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Antonio

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Everything posted by Antonio

  1. I'm a little skeptical about the information in that entry because it doesn't meet the kinds of journalistic standards that we would use in order to publish that in my newspaper. I have not checked back to see if the Idaho Statesman printed the allegations that surfaced following the conviction, but the question of whether the newspaper where I work would print that would be answered only after a major newsroom discussion at a number of levels and possibly even a consultation with an ethics expert with Loyola Marymount in Chicago or the Poynter Institute. I would assume that the Statesman didn't take it lightly, but I have witnessed the rush to print something really juicy, even if it's dicey at best. It's a totally subjective decision. Other times we've had proof of allegations or information that warranted publishing, but the desires of senior editors intervene to prevent publication, for a variety of reasons. I just get the sense based on my experience that it's really juicy, and journalists often fall back on the "he's a public figure" rationale to justify publication. That rationale has trumped the truth on more than one occasion in my experience. For my own judgment, just because someone says they had sex with someone or that they were solicited doesn't mean it's true. I need more proof. Other citations in the Wikipedia entry were sketchy, two of them being cites to blogs that had no tangible proof. Anyone can edit a Wikipedia entry, so when something is still hot in the news, take a healthy dose of skepticism. Finally, I find it interesting that allegations of gayness often are made against very conservative, anti-gay or folks who are unsympathetic to gays - not just in politics. For some reason, almost universalliy my and my wife's gay friends seem to think that someone who is anti-gay is a closet gay or lesbian, or that they are homophobic because they are repressing their true gay selves. While that might be true in some cases, it could also be true among people who are not anti-gay. That adds to my further skepticism. The real question is really "Who cares?" Who gets hurt when they are asked to have sex?
  2. Indeed. The audio tape and transcript of the interview with the senator shows the cops have a dicey case at best. The mismatch about which hand went under the stall wall is one example. There wasn't even a note passed to indicate a solicitation. If I were on the jury I couldn't convict him. Cops do make mistakes. A lot of them actually. Most of them are minor and stupid mistakes. But it leads me to wonder that if they can't get the small stuff right, how many big mistakes do they make? For instance, the cops in our area continue to insist that Mexican nationals or their descendants who are arrested here have hyphenated last names. Many use the dual last name format, where the last names are the father's and the mothers, respectively. The cops hyphenate it or incorrectly refer to the mother's last name as the arrested's surname, when it's not. This, in an area where people of Mexican or Spanish ancestry have been occupying long before whites or English-speaking people arrived. You'd think they would have figured it out by now, or at least correct themselves when told they are wrong. In the paper we print the names correctly, and then the cops once in a while try to call us on it. We politely tell them that the names they furnished us are wrong, and that Associated Press style (which most papers use) calls for second references to use both last names. And they get arrogant and indignant, claiming we are attempting some politically correct spin, or we're anti-cop or have some other agenda. Um, yeah, our agenda is accuracy. I even had one police chief in denial of the fact that I had spoken to the mother of a man slain by some local officers and she told me what is true given name was, which was different in spelling and order than what the cops have. It was one of those lame "agree to disagree" type of denials. He got even more pissed when I told him no, I will not agree to disagree, rather I will agree to what the truth is and he can choose to invent his own perception of the truth. It's really all about control and domination. They don't like being told their wrong. I had an instance recently where I had a local deputy eat crow when he insisted that I had gone up this 15 percent grade topping 80 mph, which was impossible because my check-engine light had been on due to an error in my on-board computer, which throttles my engine down to where I cannot exceed 2,500 rpm - making it impossible physically to speed up that fast on a grade (or flat land for that matter). I showed him the light, recepits of attempts at repair and told him politeliy that I'd produce folks from Honda who would attest to this. I didn't get a ticket and he ended up admitting it must have been another car, given it was a stretch of road where there are no lights and it was dark. Even in acknowledging error, he wouldn't take responsibility - choosing to blame the dark or the lack of lights. Granted, Craig should have fought it. But that was his error and now he will pay the price for it.
  3. Trusting reason is not blind. Rather, it is just the opposite because reason is based on the idea of arriving at the truth through logic and knowledge rather than emotions or unprovable assumptions. We are not blind to what we see. On the other hand, faith is blind because it expects us to believe as true that which we cannot see or prove. The material world is inherently accurate because it is what we know and it is made up of truths that are proven or that can eventually be proven through further investigation. It's illogical to say that basing one's life on reason is "a major leap of faith" because reason and logic are not faith. Rather, they are the opposite of faith. As to Pascal's Wager, one of the reasons that it is flawed is because under his assumption, then it is safer for us to believe whatever made up story that anyone can come up with just in case it turns out to be true. That's flawed because the default, self-evident presumption is that something must be proven, not disproved, to arrive at the truth. For instance, I am not immortal simply because you can't prove that I am not, given that I haven't died yet.
  4. The show hasn't done well with the critics so far, but it's pretty good. It is based on good values beyond the simple good-versus-evil archetype typical of science fiction. I like that Flash defends the people in his inner circle who he trusts, and his heroics don't go into the irrational. Something else I like is noted in the Wikipedia entry, which is that Ming is not portrayed the way he was in the campy 1980 movie or the previous versions of the story as a maniacal supervillain. The show portrays him as a calculated dictator who seems very much a heartless administrator bent on uniformity and loyalty in order to maintain order in the civilization he controls. Rather than an ill-tempered uber-villain, I could see this guy running the DMV or being director of the FBI. John Ralston, who plays Ming, is a good actor who has been in a number of kids' shows that my daughters have liked. I wonder if all 22 episodes have been filmed. It'll be interesting to see how this does on Sci-Fi Channel.
  5. Her theory is probably in the right direction. Remember, this is a pageant. Some of these people who get into the pageant circuit are obsessed. Their lives are fully enmeshed with the contests and preparing for them. As contestants go to higher levels, they go beyond standard local beauty pageants to including supposedly thoughtful questions like this in order to satisfy feminists and advocates of so-called political correctness. So my guess is that she was more prepared for the local and regional circuits and not ready for this kind of question, which is admittedly complex because it requires the contestant to come up with a philosophical or policy answer. For instance, a correct answer could have addressed how the public school system (and private too actually) has strayed from basic education to subjects like altruism, environmentalism, etc. and how it has failed to teach kids the importance of paying attention to a serious media. Plus, she could have gone into how the media, including the press, plays to the lowest common denominator, creating a vicious cycle that's dumbing down the nation. That, however, would have been asking a lot of her. Beyond the contestants, pageant moms can be downright crazy. Entertainment industry parents, sport parents and others who are obsessed with their children's niche skills or interests can be irrational too. This reminds me of a talented local athlete whose entire life is controlled by her parents. Granted, she is a world champion runner, but her entire teenage life is controlled, down to her sleeping hours, how much she eats and what times she eats - everything - in order to time her Cycadian rhythms and her blood sugar makeup and other factors they believe make her a better runner. Though she is excellent and quite a sight seeing how fast she is, and her dedication is admirable, I wonder if the individual is whittled away when they are controlled by handlers.
  6. Indeed. That is the most compelling argument against the death penalty. I find it impossible to feel sorry for convicted murderers, so I don't wince at their being executed like some of the liberal set does. But it's s damn expensive it's not worth it. While I don't buy the humanitarian arguments against the death penalty, there is one undercurrent that has always disturbed me nonetheless. That is for the state to have the power to legally take life. I am not certain that's a power I want a state that I do not trust to have. Like other matters in which the people have given their trust to the state, they government has managed to botch that trust by making it a gargantuan waste of money.
  7. It figures. Copy editors at my newspaper do this kind of thing sometimes, mostly when it's something politically charged. Most of the time our headlines are bad because the copy editors do not understand the story or don't pay attention to detail. I have to override their decisons from time to time. Once in a while the biases creep out and they have to be shoved back into the box. If you really want to become dissolutioned with the media, visit NewsBusters.org or the Media Research Center's Business and Media Institute (BMI). Lots of examples there. Sometimes they go too far in their criticism but much of it is warranted.
  8. One theory sometimes advanced is that most liberals and centrists can turn to the mainstream media and its statist/leftist biases in both news coverage and editorial commentary. That shuts out conservatives both as readers/viewers and even as journalists, who tend to turn to other media because they could not find themselves at home in the mainstream media. That explains the success of talk radio and the conservative blogosphere, and Fox News Channel.
  9. Most fundamentalists that I know would not be aware of the fact that apes are not monkeys and vise-versa. It's all about marketing. Better-educated fundamentalists will coin terms like "Scopes Monkey Trial" because it plays to people's attraction to the absurd. Then the lemmings follow. Pierre Boulle called his novel "La plan├Ęte des singes" (singes being closer to "simian" vs. monkey or ape) and when translated into English, monkey was chosen over ape when Xan Fielding called his translation "Monkey Planet." It sounds more absurd. Really, "Planet of the Apes" was a more appropriate transalation. It's all about marketing. And the fundamentalists are doing quite well at that.
  10. I have not seen Sicko and do not plan to. But I've been told that what is sorely missing from Sicko is any correlation or causation between the problems that regulation and protectionism cause for the health insurance market. For instance, we in California can't buy a policy sold in, say, Arizona. Like with gasoline, insulating insurance into 50 separate markets leads to higher prices. And it certainly defeats the purpose of having a common market of 50 states within a single nation, doesn't it? You are not going to read much about that in the mainstream media because it reaches a level of complexity beyond that of most journalists' levels of education, and because it requires deeper digging that is harder to find in these days of newsroom staff cutbacks. Those of you who know me know that I speak from experience as a newspaper editor who works for a large corporation. I recall having a conversation with our health care reporter where I had brought up how the ills of health care were caused by the price controls post World War II, which led to "fringe benefits" that were an end run around wage caps and the evolution of the market to where it was expected a third party would pay for health care. I explained to her how there are three decisions involved in the economics of purchasing: the payer, the decisionmaker and the recipient of the benefit. When one goes to buy soup at the grocer, and with most economic decisions, it's the same person. I decide whether I need the soup, I'll pay for it and I'll benefit from consuming it. In health care, that triangle is ripped apart. The doctor decides if I need treatment (prescription), an insurance company accountable to neither of us pays, and I benefit as the patient. One could argue too that the doctor benefits by charging someone other than the beneficiary and that the insurance company can intervene as decisionmaker by refusing to pay. In all scenarios, it's bad economics. My reporter showed an involuntary look of intrigue and interest in her face, triggered no doubt by her higher-than-average intelligence. But she quickly reverted to herself at her desk and did not take the conversation further because it runs so counter to her bias in favor of a single-payer government-run health care system. I stumped her. You'll never see an advanced debate in a movie like Sicko that's produced by a publicity seeking millionaire muckracker. Unfortunately, the mainstream media and the public will eat up all that pablum.
  11. As the parent of a child who uses a wheelchair because my daughter can't walk, and whose muscular disability also has delayed her speech development, this kind of thing is shocking - that someone would deliberately foster disabilities. Granted, our having her has, by far, been the most rewarding and fulfilling aspect of our lives. But I would do anything in my power to reverse her disabilities. My daughter, who is 8, is a very happy girl, and even prefers using a wheelchair to the possibility of walking someday, probably just because she's smart and practical and she knows it's not an option for now, and she knows it's pretty damn efficient. Even so, I suspect that if technology could make her life easier, she'd embrace it in much the same way that she embraces access or adaptive technology like our ramp van or her bicycle with four wheels. If we would have known of her impending disabilities before she was born we still would have birthed her because her disability is not cognitive and it is not debilitating, albiet inconvenient. The way that I view it is that there is a wide range of abilities among humans that can be expressed in a bell curve. Most people fall in a mainstream range, with a few on the edges with superabilities and others with disabilities. And no two people are the same - but that's just me being a hyperindividualist. I could not say the same for Down syndrome. Some cases are not severe, and these kids can live fulfilling lives. I've seen it. But I don't believe we're at the point where we can discern before birth at what range the Down syndrome will be. I have never embraced the "disability culture," even if I can appreciate how such a phenomenon would manifest. But it should be a source of mutual support for the here and now for folks with disabilities and their families, not an end in itself to be perpetuated. To say that I wish my daughter could overcome her disabilities is not by any stretch some kind of self-hate or admission of failure, rather my wish that she not have to suffer the inconveniences and sometimes the physical pain associated with her disabilities. Otherwise, that would make me a sadist.
  12. You can claim whatever you want. But common law precedents and the First Amendment protect the right to quote. Again, not the right to reproduce in whole or in so much a part that it could constitute a significant substitution of the original product, but quoting. What I was referring to is these laughable instances where people will tell us that we can't quote them or their works in the paper. And no, in those instances owners of the works can't stop us from doing what we want with ~excerpts~ of their work that are used for newsworthy purposes. We can do whatever we want with those ~excerpts~ or ~quotes~ without permission. We could not, however, publish the entire chapter of a book or the entirety of a copyrighted speech or magazine article.
  13. Worth the risk of a few years in federal prison? Are you kidding us? Don't you remember Office Space and "federal, pound me in the ass, prison?" I can't even fathom what would be worthwhile to subject myself to that.
  14. I'm not an attorney, but as an editor at a newspaper have become well-versed in communications law by its practical implementation and frequent consultations with both our in-house attorneys and prominent First Amendment lawyers, and it was a big emphasis in my communications major in college way back when. Short clips, quotations or references that are used to show an example of a larger body of work or in order to make a commentary are fair use. The courts have held up this view all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court. There are those who would disagree. Those could include Scientologists who attempt to silence anyone in the media who criticizes them by claiming trademark infringement (The Association of Realtors does this too when they whine about how we don't put "realtor" in all caps with a TM - they think it's the name of a profession but then they can copyright it? Yeah right.). Book publishers and authors do this to critical reviews (but then they love having a book cover printed when it's positive) and once in a while businesses will do the same claiming their name's copyright trumps all, forgetting that statutes and case law have well-defined fair use. Some folks are brazen enough to claim that you can't even quote them or their works without permission. There is a bevy of information out there on fair use. It is a very misunderstood area of intellectual-property law.
  15. Well said. Those of us who live by reason live in a world surrounded by irrational people, or at least "regular" folks who are irrational much of the time because they don't know better. The kinds of lives that some of these domestic tax avoiders lead are sometimes primitive at best. They could be holed up in isolated communities, or living off of someone who is part of the system or living off of cash-only jobs and buying a limited amount of consumer goods in order to avoid paying sales taxes. No thanks. I pay a lot of taxes, have a good life and a fun job and we're pretty well off. I can live a cushy life and live by example by folks seeing that someone who believes in freedom can work hard, be honest, be prominent in his community and even eschew going to church - and be well-liked. Being linked to the ilk of the Unambomber or the Ruby Ridge or militia crowd would not only mean a reduced quality of life, but folks would think our views are those of nuts. People ask me, when it comes up that I do not go to church or believe in religion, what I believe. Even the most religious people I run into find the comfort I find in my views to be fascinating. So they'll see this reasonable guy with good kids, who is also a conscientious parent with a child who uses a wheelchair (there is a stereotype that disabled folks and their advocates are left/liberal/moochers - not all are), reasonably say make his point about how our high taxes are unnecessary, unproductive, wasteful and immoral. I have to wonder as well how many of the more ardent "just don't pay taxes" folks here are people who have never really had to pay a lot taxes or learn what it is like to exist in the real world with kids and a house and a prominent position in one's community. I do not say this to be wantonly critical, but to suggest that maybe it is a good idea to step back and consider more thoughtful responses to issues such as these. JASKN's is a good example of a well-reasoned response.
  16. Antonio

    Abortion

    Life began billions of years ago, if not earlier. Most Objectivists with a basic knowledge of biology, and anyone smart enough to accept the truth of science, can agree on that. We were not created in a vacuum. Even if we were created in a laboratory, because matter can be neither created nor destroyed, we all have ancestors.
  17. Antonio

    Abortion

    I have always taken this to be an important point in my approach on abortion. Roe vs. Wade guaranteed legal abortion only in the first trimester - that states could not forbid the procedure before that point. I have seen human life survive tenuously in a neonatal intensive-care ward where the experience raised many questions in me about whether some of what was being done to encourage survival was right. What is clear is that a fetus in the first trimester, and at least midway or nearly through the second, has little chance of surviving on its own. On the other hand, many premature babies weighing as little as a pound who needed help in the early stages after birth go on to survive on their own or with some occasional or minimum medical or other assistance. They can become conscious people at some point. But remove a fetus that is three to 10 weeks old from a uterus and try to have it survive in an isolette or incubator with the kinds of interventions done to help premature babies, forget it. The problem is that the law is based on emotion and on perceptions about how a mythical deity wants humans to live. What is lost in this whole debate over very late-term, or "partial birth" abortions is that these are not first or second-trimester abortions of fetuses that are early in development. They're babies who in many cases could survive like other people in many cases. If a birth would kill a mother or a baby is doomed to a terrible life because it has, say, half a brain or other problems that could impair cognition, then there should be an exception to allow it based on a decision reached between doctor and patient. A fetus in early or mid development is not the same as a baby at 36 weeks that could be born any minute. That's what is lost in the debate. It would be nice if law could be based in science, where objective standards could be used to truly protect life while at the same time protecting the rights of a woman to choose whether to have a child. It is possible. But not in this world right now, with its lazy and irrational thinkers in power.
  18. To be sure, there should be no question that people who have reacted negatively to Imus' remarks - activists, sponsors, etc.- are within their rights to do so. That doesn't make it right though. We should not be talking about law but about ethics. Same goes with Maya Angelou's comments. Her call for "society" to censor is collectivist pressure. Folks of her ilk also tend to be the ones who call for government to enforce their morality. It's simple. If you don't like what Imus says, you don't keep listening. If that means that "society" (or a lot of people) choose not to listen and ratings go down, then the free market has spoken. But based on what most leftists/liberals and minority pressure groups advocate, it would lead for calls for government intervention. We should all be allowed to say whatever we want. If you don't like it, then go away and leave me alone.
  19. Here's a sign of the real trouble. Poet Maya Angelou calls for censoring "offensive" speech. She is not alone in feeling that way. People both of red and blue stripes feel this way, but in my experience in the press it tends more to be the PC left. I caught this at the NewsBusters.org blog, http://newsbusters.org/node/12022, which I quote. In the wake of the Imus affair, MSNBC is airing an all-day discussion (Friday) on the theme "What's OK to say?" Poet Maya Angelou appeared at 11:05 AM EDT, and in the course of her interview with MSNBC's Peter Alexander, had this exchange: ALEXANDER: Dr. Angelou, you're an author and an artist. I guess the question is, is there a need for more censorship of our media and of our arts, are you comfortable with that? And if that happens, when does it end? What is OK to say? ANGELOU: Exactly. I agree with that. I think the society decides upon the censorship. Each person censors himself or herself. Do you think, if any of these hip-hoppers, if they said about Mrs. Bush what they say about black women, do you think they would be given a microphone? Do you really think so? So we have to censor ourselves. And then, the society makes that decision. View the video at http://media.newsbusters.org/media/2007-04...SNBCAngelou.wmv.
  20. Sometimes it's not only the press that is not interested in the context of remarks. In my experience in the press most of the time it is usually a loud pressure group that is behind the out-of-context knee-jerk reactions. The press eats it up because it's an easy story to do, and much of the press is lazy. But not all. We had a local official - a member of a services district board (basically a very limited form of township here in California) say "I've got f---ing balls." His opponents latched onto that and screamed and shouted all over the place, including the discussion boards on my paper's own Web site. Then they screamed louder when we did not cover the story. TV did not cover it, I believe, because its reporters did not understand the situation in general, and typically they follow print journalism anyway - they're not news leaders in local markets. The context of those remarks was that they were made at the end of a very long meeting that ran past 2 a.m. after nearly eight hours of rankerous debate, one of hundreds - perhaps thousands - in 30 years over a long-delayed and highly divisive public works project that still hasn't happened. The board member's critics earlier in the night had accused him, literally, of not having balls, in addition to other abusive and berating comments that descended into ad hominem attacks. Folks would like up by the score and go one after the other using their three minutes not for an issues discussion but to berate the board members personally. The other side was also a little guilty because they'd have their people do some cheearleading during the same public comment time. That was harmless by comparison though. I chose not to have my reporter who covers that area write about this because it wasn't news. My fellow editors and senior editors agreed. It only would have put my newspaper as a pawn in a political game that has been going on for decades. It would not have served to shed any light, only heat. Basically, it would not have provided our readers with tools they need to be citizens. There were those among the opposition who disagreed, and the best they can do is call us "biased." It's a free market, not just of economics but of ideas. They have their blogs, and ironically one could say, our own open discussion forums, to spread their "news." So we're not supressing anything. It was out there. We just examined the issue (don't think we didn't jump on this though) and found it did not merit being considered news. Believe me, most of my media brethren do not show such restraint, not use logic and reason to judge what is news. That is why this Imus thing has been blown out of proportion. It's a talker. It sells papers and boosts ratings. Look at what we're doing here, after all. We've all just fallen into the vortex.
  21. I don't know if there is anything wrong with their behavior or grooming. And I NEVER said anything judging black people's hair. Like your earlier ad hominem attack on me, it only shows that you don't understand how to debate a point, nor understand the issue at hand, because attacking the messenger and putting words in his mouth only sheds more heat, not light. The state of their grooming or behavior is not the point. That doesn't matter. What matters is the media and activists' reactions to Imus' comments. Earlier Imus' comments were described as "low rent." Well put. The point is not whether Imus was right nor whether there could have been higher-level vocabulary words he could have used. Low-rent comments should not be shut down by minority pressure groups any more than deep philosophical commentary should be. The problem is the few trying to control the agenda for the many. Finally, (apologize for forgetting who) someone noted that whites can have nappy-headed hair too. No single race has the monopoly on hair quality. Look at any white homeless person and you'll understand. Actually, the very-white former mayor of a city near where I live comes to mind. At a Fourth of July event, when I went to introduce my wife to him, she had initially thought he was a homeless guy because of his gastly appearance. Same goes with the term "ho." Most of my friends of varying ages and races (I am 37, many in their 20s work for me) for whatever reason use "ho" to describe women who are loose, skanky or provocatively dressed versus "whore." I don't know if using a nickname of the original seems less severe, but the fact is that the word has spread into the popular lexicon, used by people of many stripes. What's ridiculous is that race often enters the debate because it is an effective tool of the victim culture, or as Robert Hughes put it, the culture of complaint. It's time to take away that card from their deck.
  22. Imus did not make a racial slur. He said that some of the women on the Rutgers rugby team were "nappy headed hos." He was making fun of their appearance, particularly their nappy hair and the way they dress. For those who might not have heard what he said or read the transcript, it was said as part of a conversation with another member of the cast where they talked about how they were "tough chicks" with muscles and tattoos. Folks, they are female rugby players. They are not delicate little flowers. Imus did not attack the black race. He put down a handful of loud girls with ratty hair. What Imus really did wrong is that he insulted the wrong people. It is OK to attack white men, business people or Republicans. It is not OK in our irrational society to put down anyone who is black, a woman or someone from another minority, liberals or other Democrats or in much of the country, anyone who is gay. On the latter, that depends on what part of the country because even in blue states gays and disabled people are the last acceptable discriminations by the general public. Imus insulted loud black liberals who are part of a victim culture that was nurtured in the wake of World War II by the same people of the so-called greatest generation that brought us the welfare state, new math, bad public schools and most of the nations ills. The kinds of people making hay about Imus' comments make money and obtain power through the free publicity they receive by being obnoxious. This is how it works: He who shouts the loudest wins. Or is it more politically correct to say he/she/it who shouts/expresses themselves the loudest/most passionate wins/empowers themselves? My media brethren have more fun by inaccurately referring to Imus saying a racial slur in their biased reports. It sells papers and brings ratings, and furthers the liberal/victim agenda. That was his mistake. It's not what you say, but subjectively who you say it about.
  23. Indeed, I've volunteered to help before, such as in serving meals to the homeless, because of my selfish desire to feel good helping someone. I just liked how grateful some of those folks felt to have a hot meal, particularly the folks with little kids. I challenge people all the time about how charity is really selfish. And I think that's great. We should help people because we want to, not because we feel we have to, or because some fire-and-brimstone deity says we have to. When you don't want to help you're doing it under false pretenses. Heck, when I volunteer at my daughter's school it is because I know that it puts me in well politically to get the teachers I want, to be treated like royalty when I am there, etc. I like being adored by my daughter's teacher. And I make it clear that I'm helping because I want to. Sure, when my wife put together the book fair at the school, it was nice to see how the kids were in awe of the tropical jungle she created. Selfless? No way! It boosted her ego and it got the kids excited about books, which selfishly made us happy. Now, you're service in NHS is not for naught. You're really doing it because of the payoff you hope it would bring to have it on a college application or a resume. That is enlightened self interest and it's OK. It's well-known that colleges and employers like that, and you do not have to be in NHS, so you are not being coerced or forced into this. You are not contradicting yourself. A lot of this has to do with how we perceive things. I look at it in the reverse of what altruistic society teaches. They say you shouldn't "sell out" by doing something selfish. Well, in this case, if you "sell out," you get brownie points that could pay off later. It works out great. We all know that incentive gets people to do things, which is why capitalism works. This is way to align yourself early in life with the investor class. Here you are investing time rather than money. But if you look at life as a series of investments and payoffs, you'll get what you want and be happy too.
  24. Antonio

    Good Samaritan

    Indeed if it's a stranger who is in danger, and one has a spouse and children, it would be contrary to one's values to put oneself at risk. I do not take such risks because I wish to maintain or increase the probability that I will remain alive to be with and help take care of my wife and family - my highest values. I am not paid to be a rescuer and I am certainly not trained in most emergencies. My actions could also then not only be harmful to my highest values if I die or am seriously injured, but I could make matters worse for the party I am trying to rescue if I am not properly trained.
  25. We ran into this in our area with Richard Pipes came to visit our area. The same organization responded to our local newspaper's coverage of this with a similar, and very weak, response. Part of that system of belief, and of faiths in general, is that the faithful judge infidels as being wrong, and therefore their views should not be aired. They've taken to using political correctness in an effort to limit speech they disagree with.
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