Saturday, March 6, 2010

Heads Up!

This was posted yesterday at Dave's Landslide blog, along with a newspaper article. Pretty amazing, but I'm glad I wasn't there; that whole hillside looks pretty mashed up and unstable.
Rock slide on Hwy 96 in Northern California near the Humboldt/Siskiyou County line. from Paul Hailey on Vimeo.

I've been down this route some distance on a couple of field trips, coming in from I-5, but I don't think I've been as far as this spot. The geology along this road is mind-boggling. A geologic overview and road trip can be found here (3.31 Mb PDF), however, it was published 30 years ago. A lot can change in 30 years. I have found old field guides very useful, but it can take some experience and patience to get the most out of them. What was described as a "good roadcut" may be now completely overgrown with brambles, or hidden behind a clump of alders. It may even have completely disappeared, as the cut in the video clip above has.


Despite my background in geology, like many others I used to picture tsunamis as large versions of standard waves- you know, with the curl and break and so on. It was the swarm of videos that came out in the aftermath of the 2004 Boxing Day Earthquake in Sumatra, Indonesia that really clarified what happened. It seems more accurate to me to describe them as temporary changes in sea level with an amplitude on the order of meters to tens of meters, and a duration of minutes or longer. They are waves, of course, but the effect is that the sea level just comes up and up. And up.

The NYT has just published a video clip of the recent tsunami in Chile that illustrates this well. This was stressful for me to watch; that poor yapping dog trying to balance on the fence from the beginning of the clip is still clinging to the fence at the end... so I'm guessing it survived. I was also relieved to not see any human victims, though of course in reality there are hundreds dead as the result of this tsunami.


The Stranglers, Skin Deep:

X, Johnny Hit and Run Pauline:

The Cramps, Goo Goo Muck:

Epic Concert

Julia Segal at Skull Swap posted this with the comment, "I need a fucking time machine." Indeed. I think there are two bands on there that I don't recognize, at least by name: The Stooges and Mashmakhan. Fleetwood Mac was in its blues incarnation at that time, not the soft pop rock that they did in the 70's. So they would have been a better fit with this line-up than one might think if not familiar with their older stuff.

And pretty much everyone on there is frakking legendary.

Followup: OK, I think I been pwned... The Coachella Music and Arts Festival, according to Wikipedia, debuted in 1993. The "band management had chosen this untested and under-developed site as part of the boycott of Ticketmaster and the Southern California auditoriums it controlled." And I don't think a lineup like that would have gone unremarked in music history. Also too, I hadn't realized The Stooges was Iggy Pop's Band. I suppose I should Google Mashmakhan... yes they were a band of that era, but I didn't recognize their "top hit," As Years Go By."


Badtux, that snarkiest of penguins, found this, and I had to repost.... it's one of those clips that makes you "aw" with sympathy, even as you laugh hysterically.

I may or may not work up the gumption to deal with some meaty topics today; I'm just not feeling the motivation. If you want meat, check out Badtux's economy posts.


vladimir putin
see more Political Pictures


to deal with the world as I find it, rather than as I'd like it to be. (Bits and Pieces)

Friday, March 5, 2010

Why Big Macs Are Cheaper than A Salad

From PCRM,
The Farm Bill, a massive piece of federal legislation making its way through Congress, governs what children are fed in schools and what food assistance programs can distribute to recipients. The bill provides billions of dollars in subsidies, much of which goes to huge agribusinesses producing feed crops, such as corn and soy, which are then fed to animals. By funding these crops, the government supports the production of meat and dairy products—the same products that contribute to our growing rates of obesity and chronic disease. Fruit and vegetable farmers, on the other hand, receive less than 1 percent of government subsidies.
This post is from fall, 2007, but I doubt much has changed.

The Moon's in the Sky, Like a Big Pizza Pie

Amore!Wouldn't want to carry the joke too far, though; someone might think I'm saying they have eruptions all over their face. (Io labeled, from The Planetary Society Weblog; click over for more information, and two higher-resolution versions)

Followup: They also have an interesting article on recent science from the Mars rovers.

Hopeful Horse Pies

I just opened my afternoon update email from The NYT, and this is the lead story:

Jobless Rate Holds Steady, Raising Hopes of Recovery
The economy in February shed 36,000 nonfarm jobs, fewer
than forecast, as the unemployment rate held at 9.7
percent, the Labor Department said on Friday.

I'm not going to take the time to read it, but two things: First, losing fewer jobs than expected doesn't really seem to me to be a basis for "raising hopes of recovery." Second, the US economy needs to add about 100,000 jobs per month just to keep up with new entries to the job market. I have a number of young friends who will be graduating in the next few months. I can tell you they're not very hopeful. I also know a few grad students who are finding ways to procrastinate on finishing up. That blurb just seems insulting.

Clues to Life on Land in SE Oregon's Warner Valley

A few days ago, I posted a Google Earth image of Warner Valley at Pathological Geomorphology. Now there's a Wired Science story on some biological research done there which may have implications for life's colonization of the earth's land surface. As these land-locked lakes fluctuate in size through the seasons, bacterial mats are subjected to cycles of submersion and and sub-aerial exposure.
“Production of [wax esters] may represent an adaptation to cross a critical evolutionary threshold, i.e. surviving dehydration and/or dessication cycles,” wrote David Finkelstein, a biogeochemist at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, and his co-authors. “This adaptation could have facilitated bacterial migration into the earliest lakes, and aided survival in terrestrial environments.”
When a microbe makes a wax ester from the molecules available to it, it also generates a water molecule. So, making esters could be a way of helping cells survive in environments with varying levels of moisture.

“It’s a really cool idea if it actually turns out in a concrete way that this is a way of waterproofing yourself and forestalling the loss of cellular water,” Finkelstein told “The first microbial mass that colonized land sure would have needed some kind of adaptation like this to make it successful.”
I've often noticed these mats in basin lakes when I've been out and about in SE Oregon, but it's cool to think they might give us some important insights into the history of Precambrian life.

Hazy Halo

The sun's trying to break through the haze, with a lovely effect:The camera didn't really capture the rainbow coloration of the halo, but I think the color was more distinct when I first noticed it. The sky can change faster than most people realize, and I think it was more intensely colored before I went inside to fetch my camera.
Stop. Look around.

Thursday, March 4, 2010


I suspect this is a page that won't last too long... here's how it showed up in my reader:Here's the top of the page:
and here's the bottom:
Needs more cowbell. And exclamation points! gfdgfd! Rushin' inta prnit: NatGeo does it.


As I thought about how to frame this post, several biblical metaphors pooped [sic, he said] into my head: "Drowned in the (Missoula) flood," and "Not one of the deadly sins." The one that appealed to me most was "Biblical proportions," until I realized that "Biblical!" by itself would make a fine interjection (I needed to do a little footwork to come up with that word; I couldn't remember the grammatical term) like "awesome!" or "rad!"

So here's the story: about 1970, a pile of bones were discovered and identified as a mastodon. They have recently been re-identified as a giant ground sloth.
According to Yvonne Addington of the Tualatin Historical Society, bones from the 1970s previously identified as a mastodon – a hairy, elephant-like thing – have now been identified by Portland State University scientists and National Park Service experts as a gigantic, 3 to 4 ton, 20-foot-long sloth – a hairy, bear-looking thing with big claws.
I have definitely heard of giant ground sloths before, and while I don't have my copy of Geology of Oregon at hand, I'm pretty sure I had known they were part of Willamette Valley's Pleistocene megafauna. What hadn't really registered with me was the shear size of these behemoths: we're talking about the size of an elephant, and standing bipedally, as pictured, twice as tall! Not only that, I just looked at the wiki entry for Megatherium (I can't tell if the Tualitin specimen is in that genus or not), and it says
Some recent morpho-functional analysis indicates that M. americanum was adapted for strong vertical biting. The teeth are hypsodont and bilophodont, and the sagittal section of each loph is triangular with a sharp edge. This suggests the teeth were used for cutting, rather than grinding, and that hard fibrous food was not the primary dietary component.

There is a common misbelief that the sabre-toothed cat Smilodon hunted Megatherium, but healthy adult sloths were far too large for Smilodon to attack. Richard Fariña and Ernesto Blanco of the Universidad de la República in Montevideo have analysed a fossil skeleton of M. americanum and discovered that its olecranon - the part of the elbow to which the triceps muscle attaches - was very short. This adaptation is found in carnivores and optimises speed rather than strength. The researchers say this would have enabled M. americanum to use its claws like daggers.[3] The conclusion is that due to its nutrient-poor habitats, Megatherium may have taken over the kills of Smilodon. A number of adult Glyptodon fossils exist in which the creatures died on their backs. This hints at Megatherium scavenging or hunting this animal, as no other known animal existed in South America during that period that could flip an adult Glyptodon.
(Insert: I just did the tracking around to figure out where this fits into the nomenclatural frame, and it's a different family, not just a different genus. Harlan's ground sloth is a Myolodontid... not that that means too much to me.) So we may be talking about a 20-foot tall predator, built for speed. Suddenly, the Pleistocene Willamette Valley sounds like a much more hostile place than I would have imagined a few minutes ago.
But man, oh man, so Biblical!


This would give me it:
Members of the Desarmes family left Haiti two weeks after the devastating earthquake in January, joining their eldest son in Chile in what seemed a refuge from the chaos of Port-au-Prince. Their sense of security lasted barely a month, until another powerful quake shook Chile at the weekend.
Dang. Some people have all the luck. Bad luck, that is. I suppose given the exodus of survivors from Haiti, a situation like this is likely, but still, dang!


Some gots it, some don'ts. Religion, or lack thereof, is irrelevant... a lesson you'd think might have sunk in to people's heads by this point. But since the religious are firmly convinced that people can't be moral without whatever brand they recommend, here's another example:
One of Pope Benedict’s ceremonial ushers and a member of an elite choir in St Peter’s Basilica have been implicated in a gay prostitution ring.
Given the context, the following is an... unfortunate... choice of words:
Balducci is also a member of an elite group called "Gentlemen of His Holiness," ushers who are called to serve in the Vatican's Apostolic Palace on major occasions such as when the pope receives heads of state or presides at big events.

Earthquake Escalation?

I continue to be impressed with The Christian Science Monitor's science reporting. I saw the headline above in my email newsletter, and clicked over, prepared to write an scathing take-down of more bad science journalism. Instead, right up front, the lede says this:
The 6.4-magnitude Taiwan earthquake that hit on Thursday – on the heels of quakes in Haiti and Chile – raised concern of an accelerating trend. But the statistics say otherwise.
The article doesn't downplay the destructiveness or importance of the recent quakes, it just places them in an appropriate context.
Kuo says the Taiwan, Chile, and Haiti quakes involved different tectonic plates. Globally, he says, there's an average of one magnitude 8 or higher earthquake per year, some 17 magnitude 7 or higher quakes, and 170 to 180 of magnitude 6 or larger.

So far this year there's only been one quake higher than 8 – Chile's fearsome, 8.8 magnitude temblor. Last year there were 16 magnitude 7 or higher quakes, right at the average. And so far this year there have been three magnitude 7 or higher quakes, including Haiti's.

"From a global view, that's not especially a lot," says Kuo.

Taiwan is frequently rocked by quakes, experiencing one of magnitude 7 or higher every five years and a quake of magnitude 6 or higher every 100 days. "We've only had one like this so far this year, so that's still normal," says Kuo.
So not only was this the first I had heard of the quake in Taiwan (photo gallery), it's the first time (that I recall) seeing the statistic that there is a magnitude 6 quake every two days or so, on average.

Way to go, CSM! Ur doin it rite!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

A Death in the Blogosphere

I learned from Blue Gal earlier that pseudonymous blogger Jon Swift, Al Weisel in real life, has died. I think this is my first experience with death in the blogosphere, and it shook me more than I would have expected. His blog has been inactive for nearly a year, and I'm sure many of us have been wondering about his health; I know I was. As it turns out, he passed last Saturday. You can go over to Blue Gal's Spot if you want to read the details, but I've shed some tears over this, and have no need to shed any more. Instead let me give my sciency friends a taste of his sheer brilliance, and a link to a post in which he declares victory in the War on Science:
Now that two of my least favorite subjects in school, science and history, are dead, I'm hoping that the Bush Administration will redouble its efforts to kill off two other subjects I didn't much care for, Math and Geography. While important strides have been made, I still think more can be done to send Math and Geography to the dustbin of History, which, course, has itself been sent to the dustbin of . . . something else, I guess. I'm not ready to declare victory until our schools are teaching only two subjects: Religion and Gym.
Jon Swift was a blog that I read years ago, when I was working for OSU, and had to sort of ration my browsing to fit in between actual periods of work. It's been only 22 months since I started blogging, and my experience has only increased my admiration for and envy of people like Mr. Weisel, who make it look so easy.

My condolences, Jon Swift, to your family. Rest in peace.

Followup: Vanity Fair has picked this up, along with many, many other bloggers. The comparison to Colbert is apt, but I'd point out that Swift's composition and delivery was far superior, and that's not a criticism of Colbert. It's a sad day in the blogosphere.


Yesterday I posted a photo from our hometown paper of a story unfortunately juxtaposed with a picture illustrating a entirely different story. Regret The Error is a blog dedicated to showing that the grown-up papers can do the same thing. Behold a screen capture from the online edition of yesterday's NYT (You'll probably need to click the pic to read the caption):

Bringing Back Reagan's Head

The Republicans want to put Reagan's head on the fifty-dollar bill. I want to know where their priorities are. Recession? Health? Climate change? Nope. St. Ronnie.
"President Reagan is indisputably one of the most transformative presidents of the 20th century," McHenry wrote to his Congressional colleagues. "Like President Roosevelt on the dime and President Kennedy on the half dollar, President Reagan deserves a place of honour on our nation's currency."
Now I agree with McHenry. Reagan was one of the most transformative presidents of the 20th century (though my spell-checker seems to be telling me "transformative" isn't a valid word). With his union busting and deregulation, he set the groundwork to transform the US from a mostly middle-class nation into a mostly struggling-to-get-by nation, with a healthy percentage of not getting by in the mix, and that teeny fraction of a percent that is fabulously, opulently, well-off. "Someday I want to be rich. Some people get so rich they lose all respect for humanity. That's how rich I want to be." (Rita Rudner) With his anti-environmental tilt (remember James Watt? In his Wiki photo, he looks like he needs a condom pulled over his head), he short-circuited a movement to make sure that we had a world that was uncontaminated, and could provide the environmental services (clean air and water, for example) we need to survive. I view the idiocy of today's climate change deniers as a direct consequence of Reagan's denialism. You want safe food? Reagan and his followers want to declaw the FDA. And the list goes on and on.

So here's my counter-proposal: reissue the $100,000 bill, or better yet, initiate a $1,000,000 bill, and put Reagan's head on that. Those who have the wherewithal to acquire one of those bills can spend warm, sunny afternoons rubbing it on their nether regions.

And I'll never have to look at that moronic grin again.


Interesting article from BBC which describes dust and debris from three sites in Antarctica, apparently debris from an exploding meteor like Tunguska, that occurred an estimated 481,000 years ago.
They point to strong similarities in the texture and composition of the debris found in the ice cores and that found in the granite.

However, the sites are more than 2,900km apart. For cosmic debris to be spread over such a wide area, the researchers propose that an airburst is the most likely explanation.

They estimate that it could have been caused by an object weighing 100,000 tonnes.
I imagine the spherules described in the article are extremely unstable under normal earth-surface conditions, but the long deep freeze of Antarctica has permitted the material to be preserved. This is not the first time spherules have been linked to meteors and meteorites, but the article states, "The spherules could potentially provide a signature to look for evidence of "airbursts" in the geological record."

Antarctica is a meteoritic treasure trove. Here's the Antarctica Meteorite Newsletter, which appears to come out in Feb.-March and August-Sept. each year since 1978, and offers preliminary notes on recent finds. A more general overview is here, along with an amusing anecdote from the person who discovered the Allan Nunatak meteorite field... and didn't recognize it. It wasn't until a quarter century later that it was recognized for what it was: the greatest meteorite field on the planet.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


This is jaw-dropping: a resident of Chile with relatives in Vancouver (Washington, I presume, since KATU refers to them as "a local connection.") caught the road fissuring during the earthquake there.

Now I can't be certain, but I seriously doubt this represents "the fault" opening up. The epicenter was offshore, so if this is a fault, it was a different one activated by the passage of the seismic waves. An actual fault rupture would also travel much faster than we see in the clip- at the speed of sound in rock, which is several times faster than the speed of sound in air. I'd put my money on this being a slump of the road's foundation, perhaps liquifaction of the underlying soil/sediment/saprolith. Whatever is happening here, it's amazing. I'm glad everyone's okay.

(Video here, story here, via KATU)

Sit Still! You're Making It Worse!

I pretty much giggled through this whole clip. That's a long time to giggle, for me.

Static Electricity: Ur doin' it uncomfortably... but pretty well, akchully.

I won't do this to my cat. She'd take my arm off at the neck.


One of those funny things that happens every now and then. I have made no secret of my disdain for our local paper, but it would be unfair to criticize the staff for this. It's just one of those things that happen. (Hat tip to Iris for pointing this out to me; I never even pick the paper up, and would have missed the funny if she hadn't.)

Social Conservatives? Constantly and Consistently

Via Buzzfeed

The Cost of Climate Denialism

The news on climate change over the last few months has been devastating, and I haven't felt capable of writing anything sensible on the topic. The intentionally ignorant deniers have apparently claimed victory in the midst of what was globally the first or second warmest January on record (first for the southern hemisphere, and I've seen claims of both for the planet as a whole), at the end of the warmest decade on record. Arctic ice extent at the beginning of February was at near record lows...... and well below the 2 standard deviation range from the two previous decades (1979-2000). The report for last month will be issued in the next few days, and from my occasional perusal of the site's daily charts, winter 09-10 looks to be roughly on par with winter 06-07, the record holder for minimum ice extent thus far.

The point is, the above are facts. They're not predictions. They're not the work of a giggling evil scientist hunched over his spreadsheets in a dimly lit lab, with steamy CO2 vapor coming out of flasks of colored water with dry ice in them.

To the people who are whining, "But it's cold! We have snow! We never get Snow!" I say STFU. I have quite a bit of sympathy with the east coast and Europe, but weather- even a full season of it- is NOT climate. Would it make any difference to your perception if I argued that climate change is happening even faster than we thought because western Oregon had it's warmest January on record, and it's looking like the warmest February too? It shouldn't. Those months at that location are single data points in an enormous set extending over many locations and a period of decades.

One recent bit that really got my attention- not in a good way- was the spin given to the widely publicized "admission" by Phil Jones that there was no warming from 1995 to present. Except it wasn't an "admission," it was a statement of fact: given that 15 year window, he could not, at the 95% confidence level, say that warming was occurring. Once again it's the confusion of "significance" in the statistical sense and effect size. And yes, the effect is there: the trend has been .12 degrees warmer each decade, or almost 0.2 degrees Celsius over the last 15 years. Another way of putting this is that it is as likely that the warming trend is 0.24 degrees as it is 0 degrees per decade. But the most likely trend is 0.12 degrees. Here's the actual quote from Skeptical Science:
BBC: Do you agree that from 1995 to the present there has been no statistically-significant global warming

Phil Jones: Yes, but only just. I also calculated the trend for the period 1995 to 2009. This trend (0.12C per decade) is positive, but not significant at the 95% significance level. The positive trend is quite close to the significance level. Achieving statistical significance in scientific terms is much more likely for longer periods, and much less likely for shorter periods.

BBC: How confident are you that warming has taken place and that humans are mainly responsible?

Phil Jones: I'm 100% confident that the climate has warmed. As to the second question, I would go along with IPCC Chapter 9 - there's evidence that most of the warming since the 1950s is due to human activity.
Swans On Tea posted the above chart yesterday (the .15 trend is the result of using a specific data set), and I've seen similar arguments elsewhere. George Will has been one of the most vocal and visible deniers in the US. Of course he ran with this, and of course the illiterate morons at WaPo didn't think to check his facts or representations thereof. That was the op-ed that was so jaw-clenchingly infuriating that I just couldn't take it any more.

For the sake of your children, for the sake of society, and if you're young, for your own sake, if you don't have a clue how science and statistics works, shut your fucking yap. Your opinion IS NOT of equivalent worth compared to those who have spent lifetimes studying the relevant disciplines. Can you say with absolute certainty that if you load a pistol, stick the barrel in your mouth, and pull the trigger, that your brain will soon afterward exit the back of your skull? No, of course you can't: guns sometimes misfire, shells are sometimes duds. But statistically, following the above procedure would be pretty damned stupid, wouldn't it?

The question is not whether the climate is warming or not: it is. That's a simple fact. The question is how certain do we need to be before we act. Do you want 95%? 99? 99.9? A tenth of a percent is my guesstimation of your chances of surviving as a result of a misfire. (You're actually much more likely to survive by flinching.)

And, oh, by the way, here's what I set out to mention before I got off onto a rant: the Arctic is being increasingly militarized as a result of warming unlocking mineral resources. And because of denialism, the US risks losing access to resources we should control, or military confrontation if we try to push our claims.
Major melting has spurred Russia, Canada, Denmark (via Greenland), and Norway into a new gold rush, except this time it’s about staking claim to huge reservoirs of natural gas, petroleum, and untold deposits of minerals previously inaccessible because of the polar ice shield. Much of the sub-sea Arctic wealth will of necessity be transported by ships because thawing tundra will be too unstable for pipelines. The South Koreans anticipated this more than a decade ago, building giant vessels to secure a big share of the shipping market.
Sadly, when the claims of the ignorant and unthinking have equal weight compared to those of the informed and educated, this is the result: such a society fumbles and falls behind others. If you want to call that elitist, fine. I'd rather be called elitist than proclaim myself an idiot.

The Olympics Are Finally Over

and here's the medal count:
I realized about a week ago that I wasn't really paying attention anymore, and quit turning on the boob tube. Too much Bob Costas, too many interviews, too many commercials. Still, I enjoyed the 15 or 20 minutes of actual event coverage during the the first week. (Via BuzzFeed)

Monday, March 1, 2010

Are We Prepared?

Short answer: No. Longer answer: Some areas of the US are better prepared for an enormous earthquake than other areas. From what I've read, Seattle is better prepared than Portland, and LA and SF are better prepared than Seattle. Oregon State University has retrofitted some of its older buildings, and new buildings are constructed under much stronger codes, but if the anticipated 9+/-0.5 Cascadia quake were to occur today, or even in the next few years to decades, while classes were in session, the destruction and death here would be unimaginable.

And probably the best answer: it's always possible to be better prepared. The spur for this post is an editorial piece in the NYT this afternoon titled "Are We Prepared for an 8.8 Quake?" Short essays by seismologists and engineers outline their concerns and ways we can better prepare for the inevitable. So far, there are three, but the introduction says they will be adding more as the day goes on. Good reading. As I've said before, I think about this possibility frequently. There are things individuals can do to raise their chances. However, I think it's also important to keep a certain fatalistic nonchalance about it at the same time. As John Maynard Keynes famously said, "In the long run, we're all dead." I repost this clip to illustrate the point that there are some things that are going to be devilishly difficult to deal with. That doesn't mean we shouldn't try, but we should keep our expectations relistic. Note that this is a simulated 7; a 9 would be a thousand times more energetic.

Followup: Andrew Revkin on his Dot Earth blog at NYT says much the same thing.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Geological Outreach

Ur doin it rite:
As he approached passersby Saturday, Patrick Corcoran said "Is there anything you'd like to know about tsunamis?" In many cases, the answer was yes. Thus began a series of impromptu lectures on big waves, subduction zones and the real tsunami danger in the Pacific Northwest's not far-off quakes, but close-up ones.
Via KGW.

Also too, Chris at Good Schist has a post pointing out some of the execrable "reporting" that took place yesterday about the tsunami. He's requesting other examples of either cringe-inducing MSM reports, or geobloggy posts castigating, clarifying or correcting such stories. I left a link to my post yesterday on Rick Sanchez's request for a translation of 9 meters to "English," and to a post earlier today at Phreatic Ramblings tearing apart the same broadcast. I read the transcript at the latter link, and was utterly appalled. Sanchez, if you shut your goddamned yap long enough for the guy to finish a sentence, it might give you an opportunity to learn something. So if you've seen a news report that made you queasy, or a blog post that took such a report down, drop Chris a comment.

I think it would be a really good thing to start building a geoblogospheric portfolio of this sort of asshattery on the media's part with respect to geology-related news particularly, and science news broadly. There are quite a number of us that howl about our science-illiterate press on a regular basis, but it might be good to have a key post for each major event like Haiti and Chile. I nominate Chris' post as the one for Chile.

More Sunday Funnies

I've been kinda trying to push the politics out of my Sunday Funnies. I haven't been completely successful, partly because I haven't figured out an appealing way to deal with political humor separately. Also, most political comics aren't worth a stand-alone post. But another blogger I follow, Mule Breath at Mule Dung and Ash, has been taking the opposite tack: his Sunday Funnies (Today's compilation) are almost strictly political. Fair Warning: he is firmly centrist, and makes his choices with concern to the feelings of neither party. Part of the reason I'm trying to pull the politics out of my Sunday Funnies overall is that I know I'm biased, that feature is a big draw, and I'd prefer that someone biased differently than I could browse for the laughs and not be offended politically. Chances are though, that if you have a firm leaning either right or left, something Mule Breath has posted will offend you at least a little.

Still, if it makes you think, that's a good thing.

Sunday Funnies

Invisible Fence Is Invisible
see more Friends of Irony
The Saturday Bulletin
Cyanide and Happiness
Skull Swap
Calamities of Nature
The Daily What
That Will Buff Out
Oddly Specific... but you do eventually get sort of accustomed to it.
pat robertson
see more Political Pictures
Example A
see more Friends of Irony
Bits and Pieces
Books for kids, from Bits and Pieces
funny graphs and charts
see more Funny Graphs
Bits and Pieces
Darius Whiteplume's Tumblr
Franklinstein, via Skull Swap
Shani Davis Totally Looks Like Frozone
see more Celeb Look-A-Likes
Savage Chickens
Oddly Specific (outside Yass, Australia)
Funny Pictures of Cats With Captions
see more Lolcats and funny pictures
ron paul and rudy giuliani
see more Political Pictures
The Daily What
Funny Pictures of Cats With Captions
see more Lolcats and funny pictures
Lindsay Lohan can't be unseen, from EpicPonyz
Oddly Specific
funny pictures of dogs with captions
see more dog and puppy pictures
The Daily What
The Daily What
demotivational posters
see more
engrish funny do something
see more Engrish
engrish funny frank frutes
see more Engrish
demotivational poster
see more
Skull Swap
Explain This Image
funny pictures of dogs with captions
see more dog and puppy pictures
Bits and Pieces
Savage Chickens
Comic JK
engrish funny companion mind
see more Engrish
Hacked IRL

see more Hacked IRL - Truth in Sarcasm
Culture Jamming Graffiti - ...piness And Rainbows.
see more Hacked IRL - Truth in Sarcasm
Married to the Sea, via Blackadder
From OregonLive, "In another national nod to Portland’s wacky culinary culture, Bon appetit has included VooDoo Doughnut in its list of the top 10 donut shops in the U.S." Why they chose bacon maple bars to illustrate that fact is beyond me, though.
Darius Whiteplume's Tumblr
Darius Whiteplume's Tumblr
Skull Swap
Probably Bad News
God Hates Protesters
"New York Buried under two feet of snow," from all over the place, but first seen by me at BuzzFeed
Picture is Unrelated
Explain This Image
Bits and Pieces
TYWKIWDBI... but then on the other hand...
Comic JK
In a slack moment, Kenny Baker (the guy inside R2D2) swipes Darth Vader's helmet. The Daily What
Night Deposits
Bits and Pieces