Over two Years

June 4, 2010

It has been more than two years since I posted on this site and many of my goals have changed in that time.

I am going to make another attempt at blogging here on a regular basis. So, if anyone sees this,  check back again soon.



1 year ago today

May 7, 2008

I don’t usually post about personal issues, especially health issues.

However, today I will.

One year ago today I had major bowel surgery. The surgeon removed 2.5 feet of my small intestine, 1 foot of my large intestine, fixed 3 strictures and an abdominal fistula. After 6 days in the hospital, I went home with some interesting scars and weighing only 135 lbs.

Why? I have Crohn’s disease. I was diagnosed about 12 years ago after having an emergency appendectomy during which the surgeon saw that there was nothing wrong with my appendix, but my small intestine was severely inflamed.

Today, I am up to 175 lbs and can knock off 40 push-ups in a row. I watch what I eat and am getting more and more exercise. I am probably healthier now than I have ever been.

 No real point to this post, just that I’m happy and wanted to share.


Living Your Dreams

April 4, 2008

Last night, thanks to the Objectivist Round Up hosted this week at Rule of Reason, I learned of a great blog (The Anger of Compassion) and watched an amazing lecture given by Randy Pausch. The lecture is from a series titled, fittingly enough “Last Lecture” and is all about childhood dreams and realizing them.

This man is inspiring. From the way that he has committed to actualizing his dreams, to the way he is facing his own mortality. Randy provides an example that hard work, determination and a positive outlook will get you where ever you want to go. This is a man who holds his hierarchy of values at the conscious level and never forgets or sacrifices them to anything. 

One of my favorite lines from the lecture is about the power of working hard at what you do, please forgive me if I don’t get it exactly right.

“Junior faculty always ask me, ‘What’s your secret? How did you get tenure early?’ and I tell them, ‘Call me at my office on any Friday night at 10pm and I’ll tell you.'”

 If I have one beef, it is with the seemingly implicitly held Altruistic view of the highest good is ‘putting others first’. I do give him credit that he does not seem to hold that view indiscriminately. From everything he said and all the examples he gave I did not once see any time that he broke his hierarchy of values and that is refreshing (to say the least).

Please, if you have any interest in your own dreams, watch this lecture. I promise there will be something you can take away from it and apply to your life.

One Step Closer…

March 15, 2008

Picture the scene.

It’s Friday evening, I just got home from a long week at work and I’m sitting on my couch with my feet up, reading the daily paper. I had already glanced through the headlines earlier and read the ‘big’ news items. Reality Catches Up With Spitzer, Sacrifice to Afghanistan Extended til 2011 and Tragic Explosion at Local Car Dealership, when I come across 4 column inches on page A5.

It seems that another province has decided to try and sue Big Tobacco, this time in the name of “people whose health has been harmed by tobacco products, families who have lost loved ones to tobacco-related illness and taxpayers who have borne the added costs to the health-care system.”(bold mine)

This last part is what frightens me. It sets a precedent that the government can go back to the producers of goods and hold them responsible for the health care costs of willing, non-coerced consumers who used their products. Who is next? Keith’s & Captain Morgan? Coke & Pepsi? Mr. Christie and my Mom?

There is another level to this government meddling. It sets the framework to follow in Britain’s footsteps down the road of heath care rationing. If individual citizens are defying the government decrees that certain acts and products could be harmful to their health, then they get no ‘free’ treatment of their health issues.

That is bad enough, but lets take this a step further.

The government has proof that you have made poor health choices. Say during some routine blood-work your blood was tested, without your knowledge, for nicotine and trans-fats, and the results were positive. The next week you get a registered letter from the ‘Ministry of Health’ with an itemized bill for health care procedures they say you needed due to your poor choices. At the bottom of the bill it says if you don’t pay in 30 days the government will sue you for the costs, in the name of your neighbors who paid for the procedures.

I know it sounds far fetched right now, but with the rising costs of health care in this province, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Nova Scotia jumping on this bandwagon shortly. And then it is a slippery slope down to a socialist democracy, where individual rights are only upheld if they have no real or perceived negative impact on society.

Why we should remember.

March 9, 2008

I wrote this one to post on my Facebook page, Sunday, Nov 11, 2007. I tagged my grandfather as a person in this note.

I like to think that all of those soldiers, living and dead, did not sacrifice their lives for us. But that they made a choice, in full consciousness, to place their love of freedom ahead of their personal safety.

I like to think that these courageous soldiers made the decision that they would rather die than live in a world controlled by evil and then went out to do their best to stop their worst fear from happening.

I like to think that if people of today stopped thinking of the veteran’s courage as a sacrifice and saw it for what it truly is; Man responding to the highest values possible, love for his self, his family and friends and his freedom, they would be able to celebrate this day in a manner proper to that of remembering fallen heroes. Instead of feeling a vague guilt that these men and women died for us so many years ago, people would feel a sense of gratitude to those who had the courage to follow their convictions to their own end; to those who had the honour to put their lives in the path of a horrible spreading evil; to those who had the ability to see that the only way to have a world of happiness, justice and peace is to fight evil to the death, where ever it shows it’s ugly face.

I like to think, as I take my own personal time to remember those who put their lives into defence of this great country, where we are free to make our own choices of who and what and when to remember, that if it were necessary, I would be able to make the kind of choice my grandfather made and put my body in the path of evil for the defence of freedom.

Letter to the Editor Oct 20, 2007

March 9, 2008

I can’t stand hearing people whining about the government not taking care of them well enough.

Every time I read a paper or watch the news there is a socialist agenda being promoted.

Throw away soldiers lives and billions of dollars into a desert half the world away in the name of democracy building.

Take away Nurses right to strike and make them slaves to the sick.

Give more money to the “needy” and make them more dependant on Big Mother.

Dump more money into schools and continue indoctrinating rather than educating.

Steal people’s land to widen a road that everyone pays for and a small percentage use.

Ban smoking in private cars when children are present to “save” them from their uncaring parents.

We need to open our eyes here and see that very soon government regulations will invade even further into our private lives. Next we will see legislation permitting only licensed, non-smoking, non-drinking couples to have children.

We need a shake up. A person or group to stand up to the government and take back our rights. A political party founded on the unalienable rights of an individual to decide what is best for themselves and the idea that the government’s only job is to safeguard the power of force in society.

No right to live?

March 9, 2008

This is a letter to the editor I wrote Thursday, Apr 26, 2007

I have come to the conclusion that Kenneth Taylor should adopt a diet and lifestyle strictly adhering to his principle that he does not “have the right to kill any living creature of any species for whatever reason.”

I will, however, miss reading his asinine moral pronunciations after he succumbs to self-inflicted starvation. After all, plants are living creatures too.

The ability to come to any conclusion after questioning a theory and thinking rationally is what makes humans special. As individual rational animals, our own individual lives should be most important, not the life of every rodent, insect and vegetable.

What Kenneth has concluded is not that we have “No right to kill”, but that we have no right to live.

I emphatically disagree.

* I wrote that as a letter to the editor in response to this letter;

No right to kill

After much thought, I came to the conclusion that I must Adopt a vegan diet and lifestyle to the best of my ability. As a human, I do not believe I have the right to kill a living creature of any species for whatever reason.
What is so special about humans that gives us an attitude of superiority and domination over other species? I concluded that other species are equally important as us humans.
They are entitled to life, kindness and respect – as are we humans.
Kenneth Taylor