Thursday, April 30, 2009

Wanted: Torture Planner

Well that's a job description you don't see everyday. Apparently the Bush administration paid a couple of psychologists a lot of money to engineer how to torture people. Were they consulting the records of the Inquisition or what?
Associates say the two made good money doing it, boasting of being paid a $1,000 a day by the CIA to oversee the use of the techniques on top al Qaeda suspects at CIA secret sites.
You can watch a short video about it here, it doesn't have an option to embed.

If ever you believed the argument that this was just a couple of "bad apples" I think that argument doesn't have a leg to stand on. This was planned, organized, and implemented by those in the highest of places. And a few grunts took the fall, while the ones responsible for instituting it are still walking around free.

Keeping up with Rep. Michele Bachmann

If you find Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) amusing and idiotic at the same time (really, it's like watching a train wreck) you might want to check out this site I found that's keeping tabs on the latest uninformed, unthinking statement that comes out of her mouth.

Because you can't make this shit up.

My Cat is a Christian

This is total LOLz. There is a lesson to be learned from this, I'm not sure what it is though. XD

Biden Talking out of his Ass: Swine Flu

Oh, Biden. You say some of the most ridiculous things. Where do I begin? For one thing, according to this article at, flu is spread by droplets that we expel from our noses and mouths when we sneeze or cough. These get on our hands or settle on surface, and someone else touches the same surface, and then touches their mouth, nose or eyes, and they get sick. This can happen in the mall, at school, at work, or wherever. So to imply that you have a greater chance of getting sick on an airplane of flu is not exactly true. Sure, you're in a confined space and you probably don't want to be sitting next to someone for so long if they're sick as they'll probably be coughing or sneezing in your space (have you sat in economy lately?), but you have just as much chance if you're sitting next to someone in the theater, or standing in line next to someone at the mall. Openness has little to do with the spread of disease, it has to do with you getting said virus on your hands and then it getting into your bloodstream.

Now the one thing that I will fault the airlines with, is their sinks. You cannot wash your hands properly at them, and so that might be why it seems you are more likely to get sick after being on an international flight when someone else is sick, which has happened to me. Their sinks suck. There's no water pressure, and you have to hold the little lever down to have water come out, and so you have to touch something that has been touched by others to get water. I think maybe it would be prudent at that point to have anti-bacterial gel to put on your hands before you eat or touch your face. Indeed, maybe it would be a good idea for the airlines to hand out anti-bacterial towelettes when you board and supply them throughout the flight.

What I think this boils down to, is if you're sick, you should really ask the airline to change your ticket if it's possible, most of them are being really lenient right now about waiving change fees. Don't fly if you're sick, it's rude to the other passengers. And if you have to fly, maybe consider wearing a face mask so you keep your water droplets to yourself.

Miss California is a Homophobic Prick

I'm sorry, but I think that she should be stripped of her crown as Miss California. Wait. I'm not sorry. She's a stupid, ignorant prick.

Miss California to Campaign Against Gay Marriage

NEW YORK – The reigning Miss California has gone to Washington to help launch a campaign opposing same-sex marriage.

Carrie Prejean told NBC's "Today" show Thursday that she'll be working with the National Organization for Marriage to "protect traditional marriages."

The 21-year-old says that marriage is "something that is very dear to my heart" and she's in Washington to help save it.

She says many people have thanked her for standing up for traditional marriage.

Prejean was named the first runner-up to Miss North Carolina in the Miss USA pageant April 19. Her response to celebrity blogger Perez Hilton's question about legalizing same-sex marriage may have cost her the title.

Let me start by saying, this obviously wasn't her platform before. Ah, and I know good and well what happened. Whatever personal opinions she may have had before the Miss USA pageant, she didn't go on a crusade over them. But afterward, all of a sudden certain groups, like NOM and I'm sure a bunch of other right-wing wacko groups, got wind that she was a.) in the news, and b.) for their cause. Throw enough money at most people and they'll sell their souls for anything. So yes, you are right in thinking where I'm taking this. The anti-gay marriage lobby has bought her off.

Come on California! This stupid, unthinking, parrot, sorry-excuse for a human being doesn't deserve to be Miss California. Is this the platform of Miss California, to deny rights to other people? To be an ignorant, uncouth, unthinking, bought-off fool? Do the right thing and strip her of her crown.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Rep. Michele Bachmann Needs A History of The United States for Dummies

First of all, let me say once more for the record that I hate liars. Now, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) might be misinformed. Perhaps she doesn't realize that she's wrong, but I somehow doubt that. You see, these people believe, and rightly so, that if they repeat a lie enough, it will be believed to be truth. If you are going to be in congress, and represent the people, you should at the very least make sure that what you are saying is true. Maybe you're busy and don't have time to research all the facts for yourself, but that's what unpaid interns are for.

FDR saved this country. And for her to act like he caused the depression and then made it worse, makes me very angry. There are already enough stupid people in this country that know nothing of history, and for her to spread lies like this, that unthinking chattel will go about spouting as truth, makes me even angrier.

I'll start with her first point, that the recession that Coolidge faced was worse than that faced by FDR. First of all, the recession caused at the end of the 1910's and beginning of the 1920's was caused by the end of World War I. Factories that had been pumping out items for war, all of a sudden had no market. It took them time to retool so they could start making domestic products again. There was also high unemployment because of returning troops who needed jobs. Second of all, Coolidge didn't deal with it! He didn't become President until 1923, after the recession was over, when Harding died in office. Indeed, it can be argued that all the lax regulation of the 20's that Coolidge and the other Republicans were responsible for led directly to the Great Depression. Another example of a Democrat cleaning up the Republican mess. Mass de-regulation (see the last two decades and the 1920's) leads to a massive crash (like now, like 1929).

Next, I'd like to address her Hoot-Smalley Act [sic] which is really the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act. That was enacted by Republicans Reed Smoot and Willis C. Hawley and passed by the house, the Senate which were both controlled by the Republicans, and signed into law by Herbert Hoover, the Republican President. It has been argued by economists that it was responsible for exacerbating the Great Depression. It caused the taxes on many goods to go up by 60%. What was that about not raising taxes?

FDR created the Works Project Administration, a "Socialist" idea, which saved this fucking country from absolute poverty and possibly anarchy and annihilation. It put people who were out of work, to work on the government's dime. You ever notice the stone work on many bridges here dating to that era? That was done by stone masons put to work by the WPA. Ever noticed murals on post office walls, or in other government buildings? Artists were paid by the government to paint murals. People were put to work building things and improving our infrastructure. In fact, most of our modern infrastructure has been neglected since.

In fact, FDR didn't take office until 1933, four years after the Great Depression had begun. Michele Bachmann is either stupid, or a liar, or perhaps both.
" a matter of fact the recession that FDR had to deal with wasn't as bad as the recession Coolidge had to deal with in the early 20's, yet the prescription that Coolidge put on that, from history, is lower taxes, lower regulatory burden, and we saw the roaring 20s where we saw markets and growth in the economy like we'd never seen before in the history of the country. FDR applied just the opposite forumula, the Hoot-Smalley Act [sic], which was a tremendous burden on tariff restrictions and of course trade barriers and the regulatory burden and tax barriers. That's what we saw happen under FDR that took a recession and blew it into a full scale depression. The American people suffered for almost ten years under that kind of thinking."

Mexico Slow to Update Swine Flu Statistics

I've been checking the WHO's website every day waiting to see what Mexico was saying after all the hyperbole in the press about 150+ deaths. They have not updated how many are infected or have died in more than two days. So either they have no more cases, or they're not telling us. I am betting on the latter.
Swine influenza - update 5

29 April 2009 -- The situation continues to evolve rapidly. As of 18:00 GMT, 29 April 2009, nine countries have officially reported 148 cases of swine influenza A/H1N1 infection. The United States Government has reported 91 laboratory confirmed human cases, with one death. Mexico has reported 26 confirmed human cases of infection including seven deaths.

The following countries have reported laboratory confirmed cases with no deaths - Austria (1), Canada (13), Germany (3), Israel (2), New Zealand (3), Spain (4) and the United Kingdom (5).

Further information on the situation will be available on the WHO website on a regular basis.

WHO advises no restriction of regular travel or closure of borders. It is considered prudent for people who are ill to delay international travel and for people developing symptoms following international travel to seek medical attention, in line with guidance from national authorities.

There is also no risk of infection from this virus from consumption of well-cooked pork and pork products. Individuals are advised to wash hands thoroughly with soap and water on a regular basis and should seek medical attention if they develop any symptoms of influenza-like illness.
That's the same as Monday's update.

Indeed there are supposed to be a bunch of suspected cases locally where I am. This is day three of waiting for the results from the state capitol. They said it would take up to 72 hours, well it's been that long. I'd like to know whether we have cases here or not. Yes I am impatient. Supposedly a bunch of children are ill at some of the local elementary schools, but it's hard to tell if that's just rumor or what. They haven't taken any action to close any of the schools yet. The local paper isn't any help at all, as all they do is parrot the AP, and pass along rumors and misinformation.

Egyptians Slaughtering Pigs for No Reason

Egypt is ordering hundreds of thousands of pigs slaughtered.

Apparently the health authorities in Egypt missed the fact that swine flu is spreading from person to person, and that the people contracting it have not had any contact with pigs. And why would pigs half a world away from the outbreak be infected?

This will only hurt the poor farmers there, who are told they can sell the meat so they deserve no compensation from the government. I wonder what slaughtering 300,000 pigs all at once will do to the price of pork when the market is flooded there? It doesn't take an economist to figure that one out.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Republicans: Party of the School Yard Bully

I have another right-wing rant in my inbox this evening. This one treating Arlen Specter like the popular kid who decided to be friends with the geeks. It's called ostracizing those with whom you don't agree. The Republicans have turned into the party of the school yard bully. "We're taking our ball and going home!" That and when someone doesn't do something the way you want them to, you have to turn on them and tell the whole school that they're really a whore who slept with everyone. It's so fucking immature. I feel like I'm back in high school when I read this shit.

As we learned today, U.S. Senator Arlen Specter has decided become a Democrat in the face of a seemingly insurmountable bid for re-election next year in Pennsylvania... Even before his announcement today, Senator Specter's political future was in grave danger, with recent polls showing him trailing former U.S. Rep. Pat Toomey by more than 20 points.

After he crossed party lines to support President Obama's massive $787 billion "stimulus" package, Senator Specter conceded that his vote caused "an enormous political problem for me," yet argued it was a "matter of necessity." His purported willingness to put politics aside for the good of our country ring especially hollow in light of his decision today.

While we are disappointed that Senator Specter has put personal ambition ahead of principles, we are confident that the Keystone State will reject this posturing and elect a new Republican Senator who will stand by his word next year. The fact remains that Pennsylvanians are looking for principled leadership, not political opportunism.

Nevertheless, today's news raised the stakes for all Americans. President Obama and the Democratic Congress have spent more in the first 100 days than what was spent on the Iraq War, the Afghanistan War and Katrina combined. And you and I, along with our children and grandchildren, are going to pay this bill. Senator Specter has chosen to enable this runaway spending by joining the Democratic Party...

First of all, let me say I hold no idealist view of Specter's reasons for defecting to the Democrats. I'm sure that the reasons are probably self serving, but what politician isn't self serving? This is like the pot calling the kettle black. And Specter pointed out a very important thing today, and that was that the Republican party has moved further and further to the right. They have embraced the xenophobic, homophobic, religious fanatics, and that's pretty much what's left right now in their party. I want to point out that the Republicans are one hair shy of outright fascism, and the Democrats aren't even on the left, they're all moderate. They're pro-Corporate at the expense of the people. The only good thing about the Democrats is that they do want the government to stay out of our private lives, which is what the Republicans are *supposed* to be for, before they were hijacked by the Moral Majority... I suppose they're the Moral Minority now.

Secondly, who the fuck do these people think they are taking the Democrats to task for spending money on the economy and infrastructure while saying it's costing more than the two wars we're fighting and the clean up from Katrina. The stupid pricks didn't have to go along with the wars. I'm sure they'll try to blame that on Obama eventually too. We'd still have all that money and hundreds of thousands of people would still be alive, if we hadn't gone off to wage war in Iraq because Saddam flipped G.W.'s daddy off. The Republicans think it's okay to blow a huge wad of cash on killing people, but improving the lives of their constituents? Not on your life.

Dirty Swine! Flu Name Offensive

I wondered why they had started calling it "North American Flu" in the press this morning. Now I have my answer.
Israeli official: Swine flu name offensive

"JERUSALEM (AP) -- The outbreak of swine flu should be renamed "Mexican" influenza in deference to Muslim and Jewish sensitivities over pork, said an Israeli health official Monday.

Deputy Health Minister Yakov Litzman said the reference to pigs is offensive to both religions and "we should call this Mexican flu and not swine flu," he told a news conference at a hospital in central Israel.

Both Judaism and Islam consider pigs unclean and forbid the eating of pork products.

Scientists are unsure where the new swine flu virus originally emerged, though it was identifed first in the United States. They say there is nothing about the virus that makes it "Mexican" and worry such a label would be stigmatizing..."
So now we're going to start naming medical based stuff based on religious superstition? Please. I happen to like pigs by the way. They're smart, and I don't understand how merely saying that the flu is 'swine' somehow compromises their religious beliefs. Maybe it's just me.

I fail to see how a exhortation from the Biblical writers to not eat pork, translates into not using the name "pig" or "swine". Are they not allowed to look at pictures of pigs either? I mean, I'm really not schooled on this avoiding all things to do with pigs. I just thought they weren't supposed to eat it. So, if this is the case, does reading The Three Little Pigs to a Jewish kid in a class constitute an infringement on his religious beliefs? Am I correct in thinking that this is about as ridiculous? Or am I missing something?

Monday, April 27, 2009

Sensationalism is the New Press: Or How We're all going to DIE!!!

So, I was checking my email, and one of the links to yahoo!News happens to catch my eye. It screams "Swine Flu epidemic enters dangerous new phase"!!!!! zOMG... it must be terrible, they must have more information, more people must have died, or something... Nope. Same story that I read earlier this afternoon. Nothing had changed, except they felt the need to make the title sensational.

As an aside, I happened to visit the WHO's website. Their latest update says that seven people are dead in Mexico from this. Yes, you read that correctly. There are 26 confirmed cases of swine flu in Mexico, and seven, yes that's seven people are dead. According to them.
Swine Influenza - Update 3

27 April 2009 -- The current situation regarding the outbreak of swine influenza A(H1N1) is evolving rapidly. As of 27 April 2009, the United States Government has reported 40 laboratory confirmed human cases of swine influenza A(H1N1), with no deaths. Mexico has reported 26 confirmed human cases of infection with the same virus, including seven deaths. Canada has reported six cases, with no deaths, while Spain has reported one case, with no deaths.

Further information on the situation will be available on the WHO website on a regular basis.

WHO advises no restriction of regular travel or closure of borders. It is considered prudent for people who are ill to delay international travel and for people developing symptoms following international travel to seek medical attention, in line with guidance from national authorities.

There is also no risk of infection from this virus from consumption of well-cooked pork and pork products. Individuals are advised to wash hands thoroughly with soap and water on a regular basis and should seek medical attention if they develop any symptoms of influenza-like illness.

Now the AP is saying it's 160 dead in Mexico, and their numbers keep going up every hour. They have no information though on who is dead, demographics, age, etc and no source for their numbers. The Health Minister of Mexico has said that twenty are confirmed dead of swine flu, but he can't give details because of privacy reasons, and doesn't "have the information" on him concerning their ages or situations. Really? You have got to be fucking kidding me. What are we basing these numbers on? Rumors?!

What I want to know, is when the fuck someone is going to reign the press in and tell them to stop spreading possible lies and causing panic. And when the fuck is Mexico going to get their shit together and figure out what is going on and who has actually died of this as opposed to any other form of flu or illness. It's like, "oh yes, old lady Juarez is dead down the street of something, must be swine flu because what else could it be?"

And again, a public health announcement. Wash your fucking hands!


"You turn the page, you wash your hands. You turn the page, you wash your hands. You turn the page, you wash your hands."--Filbert, Rocko's Modern Life

God will Save You From Swine Flu

Mexico doesn't have the manpower to send people to interview the families of the deceased who supposedly died from swine flu, but they say they have enough medicine to treat the outbreak if need be. Huh? In the mean time, religion will solve this, so you better start praying.
"For the first time in 300 years, the cathedral in Mexico City's main plaza has pulled an icon of the Lord of Health from storage, and worshippers placed it on the principal altar."
I'm beginning to doubt Mexico's ability to handle the situation, whether this flu is a global threat or not. The people of Mexico are obviously suffering, as usual.

In Toluca, a city west of the capital, one family said health authorities refused to treat a relative Sunday who had full-blown flu symptoms and could barely stand. The man, 31-year-old truck driver Elias Camacho, was even ordered out of a government ambulance, his father-in-law told The Associated Press.

Paramedics complained that Camacho — who had a fever, was coughing and had body aches — was contagious, Jorge Martinez Cruz said.

Of course, this is if you can even believe anything the press is saying at this point. They say over a hundred people have died in Mexico of this, but if you dig deeper you find out that the majority of those cases are *not* confirmed yet. Confirming them requires them to sequence the DNA, which takes days, if they even have samples from these cases. Leave it to the press to spread panic prematurely.

Sure, we should all be careful and wash our hands well, cover our mouths if we cough, and if you're sick you should stay home or see a doctor if you have symptoms, but seriously. On that note, this whole thing rings of Christian Fundamentalism "the-end-of-the-world-is-coming" ideology, also known as "we're-all-gonna-die!!!!!" There's a point where we should panic, and we're no where near that point. So, let's not panic yet, shall we? Turn off 24 hour CNN (or whatever news network you watch) and go do something else. Remember, the press is merely in it for the ratings. I suggest if you want information on this, to look at the CDC's website, which is not in it for the ratings.

Republicans are Anti-Worker, but we Knew That

I had another ten page rant about Obama in my inbox this morning. This time from Senator Jim DeMint (Republican) of South Carolina via Crackpots. They're asking me to sign some petition against unions, because how dare workers organize. Really though, the letter was half attack on Obama and half attack on unions.

I'm not saying unions are all they are cracked up to be, perhaps we could use some reform in that area, but if workers want to unionize they should be able to. My grandmother was in a union when she worked at a factory in the 1970s and she liked it and she made very good money. When I worked for a big box retailer, whose name will remain unsaid, they used scare tactics against any type of organizing, implying that anyone who dared attempt to unionize would find themselves without a job, and saying they had an "open door" policy that meant we didn't need a union. Really? I beg to differ. I think that unions give workers leverage, and the Corporatocracy doesn't like that, because it might eat into their profit margin if workers start demanding enough pay to live. And the sad thing is, the people I worked with who lacked critical thinking skills, were persuaded to believe that unions are a bad thing.

But the thing that really pissed me off about this drivel in my inbox, they don't bother to say what the number is on the bill, or the actual title of the bill, they just call it a "Card Check Forced Labor Bill" which I'm damned sure that's not the name of it, so I can't find what bill they're talking about, and I don't really have time to dig much for it. That in and of itself is underhanded. They spout a bunch of stuff, and make it extremely difficult for anyone with half a brain or a questioning thought in their head to go and see if what they're saying is even true. Oh, and of course at the bottom of the rant, surprise, surprise, they ask for money. There's also a disclaimer at the bottom saying they're "non-partisan". My ass.

Some choice tidbits from the ten page rant:
"You see, passage of the so-called "Card Check" Bill is all that stands between the union bosses and total control over hundreds of thousands of America's small businesses . . .

. . . not to mention the hundreds of millions of forced-dues dollars that will immediately be seized from American workers' paychecks...

Any workers who refuse to sign the so-called "union authorization cards" would find themselves victims of lies, intimidation, threats, harassment -- and worse -- from union militants...

And when you do, please consider a generous contribution of $500, $250, $100 or $35 to the Committee."
They make it sound like the union is going to come in with billy clubs like it's the Republican National Convention and start beating people if they don't want to unionize.

So, I finally found what it is, I had heard of it, but it had slipped my mind. The Employee Free Choice Act. Because you know, it's a terrible thing that employees have a choice about whether they are represented or not. I find the rhetoric in their stupid newsletter a turn off (i.e. Obama is a socialist communist devil worshipper... okay it didn't go quite that far but it might as well have), and I have this sneaking suspicion that it's lies, but I seriously don't have the time right now to go through all their points and research it.

I will say though, that there was a time in this country, when we were prosperous where almost every industry was unionized. Those days are gone. The Corporatocracy has shipped all the high paying jobs overseas and have reduced what they pay to the ones that are left here. So you can't make enough to live any more without a college education, and even then it's dicey.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Congressman Calls for Mexican Border to be Closed

What an interesting development. After all this time of screaming about having closed borders with Mexico, we finally have an excuse. I find this an interesting development. I wonder if they'll cancel all flights into and out of Mexico as well.
"The public needs to be aware of the serious threat of swine flu, and we need to close our borders to Mexico immediately and completely until this is resolved," Massa said in a statement.

"I am making this announcement because I see this as a serious threat to the health of the American public and I do not believe this issue is receiving the attention it needs to have in the news," Massa said.
Really? Despite the fact that the news has talked about nothing else, it hasn't paid enough attention to it. Would quarantining Mexico even work, considering that people have been coming and going all this time? This just keeps getting weirder and weirder.

As an aside, they'd better not cancel flights to and from Europe, as I'm going next month! Grr.


"My name is Shackleford, Rusty Shackleford."--Dale Gribble

Republicans, Democrats, What's the Bloody Difference?

In an article from the UK that I stole from The Well-Armed Lamb, it seems that the Obama Administration is taking some pages out of Bush's book. They want to overturn a 1986 ruling (Michigan vs. Jackson) that people have the right to legal counsel before being questioned by the police, and that the police are supposed to inform them of this, and not question them if they want a lawyer. It's designed to protect the mentally ill, the poor, the uneducated, and the young, who may not know that because of the sixth amendment they have a right to a lawyer before being questioned.

If they have any sense, they'll backtrack off this real quick. However, it doesn't do them any favors. If you ever doubted for a moment that this Corporatocracy was run by two parties you have another thing coming. These politicians, on both sides are nothing but lying sacks of shit, plotting on how best they can usurp total control of us all. In the end, that is what both parties want, and they're willing to work together behind closed doors to see it happen. Of course they have to put up the fake fight, it's like a WWE match, so fake you can't even stand it, in public, in front of the cameras, so that we can all see how "different" they are.

And what was that I was saying yesterday about the Swine Flu being used to cover something up... as important as this is, it isn't in any of the American News (yet?), not even on supposedly liberal MSNBC or even on Faux News. Funny that. I would think Faux News would be all over this as much as they hate Obama all. The British report it and it doesn't even affect them. Absolutely fucking amazing.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Swine Flu being used to Cover Up something?

Isn't it odd that all of a sudden we have the press attempting to spread panic over a flu that isn't a pandemic, and probably won't become one, by trying to say it might. There was absolutely nothing in the news about this flu before yesterday morning. A pandemic by definition is a virus that spreads quickly from person to person. The people who came down with it in the United States were sick two to six weeks ago. Two of the high school students who were sick in the United States have returned to school. If it were a pandemic, at least half the high school would have been sick. It would have spread all over the country by now, and we'd be closing everything up in an attempt to contain it. I live less than a hundred miles from the Mexico border, and I don't know anyone who is sick here or has been sick in the last two months. If we ever do have a pandemic, we'll see illness before we see news about it.

Indeed, a doctor at a hospital in Mexico City hasn't even seen a case of it.
"Outside Hospital Obregon in the capital's middle-class Roma district, a tired Dr. Roberto Ortiz, 59, leaned against an ambulance and sipped coffee Saturday on a break from an unusually busy shift.

"The people are scared," Ortiz said. "A person gets some flu symptoms or a child gets a fever and they think it is this swine flu and rush to the hospital."

He said none of the cases so far at the hospital had turned out to be swine flu."

Twenty people as of this morning (they're saying maybe 62 now) dying in Mexico, a third world country of the flu is no surprise. I mean how many people die in Mexico of the flu in any given year? Something is going on, something is happening, and someone doesn't want us to notice, they want it buried by this swine flu panic. Could it be the torture news about Cheney? Or something else? Is Mexico involved in something with us?

Cheney gathering documents?

Or new torture photos?

Or is it something else we don't know about yet? Or is it merely a coincidence?

Friday, April 24, 2009

Made In Communist China

With all the right wing extremist wackos raving and ranting over socialist Venezuela (I dare them to define socialism, the fools don't even know what it is) and Obama the Socialist (huh? like, as if), I got to thinking about it and realized that these people are either one of two camps. They're either the powers-that-be, spreading misinformation for the purpose of advancing their Corporatocracy, or they're sheeple, parroting the last thing their talking head on Faux News or Conservative Talk Radio told them they should think.

Now, China on the other hand. China, which is communist and has terrible human rights violations, these so called capitalist (predominately) Christians don't have a problem with China. Nevermind that communism is further to the left than socialism. Nevermind that American corporations are using slave labor in China to increase their profits so they can make millions, and we can have our cheap plastic crap. So why aren't they decrying us doing business with China? Could it be because China serves us whereas Chavez has basically told us to go fuck ourselves?

From a historical standpoint, it seems that we can set up all the dictatorships we want, and we're fine with their human rights violations, because we seriously don't have any problem perpetrating them ourselves (Abu Ghraib, Gitmo, rounding up Japanese for internment camps in WWII, giving native Americans blankets tainted with smallpox, you get the idea), so long as the country we've jury rigged gives us our proper homage. The second they do something we don't like, well, we'll just set up a military coup. Like that couldn't possibly backfire...

Our Constitution dictates that our government should operate in a certain manner, under a set of laws, but so many Americans seem willing to ignore it, when it serves their purpose to do so. You know, I don't give a damn what your private opinions are, or what political party you like to back, but for the love of god, think. It won't kill you.

Speaking of which... do you think China could export some Reason and Common Sense?

"Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense."--Siddhārtha Gautama

What's Good for the Goose: Minnesota Election Fiasco

So, the election in Minnesota isn't such as big of a fiasco as the 2000 election in which the Supreme Court appointed G.W. Bush to the Presidency of the United States, but it is a fiasco nevertheless on a smaller scale. As you well know, if you've read my prior posts, I'm on Conservative Republican mailing lists. It makes for amusing reading, most of the time. Tonight I get a letter from Orrin Hatch and John Cornyn (my Senator as a matter of fact), pleading with me to donate to the National Republic Senatorial Committee (like hell) for the support of Norm Coleman in the contested election in Minnesota. Now, perhaps that in and of itself isn't so crazy. What is crazy is what Orrin Hatch and John Cornyn, or whoever wrote this for the two of them, says:

"...Unbelievably, the very basic right to have a legal vote counted and ballot weighted evenly against another is under assault in Minnesota.

Norm was ahead on Election Day, he was ahead when the canvassing concluded, and then, instead of recounting votes, different standards were applied to ballots with some counting twice and non-existent ballots being added to the count.

To make matters worse, a three-judge panel issued rulings inconsistent with previous standards resulting in the disenfranchisement of more than 4,000 Minnesotans...

Just the other day, former Congressman Vin Weber wrote in the Star Tribune, "The decision by Norm Coleman to appeal the ruling by the three-judge panel in the U.S. Senate election contest ought to be viewed as a courageous step in the long-term interests of all Minnesotans.

"While political analysts, Democratic stalwarts, Al Franken and a bored popular media want to call an end to what has become the longest election contest in Minnesota history, it should be noted that Coleman's courage and conviction will serve him well whatever the final outcome.

"Let's be clear. The issues here are not about expediency. That's not how Minnesotans view civic life. On the contrary, Minnesota is the place where we value the legitimacy of our elections and the equal opportunity of all citizens to cast a legal ballot and have it counted."

I couldn't agree more. I know I speak for my colleagues when I say we remain completely and wholly committed to supporting Senator Coleman in his effort to achieve fairness in the election contest in Minnesota. Thank you.

Senator Orrin Hatch
Vice Chairman
National Republican Senatorial Committee

Really? Not about expediency? Everyone should have an equal opportunity to cast a legal ballot and have it counted? Really? What about all those blacks in Florida? You remember, the hanging chads in 2000. The Supreme Court making the decision to crown G.W. Bush dictator... I mean President. Surely Orrin Hatch must have agreed in 2000 that Al Gore had the right to challenge the results in court and a fair recount. Right? That's not what you told CNN...
Wolf Blitzer asks Orrin Hatch if it's fair to move the deadline from 5pm to 9pm so they can finish counting the ballots by hand. Orrin responds, "I'm not sure that it is under the circumstances, because we're now -- remember, this was all supposed to be certified by the 14th."
What was that about expediency? Or is that only when it favors your candidate?
"I think when a court gives an order, then you abide by the order," when asked by Blitzer about extending the recount beyond what the court had approved of.
Really? But you just said now the court shouldn't decide, you're decrying the fact that three judges made a decision you didn't like. What a bloody hypocrite.

You see the thing is, and I'm not in Minnesota so I haven't been following this very closely, so correct me if I'm wrong, but they did a recount, and Al Franken came out three hundred and some odd votes ahead. The Republicans are just mad they lost and accusing the election commission and the court of fraud, doesn't make you look very good. It doesn't matter if the man was ahead on election night, he wasn't ahead by very much. It was a close race, but in the end, it looks like Al Franken has more votes. Do the honorable thing and give a concession speech.

BTW, what is it with these Al's having so many problem with elections?

Convicted of Torturing Prisoners to Coerce Confessions

And here we have it folks, the New York Times has articles dating to 1983 when a sheriff and his deputies right here in the state of Texas were convicted of the crime of torturing prisoners by waterboarding them.
"The Sheriff of San Jacinto County has resigned after admitting he operated a marijuana trap on heavily traveled U.S. 59 as well as subjected jail inmates to water torture to gain confessions and testimony."
"Mr. Lewis, 26 years old, and Vernon Perry, 27, both convicted of burglary in 1976, said they saw the former San Jacinto County Sheriff, James Parker, direct his deputies to coerce confessions from two burglary suspects by draping a towel over each man's face and pouring water over it until the men gagged."
"Federal District Judge James DeAnda has sentenced a former deputy sheriff, Floyd Baker, to four years in prison for torturing prisoners to make them confess to crimes."

These require a subscription to view, but have to do with this:

Torture Hannity for Charity

Hey, that kinda rhymes! I have to put my two cents in on this. Hannity knows nothing. Waterboarding has always been considered torture, as far back as the middle ages where the Inquisition used it because it didn't draw blood. He has no idea. I'm all for this. If I had the money, I'd give money to charity for each second he lasts. I'm wagering he wouldn't last more than a minute.

Thanks to the Progressive Puppy.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Let's Waterboard Bill O'Reilly

I mean after all, he doesn't seem to see a problem with it. I don't understand what part of immoral and wrong, never mind illegal, (in laws both domestic and international) that these bastards don't understand. I don't get it. The end does not justify the means. Period. NEVER.

Via ThinkProgress

The Inquisition was a Good Thing

I hadn't heard about the Nazi-wanna-be group "Youth for Western Civilization" until I heard about Tom Tancredo getting run out of UNC-CH by a broken window, that I wrote about yesterday. The founder of the chapter of that group at UNC-CH, Riley Matheson, gave an interview before that whole fiasco, going on about the views and goals of the group. The one thing that struck me as absurd above all the others, of course I love medieval history, so it might just be me, was his comments about the Inquisition.
At the same time, YWC promotes a celebration of western European culture. On the YWC Web site and Facebook group, there are numerous historical references to European culture. I was wondering how that plays into your role at UNC.

"The problem with university students and faculty is that there is basically, in our opinion, a deep mistrust and hatred of Western heritage. We're constantly focusing on the sins of our past. It's not to say they weren't sins. It's just to say that we need to revitalize our culture and not constantly talk about mistakes we might have made. We've long since made up for the sins we might have committed."

Do you mean slavery and the Inquisition?

"I can definitely say that slavery's one of the sins. When it comes to things like the Inquisition, I'd rather not comment—I don't want to condemn it. That's a personal opinion, and not really a club opinion."

You have got to be kidding me. You don't want to condemn the torture and murder of hundreds of thousands of people because of thought crimes? WTF are these people smoking? The Inquisition tortured people to extract confessions. They wanted to know if anyone else might be heretics or were skiving off of their Catholic duties. They used waterboarding, the rack, and in certain times and places, things worse than that. The Spanish Inquisition, which is probably the most well known thanks to Monty Python's Flying Circus, was apparently renowned for their creative torturing of prisoners. But they weren't the only Inquisition. There were plenty of others that operated all over Europe from the mid-13th century when it was founded to combat Catharism in the Languedoc to the 19th century. In fact, the Holy Office of the Inquisition still exists to this day in Catholicism, albeit under a different name, The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

When someone wouldn't give in under torture and condemn other people, and renounce any thoughts that they had that were contrary to the "good" teachings of the Catholic church, they were turned over to the secular arm of the government and burned at the stake, or in certain other times and places drawn and quartered, dragged by horses and/or hanged. Sometimes if the "crime" was a small one, they were given penance, and if they relapsed into their heresy, they didn't get a third chance. The second trial was a certain death sentence. And this stupid bastard doesn't want to condemn any of that, indeed, it seems that he wasn't keen on telling the interviewer what he really thought about it since he didn't want to comment on it. I wonder why? Could it be because he fancies doing that sort of thing to people?

The Daily Show: Balzheimers and Stockholm Pt. 2

Torture does not work. It has been proven time and again (I can't even believe that we're even debating this in this day and age), that either one of two things will happen. The first, which is most common, is that people will say ANYTHING under torture, usually lies to hide the truth, but in an attempt to save themselves. They'll make things up, they'll point the finger at their own mother, or father or sibling to make the torture stop. The second thing that can happen, which is less common, is if the person truly believes in their cause they won't say anything at all, even under torture. They'll die first. So, torture doesn't work and why are we debating that it might. It is immoral and unconstitutional, something that certain political factions can't seem to wrap their tiny little brains around.

The Daily Show With Jon StewartM - Th 11p / 10c
Balzheimers Disease
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Economic CrisisPolitical Humor

And part two, of the Stockholm Syndrome:

The Daily Show With Jon StewartM - Th 11p / 10c
The Stockholm Syndrome Pt. 2
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Economic CrisisPolitical Humor

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Tom Tancredo and the Broken Window: A Tale from UNC-CH

Tancredo got run off from the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill, by a small, broken window pane. Apparently some students protested the fact that a Nazi-style club called "Youth for Western Civilization" invited him to come and give what amounts to a hate speech against illegal immigrants and their children receiving in-state tuition. You can see the video on the link to their site there. It's mostly boring, but worth watching I suppose, if only to see the persecution complex these people have.

Tancredo is an ass. He believes that immigrants should give up their culture, language and identity if they want to come live here and that they should forget their native language and speak English. Tom Tancredo, tu es un grand imbécile. Anyway, what makes this stupid and ironic, is that the first generation of his ancestors probably didn't do so. He isn't Native American, so I really don't know what his problem is. We are a nation of immigrants. Some of mine came here before there were laws concerning immigration, in 1638. The first generation of immigrants often don't learn the language, and they usually don't fully assimilate. It is possible, but not likely, unless they have means. The poor are typically disadvantaged in this area. They usually don't have the resources to spend on classes to learn English, nor do they have the time when they work to support themselves. The poor probably don't even have an education in their own language, so to expect them to learn English is a stretch, unless you're going to fund it, and help them with it. Now the second generation of immigrants are usually more at home here. Often by the third or fourth generation, they have no ties to the original country. As my father used to tell me, have some patience, things take time.

What this all boils down to is an underlying hatred of dark skinned people, or people of other religions. It used to be the Irish Catholics (no Irish need apply) that caught all sorts of discrimination when they immigrated here in the late 19th century, now it's mostly Catholic Hispanics from central and south America.

I am a firm supporter of education, and these people have already risked life itself in search of what we take for granted every day. I truly believe that this world would be a better place if people would put themselves into the shoes of others, if only for a moment, to think about the struggles they must have faced. To imagine for a moment, the shoe on the other foot. If a university wants to allow them to apply as residents because they have lived in the state for more than a year or for scholarships, they should let them. It should be up to the university, not up to racist demagogues.

Now, the protesters perhaps weren't as effective as they could have been. I'm assuming the window was broken on accident. It was reported that someone hit on it with their hand too hard, not that they threw anything through it. As much as it pains us, we have to let even racists bastards speak. Packing the room in silence wearing all black and carrying small signs would have gone further in my opinion.

As for the person who took the video comparing this to Kristallnacht. Shame on you, sir! Some stupid college student accidentally breaking a ten inch square window does not even begin to compare to thirty thousand Jews being rounded up and taken to concentration camps and having their property confiscated. And it's even more ironic that this person's organization promoting western "culture" rings of the rhetoric of the Hitler Youth. And their logo, an arm in black and white holding what looks like a war hammer, struck me as familiar in style and design. One of the Hitler Youth's flags was an eagle holding a hammer, also in black and white. Go figure. If that's the style they're going for, they've accomplished it.

As an aside, I'm from North Carolina. They don't mess around with racists down in Chapel Hill. Those of us from that area remember the race riots, and the Greensboro massacre. There's a ton of KKK and Christian Identity around there, who are violent and hate immigrants and blacks. All it takes is a single word to act as a spark to set everyone off. It's like screaming "FIRE" in a crowded theater. Tancredo should go and think hard on what he says. He should truly re-examine his life. I have an idea that he doesn't really believe what he says all that much, except that it wins him support and followers from the haters. If he truly was willing to fight for what he says he believes, a broken window wouldn't have deterred him.

A Socialist Nightmare

You know, I'd totally move to Sweden... except that it's cold, really cold, and there's not much sunlight six months of the year, and I don't speak Swedish.

Ten weeks of paid vacation! Sixteen MONTHS of maternity leave! Now that's caring about the family. The conservative talking heads who support the American Corporatocracy have no idea about "family." All they care about is the almighty dollar. And they use moral issues to keep people in fear and under their control.

The Daily Show With Jon StewartM - Th 11p / 10c
The Stockholm Syndrome
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Economic CrisisPolitical Humor

The Shoe on the Other Foot: Or How to Sue the DHS Over Nothing

I wound up with another right-wing wacko newsletter in my inbox this morning, this one from Townhall. Titled "Stop Janet Napolitano's War Against Americans and Our Constitution," it says that the Thomas More Law Center has filed a suit against Janet Napolitano for infringing on their first and fifth amendment rights (huh?), and they'd like for you to send them money, it's tax deductible. You know, I really think that some people should have their tax exempt status revoked when they pull shit like this. But whatever, the point is, they're mad because they lost and there's a black guy in the White House, so now they have to go and waste money on frivolous lawsuits over perceived slights against their freedom. The rant is long, incoherent and convoluted, but here's a snippet of it:

Why has Janet Napolitano diverted public attention from the real acts of terrorism in our country, which she now refers to as "man-caused disasters"? And why is she so willing to use the word "terrorist" to describe law-abiding Americans?
The truth is that Janet Napolitano is threatening Americans who disagree with the policies of the Obama administration to "Shut Up or else."
Would you ever have imagined our own government targeting as terrorists our returning veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan who placed themselves in harms way to defend our country?
Would you ever have imagined our own government would target citizens based on their political and moral beliefs such as opposition to abortion, same-sex marriage, or the social programs of the Obama administration?
Gee, that's really funny. I seem to remember G.W. Bush's supporters calling people unpatriotic when they questioned the un-Constitutional things that he did. Now that we have a chance to undo the damage the neo-Cons did to the Constitution, that's suddenly against the Constitution. Yeah. Thinking about it will make your head hurt. G.W. Bush can wipe his ass with our Constitution and use the DHS to strip us of our constitutional rights such as with the warrantless wiretapping and the use of torture, and these bastards didn't care about that, but warn that some right-wing wackos á-la-Timothy-McVeigh might have cause to do others harm, and oh-my-god-the-government-is-going-to-take-away-our-rights!

And all of this because she said that right-wing extremists might *try* to recruit veterans. This would seem like a joke if it weren't so troubling. The judge will probably throw it out as groundless, but you have to ask yourself this, why are these people so upset over the assessment that right-wing extremists are a danger to our democracy and safety? Unless Napolitano hit a nerve. Actually if you take into consideration all the right-wing wackos screaming for secession and the violent overthrow of a duly elected government, and thinly or not-at-all-masked neo-Nazi militias who want a white Christian America, you might see that perhaps Napolitano isn't so far off the mark.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A Giant Gay Repellent Umbrella

Because if you get hit in the head by a gay guy falling out of the sky, it might hurt.

However, if you watch this video, your ribs will hurt, from laughter. What makes it especially funny, is that George Takai is in it. This is from the same comedy troop that did Prop 8: The Musical. Brilliant stuff this.

But inevitably, you'll think about how stupid people are. As if I care whether Jim and Joe down the street get married and keep house. It ain't none of my business, and it ain't none of yours either. If you think some sky god is going to get mad about it, why don't you let him come down here and let us know in person how angry he is about it? I'm waiting, but I won't hold my breath.

Cap and Trade Hysteria

For some reason, I'm on multiple right-wing wacko mailing lists. I don't know why. What a waste of bandwidth. I don't have the heart to unsubscribe though, because I figure that it's best to know what your enemies are up to. Most of the time these newsletters are full of lies, and always full of hysteria. They use tactics that are designed to scare people. Make them think that everything is going wrong and they'll suffer for sure. Fear is what they're selling, and obviously quite a few people are in the market for it.

Today I got a newsletter from John Ensign, the Republican Senator from Nevada. This guy is certifiable half the time, and he's elected. He might be a nice guy in person, I've never met him, but his newsletters often stretch the truth of things and propagate hysteria, just like all the other wackos. So the newsletter screams that Obama is going to pass something called a Cap and Trade system on energy and it's going to cost every family $3000 a year. Turns out that $3000 might actually be more like $300, but who's paying attention to where they're getting these numbers?

Now, first of all, as educated as I am, I had no idea what a Cap and Trade system is. I imagine to his uneducated readers who can't think for themselves this sounds scary. Something they don't know what it is, and it costs a lot. But I can think for myself so I went off to find out what this all meant.

Funny thing is, we're already using a Cap and Trade system on a bunch of things, to reduce acid rain and to reduce CO2 emissions. Now, that is the government's website, so since I don't believe everything I read, I have to find some other sources. Turns out that the Canadian press has a very good explanation of how it's supposed to work since they're thinking about doing the same thing.
"In the cap-and-trade system proposed by the panel, all businesses would have to buy credits to cover the emissions they produce. If a company's emissions exceed the cap set by government, they would have to buy more credits from companies that came in under the cap. Such a system creates financial incentives for companies to reduce their emissions because they can then avoid having to buy more credits and also be in a position to make money selling their unused emission credits."
Now, here's the key thing. This will make prices go up, if energy providers fail to reduce their emissions. They will pass it onto the consumer, obviously. What they'll have then is a very angry consumer. In Texas, we have choice about who we get our electricity from. There's competition and I imagine that they'll be competing like mad to make it as cheap as possible. Secondly, if they can sell any credits left over to make a profit, well that would benefit business.

Thirdly, this money isn't going out the window. They may have to pay the government, they may indeed pass some of it on to us, however in the end, that means that the government has money to use, if we can persuade them to use it on something to benefit us, our infrastructure, our schools, or education, it's a win-win situation.

Lastly, so what if you have to pay a little more? Quite frankly, you can't breathe money. If we don't do something, indeed it may already be too late, the ice at the poles will melt and the temperature of the earth will rise, along with sea levels, and all coastal areas will be flooded. The only question is, by how much? This isn't up for argument. Sure the nutty people who think that Jesus is coming back any day (any time now since 2000 years ago!) and so it doesn't matter, will tell you that scientists are wrong. They haven't bothered to look at the data (surprise, surprise), the fact that the ice sheets are melting quite fast already, or that the mean surface temperature has risen three quarters (0.75) of a degree Celsius in the last century, most of that in the last decade. Oh sure, that doesn't sound like much, until you realize that it only takes about a 7 degree increase to render much of the planet absolutely uninhabitable and that the temperature increase is speeding up.

Let's use our heads, think this through just a little bit. How much crap do you think we can throw into the water or put into the air, before it is too much? Forget the rhetoric, the political motivations, the cost, or anything else. It's common sense. It doesn't magically disappear or go away. It adds up. Sure what you put into the atmosphere in a day might not matter, but compound that by years upon years and that's another matter. Add to that the exploding population, the rising of third world countries to industrialized status who are contributing a lot to pollution too, and we have on our hands what could be a disaster of epic proportions. And to fiddle while Rome burns, isn't an option. We have to *try* something. Even if it's wrong, even if it doesn't work. Do we really want to tell our grandchildren, "Uh, sorry, we didn't think anything was wrong, or we were too lazy or cheap to do anything, and well, uh, you're going to have to live (or die) with this mess."

In the end, the businesses that should be coming up with creative ideas to make things cleaner and more efficient are instead spreading propaganda that there's nothing wrong. It's like Pompei. The volcano erupts and people go back to what they were doing, despite the fact that ash is falling. They think that it will just stop eventually. Well, we know how that turned out don't we?

"Only when the last tree has withered, the last fish has been caught, and the last river has been poisoned, will you realize you cannot eat money."--Native American Proverb

Where In the World Is Daniel San Diego?

I couldn't resist that pun. You know, violence for whatever reason is wrong. Whether it comes from the left or the right. It doesn't accomplish anything and all it does is cheapen whatever cause it is that you're fighting for.

The FBI has put a Left Wing Extremist, Daniel Andreas San Diego on their Most Wanted Terrorist list. Yes Virginia, there are extremists on both sides. Which seems to be something that each side tends to want to gloss over. Already the right-wing is screaming that a.) they just did this to distract everyone from the fact that they called the troops right-wing terrorists last week, which I wrote about a few posts down, and b.) there's a ton more of these left-wing bastards, they better get going on that.

The one thing that really gets me, is that if you try to tell people that there are extremists on both sides, in every country probably, from all walks of life, that you are some how trying to excuse what they're doing. It doesn't matter what side you're on. Killing people is wrong. Blowing buildings up is wrong, I don't care what the people who own the buildings did. We are a nation of laws (supposedly) and by blowing stuff up and killing people, you bypass the law. And by bypassing the law, said law is going to come down on your head, and I'll have no sympathy for you, whether I agree with any of your ideals or not. Because ultimately, I believe that what goes around comes around. If you do others wrong you will have to pay the price for it, sooner or later, if not in this life then in another.


"I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent."
"What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty or democracy?"
"I cannot teach you violence, as I do not myself believe in it. I can only teach you not to bow your heads before any one, even at the cost of your life."
--Mahatma Gandhi

Monday, April 20, 2009

The Poor Rich Bastards

*warning: explicit language because I'm pissed off*

This article made me so mad. I can't even begin to describe the anger that seethes up inside me when I read drivel such as this. These people are complaining that although they make five times or more the median income of the United States, they really don't have enough money to do what they want. Well boo fucking hoo, and fuck you too. Anyone who sympathizes with these rich cry babies, ought to have their head examined. There are people starving to death in the world and these people are upset that they might have to cut back on vacations or that new Hummer they wanted because their taxes might be going up a whole three percent. Give me a fucking break.
"I'm not complaining, but the reality is Obama may call me wealthy, but I thought we were just good old middle class," says Ms. Parnell. "Our needs are being met, but we don't have a load of cash to cover wants."
Yes. You are complaining. You make more than a quarter million a year, and you think you don't have enough shit. If you can't live on a quarter million a year, you need to sit down and reassess your life.
It is a tricky situation in which some Americans find themselves after a long boom: They are by no means struggling, compared with the 98% of Americans who make far less, but depending on where they live and the lifestyle choices they have made, they don't necessarily feel rich, either.

WTF? I'm supposed to feel sorry because these rich bastards have made bad decisions on how to spend their money and so now they don't "feel rich"? You have got to be fucking kidding me.
"I'm not after sympathy. We are blessed. What I want is a reality check on what rich means," Ms. Parnell says. "I can pay my mortgage and I can buy some clothes. I'm not going without, but I'm not living a life of luxury."
This from a stupid bitch who admits that she has $1200 left over every month after they have paid everything they have to pay, including a large sum every month to their church, which is not a necessity. Does this stupid fucking dense moron realize that that is about what a lot of people make in a month. Not have left over. But make. That was about the size of my pay check every month when I worked retail full time.

These people can bite me. Fucking goddamn spoiled bastards. Oh, and I have tens of thousands in student loan debt too, and make a fraction of what they do, and I'm not complaining. Maybe it's because I realize how lucky I am. I wish I made a quarter million a year so I could pay taxes on it. I don't have any idea what I would do with all that money. It's more than I can even imagine because we make just a smidge over the median income of the United States. And considering where I grew up, a ghetto near a public housing project, that's a lot. So what if I don't have enough money to go out and buy a ton of crap. I really don't need it, and neither do these spoiled ass people. The bitches need to turn off HGTV, realize they don't need to get the latest fucking kitchen gadgets, and be happy with what they have.

As an aside, for people making a little over $250k a year. To avoid paying taxes on it, all they have to do is put enough into a retirement account, like a 401k or an IRA to reduce their income. Retirement savings comes off of your earned income.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Those Who Forget American History...

I finally got around to watching the rest of that Daily Show episode that I posted the first part of on Friday night. I'm glad I did, because the part right after is hysterical. These people are fucking nuts. Yes, we have yet another teabagging pun.

At any rate, I learned a lot from watching this. I learned that "overnight" and "going on for a long time" are not mutually exclusive. Why, I had no idea! Who knew?

The Daily Show With Jon StewartM - Th 11p / 10c
Tea Party Tyranny
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Economic CrisisPolitical Humor

The Mistress of the Lionesses

ScienceDaily (2009-04-11) -- The legend is that the great rulers of Canaan, the ancient land of Israel, were all men. But a recent dig by archaeologists at Tel Beth-Shemesh uncovered possible evidence of a mysterious female ruler.
I don't know why it's so hard for people to believe that women may have had more of a say in the ancient world than they have under modern, male-centered religions such as Christianity. If you look at the evidence of goddess worship in pre-Christian times in the ancient Near East, it doesn't become much of a stretch that women may have held leadership positions, not only in government but in religion as well. If everyone was worshiping a female as the creator of the universe, who by the way was usually depicted as being very good in battle, it stands to reason they didn't think poorly of their own mortal sisters, mothers and daughters.

If you take into account the stories of the Greeks, who insisted there were Amazons who guarded their own temples and fought against invaders, and the burials that archaeologists have found in Turkey of women buried with items associated with warrior or military burials, including spears, armor and even chariots, and whose bones show evidence of battle and of riding horses, it seems reasonable to suppose that a woman may have ruled in Canaan. It may well be, that there was more than one even. Absence of evidence, is not evidence of absence.

Alcohol Sales on Sundays: Or Why Does It Seem Like I'm Living in the 19th Century?

I decided I'd go do my grocery shopping this morning. You know, while everyone's in church. Judging from the amount of people at the store however, there are plenty of people not in church. On the one hand I'd prefer an empty store. On the other, glad to know I'm not alone. Whether it's because they're atheists, or some other religion, or just maybe don't care, is not possible to know. What I do know is, that I really like Blue Moon Beer with pizza. And since I was going to pick up a pizza for dinner tonight, I was going to pick up some beer too. I don't drink very much. A six bottle pack of Blue Moon will last me a month or maybe more. I have it with spaghetti and pizza, because it goes well with it. We drink wine on occasion too, in the European sense, if it goes with the food, we drink it.

So, I am on my way to the alcohol section, which is quite large at this particular mega-grocery store, and in the back of my head a nagging little voice said, "Ah! But it's Sunday, you can't buy beer." I'm from North Carolina, where you can't buy beer before 2pm in most counties, and in the rest you can't buy beer at all. I used to work in a grocery store, so I remembered this. I thought, nah, that was years ago, surely I can buy beer on Sunday here. Well, I can. After noon! I'm sorry, but that's got to be one of the stupidest laws I have ever had the displeasure of coming across. It doesn't make any sense. I can buy beer at 12:01pm on Sunday but not at 11:59am. Why? Because a bunch of religious fanatics at some point decided that it would be good for all of us if we couldn't drink alcohol with our pizzas. Why is this still a law in the 21st century?

I mean, we're not talking about even drinking the beer before noon, which I could do if I wanted to go out Saturday night and stock up on it, if I were so inclined. I'm talking about doing my grocery shopping for the week! The beer would be for this evening, or tomorrow. It's a stupid and retarded law, and should be repealed.

Apparently in Georgia you can't buy alcohol at all on Sundays, so it could be worse. An online petition has almost 53k signatures to repeal the law.

I tried to find a list of which states allow alcohol sales at what time, but I guess it's so complicated no one has made one. I did find a site that has current laws about hard liquor. I know in some states it's by county, which makes it even more difficult to catalog who does what, when.

My problem with this is that I live a long way from the grocery store, so I'll have to wait until tomorrow to buy beer, unless I want to waste gas going back to the store this afternoon, and I'd rather not do that. There are obviously plenty of people here who aren't Christian, so why are we run by them? If they don't want to buy alcohol on Sunday, then they don't have to. If they own a store that sells alcohol, they don't have to be open if they don't want to be. I'm fine with that. However, when I go grocery shopping, I should be able to buy whatever the store has when I'm there, not have to shuffle my schedule around because of some antiquated laws.