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|Friday, February 17th, 2012|
|Thursday, January 19th, 2012|
|An Interesting Point
Yesterday, during the big SOPA/PIPA protests, we had a bunch of corporations spending money both directly and in-kind to send out a message critizing members of the House of Representatives and the Senate by name for their support of a particular law. This was done within 30 days of primary elections in which some of those people are running, which means under the terms of McCain-Feingold, they were engaged in electioneering communications.
Which means that yesterday's protest would have been illegal had the much-maligned Citizens United Ruling gone the other way. Current Mood: thoughtful
|Wednesday, December 21st, 2011|
|Friday, December 2nd, 2011|
From a column about the NY Times coverage of the city's first gay pride march in 1972
|In the back of the line of march had been a contingent in black leather. I’d been curious and asked who they were.|
“We’re the Eulenspiegel Society,” one told me. They took their name from a medieval prankster hanged for his mischief and immortalized in the Richard Strauss tone poem.
Well, he went on, they were a self-help group of sadists and masochists.
And which exactly were they? I asked.
Oh, he told me cheerfully, they were the masochists.
I had to ask. Why were they marching?
He delivered his answer deadpan.
“For better treatment.”
Hat Tip to The Volokh Conspiracy Current Mood: amused
|Sunday, November 6th, 2011|
|After the Fall
People who know me well are probably aware that one of my biggest character flaws is that I'm extremly cynical and alienated. It just seems to me that the older I get, the more it seems that there is nothing truly noble or virtuous in this world; everything that seems to be is just a facade and believing in anyone or anything just leads to eventual betrayal when their true nature is finally revealed.
It's a lesson that was underscored for me yet again this weekend, as one of the few things I still had any faith in turned out to be built upon horrors that even I couldn't have imagined. I have, since I was a little kid, been a follower of Penn State football. My dad graduated from the University and as I was growing up, some of my most cherished memories involve weekend trips to Penn State games. As I grew up, I eventually went to the university myself. I'm a season ticket holder and do my best to make it to two or three games a year. I actually (quite foolishly as it turned out), believed all that "Success with Honor" crap. That this was one of the few major programs that still believed that winning doesn't mean anything if you don't win the right way, and that at the end of the day, character matters more points.
And then this Friday that all came crumbling down:Sandusky Charged In Child Molestation Case, Curley And Senior Admin Charged With Perjury
For more than a decade, a sexual predator was using the program to lure children so that he could rape them, first as an assitant coach and then through a children's charity. The university knew of this and covered the whole thing up. And aside from those legally responsible for this is a larger group of people who seem to have done the minimum legally required and then washed their hands of it, when basic morality would suggest they had a duty to do far more to stop this.
And while the biggest tragedy here is certainly the children who were victimized, on a smaller level I'm incredibly angry that these people had to destroy something I cared deeply about. To take something that was great and make it just like everything else in this crappy world.
And once again I feel another corner of idealism roughly round off. I grow a little more suspicious, a little more bitter, and a little more angry, and I'm sure it will continue until there's nothing left. "To steel the heart against itself ... is a stern task of soul: - No matter, - it is taught." Current Mood: shocked
|Tuesday, October 18th, 2011|
|Wednesday, October 5th, 2011|
|Car vs. Deer
Here's what the deer missile did to my car: Current Mood: annoyed
|Tuesday, October 4th, 2011|
|Car is Mostly Dead; Dragon is All Alive
Hit a flying deer at highway speeds on 422W (flying because it already been hit by another car on 422E). The car won, but is not safely drivable. Driver door dented, keypad hanging by wires, window does not lower all the way. Front left body panel ripped off, left headlight fog lamp and fender smashed, Hood bent. Radiator bent. Car leaking oil. On board diagnostics complains brakes and 4x4 damaged. Collision pre-tensioners on the seatbelt went off, so the seatbelt is shot as well. Deer pieces splattered over side of car.
But I'm okay. Current Mood: blah
|Sunday, September 11th, 2011|
|On the tenth anniversary of the 9/11
This is a poem that Polish poet Czeslaw Milosz wrote shortly following the attacks on 9/11. While not referencing that day specifically, it was intended to be his response to the day.
Current Mood: thoughtful
|In a Parish|
Were I not frail and half broken inside,
I wouldn't be thinking of them, who are, like me, half broken inside.
I would not climb the cemetery hill by the church
To get rid of my self pity.
Michaels who lost every battle,
Lie under crosses with their dates of birth and death. And who
Is going to express them? Their mumblings, weepings, hopes, tears of humiliation?
In hospital muck and the smell of urine,
With their weak and contorted limbs,
And eternity close by. Improper. Indecent.
Like a dollhouse crushed by wheels, like
An elephant trampling a beetle, an ocean drowning an island.
Our stupidity and childishness do nothing to fit us
For this variety of last things.
They had no time to grasp anything of their individual lives,
Any principium individuationis.
Nor do I grasp it, yet what can I do?
Enclosed all my life in a nutshell,
Trying in vain to become something
Completely different from what I was.
Thus we go down into the earth, my fellow parishioners,
With the hope that the trumpet of judgment will call us by our names.
Instead of eternity, greenness and the movement of clouds.
They rise then, thousands of Sophies, Michaels, Matthews,
Marias, Agathas, Bartholomews.
So at last they know why
And for what reason?
|Thursday, September 8th, 2011|
|Saturday, July 30th, 2011|
Look, I realize you want to memorialize your grandfather William Butt, but you really need to rename your pharmacy: Current Mood: amused
|Friday, July 29th, 2011|
|Perfect Metaphor for the Debt Ceiling Crisis
Right now, John Boehner is playing Colnel Sandurz to the Tea Party's Dark Helmut.
It's true that the 2001-2011 spending binge has us heading toward a financial crisis at ludicrous speed, but using the debt ceiling as the mechanism to stop us is the equivalent of pulling the emergency brake:
Of course the Tea Party, like Lord Helmut, is still demanding we do so. Unfortunately if we do, they're not the only ones who are going to crash. Current Mood: worried
|Sunday, July 24th, 2011|
|Marvel's Most Dastardly Villain Ever: The Earworm
I saw the new Captain America movie today and really enjoyed it. The very well done 1940's retro aesthetic to the whole thing made it a lot more memorable than a lot of the generic superhero movies that have been coming out lately.
And the last thing I expected to happen going in is that I'd come out with an insanely catchy tune stuck in my head:
I'm pretty much convinced that every superhero movie should have an Alan Menken penned musical production number in it somewhere. Current Mood: amused
|Friday, July 22nd, 2011|
|Screaming Like a Little Girl
I get from work, and like usual, the first thing I do is change from my work clothes into an undershirt and sweatpants, which is what I normally wear around the house. When I take off my shirt, it buzzed.
I mean the entire shirt buzzed. Which naturally caused me to drop it. Then something like this comes crawling out from under the collar:
This is the female Eastern Cicada Killer. Pretty much everything you'd want to know about it can be summed up by one fact: "Largest Wasp in North America".
Thankfully this means they can't fly very well, so it stayed sitting there while I cobbled together every vacuum cleaner extension in the house into a proverbial ten foot pole I felt comfortable enough to approach it with in order to suck it up. Current Mood: scared
|Monday, July 18th, 2011|
...to making gold on the World of Warcraft Auction House is timing.
For those who don't understand what's being seen here, I bought a Bloodthirsty Sapphire necklace from Bankarama for 346.75g and immediately put it back up for auction for 700g. Bankarama is mocking me for this move... followed barely seconds later by someone buying said necklace for the 700g price. Current Mood: amused
|Sunday, July 17th, 2011|
Well, I was considering joining Google+, but it turns out I will not for the same reason I refuse to join facebook:Google: Go public on Profiles or we'll delete you
Google is requiring Google+ users to do so under their real name. The really scary part is that they may be making this a requirement for using everything from g-mail to YouTube to their core search engine.
My first rule for being safe on the internet is that you never join a site that publically reveals your real identity. I will not use any product that requires me to do so. Current Mood: disappointed
|Friday, July 15th, 2011|
|Monday, June 27th, 2011|
|Now THAT's a Gaffe
Michelle Bachman kicked off her presidential campaign today in Waterloo, Iowa, and decided to pay homage to one of the area's famous residents:
|Well what I want them to know is just like, John Wayne was from Waterloo, Iowa. That’s the kind of spirit that I have, too.|
The problem? Well, there is a famous John Wayne who grew up around Waterloo, Iowa.
Except it wasn't the famous actor, it was John Wayne Gacy
, the serial murdering clown:
The spirit of whom would certainly be a rather novel spin on the role of the President, to say the least.
Hat Tip to Outside the Beltway Current Mood: amused
|Thursday, June 23rd, 2011|
Who's There? Cross-dressing Yankovic! Current Mood: amused