February 28, 2007
So, another inconceivable case has come up in court. A man raped a girl. Went to jail for it. Served his time. Is now free. He is back in court again...as a prosecutor...fighting for parental rights to the child he 'helped' conceive when he raped his victim. Now, this is just one of many cases that I figured would never come up, but it has. And what the heck do you do about it? Is it so far off to believe that the man could have found redemption behind bars during those years. That the man is looking to do the right thing after years of doing wrong? Obviously, the child's safety is of utmost concern in this scenario. But, what if this ex-rapist now gets married to a new women and has children. The state surely would not take them away from this man. But, our conscience desperately wants to keep him away from this child. What to do?
Posted by Eric Olsen at 8:59 AM
February 27, 2007
This format of "Ten on an Island" will be the basis of a series of questions to come in order to develop a possible political/governmental upgrade from western democracy. The premise is that there are ten people on an island, they are a sovereign nation, and they are trying to determine how to best govern themselves.
Question #1: One of these ten is a religious extremist who believes that a refusal to believe in his god deserves death. His publicly spoken goal is to to destroy the unbelievers, and is actively pursuing this goal. As the 9, what do you do?
Posted by Eric Olsen at 7:59 AM
February 26, 2007
So, there's a coffee shop in Seattle where prices are flexible. Specifically, you order a sandwich, chips and a coffee, and you pay what you think it's worth. I admire a man willing to give people the benefit of the doubt. I definitely would not have...until I heard his results. He claims to be making nearly exactly what he would if he put prices on each item himself. He says some people tend to cheap out and pay a dollar for a nice lunch, but some customers tend to overpay, because they like the idea of being part of something like this. It's a fascinating study in human character, and if this store can remain successful longterm, is very encouraging re: the state of our union.
Posted by Eric Olsen at 8:43 AM
February 23, 2007
New York State Sen. Carl Krueger introduced a bill that would make it illegal to enter a city crosswalk while engaging in the use of an electronic device. His contention is that people who are listening to music, typing on their blackberry, talking on their phone, etc. are not aware of the sounds of traffic around them, and cites three recent examples of citizen fatalities because of this. Of course, by this logic, Sen. Krueger must also be under the contention that deaf people should not be allowed out in public.
In other disabled news this week, the proposed Maryland law that would promote the use of eco-friendly "hybrid" cars is being opposed by advocates of the blind, because hybrid cars are much quieter, and traffic sounds are critical for the blind to be able to get around safely. These advocates are looking to require some sort of reverse muffler for these eco-vehicles. Which goes to show you something, I'm just not sure what.
Posted by Eric Olsen at 8:47 AM
February 22, 2007
February 21, 2007
So, Chief Illiniwek is giving his last rain dance this week, and is officially retiring as the University of Illinois mascot. So, I understand the reasons behind this, but I don't understand the choosing of "offendiest". When I was in junior high, they took away our Washington Warriors mascot, and replaced him with a thunderbird. Yet, the NFL team, the Washington Redskins are still alive and kicking? Is it because the NCAA and District 203 care more about their rep than the NFL? But, then again, why doesn't the NCAA care about the Fighting Irish, insinuating that Irish people are nothing more than ugly, intoxicated midget boxers? I found this replacement idea made by some students from the University of Illinois to be an appeasing substitute. But, if they ever play any schools in the Southern Belt, we may have another Ford's Theater upon us.
Posted by Eric Olsen at 8:40 AM
February 20, 2007
February 19, 2007
February 16, 2007
So, there's a lot of kids out there who, even after public school health class, don't really understand how sexual interaction works. The school nurse gives them condoms, but is that really enough to prepare them for the sexual world? I propose a mandatory Sexploration class. It could replace a gym credit if necessary (cardio). The school would provide clean beds, clean sheets, and most importantly a safe place for children to explore their changing bodies. After all, these children are going to be having hundreds of sexual partners anyway. We need to ensure they have a safe environment in which to do so.
Posted by Eric Olsen at 8:28 AM
February 15, 2007
So, do you remember hearing about the guys who said we should build big spaceships that we could fill with landfills and blast them off of Earth? Many people found this idea to be economically inefficient. But, my friend brought up another point courtesy of Mr. Einstein. His findings were that matter can not be created or destroyed, only moved. Therefore, by transferring mass from Earth, what could the the consequences (gravity, etc.) of that be?
That caused me to ponder something else. Let's say on arbor day, Joe Treehugger goes out and plants a tree. He did good, right? He took a seed and turned it into a tree? Not really. Nutrients that were below the ground are now above the ground. Nothing innately good was actually created. Matter was merely transformed and rearranged.
Posted by Eric Olsen at 8:38 AM
February 14, 2007
So, come Springtime, many people will run out to their local Menards/Home Depot/Lowes and buy some fertilizer to get their lawns off to a great start and looking its greenest. But, we don't actually want our lawn to GROW fast, do we? Because that means we have to cut it more often. We just want it to look green. So, how about non-toxic grass-colored spray paint for lawns? Or if you have the means, some sort of grass-loooking & feeling artificial turf?
February 13, 2007
I am reading (listening) to Plato's masterpiece, "The Republic", which discusses the philosophy of his mentor, Socrates, through a fictional narrative. As I read (listen), I find myself hearing nuggets of Socratic wisdom that we have already come to on this site. However, not many of us (at least not I) had ever read these philosophies before. So, my question is, where is the next Socrates? Well, his name was Plato. And the one after that, Aristotle. But, there it ends? Coincidentally, the three brightest philosophical minds just happened to have been friends/mentors with one another? Surely today's Socrates must exist. Perhaps among us? Please stand up.
Posted by Eric Olsen at 8:55 AM
February 12, 2007
So, there's a bunch of flaming hot magma directly below us in the Earth's core. It's like our own personal sun. Except, it's millions of miles closer. So, how bout we start digging down there and harnessing the energy down there created by the heat?
Posted by Eric Olsen at 10:07 AM
February 09, 2007
(this post idea was given to my by a faithful friend and fellow contributor to this project)
"Joe Smith, Middle Linebacker, Duke"; "Gary Gould, Cornerback, Fresno State"; "Terry Thomas, Quarterback, THE Ohio State University"
How annoying is the name of that school? Not only for grammatical reasons, but the pretension behind it. Putting a 'THE' in front of your associated body does not automatically give it some sort of elitist ranking. Isn't it annoying during the pre-game announcements how alumni smugly state this ridiculous school name as their proud roots. Maybe, it's similar to the way our heads of state smugly go around the world introducing themselves as the leader of THE United States of America. Perhaps it's this egotism that drives the world against us. To be fair, both entities deserve some elitism. THE U.S. probably is the greatest (freest, richest) country in the world. And Ohio State is consistently one of the most competitive football teams in the NCAA. But, maybe, some humility would stop some hating.
Posted by Eric Olsen at 8:30 AM
February 08, 2007
So, there's a sign outside the locker room at my gym that says, "No camera phones or digital cameras may be used inside this locker room." Now, is it right to assume that this sign is now up because of an incident where a curious person went around the showers pointing and clicking? I just can't imagine that happening. But, before joining this gym, I never imagined old, fat men could love to wander around the locker room nude as much as they do. But I was obviously wrong about that. Again, the question needs to be posed.
Posted by Eric Olsen at 12:27 PM
February 07, 2007
Thurgood Marshall Elementary School, in Seattle, WA, is one of 250 public schools in the nation now offering single-sex education. No, this doesn't mean their health teachers are homophobic. Single-sex education means that boy students learn in classes with all boy students, and girl students learn in classes with all girl students. Prior to the school's conversion, in 2000, only 10% of boy students had satisfactory reading scores, one of the lowest numbers in the nation. One year into the single-sex experiment, that percentage shot up to 66%. Now, some boy students don't like this setup because there's no little ladies around to awkwardly flirt with. And some feminists don't like this setup, because it suggests that there is truly a pyschological difference between the genders. But, it's hard to argue with results. Looking back, if I had spent less time trying to look cool and make jokes in front of girls in high school, I could be a dentist or something by now.
February 06, 2007
Well, we discussed this a while ago. But, science may have found our answer. Studies show that circumcised men contract HIV through intercourse 70% less than uncircumcised men. For those of you who didn't do too well in math, that number is huge and could have major repercussions in the war against AIDS. Decades ago, Dr. H. Dam discovered that a spike in Vitamin K occurs in the 8th day after birth for all newborn males that creates blood coagulation, making this the ideal day to perform the circumcision. Maybe this could become standard practice in Africa. That's very interesting about the 8th day, specifically because of what this guy said decades before Dr. H. Dam.
Posted by Eric Olsen at 8:31 AM
February 05, 2007
So, trends are showing that small dogs are becoming very popular among single men. And german shepherds are still the #1 choice for a pet among bitter, single women. Which goes to show that we, as humans, think that animals are very practical human substitutes. Constant companionship, constant love. Only problem is, they're dogs you freakin' weirdos. Which once again helps prove my point that the domestication of animals is wrong.
Posted by Eric Olsen at 9:17 AM
February 02, 2007
I've heard this phrase a lot. Kind of like the Bible is the constitution of God. But, the Bible is merely a historical perspective of God from people that God interacted with. From the Bible, we get to learn the nature of God. We also get to learn the nature of people... that they're idiots. Seriously, I think I used to think of Biblical people as really righteous...but they're all jerks. Murderers, liars, adulterers, and those are attributes of some of the "heroes" of the Bible. I like that one of the morals of the Bible is that people suck. I just read a passage today that made me think of this, because someone finally called these people out on it.
Israel had just destroyed a foe city, looted all of the city's possessions and then came back home. Part of this loot included golden idols to false gods. So, what to do with these golden idols? Well, let's place them in the temple so people can worship multiple gods at the same time just in case one of them is wrong.
One guy says to this, "Why would you want to worship a god who couldn't protect his people from getting overtaken by you?"
It's an interesting parallel to the universalistic non-0bjective stance that a lot of people tend to take today when it comes to God. "I think there's many paths to God." "Who's to say that only what YOU believe is right?"
Maybe we're just hedging our bets, but if there is only ONE God, that could be a foolish gamble.
Posted by Eric Olsen at 8:20 AM