"Pilate saith unto him, What is truth? And when he had said this, he went out again..."

Location: Tampa, FL, United States

Thursday, June 30, 2005

A surprise knifing?

Last month a well-liked tattoo artist, Tommy Laskas, 29, was stabbed to death inside Tampa's Club Masquerade, a Ybor City bar, during a performance by heavy metal artists Corrosion of Conformity. The band members address the knifing on its website.

Not knowing Mr. Laskas, his long-time girlfriend, also stabbed yet surviving to-date, it's difficult to know his motivation for attending the show that night. Was he there reluctantly? Was it on his calender for weeks and the expected highlight of his week? Something in-between?

When one sizes up the band per its interviews and lyrics it's no surprise that a stabathon could take place at one of its gigs. Corrosion of Conformity's song Break the Circle , reads,

"Ultimate, desolate condition of man
Laid to waste
Born again, dead again, once again
Take me out of this place
You're in violation, you cross the line
The line you found within your mind
And when the process come undone
You die alone, the victory's none

Hear the warning, the end's beginning
When you break the circle, you have no right to live."

Apart from the lyrics dripping with beauty and wisdom in the minds of some postmodernists, the lyrics lack beauty and wisdom.

Anyone who would insert themselves in a mix of this band, a "splash" of alcohol, and moshers in a Zip Code that routinley attracts lawbreakers increases their risk for bodily harm.

Are Conspiratorialists Conspiratorial?

Man's nature is fallen. In God's eternal court of justice you're saddled with the death penalty at birth. Your tendencies are to gravitate toward sin. God's mercy and grace and sound teaching from your elders can lead you out of many foul habits. Responding to personal conviction doesn't hurt either. Redemption and salvation in Christ through faith in Him stays the execution permanently.

Satan's encounter with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden showed him to be conspiratorial and power hungry, inclusively. He sought to subvert God's authority and to enslave Adam and Eve in the process. The apple was merely a means to an end. It's market value was nil at that point. Don't blame the apple. It's role in this blockbuster scene was smaller than a cameo by Alfred Hitchcock in one of his own flicks. The choice Eve made, in the absence of Adam and his would-be counsel, has led to several consecutive millennia wherein generations of people have struggled to reestablish God's kingdom in the face of great wickedness. A steady stream of tyrants have kept a dependable presence seeking to fulfill the task flubbed by Satan. Flubbed? Yes. Flubbed. Eventually God will fully restore His Kingdom and completely squash the last of coups attempted by man.

Nero was perhaps the worst of the worst. If he were privy to modern day consultants and more history he might have been instructed to kiss more babies in public, carry a Torah, go to a home church some, and ban the ancient "press" from his parties lit by burning Christians.

Man today may not be as bad as Nero for the most part, but everyone is either for Christ or against Christ. There's enough unbelieving rich people undoubtedly as conspiratorial and power hungry as Satan yet operating with more sophistication in hopes of not getting caught furthering their lofty goals.

Todays antichrists are ubiquitous. Conspiracies abound. Conniving men's paths intersect and the quest to be Satan-incarnate is highly competitive. The modern day press ridicules conspiratorialists (and rightfullty so in many instances) likely because people with great wealth and influence understand the importance of controlling information. Today's conspirators aren't dealing with just Eve but literally billions of people. The game is more complicated.

Man is better to be deemed untrustworthy until proven otherwise. Man likes to be liked.

If you espouse a evidence-based conspiracy theory and are met with shaken heads and a wealth of pity, note that it's wholesale acceptance of much of mainstream thought that generally deserves a look of flummoxity.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Anarchy is logical

In the midst of a moderately light pilates workout the other night I overheard two young men in their mid-twenties fleshing out some finer points about religion and philosophy. The obligatory names were flung about--Sartre, Nietzsche, Plato--with Christianity being dismissed as mean and silly. It was time to turn off the CD player and, in wrestling parlance, jump over the top rope (as if Christ needed me to set the record set. Nay, but it's a calling anyway).

The ex-Catholic, probable non-Christian fellow was less adamant about his state of confusion than the other guy with the ponytail. Dr. Ponytail was an intellectual amalgam comprised of of agnostic, secular humanist, existentialist and Easter mysticist thinking. When asked why he wouldn't put his faith in Christ he said his logical mind prohibits such a foolish notion. When told his freedom must "logically" be afforded to others be declined to agree. Wanting to see game 7 between the Spurs and the Pistons I brushed the dust from my feet and went home (But not before suggesting he read Cornelius Van Til's teaching on presuppositions!)

Logic must proceed from God. Dr. Ponytail refuses to put his faith in Christ and thus lives his life out from a flawed system of logic. One day he'll repent or continue a confused life beset with vanity.

This isolationist, man-centered genuflecting to perceived logic, by extrapolation necessiates the allowance of like liberty to all other thinking life forms. Hence, those who run child slave labor camps, engage in organized crime, practice the "art" of pedophilia, are implicitly granted license to ply their trade as their logical minds dictate. The sum result is anarchy in all of its non-blissful bliss.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

The Unencumberance of the Illicit Drug Industry

James Petras, a professor of sociology at Binghamton University estimates that anywhere from $500 billion to $1 trillion dollars of illicit drug money is illegally laundered in big American banks each year. In case you're tired and don't want to think it through, "laundered" means the drug kingpin goes to Citibank or some competitor bank and deposits a few scores of millions of dollars into his account. The bank then has it at its disposal for investing or meeting current obligations. The bank big cheeses know it's illegal but also knows the authorities won't pester them because if they were they would have done it by now. Petras' full article can be found at this site.

Assuming Petras is right, it's interesting to note how the drug industry prospers without the "benefits" afforded by our bloated central government to other industries. Whereas drug trafficking is "illegal," the government can hardly offer benefits such as protection from discrimination, social security, health care plans, 401Ks, licensing, OSHA inspections, minimum wage guarantees and the like. Yet somehow the illicit drug industry flourishes. One wonders how much other industries could ramp up production of its products and services if they were afforded the gratuitous luxuries bestowed upon drug warlords and their employees.

The Solidarity of Intolerance-- Bumper Sticker philosophy

A car was spotted sporting two conflicting bumper stickers. One read "Commit planned acts of organizing and premeditating solidarity." The other read, "Why do we kill people who kill people to show that killing people is wrong." A number of observations can be made from these bumper stickers.

It does not sound like the car owner was in favor of capital punishment. If a burglar stormed into her house and started killing family members would she begin to plan acts of organizing solidarity? Do her plans of solidarity include embracing people who are pro-capital punishment?

With respect to the "killing people" bumper sticker, you'll note that her premise was flawed to begin with. You don't execute murderers for the primary purpose of showing others that murder is wrong. You execute murderers because that's God's mandate to the state when it comes to dealing with murderers. Any secondary benefit of an execution being a deterrent to further murder is a welcomed "side effect."

Taken together these bumper stickers bespeak of someone with little interest in solidarity unless you realign your thinking to conform with hers. A good plan for committing acts of solidarity would be for said driver to remove the bumper stickers.

Rockin' Down the Highway

In Tampa, Florida, once summer springs the morning rush hour traffic on I-275 South frees up significantly. The retirees from up North have returned to the great white North but the largest benefit is realized from the lack of school buses and kids commuting in their own cars. Using bloated central government math taughtteded in Magnet schools, I've come up with some calculations and observations.

The tax savings from getting rid of school buses could run into the trillions and trillions of dollars. Privatizing the public school system would reduce property taxes by 62%. The money saved from a reduction in homicide investigations per fewer school shootings could pay for the new football stadium that Manhattan needs.
The tax savings enabled from postponing road-widening projects could fund Social Security for 100 years.

So, if you're in Tampa this summer, enjoy the interstate traffic while you can before those yellow monstrosities reengage the highways in numbers that make lovebug swarms seem sparse.

Let freedom ring.

Siths, Vaders and Skywalkers

Annakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi went toe-to-toe in a far away galaxy eons ago. Good vs. evil. At least those are the positions the combatants staked out. Both men had supernatural powers yey despite that they had to struggle to get what they wanted. Both men feared death. To this fact their quest to salt and light the galaxy was undermined by their weakness and shortcomings. To sum up, neither man was God and neither man sought God.

Not having omniscience, and beset with other hindrances, why so much energy expended on fulfilling a monumental task with unknown consequences? Much like America, people in position of political power who sweat blood for your benefit generally don't know exactly what their fulfilled goals portend. (And note that the importance of fulfilling unrealized goals always outweighs the benefits of goals achieved).

George Lucas' sexology (i.e. 6-part series) tapped into the world's collective heart by weaving human frailities inherent to our being--especially pride and lust for power-- into the internal motivation of his main characters. Throw in a few special effects,interesting characters and the lofty external goal of ruling a galaxy and Lucas secured himself preferential treatment at the restaurant of his choice for the rest of his life (assuming he nevers faces the embarrassment of having to wear adult diapers).

Biker-induced Screaming Meemies

A piece on Inside Edition the other day reported on a new craze wherein groups of daredevil motorcyclists perform stunts on real highways and regular roads while being filmed by someone else in the group. In turn the video is transferred onto DVDs and sold. The riders have next to no regard for other motorists and often flaunt their hobby in front of law enforcement officials. When the reporter asked one of the bikers why they would endanger other people so brazenly and disregard speed limits he delivered a very postmodern answer. In so many words he claimed the level of danger was insignificant and that because speed limits change depending on what road you're traveling you can basically disregard all speed limits altogether. I wonder how these bikers would react if thieves started a motorcycle part pilfering club because they felt laws against motorcycle part theft were "conflicting."

As the Apple commercial has taught us, "Life is Random." If life is random then so is theft, and speed, ... I suppose.