Friday, July 07, 2006

Podcast on North Korea and Missiles

Today, we are discussing the missile tantrum in North Korea with Austin Bay of the Austin Bay Blog and Jim Dunnigan of Strategy Page. They discuss the psychological and political problems with the North Koreans as well as the Japanese and Chinese reaction to the North Koreans having nuclear weapons. We also touch on the foiled plot to blow up the Holland Tunnel in New York and what's happening in Iraq and Afghanistan.

You can listen to the podcast by clicking here or subscribe via iTunes here. There's a low-fi version for dialup users here. You can also see our complete podcast archives here. Please leave any comments or suggestions below.

Carnival of Homeschooling

The 27th Carnival of Homeschooling is up at Tami's blog. The 28th Carnival of Homeschooling is requesting submissions at the Why Homeschool Blog. If you would like to send in an entry, you can do so here.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Obesity, Buffets and Political Correctness

Dr. Wes, who is of normal weight, notes that at a recent hotel buffet, he was one of the skinniest guys in the room:

So the next morning we came downstairs for breakfast. It was remarkable how many people there were obese. Not just a little overweight. I mean obese. It was striking. And the place was packed to capacity. Tons of people (I mean that literally) having their breakfasts of biscuits and gravy, sweet rolls, cereal, french toast, orange juice, coffee, eggs and sausage, before heading out for the day. I wondered if others noticed the same phenomenon. Now I'm no anorexic, but for me to be one of the skinniest guys there was striking - the average body mass index there seemed to exceed the national deficit.

Dr. Wes also notes that doctors are now being told not to tell kids that they are fat. According to this USA Today article, the CDC has decided that to refer to kids as obese or fat could mislabel or "traumatize" them.

Are our kids such hot house flowers that the truth about their condition is enough to send them over the edge? If so, their obesity, at risk of being overweight, fat or lard etc. is the least of our problems.

Update: Eden at Justonebite has some more thoughts on the expense of healthy food as well as the time needed to prepare healthier foods. Just this morning, Glenn and I were discussing using minute rice for dinner instead of the slow cooked brown rice which is supposedly better for you. The reason for the minute rice? Neither one of us wants to take the time to cook the real stuff for 45 minutes. To tell you the truth, I am absent-minded (i.e. surfing the internet lost in blogland) and usually end up burning the rice and/or starting a fire. Then the meal is ruined and I feel really stupid whereas with the minute rice, I just pop it in the microwave and push one button and feel like a chef.

Update II: It seems that the comments about those who are overweight are reflective of the dichotomy in our society between those who are prejudiced against the overweight and those who think people should be treated as human beings regardless of their size. I have witnessed people who are so fearful and prejudiced against the overweight that they cease to see them as human and think that they should lose weight before presenting themselves to the world. This is hogwash.

Is being overweight a health issue? Maybe, but so what? Is that any reason to make cruel remarks to people's face about their condition or pay someone less because they are overweight? People are so concerned with appearance that their manners and humanity have gone out the window--maybe we should get some of it back. Perhaps a little less emphasis on looks and a little more on treating others with some decency is more warranted than accusing others of being an eyesore. That cruel behavior, in my opinion, is worse than weighing 500 pounds. Does this mean that doctors and professionals should not bring up weight issues if it is for health reasons? Of course they should. However, that is a different issue then accusing others of being morally bankrupt, lazy or just plain slothful just for weighing too much. One could say the same about those who treat others like trash, just because they can't regulate their cruel behavior.