TAC College Football Poll: Week 7

Monday, October 18, 2010 \PM\.\Mon\.

We’re not at 2007 levels of chaos yet. True, Louisiana Tech did beat Idaho and that’s shocking. There even was some trouble in Lincoln and Madison, and the Vandals loss strikes at the core of our understanding of the college football world.

But we’re a long way from the “#1 is the spot of death” reality we had in 2007. However, it is weird. Oklahoma is #1 in the BCS, and not many believe in them (though their resume isn’t bad). Not many undefeated teams have believers other than Oregon and maybe team Cam Newton. Plenty have doubters (LSU-the hat is crazy Boise & TCU need to join a conference, and Missouri is really undefeated?). We now have a class of one-loss teams with serious title considerations (bama & Ohio St. leading the pack).

How it shakes out is anybody’s guess, but with two matchups of undefeated (LSU v. Auburn; Oklahoma v. Missouri) we hope to learn a lot this week.

What seems like a foregone conclusion though is that Boise St. & TCU may be left out. Although the trouble at the top gave more teams losses, the losses by Nevada, Oregon St., and Air Force will hurt them more than the losses by Nebraska & Ohio St. help. Good wins are precious and decide who gets to go to the title game, especially in the BCS computers.

Everyone ranked this week, so let’s get to it!  Read the rest of this entry »

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Is Libertarianism Individualistic?

Monday, October 18, 2010 \PM\.\Mon\.

Note: This is an old post of mine, long since deleted. I’m reposting it in response to this comment by Kyle Cupp.

Is Libertarianism individualistic? No doubt for many the answer to this question would seem to be “um, yeah, obviously.” But like most ‘isms’ the terms libertarianism and individualism can be used in several different senses. If by libertarianism one means something like “the views of Ayn Rand” and by individualism one means something like “the views of Ayn Rand” then the answer will be um, yeah, obviously. For purposes of this post, however, I’ll define libertarianism as the belief that government ought ideally to be limited to the core functions of the so-called “nightwatchman state,” e.g. policing, national defense, the courts, etc. As for individualism, I’ll just quote Wikipedia:

Individualism is the moral stance, political philosophy, ideology, or social outlook that stresses independence and self-reliance. Individualists promote the exercise of one’s goals and desires, while opposing most external interference upon one’s choices, whether by society, or any other group or institution.

Certainly there are many libertarians in the above sense who are also individualists. Be that as it may, there is, I think, no necessary connection between libertarianism and individualism so defined. Libertarianism, as I’ve defined it, is concerned only with placing limits on the state. It says nothing about the institutions of civil society, be it social norms, voluntary associations, the Church, or marriage and the family. Individualism, by contrast, does not draw a sharp distinction between limitations on individual freedom imposed by civil society and those imposed by the state. Nor is libertarianism a “moral stance” in the sense of the Wikipedia definition of individualism. Libertarianism offers a set of policy prescriptions which can be held on a variety of different grounds. One might subscribe to libertarianism because one is a committed individualist, or one might advocate it on purely practical grounds. It’s true that libertarians don’t tend to talk about civil society much (though there are exceptions). This may, in fact, partly explain its as yet limited appeal. But at the risk of repeating myself, allow me to repeat myself: there is nothing inherent in libertarianism that requires one to downplay civil society, or to view the limitations on individual action that it sometimes involves with suspicion. Read the rest of this entry »



Well Now I’m Convinced

Monday, October 18, 2010 \AM\.\Mon\.

You know, it looks like I might have to change my mind on gay marriage.  I’ve been opposed to the concept for some time, but this video has completely changed my mind thanks to its persuasive logic.  WARNING: Extremely not safe for work or probably your own house language at this video.  Do not click on this link if you do not tolerate cussing, because there’s a lot of it.

The video, for those that didn’t feel like clicking over and having their audio canals violated, was essentially a bunch of really peeved off gay marriage advocates engaging in a collective primal scream.  The long and short of it is that gay marriage opponents are bleeping hypocrites because Rush bleeping Limbaugh has been married four bleeping times, and also because we don’t bleeping oppose no fault bleeping divorce, and bleep bleep bleep we’re just a bunch of bleeping bleeps.

Yeah.

I have to say that this video does hammer home one thing for me: the most convincing opponents of gay marriage are gay marriage supporters.


Mildred Fay Jefferson, Requiescat In Pace

Monday, October 18, 2010 \AM\.\Mon\.

Dr. Mildred Fay Jefferson, tireless crusader for the unborn, died on Saturday October 16, 2010 at age 84.  Born in Carthage, Texas in 1927, she overcame all the disadvantages of being black in the Jim Crow South to be the first black woman to graduate from Harvard Medical School in 1951 and, additionally, the first female surgeon to graduate from that school.   She was professor of surgery at Boston University.  After Roe she helped found the National Right to Life Committee and was President of the Committee for three terms.  She never ceased to speak out for the unborn. Read the rest of this entry »