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Ten things that are really funny but will not amuse your woman while she is giving birth to your baby:Learned the hard way:
Doctor: "You really do these contractions well...
you stay controlled, and you push hard."
Fungi wasn't here from the beginning, and therefore it isn't natural.
Have you stepped on a mushroom, today? No? Why do you hate the Earth?
If Rita does little to no damage...
The press and liberals will report:
If Rita does lots of damage...
The press and liberals will report:
The editorials are already written all over the country.
Say 'Howdy' to an Old Tradition.
Back in the days when I was commuting through Memphis I was exposed daily to stupid, ignorant, assholish drivers. I would take note of these people and tell their story and post their license plate numbers on this website (see the post for June 5, 2001, for example) as a way of shaming them.
Then I moved from Memphis to Nebraska, and the average driver on the road around me changed from dangerously reckless to, if anything, insufferably polite. I can't actually remember encountering a single asshole driver during my year in Nebraska, and I was usually the fastest person on the road.
Then I moved to a military town in North Carolina, and I experienced what I quickly termed "testosterone driving." In a town of 40,000 Marines the streets have an aggressive, but not reckless, vibe. Fast driving and sharp maneuvers are the rule, but not really to the extent where anyone needs to get out of their way to avoid a collision. I see the occasional "ricer" idiot who has dreams of being on Fast and the Furious, but really, nobody has been worth commenting on.
Two days ago I was running an errand. A jacked up white Dodge 4x4 pickup truck was weaving through traffic, and ultimately cut across two lanes to cut me off right before a red light. I called the driver bad names out loud at my dash board. I could see it was a young woman driver with her hair pulled back, and in the passenger seat I could see the makings of a baby seat. On the back gate of the truck were many stickers. One that said, "The other half of my heart is in Iraq." Another that had a single star... the old sign that one member of your family was at war. Several oversized stickers that looked like ribbons. Two yellow, one which said, "Pray for my husband overseas" and the other which said, "Pray for my daddy overseas." One ribbon had a camouflage pattern. There were two other ribbons, but I can't remember what they were supposed to accomplish.
By itself, the incident was forgotten.
But then today, running an errand. Ahead of me I see a white truck weaving through traffic, and it ultimately cuts me off right before a red light. It was driven by a young woman, there was evidence of a car seat on the passenger side, and the back end was covered with stickers.
The license plate of this white Dodge 4x4 pickup truck is TWS 5900. The plates expire May, 2006. If any active duty Camp Lejeune Marines currently serving in Iraq happen to read this and this sounds like your truck, you'd better call home and tell your asshole wife to slow the fuck down before she kills herself and your child. And, she's covered your truck with stickers.
Shocking, I know.
For all the accusations of "Kark Rove fixed the election," amazing that the evidence always seems to point in the other direction. But, as we saw in Louisiana after the hurricane, when you know you're in the wrong, start blaming the other side as soon and loudly as possible.
Massive, colon cleansing linkdump.
My bookmarks are getting unwieldy, and it's time to thin them out. I can't remember why I originally bookmarked most of this crap.
Media Lies. "Dedicated to exposing what the media lies about, what they won't tell you and what they don't want you to hear."
A Google search for "Illegitimati non carborundum." The forum's 'Thibodeaux' said it to me one day, and it's a phrase I wanted to remember.
Music group Tool's website. I was thinking of putting this on the Music Page, but to be honest the website is 95% inside information. I usually don't have a clue what they're talking about.
Media Slander. Don't remember.
Article: The Muslims groups who wouldn't join the march on terror.
Conservative Grapevine. Kind of a Fark for righties.
Everything Tarantino. Rarely updated.
Blogshares entry for this website. We're worth a little over $7k, at the moment.
Motor Vehicles Consumer Complaint Form for North Carolina. They aren't responsive.
Ebonics translator. Yes, that's how I did it.
Robot assisted human motion. I wondered if this would have utility to those with nerve damage.
Islam: The Religion of Peace (And White Knuckle Terror). List of terror attacks since 9/11/2001.
Some forum. I have no memory of bookmarking this.
A Cool Web Shredder, last updated in June, 2005.
Yankee Flipper. Spins squirrels off of your bird feeders. With video.
Article: "The End of Treason."
Article: "The Congress Speaks." Facts on the "Bush lied" belief system.
Article: Levees not Designed for Katrina-Strength Storm.
Article: The Secret Life of RNA. I just found it interesting.
And that's about it.
I'll make a common Feedback thread... if you want to discuss any particular link in detail, start its own thread. Registration required to do that, of course.
For many years I've had the idea that "I've never met a vegetarian that I could trust." I've known many, and with the exception of a single vegan every one of them has been a jerk (pun). The biggest jerk I've ever met was, in fact, a vegetarian.
But ordinarily I am not so quick to label and generalize that way. I may joke or even speak angrily about it at times, but the plain fact is that the vast majority of black people I've personally known are honorable people, as are the Muslims with whom I've personally crossed paths. Additionally, I've met many complete assholes who were white... the fact that most of them were from Pennsylvania notwithstanding. So I don't have the attitude that all black people are thugs, and all Muslims are terrorists... because I have first hand experience that it is not true.
So why do I generalize about vegetarians? I've always wondered that.
Until the epiphany I had about 20 minutes ago.
One initial disclaimer: if one is eschewing meat (pun) for some type of health reason, that is not included in what I am about to say.
Only in a soft life of plenty can one decide to limit their diet like that. I know what it feels like to be thirsty enough to drink from a toilet. Hungry enough to eat an insect, and any other thing slower than me that I could catch. I've been in both situations. I've felt real hunger (granted, it was something I volunteered for). I'd love to see the vegan Moby in that situation.
I'm also intelligent enough to know that humans are heterotrophs and are meant to ingest proteins produced by other animals. God, evolution, and the Flying Spaghetti Monster all agree on that point, and that's rare (pun).
It is my opinion that if you've lived a life soft enough that
you need to deny yourself meat in order to feel alive, or your
priorities are such that not eating certain foods
available to you due to some imagined higher moral purpose is
something you actually expend energy to abide by, then I don't
trust your judgment. Therefore, I've never met a
vegetarian I could trust.
Movie Review: The 40 Year Old Virgin.
Carell plays a 40 year old man who has never had sex. This fact
is eventually discovered by his friends and they all work to
Spoiler-Free Discussion Here. (Violators will be prosecuted.)
Like most websites similar in purpose to DTMan I did not observe the anniversary of the sneak attacks of 9/11. Others who observed it are far more eloquent than I, and I've decided that when it comes to the murder of over 3000 people in the name of religious fundamentalism that you either get it, or you don't. No amount of reposting pictures of toppling buildings on this webpage is going to change any minds.
You either get it, or you don't.
However, a very long time ago I found an website of archived pictures from 9/11/2001, and I've had it bookmarked ever since. I've never seen a more comprehensive source of images. Today I was organizing the bookmarks and found it again. It's a good source of photos and video from that day.
Mirror it, if you can, for posterity. Someday someone will try to convince you, or your children, or their children that it never happened.
If you don’t get this then you’ve never read a USA Today.
Not that I’d hold that against you…As we move farther away from the day Katrina struck it is becoming more and more obvious that most Americans don’t have a clue about how their government works…I am addicted to Su Doku…One good thing about Katrina: Does anyone remember Cindy Sheehan?…Not to jinx them, but if the Atlanta Braves hold on to win the division this year that’ll be 14 in a row. That’s amazing, but even more so when you consider that this is being done in the free agency era and the Braves are getting it done with their farm system…”Racism” equals money for the media and votes for the Democratic party. Do not fool yourself into thinking those two organizations don’t know that. See Gordon’s “The New Slavery” post below for more on this topic…Why is John Roberts being forced to answer questions that Ruth Bader Ginsburg didn’t have to answer?…Good game last weekend between Texas and Ohio State. Ohio State had the game won and in fact were dominating it, but let Texas sneak out with a win due to a dropped touchdown pass, a missed field goal, and two turnovers all in the fourth quarter. If these teams meet again this year in a bowl I predict Ohio State will win by at least 14 as Texas won’t be able to force OSU to kick fields goals instead of getting touchdowns next time…Why the hell was Sean Penn allowed to go out on his own (with a personal photographer) in New Orleans after the hurricane? Why do celebrities in this country get a free pass like that where other citizens would have been stopped? Does anyone honestly believe he was there helping people? If so, why isn’t he still there? It was a photo op and he’s a ghoul…Speaking of Hollywood, I hated the idea of yet another Kong remake, but after seeing the trailer I’m thinking Peter Jackson may have made this a must see…Which is worse? A government not reacting immediately to a crisis they didn’t know existed and before the state even asked for help or a mayor who spent levee money on casinos, sent the evacuation order too late and well after Bush asked for it, and who didn’t bother to evacuate his citizens because the buses they had available were just school buses and not Greyhounds? For people who can see past skin color, the choice is obvious…Gamestop is selling an X-Box 360 bundle for $1999.69. For that much money it had better blow you while you play games on it…That’s all for now.
Birthin' Babies, 21st-Century-Style.
I have mated with a woman, and she is fixin' to give birth to my heir sometime between now and the end of the month... at which time she transforms from my boo to my baby-momma (GFY, kanye).
Over the last 8.5 months there have been many routine doctor visits. Unlike the old days it is now considered irresponsible to not see your obstetrician every 2 to 4 weeks throughout your pregnancy, and we've done so as many times as the doctor required.
Every visit was priced anywhere from $150 to $400, depending on which tests were performed.
There have been many ultrasounds and we found out early on that the kid had a monster penis... chip off the ol' block (whomever that may be).
Besides that, the only input the doctor ever had was "you have no diseases, and you should follow a good diet through the pregnancy."
Now, one doctor said she had gestational diabetes, about four visits in to the process. Up until that point her blood sugar was just fine, and for that visit she was tested in an entirely different building with an entirely different blood-sugar-checker-machine. That machine said she had really high blood sugar levels, and from that test it was determined she had gestational diabetes. Every other machine said her blood sugar was just fine. I suggested that perhaps she was just fine and the machine needed to be calibrated... but what do I know? I aint no obstetrician, and I was blown off.
So out of many expensive doctor and nutritionist (because she obviously has gestational diabetes...) visits, the only input the professionals have had were:
To which my response is...
I don't know. I'm pretty under whelmed at this process, so far. Lots of money, and no real return on investment.
Medicine is a good racket when they can turn a process that has occurred naturally for a million years into 20 office visits capped by a ten thousand dollar, two-day hotel room visit at the end.
Yeah, I know, babies used to die more, long ago. But since nothing was done to her for this entire pregnancy there is literally zero-change in the survival chances for this child, in spite of all the doctor visits.
Must be For the Children.
I mentally burned out on about Day 2 of the New Orleans flood, and I've been overwhelmed since then by intellectual lethargy. So I've been to the beach. Lately the wind is up, seas are rough, and there's a killer rip current pulling you south, so watch out if you go.
I've been hearing a lot lately about how the federal government is supposed to be helping hurricane victims. I won't even get into whether or not these people are using a disaster for political posturing, but there's something people seem to forget about the national government: it was never intended to be a public aid service. Yeah, FDR/New Deal, and 'times change,' and all that. Something most people don't know, though... the New Deal didn't work.
Here's something I posted almost a year ago to the day, but today it makes a point far better than I have the energy to do:
This country's taxation system is ass-backwards. Typically with income taxes a lot goes to Federal, and a little goes to State. Reverse it. Have the national government cut all of the programs that the states should handle, which is about 90% of it, and then the states have the funds to pick what they deem are necessary programs... more efficiently. This way Louisiana has their own money with which to take care of her cities when the inevitable finally happens, and nobody looks to Washington 1000 miles away to fix their problems. This way people in California don't pay FEMA to take care of hurricane victims, and people in North Carolina don't pay FEMA to take care of earthquake victims. Each state has their own power. Imagine that. There should be some kind of law.
I am prefacing this post by declaring that I am so concerned with the innocent people of New Orleans that I feel physically ill. I'd give anything to be able to go there and help out. It seems that there is a severe lack of decent people on the scene with even meager leadership ability. Meaning, none. I'm a novice and I can see major mistakes are being made in the city.
That was the disclaimer, because the following post is going to seem rude as it is. It isn't intended that way. If I didn't care, I wouldn't think about it and I wouldn't write about it.
"I'm poor and should stay in school, but fuck it, the government has welfare for
What does your life have to be like to become completely
helpless like this? How can one make it to adulthood and
just have no idea what to do with themselves once the rented
house and XBox gets washed away? The majority of these
people ignored warnings to evacuate up to 48 hours ahead of
time, and ignored direct orders to evacuate at least 12 hours
ahead of time (I'm cutting slack to the aged and infirm... those
are the only victims in New Orleans, as far as I'm
concerned). Now they are stuck sitting on freeway
underpasses if they're lucky, and in a sports arena if they're
unlucky, and they're trying to get to a sports arena in
Houston... but for what? How long are they going to be
allowed to squat there? If they had any capability of
taking care of themselves they wouldn't be there at all.
There are going to be a lot of sob stories when these people are
finally kicked out of the shelters, because a lot of them do not
have the mental ability to get out of them on their own.
This government has a lot of problems, but keeping the poor and stupid shackled in dependence is not one of them. The government does that just fine, and even when the consequences of such a system are highlighted otherwise intelligent people suggest that more aid is obviously needed, and the government isn't distributing it fast enough.
So keep the uneducated fat and happy, and keep the welfare for the AC and television flowing, and just hope you don't lose power. Once the morphine drip is cut off, they tend to notice and then you need to deal with them.
In a sensitive and politically correct manner, of course.
A lot of people right now are thinking, "Yeah Gordon, just let them all starve, you fucking asshole." Which is fine, because some people will miss the point no matter how many pictures are included in the presentation. I'm not saying to let anyone starve. By all means, feed these people. Keep them out of the rain. Get them on their feet. Figure out who is the bigger asshole... me suggesting that we don't allow this to happen again, or you suggesting we do nothing and fuck 'em, just send a few body bags and MRE's and throw more money at it when the time comes.
But fucking learn the lesson of what happens when people are kept helpless and useless.
Hurricane. Death. Destruction of an American city. Gas shortages. Gas station lines. High energy costs.
Know what? Screw all that. Let the other guy sweat it. This too shall pass.
Here at DTMan September, 2005 is "Post a GIF Month."
New gifs posted every day of September in this thread.
For the children.
Hurricane Katrina Relief Organizations.
I generally dislike the idea of the federal government using public funds to provide charity to localized disaster areas, but that's because I think charity should be a private thing and not forced on the populace through taxation.
AS SUCH, a good list of charitable organizations can be found here.
There's even a dog charity there in case people aren't your
I do not think that means what MSNBC thinks it means.
Busy as hell this week as we moved into the new east wing of the house. Between the fatigue of moving heavy stuff and doing yard work for 6 hours during a 116F heat index which resulted in dehydration, heat exhaustion and, I think, a minor stroke... I haven't had a lot of energy left for making posts.
Ever wonder what it looks like to drop a heavy-ass bookshelf on your foot that already has blood circulation problems which results in a broken metatarsal?
Mmmmm... delicious contusion.
You just can't make this stuff up.
Toledo, OH made national news several years
ago when then mayor Carty Finkbeiner suggested that to reduce
complaints about noise around Toledo Express Airport the
neighborhoods surrounding it should be populated with deaf
people. The funny part is that he was dead serious. He was even
interviewed on The Daily Show about it.
That was Carty’s last term due to
consecutive term laws and in the meantime Toledo has had its
first black mayor, Jack Ford. Mr. Ford has become known for his
ability to never be seen anywhere, get nothing done, and take
credit for other people’s work and ideas. Don’t believe me?
His campaign slogan is “Quiet and Effective.” Like I said,
you can’t make this stuff up. Toledo hasn’t exactly
prospered under Mr. Ford and if you’re wondering how he got
the job, it’s because the only person he ran against was a
drunk who worked for the county and was stealing money.
It’s now 2005 and the mayoral elections
are coming up. This year Toledo has several fantastic candidates
to choose from and they all displayed their knowledge and
expertise at a recent mayoral debate. The following is a brief
background on the candidates, if not already covered, and the
highlight of their speeches.
Jack Ford (D) – His speech gave vague details on how he
has brought jobs to Toledo and how the economy here is
flourishing because of him. Interestingly, Mayor Ford was in
D.C. less than one year ago for a conference of Democratic
mayors. In his speech there, LESS THAN A YEAR AGO, he blamed
President Bush for the bad economy and that it has cost Toledo
over 16,000 jobs. Did I mention that Mayor Ford was a councilman
before he was mayor and only attended 25% of the meetings he was
elected to attend? Oh, and if you’re wondering, the Toledo MSM
is universal in their bashing of Mayor Ford and the job he’s
done. I guess hasn’t done is more appropriate.
Finkbeiner (D) – Yep, Carty is running again now that he
can get around the law that prevented him from running four
years ago. Carty actually started as a Republican and truthfully
is more of an independent, but in Toledo you have to run as a
Democrat if you want a chance of winning. After all, this is the
home of JEEP. Now you may think his idea discussed above was
stupid and I assure you there were other dumb ones, however this
guy does bust his ass when in office. He does get things done,
right or wrong, and believe it or not, he does have some great
ideas like eliminating a company’s ability to build new
buildings in new lots or where homes are and instead forcing
them to build their stores where existing empty buildings
currently are located. Take that Supreme Court. Anyway, Carty
basically covered his past accomplishments in his speech and
even talked about how he put Toledo on the map using a cover of
Newsweek (or something similar) as an example. Do you think a
guy who has a Trivial Pursuit card asking “True or False: The
mayor of Toledo, OH said to move deaf people to the airport to
reduce noise pollution complaints.” Should be taking about how
he put Toledo on the map?
Ludeman (R) – Really, there’s an actual Republican in
this race. Well, that’s what we’ve been told. You see, the
Republican Party here in Toledo is back peddling after the Noe/rare
coins scandal and Rob really has nothing going in his favor. To
make matters worse, he’s basically done nothing to promote his
campaign. He’s more invisible than Jack Ford, if that’s
possible. If he said anything at the debate, I missed it.
Interestingly, according to the polls, if nobody were in the
race other than Ford and Ludeman, Ludeman would win.
Wilkowski (D) – About two months ago Mr. Wilkowski started
a political group to back the re-election campaign of Mayor Jack
Ford. He gave a speech talking about how Mr. Ford was the most
qualified candidate and yada yada yada. The first polls came out
later that week showing that Ford would get beat by everyone
else in the race and a few days later Mr. Wilkowski declared
himself a candidate. It’s been speculated that Mr. Wilkowski
is running only to steal votes from Carty. See, the Democrats
have no serious Republican threat here so they feud amongst
themselves. Anyway, Mr. Wilkowski’s speech was all about how
he couldn’t hire people from central Toledo anymore because
they were unskilled, uneducated, had bad attitudes, and had bad
hygiene. That’s about when he realized that this debate was
being held in…wait for it…central Toledo.
Now if you were to read the Toledo Blade to
get details on this election, you’d see articles like this
one. Well, you’ll notice that they showed the four
candidates and only talk about them, however there was one more
candidate at the debates that night.
Covey (?) – Opal’s back story is a mix of rumor and
urban legends. I don’t think anyone knows who she really is
other than she has a lot of cats and she has been running for
mayor for a while now. In fact, if you happen to see Opal
driving around Toledo in her station wagon, you’ll know it’s
her by the cardboard sign on the side of her car that says Opal
for Mayor written in black marker. There were two highlights
from Opal’s speech. First, when asked why she was running for
mayor, she stated that “she had a vision in which God told her
if she doesn’t become mayor, Toledo will be destroyed.” The
second highlight came when asked what her plans are for when she
became mayor. Her response was simple and I suppose logical to
her, “I don’t really know right now, but I’m sure I’ll
have more visions to tell me what to do before I become
I’m seriously thinking of voting for Opal and then quitting my job to become a comedian. With her at the helm of Toledo, I’d never run out of material.
If these candidates were in a comedy, the critics would say that they were over the top and unbelievable, yet here they are in flesh and blood.
You can’t make this stuff up.
Things which I was told to Fear:
I was born in....
1971, Richard Nixon.
The Vietnam War.
1976, Gerald Ford
The end-of-the-world predictions of suicidal, kool-aid
drinking religious zealots.
1979, Jimmy Carter
Crazy arabs (yes, I mean Iranians) taking Americans hostage.
1983, Ronald Reagan
Nuclear devastation in war between the USA and the USSR.
1990, George Bush
Crazy Arabs and the first Gulf War, which was sure to turn
into the Vietnam War.
Some crazy Arab blowing up Americans and American stuff
across the world.
2000, George W. Bush
The overthrow of the American government by Republicans and
the Supreme Court.
Nuclear weapons designed by crazy arabs showing up in a cargo
container in New York.
Nothing ever changes, but the fear persists.
I’m not going to beat this subject to
death since that’s already been done by the MSM due to people
like Terrell Owens, Javon Walker, Heinz Ward, etc.
However, for those who may not be privy to
the dealings of the professional sports world, it boils down to
this: Pro athletes are signing long term deals and then
demanding that their contracts be re-negotiated in the
athlete’s favor after only a few years. In Terrell Owens’
case, he demanded that his contract be reworked after the first
year of a seven year contract.
This really seems to be more of an issue in
football rather than the other “big 3” pro sports.
The players that demand new contracts in
the middle of a current contract will frequently bash their
team, coaches, fellow players, etc to the media and also holdout
from training camps, and in extreme cases, from entire seasons.
Their argument is always the same: they
performed better than the abilities/stats they used to negotiate
their current contract.
Imagine you own a business and you sign a
deal with FedEx for 10 years that makes FedEx the exclusive
vendor for your deliveries. However, in the second year, FedEx
refuses to deliver your packages because instead of the two day
delivery time the contract stipulates, FedEx is getting your
packages delivered in one day so now they want more money from
you. You can’t get another vendor of equal service because
they are already tied up to other companies, so now you’re
stuck with Jim’s Package Delivery Service.
That’s the same thing the athletes are
doing to the pro franchises. It’s blackmail and it’s
I hear a lot of people saying the players
should get what they deserve and I agree, however let’s not
forget that these players are getting paid millions to play
games and not work for a living. Most of their careers span only
a few years and they’ll never really have to work if they
don’t waste their money. This is true even for some of the
lower paid players.
Is there anyone reading this who can stay
home from work tomorrow and demand more money without getting
So I say if we are going to continue to
allow players to not fulfill the stipulations of contracts they
agreed to and signed just because they had one good season then
I say let’s make the playing field fair for both sides.
Start putting clauses in their contracts
that state when the player doesn’t live up to expectations the
club can get money back. How many millions have clubs pumped
into 1st round draft picks who weren’t worth a
tenth of the contract they signed?
Or how about spreading the guaranteed money
out over the length of the contract and replacing the difference
with money available through incentives? This would be easy. A
superstar could get $1 million in base salary and then get
millions more based on performance instead of getting millions
while sitting out with a sore toe.
Oh, the player is hurt and can’t get more
than his $1 million base salary that year? Tough shit. If a
million a year isn’t enough for you, then maybe you
shouldn’t be buying your wife’s cousin’s sister’s baby
daddy a fucking hummer.
Look, I’m not trying to spoil anyone’s
party by saying they shouldn’t get the maximum amount they can
get, even though they may not be worth it, but fuck.
To claim that you can’t feed your family
with $49 million or to holdout for more money after the first
year of a seven year deal and claim you don’t think it’s a
fair contract just shows that you’re ignorant. What are you
signing the contract for if it’s not fair?
If athletes want to renegotiate all the
time, then why are they signing long term deals? With short
terms contracts they could renegotiate all the time. That’s
not what they want though because then they truly would be based
on their latest performances.
Players used to play because they loved the game. Larger contracts and bigger money became an added bonus and meant a better life. Now players just want the better life without earning it.
Apologies in advance to Leisher, who still likes the police.
So about an hour ago I'm leaving one place out in town to go pick up some lunch and take it home.
I pull out into the seven lane city street (3/3/1), and as it was a left turn during noon lunch hour I kind of had to pull out really fast. But, I had plenty of time, and I quickly cross the road and settle into my far-right lane well ahead of all traffic. Glancing at my speedometer I saw that I hadn't exceeded 50 mph... which is good, because the speed limit was 45 and there was a policeman in the middle lane, about 25 yards up. A few car lengths.
I glance into my rear-view mirror and see some car coming up on me fast. I guessed he had to be doing about 60. I inwardly smiled because I figured he hadn't seen the cop yet, and was about to get busted.
The car coming up behind me swerves into the middle lane, zooms around me, and I assume he sees the cop and then he zooms back into my lane, directly in front of me and damned near hitting me. I give him the "you're an asshole" honk and wait for the cop to get him... but it doesn't happen.
Intersection and a red light, and the cop ends up in a line a few car lengths behind me.
Green light and my fast-food joint is coming up on the right, and I see the cop cut his way into my lane a couple cars back.
I pull into the fast food joint, and the cop follows me in.
(Now taking bets on where you think this story is going)
I pull up to the microphone, and the cop pulls up to the other side of me, window open, signaling for me to open my window. I think to myself mother-FUCK, you've got to be kidding. He looked about 24 years old and skinny and had a scraggly trailer-park moustache.
I put down the passenger window, and this is the only thing nice I can say about him... he didn't arrest me when I got irate, and in fact kept his composure.
He said, "Sir, I just stopped you here to ask that you don't follow other cars so closely, because if he would have tapped his brakes you would have caused an accident."
I went right into angry mode.... couldn't help it. I know that's bad, and need to work on it. I said, "You didn't see him speed up to us, cut me off, and almost hit me?"
He said, "No sir, I didn't see that, and two wrongs don't make a right."
Me, continuing: "Because he did it right beside you, and I can't believe you didn't see it."
Him: "No sir, but I saw you, and I'm asking that you don't tailgate other cars like I saw you doing." He went off into a little mini-lecture about how I wouldn't be able to stop in time, but I didn't hear it... a curtain of red was falling over my vision.
I no longer trusted myself to say anything, so I just gave him the 'thumbs up.'
He said, "Have a nice day, sir."
I gave him the 'ok' sign, and he pulled away.
I'm surprised I didn't slip and flip him the bird.
Lesson learned: cops are obsessed with sports cars. If you ever rob a bank, use a crappy beater as a getaway car, but have a buddy beside you in a sports car. Have the buddy drive 6 mph over the speed limit. The cops will forget all about you and the bank loot in the old Chevy Cavalier and pull over the sports car.
You know, if this kind of crap happened to anybody else, I'd never believe it. I'd figure they were exaggerating.
Crawford, Texas, April 2005. Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is meeting with President Bush at his ranch in Crawford, Texas.
Bush: Welcome to Texas, Ariel. After we have some chili we'll hop in the pickup and drink some beers and shoot stuff.
Sharon: Thank you, George... I always feel at home in Texas, the only state in the world with a population as heavily armed as we are.
Both men laugh.
Sharon: But let me get to the point, George. You and I both know the Iranians aren't stopping Uranium enrichment, even though they've told the EU they have. And we both know that a country sitting on all of that oil doesn't need nuclear power plants.
Sharon: We're going to make them stop, George, like in Iraq. We're going to shoot first and call it self defense, because you know it is.
Bush: Yeah, I know. And you know. But you know I already get a a ration of shit every time this administration supports you. Hell, I agree with you. You know I'd do it, in your place. But how do I keep supporting you, after the fact? Hell, I had actual UN resolutions backing me up in Iraq, but look at how that went. Idiots still call it an illegal war.
Ariel: George, for some reason the survival of my own country is more important to me than the political future of the American Republican party.
Bush: I know you didn't come here without a plan. Continue.
Ariel: Israel is blamed for most of the ills of the world, and for this reason we have no political currency to spend on the world stage for our own use. Would you agree with this assessment?
Bush: I would.
Ariel: As such, I suspect that if we could gain some of this currency, we might be able to spend it on an action necessary for our survival, but will be seen by the islamicists and their supporters as evidence of our 'obvious evil.'
Bush: And where do you expect this currency to come from that will buy you a raid on Iranian nucular plants?
Ariel: I'm glad you asked, George. For many years certain factions in the world have blamed our conquest and occupation of the Gaza strip as the source of the world's ills... if we were to pull out of Gaza, showing our good intent...
Movie Review: The Dukes of Hazzard.
Conclusion: It was brilliant.
Qualification: Everyone in the world, I don't care if you're 4 years old or live in AIDS stricken Zambia, know what to expect from The Dukes of Hazzard. If you go to this movie expecting to see Laurence Olivier reading Tennessee Williams, then you are a dumbass and you deserve to have wasted eight bucks on a movie you never had any intention of enjoying in the first place. If you're one of those assholes who went to go see it knowing you would hate it just so you could have some highbrow complaints about it to make yourself look superior, well you can bite my ass, too.
Dukes is about two things, and two things only: car chases, and good ol' boys from Georgia. This is exactly what the movie delivers. Now, there's a crapload more laughs than in the old TV show, but that's ok. They tend to be belly laughs.
Johnny (oh god just stop doing that) Knoxville and Seann William (I have as many names as a presidential assassin) Scott play the Duke boys, and except that Scott adds an element of mental retardation to the character of Bo Duke, I am satisfied with their performances. Actually, judging from Scott's past roles he may not be 'acting' slightly retarded... but that's ok. He's always good for a laugh.
Jessica Simpson as Daisy Duke. Jessica Simpson.
She was so frikkin hot that she's going on my List, and that is saying a lot. I was never a fan of hers before this movie... but every scene she's in, you just want to watch her.
Willie Nelson as Uncle Jessie..... he was cool.
Surprisingly, Burton Leon Reynolds Junior was quite weak as Boss Hogg. I was not impressed. But that's forgivable, too. Hogg's actions definitely drive the story, but it isn't The Burt Reynolds show, so this weak performance is forgivable.
And Jessica Simpson made me have impure thoughts. Her fake southern accent was rather pleasant.
There were several obvious continuity errors/mistakes, but again, who cares. It's the frikkin' Dukes of Hazzard.
Three shots from the double-barreled shotgun out of two. (Which you'll see.)
Because it's the frikkin' Dukes of Hazzard.
Dukes Non-Spoiler Thread. Violators will be prosecuted.
Update (1:14 am, 8/16/2005): And for no good reason, here's three more gratuitous Jessica Simpson pics:
I know you weren't pleased with my decision to join the Marines, but for the most part you kept silent with your disapproval and let me live my life. Over time, I think you accepted my decision, and perhaps even became supportive of it. And fortunately you never had to get a visit from a member of the Ohio Marine I&I unit telling you I had fallen in the line of duty.
But if someday I volunteer for another cause in which I am
risking my life in order to help others, and I fall, please
don't pull a stunt like
I understand that she's a grieving mother. Fine. Whatever. But I'd rather be remembered as a man who did his duty as he saw it... not as a bloody shirt to be waved to support a position that I disagreed with to such an extent that I gave my life in opposition to it.
I feel bad for her son more because of how he is being used
in his death, not because he died doing something
worthwhile. We should all be so lucky.
Cleaning the Stalls V: Evolution.
For longer than anyone reading this has been alive there's been this burning question of the mechanics of life... either by Evolution, or some sort of divine tinkering that today goes under the guise of "Intelligent Design" ("Creationism" was sounding too churchy, so they had to change the name to make it sound less mythical). Now, when I was about 10 and realized that in one place I was being taught about "survival of the fittest" and in another place I was being taught "God did it all in six days," I asked my Mom. She said, "Well young GORDON, nobody really knows how long a day was, to God." And that was enough to fill my glass of curiosity, for a while.
Later in high school I learned the actual mechanics of evolution, and I was always impressed with its elegant simplicity. Now, I figured out years ago that it doesn't accomplish anything to debate people on whether or not God exists, no matter which side you're arguing. You will never convince anyone, ever. But what I still (probably shouldn't) respond to is when, when the subject of evolution comes up, someone dismisses it as "Evolution doesn't make sense... a monkey didn't turn into a man, and amoebas don't turn into tadpoles." That bugs me, because that is stupid, because that's not the theory of evolution.
This post is not intended to attempt to kill your god, this post is intended to give a basic understanding of the Theory of Evolution, as Darwin proposed it. As far as I'm concerned, the concept of God and the concept of evolution are not at odds. It may be at odds with the Bible, but there's nothing wrong with the idea that God created life on Earth, and Evolution is how he did it.
So, in that spirit of helping you understand God better, if that's your thing, here's a basic evolution lesson.
Before I begin, I'll address the opposing viewpoint: just what is creation, or intelligent design? Isn't it enough to just say "God did it?" Well, God did what, exactly? Fortunately, scholars of old pinned down what exactly is being talked about when you say God did it. It's called Special Creation.... special as pertaining to species, not someone who has certain mental disabilities. The idea of Special Creation is based on, obviously, old religious texts, and in some part on Greek Philosophy. It states that all species were created separately and independently by a creator about 6,000 years ago. Each species was created perfectly adapted to its environment and placed there at the beginning. Species do not change over time, which is also known as Fixity of Species.
Now, before you start nitpicking, "Well, Intelligent Design doesn't necessarily have to mean this, or that..." allow me to describe the basic foundations of what makes something science, and then you'll see that it doesn't matter.
Conducting "science" is, by nature, very simple. It begins with making an observation... seeing patterns in something. This can be as basic as observing that whenever it gets cold outside, water freezes. From an observation you propose a hypothesis, which can (and should) be as simple as... when water gets cold, it will freeze. A hypothesis needs to be kept as simple as that, because the hypothesis prediction needs to be tested, and the easiest way to do that is to eliminate as many variables as possible. "Water freezes when it gets cold" is a lot easier to test than "Stuff gets hard when it gets not hot." Too many variables.
So, a valid hypothesis needs to be testable, and as such it needs to be falsifiable. A hypothesis must be able to be disproved, otherwise it is not valid. Louis Pasteur made some interesting predictions a while back, when he failed to spontaneously generate life in some bent flasks of sterile broth. In fact, his experiments are still running to this day, and at any time his debunking of the Theory of Spontaneous Generation (life sprouts from non-life) can be disproved if any microbes do, in fact, pop up in those flasks. This is why you can never actually prove anything, you can only disprove it. Maybe it just takes a few hundred years for spontaneous generation to occur... we don't know yet. Pasteur's work can't be proved, merely disproved. So far, it's held up.
An experiment to test a hypothesis needs to be repeatable, with lots of replication and controls and randomization, all to eliminate variables. When you put a glass of water in the freezer to make it cold, you also need a control glass of water kept at room temperature to make sure that all water in the vicinity didn't just spontaneously solidify... proving temperature was a factor. You have to run the test with several different glasses of water to ensure you didn't have a unique, lucky batch. And you have to do things like stagger the times you freeze the water, to ensure that it freezes both in daytime and nighttime.... randomization. You need to test the hypothesis in different states and different elevations and different atmospheric pressures.... and uh oh! you might might stumble upon the phenomenon of "supercooled" water, and then you need to throw out your hypothesis of "Water will freeze when it gets cold," because you've still left too many variables open. Water does not always freeze when it gets cold. You've proved your hypothesis wrong, but you've still gained knowledge from it.
So, going back to the idea of Special Creation, and what makes good science... does Creationism withstand scrutiny? Let's look at it.
"It states that all species were created separately and independently by a creator about 6,000 years ago." If you give that as a hypothesis, is it testable? Is it falsifiable? Neither. The Bible says it, and God Herself said that you just have to take it on faith... according to the Bible. It is impossible to test, much less retest, include variables, etc. Unless, of course, you can put God in a test planet and get Her into a cooperative mood.
"Each species was created perfectly adapted to its environment and placed there at the beginning." If one believes in something as simple as the fossil record, this idea loses all credibility. Dog fossils are never found in rock older than that which contains Tyrannosaurus fossils, ever. If dinosaurs existed before dogs did, then obviously dogs weren't there at the beginning.
"Species do not change over time, which is also known as Fixity of Species." I can think of several examples of a species changing within my own lifetime, off the top of my head. In Great Britain there is a species of moth that comes in both black and white varieties (the same species, the same as black and white people are the same species). The white moths used to reproduce more because when sitting on the lightly-colored bark of a birch tree, they could blend in and get eaten less. Over time more soot-spewing factories appeared, which darkened the bark of the trees... giving the dark-colored moths an advantage. In a very recent timeframe this species of moth has changed from being primarily light, to primarily dark.
There are many other points Creationists try to make, but none of the are testable. "Spiders make silk out of two different glands... that's impossible to happen accidentally! DNA is just too darned complex! And what about eyes... how can eyes be all random and accidental??!!??" But none of that is science, it's just pointing out different complex things. I don't know about spider silk glands offhand, but I'd bet money that there's a chain of more primitive methods of insects producing silk that will show a logical progression of advancement, either currently alive or in the fossil record, if there are any traces left... squishy stuff doesn't fossilize well. DNA is nothing more than simple, sequential instructions on how to make different proteins... period. That's it. It's not mysterious. And I do know offhand that there are animals currently existing on Earth that have been observed to have light-detecting organs of varying complexity. Any and all of these things can be explained, or observed, or at least questioned, through the use of the scientific method... saying "It had to have been designed purposely" cannot. You can't test it, observe it, or otherwise make any conclusions about it. Intelligent Design must be taken on faith.
I've now explained why Special Creation isn't good science, but what makes the Theory of Evolution good science?
The father of this theory is, as everyone knows, Charles Darwin... but to truly understand what he did you have to know upon whose shoulder he stood.
In 1665 Robert Hooke observed chambers in cork and called them "cells."
In the 1670's Van Leeuwenhoek observed single-celled "animalcules" in pond water. These were bacteria and protozoa.
In 1735 Carolus Linnaeus devised the system for classifying and naming species, the binomial nomenclature (Homo sapiens), which brought about the tree of life.
In 1839 Schleiden & Schwann presented the Cell Theory, "All organisms are made of cells." This can still be disproved, of course, as soon as someone finds a life form not based on cells. Remember... one can't prove a theory, only disprove it. It hasn't been disproved, yet.
In 1858 Virchow made the Theory of Biogenesis, "All cells come from pre-existing cells." This has yet to be disproved... and can only be questioned in one instance (if all cells come from cells, where did the first cell come from? Scientists have observed and studied this question, and have an excellent scientific theory, but this lesson is already long enough without going off on that tangent). This directly opposed the Theory of Spontaneous Generation...
Which Pasteur put to bed in 1861 when he failed to produce life in his sterile, cell-less flasks.
In 1865 a monk named "Mendel" asked "Why do offspring resemble their parents?" and did some experiments with garden peas. With his observations he came up with the Principle of Segregation, which stated that individuals possess 2 'particles' for each trait, which segregate into individual gametes (sperm or egg). Mendel deduced the function of chromosomes 100 years before they could be observed.
Now, about the time that Mendel was cross-breeding peas, Charles Darwin and Alfred Wallace (who?) came up with the Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection, which stated that species come from existing species, and that species change over time. Note that this is very similar to "cells come from existing cells." The same patterns that Intelligent Design people cling to also occur in actual accepted science models. Darwin observed that species adapted to new or changing environments.
It is important to note that the Theory of Natural Selection describes the nature of populations, not individuals. Individuals do not evolve and pass on their acquired traits to offspring. Arnold Schwarzenegger's kids will not be naturally muscle bound. Populations, though, do change, adapt, and evolve. I mentioned the moths in Great Britain, before. No single moth changed color, but the occurrence of dark moths over light moths definitely increased within the population. Before, the species would have been described as "primarily light in color," but that changed. This has been directly observed, and supports Darwin's theory. Another example is a certain fish in the Outer Banks area, where commercial fishing is heavy. It is a law that fish under a certain size must be thrown back, as they are considered immature. However, within that particular fish species, some were bigger as adults, and some were smaller... just like humans and most other species on the planet. These larger adults are being taken out of the breeding population by fishermen, and the smaller adults are being released as immature, even though they aren't. Before, it could be observed that the average size of members of that fish species were X inches long, today it can be observed that the average size is X-Y inches long, Y being equal to the decrease in adult fish size. This population is growing smaller as a species, and this has been observed and recorded in the present day. This has been directly observed, and supports Darwin's theory.
The fossil record supports Darwin's theory. There aren't many present-day species found in the record more than a million years ago, but more primitive homologues, or similarities, are. And farther back in the record, the same thing. And so on and so on, for a couple billions years, give or take.
Other evidence that all species are related, and descended from other species, and not created in-place:
Homologies - similarities among species that are not functionally necessary.
Analogies - Similarities among species that are functionally necessary. Arise through convergent evolution (different species evolve similar features because each has adapted to the same environment or way of life).
Biogeography - The study of patterns of geographical distribution of species. Most species have restrictive ranges... there are deserts on every continent, but cacti only occur naturally in N. America, for example. Why, unless species only come from other species, and plants only evolved into cacti in this one area? Zebras only occur naturally in Africa, even though there are other climates across oceans where they could thrive. Same for Kangaroos in Australia, and Venus Flytraps only occur naturally within a 100 mile radius of Wilmington, North Carolina. This isolation of species is strongly suggestive that Special Creation doesn't hold water, and evolution by natural selection does.
The actual Theory of Natural Selection is as follows:
In a nutshell, the definition of Evolution is a change in the frequency of alleles (traits) in a population, over generations.
It doesn't mean a monkey turned into a man, or an amoeba had paramecium babies.
And Darwin didn't just dream this stuff up, like someone did with the Bible's creation story... unless you think God's court reporter made a transcript of the first days. Darwin actually traveled and observed and saw patterns and hypothesized, and came up with a working model to explain the similarity, yet diversity of life on an island chain off the coast of South America. And his work has withheld unforgiving scrutiny for over 150 years. Special Creation, or Intelligent Design, or whatever you want to call it has not withheld this scrutiny, because saying "God or aliens designed it all a long time ago, and we have to accept it on faith" cannot be scrutinized in any way, unless you find someone's signature written in DNA in some critter, somewhere.
It isn't science.
Now, I know there is room for questions here, such as how the first cells could have been formed from chemicals, and not cells. And there are answers, I'm just not going to address them, here.
I may address those types of questions in the Feedback thread, if asked. But then I'm feeling rather drained at the moment, and I may not. In case you didn't notice, I just regurgitated a metric assload of information ;)
These new army recruiting commercials are on about 50 times a day on Spike TV.
I've seen two: in one, this young veteran is joining some sort of helicopter mechanic outfit. The boss in about to introduce him to his crew, and they're making their introductions and whatnot, and one asks, "Have you ever worked on anything this fast, before?" Then the young guy has some sort of Post-Traumatic flashback of Army Apache helicopters, he focuses back to reality, and deadpans, "Yeah, I have." No smile, no attempt to be congenial. If I'd have been on that crew, I'd immediately have pegged him as some sort of uptight dick.
The other commercial is even worse: a group of buddies is sitting around discussing video games, and all of a sudden another guy walks in in this uniform and new black beret and starts by insulting all of them, "Some things never change," suggesting that he's outgrown... I don't know... shooting the shit with buddies. He walks up and they all give him the stiff, cool-guy hug. The guys are interested in his well-being... "How's the army treating you?" He answers, "Good, real good." They ask, "What do they have you doing?" He deadpans, "Working with computers." The room is hushed, like the guy just admitted to being Jesus raised come to take the faithful home. Someone asks, "Couldn't you have done that around here?" And again we see some sort of flashback to Nam or Grenada or something where they guy has visions of some hardcore data processing in a hectic combat zone. He snaps out of his fugue, gets a blank look in his eyes, and deadpans, "No, I couldn't." At that point his former buddies are wondering how to ditch the dickhead.
I suppose these commercials are designed to show how a boy becomes a man and a leader, or have confidence, or something, but they leave me cold. It looks to me like the army jams a stick up your ass and turns you into an asshole.
This is a shitty recruiting campaign. It doesn't
surprise me that army recruiting numbers are down. The
"Army of One" campaign was shitty and stupid,
too. Nobody in the army works alone except for Martin
Sheen in Apocalypse Now.
Everything Except Being Themselves.
But that's not really accurate, is it... the problem is, being 'themselves' is losing elections.
Now, I'm not going to write an essay on why they're losing, I'll just sum up what everybody (except them) already knows: they lose because they don't really stand for anything except themselves (a trait Republican politicians are taking on themselves the last few years).
But really, people, do you need to spend $80 million to try and learn how to think?
80 liberals each pledge $1 million for alliance
On second thought, maybe that's what they need. Problem is, the smarter you get, the more conservative you lean (that's my own two cents, obviously... I could have just saved them $79,999,999.98). They are either spending $80 million to be more conservative, or they are spending $80 million to trick voters into thinking they are conservative. Good stuff.
"I hate Republicans and everything they stand for..." so we will now spend $80 million to figure out how to be more like them.
I hope they get the brilliant Michael Moore, Al Franken, and Alec Baldwin for their "think tank." No reason, of course.
"Some People Spend An Entire Lifetime Wondering If They Made A Difference...Marines Don't Have That Problem" - President Ronald Reagan, 1985
Did you know there was more than one contributor of articles on dtman.com? It's true.
The author of each post here on dtman.com always put their name at the bottom of their individual posts, which are clickable if you want to send that particular author an email. But also, at the head of each post, is a personalized "avatar" which differentiates which author wrote which post. This is a quick visual cue for the regular readers of this page to see who wrote what, at a glance, if the reader doesn't wish to scroll to the bottom of the post to see the author's name.
For the record,
There have been other contributors in the past, and there may be more in the future. An invitation has been extended to one of the forum regulars, in fact. Lately I've made the majority of the posts around here, but Leisher has always been skulking around in the shadows even when he was on posting sabbatical.
Dove has come out with a new
ad campaign for their creams and lotions featuring “real
women” with “real bodies”.
Dove claims that it’s a statement about
women and how they should feel good about themselves the way
they are and not feel bad because they don’t look like the
normal models Dove would use. Essentially, they are trying to
reach out to women who won’t ever achieve that “perfect
body” and they’re telling them that it’s ok. Basically
they’re doing this to sell a product. Not that I’m saying
Dove doesn’t believe in women having a high self-esteem.
It’s just that I doubt you’d be hearing this message if
there wasn’t a product they were pushing.
However, Dove’s motivations aren’t why
I’m writing about this today. No, I’m questioning the
message we’re sending to people. Is it doing more harm than
good when we tell people to be proud of who they are physically?
Think about it.
On one hand, it’s fantastic that we’re
telling people to be comfortable with who they are and how they
look. On the other, we’re telling people to stay in an
unhealthy state and not to do anything about it.
Look, I’m not saying that someone who is
fat should have low self-esteem. Nor am I saying that people
should constantly strive for the “perfect body”. What I’m
saying is that telling someone who is obese to it’s ok and
they should be proud of it is ridiculous and dangerous for that
These are our friends and people we care
about right? So why should we be telling them to be ok with
their obese frame? Do people normally wish their friends would
die of heart disease? Do we want our fat family members to be
obese? Is it ok that our kids can’t have a game of catch with
their dad without getting winded? Hell, even if they’re not
your friends or family, don’t they drive up YOUR insurance
I call “Horseshit!” It’s time to end
this charade. This is yet another example of how political
correctness is out of control and a danger to this country and
those who live within it.
We are telling our loved ones to suffer and
die and be proud of it.
Not buying it? Think about this, here’s some of what you’ve had hammered into your head since you were born:
Good stuff right? Makes sense as all that
stuff it deadly and dangerous and all that crap.
Well according to the CDC, diseases
of the heart were the leading cause of death in the U.S. in
So where are the “Candy causes lard
asses” and “Friends don’t let friends eat super-sized
Why has our society accepted overeating,
yet we turn our noses up at smoking? With nearly 800,000 deaths
between heart diseases and diabetes, why is it that one kid who
dies from inhaling Dust-Off gets mainstream press and email
campaigns warning everyone, yet there is no campaign about
Being obese gets covered every now and then by the MSM whenever it’s sweeps season and they think they can get people’s attention with it, but nobody makes it out to be a huge deal that MUST be dealt with like we do with smoking.
Now before I finish up here, I want to point out that I do NOT think the girls in the campaign are obese. Nor would I even classify them as fat. In fact, the only negative thing I’d say offhand is that the tattoo is ugly on the one girl’s thigh.
The whole point of this is that we
should NOT be celebrating people who are out of shape or obese
with the typical “Be proud of who and what you are”
Yes, be proud of who you are, but stay
healthy because the people who love you want you around for a
long, long time.
And if you still don’t get my point, ask
yourself this: Why are there no real obese women in that ad?
Adding on to the house, and I'm getting a personal education on the... intrusiveness? of local government.
First step was, of course, filing all permits before I was allowed to do whatever I wanted on my own, private property. If I'd lived in a planned community I'd have had to begin with asking permission from them, but fortunately, I don't. So, city hall wanted floor plans and existing property line layouts before they would issue the building permits. I gave them the copies of the actual documents I received from their own department when I originally bought the house 11 years ago. If I had planned on building within 10 feet of the boundary of my own property, I'd have had to get an easement approved by my neighbor.
Once the permits were secured, construction could begin... intermittent construction, anyway, as we had to wait for a city inspector before any given next step could begin. What follows is a list of what the city has inspected, so far. Each inspection constituted at least one, and at times four days of construction delay:
By the time construction is done, he'll want to:
At that point, the city might actually keep their noses out of my business for a little while.
Now, I understand that these inspections are intended to keep me safe from shoddy contracting work... but give me a break. I neither need nor want their interference. I know enough about construction to probably recognize if they are trying to cut corners. As it is, building codes are a lot sturdier than they used to be, anyway, at least in these parts (a couple bad hurricanes landed here in the 90's). In my perfect world the onus to secure a competent, honest contractor is on me, just as it is my responsibility to ensure quality control. I don't like the city holding my hand and wiping my ass and supporting an entire city department funded by traffic fines and sales taxes and other public money.
Yeah, I realize that most people don't have my construction experience, but I don't really care and don't want my tax money to pay for their hand holding. This reliance on the government to hold peoples' hands is the exact reason people don't bother to take care of themselves and educate themselves, any more. Their problem, not mine.
Building a 50-floor office building? Sure, regulate the hell out of it. Me, adding 300 square feet to a house on my private property? Stay out of my business. Adding on a room to a house isn't rocket science, but it is regulated as such.
Walter Disney, I thought I knew ye.
Last night I saw a DVD of Disney's new movie Bambi. I thought it would make a nice addition for a kid's DVD library. I popped it in the player and took it for a watch.
Boy, was I pissed by the end of the movie. It's a broad and vast liberal indictment of America-hating anti-conservatism in a nice shiny package intended to indoctrinate children at a young age.
Oh, it starts out innocently enough... a newborn Bambi finding his legs in a nice, peaceful meadow under the tutelage of his mother (at least I assumed it was a "he..." the deer has a stripper's name, and no visible genitalia. Obviously suggestive and supportive of male emasculation). It seemed to hearken to what the hippies see as a "golden age" for their unwashed movement, perhaps the 1960's when they were all out at Woodstock making peace, love, and dope.
But anyway, here's Bambi in the meadow with his Mom. Obvious question: where's the father? This is obviously a message that males are neither needed nor wanted in the perfect hippy utopian world of happy bunnies and other woodland creatures. The male in this movie is a dark, shadowy creature feared by all, not revered and respected like in a normal, Christian community. Bambi lives his informative years protected by the apron of his mother, and befriended by the nature worshiping hippy skunks, one of whom was unashamedly named "Flower." It's so obvious that it's ridiculous. Bambi is a metrosexual.
Bambi gets a girlfriend, and they engage in premarital sex. At least, one assumes they did, with the "tasteful fade to black." There was no wedding ceremony that I observed, anyway. Maybe the fade out was to hide the satanic rites they preformed prior to fornicating, in order to bring about the birth of a Michael Moore-loving offspring who would fawn over whichever Democratic candidate Howard Dean serves up in 2008.
But their perfect little life goes on all happily in their thinly disguised commune, where there are no property lines... a direct assault on capitalism and private property rights, by the way. And when does the world all go to hell? When the evil Second-Amendment-loving men with assault guns show up, obviously. BAM, and Bambi's Mom takes one for the team... but it sure isn't portrayed that way. It's supposed to be seen as an evil crime, or something. I actually thought the movie might be turning around when the Father shows up, no longer kept away by Bambi's Mom's restraining order against him.... but what happens as soon as Bambi has a strong father figure? That's right, their entire world is destroyed in a massive forest fire. Message: Men in charge = the end of the world.
This is going to be a popular film among the moonbat community who will use it to baby-sit their tie-dye clad children in between taking them to drug legalization rallies and then the airport to spit on troops returning from Iraq. The fact that this movie was released after the 2000 election lends great support that the creators have a strong anti-Bush agenda. The only real question left to ask is... why does Disney hate America?
FYI - There's quite the lively debate happening in Feedback in response to this post.
Last Saturday the wife and I had lunch at Applebee's, and they had an entire sub-menu dedicated to these new dishes they had, served in bowls. Some were lettuce based, some rice, and some pasta... and all contained some meat, or another.
Well today I'm at the town's longest red light, and I'm just checking out these scenery... and on the Applebee's marquee (oooo... I spelled marquee correctly right out of the gate) I saw their little promotion for this new sub-menu... "Our new menu will BOWL you over."
Oh. My. God.
I wondered why they'd pick such a lame slogan, when so many popped into my head so quickly...
"We'll pack your bowls deep with hot, steamy goodness."
"You'll love eating out of our bowls."
"Our bowls and your mouth... a match made in Heaven!"
You know, sitting at that long red light it didn't seem like all of my slogans were just different plays on the same distasteful joke. I too am lame.
The following short story is right out of my frikkin' head.
One year and one day after he accepted the newly created post of Director of Children, Clarence Mathews was not a happy man. As he sat slouched in his overstuffed office chair staring at the oak top of his desk he knew he'd have to take action, or be seen as an utter failure by the President. He considered the fact that he'd completely failed at the mission he had been assigned a year ago, and knew he'd have to act fast to try and recover the situation. To do otherwise would mean his dismissal...of that he was sure. He fingered the intercom button, and leaned forward to speak at it, "Miss Rogers, please assemble my staff in the conference room in one hour."
The thin pink voice from the intercom answered, "Yes, Mr. Mathews." Clarence leaned back in his chair and sighed deeply, staring at all those books on the shelves in his office. He wondered to himself who could ever have time to read all those books, as he waited for the meeting to start.
Clarence Mathews, Director of the newly-created Department of Children, strode into his conference room ten minutes late. Every chair at the long table was filled, except for the chair at the head. He sat briskly and lifted his head to address the room. Without making eye contact with any particular person he announced, "I apologize for my tardiness. Today's crisis is a bussing issue in Phoenix... it's those Arizonans, again." The room erupted in tittering laughter. "The fact they've never embraced to government's education plan only illustrates why it is so badly needed there." Mumbles of yes sir, and sounds about right filled the room.
Taking a glass of water from the pitcher on the table, Clarence took a drink and cleared his throat. "As you people know, yesterday I received the results of the President's Education Plan for Year Zero. The President won his office largely on his promise that he would ensure every child received an above-average education. The school year ended last month across the nation, and 48,946 children were given the Debian-Mathews-Broad testing to see how we did the first year. Results were, regrettably, across the board... the majority of children scored within the 70th percentile, with smaller numbers above and below. What is most disturbing, though, is that exactly half of these children scored below average, for the group." Mathews paused a moment to let the gasps die down. "As you know, this is simply unacceptable. Here's what we're going to tell the President..."
Two years and one day after he accepted the newly created post of Director of Children, Clarence Mathews was not a happy man. His elbows were leaving smudges on his oak top desk as he leaned forward to rub his temples. He pressed the intercom button and leaned toward it, "Miss Turner, please have my staff assemble in the conference room in one hour." A pink voice responded, "Yes, Mr. Mathews." Clarence leaned back in his chair, staring at the wall of books lining his bookshelves. One of these days I need to see what those are, he thought to himself.
Clarence Mathews, Director of the newly-created Department of Children, strode into his conference room fifteen minutes late. "Apologies for my tardiness... today's crisis is a community in Alabama who attempted to keep their children out of school to be taught at home. At home! They actually think they are more qualified that their government to educate their children!" The room filled with hearty laughter, and smatterings of applause. Holding up his hands to quite the room he continued, "I'm afraid we've had to invoke the Forced Learning Clause again... the Army has been dispatched. You'd think these people would learn the first fifteen times. But I digress..." Clarence opened his attaché and took out some papers. "As you know, yesterday I received the results of the President's Education Plan for Year One. This, as we know, was the big one... after last year's results the President was able to get by by claiming he has the previous administration's incompetence to fix, but he promised results by this year. The results are in.
"We adjusted the test by removing most science and math components in the name of removing racial bias from the tests..." turning his eyes to the room he quipped, "all the students can't be Asian, am I right?" Laughter in the room. "The revised Debian-Unger-Mathews-Broad tests were administered to 49,154 students last month, at the end of the school year. It was encouraging to see that the majority of students scored in the 80th percentile... of that we can be proud. The problem lies..." Clarence stood up, fists on his desk. He wondered if he looked tough. "Exactly half of the children still scored below average for the group." The room erupted in noise and confusion, drowning out Clarence's angry recriminations of this is not improvement, people. "We should be able to keep our jobs by giving the President the percentile improvement, but he's going to expect that problem with 50% of American students scoring below average-thing fixed by next year. Here's what we're going to do..."
And I really have no idea where to go with it. I envision Clarence making his test easier and easier, and Americans getting dumber and dumber. Eventually 50,000 kids will ace D.U.M.B. test, as soon as the provision went in that the kids too stupid to write their own names correctly would have their tests thrown out of tabulation.
But there it is.
Nebraska to Parents: Don't Worry About Raising Your Kids. We'll Take Care of It.
As far as I can glean from recent news reports...
In Nebraska, a 21 year old man impregnated a 13 year old girl. The couple discussed it with their families, and it was decided by all that the best course of action would be for the couple to cross the border into Kansas and get married, where it is legal for girls 12 and older to be married with parental consent. Consent was given, they were married, and the newliweds went home to Nebraska.
Six months later, the state of Nebraska catches on, and the husband is thrown in jail for raping a minor.
The state of Nebraska has now shit on the rights of parents to legally give consent, and has shit upon the reciprocity laws concerning marriage. Apparently Nebraska is now able to declare void any marriage from other states that they don't like... imagine Nebraska no longer recognizing a legal wedding in Las Vegas.
But what chaps my ass even harder is the fact that it was an unfortunate situation, and the girl's parents, probably after a sleepless night or two, decided it would be best for all involved to let their daughter get married and start a life with the new baby. But, then Nebraska slams the brakes on that and throws the husband, and most likely the family's breadwinner, in jail... leaving a 7-months pregnant girl to fend for herself.
Is the girl better off at this point? Will the kid be better off with its father doing 50 years on jail? Will Nebraska cause this girl to be de-screwed by prosecuting the father?
I find the situation somewhat distasteful, but even 75 years ago it wasn't uncommon for 14 year old girls to get married, especially in the mountain and southern states.
On what I'm sure is a completely unrelated note,
this Protecting the Children crusader in Nebraska, Jon
Bruning, is up for reelection soon. If you disagree
with his decision to break up a family, let
him know about it. I have. I hope he doesn't try
to throw my Dad in jail, or something.
So Congress wouldn't vote on his nomination before they recessed, so Bush made a Recess Appointment and now gruff, but lovable, John Bolton is now the United States ambassador to the United Nations. He gets to keep the post until at least 2007 when the next session of Congress begins (as I understand it), at which time I guess they get to vote on him.
The main argument against him is that he isn't a very diplomatic person... he has a tendency to speak his mind even when he knows it will hurt peoples' feelings. This is very different from being wrong, by the way. No one has suggested that he isn't qualified, only in that he is prone to utter the occasional hard word when others would choose to acquiesce to politically correct appeasement or stupidity.
I have no problem with someone unafraid to utter the truth in spite of someone's feelings. I once happily accepted a job when the CIO of the company at which I was interviewing actually threatened to personally kill me if I ever stole from the company... I figured boss like that wouldn't have a lot of use for corporate politics. I hate corporate politics.
So, here's to hoping that Bolton is able to cut through the bullshit at the UN. I'd love to see a weekly press conference by Bolton, aired during primetime, in which he gives his own personal point of view at what he's seen transpire that week... Food for Oil cover-up, UN peacekeepers running child prostitution rings, refusing to call the slaughter of millions of people, based on which tribe they belonged to, a genocide... and failing to enforce or even recognize their own resolutions. That would be some must-see TV.
And in case John Bolton doesn't work out, here's another Bolton I'd support for the position:
Update (12:17, 8/1/2005) Turns out this contest was harder than I thought. I'm going to call it CLOSED at 9pm today, eastern time zone. Right now, approximately noon, I'm going to add a line from the movie for each scene. I'm giving the lines out of my head, so they may not be exact, but I'll get it as close as I can.
Update (10:51 PM, 8/1/2005) The contest is closed, and the winner is the DTMan forum's own Malcolm, with 8 correct answers out of 11. The answers are now in the Feedback thread, so if you don't want to see them, don't look in the forum.
It was popular last time, so here's Round 2.
Again, give answers in the Feedback thread. First person to list all movies correctly, wins. I will say either "correct" or "incorrect" to submissions... I will not say which movies were correct or incorrect.
Winner gets mad props.
No fair looking at file names.
Here was the first 16-Color Movie Contest.
The Mysterious Mind of a Liberal.
Going to keep the commenting sort of terse... and mainly just highlight some comments from an anti-Bush website that posted a video clip of what looks like President Bush shooting the bird at some reporters.
I personally have no problem with people shooting reporters the bird.
The site, and the comments in question.
It starts out tame...
But quickly crashes into the cliffs of insanity:
Clinton used to get blowjobs in the Oval Office.
Clinton used to get blowjobs in the Oval Office.
It goes on and on like that... and people even start arguing about whether it is his middle finger, or his thumb. People claim to have examined every frame and say that as he lowers his arm, it's clearly his thumb... but then some "anon" person says it's his middle finger.
Ah well. I go both ways on it... I like a President who can tell the dickheads to fuck off, but on the other hand it may not be "presidential."
Most liberals were only 12 when Clinton was getting impeached, anyway. I don't really expect them to know what hypocrites they are.
Strange thing about that site... liberals claim to be all "tolerant" and stuff, but that site clearly slams scientology... just like I do. I guess their tolerance doesn't extend to the spiritual.
As a great cat once said:
I have no problem letting people know when they're wrong.
According to the logs, DTMan.com has received over 3100
unique visitors for the first 28 days of July, 2005. That may be a record.
Onward and upward.
Regular readers of DTMan.com, all four of you, know that I am anti-labor union. My opinion is derived from the belief in basic economic principles that the higher the wages of people producing goods and services, the higher the prices of goods and services. A good setup for members of the union with their artificially inflated salaries, but bad for everybody else. But then again, it's not really that good for the union members when their wages go so high that it becomes cheaper for the company to close their plant in America and move it overseas. Labor unions were relevant during the industrial revolution in the 19th and 20th century, but today the labor laws that didn't exist then are in place, and the unions are a self-serving bureaucracy existing not to protect workers from employers, but merely to protect their own paychecks derived from dues received from workers. With a business model like that, marketing is key.
Union leadership is very pro-Democrat, and anti-Bush... in spite of President Clinton's NAFTA treaty which removed all barriers to trade within in North America... meaning there is no protectionism of American jobs via tariffs. Evidence of this bias is apparent in the AFL-CIO's webpage which prominently displays a "BushWatch" section. There are some employment numbers under "BushWatch" that I find dubious. Yet more bias is in an omission in their "Union History and Culture" section. It contains a timeline of labor union philosophy from the 1600's to present. It also leaves out all mention of Eugene V. Debs, one of the first labor union organizers in America, and who was more influential on organized labor in America than was Jimmy Hoffa. He was also a president of the Socialist Party of America. I wonder why the AFL-CIO no longer wants him to be remembered and associated with them? My guess is the bad PR. Hard to claim you protect workers in a capitalist system when your foundation is deeply rooted in the writings of Karl Marx.
Now, let me be clear about one thing... your typical union member is not a commie, or evil, or the devil. Adam Smith himself said that people need to make the decisions that are in their own best interests, and for a lot of people that means taking a job in a union shop in order to put food on the table. Again, this is directly in the best interests of the union employee; the effect it has on their future job security is an abstract that people with hungry kids can't base any decisions on. Even if they'd be willing to take a particular job without union "protection," often times they can't due to the company being a "closed shop." Many people are forced into union membership whether they desire it or not... and every union member has their dues withheld from their paychecks. You can't even protest membership by withholding payment. There is no more slave labor in this country; it has transformed into being slaves to Labor.
Today, the AFL-CIO is facing a major schism.
It seems that some union members no longer like being forced to pay dues to an organization that gives their money to Democrats who say things like, "I hate Republicans and everything they stand for." Again, roughly half of union members, statistically, are registered Republican. They are forced to give over money to those who claim to hate them. I'd be pissed, too.
Well I'd say so. Watch for the Dems to try to gain more votes by, say, allowing felons to vote. They typically skew liberal. And tougher rules on absentee military ballots. Military members typically distrust liberals who claim to support them to their face while simultaneously trying to hamstring them behind their back.
If you can't win, change the rules in your favor.
As for my opinion on this labor union schism, I don't find it surprising. You can't pander to the extreme liberal left without pissing off your moderates and making your conservatives think the whole world is going to hell.... which is what the Democrats, and their supporters, have done since Clinton left office. As I understand it union members vote on all major union decisions, so it stands to reason that if these relatively smaller unions are leaving the AFL-CIO affiliation, they must have reached a 50% tipping point that was dissatisfied with AFL-CIO politics. And, since I find most people who vote Democrat to be mentally defective (wink wink), this gives me hope that even the most strident liberal can be shown the light of day that wisdom and experience has failed to shine upon them.
There... I went this whole post without once mentioning John Kerry's name.
Not sure what to write about, today.
I'm not irritated. I'm not feeling introspective. I don't really care about Karl Rove today, nor Egyptians who say, "The Jews did it," nor MILITANT hippies setting funeral flags on fire.
Nobody screwed me over for money today, nor did anyone give me a bad customer experience.
I've promised myself this would not become a "GORDON's new-baby blog," so there will be none of that.
No hurricanes on the way, the summer has been neither too wet nor too dry, the tomato garden is doing fine this year, and house construction is coming along.
I had another military dream last night, but I don't feel like talking about it.
So hell with it, here's a picture of a cat taking a nap on my desk and using the speaker as a pillow while a Type O Negative song is playing.
More on the MSM’s inability to understand the Gaming Industry.
By now you’ve all heard about the Grand
Theft Auto: San Andreas controversy. If you haven’t, then
read about it at USA
Zealand Herald, or MTV.
Before I get started, I want to point out
reviewed GTA:SA back in November and was not impressed. I
mean, its fun, but I expected a lot more.
Onto the controversy, I’ve been following
this story since it hit and I think it’s hilarious that nobody
is paying attention to the details in this issue or the big
picture. All we hear about is that this evil game lets children
see cartoon characters simulate sexual acts and how Rockstar,
the developer, cheated the ratings system.
Well, here are the facts:
Those are the FACTS of this controversy,
yet all you hear are the MSM and politicians saying these
developers are evil putting this stuff in the hands of children.
I have two questions regarding this issue:
To back up my argument here and to back up Gordon’s from his “Ignorance in Media Writing about the Game Industry” post below, here are a couple more facts:
(Those figures are from EGM, PCGamer,
CGW, and Maxim or Stuff [they’re basically the same and I
can’t remember which one it was].)
So please MSM and politicians, keep fighting to keep these evil games out of the hands of the adults who play them. Forget the fact that irresponsible store owners and parents are really the problem here.
Movie Review: The Wedding Crashers
Owen (Tweedle-Dee) Wilson and Vince (Tweedle-Dum) Vaughn play a couple of guys who crash weddings to pick up women, which works just fine until one starts developing a conscience, and then falls in love. I know, "Duh," but I need to have a broad overview as a topic paragraph. Think you could do better? I'd like to see you try. Screw you, for judging me. But anyway...
This movie is rated "R," and it definitely earns it. For approximately the first 25 minutes of the movie it was almost nonstop hilarity intermixed with plenty-o-sex and boobies. Good stuff. There's a montage early on showing the boys in one wedding after another, getting more and more frenetic, and increasing pace, and building up steam faster and faster... and I was wondering what was going to happen to the film once this climax happened. The answer is, "it slows down," but it was still good enough... and included one of the raunchiest comedy scenes I can remember seeing. Without trying too hard to remember another one.
I recommend this movie to anyone who doesn't have a stick jammed up their ass.
Interestingly enough, we bought the last two tickets available, and when we walked into the theatre the only open seats were the two next to my general contractor and his wife. Good thing we get along and he's doing a good job on my house. They liked the movie, too, and I'd say they are in their mid 40's.
One last thought: this movie was rated R by the MPAA because of some adult-language, boobies, and sexual situations. Fine. Alien vs. Predator was rated PG-13 and it was full of violence and monsters and people getting slaughtered, but no boobies. Priorities in this country are extremely screwed up.
I give this film 8.5 official rules to crashing weddings out of 10.
thread. Violators will be prosecuted.
Ignorance in Media Writing about the Game Industry.
The AP says that women need to be targeted in the video game market:
1. Like I've told many IT managers, perception is not, in fact, reality.
2. What about the men who introduce their women to gaming? That's what I did.
3. Only sometimes she felt she had to prove herself? I found most days to be like that, military and private sector. Welcome to the grown-up world.
The AP doesn't understand the industry, and is riding the coat-tails of the "GTA scandal." They interviewed one woman in the industry, and derive from her lone point of view that the industry is male dominated.
Here's a little hint for the clueless reporters
trying to understand the game industry: The top selling
games of the last 5 years have been "The Sims" and
"The Sims 2," games which my wife plays religiously
and describes as "Computer Barbie Dolls." The
other game she plays a lot is Civilization III, which is also
gender non-specific. To suggest that the video game
industry is skewed to men reveals a pretty basic
misunderstanding of the industry. On top of that, to
suggest that women don't like fast-paced action games is blatantly
sexist, and not very politically correct. I can't begin to
describe how offended I am by that.
So my birthday is on the 23rd... and my mother-in-law sent me a voucher for the new Harry Potter book. Very nice gesture, I thought. She went to a Books-A-Million in Ohio (to those not familiar, it's basically a Barnes and Noble, including in-store overpriced coffee shop) and mailed me the voucher in a birthday card that I could use here in North Carolina.
The wife and I were out and about last night, so we decided to go book shopping and pick up my birthday present.
There was a big stack of the book near the front door, and we spent about a half hour browsing and picking up some other books we wanted. There was a sticker on the Potter book that claimed it was 40% off, and I wondered if the bookstore would pay the several dollars difference between what was paid in Ohio versus what it cost in NC on sale. I doubted it, but I never found out...
We put our big stack of books and other sundries on the counter, and gave the guy our voucher. We probably had a hundred bucks of stuff, over and above the Harry Potter book. He couldn't get the voucher to work, so he asked the girl next to him to try. She couldn't get it to work, so they called the manager up from the back. The manager couldn't get it to work, so she made some phone call to someone... regional manager? and I guess they looked up my voucher number. She told me, "This voucher has already been redeemed. I'm sorry."
I was slightly taken aback... certainly she wasn't suggesting...
I said, "Do you people take the voucher when you exchange it for a book?"
She said "Yes, we do."
I answered, "Well I just gave it to you. So obviously it hasn't been used yet."
She just repeated that it had already been redeemed. Which was beginning to piss me off, because she was accusing me of trying to scam their little system, and she wasn't being discrete about it. Everybody in the front of the store is following right along with the action. By now my wife is on her cell phone to my mother-in-law, trying to figure out if MIL did anything strange on her end. The obvious answer is "no," but we're just getting our ducks in a row before we REALLY start getting pissed off.
I told the manager, "It seems to me you're having a problem with your database if it reads that the voucher I walked into the store with has already been redeemed by someone else."
She looks right at me and says, "No, there's no problem with our system"
Temperature is rising.
I asked the manager, edge entering my voice, "How could this voucher have been used if I just walked into the store with it?"
She said, "Well, someone could have claimed to have lost it, and if they can give the telephone number it was bought under, they'll honor a lost voucher."
I gave my wheels a moment to spin... and I followed up with, "So, while my mother-in-law was in the store purchasing this voucher, the person in line behind her only needs to listen while she gives her telephone number, and redeem the non-existent voucher an hour later?"
The bitch manager didn't have an answer for that.
By now my MIL was on her way to the store in Ohio to figure this mess out, and the wife and I left the NC store without buying any of the other books we had chosen.
An hour later the manager at the Books-A-Million in Ohio is on the phone with us, apologizing and promising to get it straightened out by today.
As of today, nobody has called us to straighten it out. I waited to see if they would fix it before I wrote this post. It's looking like Books-A-Million has pretty much stolen the cost of a hardcover book from an old lady.
1. Buy books on Amazon.com. It's fun to browse a store and everything, but damn. Amazon's automated checkout process has never once accused me of stealing, or actually stolen from me.
2. If you must buy from a brick-and-mortar
joint, beware of the piss-poor system security of their voucher
system. Or, conversely, use this shoddy system to your own
advantage and loiter near the counter listening for people
buying book vouchers as gifts, and jot down their phone numbers.
(I guess they should have left him stuck in the pattern buffer on the Dyson Sphere.)
It's been brought to my attention that in order to reach a wider audience, I need to "write less white." Ok, I'm willing to try that. I am fully aware that the color of my skin is a detriment to me, and makes me not be able to dance and talk good and stuff. So, in order to reach my readers in the San Bernadino, California area, here's the last post translated into ebonics.
PS - Microsoft spell-check wants to capitalize the word ebonics.
Can't really think of any good post fodder today (yeah, I know, like any of it is ever good)... so here's just a few things I wonder.
1. Women have been having babies for thousands of years, since the Earth was created 6,000 years ago... why all of a sudden are women fooled into buying the tons of hippy crap, invented in the last 10 years, that is marketed as "must-have" for parents of children? "Baby Massage" equipment comes to mind. Hippy crap.
2. I never wore a bicycle helmet growing up, ever. I never sustained a head injury while bike riding. I went through school with, probably, 500 other kids. None of them wore helmets (because in the 70's a kid wearing a bicycle helmet was going to get his ass kicked... daily) , and none of them ever came to school (or was hospitalized) because they sustained head injury while riding a bicycle. So why are there now laws requiring kids to wear bicycle helmets?
3. Why do some people think that I don't need to own a gun/will commit a crime if I own a gun/are just generally scared to death of guns?
4. Why will the government give me a rifle at 18 years of age and send me off into harm's way, but they won't let me purchase a beer when I get back?
5. Are turn signals really all that hard to use?
6. Why do so many people just instinctively hate President Bush?
7. How can someone who has never eaten Memphis barbecue tell me I'm wrong when I claim that Memphis barbecue is the King of All Barbecue?
8. If a liberal wants to take care of people, why will the same liberal want to ban DDT which could save thousands of people each year who die of pest-borne diseases like malaria?
9. If environmentalists want to reduce pollutants, why do they oppose nuclear power plants and storing nuclear waste under a mountain in a desert in Nevada?
10. Why do so many people want to legislate and force me to do what they feel is best for me? Am I a child? Like the man said while they were pulling his guts out, "Freedom."
Music Review: Demons & Wizards - Touched by the Crimson King.
Yeah, I figured I'd better not let two full years go by without an album review. Thing is, I tend to only focus on outstanding albums... and those are few and far between, methinks.
I first discovered Demons & Wizards when I was still on the honeymoon with my marriage to Blind Guardian's
Nightfall in Middle-Earth album. I was so in love, then. Passion that burns with that intensity cannot be sustained, though, and while I still love it, I am no longer IN love with it. You understand.
(Continue reading this review...)
Some time ago on the forums it was suggested that maybe if the non-insane section of the Muslim community would publicly speak out against terrorism and terrorist acts, then maybe the average person would stop thinking that there weren't, in fact, any sane Muslims. Believe it or not, a Muslim or two actually lurk on the DTMan forum, and the response at the time was, "We're not all crazy but we don't defend ourselves because we feel we shouldn't have to." While I personally disagree with that tactic - I think that if someone's reputation is being smeared in the mud that it should be defended - I can appreciate the go to hell attitude of that. I don't always respond to personal attacks either, because the people attacking me are usually idiots and not worth my time.
But today, while out at lunch, I saw a TV showing a massive gathering in London at Trafalgar Square to remember the dead of 7/7. What struck me about the images on the muted, closed-captioned television was that I was looking at a huge gathering of "white people" to remember the dead, and I am yet to see any gathering of Islamic people doing anything even remotely resembling gathering to make a public statement mourning the innocent dead, supporting any type of peace process, or anything.
Also at this gathering of "white people" there was nobody firing guns in the air, holding up placards written in the language of the people holding the cameras (ever notice that when you see violent, anti-US demonstrations in foreign lands that they hold up signs written in English? Do you think English is the primary language in the Palestinian territory, Pakistan, or Indonesia?), or otherwise looting and acting like animals. It was a striking contrast to see a large gathering of calm, sober people.
So that's what I was going to write about today.... the fact that I never see any Muslims distancing themselves from the extremists in their midst.
But then I saw this:
I tried to find a reference to this on the usual MSM websites, but couldn't find anything about it. I was made aware of this on Black Five, a milblogger in the list on the left. Why isn't this kind of thing being widely reported? Even 11 people showing up to protest Bush in Belgium warrants a "Crowd Gathers to Protest Bush Visit" headline in the AP. God forbid the MSM report that brown people hate terrorism, too. Might make the USA look, you know, not like the bad guys. If I were a sane Muslim, I'd be trying to do something about this public relations problem... you are being slighted by the MSM in order to smear the US.
A few protest pictures, for archiving purposes. They were taken not by MSM reporters, but by servicemen who were there. More in the above link (with some decent responses, too...). Note the presence non-English signs. One group even brought one asking the coalition forces for the release of a prisoner... and yet coalition forces didn't shoot them dead. Amazing, considering our reputations for torturing Korans and reading Harry Potter books aloud.
In the silence from the Muslim community after 7/7 I was about to lose my faith in the idea that there could exist sane Muslims. My faith is now renewed. Thank you, Iraqis.
No, not Ducks Unlimited.
I don't ever visit the Democratic Underground.com website, because if I want to be around people who call me stupid I can just.... well, nobody besides hard-lefties ever call me stupid (more than every once and a while). But every now and then some of their words of wisdom gets through my sanity filters and I end up being exposed to their hatred of everything American.
Here's what one really smart person on their forum has to say about the average American:
There's just so much there, it's hard to know what to say.
If you visit that thread, be sure to read follow-up posts. Lots of people there agree.
That thread is from October '03, and apparently the left realizes that MAYBE it isn't beneficial to them to accept all supporters, even the extreme nutballs. Not because it is wrong to support their extreme positions, but because it isn't working for them come election time. The center was turned off by the antics of the far-left in the last election, and the moderate left is beginning to realize it. Recently the hard-left, self-described moderate, anti Republican organization "MOVEON" (remember when they put out that pre-election commercial comparing Bush to Hitler? Yeah, that was them being 'moderate') had a little press party. Drudge was invited:
Most conservatives I know reject the rhetoric of the far-religious-right just as quickly as they do the far-nutball-left. It's actually somewhat frightening to my anti-progressive self to see the left figuring this out.
Somebody put Howard Dean back in front of a camera, already.
You know.... it has been over ten years since my honorable discharge from the Marine Corps, and I still dream at least once a month about serving. I dream that I got called back... and in every dream I'm usually worried about the fact that I forgot to shave my beard before I reported for duty in uniform.
In the really good dreams I'm shooting bad guys.
The service is 98% tedium and games, but the other 2% of the time you get to change the world. Most people never know that feeling.
I guess instead of lamenting days gone by I should instead feel lucky I was brave enough to take the plunge in the first place.
But I'd still re-sign in a second.
Bringing Down a Nation II: Disinformation Overload.
Bringing Down a Nation: Part I
Some would say that it is a truism that if you repeat a lie often enough, people will begin believing it.
I'm not sure if I personally believe that, even generally (when I generalize, I always admit that there's 10% exception to everything... but I believe that greater than 10% of people are not gullible enough to believe an oft-repeated lie. I know... unusually generous of me). In my eyes this is a fundamental viewpoint to which one must adhere in order to trust people with freedoms of speech and press. The press is certainly not censored by the government in this country (in spite of what some would have you believe), but would that be a wise policy if everyone believed everything they hear, all the time? Absolutely not. With 100% public gullibility, newspaper owners would tell their readers that they need to purchase the other products they own, that they need to.... well, you get the idea.
So we have a free American press that fancies itself the 4th branch of government, ensuring the government operates "above board" with complete accountability to the people it serves. Great system, in theory. Unfortunately, it's never really worked that way.
Since Ben Franklin (and his family) used their printing presses to speak out against and/or support their government instead of just reporting on it, the American press has been the untouchable 4th branch of government that actually has none of the accountability to which they claim to hold the Judicial, Legislative, and especially the Executive branches. The only way one can actually hold a newspaper accountable for lying is to vote with one's dollars and not buy that newspaper. Not overly effective.
In today's world several news sources are owned by single mega-corporations. In itself, this is fine. I am not anti-capitalist. The problem I see, though, is what happens when a single person is in control of a sizable percentage of information that people receive? What happens when that person decides he wants to sway public opinion? There's not a thing to stop that person, be it Hearst or Benjamin Franklin, to lie all he wants.
I said before that not many people are gullible enough to believe everything they hear. But if one person is fooled by lies, doesn't that make the source of the lie a liar? And as the self-appointed 4th branch of government, is there absolutely no accountability for this? If Rathergate and Eason Jordan taught us anything, it is that even competing "4th branch of government" news sources are afraid to be too critical of each other, as the next media scandal is never more than a news cycle away.
A few days ago terrorists targeted a bunch of women and children and other civilians using public transportation during rush hour in London, England. The day of the attacks England's venerable BBC reported these as "terrorist attacks." People were amused that they had changed their tune... before they hit the home of the BBC suicide bombers were referred to as militants, insurgents, or merely bombers. Though we approved of the BBC taking off the kid-gloves, some of us were wondering how long it would it would take the BBC to return to their more cuddly, appeasing terms.
It turns out the answer to that question was, "It would take five days," and not only that, but they are trying to change history, too. They've gone back into their archives and removed all instances of their usage of the word terrorist.
The above quote is, of course, in English-English, not English.
The BBC doesn't want to make a value judgment on people who killed women and children and other civilians. While this seems ridiculous to me... I GUESS I can see the point, if their goal were to report news and not sway public opinion. I just wonder what all the 7/7 widows, widowers, and orphans think of the BBC's sensitivity to the animals who destroyed their lives. No, I doubt they are making value judgments. *cough*
American press doesn't quite hold back so much when labeling people.
No, I don't mean terrorists, per se. I mean American leadership, who have spearheaded the Global War on Terrorism and the terrorist animals who deliberately target woman and children in the name of their ideology.
She even said "Bush is evil" twice. I guess she really, really means it.
The press gives sensitivity to cold-blooded murderers, and the worst accusations in our nation's current mindset are reserved for the people fighting the murderers. Continuous, relentless, repetitive disinformation. That is how you sway a population. Al-Qaeda couldn't do better if they themselves were in charge of the press and propaganda, and therefore the 4th branch of American government.
Saturday Night Observations, Haiku-Style.
Walking through Wal-Mart
Just walking around tonight composing haikus.
Any ideology that can carry out, endorse, excuse, or ignore the deliberate murder of civilians, including women and children, in order to further their cause is sick and twisted, and the complete annihilation of that ideology is fully justified.
Most have forgotten, but the English played the Star Spangled Banner at the Buckingham Palace Changing of the Guard on 9/12/2001. I call on President Bush to order American flags at all federal installations to half-mast for the next three days in mourning for the losses of our closest friends across the Atlantic.
What an interesting jumble of completely unrelated facts, eh?
In light of the latest incident involving dead children and a child molester that was released from jail, I got to thinking about these types of crimes.
A while back I started a forum thread claiming that I was boycotting Pepsi, my soft drink of choice. The CFO of Pepsi made a bunch of anti-U.S. statements at a commencement address at Columbia University, and I haven't purchased a Pepsi product (that I know of) since.
This thread was lost in the Easter server move.
Some folks in the forum agreed with me, some said that America did indeed suck and
that they were going to drink MORE Pepsi to counter my personal
I'm not sure how America can be the middle finger flipping
off the world at the same time we are extending our hands with
Movie Review: War of the Worlds
Trying out a new idea, here... whenever one of the DTMan crew manage to catch a movie when it's still relatively new, we'll start a review here on the main page and finish it in the Movie Forum where peeps can add their own comments.
Steven (Remember when I Made Jaws?) Spielberg directs Tom (Scientology is My Life) Cruise in a remake of the movie based on H. G. Wells's 1898 story about invaders from the planet Mars. I read the book in the 6th grade, and this movie stays faithful to the major themes of the original story. The special effects are top notch, and a lot of the aliens have definite elements of alien-ness. There were even some bits of the book that were omitted from the 1950's version of the movie that Spielberg put back in... of which I approve. And the movie was, for the most part, shown from the point of view of Tom Cruise's protagonist, and as his character wasn't the center of the universe, not every single alien element of the movie was broken down and explained Sesame Street-style. I approve of this, also.
Tom Cruise plays a character being ridden by his boss, his ex-wife, and his teen son, and Tom does a decent job of portraying a regular joe just trying to hold his fraying life together. And then the big alien stuff starts. This role isn't Jerry McGuire (Tom's best acting ever, in my opinion), but it isn't Joel-something from Risky Business, either.
Tim Robbins has a significant role in the movie, and it felt to me like he was playing a caricature of what he thinks a paranoid, violent survivalist must be like.
And as the last bit of non-spoiler review, I'll just say that Spielberg kept the technical ending of the film faithful to the novel (of which I approve), but I don't like what he did with the wrap-up of the human story. I'll say no more, other than make sure you buy the DVD as soon as it is released... in 20 years Spielberg will edit the film so the aliens are carrying walkie-talkies instead of death rays.
Two and a half legs of the tripod out of three.
So a bunch of musicians are doing their jobs another day under the guise of eliminating the debt from African governments. Seems to me that President Bush suggested the very thing a few weeks ago.
If you tell these dictators they have a clean slate, it isn't really going to end any type of poverty for the average destitute African. It isn't like these governments are going to just turn around and give the interest that have been (or haven't been) paying on this debt to their people.
Hey President Bush... how about some American debt relief? I promise that if you wipe out my house, car, and credit card debt that I will turn around and pump 75% of that money back into the economy, which as we know will create more jobs. Win/win for America and Americans, right?
As everyone knows, today is the anniversary of the day most of the Second Continental Congress signed the final draft of the Declaration of Independence... with the president of the Congress signing it two days later. Copies were then made and distributed on the 4th.
What's weird is that they have 2nd of July in England, too.
Movies, Movies, Movies! And 16 color drawings.
Welcome to July!
I've been busy.... busy drawing pictures! The following are scenes from various movies that I drew in plain, vanilla Microsoft Paint. Can you figure them out? No fair peeking at file names!
You can give answers in the Feedback thread. The first person to name all the movies correctly gets the satisfaction of knowing you made me feel special by paying attention to my desperate pleas for affection.
Update: (1151, 7/2/2005) Troy from the DTMan Forums listed all the movies correctly. If you don't want to see the answers, don't look in the forums.
Cleaning the Stalls
Bringing Down a Nation
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