Sunday, April 29, 2007

Simpler Times

It's been a little while since there's been a real post here. There's been more podcasting than anything else lately. Sorry, it's just become an enjoyable hobby.

And things have been so hectic at work lately that it's hard to find any time to sit down and actually write. In fact, I'm writing this on my Palm Tungsten T3 while my son plays in the bath tub. I guess I just have to take the time where I can get it.

Hopefully I'll be getting a little more of it soon. I start a (short) vacation on Thursday, which just happens to be my daughter's first birthday. Wow! It's hard to believe that a year has gone by already. She's gotten so big and is almost walking. And my son is getting bigger and smarter every day.

With the kids growing so quickly, and so much going wrong in the world every day, it's hard not to be a little concerned sometimes. Concerned for the well-being of my kids. Concerned about what the world will be like when they become young adults. Concerned that some idiot could shoot them down before they even have the chance to become young adults.

Bloody April has had two new casualties: two people shot to their deaths in a mall in Kansas. For what reason? That could have been any two people -- like my two kids.

We do everything we can to protect them, but you can only do so much before your efforts become over-protective and you actually do them more harm than good.

I know that every parent throughout history has had these concerns -- and it may have been the innocence of my youth -- but I don't remember ever being so concerned about my own safety as a kid. Times just seemed to be so much simpler back then.


Saturday, April 28, 2007

President Bush's Weekly Radio Address

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In his weekly radio address President Bush said, “The opportunities America offers make our land a beacon of hope for people from every corner of the world. America's ability to assimilate new immigrants has set us apart from other nations. In this country, our origins matter less than our dreams. What makes us Americans is our shared belief in democracy and liberty. Our Nation now faces a critical challenge: to build an immigration system that upholds these ideals and meets America's needs in the 21st century.”

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Average Joe Radio Episode 21: Raison d'Etre

New this week on

Average Joe Radio

Episode Twenty-One: Raison d'Etre

Smallfish"Be Free" from "Low Tide"
by Smallfish
Buy at Podsafe Music Network

Phil Ayoub"White Feather" from "Schoolbus Window Paper Heart"
by Phil Ayoub
Buy at CDBaby

David McMillin"Annabelle" from "Outlast The Day"
by David McMillin
Buy at AwareStore

Go Fish"Superstar" from "Superstar"
by Go Fish
Buy at
played with permission from the Artists

William Brooks"After The Flood" from "Karma Dogs"
by William Brooks
Buy at Magnatune

Shane Jackman"My Place In You" from "Sanctuary"
by Shane Jackman
Buy at Magnatune

Jordan LeechDownload "Hey" from Jordan Leech
by Jordan Leech, C4 Records
Buy at eMusic
More On This Album

Mike Errico"Skimming" from "Skimming"
by Mike Errico
Buy at Engine Company Records

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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Gun Control

This is a controversial topic lately with the recent rampage at Virginia Tech. Read on:


“There are those in America today who have come to depend absolutely on government for their security. And when government fails they seek to rectify that failure in the form of granting government more power. So, as government has failed to control crime and violence with the means given it by the Constitution, they seek to give it more power at the expense of the Constitution. But in doing so, in their willingness to give up their arms in the name of safety, they are really giving up their protection from what has always been the chief source of despotism—government. Lord Acton said power corrupts. Surely then, if this is true, the more power we give the government the more corrupt it will become. And if we give it the power to confiscate our arms we also give up the ultimate means to combat that corrupt power. In doing so we can only assure that we will eventually be totally subject to it.” —Ronald Reagan

So what is a country to do? One of the many founding principles of this country was the right to bear arms. But at what point do we say, "Enough is enough?" Do we give up the right to bear arms in the interest of a common safety? The answer is no. And yes.

I don't believe that we, as American citizens, can afford to give up our right to bear arms. In a time of terrorism and unexpected attacks by unknown attackers at unexpected times, it would be folly to lay down our arms. But I do believe that change is necessary. I don't believe that any man or woman should be able to just walk into a pawn shop and be able to walk out the same day with a gun. Granted, mandating some type of background checks and waiting period is not going to eliminate violent crime with guns. I do believe that it might reduce the number of "heat of the moment" violent crimes just by forcing the potential gunmen to wait long enough to hopefully cool off before getting his hot little hands on some cold hard steel.

Others -- and I can think of at least one person in particular -- would probably argue that waiting periods will just force a potential killer to get his gun illegally, through a black market, where it is never registered and can never be traced, possibly making solving the case more difficult. I can see the validity of that argument.

More importantly than all of this, I believe that we as a nation should not allow the possession of firearms by non-citizens. Period. I also believe that we should not so readily allow the possession of concealed weapons. It's just my own personal opinion. No reason to argue it. I doubt that there's any way to actually enforce it, but I sure wish there was something we could do about it.


Monday, April 23, 2007

Average Joe Joins IODA

Feedback Line: (206) 600-4JOE

Average Joe Radio

Bringing you one of the LARGEST music libraries
in Podcasting today,

has teamed up with
the Independent Online Distribution Alliance

IODA PromoNet

with over 25,000 podsafe tunes available!


Subscribe today for the biggest variety in podsafe music!

SUBSCRIBESubscribe in iTunes

Average Joe Joins IODA

Feedback Line: (206) 600-4JOE

Average Joe Radio

Bringing you one of the LARGEST music libraries
in Podcasting today,

has teamed up with
the Independent Online Distribution Alliance

IODA PromoNet

with over 25,000 podsafe tunes available!


Subscribe today for the biggest variety in podsafe music!

SUBSCRIBESubscribe in iTunes

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Earth Day

Did you realize that today was Earth Day? I didn't, not until almost 11:00 pm, that is, and then thanks only to Google's Earth Day doodle.


The Best Medicine

They say that laughter is the best medicine. Here's your daily dose:

Thanks to Kevin Agot, for putting this in my Bloglines feeds.


Saturday, April 21, 2007

President Bush's Weekly Radio Address - UPDATED

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Looks like they recorded the podcast on Friday this week instead of Saturday, causing me to have the wrong link for the file. All should be working correctly now.

In his weekly radio address President Bush said, "This week, the thoughts and prayers of millions of Americans are with the victims of the Virginia Tech attacks. We mourn promising lives cut short. We pray for the wounded. And we send our love to those who are hurting. ... The day after the attack, Laura and I attended a memorial service on the campus in Blacksburg. We met with faculty members who lost students and colleagues, and shared hugs with grieving moms and dads -- including parents who had lost their only child. We offered what words of comfort we could, and we were moved by the solidarity and strength of spirit we found. We wanted everyone at the university to know that this tragedy saddened our entire Nation -- and that the American people stand with them in an hour of darkness."

Friday, April 20, 2007

April Bloody April

You've no doubt heard most of this already in the past week, but you haven't heard it from me. With the tragic events at Virginia Tech that started this week off, and the history of tragedies that seems to plague the month of April, it's enough to make one wonder exactly what it is about the start of spring that brings such disaster to us. Consider these other great tragedies of history:

April 19, 1993: Seventy-nine members of the Branch Davidian religious cult, including twenty-one children, perished in defense of their compound in Waco, Texas. While the compound burned to the ground during a government siege, autopsies later revealed that many of the cult's members, including leader David Koresh, died of single gunshot wounds to the heads.

April 19, 1995: The Alfred P. Murrah federal building was bombed by Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols, killing at least 168 people.

April 20, 1999: At Columbine High School near Littleton, Colorado, twelve students and a teacher were killed during the shooting rampage of Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold.

April 16, 2007: Thirty-two people were killed by Cho Seung-Hui in the worst such massacre in modern history.

Other April tragedies:
  • The San Francisco earthquake in 1906
  • The sinking of the Titanic in 1912
  • The assassinations of both Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King
  • The Rodney King riots
  • A record number of tornadoes in one day in 1974
  • The Chernobyl nuclear accident in 1986
And, lest we forget, Adolph Hitler was born 108 years ago today.

So what is it about the month of April? Email me with your thoughts, or call 206-600-4JOE.


Thursday, April 19, 2007

A Man For All Seasons

Here is the latest image from PatriotHumor.US -- Sir Albert Gore commemorates Earth Day 2007.

This week's Patriot Humor image is included below. If you do not see the image, please click the link: http://archive.PatriotPost.US/humor/a-gore-for-all-seasons.jpg

Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus, et Fidelis!

Mark Alexander
Publisher, PatriotPost.US

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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Virginia Tech Massacre Timeline

So with all the Virginia Tech massacre dominating the network news today, here are the updates as I received them in my email as events unfolded. My personal comments are noted as text in GREEN.

Apr 16, 2007 10:35 AM
subject: News Alert! One Person Dead In Virginia Tech Shooting
Police say one person is dead and Virginia Tech is under lockdown after reports of a shooter on campus.
It has since been reported that there was no lockdown of the campus. In fact, the only notification most of the students received when the tragedy began was an email, which most of them would have had no access to during classes.
Apr 16, 2007 10:23 AM
subject: Breaking News - Virginia Tech reports shooting on campus, tells students to stay indoors
MSNBC Breaking News: Virginia Tech reports shooting on campus, tells students to stay indoors
Apparently, "indoors" is exactly where is was not safe to be.
Apr 16, 2007 11:07 AM
subject: Breaking News - Official: Seven to eight additional casualities at Virginia Tech campus
MSNBC Breaking News: Official: Seven to eight additional casualities at Virginia Tech campus
This is actually the first breaking news email I received that even mentioned "casualties," as "seven to eight additional."
Apr 16, 2007 11:13 AM
subject: News Alert! Suspected Gunman Arrested In Virginia Tech Shooting Spree
Officials have told The AP that a gunman suspected in one killing and seven to eight additional casualties at Virginia Tech has been arrested.
This was apparently the cause of the delay in notifying students and why the school did not evacuate the building. Police were on to the wrong suspect.
Apr 16, 2007 12:04 PM
subject: News Alert! 17 Injuries Reported In Virgina Tech Rampage
A hospital spokeswoman reports that 17 Virginia Tech students have been treated for gunshot wounds and other injuries. At least one person is dead.

Apr 16, 2007 12:26 PM
subject: News Alert! Cops: 22 Dead In Va. Campus Shooting Massacre
The Virginia Tech campus police chief says at least 22 are dead after a shooting massacre at the university.

Apr 16, 2007 12:23 PM
subject: Breaking News - University official reports multiple fatalities in shootings at Virginia Tech
MSNBC Breaking News: University official reports multiple fatalities in shootings at Virginia Tech

Apr 16, 2007 1:47 PM
subject: News Alert! At Least 30 Dead In Va. Tech Shootings
CBS News confirms at least 30 people are dead after a gunman opened fire in a dorm and classroom at Virginia Tech.

Apr 16, 2007 2:27 PM
subject: News Alert! Sources Tell CBS Lone Gunman Took Own Life
The FBI and the ATF believe two handguns were used by a lone gunman who took his own life after fatally shooting at least 30 people at Virginia Tech, sources tell CBS News.

Apr 16, 2007 2:28 PM
subject: Breaking News - Officials tell the Associated Press the Virginia Tech death toll has risen to 31
MSNBC Breaking News: Officials tell the Associated Press the Virginia Tech death toll has risen to 31

Apr 17, 2007 9:29 AM
subject: Breaking News - Virginia Tech gunman identified as South Korean native Cho Seung-Hui, 23
MSNBC Breaking News: Virginia Tech gunman identified as South Korean native Cho Seung-Hui, 23

Apr 18, 2007 8:29 AM
subject: Breaking News - Virginia Tech building evacuated, police swarm with guns drawn
MSNBC Breaking News: Virginia Tech building evacuated, police swarm with guns drawn
I received that report this morning. That police had swarmed a building on campus today with their guns drawn. There has been nothing more about it since then, that I have been able to find.
Apr 18, 2007 2:24 PM
subject: News Alert! Officials Say Gunman Left Suicide Note
CBS News has learned a search of the Virginia Tech gunman's apartment produced eight pages of notes which law enforcement sources characterize as a suicide note. They say the writings "appear to be a manifesto."

Apr 18, 2007 4:43 PM
subject: News Alert! Police Say Gunman Mailed Manifesto To News Station
Police say Virginia Tech shooting Cho-Shun-We is believed to have sent a manifesto, multiple photos and video to NBC News which were apparently mailed after his first shootings but before his second shootings, two hours later.
So what does this say of the media? There is such a rush to keep the American public informed that we are often given unconfirmed or totally false information, because the media is so anxious to be the first to report that they don't actually take the time to make sure that what they are reporting is true. Is this a case of too much, too soon?

Average Joe Radio Episode 20: Time

New this week on

Average Joe Radio

Episode Twenty: Time

Josh Woodward's Spirit World

Val Davis's Texas Sky

Lee Broderick's Madeline

The Shakes' Liberty Jones

Steadman's The Bitter End

Geoff Smith's Save Me

Covenant's Superstar

William Brooks's A Different State of Mind from his album Bitter Circus available at

Kevin Reeves's Throw Me A Line

David McMillin's Manhattan Street

Feedback Line: (206) 600-4JOE

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Sunday, April 15, 2007

President Bush's Weekly Radio Address

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In his weekly radio address President Bush said, "I recognize that Republicans and Democrats in Washington have differences over the best course in Iraq, and we should vigorously debate those differences. But our troops should not be trapped in the middle. They have been waiting for this money long enough. Congress must now work quickly and pass a clean bill that funds our troops, without artificial time lines for withdrawal, without handcuffing our generals on the ground, and without extraneous domestic spending."

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Book Review: Skin by Ted Dekker

Book Review
Proceed With Caution
The following may contain SPOILERS
For a special Skin episode of Average Joe Radio, CLICK HERE.

The master of suspense in the Christian fiction genre is back, and he's brought the Horde with him.

You met them first in The Circle trilogy (Black, Red, and White) and learned of the evil that literally hangs from their bodies. The effects of their evil ways followed you to Project Showdown, then through House, Saint, and now into your very Skin.

As all Ted Dekker fans have come to expect, he has woven another suspenseful tale in Skin. And, once again, he takes us back into the world of The Circle, where the Forest Guard and the Horde wage the epic battle of Good versus Evil.

In Skin, we meet five very troubled souls, thrown together unsuspectingly when they cross paths with a trio of tornadoes in the small town of Summerville. As the deadly destructive forces of Mother Nature bury the town in desert sand, the quintuple comes face to face with the very incarnation of Evil -- Sterling Red.

But all may not be quite as it seems. As tragedy strikes the Summerville police force, former FBI Agent Mark Clifton -- the small town Detective from Walton with the movie-star reputation -- takes over the case. He's a no-nonsense sleuth with a knack for getting to the bottom of things, very slow to trust others, and a deadly aim with a weapon. He's a criminal's worst nightmare. Or is he?

Download PodcastAnd what of Jerry Pinkus -- the gaming expert -- or brother/sister duo Carey and Nicole Swartz (whose last name, by the way, is a derivative of the German word Schwarz, or Black). When they find themselves trapped with Wendy Davidson and Colt Jackson (he of the Summerville Police Department) trying to wait out the stormy tornadic trio, they soon learn that a trifecta of tornadoes is the least of their worries.

Dekker masterfully takes us into the world of Skin -- and the mind of Sterling Red -- weaving a tale of suspense that will keep you turning pages long into the night. And, if you're anything like me, you'll find yourself flipping back through the pages in search of the easter eggs that reveal the hidden links between Skin and The Circle trilogy. (If you want some help finding those links, click the DOWNLOAD button above for my special Skin podcast.)

But you better pay close attention, because in the town of Summerville, things are not always what they seem. Don't trust your eyes.


Want to know what inspired Ted Dekker to write The Circle trilogy? Find out here.

Dive Deep!

Friday, April 13, 2007

Can't Get Enough

I'm kind of hooked by The Circle Trilogy by Ted Dekker, and all of the other books he has written that have a link back to his epic tale. I just finished reading his latest book, Skin, and it left me wanting more that I'm about to begin reading Black and the rest of the Circle tales again, some of them for the fourth time.

Now that's some good stuff!

A review and some thoughts on Skin should be posted Saturday.


Average Joe's Review Store