2:11 PM Apr 29, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

Mark Stein: Light bulbs that don't signify ideas

Everything's difficult, isn't it? In the Democratic presidential candidates' debate, Sen. Barack Obama was asked what he personally was doing to save the environment, and replied that his family was "working on" changing their light bulbs.

Is this the new version of the old joke? How many senators does it take to "work on" changing a light bulb? One to propose a bipartisan commission. One to threaten to de-fund the light bulbs. One to demand the impeachment of Bush and Cheney for keeping us all in the dark. One to vote to pull out the first of the light bulbs by fall of this year with a view to getting them all pulled out by the end of 2008.

In 1914, on the eve of the Great War, British Foreign Secretary Sir Edward Grey observed, "The lamps are going out all over Europe. We shall not see them lit again in our lifetime." Whether he was proposing a solution to global warming is unclear. But he would be impressed to hear that nine decades later the lights are going out all over Washington.

Three words....

12:54 PM Apr 29, 2007by Rob Ritchie

Giant! Nazi! Robot!

Uploaded by Cee-Gee-Productions

7:18 PM Apr 27, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

Damn, these guys are competative!

The French dislike themselves even more than the Americans dislike them, according to an opinion poll published on Friday.

Come on, America! Start hating the French again, so we can reclaim the #1 spot!

4:02 PM Apr 26, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

The Financial Times is reporting that 'Carbon Credits' are a fraud.

Well, sure, but what about my idea?

73 for my 45th

11:37 AM Apr 21, 2007by Rob Ritchie

That time of year thou mayst in me behold
When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang
Upon those boughs which shake against the cold,
Bare ruin'd choirs, where late the sweet birds sang.
In me thou seest the twilight of such day
As after sunset fadeth in the west,
Which by and by black night doth take away,
Death's second self, that seals up all in rest.
In me thou see'st the glowing of such fire
That on the ashes of his youth doth lie,
As the death-bed whereon it must expire
Consumed with that which it was nourish'd by.
This thou perceivest, which makes thy love more strong,
To love that well which thou must leave ere long.

Dangerous animals

3:22 PM Apr 15, 2007by Rob Ritchie

Last weekend, my houseguests and I went to Seaworld, where we saw their new "Believe" show, featuring Shamu, the Killer Whale.

The show has been strangely refocused away from the animals themselves and towards the trainers, epitomized by a boy shown in a movie at the beginning, whose dreams of working with the Orcas was sparked by a chance encounter between himself and a sounding whale at the beach. In the movie, the boy jumps into his kayak and paddles out to where the huge, dangerous animal was hungerly swimming around.

In the movie, nothing bad happened to the boy who so unwisely risked his life in a close encounter with a dangerous predator; but I suspect that the real world version of these events would have resulted in an overturned boat and a coast guard alert.

It is with this in mind that I find (via Tim Blair) a video of a similar encounter between eco-tourists and a herd of African elephants:

... one killed; two injured

"Reality Based," indeed.

3:16 PM Apr 14, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

It's been a while since I linked to a Bill Whittle essay, but he's got a new one that I can't recommend highly enough:


It's worth your time.

5:57 PM Apr 13, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

T. Rex: the other, other, white meat.

Pious gratitude to: Florida Cracker

10:56 PM Apr 12, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

Here's some advice: if you have 50 pounds of marijuana in your car, don't stab your boyfriend's dog.

11:13 AM Apr 6, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

Leftist hate: Gore fans abuse, threaten Gore foes

Such anti-intellectual intimidation reflects the high-octane hate that fuels so much Leftist discourse. Rather than simply argue that Johnson, Williams, and their colleagues are ecologically misguided or misinformed, these bullies call them barefoot, same-sex-loving, Winchester-wielding whores and evangel-yokels. Remember this whenever liberals crow about diversity, tolerance, and open-mindedness.

Please note, the emails reproduced are pretty vile and probably not-safe-for-work...much like the Leftists who sent them.

10:41 PM Apr 5, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

The Inbox Of Nardo Pace, The Empire's Worst Engineer

10:31 PM Apr 5, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

Part of a Larger Purpose
By Paul Kollman, CSC, '84, '90M.Div.

I live in a noisy room in Keenan Hall. It isn't usually my gentlemanly neighbors making the noise, but a clanging heater and the people who pass along the sidewalk below my window. Voices from outside reverberate into my room, bringing the shrill musings or complaints of students returning home late from the library. I am the latest in a line of Holy Cross priests who have lived in this room, and certainly not the first who, awakened by such voices, asked himself, "What am I doing here?"

It's a question I've asked myself before in religious life. I remember vividly how I felt when, during my second year in formation, I sat in a chapel many miles away from the wedding of one of my Notre Dame roommates, where I earnestly wished to be. A raucous phone call from the reception had made me laugh at my friends' quirky humor, but sitting there I felt only wistful and sad. I pondered, "What am I doing here?"

That question echoed again two years later as I sat in another chapel of another Holy Cross seminary residence, this time in Dandora, a poor neighborhood in Nairobi, Kenya. That morning a restless voice was high-pitched and insistent: "Kollman! Where is Kollman?" A neighbor down the road was drunk again and wanted to see me after a night of revelry. His fist thundered against our metal door. "What am I doing here?" I thought, again many miles away from where I wanted to be. In this case my impulse was a longing to escape aggravation rather than to be in any particular elsewhere.

It's a natural question at many points in life, certainly for people like me in their 40s. Answers at various levels are easy to provide. As a theology professor who lives in a residence hall, my days are full, but I often gratefully feel part of larger purposes, which give greater meaning to my doings.

Read the rest.

Well, duh!

12:05 PM Apr 4, 2007by Rob Ritchie

Serenity named top sci-fi movie

Space thriller Serenity has beaten Star Wars to the title of best sci-fi movie in an SFX magazine poll of 3,000 fans.

The futuristic release from 2005 was based on the short-lived TV series Firefly. Both were the work of Buffy the Vampire Slayer creator Joss Whedon.

Star Wars - which Whedon has conceded had "an enormous influence" on Serenity - came second in the survey.

Blade Runner was third, followed by Planet of the Apes, The Matrix, Alien and Forbidden Planet.

The Browncoat community is pretty strong, and goes to great lengths to bust polls like this in order to raise conciousness and get more Firefly, so take these polling number with a grain of salt.

My personal list out of these would be:

  1. Serenity
  2. Blade Runner
  3. Star Wars
  4. Alien (Though Aliens was better.)
  5. Forbidden Planet
  6. The Matrix
  7. almost anything else
  8. Planet of the Apes

6:03 PM Apr 3, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

Patrerico reports on The Woman Who Cried Rape and what happened to her.

11:58 PM Apr 1, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

Congressman Charlie Rangel admits that Democrats sell their votes.

Yeah, I know, tell you something you didn't know...but it's interesting that he admitted it on Meet the Press.


7:12 PM Apr 1, 2007by Rob Ritchie

Diary a Clue to Amelia Earhart Mystery

It's the coldest of cold cases, and yet it keeps warming to life. Seventy years after Amelia Earhart disappeared, clues are still turning up. Long-dismissed notes taken of a shortwave distress call beginning, "This is Amelia Earhart...," are getting another look.

The previously unknown diary of an Associated Press reporter reveals a new perspective.

A team that has already found aircraft parts and pieces of a woman's shoe on a remote South Pacific atoll hopes to return there this year to search for more evidence, maybe even DNA.

If what's known now had been conveyed to searchers then, might Earhart and her navigator have been found alive? It's one of a thousand questions that keep the case from being declared dead, as Earhart herself was a year and a half after she vanished.

This story, ostensibly about a newly-discovered press diary, gives a good background on the disappearance 70 years ago, and rounds up some recent discoveries. Give it a read.