Saturday, December 15, 2007

My Mini City

Check out my mini city where you can create your own town. The town grows the more people that visit.

My city is Tytown.

Please stop by.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Go to and test your word knowledge. For every definition that you get correct, ten grains of rice will be donated via an international relief agency to feed a hungry person.

No registration is required.

Update: I've given 2020 grains of rice.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Human Stem Cells Vs. Rat Stem Cells

With all this talk over whether it is right to federally fund new lines of human stem cells for study research, consider this.

Scientists have recently corrected the broken hearts of rats by the use of implanted human stem cells.

I don't know why they can't use rat stem cells for this. It would seem from the pressure that is placed on congress to fund more research that the human variety is rare and costly.

So, why are they injecting human cells into rats?

Don't get me wrong, I think this is important research, but I think that there should be a premium placed on human life.

Science Blog: Human Stem Cells

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Google Astronomy: I Said It First

I effectively predicted two years ago that google would integrate their maps with an astronomy interface.

Here is my half-baked idea fully fleshed out.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Mitt Only Top Tier Candidate For Marriage

It's official:H/T Hugh Hewitt. Romney is the only top tier candidate to support the Federal Marriage Amendment.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Romney vs. Huntsman: On Immigration

Lamar Smith has an article on Mitt Romney with the claim, "Governor Romney will enforce our immigration laws." Let me cover the points of Romney's career as Governor of a blue state addressed in this piece and contrast these with the actions of the Governor of Utah, a very red state.
  • Romney: "In 2006, he signed an agreement with the federal government to deputize Massachusetts State Troopers so they could help enforce immigration laws. "
  • Huntsman: Some in the legislature tried to enact legislation to this effect, but without the endorsement of the Governor.
  • Romney: "He authorized Massachusetts National Guardsmen to deploy to the Southern Border."
  • Huntsman: Nothing like that here according to Jim Matheson.
  • Romney: " In 2004, Governor Romney vetoed a plan that would have provided illegal immigrants the same in-state tuition at public colleges and universities as Massachusetts citizens."
  • Huntsman: Illegal immigrants get in-state tuition in Utah, despite efforts by some in the legislature.
  • Romney: "In 2003, he announced his opposition to efforts to give drivers' licenses to illegal immigrants, again upholding the rule of law."
  • Huntsman: Signed legislation for 'driving privilege' cards in 2005.
  • Romney: "He also insisted upon teaching our kids in English."
  • Huntsman: Wants to hire Mexican teachers to teach English to immigrants in Utah. (there is a subtle difference in execution here)
CNN estimated in May, 2006 that Utah has 100,000 illegal immigrants. The 2000 Census puts Utah right below Massachusetts for illegal immigrants.

It is not my intention here to bash Governor Huntsman. Only to offer a point of comparison, and to say that the state a person hails from has very little to do with their own ideology.

Whether we agree with Romney or not, we can say that his record shows that he acted conservatively on immigration.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Monday, July 02, 2007

Endorsing Mitt Romney

I'm doing what is considered virtually automatic in this state and endorsing Mitt Romney for President.

But, I've done my homework. Really, I have. This isn't just another knee-jerk reaction by a Utah, Red-State, Republican.

I do want to say that one of the biggest objections to Romney is turning out to be his switch from Pro-Abortion to Pro-Life. What he's said on the matter ought to settle that debate. This speech, given to the National Right to Life Convention Forum. Follow the link for the entire speech.

"In the midst of that battle, another arose. It involved cloning and embryo farming for purposes of research. I studied the subject in great depth. I have high hopes for stem cell research. But for me, a bright moral line is crossed when we create new life for the sole purpose of experimentation and destruction.

"That's why I fought to keep cloning and embryo farming illegal.

"It was during this battle that I began to focus a good deal more of my thinking on abortion.

"When I first ran for office, while I was always personally opposed to abortion, I considered whether this should be a private decision or whether it should be a societal and government decision. I concluded that I would support the law as it was in place – effectively, the pro-choice position.

"And I was wrong.

"What became clear during the cloning debate is how the harsh logic of an absolute right to abortion had cheapened the value of human life to the point that rational people saw a human embryo as nothing more than mere research material to be used, and then destroyed.

"The slippery slope was taking us to racks and racks of living human embryos, Brave New World-like, awaiting termination.

"What some see as just a clump of cells is actually a human life. Human life has identity. Human life has the capacity to love and be loved. Human life has a profound dignity, undiminished by age or infirmity.

"My experience as Governor taught me firsthand that the threat to our culture is real and those in a position to do so must take action to defend it.

"Times of decision are moments of great clarity. Before I was Governor, the life issue was just that, an issue. But when responsibility for life or ending life was placed in my hands, I made the right decision. I chose life.

"Just like some others in the pro-life movement, a moment of decision became a defining moment.

"And so, every time I faced a decision as Governor that related to life, I came down on the side of life.

"I fought to ban cloning.

"I fought to ban embryo farming.

"I fought to define life as beginning at conception rather than at the time of implantation.

"I fought for abstinence education in our schools.

"And I vetoed a so-called emergency contraception bill that gave young girls abortive drugs without prescription or parental consent.

"That is my record as Governor of Massachusetts.

"Recently, I was attacked by one of my opponents because when I ran for Governor I promised to maintain the status quo with regards to laws relating to abortion in Massachusetts. Of course, I kept that promise. But in Massachusetts, that meant vetoing pro-choice legislation – as I consistently did as Governor. That's why last month I was honored with an award from Massachusetts Citizens for Life in recognition of the actions I took as Governor to protect life."

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Who's Out Of Touch?

"This is just one example of how the president puts ideology before science, politics before the needs of our families, just one more example of how out of touch with reality he and his party have become," Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., told the Take Back America conference of liberal activists Wednesday."

So let me get this clear.


Apparently, our families 'need' federally funded scientific research.

Hat tip: Wired News

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Opinion Vs Fact

In turn, this leads to a fifth point which is the confusion of news and commentary. Comment is a perfectly respectable part of journalism. But it is supposed to be separate. Opinion and fact should be clearly divisible. The truth is a large part of the media today not merely elides the two but does so now as a matter of course. In other words, this is not exceptional. It is routine.
--Tony Blair's parting shot on the media

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Colony Collapse Disorder Vs. Global Warming

This is old news now, dated May 19th, but I had to post it because the lesson should last a thousand years. First, some background.

Global warming enthusiasts tell us that we have a problem like no other. The best estimates of these experts warn that our descendants in 1,000 years will have an intractable problem that we should solve today.

The Oceans will be several feet higher. Idaho, Utah, and Arizona-Iowa, Michigan, and Illinois will have great surfing, and Washington D.C. will have to be moved inland. New Yorkers will exclusively live in the top floors of the new Atlantis.

There has been another danger, even more present, and drastic. Beehives colonies have been dying off in the U.S. in large numbers. They suffer from a condition called Colony Colapse Disorder (CCD). Scientists, not to be left unawares, have been relatively quietly addressing this problem with little press attention. They've studied the effects of mobile phone signals, parasites, and bacteria.

Bees are responsible for a large amount of pollination that takes place on Earth.
"A congressional study said honeybees add about $15 billion a year in value to the U.S. food supply. Among the crops to be affected are apples, nuts, avocados, soybeans, asparagus, broccoli, celery, squash, cucumbers, peaches, kiwi, cherries, blueberries, cranberries, strawberries, cantaloupe and other melons.

The shortage will potentially affect the beef industry too because the growth of alfalfa is dependent on pollination from the bees."

Einstein reckoned that mankind would have 4 years to live without bees.

Einstein was a smart man.

I'll tell you what I told my wife months ago. Scientists will fix it, and it appears that they now have a way to treat Hive colonies to immunize them against the effects of parasites using relatively simple methods employed by ancient African tribes 60,000 years ago.

My point is that if scientists can solve a clear and present danger like CCD, don't you think they can address a foggy and distant danger such as Global Warming?

ScienceDaily:Using Spearmint And Lemongrass To Protect Bees From Mites That Threaten Hives

Thursday, May 03, 2007

WSJ:The Case For A Strong Executive

Harvey C. Mansfield has a great article at Opinion Journal from the Wall Street Journal on the tug-of-war between the "rule of law", and the case for a strong executive.

This one takes some time to absorb, so give yourself some space to read it.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

On Blank Checks

"The president wants a blank check. The Congress will not give it to him."
No, Madam Speaker, the President would like you to remove the following small print from your check.

In order to operate the Congressional funding service and to reduce the risk of fraud, Congress Inc, ("Congress" or "we") must ask you to provide us information about yourself and your bank account. This Policy describes the information we collect and how we use that information.

If you apply for a Congress branded credit card or credit line, you authorize Congress and the issuer of the Congress branded credit card or credit line ("Democrats" or "your eternal foe") to exchange the information you provide in the application form. If you are approved for a Congress branded credit card or credit line, your account may be frozen upon the existence of one or more of the following conditions.
  • You continue to operate in your assignment as "Commander and Chief" of the United States, without, first, declaring fealty to a panel comprised of the 222 members who dislike you.
  • You refuse to disclose the reasoning by which we funded your operations in the first case.
  • You continue to use words such as "veto" and "find common ground" in reference to Congress, Inc, 222 members who dislike you.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Make Just One Pencil

Reach Upward has a great post on the economics involved in "Shopping Local". His post features a replay of a concept proposed 50 years ago by an economist by the name of Leonard Read, and made famous by Milton Friedman.

The concept is that something as simple as a lead pencil could not be made by any one man. In fact, its production involves the work of countless people. The idea was intriguing enough to me that I've started a new blog dedicated to gathering all information on the production of pencils.

Check it out.

Make One Pencil

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Marriage, Poverty, Education, And Homosexuality

Democracy for Utah has a post entitled, "Is poverty a greater threat to marriage than gay people?" The author, Carrie, then goes on to cite a statistic that shows that poverty is low among married people to support her claim.

It would seem to me that her question may have easily have been phrased this way, "Is marriage a greater threat to poverty than gay people?". Or, why not, "Is poverty a greater threat to gay people than to marriage?" There is as much evidence to support these claims as that made by DfU because, frankly, homosexuality is not addressed in this study.

In any case, why not conclude from studies that show marriage, and wealth, as co-factors that marriage has a positive impact on ones financial well-being? What harm can it do to pursue two worth goals instead of pitting each against the other. In any case, correlation is not causality. Poverty could, in fact, cause nothing that is measurable by this study, and marriage could have no effect whatsoever on the pocketbook.

And what about the issue of poverty? This study does appear to discuss the level of education of the participants, drawing a direct correlation between the levels of education of women, income, and marriage status of the group.
"College-educated women, whose numbers have risen sharply since 1980, often live with a partner and postpone marriage. But in most cases, they eventually marry and have children, and divorce at about half the rate of women who do not finish high school."
Do any of these characteristics cause the others? Perhaps there is a correlation between those who obtain a college degree and those who escape poverty, but cause is not as easy to peg as correlation.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Share Your OPML

OPML is a file that can be imported/exported, uploaded/downloaded that contains all of your RSS feed information. I've talked about RSS feeds before. RSS feeds are an invaluable tool for the 'internet addict'. I've thought about sharing my list of RSS feeds for a while, but haven't been sure about how to do this.

Until now.

At Share Your you can upload your list of RSS feeds, and then view those feeds that are similar to your own.

I highly recommend it.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

MLK Day:Clearing The Calendar

The legislative leadership would like to move the start of the legislative session so that it doesn't begin on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Now this raises, for me, a thought about the idealogical divide separating conservative thinkers, from liberal ones.

Conservatives are, generally, most concerned that government address issues that strike at all people. Liberals take an added interest in the well being of minorities. For them, the government is the individual. They draw no distinguishing line between the activities of the government, and individual acts. To a liberal, the impact of government actions are felt, most keenly, by the minorities. Broad, overarching, concerns, are considered less important to solve than small issues. To a liberal, present dangers have decidedly less emphasis than far distant dangers. For reference compare 'global warming', which will have its greatest impact-all evidences being equal--years hence; to our economic dependence upon oil--a concern right now. Our economic vitality was a concern, cited by the U.S. administration, leading to our rejection of the Kyoto accord.

Now back to the start of the legislative session which is written into Utah's constitution. KSL reports that there are one million residents of Utah that are black. This is not to say that there are one million critics of the start day of the Utah legislature. It does not follow from being a member of the black race, that one will take offense at MLK sharing the day with the legislature. In fact, we can't, say that King himself would be offended at the collision of the two days. I would think that the very existence of such a constitutional activity would have cheered King. We, also, might just find more significance in Kings life if we mark the passage of another session of the legislature alongside Kings memorial.

Then again, we might want King to have his own day, which is why I support a vote of the people.

Let the majority decide.

Monday, January 15, 2007

The Constitutionality Of Vouchers

A post by Natalie regarding the constitutionality of school vouchers. Please see my reply.