Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Great, George

So, I was watching CNN and I saw George Bush say:

The propagandists have done a better job of depicting America as a hateful place, a place wanting to impose our form of government on people and our religion on people. And it's -- and we're behind when it comes to selling our own story and telling people the truth about America.

This is obviously a ridiculous statement. We are imposing our government upon them, and Bush is the one who is taking the lead in morphing democracy into theocracy here at home.

But, if you look at CNN's article about Bush, you find

"The propagandists have done a better job of depicting America as a hateful place, a place wanting to impose our form of thought and our religion on people," he said.

I admit that this is probably what Bush meant, but it sure as hell is not what he said. I'd like to think it's a Freudian slip from our Pathological Liar in Chief.

Sunday, January 9, 2005

Whence marriage?

I went to the beautiful wedding of Catherine's friend in Birmingham this weekend, but I had been reading too much Brothers K and was in an overly analytical mood. When the minister described marriage and love as if both originated from and were the exclusive province of a Christian God, I found myself wondering about the institution of marriage. I was kind of surprised that I had read so little explaining how we got to the point where churches sanctified and appropriated what must have at one point been the spontaneous union of two people to form a family. I found some random articles and the Wikipedia entry but I'm still not satisfied. Still looking for something better. Maybe it's worth finding a book?

Tuesday, January 4, 2005

Wikipedia is fun

I've been on a big Wikipedia-reading kick lately. I think it started when Catherine started asking me about Hinduism, and all I really knew was that Krishna stole butter and ate it and killed a serpent in the lake. Today, for kicks, I looked up "water sports", which was disambiguated into the secondary definition of Urolagnia. I feel much more educated after reading up on this topic. The one thing that worries me most about Wikipedia is the stories I've heard about people who made subtle alterations to pages, changing, say, the number of home runs of some obscure baseball player, and have had it gone unnoticed (despite general success in identifying vandalism). I like the idea of editors - maybe they could periodically mark release branches, just like in code development. Speaking of Wikipedia, the live recent changes feed is slick.