Today, Loose Canon ducks that question, but responds thusly:

If you don't work for some magazine in Swami's milieu, you're too stupid to have opinions that matter. My passive aggressive holiday wish for Swami this year is that he will come to recognize that there are people who don't work for Time and Newsweek who might nevertheless have something to say. In other words, I'm asking for a miracle.
Not at all, LC. Lots of people who don't work for Big Media have Important Things to say. But what they have in common is a search for truth, not ideological purity. As for Time and Newsweek, who but a Religious Nutcase would try and power-wedge the ultimate meaning of Christ into some seasonal filler of an article about religion in a weekly newsmagazine? Let's have a little sense of proportion, please! Or do you want articles like "Jesus is My Pit Crew" in Car & Driver?

Now We Know: There Are Two Classes of U.S. Citizens

It was in USA TODAY, so it must be true:

Nearly half of all Americans believe the U.S. government should restrict the civil liberties of Muslim-Americans, according to a nationwide poll.

The survey conducted by Cornell University also found that Republicans and people who described themselves as highly religious were more apt to support curtailing Muslims' civil liberties than Democrats or people who are less religious.

Researchers also found that respondents who paid more attention to television news were more likely to fear terrorist attacks and support limiting the rights of Muslim-Americans.

The survey found 44% favored at least some restrictions on the civil liberties of Muslim Americans. Forty-eight percent said liberties should not be restricted in any way.

The survey showed that 27% of respondents supported requiring all Muslim-Americans to register where they lived with the federal government. Twenty-two percent favored racial profiling to identify potential terrorist threats. And 29% thought undercover agents should infiltrate Muslim civic and volunteer organizations to keep tabs on their activities and fund-raising. Guess this is more "confirmation" of what LC and her ilk keep saying: Christians and Republicans care more about America's security than Democrats.

Why Politics Really Is Spiritual

George Lakoff, the master linguist, who has spent decades studying how Republicans "frame" political issues to their advantage:

They [Strict Father Republicans] see themselves in an all out war of good versus evil and you can use the devils own tricks against him, so that there is a no-holds-barred situation. Anything goes in confronting evil. The Democrats have assumed that the election process is not war, that it replaces war. That's why you hold elections instead of having war.
Good and evil, huh? And here you thought it was just about who's going to get the contract to fix the potholes.

Christmas at AOL

Want proof that a godless society has taken Christ out of Christmas? If you're on AOL, go to Keyword: Christmas. There's a tip of the day which might have spiritual content--though today it's about eggnog--but the other 99% is Shopping. (Make that 98%. You can follow Santa on his route with the NORAD tracker.)

Why is this? Jews control Shopping at AOL? (In fact, they don't.) Oh, now I remember: because we don't allow the 10 Commandments in Federal courthouses.

Thought for Today

It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.
--Upton Sinclair

End of Week Meditation

Dear Lord, I watched some television last night. And I found myself saying to my wife, "I want to buy a new car before Chistmas." Which is nuts--we live in Manhattan and already own a car that is way too good for us. I guess, in the end, I desperately want to be an American--I mean, I would even have bought an American car. An SUV probably. The kind that starts at $22,000 except that at the bottom of the screen you learn that the car in the commercial is $36,000. But zero-percent financing! A built-in DVD! A free year of satellite radio! Here's my question: Is this your bounty, O Lord--or Satan's temptation?

Weekend Movie Suggestion

Finally saw Kinsey. Thrilling. Ignore what the wingnuts say--I'd lay any amount of money on the proposition that they're projecting their own sexual distress. (To make it even simpler: If they hate it, it almost has to be good.) Consider the intellectual excitement of a film that has its main character announce, five minutes into the movie, "I've yet to find a single gall wasp that's the same as another...The implication: If every single living thing is different from every other living thing, then diversity becomes life's one irreducible act. Only variations are real."