I believe very strongly that if the country gave each parent a voucher for forty-four hundred dollars that they could only spend at any accredited school several things would happen. Number one schools would start marketing themselves like crazy to get students. Secondly, I think youd see a lot of new schools starting.

via Smithsonian Oral and Video Histories: Steve Jobs.

Wireless phone companies need to take a cue from the folks who use batteries in children’s toys. They both get used a lot, but the toy batteries seem to last a whole lot longer.

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The solution to this travesty goes far beyond simply uttering “I do.” However, the solution does begin with a simple step of recognizing that marriage is not a man-made institution that we are free to redefine using “our own rules”-at least not without devastating consequences.

Link to article: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2011/05/the_sad_consequences_of_shacki.html

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http://odb.org/2011/03/09/are-we-there-yet/

Hardly a day goes by when I don’t ask this question.

I recently reread Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Dueteronomy and I was struck again by how much the Israelites complained and how much they ‘missed’ out on what God had in store for them. I kept wanting to yell at them and say, “just be quiet and wait! It will be good!” Then I thought, oh wait…they are me. I’ve done a lot of complaining in the last 3 years. I’ve asked countless times, “Are we there yet?” Oh boy…

I know that there is none righteous and that even Moses disobeyed God, but I do know that I will some day see the promised land because of Jesus Christ. As for the journey, I need practice eliminating the whine from my diet.

(On a related score, listening to my own children whine and correcting their behavior has done a lot to highlight my own, adult version of the whining voice.)

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I don’t have a big list, but here are a few:

Tonight while reading a short illustrated version of Disney’s Sleeping Beauty, Maura asked me about the phrase, “he threw his sword straight as an arrow.”  She asked, “Where is his lawn mower?”  Either I need to speak more clearly or clean her ears.

Malcolm’s vocabulary:

  • prize-a-pee = privacy
  • pazzi = pizza (this is an old one that he doesn’t use any more, sadly)
  • what you said? = what did you say?

Maura’s vocabulary:

  • butter n’ jelly = peanut butter and jelly
  • pih mai uh = pick me up (this is an old one)
  • cully = color
  • cullies = crayons

Daddy’s vocabulary:

  • Stop = keep doing what you’re doing because clearly you are ignoring me and I can’t think of a consequence quickly enough to make you stop

Below is a link for an article in the Washington Time that reports that children are being bought to act as suicide bombers.

EXCLUSIVE: Taliban buying children for suicide bombers – Washington Times

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Here are some pertinent excerpts from the article:

Pakistan’s top Taliban leader, Baitullah Mehsud, is buying children as young as 7 to serve as suicide bombers in the growing spate of attacks against Pakistani, Afghan and U.S. targets

I can’t imagine a culture in which a child as young as 7 years old would be used as an instrument of death.  Would this be possible in a predominantly Christian culture?  A Jewish culture?  Even a Bhuddist or Hindu culture?  Being a Christian in a predominantly Christian culture I think I am safe in arguing that no, this would not be possible.  Certainly there are psychopaths who do terrible things to children, but would they have success buying children to be used as suicide bombers?  I doubt that could happen here and even if it started to happen the public outcry would be so deafening there would be no way that it could be sustained once it was discovered.  Perhaps, I put too much faith in the concience of my fellow Americans, but I am too optimistic to think otherwise at this point.

A Pakistani official, who spoke on the condition that he not be named because of the sensitive nature of the topic, said the going price for child bombers was $7,000 to $14,000 – huge sums in Pakistan, where per-capita income is about $2,600 a year.

That you would assign a price to any person is outrageous.  People have value beyond estimation if you believe that they are created uniquely by God to live and serve Him in a unique way.  For the sake of understanding the possible draw in selling you child I want to make a comparison.  I’m no economist, or statistician, but if you extrapolated the price being paid for a child to be a suicide bomber in Pakistan and translate it to the United States where the per capita income is reported as $39,751 in 2008, then the equivalent price for a child in the US would be between $100,000 and $215,000.  I imagine that many life insurance policies for adults in our country are in this value range and no family member (I hope) considers “offing” them to collect that amount of money.

In some cases, he [unidentified U.S. official] said, the children are kidnapped and then sold to Mehsud.

This is only moderately encouraging.  At least parents aren’t willingly selling their children to evil.  Sadly, evil befalls their house in the form of malevelant men who are either looking for dishonest gain or are intentially abetting the twisted plans of the Taliban.  I hope that parents of any age children in Pakistan are waking up to realize how evil these people are and that they might have the courage to stand up to the Taliban and their ilk and purge them from their midst.

Efforts to reach a spokesman for Mehsud [the purveyor of child suicide bombers] were not successful.

Ha!  You’re kidding, right?  Who tried to reach a spokesman for this snake?  What were they hoping to find out?  Official US policy is to get this guy, dead or alive.  I hope that at least now there is no way that his death can be turned into a rallying cry of martydom.

I am no religious expert and I don’t intend to use wide brush strokes to describe Islam, but aren’t the Taliban of the Islamic “persuasion”?  Either way, the Taliban are clearly evil.  Evil is bad (for those of you subjected to a multicultural education).  Bad is not desirable (for those of you subjected to a curriculum of self-esteem building).  There are more sophisticate debates over whether it is wise to engage groups like the Taliban in the far reaches of our globe, but I for one support the effort to rid this world of that kind of evil.