Thursday, January 01, 2009

New Year / New Blog

Happy New Year! Welcome to 2009!

It's a new year, and I decided to start a new blog. I wanted to change the name of my blog and have a fresh start. (I expect this to be the last "Technocracy Unleashed" post.) 

My new blog is called "Olio Engineer". Check out the first post.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Tagged by "New Momma"

8 TV Shows I Watch
  1. Kath & Kim
  2. Psych
  3. Burn Notice
  4. Bones
  5. The Soup
  6. The Office
  7. Not Another Cable News Show
  8. Special Report with Brit Hume
8 Favorite Restaurants
  1. Chili's
  2. Olive Garden
  3. Texas Roadhouse
  4. Carl's Jr.
  5. Arby's
  6. Applebees
  7. Whatburger
  8. Krystal
8 Things that Happened Today
  1. I went to work.
  2. I worked.
  3. I came home.
  4. I watched some TV.
  5. I took out the trash.
  6. I watched a trailer for the upcoming Star Trek movie.
  7. I fed our baby boy, Ian.
  8. I tried to take a picture of Ian smiling, but his smile disappeared as soon as I got the camera ready.
4 Things I Look Forward To
  1. Coming home to my wife, Jessica.
  2. Holding Ian.
  3. Hearing the sounds that Ian makes when he's feeding.
  4. Being at home on the weekends and holidays.
Wow, I'm way out of practice with this whole blogging thing (it's harder than it looks). I didn't realize that 8 is such a high number!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Happy Independence Day!

To celebrate America's birthday, I've posted a couple photos.

(By the way, I gave the blog a new header graphic, too.)

Everybody have a safe holiday!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Maybe it was a paraphrase of a paraphrase?

From Biblical Scholars Challenge Pelosi's 'Scripture' Quote:
In her April 22 Earth Day news release, Pelosi said, "The Bible tells us in the Old Testament, 'To minister to the needs of God's creation is an act of worship. To ignore those needs is to dishonor the God who made us.' On this Earth Day, and every day, let us pledge to our children, and our children's children, that they will have clean air to breathe, clean water to drink, and the opportunity to experience the wonders of nature."
Apparently, the Bible doesn't actually tell us that (in the Old Testament or the New Testament). Speaker Pelosi's office didn't respond to Cybercast News Service's questions about the location of this supposed Bible verse. Various Bible scholars (such as Dr. Claude Mariottini) weren't familiar with the particular passage.

(By the way, House of Leoj also has an interesting blog post on this topic.)

So Pelosi's quote doesn't seem to be from the real Bible, but maybe it's from someone's fake Bible.

In any case, her Bible seems to teach worshiping the creation in lieu of worshiping the Creator. That doesn't seem like a Biblical principle to me, but I'm not a Bible scholar.

On the other hand, ministering to people (who are part of God's creation) is a Biblical concept. Matthew 25:34-40 includes: "And the King will answer them, 'Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.'" But that passage doesn't teach worshiping people instead of God.

Saturday, January 26, 2008


Magnetix are awesome! They're magnetic and shiny and geometric and soooo much fun!

I have to give a shout-out to Mrs. Technocrat7 for getting me hooked on them.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Reading the Bible Every Morning

For several months now, I been trying to spend some quiet time every morning reading a chapter from the Bible and praying. (For the first few days, I might have read less than a chapter, but on the other hand there were a few mornings that I read more than a chapter.) I'm not a morning person, so when I started this routine, I thought it would be a lot harder than it's been. In all of these months, I've only neglected to spend this quiet time with God a few times. For me, it's mostly been a commitment to have a "quiet time" every morning.

I just wanted to blog about this to remind myself what I've been doing, and hopefully to encourage other people that might want to start spending a few minutes with God every day. It's been a good experience for me, and I'd recommend for others to give it a try, too.

I started this routine by reading the Gospel of John. When I finished John, I think I read Matthew (my memory gets fuzzy after a few months). After Matthew, I read Mark (which inspired me to post a blog entry about what I had read). Then I must have read all of Luke (which I had recently read part of due to the "One Year Bible" project in the evenings with my wife). Then I jumped to the end of the New Testament to read Revelations. After that, I went through Leviticus.

Since then, I've been reading through the Old Testament starting at Malachi going backwards (I start with the first chapter of each book, and then when I finish the book I go to the previous book). I've read Malachi, Zechariah, Haggai, Zephaniah, Habakkuk, Nahum, Micah, Jonah, Obadiah, Amos, and Joel.

There's some method to my madness. I'm still reading through the "One Year Bible" every night with my wife. Before this year, I had already read the entire New Testament, but I had only read the Old Testament from Genesis to where I stopped in Isaiah (for no particular reason). So by reading from Malachi backwards, I'm trying to finish reading the Old Testament before the end of December. (If I stay on schedule, I think I'll be able to say that I've read the whole Bible by sometime in November.) The Bible's a big book, but I'm kind of embarrassed that it's taken me so long to finish reading it. (And then, I'll just put myself on a schedule of re-reading.)

Since I finished reading Joel this morning, I plan to start Hosea tomorrow. (By the way, I'm not trying to brag since most of these books that I've read in the morning aren't very long.)

By the way, I've been doing all of this recent Bible reading using the ESV translation (which has been my favorite translation for several months now). I still refer to other translations, but I've been using the ESV as my primary translation for reading and studying the Bible.

This probably means more to me than anyone else, but I think I started my morning readings by reading the Gospel of Mark. Then I read Matthew and Luke. (I have read John recently, too, but it was part of my "One Year Bible" readings in the evening.) I guess then point is that I've been reading in such a disorganized order that I've lost track of what I read when.

Mike Huckabee on Headline News Tonight

Glenn Beck has mentioned on his radio show that presidential candidate Mike Huckabee is going to be on his nightly Headline News show today (Friday, October 19). It's one of his hour-long interview episodes.

I think Glenn has pretty much interviewed all of the Republicans running for President on the radio (except perhaps Ron Paul) and apparently has offered all of them the chance to sit down with him for an hour, but Huckabee seems to be the first to actually end up doing it (in their defense, some of the others might have fuller schedules).

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Cascading into a Crusade Against Dietary Fat

In the first hour of today's Rush Limbaugh show, he discussed a column by John Tierney called "Diet and Fat: A Severe Case of Mistaken Consensus". It's a very interesting article about the main idea of Gary Taubes's new book Good Calories, Bad Calories: that eating fat isn't bad.

The article showed how scientific consensus can come to a faulty conclusion due to a phenomenon known to social scientists as a "cascade": a confident voice can lead others in the wrong direction like sheep that have gone astray. In 1953, Dr. Ancel Keys showed a correlation between how much fat people from a particular country ate vs. how much heart disease was in the population. ("But critics at the time noted that if Dr. Keys had analyzed all 22 countries for which data were available, he would not have found a correlation.") In 1957, the American Medical Association didn't find Dr. Keys' evidence convincing. But Dr. Keys didn't give up his efforts to get his theory support:
But three years later the association changed position — not because of new data, Mr. Taubes writes, but because Dr. Keys and an ally were on the committee issuing the new report. It asserted that “the best scientific evidence of the time” warranted a lower-fat diet for people at high risk of heart disease.
Years later, a Senate committee issued a report written by a non-scientist that relied "almost exclusively" on one particular nutritionist.
That report impressed another nonscientist, Carol Tucker Foreman, an assistant agriculture secretary, who hired Dr. Hegsted to draw up a set of national dietary guidelines. The Department of Agriculture’s advice against eating too much fat was issued in 1980 and would later be incorporated in its “food pyramid.”
Tierney also explained how as politicians became more convinced that the science was irrefutable, scientists began to risk their reputations if they questioned the "fat is bad" theory:
The scientists, despite their impressive credentials, were accused of bias because some of them had done research financed by the food industry. And so the informational cascade morphed into what the economist Timur Kuran calls a reputational cascade, in which it becomes a career risk for dissidents to question the popular wisdom.
John Tierney also has a follow-up article about this topic: How the Low-Fat, Low-Fact Cascade Just Keeps Rolling Along