Saturday, January 15, 2011

Friday, January 14, 2011

Ummm... Irony Alert?

Don't know how else to describe it: via TPM, A Washington Times editorial claims
Mrs. Palin is well within her rights to feel persecuted. Since the Saturday bloodbath, members of the liberal commentariat have spoken in a unified voice, charging her and other conservatives with being indirectly or somehow directly responsible for the lunatic actions of accused gunman Jared Loughner. Typical of blood libel, the attack against Mrs. Palin is a false charge intended to generate anger made by people with a political agenda. They have made these claims boldly without evidence and without censure or consequence.

This is simply the latest round of an ongoing pogrom against conservative thinkers.
Within her rights or not, Palin and the rest of conservatopia are going to feel persecuted. We get it guys. That's what you do.

Silvio, Silvio

Why does this not surprise me?
The chief prosecutor in his home city of Milan said the Italian prime minister had been formally placed under investigation on suspicion of having sex with an underage prostitute. He was also accused of abusing his position to pressure the police.
Say what you will about US officials from, yes, across the political spectrum. I can't think of anyone whose "wandering genital syndrome" has gone this far out of hand. So to speak. I can't tell if he's trying to look contrite and ashamed, or if he's smirking.
Followup: I just mentioned this tidbit to fellow smokers/coffee drinkers outside with the comment that there had been many, many stories about politicians and sex scandals over the last couple of decades, but that Berlusconi was the undisputed champion. I was asked "What else has he done?" To which I responded, "As best as I can tell, the entire female population of Europe." And much of northern Africa, I might add.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

All of The Substance, None of The Noise


I'm reminded of Max Headroom, but he was at least clever and funny.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Wednesday Wednesday

From Love, Bows and Bones.

A Little Knowledge Might Be a Dangerous Thing

But it often seems that a little bit more- or at least thinking a bit about the small amount you do already have- could go along way toward making the situation much safer. For example, from Not Always Right:
Customer: “Where are the pregnancy test kits?”

Me: “Over there, by the condoms.”

Customer: “If I knew where the condoms were, I wouldn’t need the pregnancy test!”
Or how about this, from The Daily What:
Somewhat Apropos Of The Previous Post of the Day: Palmetto State Armory’s limited edition AR-15 lower receiver engraved with Rep. Joe Wilson infamous anti-Obama outburst “you lie” is an awesome, timely idea that couldn’t possibly backfire.
The editor notes that either the offer has been removed, or given the limited edition, has already sold out. And the "Previous Post" referenced? Why, Sarah Palin's "blood libel" comment, of course. (Here's the NYT report.) Okay, I'll admit it: I had to go look this one up myself. Turns out, I was aware of the myth, folklore... hey, "libel" is actually a pretty good word for it. But I guess I wasn't aware that that particular phrase was so firmly linked to those particular nasty rumors. The Wikipedia article is not for the faint-hearted or weak stomached. Not for the descriptions of acts, which, awful as they are, are fictional, but for the fact that a human being would accuse other human beings of doing such things.

This novel reaction on Palin's part has prompted a number of (deservedly) snarky comments. For example, @tbogg: "Sarah Palin proved today that it is possible to shoot yourself in the foot even when the foot is already in your mouth." @MickeySqueeks: "actually I don't think Palin said "Blood Libel" anyway. she said "Bible" but belched loudly in the middle of the word. try it." @BadAstronomer: "I thought it was a wind rising outside, but it was actually the sigh of Dan Quayle as Sarah Palin passed him on the way down. " @SarrahPalinU5A: "Sorry for using the phrase "blood libel". I was shooting from the hip. I tell ya, I need all this drama like a hole in the head."

A clue, Sarah: as I've said many times, Wikipedia isn't the most authoritative source, but it's not a bad place to start at all.

Followup: Somewhat more serious and sober commentary on Palin's faux pas here.

Oh My.

Via Swans on Tea, I found this Flickr collection of sand photos (two pages) by "Mouser NerdBot". Oh my. I need to catch my breath. Now here's the thing I really appreciate: the photographer has done an excellent job of labeling the location and composition of the samples, even, for example, explaining how the garnets below were concentrated from an "ant sand." Check out the enormous original size photos too!
These garnets were extracted from ant sand. Garnet is paramagnetic and can be separated from its surroundings in sand with a strong magnet. These garnets range in size from 1mm to 5mm in diameter. There are presumably larger garnets in the soil in this area, but with ant sand you are limited to things ants can lift and carry.

Hmmm... Tropical Paradise

As predicted, after some brief flurries yesterday afternoon, it switched over to rain and warmed up over night. It feels positively balmy out there today, and I'm loving it! According to WeatherUnderground, our average high for today is 46, so we are warmer than normal, but we've hardly been breaking freezing for what feels like weeks. I'm pretty certain it hasn't actually been that long, but it feels like it. So at least in contrast today's moderate temperature feels simply tropical, and my poor aching feet are feeling very comfortable, thank you.

They Left Out a Step

That part where Mulder, with practically no information, and in the first five to ten minutes, comes up with the most ridiculous, implausible and unlikely explanation possible. Which, of course, turns out to be the right one. (Blastr; 10 steps that defined every X-Files episode)

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Golly. More Casualties Than I Realized.

The right has managed to pass itself off, at least in it's own eyes, as an enormous group of helpless victims ground under the heel of Liberal Oppression for nearly two decades now. Limbaugh really rose to prominence in the wake of Clinton's election, and he is certainly the first-ranked victim over the last five presidential terms. Until now. Imagine my shock to read that there weren't just 19 20 dead and injured in Saturday's massacre: the entire Tea Party is also in critical condition:
A nine-year-old girl lies in the morgue. A member of Congress faces a lifetime of struggle to recover from a bullet in the brain. A city is bracing itself for a string of funerals as it tries to fathom the carnage. But Trent Humphries says there is another innocent victim left by Jared Lee Loughner's killing of six people and wounding of 14 others in his assassination attempt against Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. It is his Tea Party movement and, more particularly, his family. The killings, he says, are evolving into a conspiracy to destroy his organisation and silence criticism of the government.
And here's an example of the life-threatening vitriol that has sent a whack-a-loon political fiasco into the ICU:
"It's time to change your message of hate. If not, get out of politics because the American people are not going to take it any longer. We want our country back."
Brain damage is such a sad thing. But the subsequent delusions can be breathtaking in their grandeur.

Special Extra Defensive Edition!

Okay, I admit it... I'm a big fan of fiery, provocative and violence-tinged leftist rhetoric. Here's a great example from Circle Jerk at the Square Dance. Click over for #'s 10-1!
Top Ten Tuesdays: How are we reacting to the Arizona shooting?
15) Why are you blaming conservatives? We didn’t have anything to do with this!

14) Oh, sorry, you actually weren’t blaming conservatives. There’s a lot of that going around.

13) Because, and we want to make this abundantly clear, when we put a crosshairs on someone, we don’t mean they should actually be killed. We mean that they should be eliminated.

12) From office! And not eliminated, no one is saying eliminated. You know, let’s just scrub that from the record. Besides, those weren’t crosshairs. Those were surveyor’s marks, like you’d use when mapping the political landscape or deciding if a bridge should be taken out with an airstrike.

11) Fuck, sorry, we can’t help ourselves with the military analogies. That’s all they are, analogies. You know, Republicans:Godliness::Guns:Freedom.

Spoiled Meat?

Feed it to prisoners! (Something about killing two birds with one stone here)

Monday, January 10, 2011

An Outstanding Example

...of measured, moderate and completely non-violent right-wing rhetoric:From our fine friends at The Patriot Shop, via Facebook friend Jon. From whom, I just received a response to my comment (essentially, the title and opening line of this post): "Yep. Besides, liberals do it, too. I saw a liberal quoted somewhere as saying that a conservative should be voted out of office. Same thing."

Poor, Delicate Flowers

This Modern World. BTW, those cross-hairs on Palin's map? Turns out they were meant to represent "survey marks." Hoocoodanode? To which @tbogg commented, "Johnny Cash once surveyed a man in Reno just to watch him die." Another fine quote from the same account came down the pipe just a little while ago: "Compromise in DC: conservatives will tone down the rhetoric and liberals will agree to not be so whiny when they get shot"

Sunday, January 9, 2011

"Even More Tragic"

In my previous post on the Arizona shootings, I quoted a comment I had received, but didn't really discuss how thoroughly it shocked and horrified me, leaving readers to find my problem for themselves. After considering this over the last day, I think that it is central to the issue of how mainstream the hateful, eliminationist rhetoric has become, and I want to revisit it. So here's the comment:
"It is a very tragic event. Even more tragic is to blame Sarah Palin and the Tea Party. I do not believe for one second that they endorse democrats being murdered. How stupid to think so. I do not like democratic ideas but I do not want one single democrat to ever be murdered!!!!"
Now think about that. Six people are dead. A congressional representative faces an uncertain future- the damage to her brain was much worse than I imagined a person might survive. The bullet traveled from the back to the front of her left lobe; this was not just a skull-grazing injury. One of the dead was a nine-year-old girl, pictured above, Christina Taylor Green, whose birthday was September 11, 2001. She had been featured in a book named "Faces of Hope," which contained portraits of 50 children, one from each state, born on that fateful day. She was interested in politics as a solution to human and social problems, and was taken to meet Giffords by a neighbor who thought she would enjoy the experience. Ironically, the levels of paranoia and fear whipped up by a certain side of the US political spectrum in the aftermath of her birth date have, without any real doubt, played some role- potentially small, possibly large, we simply don't know yet- in ending this child's life. And that of five others.

So, responding to my comment linking this paranoia, hateful rhetoric, Sarah Palin, the teabaggers, and my own anger and despair at yesterday's events, the commenter acknowledges that it was indeed a tragedy. Then proceeds to say, "
Even more tragic is to blame Sarah Palin and the Tea Party." "Even MORE tragic?" Seriously?

MORE tragic that an absolute nobody blogger/facebooker/twitterer makes the exactly same connections as thousands of others who write and go public on the web? MORE tragic that Palin and the teabaggers are asked to take SOME degree of responsibility for an atmosphere of terror, blind rage and bloodlust? MORE tragic that within minutes of the news, Palin and others were pulling down images and comments that people have been warning for the last couple of years would lead to exactly this kind of massacre? Are you fucking serious?

These things are "even MORE tragic" than the simple fact of Christina Taylor Green's cold, dead body? Not to mention the 18 other injuries and deaths? MORE fucking tragic?

And this is exactly the point. I'm sure the commenter didn't even think about what she was saying. She was on autopilot. She has been conditioned by Palin, O'Reilly, Hannity, Beck, Boehner, Brewer, and on, and on and on, to believe that merely impugning the wonderfulness of "people like them" is more tragic, a greater crime, a worse humanitarian crisis, than hundreds of thousands of people dying annually from lack of health care, than millions of children who are mal- or undernourished every day, than tens of thousands of homeless veterans for whom it's well worth shelling out for showy car magnets, but not worth a nickel to actually get them shelter. I'm sure she is quite right that neither she nor her party's leaders "endorse" democrats or other undesirables being murdered outright. However, she has been well trained to understand that when, God forbid, such a thing happens, the appropriate response is to defend the righteous, stay calm, put it out of your mind, and walk cheerfully forward into the the world that is being re-shaped for the right people. The ones like them. The ones who believe the right things, in the right God. The ones who understand that democracy is all about being the ones ballsy and macho enough to kill and take power from anyone with the temerity to stand in the way of the blessed. The ones who understand that civility is for the weak. The ultra-rich and those who are happy to service them and their whims. The ones who understand that "thinking for oneself" is a trick of Satan. Because to react in any other way would even more tragic still.

Sunday Funnies

Bits and Pieces
Matt Yglesias
demotivational posters - CREEPY
see more Very Demotivational
engrish funny - Everyone Accepts It.
see more Engrish
Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal
Sofa Pizza
That's What She Said!
see more Lol Celebs
Susan Boyle Totally Looks Like Robert Pattinson
see more Celeb Look-A-Likes
Sober in a Nightclub
Sober in a Nightclub
Married To The Sea
funny puns - I Swear It's a Fail-Proof Cure All!
see more So Much Pun (From the makers of Fukitol)
xkcd- I, like thousands of others, tracked down and read this page following the above.
Skull Swap
engrish funny - But WHAT?
see more Engrish
A Gentlemens Disagreement Gif - A Gentlemens Disagreement
see more Gifs
demotivational posters - I LOVE YOU HAS  8 LETTERS
see more Very Demotivational

The Daily What
epic win photos - Side Effects WIN
see more Hacked IRL - Truth in Sarcasm
BizarroBlog
funny graphs - The Alternate History Channel
see more Funny Graphs
Sober in a Nightclub
funny pictures history - When Starbucks was   still just StarNickles.
see more Historic LOL

Well, crap. I thought we were going to get three films out of this project. The High Definite.
Bits and Pieces
Peter Cushing: BAMF
see more Lol Celebs
demotivational posters - MOLESTERBATION
see more Very Demotivational
funny puns - Well, That Most Certainly is...
see more So Much Pun
demotivational posters - CRIME
see more Very Demotivational
Balloon Juice
Chuck & Beans at Shoebox Blog
POP-O-MATIC Gif - POP-O-MATIC
see more Gifs
Sober in a Nightclub
Skull Swap
funny pictures - I thout yu'd want sumthing  to remember yur parrot by.
see more Lolcats and funny pictures
wtf photos videos - Mental Demons
see more WTF Pictures and WTF videos by Picture Is Unrelated
4 koma comic strip - Lost Chapter
see more Comixed
Sober in a Nightclub
Sober in a Nightclub
Clay Bennett