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Sunday, September 11, 2016

Sept. 11th

Another 9/11 anniversary.

As per usual I spend the day avoiding any archival footage of what happened that day. The attack on the World Trade Center in New York in 2001 was played live on TV. It was a truly tragic day and a lot of people lost their lives whether in New York, the Pentagon, or even in a farm somewhere in Pennsylvania.

Unfortunately we're still fighting some form of Islamic fundamentalist terror today. From 2001 onwards we had been fighting Islamic fundamentalism in the form of Al Qaida. Today Al Qaida isn't the main enemy but there are other groups out there asserting themselves around the work. We may have heard about them in Iraq, Syria, or even Libya. We still have a long way to go to finally defeat this emerging enemy.

This has been a day to remember the lives lost. Those who have lost someone hopefully they're remembering this day in their own way. Hopefully we'll never see carnage likes that again.

I want to offer a movie recommendation at some point this week. Go see Sully - the title character was the captain of a commercial airliner ditched in the Hudson River of New York. You will see imagery that could match 9/11 except that well it didn't happen. The fear that an out of control plan suffering mechanical problems and crashing into a populated area is truly a scary thought especially in the waning years after 9/11.

Thankfully for Capt. Sully he did what he had to to save the lives of everyone on that jet that day in 2009. Good news is truly a blessing!


Wednesday, September 07, 2016

Fascinating

A series of links found on Instapundit. Different philosophies of Star Trek. Particularly political & legal philosophies. Questions about the Prime Directive, especially.

Better yet the philosophy of American when Star Trek premiered 50+ years ago. How did America go from a robust pro-liberal philosophy to a more UN-centric "moral relativism".

Then what if Star Trek was written by libertarians.

I can only image a different vision for Star Trek and different drama if someone decided to reboot the universe of Star Trek: The Next Generation.

Check this video from reason which is what you see on Instapundit.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Controversy around Nate Parker

I've struck out some factual mistakes and made some corrections on August 29, 2016. My apologies for them. - Levois
 
I've been hearing about this for a while now. Nate Parker who has a movie coming out in October - The Birth of a Nation. Lately he's been mired in bad press over a past rape charge for which he had been tried and convicted acquitted.

At Instapundit we see a rebuttal to this. Basically it's that men unfortunately have often been unable to shake any charge of rape even after they were found innocent or acquitted. The rebuttal is basally we believe the victim over the accused even if it turns out the accused may not have committed the crime after all.

This is what happened to Mr. Parker and is what's happening. Unfortunately the victim is not with us to tell us her side of the story, she killed herself in 2012. Her family continues to speak for her however and seems to still believe Parker and another young man assaulted the victim.

All the same the story behind the alleged rape is as controversial as the subject of the movie. The film essentially is about a slave rebellion led by one Nat Turner.

In the comments about this I find on social media it's always emphasized that being acquitted doesn't mean it didn't happen. Which is technically true and we have one case of that look at OJ Simpson and he's in prison right now. Not for killing his ex-wife and her male friend, but for something completely different. It's an example how his life unraveled after he himself was accused of a major crime and also acquitted. He later lost a judgement in a wrongful death civil suit.

But then having to say acquitted doesn't mean it didn't happen also bothers me. Because in our system we're innocent until proven guilty. For that trial Parker wasn't proven guilty and now this case is coming back out. Someone out there isn't going to let him shake it and will believe he did something. It won't even matter if he stayed on the straight and narrow after his release acquittal.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

A rare Chicago tornado

Found out Chicago had its last tornado in 2006. Why do I know about this now because on Tuesday with no rain or storms in the area a tornado touched down on Chicago's southwest side near Midway Airport. It stayed in one place and remained stationary according to reports but it's still what they call a landspout tornado.

WGN has some pictures from their camera at the Sears Willis Tower
This piece of trivia I found very fascinating and to recall I used to be terrified of tornadoes until I learned how rare these storms are especially in our city. Not sure I'd want to experience this in the sticks. All the same I'm sure there are media reports of this 2006 tornado.

I could still look but then I found this 2006 video of a tornado near Loyola University Chicago. So when this video was uploaded to YouTube I had been at Morehouse for a month already.

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

CHICAGO ARGUS:What constitutes a “real” American? That’s the question we must answer

Gregory Tejada writes this post to take on the Trump phenomenon. He even mentions the whole attack on the parents of a Muslim solider who had been killed in Iraq.

BTW, I read that the father who spoke at the Democratic Convention last month had business ties to the Clintons. So Trump's volley towards him seem appropriate. Seems like a mess all the way around though.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Spelman alum gives up her corporate job for the cannabis industry

BTW, I really hate this headline for this article just so you know. She gives up "coke" for cannabis almost makes it sound like she's giving up on drug for another. Reality is she's giving up her job at Coca-Cola to enter into the emerging and growing marihuana industry.

It's an intersting look at a "minority" entering an emerging business that no one really understands. Also this business involves a drug like marihuana that is increasingly accepted even if many still shun it. Consider that most banks still won't accept funds from such a business because of any connection with any illegal narcotics.

In Illinois there is a law that allows for medicinal marihuana. In fact this morning on the CapFax there was an article about a court ruling on whether or not a state agency can unilaterally deny a certain condition can be prescribed medicinal marihuana.

Another question answered in the above article is the perception about Blacks and drugs. Even if increasingly marihuana is starting to find acceptance and ultimately decriminalized.

Monday, July 25, 2016

New ship for "Star Trek: Discovery"

[VIDEO] The new ship for a new Star Trek TV series coming in the new year. If you can't wait for that new series to premiere in 2017 then Star Trek Beyond is out in theaters now. Hopefully I'll see it during the course of the next week or so. Can't wait!

BTW, Discovery will air the series premiere on the CBS TV network and then further episodes will air on CBS's online streaming service. Which I hope they'll change if this return proves to be very successful.

The use of online streaming for TV programs have expanded as of late with such shows as Orange is the New Black, House of Cards, and Fuller House have taken advantage of this medium. For a Star Trek series this is not unfamiliar territory since a new Star Trek series in the 1970s would've premeired on a new network. Also two Star Trek series aired in syndication and two others aired on a new TV network as well.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Go somewhere....

The Grand Canyon
Something I did for a little over a week. As usual the mode of transport for this trip is not an airplane but Amtrak. It's always good to see the nation roll by especially during the daylight hours. It's always sad to return home though exciting to go out of town. It's also great to be in far more familiar territory as well.

It always good to leave home for a few days and see how life is lived in another part of this nation. How do people live in such locales as Los Angeles or Las Vegas for example? I had a few days in that part of the nation and it's only a snapshot but worthwhile. Plus heading west is always a rare treat indeed.

On this trip I also went to the Grand Canyon. Been years since the first time I went and it's without a doubt a very massive and deep site. If you're not careful deadly because on the way there I learned someone recently slipped and fell to their death.

All the same the message of this post is clear. It doesn't matter if you leave your block, neighborhood, city, or state. Its always OK to go somewhere and see what's out there. You need not go as far as I had because there are sites to see in the Chicago area or even a day trip away.

Which reminds me, I've always wanted to go to Springfield for example. Also I've never allowed myself an opportunity to see St. Louis. Of course I can always visit Gary, Indiana or check out Indianapolis. Then there's Milwaukee never really had the opportunity to see what that city has to offer.

And with these place all you have to do is spend a day go down early one morning and then come back that evening. Of course you can always spend one night away from home. It's always great to see another part of the world.

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Saw the new "Purge" movie recently

[VIDEO] I wanted to take this time on the waning minutes of the 4th of July holiday to talk about The Purge: Election Year. I saw it on Sunday and had some thoughts. Mainly to express how glad that so far this nation hasn't turned to anyone similar to the "New Founding Fathers of America".

Somehow in this decade the NFFA is able to gain control of this nation and proposed an event known as the "purge" where it is legal to engage in criminal activities including murder for 12 hours. All emergenc services are suspended so basically whether you participate or not you're on your own.

In some of the synopsis of this film the NFFA and the "purge" is a result of the need to preserve economic prosperity. Essentially what was driven home in the last movie was how the purge is really used to eliminate those people who are dependent. In these movies there are racial overtones in this although I realize who could be targeted in that universe may not necessarily be of one race or ethnicity.

To be honest I never saw the first one but the gist of it is a family helps to protect a homeless man and are thus targeted by a group of purgers. BTW, I got a basic synopsis online so if you don't want to know what it's about especially if you haven't seen it please DO NOT click this link. Although I realize that this film was released in 2012.

The second one had a group of people hoping to survive the purge either being stranded in the wrong place during that period or finding themselves targets by the government. We find out more about this new regime who put this day in place and we find out that well not as many people are participating as they used to.

Then we go to the third one which is the most political of the series. The NFFA and an independent candidate are facing off over whether to keep the purge or abolish it. Of course this "political" movie also involves attempted assassinations and we nakedly see the ethnic and economic overtones of this event. We see more of these new founding fathers. They may not necessarily hold any public offices but obviously have enough influence to be the new regime of the United States.

BTW, worst part of this movie is a girl getting murdered after attempting to steal a candy bar from a store. In this world all you need is a messed up excuse to engage in this activity. I already knew the movie wouldn't end well for her and her crew. Also it's shown how this event can do nothing more than corrupt people.

With the NFFA comes an odd religion and then an odd prayer. The new founding fathers are blessed for letting American citizens to purge and "cleanse" their souls. America is referred to as a nation reborn - which becomes in my mind a very scary campaign slogan. In the third movie it seems the NFFA has their own religious arm which celebrates this purge.

All the same I could spend most of this post over-analyzing a fictional movie but I'm truly glad that in the real world we don't have such an event and never will. A character in "Election Year" said living in Mexico every night is a purge and it's already like this in some places here. We might find out the toll here in Chicago regarding how many people are killed or injury in violence throughout the city.

The new movie is fitting as it involves an election and we are in an election year now. The difference between that election which takes place at some point in the future vs now is that this election doesn't involve any idealistic candidate who seeks to do something major. The major party candidates are on opposite ends of the electorate ideologically and the nation generally isn't happy with them.

Either way, I'm glad that this isn't the nation we have now where there is such a legally sanctioned event.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Trump

In light of the tragic incident in Orlando, Florida over the past weekend with comments made by GOP nominee for President Donald Trump and comments to a federal judge I found a meme online. Not a meme as much as it appears to be a screencap with comments.