Archive for January, 2007

This has got to stop

Monday, January 29th, 2007

I hadn’t blogged on the subject because I wanted to let the facts sort themselves out before I commented.

Marshawn Lynch, the star RB at Cal who is turning pro this spring was accused of sexual assault by an ex-girlfriend.  My first reaction, after having seen the Duke case and others, was to assume that the girl was a money grabbing liar.  Others on other Cal blogs expressed similar sentiments.

But what is missed from that initial reaction was a disappointment in myself.  What if this girl really had been violated?  What if Marshawn, despite being Mr. Shy to the press, was a sexual deviant who deserved to be in prision?  How bad would my reaction have been then?

Well the news has broke today that the charges have been dropped due to lack of evidence and contradictions in the woman’s story.  Every indication was that my initial reaction was correct.

Can anyone else besides me see how horrible it is for our society that this keeps happening?  Was I the only one who’s parents told him the story “The Kid Who Cried Wolf”?  This is yet another instance that will lead people to be distrustful of women who make sexual assault cases against prominent men.  In the end it is the women who most need our support who will be negatively affected by this story.  I don’t know how we make it stop, but for the sake of sexually abused women everywhere, this has got to stop.

Injunction issued against Cal renovations

Monday, January 29th, 2007

Well, it looks like yet again the irrational idiot minority have won over rational adults.  A judge has issued a temporary injunction against the Cal Performance Center.  The best-case scenario at this point is a quick appeal to overturn the ruling.  The likely scenario is that it delays the project a year.  The worst-case scenario is that this will be the demise of the project, Tedford will leave, the Cal football program will go into the tank, and I’ll be able to improve my season ticket location in the stadium (I took a hit when I added some seats).

This ruling upsets me for so many reasons but the biggest is just how disingenuous the lawsuits are.  From the article:

“[the plantiffs] made a sufficient case that the project violates the Alquist-Priolo Act, a state law prohibiting new buildings on earthquake faults.”

Yet, it is clear from talking to any of the plaintiffs that they could care less about the earthquake fault.  The tree-huggers only care about the trees.  The other two organizations only cares about the trees and their views and Tom Bates, the mayor of Berkeley is quoted in the article as saying:

“We’re open to discussion. I personally would be willing to negotiate, although it’s not totally my call,” he said. “Some things are non-negotiable. The garage, for example, is off the charts. That’s a non-starter.”

In other words, this is about traffic and trees and political clout.  Any idiot, including the idiots filing the lawsuits, realize that this project will dramatically improve seismic safety not hamper it.  But no, instead of having the integrity to file the suit on what they really believe, they file the suit based on whatever they can come up with that looks like it might have a prayer of winning.

The other thing that really bothers me is just how horrible our judges are.  They are overly cautious and defer WAY to much to activists.  It seems there is a new example every day of a lawsuit that just about any rational person knows what the ruling should be that some idiot judge says something like “Nah, we’ll make the University delay.  We want to be extra cautious.”

I know fairly few Cal Bear fans are practicing Catholics but today should be a day of prayer and fasting for all Cal Bear fans:

“Why is my pain continuous, my wound incurable, refusing to be healed? …

Thus the LORD answered me: If you repent, so that I restore you, in my presence you shall stand; If you bring forth the precious without the vile, you shall be my mouthpiece. … Though they fight against you, they shall not prevail, for I am with you, to deliver and rescue you, says the LORD.  I will free you from the hand of the wicked, and rescue you from the grasp of the violent.” (Daniel 15:18-21)

OK, so maybe that’s a bit over the top, this is just football, but nevertheless for all those who ask today “WHY!?! DEAR GOD WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN CAL BEAR FANS!?!” remember that God listens to all prayers, and rejoices in those who repent of their sins.

Offensive Coordinator changes

Wednesday, January 24th, 2007

Mike Dunbar is leaving Cal:

This isn’t much of a surprise to me.  As much as Tedford is too classy of a guy to state publically that he was unhappy with Dunbar, I think it is safe to say that the two were unable to compromise successfully.  Tedford likes too much of his Pro-Set offense and Dunbar was too attached to the pure spread.

While I’m sure Tedford was honest when he said that he’s going to continue to use some of the elements of the spread, I suspect things will look more like the 2004 offense in 2007.  He’ll always have the spread plays in his “bag of tricks” however.

Overall I think this was a good decision for everyone involved. Many of the plays called this year were somewhat puzzling.  In some ways, that makes more sense now.  If Dunbar wasn’t confortable with the offensive style he was executing, he wouldn’t be completely comfortable calling plays.  He doesn’t think Pro-Set, doesn’t know how to maximize it, but yet can’t pull out all of his spread options because that’s not the offense being run.  I’m sure he’ll be more successful at a team that will let him run a true spread.

As for Cal, things will be better too.  The offense will be of one mind, the Tedford one.

Failures of the women’s movement

Tuesday, January 23rd, 2007

In my post about marital names the subject of the women’s movement and feminists came up.  Since it was a topic that was quickly diverging from the topic being discussed I decided to make a new post on the subject.  Here are the relevent comments:

Me: “There is plenty that is good about the women’s movement. Unfortunately there was one unintended consequences: a general negativity towards men, marriage and children. … Both the groom and bride need to be able to answer yes to all of those questions (not quoted) to give a marriage a fighting chance. What the women’s movement failed to realize is that it should be fighting to ensure that men answered yes to those questions, not that women should answer no.”

Sarah: “As far as the women’s movement being anti-children, marriage and men, nothing could be further from the truth. At the heart of feminism is the simply belief that men and women should be treated as equals in our society. And despite some radical ideas, this is what most feminists believe.”

For starters this is yet another case where Sarah completely mis-understands my point.  She’s right about the heart of feminism and what most feminists believe.  That’s why I used the critically important phrase “unintended consequences”.

Unintended as in that’s not what was in their heart and not what they believe.

Unintended or otherwise, I think the case is pretty convincing that is indeed what has happened:

  1. One of the first significant points of the women’s movement was that being pregnant keeps women from being successful in their careers.  If that’s not anti-children I don’t know what is.  What they should have done instead (and in fairness started fighting for about a decade too late) was fight for better maternity benefits and career environments that were supportive of raising children.
  2. Along the same lines, a big part of the women’s movement was abortion rights.  Even putting aside the murder of unborn children, which I view as scientific fact, abortion has still fostered the mindset that children aren’t a gift but a burden.
  3. The other early significant portion of the women’s right movement was no-fault divorce.  I’m sorry, nothing says anti-marriage than making it easier to end them.  What they should have been doing is making the consequences of men who abuse their wives much more stringent.  Instead they created an environment where not only is marriage denigrated, but the same asshole men that were emotionally abusing their wives before can now do it until something better comes along and bolt “without fault”.  At least before the women in those cases got 100% of the assets not 50%.
  4. Finally, the body of work of women who have called all men pigs in the name of feminism is so comprehensive that anyone who would doubt it is just being foolish.  While I don’t think most women buy into it, thankfully, I do think that it’s pervasive enough it creeps into the subconscious of too many women and makes them very wary of men, even very good men.

Notice that in all cases besides #4 the motives of the ones pursuing the goals was noble but the results were disasterous.  Personally I think women are in a worse situation as a whole today than they were 50 years ago.  More women are being raped.  More women are being abandoned by their spouse and just as frequently with children.  More women are being treated as sex objects through pornography and other sexual deviencies.  More women are being asked to not only do housework and raise children but at the same time are asked to have a full-time career.  More women are being pushed to the brink resulting in higher suicide rates for women than ever before.

In fact, the only area in which the women’s movement was a success was in getting access to more professional career and educational opportunities.  Heck, even that hasn’t been the success that the women’s movement was hoping.

Overall, while I think the original goals were noble, the result has been a disaster for women.  Women deserve better.

A prayer for the end of the injustice

Monday, January 22nd, 2007

Today is the anniversary of both the Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton US Supreme Court decisions.  As of today there are about 40 million Americans who are not alive because they were allowed to be aborted by these two court decisions.

There are many misconceptions about the two court decisions, but here is what is true:

  • Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton do not allow for the citizens of the United States to make laws that explicitely restrict abortions, even late term abortions.
  • Roe v. Wade did not make abortions legal.  In fact numerous states had already made abortion legal prior to Roe v. Wade.  Roe v. Wade made it illegal for any governing body in the US to limit abortions.
  • The overturning of Roe v. Wade would not make abortion illegal.  What it would do is allow for states to make that decision.  Some would obviously make abortion illegal, others would obviously not.  Many would limit abortion to the first trimester.
  • As it stands, it is illegal for any state to make a law limiting abortion for any reason at any point during the pregnancy (as long as the mother is an adult).  Children who are 30 minutes from being delivered in the hospital can legally be killed inside the womb because the mother decides it wouldn’t be in her best interest to have a child.

That’s the current legal situation and it is a true injustice that it remains that way.  Too many beautiful children are being denied their right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.  Furthermore, there is a reason that just about every group should worry about the continued legalization of abortion:

  • Women’s rights groups should fear that what has happened in China and India will eventually make its way to the US.  Abortion based on sex selection is a growing International problem.
  • Economists should fear that the same population colapse that is on the verge of crippling the economies of Europe and the former Soviet Union will drag the entire world into the worst depression in world history.
  • Disabled rights groups should fear that children are being aborted because of their disabilities.  As our ability to test for disabilities grows this will only get worse.
  • Women’s right groups should further fear that abortion allows for the futher objectification of women as sex objects who can be pressured into abortions.
  • Senior citizen right groups should fear that if we are not willing to protect the young, why will we be willing to protect the elderly.
  • Supporters of Eugenics should fear that it is not the poor and uneducated who get abortions but the well-educated and wealthy.
  • Gay rights groups should fear that if a “gay gene” is ever found, most every gay child will be aborted.
  • Political parties should fear that by supporting abortion their supporters will be aborting their future voting block.
  • Death penalty opponents should fear that if we aren’t willing to protect the lives of the innocent, why would we protect the lives of the guilty.
  • Women’s health groups should fear that the abortions will be hurting the future fertility of women and possibly increase the likelihood of breast cancer.

In truth, every American should fear what abortion does to our society.  In the end, abortion is a lack of respect for unborn life.  When we stop respecting one form of life, it is far easier to stop respecting other aspects of life.  We must choose life.

Today I pray for all those who have suffered from an abortion and for all of those who will be faced with the decision to abort.  May God’s grace lead and guide our nation to end this injustice.

“The Painted Veil” is remarkable

Monday, January 22nd, 2007

Wendy and I went to see the movie The Painted Veil over the weekend.  We knew very little about the movie going in except the by-line:

A love story set in the 1920s about a young English couple–a conservative doctor and a restless society girl–who marry hastily, relocate to Hong Kong. There they betray each other easily, and find an unexpected chance at redemption and happiness while on a deadly journey into the heart of ancient China.

We figured it was going to be, more or less, a standard romantic drama but were both a little unsure of what “a deadly journey into the heart of ancient China” meant.

So I’d like to recommend the movie without giving away any more than I have to because I think it made the movie that much better.  But I will say this:

If I had a “business card” that applied to my entire life my title would be “God fearing Husband, Engineer, Sailor, Bears fan and student of the Human Condition”.  Just about every movie that I’ve truly loved has said something meaningful about the human condition.

And this movie delivers on that.

One of my biggest peives is movies that are given the opportunity to deliver on a meaningful point about the human condition that instead pass up the chance and pull their punches so that the movie can have a “Hollywood ending”.  As I told Wendy as we stood up after the credits, “That movie DID NOT pull any punches.”

In fact, just when you thought it was going to let you off the hook, it went for the kill.

OK, I know that was beating around the bush.  But if you are interested in movies that delve into the heart of human nature, trust me, you’re going to love this movie.

“Thanks for inviting me even though I’m obstinate”

Sunday, January 21st, 2007

That’s the comment I got from my brother’s girlfriend as they were leaving Andrew’s (my yougest) birthday party.  It was in response to my comment on my brother’s blog where I called women who refuse to talk their husband’s last name obstinate.

So now I feel obligated to explain/defend myself…

What may not have been clear in my comment was that I was not saying that all women should take the name of their spouse.  In fact, in numerous traditional societies it’s not even the convention for women to do so and I wouldn’t expect them to conform to our society’s conventions.

What I am saying is this: OUR society’s convention is for women to take their husband’s last name for very specific symbolic reasons.  It is a sign that the bride is no longer an immediate member of her parent’s family and now is part of a new family, a family made up of her, her husband and their future children.

Any woman who doesn’t agree with the above symbolism shouldn’t get married.

Is it true that the groom is doing the same thing in leaving his parent’s family?  Yes, it is.  And if we had a similar convention or if a couple wanted to create a convention that symbolized that, I’d fully expect the groom to support it.

But that’s not what is at issue here (the groom).  What is at issue is the disposition of the bride.  Is she really willing to make a sacrifice for her new husband?  I guess if perhaps (and I think this is fairly rare) the groom-to-be tells his fiancee that he doesn’t want her to take his name, then it wouldn’t be a case of obstinence.  Although I would still hope that she woud want to take the name anyway.

See, marriage takes a lot of compromise.  It takes BOTH spouses putting their marriage’s interests above their own.  A name is really a trivial thing in the big picture.  There will be times when both spouses will have to do far more.  If one of those two entering the marriage isn’t willing to do something as simple as change their name, then there is a problem.

And to be clear, I expect both spouses in a marriage to fully dedicate their lives to serving the other.  Marriage is a life of service to one another.  I expect men to give everything they have to their wives.  There have been numerous times when I have made it clear to friends of mine that I thought they weren’t honoring their wives by giving all of themselves.  I expect a great deal of husbands and expect them to make every sacrifice necessary to meet the needs of their wife and children.  I expect the same of wives, including the trivially small issue of being willing to give up their last name.

Just to make sure I finish off the post with a bang, I’ll go through all the bogus reasons people will hit me with for why it is OK for a woman to insist on keeping her own name:

  • It will impact my professional career: Get used to it.  In every marriage one or both will have to make significant career sacrifices.
  • My family’s last name will die: It’s just a name.  You’re going to have to sacrifice more than that.
  • I think not doing it is an important statement for women’s rights: I’m glad to hear that a political movement is more important than your marriage.  I predict a marriage where you demonize your husband as a male pig every time a situation arrises that requires you compromise with your husband.
  • Why doesn’t he take my name?: Sounds great if you lived in a society that used that as their convention.  But you don’t and it would be just as stupid for a man in that society to question that convention as it is for you to be obstinate.
  • You just think women should submit to their husbands: You’re right.  I also think that husbands need to put their wife’s desires above their own.

Any questions?

Come on over to the full blog!

Sunday, January 21st, 2007

To all my Cal blog readers,

Many of you go to my address to get straight to my cal commentary.  That’s great and for those only interested in my sports stuff, please continue to do that.  However, now that we’re in the off season and my sports commentary will be more sparse (I’ll try to post at least on cal item every week), feel free to instead go to which has all of my blog posting including the Cal stuff.  You’ll see movie reviews, political commentary, religious commentary and whatever else I find worth commenting on.

Hope to see everyone there.

2007 Cal football schedule published

Sunday, January 21st, 2007

Well the Pac-10 released the “preliminary” football schedule for all of its teams.  From my understanding, the only thing preliminary is the non-conference schedule.  Once the conference schedule is released, it’s pretty much written in stone.  You can find the Pac-10 release at:  You can find the Cal press release at:

As for the actual schedule here it is:

Sept. 1 Tennessee
Sept. 8 at Colorado State
Sept. 15 Louisiana Tech
Sept. 22 Arizona
Sept. 29 at Oregon
Oct. 6 BYE
Oct. 13 Oregon State
Oct. 20 at UCLA
Oct. 27 at Arizona State
Nov. 3 Washington State
Nov. 10 USC
Nov. 17 at Washington
Nov. 24 BYE
Dec. 1 at Stanford

This is a semi-significant change from what was previously published.  Basically, the Big Game was moved from its traditional date (for 2007 that would be Nov. 17th) to what is apparantly going to be the new traditional date.  All of the conference rivalry games are now after Thanksgiving as opposed to the Saturday before Thanksgiving.  With that change, the gave versus Washington was moved from October 6th to the newly vacated Nov. 17th date.

Other than the fact that it puts the squash on my previously planned road trip where I’d catch the Oregon and Washington on the road back to back, I’m also not looking forward to Cal having to go to Seattle in mid-November, particularly with what I’m sure will be a work-in-progess Washington team that may have gotten its act together between the two dates.

On the other hand, its been proven time and time again that from a ranking perspective, it is better to play games in those last couple weeks to impress the pollsters.  At the same time, adding a couple bye’s to what was previously a bye-less schedule has its advantages.

Here are the games that I think will be the critical ones next year:

  • 9/29 at Oregon: Cal always struggles there and Oregon will not yet have had their confidence broken.
  • 10/20 at UCLA: The home team has won the last 7 (or something like that) in this matchup.
  • 11/10 USC: Do I really need to say anything?

The honorable mentions are 9/22 Arizona (they’re getting better) and 10/27 at ASU (lots of wasted talent in last few year, will the new coach be able to turn it around?).

Sign the petition

Monday, January 15th, 2007

For those in the know, the UC Berkeley stadium plans continue to be under attack from now FOUR groups.

  1. City of Berkeley (traffic and safety concerns, supposedly)
  2. Student environmental group (destruction of trees planted when first stadium was build)
  3. Tree squatters (similar to #2)
  4. Tightwad hill (claim new stadium plans will block their view of field)

I was against a petition a couple months ago but now that the opposition to the Performance Center has solidified and is clearly in it for the long haul, it is time that us average joes make our voices heard.

Don’t let the wack-jobs win this one.

Sign the petition.