip from Adam Corolla’s pod-cast.   Dr. Ben Carson wrote, “Playing a Name Game with the Redskins“.   The Hoover Institutes Richard Epstein wrote the very thoughtful,”Time to Retire the ‘Redskins‘?”  and last but not least on the subject of, “Who’s Racist?” Dennis Prager’s Op-Ed.

Speaking of Racism… the The Presbyterian Church USA has voted to divest from three companies.  Believing that the divestment will help put pressure on Israel to vacate land they believe Israel is occupying illegally.  Christianity Today has some of the facts here.  The Federalists makes the case that by divesting in this manner, “the Presbyterian Church has allied itself with Hamas”.  Ouch.




History: D-Day and Isolationism:

Victor Davis Hansen is one my favorite historians (and a Hoover fellow),  He wrote a D-Day article in early June (D-Day anniversary June 6th 1944) and then in  this article on the cost of isolationism   Davis says, “Americans did not fully appreciate the costly postwar global order that the United States had established over the last seventy years. Maybe they will start to as they witness it vanish”.

Answer:  The GROWING Antarctic sea ice measurements.  Global what-ing????   Article.






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Author: noah

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