Archive for October, 2008

Pumpkins

Posted in Comedy with tags , on October 29, 2008 by Josh Wittner

Seems to me that pumpkins are stupid. Every other vegetable/fruit is either super delicious, super useful or totally poisonous. The pumpkin is none of these. Pumpkin pie is good, but if it was really good, we’d be eating pumpking pie all the time. They make the canned filling, pumpkin pie all the time is not out of reach, its just undesirable.

Pumpkins are nothing but a seasonal canvas for amateur carvings of halloween related icons.

Pumpkins.

Pffft.

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Mixed minds

Posted in Uncategorized on October 26, 2008 by Josh Wittner

I long, almost desperately, to truly understand the differences between us. I don’t believe that people of different ideologies than me are evil or stupid. I believe that thinking in such a way dehumanizes your opponents and shows a lack of understanding of the true nature of morals. I don’t want to judge with my emotions the ideological opinions of others, I want to really truly understand perspectives different than mine and then continue to build my ideology with my new understanding.

Lets get one thing straight, I’m talking about opinions here. I’m talking about ideologies. I don’t want to discuss things like homeopathy, acupuncture, or therapeutic touch. I don’t want to talk about things which evidence can show is one way or another. I want to discuss philosophies and opinions. I want to talk about the validity of claims of value and I want to understand, empathetically, the stances of people that differ than me in this arena of value claims. This brought me to the idea of The Meeting of Mixed Minds.

I want to get people together. Different people. Republicans and democratics. Conservatives and Progressives. Zealot and Heretic. Get them to together and talk, not about our obvious differences, but try and find the reasons why we are the way we are. Not ‘are you a beliver’ but ‘why are you a believer’, not ‘why not’, but ‘why why not’. I hope that this well help me and others really understand our differences and help us understand what similar motivations we have.

Lets get to details. I’m thinking a pub style environment where drinks are available to help relax the introductions and intense conversation. I’m thinking once every couple months at first to give time to recruit people and let people start to want to do it again. Then we can change the frequency to fit the desire. I think that in all this arguing, we don’t often enough try and really understand the other side before denouncing it or trying to shadow it in the strength of our own argument and I want some time and conversation where that isn’t the case.

It be wonderful if we found that the things that motivate us are the same and we tried to find either a compromise or a new way to solve the issue at hand to achieve that motivation. If we found a way through which we can work together to make things better. I think The Meeting of Mixed Minds could help us.

Who’s down?

I Love you? WTF

Posted in Life with tags , , , , on October 21, 2008 by Josh Wittner

Not too long ago someone told me a story where they felt another had used the phrase, well, maliciously. At first I was all ‘uh huh’s and ‘no way’s but after some time the ridiculousness of that idea dawned on me. All I can think now is really? You really think someone would say that to someone else in an effort to hurt you? Now when I think about it I find it funny. I imagine someone trying to be coy about deploying operation ‘I love someone else now’ and I giggle to myself. If only life were a sitcom you know?

We’re about to get a little more serious now but don’t worry this isn’t an emotional thing.

This got me thinking about the phrase in general as the best comedy causes reflection. The phrase elicits almost no emotion from me anymore. Its dead to me, or rather I’m dead to it. Its role is purely obligatory. I look at all the people I love or have loved and saying it that way makes me feel something, but when I think about telling someone or having someone say it to me it feels empty. Devoid of the emotion I feel when I say it to myself about those people.

I think its because the phrase has taken on so many meanings that its been diluted. When someone says it I don’t really know what they mean. And when I say it I can’t expect the recipient to understand exactly what I mean. Language, it changes and evolves and so must I. I need a new word for this feeling. When trying to use the most concise method of expressing oneself this phrase is a failure.

It really goes back to the objective and subjective me. When the expression requires only the subjective, it rings true. When I know that it requires the objective as well, I feel as though I might as well not say it for there is so little information one can glean from it reliably.

The objective vs. subjective us and the disconnect we feel between them is a powerful ally for dualists and I can’t fault Descartes for broaching the idea. Too bad the real evidence lies with the materialists. That, however, is a conversation for another itme.

Voting

Posted in Uncategorized on October 20, 2008 by Josh Wittner

So yesterday I filled out my absentee ballot and while I was doing so I realized something; choosing people for positions like Commissioner of Public Lands and Insurance Commissioner is way harder than picking who I want to be president.

I have no idea what these positions really entail, I have no idea how well the incumbent has done over his last n terms. And I only have readily available two small briefs written by the candidates themselves. Filling out the box for Obama may be more important, but filling out the box for these positions was harder because I don’t have any idea how the candidate I choose will do, or what it is exactly they’ll be trying to do. If I vote for the wrong person, how ‘wrong’ is it?

I think I chose the right candidates this time around, but shit man who knows?

That’s why I vow that before the next elections I will have learned what exactly these more obscure positions entail and to pay more attention to what our public servants are doing in their attempts to fullfil the requirements for the positions they were elected to.

And why the hell am I electing judges? We don’t know shit about these people! I just picked the top rated and most well endorsed judges I could. Oh wait, they didn’t have any competition! What the shit is going on here.

Other than President, Governor and the legislation I was totally unprepared for these elections.

Some of the candidates for state goverment made me wanna run for office. In one district (not mine) there was a retired nurse vs. a ‘classically’ trained pastry chef. Oh shit, which one of them is more qualified to understand the intricate nature of forming and passing legislation that governs the millions of people in Washington. Fuck dudes, that would be a hard choice. On the one hand the nurse has probably saved lives, but on the other the dude can bake me some delicious pastries. Classically! I grew up thinking you had have training for this shit, or like a PHD in something even remotely related. Apparently not, apparently ‘pastry chef’ is enough training to make it to the top two!

The even more amazing thing is that these people get re-elected! Which means that apparently the job really isn’t that hard to be acceptably sufficient at. Here I am thinking our state representatives are somehow well qualified…silly me.

Sarah Palin

Posted in Politics with tags , , on October 15, 2008 by Josh Wittner

There is no single position in the world that one individual can hold that is of more importance than that of President of the United States. The responsibility should at no times be taken lightly. I expect the person who fills this position to hold it with as much serious consideration as possible. It is not something one trifles with.

In nominating Sarah Palin as his running mate John McCain has shown total disregard for the importance of the office of the President of the United States. And in doing so has made it clear that regardless of his opposition he is not a man that we want to lead this country.

The Republican party has opted to do what they perceive to increase their odds of winning, over what is best for this country. Winning the job has become more important than doing the job and that, above all else, is what makes me dislike the Republican party right now.

Most of my differences with the Republican party are ideological, but the power held by the President is the one thing that we should all be able to understand. Being President should be about sacrificing oneself, about doing ones duty for this country.

Someone like Sarah Palin should not be as close to being President as she is. She should not be as close to Vice President as she is. As Vice President she would be abysmal. She lacks the understanding and the desire to understand necessary to fulfill a position like that. As President she would be a failure and we as citizens should make mockery of the nomination of Sarah Palin. In my opinion the Republicans should receive zero votes in this election.

Perhaps they truly think that winning with Sarah Palin will result in a better country than losing to Obama. Perhaps, but I don’t think its an argument they should be able to convince anyone of and arguing it only convinces me that they could be more delusional than I already thought.

If you don’t like the democrats either, then vote for an independent that you do like. If you don’t like anyone and you can, vote for none of the above. The Republicans have shown that they don’t respect this country and they don’t respect its citizens, us. They don’t deserve a vote.

Topic of Discussion: Travel Abroad

Posted in Uncategorized on October 12, 2008 by Josh Wittner

There’s a good discussion started at The Dan Baron Blog about why Americans tend to travel abroad less often than people in other countries, members of the EU in particular. I suggest you go check it out.

The factuality of the claim is currently assumed, but is widely accepted. I’m in the midst of finding statistics comparing EU to American travel behavior.

Upcoming posts

Posted in Uncategorized on October 10, 2008 by Josh Wittner

Marijuana: Why we shouldn’t need to go spec ops on this shit.

The meeting of mixed minds.

The malicious ‘I love you’

Should we fight against ‘ladies night’?

Interview question : Whats your greatest weakness.

What I got from the bible.