Daily Archives: 7 Dec 2011

Christmas in the South

If a picture is worth 1000 words, this one describes the South in exactly 1000.

Joel Watts’ Christmas Deco

The United States Air Force Dumped the Remains of More Than 274 Troops into Landfills

Someone or some group of someones need to be in prison for a very long time for abuse of a corpse at least.

The Air Force dumped the incinerated partial remains of at least 274 American troops in a Virginia landfill, far more than the military had acknowledged, before halting the secretive practice three years ago, records show.

The landfill dumping was concealed from families who had authorized the military to dispose of the remains in a dignified and respectful manner, Air Force officials said. There are no plans, they said, to alert those families now.

That’s beneath contempt.  What dreadfulness.

Another Photo of the Jerusalem Mystery Floor

From Gershon Galil on Facebook-

Amazon, You’ve Lost a Long Time Customer: I Won’t Be Back

In a scheme clearly devised to give brick-and-mortar retailers nightmares, Amazon is running a one-day promotion on Dec. 10 in which customers can score up to $15 in discounts for literally walking out of stores. Here’s how it works: Download the Amazon Price Check app for your iPhone or Android device, walk into the retailer of your choice on Saturday with the geo-location feature on, scan three things you’d like to buy, and leave.

That’s dirtbaggery of the highest order.  I won’t be back.  So congratulations, you’ve managed to offend someone who has bought enough stuff from you over the years to employs several of your workers.  Goodbye for good.

Correct, Andrew

More Sandusky Depravity Exposed

CNN emails this alert

Ex-Penn State assistant coach Jerry Sandusky has been arrested again on new child sex charges, Pennsylvania Attorney General Linda Kelly announced Wednesday. The move raises the total number of alleged victims to 10 people, according to a statement.  The new charges include four counts of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse and two counts of unlawful contact with a minor.

Once the flood gates are opened by the first victim it always happens that loads more follow.  Molestation is never a one time thing.  Once a molester, always a molester.

I Used to Like Johnny Depp, But Now He’s Just Become an Idiot

Having Jesus turn up for a bachelor night is bad enough. But when Johnny Depp sang about him drinking then passing out on the floor in a new song, it was more than some Christians could bear. The Christian Coalition says Depp and members of the indie band Babybird “will burn in hell for this filth.” It’s a “slap in the face to Christians all over the world,” says a statement from Focus on the Family.

The song, “Jesus Stag Night Club,” is about men who hire a Christ look-alike for a stag party, then realize he’s the real thing, reports ABC News.

Prat.  He’s apparently just seeking publicity, knowing his dreck song would only stir up folk.  Prat.  Nothing says fading loser quite like publicity whoring stunts.  I think he should go ahead and sing such a song about Mohammed.  Let him see what some radicals of that persuasion do to publicity questers.

Isaiah 5:7 and Puns in Hebrew

Since I’m presently working on Isaiah for the series it’s only natural that I’d wind up in Chapter 5 with it’s stunningly beautiful pun

לְמִשְׁפָּט֙ וְהִנֵּ֣ה מִשְׂפָּ֔ח לִצְדָקָ֖ה וְהִנֵּ֥ה צְעָקָֽה׃

God looked for justice (mishpat) but only saw oppression (mispach). God looked for righteousness (tzedakah) and instead he heard an outcry of pain (tz’acha).

This pun is virtually impossible to render in English. The Common English Bible tries, but meets the same resistance as every other rendition has-

God expected justice, but there was bloodshed; righteousness, but there was a cry of distress!

The REB is essentially the same. What this shows, it seems to me, is that the rendition of puns from one language to another is excessively difficult. Perhaps translators, and especially commentators, should indicate the pun in transliteration in a footnote or in their comments so that readers of English can at least have some sense of the beauty and brilliance of the underlying original.

Texas, Of Course: Mom Shoots Her Kids Because She’s Denied Food Stamps

A desperate mom denied food stamps for months shut herself in a Texas welfare office and shot her two children before killing herself. Her daughter, 12, and 10-year-old son are in very critical condition. Rachelle Grimmer, 38, had recently moved from Ohio and had not completed the proper paperwork to obtain aid, said authorities. She was meeting with a caseworker in the Laredo welfare office when she pulled a gun. Police negotiated with her for more than seven hours, and she gradually released everyone from the office except for her children. A SWAT team moved in when they heard three shots, reports AP.

Dear God.  That’s some solution.  There must have been something else wrong with her but that we’ll never know.  We’ll only know that the easy availability of guns make all such acts possible.

Those Who Cause an Uproar: The 1524 Beat-Down

Zwingli on the bronze doors by Otto Münch (193...

Conrad Grebel published a snippet contra Zwingli and his position on baptism on the 7th of December, 1524. On the 28th of the same month Zwingli let fly his own ‘Pearl Harbor attack’ on the ‘theology’ of Conrad Grebel in his Wer Ursache gebe zu Aufruhr usw. Actually, the full title is Welche ursach gebind ze ufruoren. Welches die waren ufruorer sygind. Und wie man zuo cristlicher einigheit und fryden kommen möge. Durch Huldrych Zuinglin zuo Zürich, etc.

Zwingli delivers a lengthy full frontal attack not only on Grebel’s views but on the stance of the troublemakers as a whole. The opening lines tell the story-

Aller liebsten brueder in gott! Es ist nieman unerkant, wie vil widerstands und muesal erlyden muessend alle, die gottes wort anhangen wöllend, als ouch Paulus 2. Timmo. 3. [2. Tim. 3. 12] anzeygt. Daruß wol ze vermessen ist, das ouch ir vil verspottung, lestrung, tratz und tröuwen tragen muessend darumb, das ir in erkantnus der warheyt kommen, und die angenommen habend. Doch sol üch sölicher widerstand gheinen weg krencken, sonder ye me und me im glouben stercken; dann wir sicherlich an widerwertigheiten erlernend, was recht gegloubt, recht gebättet, recht geraten, recht gethon sye.

Brilliantly Zwingli suggests that the Grebel-ites are in fact persecutors of those who preach the truth and who are spreading the Gospel in its fullness. It’s a grand read. You should take a look.

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Is the Ark of the Covenant going to be made available for public viewing?

No one has been allowed to see the holy object, described in scripture as being made from acacia wood, plated with gold and topped with two golden angels, except one solitary elderly monk, who must watch over the Ark for the remainder of his life, and is never allowed to leave the chapel grounds.  But now the chapel – which was designed by the Ethiopian leader Emperor Hailie Selassie – has had to be covered in a tarpaulin to stop rain getting in.  The water damage could mean the Ark will be moved for the first time in decades giving religious worshippers and adventurers alike a chance to see it.

Right.  Just a bit more of the same old ark-oe-porn we’ve become accustomed to in these troubled times.  (HT).

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The Strange Shapes in the Floor: A ‘City of David’ Mystery

From the HuffPo

Mysterious stone carvings made thousands of years ago and recently uncovered in an excavation underneath Jerusalem have archaeologists stumped.

Israeli diggers who uncovered a complex of rooms carved into the bedrock in the oldest section of the city recently found the markings: Three “V” shapes cut next to each other into the limestone floor of one of the rooms, about 2 inches (5 centimeters) deep and 20 inches (50 centimeters) long. There were no finds to offer any clues pointing to the identity of who made them or what purpose they served.

The archaeologists in charge of the dig know so little that they have been unable even to posit a theory about their nature, said Eli Shukron, one of the two directors of the dig.

“The markings are very strange, and very intriguing. I’ve never seen anything like them,” Shukron said.

The shapes were found in a dig known as the City of David, a politically sensitive excavation conducted by Israeli government archaeologists and funded by a nationalist Jewish group under the Palestinian neighborhood of Silwan in east Jerusalem. The rooms were unearthed as part of the excavation of fortifications around the ancient city’s only natural water source, the Gihon spring.

It is possible, the dig’s archaeologists say, that when the markings were made at least 2,800 years ago the shapes might have accommodated some kind of wooden structure that stood inside them, or they might have served some other purpose on their own. They might have had a ritual function or one that was entirely mundane. Archaeologists faced by a curious artifact can usually at least venture a guess about its nature, but in this case no one, including outside experts consulted by Shukron and the dig’s co-director, archaeologists with decades of experience between them, has any idea.


With the experts unable to come up with a theory about the markings, the City of David dig posted a photo on its Facebook page and solicited suggestions. The results ranged from the thought-provoking – “a system for wood panels that held some other item,” or molds into which molten metal would could have been poured – to the fanciful: ancient Hebrew or Egyptian characters, or a “symbol for water, particularly as it was near a spring.”

Yeah that’s pretty odd.  But not as odd as some of the ‘solutions’ on the FB page…  Aren Maeir probably knows.  Someone ask him.  Or Israel Finkelstein.

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