Bag of Randomness

  • Yesterday an Austin police spokesman was asked if the plane crash yesterday was a terrorist act.  He replied by saying that it was not a terrorist act, but a criminal act, and then the reporter asked him to explain the difference.  The police spokesman was smart enough to just state that he believed it was a criminal act and he was going to leave the defining to the reporter.  But that really got me to thinking, I don’t know exactly how to explain the difference, especially in yesterday’s case.  Help me out and let me know your thoughts.
  • Why are there blue lines on the ski slopes in the Olympics?  Is that new?
  • It was interesting watching the women snowboard last night, the part that stood out to me was some of them pulling out their iPod before starting their routine.
  • If there is a Best Actor and a Best Actress category, whey aren’t there a Best Male and Best Female Director categories?  I think there should only be a Best Actor category that combines both male and female actors.
  • Benny Hinn’s wife files for divorce –  You may remember her from her Holy Ghost Enema sermon
  • I wasn’t aware that Denver won the rights to host the 1976 Winter Olympics, but then decided that they didn’t want to play host.  Link The games ended up going to Innsbruck, Austria.
  • If a shoe company were to come out with a mobile phone, you would probably think it would be Nike, but Puma has beat them to it.
  • Darth Vader Adidas jacket
  • GatorBike
  • 101 Muppets of Sesame Street infographic
  • Who’s Your Daddy Real Bacon HandMade Potato Chips
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8 Responses to Bag of Randomness

  1. dan says:

    I'm guessing the blue lines are a guide because the skiers sometimes have a hard time seeing the course. They keep going from bright white, almost white-out, to shaded areas where they can't see the moguls. Some of the skiers went outside the blue lines but there was no penalty as long as they made it back on the course for the next gate. I thought it was interesting that some of the women skiers said they were afraid of the course. I could see why after a few of the wipe-outs. A couple of the women were whipped around like rag dolls when they lost of their footing. It can't be fun to hit packed, icy snow with your face when you're traveling 70 mph.

    Speaking of Denver rejecting the Olympics, I've been wondering whether the 2008 Olympics in Athens played a role in their current financial meltdown due to the government's debt problems.

    Some of the women skiers listen to music right before their runs, even singing out loud, to completely zone everything else out and relax.

  2. Shawn Wilson says:

    As far as terrorist or not, I think that is a bad arguement. Mainly for the simple fact the George Bush signed into law a Presidential Directive that said "anything" that causes fear, alarm, etc is a terrorist act. I think we throw that word around more to bring fear then anything else. To be honest I don't even think that what was done on 9/11 should be called terrorism, more like an act of war.
    FDR didn't call the bombing of Pearl Harbor a terrorist attack, he called it war!!
    I think that when the government can define what an action is in such a broad sense he can lead to extreme misuse.

  3. Rev. Hart says:

    I think Shawn's points above are valid. The terminology of these events has nearly as much power as the events themselves.

    Many people have read the man's manifesto (suicide note) and actually find that they agree with some of his frustrations. We should be alarmed if people agree with the frustrations and THEREFORE are unwilling to call his act terrorism. I read that Senator Scott Brown (R) mentioned that the same anger that motivated the Austin bomber was what motivated the people in Massachusetts to elect him. This statement should terrify us.

    Throughout history, humans have unfortunately tended toward an "Us. vs. Them" mentality. What we really are doing in our hearts is thinking "Righteous Us vs. Sinister Them." When Sinister They encroach upon Our Righteous Way of Life, then We are justified to take any measure necessary to stop Them.

    Thus we see that yesterday's Austin bomber had the exact same motivation as an Al Qaeda suicide bomber.

    • Dude says:

      I think I understand what you are saying about the dangers of the whole righteous vs. sinister mindset. Historically, people do demonize enemies to justify war and/or any other sundry atrocities. But I think there is _also_ a mistake in labeling all acts as "terrorism" in broad terms, and using moral relativism to not identify evil acts as such. It seems to me that not only are we not "hating the sinner" but we are reluctant to "name the sin".

      For me, the term use of the term "terrorism" seems to be more applicable to the actions of a specific group of people (who we've dubbed "terrorists") who are engaging in acts of war while employing unorthodox methods, in disparate lands in an attempt to attack a perceived enemy (or more specifically an ideal). Shawn, FDR could call it war because the act was carried out by a sovereign nation under a flag with known boundaries that could be held accountable as such.

      What happened on 9/11 (and WTC and Cole and all the other places) is more complicated than that. I think Bush's directive was an emotional and shortsighted reaction to remove legal barriers that existed that might have kept the govt. from going after Bin Laden and Al Qaeda. Widening the definition of "terror" to allow our law enforcement and military to pursue these criminals ultimately ended up in Iraq…. don't get me started. The "terrorists" perform acts meant to terrorize us because as a military action they are largely ineffectual. They can't fight on a level field because it simply doesn't exist. Whenever they meet us in a conventional military encounter they are defeated.

      What happened in the case of Stack (and McVeigh, Rudolph, Malvo/Muhammad, Kaczynski, etc.) is most certainly criminally insane, but not "terroristic" to me. There have always been crazy people who "go off" and perform senseless acts whether it's shooting Archduke Ferdinand or innocents walking under the UT Tower. It's sad, mindless and shakes our ideas of what is safe and fair in this world.

      I disagree with the Rev. about Stack's motivation being exactly the same as Al Qaeda's. I don't think that Al Qaeda is "insane" but rather their motivations are anti-West, anti-Israel and pretty much anti-anything-not-aligned-with-Radical-Islam. Their actions have been pretty consistent on that matter. Until we are willing to own up to this, we will continue to make 90 yr-old ladies take off their shoes at airports so as not to offend anyone's delicate sensibilities.

      I will agree though, that it is sad and scary that there are people forgiving Stack's actions based on misplaced anger. As a society we seem to have lost the ability to resolve conflict in a rational and respectful manner.

  4. BuriedCaesar says:

    Back to the Olympics…

    The lines in the halfpipe are there not only to help the boarders see the course, but also to help the judges determine how far the boarder is traveling during jumps (partly determines how many points to award).

    Denver ultimately turned down the '76 winter games because a critical bond election failed which would have helped to raise the necessary money to pay for new venues and needed renovations to existing arenas. It was also what spurred the Lake Placid Olympic Committee to make one last effort and ultimately get the 1980 games. I suppose that means we have Denver to thank, albeit indirectly, for the "Miracle on Ice"…

  5. Brokelyn says:

    I can't figure it out. White people are not terrorists, brown people are. Muslims are terrorits, Christians/Catholics/Jewish are not. Westerners are not terrorists, Middle Easterners are. There, use that set of guidelines the next time someone commits a crime against Americans.

    As always, thanks for "nothing" Keith! Keep up the great work.

  6. David Bryant says:

    "To be an act of terrorism, "there has to be some political motive and it has to send a broader message that seeks some policy change," Georgetown University professor Bruce Hoffman said. "From what I've heard, that doesn't appear to be the case. It appears he was very mad at the [IRS] and this was a cathartic outburst of violence. His motivation was the key.""

    From the Fort Worth Star-Telegram –

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