Thursday, December 20, 2007

City of Green Bay: "Please sue us."

The city of Green Bay decided to allow all religions to set up any religious display they wanted on some public property. Some Christians vandalized a Wiccan symbol so the mayor decided to only allow a Christian symbol. The mayor of Green Bay is obviously a retard. Illusory tenant has been providing some good commentary as the situation has developed. See:






Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Friday, December 14, 2007

Worst Posts of the Week

Last week I found the worst blog post of the week in the Wisconsin blogosphere. I think I'm going to continue to do this, but I will rank the three worst posts each week. There's just so much nonsense out there. These bad bloggers deserve to have their work measured against the work of other bad bloggers. I will be grading these posts in the same three categories: hypocrisy, inanity and faux outrage. If you see a blog post that you think is particularly hypocritical, inane or full of faux outrage, I'd love to hear about it. Now for the worst blog posts of this week:

(3) The Third Worst Blog Post of the Week is written by The Marquette Warrior. It's titled "Secular Liberal Anti-Mormon Bigotry." It's sort of a "well duh" post where he comments on a "rant" of Larry O'Donnell about Mit Romney and Mormons. His words in italics:

It’s well known that a fair number of conservative Christians think that the Mormon religion is a “cult,” and won’t vote for Mitt Romney.

But a fair number of liberals and leftists have rather extreme anti-Mormon biases too.

For starters, it's a little odd that he simply begins by noting that some groups of conservative Christians think that another group of conservative Christians is a little culty. But isn't it obvious that non-religious people think a group of really religious people are culty? And if you're a member of one of those really culty religions, like the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints or Catholicism, that's really into displaying anti-secular bias, like Mit Romney or The Marquette Warrior are, isn't it a tad hypocritical to pretend to give a crap about anti-cult bias?

And all Larry O'Donnell said is that the Mormon religion has racist roots. And it DOES. Why shouldn't that enter your calculus when picking a candidate? Isn't it very good evidence that a candidate is unhinged if he believes that a known con artist found some magical golden tablets in the woods and read them with magic glasses and that black people were turned black by god for rejecting him? Isn't it good evidence that a candidate is unhinged if he believes that a magical Jewish zombie will save us from eternal damnation if we ceremoniously drink his blood?

Do people like O’Donnell pose a problem for Romney? Not where votes are concerned, since they wouldn’t vote for a Mormon anyway.

Why not? All candidates at least pretend to be religious.

Where media coverage is concerned, maybe. Mainstream media types are heavily secular and -- if not actually hostile to religion -- think religious belief is rather odd. And they think that Mormon religious belief is even odder. This is likely to affect the tone of the coverage.

What's great about the Romney candidacy is that it puts all religion under the microscope. He notes the media's hostility to religion as if that were a bad thing. But the media here is an opinion show, and O'Donnell is not saying anything more or less bigoted that when the Marquette Warrior says on his blog.

This was a pretty lame post, but The Marquette Warrior will have to do much worse if he wants to win the Worst Blog Post of the Week.

Hypocrisy: 7/10

Inanity: 7/10

Faux Outrage: 6/10

Total: 20/30

(2) The Second Worst Blog Post of the Week comes to us from Milwaukee Journal Sentinel columnist Eugene Kane. Mr. Kane is a completely and blatantly racist person and a terrible writer. He see the world in terms of race and his blog post from yesterday is no exception. It's titled "Does Berry Bonds get an apology now?" His words are in italics.

It's a dark day for baseball fans, if there are any left.

Major League Baseball has issued its steroids report and it's a blockbuster.

Big names like Roger Clemens, Miguel Tejada and Andy Pettitte and others have been implicated. Basically the report says they cheated.

Just like Barry Bonds, who is facing a trial for lying to the FBI about his steroid use.

It will be very interesting to see how
baseball fans who demonized Bonds react to this list of other big-time stars accused of the very same thing.

I'd first like to note how annoying Mr. Kane's writing style is. Does every sentence need to be its own paragraph? The second thing I'd like to note is that, in a lot of cases, the report basically says that some of these guys didn't technically cheat (like if they took HGH or Andro in 2004). But whatever, I'll role with the theme that many of the guys in listed in the report did cheat.

Kane's main point is that Berry Bonds has been unfairly criticized, cause... like... everyone was doing it man. It must be because Berry Bonds is black. It's not because he was very high profile, it's not that he lied to a federal grand jury and it's not because he's a huge fucking asshole. It's because he's black.

Many fans said criticism of Bonds was justified because he was one of baseball's biggest names due to his challenge of Hank Aaron's home run record. I submit Clemens, winner of seven Cy Young awards, has the same lofty stature in the game as Bonds.

Now this bit is just hilarious. Does Eugene Kane actually think that Roger Clemens is some sort of media darling? Who doesn't hate Roger Clemens? He's like the second most hated guy in baseball.

Will the Cy Young awards get an asterisk now?


Frankly, now it looks like Bonds was just another player doing what everybody else was doing to stay on the top of his game. Lying to the government might get him jail time but taking steroids clearly wasn't a big crime for baseball players.

Yes, that is what it looks like. That's what it always looked like. Nobody thought Bonds was the only guy doing roids. You heard his name more because he broke a career record of a legendary player that everyone loves (who was black). If it had been McGuire or a Giambi, we'd boo just as much.

This will be a good score for Eugene. The post pretty much sums up his bad blogging. The hypocrisy is huge. He's accusing everyone of being racist when he's clearly a very racist man. The inanity is also huge. Of all of the issues that the Mitchel report brings up, Mr. Kane decided to approach it from a racism angle. That's an issue that just isn't there. His faux outrage isn't too high. To be sure, he's pretending to be upset without reason, but he doesn't express his outrage in the fire and brimstone manner of a lot of bloggers. He'll lose points there. If I awarded bonus points for bad writing and racism, Kane's post would be one for the ages. Still, it's a good score:

Hypocrisy: 9/10

Inanity: 8/10

Faux Outrage: 6/10

Total: 23/10

(1) The Worst Blog Post of the Week comes from Peter the Hypocrite. I expect Peter the Hypocrite to be a major player in the Worst Blog Post of the Year race. He's what you would call a three-tool athlete in the sport of bad blogging. He's a hypocrite that becomes outraged at basically everything. And the inanity. Oh the inanity. Peter the Hypocrite's worst post this week (and there were plenty of bad ones) is called "More From the Hate Left." Even the title is brimming with hypocrisy, inanity and faux outrage!

Sometimes it’s best to ignore the smears and personal attacks that resemble a middle school lunchroom that flow with regularity from the liberal side of the blogosphere. They have their own little circle jerk and laugh at each other like the adolescents trapped in adult bodies that they are.

Peter the Hypocrite calls Hillary Clinton "the Hildabeast" whenever he refers to her. He refers to public schools as "gummint run schoolz." Peter is so middle school lunchroom that his voice cracks. Huge hypocrisy points. He get's more with the "circle jerk" comment. Peter the Hypocrite bans commenters that disagree with him. His blog is all about laughing at dumb puns with his mouth-breather friends.

Then there are times which various items need to be addressed. These are the people who are demanding we be civil and show proper respect to liberal icons like Hillary Clinton, Ted Kennedy, Barack Obama, John Edwards, Jim Doyle, etc.

They howl in protest with each reference to The Hildabeast, Or Shrillary. Or The Swimmer. Or Osama bin … Osama ObamaObamamama (actual words used by Ted Kennedy). Or The Breck Girl. Or Don Doyleone. Or … well, you get the drift.

How dare you launch these personal attacks and fail to show proper respect? Well, for starters, these are what are known as public figures. Public figures have always been fair game for ridicule. Ever hear of Jay Leno? David Letterman? Jon Stewart? Stephen Colbert?

I've never heard anyone demand that Peter the Hypocrite stop using his kindergarten humor. People often read it and remark, "wow, Peter the Hypocrite sure is a douchebag" or whatever. Some people even asked a columnist at the Journal Sentinel to remove his link to Peter's blog. But that's hardly demanding that he halt his douchebaggery. And even if it is, nobody is forcing him to listen. And the obvious difference between the comics he listed and himself, is that they're funny.

He goes on for a few paragraphs about someone making fun of some other blogger. More middle school crap. More hypocrisy. Then there's this:

It’s the frightening attitude of several commenters who implied that it is fair game to go after conservative bloggers and investigate their backgrounds and publish it. Two of those were cowards hiding behind the cloak of anonymity and a third was a liberal blogger from Racine. All seemed to imply that anyone writing a blog is fair game for the leftwing smear machine.

Actually, no. They are not fair game. Someone writing a blog, be it on the Left or the Right, is a private citizen. None of us are public figures, running for office or part of the media. Citizen bloggers have much more protection in the areas of libel and slander than do political or media figures.

Yeah, they do. But truth is still and (almost) absolute defense. And publishing someone's address doesn't exactly fall into the category of defamation. And opinion statements are rarely found to be defamatory. So I'm totally free to make the statement, "Peter the Hypocrite is a douchebag" because we have a First Amendment in this country.

Citizen bloggers should be off limits from the type of personal attacks displayed on a regular basis by the Left, as well as other smears, parodies, etc

To suggest that only "the Left" engage in personal attacks is just astounding. He's basically attacking a "private citizen" blogger in this post by referring to some dude's blog as "stalker blog." How's that not defamation under Peter the Hypocrite's definition? Read the whole thing. It's really quite jaw-dropping. Peter stands out in all three categories.

Hypocrisy: 10/10

Inanity: 10/10

Faux Outrage: 10/10

Total: 30/30

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Worst Wisconsin Blog Post of the week.
I'm going to do a weekly post in which I outline the worst blog post that I come across in the Wisconsin blogosphere. I will be grading these posts in three categories: hypocrisy, inanity and faux outrage. If you see a blog post that you think is particularly hypocritical, inane or full of faux outrage, I'd love to hear about it. Now for the worst blog posts of this week:

The worst worst blog post of this week comes to us from Brian at GOP3. GOP3 is a blog that is written primarily by three Republican Marquette University students named Brian, Daniel and Brandon. Daniel is a smart guy. Although I disagree with him on all sorts of things and I bet he's boring at parties, his posts usually make some sort of sense, given his religious upbringing, and have real data supporting them. Brandon is pretty harmless. He makes some descent points once in a while, but usually he's pretty "eh." Brian is the real star over there. Brian is very very very angry. About everything. If you comment on one of his posts, he will snap at you unless you are agreeing 100%. He never says anything that I would describe as "interesting," but whatever the topic, Brian is pissed off about it. Even when the topic is sports. The title of Brian's winning post is "UW-M fan base beneath dignity of MU program." Beneath the dignity? Really?

"There is a rumor being perpetuated on UW-M message boards about something Tom Crean is alleged to have said immediately after the game to some UW-M officials. Somehow, a rumor so dramatically nasty managed not to make it to public fora until a full 72 hours following the UW-M game."

"An absolutely implausible rumor in and of itself would not be worth my blogging about, but UW-M fans took it to the next level yesterday when they decided to launch a discussion of it on local sports radio stations. The rumor is so beneath the dignity of anyone associated with Marquette that I will not justify it by linking to the UW-M boards."

Brian is fast out of the gates in the faux outrage department. Brian won't repeat the rumor because it's so "dramatically nasty." But I will. The rumor is that, Marquette's coach said to a group of UWM fans, “now I am fucking done with you guys and you can fucking go home.” He also allegedly went up to one of the assistant coach’s wives and said to her “you can fucking go home too”. Maybe that's a bit inappropriate, but so "dramatically nasty" that he's not willing to tell us what the rumor was? He also thinks it's "implausible." Personally, I'd find it hard to believe that a basketball coach didn't drop a few f-bombs. Tom Crean's no Bobby Knight, but he's no pussycat either.

And Brian is pissed off that people are talking about it on message boards. MESSAGE BOARDS. It's not like UWM put it on a billboard. It's just people talking. Ready for some more faux outrage?

"If nothing else, the earnest perpetuation of this vicious lie about HC Tom Crean — a basketball coach I’ve never felt apprehensive about criticizing — demonstrates that UW-M and its fan base is beneath the dignity of Marquette University and warrants dismissal of the rest of the series. There is absolutely nothing to be gained from it."

Did you get that? Marquette should no longer play UWM in basketball because one fan wrote something on a message board. I love how Brian wants to judge the dignity of an entire university and it's basketball team's fans based on what one person wrote on a message board. On that note, I'll think of Marquette, a Catholic school, next time one priest fucks a little kid. Huge hypocrisy points there Brian. He continues on with the same stuff for a few more paragraphs. It's really worth reading the whole thing. The comments are pretty funny too. I asked him this:

"How do you know he didn’t say it? Has he denied it? I’m not trying to pick a fight, I’m just curious..."

Brian's response:

"When the accusations come from people who claim their uncle’s wife’s kid through a previous marriage’s biology teacher’s next door neighbor heard it, and it takes a full 72 hours to “hear” about it while the UW-M fans didn’t wait a second to go stark raving mad over the score of the game, its plausibility is reduced to basically zero."

Brian believes that "coach says swear word" is such breaking news that to delay discussion of it for a few days makes it IMPOSSIBLE that it happened. Also, a few people on the message board said they heard it first hand. It's still hearsay, but it isn't exactly 9th party as Brian suggests. I asked a few more questions. I never said I though the rumor was true, or even implied it. I certainly never indicated in any way that I had any connection to UWM or Marquette (and I don't). But my favorite comment was from a douchebottle named Fran:

"It’s hard to take you seriously when A) you don’t have your facts or opinions correct; B) are willing to believe any old internet rumor without any serious consideration that it might be a bunch of crap; C) you have a 4th tier UWM Education (4th tier as recognized by US News and World Report rating of Universities and Colleges)."

I responded by noting that I didn't state any facts and opinions can't be incorrect, that I didn't believe the rumor and never implied that I did, and that I didn't go to UWM but, if fran is really concerned about US News ranking, the school I did go to is ranked higher than Marquette. Not that I'd ever use that to discredit someone. If I were a student at a third-tier school (or maybe it's second-tier, I know it's right on the line for law school)I don't think I'd use it as a way to insult people that go to alleged fourth-tier schools. But whatever.

This was a pretty bad blog post overall. It will lose points in the hypocrisy category to some of the big guns in this competition since it's only hypocrisy is that Brian is so outraged that a college student spread a rumor, when college students at his school certainly are capable of the same thing. He also attributes the actions of one (or a few) students to the entire University. Brian has become outraged in the past when others judge all of one group (Christians or Republicans for example) by the actions of one member of that group. He scores well in the inanity department since, really, who gives a shit? And his faux outrage is obviously outstanding.

Hypocrisy: 6/10

Inanity: 8/10

Faux outrage: 10/10

Total: 24/30

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

"My Name is Chuck Norris, and I disapprove of this movie."

That's what karate fighting douchebag Chuck Norris has to say about The Golden Compass. Thanks Chuck, I loved your work in Sidekicks. Norris wrote this movie review in World Nut Daily, but unlike most movie reviewers, Chuck Norris reviews movies he hasn't even seen.

The problems with the movie lies not in imagination or ingenuity, but in authorship and analogy.
I strongly urge everyone to read the
Focus on the Family review of "The Golden Compass." Suffice it for me to highlight these few points from it. Though Philip Pullman looks with disdain upon the works of C.S. Lewis saying, "I hate the 'Narnia' books, and I hate them with a deep and bitter passion":

There [is]no shortage of parallels between "His Dark Materials" and C.S. Lewis' "Chronicles of Narnia" series. Lyra instead of Lucy. A wardrobe. Alternate worlds. Talking animals. Cosmic consequences linked to a final battle. Oh, and witches – this time on the side of so-called good rather than evil.
As to whether or not a real Creator is responsible for everything, however, another character says simply, "There may have been a creator, or there may not: We don't know."

"The Christian religion is a very powerful and convincing mistake, that's all," says an influential character named Mary Malone, who then goes on to relate her own "testimony" of why she abandoned her calling as a nun.

Other messages woven into this story exalt witchcraft, evolution, divination, homosexuality and premarital sex. Accompanying them are smoking, drinking, occasional mild profanity and moments of visceral violence.

[In the end] …"God" gets overthrown and the "fall" becomes the source of humankind's redemption, not failure.

I read the Golden Compass several years ago and I thought it was pretty awesome. To say that your kids should read The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe but not The Golden Compass is no different then saying your kids should only read the Koran. The Golden Compass is a great book for kids. It exposes them to some knew ideas like love, courage, independent thinking and self sufficiency. How can you be against that?

Friday, November 30, 2007

More on the War on Christmas

The annual battle over what to call the big evergreen tree in the Wisconsin Capital Building is under way. A few decades ago, a group of atheists convinced state officials to start calling it a "Holiday Tree." This year, State Representative Marlin Schneider, D-Wisconsin Rapids, asked the state legislature to support his plan to rename the holiday tree the "Wisconsin State Christmas Tree." The Freedom From Religion Foundation opposes this measure.

They shouldn't.

As my one or two readers are aware, I think religion is stupid and dangerous. But if you want to get religion out of the public mindset, you shouldn't fight against Christmas, you should try to make Christmas your own. The fact that the origin of the word "Christmas" is based on Christian mythology is not a good reason to try to change the name. Similarly, the fact that the date of December 25th was chosen because of Mythra is no reason not to celebrate on that day. Just because I referred to yesterday as Thursday doesn't mean I believe in Thor either.

I love Christmas. I absolutely love it. But to me it's not about Santa or Jesus. It's about real things, like family and commercialism. A lot of people think I'm joking when I say that. But if you look around you, you'll see that, when it comes to Christmas, most people are more concerned about family, friends, parties, shopping and fun then they are with magical Jewish zombies. And that's GOOD! So instead of fighting against Christmas and the terminology that goes with it, freethinkers should change the meaning of that terminology. Some day, Christmas may truly synonymous with good times and presents. And that will be a better day.