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Oyarsa's Observances

This blog is created for my random thoughts and opinions. Conflicting opinions are always welcome, but comments or remarks left in a disrespectful or distasteful manner (to be determined by myself) will be either ignored or deleted. This blog has a zero-tolerance policy for spammers. Don't waste your time, spammers, go elsewhere.


"Oyarsa" for those who don't know, is the name of an archangel (or "god" with a little 'g') in C. S. Lewis's Space Trilogy. I liked the character, so I stole the name. Who am I? I am a library science student in Illinois who has a variety of interests--too many to list! I have worked in libraries for five years and counting.

Are you a good person?

Friday, September 30, 2005

An Honest Heart-to-Heart Chat on Marriage

I was talking with a friend about the state of marriage in America, and the one thing that continually came up was the notion that "love" or "happiness" was one of the reasons people chose a wedding partner, i.e. "I love her," or "he makes me happy" or "I respect him".

Now, before you accuse me of saying "marry someone who makes you miserable" or "marry someone you hate" or "marry someone you can't respect, let me clarify what I mean.

An imperfect man and an imperfect woman do not a perfect marriage make, so let's put away the Wedding Barbie and Wedding Ken and think this through.

First off, you are responsible for your feelings. Even if someone does something you don't like, you can control how you will react to it. You've been mastering the art since your toddler years (though, we all hope you've matured beyond having an emotional meltdown every time something doesn't go your way.) Sooner or later, the man you respect, or the woman you love will become unrespectable or unlovable. That’s just the way it is.

Secondly, marriage isn’t a game. It’s not something you jump into and hope that you ‘win’. It’s work. It’s 128 hours a week-no pay-no health care benefits-work. It’s all about learning to respect him when he’s being a jerk and learning to love her when she’s being irrational, because love means more than an emotion—it’s a commitment to the true good of another person, the same way your mother loved you when she comforted you when you were hurling or reassured you when you saw monsters under your bed or changed your diapers dutifully. Ladies, there will be days when you have to build up your husbands. Men, there will be days when you have to comfort your wives, even if your spouse isn’t grateful for your efforts at the time—you probably weren’t very grateful at diaper change time.

Thirdly, marriage isn’t about you. It’s not about showing off your husband or wife as a trophy at parties, or about getting your spouse to do things for you. If you make your marriage about you it will fail big time, and you will be picking up the shards of your marriage. Understand that, and do your best to understand your husband or your wife. Ladies: don’t treat your husband like your girlfriends; Men: don’t treat your wife like your buddies.

Marriage isn’t for the weak. It separates the men from the boys and the women from the girls. If we want to heal marriage in our society, we need to heal the foundation of marriage by educating people in what it takes to make a marriage work. Until or unless we do so, by our negligence, we will have doomed ourselves, our posterity, and our country.

Top Ten Most Embarassing Moments of 2004

Yeah, it's old, but it's still interesting. I'll post the 2005 list when it's up.


JunkScience.com Announces Top Ten “Most Embarrassing Moments” of 2004

List Spotlights Dubious Achievements and Irresponsible Claims Made by Health and Environmental Scientists

WASHINGTON, D.C., (Dec. 1) -- JunkScience.com today announced its list of the Top Ten Most Embarrassing Moments in Health and Environmental Science for 2004. The list spotlights individuals and organizations that -- through exaggerated claims, bad judgment, and/or hidden agendas -- have most egregiously undermined public confidence in the scientific community’s capacity to conduct sound and unbiased research.

JunkScience.com has exposed and debunked flawed research and unfounded scientific claims since 1996. “Many researchers and organizations sensationalize scientific claims to grab media attention,” says JunkScience.com publisher Steven Milloy, “and, all too often, the media simply repeat such claims verbatim.” Milloy is the author of “Junk Science Judo: Self-defense Against Health Scares and Scams” (Cato Institute, 2001) a guide for laypersons interested in being able to recognize distorted research -- a.k.a. junk science.

JunkScience.com’s Top Ten “low-lights” for 2004 are:

1. In August, Harvard University researcher Dr. Walter Willett delivered an urgent warning to parents declaring soft drinks harmful to children. Upon closer inspection, however, the report by Dr. Willett’s research team suppressed some highly contradictory evidence-- including findings from their own research -- to reach this far-flung conclusion. Read more...

2. Leading up to election day, Stanford researcher and TV spokesman, Dr. Irving Weissman, preyed on the public’s trust in his credentials as he hawked the $3 billion pro-embryonic stem cell research initiative, known as Proposition 71, to California voters -- without also disclosing the fact that, as a director and major options holder in a stem cell research company, he stands to benefit substantially from the windfall of taxpayer dollars. Read more...

3. Anti-obesity crusaders at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, who claimed in March that “obesity kills 400,000 Americans each year,” received a long-overdue black eye when researchers from the National Center for Health Statistics attacked the oft-quoted estimate as overblown by as much as 200 percent -- revealing just how the crusaders cooked the books. Read more...

4. The Arctic Climate Impact Assessment alerted the public that polar bears may be on the verge of extinction due to global warming -- even though their own data show that the current Arctic warming trend is within the expected fluctuations of the Arctic’s natural cooling/warming cycle. Despite their claims, other scientific surveys indicate that polar bear populations have actually been increasing during the current warming trend! Read more...

5. The Center for Science in the Public Interest bestowed its annual “Integrity in Science” award to Dr. Theo Colburn, a major proponent of the 1996 health scare blaming trace levels of industrial chemicals in the environment -- so-called “endocrine disruptors” -- for every health problem from cancer to infertility to attention deficit disorder. Where was CSPI when, in 1999, the National Academy of Science’s National Research Council announced that there was no persuasive evidence to support the endocrine disruptor scare? Read more...

6. Bypassing the more established tradition of featuring a prominent scientist or official as keynote speaker for its 2004 Annual Meeting, the American Public Health Association chose to set the tone with none other than anti-toxin babe Erin Brockovich -- and proudly featured a revealing, bustier-clad photo of Ms. Brockovich on their website promotion. Read more...

7. In February, the Journal of the American Medical Association scared the public with a widely-publicized claim that even a single day’s worth of antibiotic use is associated with increased risk of breast cancer. The study’s researchers, however, based this claim on a fatally flawed analysis that did not adequately distinguish antibiotic users from non-users. Read more...

8. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers officials who had halted use of chlorine disinfectant in the Washington, DC drinking water system -- due to unfounded cancer fears hyped by the Environmental Protection Agency -- replaced this proven germ-fighter with a more corrosive substitute that leached lead from the pipes and caused wide-spread public alarm as lead levels climbed above federal standards. Read more...

9. In early 2004, a panel of the National Academy of Science’s Institute of Medicine urged that the recommended daily allowance of sodium be drastically reduced by almost 40% and that the average American’s actual sodium consumption be slashed by more than 60% -- even though 10 major studies conducted since 1995 have all concluded that lower sodium diets don’t produce health benefits and may pose risks for some. Why the extreme recommendation? Political correctness run amok. Read more...

10. University of Arkansas researchers attacked the Atkins Diet in January with a report linking a high-carbohydrate diet with weight loss, saying it was possible to lose weight without cutting calories and without exercising. What they didn’t reveal, however, was that the study subjects who lost weight actually ate 400-600 calories per day less than those who didn’t lose weight. Read more at...

For more information on junk science, including daily updates, visit JunkScience.com, home of, “All the junk that’s fit to debunk.”

CONTACT: Julia Henderson, JunkScience.com, 301-926-3197, Julia@JunkScience.com.

EPA Rules Raise Gas Prices

The following is an article by Steven Milloy, author of www.junkscience.com.


EPA Rules Raise Gas Prices

Thursday, September 29, 2005

By Steven Milloy

We’re all feeling pain at the gas pump these days. So that we don’t pay even higher prices in the future, President Bush and Congress should get a grip on the junk science-fueled Environmental Protection Agency.

Ever-increasing worldwide demand for gasoline, U.S. oil refineries operating at or near capacity, and the recent one-two punch from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita resulting in facility shutdowns and infrastructure damage, are major reasons that gasoline has spiked to over $3 per gallon.

Of these reasons, only the increasing worldwide demand is more or less inevitable. But even rising demand can be satisfied by increasing supply — and this is where action can be taken, according to a December 2004 report issued by the National Petroleum Council (search), a federal advisory committee to the Secretary of Energy.

One major bottleneck in the gasoline supply is refinery capacity. If you've followed the news coverage about the gasoline spike, you've probably heard that we need more refineries — especially since we've not built a new one in 30 years.

But don’t hold your breath waiting for construction of new refineries. In addition to the hurdles of not-in-my-backyard opposition (NIMBY-ism) (search) and burdensome environmental regulation, the oil refining business has not produced terrific financial returns for investors — a 5.5 percent return on investment in the oil refining industry versus a 12.7 percent return on investment in blue-chip stocks from 1993 to 2002, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The good news, however, is that while new refineries may not be built any time soon, production at existing refineries can be expanded — and that’s what’s been happening over the last 20 years. Remarkably, we’ve gone from about 320 refineries producing about 100 billion gallons of gas in 1980 to about 150 refineries producing about 130 billion gallons of gasoline in 2004.

But while it is possible to expand domestic refinery capacity without constructing new refineries, current and planned EPA rules act as disincentives to refinery expansion.

In 1997, the EPA made air quality standards across the country more stringent. As I’ve written in this column many times before, these standards were not based on sound science and, consequently, aren’t likely to produce benefits commensurate with their $100 billion annual cost.

Although the EPA’s 1997 rules have not yet been fully implemented, states are already being held hostage by them. States where air quality standards fail to meet (or “attain” in air pollution lingo) EPA air quality standards can be penalized through loss of federal highway funds — a coveted source of revenue to states.

But the EPA stands ready to penalize the states before the 1997 rules have had the chance to have an impact on air quality. In the language of the National Petroleum Council report, “As currently structured, [air quality] attainment deadlines precede the benefits that will be achieved from emissions reductions already planned.”

The effect of enforcing the EPA rules before they’ve had a chance to have an effect on air quality will be to force states to take action that will discourage refinery expansion.

States may require refineries to implement more costly emissions controls that further reduce the economic attractiveness of refinery expansion or reduce the viability and profitability of existing domestic refining. Less domestic refining means greater reliance on imported gasoline, which can be more expensive and more difficult to obtain.

As if enforcing air quality standards that haven’t had a chance to materialize yet isn’t bad enough, the EPA is preparing to embark on a new rulemaking process to make those standards even more stringent — forcing states to take even more drastic action that would act as even a greater disincentive on refinery expansion.

While the President and Congress might not have the political will to force the EPA to revise its 1997 standards, they should at least press the agency to delay the attainment deadlines. This would give states sufficient time to assess the impact of the 1997 rules and perhaps not make refinery expansion any more economically unattractive than it already seems to be.

The NPC recommended in a 2000 report that “Regulations should be based on sound science and a thorough analysis of cost-effectiveness.”

President Bush issued Executive Order 13211 (search) in 2001 requiring agencies to consider the impacts of regulatory actions on energy supply, distribution and use.

But the NPC 2004 report spotlights EPA’s air quality standards as “examples of regulations that [do not] reflect a thorough analysis of their energy supply effects.”

We may not be able to do anything about the ever-increasing global demand for energy or the extreme weather, but our leaders certainly have the authority to force government agencies to use sound science, cost-benefit analysis and, from time to time, even some common sense.

Steven Milloy publishes JunkScience.com and CSRwatch.com, is adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute, and is the author of Junk Science Judo: Self-defense Against Health Scares and Scams (Cato Institute, 2001).

Respond to the Writer


Flames will set off tiny sprinklers inside your computers, effectively flooding them.

Comments always welcome.

Friday Humor: Cats vs. Dogs

An oldie, but a goodie....


[Friday Humor] Cats vs. Dogs

This is going around via eMail today, and I got a good laugh out of it. I am a cat and dog lover - please don't label me as anti-cat because of this... I'm just passing on a piece of tongue-in-cheek humor. Hope you enjoy it.

How To Clean Your Toilet - The Fun Way

1. Put both lids of the toilet up and add 1/8 cup of pet shampoo to the water in the bowl.

2. Pick up the cat and soothe him while you carry him towards the bathroom.

3. In one smooth movement, put the cat in the toilet and close both lids. You may need to stand on the lid.

4. The cat will self agitate! and make ample suds. Never mind the noises that come from the toilet, the cat is actually enjoying this.

5. Flush the toilet three or four times. This provides a "power-wash" and rinse".

6. Have someone open the front door of your home. Be sure that there are no people between the bathroom and the front door.

7. Stand behind the toilet as far as you can, and quickly lift both lids.

8. The cat will rocket out of the toilet, streak through the house, and run outside where he will dry himself off.

9. Both the commode and the cat will be sparkling clean.


-The Dog

Disclaimer: Please don't actually do this. Not responsible for veterinary bills due to split sides on dog.

Or, for that matter, could you pass...

Could You Pass the 1885 Admission Test for High School?

The following entrance examination for prospective high school students in Jersey City, N.J. was reprinted in the Union City, N.J., newspaper, the Hudson Dispatch, and later in the Wall Street Journal, June 9, 1992, Section A, p. 16.

Jersey City High School, JUNE, 1885


I. Define Algebra, an algebraic expression, a polynomial.
Make a literal trinomial.

II. Write a homogeneous quadrinomial of the third degree.
Express the cube root of 10ax in two ways.

III. Find the sum and difference of 3x - 4ay + 7cd - 4xy + 16, and
10ay - 3x - 8xy + 7cd - 13.

IV. Express the following in its simplest form by removing the parentheses
and combining: 1 - (1 - a) + (1 - a + a2) - (1 - a + a2 - a3).

V. Find the product of 3 + 4x + 5x2 - 6x3 and 4 - 5x - 6x2.

VI. Expand each of the following expressions and give the theorem for
each: {a+4}2, {a2-10}2, {a+4} {a-4}.

VII. Divide 6a4 + 4a3x - 9a2 x2 - 3ax3 + 2x4 by 2a2 + 2ax - x2.

VIII. Find the prime factors of x4 - b4 and x3 - 1.

IX. Find the G.C.D. of 6a2 + 11ax + 3x2, and 6a2 + 7ax - 3x2.

X. Divide (x2 - 2xy + y2)/ab by (x - y)/bc and give the answer in its
lowest terms.


I. If a 60 days note of $840 is discounted at a bank at 4 1/2% what are the proceeds?

II. Find the sum of {square root of} 16.7281 and {square root of} .72 1/4.

III. The interest of $50 from March 1st to July 1st is $2.50.
What is the rate?

IV. What is the cost of 19 cwt. 83 lb. of sugar at $98.50 a ton?
What is discount? A number?

V. Divide the difference between 37 hundredths and 95 thousandths by 25 hundred thousands and express the result in words.

VI. The mason work on a building can be finished by 16 men in 24 days, working 10 hours a day.
How long will it take 22 men working 8 hours a day?

VII. A merchant sold a quantity of goods for $18,775.
He deducts 5% for cash and then finds that he has made 10%.
What did he pay for the goods?

IX. By selling goods at 12 1/2% profit a man clears $800.
What was the cost of the goods, and for what were they sold?

X. A merchant offered some goods for $1170.90 cash, or $1206 payable in 30 days.
Which was the better offer for the customer, money being worth 10%?


I. What is the axis of the earth?

What is the equator?

What is the distance from the equator to either pole in degrees, in miles?

Why is it warmer at the equator than near the poles?

II. Name four principal ranges of mountains in Asia, three in Europe, and three in Africa.

III. Name the capitals of the following countries:
Portugal, Greece, Egypt, Persia, Japan, China, Canada, Hindostan, Thibet, Cuba.

IV. Name the states on the west bank of the Mississippi, and the capital of each.

V. Bound New Jersey, and name six important cities in the state.

VI. Tell the situation of the following:
Detroit, Chicago, Portland, Rio Janeiro, Callao, Venice, Bombay, St. Louis, Halifax, Vera Cruz.

VII. Name 10 countries of South America, and the capital of each.

VIII. Bound Russia and name its capital and largest river.

IX. In what countries is coffee raised?

What are the principal exports of France?

Of the West Indies?

X. New York is nearly 75 {degrees} west of London.
When it is noon at the former, what time is it at the latter?


I. Analyse the following:
Perseus ground his teeth with rage, for he saw that he had fallen into a trap.

II. Make a list of all the verbs in the sentence above, and give the principal parts of each of them.

III. Parse for, had fallen, that, saw

IV. Give two uses of the hyphen.

V. Copy the sentence below, and punctuate it properly.
"Will you please to tell me boys, for what the reindeer is useful"?

VI. Write a sentence containing a noun used as an attribute, a verb in the perfect tense potential mood, and a proper adjective.

VII. Correct

{a} It is only me.

{b} Who did she invite?

{c} Whenever my husband or son take an umbrella down town, they always leave it.

VIII. Write the declension of

{a} bird,

{b} man,

{c} fly,

{d} fox,

{e} it

IX. Write four lines of poetry, giving particular attention to the use of capitals, and to punctuation.

X. Make three sentences, using the plural of sheep

{1} in the nominative case,

{2} in the possessive,

{3} in the objective.

XI. Write a declarative sentence; change to an imperative, to an interrogative, to an exclamatory, and punctuate.


I. What people settled Massachusetts?

Where did they land, and what was their character?

II. Name four Spanish explorers and state what induced them to come to America.

III. What event do you connect with 1565, 1607, 1620, 1664, 1775?

IV. Name the thirteen colonies that declared their independence in 1776.

V. Name three events of 1777. Which was the most important and why?

VI. What caused the war of 1812?

Who was president during that war?

What was the result of it?

VII. What form of government was established in 1789?

Into what three branches was the government divided?

What do the Senate and House of Representatives constitute?

VIII. What caused the Mexican war?

What was the result?

What American general commanded at the capture of the City of Mexico?

IX. What was the remote and the immediate cause of the great Civil war.

Who captured Fort Donelson?

X. Name three commanders of the Army of the Potomac.

In what battle was "Stonewall" Jackson killed?


Answers to this Quiz

Could you pass an 8th grade final exam....

...from 1895?


This is the 8th grade final exam from 1895 from Salina, Kansas. It was taken from the original document on file at the Smoky Valley Genealogical Society and Library in Salina, Kansas, and reprinted by the Salina Journal.

Imagine a college student who went to public school trying to pass this test today, even if the few outdated questions were modernized. This gives the saying of an early 20th century person that "She/He only had an 8th grade education" a whole new meaning!

After you try this test, see if you can pass the high school admission exam.

GRAMMAR (Time, one hour)

1. Give nine rules for the use of Capital Letters.

2. Name the parts of speech and define those that have no modifications.

3. Define Verse, Stanza, and Paragraph.

4. What are the principal parts of a verb?
Give principal parts of do, lie, lay, and run.

5. Define Case. Illustrate each Case.

6. What is Punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of punctuation.

7 - 10. Write a composition of about 150 words and show therein that you understand the practical use of the rules of grammar.

ARITHMETIC (Time, one hour)

1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.

2. A wagon box is 2 feet deep, 10 feet long, and 3 feet wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold?

3. If a load of wheat weighs 3942 pounds, what is it worth at 50 cts. per bu., deducting 1050 lbs. for tare?

4. District No. 33 has a valuation of $35,000.
What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals?

5. Find cost of 6720 lbs. coal at $6.00 per ton.

6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent.

7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft. long at 20 cents per sq. foot?

8. Find bank discount on $300 for 90 days (no grace) at 10 percent.

9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per are, the distance around which is 640 rods?

10. Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt.

U.S. HISTORY (Time, 45 minutes)

1. Give the epochs into which U.S. History is divided.

2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus.

3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.

4. Show the territorial growth of the United States.

5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas.

6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.

7. Who were the following:
Morse, Whitney, Fulton, Bell, Lincoln, Penn, and Howe?

8. Name events connected with the following dates:

ORTHOGRAPHY (Time, one hour)

1. What is meant by the following: Alphabet, phonetic, orthography, etymology, syllabication?

2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?

3. What are the following, and give examples of each: Trigraph, subvocals, diphthong, cognate letters, linguals?

4. Give four substitutes for caret 'u'.

5. Give two rules for spelling words with final 'e'. Name two exceptions under each rule.

6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.

7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: Bi, dis, mis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, mono, super.

8. Mark diacritically and divide into syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates the sound: Ball, mercy, sir, cell, rise, blood, fare, last.

9. Use the following correctly in sentences,
Cite, site, sight,
fane,fain, feign,
vane, vain, vein,
raze, raise, rays.

10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllabication.

GEOGRAPHY (Time, one hour)

1. What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?

2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas?

3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?

4. Describe the mountains of North America.

5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia, Odessa, Denver, Manitoba, Hecla, Yukon, St. Helena, Juan Fermandez, Aspinwall, and Orinoco.

6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S.

7. Name all the republics of Europe and give capital of each.

8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude?

9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.

10. Describe the movements of the earth. Give inclination of the earth.

Answers to the 8th Grade Test (No cheating! Don't even think of looking at the answers until you've finished the test!--Oyarsa)

GRAMMAR (Time, one hour)

1. Give the nine rules for the use of Capital Letters.

Always capitalize the first letter in a sentence or sentence fragment
Always capitalize the first letter in a direct quotation
Always capitalize the first letter in a direct question within a sentence
Always capitalize the first letter in a line of poetry
Always capitalize the first letter in proper nouns, including registered trademarks, names of treaties, geological eras, planets, courts of law, the days of the week, and genera in zoology and botany
Always capitalize the first letter in titles of books, magazines, newspapers, movies, works of art, and music, except for conjunctions, prepositions, and articles (Gone With the Wind)
Always capitalize the first letter in the names of ships, aircraft, and spacecraft (e.g., Sputnik)
Always capitalize the first letter in peoples' names (e.g. John Smith)
Always capitalize the first letter in a title preceding a person's name (e.g., Mr.)
Always capitalize the first letter in words designating the Deity (e.g. God)
Always capitalize the pronoun "I"
2. Name the parts of speech and define those that have no modifications.

Noun: A word used in a sentence as a subject or object of a very or a preposition.
Pronoun: A word used as a substitute for a noun and which refers to a person or thing.
Adjectives: A word that modifies a noun.
Verb: A word that expresses an act, occurrence, or mode of being.
3. Define:

Verse: A line of metric writing
Stanza: A series of lines within a poem that are arranged together and usually involve a recurring pattern of meter and rhyme.
Paragraph: A subdivision of a written composition consisting of one or more sentences dealing with one point or giving the words of one speaker.
4. What are the principal parts of a verb?

Transitive, intransitive, past, present, future, conditional, subjunctive

Give the principal parts of do, lie, lay, and run.

Did, do, doing, shall do
Lied, lie, lying, shall lie
Lay, lay, laying, shall lay
Ran, run, running, shall run
5. Define Case.

A change in the form of a noun, pronoun, or adjective indicating its grammatical relation to other words.

Illustrate each case.

Near, nearer, nearest

6. What is Punctuation?

Dividing a written matter with punctuation marks.

Give rules for principal marks of punctuation.

Comma: Separates main clauses joined by a conjunction; separates words in a series; sets off an adverbial clause.
Semicolon: Links main clauses not joined by conjunctions.
Colon: Introduces a clause that explains or amplifies what has gone on before.
Period: Terminates a sentence.
Hyphen: Used in some compound words.
Question mark: Terminates a direct question.
Exclamation point: Terminates an emphatic phrase or sentence.
Apostrophe: Indicates the possessive case or omissions in contracted words.
Parentheses: Sets off supplementary material.
Quotation marks: Enclose direct quotations.
7-10. Write a composition of about 150 words and show therein that you understand the practical use of the rules of grammar.

Arithmetic (Time, one hour)

1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.

Arithmetic is the branch of mathematics that deals with real numbers.
Addition: Combining numbers to obtain an equivalent quantity.
Subtraction: Deducting one number from another.
Division: Dividing one number by another.
Multiplication: Adding an integer a specified number of times.
2. A wagon box is 2 feet deep, 10 feet long, and 3 feet wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold?


3. If a load of wheat weighs 3942 pounds, what is it worth at 50 cts. per bu., deducting 1050 lbs. for tare?

The net weight of the wheat is 2,892 pounds. A bushel of wheat weighs about 60 pounds. The correct answer is $24.10.

4. District No. 33 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals?

1.3 percent

5. Find cost of 6720 lbs. Coal at $6.00 per ton.


6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent.


7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft. long at 20 cents per sq. foot?


8. Find bank discount on $300 for 90 days (no grace) at 10 percent.

Discount is subtracted from the principal before the borrower receives the money. A person who borrows $300 at a discount rate of 10 percent for 90 days would receive only $260.

9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the distance around which is 640 rods?

An acre is 160 square rods. The answer is $60.

10. Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt.

U.S. History (Time, 45 Minutes)

1. Give the epochs into which U.S. History is divided.

The Colonial Era
The Revolutionary Era
The Critical Period
The Early National Era
The Jeffersonian Era
The Antebellum Era
The Civil War Era
The Gilded Age
The Progressive Era
World War I
The Interwar Era
World War II
The Postwar Era
2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus.

In 1492, the Italian-born Columbus captained three ships westward, seeking a water-route to the Spice Islands. After three months, he encountered land in the Caribbean.

3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.

Causes of the Revolution include the British decision to levy taxes in the colonies without the colonists consent; the stationing of troops in the colonies; the imposition of restrictions on colonial trade, manufacturing, and westward expansion; and infringement of the colonists' legal rights and liberties. Consequences of the Revolution include the emancipation of slaves in many northern states and the adoption of graduate emancipation schemes in other states in the North; the disestablishment of churches in most states; the adoption of new state constitutions; and rapid westward expansion.

4. Show the territorial growth of the United States.

A correct answer would include the purchase of Louisiana Territory from France; the annexation of Texas; the acquisition of the Pacific Northwest as a result of negotiations with Britain; the Mexican War; the Gadsden Purchase; the purchase of Alaska from Russia; and the annexation of Hawaii.

5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas.

A correct answer would include the Kansas-Nebraska Act, which opened Kansas to white settlement and the contest between pro-slavery and free soil forces to control Kansas' territorial legislature.

6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.

The First Battle of Bull Run: The first full-scale battle of the Civil War, which took place in Northern Virginia not far from Washington, dashed Union hopes for a quick military victory.
Antietam: This battle, which witnessed the bloodiest day of the Civil War, halted a Confederate offensive into the North and led President Lincoln to issue his Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation.
Gettysburg: The largest battle in the history of the Western Hemisphere ended the Confederacy's ability to wage an offensive war in the North and removed the threat of foreign intervention in the conflict.
7. Who were the following:

Morse: A prominent artist and nativist who invented the telegraph.
Whitney: The inventor of the cotton gin also helped popularize the American System of standardized parts and mass production.
Fulton: Demonstrated the practicality of steam-powered navigation.
Bell: A teacher of the deaf who invented the telephone.
Lincoln: The 16th President of the United States led the Union during the Civil War and issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which transformed the conflict into a war to liberate the slaves.
Penn: The Quaker founder of Pennsylvania colony.
Howe: An inventor of the sewing machine.
8. Name the events connected with the following dates:

1607: The founding of Jamestown, Britain's first enduring colonial settlement.
1620: The landing of the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock.
1800: The election of Thomas Jefferson as the third president marks the first transfer of power from one political party to another.
1849: The discovery of gold in California the previous year led some 80,000 '49ers to migrate into the territory.
1865: The defeat of the Confederacy in the Civil War and the assassination of President Lincoln.
Orthography (Time, one hour)

1. What is meant by the following:

Alphabet: A set of letters or characters with which a language is written.
Phonetic: Representing the sounds of speech.
Orthography: The representation of a language by written letters or symbols.
Etymology: The history of a word.
Syllabication: The division of words into syllables.
2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?

The elementary sounds are the basic sounds of speech.

3. What are the following, and give examples of each:

Trigraph: a cluster of three successive letters
Subvocals: The occurrence in the mind of words without vocal articulation.
Diphthong: A sound (such as the last sound in the word "toy") that starts at the position of one vowel and moves toward another.
Cognate: Words related by descent from the same ancestral language.
Linguals: Sounds produced by the tongue.
4. Give four substitutes for caret 'u.'

ie (view)
ew (blew)
oo (food)
ou (through)
5. Give two rules for spelling words with final 'e.' Name two exceptions under each rule.

A single long vowel followed by a consonant (other than w or y) is often followed by a final 'e.' (example: crude or prove; exception: love or above)
Two consonants followed by a long 'e' at the end of a word often include two "e"'s. (example: free or tree; exceptions: brie or monkey)
6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.

Pneumonia; knight

7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word:

Bi: two parts; bicycle
Dis: opposite or deprive of; disagreeable
Mis: badly, unfavorable, or not; mistrust
Pre: earlier or prior to; prehistoric
Semi: half or partly; semi-circle
Post: after or subsequent; posthumous
Non: not or reverse of: nonpaying
Inter: between or occurring among: intermarriage
Mono: alone, single, or containing one: monotheistic
Super: above or over; superscript
8. Mark diacritically and divided into syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates the sound:

Ball 'bol
Mercy 'm&r-sE
Sir 's&r
Cell 'sel
Rise 'rIz
Blood 'bl&d
Fare 'far
Last 'last
A glossary of pronunciation terms:

Accent marks: a mark used to indicate stress or pitch.
Diaeresis: Two dots placed side-by-side over a vowel to indicate that a vowel is considered a separate vowel, even though it would normally be considered part of a diphthong.
Digraph: A series of two letters that constitute a single sound not predicted by combining the two letters.
Diphthong: A sound that start at the position for one vowel and moves toward the position of another.
Long and short vowels: Vowel-containing sounds that are long or short in duration.
9. Use the following correctly in sentences,

Cite: Cite the proper source.
Site: The landing site was on the western coast.
Sight: It was a beautiful site.
Fane: (temple or church) To the east is a fane.
Fain: (happy or inclined) He was fain to go to the party.
Feign: (to give a false impression) He feigned death.
Vane: (an object showing the direction of the wind) There was a weather vane on the roof.
Vain: You are so vain.
Vein: Blood flows through her veins.
Raze: The construction workers razed the barn in order to build a new house.
Raise: She raised the flag.
Rays: He enjoys the sun's rays.
10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllibication.

Geography (Time, one hour)

1. What is climate?

The condition of the weather at a particular place.

Upon what does climate depend?

On the season, the temperature, wind velocity, the degree of cloud cover, and precipitation, among other factors.

2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas?

The state's physical location. Cold air from the north moves easily across the Kansas plains during the winter, and hot winds blow from the south in the summer.

3. Of what are are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?

Rivers offer a source of drinking water, water power, and transportation routes. The ocean also provides a transportation route.

4. Describe the mountains of North America.

Major mountain ranges include the Appalachians, the Rocky Mountains, the Sierra Nevadas, and the Cascades.

5. Name and describe the following:

Monrovia: The capital of Liberia.
Odessa: City and port in southern Ukraine on the Black Sea.
Denver: The capital of Colorado.
Manitoba: A Canadian province.
Hecla: A volcano in southwest Iceland.
Yukon: A territory in northwest Canada between Alaska and British Columbia.
St. Helena: An island in the South Atlantic.
Juan Fernandez: A group of three islands in the southeast Pacific west of Chile
Aspinwall: A city in western Pennsylvania.
Orinoco: A river flowing from the Brazilian border to the Columbian border and into the Atlantic.
6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S.

New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco

7. Name all the republics of Europe and give the capitals of each.

Examples include:

Britain (London)
Finland (Helsinki)
France (Paris)
Germany (Berlin)
Italy (Rome)
Netherlands (Hague)
Sweden (Stockholm)
8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude?

Because of the routes of the ocean currents.

9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.

Through evaporation and precipitation.

10. Describe the movements of the earth. Give the inclination of the earth.

The earth spins on its access once a day. It spins around the sun once a year. The earth's inclination is 23.45 degrees.

Related URL, for the interested: Michael Hodges, owner of the Education Report

"How to Control Poverty in New Orleans"

Snagged this from Norma's blog.

With very little government interference. Support and promote intact families in the media, in entertainment, in books, in churches, in the entire culture. Women, save your children from poverty.

My Thoughts on the Katrina Aftermath

It is not entirely the fault of the Feds.
It is not entirely the fault of the Local or State governments.

Yes, the federal government took a few days to get there, but then, that's not a surprise, is it? Government agencies, by nature, are not fast responders. When's the last time you got through a post office line in less than half an hour?

Yes, the state and local governments could have done a lot more to help out. Louisiana should have been declared a disaster area. A mandatory evacuation should have been in place.

School buses in Louisiana, as seen from above.

No, they wouldn't have evacuated everyone, but they would have evacuated a group at a time, took them over the state line (or at another predetermined point) and gone back for more. The school buses should have been used to bus out those who had no reliable transportation (or, people should have been advised to use any available transportation--bikes or walking if necessary--and get outta dodge).

If you read the city of New Orleans' comprehensive emergency plan, it says very clearly: "Conduct of an actual evacuation will be the responsibility of the mayor of New Orleans (my emphasis). The city of New Orleans will utilize all available resources to quickly and safely evacuate threatened areas. Special arrangements will be made to evacuate persons unable to transport themselves or who require specific life-saving assistance. Additional personnel will be recruited to assist in evacuation procedure as needed. Approximately 100,000 citizens of New Orleans do not have means of personal transportation."

What I want to know: Why isn't anyone talking about how Mississippi and Alabama recovered? Nearly all the news has been about New Orleans?

For the interested: Junk Yard Blog drives home the excellent point of who exactly is responsible for what.

Librarian Links

A shoutout to my fellow librarians, if you would like me to link to your blog, let me know; I will need your blog URL to do so, however.


Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Heretical Librarian

Shout out to my fellow conservatives. Check out Heretical Librarian's blog.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Added a new link.

"Ralph Bakshi's Lord of the Rings, Part One: A Critique" I've seen Bakshi's version of Lord of the Rings, and this is very hit on. It's meant to be a review, but it's dripping with so much sarcasm that you simply have to laugh throughout it.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

"How Are You in Love?"

And another quiz to make life interesting....

How You Are In Love

You take a while to fall in love with someone. Trust takes time.

You give and take equally in relationships.

You need your space and privacy. You don't like to be smothered.

You love your partner unconditionally and don't try to make them change.

You stay in love for a long time, even if you aren't loved back. When you fall, you fall hard.

(Let's take a poll..how many people see that as being me, and how many people think I'm smoking something?)

Changed some settings.

All right; I'm going to give the anonymous comments function a try. So, if you're a friend of mine, but don't have a blogger account, you can reply in here.

One thing I do ask: please leave some nickname or some blatant hint only the two of us would know so that I know who you are. If you don't know me, say so; you're still welcome. :-)

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Added More Links. Deleted More Spam

Keep sending suggestions, and I will add more to my Links list. That's an order.

And the newest spam has been deleted. Because I don't like eggs and spam and bacon and spam and....not again...now it's stuck in my head!

Anyway, I have church tomorrow, so I should stop blogging and get ready for church.

Power Wheel!

No, not the power wheel toy you're thinking of!

The Power Wheel!

Here's a pic of what it looks like.

No, I didn't order one directly through lifeline; I actually found one in a store. I've been using it for the past few days, and it's awesome; you really can feel your abs stretch.

I had been looking to update my exercise program (which was previously something like walk-once-or-twice-a-week-do-occasional-situps--um--yeah). But I wanted something that would be fun and cool and not a lot of work

Well. It's fun.

It's cool.

But it is work.

Granted, you're exercising with a wheel, which is always interesting. But it is still work.

Look for a non-speel update coming shortly.

If you want to check it out, go here:

you will have to scroll to see it.

I found it at a store called "Body Dynamics"; if there is a location in your area, they should carry them.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

"Beyond the Summerland" Review

"Beyond the Summerland"
Binding of the Blade Series: Book 1
L. B. Graham
ISBN: 0-87552-720-5

What Critics Have Said....

"A staggering accomplishment. The vibrancy and scope of L. B. Graham's world-builing deserves highest praise. Add in well-rounded and memorable characters, thematic richness, and high adventure, and you have an unbeatable forumula for success. Ranks right up there with Tolkien and Lawhead as among the best Christian novels of the fantastic ever written"

--Jan P. Dennis, discoverer of Frank Peretti, Stephen R. Lawhead, and Ted Dekker

(more critic reviews can be read by looking at the back cover of the image on Amazon.com)

Beyond the Summerland

It was with some skepticism that I picked up the book. Many fantasy books claim to be in the same venue or spirit as Tolkien's work, and few of these can make that boast legitimately. Beyond the Summerland is one such work.

In a world as rich as Tolkien's Middle Earth, the reader is greeted (after an establishing prologue) to experience the life of a young man named Joraiem; a man with loves, hopes, and dreams who is called away from his village to make a pilgrimage expected of all young Novanna (the young nobles of Beyond the Summerland) between 18-25.

He is joined in this by a host of other characters: Alijeron and his battle brother, the tiger Koshti; Rulalin, a Novanna in love with Wylla, the beautiful princess of the Summerland; as well as the blind, elderly wizard Valzaan. Together, our band of heroes must use their unique talents and abilities to discover and thwart the plans of Malek, the evil overlord, if you will, of Graham's world. To do this, each character must not only battle the monsters and evils Malek sends out against them, but also their own inner demons---Joraiem, for instance, has to come to terms with his gift from Allfather, the God of Graham's series.

The writing and character development is altogether seemless, though occasionally, the author grows a bit careless in the dialogue; this is, at worst, only a minor annoyance.

In summary, Beyond the Summerland is an excellent read that Christian fantasy (and even secular fantasy) fans will likely enjoy.

Don't have the money to buy it or want to read it before deciding to purchase it? Email me and give me the state/country you live in and I will find out what libraries in your state have it for you.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Yay! My Blog Is Back To Normal

My blog has finally fixed itself...the "12 Movies Meme" was evidently too much for its settings. Oh well, that game was fun. I like to torture challenge my friends...


Updated Links

As you can see, I have updated my links column. Feel free to suggest new or alternative links.

For those who don't know, L. B. Graham is the author of the Binding of the Blade Series (he currently has 2 out of 5 of the series published; Beyond the Summerland and Bringer of Storms. I'll post my reviews of both later tonight or tomorrow.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Monday Humor: Why Noone Should Live in the USA

"Why Noone Should Live in the USA"

(Original Source: LJ user "trollprincess"; quotes my addition)

On more serious matters, my prayers go with those in the path of Rita.

Edit: If you can't see the image clearly, click on the graphic and it will enlarge itself. Then hit the back button to return to my blog.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

What do you guys think? Is this me?

I try not to read too much into these sorts of quizzes, because how I see myself could be completely different than how someone else sees me.

So, if someone needs to smite me with a 2x4, please, do so.

Here's my quiz results...


You're just the happy go-lucky type. You might have
your pet peeves, but other than that, you're
mainly calm. Blending in with your
surroundings, you're the type of person who
everyone likes. Usually it's you who cracks
jokes at social gatherings - after all,
laughter is the best medicine. Sometimes you
pretend to be stupid, but in all actuality, you
could be the next Einstein.

What Type of Soul Do You Have ?
brought to you by Quizilla

Friday, September 16, 2005

Tickle Me Ulmo!

Too bad this isn't real... :-(

For those who don't know, Ulmo is a god (think archangel) in the Silmarillion. Not worshiped, but respected.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Pray for the Christians of China.

Here I must write as a Christian to my fellow Christians:

Our brothers and sisters in China need our prayer and support as they battle this cult. Please pass the article on to anyone you know who is doing (or planning) on doing missions work in China.


Jesus Is Back, and She's Chinese
A bizarre religious sect is preying on China's rural Christian congregations

Sister Hong's brainwashing session began when her Bible class ended. Five peasant women had led the Catholic nun to a house in a distant village in Henan province two years ago so that she could teach the life of Jesus. Suddenly, the women vanished and a man entered. For the next five days he refused to let her leave and forced her to debate the Bible. He said the day of judgment is nigh. Jesus has returned. China—the Great Red Dragon from the Book of Revelations—faces destruction. By the end, "I was dizzy. I was confused. He knew the Bible so well," says Sister Hong. Her pleading, plus promises to return, finally won her release. Lightning had struck again.

A fast-spreading sect named Lightning from the East is alarming Christian communities across China by winning large numbers of converts to its unorthodox tenets, often by abducting potential believers. Its followers, who say they number 300,000 but whom observers measure in the tens of thousands, believe that Jesus has returned as a plain-looking, 30-year-old Chinese woman who lives in hiding and has never been photographed. They credit her with composing a third testament to the Bible, writing enough hymns to fill 10 CDs and teaching that Christians who join her will ascend to heaven in the coming apocalypse. They see signs of doom everywhere, from the perfidy of Communist Party propaganda to anthrax spores in the U.S. postal system. According to one of the group's Chinese leaders who uses the alias "Peter" and moved to New York City last year, "The judgment is ongoing in China and will expand through the world."

The sect—which calls itself "the con-gregation"—operates deep underground. A two-year police campaign against it and other so-called "evil cults," such as Falun Gong, has put 2,000 of its followers in jail, say its spokesmen. Yet by targeting Christian believers it is flourishing—even though its belief that the female Jesus has updated the Bible for China violates core Christian tenets. The appeal seems to be the group's claim to have improved the Christian faith by putting the end of the world into a Chinese context and offering believers a path to immediate salvation. Official Christian churches, by contrast, downplay the Final Judgment, emphasizing instead codes of behavior. That, plus the sect's insistence that China is "disintegrating from within," appeals to peasants, many of whom are poorly grounded in Christian principles and are angry at a government that has failed to raise their incomes or curb corruption.

Fearful for their believers' souls and welfare, leaders of China's roughly 60 million Christians have mobilized. Last year a man claiming to be Lightning's coordinator for north China met secretly with a senior aide to a Catholic bishop in Hebei province to try to convert the Catholic leadership there. He failed, and the bishopric has warned clergies to remain vigilant against Lightning. In Henan, the main church in Dengfeng county called a meeting of 70 lay leaders for a two-day training session on Lightning's "heresies"—but since then five of the leaders have joined the sect. Lightning "is the greatest danger we face today," says a minister named Li who no longer allows strangers to worship in his church in Zhengzhou city, where the sect began a decade ago.

Lightning is the most aggressive Christian sect to emerge in China since the revolution, but it follows a beaten path. In the decades before the communists swept to power in 1949, a Chinese missionary known as Watchman Nee built his congregation, the Little Flock, to 300,000 followers in central China. The sect's emphasis on decentralized congregations launched a home-church movement that helped Christianity survive communist repression. Yet as Little Flock congregations became isolated, they splintered into separate groups. The Shouters, for instance, rewrote the Lord's Prayer to read simply, "Oh, Lord Jesus," and taught followers to holler the phrase while stamping their feet in unison. Other offshoots, like the Disciples, believe that the devil exists in all people—and can be beaten out of them.

Today, the Communist Party's restrictions on religion help sects flourish. China's 18 state-sanctioned Protestant seminaries can't graduate enough ministers, and in the countryside, believers commonly outnumber ordained preachers 50,000 to one—not enough shepherds for an expanding flock. The unavailability of rural health-care means that "seven out of 10 converts come to faith through illness" after people pray for their recovery, estimates Faye Pearson, a teacher at China's biggest seminary, in Nanjing. Many of these converts have scarcely read the Bible. Without strong doctrinal leadership, it's a prescription for heterodoxy. "I'm not sure that most rural Christians are well enough grounded in Christianity to even know they're in a sect," says Daniel Bays, a historian of Chinese Christianity at Calvin College in Michigan.

A typical country church, this one outside Dengfeng county is run by a lay minister who has received no special training on dealing with strange sects. It is poor. The pulpit is a red flounce curtain draped over a desk; broken windows let the swirling central China dust coat the whitewashed walls. The biggest single expenditure this year was the $25 the congregation gave its most desperate members to celebrate the lunar new year. Every Sunday 150 peasants crowd onto low wooden benches to receive the Word, including a gray-haired woman known as Granny He.

On a chilly night three autumns ago, a young woman in her 20s walked past the chickens scratching in Granny He's courtyard and knocked on her red wooden door. The caller had done her research: she knew Granny He was Christian and that her husband, a teacher, spent time away. They talked about God for two hours that evening, and for longer on subsequent nights. Then the visitor arranged for a rare luxury—a car to drive Granny He to worship in someone's home. There, she and seven other believers sat facing the preacher. He said the Jesus of the Bible is the old one. The new Jesus has come, and she will destroy the earth. They sang hymns that the new savior had written to the tunes of familiar revolutionary ditties like Communist Party, My Loving Mama. Granny He returned four more times. On occasion, when the spirit moved them, they danced. "I half believed and half doubted," she says. A month later, concerned relatives forbade her to attend any more meetings. Sundays now find her back on the country church's wooden benches, but she sounds ambivalent about Lightning: "I don't think they harm people's spirit."

Granny He's experience was a textbook piece of evangelism. The sect's most trusted members receive a 67-page missionary manual explaining the dos and don'ts of conversion. Do start slowly, lend money, convince converts that God's work is incomplete and, finally, that doomsday is coming and Jesus has arrived to complete that work. Don't tell them until they are firm believers that the new Jesus will destroy the Great Red Dragon, which in the Bible represents Satan but to Lightning represents China. And if anybody asks why the "all-powerful" new Jesus must hide from police, the answer is that "there's a time for secrecy and a time for openness, but she has her plan," says Joseph Yu, a believer who arrived in New York City two years ago.

Sometimes, the plan seems unfathomable. A 60-year-old woman from Zhengzhou says Lightning devotees invited her to teach the Bible in their homes last year. They drove her to an unfamiliar village and presented her with a screaming and trembling man. They instructed her to cast out his devil. She couldn't. Then a Lightning follower prayed and sure enough the devil vanished, proving the woman's God was false, they said. Frightened, she acknowledged that her God seemed less powerful. Still, they held her nine more days, until her minister tracked her down and sought the police. She is too afraid to be quoted by name. "The other day I dreamed that they piled onto my bed and wouldn't leave," she said in a phone interview.

Lightning from the East has burrowed further underground in China. But already its followers hand out leaflets in Chinatowns in New York City and San Francisco. Lightning could soon strike the West.

Copyright © 2005 Time Inc. All rights reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited

URL: A Bizarre Religious Sect is Preying on Chinese Christians

Monday, September 12, 2005

Red Crescent Faces Mecca

This is just too uncanny to be a conincidence.

Image thanks to: Etaoin Shrdlu of LittleGreenFootballs. (See comment #291).

Here is the opinion of bluemerle 9/10/2005 01:05PM PDT

"The north/south east/west axes of theGoogle map the of flight 93 crash site line up with the pdf. map of the memorial site.

That's three maps so far, so maybe the "p*ss poor geography" commenters will reconsider.

It's pretty clear that by accident or design, arms/talons of the crescent are reaching from Mecca along the qibla, and that at the peak of the crescent of trees points right back to mecca.

- and the "star" vistors will also be on the path of the qibla.

I wish they would please pick another design without these elements so directly associated with the 19 murdering cretins and their stated goals. "

Flight 93 Victims Honored with Muslim Crescent? This had better be false....

Flight 93 victims honored with Muslim Crescent?: Something to keep an eye on.....

I certainly hope that Murdoch didn't intend for his design to mirror the Muslim crescent, but one would THINK the guy would at least have considered the implication of such a design....

Flight 93 victims honored with Muslim Crescent?
Pastor threatens lawsuit, sees design as bow to terrorists
Posted: September 10, 2005
1:00 a.m. Eastern
@ 2005 WorldNetDaily.com

Model of Flight 93 memorial

A Pennsylvania pastor is fighting the newly approved design of the Flight 93 National Memorial, contending its crescent pattern is a symbol of Islam.

Rev. Ron McRae, head of the Bible Anabaptist Church near Jerome, Pa., about 55 miles from Pittsburgh, said a private group he formed might go to court to block the "Crescent of Embrace" memorial designed by Paul Murdoch Associates of Los Angeles.

"This is a memorial to the terrorists who killed those people, not a memorial to the folks who died there innocently," McRae told the Tribune-Democrat newspaper in Johnstown, Pa.

McRae of Conemaugh Township, Pa., is director and founder of the Lancaster-based Street Preachers Fellowship.

Muslim Crescent

The heart of the memorial is a mile-long semicircle of red maples surrounding the place near Shanksville, Pa., where the flight's 40 passengers and crew were killed when the hijacked plane plunged into the ground Sept. 11, 2001.

The designer maintains he used the term crescent only in the architectural sense of a curved line.

"This is not about any religion per se," Murdoch told the Tribune-Democrat. "It's a spiritual space, and a sacred place, but it's open to anyone."

But McRae vows to fight it.

"They wouldn't dare put up the Ten Commandments or the cross of Christ, but they're going to put up a red crescent," he said. "We're not going to stand idly by and allow this to happen."

Several weblogs raised similar concerns about the design. Charles Johnson at Little Green Footballs asked: "Is this a coincidence, an example of amazing cluelessness, or something more deliberate?" Ed Morrissey at Captain's Quarters said, "Can you imagine the outcry from the multiculturalists and the ACLU had the design incorporated a cross or a Star of David in honor of the victims? Why should we tolerate the Crescent that, inadvertently or deliberately, honors the terrorists?

Link: Flight 93 victims honored with Muslim Crescent?

Edit: Here are the comments of my father on the subject; he gave me the permission to transcribe them here:

The crescent is not a design by "accident." Someone needs to wake up. DESIGNERS DESIGN WITH INTENTION.. that is what designing is. Hello!? And Archetechs above all professions understand how to put symbolic reference and ideology into what they build, it is at the heart and soul of what they are called to do.

For the designers to say this is for "healing and bonding" they are telling us directly, "We made this design for a reason. We want to be inclusive and understand that the peacefulness of Islam is seen and appreciated." If anyone doesn't understand that, they are nieve.

Now the bigger question, "Is it a bad idea to have a peaceful Islamic crescent as part of the memorial for the Flight 93?" I say, "let's go with it....Just as soon as there is a huge Christian cross erected at the Abu Grae Prison for "healing and bonding" And might as well put another one at the scene of the bloody seiege that captured the two sons of Sadam, and why not a third in the hill country around the spider whole were we got Sadam... or atleast in the town square where his statue was toppled. I like that best. A "healing and bonding" between our peoples, and a giant cross to help those tensions go.

Ludicrous you say? Exactly. And you don't hear any Muslims suggesting it. I wonder why? Lets put a huge granite block with 10 foot high "Let's Roll" hewn into the side... with a wonderfully magnificent American flag flying right behind... God bless those brave men and women.


Saturday, September 10, 2005

My Blog is Broken again....

I think it has to do with the pictures that are causing it to 'float' about...


"They're Taking the Hobbits to Isengard!"

"They're Taking the Hobbits to Isengard!"

I found it amusing, at least...you might too.

Friday, September 09, 2005

12 Movies Meme

12 Movies Meme (idea swiped from someone I know over at livejournal.com)

01. Pick 12 films you love/thoroughly enjoy.
02. Find stills from each film.
03. See how many people guess correctly.

WARNING: BIG IMAGES! May take some time to load if you're on dial up...


Comment: You know this better than you think you do.


Comment: Well, that's one way to follow orders to the letter....


Comment: If you don't know this movie, you are either under the age of 5 or took a vow never to watch Disney flicks after "Beauty and the Beast".


Comment: One of two movies that I have been known to cry while watching, everytime I watch it.


Comment: The other of those two movies.


Comment: One of Dreamwork's best.


Comment: A classic; should be required viewing in all screenwriting classes, imho.


Comment: I'd tell you which famous actors are in this movie, but that would be a deathwish...


Comment: One of the better movies of 2000.


Comment: Yes, I know this movie isn't entirely "historically accurate"; very few 'historical' movies geared to the people are!


Comment: Colin Firth isn't the BEST person for this role, but he does a good job.


Comment: I will say that this movie is also a musical.

Start guessing....

Edit: I did change the stampede image so that it would be smaller; it is the same scene, same movie, however.

Too Many Takers in New Orleans

Too many takers in New Orleans
Posted: September 9, 2005
1:00 a.m. Eastern
By Jon Dougherty
© 2005 WorldNetDaily.com

September began with Hurricane Katrina devastating one of America's oldest, culturally rich cities, causing untold thousands of deaths and billions of dollars worth of damage. The last raindrop had yet to fall on New Orleans before the beleaguered city descended straight into the depths of hell – an anarchy that was punctuated only by a rousing game of blame between local, state and federal officials as to who was most at fault for the carnage.

Usually such disasters are a rallying point for Americans, long known for our charitable nature. In the immediate aftermath of the 9-11 attacks, as well the weeks and months that followed, we gave generously of both time and treasure to help our nation heal its wounds and prepare for the arduous task of rooting out the guilty parties.

But 9-11 was an act of war, say some critics of the comparison, and thus created a climate much more conducive to unity. Fair enough, but what about when we compare apples to apples?

The state of Florida has been buffeted with no less than six hurricanes in 13 months, causing billions in damages and putting countless families out of their homes – sometimes more than once. While none of those storms engulfed a single city the size of New Orleans, areas far larger than the land mass of the Big Easy, with millions more people, were affected.

There were reports of some looting – there are always those who seek to take advantage – but missing from the sporadic incidents of criminality were widespread stories of armed gangs roaming the streets killing and raping; corpses left to rot on streets and in alleys; rescuers being fired upon; police deserting their posts; thugs turning refugee centers into nightmarish prisons; and the creation of an every-man-for-himself environment. According to a Newsweek description, "the night was alight with fires, the pavement was alive with looters."

A day after the storm struck, right before the order came to evacuate the refugee centers at the Louisiana Superdome and Convention Center, one police officer told CNN he "expressed concern that the situation could worsen overnight after three shootings, looting and a number of attempted carjackings during the afternoon."

Jesse Walker, writing for Reason Magazine, noted:

More than a half-century of investigation has established a fairly firm pattern: After the cataclysm, social bonds will strengthen, volunteerism will explode, violence will be rare, looting will appear only under exceptional circumstances, and the vast majority of the rescues will be accomplished by the real first responders – the victims themselves.

This obviously didn't happen in New Orleans. All semblance of social order disintegrated as fast as the city's earthen levees. It may be the days of strong "social bonds" are over, and we can blame a host of left-wing social experimenters and decades of their overt public policy influence for it.

For too long, we have had far too many Americans hooked on the largess of the federal government. We have too many programs which saddle a shrinking pool of working taxpayers with the burden of carrying for a mass of non-working Americans that grows each year. This latter group, to be sure, was most responsible for the breakdown in social behavior in New Orleans, simply because they are not used to doing for themselves.

The fact that many of them stayed behind to get stranded by Katrina instead of evacuating in the days leading up to the storm is a case in point, one proven time and again by so many liberals in and out of government who have complained we "didn't do enough to help" these people. The other side of the coin is they did little to help themselves either. It's not that they no longer have a sense of self-preservation, it's more like Big Government has stripped them of their motivation to be self-reliant.

Because of that, this same group will cause the same kinds of problems we are seeing in New Orleans in other cities struck by disaster in the future. Those used to making it on their own will do their best to stay out of the way of devastation and help those who couldn't avoid it, while the other group will do nothing but rely on others, then erupt into medieval brutality when help doesn't come fast enough.

The welfare state has corrupted entire generations of Americans, making them capable only of taking, not giving, to society. Is it any wonder why they behaved the way they did in the Big Easy?


Jon E. Dougherty is the author of "Illegals: The Imminent Threat Posed by Our Unsecured U.S.-Mexico Border," and founder/editor in chief of the website Voices Magazine.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Corruption in Louisiana?

Perish the thought....


Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2005 10:18 p.m. EDT
Louisiana Officials in Flood-Money Scam
Nine months before the Hurricane Katrina disaster, three Louisiana Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness officials were indicted for obstructing an audit into flood prevention expenditures.In a November 2004 press release, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of Louisiana announced: "A federal grand jury has returned two separate indictments charging three members of the State Military Department with offenses related to the obstruction of an audit of the use of federal funds for flood mitigation activities throughout Louisiana.
"The two emergency management officials were senior employees of the Louisiana Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness. Both were charged with conspiracy to obstruct a federal audit."
Gov. Kathleen Blanco told Louisiana's News-Star at the time that she was disturbed by the indictments. She said the National Guard is cooperating with the investigation "as I expect them to do."
Reports of rampant corruption among Louisiana's state and local agencies have been cited in recent days to explain why officials were so ill-prepared to deal with the Katrina disaster.

Louisiana Officials in Flood-Money Scam