atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#3153: Really? What kind of monkey?

That's a phrase I don't often use. But a line in this article about the GOP frontrunners elicited it.

"His [Santorum's] views on homosexuality are simian." Really? 'Cause there are several kinds of monkeys.

Take the bonobo monkey, for example. Read the section on sexual social behavior. Okay? "Bonobo males occasionally engage in various forms of male-male genital behavior." And: "Bonobo females also engage in female-female genital behavior,..." Bonobos are always held up as the answer to "homosexuality can't be genetic because it would extinguish itself."

So if Santorum's views on homosexuality were bonobo-like simian, what would the problem be? Of course the writer didn't mean that; he meant "bigoted" or "evil" or what-the-hell-ever. Why couldn't he just say that?

My problem with Santorum--I know this will come as a shock to everyone--is that he's a so-called "big-government conservative".
In 2006 Santorum told NPR, “One of the criticisms I make is to what I refer to as more of a libertarianish right. … This whole idea of personal autonomy, well, I don’t think most conservatives hold that point of view. Some do. They have this idea that people should be left alone, be able to do whatever they want to do, government should keep our taxes down and keep our regulations low, that we shouldn’t get involved in the bedroom, we shouldn’t get involved in cultural issues. You know, people should do whatever they want.” That was not Santorum’s view then, and it certainly isn’t now: In July he said he would “fight very strongly against libertarian influence” within the GOP.
That doesn't sound like the kind of person I want to elect President.

But then there's this:
There are also several things to say against the pragmatic approach. First, there are often several practical solutions, and pragmatism can’t easily decide among them. Keynes and Friedman both offer compelling advice on economic crises. Whose do you take?
That's easy: you take the one that hasn't been demonstrated time and again to be a miserable failure. That is to say, Keynesian economics got us into the mess we're in now; it obviously does not work worth a hill of beans, however "compelling" it might be. The pragmatic approach would therefore be to stop using it and try something else.

Considering the tone of the article, I think the writer doesn't consider that an optimal outcome.

But I don't like Santorum's approach to social issues. Example: I oppose a federal ban on abortion. That's not an issue for the federal government to decide; that decision properly resides at the state level. Roe v. Wade was an intrusion on states' rights; it essentially said, "States may not outlaw abortion." Understand: in America before Roe v. Wade abortion could have been legalized in any state where it could garner sufficient support; abortion was illegal because the majority of people thought it should be. Roe v. Wade made abortion legal in spite of the opinion of the electorate, not because of it. Considering that the United States is supposed to be a representative republic, this is wholly unconstitutional. The function of the Supreme Court is to judge whether or not laws are constitutional, not to create law out of whole cloth as they did for Roe v. Wade.

(Personally, yes, I think abortion is wrong and should not be legal. But the question of its legality should reside with the elected state legislators, not with nine appointed judges who hold their offices for life. And not with the US federal government.)

* * *

Anyway, I got up around 11, ate the last of the pepper steak, then blew down the driveway. Of course by the time I was finished I was hypoglycemic as a motherfucker.

There's no way I can express how f-ing frustrating that is without resorting to Karl Denninger-level typographic emphasis, so I'm not going to bother. I went to Culver's for a double deluxe (got to come up with a nickname for that, like "bacon mofo" for the McDonald's black angus bacon cheeseburger) and just finished inhaling it. I feel a bit better now.

There's absolutely nothing that I have left to do this week. Sunday morning, of course, I've got to be at chuch at 8:30 (half an hour early since I'm in choir) but otherwise there is nothing I really must do. (And anyway, Sunday is next week.)

It's kind of an odd feeling not to have anything nagging at me.

* * *

Well: what I haven't done yet is head over to Amazon and check out Kindles. I don't want to fritter away my Christmas money on incidentals; I'd rather buy something nifty and keen and a Kindle would seem to fit the bill handily.

"What about the Aluratek you've got?" You may ask.

The Aluratek--well, if you consider that when I got it a Kindle cost a lot more, it made sense. But when you can get a basic Kindle for $80--$50 less than I paid for the Aluratek, and $20 less than Mom paid for hers--it suddenly stops making sense to make do with a product which really wasn't ready for prime time.

The Aluratek works well enough as an e-reader. The problem is the flaky charging system, the flaky way it sometimes doesn't suspend correctly, the odd habit it has of requiring a hard reset every so often--it's frustrating. Half the time I wanted to read with the thing I had to do it with the thing plugged into its power cord because it hadn't charged the battery--despite being on the charger all freakin' night.

Then having to do a hard reset, sometimes twice, to get the thing to acknowledge that its charger was plugged in...only to have it then charge for exactly five minutes and claim to be fully charged thereafter. Unplug it, and it claims that it needs charging; plug it back in, and it claims to be fully charged. Do a couple hard resets, let it charge all night, and it then works fine...until you put it in suspend, after which you must repeat the whole weary process again.

In all probability, the problem is that the thing ran its battery down beyond the "reversal" limit. Rechargeable batteries can only be safely discharged so far; beyond that, the battery's polarity can suddenly switch and the battery is ruined. The Aluratek didn't seem to have the ability to shut itself off (really off, I mean, not just in "suspend") when the battery got too low; and though the instructions said you could manually power off the thing by holding the power button for five seconds, that never seemed to work. (A "power off" screen would have helped immensely. It might have one; I certainly never saw one.)

So: now I'll get a Kindle, the name brand device, and see how it compares. I'd wager it will be a superior user experience to the Aluratek.

* * *

And here's yet another home-brewed Garfield Minus Garfield:

I think we've all had days like that.

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