Political correctness gone too far


This article, posted here in it’s entirety for your convenience (and to keep you here because there is nothing more you need to know), made me giggle.

SYDNEY (AFP) – Santas in Australia’s largest city have been told not to use Father Christmas’s traditional “ho ho ho” greeting because it may be offensive to women, it was reported Thursday.

Sydney’s Santa Clauses have instead been instructed to say “ha ha ha” instead, the Daily Telegraph reported.

One disgruntled Santa told the newspaper a recruitment firm warned him not to use “ho ho ho” because it could frighten children and was too close to “ho”, a US slang term for prostitute.

“Gimme a break,” said Julie Gale, who runs the campaign against sexualising children called Kids Free 2B Kids.

“We are talking about little kids who do not understand that “ho, ho, ho” has any other connotation and nor should they,” she told the Telegraph.

“Leave Santa alone.”

A local spokesman for the US-based Westaff recruitment firm said it was “misleading” to say the company had banned Santa’s traditional greeting and it was being left up to the discretion of the individual Santa himself.

Next thing you know, they will be going after the Jolly Green Giant! Children find many reasons to be frightened of shopping mall Santas. Pretty sure that even with the stench of cheap booze, the thought has never crossed their impressionable minds that Santa is really a pimp calling out for new recruits. Personally, I find most hired Santas rather disturbing, but since the term ‘ho’ doesn’t apply to me, I am not offended. The *ahem* ladies that the term does apply to are probably not so worried about Santa.

Seriously some people deserved to be slapped. Maybe they would grow thicker skins.

And here’s a barely related tasteless joke for you:

Did you hear about the dyslexic devil worshiper?
He sold his soul to Santa

Upon the Altar of Professional Sports

Any one that knows me, knows I’m not a sports fan. You can be. That’s fine. I have no problem with people choosing whatever entertainment makes them happy. What I do have a problem with, is society raising sports up onto a ridiculous pedestal.

And so, I am incredibly impressed with Citizens for More Important things. Unfortunately, they have been so successful in dealing with their problem that it is coming to my home. Mr. Van Dyk, we have chatted before, and I am sure we will again. For anyone not aware, the Seattle Sonics (soon to be the Oklahoma City Sonics) got tired of their arena. And who can blame them? I mean it was built way back in 1994 for the bargain price of $74 million. So they want a new one. No problem! Professional basketball is multi-billion dollar industry, surely they can afford to upgrade their facilities.

Yep, there’s the problem. The new owner, Clay Bennett, threatened the city of Seattle that he would move the team unless the city built them a new arena. He thinks basketball is so very important that tax dollars should be spent to give these guys with million dollar salaries a nicer place to play. Apparently they don’t generate enough revenue from ticket sales to pay for it themselves. My response, too bad. And the people of Seattle seem to feel the same way. Chris Van Dyk and the others at Citizens for More Important Things, got the measure to a vote, and the people said ‘no.’ Lawmakers in Seattle tried to scamper around the voters to fund it anyway, and still it was stopped. Kudos to you in Seattle! David Stern, the NBA commissioner, says they won’t even get another team. Not only that, but he’s been whining about it.

“To have the speaker of the house say well, they just spend too much money on salaries anyway, so we need it for other things,” Stern said, casts aspersions on the whole league’s operations. “We get the message. Hopefully, maybe cooler heads will prevail.”

Yes, it does ‘cast aspersions’ on their operations. Professional sports are entertainment. These things are not necessary. I’ve yet to see Brad Pitt campaigning for tax dollars to build a new studio. He makes millions of dollars because people buy tickets to see him perform. Movie theaters are built by private corporations to generate income by entertaining people. I cannot see any reason why professional sports are any different.

Let’s put it another way. If the vast majority of the planet was wiped out tomorrow, and you were left with the agonizing decision to save the life of a brilliant doctor or someone very skilled at throwing a ball through a hoop, who do you save? I can promise you that 10-point shot fired in the last 5 seconds of any game is not going to set the compound fracture in your femur.

Tax dollars should be spent in a way that benefits the community. Education, hospitals, public parks etc. A profit generating machine should be paying taxes, not being paid by them. People should be left to set their own priorities in what non-necessary, entertainment they chose to invest their hard earned money. This should not be left up to lawmakers.

And so, I applaud Seattle for not laying their children across the altar of professional sports. I just hope they send some torches my way while I gather my pitchfork.

This Photo is Amazing


Wow! Please, click the photo and go to the story. I kid you not, I was blown away.

This photo is amazing because of what it is. Yes, the color balance and composition are visually pleasing, but what you are seeing here are Muslims and Christians placing a cross on St. John’s in Baghdad. It gives me chills. All we hear about in the news is the hate and separation. We only see this from independent journalists like Michael Yon.

Until today, I had never ever heard of him. This guy is actually traveling with a combat unit in Iraq telling the real story from behind the lines. He is supported entirely by his readers. He believes that these stories need to be told, and I agree completely.

Iraq is still a scary place, but it is getting better in spite of what the mainstream media would have you believe. Check this out from this past Easter.

During the mass, Shiite Muslim leader Ammar al-Hakim, son of the head of Iraq’s most powerful Shiite political organization, walked into the church. Father Louis al-Shabi, the chief priest at St. Joseph, escorted al-Hakim to a seat near the alter.

“Sheik al-Hakim came to join us in our celebrations as we mark this feast,” al-Shabi told the worshippers. “We welcome this visit as a display of unity among the Iraqi people.”

Al-Hakim responded, “We are all the sons of Iraq, and we should put our hands together to build this country. We are confident that the Iraqi people will come out of this crisis and our pain will end.”

If that doesn’t instill some kind of hope, you’ve been watching too much doom and gloom liberal news.

JK Rowling is a Pimp

Yep, I said it. You know why? Because she is whoring out one of her characters for a little publicity.

Harry Potter fans, the rumors are true: Albus Dumbledore, master wizard and Headmaster of Hogwarts, is gay.

Here’s the story. Apparently, this is news. It has absolutely no bearing on the character and frankly, I think making it an issue cheapens the story somehow. You know, during the hours I spent reading these books, I never once wondered whether Albus Dumbledore preferred inies or outies. Now I have the answer to a question that I never even thought about asking.

Honestly, I don’t want to know the details of what anyone wants to do with another consenting adults. I certainly don’t care about the private life of a fictional character.

Well Mr Headmaster-Wizard, you better get out there and earn mama some more money before she has to slap you around. And let that be a lesson to all the young witches and wizards, Ms. Rowling wants her bling.

They said what?!?!?!?!—-with update

So predictable that I would have to weigh in on this issue. I have to admit that I should be ashamed. I shouldn’t let drivel like Desperate Housewives anywhere near my radar and certainly not close enough to form an opinion.

Why am I annoyed? Here is why:

The officials cited a recent episode where actress Teri Hatcher, who plays Susan Mayer, asked whether the person attending to her during a medical consultation “can I check those diplomas because I want to make sure that they’re not from some med school in the Philippines.”

There are plenty obvious reasons why I should be annoyed. My paternal grandfather is from the Philippines after all. But I find the very existence of this show to be offensive, so why should I care whether or not they are sensitive to every little group. I was born here in the US and feel no special urge to add any label to myself beyond American. I am not part of the larger victim culture and refuse to associate myself in that way. The fact is, I really don’t care if they are insensitive. I wouldn’t have known about the comment had it not been covered here, here, and here. And that is not including the original reference in this post. I find it offensive that it took a racially charged slur to tick people off.

Desperate Housewives is just a symptom of a greater disease. The disease is serious moral decline. This show glamorizes adultery and pretends this is normal, perfectly acceptable behavior. Fine. The producers are just making what gets ratings. The real problem lies with the society that accepts it, watches it, and embraces it. Not that families even need to watch prime time television (heaven-forbid the almighty media get turned off in a household once in a while), but when you do turn it on you choose this as quality entertainment? This show is just one of many.

I’m not going to ask you to write letters to the producers or the FCC. I won’t direct you to some internet petition. I’m not asking you to take any action at all. I have enough faith in the people that read this that they are smart enough to just turn the television off.

UPDATE: Aren’t you relieved? They apologized. Right here. But not for the fact that I vomited in my mouth a little when it dawned on me that I had actually written about this so-called sitcom which is actually just porn in shiny packaging. If you want to watch smut, then do it. Just don’t try to convince me that it is anything else.

In the News Today

There are some great ones today that I just can’t resist commenting on. I have to tip my hat to this guy. He actually posted Belgium for sale on eBay. Too bad the ad was taken down. Brilliant political statement. I love the creativity and satire. And I would love to own Belgium. Mmm Belgian chocolate and beer could be Jennifer’s chocolate and beer. What a happy, happy day.

And speaking of selling off a country to the highest bidder, one of our presidential candidates was in the news today. We haven’t really heard anything from him in a while. I was beginning to worry that he had given up. In an effort to buy the American voter, Obama uses the old promise to lower taxes. Of course everyone wants to pay fewer taxes. That’s an easy one. And it sounds wonderful on the surface. Everyone want to be Robin Hood. Tax the rich and give breaks to the poor. I’m not rich by any stretch of the imagination. I certainly wouldn’t mind though. But I feel that as a US citizen, I have an obligation to pay a fair share of taxes. (No the current system isn’t fair either, but I”m not going there today. Not enough time during my lunch break). Hand outs will not fix the economy. If you tip the full tax burden onto the upper class, then where is the incentive to get ahead? Personally, I think that if I work hard to earn more money, I should get to keep it. I thought working for a good life for yourself and your family was once the American Dream.

Onto the subject of making money. The New York Times has decided to end it’s paid subscription service for it’s online news in an effort to make more money. Sounds backwards, but it’s brilliant really. More and more, people are getting their news online. I personally haven’t bought or even read an actual newspaper in years. I can get online and get news about absolutely everything everywhere in just a few keystrokes. And it doesn’t add to the clutter in my house. Fantastic. And the best part is that it’s free! I don’t pay for news online, and I am not alone. So they are giving up $10 million a year in subscriptions, but they’ve opened themselves up for twice that many readers easily. People don’t spend their money on information, they spend it on stuff. Stuff that they learn about from the ads around the news articles. Which ad space would be more attractive to you, one seen by a limited group of subscribers, or one available to the world?

Tell me your thoughts, comments are always open. And remember, tomorrow is International Talk Like a Pirate Day!

Thinking about today

There is so much to write about today. I almost can’t make a decision. I originally thought I would write about the new Pope’s chastising of Europeans. There is plenty of fodder for a rant there. Yes, God told us to be fruitful and multiply in order to populate the world. The world is populated. Over populated actually. He says people are being selfish, but I don’t see him pitching in on college tuition, helping with homework, and attempting to schedule parent teacher conferences around a full time work schedule. But no, I’m not going to focus on that one.

I could talk about my opinions about the iPhone and the price drop. But it seems everyone else with internet access has done that. Hmm, how many of those articles have been written entirely using thumbs as so many are carrying little computers on their hips? I’m sure the next news story I see will be all about a rash of a new repetitive motion disorder a la carpal tunnel paralyzing the thumbs of generation X. I will admit that I am guilty of some thumb typing myself, but I’ve yet to make a blog entry that way. The blog is young though and so is my new Blackberry 8830.

There were so many news stories I thought maybe I could share my slant on until I saw this one. Suddenly everything else seemed so trivial. Call me a hopeless romantic but these kinds of stories warm my heart. While everyone else is critiquing whatever Bush or a presidential candidate said, this reporter decides to focus on something completely outside the sensationalist realm.

September 11, 2001 will always be remembered in solemn ceremonies across the country. Quite possibly the world. In our homes, offices, and even online communities, we will talk about how we experienced those events as they happened. The news will again show buildings collapsing as though the image was not permanently branded in our collective memory. And as human beings we need to go through that. We need to remember the pain together. We need to share it. We must move on, but we must not forget.

In the shock and pain of 9/11, ordinary people did something extraordinary. People dropped the facade and did whatever they could to help. Across the country people organized to send help in the form of care packages and skilled rescue workers. Prayers were lifted up for our fellow citizens whom we had never met. It didn’t matter, we were a true community on that day and for some time afterwards. But as these things always do, it faded. We went back to our regular routines. My challenge to anyone that takes the time to read this, is just for today, remember that we banded together as one and try to feel like that again. The banner at the bottom of this post will take you to a site with some great suggestions on how to commemorate this day.

The animation may or may not work. It should take you to MyGoodDeed.org