Chad the Elder unflinchingly stands by the colors:

Cheering for a team is not about calculating the odds and going with the winners. It’s about loyalty and eternal hope in the face of constant disappointment.

People occasionally ask me how I can persevere so stoically in the face of constant scorn, derision, mockery and ridicule. They marvel at my ability to shrug off the most scathing attacks with little more than a sardonic smile, and they wonder how I remain so blithely unmoved by criticism, dislike and hate.

I find it hard to understand the question. I am a Vikings fan. There is nothing you can throw at me that could make me feel any worse than I have felt before. I sobbed in 1974. I raged with burning fury in 1975. I cried in 1976. I felt sick in 1987. By 1998, there was nothing left inside but a frozen hollow. In 2000 and 2003, I barely blinked. That which did not break me has made me stronger and harder than you can possibly imagine.

We are cold and bleak, we men of the North. We are made of sorrow, snow and stone.

We are all Bud Grant.

That word does not mean

What you think it means. NRO’s editors claim that despite his promises to bring a new Federal public-private partnership to Detroit to revive the auto industry, Mitt Romney is the most conservative “viable” candidate. Meanwhile, just down the page, J.J. Pitney Jr. notes that Romney appears to be the least electable of the “major” Republican candidates. “According to recent trial-heat surveys, Romney would lose to either Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama by the widest margins of any major Republican candidate.”

I don’t know about you, but I’m very much enjoying the increasing insanity of this election campaign. The Republicans are imploding one after another, Hillary nearly lost to no one and her closest rival is an admitted drug user* who belongs to an African supremacist church. America, how very richly you deserve the government you are going to get! And though our reasons may differ, I find myself in agreement with everyone’s favorite science educator:

I’m feeling a bit like I’m watching a whole country merrily running towards that cliff right now.

The hilarious thing about PZ and company is that they completely fail to understand that they are right there running in the midst of the rest of the lemmings. Huckabee and Hillary are going in exactly the same direction and they’re not the only ones.

*Not that there’s anything wrong with that, we ARE libertarians.

The first TIA reviews appear

Attention all one-star-rating, non-reading “reviewers”… you may now start your engines:

Digital Cowboy writes: “I read this book in a very short time because I couldn’t let go of it. I had high expectations for this book and Vox managed to exceed them. It was far more humorous than I expected, for one. I’ve always loved his writing style and I particularly enjoy the irreverence. I’ve described it to others as “what most people would call arrogance but as we say in Texas, ‘It ain’t braggin’ if ya done it.'” With this book Vox did it. It’s an irrefutable case that he makes largely because he avoids the silly mistakes most Christians make when responding to atheists – primarily, appealing to authority that they don’t recognize. Vox says in the preface that he will battle them on their terms – their chosen ground of logic and reason – and he does it overwhelmingly and convincingly…. I almost feel sorry for his targets. He’s left them no wiggle room at all.

D. Christensen writes: This is not just a polemic against the New Atheists; the best part is that for each of the subjects he lists some glaring logical and factual errors…. Harris, et al, have really got their credibility on the line now, and they are going to have to respond. If they don’t, that ommission will be just as glaring.

I’m very pleased to see that a certain theme appears to be emerging in the various reviews beyond, “hey, I liked it”. I did not set out to write a Christian apologetic, but rather an entirely secular assault and readers appear to be grasping that. One of the pre-release readers, a fellow BenBella author named Read Mercer Schuchardt, an Assistant Professor of Communication at Wheaton College, had this to say about TIA: “Day’s work is a healthy kick in the head to the comfortably numb. Using their own claims against them, he uses logic, reason, and rhetoric to reveal that atheists are the new fanatics, and that we should all—religious or irreligious— be very wary of their schemes. G. K. Chesterton once remarked that without God, there would be no atheists; Day updates this by showing how atheism itself is an evolutionary dead-end. A provocative, gutsy, and in-your-face book, but eminently enjoyable reading.”

Please note that posting these reviews should not be interpreted as a hint to order the book from Amazon today. It’s Saturday that would be the ideal time to do so if you happen to feel so moved.

By the way, please don’t worry that this blog is going to turn into an all-TIA, all-the-time hair-braiding fest. Yes, there will probably be a fair amount of posts related to it over the next week or two, but if you’re not interested in the subject, don’t worry, there will be even more posts on other, unrelated subjects as well.

UPDATE – Amazon must be policing its reviews and tag associations. I just noticed that TIA is no longer associated with “crap”, “total inanity” and “doughy pantload”. I always thought those associations were interesting considering that the book wasn’t even available yet although I have to admit, I did find the behavior to be most amusing on the part of such a rational, intelligent, and open-minded collection of highly evolved primates.

Let me get this straight

Mitt Romney travels to Michigan, a state where his father was the governor, promises loads of government intervention in an attempt to revive a moribund and uncompetitive industry, wins by nine points, and this is supposed to be interpreted as a victory for conservative Republicans?

I haven’t seen the full results yet, but by the way Fox and CNN are religiously reporting only the results for top three finishers despite the fact they’re also reporting that 100 percent of precincts are in, (Captain Underoos 39, Mad Dog McCain 31, Huckster 16), I can only conclude that Ron Paul finished fourth, ahead of both the Tennessee Toad and the Savior of New York City.

When John Hawkins asked me last week who I thought the Republican candidate will be, I gave the same answer that I have given since 2003. Rudy Giuliani. I realize this is counter-intuitive to the point of seeming utterly ridiculous, as he’s a terrible candidate and can’t seem to win a primary or a caucus to save New York, but if the Republican nomination comes down to a brokered convention as some commentators are breathelessly suggesting, I find it hard to imagine that the party elite will miss the chance to jam their guy back down the party’s throat.

This is, after all, the Most Importantest Election Ever and how is Hillary Clinton, who can barely win an unopposed primary, going to ascend to the Cherry Blossom Throne unless Republicans cut their own throats?

Inventing offense

Wayward Fundamentalist has an unusual way of defending Christianity’s public image:

So, I guess Vox has, as he put it, “nothing but the back of my hand and a dismissive snort of contempt”, for those of us who Believe the Bible. Wow, So much for Christianity.

Is this simply a problem with basic reading comprehension? That’s possible. But more likely it’s the Christian drama queen’s desire to play public martyr. His decision to cut off the quote mid-sentence in his response shows that he knows perfectly well that I was not referring to “those of us who Believe the Bible”, but “those who will inevitably attempt to dismiss my case because of the insufficiently respectful manner in which it is made”, or in other words, the academics and their acolytes whose prissy rhetorical etiquette I rejected in writing my forthcoming book. Not exactly a big bunch of Bible believers.

Wayward not only fails to respond to the cited example of Jesus Christ’s own use of strong language, but also omits to mention the fact that “I don’t have a problem with Christians who object to this,” because doing so would not so much have undermined his complaint as eliminated it entirely.

The bizarre thing is that while Wayward thinks it’s unacceptable to use colloquial language in manner quite similar to the way that Jesus Christ himself used it, he considers it entirely proper to blatantly misrepresent what others have written. This is absurd. And as I pointed out yesterday, there are much better ways to sell books than using Christianity as “a bumper sticker or a title use to get people to read one’s books”.