Tag Archives: news

This McDonald has no farm


Like McDonalds has anything to do with a farm.  Check out this article from the USA Today where McDonalds is doing some marketing through Facebook’s Farmville application.

“The virtual farm looks a lot like a Norman Rockwellesque farm that’s been spun through a McDonald’s branding machine. It’s got tomatoes growing in a big McDonald’s “M” logo. It’s got a McCafe flag flying in front of the perfect farmhouse. It’s got a big billboard touting the latest McDonald’s Monopoly consumer promo. The McDonald’s hot air balloon is wafting overhead.For McDonald’s, the promo is closely linked to the chain’s new vision of how to best reach consumers.”

A virtual farm promoting virtual food.  Is anything real anymore?

Believers: It’s not about you


Prop 8 judge to religious believers: It’s not about you    USA today article on Prop 8 judicial decision in California.  (Cathy Lynn Grossman)The pivotal quote seemingly in the decision is:But he spells out in all capital letters in the decision:

“A PRIVATE MORAL VIEW THAT SAME-SEX COUPLES ARE INFERIOR TO OPPOSITE-SEX COUPLES IS NOT A PROPER BASIS FOR LEGISLATION…California’s obligation is to treat its citizens equally, not to “mandate [its] own moral code.”

 My interest in this article is not to side my opinion on one side or the other on the decision, I’m not intersted in a political blog.  What I am interested in is the Truth claims on both sides.  Philosophically, that is what I find fascinating and intriguing on a human level.  What is true?  and how can you know it?  There certainly are a lot of both personal and societal issues depending on it. On one side, the argument is that there is an absolute and universal truth that is not a matter of personal opinion, but a grave issue of defining societal norms for either the good of the society (utilitarian) or mandated by a much wiser Creator than us as the creation could be (theist).  Either its a truth worth fighting for because it works better for society as a whole or its dire because it sets us up on a slippery slope for a legendary decline (i.e. Rome) if we sanction created order to our whim (humanism) as opposed to a submission to the Creator.  To play devil’s advocate on this, I would say that history shows us that “believers” in America used to argue againt the abolition of slavery or even civil rights for that matter.  They used the Bible to support their political views (Apostle Paul told slaves to obey their masters etc.)  They were dead set against abolition with their truth claims.  The Church was sure Galileo was dead wrong that the earth was not the center of the Universe and so on.  How can  you be sure that this now is an absolute truth claim and not just another kind of evolution of ideas and values and new realizations? On the other side, the judge’s truth claim is that it is a private issue and the moral view is relative to the individual.  Is a truth claim ever really just a personal issue?  To me, this is incredibly naive but textbook American.  Hyper-individualism is King.  The individual has full rights and entitlements and they are compartmentalized, never affecting others.  Our suburban neighborhoods have no front porches, rather we have fences and back decks.  We are isolated to our little bunkers and want to live and think and believe what we want.  That is our right as an American.  I guess there has to be a differentiation between opinion/taste/preference and a truth claim.  The reality is that we live as a collective, our lives deeply affect one another.   We belong to a system of dependency on one another as a nation, its why we pay taxes.  If my “truth” claim is a harm to my neighbor, the law exists to protect my neighbor.  How do we “know” that this issue does not create a harm to others?  Family is the center of culture and society, is its most basic definition not a collective truth claim to fight over together?  Is that really just an individual issue?  It seems to me that it is much too large an issue for our collective (nation and culture) to be explained away as simply a personal preference. I am most interested in truth.  I believe there are moral absolutes out there just like there are scientific laws to the universe.  I also know that history tells me that as humans we can be narrow in our view.  We can say our preference is an absolute truth when in reality, its just our relative taste and choice.  I certainly am asking more questions than giving answers here, but this is just the kind of stuff I think about.peace,Marshall

Sea World saw too much


I felt a personal connection to this tragic story yesterday of this altercation of the whale and its trainer.  My parents were at the 12:30 show just before this happened.  My Mom said the whale was not cooperating at their show and refused to perform.  Apparently they should have given it the day off. The show the altercation happened at was a special show for those with birthdays.  The kids there must have been horrified. It seems easy to pile on Sea World here on this story, and maybe rightfully so.   Don’t think I’ve ever sided with PETA before, but this may be a first.  I guess the question is, are we entitled to our amusement?  Does our consumerism never end?  Things I’m thinking about today.peace,marshall