Friday, February 29, 2008

opportunity





I have nothing more to say today than I have for the last week (or year, for that matter). However, today is February 29th, and I figured I ought to take advantage of posting something on a leap day, since this event happens but once every four years. We'll get another full lunar eclipse before that.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

sunday funny


Q: What did Ignatius of Loyola wear when he got dressed up?

A: A Je-suit.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

ratings

blog readability test

Bummer. I would have prefered "genius", but oh, well, that's ego for ya. I should be happy I got that considering my refusal to use apostrophes in many of my contractions.

(props to the Sapient Sutler.)

On the other hand, I'm apparently read more than I think I am.

C-List Blogger

(props to spiiderweb™.)

Friday, February 22, 2008

social studies

My wife's a teacher and this morning I found this on a sheet of paper she'd copied from one of her textbooks:
liberalism: A political and economic movement that began to flourish in the 18th and 19th centuries in Europe in response to the the arbitrary rule of absolute monarchs. In the political realm, this movement stresses the rule of law, individual liberty, universal rights, and adherence to constitutional procedures. In the economic arena it emphasizes free trade, individual property rights, and the removal of restraints on economic activity.
fascism: A political philosophy based on an extreme sense of nationalism and the concentration of power in strong, charismatic leaders. This philosophy holds that people are unequal and that human potential is best achieved through war and conquest. Thus, it denies the democratic notion that ordinary citizens should retain power.
Which one sounds to you more like the Republican Party?

Thursday, February 21, 2008

fortune cookie moment

Hey, I need fish to be able to best perform My Duties for The People, and after I'm done, dont I deserve something for all my sacrifices?

Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Give a man an Office, and he'll make you give him and his family fish for the rest of their lives.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

today's quote


Okay, here's a good one: Imagine if George Bush were to deliver the Gettysburg Address, only now and about the Iraq War. It might go something like this...


Two score and 17 months ago, I brought forth in the Persian Gulf a new conflict misconceived in secret and dedicated to the proposition that all oil belongs to Halliburton...


Read the rest at the Quaker's Colonel.



finders fee to Millard Fillmore's Bathtub

no, nope, nuh-uh, never, no way
negative

"Speeches don't put food on the table. Speeches don't fill up your tank, or fill your prescription, or do anything about that stack of bills that keeps you up at night...There’s a big difference between us — speeches versus solutions. Talk versus action. You know, some people may think words are change. But you and I know better. Words are cheap."

Hillary Clinton
Dont get me wrong, I dont have anything really against Hillary Clinton. If she should win the White House, that'll probably be okay (of course, relatively, almost anybody would be better than George Bush). But seriously, who buys into bullshit like this.
Hillary, I have a message for you. What you said there, that was a speech. It was words, it was talk. The bitch of any election is that you never know until you have a winner in place how that winner is going to do, and that includes you, ma'am. In 1999, I dont think even the most pessimistic, cynical Liberal thought George Bush would be this bad.
Unfortunately, your speech is disturbingly similar to one of my least favorite Dubya-ism: You seem to think that because you say it, we ought to believe it, and because he says it, we ought not*. Sorry, I've had seven years of that bullshit, and I'm sick of it. Make your promises, and act like a person who will keep them.
Oh, and dont think that I'm not going to look at promises already made. Remember that next time a vote comes up in the Senate for something Lord Bush wants but the rest of the nation does not. The Democrats, whether up for election in 2006 or not, rode to the Majority on the idea that they would stop the madness of King George, and so far they've been a terrible disappointment. This kind of talk doesnt do it for a lot of us any more, and having been a victim of it yourself since you made the "awful" proposal that maybe the government should provide health services the same way it provides fire and safety services, you'd think that you would know better. Alas, apparently not.

Here's the thing; after a couple of decades of listening to the Republican Party tell me how wonderful they are and how awful everyone else is (even as their wonderfulness was demonstrably not true), I've pretty much decided that when someone, including you, Ms. Clinton, tell me not to trust the other person, I'm more inclined to look askance at you.

* Also, it's something which Dubya displays a real "talent" for; it's one of those statements that your opposition could just as easily say about you.

Friday, February 15, 2008

a little bit punky

this is a Sid and Nancy reference, by the way, if it's too obscure for you

Want a bill,
want a bill,
want a good bill,
one that fulfills mah
fascistic needs

olbermann rocks

Seriously, this man is good.

post: ex-factoid

I am so sick of this telecom immunity thing. Does nobody else recognise the hard sell?
Well, I need to have an answer right away, 'cause there was naother counrty here looking at this baby also, and it's the last one in stock.
Here's a question: If you can grant immunity to the telecoms ex post facto, can you revoke it ex post facto, too?
I'm sick of the Bush Administration, I'm sick of their daily lies, I'm sick of the spin and the rationaizations and the absurd logic that passes for proof from them. Mostly though, I'm sick of being told to FEAR. You know what the prime difference between the Clinton presidency and the Bush presidency is? Clinton was positive, but Bush is all negative. Sure Bill was a horn-dog and an asshat, but he didnt build you up by tearing someone else down. Bush acts in a manner which we would never accept from our children, and he does it using countries.

Hey, here's another question: What does it matter if Congress passes the bill or not? Bush will do whatever he wants to do, regardless of law, or even of reason. Who's going to stop him? The stacked courts? The pussies in the Democratic Party? The voters???

Here, let's describe the Republican party, at least as its leadership stands now, in simple terms: They are the Sith.
The Sith are portrayed in various Star Wars media as individuals who use the dark side to attain power at any cost. The prequel films establish that they draw upon strong emotions, both negative and positive, as the source of their power, and care only about themselves.
Seriously, am I right? What we need is a Jedi Knight, who'll come in and kick their dark asses, but without malice, and in a spirit of Justice, rather than Revenge. I'm not crazy about Obama, but does anyone really think that Hillary is that Jedi?

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

rationalizations are more important than sex

If you still think you need a reason to elect a Democrat for President, not just in 2008, but for the next 20 years or so, here's a good one for you. An interview with "Justice" Antonin Scalia* wherein he displays his Republican credentials by taking the side of those who support torture:

"You can't come in smugly and with great self satisfaction and say 'Oh it's torture, and therefore it's no good'," he said in a rare interview.
Yes, yes I can say it's no good. One of the defining points of "civilization" is that it refrains from violence as a matter of course, that it attempts to spare others pain and death, sometimes even at a cost to itself. It's called "morality" and it is one of the things that the Republican Party claims for itself, even as it tortures prisoners, invades nations and denies healthcare for it's own citizens. As for smug, can you get much smugger than the current administration? George Bush et al have the mien of spoiled children who know that whatever they do, the punishment (if any) will be nowhere near as great as the rewards to themselves, and forget the cost to any others.
No, it is not the anti-torture crowd that is smug, but Antonin Scalia. This man is not fit to serve on a court of men who are supposed to be "objective". He has often expressed opinions about issues which may potentially appear before him in court, and there have been occassions upon which he should have recused himself, and has not. Can a Supreme Court Justice be impeached? Or maybe the next President should do as FDR thought of doing. Maybe not. Whatever, the lasting legacy of the Bush Administration will be our Supreme Court and it's Authoritarian Activism, and we will be stuck with that legacy for decades.
I'd heard warnings about the stacking of the Courts for years, and frankly I have no problem with a rather conservative court - that's the function of judges, really, to step back and say. "whoa". But these judges that have been put into place by the Republican Party under the guise of "stopping an activist judiciary" are themselves at least as radical (the other way) as those they are proposed to be stopping. The function of the Supreme Court should not be to dismantle decades of their own decisions, yet that is what the SCOTUS appears poised to do.
We cannot reverse this trend (not without radical leadership on the left, which it is quite clear that the Democratic Party is not going to provide), but we can at least halt it, by the simple act of electing Democrats to office (and, if necessary, throwing them out in favor of different Democrats for the next term). I really dont like the Democrats, their passive enablement of the Republican party is almost as much to blame for this mess as the GOP itself. But however unpleasant chemotherapy may be, it's usually better than cancer.
The decades since the election of Ronald Reagan, even during the Clinton Administration, has seen a shift in government priority from providing for the general welfare of the People, to providing for the general welfare of the Corporation, in the theory that what's good for Business is good for the People. This is nothing more than another form of trickle-down economics, voodoo theory the bankrupcy of which has been expressed even by its one-time proponents. The Courts have played their part in this shift, as much as Congress or the regulatory arms of the various Administrations.

As for Antonin Scalia, if you want further proof of his radicalism, read these words:
Justice Scalia is often described as the most conservative member of the court - but it's a charge he denies.

Instead, he says he's an "originalist," which means he interprets the text of the US Constitution as it was written.

He both attacks and mocks the idea that the Constitution is a "living document" which needs reinterpreting in the light of social change.
Can I just say, "What the fuck"???
As it was written? Was he there?
Do we really need a Supreme Court justice who thinks that the Founding Fathers deliberately wrote their Constitution in sweeping and rather vague terms because they intended for it to be rigidly followed based on the events of their times? What's the point of having a judge; in this case, why not stack the court with Historians instead? Or, Authoritarian Assholes...

Oh wait, we did that.


* of the Supreme Court, I know I dont really have to tell you that, but I'm not feeling very hopeful today.

tuesday matinee

I havent seen the Obama ad that this parodies, but I dont think I need to, really. This is funny all by itself.

props to Kel at The Osterly Times

Monday, February 11, 2008

Pack your stuff,
save your money,
be ready to go... just in case

I'm not sure if this post deserves the tin-foil hat picture or not, but let's just say that it does so we can all laugh about it in 2010.
I hope.
First of all, read this official FBI site, "all about" something called Infragard. Then read this report from Agitprop. Oh, come on, you're saying, that's just some left-wing nut job. Okay, how about this one from Alternet? Again, maybe it is all paranoia. But we have the most secretive, Authoritarian, power-hungry administration, perhaps ever in the history of the United States. They've had Halliburton build them detention camps, they've made habeas corpus dependent upon their own say-so, they've declared thier word to be all that they need for proof, they've essentially dismantled the just-passed congressionally-mandated FOIA law revisions, and throughout their reign they have shown nothing but contempt for the constitution and its many checks on Presidential power. I wouldnt normally be worried about just one of these things happening, but all of them together should worry anyone but the 25-percenters who think that George Bush and God are practically one and the same.
Somewhere in America we've got private armies, and they'll now have a "legal" right to kill civilians should they "feel threatened", and do so without being held accountable. This sounds much like the situation that existed in Iraq, with Blackwater. That's the same Blackwater which is attempting to set up a 2nd base of operations somewhere on the West Coast. Ever hear of the classic pincher manuever?

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

Yeah, I'm crazy, I know. But, again, if you had to fit everything you really needed into a 6x8 U-haul, what would you take? Now might be a good time to think about that. Or else hope that sheep have very sharp teeth.

Pros to Spiiderweb.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

sunday funny


Bizarro has been a long-time favorite. He's local talent, too.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

today's quote

"I've just returned from Europe where, I must tell you, the prevailing attitude is not only disappointment with America, but also a certain amount of shadenfreude, or secret pleasure, over how far into silliness we seem to have fallen. The spectacle of two "royal families" reigning over the American political parties for almost thirty years is viewed as proof that we have become absurd, lacking any confidence in our ability to draw new leaders from the general population. An age-old trap that we used to accuse the Europeans of!"

David Brin

I love that word! Schadenfreude. A lot of that going around these days.

Friday, February 08, 2008

boo-fucking-hoo

that's right, it's an image of a crybaby ON THE RIGHT.So, now that McCain has all but clinched the Republican nomination, the conservative base is all upset because he's not "conservative" enough for them. Join the club, you crybabies. Do you think that there have been any Democratic candidates that have made it all the way to the ticket that have been everything that the liberal base has wanted? Hell no! But we suck it up anyway, because however much we may not have liked Kerry, or like Hillary (or whoever, whenever), they'll do far less damage to the People and their rights and liberties than whoever the Republican party chooses will... well, hopefully. Sweet Jeebus in a Tantrum, will this "controversy" not finally make it perfectly clear what a bunch of controlling, self-involved assholes the "base" of the Republican Party really are? No wonder they cant play nice.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

amnesty blogonational

Skippy the Bush Kangaroo and Jon Swift have both launched a Blogroll Amnesty Day. The idea is to encourage links to smaller blogs. Being a smaller blog myself, and woefully short of apparent readers these days (Sitemeter is depressing the hell out of me), I'm all for that. I also personally have little use for the Big Boys. My own sidebar blogroll consists pretty much entirely of blogs I read on a regular basis, while other blogs, equally worthy but less read, go in the blogrolls shown on the sidebar.

Props to Kel at the Osterly Times.

sunday funny

more Moonbeam.


Saturday, February 02, 2008

notes from the Land of Pod

So I was listening to my iPod tonight, and heard Johnny Cash singing the song below. In addition to adding to the respect that I already had for the man, it made me wonder what he's been thinking of the state of America during the last years of his life. Or was this just a young man's song?
Well, you wonder why I always dress in black,
Why you never see bright colors on my back,
And why does my appearance seem to have a somber tone.
Well, there's a reason for the things that I have on.

I wear the black for the poor and the beaten down,
Livin' in the hopeless, hungry side of town,
I wear it for the prisoner who has long paid for his crime,
But is there because he's a victim of the times.

I wear the black for those who never read,
Or listened to the words that Jesus said,
About the road to happiness through love and charity,
Why, you'd think He's talking straight to you and me.

Well, we're doin' mighty fine, I do suppose,
In our streak of lightnin' cars and fancy clothes,
But just so we're reminded of the ones who are held back,
Up front there ought 'a be a Man In Black.

I wear it for the sick and lonely old,
For the reckless ones whose bad trip left them cold,
I wear the black in mournin' for the lives that could have been,
Each week we lose a hundred fine young men.

And, I wear it for the thousands who have died,
Believen' that the Lord was on their side,
I wear it for another hundred thousand who have died,
Believen' that we all were on their side.

Well, there's things that never will be right I know,
And things need changin' everywhere you go,
But 'til we start to make a move to make a few things right,
You'll never see me wear a suit of white.

Ah, I'd love to wear a rainbow every day,
And tell the world that everything's OK,
But I'll try to carry off a little darkness on my back,
'Till things are brighter, I'm the Man In Black.