Wednesday, April 27, 2011

So many levels of stupid on all parties’ parts.

First, let's talk about the incident: a mother stands off a swat team in Detroit sent to seize her little girl because she refused to let her be medicated.

Yeah, I'm betting you're having my reaction: why the hell would you raise a kid in Detroit? Why the hell would you even think about letting your kid go to Detroit public schools when you've been homeschooling? Why the hell hadn't you gotten her immunized earlier?

Say what, now?

Little girl born with a birth defect that required the amputation of one of her feet tells Mom she wants to go to public school. I can't fault her mother for homeschooling the child, nor can I fault her for her protectiveness. However, she never bothered to get her child her immunizations. And the little girl apparently had some nasty bad reactions to it. When the family sought treatment, the little girl was put on an ADHD med—which she didn't need. The Department of Child Illfare has admitted she didn't need it. Mom refused to dose her daughter with it, and the courts stepped in to take the little girl away and forcibly medicate her. Mom didn't do as she was told and turn the kid over.* So, the cops are sent to seize the kid like she's the ill-gotten gains of a drug deal.** Mom not only refuses to hand her little girl over, she pulls a gun to defend herself, her home, and her family from those who sought to harm them (i.e., the government and Child Illfare). SWAT got called.

Mom is now a criminal, and little girl is now in foster care, despite Department of Child Illfare promises that she'd go to relatives.

Of course the government is stupid and abusive—that's a given, sadly enough. However, Mom did a lot of stupid things, several of which I addressed earlier: first and foremost, living in Detroit; not having her child immunized as an infant; even considering the girl's request to go to public school (which ranks up there pretty high); and seeking medical help while on government assistance in a big government nanny state.

Note that I never said pulling a gun in defense of your child was one of them.

Honestly, I think this family has grounds to not only get Mom's charges overturned, but grounds to sue the city of Detroit, the Department of Child Illfare, the doctors involved, the county health clinic that called Child Illfare, and everyone involved in scarring this little girl's psyche by ripping her from a semi-responsible, loving, non-abusive family.

*I wouldn't, either. I've lived through that mistake, and I won't make it with my kids.

**Given that it's Detroit, and there's no father in the picture, the kid involved might well have been the ill-gotten gains of a drug deal.

Just another illustration of why I’m unwilling to go anywhere unarmed.

I'm a very small woman. I've been a victim of a large man; I am a survivor. I refuse to be a victim again. You never know who's going to have the courage and moral fortitude of this woman's lawyer.

There is exactly one tool (okay, one type of tool) that makes me a physical equal to any man out there. It goes BOOM! and throws little bits of metal of different calibers, from smaller than the end joint of my (very small) pinky finger to larger than the end joint of my thumb, at very high speeds.

A gun free zone is a target rich environment. I don't ever plan to be a target.

It’s about bloody time someone said it!

LZ Granderson writes an op-ed suggesting that it's parents' fault that kids are being sexualized earlier and earlier. He focuses on how people damn fashion and designer labels for putting out push-up bras for 12 year olds, but should really be damning the people who buy the push-up bras for their 12 year olds, who really don't have anything to push up. For example, he describes seeing a pretty young thing dressed to kill, with a midriff-baring top, low riding sweats with "Juicy" on the seat…and who was only about eight years old.

Yeah, that 8-year-old girl was something to see all right. ... I hope her parents are proud. Their daughter was the sexiest girl in the terminal, and she's not even in middle school yet.

The man has the right idea.

It's easy to blast companies for introducing the sexy wear, but our ire really should be directed at the parents who think low rise jeans for a second grader is cute. They are the ones who are spending the money to fuel this budding trend. They are the ones who are suppose to decide what's appropriate for their young children to wear, not executives looking to brew up controversy or turn a profit.

I get it, Rihanna's really popular. But that's a pretty weak reason for someone to dress their little girl like her.

I don't care how popular Lil' Wayne is, my son knows I would break both of his legs long before I would allow him to walk out of the house with his pants falling off his butt. Such a stance doesn't always makes me popular -- and the house does get tense from time to time -- but I'm his father, not his friend.

That's sadly becoming a unique way to raise children.

I not only don't disagree with him, I think he doesn't go far enough in castigating the parents who prefer to be their children's best friends. Those parents are raising a generation of whiny, insecure, bullying, lazy…I could go on all night, describing the children those parents are releasing into the world with the adults.

I parent more like Ganderson, and like I assume he's doing, I'm working on raising future adults. I don't care if my kids like me or not. I don't even care if they tell me they hate me. I know better, and I will know better when the time comes to tell them that no, my daughter can't go to school looking like she works at a brothel, and my son had better not look like he's just about to go to one (or worse—has just left one).

Parents love their kids. That goes without saying. Even the selfish, stupid, immature parents love their kids.

Good parents love their kids enough to set boundaries, and trust that Twain was onto something.

Monday, April 25, 2011

From the only funny dream I had last night.

"I always thought it was 'grin and BARE it,' not B-E-A-R, 'bear it.'"

"Yeah, Mom and Dad never told you because they thought it was funny when you did."

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Aren’t you just the cutest little smug bug? Yes, you are!

I don't know if this guy is serious or trying to be funny. If he's trying to be funny, he's failing. Badly. What he's succeeding at is being offensively sexist to a person who doesn't typically notice sexism. His comments on female membership in the NRA (specifically, why women aren't a visible chunk of the NRA's membership) are sexist, misogynistic, and explains why he's probably still asking his mom to explain to him why he's still single while she cleans his apartment in her basement.

I am a gun owner. I am a gun enthusiast. I am a woman. I am a wife. I am a mother. Oddly enough, I'm also a college English professor.

Here are some money quotes from sexist dude:

But it seems that many preconceived notions must be overcome before the National Rifle Association attracts more women to its annual convention. Right now, it's about as popular among women as fly fishing competitions, cigar tasting events and public executions.

Hello, sexist dude—just because something may not be popular with most women doesn't mean that all women don't like that something. Next thing I know, you'll be commenting on how all women would rather have a day at the spa than at the range! Oh, wait: you did.

Its offerings at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center will include a ladies-only seminar teaching them how to become pistol instructors.

To most women, such a seminar probably wouldn't have the same appeal as, say, a holistic facial at the day spa. But providing people with relaxed, radiant faces isn't part of the NRA's mission.

And:

  • Spending several hundred dollars on a serviceable handgun might leave them without enough money to get the full treatment at that next visit to the day spa.

Personally, spending a day at the range does leave me with a relaxed and radiant (if dirty) face. I have never been to a spa, and I am not trusting enough to allow a stranger to put their hands all over me while I'm vulnerable, so I likely will never go to a spa, either. Not my thing. I'd rather spend that money on ammo and go meditate to the sound of a .45 punching many holes very close together in the middle of an eight inch circle.

And if a woman is spending a day at the spa to find a man, she's looking at the wrong place. She'd be more likely to find one that wouldn't spend more time in the morning getting ready than she does if she looked at the range.

  • Carrying a gun in a small purse would leave less room for more important items, such as lipstick or compact.

I have room in my purse for a change of clothes for each of the kids, diapers, wipes, snacks, wallet, checkbooks, etc. I do have a dedicated pocket for my gun, when I have to carry it in my purse, but I'd far prefer to carry concealed on my actual person. Purses can be snatched (though an army surplus multi-purpose digicam courier bag repurposed into a diaper bag is less likely to be). If I were to carry a small purse, I'd have to also carry a diaper bag, and futzing with both bags would make me more vulnerable to having the smaller one (the purse) yanked out of my hands. If my gun is in my purse, my attacker would have it. If it's on my person, it's a) not taking up room in my purse, and b) available to keep said attacker from taking my lipstick compact spare magazine and wallet.

  • The baggy clothing required to successfully conceal most holsters would make them appear frumpy.

Actually, the best concealment I've found is a pair of well-fitting blue jeans, a tank top, and a blazer, with the holster tucked down the waistband. The way I carry, I don't look frumpy—I look classy—and no one is ever going to know I'm carrying unless, like me, they can add line of clothes + way individual is walking + keeping their dominant hand free + not letting suspicious characters get behind them and come up with "there's a gun there." Not without patting me down looking for it. (And if someone is patting me down looking for a gun, they'd better be arresting me.)

  • Gunpowder residue might stain the new Karen Scott blouse they just bought at Macy's.

Gunpowder residue doesn't stain. Duh. If he had ever fired a gun, and/or done his own laundry, he'd know that.

  • The gunpowder smell when the weapon is fired could totally overwhelm the Chanel they're wearing.

If a woman is wearing Chanel, they're trying to impress other women. Or metrosexuals who probably use even more expensive fragrance, so wouldn't be impressed by Chanel, anyway. No, gunpowder and Hoppe's No. 9 is a far more potent man bait than the most expensive perfume.

  • Most firearm accessories come only in one boring color: black.

What is he, stupid? Black goes with everything. No, give me a plain black gun over shiny stainless with pearl grips any day. And don't even get me started about the accessorizing that can be done by changing 1911 grips.

  • Target practice earplugs simply aren't sexy.

Neither is being a rape victim. (Personally, my other half finds me taking the time to learn to protect myself quite sexy.)

I could go into just why this guy must be so stupid because he's a man, but I like men in general, and don't want to insult them by implying that he is one.



Time to hook up the icemaker.

It'll make a nihilist hippie cry for Mother Gaia.

Saw this a couple days ago, didn’t have time to comment.

I love my kids, and I love my job, but I seriously wish I had more time to write. I would have beaten Vilmar to the punch.

This is a vicious violation of our fourth and fifth amendment rights. There's no way I'd a) own a smartphone to begin with, or b) hand it over to be searched without a warrant and probable cause, whether I'd been doing something wrong or not. No, I wouldn't cooperate any more than I'd cooperate if the government decided to place a GPS tracker in my car without a court order.

(And yes, I regularly look under the car for things like this. I may be paranoid, but I absolutely do not trust the government or law enforcement not to violate my rights. If I find one, it's getting tucked down in the seat of a taxi in one of the two major cities in Missouri.)

This explains so much.

Apparently, there was a study of…manhood enhancement techniques in France (where, apparently, normal, or average penis size is three inches. When fully erect.). You know, compared to the rest of the world, that's pretty darn pitiful. And you know they know it.

Honestly, given that information, I am totally unsurprised that they're studying penis length enhancing techniques. And that their birthrate is shrinking the population of ethnic French so badly that they're importing new taxpayers.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

What class

I cannot believe that a judge had to slap down one panel of lawyers for objecting to a continuance requested by the other side because of one of the other side's lawyers' wife was due to give birth.

When the judge, in overruling the objection raised by one side, congratulates the other, it bodes very ill for the side that objected.

Friday, April 15, 2011

So, how has tax day treated you?

Did you get dinner and maybe a kiss first, or did they just roll you over and do you dry?

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Dumbfounded

I finished grading last week's blogs last night. One of them was so far above what one of my students' usual writing skill has been to that point that I e-mailed said student, telling them that I couldn't prove it, but was certain that the post wasn't their work. I told them that they wouldn't be receiving credit, but that I wouldn't fail them for the whole class.

I just got an e-mail response from that student. They told me that it was their work, that it was a paper that they'd written in the past for a different class. They told me (not in these terms, but with the same meaning) that they were capable of doing much better work than they'd done for my class, and that they'd been blowing my class off.

Then they said that they planned to pick it up with my class to finish out the semester with a better grade than they've currently got.

Good luck. I'm not inclined to grade this person's work as easily as I have been, and I am not an easy grader. They've aced one paper out of three so far, and are barely average. I am not giving a grade above an average unless the paper is absolutely perfect—no grammar errors, no standout problems in focus, organization, development, or tone/style. This person is going to have to write professional level work from here on out to get an above average, much less an excellent from me.

I do not remember giving any class less than my best, when I was a student. It didn't matter if I hated the professor (four times that I can think of), or if I hated the material (much more often), or if I simply didn't understand it despite trying my hardest, I never gave less than my best effort. I do not comprehend the mindset that says "I don't want to do this, it's not related to my major, so I'm just not gonna bother."

I don't understand that mindset. I really don't understand why that student admitted that they didn't give a rat's ass about my class to me in an e-mail. I mean, I teach composition. I know they don't care about/like my class. Most of them try anyway.

I hate giving a student a failing grade. I hate it. I have never wanted to give a student a failing grade for actually failing to do the work, much less a failing grade for attitude.

I want to fail this child so hard they bounce all the way out of my university. Their attitude is, in my opinion, almost as bad as plagiarism, because of the image they set up of themselves as a failure when they could easily have been writing papers and blog posts more readable than most modern novelists' work.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Testing a feature

Microsoft Word has added something to the '07 version that I'm testing out: when you click on "New Document," it gives you a choice between a standard document and a blog post.

I'm testing out the "blog post" feature to see how it works.

Edit: It seems to have worked pretty well.

I thought the Nomenklaturea was a Soviet thing...

...apparently not. I guess it's more a Socialist/Marxist thing--the People's Democratic Republic of Kalifornia proves that.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Stupid marketing decisions.

There's a local realtor--Next Generation Realty--that really needs to re-think their ad signs and For Sale signs. Every time I drive past one, I mis-read it: NGR Realty really looks bad at even residential area speeds.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Shit.

Back in August of last year, we bought a used car, cash on the barrel. We paid $1500 for a 1986 Mercedes 190E (a 4 door, unlike our '03 Civic). We've driven that car nearly constantly since we bought it. I adored that car.

Note the past tense.

Yesterday, we were visiting my in-laws, and left the boy with them while we went into town to their Sam's Club. The boy has recently started drinking chocolate milk--"boo juice"--but only one brand of shelf-stable stuff that has a cow on the individual serving-size cartons. Our club doesn't carry that brand, and doesn't carry a few other things we like, while their club does.

Everything went fine until we were nearly back to their house. Then something went thump, and we lost power to the wheels. The engine mostly sounded fine (except for a few more thumps), but really pushing down the accelerator pedal didn't get us up to more than about 25 mph.

Needless to say, that last ten miles back to the in-laws took a while.

My car may not be worth it to fix. It would be a minimum of $600 for a shop to fix, if it is what my other half thinks it is (cracked head gasket). Unless that is what it is, and we can find a shade-tree mechanic that can fix it for under $500, it really isn't worth it to fix the car. That is, after all, about a third of what we paid for it.

Meanwhile, we're stuck with two car seats--one front-facing, and one rear-facing carrier--in a two-door car. We're not going to be able to go anywhere that isn't absolutely necessary for a good while.

Friday, April 1, 2011

I only wish this were an April Fool's joke.

Despite what the government swearing that there is no inflation, and using that lie to justify no COLAs for seniors, Wal-Mart's CEO says that the superstore can't hold the line on prices for consumers much longer.

In other words, were it not for Wal-Mart, the federal government's big lie would have been exposed sooner.

I'm now just waiting for the government to be exposed for the incompetents they are when it's revealed that, not only is there no money in Social Security for COLAs, but there's no money in Social Security, period, and they're stopping payments for good (even though they're not going to stop collecting the taxes that supposedly pay for it).

The moment that happens will mark the beginning of Rome burning.