Saturday, January 23, 2010

News Flashes

There was an article on Fox News this morning about how humans might eventually be able to run 40 miles an hour (and that the fastest human now runs 28 miles per hour). That falls into the category of "and what good would that be?"

We live in a society of great obesity because people aren't exercising period, so reaching the limits of human endurance seems kind of silly when most people won't get off the couch and go for a walk (this is one area where I can be self-righteous, as I walk 2-3 miles a day; that's really not enough but it's something). Until we can get people to live healthy lifestyles, health care reform is missing the point.

The Republicans might be overreaching about the Scott Brown victory. They can't bank on a sweep in November. By them the mood might be calmed down, especially if health care reform goes in a different direction and the job market improves. I want to feel sorry for President Obama but have to remember he himself wildly overreached in wanting to "fundamentally transform America." I figured out why his speaking since the inauguration has been so lackluster. As president, one has to talk about something other than oneself. He does great when he talks about himself, his vision, his dreams; he is less inspiring (to say the least) when it's not about him. Ironically he said in a speech yesterday "This is not about me." HA! He's just now figuring that out, I guess. Can we say "buyer's remorse"?

The last two times we got take-out at our favorite restaurants, we got sick. I guess we won't be going there again. I can't handle that kind of pain!

I am reading Mark Noll's 1990 book, Religion and American Politics. Fascinating stuff. I am going to start studying identity theory as well.

I have been contemplating going on a mission trip with my church. Now this is a hard decision. First, the money: would it be better spent in another way? Second, my motivation; I can't get my head around why I really want to do this. Third, timing; it may work out quite well, actually. Fourth, money again; my son just told me his college tuition was going up quite a bit next year, and my pay is not. Fifth, health. Yeah, I'm okay there. I can handle a trip like that. Sixth, my husband. I just don't know if I should be so worried about going off all over the world just to make myself feel connected to my church. I would really prefer to visit friends on the mission field.

A friend who sends me email things sent me one about Idiot Sightings; one of them had to do with cashiers who can't make change. This skill is not taught to young people any more, so they can't do the simple math involved (it's just adding). I feel the same way about gps systems. Young people won't be able to read a simple map. Plus, who wants a car talking to them?

I am on a committee to hire three new English teachers. We received resumes from some very accomplished people. However, I have to wonder about the research going on in higher education. One candidate's dissertation is about mast--- in some literary period. Oh, my. I can't even talk about it in polite conversation. Unbelievable. Obviously, we chose not to interview that person. However, some of the letters we received showed that academics don't know how to write business letters (a cover letter should not be three or four pages long).

Do they just show old Westerns on AMC on Saturdays?

I received a phone call this morning from a group wanting me to give money to Haiti relief. I sent money the first day, so I would like to be left alone. Money is not the problem down there. Lack of American generosity is not the problem down there. Haiti's culture and lack of infrastructure is (are) the problem. Not being able to get the massive supplies to the people is the problem. No viable government in Haiti is the problem. Their history of political corruption is the problem. I stand by what I said earlier--raze Port-au-Prince and start over, and get the orphans out of there. Too many Americans want them.

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