Before i Forget : Simon Jones's blog

February 2007

Environment and Faith & ReligionWednesday, February 28th, 2007, (4:52 pm)

The Reverend Jerry Falwell, former head of the ‘Moral Majority‘ Christian political lobbying group, has stepped up to offer the world some holy reassurance on fears that we might be in the grip of a global climate crisis. In his sermon on February 25th Falwell described global warming as “a myth” and that “the Church must quickly get serious about denouncing the accelerating effort to promote the alleged catastrophic human-caused global warming.”

Speaking to his faithful baptist congregation in Lynchburg, Virginia, Falwell said that the growing environmental awareness among Christians and “naive Christian leaders” is “Satan’s attempt to redirect the church’s primary focus from evangelism to environmentalism.”

“The problem is global warming has become a trendy issue of limousine liberals and Hollywood elitists, and the media are promoting it as virtual, if not substantive, fact.” Said Falwell.

His recent sermon isn’t the first time he’s spoken on the subject of global warming or environmentalism. He’s been dismissing all science about the subject for many years and has called it a “myth” on a number of previous occasions.

On CNN’s ‘Inside Politics‘ show in November 2002, Falwell dismissed global warming as “created to destroy America’s free enterprise system and our economic stability.” Frequently interrupting the shows other guest whose views opposed his, Falwell went on to say “I urge everyone to go out and buy an SUV today.”

Falwell believes Jesus Christ will soon return to earth and a violent apocalyptic battle will take place and therefore there is little need for Christians or anyone to worry about any perceived threat of an impending climactic catastrophe.

Of course, it’s hard to take the so-called “Christian leader” seriously when he seems so adept at regularly spewing the ill considered hateful garbage he so often does. In 2002 he angered Muslims by calling Islam’s prophet Mohammed a “terrorist” as well as “a demon-possessed pedophile.” Indeed, just two days after the 9/11 attacks on America Falwell infamously said on Pat Robinson’s ‘700 Club’ TV show that the attacks were God’s judgment on America for “throwing God out of the public square”

Falwell did say in his sermon that he believes Christians should give the environment some consideration but they should not become “first-class nuts.” As yet the reverend has not given any solid direction on how a Christian might become environmentally aware, and it seems unlikely that there will be a follow up sermon offering practical Falwell endorsed eco-friendly hints and tips.

Jerry Falwell Ministries
Falwell : Global warming is [still] a myth
[MP3] Falwell talks… well, crap in 2006.
Fallwell to get Jesus a Hummer
Biblely stuff about the environment
Falwell foolishly blames gays, lesbians, the ACLU and others for 9/11
Falwell sheepishly falls back from his original 9/11 position

MusicWednesday, February 28th, 2007, (12:50 pm)

For those of you who play guitar, or any instrument, or indeed just enjoy music, check out the video below of a guitarist by the name of Andy McKee playing a track called “Drifting.”

Andy McKee is a 28 year old guitarist who has been playing guitar since he was 13. But the video above shows him playing the instrument “fingerstyle” which I have to say I had neither heard of or seen done before.

Perhaps this style of playing guitar is common, but I was very impressed when I saw the video. It’s not just a show off video either, the music itself is very good. Andy has a few CD’s out and you can watch him perform other tracks on iTunes, including a rather dodgy rendition of Toto’s classic track “Africa”, but we’ll forgive him for that.

Andy McKee’s website
More of Andy McKee performing

Faith & ReligionMonday, February 26th, 2007, (6:35 pm)

The jokers behind the recent “God hates a fag” video that caused quite a rumble online, have made another video which I hadn’t noticed until the other day when “Donnie” himself told me about it.

I managed to track ‘Donnie’, known in the real world as actor Joey Oglesby, and he was kind enough to spare me a few moments to chat about his video ‘The Bible Says’ in which the Donnie character sings about how “God hates a fag.”

Although Joey hasn’t yet (to my knowledge) admitted that ‘Donnie’ is him, there is now no doubt. According to ‘Donnie’ a new video will be coming out quite soon, and “work is progressing” on the C.H.O.P.S (Changing Homosexuals Into Ordinary People) program.

However, the latest video on Donnie’s own website seems to add a lot more humor to the subject which so many people, including YouTube, Google Video, and Myspace, all had a sense of humor failure about.

At this stage I’m glad that the Davies camp are playing up the joke a little more obviously, but I’m still a little puzzled as to where they want this to go next. Another video will surely not have anywhere near the same effect and at worst might even be viewed as being deliberately antagonistic toward both Christians and gay people.

If the original video was made to promote discussion using humor about how the church vilify and struggle to treat gay people in a way that they should, then it pretty much achieved it’s objective. But a lack of follow-up leaves me feeling a little disappointed that ‘Donnie’, or the group behind the prank, may have let a valuable opportunity to raise a few good questions (aside “who is Donnie Davies?) pass them by.

The sad truth though is that while Donnie and his ‘Bible Says’ video fade into the forgotten, the very real attitudes that made so many wonder if his video might actually be real, are still out there and part of the religious opinions of more people than perhaps we might want to think about. Perhaps that is the point that Donnie Davies should now be making?

Found on the webFriday, February 23rd, 2007, (1:46 am)

If ever you get to the point where you think dressing your dog in some kind of costume is a good idea, you’ve probably already experienced a serious taste malfunction. However, if you ever put your dog in something like the outfit pictured below then you’ve had a serious, and I would suspect, completely unrecoverable breakdown of all good taste, medically referred to as ‘Chronic Taste Failure’ or CTF.

Chronic taste failure isn’t an uncommon condition and evidence suggests that the number of people afflicted is on the rise. Men and women are equally likely to be struck with CTF which can strike at almost any age. The condition is seemingly indiscriminate and left untreated can develop into TTF (terminal taste failure).

Although the onset of CTF often goes unnoticed by the affected individual it can usually be detected by looking for telling signs. Fluffy objects, an abundance of cheap gold jewelry, shower caps and Barry Manilow CD’s are among the more obvious signs. However pay attention for early onset signs such as flashing bluetooth headsets worn all the time, regardless of whether it’s in use or not. Car bra’s, travel pillows, and ridiculous mobile phone ring tones are also pointers that CTF may well be in its early stages.

If you display any early symptoms DO NOT DELAY – Seek professional help at once!

The disturbing picture above (found while I was looking for a pig picture for my chinese new year post) is probably something only someone suffering a sad case of Terminal Taste Failure would find endearing.

The creators of the “Pig dog costume” are blatantly exploiting CTF and TTF sufferers when they claim on their website that “Your dogs will love the attention from photo opportunities and parties in this hilarious Piggy Pooch costume.”

If you think you have CTF, or if you know anyone suffering from CTF, don’t be ashamed to request help. Ask your doctor for details about Taste Failure Support Groups in your area. They’re always completely anonymous and never judgmental.

Remember, taste failure can strike at anytime but with the correct treatment as well as the support of friends and family, sufferers can make a complete recovery and go on to live long and happy lives.

Found on the webThursday, February 22nd, 2007, (3:58 pm)

This is something only the nerds will appreciate. If you’re not a nerd or one of those super-cool Mac people (iPeople maybe?) then chances are you wimply won’t get this

Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO, is of course way cooler than the Prince of Nerds Bill Gates. Gates though is fabulously rich and just about still clinging to his title as the richest man in the world, though he may well lose that too the founders of Google, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, who are sort of cool in some respect but still need Italian sports cars to get laid.

Apple as a brand carry way more kudos than Microsoft. But then even charismatic Steve Jobs would surely struggle to make spreadsheets seem sexy. The Apple -vs- Microsoft battle ended a long time ago according to Steve Jobs. But the latest Apple TV commercials take some pretty direct shots at Windows latest offering, Vista.

The Apple -vs- Microsoft battle is one of the enduring rivalries in the nerd world. It’s the geek equivelent of the Yankees -vs- The Red Sox, or Liverpool FC -vs- Manchester United. In essence the Apple -vs- Microsoft battle adds excitement to a subject that isn’t known for being exciting or sexy.

But all joking aside, Macs are just cooler… No, seriously, they are… really!

Apple CEO and co-founder Steve Jobs
Microsoft founder Bill Gates
Google founder Larry Page
Google founder Sergey Brin
Bono (just because he IS cool)

GeneralMonday, February 19th, 2007, (11:31 pm)

This is a recent picture of my little nephew and niece, Jacob and his twin sister Sommerlee. I didn’t take the picture. They live 250 miles away from me and in UK terms that is a LONG way away. And besides, driving my little MG is scary enough in the wet, so there’s no way I’d want to drive it in snow!

Anyway, I just thought I would post the picture simply because it’s got that “Aww” factor. Or maybe I’m biased?

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