Greg Krehbiel's Crowhill Weblog - Content

Thoughts on life — News, culture, politics, beer, art, science, education, religion and ethics

Greg Krehbiel's other sites:
The Krehbiel Report on Publishing

Donald Trump to speak to the “National Council of The Race”

by Greg Krehbiel on 6 July 2015

Scary, huh?

But … oh, I’m sorry. I got the details wrong. It’s actually Hillary Clinton who will be speaking with the National Council of La Raza (which means “the race”).

National Review asks, with a sense of the absurdity, I’m sure, “can it really be true?” See Hillary Clinton and ‘The Race’.

As I recently said on Facebook in another context, Democrats get a pass because, no matter what they say, we all know that they mean well and have good hearts. Republicans are held to a different standard because, no matter what they say, we know they are mean-spirited, small-minded bigots.

--  ::  What do you think?  ::  2015-07-06  ::  Greg Krehbiel

The new Declaration

by Greg Krehbiel on 6 July 2015

My friend Rick Wilson wrote this for the 4th of July. I think it’s pretty good.


To The US Congress, July 4th 2015,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for the people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with their Congress, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

The history of the present Congress is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over the People. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world:

The People’s budgets have not been submitted in a timely manner.

You have voted for laws without reading or understanding them aforetime.

You have unashamedly gerrymandered your home districts so as to preserve your warrant to office as inherited Baronies.

You have allowed campaign monies to more influence you than the needs of the people or your own good common sense.

You have allowed your partisanship to trump your statemanship

In every stage of these Oppressions of partisan bickering, uncompromising and uncooperative attitudes, We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Congress whose character is thus marked by every act which may define Slothful Tyrants are unfit to be the rulers of a free people.

We, therefore, the People of the United States of America, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these United States, solemnly publish and declare, That that we are Absolved from all Allegiance to the Congress, and that all political connection between them and these good and noble people of the United States is and ought to be totally dissolved.

And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

Happy Independence Day!

--  ::  What do you think?  ::  2015-07-06  ::  Greg Krehbiel

The intolerant left as America’s Taliban?

by Greg Krehbiel on 6 July 2015

I was just reading about how efforts to get rid of the Confederate Battle Flag aren’t enough for some folks on the intolerant left. They want us to rename streets, pull down monuments, and otherwise rewrite history.

It reminded me of the outrage when the Taliban destroyed ancient statues in Afghanistan. They wanted to erase a past they didn’t approve of.

-- 1 comment  ::  What do you think?  ::  2015-07-06  ::  Greg Krehbiel

Reasoning vs. instinct

by Greg Krehbiel on 6 July 2015

This is an amusing read: Why Pretty Girls Hate Being Asked Out on Dates by Nerds.

My question is, are people consciously calculating all this stuff, or is it something we know by instinct?

--  ::  What do you think?  ::  2015-07-06  ::  Greg Krehbiel

Do facts matter? Trump edition

by Greg Krehbiel on 3 July 2015

Please don’t confuse anything I say here with an endorsement of Trump.

Trump recently said, if I may summarize, that illegal immigrants are not “Mexico’s best,” and that they are disproprtionately responsible for crimes in the U.S., including rape.

His comments were immediately criticized as racist, and various segments of corporate America lashed out. As did a lot of other people.

I don’t understand why his comments were considered racist. He was not referring to all Mexicans, or all Hispanics, but to those who come here illegally. An analogous comment might be to say that white people who have been in jail are more likely to commit another crime. IOW, he was not referring to the whole group, but to a subset that is distinguished precisely by the fact that it has broken the law.

Isn’t this simply a question of fact? He’s either right or wrong. Either illegal immigrants are more likely to rape and break drug laws or they are not. What does race have to do with it?

It seems we have come to a point where we are so over-sensitive about race that any comment that even mentions race is going to be called racist.

Does the truth matter? Do facts matter?

It seems not.

I don’t know if illegal aliens are more likely to rape. But if they are, do we have to hide that fact and never mention it — just to avoid being accused of racism?

Trump is a buffoon, but the thing he brings to the table is a willingness to say things that other people won’t. (I guess those two things go hand in hand.)

Political correctness has become a plague on our culture. We need people like a Trump to say the unpopular thing, and the rest of us need to resist this knee-jerk reaction to anything that mentions race.

Again, I don’t know if Trump is right or wrong. But that should be the question. Not whether what he said is a “trigger” for over-sensitive race hustlers.

-- 18 comments  ::  What do you think?  ::  2015-07-03  ::  Greg Krehbiel

The nuclear option to prevent jiggery pokery

by Greg Krehbiel on 2 July 2015

A lot of liberals think Citzens United was absurd. I think the recent same-sex marriage ruling is absurd. Apparently four Supreme Court justices agree. Five don’t.

That’s the way it goes, of course, but I wonder if it would make sense to put a mechanism in place to prevent extreme decisions? Especially 5-4 decisions.

For example, what if each justice had the right to nuke one decision per year? If a Supreme Court justice found the majority opinion too extreme, he would invoke his nuclear option and the decision would not be issued. The court simply wouldn’t rule on that case. Or at least not in that term. It could come up again next term.

The justification for such a rule would be that no decision is better than a bad decision, and that it’s all too possible for five justices to go off the rail.

-- 9 comments  ::  What do you think?  ::  2015-07-02  ::  Greg Krehbiel

Wear a hat!

by Greg Krehbiel on 1 July 2015

This morning was my annual visit with liquid nitrogen to freeze the pre-cancerous junk off my head.

I have a good dermatologist that I see annually, so it’s all under control. But … be warned. Wear a hat and/or sunscreen. Especially you, Root, down there in Orangeland.

-- 1 comment  ::  What do you think?  ::  2015-07-01  ::  Greg Krehbiel

What’s next? Register your predictions now.

by Greg Krehbiel on 30 June 2015

Slippery slopes are weird things. While it’s true, in a general sense, that one thing leads to another, it’s also true that the “things” we’re talking about aren’t simple logical propositions. And we’re not simple, logical beings.

It’s easy to say “acceptance of X will lead to Y,” but … it’s not always that simple. X and Y may be related in one way, but not in another. Also, X may be more popular than Y for other reasons.

Humans behavior is not math.

Still — I think there’s hardly any doubt that allowing same-sex marriage is going to have some other effects. What will they be?

Is Polyamory next?

Here are my predictions.

  • The marriage rate in general is going to decline noticeably.
  • Within two years, states will not be allowed to forbid marriage between first cousins.
  • Within five years, polyamory will be legal.
  • Also within five years, there will be no tax benefits for married couples.

I don’t believe we’ll go as crazy as Canada and start imprisoning pastors for preaching against homosexuality. We have too strong of a tradition of religious freedom in this country for that.

-- 14 comments  ::  What do you think?  ::  2015-06-30  ::  Greg Krehbiel

Are we fundamentally transformed yet?

by Greg Krehbiel on 30 June 2015

Or is there more to come?

Maybe we’ll have a nuclear Iran, a problem with Russian tanks in eastern Europe, or a China that beats us at trade because we’re afraid to call them on their currency tricks. And we’ll be ill-equipped to do anything about it because the service branches have been forced to accept unqualified women in combat roles.

Perhaps we need automatic citizenship for anybody who can get across the border, by hook or by crook. Preferably from countries that do not share our values.

Perhaps we need a justice department that assumes the police are guilty whenever a “person of color” is arrested or inconvenienced.

Or maybe we need administrative agencies that just make things up, cover over their failures, then lie to Congress about it.

Gee, there’s just so much to be transformed.

-- 4 comments  ::  What do you think?  ::  2015-06-30  ::  Greg Krehbiel

10 reasons you should go to church even if you don’t believe

by Greg Krehbiel on 30 June 2015

I think there are a lot of benefits of going to church, completely aside from any spiritual issues. Here’s a quick list of ten of them.

  1. It may help you get over yourself. In an age where people get certificates and ribbons and trophies for just showing up, it may help cure your warped self image to go someplace where you’re reminded that the world is not about you, and that you have sins to confess.
  2. Where else do you get any moral instruction? No, your friends griping about Citizens United on Facebook is not moral instruction. Unfortunately, most pastors these days are pretty awful at pressing the moral law with any force, but … still. It’s more than you’re getting anyplace else.
  3. You learn of larger concerns. Churches are often places to learn about issues and challenges that you don’t hear about on the news. The good and the bad.
  4. Where else can you sing? I can’t prove it but I suspect that singing with other people is good for you in a lot of ways. It’s unfortunate that most churches have hymnals that would embarrass the guy who writes the music for Barney and Friends, but … at least it’s something.
  5. Prayer is good for you. You need to step away from the daily grind and spend time to think about your life, your family, your priorities, your goals, your hopes and your wishes in an honest context. An enforced time of prayer can help get your head out of the silliness we usually concern ourselves with.
  6. Churches are caring communities. No one in church is perfect, but generally speaking a church is a community of people who care for one another, and for their neighbors. It’s good to be around people like that.
  7. It’s a way to be a part of your community. There’s more to being “local” than eating locally grown tomatoes. In church you become part of your community.
  8. It’s a place to meet good people, and different people. You’re almost certain to meet people at church that you wouldn’t have met otherwise. It’s good to get outside of your own little social circle.
  9. It’s a chance to be involved in charitable activities. Churches often have ministries to help the poor and needy in your community. Church is a good place to get involved and help somebody.
  10. You need at least one hour a week where your face is not buried in your iPhone.

-- 2 comments  ::  What do you think?  ::  2015-06-30  ::  Greg Krehbiel

2015-06-29 :: Greg Krehbiel // General
And why not?
2015-06-28 :: Greg Krehbiel // General
God, or the Genie of the Lamp?
2015-06-27 :: Greg Krehbiel // General
Are government officials being blackmailed?