Saturday, November 11, 2006

I think I'm turning unsatisfiable.

So I got my actual test results back from that professional exam, and when they implied I scored between 20% and 30% better than the passing grade, I was annoyed that I did not score higher. This is, however, unreasonable, since, given what the passing grade probably was, the highest attainable score, indicating 40+% better than the passing grade, may have been theoretically unattainable, and the next score, indicating 30-40% better than the passing grade, may have been simply ungodly. Given that only 40% of the people effectively taking the exam passed, I should be quite happy to have gotten such a good score. Before I got the actual score, I was glad to have passed at all. I just took a little listening quiz I saw on Dawn Eden and was annoyed that I "only" got 88.9 until I read the comments from a certain musician who reads this weblog saying that's what he got as well - and even then I was still slightly miffed. Good grief, I don't even really care about music, I think I'm just annoyed that I didn't get above 90% and earn the top designation.

Contrast with relative indifference to performance at work? I'm quite happy when I do well there and pleased to just scrape by - or even fail to scrape by but not get fired. I'm only annoyed when I completely strike out or get rained on.

Something to keep one's eye on, I suppose.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

on politics

Not that I care very much, my only real political conviction is to be pro-life, but the elections are today and I love a good fight as much as the next man. I will be up front: I'll never be able to understand the appeal of Republicanism. The only thing they've got going for them is that many are vocally against abortion, though there are few pieces of legislation against abortion which could stand the scrutiny of a court challenge, and some are against stem-cell research, though I do admit that I haven't found one yet who is enthusiastically for it like some members of the Democrat Party. However ineffective I think their policy solutions are, however, I do admit that if one thinks, say, their fiscal and educational policies will obtain results -- which I doubt and is the reason I can't see the appeal -- one could broadly identify with the party. Really, party identification is less about ideology, since American parties are not ideological parties, but about class and social identification.

But I want to comment on this mutual incomprehension. Though I do not understand the appeal of Republicanism, I couldn't go so far as the typical sort of tripe thrown out at dKos -- I'm not talking about the BUSHITLER school of trash talk, but the sincere people who think anybody who votes for a Republican is an evil and deluded fool or the sort who jokingly yet earnestly can ask if there is any reason to vote Republican at all. Though I admit I don't see the appeal, I can certainly find reasons. On the other side, the web-loggers for some rag could not see the parallel between Clinton-bashing and Bush-bashing, taking paragraphs to draw a distinction between the two that I am not convinced the removal of ideological blinders could preserve. I must admit, the obscene villification of the current administration beyond mere disapproval of its policies is the second most off-putting aspect about liberalists [the first being enthusiastic support for abortion, embryonic stem-cell research, etc], but it is common to both sides. What a great falling-out there was? Ah, political difference. What joy.

Anyways, I do not see how a man of good conscience could vote for either candidate for governor of Illinois. One of the current debates is using state funds for embryonic stem-cell research. Both are for embryonic stem-cell research, the only difference is that the Republican may not be sure it is the best use of state resources, though she has stated she wants Illinois to be a "hub" for such research.

Anyways, I'm taking a week off work starting today because I'll be travelling from Thursday to Monday and I somehow decided that mandated taking Tuesday and Wednesday off.

EDIT: Democrats for Life has a helpful listing of pro-life races to watch tonight for those who are interested in pro-life Democrats. The Republicans don't provide a similar service.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Scientific progress!

Obstetricians are calling for debates about the possibility of euthanizing the sickest of babies, the sort, to paraphrase, the mothers would have aborted if they had known how sick they would be. In the Netherlands, babies born at 25 weeks are already not given medical treatment and can be euthanized in certain cases. This is real scientific progress.