The Death Penalty

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VA Doctors Claim Immunity from Malpractice

Paid Student Loans

Shop is responsible for damage from botched oil change - Car Talk

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May I ask you a rather personal question?

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Criticism is welcome to me. Criticism is the honing stone upon which I am sharpened.

In reading the gospels we are reading something that somebody said to yet somebody else a very long time ago. As quoted in the bible, when Jesus spoke, logically and semantically, he was speaking to the person(s) standing immediately before him. But, if we take it personally, if we take it to heart, he is speaking directly to us (the readers), so that, when he said:

“…Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”

(Matt. 5:48 KJV)

He was in fact speaking directly to us or, especially, to me – today.

In order to comprehend this, one must first accept certain premises:

1) One definition of father is as the originator, e.g., “George Washington was the father of our country.”

2) God is the Father/Creator of the whole universe, and you, as part of that creation, are thus, his child.

3) You accept Christ as your lord and you become subject to him, (i.e., as one knight accepts another as his overlord), his words become his will and thus a commandment directly to you.

Under these premises, when I read “ye” in the above quotation he is speaking directly to me.

On the other hand, whenever you read “ye” he is speaking directly to you.

Humanity seeks perfection but does it the hard way, pointing critical, accusing fingers at each other, instead of putting forth the effort of perfecting themselves. He did not say: “Make them perfect.” But, rather: “Be ye therefore perfect.”

I’ve given up on trying to make others perfect. It’s just not working. And this begs the question:

Is it even possible for someone to be perfect? And in what way?

I can’t straighten my crooked leg. There is no corrective measure for my lifelong amblyopia. Diet and exercise are hopeless against the ravages of old age. What can I perfect? What about me is perfectible?

Nothing, really, but I hit upon the idea that he meant logic and reason and the taming of the tongue – what pours forth from your mouth must be closely monitored; perfect in all cases. And what of the mind, purged of all sin, all hatred, and selfish motivation? Morally, as the Law is written, I stand condemned; and yet I still continue to strive for perfection. Why? Because God is my judge, and He being perfect, the closer I come to perfection the closer I come to Him. I gain assurance against that condemnation.

I invite you, as a friend, to criticize me:

criticize my spelling, my grammar, and my punctuation; but especially, my reasoning, that I make no error in the eyes of The Almighty.

In this life, on this plain of existence, perfection and it’s attendant assurance of God’s Love is the closest thing to happiness a man can find. So help me in my quest for my own perfection.

Your criticism is more than welcome here.

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Jubilee – and the end of Our Civilization

My understanding of jubilee comes from the reading of the bible. Admittedly, the language of the bible in translation is often a muddy affair. It is, at best, poorly written, roughly translated, biased in interpretation and, all too often, entirely misunderstood.

Jubilee was never effectually put into practice. This is perhaps due to personal greed, a misunderstanding of its purpose or the disruptions it might have caused to the economy. Every 50 years the Israelites were to leave the land fallow and to forgive all debts, which may well have included the freeing of debt slaves. The prophets denounced the Israelites vigorously and repeatedly for their “inequity” – which is more an economic term than anything else.

While jubilee bears some kinship with modern bankruptcy practices it was not intended, as bankruptcy is, to break the debtor, picking his bones like vultures, but rather for the money lenders themselves to thank God for all his blessings: a life of wealth, ease and success thru usurious undertakings.

Jubilee is the shedding and redistribution of accumulated wealth. If every Israelite freed their slaves and debtors all at once chaos would ensue but, if practiced individually, say from bar mitzvah (manhood) to age of 62 (retirement or 50 years) it would have served to strengthen the nation rather than weaken it.

If we can agree on nothing else we can all agree the language of the bible is indeed muddy.

The accumulation of land and other forms of property polarizes the nation into two camps: the very rich and very the poor. The poor slaves and servants are unwilling to fight to defend your inheritence.

When the Visigoths sacked Rome the people stood by the roadsides applauding – most of the population were slaves in some form or other and so too were the denizens of Judea some centuries earlier, which easily fell to Rome.

Ruinous usury and excessive inheritance were fatal mistakes for the Israelites.

Leviticus 25

There are similar tribal hospitality and sharing customs in many other cultures.

see: potlatch

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The Recipe

Once upon a time, in a land not far from here, a family gathering took place. A banquet was laid out with all manner of food and drink. It was, as they say, a “pot luck” dinner, where everyone brought something or other to share. There was much discussion over a particular dish, it gaining laudits all ’round, and much high praise. The people all said it was “A – #1”; and begged the woman who’d brought it for the recipe. She, of course, adamantly refused. That particular recipe, it seems, at least for the moment, made her the center of everyone’s attention – it was, as on so many other occasions, her personal “claim to fame.” No one could pry that secret recipe from her tightly closed lips.

The recipe itself had something to do with;
Ground Beef,
Brown Sugar,
Corn Starch, perhaps, just for thickening.

But we’ll never know the exact ingredients – the truth of the matter, as it were, as she died with her secret still locked away in her head, more’s the pity.

Long, long ago, I read an article in the newspaper about a man who made prosthetic glass eyes. The article stated that he was one of only three people left in the entire country in possession of such a skill, to match correctly the size, shape, and color of an individual human’s eye, out of molten glass no less. Of course, that was a long time ago; so naturally, and in due time, he took his knowledge and peculiar skill to the grave, – lost to mankind forever.

History does not repeat itself – ignorance does. With each squalling baby’s birth, ignorance is born again. And with the death of a man, much knowledge and wisdom is lost. I mourn for this fact. My desire to write is predicated on this: that I’ve had my epiphany and realized how stupid I was (and am); so much so that I became a voracious reader and learned much; but still I mourn that I am unable to impart my knowledge to future generations.

One often wonders why people act like such animals (and worse than animals). It is because we are all born animals; animals that must be tamed.

Culture is communication from one generation to the next. Old heads placed upon young bodies. We have no culture.

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Technology is morally neutral. The ability to print a great number of tabloid size or larger newspapers with full color photographs and graphic illustrations is an evolved form of the print technology that underlies some forms of mass communication. But the technology, like all other technologies, is still morally neutral. Gutenberg would just shit if he saw this!

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Wood Shop

Kosciusko Junior High School 7th Grade Wood Shop Project
Magazine Rack

This magazine rack was one of several projects students could choose from in learning how to safely operate power tools such as a band saw, a table saw, a drill press, and the various hand tools commonly used in the manufacture of commercial wood products.

After expending a good deal of time and elbow grease gluing, clamping and hand-sanding the joinery of my sub-assemblies (much to my own satisfaction) I placed my work in the wallmount bin (we were assigned by name) to stow our unfinished projects. I returned the next day expecting to stain them (which brings out the wood grain) and make the final assembly, but I discovered that someone, some other student, had switched their much inferior parts for mine. I immediately reported the crime to Mr. K.; the Woodshop teacher. Indifferent to the injustice, he just told me to use the ones the thief left behind instead of the one’s I had so carefully and painstakingly made.

Somehow I’d gotten the notion that a man is supposed to take pride in his work; and so it was with my wood joinery. I’d spent hours hand-sanding the sub-assemblies to such an extent that a blind person couldn’t detect the transition from one piece of wood to another.

I was incensed at my teacher’s indifference. I was so infuriated at this I angrily assembled the ill-fitting pieces, slathered on the wood stain but didn’t bother to wipe it down in the prescribed manner. That’s why it appears to be painted rather than having a light wood grain finish.

This is not my magazine rack.

In this life, those things that you steal may be quite admirable, but you, still in all, are just a common thief.

This was Junior High School, 1964, Grade 7B.
My final grade for the course was a B – it should have been an A.

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Churning Lawyers Part III

The intent is to spare the reader the task of reading through the entire newspaper article while clarifying in the most absolute of terms the meaning and actions of CHURNING LAWYERS, viz.:

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Thursday, March 14, 2019
GOP to
in suit on

Lawmakers don’t trust
AG Kaul to defend laws
Patrick Marley
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Dispatch (Dateline):
MADISON – Republican lawmakers
are seeking to intervene in a lawsuit
brought by Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin
because they don’t trust Attorney
General Josh Kaul to defend the
state’s abortion laws.
The Democratic attorney general has
filed paperwork in the case saying he
intends to represent the state but hasn’t
spelled out what legal position he will
The move is the latest example of
state officials from both parties using
taxpayer money to hire private attorneys
in legal fights over state laws.

Cont’d. . .
The sentence in focus:
The move is the latest example of
state officials from both parties using
taxpayer money to hire private attorneys
in legal fights over state laws.
The move is the latest example of
state officials from both parties using
taxpayer money to hire private attorneys
in legal fights over state laws.
The move is the latest example of
state officials from both parties using
taxpayer money to hire private attorneys
in legal fights over state laws.
The move is the latest example of
state officials from both parties using
taxpayer money to hire private attorneys
in legal fights over state laws.


Sometimes the media slips up and hits upon the actual truth of things. These lawyers charge sometimes hundreds of dollars an hour (on the taxpayer’s dime) to rehash and revisit the same issues over and over again. As a taxpayer you should be outraged. It is safe to assume that some of that money circles back into the politician’s reelection campaign coffers.

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Slack-Jawed Gawkers

Slack-Jawed Gawkers, are not now, nor have they ever been, placed on the Endangered Species list.

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It HAD to be a Friday

It was a week ago last Friday (It HAD to be a Friday); when, for no apparent reason, I decided to voluntarily do the dishes. I plugged the sink and added detergent and suddenly realized there was no hot water. Great. I went in the basement to find water gushing out of the top of the water heater. I say it HAD to be a Friday because plumbers charge time-and-a-half on Saturdays and double-time on Sundays.

I shut off the gas and tried to shut off the water but, as one might expect, the shut-off valve nearest the water heater was frozen (not from the cold, but from old age). I shut off the whole-house valve at the water meter and drained the water heater tank. I applied WD-40 to the stuck valve and wrestled it loose – too loose – it would just spin and not close. It said plainly right on it: Made in China, so that explains why it’s good for one turn. The wheel on the shut-off valve eventually turned but turned freely and couldn’t quite stem the flow of water altogether. The way the plumbing is laid out in This Old House: In order to stop the water from flowing down the basement floor I’d have to cut off the upstairs water supply or the whole house; so I had to just let it trickle to the basement floor drain via the broken water heater tank. That went on for several days due to inclement weather (bitter cold) and the logistics of finding a contractor and buying a new heater.

During the recent cold snap the COLD tap water was running at a relatively warm 55°F.; which is the average temperature of ground water. But 55°F. won’t melt butter so I resorted to heating water in a good ol’ tea kettle and just letting the laundry pile up.

The Big Day arrived and my other brother who knew a guy who knew a guy showed up with a contractor in tow. We all went to Home Depot where I got a Veteran’s Discount on a new water heater. Helping the contractor wrestle the in-the-box heater over snow and icy sidewalk I stumbled and fell on my ass the very first try. Anyway, we got the heater into the basement and the contractor broke the shut-off valve completely in attempting to close it. I washed my hands of the whole affair (I had errands to run) or so I thought; and left them to finish the installation unsupervised.

When I got back the new water heater was up and running and my brother and the contractor were gone. I asked my other brother (the resident proprietor) about ‘the paperwork’ for the new heater. He said he hadn’t even seen any. I went down to the basement and looked around for the documents. I found the document bundle (User Manual, Warranty, etc.,) sitting atop a cardboard box. Inexplicably they were all wet and downright soggy. Since the suspects were gone I assumed one of them had dropped the documents in the water stream running across the basement floor.

I attempted to dry the stack of wet paperwork in the microwave oven. I’d had previous success in dealing with smelly, damp and moldy old books (mold is a living thing) so I zapped the documents for a bit. They came out steaming and hot so I gingerly set them aside and left them to be dealt with later. I ran some more errands.

Later on, the papers were a bit warped but readable but, darn it, they were still wet around the edges. I put them back in the microwave – a little too long, however. Apparently the microwaves dried out just the center of the pile and drove the moisture to the periphery of the documents, achieving a temperature well above Fahrenheit 451° (it’s a novel) they started to smolder and smoke. I turned off the oven and attempted to remove them. Too hot to handle, I tossed them on the counter. I tried to pat down the papers with my hand to make sure they were out but they smoked even more. I turned them over to examine them and opened the User Manual. The rush of oxygen to the center of the superheated center caused it to burst into flames. With burning embers and black bits of ash floating about through the air and open flames leaping upward I had no choice but to toss the lot into the sink and wet them all down again. From two rooms away my brother asked: “What’s burning?” “Your Warranty”, I replied.

The next time I have to deal with wet documents I’ll need more patience and let them air-dry or just put them in the freezer. Don’t Try This at Home, kids. Try it by somebody else.

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