Monday, March 31, 2008


I gave it little direct thought, but for years my instinctual assumption was that the line at the bottom of emails,
Please consider the environment before printing this e-mail.
...was a suggestion that you make sure you knew who was around your printer - ie, the "environment" - before choosing to print out the email. Like an ATM warning - make sure you trust the people around you before making a new copy of this email, which could then be carried off. It just sounded like those other pompous footers, like
NOTICE: If received in error, please destroy and notify sender. Sender does not intend to waive confidentiality or privilege. Use of this email is prohibited when received in error.
I don't know why the other obvious - correct - meaning of the message escaped me!


Warren Ellis, on Twitter, on Twitter:
ambient post-geographic conversation (accent on "ambient") or world nonsequitur delivery system, take your pick...
I like the first one.

Sunday, March 30, 2008


His "when I was a kid" schtick is irritating at times, sure, but Dave is often onto something:
What we used to call blogging is now just bullshit about recycled bullshit about recycled bullshit and on and on. Who bit who in the ass, never mind anything new or hard to comprehend, cause that's not what we do. We aggregate eyeballs and clickthroughs and CPMs and god knows what else. 

Back in the old days before any of you were blogging, we (the olde skool bloggers) used to write about them watching us watching them watch us watch them.  

It's happening again... 

Nothing wrong with it, it's human nature. 

But it's time to decentralize again.  

Head for the hills. 

If I could only remember where they are!
I'm providing no original thought in this post - just enjoying it!



Image from Kos.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Black Holes In Our Discourse

An embarrassingly bad opening four paragraphs in a NY Times article about two men who claim that the Large Hadron Collider will create a black hole when it's completed and turned on later this year:
More fighting in Iraq. Somalia in chaos. People in this country can’t afford their mortgages and in some places now they can’t even afford rice.

None of this nor the rest of the grimness on the front page today will matter a bit, though, if two men pursuing a lawsuit in federal court in Hawaii turn out to be right. They think a giant particle accelerator that will begin smashing protons together outside Geneva this summer might produce a black hole that will spell the end of the Earth — and maybe the universe.

Scientists say that is very unlikely — though they have done some checking just to make sure.
"Maybe the universe?" A black hole will swallow the universe? Do you know what these words mean, Dennis?

"Some checking?" Yeah, scientists pursed just a few lines of "checking" during the process of designing the LHC.

There's an interesting story in all this, but this version seems like it was written for InTouch.

I do like the ending, though.
Dr. Arkani-Hamed said concerning worries about the death of the Earth or universe, “Neither has any merit.” He pointed out that because of the dice-throwing nature of quantum physics, there was some probability of almost anything happening. There is some minuscule probability, he said, “the Large Hadron Collider might make dragons that might eat us up.”

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Bad Guys

You get the sense that Bush and Cheney told Maliki that he had to "kill all the bad guys" and so Maliki said, "Sure, I'll go kill all the bad guys."

Most Common Thing

The AP quotes Hillary Clinton::
"But the most common thing that people say to me ... is 'Don't give up, keep going. We're with you.' And I feel really good about that because that's what I intend to do," she told reporters on Tuesday.
Really? The "most common thing that people say" to you is to stay in the race?


From a new Q&A on BoingBoing's comment moderation policy, a technique I've never heard of before: disemvowelling:
Q. All the vowels have disappeared from a paragraph I wrote! What's going on?

A. We did it. Someone (a moderator, one of the Boingers) was expressing displeasure at your remarks. The technique is called disemvowelling. It deprecates but does not delete the remark. With work, the disemvowelled text should still be readable.

That Covers It

Fake Steve Jobs has officially stopped reading Foucault's Pendulum:
For a while I thought it was just me. But then I realized of course it's not me. I mean does that even make sense? Clearly the problem is the book. And I'm not just talking about the typeface. It's also the words themselves and the way they are arranged into sentences.
Apparently, he's "very busy finishing the v2 iPhone," so that's cool.


The Editors consider our challenge:
People, listen: reducing the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere?  Obtaining all the energy we need directly from sunlight?  These are the kinds of insurmountable engineering challenges overcome every day by plants.  Plants.  And not just those clever trees or those cunning shrubberies, mind you - single-celled algae-type bullshit figured out workable solutions to these questions several billion years ago.  Call me speciesist (kingdomist?), but I’ve never found the flora to be particularly deep thinkers.  I suspect we can probably do as well if not better, but we might have to cease our incessent whining and excuse-making for a while.  Oh, and stop spending billions of dollars a week so that Friends of Dubya don’t have to admit that they fucked the dog.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Paul Holds the Mirror

Fascinating to see this article in Time Magazine: Why Ron Paul Scares the GOP:
The real significance of the [Ron] Paul campaign is not the ubiquitous bumper stickers and lawn signs or the online fund-raising records ($6 million in one day, plus another $4 million, hilariously, on Guy Fawkes Day) but the mirror Paul held up to the modern Republican Party. When his fellow candidates denounced big government, Paul was there to remind them that President Bush and the G.O.P. Congress had shattered spending records and exploded the deficit. When they hailed freedom, Paul asked why they all supported the Patriot Act and other expansions of executive power. And when they called themselves conservatives, Paul asked what was so conservative about sending thousands of young Americans to try to transform the Middle East.

Get a Grip

Phil Plait, at Bad Astronomy Blog:
Now far be it for me to make fun of someone’s religion… but if your religion is telling you Doctor Who is evil, you’re doing it wrong.

Staten Smokin'

Terrifying study on smoking in NYC:


It seems that the sample size must be unusually small, but it's still pretty freaky.

Also, leave it to the NY Post to include this kind of metaphor:
City officials are trying to understand why Staten Island women are more willing to turn their babies' umbilical cords into hookahs.

Monday, March 24, 2008


Picture 1.png



Is this useful?:
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Attorney General Michael Mukasey has been taken aback by the scope and variety of potential terrorism threats facing the United States, he told reporters Friday at an informal meeting in his office.

Attorney General Michael Mukasey receives terrorism updates during national security briefings.

"I'm surprised by how surprised I am," said Mukasey, who as a federal judge presided over terrorism-related trials in New York.

"It's surprising how varied [the threat] is, how many directions it comes from, how geographically spread out it is," he said.

Mukasey issued no warnings, made no pronouncements and offered no suggestion of increased danger or newly detected plots.

He would not discuss specifics of potential threats, which remain secret.

Oh, check that - I see. He continues:
The attorney general used the occasion to once again urge congressional passage of a measure to update the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. An initial update, termed the Protect America Act, expired last month.

"I never thought I'd see that [expiration] happen," Mukasey said. "The danger doesn't fade."

He also referred to the terrorism updates he receives in early morning national security briefings.

"The people I hear about every morning, their fatwas do not have an expiration date," Mukasey said.

Yet I take hope that they are still scrambling against this:
The House has refused to bow to administration pressure to pass a version of the law that exempts telecommunications giants from legal action for taking part in the government's program to eavesdrop without a warrant when one of the parties is inside the United States.

Critics said the program violated the law, and phone and Internet companies face as many as 40 lawsuits related to their participation.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Tide Is Turning

More and more critiques appearing.

"Stuff White People Like" is a retrofitted Sinbad routine. It's the internet equivalent of Michael Scott re-telling a Chris Rock joke.


Klein bottle uses Divide By Zero!

I See

Joy of Tech, on why Monster Cables are so much pricier.

Picture 3.png

Friday Noonan

There is truly no more ignorant voice on the internet than Mark Noonan:
The flaw in the UN is that it includes within it nations with completely opposite points of view.

Oh, Dear

Devotees nailed to cross - World Faith-
"After being nailed to the cross, I feel so refreshed, like all my sins are washed away," Mamangon said. "I will continue this until my son Alex is cured."

Bass Ackward


You know how PCs all ship with loads and loads of crap pre-installed? Jukeboxes and "download-accelerators" and ISP trials and loads and loads more?

Well, Sony has acknowledged this problem. And is offering to ship new computers without all that stuff. However, they require that you pay a $50 premium for them to "remove" it! They call it the "Fresh Start" program.

Clearly there's something very wrong in Windows-land.

Thursday, March 20, 2008


A reminder: a "war" is not what is happening in the Democratic primary. A "war" is where you have body parts in the street.


Yesterday was too dispiriting for words, politically.

5th anniversary of the start of the war, and the media is stuck on Hillary being in the White House on Blue Stain day, ages ago.

Obama unable to shake this Wright shit, despite a remarkably intelligent and forward-thinking speech.


Please let today be better.

New Evidence

As an antidote to all the "Blue Stain Day" shit floating around today...

WASHINGTON -- New found evidence has shown that President George W. Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney were officially in the White House when two wars were ordered, leading to widespread death and a complete embarrassment for the nation as both wars turned into horrible failures while leaving the nation's military in shambles, according to experts.

The new evidence also points out that Bush and Cheney were in the White House as the nation's economy tanked, home foreclosures went through the roof, the federal deficit exploded, widespread corruption occurred, oil and gas prices hit record highs, and wealth inequality widened substantially.

The evidence also points that Bush and Cheney were in the White House when Habeas Corpus ceased to exist in the U.S., torture became legalized, and eavesdropping on Americans became commonplace.

When asked for comment, Cheney said simply, "So?"

Wish Well

Obama spokesman Bill Burton:
We wish the McCain campaign well as they try to figure out the difference between Iran and al Qaeda.

Roger Kay Knows Nothing

The The Macalope has found, in BusinessWeek, one of the most ignorant pieces of tech writing about Apple in a good long time.

Remember the name "Roger Kay." He was the writer.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

New Low

Poll: Bush's approval hits new low -
The 31 percent approval number is a new low for Bush in CNN polling, and 40 points lower than the president's number at the start of the Iraq war.

"Bush's approval rating five years ago, at the start of the Iraq war, was 71 percent, and that 40-point drop is almost identical to the drop President Lyndon Johnson faced during the Vietnam War," said CNN polling director Keating Holland.
I'm living history! I'm living history!

The Wingnut Mechanism

The Editors understand this kind of thing:
When you respond to wingnuttery of this sort, you are not responding to sincerely-held beliefs. You see, when the wingnut feels threatened, it excretes a foul substance which forms a protective layer of disingenuous stupidity designed to deflect dissonant facts and beliefs which could damage the wingnut’s tender underbelly of pure stupid. In order to harden this protective layer into an impervious carapace of ignorance, the wingnut needs to come to believe this tactically-held nonsense - needs to incorporate this protective layer into its body of stupid beliefs by making itself believe them for real. But then, of course, if this carapace is threatened, it too will have to be protected by a layer of disingenuous stupidity, and so on and so on until you start writing books called Liberal Fascism
As someone who journeys to scary places like RenewAmerica and, I am grateful to read the occasional field guide like this.

An don't miss his comment below this post, on Who's Gonna Win. Count on it:
But nobody knows shit at this point. Everybody will wait until after the fact to have known it all along, as usual.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008


Clinton's first lady papers to go public - Yahoo! News

"Lady papers?" The first ones were the best.


This election has turned into some kind of bizarre series of rituals, like an season of Greek theater where everybody knows the plot and the audience is left to judge the work on the presentation. The parade of comment, counter-comment, conference call about comment, distancing from comment, and major speech incorporating remarks about comment is the real distraction in this campaign, diverting from a looming economic recession (a recession at BEST) and a tragic stalemate in Iraq. Rarely does anything good for the country come out of this exchange.


The speech seems to be proving once again, with a shadow of a doubt, that there are people and forces in this country we cannot convince of our position, that we must simply defeat in the structure (ie, elections) of our government.

They will continue to lie, and the best we can do is imagine them (as my friend Chris would say) sitting in their easy-chair, powerless, yelling at the TV.


Kottke agrees with me about that What White People Like blog, and provides a link to a short post at TNR on it.

United States of Eden

Aside from disparate treatment of left and right and black and white in our mainstream discourse, there's also a difference in the basic narrative provided. The narrative from the Right - and its representatives in the conservative religious community - is of an America which was once the garden of Eden, until its tragic fall at the hands of (feminists, liberals, civil rights movement, whatever), and they wish to bring the country back to its former state. Thus they can hate the America that is while dreaming of the perfect America that was. Thus there's no conflict between their unquestioned patriotism and their hatred of the country, as their patriotism is for the True America that was, not its current corrupted incarnation

While the mirror image rhetoric from the Left is about a country which was flawed, often tragically so, but which has the capacity for improvement. Be disgusted with the country as it was and is, while hoping for an evolution to a better country.


Obama delivers a stunningly honest and powerful speech, and all Fox News asks is whether he denounced fervently enough. Fuckers.

Picture 1.png

What's more, he WROTE it himself. Nice touch.

Monday, March 17, 2008


Michael Stipe:
(The song) 7 Chinese Brothers was about me breaking up a couple and then dating both of them - a man and a woman - which is a terrible thing to do. But I was young and stupid.

A Job for BS


Athenae, at First Draft:
Couldn't Bear Stearns just get a job, already? I mean, I know of six or seven places that are hiring. I don't know what they pay, but surely it would be enough to keep them in sneakers and Xbox games.
(via Corrente)

That Woulda Ruled

publius, at Obsidian Wings:
It's too bad we didn't invest one-third of the Social Security system in the market.


Bush is on top of it:
“I want to thank you, Mr. Secretary, for working over the weekend,” Mr. Bush said.
That's Henry Paulson, Secretary of the Treasury! Thanks for coming in on....Saturday.

What About Gold?

Brad, at Sadly, No, with a Terrifying thought of the day:
It cost JP Morgan less money to purchase Bear Stearns than it would have cost them to purchase Alex Rodriguez’s contract from the New York Yankees.

Selective Safety Net

As I said before, I don't necessarily have a problem with the government intervening to help stabilize the financial markets if that's what's necessary for the economy. There's no sense letting a sense of spite directed at the wizards of high finance get in the way of doing what needs to be done. But surely Democrats could seize this opportunity to make the case for the rest of the social contract. After all, it was just a couple of months ago that the GOP was blocking efforts to temporarily increase food stamp benefits and extend unemployment insurance and doing so in the name of free markets and moral hazards.

It's preposterous. This is the time to be making the case for progressive taxation and for a safety net that works for the broad mass of people, not just a selective one for people who reap the windfall during boom times and then walk away from losses when things go bust.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Socialized Banking

Crooks and Liars:
The whole Bear Stearns bail out is hilarious when you consider how horrified these ‘free market’ proponents are at the thought of say, socialized medicine, but barely bat an eye at socialized banking. Privatize profits and nationalize losses, anyone?

Marsh West, Logician

The craziest fools on the internet live at Alan Keyes' RenewAmerica, and when I saw that article last week about how one in four teenage girls carried an STD or something, I just knew they'd be falling over themselves to point to it to prove some point or other that they had already.

Grant Swank, prior to penning the RA classic "I believe Obama could be a Muslim mask," made a run at it last week with "US girls filled with sex diseases," but Marsh West takes a stab at a much bolder conviction.

Here she goes!

Picture 1.png

I'll leave it to you to click through - if you dare - and see how she makes this leap.

Friday, March 14, 2008


Boing Boing links to a really handy chart showing who bought up your favorite little "independent" health-conscious brand, like Silk or Lightlife or Boca.

I've been amassing some of these facts in my head, but it's nice to see it all laid out in a chart.

The Free Market

We need a word that means "I thought this was an Onion headline, but it's actually real!!
NEW YORK - Paris Hilton is looking for a new best friend. Hilton will choose from 20 potential confidantes on an MTV reality series, tentatively titled "Paris Hilton's My New BFF," premiering later this year, the network announced Thursday.


Ferraro keeps on keepin' on!

No, Thank You

Nope. I just don't think Stuff White People Like is a funny blog.

And On It Goes

I feel like we've been asking this same question for 5 or 6 years now, but it's still my primary reaction:

"Are you shitting me??!"
“I must say, I’m a little envious,” Bush said [of the troops fighting in Afganistan]. “If I were slightly younger and not employed here, I think it would be a fantastic experience to be on the front lines of helping this young democracy succeed.”

It must be exciting for you … in some ways romantic, in some ways, you know, confronting danger. You’re really making history, and thanks,” Bush said.

Update: Leonard Pierce at Sadly, No comments on these insights:
I’ve said it before and I’ll keep on saying it until he’s not drawing either breath or a taxpayer pension: George W. Bush is a fucking dick.

One Life We All Have

I'm liking this Paterson guy:
It is a daunting challenge. I’ve had many of them. And I’m pretty excited about trying to fulfill what is expected of me. That’s always a high expectation and it’s fun, in the one life that we all have, to try to go beyond perhaps even where you may have thought you could go.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Important Announcement

An Important Announcement from Shakesville.

No Free Ice Cream & The Media

[Democrats] could shoot down Bush's proposal for free ice cream day and it'd probably be popular as long as the headlines said something like "Democrats beat Bush."

Ashley Herzog: Feminists Hate Teh Scienz!

Plus, a bonus joke!
Given their current level of anti-science hysteria, I’m looking forward to the day when some feminists start angrily denouncing the idea that women have ovaries and men don’t.

Noonan Scores

Mark Noonan wins the award for today's most deluded logic.
The dollar became the world’s reserve currency because of all the world’s economies, that of the United States could be best relied upon to be governed by rational ideas and be ruled by law, rather than governmental whim. People are wary of the dollar today for a variety of reasons, but not least of which is the worry that come January, 2009, the United States will not be as friendly an investment climate as now. With the Bush tax cuts set to expire, the worry is that if you keep your money in the US, you’ll find yourself hit with a rather large tax penalty because liberals in the United States want to tax “the rich” (which actually doesn’t mean taxing real rich people, but works out to taxing productive people and capital).

With Democrats in control of Congress and at least an even money chance that a tax and spend ultra-liberal will be sworn in come January, it might be a good time to hedge your bets on the United States and move your money into Euros…or into oil futures. On the other hand, a McCain victory - especially if accompanied by more GOPers in Congress - would be seen as a signal that taxes will remain low and America will remain open for investment.
The dollar has collapsed because everyone's been afraid of the end of Bush's marvelous tenure!

Shall we review the US Dollar against the Euro over the course of the latter's lifetime, including a year of Clinton and 7 years of Bush?Picture 1.png

I can't even write anything snarky b/c this theory is so inane.

Big Surprise

I know this is probably a huge surprise, but it will really be quite lovely to see this guy go:
Instead of giving the companies blanket immunity, as the Senate would do, the House proposal was understood to give the federal courts special authorization to hear classified evidence and decide whether the phone companies should be held liable.

But the president said that this approach “could reopen dangerous intelligence gaps by putting in place a cumbersome court approval process that would make it harder to collect intelligence on foreign terrorists” and could lead, he said, to disclosure of state secrets.

“Their partisan legislation would extend protections we enjoy as Americans to foreign terrorists overseas,” Mr. Bush said.

In a statement yesterday, 19 Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee questioned the administration’s arguments.

“We have concluded that the administration has not established a valid and credible case justifying the extraordinary action of Congress enacting blanket retroactive immunity as set forth in the Senate bill,” they said.

Some 40 lawsuits are pending in federal courts, charging that by cooperating with the eavesdropping program put in place after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, the phone companies violated their responsibilities to customers and federal privacy laws.

Nicely done, though, House Democracts!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Thanks, New York Times!
Music is her first love, and on the MySpace page, Ms. Dupré mentions Patsy Cline, Frank Sinatra, Christina Aguilera and Lauryn Hill among a long list of influences, including her brother, Kyle. (She also lists Whitney Houston, Madonna, Mary J. Blige and Amy Winehouse as her top MySpace friends.) In the interview, she said she saw the Rolling Stones perform at Radio City Music Hall on their last tour after a friend gave her two tickets. “They were amazing,” she said.
AKA Journamalism.


If you're not reading Fail Dogs already, you should. It provides the essential definition of the word FAIL.

Place In Space

An incredibly fascinating post from the marvelous Bad Astronomy Blog on Ten things you don’t know about the Milky Way Galaxy.

And I checked a few week sback with one of our astrophysics advisors at the museum, and he says "The guy who does the Bad Astronomy stuff is quite good." :-)

Had Enough

Blue Texan at Firedoglike can't believe the idiocy of Jonah Goldberg:
Can someone please explain why the Los Angeles Times prints this shit?

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Political Summary



If you know what this references, you know.

Not So Hard

This is how you do it.

Asked about Congressman King's silly comments about his middle name, and Al-Qaeda "dancing in the streets" if he wins, Obamas speaks clearly and intelligently about topics, one at a time:
Asked about the remarks as he campaigned in Mississippi, Obama said, "I think that Mr. King has it backwards. The fact that the continuation of a presence in Iraq as Senator McCain has suggested is exactly what, I think, will fan the flames of anti-American sentiment and make it more difficult for us to create a long-term and sustainable peace in the world.

"But I have to say that Mr. King and individuals like him thrive on offensive or controversial statements as a way to get in the papers, so I don't take it too seriously. I would hope Senator McCain would want to distance himself from that kind of inflammatory and offensive remarks," Obama said.
He's not perfect, but Obama makes it look so easy. It's remarkable that so few politicians respond with such clear and simple force.


I can't wait to see how the administration will spin Fallon's early retirement as a sign of positive progress.

At Least

Roy, at alicublog:
One happy side-effect of the [Spitzer] affair is that it spurs Jonah Goldberg to deep thought, which is to say it steers a fat kid in a Buster Brown outfit to a banana peel.
Roy grabs hold of Jonah's prose and tries to hold on...


John Cole's mother's take on Spitzercabana:
He was obviously paying too much. What can you possibly do for $5,000 an hour? Surgery. Life-saving surgery performed on me is worth $5,000 an hour.

Beyond the Edge


I didn't think there was any "there" there.


The Editors have a horrible vision of the future, "from November, 2008, shortly after Barack HUSSEIN Obama has been declared President For Life of Los United Caliphates of Aztlan."


When Wingnuts Debate Tears

Ace of Spades, in a revealing post, takes freak rightwinger talk radio host Laura Ingraham to task for mocking Brett Favre's tears in his farewell-to-football-after-:
So come on, Laura. Lighten up. And butch up, too. Yeah, butch up. Because if you're doing this Brett-Favre-is-a-big-fat-blubbering-pussy schtick you're not really as flinty-tough as advertised. It's pantomime.

It isn't that any of this is hurtful or insulting; it's not. It's too silly to be. It's just that it's pure ass.

Besides, there's a biological explanation for getting all weepy in such a situation: mirror neurons. You see someone yawn, you yawn. You see someone kick their shin into a table, you wince. You see a bunch of people getting teary on your behalf, you get teary back.
Got that?

Don't be so non-butch as to suggest that Favre is non-butch, and even if he were, it would be out of his control because other people were crying, too. It's the midochlorians!

If you can tear yourself away from the Spitzerpalooza, note that there was a horrible bombing in Pakistan.

No Lo

Apparently, Lindsey Lohan is refusing to appear on her mom's reality show.

What's the point of the show, then?

Monday, March 10, 2008

Capacity of the System

Ezra Klein:
I don't care about the prostitution. But the capacity of the system to stand against those who would reform it, and who come into office with a broad mandate to do so, is really quite sobering.

Good Grief

Oh, Elliot, you poor fool.



Obsidian Wings on Spitzer:
I felt a great disturbance in the Force today . . . as if millions of Wall Street bankers cried out in joy and refused to be silenced.


The religion of balance and centrism - Glenn Greenwald -
Thus, over the last eight years, the "shrill partisan hysterics" are the ones who warned -- accurately -- of the grave dangers of the Iraq War, documented the radical assault on our system of government, complained of the wholesale degradation of our political discourse and institutions, and objected to the complete erosion of our core political values and identity. Conversely, the Serious, Sober Thinkers were -- and remain -- the ones who saw both sides, who understood the good and important things the Bush administration was achieving, who vouched for their good intentions, who refrained from strident criticisms and confined themselves to respectful, balanced, supportive analysis.

In reality, it is the preachers of Centrism and Balance who stand exposed as the deeply irresponsible and mindless enablers of the last eight years. We needed far more unvarnished opposition to the administration and the political establishment that supported it, and far less of the Balanced Bush apologists and Centrist Mavens embodied by the likes of David Broder, Fred Hiatt and Joe Klein.

"Balance" and "centrism" are only virtues when prevailing circumstances are actually balanced and centered. When they're not -- as they haven't been for the last eight years at least -- respectful balance and restrained centrism are delusions, self-regarding luxuries, ones that can be as dangerous and destructive as they are slothful and unserious.
There's rarely any need to add anything when I post a quote from Greenwald, but I will note that I don't how he keeps doing it, post after post. It must be unimaginably draining and horrifying to recognize the catastrophe of this administration and the current media of our country in such detail.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Getting to Know Steve King from Iowa

Fuck you, you ignorant motherfucker. May you rot in hell.

Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa contributes to our civilization.:
"I don't want to disparage anyone because of their, their race, their ethnicity, their name - whatever their religion their father, father might have been," King said just before doing just that.

"I'll just say this that when you think about the optics of a Barack Obama potentially getting elected President of the United States -- and I mean, what does this look like to the rest of the world? What does it look like to the world of Islam?

"And I will tell you that, if he is elected president, then the, the radical Islamists, the, the al-Qaida, and the radical Islamists and their supporters, will be dancing in the streets in greater numbers than they did on September 11….

"It does matter, his middle name does matter. It matters because they read a meaning into that in the rest of the world, it has a special meaning to them. They will be dancing in the streets because of his middle name. They will be dancing in the streets because of who his father was and because of his posture that says: Pull out of the Middle East and pull out of this conflict.

So there are implications that have to do with who he is and the position that he's taken. If he were strong on national defense and said 'I'm going to go over there and we're going to fight and we're going to win, we'll come home with a victory,' that's different. But that's not what he said. They will be dancing in the streets if he's elected president. That has a chilling aspect on how difficult it will be to ever win this Global War on Terror."
Sit down and shut up. There are dangerous and terrible aspects to the world we live in, and We Don't Need You involved in making decisions for our country.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Clinton Continues to Mock Most States

Hoffmania! notes the persistance of a really ugly aspect of Clinton's campaign. Quoting from the Times UK Online:
One Clinton aide yesterday derided Mr Obama’s victories in “boutique” caucus states rather than the hardscrabble terrain of the rustbelt, saying: “Obama has won the small caucus states with the latte-sipping crowd. They don’t need a president, they need a feeling.”
I love Hoffmania's response:
Small caucus states like Georgia, Minnesota, Kansas, Colorado, Washington and Connecticut? Latte-sippers like Alabama, Iowa, Louisiana, Missouri, South Carolina, Utah and Idaho? And insignificant states like Virginia, Maryland, Alaska, Maine, Vermont, North Dakota and Nebraska?

Let's make a deal. I'll stop making upsetting posts like this if they stop saying stupid shit. Whattya say

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Red Letter

Fake Steve:
Seriously, folks, it's game over. This announcement today is as big as the announcement of the original Macintosh in 1984. At airports all around the world they put flights on hold so that people could stay in the terminal and watch the news as it was announced. In Canada they declared a national day of mourning for RIM. It's that huge. Today, frankly, is a day that will live in the history of our industry.


The best picture of the day is from Sadly, No.


The post has a pretty good Hillary one, too.

cocteau twins lyrics

Been listening to a lot of Cocteau Twins recently.

Here's a great collection of quotes from Elizabeth talking about the meaning and significance of her lyrics and non-lyrics.



I love this whale from THEBLOG WEEMADE, an art blog of children's drawings.

Wait For It

Balloon Juice:
Some jackass threw an incendiary device through the window of a recruiting station in Times Square, so you all know what that means- another 5 weeks of LIEBERALS HATE AMERIKKA from the chest-thumping, cheeto-munching chickenhawk brigade


Even a "do-over" in Michigan and Florida makes no sense. The "Rules of the Game" were that they were not part of the primary process, and Obama chose to act within those rules. If the rules had been different, his campaign would have been different in the run up to those elections.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Internet Explorer 8


Bestest Ever

Outrageous McCain love in the media? Nahh.

CNN Political Ticker: "Can Cindy McCain really be that perfect?"

If by perfect you mean the absolute most Stepford-ish evar.

Rose Garden Of Zen

Bush won't surrender the spotlight:
Q And Senator McCain, where would you like the President to campaign with you?

THE PRESIDENT: As I told you, you know, if he wants me to show up, I will. If he wants me to say, “You know, I’m not for him,” I will. Whatever he wants me to do, I want him to win. And, you know, Wolf, I don’t know where. I mean, look —

SENATOR McCAIN: Could I start out with —

THE PRESIDENT: I’m focusing on, you know, protecting America, and succeeding in Iraq, and dealing with the North Korea, and dealing with the Iranian, and dealing with the issues around the world where we’re making a difference in terms of keeping peace. I want to get this in as good as a position as possible so that when John McCain is the President — and he will be — he can deal with these issues in a way that yields peace.

SENATOR McCAIN: Wolf, could I say — one state springs to mind: Texas. (Laughter.)

THE PRESIDENT: He’s not going to need me in Texas. He’s going to be a landslide in Texas.


The Washington Post had an interview with Charlotte Allen over her stunningly inane article (which she and WaPo now claim was "ironic" or a joke or something) on why women are stupid.

Sadly No investigates. My favorite part:
East Bridgewater, Mass.: You seriously don’t even know what year women got the vote? Who on earth hired you to write about women’s issues?

Charlotte Allen: Why is the exact year germane to anything?

Stephen Baldwin

Stephen Baldwin?:
On Fox News Channel, the actor Stephen Baldwin said he would be reaching out to Mr. Huckabee to serve as a spokesperson for an organization called the Christian Values Network. It was unclear what network Mr. Baldwin was referring to, but it will apparently launch on the Internet soon.

“The Web site launches on Friday, so Mike, I’m going to be calling you soon,” Mr. Baldwin said, putting his thumb up for the camera.

Catching My Breath

Michelle Cottle:
Horsefeathers. This isn't a primary in which Democratic voters are having a hard time making up their minds because both candidates are so disappointing. That's what's happening with the other team. Democrats' problem is that they have two candidates who are firing up the electorate, as seen in the consistently high turnout at the polls and the jaw-dropping fund-raising figures.

Not Dismayed

I said I was going to avoid politics for a few days. I lied.

Obama supporters should not be dismayed.

Obama has a tougher, nastier opponent in the Clintons than he does in McCain. If he wins this by a long, grueling struggle, he will be more immune to the lazy, stupid criticism that he is some kind of flash in the pan, he has more opportunity to prove that there is a great deal of substance behind the oratory, he has more of a chance to meet and talk with the electorate he will need to win in the fall.

I think the argument for Obama is easily strong enough to withstand the egos of the Clintons. The more people see that her case is almost entirely a fear-based one and his is almost entirely a positive one, the more he will win the moral victory as well as the delegate count. In the cold light of day, the bruising news that the Clintons are not yet dead seems less onerous.


In his acceptance/victory speech last night, John McCain made clear his foreign policy would be based on a world view that assumes a global war with radical Islam is the great calling of our time. He essentially endorsed George Bush's good versus evil mentality and the Administration's imperial notions of America's role in subduing this evil throughout the world.

He did not mention, however, that Secretary of State Rice was in the Middle East and Admiral Mullen was in Pakistan, both trying to obscure the embarrassing fact that every single application of the Bush Administration's foreign policy against Islam has collapsed in total chaos, leaving America's strategic interests in shambles.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008


Michael Crowley, in The New Republic:
I think from now on political journalists should turn off their BlackBerries from 5-8pm on election nights and, like, go do ESL tutoring or some other charitable work instead.

Forecast of Darkness

David Gregory on MSNBC is driving me nuts. How would it be "changing the dynamic" if Hillary won Texas and/or Ohio? It would be - in the same sense that each night, there's a total change of brightness all across New York City.

Our Hands

Michael Grant:
Today, it’s our turn to speak, one registered voter at a time, and it is that voice, the voice of all the involved people, and not the voices of the candidates, that will set the national direction we find ourselves on tomorrow. The future is not in the hands of Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama, but in our hands. They must wait for us to decide which of them goes forward. 
I'm worried how much election coverage I'll be watching tonight.

Daily Kos: Pushing Clinton from the race

Expect Clinton to get the early media spin victory, but soon expect the hammer to fall -- 50 supers, a gazillion raised in February, and high-profile converts like Richardson will create intense pressure for Clinton to call it a day.

If she doesn't, she can continue running. It's a free country, and I like the thought of both campaigns building infrastructure in Pennsylvania. This primary season has done wonders for party building, and I'm under no hurry to shut it down. And Hillary's campaign can continue to play "Karl Rove" to Obama's effort. It's good practice for the shit Republicans will fling at Obama this fall. And if Obama can't handle the Clinton crap, how's he going to handle the McCain crap? So I'm cool with that as well.

But realistically, Hillary Clinton would be little more than our version of Mike Huckabee, nominally in the race, but everyone else having moved on.

Leaving the race after a long losing streak is tough and a bit humiliating. But if she leaves after winning a couple states, she leaves on a high note, magnanimously ceding the race to the better candidate running the far better campaign. She can claim the high ground, knowing she could've kept going, but suspending her effort in the interest of party unity.

I'm cool with either option. But only one allows Clinton to exit with her dignity fully intact.
I don't know about the surety he has about Clinton not turning this around, but I hadn't heard that Party Building point before.

Chaotic Evil?

D&D crosses all divides.

Even Michelle Malkin has a tribute to Gary Gygax up.

Maybe It's Best He Stays Away

The George W vacation flap that comes around from time to time bugs me a little. Sure, it's noteworthy that no president has ever spent more time "on vacation," let alone a wartime one.

But if he was a good president, I wouldn't much care.

If Someone Falls Into a Swimming Pool has a great Survival Guide to Bad Scifi Movies:
A few signs of a bad movie
  • Sunglasses in the poster. If human adults are wearing them, it's bad. If babies or animals are wearing them, it's worse. If adults are looking over the top of the sunglasses, it's horrendous. If a baby or animal is looking over the top, it's a sign of the apocalypse.
  • If someone falls into a swimming pool.
  • If there's a hot-air ballon. (Quoth Roger Ebert: "Good movies rarely contain a hot-air balloon.")
  • If it takes place in Venice Beach. Very few good movies were shot there.

  • Check it all out.

    PC Politics


    John Hodgman (aka "PC"):
    AND NOT THAT IT SHOULD MEAN ANYTHING TO YOU, but if Hillary Clinton wins the nomination, I'm leaving the party.

    I MAKE THIS PROMISE TO YOU, in internet writing.


    Obsidian Wings: Speaking Of Iraqi Justice...:
    [A]sk yourself how buying peace by arming all sides in a future civil war can possibly lead to anything worth calling a victory.

    Monday, March 03, 2008

    NYC Tabloids Gets Defensive About Reality Show Mocking NYC Rich

    Hahahahha! The New York City press (as represented by a couple of tabloids) is getting all defensive about something really inane - the new Bravo reality show The Real Housewives of New York City. "We're not like that!" they yell, or rather, "Our Wives are not like that!"

    First the Post...

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    DON'T BUY THIS 'WIVES' TALE - New York Post
    March 3, 2008 -- NEW YORKERS, prepare to be insulted. Also get ready to be disgusted and en raged.
    These are just some of the feelings likely to rise up inside you if you watch "The Real Housewives of New York City," a new reality TV show starting tomorrow night on the Bravo cable channel.

    It's not likely you'll be shouting "Bravo!" after getting a look at the five status-hungry, money-mad matrons whom Bravo has chosen to represent New York City before a national TV audience.

    Thanks, Bravo, for bringing this great city - with its more than 8 million residents representing every known corner of the globe - down to the level of brain-dead Orange County, Calif. - the land of lookalike McMansions where the first "Real Housewives" series was spawned.

    On that show, viewers got a chance to gape open-mouthed with amazement as a group of bleached-blond Stepford wives bragged about their breast implants and face-lifts.
    Were they fairly representative of Orange County's "real" housewives? I wouldn't know - I don't know Orange County from the Orange Bowl.

    But I do know New York. And while the five "housewives" of this new Bravo series (one of whom is not actually a wife) surely represent a certain kind of woman who lives here, they in no way represent the vast majority of women - married or single - whom most of us know.
    Okay. Adam wants to emphasize that the women on The Real Housewives of New York City are not, in fact, "real" New Yorkers.

    The NY Daily News, too!

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    Poor excuse for N.Y. 'Housewives' - NY Daily News:
    Just a few more programs like "The Real Housewives of New York City," and television will be able to start a whole new 24/7 channel.
    We'll call it "Ridicule the Rich."

    Only thing is, it would be nice if future programs in the genre would be a little better than this one, which is as shallow as its subjects.

    "The Real Housewives of New York City" follows five women through their New York lives, which isn't a bad premise, except that saying these women represent "New York housewives" is like saying Alex Rodriguez represents the New York working class.
    Same issue. Is this news to them that Reality Shows are not statistically representative of the populations described in their title?

    At least the NY Times takes a look with a bit more comfortable remove:
    At the moment there is a glut of series focused on high-heeled and high-stepping New York women, notably “Lipstick Jungle” on NBC and “Cashmere Mafia” on ABC, which could mean that television shows about lifestyles of the rich and famous are recession-proof. If nothing else “The Real Housewives of New York City” helps test the market.

    CNN pulls out an Onion-style headline:

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    What Howard Kurtz means by "media scrutiny" - Glenn Greenwald

    Glenn takes on Howie more clearly than I ever could:
    It's absolutely true that Barack Obama, like any presidential candidate, ought to be subjected to rigorous media scrutiny. And it's not unreasonable to suggest that because Obama has thus far been the opponent of the media's most despised figure -- Hillary Clinton -- his policies, positions and legislative record have received less scrutiny than they ought to.

    But as he made abundantly clear, scrutiny over substantive issues is not what Howard Kurtz is talking about. Those are the last things he's interested in. When vapid media figures like Kurtz complain that Barack Obama hasn't received the necessary "scrutiny," what they mean is that the real fun hasn't started yet -- they haven't been spewing all of the standard, entertaining, petty, personality-based smears from the right-wing sewers.

    Mike Dukakis is an effete loser; Al Gore is a pompous, lying bore; John Kerry is an awkward, flip-flopping weakling; and Barack Obama is an America-hating, Terrorist-loving, angry radical racist coke-head. When Kurtz says he wants more "media scrutiny" of Obama, what he's really saying -- as today's column proves conclusively -- is: when are we going to start propagating the right-wing personality smears in earnest? What are we waiting for?

    Last Chance

    Wait - who's last chance is it again?:
    You hear it everywhere: Tuesday is Hillary Clinton's last stand. If she can't win Ohio and Texas, she's history.

    True, mostly. But it's not the whole story. The rest goes like this: This is Barack Obama's third chance to knock her out. If he can't close the deal this time, maybe he can't close the deal, period.
    I can't wait for Wednesday.

    Noonan Ahoy!

    Mark Noonan, at Blogs For Victory, shows how easy it is:
    At bottom, my economic views are based upon asking this question: will this help or harm individuals and their families? If the answer is “harm”, then I oppose it; if it is “help”, then I support it.
    gotcha, Mark!

    Not Quite

    Howard Kurtz :
    'Soft' Press Sharpens Its Focus on Obama

    During a campaign stop in Ohio last week, ABC's Jake Tapper asked Barack Obama about what he called "an attempt by conservatives and Republicans to paint you as unpatriotic."

    Tapper's litany: "That you didn't put your hand over your heart during the national anthem, that you no longer wear an American flag on your lapel pin, that you met with some former members of the Weather Underground, and now they are questioning your wife's comments when she said she hasn't been proud of the U.S. until just recently."

    Obama dismissed the criticism as "nonsense." But did the exchange mark the end of a long period in which the media have gone easy on the man who could all but clinch the Democratic nomination in tomorrow's primaries? Are the media going to change the environment that prompted Kristen Wiig, playing a CNN anchor on "Saturday Night Live," to declare that she and her colleagues "are in the tank for Obama"?

    Repeating falsehoods and silly talking points are NOT an example of the press getting "sharper" and more journamalismy.

    A Break From Campaigning

    PAGE SPRINGS, Ariz., March 2 -- If he loses the presidency, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) will have a career as a barbecue chef to fall back on.

    At his weekend cabin just outside Sedona on Sunday afternoon, McCain took a break from campaigning and grilled ribs and chicken for three dozen reporters, some staff members and a few Republican friends from the Senate.

    Dressed in jeans, an L.L. Bean baseball cap, sunglasses and a sweat shirt featuring a picture of his family, McCain held court the way he does almost daily aboard his "Straight Talk Express" bus.

    (via Digby, in a post called "The Manly Man's Best Friend," which covers more of the straight-talkin' awesomeness of St. McCain)

    Love Fest

    John Cole:
    Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad began the second day of his state visit to Iraq on Monday. Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki called Iran's stance toward Iraq "helpful," contradicting his American allies.

    The entire love fest of Ahmadinejad's visit underscores how George W. Bush has inadvertently opened the Iranian sluice gates. Iran is the regional victor in the Iraq War.

    On Sunday, Ahmadinejad had jousted with Bush long-distance, saying that there hadn't been any terrorism in that part of the Middle East before Bush invaded Iraq.

    Iraqi President Jalal Talabani said he hoped Ahmadinejad would stay in Iraq "a long time."

    Independently Invented Buddhism

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    Diggin' Monday's Dinosaur Comic.

    Sunday, March 02, 2008

    We Know Nothing Here in the US

    Reuters: Iran leader's Iraq visit eclipses US, Arab ties:
    BAGHDAD, March 2 (Reuters) - Pomp and ceremony greeted Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on his arrival in Iraq on Sunday, the fanfare a stark contrast to the rushed and secretive visits of his bitter rival U.S. President George W. Bush.

    Saturday, March 01, 2008

    What Were You Saying About Plagiarism?

    Wow. The new "call at 3am" ad from Hillary, beyond what else can be said of it, is also blatant rip-off of a user-generated youtube ad from January - for John McCain. Complete with details like "3AM" and "Who do you want to answer the phone?"

    Kos has the pair, for your review.

    What will she say?

    At a rally in Waco, with more than two dozen military veterans and flag officers standing behind her, Clinton criticized Obama for being "missing in action" during key security decisions in the Senate and claimed that he had "no responsibility" when he gave an anti-war speech in 2002 as an Illinois state senator.
    For goodness sake. What's next? Obama wants to surrender the war? Who pulls from Rove's playbook, again?

    "Missing In Action" means something a hell of a lot more important than "I don't want to lose."