Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Is Captain America Gay?

Whilst cackling with my workmates over this, I found a long thread devoted to a very important question. Sample excerpted below:

It's entertaining how angry some people get over it.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


That’s right, the Koch brothers are pro-free-market simply because they’re unsatisfied with their billions. It couldn’t possibly be because they’re trying to make the country better, even a little.
[Note to self: spam for Jonah, non-stop. A guaranteed sale.]


The bedsprings of freedom squeak ever onwards:
A judge in Ontario has overturned key Canadian anti-prostitution laws, finding they force sex workers into the streets at risk to their safety.

She ruled with three prostitutes who had challenged bans on brothels, pimps and solicitation.

Reward and Punishment

A comment by Ben Hyde on a post at Crooked Timber:
Let’s train a pile of pennies to behave. Good pennies come up heads. Flip the pennies ten times. Divide them into two piles, the good ones and the bad ones. Now punish the bad ones. Beat them with stick. Repeat the experiment. Notice how their behavior improves! Now reward the good ones. Kiss them. Repeat the experiment. Notice how they appear to be slacking off! Clearly negative reinforcement works and positive reinforcement doesn’t.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Mo' Problems, Mo' Money

Make money off the accusation, make money off the retraction. It's the American Way.
More than 20 years ago, Meredith Maran falsely accused her father of molestation. That she came to believe such a thing was possible reveals what can happen when personal turmoil meets a powerful social movement. In her book "My Lie: A True Story of False Memory" (the introduction of which is excerpted on Salon), Maran recounts the 1980s feminist-inspired campaign to expose molestation, which hit feverish levels in 1988 with the book 'The Courage to Heal." As an early reporter on the story, Maran observed family therapy sessions, interviewed molesters and steeped herself in cases where abuse clearly took place. Meanwhile, she divorced her husband and fell in love with a woman who was also an incest survivor. Maran began having nightmares about her own molestation and soon what had been a contentious relationship with her father turned into accusations of unspeakable crimes. Eventually, she came to realize the truth. She was the person who had done wrong.

The Fight for Democracy

Equal representation before the not-law in Pakistan:
Commenting on corruption in the country, the minister said that only politicians should not be blamed for corruption, rather generals and judges should also be held responsible in this regard. He opined that everyone had an “equal right” in corruption, while demanding that the Baloch, Seraikis, Sindhis, Pashtoon and Punjabis should be given an equal right to corruption. “Only the ruling parties should not be given the right to corruption, rather this right should be given to everyone,” he remarked.

Sex Mad

Sunday, September 26, 2010

This Does Not Work That Well

Overflow Projects

Power issues:
On a blustery Labour Day weekend this year, the wind turbines sprinkled across Ontario’s landscape set a record.

That Saturday, they pumped an average of 1,000 megawatts of power into the province’s grid over a seven-hour stretch, the biggest sustained wind output on record. It amounted to about 7 per cent of the power demand at the time.

That was the good news.

The sobering news was that the power flowed into the grid on a cool Saturday afternoon during a holiday weekend when there wasn’t much demand for it.
We could take care of all this extra power that's gumming up the works by diverting it to a giant laser that would split the moon in two. Then in quarters, and so on. Really, it could go on forever.


A book:
In 1879, more than a year into the European tour that led to “A Tramp Abroad” and miserable from too much hotel cooking, a “cranky, ravenous, homesick” Samuel Clemens (better known as Mark Twain) sat down and wrote a menu of all the foods he longed for from home, which he said he wanted “served at a 'modest, private affair' all to himself, the moment he stepped off the steamer.”

Stretching pages, the final list was 80 items strong and covered everything from radishes, asparagus, and butter beans to raccoon to roast turkey and pumpkin pie. Potato chips (the newly invented “Saratoga potatoes”) made the list and so did “catsup.” Twain was incredibly specific in his longings: from “San Francisco mussels, steamed” to “Lake trout, from Tahoe” and “Canvas-back duck, from Baltimore.” Even iced water made the list – “not prepared in the ineffectual goblet, but in the sincere and capable refrigerator.”

Writer Andrew Beahrs has attempted to recreate Twain's menu in his new book, “Twain's Feast: Searching for America's Lost Foods in the Footsteps of Samuel Clemens,” which combines Twain's life with the history of the foods the writer loved. (Twain, a quotable writer on any subject, cared passionately about food and could leave today's critics eating their napkins in despair.)

Saturday, September 25, 2010

True Facts

Here is another non-surprise regarding Sheriff Paul Babeu's crack team:
Two nationally known forensic pathologists are questioning a sheriff deputy's version of how he was shot in the remote desert south of Phoenix, adding to theories that the incident was a hoax timed to enflame the debate over illegal immigration.
No conclusions made of course. More if you follow the link.

Death to Gummis

Friday, September 24, 2010

C'mon Sudanese Guys, Make An Effort

Is Our Engineers Learning?

Haikuing the News

I enjoy Gnoetry Daily.
Tue September 21 16:58:23 2010

The physician who
lives in the soil made the corn
stalks puny. As dirt.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Digg Sucks

What's with the nonstop lists of shit? It's like Right Wing News but less funny.

Evidence Aplenty

Arizona sheriff Paul Babeu raises the alarm:

In a phone interview, Babeu told TPM that when he spoke about the cartels controlling parts of the state, he meant they control movement. Babeu says cartels have scouts and other surveillance set up to monitor activity, and when the sheriff and his staff aren't around to patrol, especially in the rural parts of his county, smugglers operate freely. Babeu's website includes news items about drug spotters on hilltops and in caves in Arizona.

"Often times during our patrols out there, we would find cold food and a box of AK-47 rounds, you know, and some other things," Babeu said. "There wasn't a confrontation or a shooting, but we find these pieces of intel, that we know clearly there was somebody here on this high point. And they left because they saw us coming up 45 minutes ago. So that's the kind of stuff that we have, that we're asking for additional help and resources."

Perfectly reasonable to me that there are drug smugglers in Arizona. But, absent the drug smugglers, it's also perfectly reasonable that there are guys in the hills eating food and shooting guns. It's Arizona.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

War is a Dirty Business

The BBC explores military vehicles:
Jonathan Beale describes the advantages of the Ocelot vehicle, which will replace the controversial Snatch Land Rover, the Ministry of Defence has announced.
The latter vehicle pictured below:

Recycling helps the Earth.

Fake Outs

Stephen Colbert will testify before congress in character. Daniel Foster thinks it's bizarre. Mark Krikorian is dumberfounded. Jonah Goldberg is stunneder by the stupidity. Jonah:
I still like Colbert and think he can be funny.
A template for all Jonah says and a perfect illustration of why he is not testifying before congress, and there's still more:
But it’s almost as if the Democrats are deliberately taunting the voters. Maybe that’s the idea for some reason? Or maybe the idea is to activate the youth vote by making congressional hearings into an ironic joke?
"I don't get it." Well spoken!

Let's imagine Foster, Krikorian and Goldberg in front of the committee, something I'm sure they'd be happy to do. Foster's the sharpest of the bunch and most likely to say something unapologetically awful and know and acknowledge how awful it is. Krikorian's likely to say something awful and not know it's awful. And Jonah, poor Jonah, would not know what he was talking about and not understand how awful it was.

I think it's safe to say that Stephen Colbert is better at delivering the National Review's message than the National Review staff.

Christian Zeal and Activity

At-work listening:


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

My Tax Dollars At Work

Part three of this show has a long and interesting interview with Gideon Levy about the latest peace talks between Israel and Palestine. It's worth hearing.

No Doors Are Closed To Me

Telepathic Ed:
On February 26, 1993 Moslem Terrorists Set Off a big bomb in the Basement of the World Trade Center Killing 6 and Injuring Over A Thousand. Shortly After I Was Watching "Entertainment Tonight" and Saw an Old Friend of Mine, Curt, Being Interviewed Lengthily by John Tesh with Curt's Profile Covering a Wall. Apparently Curt had been in the World Trade Center Seeing Customers when the bomb went off and he Led People to Safety Down the Stairs with the Light from his Watch Illuminating their Escape of all things. I had gone to a Lavish Pigroast at Curt's Place in Scottsdale and a while afterwards he was Mad at Me and Shaking his Head Saying I'm Sorry I Invited You to My Party, I said I Brought a Case of Beer. I Can Go Anywhere If I Have a Case of Beer, No Doors Are Closed to Me.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Sexy Mathematicians

Is our children learning sexy?
Danica McKellar -- best known for playing Winnie Cooper, Kevin Arnold's love interest, on "The Wonder Years" (yes, really) -- has found a second career writing about math. Her books have all reached the New York Times bestseller list: "Math Doesn't Suck," "Kiss My Math" and the just-out "Hot X: Algebra Exposed!," which is exponentially more engaging and entertaining than any math book has a right to be. Yet McKellar's vocation as role model isn't uncomplicated: She holds a degree in mathematics from UCLA and co-authored a complex theorem that bears her name, but she's also posed for Maxim in skimpy lingerie, and her books feature cheekily sexy titles and fluffy packaging -- the cover of "Hot X" promises "boy-crazy confessionals!" Is she sending mixed messages that compromise her mission -- or just making savvy marketing moves?

Argument From Authority

Ben Barrack studies history:
In the film “300,” Spartan king Leonidas knew his country was under an imminent threat of attack from the Persians, led by the tyrant Xerxes. The law of the land – as depicted in the film and based on historical accounts – was that before a king could commit his soldiers to war, he had to get the approval of the loathsome ephors.

The ephors decided military matters in a way not all that dissimilar from how the U.S. Congress is the only body having the power to declare war under our Constitution. In the film, Leonidas paid the ephors a visit to explain the threat, outline his strategy to defeat it, and plead for their approval. The ephors denied him that approval, leaving Leonidas furiously apoplectic at their refusal to recognize a very real threat while using the excuse that war can never be waged during the time of the Greek festival known as the Carneia.
There's this totally cool movie I saw based on this totally cool comic book that was like based on true history and stuff and CONGRESS IS TOTALLY LIKE THOSE LEPROUS GUYS WHO WOULDN'T LET LEONIDAS KICK ASS. Proof? ABOUT.COM and the fuckin' CONSTITUTION, assholes! Documentary footage below, DOUCHEBAGS!

Cigareets and Whuskey

I think I've posted this before:

Peter Sellers should have released an entire album of hellfire tunes.

I love it even though he stole the whole bit. Prior art via Metafilter:

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Police Beat

Fire me before I fuck your wife again!
Patrol Officer William Bowker was serving on the Lee County Narcotics Task Force in 2008 when he committed several admitted policy violations. State records related to Bowker's recent request for unemployment benefits indicate that while assigned to the task force he was twice photographed by colleagues while sleeping on duty, consumed alcohol while on call, refused to attend a class about search warrants and complained that another class conflicted with his plans for a Super Bowl party.

As a result, Bowker was removed from the task force in early 2009, but he faced no discipline from the Fort Madison Police Department, where he remained on staff.

In the spring of 2009, Bowker allegedly initiated an extramarital affair with Reserve Officer Christine Niggemeyer, the wife of Police Chief Bruce Niggemeyer. Another officer in the department reported the matter to the chief in June 2009, but when questioned by the chief, Bowker allegedly denied the affair.

The city manager then instructed two of the city's 18 police officers to investigate the matter. After conducting surveillance of Bowker and collecting video of Bowker and Christine Niggemeyer hugging and kissing, the officers confirmed the affair.

Stop Thinking About Making Me Hit Myself

Here is a headline:
Are Democrats Planning a Government Shutdown?
Gracious! Are they?
In the December surprise scenario, the Democrats, who would still largely have the same majority in place after the election as they would before it, would toss into the CR a couple of provisions that Republicans simply could not vote for. There is no telling yet what those might be, but they could be anything from card check and a “cap and trade” energy tax to something apparently minor having to do with abortions at overseas U.S. military hospitals or funding for embryonic stem cell research.

The idea is not to see any of these items actually become law but to include them in the CR because their inclusion would force the Republicans into opposing it, even to the point of using the filibuster to keep it off the Senate floor. The result being that the federal government would run out of money and have to shut down.
Ah, the majority party would FORCE the minority party to shut the government down. By attempting to pass policies the majority wants.

Politics is complicated.

Breastfeeding and The Princess Bride

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Thinking It Through

Is Michael Bloomberg to blame for the deaths of the 18 Muslim men in Indian-controlled Kashmir who rioted over reports that someone in America burned the Koran?

Let's think it through.
Uh-oh. See what Jonah wants to say without saying it is that had Bloomberg put the kibosh on The Dreaded Not-Mosque Built On The Piled-Up Skulls Of YOUR GRANDMOTHERS then the book-burning adventure wouldn't have taken place and gee whillikers and so on and so forth. So, can we string Bloomberg up?
Alas, no. While we should criticize him for his thumbless grasp of church-state issues and his megalomaniacal incompetence, he's not to blame for the actions of others. And it isn't fair to hold people legally accountable for the evil or misguided deeds of others.
Thank you Jonah: not only can you not blame Bloomberg, but you can't even jail him. Nevertheless: AHA! Pastor Terry Jones is off the hook too!
And the same basically goes for Jones. His plan to burn the Koran was stupid, irresponsible and repugnant, but it's not his fault that there are a significant number of Muslim men who are not only ready but eager to riot and kill in response to insults to Islam.

If you deny this, you are basically denying the humanity of Muslims.
Got that? If you opposed the book-burning because you thought it might make trouble, YOU ARE THE REAL MONSTER! Because, you know, you can't distinguish between people who go bananas over nothing and everyone else who would not go bananas over nothing. They're all Muslims dontcha know. Also they're all monsters because BECAUSE.

But maybe he has a point: I cannot tell the difference between the two Republicans below:

Tourette's Spandau Ballet

Friday, September 17, 2010


I am enthused:
"Borat" star Sacha Baron Cohen is set to play flamboyant rocker Freddie Mercury in a dramatic feature focusing on his glory days as the frontman of Queen, its producers said on Thursday.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Office Supplies

Enjoy a rubber-band gun.


Benedict XVI used the first papal state visit to Britain today to launch a blistering attack on "atheist extremism" and "aggressive secularism", and to rue the damage that "the exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life" had done in the last century.
Why without atheist extremism the bums of countless little boys would have remained uninvaded.
The leader of the Roman Catholic church concluded a speech, made before the Queen and assembled dignitaries at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh, with the argument that the Nazi desire to eradicate God had led to the Holocaust and a plea for 21st century Britain to respect its Christian foundations.
And of course the first foreign treaty the Nazis signed was with the Vatican. The Vatican's negotiator later became Pius XII.


What's that mikey?
Perhaps he was so enamored of his pretty hat and beautiful shoes that he failed to notice the irony dripping off his words like rain on your wedding day.
A speech in which the Pope appeared to associate atheism with the Nazis has prompted criticism from humanist organisations.

However, the Catholic Church has moved to play down the controversy, saying the Pope knew "rather well what the Nazi ideology is about".

Rebuilding Civilization

The reconstruction of Iraqi society proceeds apace. Below we see that the biology faculty of the University of Baghdad has received fresh supplies of plasticine. Progress!

Below, the University of Baghzab.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Protein Shakes

YOU demand them:
With newly affluent consumers from Brazil to China eating more meat, Argentine ranchers are honing their centuries-old cattle-breeding traditions to meet growing global demand for semen, embryos and genetics know-how.


The Anarchist Cookbook's author William Powell:
Unfortunately, the book continues to be in print and with the advent of the Internet several websites dealing with it have emerged. I want to state categorically that I am not in agreement with the contents of The Anarchist Cookbook and I would be very pleased (and relieved) to see its publication discontinued. I consider it to be a misguided and potentially dangerous publication which should be taken out of print.
It makes an excellent wedding gift. I'm kinda sad I gave mine away.


Sometimes the prison clothes do not make the man.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Where Are the Left's Fucking Freaks?

Should people want a Glenn Beck or a Sarah Palin on their team?

Cock Blocking for Science

Come on man:
Male great bowerbirds (Chlamydera nuchalis) build intricate bowers – tunnels built from interlaced twigs. Ornaments like stones and shells are placed at the tunnel's end creating a "court". Females sit inside the tunnel, while males strut around the court attempting to woo them.

By measuring the size and position of ornaments that were displayed on 33 different bower courts, Endler found that in all cases the males had carefully laid them out in order of increasing size. The objects gradually became bigger the further they were from the entrance to the bower.

Endler then reversed 15 bowerbird courts, placing larger objects close to the opening of the tunnel, but their owners would have none of it. After just three days, 14 bowerbirds – nearly half the study group – had returned their courts to the original design. Within two weeks all courts had been fixed.

This suggests order on the court is important to the males, says Endler. "Clearly, they didn't like it when I changed it around."
You know, when a bird shits on your shoulder before you head into the club, here's betting you clean up.

White Male Indexing

Over at the zombie's place AG has discovered a dating site having fun with statistics in an effort to embarrass us all. And embarrassed we are.

Of 50 things that their sample of white males like, here is what has made or currently makes me white.

White Male Interests Past Enjoyment Measurable Current Shit-Giving
van halen 1
the big lebowski 1 1
soundgarden 1
brew 1 1
boating 1
groundhog day 1
hockey 1
blazing saddles 1
megadeth 1
ccr 1 1
robert heinlein 1
skiing 1
zappa 1
nascar 1
software 1 1
the hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy 1 1
coen brothers 1 1
tenacious d 1 1
mostly rock 1
queens of the stone age 1
a few beers 1
apocalypse now 1 1
most sports 1
guitar 1 1

24 10

x2 and I have been 48% white over the course of my life and now am a weak and tepid 20% white. Please do away with me by driving a jeep over my head.

White males outside North America suffer less humiliation, but they don't matter anyway. Counting beer twice makes sense.


Golf made even more boring.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Hey You 72-Year-Old Woman! Get Off My Lawn!

AWR Hawkins has found another human of the female persuasion that he does not like:
When I read that 72-year old Jane Fonda was about to release two new workout DVDs “geared to the 100 million Baby Boomers and older adults,” two words kept popping into my head: “Hanoi Jane.”
What the fuck? Is it last-century o'clock? Wait, let me check the list - Oh. Jane Fonda at 13. My bad.
What is Fonda’s deal? Doesn’t she know that real Americans have been sick of her since she took North Vietnam’s side during the Vietnam War? Does she really think she can pose for pictures in her workout clothes in 2010 and we’ll somehow forget about her posing for pictures with a North Vietnamese Anti-Aircraft gun in 1972?
Um, yeah.
For the record, we did learn some lessons from the Vietnam War, and one of those lessons was that Fonda is a traitor.
That's a valuable takeaway from, you know, a war in which millions of people died. Mind you, following this set of priorities we learn the lesson from this article that AWR Hawkins has a doughy ovoid face.

Image and video hosting by TinyPicImage and video hosting by TinyPic
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

The Means of Production

Another open source argument:
IRKUTSK, Russia — It was late one afternoon in January when a squad of plainclothes police officers arrived at the headquarters of a prominent environmental group here. They brushed past the staff with barely a word and instead set upon the computers before carting them away. Taken were files that chronicled a generation’s worth of efforts to protect the Siberian wilderness.

The group, Baikal Environmental Wave, was organizing protests against Prime Minister Vladimir V. Putin’s decision to reopen a paper factory that had polluted nearby Lake Baikal, a natural wonder that by some estimates holds 20 percent of the world’s fresh water.

Instead, the group fell victim to one of the authorities’ newest tactics for quelling dissent: confiscating computers under the pretext of searching for pirated Microsoft software.
Not that authorities won't find another pretext to beat on hippies: that's what they do. Still, Microsoft software is wholly unnecessary (and of course so is my Mac software).

As the ploy grows common, the authorities are receiving key assistance from an unexpected partner: Microsoft itself. In politically tinged inquiries across Russia, lawyers retained by Microsoft have staunchly backed the police.

The Business of Damien Hirst

Damien Hirst outperforms the S&P 500, but it's a recession after all:
The average auction price for a Hirst work in 2008 was $831,000. So far in 2010 it is down to $136,000, a sum that does not even take into account the many lots that failed to find buyers. With prices down to 2002 levels, the artist’s work is outperforming the S&P 500, but is lagging well behind Artnet’s C50 contemporary art index, an industrial average of the 50 most traded post-war artists (see chart 2).
The article in The Economist is long and worth reading despite and I guess because of the comical bloodlessness of the above.

The video is cranky get-off-my-lawn fun, if you imagine rich people and careerists wanting to hang out on your lawn (in which case I guess the smarter thing to ask is "How can I profit from this? What should it cost to be on my lawn?"). Quote from an "art advisor" in part 9:
We're all defined by the way we present to the world and some of us do it with very big diamonds and large homes and some of us do it with very big diamonds and large homes filled with magnificent art.
Thea Westreich, my shit in your mouth is worth $10000, but I will let you have it for $8000.

Playlist of the complete program here.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

On the Recent Dimensional Rift


Image and video hosting by TinyPic

I'll clean it up in the morning.

Humanitarian Aid

Under the ground in Chile:
COPIAPO, Chile: The 33 men trapped deep inside a northern Chilean mine have been given permission to smoke after improvements were made in the air ventilation.
Okay, now the headline:
Stubbed out: ideal chance for miners to quit smoking
Why without the collapse of the mine these men might have missed a valuable opportunity!

''We are not going to give a pack of cigarettes to each of them, but rather a reasonable amount,'' said Jorge Diaz, a medical doctor on the rescue team.

Requests for wine have so far not been agreed to.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Fish Takes Residence in Shotgun Owner's Barrel

Not that fish.

Via Susan of Texas, pure Megan McArdle self-humiliation delight. Read the whole thread.


That asshole from The Vandals:
I get a lot of calls to my radio show asking if someone can use “classical” music in a film or podcast or something without permission since it’s so old. Seasoned listeners to Barely Legal Radio know that you can use the composition because it is in the public domain if it is from the classical period (1550 to 1900?) but you must get permission to use copyrighted recordings of these, or any works, regardless of whether they are in the public domain. Somehow this doesn’t sit well with some people.

According to Richard Esguerra from The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), a group is “doing something about this “problem. The organization “Musopen” is raising money from “philanthropists” to create high quality digital recordings of works from masters such as Beethoven and Brahms so that they can “generously” donate these recordings to the public domain so that no one will have to worry about licensing recordings of them ever again.

Does this sound nice to you? If it does, you are forgetting one thing.You are forgetting that if these recordings have some commercial value it creates a market for them which not only employs musicians, it encourages better and better recordings and orchestrations that benefit all of society. Destroy their commercial value, and you destroy a lot more than you realize.
Dear asshole: have you ever been to a record store? Or a performance of anything orchestral? I'd guess not:
Is it that offensive to these people that musicians should get paid for mastering their chosen instruments and making the sacrifices necessary to become a professional? Or is it crazy if someone gets a return on an investment to undertake the enormous task of recording a 100 plus person orchestra? Carried to it’s logical conclusion, someday all classical recordings will be in the public domain so this faction of the recording industry can just shut down. Now you can tell your kids not to waste time learning the cello, because there’s no way to earn anything from the sacrifice, so don’t go to orchestra practice. It’s a waste of time.
Classical music as a return on monetary investment: ho ho ho.

Back to the proposed donation of recordings:
When my late Uncle Frank used to hear stuff like this he used to blurt out, “That’s just plain old fashioned communism!” That may be naive but it’s all I can think of to explain the lunacy. My band played in communist East Germany once. I see a bland world of music coming if those ideas make a comeback. I still have nightmares about the “boiled wheat” they served us to celebrate our musical triumphs there.
One thing about the Eastern Bloc: no classical music.

The Cracks

Cheating Japanese caught inflating life-expectancy numbers:
More than 230,000 Japanese citizens listed in government records as at least 100 years old can't be found and may have died long ago, according to a government survey released Friday.
Or is there a more tragic explanation?
The head count followed a flurry of reports about how elderly people are falling through the cracks in Japan as its population ages rapidly and family ties weaken.
GUARDRAILS could have prevented this, tightwads.

Friday, September 10, 2010

"Crazy Dumbass" Necklace Absent From Article

You are what you're tattooed to be:
SEATTLE—A woman who was robbed of $310 while sitting at a Seattle traffic light gave police a detailed description of the man who stuck a gun in her open window.

He had "GET MONEY" shaved into the hair on one side of his head. He also had "GET" tattooed on his right hand and "MONEY" on his left hand.

A Tale of Two Big Hollywoods

Chris Burgard writes about the genesis of his new project:
“I’m starting a new company.” He said.

“Oh. Okay, but I highly doubt that you are going to get a network to pick up a series about grassroots conservatives wanting to make a difference.” I said.

“We’re going to start a new network too.”

“Really?” Now he had my complete attention.

I could feel the schpiel approaching: “Yep. It’s going to be a three-platform media company: web, mobile, cable and satellite VOD. We are going to build programming around the core values and beliefs upon which America was founded. Then our viewers can jump on our social networking sites and participate in the kind of national conversations that are currently being dominated by only one side. We will make programming for all Americans. We are calling it “RightNetwork.”
Just down the page:
Leftists Artists Create Propaganda Not Art
by Joseph Lindsey

How Low Can You Go?

Lower, always lower.

The Great Hunger

Thursday, September 9, 2010

At Least You Can Sue a Contractor...Or Can You?

Veterans just sucking up benefits like pigs at the trough:
In a lawsuit in federal court in Maryland, 241 people from 42 states are suing Houston-based contractor Kellogg Brown & Root, which has operated more than two dozen so-called burn pits in the two countries. The burn pits were used to dispose of plastic water bottles, Styrofoam food containers, mangled bits of metal, paint, solvent, medical waste, even dead animals. The garbage was tossed in, doused with fuel and set on fire.

The military personnel and civilian workers say they inhaled a toxic haze from the pits that caused severe illnesses. Six with leukemia have died, and five are being treated for the disease, a cancer of the blood and bone marrow. At night, more than a dozen rely on machines to help them breathe or to monitor their breathing; others use inhalers.
Ingrates. They got a free trip around the world!



Wednesday, September 8, 2010

The Greatest Country in the World!

Children are the future or something:
FORTUNE -- Alabama schools have been having a rough time of it, and it only looks like it's going to get rougher. The Cotton State recently came in last place in the federal Department of Education's Race to the Top grant competition. And a steadfast global recession combined with the Gulf Coast oil spill this summer have put a severe strain on the state's tax receipts, the primary source of revenue for Alabama's education system, forcing several school systems to take out private loans just to make it through the year.

Five school districts have already borrowed against lines of credit they have with local banks to fund basic school operations, and 25 additional districts are planning to follow suit in the next few months, accounting for over 20% of the state's school system, according to the Alabama Association of School Boards.

Stonewall Jackson

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


Quote of a few days ago:
After their latest record, "Glee: The Music -- Journey to Regionals" landed at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart in June, star Mark Salling said he'd seen "not a dime" of royalty payments from label Sony Music.

Co-star Corey Montieth told Toby Knapp's DC 99.5 radio show: "I got 400 bucks from it going No. 1. But you know what, that's OK, because if I'm patient, and if this thing does really well, maybe I'll see another 400 bucks."

A Book

Kristin Hersh has a book out:
But Rat Girl is not really a chronicle of music or mental illness or even teen motherhood. Hersh writes that her book is a love story, "one with no romance, only passion." It is not about her baby's father, nor is it about falling for music: It's about the exaggerated passion of adolescence. For Hersh that means breaking into pools, driving around in old cars, dressing like a grandmother, befriending aging former Hollywood starlets, living in comfortable semi-squalor in punk houses. It's going to the park and dyeing your hair blue with Manic Panic because "real is a dumb color for hair." By describing the particulars of her atypical experience, Hersh evokes the bored-but-excitable mindset of most teenagers.

Rowland S. Howard

That Talk Talk song would be a grave insult at a bad time. It needed more spite.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Greetings Tony

Oh how sad, more events cancelled.

Such woes:
"I love my own politics and progressives and all the rest of it," Blair told ABC's Christiane Amanpour in an unaired portion of his This Week interview from Sunday. "But if we have a weakness as a class, when the right get after us and attack our progressive leaders, instead of defending them we tend to say, 'Yeah, well, really we've got a lot of complaints about them, too.'"
It would have been swell if his own party had done just that. Aren't they progressive enough to conform to type?

Appropriate Handling

Over at Beliefnet, Stephen Hawking's latest shocking claims are discussed:
Stephen Hawking has created a firestorm in his new book, The Grand Design, in which he declares that an intelligent creator was not necessary for the creation of the Universe. This is nothing new - Hawking has long argued against the need for a supernatural being to create the Universe, but in this new book he speaks out with particular clarity, saying that the laws of physics can create the universe out of nothing, it doesn't require God.
Okay, that's a somewhat plodding summary, do go - oh, you ARE going on:
Though not a scientist, I will argue that the creation of the Universe and the planet is a separate issue entirely from the creation of consciousness. Human beings are conscious creatures, and there is growing evidence to suggest that most animals and birds possess a level of consciousness as well. I am certainly not arguing for the Genesis-tale of creation, where a god variously termed Jehovah, Yahweh, and the Elohim (Plural) created the heavens and the earth. But it is difficult to imagine a scenario where conscious beings formed without a conscious intention of some kind.
All right, you're branching out into the ether there and I -
Hawking's Sun is in achievement-oriented Capricorn, and he has a Grand Trine of planets in earth that includes Mercury, Uranus and Neptune. Uranus opens his mind (Mercury) to fresh new insights, and Neptune adds a creative note which helps to raise his mental abilities. Hawking was an underachiever in college until ALS began to rob his physical body of its abilities, after which time he began to work hard and focus all of his energies through the mind. He is now thought by some to be the smartest man in the world.

Uranus in Hawkins chart conjoins Saturn, a combination that requires a balance of one's radical and individualistic (Uranus) nature with the more structured rules of Saturn. Often individuals with this combination of planets tend to embrace one over the other and a war between the two impulses can result. Hawkings was first diagnosed when he was 21 years old - an age at which transiting Saturn forms a square to Saturn in the birthchart at the same time that Uranus squares the natal Uranus. This is a big time of change for every human being, but with Saturn and Uranus conjoined in the birthchart it took on greater force and likely drove all of his focus towards the aspect of his personality which worked well, which is the Grand Trine involving Mercury.

Sunday, September 5, 2010


Why didn't anyone tell me how hilarious 300 is?

Hey Joe

A brutal and disturbing song:

Few know about the prequel:


A Master Baiter

Can you believe this guy?
Hit on Iran would spell Israel's 'eradication': Ahmadinejad
By Wissam Keyrouz (AFP) – 4 hours ago

DOHA — Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad ruled out an attack on the Islamic republic over its nuclear programme, during a visit to Qatar on Sunday, because any such action would result in Israel's destruction.

"Any act against Iran will lead to the eradication of the Zionist entity," he told a joint news conference in Doha with Qatar's emir, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, after their talks.
How close is this to "Bring them on"?

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Pounds of Flush

Old news, but interestingly put:
Fake Journalist Completes Excretion of Hard Drugs
12 September 2007

Lagos — A Fake journalist, Mr Muoka Uzochukwu Anthony, arrested by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) on September 2, 2007, for ingesting hard drugs has excreted a total of 76 wraps of cocaine, weighing 1.254 kilogrammes.

Muoka pretended to be a journalist with a fake Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) identity card, so as to have easy passage through the airport, but his journey to London terminated at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA) office of the NDLEA, where he was placed on observation to enable him empty his bowels of the hard drugs that he had intended to take to London.
Live broadcast I hope. Imagine the suspense!

Friday, September 3, 2010

What We Require

We love Transformers 3 THIIIIIIIIIIIIIIS much:
Indiana State Police say [Gabriela] Cedillo was driving her own car during the filming of a [Transformers 3] stunt. She was among many other drivers in the scene. A metal object hit Cedillo's car, then flew through her windshield, hitting her in the head.

Cedillo's 2006 Toyota then sped away, hitting an inner median concrete barrier wall. The 24-year-old's car traveled for about a mile, before stopping. The vehicle had extensive damage to the driver's side.
Gabriela Cedillo was an extra working for minimum wage, away from her day job as a bank teller.

Life Studies

Here's an interview of always-cranky Craig Venter:
SPIEGEL: It took eight years from the time the first bacterial genome was decoded until the human genome was completed. How much time will elapse between the creation of the first synthetic bacteria and the creation of the first synthetic human?

Venter: There is currently no reason for us to synthesize human cells. I am, for example, a fan of the work that was done a short time ago that led to the decoding of the Neanderthal genome. But we don't need any more Neanderthals on the planet, right? We already have enough of them.
The interview's worth a read: the questioners come at him from as many angles as they can. Venter does his usual good job of being an asshole, but is also surprisingly clear about how much he doesn't know about any genome anywhere, which is not the Venter I remember. Mind you I haven't kept up.

The bioforgery industry proceeds with or without meddlers in the genome:
Kano — Assessment of the degree of fake seeds distribution and sale in Nigerian markets by the National Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC) has shown that the North-West and North-East regions of the country have the highest proliferation of fake seeds in circulation.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Invade It Again, and THIS TIME Do It RIGHT!

Over at Andrew Breitbart's Big Peace Diana West makes a discovery:
His report is also one that people, whether in Iraq or particularly in the US, are not comfortable hearing. Who in the US, now that the war in Iraq has “ended,” wants to hear that in American-liberated Iraq, Islamic education class is Iraqi schools, many of which were rebuilt or built by US soldiers, is teaching jihad and Islamic supremacism? Certainly not Americans fond of claiming victory.
If only some iron-fisted dictator was handy to keep the Islamists at bay.


Over at OCWeekly:

Unsuccessful Docking Attempts

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Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The Intellectual Conservative

The Daily Telegraph:
In his new book, A Journey, Mr Blair writes that the former US president was confused by the presence of Guy Verhofstadt at the 2001 G8 summit in Genoa. “He didn’t know or recognise Guy, whose advice he listened to with considerable astonishment,” Mr Blair writes. “He then turned to me and whispered, ‘Who is this guy?’ ‘He is the prime minister of Belgium,’ I said. Belgium? George said, clearly aghast at the possible full extent of his stupidity. ‘Belgium is not part of the G8’.” Mr Blair explained to Mr Bush that Mr Verhofstadt was there as “president of Europe”. Belgium held the presidency of the EU council at the time. Mr Bush responded: “You got the Belgians running Europe?” before shaking his head, “now aghast at our stupidity”, Mr Blair writes.
To which Andrew Stuttaford responds:
“Running Europe”? Well, not quite, but W’s aghastness will do nicely. In fact, very nicely.

As for not knowing who Verhofstadt was, one can only admire the president’s shrewdly selective assessment of what information is worth knowing — and what is not.
Ha ha, well, you know, I don't think I've ever known who a Belgian head of state is, mind you, I'm not a head of state meeting one at meetings where heads of state meet other heads of state and are supposed to know what's on the fucking agenda. Evidently at least two heads of state who were not George W. Bush knew what the deal was.

At Last I Am Free