1/3 of Americans are "biblical literalists"

Almost half of Americans believe God created humans 10,000 years ago [via]. My favorite quote from this little survey is the following.

Forty-five percent of Americans also believe that God created human beings pretty much in their present form about 10,000 years ago. A third of Americans are biblical literalists who believe that the Bible is the actual word of God and is to be taken literally, word for word.

Hey, all you “biblical literalists” I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price for her?


Looks like I’m going to have to change the photo in my header. After much prodding from Lauren and the thought of wearing glasses in my wedding photos, I decided to break down and start wearing contact lenses.

There are a few things that I like about contacts over regular glasses.

  1. Things are extremely clear. My old glasses (the old-old ones, my newer ones got destroyed) were scratched, which made my vision cloudy.
  2. You don’t have any rims/lenses to get in your way.

And of course there are a few things I hate about contacts.

  1. Putting the little fuckers in.
  2. Taking the little fuckers out.
  3. I have some strange blurred and double vision in my peripheral vision.

At any rate, I’m slowly getting used to them. Though I think my vision could be clearer at this point. And, one last point, Desperate Housewives kicks ass.

Arrgghhh Matey! Check out my booty!

After spending two weeks limping around on a gimp foot I finally broke down and went into the emergency room. This is no small feat considering I don’t have health insurance. Lauren was making fun of me the entire time. I’m a big wuss, etc.

Well, guess what? I have a stress fracture in my foot. SO THERE LAUREN! As a result I’m walking around in this amazingly NOT COOL booty. It is supposed to keep my foot from bending and putting stress on the broken bone. I get to walk around in this thing for a full 6 weeks.

What amazed me so much was how technically advanced the hospital was. I got a few x-rays and before I was wheeled back into the waiting room I saw the doctor treating me looking at my x-rays on a monitor. The most amazing part was that I was in and out of the emergency room in less than two hours. Of course, they told me the bill was in the mail. Scary.

Back from OSU

I’m finally back from my trip to OSU. The PHP training went well, though I do think some of the more advanced topics went over some of the students heads. However, all of them said they came away with some things though could use to instantly improve their applications, so it wasn’t all in vain.

While I was down there I was able to visit with an old fraternity brother and roommate of mine as well as my soon-to-be best man for my wedding. Many beers were drank and more than a few chicken wings met their doom.

Before I wrap things up here I’d like to point out a few things that I hate about flying and being in airports. Below is a small list of things that annoyed the hell out of me on this recent trip.

  1. Am I the only one who doesn’t walk like they’re site seeing while walking through the terminal? Come on people! Pick up the pace!
  2. Why isn’t there an airline that offers adults-only flights? I’d pay $50 to $100 above a regular ticket price if I knew there would be no chance of an infant being on the aircraft when I boarded.
  3. A lady sitting next to me actually reach across the row of seats into MY pouch (the little puch in front of your seat) and grabbed one of the magazines I had purchased. Hey lady, how about you buy your OWN magazines next time?! I don’t mind her reading my magazine, but I do mind the fact that she assumed something in my area of the aircraft was fair game.
  4. I now know why everyone got so upset when my fraternity was up late drinking and partying at the hotels we stayed at for formals.
  5. C’mon! If you have a convention center in your hotel you HAVE to have high speed internet in all of your rooms. And if you charge for it I’ll never stay at your hotel ever again. If the Comfort Inn in Souix City, SD gets this why can’t you Holiday Inn?

Ahhh. I feel better now.

Jesus speaks through the Republicans

Jesus speaks through the Republicans

I hope the election of George W. Bush is seen as a wake-up call to all the liberal Democrats who oppose God’s will.

It is His doing that George W. Bush is still our president. Millions of born-again Christians helped win this election through our prayers and votes. Jesus speaks through the Republicans.

The Democrats will not be able to win elections until they renounce their sinful ways and stop encouraging abortions, gayness, and trying to take away our guns.

Earl Balboa

I couldn’t make this shit up if I tried.

F*ck the South

I just read what is quickly becoming an Internet sensation, fuckthesouth.com. It’s got some strong language (ie. lots of use of “fuck”), but the message is clear and VERY funny. Below I’ve listed some of the points the site makes, which are great.

  1. 8 of the top 10 states who receive more federal dollars than they pay in federal taxes are “red” states.
  2. 7 of the bottom 10 receiving the least amount of money per dollar paid in taxes are “blue” states. All of these states get back, on average, about 75 cents on the dollar paid.
  3. Of the states with the highest murder rates per 100,000 people the top five are all southern states.
  4. The state with the lowest divorce rate is Massechusetts, with half as many divorces per 1,000 than Texas.

I found the numbers really funny. It looks like some people in red states need to do some real soul searching. I think the tax dollars are really interesting. Republicans get all nazi about taxes, but when it comes to handouts from “high” taxes they’re all for it. The “moral values” argument is pretty funny too, since the south’s and other red states have much higher divorce rates than their hippy counterparts.

In other words, if you don’t like our high taxes then don’t use them and if you think marriage is something you should protect then start with your own home before you start telling everyone else how marriage should be.

Let's try a true democracy

Anyone who has ever had a political science class knows that the United States not a Democracy, but really a Republic. In a true Democracy when a law is proposed everyone in the country would vote on it, instead of representatives.

I think that, as technology progresses, the ability to have a true Democracy could be possible. You could log in daily to “My Democracy” and view proposed bills/laws and then vote on them from the comfort of your home. Would everyone participate? No, but if only a few thousand from around the country participated it would have to be more representative than the current system.

We’d still have a leader and a judicial branch, but the legisliative branch would be the entire US public. It would be interesting, to say the least. For now, I’d take the ability to simply vote on federal laws directly (which many states do in the form of “propositions”).

Using mysql_grep.php to grep tables

I’ve created a new piece of code that allows people to grep through their database tables and fields. I regularily work on databases with more than 50 tables in the database. Each table has anywhere from two to twenty fields in them. To make things even more of a pain in the ass sometimes the fields are mispelled or do not match up.

As a result I created mysql_grep.php. You can download it from my newly created source directory. Check back often for more code/utilities created by me. Below is an example use of mysql_grep.php

jstump@zebulon:~$ php -q bin/mysql_grep.php -d joestump_net -e photo

The following fields match "photo"
  +-> photos_favorites
      +-> photoID
  +-> photos_images
      +-> photoID

The following tables match "photo"
  +-> photos_albums
  +-> photos_favorites
  +-> photos_images

The code does not support connecting to hosts other than localhost nor does it support changing sockets/ports. Furthermore, the code requires PEAR’s DB. And, finally, the expressions are passed directly to PHP’s ereg(). This means you should be able to pass "^[A-Z]" as an expression (remember to quote your complex expressions).

Election 2004

Well, I just got back from voting. I think everyone probably knows who I voted for and if you’re thinking I wasted my vote I think you wasted yours on Kerry (or Bush). At any rate, I have a few observations on the whole voting process.

  1. Next to all candidates was their party designation, except in the cases of judges, who were marked “NP” or “Non-Partisan”. What a joke! I don’t know about you, but I’d like to know where judges stand on such issues as abortion, gay rights, etc.
  2. The process was extremely quick. I was in and out in about 20 minutes.
  3. I’m frustrated at how low tech the whole process is. I LIKE voting with paper because paper trails are a Good ThingTM. However, I’d like a “voter verification” code that I could check online if need be. I envision it working much like a UPS trcking number. I could view when my ballot was cast, if it was “official”, verify my votes and, if it was deemed an “invalid” vote why it was deemed such.

The next problem I see with the entire voting process is that lawyers are becoming more and more involved in the process. If we have a repeat of last year’s debacle where the man with the majority of the votes loses the election in the courts, we’re going to have a serious problem on our hands. Voters will become disenfranchised with the process (why vote if the courts decide in the end?). Other countries will begin to question the stability of our election process (the UN, by the way, is overseeing our election this year – something usually reserved for third world countries experiencing their first elections). In other words, it’ll be a huge clusterfuck. I, of course, have an opinion on how things could be fixed.

  1. Either move to a popular vote or mandate the Electoral College vote in a percentage based way, instead of the current winner-takes-all way. Currently if Bush wins Ohio by 3 votes he takes ALL of Ohios Electoral College votes. Under my changes Bush would get 51% of Ohio’s EC votes and Kerry would get 49% of Ohio’s EC votes.
  2. Allow all parties who appear on at least 40 state ballots to participate in the Presidential Debates. If he’s a valid candidate who is on enough ballots to win the election he should get just as much air time as everyone else.
  3. Change The House of Represenatives into a representative body based on percentage of votes. If the Green Party got 10% of the votes they would get 10% of the seats in the House for that particular state.
  4. Allow for popular votes on federal issues. I’m not sure if this is currently happening or not, but for certain issues I should be able to vote on federal laws.

I think we need to get away from the thought that our “Democracy” (it’s, by definition, actually a Republic) is perfect. It has known flaws and, luckily, our framers have given us avenues to fix those flaws. In time, I hope they are fixed. If not we could be in for some major problems in the very near future.

Tomorrow is the most important day of your life

Tomorrow is the single most important day of your life. You need to get off your lazy ass and vote. It doesn’t matter who you vote for, just vote. If you think George has done a bang up job, then vote for him. If you think Kerry is a cool dude, then vote for him. Don’t forget that you have a few other options.

Don’t listen to the people on both “sides” saying that if you vote for a third party candidate you have wasted your vote. A vote that isn’t cast is a wasted vote. Just because your guy might not win doesn’t mean it’s wrong for believing in him – the best man doesn’t always win and nice guys usually finish last.

Now get out there and vote.