Martians and links

December 29, 2015

Julia and I saw “The Martian” yesterday. Other than some of the language, it was a great movie. It handily beat “The Force Awakens”.

Although (spoiler!) Matt Damon’s character does survive, I think it’s good to remember that space exploration is not safe. If we ever get serious about it again, people will die. (It’s worth noting that, for example, only one out of ten English immigrants to Virginia during the original colonization survived for more than two years.) This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do it, though.

Now for some links. The first two are related to immigration and multiculturalism: Progressivism Makes Immigrants Unwelcome and Seeing the West as worse. And then, a Christmas one: Born of WHAT???

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Two articles worth reading

December 17, 2015

Trump Is Going to Break Your Heart

Mass Shootings and Missing White Woman Syndrome

Ancient wisdom

December 12, 2015

Tao Teh Ching 75, translated by John C. H. Wu:

Why are the people starving?
Because those above them are taxing them too heavily.
That is why they are starving.

Why are the people hard to manage?
Because those above them are fussy and have private ends to serve.
That is why they are hard to manage.

Why do the people make light of death?
Because those above them make too much of life.
That is why the make light of death.

The people have simply nothing to live upon!
They know better than to value such a life!

Candidates

December 10, 2015

For anyone who’s been wondering which presidential candidate I’m supporting (a set that likely contains zero members) I’m currently undecided between Carson, Cruz, Fiorina, and Rubio. I’ve listed them in alphabetical order because I’d be happy to see any of them win.

And as for the supposed leading Republican candidate (although as I was just reading earlier this evening, the real leading candidate is “undecided”) my philosophy is “don’t feed the trolls” so I try to ignore him. I consider his popularity a symptom of the dysfunction of our political, media, and academic elites. I’m sure he’d make a poor president, but all the corruption, arrogance, incompetence, and dishonesty from those who should be leading us make him look good in comparison. It’s not surprising that after so many years of treating so many people with contempt, when someone comes along who is openly contemptuous of these elites he finds a ready-made constituency. When I see major politicians and news organizations express shock at him, I think, “you created the environment that made this possible.”

The victims

December 4, 2015

In the belief that the good people who were murdered should be better known that those who chose evil and killed them, I link to this L. A. Times report on who they were.