June 11, 2007

Jefferson Dilemma Part 1

Thomas Jefferson wrote and fought for legislation that would abolish slavery in this country. While he was doing this, he owned many slaves. Is this hypocritical? Today's post is meant to create a consistent platform before we discuss a more current, relevant issue tomorrow.

June 8, 2007

Opinions Based on Convenience

How do we develop social/political viewpoints? Do we just defend the things we want to be able to do? For example: Argument from person who smokes. "Stop taxing my cigarettes. That's a government intrusion." Argument from same person who doesn't like that SUVs block their view on the road. "Get those SUVs off the road. They're dangerous and bad for the environment." Instead, shouldn't we develop a consistent reasoning platform, and then base our decisions off that platform - rather than just, "I don't like cigarette smoke, so let's ban it."

June 7, 2007

Re-Thinking Leases

In the 1980s, leasing a car was actually a smart investment move. You could actually MAKE money on a re-sale, because rising inflation caused your initial lock-in price to be a steal when you bought out your lease at the end. Since then, leases have turned into a financial joke, with common knowledge being that leasing is stupid. But, I was investigating some leasing opportunities the other day. I can lease a $25,000 car for 2 years for $5,000 total, including sign-on costs. Why is that such a bad deal? I get a new car every 2 years. The only way I lose is that if I buy, I could hope that after 10 years, my car is worth more than 0, which it probably would be. But, how much more? And is that a better value than getting a new car every 2 years?

June 6, 2007

For Richer or for Poorer?

Is it better to steal from someone who is poor or someone who is rich?

June 5, 2007

Intelligent Design in Schools

What would the teaching of intelligent design in public schools actually consist of? Does it really need to be given "equal" time in the classroom along with evolution? I think it can be summed up in 2-minutes. Just say that there's a lot of evidence that leads us in the direction of evolution, but that it is based on an assumption that we can't prove. So, some people believe that there must have been a divine Creator involved in the creation process, but that can not be proved either. But, here are a couple reasons why they think that: Some scientists believe that the complexities of even the smallest living organisms are too marvelous to have been coincidentally created, and believe that a higher power must have had his hand in it. Scientists like Augustine, through the dissection of humans made a statement, paraphrased here, "that as I learn more and more about the perfect symmetry of human anatomy, it would seem that we were perhaps created for beauty as much as utility." Just get the kid to understand that science is based on assumption, as is faith. I'm not sure it's necessary to give them equal credence in the textbooks. After all, and I quote the E-Ching: "The truth shall outring what is loud."

June 4, 2007

I Want My Coke Black

As I was sipping my cup of coffee this morning, I realized that it was a little more bitter than I'm used to. It was because I was using a larger mug, and therefore, my standard measurements of creamer and Sweet & Low didn't have the same effect on the larger amount of coffee. This led me to wonder...I'm not quite sure how...why we don't get to sweeten soft drinks to our particular likeness. There are many people out there who say that Coke is too sweet for them, or that Pepsi is better because it's a little sweeter. How about Coke served black, an unsweetened or lightly sweetened formula that you have to add sweetener too, just like coffee. Therefore, you can have your Coke just the way you like it.

June 1, 2007

Why Every President Sucks

(continuation) #1: George Washington Washington signed Jay's Treaty in 1795, a treaty with Great Britain that "relinquished the right to U.S. neutrality on the seas" in hopes of avoiding further conflict. This treaty allowed any American ship to be seized and searched by Great Britain. Therefore, many were. And Britain often claimed any useful product they found on board, including any British immigrants to the United States, which they would then drag off any force them to serve in the Royal Navy.