Friday, December 6, 2013
Wednesday, December 4, 2013
When the video went viral, and Titus showed his skills on the Today Show and the Deseret News published this story: "Mormon 2-year-old basketball star becomes famous for 'trick shot' YouTube video."
By June, Titus was a regular on the Jimmy Kimmel Live! show with shoot-outs with Shaquille O'Neal. See the article "Mormon basketball sensation, 2-year-old 'Trick-shot-Titus' takes on Shaq," which has a link to videos.
Titus was also featured in a national TV commercial about March Madness for Sprint. Titus also had a shoot-out with Kobe Bryant. See "Toddler basketball star Titus Ashby takes on Kobe Bryant" for a link to the video.
In the article "Father of toddler basketball star 'Trick-Shot-Titus' shares importance of being a dad," Titus' dad Ashby talks about the bond he has developed with his son Titus through all the attention and traveling to appearances.
Titus also had shoot-outs with Channing Tatum and Bradley Cooper on a TV show in Spain. See "Toddler basketball star, 'Trick-Shot-Titus,' in new video with Channing Tatum, Bradley Cooper."
Here is Titus' latest video:
Monday, December 2, 2013
If you live within 10 miles of one of Amazon's fulfillment centers, they expect to deliver packages up to 5 pounds to your house in less than 30 minutes.
Read more about Amazon delivery drones.
Sunday, December 1, 2013
Thursday, November 28, 2013
Friday, November 22, 2013
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
From Human Events by Betsy McCaughey, former Lt. governor of New York and the author of “Beating Obamacare.”
On Nov. 1, the Gilardi brothers, devout Roman Catholics who operate their own fresh produce business in Ohio, won round two in a battle against the White House. The Obama administration tried to claim that freedom of religion means freedom to pray, not necessarily to practice your beliefs. Once you leave church, you have to obey government regulations, even when they conflict with your faith.
Francis and Philip Gilardi insisted on living their beliefs as they run their business. For a decade, they’ve provided health insurance for their 400 employees but excluded abortion drugs, contraception and sterilization because they conflict with Catholic teachings.
However, the Obama administration requires all health plans to provide them. On Jan. 2, 2013, the Gilardi brothers sued in federal court, asking for temporary protection from the $14 million annual penalty they would face for not complying. A lower federal court turned down the Gilardi brothers, but last Friday, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia granted their request.
Judge Janice Rogers Brown ruled that if you like your God, you can keep him. Your freedom to practice your faith isn’t just protected inside a house of worship. Quoting from the Bible, she reminded the government’s lawyers that “Faith without works is dead.” If the Gilardi brothers want to paint signs on their trucks saying, “It’s not a choice, it’s a child” and decline to provide contraception products to their employees, that’s their right.
Judge Brown cited a 1963 ruling by Chief Justice William Brennan that the government may not “penalize or discriminate against individuals because they hold religious views abhorrent to the authorities.”
The law appears to be on the Gilardi’s side. The Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 says a person can opt out of a law if obeying it would substantially diminish their fidelity to their religious principles. There are exceptions, said Judge Brown, when the government has a compelling goal and no other way to achieve it. But Judge Brown made the common sense observation that there are other ways to provide contraceptives to women who need them.
These products already are dispensed at federally funded community health clinics and at Planned Parenthood sites. Access does not depend on employer coverage.
So why is the Obama administration doggedly waging this legal war? More than three dozen for-profit companies owned by Catholics, Mennonites and other people with religious scruples are in court, resisting the administration’s requirement. So far, six federal appeals courts have ruled on these cases, with four deciding for religious freedom and two siding with the Obama administration. It makes a Supreme Court showdown in 2014 almost inevitable.
The Obama administration has requested the court hear its case against David Green and his wife, who own Hobby Lobby craft stores and Mardel Christian bookstore. The Greens close their stores on Sundays and try to operate according to biblical principles, which in their view, means not providing the morning-after pills — known as Plan B and Ella — to employees.
When the Greens prevailed in lower federal court, the Los Angeles Times objected, saying “A hobby shop is not a church.” The New York Times called the court’s decision “a warped view” in that “some employers can get out of complying with the new law …”
Actually, nothing in the new law — the Affordable Care Act — guarantees coverage for birth control. The Secretary of Health and Human Services — a presidential appointee — decides what your plan covers. President Obama and Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said all plans must cover birth control. Future administrations can change that edict. Amazingly, women’s rights groups have not objected to leaving this matter to the whim of whoever occupies the White House.
The dissenting judge in the Gilardi decision, Harry T. Edwards, argued that the Gilardis cannot “invoke their personal religious values to deny employees the benefit of laws enacted to promote employee welfare.” But Edwards glossed over the fact that Congress didn’t enact the contraceptive requirement. It’s unlikely such a divisive mandate could have passed.
Blame the Obama administration for putting the mere convenience of birth control users ahead of Americans’ freedom to practice what they preach.
In the unlikely event the Gilardis and others do not prevail in the U.S. Supreme Court, the American people have another remedy. Elect a president who will respect both sides on this issue — and who will devise a solution that does not trample an employer’s “right to choose” his faith.
Thursday, November 7, 2013
Renowned columnist and television commentator George Will argues for a limited government to ease Washington's financial and moral troubles.
Listen to Mr. Will's description of why "we are in the most predictable crisis in the United States."
"What are we going to do to bring our appetites in line with our revenues so we don't continue the decadence of a democracy that borrows not for the future, but from the future?"
How big should the government be? What should the role of government be? How can we chose better policies?
Watch the video below:
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
LDS writer and videographer Seth Adam Smith wrote an article titled "Marriage Isn't For You" that has gone viral.
After having been married for a year and a half, he concluded that marriage is not for him. He wrote, "a true marriage (and true love) is never about you. It’s about the person you love."
"You don't marry to make yourself happy, you marry to make someone else happy," Seth recalls his dad telling him. "More than that, your marriage isn’t for yourself, you’re marrying for a family. Not just for the in-laws and all of that nonsense, but for your future children."
This selfless idea rang true. Within two days, it was read over 20 million times. It was featured on the front page of the Huffington Post, and also in the New York Daily News, Today, The Blaze, Parents, the Christian Post, FamilyShare, and the U.K.'s Daily Mail, just to name a few.
But not everyone believes. Seth's article prompted a retort by a woman writing for Cosmopolitan who claims that Seth's philosophy is nothing more than old-school romance. But maybe the world needs more unselfish, old-school romance.
Seth is also the editor-in-chief of ForwardWalking.com, a website dedicated to helping people move forward in life.
You can subscribe to Seth's blog or follow him on Facebook or Google+.
See the blog post featured on NBC's Today Show.
Watch an interview with Seth and his wife on Fox and Friends.
I've written about other Utahns and their YouTube channels, and today I want to feature Give Back Films, a new YouTube channel that inspires people to give back to the community and pass along goodwill.
Kyle Oreffice (18) and Josh Gibson (25) started the channel about a month ago. They have published four videos, three of which were filmed in Salt Lake City, and they plan to post a new video each Monday.
Below is their first video, where they give $100 to people living on the street. Notice how they take a few minutes to talk to each person and learn his or her story.
The 1.8 million people who have watched this video have been inspired to help out a homeless person or pass along goodwill in some way.
The next week, they posted their second video where four customers paid for strangers' drive-through bills, eventually creating a pay-it-forward chain. That video has been watched more than 1.5 million times.
Other videos in include Tipping a Waitress $200 and Paying For People's Gas.
The channel's success is a testament to the fact that people enjoy seeing the positive reactions of others.
Read more of the back story at the Deseret News.
Tuesday, November 5, 2013
Quotes from Howard W. Hunter, "The Law of the Harvest," address at Brigham Young University, 8 March 1966:
There appears to me to be a trend to shift responsibility for life and its processes from the individual to the state. In this shift there is a basic violation of the law of the harvest, or the law of justice. The attitude of “something for nothing” is encouraged. The government is often looked to as the source of wealth. There is a feeling that the government should step in and take care of one’s needs, one’s emergencies, and one’s future. Just as my friend actually became a slave to his own ignorance and bad habits by refusing to accept the responsibility for his own education and moral growth, so, also, can an entire people be imperceptibly transferred from individuals, families, and communities to the federal government.
…what is the real cause of this trend toward the welfare state, toward more socialism? In the last analysis, in my judgment, it is personal unrighteousness. When people do not use their freedoms responsibly and righteously, they will gradually lose these freedoms.
If man will not recognize the inequalities around him and voluntarily, through the gospel plan, come to the aid of his brother, he will find that through "a democratic process" he will be forced to come to the aid of his brother. The government will take from the "haves" and give to the "have nots." Both have lost their freedom. Those who "have," lost their freedom to give voluntarily of their own free will and in the way they desire. Those who "have not," lost their freedom because they did not earn what they received. They got "something for nothing," and they will neither appreciate the gift nor the giver of the gift.
Under this climate, people gradually become blind to what has happened and to the vital freedoms which they have lost.
Wednesday, October 30, 2013
And technology makes it worse. Some people think that texting that you are late somehow means you are no longer late.
Serial lateness is a character flaw.
Read the article "How Did It Get to Be 'OK' for People to Be Late for Everything?"
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Friday, October 25, 2013
The Modern Age has alienated an entire civilization from its Christian roots.
Recent research shows that 1 in 5 Americans is thoroughly secularized, with no religious affiliation at all. Worse yet, 1 in 3 younger Americans under age 30 is so identified.
Secularization has come about in 2 primary social locations: western Europe and the American college and university campus.
The weakening of marriage is a first sign of civilization collapse.
Children are routinely sacrificed to the romantic whims and sexual demands of their parents, who may or may not be married, may or may not stay married, and may or may not include both a father and a mother at any point.
The talk is insightful and worth reading:
Tuesday, October 15, 2013
- MAX your 401(k) or equivalent employee contribution.
- Buy inexpensive, well-diversified mutual funds. Pay attention to fees. Avoid actively-managed funds.
- Never buy or sell an individual security. The person on the other side of the table knows more than you do about their stuff.
- Save 20 percent of your money.
- Pay your credit card balance in full every month.
- Maximize tax-advantaged savings vehicles like ROTH, SEP, and 529 accounts.
- Know how you spend your money (budget and tracking) and never spend more money than you make.
- Carry enough insurance to provide for your reasonable needs and cover reasonably probable risks.
Adapted from the article “Everything you need to know about finances on a 4×6 index card.”
Saturday, October 12, 2013
I saw it last night, and found it to be a compelling story–powerful, touching, engaging, and filled with both physical danger and spiritual insight. It is well worth seeing in a theater. Don’t wait for it to come out on DVD.
A friend of mine had the blessing of being mission president for the two elders when they decided to finish their missions instead of returning home after their incredible experience. For safety, they were reassigned to missions in England.
Go see it in a theater for the full experience and to support quality LDS film making.
Below is the movie trailer.
Monday, September 23, 2013
If you have trouble viewing the attachment, you can see it online at http://blog.hostgator.com/2013/07/09/infographic-kids-of-the-past-vs-kids-of-the-internet-generation/
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
It’s fairly safe to say that viewers don’t tune in to the Teen Choice Awards in hopes of hearing incredibly insightful advice about the importance hard work, perseverance and dreaming big — but that’s exactly what they got from Ashton Kutcher this year.
After receiving the “Ultimate Choice Award” at the 2013 Teen Choice Awards on Sunday night, Kutcher began by revealing that his real first name is actually “Chris.” He then launched on a surprising diatribe about the three most important things he learned before he was known as Ashton.
“I believe that opportunity looks a lot like hard work,” Kutcher began with his first point. “When I was 13, I had my first job with my dad carrying shingles up to the roof, and then I got a job washing dishes at a restaurant, and then I got a job in a grocery store deli, and then I got a job at a factory sweeping Cheerio dust off the ground.”
He went on: “And I’ve never had a job in my life that I was better than. I was always just lucky to have a job. And every job I had was a stepping stone to my next job, and I never quit my job until I had my next job. And so opportunities look a lot like work.”
Kutcher then talked about “being sexy.” He almost certainly surprised thousands of screaming teenagers when he revealed “being sexy” has nothing to do with the “crap” that they are sold by society.
“The sexiest thing in the entire world is being really smart,” he said to cheers. “And being thoughtful, and being generous. Everything else is crap, I promise you. It’s just crap that people try to sell to you to make you feel like less. So don’t buy it! Be smart, be thoughtful and be generous.”
The third and final piece of advice Kutcher offered the audience dealt with the fulfillment of refusing to live “inside the world” and instead creating your own life.
“Everything around us that we call life was made up of people that are no smarter than you,” he said. “And you can build your own things, you can build your own life that other people can live in. So build a life — don’t live one, build one.”
The video of Kutcher’s speech has gone viral and currently has more than 2.6 million views on YouTube.