Phreaky Phred Comes to Town

 Westboro Baptist Church at the Billy Graham Crusade, 2 , by RSEanes @ FlickrFred Phelps and his Westboro Baptist Church are coming to town today. They’re protesting at the base because of the young pregnant Marine, Corporal Maria Lauterbach, who was found murdered here recently.

What one has to do with the other, who knows? I don’t.

I had intended to go down and take some pictures, mostly out of morbid curiosity but also for future Photoshop enabled ridicule and humor value. Of course, with Phreaky Phred et. al. Photoshop would almost be superfluous. Whatever, that’s neither here nor there really.

Yesterday’s column by Timmi Toler had me thinking twice for a while. She advocated ignoring them completely, thus removing their only real power. It’s true that they are little more than attention seekers with a message of hate, and it’s true that without attention they would probably just fade away, and deservedly so.

But after thinking about it, here’s my problem with that strategy. Phelps is just a less publicly palatable version of Mike Huckabee or Mitt Romney or any one of a number of very prominent Christians. Removing Phelps from the public view is akin to locking up crazy old Uncle Joe in the closet so he’ll stop telling the family secrets to dinner guests. It doesn’t really do anything to cure the family disfunction.

My response, which can also be found here on Timmi’s blog where she reposts her columns (highly recommended blog, btw), is below the fold.

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Shock and Awe

LeftyOh forsooth. I am sure that you’d never have guessed, right?

I think the only reason I’m so far to the economic right on this graph is because of the question about taxes. The question was something along the lines of “Do you believe that raising taxes is the best way to reduce the federal deficit?”

No. I believe that a much more effective method would be to reduce the loopholes for the wealthy and large corporations and actually make them, y’know, pay some taxes.

Even better, let’s stop illegally invading other countries and spending hundreds of billions of dollars and priceless lives for the benefit of Dubya’s erection. It’s disgusting how little he and his ilk value human life, and how flippantly and carelessly he’d sacrifice good men and women on the altar of his woody in the temple of his wallet.

Try it yourself.

(I like Greg Laden’s answer best though.)

Cowboys Lost

Cowboys Star

The Flyboys better start doing something soon to alleviate the utter frustration I’m feeling. The Giants didn’t win, the Cowboys beat themselves.

I am not responsible for any physical harm inflicted on anyone who speaks to me between now and the Superbowl.

Especially if they mention Jacques Reeves.

…with the possible exception of the fan below the fold. Some fans earn a certain amount of leeway.
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The Adventures of Little John

Little John Conquers the World

I’d like to introduce you to a friend of mine. He also happens to be my brother-in-law (or cousin-in-law, depending on how you look at it).Little John isn’t so little any more, but that’s OK. He’s in his late twenties, and what’s amazing about that is that he wasn’t expected to live to see six months.

John was diagnosed at birth with Cerebral Palsy. Though that has never been officially changed to reflect a more accurate diagnosis, it’s likely that his issues are actually caused by Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, a very new diagnosis at the time of his birth.

My parents-in-law adopted him from my mother-in-law’s sister when he was still just a baby, and because of the continual prognoses of imminent demise, never really expected much of him. John’s a great guy in spite of all he’s been through, and is quite capable of functioning well above what’s always been expected of him. After Mom went to California, John became rather restless roaming the Kentucky farm on which he was raised, and this past year asked if he could come live with us. It’s a little crowded in our little home, but we’re glad he’s here. (Plus he makes great coffee, and is the self-named “coffee bitch” of the house. (I’m beginning to bristle a bit at that appellation, much as other family members have bristled at “Louie da turd”.))

John has been wanting to improve his literacy (and pick up chicks), and to that end he’s started a blog. I’m helping him along, and although he’s only got one post up so far and he’s still working on his “About” page, I’d appreciate it if y’all’d drop by and give him some encouragement.

Dateline Jacksonville, 3:30 AM

Sneaky DogI am awakened by the dog.  He’s whimpering.  Now, when he wakes me up in the middle of the night whimpering, it’s because he’s stuck in the bathroom and wants out.  (He likes to sleep in the tub but sometimes bumps the door closed on the way by.)

This time, he’s not in the bathroom at all, but standing by the bedroom door.  (I keep the door closed at night so he doesn’t get into anything in the rest of the house.)  This is unusual enough that it’s worrisome.  He doesn’t go for his morning constitutional until around 8:00.  He’s pretty regular (all the fiber he gets eating my socks, I think).

I get up and go check the house.  My wife’s just home from the hospital, and still wearing a heart monitor (just in case thing), so she’s on the couch.  She’s fine.  The boys are fine, snoring like their lives depend on it.  Kay’s fine, she rolls over when I crack the door.

There’s no fire, no one creeping about the yard, the doorbell hasn’t rung.  There’s no Sunshine Behind the Trashcan (although it’d be a Gina at this point – relationships are kinda fluid at 13 I guess).

I return to the bedroom.

There, with the most innocent “What???” face ever beheld gracing the face of a golden retriever, Shakespeare lies in The Warm Spot on the bed.

He is so not getting any treats today.

Jerk.

A Little Scary

Topsail Beach, North Carolina by JamSkiLast evening my wife fell ill. It was scarily reminiscent of when Pop went down last year.

She spent the night in the hospital, Kay stayed with her. I’m beginning to hate that place.

Tests have all come back fine. That’s kind of scary in itself.

I’m off to the hospital.

again.

From whence came the art:

That photograph is titled Topsail Beach, North Carolina, by JamSki.

Missing The Point

Richard Dean Anderson portrays W. Kevin VicklundYou may know him from The Panda’s Thumb. He’s been called the Master of MacGyvers.

Look out, he now has a blog:

Missing The Point

 The point of this blog is to document the illogic of modern argumentative discourse.  Of particular focus are the arguments of pseudoscience and the nuances of First Amendment rights.

Please go welcome W. Kevin Vicklund to the blogosphere.