Thursday, November 25, 2010

Deep Thoughts, Turkey Day Edition

The problem with drinking while you're cooking...  when the oven timer rings you can't remember what the hell it's for.

Today's menu:

Turkey and stuffing
Giblet Gravy
Mashed Potatoes
Brussel Sprouts
Broccoli Cheese Casserole
Roasted Sugar Pumpkin stuffed with apples, walnuts, bread cubes, and linguica.
Cranberry Sauce
Pumpkin Pie

It's all made from scratch except for the pie.  That came from Costco.  Everything is still cooking, so I'll give the full prognosis after the break!  Happy Thanksgiving, y'all.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


While reading an interesting article about how hyenas inherit their social status on I saw this ad in the Google contextual ads in the side bar...

WTF!?!?  I didn't know the zoophiles were such an important audience that you had to target ads to them.  And what about hyenas brings mating with animals to mind?  I love the internet.  It's like real life, only stupider.

Monday, March 22, 2010

This one goes out to Jim DeMint

I hope for your sake, Mr Senator, that you feel like you win when you lose.

Friday, March 19, 2010

You and your girl went what?

Wow, I totally misheard the opening on this song.  I swear he was singing "Me and my girl went balling" not "bowling".

"Cast Iron Arm" by Peanuts Wilson

Friday, March 12, 2010

Bus vs. Boardroom

On the was into work the other day I heard the following:
His grandma lives in Tacoma, and is 76 or something.  I buy all of my weed from her.
Then I get into work and heard the following inanity:
What happens when we 'rightsize' the business?
I wish I could ride the bus all day.  I love the bus.

Le Pain Maudit: Foreign Relations At It's Best

Back in the summer of 1951 a French town, Pont-Saint-Esprit suffered from a case of mass insanity that led to 7 deaths, 50 people being interned in mental institutions, and 250 overall incidents.  The insanity was traced to eating bread from a local bakery.  Original theories included mercury poisoning, but eventually most investigators settled on ergot poisoning.  This was not an entirely unreasonable assumption, all things considered.

Fast forward to 1975, and the Rockefeller Commission's investigation into the CIA's domestic activites and the Church Commitee.  The CIA's experiments with mescaline, LSD, and other psychoactives, bundled under the project name MKUltra, came to the knowledge of Congress and the public.  At least one of the researchers on the project, Frank Olson, died when he allegedly threw himsel out a window from a 10th story window due to LSD inspired insanity.  His family was paid $750,000 by Congress, an admission of culpability by the CIA.

In 1994 his body was exhumed at the request of his sons.  According to the medical examiner, he'd suffered sufficient blunt force to his head to render him unconscious before hitting the ground.  This strongly suggests that it was not a suicide, but actually homicide.

Now jump forward to present day... and investigative journalist Hank Albarelli
However, H P Albarelli Jr., an investigative journalist, claims the outbreak resulted from a covert experiment directed by the CIA and the US Army's top-secret Special Operations Division (SOD) at Fort Detrick, Maryland.
The scientists who produced both alternative explanations, he writes, worked for the Swiss-based Sandoz Pharmaceutical Company, which was then secretly supplying both the Army and CIA with LSD.
Mr Albarelli came across CIA documents while investigating the suspicious suicide of Frank Olson, a biochemist working for the SOD who fell from a 13th floor window two years after the Cursed Bread incident. One note transcribes a conversation between a CIA agent and a Sandoz official who mentions the "secret of Pont-Saint-Esprit" and explains that it was not "at all" caused by mould but by diethylamide, the D in LSD.

While compiling his book, A Terrible Mistake: The Murder of Frank Olson and the CIA's Secret Cold War Experiments, Mr Albarelli spoke to former colleagues of Mr Olson, two of whom told him that the Pont-Saint-Esprit incident was part of a mind control experiment run by the CIA and US army
Circumstantially, it all ads up.  But just because it makes sense, doesn't mean it happened.  I'd really like to see confirmation or denial on this one though.  And I'm sure the French government would as well.
Mr Albarelli said the real "smoking gun" was a White House document sent to members of the Rockefeller Commission formed in 1975 to investigate CIA abuses. It contained the names of a number of French nationals who had been secretly employed by the CIA and made direct reference to the "Pont St. Esprit incident." In its quest to research LSD as an offensive weapon, Mr Albarelli claims, the US army also drugged over 5,700 unwitting American servicemen between 1953 and 1965.

None of his sources would indicate whether the French secret services were aware of the alleged operation. According to US news reports, French intelligence chiefs have demanded the CIA explain itself following the book's revelations. French intelligence officially denies this.
I'll follow-up on this if I hear more.

h/t BoingBoing

Monday, March 8, 2010

"Don't let them take the joy you make on your own."

Good lord, I wish.  "I Quit My Job" by Old Man Luedecke.

This song has a fun Bluegrass melody.  And anything with both banjos and ukeleles is ok with me.  Never mind, the lyrics, which I wish I could fully endorse.

You can find the album here.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Rampantly Sexy Sexism!

Here's another awesome Scopitone video, this one with an extra helping of ye olde schoole gender identity.

And for completeness sake, here's the original.  Unfortunately, it's not a Scopitone.  We'd probably get more sexy ladies if it was.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

George, Teddy & The Condors

Check out the Go-go dancers on this one!  And the song is fun, too.  I think it was originally done by the Coasters.  The Hollies covered it too.

I imagine that for it's time, the black men/white women dynamic was pretty controversial.

Daddy's Little Proletariat

My one year old, Lucius, has succesfully completed his first chores.

A couple of days ago, he was picking up his bottle (which was empty) and waving it around and hooting. My wife, Tersa, who was not feeling very good said, “Well, if you want more milk bring it to your dad and have him fill it up for you.” Lucius grinned ear to ear, and made a beeline to me. He handed me the bottle, then promptly yanked it out of my hands and tried to drink out of it. “What do you mean there’s no milk? I went to Daddy like you said.” I said, “I have to fill it up silly. Follow me and we’ll get more.” He grinned at his mistake and then attempted to follow me to the kitchen, only to get distracted by the barber chair in the dining room.

First lesson learned.  Follow instructions, do the work, and get a reward.  He's now learned how it should work.  (Ignoring the hidden costs of milk and bottle, which he has not yet earned.  We'll cover that in a later chapter.)  I don't start covering exploitation, and Daddy passively owning the means of production until the kids are at least two.

Yesterday, he worked on his second chore, which was slightly less successful (from my point of view at least).  He was cruising around the living room, and started to engage in his favorite game of "Throw diapers all over the room".  Yeah.  That game is awesome.  I got down on his level and said, "OK, buddy.  Time to clean up the mess."  I modeled putting the diapers away, and he mostly got it.  Then grabbed more diapers and threw them on the ground.  "Look Dad, we can play some more."  So we did it a bit more, and he got positive feedback for putting things away, and none for throwing things on the ground.

Sometimes it's overkill to try to apply Marx to a situation, when B.F. Skinner would suffice.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Oh, Spambot.

Had a lovely conversation with a pornbot/Nigerian phishing scheme this afternoon.

Click to enlarge.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The Wonders of Technology

Ugh.  This is absolutely horrible.

Text messages, and to a lesser extent, Facebook helped organize the latest Nigerian sectarian violence, urging members of both the Christian and Muslim communities to slaughter each other.

"The messages helped escalate the violence in Jos in that some of them instructed people on how to kill, dispose of and burn bodies," said leading rights activist Shehu Sani.

The texts were aimed at "spreading rumours and inflaming tensions," said Sani, who heads a coalition of 32 Nigerian civil and human rights groups called the Civil Rights Congress.
One of the messages seen by AFP read : "War, war, war. Stand up ... and defend yourselves. Kill before they kill you. Slaughter before they slaughter you. Dump them in a pit before they dump you."

In Kuru Karama, a former mining village and Muslim enclave in a Christian district south of Jos, attackers who killed more than 150 villagers disposed of the bodies systematically.
Ah Humanity.  Always finding wonderful new tools to kill each other.

h/t BoingBoing

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Back on the oxys?

Y'all have probably seen this.  But watching evil men embarass themselves to Lady Gaga is always fun.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Some night time loud

SELFISH CUNT, "England Made Me" mp3

Turn this up.  Loud.  This song is so unbelievably bad ass.  And any front man that looks like he's channeling Iggy Pop AND Lux Interior is ok with me.

PIERCED ARROWS, "Paranoia" mp3

These guys are fun.  It's like AC/DC by way of the Tiger Lilies.  And the album just came out today, so be the first on your block.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Welcome to Rapture: Colorado Springs Goes Bioshock

OK, so the lede is a little unfair.  The Underwater City of Rapture, the setting of 2K Games Bioshock, was a hellhole due to the logical failures of Libertarianism/Objectivism.  Colorado Springs on the other hands is a hellhole because of the logical failures of Conservatism.

Via the Denver Post:
COLORADO SPRINGS — This tax-averse city is about to learn what it looks and feels like when budget cuts slash services most Americans consider part of the urban fabric.
More than a third of the streetlights in Colorado Springs will go dark Monday. The police helicopters are for sale on the Internet. The city is dumping firefighting jobs, a vice team, burglary investigators, beat cops — dozens of police and fire positions will go unfilled.
The parks department removed trash cans last week, replacing them with signs urging users to pack out their own litter.
Neighbors are encouraged to bring their own lawn mowers to local green spaces, because parks workers will mow them only once every two weeks. If that.
Water cutbacks mean most parks will be dead, brown turf by July; the flower and fertilizer budget is zero.
Welcome to the Ownership Society!

Colorado Springs is the town that brought us Ted Haggard.  Colorado Springs is the town that brought us James Dobson and Focus on the Family.  McCain took Colorado Springs by 19 points.  And then there's this:
Voters in November said an emphatic no to a tripling of property tax that would have restored $27.6 million to the city's $212 million general fund budget. Fowler and many other residents say voters don't trust city government to wisely spend a general tax increase and don't believe the current cuts are the only way to balance a budget.
This is Grover Norquist's government that's small enough to drown in a bathtub.  Or it would be if there was any water left in Colorado.  You get what you pay for, and the voters have chosen to pay for a city with Third World level of services.

Welcome to Rapture.

h/t Daily Kos Diarist Bink

Sunday, January 31, 2010

"And this is a lighthouse keeper being beheaded by a laser beam."

Except for the inexplicable pipe in the window, this could be every evening news story you've ever seen.  And that includes the light house keeper. 

Wheaton College vs. The Wiggly Hominids

There's an interesting write up on Wheaton College over at the Society of Mutual AutopsyWhen I was a kid I lived in Glen Ellyn, Illinois, in a house that was painted by Jim Belushi (and his house painting company) before he became "famous".  My back yard fence was the border between Glen Ellyn and neighboring WheatonYears later, whenever I described where I lived to a Chicagoland native, they all said something along the lines of, "Can't buy liquor there because of the fundie school."  Which is funny, because I had to bike over to Wheaton to score my drug of choice at the time (candy, and lot's of it) at the nearby pharmacy.

After 17 years the current president of Wheaton College, Duane Litfin, is on the way out.  By the sounds of it, he was a heck of an administrator (grew the endowment, added two doctoral degrees, kept tuition low, added to the physical footprint of the college etc.) and liberalized the college in many ways.  

During his tenure, the student body has moved towards a more apolitical stance (to the point of discouraging voting), but with a strong emphasis on social and environmental justice.  But oddly enough, it seems the trustees of Wheaton hired Litfin as a doctrinaire reactionary:

One of his first moves was to declare that Wheaton’s longstanding “Statement of Faith” allowed too much interpretive wiggle-room on the question of Adam and Eve. Scientists were thus required to specify whether they (1) “reject the idea that Adam and Eve were created from pre-existing human-like creatures, or hominids”; (2) are neutral or “unsure” on the hominid theory; (3) affirm that “God gave a human spirit to a pair of pre-existing human-like creatures, or hominids”; or (4) deny the historicity of Adam and Eve and think of Genesis as a wholly “theological document.” Options (3) and (4) were deemed inconsistent with ongoing employment. Those who affirmed (2) were given one year to change their view to (1), or else they too would be asked to seek employment elsewhere.
Wow.  You'll fire tenured faculty because they don't believe in a literal translation of chapters 2 & 3 of Genesis?  Even if they believe that God was somehow involved in the process?  That's going to cull the cream of the Academy, I'm sure.  Too bad he didn't throw himself into the middle of the Young Earth Genesis literalists, who think a day is a day is a day, versus the Day-Age Creationists, who think the word "day" in Genesis is representative of longer time periods.  That could have been fun.

Anyway, he's on the way out.  It will be interesting to see what type of president they choose to replace him.

 h/t The Edge of the American West

Saturday, January 30, 2010

You can now wipe in triplicate

In the arena of office efficiency, green design, and the ability to wipe your ass on your month end reports, I present to you the "White Goat".  A rather ingenious device designed by the Oriental Co, Ltd that directly recycles office paper into toilet paper.  Just add water.

I shit you not.

I suppose this a more environmentally friendly way of dealing with office stress than punching a fax machine to death in a field.

h/t Popular Science

No Regrets

I had a great realization today on the commute home. I live a life without regret.

Almost all of my great regrets involve not having seen particular musicians live before they died or broke up. Everything else was just the choices I've made and the experiences I've had. I like where life has brought me, and wouldn't change a damn thing.

But Johnny, John Lee, Joe, Dee Dee, and Kurt you all change my life every time I hit *PLAY*.  I wish I'd had a chance to see you all once before you left.

So for the rest of y'all, here's a little Friday night listening.