Wednesday, March 31, 2010

public service announcement

I had this idea for an ad campaign, and I roughed up a piece or two. Here's the first one...
The lack of civic responsibility in this country is irritating, especially when some of the worst offenders also claim to be "patriots".
I mean, I get that people would like to keep their money, who wouldnt? But a lot of Republicans sound like a whiny pre-teen who's been told that he has to clean up the living room, including his little sister's mess.Yeah, there are problems with Welfare, and there are some people who are always going to take advantage of a free lunch. Get over it. It's no excuse to throw out the programs that do the whole nation good, such as heavy subsidization of higher education or building roads that dont require a fee to drive on them or giving poor children pre-school and lunch. That may save you money up front, but it's a little like buying cans of "slightly" radioactive food simply because they're two for a dollar.
It boils down to this; despite all your bitching about "socialism", any nation is, at its heart, a collective endeavor. Nations are created when people pool their resources together for the benefit of all. Yes, some of the people do better than the others. Usually the ones who get the most out of it are the ones at the top. Western civilization is unusual in that the ones at the bottom get a bit more than in most cultures, and in case you havent noticed, everyone has done pretty well under that system.

Oh. Wait. You thought it was because you were so awesome, didnt you.
That's so cute.

Now grow the fuck up.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

party on?

Here's a quote from the comments section of the link from the preceding post. It's from a guy (presumably) who's been attending Tea Party meetings, apparently studying them. It's a rather scary description:
Shortened almost to incoherence, the pet theory is that they’ve spent their whole lives expecting (and dreading) an epic battle with evil, and they’re convinced It Is Coming.

The conservative Christian ideology has encouraged them, their entire lives, to view their whole life as part of an epic struggle of good and evil. Evil is everywhere, creeping up, preparing to overwhelm, or to suddenly strike. And you’re trained to actively look for the evil that’s always creeping up all around you (generally, this takes the form of decadence, impropriety, and disrespect for recognized authority figures). A feeling of despair at the evil of the world, and the deep threat this poses to your own soul, is quite normal.

I understand there to be some kind of implicit guilt by association: the fact that people around you are engaging in decadence endangers your soul. And they shouldn’t have a right to endanger your soul with their behavior. Or at the very least, to protect your own soul from taint, it’s your role in the world to be afraid of the sin around you, to call it out and protest it and be afraid of its ability to taint you with evil. The idea could be compared to a mild reworking of the city of Sodom story, I think.

So anyway. Every single tea party attendee I’ve ever met is a conservative Christian. Almost all of them, and every single woman, very strongly self-identifies as this; the only possible exception is some of the militia folk who go along with it but aren’t deeply emotionally invested in that identity (though even they use phrases like “God-fearing man” .

They are a subpopulation of America who are predisposed to believe, and be afraid of, grave threat. The Democratic party is already known to be the ones who pose the threat, because they enable murderers (i.e., they support killing babies; i.e., they are pro-choice).

So now they’ve been emboldened, by electing a suspect President (who wasn’t even eligible to be elected, because he is foreign-born, and who is obviously an evil man—whatever their other views on race, they understand Obama to have been illegitimately placed in the President position by sinister organizations like ACORN which have been just waiting for a moment to exploit. A common misconception is that Obama actually belonged to, and participated in bombings with, the Weather Underground).

So they’re [Democrats] emboldened, and so they’re [Democrats again] making their move to destroy America. It strikes me as very logical, if you begin with two beliefs:

1) Other people living their way of life endangers your soul.

2) Everyone knows that your Godly way of life is holy, and deviants know in their hearts they are being unholy and Satanic. Everybody (at least everybody relevant to this discussion) believes in God and Satan and has chosen a side in that fight. Therefore, the people who want alternate ways of life to your own are actually literally threatening and intentionally endangering you.
Incidentally, the commenter, one "Salient", had a lot of interesting things to say. Among them, one of the large sponsors for Glenn Beck is a gold dealer named "Goldmine". Guess what gold prices do when people get worried? How great is it to have a guy working for you who can amp up the worry?


"Bipartisanship" explained. Via Gerry Canavan.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

so close

I think I've talked before about the fine line between satire and actually right-wing craziness. If Victoria Jackson doesnt demonstrate this perfectly, I dont know who will. Unfortunately, as nice as it would be to say that she's engaged in some sort of elaborate (and brilliant) satire, and despite her comedic background, this woman has been appearing on FOX and saying this kind of stupid shit for a while now, so she is apparently serious.

Which just goes to prove an even more important point: just because you're famous for one thing, doesnt mean you know shit about anything else.

Thursday, March 25, 2010


So, why is it considered patriotic to want to spend billions to kill people for your country, but it's considered unpatriotic to want to spend billions to prevent the deaths of fellow countrymen?

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

which way does the money flow?

I was looking at a McDonalds' ad and noticed that there was a Coke cup in it, and was plagued by this question: Does McDonalds pay Coke for the right to show the cup, or does Coke pay McDonalds for the product placement?
Logically, the two would cancel each other, being mutually beneficient, but with the corporate greed that runs rampant these days, I suspect they'd both try to charge the other, and the winner would be the one who blinked.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

passing it on

I got this off of Rude Pundit's Facebook page via someone named Danna Bower.You can tell it's not my work because there's an asterisk in the word "fuck".

Regarding the teabaggers and their anger:

You didn't get mad when the Supreme Court stopped a legal recount and appointed a President.
You didn't get mad when Cheney allowed Energy company officials to dictate energy policy.
You didn't get mad when a covert CIA operative got outed.
You didn't get mad when the Patriot Act got passed.
You didn't get mad when we illegally invaded a country that posed no threat to us.
You didn't get mad when we spent over 600 billion(and counting) on said illegal war.
You didn't get mad when over 10 billion dollars just disappeared in Iraq.
You didn't get mad when you saw the Abu Grahib photos.
You didn't get mad when you found out we were torturing people.
You didn't get mad when the government was illegally wiretapping Americans.
You didn't get mad when we didn't catch Bin Laden.
You didn't get mad when you saw the horrible conditions at Walter Reed.
You didn't get mad when we let a major US city drown.
You didn't get mad when the deficit hit the trillion dollar mark.
You finally got mad when.. when... wait for it... when the government decided that people in America deserved the right to see a doctor if they are sick. Yes, illegal wars, lies, corruption, torture, stealing your tax dollars to make the rich richer, are all ok with you but helping other Americans... well f*ck that. That about right? You know it is.

Monday, March 22, 2010

haiku no. 12

vacation's over
after a long, lovely week,
back to the old grind

Sunday, March 21, 2010

so wrong

This is a photo from today. In Dallas. This is wrong in so many ways.

Well, no, actually only in one way: That there is snow in Dallas in March!

Addendum: did I mention that it snowed last month? Oops! Silly me, let me fix that through the miracle of post-posting.

Addendum 2: This is the backyard about 10 hours later. Welcome to Texas!
all gone!

Friday, March 19, 2010

haiku no. 11

a nice evening
walking in the neighborhood
in the cool spring air

quote for the day

"The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt."

- Bertrand Russell, The Triumph Of Stupidity In Mortals And Others: Bertrand Russell's American Essays, 1931-1935 (Routledge, 1998, p28).
The trouble with this kind of quote is that the people who ought to be heeding it will be exactly the people who will just know that it applies to everyone else. This isnt just my opinion, or Russell's, but has been shown in an actual study (more accessable information here).
Another quote:
People tend to hold overly favorable views of their abilities in many social and intellectual domains. The authors suggest that this overestimation occurs, in part, because people who are unskilled in these domains suffer a dual burden: Not only do these people reach erroneous conclusions and make unfortunate choices, but their incompetence robs them of the metacognitive ability to realize it. Across 4 studies, the authors found that participants scoring in the bottom quartile on tests of humor, grammar, and logic grossly overestimated their test performance and ability. Although their test scores put them in the 12th percentile, they estimated themselves to be in the 62nd. Several analyses linked this miscalibration to deficits in metacognitive skill, or the capacity to distinguish accuracy from error. Paradoxically, improving the skills of the participants, and thus increasing their metacognitive competence, helped them recognize the limitations of their abilities. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2009 APA, all rights reserved)
This post was pretty much stolen from Millard Fillmore's Bathtub.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

haiku no. 10

the bread machine craze
of the nineties left behind
some useful flotsam

Seriously, are there many things as good as fresh bread? No, there are not.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

haiku no. 9

After that last rant,
I'm feeling much better now.
Back to vacation

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

a memo to the Democratic party

Okay fellas, it's time for a decision. Do you want to show America that you are Leaders? Or do you want to show America that you are still a bunch of useless pussies, just like you were while Bush ruined the nation? It's 1994 all over again, and you're on the precipice of returning the country into the hands of the assholes responsible for the last decade of clusterfuckery.
Vote for the goddamned healthcare bill, or you guys are gone.


Addendum: (stolen via Pryme):

"Here are the words that were used most frequently by the 45 percent of the country who would tell their Congressman to vote for the health care bill:"

"And here are the words used most commonly by the 48 percent of the country who would tell their Congressman to vote against it:"

There's more information in the article I got the images (and their descriptions) from. The thing I note most the largest word of all is the word "people", as in "we the". Seems appropriate for the United States. The largest word on the "con" side is "government", which is interesting considering that the anti-health care people are also (supposedly) anti-government (except when they are running it, of course).

Okay, that's it for this post, I've wasted too many words on the subject already.

Du-addendum: Okay, once more with feeling -

if you spineless Democratic pussies cant show that you have the balls to lead, you can kiss your two per cent margin of victory goodbye.

And that's all it'll take to return us to the party of Bush.

quote for the day

"I always thought that if Johnny Cash had been Irish, his music would've been more lilting."

from Wonderfalls, one of my most favorite TV shows ever, which, for some reason, my wife refuses to watch even though everyone who's ever watched has loved it (except for a disfunctional and possibly Ausberger-afflicted friend of The Boy).

haiku no. 8

if you like your news
mixed in with some poetry
then try Newsmericks

Really, when I start writing haiku with news links (repeatedly, I mean, I'm sure I'll do it once or twice), then it'll be time to call the men in the white suits.

Monday, March 15, 2010

wedding anniversary haiku

a few rough patches
in seventeen married years
but mostly there's love

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Saturday, March 13, 2010

haiku no. 6

I know these are bad
but I'm having some fun here
so just bugger off

Addendum: By the way, Shawn, this haiku was not aimed at you, having been written before you made your comment.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

haiku no. 5

a bit of roast beef
and a slice of havarti
bite, chew, taste, heaven

Tuesday, March 09, 2010


Here's the thing about romantic comedies. It's fairly easy to write one, because it's a formula:
a) boy meets girl.
b) boy and girl fall in love.
c) obstacle comes between boy and girl, but is overcome.
These three elements can be arranged in all sorts of ways or split up into pieces or whatever, but they're always there, and we always know how the story will end.
What separates the dross from the gold is the quality of the writing.
Which leads me to the following statement: no one can be considered a truly great writer or film-maker, unless they have made a successful romantic comedy. Good? Yes. Really good? Sure. But great?
Overcome the formula, then we'll talk.

internet haiku no. 4

I'll admit I like
light romantic comedy.
So sue me, dammit.

Monday, March 08, 2010

internet haiku no. 3

as a test of one's
vocabulary, haiku
works pretty nicely

Sunday, March 07, 2010

internet haiku no. 2

when you find why you
do what you do, then reasons
become excuses

Saturday, March 06, 2010

internet haiku

I am becoming
quite bored with the internet
so, now what? I ask

Friday, March 05, 2010

holy shit

It's bullshit like this that makes me wish Jesus really would come back, 'cause I'm pretty sure he'd kick their asses all over the marketplace.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010


The doctor asked if any of the members of my family suffer from insanity.
I said, "No. They all seem to enjoy it."

Monday, March 01, 2010

a question for Republicans

okay, here's a question that I'd like to ask Republicans: Why do they oppose climate change legislation so adamantly?
In strictly political terms, it doesnt seem like a very good strategy. Let's consider a couple of scenarios:
1) The climate change folks win the battle, and fifty years from now, it turns out all to have been a lot of shouting about nothing. What's the worst case outcome? We've spent a lot of money making the planet a much cleaner place, and the Democrats (the ones who actually listen to their base, that is) look like a bunch of big-spending Chicken Littles.
2) Republicans and other climate change skeptics/deniers win the battle, and it turns out that the Earth actually is getting warmer. What's the worst outcome? Regardless of the reason for the global temperature increase, Republicans are known as the party that not only did nothing to change things, but actively battled to not try to change things. As coasts drown, crops wither and mighty storms take a greater toll, people look around for someone to blame. Think they'll choose Al Gore for not warning folks urgently enough?

Really, I can only think of one reason to oppose the various things that need to be done to attempt to alleviate the threat of global warming.
Certainly there is no other threat from turning to greener energy sources. It's good for the air, it's good for jobs growth, and it gives America a chance to regain our scientific prowess from Indian and Chinese incursion. It also makes us less dependent on (and vulnerable to) that moneypit (and life-pit) we call the Middle East.

That's all. I have no coherent thought about how to stop these mammon-worshipers. The answer is obvious and simple - just dont vote for them - and yet they keep getting elected anyhow. How does one address so obviously a suicidal impulse, just for the gathering of more filthy lucre? Especially when their death-wish takes others with them?
I guess the only thing a thinking person can do at this point is take names. The ass kicking will have to come later. At least there's a high chance that they'll deserve it.