Archive for July 9th, 2010

July 9, 2010

On This Evening

by Vince

It feels good to curl up and sip on some black coffee, have an interesting book in hand, and watch the rain fall down. What things sooth your soul?

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July 9, 2010

“People simultaneously complain about LeBron and enable him”

by Vince

J.A. Adande begins to wrap up the armageddon weekend for wunderkind Lebron James:

“The Real World” has been on for 19 of LeBron’s 25 years on the planet. He practically doesn’t know life without it. He doesn’t know an existence when private matters were just that, before every kiss and every spat were played out in front of the cameras. So it only makes sense that he would create a show to reveal his choice, that he would drag teams and fans along until the camera’s red light comes on at 9 p.m. ET.

These were two actual, back-to-back headlines on one sports website (which one is irrelevant; we’ve all been guilty of sensationalizing the most trivial developments): “LeBron James Shows Up At Camp.” And “LeBron James Joins Twitter in Advance of Free Agency Announcement.” So a camp appearance and a new Twitter account are now considered national news?

July 9, 2010

An unShort Shrift Analysis on Same-Sex Marriage

by Vince

Slate delves into a little known court case in Massachusetts on same sex marriage:

“The Constitution ‘neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens,’ ” Tauro opened, a pointed citation of Justice Harlan’s dissent in Plessy v. Ferguson, the universally discredited 1896 Supreme Court ruling that upheld segregation. He then decimated the Obama Justice Department’s rationale for DoMA [Defense of Marriage Act] as a legitimate effort to preserve the existing social order to buy time for society to digest the controversial idea of same-sex marriage. The anti-miscegenation laws that spread among the states before the Supreme Court struck them down in 1967, he said, did not cause Congress the concern for social order it invoked in defense of DoMA.

July 9, 2010

Dan Gilbert’s Meltdown over Lebron James, Ctd.

by Vince

A reader writes:

I love how we all go nuts over stuff like this. We are a pathetic species.

July 9, 2010

Understanding Your Energy Bill

by Vince

In light of the scorching heat waves in parts of Pennsylvania, I found this Atlantic article as a good read:

The fix to a system that’s high in both costs and headaches lies in connecting consumers to their consumption–showing people what they’re using in a way that’s clear and easy to understand. Already companies are peddling gadgets designed to tell you how much electricity your dishwasher requires, or how much juice your dryer pulls. Google has even gotten involved, offering a web-based tool called Google PowerMeter that connects to these sorts of monitoring devices to help people see and record what they’re using. It’s a great start, but let’s take it further: let’s require consumption gauges on appliances, and link them into the power grid so that they could display, in dollars and cents, just what it costs to fetch energy in real time.

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July 9, 2010

A-May-Zing

by Vince

Hat tip: Erik Jacobs

July 9, 2010

Dan Gilbert’s Meltdown over Lebron James

by Vince

Last night, Lebron James ended his 7 year tenure with the Cav’s to venture south and join up with Chris Bosh and Dwayne wade and the Miami Heat. The owner of the Cleveland Cav’s had the following to say. I will recap some of the stand out ones:

“He has gotten a free pass,” Gilbert said in a phone interview with The AP. “People have covered up for (James) for way too long. Tonight we saw who he really is.”

Gilbert feels James quit on the Cavs during their second-round series against the Boston Celtics, who rallied from a 2-1 deficit to eliminate Cleveland.

“He quit,” Gilbert said. “Not just in Game 5, but in Games 2, 4 and 6. Watch the tape. The Boston series was unlike anything in the history of sports for a superstar.”

The following is some from a direct letter by Gilbert on the Cav’s website:

Dear Cleveland, All Of Northeast Ohio and Cleveland Cavaliers Supporters Wherever You May Be Tonight;

As you now know, our former hero, who grew up in the very region that he deserted this evening, is no longer a Cleveland Cavalier.

This was announced with a several day, narcissistic, self-promotional build-up culminating with a national TV special of his “decision” unlike anything ever “witnessed” in the history of sports and probably the history of entertainment.

You simply don’t deserve this kind of cowardly betrayal.

Finally, some more of Gilbert as he talked to the AP:

“It’s not about him leaving,” Gilbert said. “It’s the disrespect. It’s time for people to hold these athletes accountable for their actions. Is this the way you raise your children? I’ve been holding this all in for a long time.”

Also note that the letter from Gilbert on his teams website was in a Comic Sans font. In general, this is not the norm by an owner. I wonder what David Stern will say to this all.

July 9, 2010

For some of the Worshiping Fathers

by Vince

Mars Hill Church reminds those it pertains to of the importance of leading your family into a lifestyle of worship when church is over:

As a pastor who leads others in worship through song and teaching, there is an overwhelming temptation to value what happens in public over what happens in private. It’s so easy to value public gifts over private faithfulness, and what happens on a stage more than what goes on in your closest relationships. This is true in many areas, but one of the most troubling is the neglect of fathers in leading their families in regular times of family worship.

I was deeply convicted of my inadequacy in this area when I heard Don Whitney lecture from his excellent book Family Worship a few years ago. I was on autopilot with my family. My schedule was full and I felt very important to be so busy. I got up every day, went right into work mode, and returned every evening tired, spent, and looking to turn my brain off. I had everything backwards as I neglected my first and most important congregation—my family. I had no idea the opportunity I was missing; an opportunity to speak into my daughters’ young lives—not to mention the unequaled joy of seeing my kids grow in faith in Jesus.

July 9, 2010

Poverty, Not Conflict, Divides a Country

by Vince

Marcus Bleasdale provides some photos of Djibouti where poverty, not conflict divides the African country.

July 9, 2010

The Ballooning Costs of Defense Spending

by Vince


Foreign Policy tells of the voluminous spending on sometimes unrealistic defense measures. This stuff really interests me and is worth reading in full:

To anyone who hasn’t been paying attention, let’s go over it one more time: In February the Pentagon requested $708.2 billion for fiscal year 2011 — which would make the coming year’s defense budget, adjusted for inflation, the biggest since World War II. As one analysis of the budget points out, that would mean that total defense spending — including the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq — has grown 70 percent in real terms since 2001. Defense spending now accounts for some 20 percent of federal discretionary spending. That’s even more than Social Security.

And though his department’s request for 2011 hasn’t gone to the same lengths, there are still some out there who hope Robert Gates could yet become the new poster child for the Eisenhower tradition of conservative doubts about the “military-industrial complex.” But perhaps that’s a little premature. Some would-be budget-cutters point out that Gates favors the notion of setting U.S. military spending at a fixed percentage of GDP — which, they note, would more likely than not leave outlays at a permanently high level.

http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2010/07/07/life_by_a_thousand_cutsTo anyone who hasn’t been paying attention, let’s go over it one more time: In February the Pentagon requested $708.2 billion for fiscal year 2011 — which would make the coming year’s defense budget, adjusted for inflation, the biggest since World War II. As one analysis of the budget points out, that would mean that total defense spending — including the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq — has grown 70 percent in real terms since 2001. Defense spending now accounts for some 20 percent of federal discretionary spending. That’s even more than Social Security.