Sunday, October 31, 2010

holiday cartoon



Kids these days! Why, I remember having to walk five miles uphill to trick-or-treat, in the snow.

via

Thursday, October 28, 2010

a little video present for The Brother

The Sandpit from Sam O'Hare on Vimeo.


This is for The Brother, not for any particular reason, but because I wanted to post this and today is his Birthday. And no, while this sometimes looks like a model set, it's not.

(via)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

quote for the day

"The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness."

John Kenneth Galbraith.


via Kel

tuesday video

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

a thought

I've been thinking, and perhaps one of the things that bothers me most about the Republican party is that they no longer seem to be the party of pragmatism. I mean, I get the need for both progressives and conservatives, one acting to advance society, the other acting to curb the excesses that sometimes arise from change. People often accuse liberals of idealism, but that is required to promote change.
But what I see these days is that it is the supposedly conservative Republican party that acts as ideologues, and the pragmatists all seem to belong to the Democratic side.

Friday, October 22, 2010

friday night at the movies



stolen from Dusty.

quote for the day

"According to FEC data, only 32 percent of groups paying for election ads are disclosing the names of their donors. By comparison, in the 2006 midterm, 97 percent disclosed; in 2008, almost half disclosed."

Robert Reich. Read the rest.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

angst redux



I'm just feeling all enthusiastic and shit about the election, so I re-sharing this thing I made a couple years ago, when we were so desperately hoping the Democrats would save us.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

quote for the day


"I have long since come to believe that people never mean half of what they say, and that it is best to disregard their talk and judge only their actions."

Dorothy Day

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

t-shirt*


* t-shirt not actually available

Monday, October 18, 2010

quote for the day

Rude Pundit keeps hearing about a "war" in the Republican Party, but he won't believe it until he starts seeing some casualties.

from Facebook

I have a desire

Once this election is over, I would really like to see some stats on how much anonymous money went to each side, what percentage of their (on each side) funding was anonymous, and the ratio of anonymous funding, both to non-anonymous and to each side.

Also, can anyone tell me how Karl Rove can get away with setting up a "non-partisan" PAC? I mean, what exactly does a PAC have to do to be considered partisan - specifically say "we are partisan", and otherwise they're just assumed not to be so?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

sunday matinee



Takes me back to Art School - a bit of art history within a song's length

Friday, October 15, 2010

friday funny

quote for the day

"the only choice we voters have is between coke or pepsi"

Joey, in Oregon


If this doesnt sum up the state of politics in America these days, I dont know what does. Socialists, my ass. Most Americans wouldnt know a socialist if he bit them on the ass*.


* Although if he did bite them, he would then take them to a the doctor - for free!

another thought

Okay, over a decade ago, states started to get the idea that they could raise a bit of cash by operating a lotto. As time has gone on, those lottery prizes have grown in size until they are worth sometimes over a hundred million dollars.
They also have odds of winning somewhere around 1:16,000,000 to as high as 1:170,000,000, which is pretty awful, really. By comparison*, the odds of dying in a one hour plane trip is about 1:1,000,000.
Now, not long after this trend began (and a very popular, money-making trend it has been for states), 9-11 happened, and suddenly everyone was worried about dying in a terrorist attack. We continue, nine years later, to be worried. Why? What are the odds of dying in a terrorist attack?
Even if terrorists were able to pull off one attack per year on the scale of the 9/11 atrocity, that would mean your one-year risk would be one in 100,000 and your lifetime risk would be about one in 1300. (300,000,000 ÷ 3,000 = 100,000 ÷ 78 years = 1282) In other words, your risk of dying in a plausible terrorist attack is much lower than your risk of dying in a car accident [one-year odds of dying in a car accident is about one out of 6500, lifetime probability about one in 83] , by walking across the street [a one-year risk of one in 48,500 and a lifetime risk of one in 625], by drowning or in a fire [both a one-year risk of one in 88,000 and a one in 1100 lifetime risk], by falling or by being murdered [both a one-year risk of one in 16,500 and a lifetime risk of one in 210].
So anyway, my point here is to wonder if the Lotto is part of the reason that Americans are so terrified of dying in the same kind of attack that hasnt been repeated in nine years is the same reason that leads people to spend a dollar or two or ten or even a hundred, week after week, with the idea that they will become millionaires.
Just wonderin'.


* The way the odds are stated dont really match up very well, but if you played the lotto once a week you could be expected to win once in a 250,000 years.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

a thought*

So, I heard yet another story today which mentioned the protests of the Park 51 Community Center. And the following thought occurred to me:
Say you knew of a bunch of kids, and there was one kid who, one day, punched another kid in the face and knocks him down. A few weeks later, the kids are doing art projects, and the puncher creates an image featuring a couple of guys doing kung fu. The teacher wants to put it up, but the punchee gets upset about it, saying that the picture makes him feel bad because it depicts a "violent" act and it was drawn by the kid who bloodied his nose. Question: is that kid right, or is he a whiny little pussy?
See, Americans like to think
Which side does the guy with the 'fanatics' sign belong to?
they're the toughest guys in the room, but a hallmark of the true tough guy is that he can take a punch. By whining about the "insensitivity" of Muslims building their community center (or anything, for that matter) close to 9-11, Americans are flinching at the mere thought of that punch, which shows the world that not only are we not particularly tough guys, but that we are, in fact, total pussies.
You want to show how tough you are? Help build the damn center. You want to be even tougher? Ignore its presence completely.
Those protesting the "Ground-Zero Mosque" are showing not only their ignorance, but their fear. In crowd terms, they're practically shitting themselves. The only way they could show themselves to be even bigger cowards than they already are would be for some dumb son-of-a-bitch to blow it up.
Dont be surprised when it happens.


* keep having these, cant help myself, sorry

linkage

- "There’s a whole machinery of brainwashing in Israel which really accompanies each of us from early childhood, and I’m a product of this machinery as much as anyone else." (via)

- How the end will come. (via)

- Tea Party Jesus sez... (via)

- Dunno what to do for Halloween? How about a storm trooper? Here's a cheap mask you can make. (via)

- John Scalzi on "Atlas Shrugged". I knew there was a reason I liked him. (via)

- We need more of this. If tax money shouldnt go to people who've lost their jobs, then it sure as hell shouldnt go to sports programs that cannot pay for themselves. (via)

- Okay, can someone tell me how paying a "subscription fee" to a fire department is different than paying a tax, other than you can gamble on not needing it?

- You do realize that half the stuff I put here I do so because I want to find the article again at some point. Like this recipe via Boing Boing for broccoli muffins.

- So, do Republicans block campaign finance disclosure bills solely so that they can accuse the more transparent Democrats of wrongdoing, while avoiding the same charge themselves because "there is no proof"?

- Hey! Can you imagine? All that stuff about the government causing the housing bust? Not true. Could it be that conservatives were wrong about that? (via)

- Cards and advice, together! Or buy them here.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

sums it up


more here. Via David Brin.

By the way, I'm getting the hang of the picture thing, finally.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

a thought

For all those folks out there who buy into the "Prosperity Gospel": Did you ever consider that your "God-given" wealth may be not so much a reward as a test?

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Guarantee

For every "small" businessman bitching about having to pay tax at the same rate they were before the Bush regime bankrupted the nation, there are two American workers having to work weekends with no overtime pay because "times are tough" and "competition is fierce" (and, unspoken, or not, "lots of people would love to have your job").

It should also be pointed out that higher taxes are an incentive to reinvest the money in your company. Lower taxes mean more that owners can take home, and less to pay workers. It is profits that are taxed, not expenses.

Addendum:

I should point out also that, ironically, small businesses are being treated by their clients in pretty much the same way that small businesses treat their employees.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

quote for the day

"Read somewhere that the video game Bioshock is an effort to inoculate teenage boys from the Ann Rand virus."

"unholyguy", in comments on John Scalzi's review of "Atlas Shrugged"

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Sunday, October 03, 2010

sunday funny



And let me just add, that blogger can kiss my ass. When I tried posting this image using blogger's image hosting, it shrunk it down to about a fourth (or, rather, a sixteenth, if you want to get technical) of its original size. So fuck them and their new system. Oh, but I could move the damned image anywhere I wanted to.
Woop-de-doo.

Saturday, October 02, 2010

proselitizing

Top 10 reasons why beer is better than religion.

10. No one will kill you for not drinking Beer.
9. Beer doesn’t tell you how to have sex.
8. Beer has never caused a major war.
7. They don’t force Beer on minors who can’t think for themselves.
6. When you have Beer, you don’t knock on people’s doors trying to give it away.
5. Nobody’s ever been burned at the stake, hanged, or tortured over their brand of Beer.
4. You don’t have to wait more than 2,000 years for a second Beer.
3. There are laws saying that Beer labels can’t lie to you.
2. You can prove you have a Beer.
1. If you’ve devoted your life to Beer, there are groups to help you.

via

Friday, October 01, 2010

quote for the day

"There has been in our country a divorce of church and state. This follows a natural sequence of the declaration that 'governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed'. The priest was no longer a necessity. His presence was a contradiction of the principle on which the Republic was founded. He represented, not the authority of the people, but of some 'Power from on High', and to recognize this other power was inconsistant with free government. The founders of the Republic at that time parted company with the priests, and said to them: 'You may turn your attention to the other world - we will attend to the affairs of this'. Equal liberty was given to all. But the ultra-theologian is not satisfied with this - he wishes to destroy the liberty of the people - he wishes a recognition of his God as the source of authority, to the end that the church may become the supreme power."

Robert Ingersoll, God In The Constitution, 1890