Sunday, October 30, 2011

Common Sense on Vitamins

I used to be a vitamin supplement enthusiast, but in light of recent research I have lost interest in supplements. It seems to me that vitamin pills are a continuation of the snake oil remedies of the past.

Multivitamins should be used in moderation. If one is eating a well-balanced diet, there is no need for a multi. If one is eating vitamin-poor food at fast-food joints, perhaps it can't hurt to pop a multi in an attempt to fill in the gaps left by such a poor diet.

Taking a multi every day regardless of diet seems wasteful to say the least, and then there's apprehension in the medical community as to the pharmacological effects of high dosages of various vitamins and minerals on the body.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Rick Perry's Just Another Bigot

I knew Rick Perry was stupid, but I didn't know the degree of his stupidity, though I knew his college degree was studded with numerous C's and D's. If there was ever anything positive said about Rick Perry on my blog, I retract it. I heard he favored the campaign to repeal gay marriage in NH. So he's just another bigot. I wonder if his own marriage is worth protecting?
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Steve Joke

If Steve Jokebs is considered a genius by all the talking heads in the media, including Jon Stewart, then the human race has deteriorated a great deal, to say the least. Earlier generations celebrated Einstein, Edison, and Mark Twain. Maybe these gentlemen didn't become billionaires, but a genius doesn't need to.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Can't Support Obama in 2012

I don't like the idea of supporting an out-and-out liar like Obama who refuses to listen to scientific evidence that marijuana is a worthwhile medicine. If the Republicans nominate a nincompoop like usual, I will simply vote for the Libertarian candidate, but not Obama. As far as I'm concerned, he's a Republican in disguise who connived to transfer funds from the American taxpayer and give them to bank executives. His main legacy that stands out in my mind is grabbing money from the American taxpayer and lying about medical marijuana. He flip-flops on so many of the other issues that it is hard to say whether he has any ideals at all.

At least with a Republican President, the Democrats don't look so bad. I'd rather the President be an out-and-out wolf than a wolf in sheep's clothing making the sheep look bad.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Monday, October 24, 2011

Gore Vidal

I suppose it's unnecessary to declare Gore Vidal a genius. For all his attacks against Academe, he is forever a scholar and among the best. His writing is always interesting, even when he is rehashing a pet idea that he has expressed a dozen times before.

I think he's great. I also think he has more courage than most writers. I wish there were a potion he could be given that would restore him to youth and permit him to write for future generations.

Gore's gift is as a teacher of history, language, culture and psychology, but more than that, a teacher of teachers, superior to the other writers and thinkers he holds up for derision or praise or both. I think that he recognized his own genius and had no doubts about it and delighted in it a bit too much. Unseemly, I think it was, for Gore to take so much pleasure in smiting the less talented. Yes, Gore is a somewhat guilty or curious pleasure, brimming with lore and half-forgotten secrets. His knowledge appears deep like the ocean and even wondrous. To imagine the number of books he has read is dizzying. I would estimate he spends the greater portion of every day reading.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Saturday, October 22, 2011

I Wish the Best for Libya

I hope Libya enjoys all the peace and prosperity it is due.

I do wish the media would report on other topics besides Khadaffy's corpse, though. Ghoulish, if you ask me.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Friday, October 21, 2011

Gore Vidal

I'm still reading Gore Vidal. He really does seem to have mastered the essay. However, I don't find him abundant in ideas. He has about thirty ideas--more than most people I suppose. He recycles them. Some essays don't have a new idea, only new trivia or gossip concerning a celebrity.

I find I learn more with Vidal than I learned in college from my professors. I think it was a mistake, majoring in English. Vidal provides a better education than the liberal arts department did. He knows more and he is both clever and insightful and unrestrained by politics or prejudice. I can see why he interests so many people.

I hate his surrealist novels. I like his historical novels the best. I think he quit writing historical novels because he felt like they did not pay enough, and he found essay-writing easier and more lucrative. Also, through essays he can get on his soapbox and voice his opinion directly rather than through the medium of characters.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Huntsman is Better than Paul

Among the current crop of Republican Presidential candidates, I think I prefer Huntsman over Paul. He's a Mormon who supports civil unions for gays and gave $1 billion in the fight against cancer. He seems more humane than Ron Paul, who let his uninsured campaign manager die of pneumonia at 49.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Republicans Too Stupid to Pick Ron Paul

Republicans always pick a stupid candidate lacking both ideas and ideals, an accurate representative of their base.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


"A van containing President Obama's teleprompter and podium were stolen from a Virginia hotel parking lot on Monday, according to NBC12 in Richmond." - NBC

The people who work for NBC do not understand grammar. I suppose they feel grammar is an unnecessary, outdated knowledge. Perhaps that is why I had so much difficulty getting a job after graduating with highest honors in English Lit. No one in the business community gives a damn if you can write in a competent manner. Journalists in the mainstream media seem to have dropped out of school around grade five.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Rand Paul

Rand Paul looks good in his latest action in the Senate, helping to ensure safe pipelines.

It's a pity that elected officials such as Rick Santorum do nothing with their public lives but cater to hate-mongers that seek to destroy everything that makes the United States a good country.

I'm glad Santorum is running for President, however, because he makes the Republicans look bad on a consistent basis. In that respect, he is useful, reminding people to vote for the Democrats.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Monday, October 17, 2011

Rick Santorum

The truth is I don't feel threatened by Rick Santorum or his notions. His ideas are ridiculous, and he is a worm. It is a sad commentary on Pennsylvania that a worm such as Santorum was able to attain power for a time in our Republic. Santorum reflects poorly upon the people of Pennsylvania.

His thoughts, ideas, and rhetoric require no rebuttal, only silence.

Silence is the proper response to Rick Santorum.

In the presence of fools, silence is best.

He is nothing more than a distorted mirror that makes the people of Pennsylvania look like a bunch of morons.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Gore Vidal

The more I read Gore Vidal, the more I'm convinced he'd hate me*.

Well, maybe hate is too strong a word. He'd disapprove.

He disapproves of so many who are smarter, wiser and more industrious than me, that I can't imagine any circumstance in which he'd accept me or anyone else not at his exalted I.Q. level which I'm sure he feels is predestined at birth.

So, my admiration for Gore Vidal is tempered by Dr. Reality.

He's very much the elitist who wants everyone in their place, that is, below himself.

I continue reading his essays in order to learn about people, places, and ideas. But I have a cold feeling toward Gore Vidal. I can readily understand Hillary Clinton's ambivalence towards him. He's a bit of a lizard, really, licking his lips thinking about the next fly. A writer I really like and would have wished to meet is Mary Renault, because her prose seems magical and also reveals a thumping good human heart, something I'd like to see in the hyper-analytical spellchecker and proofreader, Gore Vidal, who delights in pointing out the petty errors of others, though he has bestsellers to his overexposed name.

I am almost half through his collected essays, 1952-1992, a thousand-plus page book which I dearly love, although I know the love ain't reciprocal. It's the collected thoughts of an unattainable beauty who was too good-looking for all the boys and just couldn't be touched by anyone.

I pity his unauthorized biographer who received the cane for his labors! He should have known better than to offer obeisance to an ungrateful god. Yet I have done similar things in the past. Unrequited love is a mental disease and it is contagious through songs, stories and movies.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Reducing the Salary of Politicians

According to countless media articles, chain email petitions, and idle cant, a large group of people, possibly a majority, want to reduce the salary and benefits of the President and / or Congress, to set the bastards down a peg and let them learn how the rest of us live.

Such levelers, as I call them, live in a fantasy universe, not unlike ours, where politicians never get paid by private businesses and bribery is unknown. Must be a nice place to live. These levelers understand nothing at all about the real world.

The salaries of our politicians in Washington should not be reduced, but tripled, at least, in order to provide a protective buffer reducing the temptations of corruption. Anyone who does not understand this has either not read history at all or has not read the right books about history and does not have any inkling about human nature.

Ron Paul suggests the President's salary should be reduced to $39,000 a year. Anyone who really believes that should not vote at all until they learn more about human nature.

I like Paul's idea about ending foreign and domestic (drug) wars and some of his other ideas, but he always seems to want to go too far.

Imagine a fellow earning $39,000 a year. He is offered $1 million cash to veto some piece of legislation. What the hell is going to stop him? He may well feel like he deserves to be wealthy for being President of the United States. The truth is, the President should be wealthy and so should members of Congress, because ours is a wealthy country.

Of course, the case may be made that no matter how much a man is paid, he will still succumb to bribery. I hate to think that. I like to think that in my case, after I obtained a comfortable middle-class lifestyle, I would be completely immune to bribery. I don't think millionaires pine to become billionaires with the same urgency that the poor want to improve their lot. Maybe I'm mistaken. It would be interesting to take a poll, assuming that people would respond with perfect candor.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Friday, October 14, 2011

Frank Kameny

I was most impressed by the obituary of Frank Kameny, a gay astronomer who lost his job due to his sexual orientation. It made me wish I had been in a position to help or assist him at some point. I am glad that he lived to see his justified complaints addressed by those in authority. The integration of the armed forces probably meant a great deal to him, more than anyone can imagine.

Injustice certainly does motivate people to divert their energies to social change. It is a form of inefficiency in a society. Instead of doing astronomy, one may find oneself doing activism, but that is what is needed in an unjust society. Likewise, in the human body, when an infection is raging, the body marshals its resources to manufacture more antibodies, instead of using its resources for growth*.

Injustice is wasteful, like an infectious microbe.

Activism is the ethical response to injustice. It serves future generations and is selfless in that respect.

I wonder if, in my blog, I am sometimes unjust to hostile regimes or nations that threaten the security of my homeland, the United States. Perhaps. However, one cannot be expected to remain objective when one's own fate, and the fate of loved ones, is at stake. I think it is a vain ambition to hope for pure philosophical objectivity in such circumstances. Even Socrates and even Buddha would break before the wheel. We are not that far advanced as a species, I think.

* - a possible weight-loss regimen is suggested. Some people ingest tapeworms to lose weight. I would not recommend getting infected by anything solely for the purpose of losing weight. One cannot always predict the consequences. Viruses are treacherous!
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Syria Explained

Excellent article in Al Jazeera about the situation in Syria. No other source in the media has explained the Alawite/regime connection so well.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


It will become necessary to retaliate against Iran in the future. It would be convenient and simple to do so while occupying Iran's neighbors.

At that point, whoever is the U.S. President should authorize a strike against all of the law enforcement, military, nuke, space, and rocket infrastructure, which may take a period of six months of continual bombing. In order to be effective, environmental catastrophes must be created to ensure that limits are placed upon reconstruction and future human habitation in those regions. In other words, in order to rebuild, Iran will have to start over completely at a new site, rather than repairing a few buildings at an old.

This remedy may be repeated as necessary, with diminishing accuracy, until Iran pays the debt for U.S. military expenditures from 2001 - present, along with all of the interest accrued.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Doubtful about Obama

I am starting to doubt whether I will vote for Obama in 2012, based on his abysmal record concerning medical marijuana. Maybe I will flip a coin, and if it is heads, I'll vote for him, and if it is tails, I'll vote for whoever the Libertarian candidate is. The 50% chance is meant to symbolize Obama doing an adequate job on gay rights, but a terrible job on medical marijuana rights.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Lacking a Moral Compass

Lacking a moral compass, those in power, working for government agencies, make serious mistakes because they think only in the short-term, of what can benefit them within the span of several months.

Those possessed with ethics think about the long-term--a year from now, five years, a generation from now.

Until the evil-doers are removed from government, the nations of the world will continue making foolish decisions, such as the one in which a man was kidnapped from the U.K. by U.K. agents and sent to Libya for torture.

Those in "intelligence" agencies really aren't very intelligent after all. They have the reasoning capacity of an insect. Many of their activities will betray the country that they are supposed to be protecting, because they lack a moral compass.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Dinah Washington's "Bill"

Dinah Washington's "Bill" is superb; her timing impeccable, her diction precise, her inflections perfect.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Understanding Technology

Qubits are being studied in research into quantum computing.

I can't help but think of Q-bert, a popular video game from the 1980's.

I have only a vague notion of what the research really means or how it works, but it does sound most impressive. I have difficulty understanding what is meant by a bit that can be both zero and one at the same time. Does that mean it has three possible values, rather than two, and the speed increase derives from increased capacity or bandwidth? Or would there be five possibilities: 1, 0, 00, 10, or 01? I don't really understand a single thing about quantum mechanics, insofar as why it works. I can almost grasp how it works, but not why.

As far as I'm concerned, electricity is magic. I've never understood electricity in a proper way. The inner workings of personal computers also seem like magic.

I suppose it is possible, if written and recorded documents were lost in an Apocalypse, such as after a nuke attack or comet strike, that much technology could also disappear, because many people don't really have a good idea as to how their gadgets work and could not begin to recreate them, especially without preexisting tools and other supplies. It is easy to understand and recreate such things as a cart, a wagon, and even a saddle from easily obtained natural resources, but to build a car and the infrastructure to support it and its fuel, that would be quite a trick for an ordinary person left to his own devices. The only guarantee we have is about the Renaissance level of technology. Hopefully, though, there will always be a cache of technological information stored somewhere in a computer disk or a book.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Great Thoughts from an Oxford University Scholar

Some of the "scholars" at Oxford University could not reason their way out of a paper bag. If they represent the best in Western Civilization, then brother, we're in trouble. Deep, deep trouble. Today I read an editorial by some Oxford academic who wants to electrocute animal-f*ckers. That is what he is spending all of his time studying, that is what he is applying his scholarly brain upon, animal-f*ckers.

Whatever happened to the days when Tolkien & Co. were writing masterpieces? Where's the brains? Oxford University appears to be brain-dead. Sitting in their ivory tower, what are they studying? Anything important?


How much grant money supports that research, I'd like to know.

I think there are more important issues in the world than animal-f*ckers and more important things to be concerned about.

Sometimes I have the distinct impression that nothing will ever be done about global warming, and that future generations are just going to have to accept everything that Mother Nature throws at them. It doesn't seem quite fair that the children of tomorrow will be punished for the misbehavior of today's overgrown kids, but that's just the way things are going to work. The people running the show these days are just plain stupid, no two ways about it, or if they have a lick of sense, then they're out to get what they can while they can and not terribly concerned about much else. But then, what else is new? A perusal of history shows that the monarchs of yesteryear were not so hot, either.

Good government is exceptional. It almost never happens. And when by some stroke of luck a good leader does arrive, nine times out of ten, he is assassinated.

Too bad there's no God. We really could use one. An interventionist God would be ideal. I think people want to believe in one because the alternative, reality, is not very comforting.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Only People on Craigslist are Criminals

No point trying to sell anything on Craigslist. The only people on Craigslist are criminals. If you have something legitimate to sell, then if you post it on Craigslist, count on either being ignored or robbed. There is no greater waste of time and no greater population of time-wasters than Craigslist.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Don't want $12,333 ?

$12,333 per American.

That will be the cost of the wars by the time they are over, according to a Brown University study.

I arrived at the above figure by dividing 3.7 trillion by the approximate U.S. population of 300 million.

I don't know about you, but I could sure use twelve grand right about now. Instead, it's our debt, and we're paying interest on it--or rather your children will be.

I'm not sure now is such a good time to have children. The country they inherit will almost certainly be a weaker and poorer one. In retrospect, I'm glad I did not have any.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Newt Gingrich, a Nobody

Newt Gingrich is a temporary aberration. He was a corpse-in-a-suit, no ideals, no originality, no intelligence, no creativity, just raw lust for power and money, that got elected to the House, served a couple of terms, then bailed. Now he wants to be President, but that just is not going to happen. Too bad, so sad, good riddance. What a worthless waste of space he was. It is quite appropriate to use the past tense when talking about a has-been like the Grinch.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Alas for Chattiness

One minor aspect I don't care for in the latest incarnation of Crawl is that the chattiness of charmed orcs has been eliminated. Instead of lifelong pledges of friendship, charmed orcs maintain a stony and boring silence. And I thought we was friends!
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments

Obama Best President in Thirty-Two Years

Any reasonable observer would allow that Obama inherited a can of worms. Two unpopular foreign wars, offshore detainees, the lousiest economy since the Great Depression, and a culture war over gays and marijuana that is always simmering in the background.

I didn't envy him from the get-go. I did vote for him and plan to vote for him, regardless of who the Republicans anoint, although I am pretty sure it will be Romney who believes--in himself. One thing that's good about him is he's tall. I can't think of anything else.

Obama has done better than expected on a number of counts. I hate his record on marijuana (he's timid), and I wish he hadn't given so much money to Big Business. I think both positions are a political mistake. He loses the not-inconsiderable stoner vote on the one hand and loses more of his base by opening up the public coffers and letting the business criminals take what they want.

But considering that the most likely Republican nominee would have done the exact same thing, or rather worse, Obama is my man. Less corrupt, less horrible than the Republicans, who do not know the meaning of morality and believe only in theft. I was surprised when Republicans booed a member of the armed forces, but perhaps I shouldn't have been.

Jimmy Carter inherited a similar economy in the 1970's. I felt he was a good President, too, probably too good for this nation. He thought, which was unforgivable to most Americans, who promptly elected a man without any thoughts at all.
by igor 04:20 8 replies by igor 09:32 6 comments
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