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March 31, 2006

Cell phones and tumors

Dutch researchers said no, a 4-year British study said no but along come the Swedes who say cell phone usage can cause brain tumors.

"A total 85 of these 905 cases were so-called high users of mobile phones, that is they began early to use mobile and/or wireless telephones and used them a lot," the study said.


First it wasn't good to eat eggs, then they said "Go for it!". Coffee was linked to some kind of disease and then the researches retracted that. Cell phones bad, no cell phones good...uh wait, cell phones bad.

While we are jumping from one foot to the next, somebody is getting mad grant money. Fucking figure it out already.

March 30, 2006

Sweet, sweet justice

Last night I was awakened by the usual drag racing that goes on during the wee hours of the morning on my street. At about 1:30 a.m. I heard a particularly unusual racer and I jumped up to see a black Honda screech to a halt in the middle of the street in front of my apartment complex. A teen wearing a black shirt ran out of the car leaving the driver's door wide open. The youth ran into a parking lot in front of the apartment complex and hunched down behind a car.

I was wondering what kind of stupid prank this cheese dick was pulling then I noticed a cop car racing down the street and then pull up behind the unoccupied car. Oh yeah, this douche bag are finally gonna get his.

The cop got out of the car with a bewildered look on his face so I yelled out to get his attention by telling him where the driver was. He looked over in my direction but being on the 8th floor with 100+ apartments staring the cop in the face he asked, "Which car?". His question was almost drowned out by the resounding "FUCK!" from the now fingered driver. The teen walked over to the cop who promptly put him on the ground then cuffed him.

I was elated. After two years of living next to Talladega this one kid was going to represent the dozens of inconsiderate jackasses who have disturbed this neighborhood with their obnoxious vehicles.

After taking this picture I decided to go down and talk to the officer whom I helped.

But I was to find out there was more to this story- the car was stolen. When I heard the cops talking about it I had to restrain myself from the yelp of joy knowing that this kid was going to really get it in the ass- perhaps not in a federal pound-me-in-the-ass prison but something very similar.

I was asked to make a statement and I willingly complied as well as told them I would be able to testify in court if need be. As I lay in bed after the whole ordeal trying to fall asleep, I felt better than any on-target egg I have been able to land. The system finally worked.

A Nation in Distress

The first time I ever saw an American flag hung upside down was when I was stationed on my first submarine and the guy raising the flag during morning colors just screwed it up and raised it about halfway up before the Duty Chief yelled at him form the brow to reverse the direction. The young sailor was also shat upon by the people who saw the event.

The kids at Montebello H.S. in CA not only raised the Mexican flag above our own ensign, an illegal act according to the laws relating to Old Glory, but also had the American flag hung upside down. There is no doubt that when looking at the photos of the event the flag raising that it was done in spite and contempt for our colors. Unwittingly, these jackasses did two things:

1. Displayed their ignorance of flying the flag. An upside down flag indicates distress (US Flag Code Section 8a). In an allegorical context, they have reinforced the illigal immigration issue in that the United States is in distress by the very flag that flew above it.

2. Pushed people away from their point of view. If they are attempting to gain support by disrespecting the very flag which represents the nation illigals are coming to then they are defeating their own cause.

I support people's right to protest but for crying out loud, do some research so that you don't look like a bunch of assclowns in the process.

March 29, 2006

Evolution an all that jazz

I have been making many post of the theory of evolution and religious ties to that theory on Andy's blog the last few days. There has been some great discussion and I figured now would be the best time to make my own posts in this forum. Ironically, these topics were discussed a few days ago in my office so my references are handy.

I will not post all of the articles on my site because some are rather lengthy and I think poeple would end up skimming over them. Instead I will jsut post a thesis statement of the articles and link to them from my posts. I encourge readers to read the end notes at the end of each article.

I told Andy that Iu sualy do't like to talk about this kind of stuff not becuase I am afraid of reprisal or, as the kids say, getting pwnd, but becasue no matter how much evidence is proposed and discarded, most people alrady have their minds made up. To wit, I had believed most of my childhood and adult life that modern day birds came from dinosaurs. this seems plausible enough in that they really do look the same. Research and hard eveidence indicates otherwise.

Anyway, enjoy the next series of articles as I posted for my own edification and for me to link to on future discussions.

No, it's not being lazy, just front loading my sources!

Evolution: By the numbers

Given Enough Time Anything is Possible - Even Evolution
By David N. Menton
(C) copyright 1991 Missouri Association for Creation, Inc.
(repetative exclamation points removed)

This myth is the ultimate argument of those who attempt to "explain" the origin of the Cosmos and all life by CHANCE and the natural properties of matter and energy. Evolutionists hope that by invoking immense amounts of time, highly improbable events can somehow be made probable.

But with this type of argument it is possible to "explain" ANYTHING. We've all heard it said, for example, that "given enough monkeys and enough typewriters, EVENTUALLY one of them is bound to type the sonnets of Shakespeare error free." But this outrageous myth violates the statistical foundation on which all modern science rests.

Statistically controlled experiments are useless if we do not assume that highly improbable events simply do not occur. The probability of any event which has a known number of possible outcomes can be calculated quite easily.

The probability of rolling a particular number on a die, for example, is one chance out of six (the total number of possible sides) or 1/6. The probability of getting TWO particular numbers on two successive rolls of the die is 1/6 x 1/6 or 1/36, which is to say you would expect to succeed once in 36 rolls.

What then is the probability of randomly selecting the appropriate letters and spaces from a Scrabble set to spell "THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION"? There are 26 different letters and a space in the alphabet (total 27) and there is a total of 23 of these letters and spaces in our sentence.

The probability of spelling this sentence without error by blindly drawing and replacing letters from our 27 character set is calculated by multiplying 1/27 x 1/27 x 1/27 .... 23 times. The answer reveals that we would expect to spell this simple sentence correctly by CHANCE approximately ONCE IN 8 HUNDRED MILLION, TRILLION, TRILLION draws!! If we drew and replaced letters at the rate of a billion a second we would expect to succeed once in 26 THOUSAND, TRILLION YEARS.

Now the simplest living organism is so vastly more complex than our simple sentence, that we have no way of really calculating its probability. If, however, we consider just one one particular protein of average size (say 500 amino acids) from among the thousands of proteins in a living organism, we can easily calculate the probability of forming it by CHANCE.

Proteins are made of a tightly linked chain of amino acids. There are only 20 different amino acids used in the proteins of ALL living organisms and they are arranged in a linear sequence much like the letters of a long paragraph. Assuming an inexhaustible supply of each of the 20 different amino acids, the probability calculation would be 1/20 x 1/20 x 1/20 ... 500 times. The number of possible combinations of the amino acids in this protein is 1 with over 600 zeros after it.

Even if we were to begin with the proper mixture of 500 amino acids to make our particular protein, we could never get the correct sequence for them by CHANCE.

Even if the entire universe were packed tight with computers the size of electrons, each trying a billion combinations of our 500 amino acids a second, we could sample only an infinitesimally small fraction of all of the possible combinations in 300 billion years.

Even if every medium sized protein molecule that ever existed on earth were ALL DIFFERENT, our vast "fleet" of busy computers could not be expected to come up with the combination of amino acids in ANY ONE OF THEM in a mere 300 billion years.

What all this means is that if the whole of evolution were reduced to the question of the probability of forming ANY ONE biologically useful protein of average size, we could safely conclude that evolution would be a VIRTUAL IMPOSSIBILITY by reason of the fact that there would be INSUFFICIENT TIME AND MATTER IN THE UNIVERSE. Now calculate how much faith it takes to believe in evolution.

Evolution: A Mathemetician's NIghtmare

Not Long Enough for Evolution: A response to Llewellyn Jones
John Baumgardner
The Los Alamos Monitor
3 April 1997

Editor:
Llewellyn Jones in his 3/21 letter seems to be persuaded that 15 billion years is an abundance of time for life to arise by random interactions of atoms and molecules, whereas I have been arguing such an idea is sheer fantasy. I believe a simple arithmetic lesson is in order.

To have some sort of ultimate limit on the number of trials -- the number of coin tosses -- we have to work with, let's use the maximum conceivable number of atom-atom interactions in all the universe during its entire history. Taking 10 to the 80th power as a generous estimate for the number of atoms, 10 to the 10th power for an extreme average number of interatomic interactions per second per atom, and 10 to the 18th power seconds, which is about 30 billion years, as a limit for the age of the universe, we get 10 to the 108th power as an upper limit on the number of coin tosses available.

We next need to address how many trials we require randomly to sort through enough of the possible protein combinations to get the thousand or so that are needed for even the most primitive form of life. Let's ignore that there are some hundred or so amino acids and restrict our consideration to the special set of 20 found in most living systems. Let's also ignore the fact that only left-handed forms appear in life proteins. Let's also ignore the extremely unfavorable chemical reaction kinetics involved in forming long peptide chains in aqueous solution. Let's merely focus on the task of obtaining a sequence of amino acids that yields 3D protein structure with some essential functionality.

Various theoretical and experimental evidence indicates that in some average sense about half of the sites must be specified exactly. For a protein of length 200, the number of random trials needed for a reasonable likelihood of hitting a useful sequence is 20 to the 100th power or 10 to the 130th power. This is ten million billion times the limiting number we computed for interatomic interactions in the history of the universe! And this estimate is only for one of the thousand or so proteins needed for the simplest type of life!

In the face of such stunningly unfavorable odds, how can any scientist appeal to chance interactions as the explanation for the complexity we observe in living systems? This line of argument applies, of course, not only to the issue of biogenesis but also to the issue of how any new gene/protein might arise in any kind of macroevolution process.

Mr. Jones rightly presumed that my own answer as to how life originated is to be found in the writings of Moses. The greatest detail on this question is given in regard to how human beings first appeared. Genesis 2:7 says that "God formed man (or Adam) from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul." As a scientist I offer no apology for my conviction that all living systems absolutely require an intelligent and supernatural cause for their origin.

To me this conclusion is so self-evident from what we know of living systems at a molecular level that, on the surface, it is bewildering why so many reject it. But then I remember the years in my own life when I also rejected it.

John Baumgardner

Evolution: Dinosaur to Bird theory

Summary:
Demise of the "Birds are Dinosaurs" Theory

Two startling studies, relying on completely different methods, published just three weeks apart, have dealt a "one-two punch to the dinosaurs origins of birds hypothesis" according to paleontologist James Farlow of Indiana University-Purdue University at Fort Wayne. The first study examined the origins of the three bones of the fingers/wings and feet of the theropod dinosaurs and modern birds. The results clearly indicated that the hands of the theropod dinosaurs are derived from digits I, II, and III, whereas the wings of birds, although they look alike in terms of structure, are derived from digits II, III, and IV. The second study looked at the lungs of the theropod dinosaurs (from fossil evidence) and compared them to the lungs of modern reptiles and birds. The results indicated that the theropod dinosaurs likely possessed a diaphragm and bellows-like septate lungs (similar to modern reptiles), which are not found in modern birds. In addition, the theropod dinosaurs lacked the proper pelvic structure to assist breathing by means of tail movements. Such structures are incapable of supporting warm-blooded respiration and the aerobic requirements of flight.

Evolution: A Chemist's Nightmare #1

Is the Chemical Origin of Life (Abiogenesis) a Realistic Scenario?
by Rich Deem

There are only two possibilities for the existence of life:
1. Chance assembly of life from chemicals
2. There is a Creator who designed biological systems

If you deny the existence of a Creator, scientific studies demonstrate that you must believe each of the following things about the origin of life (short list):

Fact:
Homochirality somehow arose in the sugars and amino acids of prebiotic soups, although there is no mechanism by which this can occur and is, in fact, prohibited by the second law of thermodynamics (law of entropy).
Solution: Reject the second law of thermodynamics

Fact:
In the absence of enzymes, there is no chemical reaction that produces the sugar ribose, the "backbone" of RNA and DNA.
Solution: Accept "science of the gaps" theory

Fact:
Comparison of the dates of meteor impacts on the moon, Mercury, and Mars indicate that at least 30 catastrophic meteor impacts must have occurred on the earth from 3.8 to 3.5 billion years ago. These impacts were of such large size that the energy released would have vaporized the entirety of the earth's oceans, destroying all life.
Solution:Life spontaneously arose by chance at least 30 separate times, each within a period of ~10 million years.

And evolutionist say it takes a lot of faith to believe in crationism!

Evolution: A Chemists Nightmare #2

PROBLEMS WITH CHEMICAL ORIGINS OF LIFE THEORIES
Based on talks at the University of South Carolina, 16 April 93 and 3 April 95
Copyright 1998 by Emerson Thomas McMullen

Abstract:
The ultimate question concerning the origin of life is whether it happened naturalistically or as the result of a creator. In the twentieth century, A.I. Oparin and J.B.S. Haldane supplied a theoretical basis for the naturalistic origin of life. The supposed experimental evidence, the Miller experiment dominated discussions for decades, but has many weaknesses. One problem for all naturalistic explanations is the source of the information in DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid). Whatever the proposed pathway, mathematical calculations indicate that it is impossible for life to occur naturalistically. The best explanation for the origin of life, as well as its detailed genetic information stored in complex molecules, is a creator.

Awesome time-waster



My office recently got hooked on Google Earth, a tool that instantly rotates the earth to any Zip code or city in the world. This picture is of Pearl Hrbor and I was suprised at the detail. When I entered the ZIP for my childhood home I was very disappointed as the image was just a blurry blob. I wouldn't expect much satellite imagery near Greenbrier, AR though.

Here is the link for Google Earth

Here is another shot of Waikiki Beach with a building enhancer and a lodging tool.

March 28, 2006

Sam's


I went to Sam's Club yesterday for the bi-weekly restocking of my office refridgerator and caught a glimpse of this woman in line next to me. Besides her morbidly obese apperance I also noticed the contents of her cart.

She had a 2 pack of Zest soap totalling 24 bars. I can understand why she buys in bulk. This will probably last a month.

I especially liked the two 2-foot hoagies, the two gallons of punch, and to wash it all down, a case of Bud Light. At least she's watching her calorie intake. She also had a huge package of tube socks.

Everyone goes to the store for specific items and then a few other things are picked up as impulse buys. I would imagine the food stuffs were her specific target this run but the socks really confused me. Did she need them or were they impulse?

I started running through a lot of assumptions about this woman after I remembered a sobering statistic about the obese. A company with 1000 employees will spend $285,000 on medical bills and other costs associated with absenteeism due to obesity. Just one obese person will cost a company anywhere from $460 to $2500 annually.

There have been a lot of articles lately about obesity here in Hawaii including a lot of focus on fat kids. I believe I made a post about this earlier this month so I won't cover it here. I will reiterate something that firmly believe in and that is obese people should pay more for health care. Endogenously obese or, more specifically, the environmentally induced obese are the targets for my thesis statement.

Envirionmentally obese people, or the couch potatoes, should be made to pay more in health insurance to offset the costs associated with treating them. They are more prone to Type II diabetes, joint problems, etc. so it only seems fair to have them pay more for health insurance.

Many people say this is unfair treatment and discrimination. Putting political correctness and emotion aside, people are made to pay more for for all types of insurance because of their risk factors. If you live in a tornado infested area that loses trailers every year, live in an area that gets smacked by hurricanes or earthquakes then you will pay more for homeowners insurance. If you smoke you pay more for life insurance. If you drive like an asshole and get tickets you will pay more for auto insurance.

These are all choices people make. They choose to drive poorly, to live in a risky area for their homes, to kill themselves by smoking. Why shouldn't a fat fuck who eats Big Mac's all day and who does not exercise pay more for health insurance?

March 27, 2006

Save the Whale's hearing

The bi-annual RIMPAC exercise is gearing up and growing concern over the Navy's use of active sonar is getting environmentalist's panties in a wad. The Honolulu Advertiser ran a lengthy article on the subject yesterday and with good cause. It does appear that there can be some deliterious affects on marine mammals from high intensity active transmissons.

There have been an increasing number of whale groundings and strandings in the past 6 years all over the world and NOOA has been trying to link them to active sonar exercises. In July, 2004 residents of Kauai awoke to over 200 "melon-headed" whales swimming dangerously close to land. Residents jumped in their canoes and kayaks in an attempt to drive the animals back out to sea. The melon-heads were noticably disoriented and "stressed", probably becuase they were being refered to as "melon-headed", something the species especially dislikes. They inform the other marine mammals they prefer to be called "bulbously sexy".

All over the world marine mammals seem to be beaching themselves conspicuously close to the time frame of local naval exercises. Some scientists say there could be a link while others vehemently support their claim. The Natural Resources Defense Council(NRDC), who has become the voice of unintelligable marine mammals everywhere, states that active sonar is harmful, and in extreme cases deadly, to marine mammals. When asked about other marine life, non-marine mammals specifically, an NRDC official stated, "Who gives a shit about fish? I mean, hey, they just aren't as cute as the dolphins or as cool to watch as the whales. Fish are our food for a reason; they are very ugly. Are you trying to compare a tuna to a delphinus delphi? Puhleeze. We are here to protect the cute denizens of the deep from active sonar."

Scientists at the Marine Mammal Research Program here in Hawaii have actually measured the hearing of 12 different species of marine mammals in order to be able to send a slam-dunk message to the navy and to not only prove themselves right about active sonar but to also give themselves an ego boost ever since the science community in general found out that Lucy is more ape-like than human.

While scientists struggle to find a more concrete definition of "harrassment" in relation to maximum value of the sound levels that can be used in the exercises, 190 dB seems to be the agreed upon value for now. In an effort to appease the dolphin and whale lovers, most of whom masterbate to the centerfold of the monthly magazine Marine Mammal Mischief, a sister magazine to the more popular Swank, the navy has also agreed to scout the local operational areas for sounds emitting from sea life- well, the cute ones anyway - and will stop all active sonar if the animals are detected. In fact, the U.K. Navy has just launched a 1.3 million, uh, ok, not dollars, but... well, I can't find the symbol for U.K. pounds, but anyway, it's a shitload of money that they are spending to develop a sonar system specifically for the detection of marine mammals. Money well spent, I'm sure.

Interstingly enough, 2 whales were killed, one of which was an extremely cute baby humpback, off the coast of Maui when they wree struck by boats. The whale watching season brings thousands of visitors to the islands. There is supposed to be a 100 yard restriction but sometimes the lovable whales let their curiosity get the best of them. Perhaps controlling the tourism industry's disturbance of the marine mammals is in order, but it is the Navy who causes, allegedly, the most damage to these animals. Plus, tourism brings in money so if a few stupid whales get run over in the process then boat drivers can just say it is part of the tour and whale-ka-bobs will be served at a post-tour get together on the pier.

The U .S. Navy is under scrutiny from scientists, Greenpeace, tree huggers, whale and dolphin huggers, and anyone else that can thumb the military for yet one more environmentally unsubstantiated outrage. Lawsuits are pending and research results are being examined in the Active Sonar vs. Dipshits case that could very well limit the navy's use of sonar to shore-based training facilities where nothing but the electrons that pulse through the circuit boards will be distrubed. Coincidentally, a new protest group named Committee Against the Molestation but Ethical and Loving Treatment Of Electrons, or CAMELTOE, has just filed for legitimacy along with the new group, Coalition of Bush Lied Supporters, or JACKASSES.

One U.S. Navy sonarman that I talked to had this to say, "I think using active sonar is gay anyway. Unless you really need to use it to find a really quiet diesel submarine, diesel subs that Russia keeps selling to every piss ant nation who has the cash, and could threaten any nation that has a coastline, then don't use it."

When asked about the active sonar training the navy conducts as being essential to the growing diesel submarine threat a U.S. Navy non-official was overheard as saying, "Are you fucking retarded? We are supposed to be able to just find one of these rogue subs on the spot with the limited training we do have, and now some agencies are trying to restrict us even more? How the hell are we supposed to..."

The sailor was cutoff with an inconspicuous kick to his shin.

Well, whatever the outcome of the litigation and science involved with active sonar and its effects on cute and lovable marine creatures, you can be rest assured that these animals will be well cared for even as the insertion force of a communist controlled country storms an unsuspecting non-communist beach in the middle of the night.

If you will excuse me, I still have 40 lbs of melon-headed whale I need to shish-ke-bob.

March 23, 2006

Military History in the Making & the Politics of War

I have to pass along a link to one of the most moving sites concerning the war in Iraq I have ever seen. This blog does not belong to a Democrat or Republican, liberal or conservative. It belongs to an Army Enlisted soldier who proclaims in his posts and his ongoing documentary that he is an American.

He is writing from Iraq while he plugs through a year-long deployment. It is some of the best and most brilliant writing that I have ever read- proof positive that the military is not full of mindless and uneducated pawns. I can only hope to reach the level of clarity and writing prowess Buck Sargent has mastered.

I have batted around the idea of making a sister blog to Alohadump and lift just an edge of the vale that surrounds the submarine force and our role in the military. Unfortunately, our missions and operations are so clandestine that the blog would just contain vague references and sea stories, hardly on a level designed to inform.

I anxiously await the release of his movie.

Sweet, sweet retirement

I have less than 17 months until I retire from the U.S. Navy with 20 years of service. It will be a meager retirement paycheck plus benefits and I will in no way be able to live on just the check from Uncle Sam- unless we live in a cardboard box and fish our food out of Burger King dumpsters.

I found this entry in one of my journals. The 'military speak' has been dumbed down as much as possible so that the content of the entries can be understood by people who aren't in the military, people who are in a different branch of the military, or people who are in the military but have to read it every freakin day and do not wish to read it on a blog.

Shit I Won't Have to Deal With When I'm Retired

1. Taking a shower and bouncing off cold steel walls because the dickhead Officer of the Deck decides to go to periscope depth during turnover. (the sip rolls from side to side if the seas are high)

2. Shower door popping open because of ship's angle. (Imagine trying to soap your self down and keep your balance while using one arm to keep the accordion style door from opening and hitting you and letting the 68 degree air into the shower)

3. Rolling my clothes up into a bundle when I sit on the shitter so they won't soak up all the piss and standing water on the deck.

4. Living with stinky assholes who don't shower. (There is nowhere to escape, no window to open, no air freshener to spray , and to make matters worse, when running drills all the air conditioning is secured except to vital areas)

5. Snorers, who sound like Paul Bunyan having an explosive case of diarrhea into a concrete bowl, that keep 10+ people awake. (I never understood why someone just didn't round up all the snorers and kept them all in one berthing area. Then they could keep each other awake instead of people that don't sound like they have a case of severe sleep apnea having who get no sleep in the 12 hour off time.)

6. Finding shit-stained underwear lodged in the overheads in berthing and in the bathrooms.

7. Useless prewatch and periscope depth briefs. (These briefs are the boredom equivalent of having to listen to your barber go into great detail on how, exactly, he is going to cut your hair.)

8. Smelling the food grinder (equiv. garbage disposal) all over the boat as it churns the leftover food scraps into a disgusting soup before sending them to the same tank we send our human shit to. (There is an isolation valve that is only opened during this process so that the stink is confined to the piping. This is the equivalent of sending your garbage disposal waste to your septic tank and having to smell that mess everytime you use it.)

9. Extra riders.(This is the equivalent of having 4-5 strangers show up for every road trip you and your friends go on. All you have to drive is a 1985 Honda Accord and the riders don't pay for food, beer or gas. They sleep the whole trip or watch movies on their DVD player and don't offer to drive.)

10. Not being able to take a piss when I want/have to (because the bathroom is full, not working because they are using low pressure air to blow all the poop out of the collection tank, or the ship's barber has a line of people waiting and it is impossible to reach a stall.)

March 22, 2006

Former Saddam General talks about WMD's

I love watching Jon Stewart becuase he puts such a great perspective on the crap that surrounds us by the media.

Last night he had a guy promoting his new book called "Saddam's Secrets" who was also a General in Saddam's army. Of course, it didn't take long for WMD's to come up and the General gave his explanation for the scarcity of them:
"He had them there before Americans came and liberated the country. The weapons were transported to Syria by air and by ground."

I made a post recently that focused on one of Saddam's in-laws who was the head of a WMD program confessing that they were indeed working on a WMD program and now this General comes forward. I think things are starting to gel.

After doing a little more research on General George Sada I found an interview he did with Brian Lehrer (WNYC-FM) on March 9th. Although I haven't listened to the entire boradcast, apparently there is a clip where he claims he did not actually see the WMD's but kjpows they were transfered. When I get back to my home computer I will listen to it.

Ian Schwartz has the full video and transcript from Stewart's show.

March 19, 2006

So long Chef


I was really bummed to read this story about South Park.

Issac Hayes , the voice of South Park's cafeteria chef, says he will not do anymore shows for the crude cartoon after an episode which poked fun at the Scientology religion.
"Religious beliefs are sacred to people, and at all times should be respected and honored," he continued. "As a civil rights activist of the past 40 years, I cannot support a show that disrespects those beliefs and practices."

Hayes, who is a Scientologist, says he is leaving because the show is getting a out of hand, but I would imagine after the Scientology episode he got pressure to stop doing the episodes from his fellow members.

This can be the only explanation that wouldn't paint Hayes as a hyprocrite and a douchebag. He had no problem doing shows, since 1997, that made fun of Christianity, Mormonism, Catholocism, and Islam not to mention other sensitive topics the show tackles like obesity, homosexuality, promiscuousness and foul language. As a 'civil rights activist' he never gave shit back then about all the satire the show was airing.

From a July 1999 interview:
"Hey, let me tell you I worked years to achieve artistic excellence," Hayes says, "and then all of a sudden, I get involved in this stupid, crazy, insane cartoon and now I'm hotter than I've ever been. I love it. I love it."

Yeah, it took a while for Hayes to reach artistic excellence, especially with these craptacular movies in his resume: "Six Ways to Sunday" (1996), "Flipper" (1996), "Johnny Mnemonic" (1995), "Robin Hood: Men in Tights" (1993). He won an Oscar back in 1971 for "Shaft" and he finally got inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1992.

I would expect that unless you listen to Soul music, this will be the last we see of Isaac Hayes.

*Update
Last nights episode left little to ponder as Chef was converted to pedephilia by brainwashing safarians, brought back to normalcy by the children in a strip joint, then left for dead, impaled at the bottom of a revene as a coyote and a bear fight over his burned, broken and horribly mangled body. There were many allegorical references including a link between the brainwashing club Chef joined and the Scientology religion Hayes is a member of. I think Stan got it right when he said alhtough Chef acted very strange the last days of his life, it is his music, advice, and colorful past that should be remembered.

March 15, 2006

High Water

I was going to make a post on another blog refuting the "Bush Lied about WMD's" argument and the UN Resolution 1441 violation but I just started to get a headache. They are tiresome and I have argued both of these too many times to try and show the opposition that they are wrong but I guess I should just make a post so I can just link to it whenever these replayed 8-tracks rear their ugly heads. Instead, I would like to comment of some local issues, and no, I'm not bashing a local or complaining about the noise level on my street.

Hawaii made national news today when a dam broke on the island of Kauai. Here is the article from the local paper: Honolulu Advertiser. We have had a steady supply of rain for the last 2 weeks, 18" falling in just one 48-hour period. Telephone poles fell over Farrington Highway a few days ago, cars have been stuck in the high rising waters, yards and homes have been swept away by flash floods.

I have lived here for more than 13 years and I do not recall this much rain falling so quickly. Twelve years ago there was some flash flooding but I don't remember watching a whole backyard being swept away- yard furniture included. I remember when I was living in the barracks on base in 1989 or 1990 it rained so hard that there was a small river flowing at the base of the hill our barracks sat on. Guys were taking boogie boards and racing across the lawn.

I did some research on Hawaii's dam structure since I didn't know there were any here and found some interesting information on both dams and bridges, specifically, they really suck out here. A report card by the Society of Civil Engineers gave a pretty poor grade to Hawaii in a lot of areas but h ere is what they said about the bridges and dams:

- 47% of Hawaii's bridges are structurally deficient or functionally obsolete.
- There are 22 state-determined deficient dams in Hawaii.
- Hawaii has 77 high hazard dams. A high hazard dam is defined as a dam whose failure would cause a loss of life and significant property damage.


A civil engineer from Kailua had this to say in the report:
It is difficult to get public energized about infrastructure until there is a failure.

That statement gets the big "Duuuuuuh!". Money just isn't spent on important upgrades until someone dies. I wonder though why is it that so many things that happen regularly out here kick this state's ass. There are parts of this state that get as much rain as a rain forest however if the cloud moves a mile in any one direction the countryside is devastated. The drainage and run-off systems are woefully inept and as residents have learned (the hard way, unfortunately) something has to be done. Hawaii needs to spend the money to upgrade existing infrastructure to keep people who live near the run-off areas safe.


Even the homeless people are suffering from the extensive rain. This 47 year-old woman has her "encampment" setup next to the Waimanalo bridge- yes, a bridge. She says she has nowhere to go but I would think with the rising waters and the condition of most of the bridges in this state would be a bellringer for this woman and she would go somewhere else. I used to think that the bums who lived underneath the H-1 highway had it made- permanent shade and a continuing supply of cars to panhandle. I have noticed that the rain really comes down in sheets under that overpass so I suspect that the bums have moved on because I haven't seen any make-shift tarps or abandoned shopping carts lately. They are probably stepping up their movie attendance at Restaurant row since it is only 50 cents, dry, and air conditioned.

This post has been a hodgepodge of comments and such but the point is clear. Hawaii just can't seem to get it together when it comes to any type of civil infrastructure. Perhaps this thesis statement should have been at the beginning of this post; I must be slacking. Time to finish up my Master's and get back into the swing of education.

March 10, 2006

Old Dem habits are hard to break


(My first attempt at some Photoshop manipulation on this level where I combine my knowledge of electronics with my political, uh, something-or-other)

The schematic and Hillary's face match- and here's why: Hillary Clinton

March 9, 2006

Fanatic Jihadist acquires 250g of plutonium

Here is the complete story.

Ripley wouldn't touch any of this...

As Britain becomes more and more politically correct and its citizens more and more dumbfounded by it all, it's encouraging to find that we are not alone. Tom Tickell looks back on a year full of pomposity, idiosyncrasy and plain old-fashioned nonsense, here and abroad.

• A market trader in Derby was banned from selling candles - unless they carried a notice warning that they can burn.

• A constable who saved the life of a man who was high on drugs by stopping him jumping from a window was reprimanded. PC Amerjit Singh, who had been summoned to a house in Cambridgeshire to prevent the potential suicide, had used "undue force" in holding the man back from killing himself. The man's father complained.

• Labour's election slogan - Forwards Not Backwards - sounded ironic to most Germans. The words were the East German government's standard election cliché and slogan, just before the Berlin wall came down and Communism collapsed in 1989. Germans still use the term as a bad joke.

• Staff at a Norwich school had to fill in risk assessment forms before they could take children out to play in the snow last winter. Children throwing snowballs could do so only if they were 65ft apart. "Risk assessments can keep children safe in snowy weather," claimed a spokesman for the council.

• A teenage thug was ordered not to wear anything obscuring his face as part of the terms of the Asbo slapped on him for terrorising local residents in Portsea, Hampshire. But the ban was lifted after his lawyers claimed it "interfered with his right to his personal development".

• A man whose leg was amputated three years ago was told to report for a new medical examination before his disabled parking permit could be renewed. Bradford council had details on Ron Craig's problems, but a spokesman insisted that everyone wanting their disabled permit renewed had to be treated in the same way.

• An education chief ordered his staff not to use the words "gifted" or "talented" about school students because "it suggests exclusivity". Instead, Howard Cooper, educational director of Wirral council, suggested they use the words "very able with specific gifts or talents".

• A team of image consultants was paid £15,000 by Basildon council to recommend a new name for the town. They suggested changing it to Boethalls Hill, because it had "a more up-market feel than Basildon". The town has been the butt of jokes about Essex girls and white van men.

• Hospital visitors to the maternity wing of Calderdale Royal Infirmary in Halifax were told not to coo over newborn babies because to do so infringes their human rights. The hospital also asked visitors not to ask mothers about their babies "to protect their privacy and dignity".

• The local council in Test Valley, Hampshire told residents not to light bonfires on Guy Fawkes' night because the smoke might annoy neighbours and cause air pollution. The council recommended making compost from garden waste instead.

• Academics at Glasgow university spent £140,000 on a study of "the cappuccino culture" which concluded that people went to coffee shops so that they could enjoy meeting their friends. Women with young children preferred coffee shops to pubs, claimed the report, which also revealed that when customers did not like the coffee a particular chain served, they would stop going there.

- A woman was fined £60 for driving while holding a small apple. Police evidence included video footage and aerial photography, and they successfully argued that the driver was not in full control of her car.

• Norfolk's education chiefs told people teaching religious instruction in the county's schools to avoid mentioning the Holy Ghost, because children might find the thought of ghosts spooky. Giving information about Holy Communion was out because talk of eating Christ's body and blood could make children assume Christians were cannibals. Finally, teachers should not mention the Wailing Wall because it could imply that Jews were moaners.

• A study of the power consumed by electrical equipment showed that turning them off was cheaper than keeping them on all the time.

• A doctor in New Hampshire was ordered to apologise to a massively obese woman after he told her that she would face serious health problems unless she lost weight.

• The arm-bands for the Make Poverty History campaign turned out to have been made in Chinese sweatshops. An audit showed that some staff were being paid only 9p an hour - 60 per cent of their government's minimum wage.

• Miss Universe was banned from opening a food festival in Toronto because local officials claimed that her beauty queen regalia might be offensive to women. They used a by-law forbidding "degradation of women through sexual stereotyping". The mayor later apologised.

• University staff discussed the "meaning" of David Beckham at a conference at Paisley University. They received a mass of academic papers including one entitled Father Why Hast Thou Forsaken Me? Post-modernism, Desire and Dissatisfaction: A Case Study in David Beckham's Meaning.

• Relate - formerly the Marriage Guidance Council - announced that children should be discouraged from making Mother's and Father's Day cards this year. It claimed that it was unfair to children in single-parent families, or with step-parents.

• Cycling paramedics on emergency calls in Norwich must now dismount as they cross the Chipperfield shopping centre. The owners were worried that they might hit shoppers, who could sue the centre for compensation. The cyclists have gone to more than 6,000 emergencies in the past five years.

• A 10-year-old boy received a police warning for playing cowboys and Indians with his little brother. Carl Astley had a tiny cap gun, but a passing police car unit screeched to a halt as he was firing it. The men inside - from an armed response unit - told Carl he could be arrested for wielding a toy gun.

• An American cartoon character, SpongeBob Squarepants, has come under fire from born-again Christian groups for promoting homosexuality. The cartoon featured him holding hands with Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy - apparently a coded message that implied gay sexuality was acceptable.

- Belgian politicians went to congratulate the country's oldest woman on reaching the age of 109. But a bureaucratic error had ensured that no one had recorded her departure for Paris in 1939, or her death there in 1954.

• Feng Shui underpants designed to bring spiritual balance by having something lucky next to the skin were launched in time for Chinese new year. The Life Enhancer company of Hong Kong claims that they will also help ward off evil spirits and bring harmony.

• Bob Geldof called for a "new Dunkirk" - where boats would flood across the Channel to pick up French protesters. The demonstrators could then join thousands of other protesters demanding fairer international trade outside the G8 summit in Edinburgh. Alas, only five boats went over - and no protesters were there to pick up.

• North Korean men must get their hair cut regularly. The country's main radio station claims that long hair uses up the energy that could otherwise go to the brain. Broadcasters and North Korea's Communist government have launched an official campaign entitled "Let Us Trim Our Hair in Accordance with Socialist Principles".

• A Californian woman was so moved by the devastation caused to New Orleans poultry farms by hurricane Katrina that she led a group of people to Mississippi to rescue more than 1,000 chickens, which have now gone to animal sanctuaries.

• Orthodox Jews should not sing in Hebrew while having a shower, according to a former chief rabbi in Israel. Mordechai Eliahu announced that Hebrew was too sacred to be used in the bathroom. But it is acceptable to hum - provided no word of Hebrew crosses your mind as you do so.

• Truck drivers caught speeding in Bihar in India now face a new punishment. They have to hop like frogs for half a kilometre, reciting their favourite politician's name. Police claim that public humiliation is far more effective than financial penalties.

• A Turkish prisoner held in solitary confinement managed to get the convicted woman bomber in the next-door cell pregnant - through a 3in hole drilled in the wall. Both prisoners have been punished for making the hole.

• A 22-year-old German mugger targeted a victim of 88 - and got knocked out. Grandfather Gerhard Brinkmann was Germany's lightweight boxing champion in 1936.

• A single kiss can contain 40,000 parasites, 250 types of bacteria and up to 0.45 grams of fat, according to a study.

• A strip club in Boise, Idaho, started advertising itself as a life-drawing class and gives pencils and papers to all its clients before they come in. Boise bans public nudity "unless it has serious artistic merit". The Erotic City's Art Night has been a dramatic success.

• Police called to investigate damage to a medieval church refused to climb a gently sloping 12ft ladder to see what had happened to the roof - because they had no specialist ladder training. Only specialist units can climb ladders of that kind, and none could be summoned because the vandalism was not an emergency.

• A teenager who forced open an industrial container at the port of Ashburton in New Zealand was trapped by an avalanche of frozen peas. They covered him up to his chest, and police had to bring in a fork-lift truck to rescue him. He was then arrested.

• Britain's oldest election candidate, 91-year-old Bob Leaskey, stood for the Virtue, Currency and Cognitive Appraisal Party, which he founded. Its programme included abolishing money, and the removal of all politicians. Civil servants would draft all laws, though voters would have to vote on how much they backed each one (on a scale of one to 10) to decide whether they came into force.

• Three elderly criminals admitted carrying out a string of armed robberies in Germany. The trio - aged 74, 73 and 64, had seized 1.3 million euros in 14 raids. But their age let them down: "Rudi could not get up the stairs any more and he constantly had to stop to go to the toilet," said one raider. Police realised the suspects were likely to be elderly after a witness reported all three had been wheezing.

• A specialist range of clothes for chickens was shown off by 20 hens on a Japanese catwalk. The designer claims that many local farmers have ordered the suits which come in five sizes - small, medium, large, extra large and turkey. The chicken farm's name will come on all suits, which, says the manufacturer, will make them the perfect way to advertise.

• Police raided the home of a man who received long-term disability benefits because he could not walk - only to find holiday pictures of him wrestling with an alligator, riding a camel and receiving an award as a jujitsu black belt.

• The Mexican government published a 32-page comic book, giving advice to people thinking of crossing into the United States illegally. It gives tips on what to wear to remain inconspicuous, how to avoid dehydration in the Nevada desert and sets out their legal and medical rights if detained. Officials claim that 300 Mexicans died in trying to reach the US illegally, and that the state must protects its citizens.

• A Californian teacher turned model took a coffee company to court for using his face on its coffee jars without his permission and received $15 million in damages. He had featured on the jars for almost 20 years, but no one had recognised him before.

• A burglar in Sofia, the Bulgarian capital, avoided a three-year jail sentence by having a sex-change operation while on bail. Bulgarian law does not recognise trans-gender operations, so technically the former man and present woman are different people.

• Officials in the Czech Republic started a campaign to cut down government bureaucracy and waste by closing down the country's General Directorate of the Civil Service. The directorate had itself been set up to find ways of cutting back on waste and red tape.

March 7, 2006

Parody of DNC's lack of direction

Democrats Vow Not To Give Up Hopelessness
February 27, 2006 | The Onion: Issue 42•09
WASHINGTON, DC—In a press conference on the steps of the Capitol Monday, Congressional Democrats announced that, despite the scandals plaguing the Republican Party and widespread calls for change in Washington, their party will remain true to its hopeless direction.

"We are entirely capable of bungling this opportunity to regain control of the House and Senate and the trust of the American people," Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) said to scattered applause. "It will take some doing, but we're in this for the long and pointless haul."

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi reaffirms the Democratic Party’s promise to remain marginalized.

"We can lose this," Reid added. "All it takes is a little lack of backbone."

Despite plummeting poll numbers for the G.O.P nationwide and an upcoming election in which all House seats and 33 Senate seats are up for contention, Democrats pledged to maintain their party's sheepish resignation.

"In times like these, when the American public is palpably dismayed with the political status quo, it is crucial that Democrats remain unfocused and defer to the larger, smarter, and better-equipped Republican machine," House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said. "If we play our cards right, we will be intimidated to the point of total paralysis."

Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-CT) cited the Bush Administration's bungled response to Hurricane Katrina as a model for Democrats.

"Grandmothers drowning in nursing homes, families losing everything, communities torn apart—and the ruling party just sat and watched," Lieberman said. "I'm here to promise that we Democrats will find a way to let you down just like that."
According to Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-MA), Democrats are not willing to sacrifice their core values—indecision, incoherence, and disorganization—for the sake of short-term electoral gain.

"Don't lose faithlessness, Democrats," Kennedy said. "The next election is ours to lose. To those who say we can't, I say: Remember Michael Dukakis. Remember Al Gore. Remember John Kerry."

Kennedy said that, even if the Democrats were to regain the upper hand in the midterm elections, they would still need to agree on a platform and chart a legislative agenda—an obstacle he called "insurmountable." "Universal health care, the war in Iraq, civil liberties, a living wage, gun control—we're not even close to a consensus within our own ranks," Kennedy said. "And even if we were, we wouldn't know how to implement that consensus."

Democratic Party faithful cheer on their leaders’ resolutely defeatist agenda.
"Some rising stars with leadership potential like [Sen. Barack] Obama (D-IL) and [New York State Attorney General Eliot] Spitzer have emerged, but don't worry: We've still got some infight left in us," Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean said. "Over the last decade, we've found a reliably losing formula, and we're sticking with it."

Dean reminded Democratic candidates to "stay on our unclear message, maintain a defensive, reactive posture, and keep an elitist distance from voters."
Political consultant and Democratic operative James Carville said that, if properly disseminated, the message of hopelessness could be the Democrats' most effective in more than a decade.

"For the first time in a long time, we're really connecting with the American people, who are also feeling hopeless," Carville said. "If we can harness that and run on it in '06, I believe we can finish a strong second."

March 6, 2006

Bad night

I got to bed about 10:40 after watching the Oscars. I didn't watch any of the movies so I won't comment on how it went except the point that it looked like they were forcing Memoirs of a Geisha into everything they could. Why was that movie in the Best Sound Editing category with Narnia and Kong? I just think that category, along iwth other technical categories, should be reserved for the Sci-Fi movies since most of the sounds have to be created.

Here is the timeline from 10:40 pm to when my alarm went off at 6:30-

1:30 a.m. Awakened by crying man being consoled by his 3 friends. Aparently he was dumped and wanted to go kick the guys ass for whom he was dumped for. Cops showed up after our security guy called them. Random screams pursued including but not limited to, "Fuck you cops. PORKCHOP! You PORKCHOP!"

2:30 a.m. Cars drag racing down my narrow street. Extremely loud and annoying. Spent 25 minutes making a mental list of the things I nheed buy at Home Depot to launch off my lanai at passing racers.

3:00 a.m. Another pass of the racers. Spent next 30 minutes wishing the drivers would crash and die in a violent and fiery death.

3:15 a.m. Almost asleep. Jostled into reality by passing sirens 5 minutes apart. Hoping against hope that it was a fire engine rushing to put out 2 car fires

4:30 a.m. Awoke to the sound of the paper delivery guy slamming the paper machines and his van door.

5:15 a.m. Awoke to the first bus of the morning stopping in front of our apartment.

6:30 a.m. Alarm goes off to a shitty song.



~

March 3, 2006

Hawaii Sovereignity: An Essay

This post is rather lengthy and targets a small group of people who, by virtue of subject matter, would have me strung up and horsewhipped after having read it. What started out as a casual Hawaii Sovereignty bashing post surprisingly blossomed into a full-fledged research project.

This post might appeal to people who think Hawaii is a happy place full of surfers, mai tai’s, luaus and hibiscus. This ‘paradise’ also has its dark side. I have to precede this essay with a statement concerning the people who live and work in the 50th state- I don’t have anything against them. Some people think that I am biased against Hawaiians after reading my posts on this blog and nothing could be further from the truth. I have a great respect for the people here and there are many things I admire about them. But, just as in any culture, or state, or region of the world, there are people that piss me off and they can be any color, creed, or nationality. With that said, here is my essay.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I saw another television ad for the promotion of the sovereignty movement here in Hawaii and brought the topic up in my office. Immediately, 2 guys in my office piped up about the Akaka Bill debate they attended at the Japanese Cultural Center last August as part of an extra credit assignment for a World History class they were attending at Wayland Baptist University.

*Background. The Akaka Bill, in a nutshell, would give the Hawaiians with ancestry their own Nation within a Nation, much like the American Indians have. Some Hawaiians don't want it to pass because it would forever prohibit them from pursuing their fight for a completely sovereign nation of Hawaii to be recognized. Some Hawaiians don’t care about the bill and want to be left alone and disassociated from the whole sovereignty movement all together

The only way to keep the government money flowing and to preserve racial exclusion for beneficiaries is to pass the Akaka bill.

One noted distinction during the debate was the difference in emotional outrage between the two sides. Opponents to the Akaka Bill were allowed to speak and give their points but when supporters of the bill were speaking continual outbursts from the opponents caused the speakers to have to wait until things got quiet. The Hawaiians are all about respect, but only when they have the floor.

I have kept up with the subject for many years mainly because there were people in my college classes who supported a free Hawaii. After listening to them and reading about the sovereignty plight I just couldn't generate any sympathy for this cause.

I went to the freehawaii.org website, one of many sites devoted to this cause, to see if I cold get more sovereignty insight than what the local paper or other propaganda sources dole out. Among the many spelling and grammatical errors on the site (a bleating testament to the Hawaii education system) are some snippets from this site that stood out:

In 1993 the 103rd Congress unanimously signed into Public Law the Apology Bill.

America publicly admitted to illegally overthrowing its ally and trading partner the Sovereign Kingdom of Hawaii and falsely imprisoning the beloved Queen Liliuokalani.

Since then, America, has done everything it can to avoid the consequences of this Bill. The inevitable result will be the restoration of a sovereign Hawaii.


The Apology Bill the site refers to happened later that year after Clinton's inauguration. I have a problem with that apology in that he made it on "behalf of the American people". Well, Bill, I had absolutely nothing to do with the illegal take over the apology talks about. I do admit there were some shady actions behind the whole thing but I don't think I should have to be included in an apology for something I was not involved in. And that goes double for the half-ass slavery apology Clinton gave to the blacks to smokescreen his knobber debacle in the oval office. Native Hawaiians treat this apology as an admission of a crime instead of a sympathetic “Hey, sorry your ancestors had to go through that shit” statement.

I do believe the Hawaiians should get some kind of reparation from the U.S. government; I think that would be the fair thing to do. My wife brought up a good point last night when we watched a news clip on the island of Koho’olawe, an island the U.S. military used to brush up on their bombing skills. The island is uninhabitable because of the unspent ordinance. The government should, at the very least, go in there and clean it up and give it to the Hawaiians, not the state. This would be a good start. I must be getting soft in my old age.

Give them land, but not their sovereignty. That is ludicrous.

This website has a comprehensive collection of the pitfalls of the sovereignty movement.

I read a story in the Honolulu Advertiser about how the tourism industry is making millions of dollars off the backs of the Hawaiians and later found this article written by Hawaiian native, Rev. Kaleo Patterson, on the subject of tourism, specifically the pitfalls.

Rev. Patterson talks about how tourism is killing the Native Hawaiians and the their lands. In his opinion, tourism was not instituted by the natives but by greedy proprietors. The only reason Hawaiians dance the hula or work at the hotels (as do his siblings) is because that is the only way they can survive. I have been to many luaus and I don’t get that perspective. The dancers are happy to share their culture and heritage with the audience. But then again, looks can be deceiving.

I find it hard to believe that the only thing native Hawaiians can do is participate in the tourist industry. That is a smack in the face to fellow natives. The reverend continues to say that native Hawaiians are continually at the top of the list of the poor, unhealthy, and struggling peoples in the state.

Reverend Patterson states,
It is no accident that Hawaiians are the poorest of all people in Hawaii, capturing the highest percentage of unemployment and welfare recipients. It is also not an accident that as a population group Native Hawaiians dominate the prison populations.


I agree that it is no accident.

But is tourism really the agent of their despair? Is tourism the only that prohibits them from getting a good job outside the industry?

Tourism, according to the reverend, is also responsible for their economic despair:
“Most Hawaiians will bear witness that tourism, as a foreigner dominated enterprise, is the plague which an already oppressed people must endure with very few other economic options or alternatives in life. Many end up choosing the lesser options even if it means unemployment or criminal activity.”

So what about the poor white people who live in Kauai; is tourism the reason for their misfortune or are Hawaiians the only ones susceptable?

There are always other options and getting an education is one of them. I tried to lift the vale of perception and find some information that could conclude the native Hawaiians had the educational capacity to do something else besides the hula or sell shave ice on North Shore.

Education: Native Hawaiians
The 2000 Census states 84.6% of people age 25+ living in Hawaii had a high school diploma and 26.2% had a Bachelors or higher. In 2002, the census states that 87% had high school diplomas (ranked 14 among states). Total
Native Hawaiians in 2000 was 5% and their education level was pretty good compared to other pacific islanders:

No high school diploma- 16.8%
High School Diploma or equivalent- 36.5%
Some College or Associate’s- 31.4%
Bachelors or higher- 15.2%

* Census error

While these statistics fared Native Hawaiian's better than other Islanders, compared to the national average the native Hawaiians are well below par for their educational levels. The capability of the Hawaii school system in educating its youth makes me wonder if the high school diploma is really worth anything.

The American Legislative Exchange Council ranked Hawaii 44 out of 50 states and District of Columbia in academic achievement.

The Heritage Foundation has this to say about Hawaii schools:
“Hawaii offers little public school choice. The state has a weak charter school law. Hawaii has a higher proportion of students in private schools than most states.”

These depressing numbers might shed some light on why Native Hawaiians fare so poorly in job placement- they aren’t qualified to get them.

Work Force: Native Hawaiians
Almost ¾ of male natives and 3/5 of women natives were working at the time of the 2000 census in the management, professional, and related industries. It is logical to assume that native Hawaiian residents of the outer islands are below the income levels compared to the rest of the state because Oahu is where the bulk of the commerce and industry is. The outer islands are tourism driven because there really isn’t anything there that is commerce driven except tourism. There are only a few choices for those outer island people to improve their income levels: move to where the jobs are, bring non-tourism driven commerce to the island or win the lottery. In fact, this could be applied to anyone regardless of where they live.

The most blinding factor of low incomes and focused job opportunities (tourism related only) for native Hawaiians bellows across the pages of educational studies of the state. If you don’t have the education level required for a job then you aren’t going to get hired. This truth is not restricted to Hawaii natives but for all Americans. The qualified people get the jobs.

Earnings: Native Hawaiians
A depressing statistic was the median earnings of male workers age 16+ of a meager $32, 672. It doesn’t take a financial planner to realize $32k doesn’t go very far because of Hawaii’s high cost of living when people pay $5.00 for a gallon of milk and $2.85 (average) for a gallon of gas. In fact, Hawaii is ranked 3rd in the 20 most unaffordable housing markets. The real kick to the crotch is that the U.S., Canada, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, and the U.K. were included in this report.

But is this tourism’s fault? No, it is the state’s fault, to a degree, that the cost of living is so high. Wasteful spending, poor legislative choices, and an unwillingness to look to the mainland for new ways to do things are contributing to the problems of this state.

This has gotten way off topic but I think these statistics and views of the sovereignty movement are important. I stated earlier that I just can’t seem to drum up any sympathy for the sovereignty movement and that is because I think the whole thing is a sham. After 2 weeks of research on this blog post I have come to the conclusion that it doesn’t matter if you are a minority or how long ago your ancestors were “wronged” in some way, if you don’t have an education, if you are too lazy to get off your ass and make things better for yourself or if you rely on some scheme to change your quality of life, you will always live in some part of a shadow that drains your life either economically, physically, emotionally, spiritually or, to the worst possible extent, all of the above.

When all the layers are stripped off, the fight for Hawaiian sovereignty is nothing more than a corrosive race-based movement. It is an ideology that corrupts Hawaii’s youth and separates native Hawaiians as a people.

March 1, 2006

Runway nightmares

No, this isn't an article about underweight supermodels. My best friend Jeff sent me this pictures of airport runways that probably make pilots drop a deuce on their approach. Jeff has been a pilot about as long as I have live here in Hawaii- and he still hasn't come to see me!

Click on the images to enlarge.





Saddam's Confession

After all this time in court Saddam has caved in and finally admitted just how much of a despotic asshole he really is. The mass graves in Northern Iraq, the weapons of mass destruction, the torture dungeons just couldn't hold up to the startling confession that came from the ousted dictator's lips this morning at his hearing.

He ordered "the destruction of orchards as a reprisal for an assassination bid in a Shiite town."

Yeah baby! Did you hear that? Straight from the horse's ass. So I submit to all you nay-sayers that democracy has taken a hold in Iraq as evidenced by this compelling court drama unfolding as we speak.

Go fuck yourself Judge Judy!

UPDATE
It seems Saddam has caved even more as he confesses that he "signed orders leading to the execution of dozens of Shi'ites in the 1980s but said he was acting within the law as Iraq's president."

Now, we're getting somewhere.

Even these harsh allegations could not stand up to Saddam's solid defense from his own lips: "Where is the crime?"

Hang in there buddy. Hell is preparing a special place for you.