Monthly Archives: March 2021

Scriptural Thoughts

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Piraro–Bizarro

Telling others what scripture means is a great way to start an argument. Nevertheless, it’s been debated since time immemorial and I’m going to keep the discussion going by adding my own thoughts. First, know that I see scripture–the Bible–as the way to go to Heaven, not how the Heavens go.

Over the years, I’ve read and studied various interpretations or versions of the Bible; I focus on what the message is, not on memorizing chapter and verse, particularly since the numbering varies a bit from version to version.

Some things to think about:

  • Jesus was Jewish.
  • Jesus’ skin was probably dark–like most who live in the Levant.
  • Jesus’ did not have blonde hair and blue eyes.
  • Jesus did not speak in Olde English. He never addressed people as “thee” or “thou” nor did he say “giveth or taketh away.”
  • Jesus probably spoke Aramaic with possibly some Greek or Latin.

The Bible has been through a number of Euro-Asian languages before it came to us, with each interpretation adding the potential for confusion. Not only has interpretation from one language to another caused problems. All languages change over time and English is no exception.

Perhaps the best example of the confusion of scriptural interpretation I can offer is Matthew 19:14 (yes, I had to look up the chapter and verse), But Jesus said, “Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.”

As a youngster, I was horrified with this. I knew that Jesus would not want children to suffer, but there it was in black and white. Now, of course, As an adult, I know that Jesus’ comment was for the benefit of the disciples, telling them to not stop the children. He didn’t want the children to suffer, he wanted them close to Him.

Just something to think about during Holy Week and Passover.

Revenge on the Young!

Just a quick note today.

If your kids sit glued to the television, for hours, watching shows in which the kids are talented, smart, and very attractive and adults are dimwitted dolts, take hope.

Disney, among others who churn out these shows expect to keep running and rerunning these for years, if not eons. (Don’t believe me? How long ago was Gilligan’s Island filmed?)

Sooner or later, our kids will not be able to avoid these shows after they become adults and see themselves portrayed as dimwitted.

Even better, the child actors who starred in these will have to watch their past selves.

Salut!

Today’s kerfuffle concerns Vice President Harris’s failure to return the salute of the Marines as she boarded Air Force Two. There’s a reason for that, she’s not in the chain of command. Not only is she not required to salute, but by the letter of the law, she is not entitled to salute.

Ronald Reagan started the Presidential saluting tradition. The President is the Commander-In-Chief of the US Military because the military is subordinate to civilian leadership. The President is a civilian, but he is in–and at the top of–the chain of command. The Vice-President, on the other hand, is not in any way in the chain of command.

Saluting has an interesting history. It is believed that it was originally to indicate that the person saluting was no threat. Some believe it was to show an open hand without a weapon, while others believe it was to raise the visor on a knight’s helmet, making the knight’s identity known. It probably has elements of each.

My experience is with the Navy, which has had a few different rules than the other branches, so others may have slightly different experiences. Some of these practices may have changed. Nevertheless, a salute is a gesture shared among those members of the military who are in good standing. If a Sailor is arrested and is a prisoner held in the brig, they are not permitted to salute because they are not in good standing. Enlisted or junior officers salute officers senior to them, but they are honoring the rank, not the individual. (Just for fun, enlisted members have been known to space themselves out when they see an officer so the officer has to return a salute to each of them, rather than a single salute.)

The Navy traditionally only salutes when covered (wearing a uniform hat). They remove their cover indoors, so while other branches salute indoors, the tradition was that Sailors did not. When the others saluted indoors, a Sailor would remain at attention until the salutes were rendered and returned.

Until about ten years ago, one did not salute unless in uniform. At that time, for morning or evening colors (raising the flag in the morning and lowering it in the evening), service members and veterans were permitted to salute even if not in uniform. You may see some veterans on television salute during the National Anthem.

One final bit of Navy saluting trivia–Sailors are permitted to salute with the left hand, “if the right hand is occupied.” In practical terms, this is usually limited to a boatswain mate who is piping an event with his right hand. They then salute with the left.

So, the vice-president did not salute the Marines or return their salutes. She’s not supposed to and she doesn’t.

You Get Over Here Right Now!

I know many politicians are old white guys.

I suspect that most of their mothers are dead and not just because of their advanced age.

Why?

If I were a politician and I said the things that they do, my mother would be on me like spit on a dogbone. I’d hear my name being called–formal first name, full middle name, and last name–a dead giveaway that I was in deep trouble. She would then proceed to tell me how disappointed she was with what I had said and done, how I let her down, how I let my father down, my school, etc. (It would be a long list, including people and organizations I had never heard of before.)

Then she’d let me have it with a verbal barrage that only mothers can unleash.

In the afterlife, I suspect that many mothers will be waiting for their politician sons. The politicians won’t even get near St. Peter until their mothers are finished with them. Talk about an eternity! I won’t guess where their souls end up.

That, of course, assumes they have souls.

Filibuster

Mr. Smith Goes To Washington (1939) - The Movie Crash Course

It’s very easy to unintentionally overdose on the news. Like the drinking water in Flint, Michigan, it seems innocuous, but it c an be deadly. Too often, my best efforts to steer clear are thwarted because the news is ubiquitous although most of what it contains is either sensational or useless. For example, most cable news sources include endless celebrity coverage interspersed with the latest buffoonery from our elected officials.

Likewise, Real Buffoons of Washington, DC, a reality television show, drives me up the wall. Politicians redefine their “facts” as often as I change socks–and yes I change them daily. Yesterday’s up is down today. Although someone may have a video of one of them saying the sky is blue, they swear they’ve always described it as pink.

Filibuster is a word that gets bandied about freely. I know that it is a mechanism for the minority in the Senate to block the majority from successfully advancing a cause. In my opinion (for what that’s worth) I can’t see the filibuster as consistent with the goals of a democratic republic.

On the other hand, filibuster is a strange word and I wondered where the word came from. Was it like gerrymander, a term that grew out of and is strictly relevant to politics? It turns out that filibuster is every bit as interesting as you might expect. Merriam-Webster offers the following:

Definition of filibuster

1 : an irregular military adventurer specifically : an American engaged in fomenting insurrections in Latin America in the mid-19th century

2 : [filibuster entry 2] a : the use of extreme dilatory (see dilatory sense 1) tactics (as by making long speeches) in an attempt to delay or prevent action especially in a legislative assembly
b : an instance of this practice The filibuster delayed the voting on the bill for over a week.

History and Etymology for filibuster

Noun and Verb

Spanish filibustero, literally, freebooter

I admit, I had no idea as to what a freebooter was, so as long as I was in the dictionary, I decided to look it up, too.

Definition of freebooter

: pirate, plunderer

Filibuster refers to an insurrectionist or a pirate? Really! How interesting.

Just to clarify, we’re not talking a Disney pirate like Jack Sparrow. We’re talking ruthless people who would hunt down a ship and take its valuables, possibly including the ship itself. People like Captain Kidd, Calico Jack, and Blackbeard, not to mention those who attack ships, such as the Maersk Alabama, in modern times.

Filibuster provides an interesting etymology, if not an accidental truth.

Start Your Own Business!

Have you ever wanted to start your own business and make a ton of money? I know how!

I probably should make this one of those Have your credit card ready! deals, but, hey, we’re all friends, right?

The quickest way to start a business and get rich is to start an insurance company.

You’ve probably noticed that in addition to AllState, State Farm, and The Crimson Permanent Assurance, every day it seems like another insurance company is bombarding us with ads. There are so many that they’ve run out of good names. There’s the General, Elephant, and Lemonade. Lemonade? What kind of names are those for insurance companies?

The motto, “You’re in good hands,” has given way to an Emu, Flo and friends, and who knows what else–although I confess, I did like the cavemen.

If you add in the thousands of automobile extended warranty companies, it’s possible that YOU are the only person on the planet that does not have their own insurance company.

Primary Confusion

https://www.capellaspace.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/SpaceNet6-Blog_wavelength-spectrum.png

Progress never ceases to confuse me,

When I was in grade school—what we now call primary school—I was taught that the primary colors were red, yellow, and blue.
You could take your Tempura paints and mix them to get other colors:

  • Red + Yellow = Orange
  • Blue + Yellow = Green
  • Red + Blue = Purple

Remember the tree-trunk sized Crayolas we used in first grade? There were eight colors—Red, Yellow, Blue, Green, Orange, Brown, Violet (purple), and Black. I was never sure why they called Purple “Violet,” but they did. If they hadn’t, the next wavelength would be called “Ultrapurple,” which must have been too unscientific sounding or something.*

I accepted Red, Blue, and Yellow as the bona fide primary colors for many years, then I became involved in photography. In printing color pictures from a film negative, the primary colors are Cyan, Magenta, and Yellow, which are subtractive primary colors. In converting a negative to a positive, you subtract to adjust the colors. Today we also use Cyan, Magenta, and Yellow for inkjet and laser color printers. I have no idea what they’re subtracting from.

But wait, as they say, there’s more! If you’re using light emitting diodes (LEDs) such as in color televisions, the primary colors are Red, Blue, and Green. Somehow, with three sets of primary colors, we’re able to get all—or at least most—of the other colors.

So, what are the primary colors? Who knows!

* The portion of the electromagnetic spectrum that includes visible light, and therefore colors, seems to always be expressed in wavelength rather than frequency. Red has a longer wavelength than Violet, so you’d think they’d have called the next wavelengths as Infraviolet and the other end of the spectrum Ultrared rather than Infrared and Ultraviolet.



 

All the Gnus That Fits

Media Malpractice: The ABCs of Media Bias - Accuracy in Media

Dear MSN, CNN, Fox, etc.:

I flipped through today’s headlines. Please be advised that I have absolutely no interest in the following stories:

  • Khloe Kardashian Goes ‘90s Chic in Nothing but Ripped Jeans & High Heels
  • Chris Harrison Shares Plans to Return to Bachelor after Controversy
  • The Sussexes’ Friends Think the Palace’s Response to Bullying Claims Is “Retaliation” for Oprah Tell-All
  • What Life Was Like in the Roaring Twenties
  • William Shatner Fast Facts
  • The Worst Angelina Jolie Movie of All Time, According to Critics
  • Paul Bettany Didn’t Think ‘Kooky’ WandaVision Would Be a Hit: ‘It’s Been Really Extraordinary’
  • Side Effects of Eating Too Many Potatoes
  • Experts Share 11 Ways You Could Be Confusing Your Dog, and How to Stop
  • Pregnant Ashley Tisdale Reunites with Hight School Musical Costar Vanessa Hudgens: “It’s Taken 9 Months.”
  • Lamar on “KUWTK” Ending, Kimye Split Rumors

I realize much of the real news is depressing or frightening, but this human is totally not interested in these human interest stories.

Not that you really care. Thank you.