Wednesday, December 21, 2005

A Christmas letter

This is an e-mail I just sent to Bill O'Reilly. I'm not a "premium member" of his site, so I'm not sure he or anyone else will see it. (It's kind of like sending back a Publisher's Clearinghouse entry without subscribing to any magazines.) But I thought I would give it a try anyway.

I'm an agnostic, but I love Christmas. For me it's about the traditions: the tree, the gifts, Christmas music. Obviously, there's a lot about Christmas that's secular and not religious.

I'm not the least bit offended when someone wishes me "Merry Christmas." So why should a devout Catholic or Protestant be offended when someone wishes them "Happy Holidays"? Is that really an insult?

What puzzles me the most is why you want to require retail establishments to celebrate your religious holiday. Seems to me Christmas for Christians should be a lot more about what happens in church and a lot less about what happens inside a Wal-Mart.

-Thomas More
Madison, WI

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

iTunes Music Store

I did the "podcast" post below simply as a test for a client who wants to start a podcast on his site. So I figured I had to learn how it all works for myself. And I must say, it's fascinating. I was even able to add the Utopia podcast to the Apple iTunes Music Store. (Search for "utopia" under podcasts, and it should come up. Or, Apple says this link will work.) That's cool. Who knows - I may even do a few podcasts, even though I can't stand the sound of my voice.

Good news and bad news

The good news is that a federal judge has ruled that teaching "Intelligent Design" in the Dover, PA schools is unconstitutional, and further, that ID is not science.

That's great.

The bad news is that we even have to endure a case like this. Why are we even questioning whether it's OK to torture prisoners, or secretly spy on U.S. citizens? Why is there a question about the definition of science in the year 2005? Why are we forced to cheer whenever basic common sense and the values we thought we shared are upheld? And why must we be disappointed so often when this doesn't happen?

Our society is completely upside-down. That's scarier than I can express. All I can think of is, what's next?

Monday, December 19, 2005

Bill, Bill, Bill

For those like me who greatly mourn the loss of Henry Quinn's wonderful site "Sweet Jesus, I Hate Bill O'Reilly," why not try "The Anti-Bill O'Reilly Blog." It's a great resource for cataloging all the reasons to loathe Billy.

Utopia podcast: Inaugural Edition

This is a test of using Blogger for podcasting. The file linked here isn't actually a Utopia podcast, but that could come in the future. Just testing for now.

Utopia podcast - 12.19.05

Utopia logo

This is a test.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Chris Wallace, Fucker

I recently watched Chris Wallace interview his father, Mike Wallace of "60 Minutes," on "Fox News Sunday," the program Wallace Jr. anchors. It ended with a tearful father telling his son, "I love you and I'm proud of you."

Now NewsMax has only slightly more credibility than the guy yelling about aliens outside the Walgreens. But if Chris Wallace said anything even close to what's being reported, he earns Fucker of the Year without anyone else having to be nominated.

Great move, Chris. I didn't think I could loathe anyone more than your colleague Brit Hume. But you're almost there.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Bill O'Reilly loves Christmas

Listening to O'Reilly's latest salvo in his ginned-up "War on Christmas" coverage, I couldn't help wishing that the latest dildo Bill would use on himself while calling up female employees with x-rated come-ons would take the form of a very large and spiny Christmas tree. (Hey Bill - did you know that the Christmas tree is a pagan symbol?)

Bill's latest line is that "the secular forces will lose this war." That's a good trick. Create a "war" out of whole cloth, pontificate endlessly about "battles" that don't exist, and then declare "your side" the winner. Another blow struck against the secular humanist heathens! Hallelujah!

The thing is, this little trick has been going on for several years now. It's a winner for Fox, and a winner for O'Reilly. He gets to be the Holy Warrior, and even better, he "wins" every year! Guaranteed! It's brilliant. And it lets retail establishments like Sears and Target know the power of the religious right, and the slack-jawed yokels who hang on Bill's every strangled word.

To me, it comes down to this: if you need Target to affirm your faith, you've got some serious problems - problems that won't be solved by a Wal-Mart greeter wishing you "Merry Christmas."