Saturday, March 31, 2007

Similar patterns ...

One similarity is the recent abducting of soldiers by Iran and their earlier treatment of soldiers captured in 2004. A competing model, however, is with the abduction of Israeli soldiers by Iran-backed Hezbollah in Lebanon that sparked the recent spat between Israel and Hezbollah. This ended with a victory for Hezbollah and western "pacifists", while the abducted soldiers whereabouts remains unknown. Compared to the ealier incident of 2004, Iran has a new president, Ahmadinejad, whose self esteem is tied up in being obnoxious. Somehow I expect that Iran will follow the later pattern, but time will tell and I am certainly not a prophet.
Off the plane, into the trail running shoes, and back up the mountain. Unfortunately, the lense is a bit smudged so the little bumblebee isn't as clear as he should be. I saw my first snake of the season but couldn't get the camera out fast enough before he slithered off into the brush.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

The Destruction of Holy Sites in Mecca and Medina.

This topic is new to me, however, blogging is nice in that we are free to comment on just about anything - regardless of ignorance! It seems that there is a fuss about putting Mosques on top of graves. The mindless traditionalists are unhappy because a lot of beautiful architecture is being dynamited and the graves destroyed by armed fanatics. The Wahhabis are the perpetrators of this offense for the obvious reason that the Koran requires devotion to God alone, and a mosque on top of a grave certainly sends mixed signals.

Christians have the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, which is on the empty tomb. The construction of this church coincides with an interest in relics that was extremely damaging to the church. When it comes to "God alone", my theological points are closer to the Wahhabis, except that you can't embrace God and reject His son.
New Balance 907 Trail Running Shoe: Review

It is always fun to do 10 miles of trail running before church and then tweak those who show up late to church. Pathetic.

This morning I tried out my new trail running shoes on the Mount Allison - Mission Peak route. They are a heavy duty trail runner with nice toe protection and an extra inner layer of plastic in the sole to spread out the effect of sharp rocks. On the fast down hill sections, this was quite nice as there was almost no sensation of rocks at all. The descent was fast and the final quarter mile of gradual acceleration to a sprint felt especially good.

There was also a penalty, however, which was experienced on the uphill section. The stiffened soles mean that the shoe won't flex as easily and the heel of the shoe doesn't track the heel of my foot very well. This results in a lot of chaffing and I have a nasty blister on my right heel. Restringing the shoe laces helped a bit, but probably I won't be able to use the shoes unless I am on a relatively flat course or with a double layer of socks.

My other trail runners are ASICS Gel Eagles which are lightweight and flexible. These never give me any blistering problems, but don't have nearly the protection against sharp rocks that the New Balance shoes offer.

The mountain was very nice this morning with a cool fog covering the upper half. Sunrise was at 7:04 which was about the time I was done, so most of this was done in the dark with the headlamp.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Baylor conducts a survey on religion in America as reported by the Washington Post.

One thing that seems evident from the discussion is that Americans are a bit less label oriented. This may be a good thing, because we are commanded to be followers of Jesus, rather than any particular movement or organization. Still, we are also commanded to join together with other believers and this requires some discernment.
This farmer looks to be doing electromagnetic signature experiments on mock airplanes in his front yard.
The University of Florida honors Jeb Bush by not giving him an honorary degree. Most lightweights, of course, could easily get an honorary degree given the committee endorsement, but Jeb is above their standards. One reason for the rejection was that Jeb opened three medical schools which "diluted resources". I guess we need more gender and GBLT studies experts and fewer doctors per their logic. Jeb, I am proud of you.

Friday, March 23, 2007

The profound question of whether or not Richard Dawkins exists is addressed in this post.
What Kind of Reader Are You?
Your Result: Obsessive-Compulsive Bookworm

You're probably in the final stages of a Ph.D. or otherwise finding a way to make your living out of reading. You are one of the literati. Other people's grammatical mistakes make you insane.

Book Snob

Dedicated Reader

Literate Good Citizen


Fad Reader

What Kind of Reader Are You?
Create Your Own Quiz
The rating of "book snob" is based on my most recent "favorite book" (aside from the Bible). This is "God and Man at Yale, the Superstitions of Academic Freedom" by Buckley. They will NEVER make a movie out of this.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

There is an interesting article on the perplexing discoveries made by a recent satelite regarding the Sun. One of the things that is obvious from this is that scientists really don't have that much understanding about how stars work. Of course, that won't stop them from making all kinds of cosmological pronouncements and writing books and scoffing at anyone who thinks that they don't know much at all. Confidence and knowledge are inversely correlated in science, but we won't tell that to the kids in school.
"If a wise man goes to court with a fool, the fool rages and scoffs, and there is no peace." - Proverbs 29:9

As any creation-evolution argument can attest, scoffing is the core. The disciples of Darwin scoff the best, but Christians scoff too. There will never be any peace until the Judge returns.
Here is a view of San Francisco from the bike path in Coyote Hills park. Mount Tamalpais is behind the city and on the other side of the Golden Gate. The city is probably 20 miles away.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

The Inventor of Fortran dies. My profs told me that Fortran was dead 30 years ago, but it lives on in many software companies. I gave up on Fortran several years back and initially went to C++. The Darwinian chaos of C++ coding convinced me that Intelligent Design was impossible with this language, so I switched to Java for all my current large scale scientific programming.
My local congressperson comes out of the closet.

There does seem to be considerable confusion regarding the difference between atheist, antitheist and antichristian.
Silicon Valley and 2 million or so people are down in the fog between the mountains.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

"Every island fled away and the mountains could not be found." Revelation 16:19

As a trail runner, this is quite disturbing. But why the symbolism? As I was chasing some other things down, I came across an idea from the ancient Greeks: The planets, sun, moon, stars and earth were all believed to be perfect spheres which travelled in orbits that were also on spheres. It was Keplar who finally pushed people out of this mode since even Copernicus was still stuck on spheres. The Greeks had, however, a problem explaining the mountains because this required an imperfect Earth. For them, the mountains were a symbol of corruption.

Given that Revelation is written by John, who also wrote about "logos" and other Greek ideas, my guess is that this reference is to a future removal of corruption from the planet. The corruption doesn't just appear in our human nature, however, but in all of creation. The other point, however, is that John most certainly views the Earth as being essentially spherical, just like the Greeks.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Genetics and Gays?

First, I don't recall where, but there seems to have been some articles indicating a weak correlation between homosexual behavior and genetics. This brings up a number of classical ethics issues, but some people seem to think that this is a new novelty that negates all of traditional Christian reasoning. So here are my observations:

The idea of a genetic link to behavior - and also intelligence - is nothing new. This field reached a zenith a few decades back under the name of "eugenics" and derives from Darwinism. If God didn't create man, then man certainly didn't evolve equally, and the practitioners sought to quantify this inequality. Even the Darwinists have backed away from this field for the reason that what ever scientific insights may have been obtained were more than negated by the abuses of the theory in the hands of idealogues of the atheist, agnostic or new-age sort. GBLT supporters, are you paying attention?

The novelty seems to be of the form: Mr. T has a genetically inherited tendency to homosexual behavior, therefore, this behavior was given to him by God, therefore, God must approve of homosexuality. Of course, if we substitute homosexual with homocidal, then the argument no longer seems as compelling. The fact is that a temptation to sin is inherited, but the choice is mine. Are God's judgments based on the temptations we received or the choices we made?

There is nothing new under the sun.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Tired of the phrase "anti-war".

"Anti-war" means that the US should stop trying to hold the lid on the Shiite-Sunni civil war. These pacifists apparently aren't happy unless people are slaughtering each other. Much of the problem is that American and European pacifists are hardcore racists: They believe that the life of one westerner is more valuable than a thousand Iraqis, thus it makes sense for us to leave so that the Iraqis can get along with killing each other. Yes, it is Vietnam all over again.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

We had a wonderful ecumenical gathering of bikers today on Mount Hamilton at the Lick Observatory. This was mostly to celebrate the Lord's blessing of beautiful weather. Most people aren't aware of the enthusiasm of motor cycle gangs for institutions of learning. It is only 35 miles to get home from here and my bike is the one without the engine.

Friday, March 16, 2007

"In tests administered to eighth-graders nationally, California students score seventh lowest in math, third lowest in English and second lowest in science."

This was from the San Jose Mercury. Are we better off than Zimbabwe? The solution, of course, is to provide $32 billion more per year. Half of the problem is that we are educating a significant fraction of the Mexican citizenry who pay negligible taxes, but also consume other benefits. I won't protest this. The other half of the problem is the beautiful troglodytes of the teachers union and the not so beautiful troglodytes of the ACLU. The latter group couldn't care less if the children master science, but would go wild with hysteria if Darwin wasn't taught.
Zogby has a poll on what Americans think of media bias. For the moment, it appears that the Left is losing the argument, but they have certainly been fighting back. The core of the Left's argument is that a report which is on the surface "fair & balanced" but gives far greater credence to the Left's viewpoint (MSM classic) is an indicator of right-wing bias. Thus, anything short of crudeness constitutes right-wing bias. Somehow I think the old Trojan horse style Leftist news reporting was probably more effective.
A storm is coming ...

The Washington Post has an article about the new terrorists and how they don't fit usual profiles. I still believe that if we continue to embrace Godlessness as our national religion, God will give them a free hand - until we come back and repent.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

"Coined by scientists, z-squared means zero carbon-dioxide emissions and zero energy use from the grid." from the San Jose Mercury.

I am all for solar power, but as usual, there is no stupidity like the stupidity of a scientist.

1) To make solar cells requires high temperature processing of silicon into pure crystals. This is typically done with power drawn from the "grid" somewhere in the world. How many years of solar panel use does it take to recover the power used to smelt the silicon?
2) To get the cells onto the roof of a building also requires a tremendous expenditure of fossil fuels. We must get the ore to the smelter, the silicon to the crystal wafer plant, the crystal wafers to the solar panel assembly, and the assembled solar panels to their destinations, along with inverters and other hardware. At each point, there are employees who must get from their homes to work to make everything happen starting from the original mining and finishing with the installation on the building. Thus, significant fossil fuel expenditures are mandatory to make a solar installation happen.
3) The "zero energy use from the grid" means a zero net usage from the grid. The building is still connected to the grid and a grid is mandatory to make things function.

There is another meaning for the word "green" that doesn't imply eco-friendly, but is just as applicable to the Greens.
Sping time on Mission Peak.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Using windpower at the top of Welch Creek Road. With my knee bugging me, cycling is the form of exercise that burns the most calories and won't cause joint problems - as long as I don't crash. Welch Creek Road is one where you worry about your brakes catching fire on the way down.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Selective abortion in India. As always, the result is that mostly girl babies are aborted. This means that India is following China towards becoming a nation of frustrated men.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

From Bruce Prescott:

"That is why the underhanded, double-dealing, dishonest methods and tactics that the Fundamentalists used to takeover the SBC disturbed him so much. He could never condone in his church or in his denomination the very vices that he worked so diligently to remove from his business."

As I see it, we are all sinners. When Fundamentalists sin, it is certainly an awkward spectacle to behold and rightfully generates a lot of shaking heads. Sheep just don't do Kung Fu well. The flip side of the coin is that the endless subterfuge of the Modernists is so subtle, so fluent, so relentless, ruthless and remorseless ...
What is the difference between a Jr. High Sunday School and a group of cows? The cows shut up and pay attention.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Democrats Never Pander.
Some poison oak embracing the spring warmth.
Visiting Pacific Commons in Fremont.

This is a new development still in progress which will probably pave over 2 square miles of land by the time it is done. Even partially complete, the congestion is appalling. What is especially amazing is that Fremont land prices are incredible, but this is still being done per urban sprall mandates: Single story construction and massive parking lots. As usual, if someone proposes bashing heavy industry in the name of the environment, it is easy to whip a crowd into a Jihad frenzy. Ask for something easy, like a parking garage with a building on top and you get no where.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Yesterday's 30 miler in the Ohlone Wilderness was beautiful. The weather was warm, but remnants of last week's snow store were hanging around at the higher elevations. My knee is hurting still, so I may have to switch to cycling for a few days to let it recover. A few notes:

1) Snow is great for cooling you down on a trail run.
2) Too much snow will jam up the Camelbak flow and won't melt.
3) Watch out where the huskies go and dont you eat the yellow snow.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

This article from the Washington Post on religious illiteracy was quite interesting to me. The main observation that I have is that illiteracy in the US, as compared to other developed nations, isn't limited to religion and culture. Everything from math and reading to science is suffering. No, we can't leave a child behind his peers, but we can sure leave an entire nation behind.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Your Dominant Intelligence is Logical-Mathematical Intelligence

You are great at finding patterns and relationships between things.

Always curious about how things work, you love to set up experiments.

You need for the world to make sense - and are good at making sense of it.

You have a head for numbers and math ... and you can solve almost any logic puzzle.

You would make a great scientist, engineer, computer programmer, researcher, accountant, or mathematician.

Well, I am an engineer, but certainly not a "great" one. Thanks to Duane at Abnormal Interests for this link.
The Flat Earth Theory is still taught in Singapore.

This I just learned talking to some students from there. They were taught that Christopher Columbus faced opposition based on a belief in a flat earth which came from the Bible. It is amazing how much damage is done by the lies of intellectuals.

" ... ordering him to form a council of geographers ... For support they cited Seneca, who in one of his books debates the question, ... of this inferior SPHERE of land and water only a small belt or cap was inhabited, all the rest being sea ... "

from The Life of the Admiral Christopher Columbus by Ferdinand Columbus (his son).
"Christian Cosmic Light Holistic Care Organization"???

New Age meets Christianity? Their objective is to help drug addicts while presenting the gospel.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

America is too dangerous, so I am going back to Afghanistan.

And so Ansari's husband did with their 6 children. Ansari was shot in the head and killed while picking up her children from a local school on October 19th of last year. The suspect, Manuel Mares, is just now being processed. The judge read the list of previous crimes: Burglary, drugs, car theft, hit-and-run. There is little to do more than cry in the presence of the Lord.
For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. - 2 Timothy 4:3-4