Trump and National Security


A couple of days ago Donald Trump held a campaign rally in San Diego. He talked about how he would be back in San Diego this fall for a civil suit trial brought against Trump University; how he was able to call his ‘school’ a University is beyond me, and he mentioned the name of the judge that would be presiding over this trial. Gave the man’s full name, and race. He dropped the names of the prosecuting attorneys and the plaintiff’s in the case. He did so of course amid snide remarks about gender, race, personality and physical traits.

This is the man who Republicans want to trust with our nations top secret military information? This is the man who is already being briefed by the CIA on sensitive information? Really?

President Obama In Hiroshima


https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/05/27/remarks-president-obama-and-prime-minister-abe-japan-hiroshima-peace

Obama has always been a superb orator, this speech epitomized our President’s ability to stir emotions, pump up pride and to look ourselves in the mirror without denying our shame; our remorse or our self-respect.

There are those who heard his words at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial as an apology from the United States. Apologize he did not; what he did do was express remorse as a human being, not as a President. What he did was speak to and for humanity, not to a nation or a peoples. What he did showed was speak as the leader of a country that engaged in war to another country that was engaged in the same war, not as leader of the winning side to the loser on the other side. What he did was speak as a President who would not make the same decision to drop the bomb, not speak for another President who made the decision to do so. What he did was plead for the world to learn from that war, not beg nations to stop fighting them.

I wish Oppie could have been there to hear the leader of the Free world say to the rest of the world what he was saying all along.

Now that mankind has the ability to destroy itself, we need to make sure we never do.

Trump Talks To Kissinger To Learn Foreign Policy


Trump admitted he needed to learn about Foreign Policy, okay, so he reached out to the person he must have felt made the best policies of our; Henry Kissinger. The same Kissinger who as Secretary of State ordered the illegally bombings in Cambodia during the Vietnam war that killed hundreds of thousands of civilians; in a country not involved in the war. He also authorized the use of chemical weapons like Agent Orange in Vietnam which is a violation of the Geneva Convention; i.e. a war crime.

Kissinger is also wanted for questioning about his support of Chilean dictator General Augusto Pinochet who came into power after the CIA conspired to overthrow democratically elected leader Salvador Allende. Before Allende became president, Kissinger “I don’t see why we need to stand by and watch a country go communist because of the irresponsibility of its own people.” The attempt to prevent the presidency of Allende resulted in the assassination of Rene Schneider, Commander-in-Chief of the Chilean Army. According to the U.S. Senate, the CIA “decided to support and engineer the assassination of General Schneider in order to clear the way for a coup.” A $3 million civil suit was filed by Schneider’s family against Kissinger and former director of the CIA Richard Helms.

 

Kissinger’s involvement in Operation Condor, the political oppression of the people in Chile, is why lawyers fighting for Human in Chile have filed complaints against him.

“rightist military dictatorships in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay coordinated efforts throughout the 1970s to kidnap and kill hundreds of exiled political opponents”; according to the International Herald Tribune, it is said this was done with the support of the Nixon and Ford administrations.

These are just a few example of Kissinger’s policies, just bomb them. Diplomacy escaped this man; and diplomacy is definitely not what Trump will bring to the White House.

 

The Bathroom Battle Won; Mic Is Dropped And She Has Walked Away


I am sharing a post I saw on Facebook. Like I said, drop the mic and walk away; there is nothing more to say;

This woman, Kasey Rose-Hodge, just shut down the whole bathroom conversation in magnificent style!

“Dear creepy heterosexual men guarding our bathrooms,

My entire life, I’ve been told to fear you in one way or another. I’ve been told to cover my body as to not distract you in school, to cover my body to help avoid unwanted advances or comments, to cover my body as to not tempt you to sexually assault me, to reject your unwanted advances politely as to not anger you. I’ve been taught to never walk alone at night, to hold my keys in my fist while walking in parking lots, to check the backseat of my car, to not drink too much because you might take advantage of me. I’ve been told what I should and shouldn’t do with my body as to not jeopardize my relationships with you.

I’ve been warned not to emasculate you, to let “boys be boys”, to protect your fragile ego and to not tread on your even more fragile masculinity. I’ve been taught to keep my emotions in check, to let you be the unit of measure for how much emotion is appropriate and to adjust my emotions accordingly. I’ve been taught that you’re allowed to categorize women into mothers/sisters/girlfriends/wives/daughters but any woman outside of your protected categories is fair game.

So to those of you who think you’re being helpful by “protecting” me and my fellow women, you’re like a shark sitting in the Lifeguard chair. I wasn’t uncomfortable until you showed up at the pool and the only potential predator I see is you.

Your mothers, sisters, girlfriends, wives and daughters don’t need you to walk them to the bathroom for safety. Your fathers, brothers, friends and sons need to walk themselves away from their own double standards. Women are sexually harassed and sexually assaulted on school campuses, on the street, at their jobs, on the Internet, in their own homes, in ANY public place. And it has been excused or ignored for so long because of what you and I are taught from the first years of our interactions with each other: You, as a male, are not accountable for your own actions. It’s MY responsibility, as a female, to not “provoke” you. But then you get to Knight-In-Shining-Armor your way through life for those in your protected categories and I am expected to applaud you. Why the outrage now over bathrooms? Why aren’t you outraged every single day?

If you’re telling me that there are high volumes of boys and men out there, in schools or in general, who are just waiting for a “loop hole” to sexually assault girls and women, we have bigger problems on our hands than bathrooms. The first problem would be your apparent lack of knowledge of how often it happens OUTSIDE of bathrooms, with no “loop holes” needed. This isn’t about Transgender bathroom access. This is about you not trusting the boys and men in your communities and/or fearing that they’re all secretly predators. Why do you have this fear? How many fathers have panicked when their daughters started dating because they “know how teenaged boys can be because they used to be one”? How many times have girls been warned “boys are only after one thing”? A mother can bring her young son into the women’s restroom and that’s fine but a father bringing his young daughter into the men’s restroom is disturbing because men are assumed to be predators and “little girls” shouldn’t be exposed to that.

So instead of picking up your sword and heading to Target or the girls’ locker room to defend our “rights”, why don’t you start somewhere that could actually make a difference? Challenge your children’s schools to end sexist dress codes and dress codes that sexualize girls as young as age 5. Advocate for proper (or any) sex education classes in all public schools by a certain grade level. Focus more on teaching your sons not to rape vs teaching your daughters how to avoid being raped. Stop asking “How would you feel if that was your mother or sister?” It shouldn’t take the comparison to clue you in to what’s right or wrong. Question why you’re more worried about your daughter being around men than your son being around women in bathrooms and dressing rooms. Stop walking by Victoria’s Secret with no problem but covering your son’s eyes if a woman is breastfeeding in public. Stop treating your daughter’s body as some fortress you’re sworn to protect as if that’s all she’s got to offer the world.”

– Kasey Rose-Hodge

Pass it on!

The Moral High Ground


I have been told in response to my theory that Hillary and Bernie need to be each others running mates to guarantee a Democratic win; or more importantly a Republican/Trump loss that it will never happen because they differ too much in methodology, domestic policy and basic principles when it comes to economics. Most Bernie supporters state they would absolutely not vote for her if he doesn’t get it and I have been told that Bernie Bots will never under any circumstances vote for Hillary if she get the ticket and Bernie runs as her VP.

Even though if you really look at both of them they do not differ that much in philosophy or policy; their big divide is economic and financial principles, or what I see as moral high ground.

Basically the problem between them is that Hillary is Rich and Bernie prides himself; he is what my grandma used to call ‘poor proud’. He chooses to be poor and prides himself on not needing money; or at least not spending money. Because Bernie has money. His wife brings in over 200,000 dollars a year in pension money from Burlington College; he makes 174,000 a year as a Senator. Bernie has money; Hillary just has more; and Hillary spends more money, money that she takes from corporate donors. Donors Bernie is too proud to take money from, but not to proud to make a point; a campaign slogan out of it.

But are those couple of differences, there really only only those couple they stand solid on common ground virtually every where else; are those differences so important that taking that moral high ground would open the way for a Donald Trump Presidency then its time for Bernie Bots to get off their high horses and swallow that anti-corporate pride. Though Bernie would probably be riding a donkey as humble men are supposed to.

But this was before Trump actually became the Republican nominee; the jury is in on this one. What say ye now? Now will you come down from that pedestal so the entire country does not fall into the sewer; that moral cesspool that would be a Trump Presidency?

If not then you have not the courage of your convictions. If not you have not the interest of this country at heart. If not you are no better than than the white trash that will be in the White House if you stand tall on that moral high ground that is anti-Hillary.

Trump’s Show Is Now A Reality


I haven’t posted anything about the current presidential campaign, not for lack of interest; concern or information but because I have actually  been rendered speechless. If I believed in god I would have prayed that Trumps run for the Republican ticket was really a reality show. I couldn’t bring myself to take it seriously.

But seriously thinking about it I imagine him meeting with foreign leaders, leaders whose name he won’t bother to pronounce properly and quite probably not even know what country they represent or where that country is. I imagine some of these leaders may be female, or Muslim, or even just not white; which obviously many of them will not be.

I imagine him ‘firing’ the entire White House staff from the maids to the entire administration and hiring beauty pageant runners-up to clean dressed in uniforms from Victoria’s Secret or designed by his wife; with the entire administrative staff looking like sexy librarians from a music video.

I picture how he will redecorate the Oval Office or the Press Room. I picture his sons being appointed Secretary of State and Speaker of the House. I picture him hosting the Miss Universe Pageant in the White House Ball Room.

I envision his press conferences where he will only answer questions from the pretty reporters.

I picture his entire Presidency be a 24 hour live reality show where we will see him in the hot tub with his daughter so he can show off her hot body he brags about or him doing photo shoots of her sprawled out Lincoln’s bed.

I can see him turning the billiard room into a casino for his inaugural dinner.

I think about Senator’s, Judges, Congressmen and important political allies living it up at one of his casinos on his dime when he wants a bill passed. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Secret Servicemen around him would be bouncers from his clubs.

But none of those nightmares compare to this reality; as the Republican nominee Trump now gets CIA briefings and control of party resources and worse the reality of him winning the Presidency and actually having a security clearance higher than anyone else in the nation. Think about this man having the power to launch nuclear weapons. Think about his man having the power and the authority to choose Supreme Court Justices and appoint Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense and Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Donald Trump, will have access to classified information. Donald Trump, the conspiracy theorist, the racist, the misogynist, the Islamaphobic, the incestuas; yes I said it; watch any interview he has ever done with his daughter, the name calling;  narcisist who is endorsed by the likes of Mike Tyson; a convicted rapist and David Duke known leader of the Ku Klux Klan. The same man who insists Obama is a Islamic Terrorist; and who accused Rafael Cruz; Senator Ted Cruz’s father of be involved in President Kennedy’s assasination. The man who has made such comments as it would be a “pretty picture” to see a female contestant from “The Apprentice” on her knees. an interview in Esquire in 1982, and that is didn’t matter what the media wrote about him because he had a hot girlfriend with a great ass. Referring to his daughter Ivanka In Rolling Stone he said “She’s really something, and what a beauty, that one, if I weren’t happily married and, ya know, her father…”

The most horrifying part of all this is the realization that like Hitler, Trump could be an elected leader; an elected leader of the free world.

Johnny Depp – Finding The Creativity In Madness


The very first question that comes to mind is why would Lawrence Krauss be interviewing Johnny Depp for an Origins Project Dialogue? Professor Krauss and several unnamed colleagues are do some research on madness in the minds of those with a higher than average IQ. There are many reasons to understand this mentality; look at Hitler for example. Madness in a brilliant mind can be very dangerous, or it can be very creative. Johnny Depp is brilliant, creative and very very mad.

Krauss is developing an interview style much like the master himself; James Lipton. IT was all together a wonderful, warm, funny, informative and all around enjoyable evening. Depp opened up about his childhood, told stories about the great Hunter S. Thompson and let the audience in a few secrets about upcoming stuff.

The even shook hands and agreed to make a movie about an unsong great character in history Thomas Paine. Should be interesting.

I am looking forward to Professor Krauss’ next dialogue!

To Pray or Not To Pray…That Is The Question


Recently the Church of Satan in Phoenix challenged the City Council when the tried to requested to say the opening prayer at a City Council Meeting. The City Council opens every public meeting with a prayer; a Christian prayer. The Council members reacted by holding an emergency meeting to decide what to do. They took a vote; not a vote on whether or not to let the Satanists say the opening prayer, this of course would have ended up in the State Supreme Courts where chances are the Council would have lost. They took a vote on whether or not to ban prayer all together at their Council meetings. The council voted 5 – 4 to ban prayer, rather than let the Satanists have their say. Talk about cutting of your nose to spite your face.

So who really won? Many say the Church of Satan really won, claiming that a ban on prayer is what they really wanted. Some say the Council and it’s Christian members one by not letting the Satanists say the prayer. I would say us Atheists and the Secular won this one. Let’s here if for no public prayer at Council meetings.

Let’s Talk About First Ladies


Let’s start with our current one; Michelle Obama

https://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/first-lady-michelle-obama

A product of Chicago public schools, Michelle Robinson studied sociology and African-American studies at Princeton University. After graduating from Harvard Law School in 1988, she joined the Chicago law firm Sidley & Austin. She served as assistant commissioner of planning and development in Chicago’s City Hall before becoming the founding executive director of the Chicago chapter of Public Allies, an AmeriCorps program that prepares youth for public service. In 1996, as Associate Dean of Student Services, she developed the university’s first community service program, and under her leadership as Vice President of Community and External Affairs for the University of Chicago Medical Center.

In 2010, she launched Let’s Move!, bringing together community leaders, educators, medical professionals, parents, and others in a nationwide effort to address the challenge of childhood obesity. In 2011, Mrs. Obama and Dr. Jill Biden came together to launch Joining Forces, a nationwide initiative calling all Americans to rally around service members, veterans, and their families and support them through wellness, education, and employment opportunities. In 2014, Mrs. Obama launched the Reach Higher Initiative, an effort to inspire young people across America to take charge of their future by completing their education past high school, whether at a professional training program, a community college, or a four-year college or university. In 2015, Mrs. Obama joined President Obama to launch Let Girls Learn, a U.S. government-wide initiative to help girls around the world go to school and stay in school.

Let’s look at Hillary Clinton;

https://www.whitehouse.gov/1600/first-ladies/hillaryclinton

As an undergraduate at Wellesley College, Hillary mixed academic excellence with school government. Speaking at graduation, she said, “The challenge now is to practice politics as the art of making what appears to be impossible, possible. In 1969, Hillary entered Yale Law School, where she served on the Board of Editors of Yale Law Review and Social Action, interned with children’s advocate Marian Wright Edelman. After graduation, Hillary advised the Children’s Defense Fund in Cambridge and joined the impeachment inquiry staff advising the Judiciary Committee of the House of Representatives. She joined the faculty of the University of Arkansas Law School in 1975 and the Rose Law Firm in 1976. In 1978, President Jimmy Carter appointed her to the board of the Legal Services Corporation, and Bill Clinton became governor of Arkansas. Hillary served as Arkansas’s First Lady for 12 years. She chaired the Arkansas Educational Standards Committee, co-founded the Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families, and served on the boards of the Arkansas Children’s Hospital, Legal Services, and the Children’s Defense Fund.

As First Lady, in 1993 the President asked her to chair the Task Force on National Health Care Reform.She wrote a weekly newspaper column entitled “Talking It Over,” which focused on her experiences as First Lady and her observations of women, children, and families she has met around the world. Her 1996 book It Takes a Village and Other Lessons Children Teach Us was a best seller, and she received a Grammy Award for her recording of it. Hillary Clinton was elected United States Senator from New York on November 7, 2000. She is the first First Lady elected to the United States Senate and the first woman elected statewide in New York. Hillary Clinton served as U.S. Secretary of State from 2009 to 2013.

Barbara Bush; As wife of the Vice President, she selected the promotion of literacy as her special cause. As First Lady, she called working for a more literate America the “most important issue we have.” Involved with many organizations devoted to this cause, she became Honorary Chairman of the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy. A strong advocate of volunteerism, Mrs. Bush helped many causes–including the homeless, AIDS, the elderly, and school volunteer programs.

Rosalynn Carter; As First Lady, she focused national attention on the performing arts. She invited to the White House leading classical artists from around the world, as well as traditional American artists. She also took a strong interest in programs to aid mental health, the community, and the elderly. From 1977 to 1978, she served as the Honorary Chairperson of the President’s Commission on Mental Health.

Claudia Taylor ‘Lady Bird’ Johnson; At the University of Texas she earned a bachelor’s degree in arts and in journalism. She helped keep his Congressional office open during World War II when Lyndon Johnson volunteered for naval service; and in 1955, when he had a severe heart attack, she helped his staff keep things running smoothly until he could return to his post as Majority Leader of the Senate. In the election of 1960, Lady Bird successfully stumped for Democratic candidates across 35,000 miles of campaign trail. As wife of the Vice President, she became an ambassador of goodwill by visiting 33 foreign countries. She created a First Lady’s Committee for a More Beautiful Capital, then expanded her program to include the entire nation. She took a highly active part in her husband’s war-on-poverty program, especially the Head Start project for preschool children. She supported causes dear to her–notably the National Wildflower Research Center, which she founded in 1982, and The Lyndon Baines Johnson Library. She also served on the Board of the National Geographic Society as a trustee emeritus.

Jackie Kennedy; As a Vassar student she traveled extensively, and she spent her junior year in France before graduating from George Washington University. In Washington she took a job as “inquiring photographer” for a local newspaper. She devoted much time and study to making the White House a museum of American history and decorative arts.

Eleanor Roosevelt; In Albany, where Franklin served in the state Senate from 1910 to 1913, Eleanor started her long career as political helpmate. She gained a knowledge of Washington and its ways while he served as Assistant Secretary of the Navy. When he was stricken with poliomyelitis in 1921, she tended him devotedly. She became active in the women’s division of the State Democratic Committee to keep his interest in politics alive. From his successful campaign for governor in 1928 to the day of his death, she dedicated her life to his purposes. She became eyes and ears for him, a trusted and tireless reporter. When Mrs. Roosevelt came to the White House in 1933, she understood social conditions better than any of her predecessors and she transformed the role of First Lady accordingly. She also broke precedent to hold press conferences, travel to all parts of the country, give lectures and radio broadcasts, and express her opinions candidly in a daily syndicated newspaper column, “My Day.” After the President’s death in 1945 she began her service as American spokesman in the United Nations.

Now lets look at possible future First Ladies….

Mary Jane O’Meara Sanders  is an American social worker and academic. Sanders was provost and interim president of Goddard College from 1996 to 1997, and then president of Burling College from 2004 until she resigned in 2011, after allegedly committing federal band fraud to the tune of 10 million dollars for which she will possibly be under investigation for. Can we trust her?

Melania Trump; She earned a degree in design and architecture at University in Slovenia, She has graced the covers of Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, British GQ, Ocean Drive, Avenue, In Style, New York Magazine. Her major layouts include the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, Allure, Vogue, Self, Glamour, Vanity Fair, and Elle.  She has also co-hosted The View with Barbara Walters. She was Honorary Chairwoman for Martha Graham Dance Company in April 2005, is an active member of the Police Athletic League which honored her with Woman of The Year 2006, has been an Honorary Chairwoman for The Boy’s Club of New York for five consecutive years, and in 2005 The American Red Cross awarded her with Goodwill Ambassador which she has proudly served for four years. In April of 2008, she was asked by Love Our Children USA and NASDAQ to participate in the Fifth Annual National Love Our Children Day and the beginning of National Child Abuse Prevention month by ringing the closing bell at NASDAQ. In February 2010, Melania Trump announced the launch of her debut jewelry collection with QVC, “Melania™ Timepieces & Jewelry”. In March 2013, she launched her Skin Care Collection, “Melania™ Caviar Complexe C6”. What is she going to do, design clothes for the homeless?

Can you either of these two really being a First Lady we can be proud of?

 

Ancestral Line of Jesus According To Luke


Jesus was the son of Joseph

Joseph was the son of Heli,

Heli was the son of Matthat

Matthat was the son of Levi

was the son of Melchi

was the son of Janna

was the son of Joseph,

was the son of Mattathias

was the son of Amos

was the son of Naum

was the son of Esli

was the son of Nagge,

was the son of Maath

was the son of Mattathias

was the son of Semei

was the son of Joseph

was the son of Juda,

was the son of Joanna

was the son of Rhesa

was the son of Zorobabel

was the son of Salathiel

was the son of Neri,

was the son of Melchi

was the son of Addi

was the son of Cosam

was the son of Elmodam

was the son of Er,

was the son of Jose

was the son of Eliezer

was the son of Jorim

was the son of Matthat

was the son of Levi,

was the son of Simeon

was the son of Juda

was the son of Joseph

was the son of Jonan

was the son of Eliakim,

was the son of Melea

was the son of Menan

was the son of Mattatha

was the son of Nathan

was the son of David,

was the son of Jesse

was the son of Obed

was the son of Booz

was the son of Salmon

was the son of Naasson,

was the son of Aminadab

was the son of Aram

was the son of Esrom

was the son of Phares

was the son of Juda,

was the son of Jacob

was the son of Isaac

was the son of Abraham

was the son of Thara

was the son of Nachor,

was the son of Saruch

was the son of Ragau

was the son of Phalec, which was the son of Heber, which was the son of Sala,

36 Which was the son of Cainan, which was the son of Arphaxad, which was the son of Sem, which was the son of Noe, which was the son of Lamech,

37 Which was the son of Mathusala, which was the son of Enoch, which was the son of Jared, which was the son of Maleleel, which was the son of Cainan,

38 Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God.

Grow Up And Put Away Childish Beliefs; Like Religion


1 Corinthians 13:11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.

When I was a child I had a blanket that was my shield, my protection and it was my comfort.

When I was a child I believed that thunder was god bowling, that the rain was gods tears and that Noah actually put two of every animal on the ark. As a child I believed that stepping on a crack would break my mothers back and that four leaf clovers were good luck. As a child I believed in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny. I believed that if I ate a watermelon seed a plant would grow in my tummy and that if I didn’t smile my face would freeze that way.

I know better now.

Remember when you were a kid and that story your big brother would tell you scared the hell out of you; the first 500 times they told it? Sure it was scary the first hundred times you heard it, but after hundreds of nights where there was nothing under the bed you just weren’t afraid anymore?

Well when I was a kid I also believed that if thunder was god bowling and that the rain was his tears. I believed that god would protect me from evil as long as I loved him. I believed that the devil was responsible for all the evil in the world and god was responsible for all the good.

I have grown up since then, I know that thunder is caused by an increase in pressure and temperature from lightning which produces rapid expansion of the air surrounding and within a bolt of lightning. I know that the more water vapor there is below a cloud, and the stronger an updraft is it causes the water vapor to condense into cloud water or ice particles, and precipitation will form within the cloud, and then it rains.

I also know that if no god can protect me from the evil in humans no matter how much you love him. I also know that there is good in humans that don’t even believe in god.

I have put away all my childhood things, the blankies, the dolls and the toys. It is time to put away those childhood beliefs as well.

 

 

 

To Richard, From a Feminist; A letter to Richard Dawkins


“Human rights are women’s rights and women’s rights are human rights.”

Hillary Rodham Clinton

 

Dear Richard Dawkins,’

Feminism is not an issue and it isn’t political. Feminism is a stand for what is a moral, ethical and international dilemma, the violence against, the oppression and inequality of women. I believe that Dawkins is a good man, rational, reasonable, moral, enlightened, empathetic, intellectual activist who believes, sees, speaks out and stands up for women’s rights, secular freedom and scientific education for the good of the whole of humankind. What he isn’t is a run of the mill man, biased, sexist, racist, misogynistic, religious or hypocritical. He is educated, brilliant, secular and extremely influential and is or at least should be held to a higher standard. He has put himself in a position to make a difference on a global scale for the cultural, intellectual economical, scientific and political advancement and enlightenment of humanity. He has placed himself among those who know they can and will make not only a difference but history. His work is and will be studied, taught and remembered alongside of Newton, Einstein, Darwin, DeCartes, Hume, Oppenheimer, Krauss, Tyson, Bethe, Bohr, Feynman and others who have changed the course of our very existence. So yeah, I expect more of him than most.

Recently Dawkins has been misquoted, , misinterpreted, misunderstood and had completely missed the point of feminism. This is not entirely his fault but it is entirely his responsibility. It is his responsibility to clarify, rectify and unify this divide among free thinkers that he has caused, the cause in which he has fought so hard for; secular freedom and reason depends on him. This cause of secularism and reason isn’t his to divide but it is his to unite. Common Richard, don’t group all feminists into this rape culture and militant feminism; just as you don’t like being lumped in with atheists that have caused harm in the world, those that have damaged your cause; don’t let a few damage ours.

Your’s truly;

and atheist feminist.

 

Vice President Joe Biden and Lady Gaga?


This Sunday Vice President Joe Biden will introduce Lady Gaga when she will perform the song ‘Til It Happens To You’. The VP’s presence at the Oscars is to promote the ‘It’s On Us’ Campaign. He is bringing awareness to the problem of rape on college campus. Support this campaign.

http://itsonus.org

Biden drafted the Violence Against Women Act, he has been an outspoken advocate in the fight to stop the violence against women.

 

Origins Project Panel on Evolving Ethics: Food, Sex & Death


This was an interesting panel, Peter Singer, Ira W. DeCamp Professor of Bioethics at Princeton University, Jason Robert, Director at Lincoln Center for Applied Ethics, Christopher Wharton, Director at Food Systems Transformation Initiative, GIOS, Ron Broglio, Senior Sustainability Scholar, GIOS and Associate Professor of English, Joan McGregor, Professor of Philosophy at the School of Historical, Philosophical, and Religious Studies at ASU.

Lawrence Krauss moderated. Peter Singer is a world renowned animal rights activist who really made me think about factory farming. Though I could not commit to being a vegan as he is I definitely walked away with a more remorseful outlook on how the animals are ‘farmed’. Though I didn’t quite agree with everything he stands for, as I think he is somewhat extreme; but I do see that we can and should be more humane in our meat eating endeavor.

https://origins.asu.edu

No Representation Without Taxation


The Revolutionary war began when Americans refused to pay taxes without being represented. They coined the phrase ‘No Taxation Without Representation’.

Well I think it is high time and equally valid to state that there should be No Representation Without Taxation.

 

To argue that religious institutions aren’t represented is absolutely not true. To use as an argument for this that we have a separation of church and state due to the First Amendment is equally false. There is no separation. And the First Amendment was written to protect religion from government not to protect government from religion.

Let me give you a good example;

Congress has a Congressional Prayer Caucus, a Chaplain of Congress (with an office in the Capitol) elected by Congress and paid with tax payers money. Military Chaplains are also paid with federal tax dollars. How again is this the separation of Church and State? How is this not a violation of the First Amendment? It isn’t.

Congress has had a Chaplain since 1774, no that is not a typo, the office of House and Senate Chaplain came to be before the Constitution, the Bill of Rights and the Declaration Independence was written.

Here are the requirements for Tax Exempt Status per the IRS

Tax-Exempt Status

Churches and religious organizations, like many other charitable organizations, qualify for exemption from federal income tax under IRC Section 501(c)(3) and are generally eligible to receive tax-deductible contributions. To qualify for tax-exempt status, the organization must meet the following requirements (covered in greater detail throughout this publication):

  •  the organization must be organized and operated exclusively for religious, educational, scientific or other charitable purposes;
  •  net earnings may not inure to the benefit of any private individual or shareholder;
  •  no substantial part of its activity may be attempting to influence legislation;
  •  the organization may not intervene in political campaigns;
  • and n the organization’s purposes and activities may not be illegal or violate fundamental public policy.

IRC Section 501(c)(3)

All organizations, including churches and religious organizations, must abide by certain rules:  

  • their net earnings may not inure to any private shareholder or individual;
  •  they must not provide a substantial benefit to private interests;
  •  they must not devote a substantial part of their activities to attempting to influence legislation;
  •  they must not participate in, or intervene in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for public office;
  • and n the organization’s purposes and activities may not be illegal or violate fundamental public policy.

 

Congress even wrote special legislation regarding the IRS’ right to audit churches and religious institutions;

Special Rules Limiting IRS Authority to Audit a Church

Tax Inquiries and Examinations of Churches

Congress has imposed special limitations, found in section 7611 of the Internal Revenue Code, on how and when the IRS may conduct civil tax inquiries and examinations of churches. The IRS may begin a church tax inquiry only if an appropriate high-level Treasury official reasonably believes, on the basis of facts and circumstances recorded in writing, that an organization claiming to be a church or convention or association of churches may not qualify for exemption, may be carrying on an unrelated trade or business (within the meaning of IRC § 513), may otherwise be engaged in taxable activities or may have entered into an IRC § 4958 excess benefit transaction with a disqualified person.

Now let’s look at how much this elected office pays;

Total Salary Expenditures

 

I fail to see how being an elected member of Congress does not influence legislation.

From an article by Paul Singer, USA Today;

“We do what we can to make sure that legislation emerges with what we believe to be American, Christian values,” said caucus member John Fleming, R-La. “We believe that a democracy is only functional if there is a certain level of virtuousness among the nation. Freedom also requires a certain responsibility and that requires a certain moral code. The moral code that we as Americans have lived by for over 200 years is based on what? The Ten Commandments.” 

Rep Randy Forbes VA  and a dozen other Prayer Caucus members traveled to North Carolina in March to launch an initiative called PrayUSA, asking government officials and other to sign a resolution calling for prayer. The initiative is part of “a tactical strategy to effectively challenge the growing anti-faith movement in our Country,” the foundation says.

And the foundation blog advocates strongly for the defense of conservative Christians like Kentucky clerk Kim Davis, who was briefly jailed for refusing to sign marriage licenses for gay couples.

“Criminalizing Christianity is not the America envisioned by our Founding Fathers,” reads a blog post on the foundation website about the Kim Davis saga. “Sadly, the balance of power in our country is being undermined within the legislative branch and increasingly supplanted by both executive fiat and judicial tyranny. The government was never designed to replace God and therefore, does not have the authority or right to redefine the laws of nature or of nature’s God…..  We are fighting for our freedoms—silence and inactivity will leave us vulnerable and open to further attack. Christian…it is time for us to wake up and be engaged!”

How is this not influencing legislation?

 

 

While the Supreme Court has ruled in favor of the a House and Senate Office of the Chaplain stating that it is a tradition and should be respected it is important to remember that slavery was considered a ‘tradition’ as well.

MARSH v. CHAMBERS, 463 U.S. 783 (1983)

CHIEF JUSTICE BURGER delivered the opinion of the Court.(1)

 A statute providing for the payment of these chaplains was enacted into law on September 22, 1789.

Clearly the men who wrote the First Amendment Religion Clauses did not view paid legislative chaplains and opening prayers as a violation of that Amendment, for the practice of opening sessions with prayer has continued without interruption ever since that early session of Congress.

It can hardly be thought that in the same week Members of the First Congress voted to appoint and to pay a chaplain for each House and also voted to approve the draft of the First Amendment** for submission to the states, they intended the Establishment Clause of the Amendment to forbid what they had just declared acceptable. In applying the First Amendment to the states through the Fourteenth Amendment, it would be incongruous to interpret that Clause as imposing more stringent First Amendment limits on the states than the draftsmen imposed on the Federal Government.

This unique history leads us to accept the interpretation of the First Amendment draftsmen who saw no real threat to the Establishment Clause arising from a practice of prayer similar to that now challenged. We conclude that legislative prayer presents no more potential for establishment than the provision of school transportation, beneficial grants for higher education, or tax exemptions for religious organizations.

A paragraph from writings by James Madison point out that Madison was concerned about respecting the religious rights of all religious sects;

JAMES MADISON: The tenets of the chaplains elected by the majority shut the door of worship against the members whose creeds & consciences forbid a participation in that of the majority. To say nothing of other sects, this is the case with that of Roman Catholics & Quakers who have always had members in one or both of the Legislative branches. Could a Catholic clergyman ever hope to be appointed a Chaplain? To say that his religious principles are obnoxious or that his sect is small, is to lift the evil at once and exhibit in its naked deformity the doctrine that religious truth is to be tested by numbers or that the major sects have a right to govern the minor.

Though Madison did see the payment of the Chaplain by the National Treasury as unconstitutional, what he deemed a violation of the First Amendment was the appointment of a Protestant, not the appointment of a Chaplain.

 

Observing Our Origins In The First Galaxy:Adrian Liu


April 15,2015, Adrian Liu, recipient of the inaugural Postdoctoral Lectureship Prize, gave an interesting lecture; introduced by Lawrence Krauss for the ASU Origins Project ‘Adrian Liu is an astrophysicist working to make the exciting new field of 21cm cosmology a reality. He has garnered multiple teaching awards, including the Buechner Teaching Prize, the Henry Kendall Teaching Award, and the Goodwin Teaching Medal. He is currently a Berkeley Center for Cosmological Physics Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of California, and will begin an appointment as a Hubble Fellow in Fall 2015.’

I really enjoyed this lecture. He was very articulate and easy to understand. I am looking forward to see what he does in the future!

I was able to approach Lawrence Krauss after the lecture, even thought they were not  doing a book signing afterward Krauss graciously signed my copy of ‘A Universe From Nothing.’

https://origins.asu.edu

Lawrence Krauss and Noam Chomsky


March 22, 2015 I attended my first Origins Project Dialogue with Lawrence Krauss.

I have never been a big fan of Chomsky. I have been a huge fan of Krauss since I first watched a debate with Michael Shermer against D’Souza and another Christian Apologist. He has been my ‘patron saint’ of science and non-belief ever since. I admittedly was somewhat surprised to learn that Krauss had such reverence for Chomsky, for starters Krauss makes no secret about his opinion of philosophy; it is anything but favorable and sometimes he finds it intolerable even as much so as religion at times. Not because Chomsky is unworthy or respect or even reverence but because he is in my opinion a pacifist more than an activist; I would even go so far as to call him an apathetic complainer, even anti-American. His disdain for the U.S. government and it’s institutions borders on Right Wing Conservatism even Tea Party politics, if he wasn’t an atheist who condemns religious scripture. What he doesn’t condemn is the Church or it’s institutions. In fact he often praises them for the good they do in the world with the poor, the sick and the hungry. Support of the Catholic Church let alone religion in general is not something Krauss has ever shown. Ever.

Outside of that, the impact on politics and government; the difference he has made in communities, society and academia is volumes. He is the most cited living scholar in history and has authored over 100 books. He attended the University of Pennsylvania in 1949 at the age of 16, and went on to receive his M.A. and Ph.D. as a member of the Harvard Society of Fellows from 1951-1955, earning a degree in Linguistics, Philosophy, and Mathematics.

His activism over the course of history has landed him in jail several times. He even landed on Nixon’s enemy of the state’s list. His protests of the Viet Nam war to his condemnation of religion he has never held his tongue.

Krauss in his truly reverent and heart felt introduction he even said that where most people might ask ‘What would Jesus do?’ I ask ‘What would Noam do?’. That in my mind was one of the most sincerely reverent statement I have ever heard. He went so far as to call Chomsky his Mentor; he was one of Krauss’ instructors at MIT.

I won’t say I was disappointed by the dialogue but I most definitely was not impressed by Chomsky, I was however more that awestruck by Krauss. He was everything I expected and more. Not only in his ability to have such an inspiring and informative conversation with Chomsky but by how approachable he was afterwards when they were signing books. I unfortunately didn’t get a book signed, the line was at least 500 people long. What I did manage to do was go up to the side of the table he was on; it seemed everyone was waiting for Chomsky, and I loudly said ‘Professor Krauss’ and when he turned around I told him I had a gift for him, then I gave him a copy of ‘Los Alamos Place Names’. It is not only my home town but my family legacy is there in the ‘X Lovato Field’ which is a softball field named after my dad in 1975. He was very receptive.

A couple of weeks later I tweeted him; ‘I hope you enjoy the Los Alamos Place Names book I gave you’. To my absolute surprise he tweeted me back the same day’ Thank you very much. I was pleasantly surprised. From that moment on I have attended every local event here in the Phoenix area but one. I have even gone to the smaller talks on campus at ASU in the Marston Theatre inside the Tech 4 Building where Krauss office is.

https://origins.asu.edu

Politically Remiss


As of late I have been somewhat remiss in political blogs. Though I have indulged in a few rants on social media, none have been up to the usual level of my rants. After much contemplation on this matter this lack of ranting has been in part because once I get started, given the current Presidential Campaign candidates on the Republican side I am actually to angry; appalled; taken aback and just plain embarrassed.

Be that as it may I can sum up the entire line up in one paragraph; Trump thinks this campaign is a performance, like he is the star of his own reality show. My only hope is that those that are supporting him are just enjoying the show and when it comes down to actually voting for him they won’t do it; this is assuming he actually wins the Republican ticket. Scarier still is the fact that Cruz and Rubio are even scarier. Their phony Right Wing good old boy Conservative Christian act is very very dangerous; especially for women. The scariest of all is that of the lot Jeb Bush is the least threat, and I have no doubt that either Democrat that will be running will have the best chance running against him.

Now to the democrats. I like Bernie but I think he is unrealistic about many things. Socialism in theory is not a bad thing but in a Capitalistic nation it just won’t work. The only thing I hold against Bernie is his wife. Why does she matter? Because as First Lady she will have many responsibilities and she will have the ability to make changes to many things concerning women’s issues, educational issues and many social and cultural issues as well, here and abroad. I don’t think she has the personality, the experience, the education or the gumption to be the kind of first lady that Hillary, Eleanor, Dolly, Jackie or even Nancy was. I won’t be upset if Bernie wins but I am a Hillary girl all the way and I will tell you why.

Hillary Rodham Clinton had me at ‘Women’s rights are human rights and human rights are women’s rights once and for all’. She went to the Fourth World Conference on Women in 1995 in Beijing. This is the whole speech https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xXM4E23Efvk  . She was First Lady at the time and our government was strongly opposed to her going but she went anyway and not only did she go she gave a no holds barred speech about the violence and oppression against women that no one had ever spoke out about, especially not the First Lady of the United States and never so bluntly and graphically. She held nothing back and it was beautiful and empowering and it worked. She made a difference in the final outcome of the agreements come to by every nation in the world, over 180 governmental organizations and they made official

Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action .

 

Yes, the fact that she is a woman greatly influences my supporting her, but not just because she is a woman. I would not support just any woman; absolutely not Sarah Palin or Carly Fiorina. Elizabeth Warren absolutely yes. Hillary has the most experience having been a Senator, Secretary of State and a First Lady; twice. But the most important factor is what she has done for women around the world.

 

Obama’s Decisions About Syria; Or Lack There Of


It boils down to this, Obama blew it when he didn’t help the Syrian Rebels when they first started fighting back against Assad, for that matter Obama should have acted when Assad first started killing his own people. Yes there were valid political reasons for his decisions but the had to have been something, or at least more he could of done than he did.

Because he didn’t help the Rebels, ISIS stepped up and offered to help the Rebel’s and many accepted their help and even fought with them, but even if no one accepted their help I am willing to bet they would have started fighting Assad anyway. Not out of the kindness of their hearts or even to help fellow Muslims, they are fighting Assad to take the country away from him and when they do they will be no less tyrannical to the Syrian people.

Because he didn’t act when Assad started killing his own people Russia was able to step up without declaring war on the Western world and therefore he moves ever close to his goal of expanding Russian territory. Needless to say America will not take arms against Russia, some even call them our allies. So at this point if we help Syria that is what we will be doing, we will be not only aiding terrorists but we will be taking on formidable foe in Putin. I we help Assad and Putin against ISIS we are helping as mass murdering war criminal. It’s a lose lose situation.

Many Americans don’t see the big picture, what they see is that we aren’t helping fight ISIS, therefore helping terrorism.

It seems to me that not getting involved at this point is a brilliant move. Why risk American lives, spend money this country doesn’t have and why deplete our supplies when if we wait this out till either ISIS wins or Assad wins then if going to war is still the only option we have only one enemy, but make no mistake immediate action has to happen. If we hesitate or try to negotiate or impose more useless sanctions either side will maintain their momentum, ISIS will continue where Assad left off in his attack on the Syrians; If Assad wins this war the Syrians will pay for their crimes against their sovereign with their lives and their fellow Syrians will once again be living under the oppressive regime.

But what is most likely is Obama is hoping that Putin will be able to defeat ISIS. Then under this assumption that he is our ally he will try to play politics and negotiate away Assad’s regime. Which will be a mistake. Will it affect us here at home? Not in the traditional sense, but anyone of conscious will acknowledge the immorality of indifference to the crimes against humanity Assad’s regime has and will commit.

So what do we do? We sit it out and wait.

Islam; Christianity and Terrorism


Let me start by pointing out that Islam, Judaism and Christianity are all monotheistic religions of the same god. Call him Allah, Yahweh or Jehovah he is the same god. Something that most Christians do not know and do not want to know is that Muslims worship the same god, read the same Bible; Old and New Testament and they also believe in Jesus Christ. They, like the Jews just don’t believe he was the son of god, Islam does however see him as a prophet of god. They also differ from Christians on the Resurrection as they believe that god ascended Jesus into heaven before he died on the cross. They all three believe they are descendants of Adam, of Abraham and of Noah.

Another not well know fact and also a commonly disputed fact; as much so as their god being the same god and their holy books being the same is that Muslims claim the Quran was given to Muhhamed by the Arch Angel Gabriel. Yes that Arch Angel Gabriel.

What does all this have to do with terrorism? Just as Christians can’t all be lumped in the same group as Jim Jones, Davis Koresh, Adolf Hitler or those that took part in the Inquisitions or the Crusades, not all Muslims can be lumped in the same groups as terrorists; ISIS, Al Queda or Boko Haram.

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