"She [the queen] has no real powers but she does serve as a diplomatic center, a meeter and greeter if you will"
Man, I'm so going to hell. I just hope the person that wrote that line
isn't too pissed at me for defacing her royalty. And poorly, no less. But I read "meeter and greeter" and the first thing that jumped into my mind was "the Queen is the geopolitical equivalent of a wal-mart greeter".
In my own defense, it could've been alot worse
For background and a must-read essay on the function of modern British royalty from a modern Briton herself, go here
She also links to this webpage
where one can apparently buy a title. Which is weird, because just a little while ago I was talking about how I thought it'd be cool to be a Baron. Why? Just because.
"Baron" just has a nice ring to it. Slightly intimidating, like "Land Baron" or "Oil Baron", but still obscure enough that nobody seems to know exactly what the function of a Baron is. Dick Cheney should be a Baron, he has that aura of intimidating, powerful high-level functionary about him. Not the king or emperor or somesuch, but the guy that does the dirty work while the King is eating crumpets with other kings. I think that's one of the reasons I like good old Darth Cheney so much.
(tip to Sadie
, who inspired the explination in the first place)
because it hurts less
I finally sat down and did a post on the "cutting" issue that's been going around, but it's long and I don't feel like looking at it every day so it's been moved to my test blog.
I have a personal connection to this issue and have done some research on it, so if you're interested, continue on. What's below is just the beginning, go here
for the full post.
I wasn't going to write this post, but it's turning into something
of a blogosphere shitstorm
, and I do have an awful lot to say, so what the hell. Malkin
, who I usually respect, seems to have phoned this one in, because it is not only lacking any sort of real research at all, her column dosen't even seem to care about the reality of the situation and instead prefers to make political points off of it.
I want to preface it with saying that I went through this with someone I was very close to, and so have a serious personal connection to the issue as well as having done some research on it. In deferance to people I know IRL that occasionally read this blog, that's all I'm going to say about that.
I also want to clarify a common misconception; that self-mutilation, or "cutting", isn't suicide. It is completely seperate, and while not necessarily unrelated, it is not necessarily related either. Self-mutilation is not always an indicator for suicidal tendancies, and to me anyway, there is an important distinction there.
First off, much has been made of the "broken home" angle. Several folks have pointed out that kids from perfectly normal homes do this. Is divorce good for a kid? No, not really. You know what's worse? Parents who stay together even though they hate each other for "The Children" or out of religious conviction or whatever. Ever talked to a 16 year old kid whose parents loathed each other, barely said two words to each other and when they do it's at the top of their lungs?
Yeah, that's real healthy.continue...
speaking of ward churchill...
This guy just keeps getting worse...Soon as I finish typing about what an asshead he has been proven to be on the whole Indian genocide thing, I click over to Ace's and what do I find, but this
Question from Audience: [W]hy shouldn’t we do something ["doing something" here means flying airplaines into buildings] and how could we move so they don’t see us coming?
Churchill: As to the first part, not a reason in the world that I could see. I can’t find a single reason that you shouldn’t in a principled way—there may be some practical considerations, such as do you know how (laughter from audience)—you know, often these things are processes. It’s not just an impulse. And certainly it’s not just an event. And the simple answer, although it probably should be more complicated, but I’m not being flip and giving the simple answer, is: You carry the weapon. That’s how they don’t see it coming.
I liked Goldstein's analysis of Churchill as an "intellectual streaker": what he's doing seems contraversial and thought-provoking but it's really just stupid, immature attention-hounding. I'm tired of hearing his stupid name and his stupid right-from-DU talking points. I don't see why we should devote any more time or thought to someone that thinks American citizens committing terrorism (in which innocent people DIE, Ward) against our country is an acceptable means of voicing a protest.
Ward gets all hopped up about the massacre of "innocent" Indians in America. Don't forget: the only reason it was a massacre was because white Europeans had science and numbers on their side. The Indians were just as brutal and vicious as the settlers; if they had had ray-guns to use against the settlers flint-locks' we'd all be speaking Sioux or Lakota; that is if the Indians didn't subsequently manage to use all that technology to wipe each other off the continent, a past time they had been devoted to for hundreds of years before us white folks got here.
That dosen't make what the Europeans did right; it's just history. But don't give me this crap about innocents. How many people did Sitting Bull kill at Little Big Horn? Over 300. You like to bitch about the persecution during the Ghost Dance days and it's conclusion at Wounded Knee. How many Indians died at Wounded Knee? The highest estimate I've ever seen was 180; although not all fighting men, which is a damned shame. How many people died in the WTC? A few could be called fighters or even opressors if you want to see them in that twisted way, but most were men and women at least as innocent as those killed at Wounded Knee.
And you want to advocate killing more of them. Good on you, Ward.
See? I start out talking about how we should just ignore this crap, and there I go on a tangental rant. Well, whatever. Idiocy on the level of Ward Churchill is an incurable disease, and unfortunatly he dosen't appear to be going away anytime soon. But I fully intend to do my best to ignore him from here on, as I had been up until today.
ann coulter: the answer lady
I know Ann Coulter's invective and vicious style turn alot of people off, wheter you find her writing amusing or not one thing that I have found is that it is almost always strictly factually accurate. It seems that there are people that have dedicated their lives to proving her a liar, but so far, I'm not impressed.
I read Treason, and after I finished the book I tried to find evidence to prove or disprove some of her more unusual theories. I still don't think I agree with the conclusions she draws on some from the facts she lays out, but among all the sites claiming to list the lies and innacuracies of this book the most damning offense seemed to be along the lines of citing the wrong page number of a newspaper article or attributing a quote to one nobody wingnut college professor when it actually came from a completely different nobody wingnut college professor. Sure, those things should be corrected for later editions and such, but from where I stand saying page "A8" when you mean "E8" among hundreds of citations qualifies as a typo, certainly not a "lie".
So anyway, this is a long-winded way of saying that today I decided to read the past couple of columns of hers I missed. My regular reader(s) may remember that little while ago (Feb 13
), I was wondering if Ward Churchill's story of the Army poisoning Indians with smallpox was complete B.S., or whether that had actually happened at some time other than when Churchill claimed it did. I'm pretty sure it's a "never", based on this article over here
, but check this out:
Ann Coulter, Feb 17
Not only are the diseased-blanket stories cited by Churchill denied by his alleged sources, but the very idea is contradicted by the facts of scientific discovery. The settlers didn't understand the mechanism of how disease was transmitted. Until Louis Pasteur's experiments in the second half of the 19th century, the idea that disease could be caused by living organisms was as scientifically accepted as crystal reading is today. Even after Pasteur, many scientists continued to believe disease was spontaneously generated from within. Churchill is imbuing the settlers with knowledge that in most cases wouldn't be accepted for another hundred years.
See? That's what I get for trying to do research when I could just be plagarizing professional columnists.
mark is dead, stop calling me already
If you should ever need to call the R&D facility of a multinational corporation and ask for an individual, do not say: "Hi, is Mark there?" There are over a hundred employees and six different people named "Mark" here. I counted. So don't get snippy with me when I have to explain, for the fourth time this week, that I again failed to bring my fucking crystal ball to work and as such am unable to divine which "Mark" you want without a last name.
Similarly, there are at least two dozen people here with "Lee" or "Li" or "Lei" or "Lea" somewhere in their name. Maybe we need to diversify, but that's not my area.
Also, I do not know where Mark is, or when he'll be back, or if he's in the building or, for that matter, even still alive. My X-Ray glasses are, unofortunatly, sitting at home on the table for "Stuff I Should Take to Work" right next to the crystal ball, so I can't see up five floors and across the building to see if Mark is at his desk or on the can or in the closet banging his secretary. Er, sorry, in the closet banging his "Administrative Assistant".
And even if Mark just bummed a smoke off me and walked out the door to his Miata (which, of course, would never happen; Mark dosen't smoke), I still couldn't tell you if he was here. Why not? Company policy. Sure, I think it's dumb too. But that's what I get paid for: to enforce dumb rules and irritate people like you.
Another company policy: You will get absolutely nowhere calling me up and asking for the "Building Manager" or "Office Manager" or "HR Director" or whoever it is you're trying to sell something to, unless you have their name. Not just Mark, his full name. I know you just saw that name in the newspaper anyway. I don't care what you're selling or how many times you call back or how irritated you get, all I'll say is "I don't know who holds that position here" even if I do know and "You'll have to get that information off our website". The information you're looking for probably isn't on the website, but hopefully by the time you figure that out it will be someone else's shift.
My favorite salespeople like this are ballsier: they walk into the building and just breeze through the lobby to the elevators and hit a number. Presumably, they'll just wander all six floors trying to look like they belong there until they find whomever they think it is they're looking for. Of course, they don't look at all like they belong there and besides, I know everybody working in the building, at least to say hello to, but I let 'em go anyway. Because, see, you need security clearance to get past the lobby or onto any of the floors. So, slick as hell, they jump into an elevator car and start pushing buttons, but after a few minutes of not going anywhere they sheepishly push the "door open" button and are stuck with me grinning at them from across the room.
And no, I'm not letting you upstairs. Put on your best used-car salesman face and your best "I'm dealing with an underling that will do what I tell him if I tell him enough times" tone, the only place you're going is back out the front door after wasting lots of air and fifteen minutes of my time.
And no, I'm not calling Mark for you.
wait...I thought he had a girlfriend...
Some of the best unintentional humor I've seen lately can be found here
The first line almost makes sense. I haven't seen Shrek 2, but Shrek 1 did have a few (very subtle and only alluded to) bits that were, to me, surprisingly sexual. Not anything that a 10 year old would notice; for that matter I don't think a lot of Ned Flanders types would've noticed it. It's been a while, so I can't remember exactly what they all were, but it was mostly Simpsons-esque: a bad word expected then not said, a double entendre that quickly gets lost in the dialog. If it was my kid, I wouldn't have a problem letting them watch it. Then again, I'm not a member of the "Family Values Coalition" or whatever, but hey, to each his own.
What makes that little PSA so hilarious is the alarmist, "Oh my God the HOMOS Are Coming!!!" style barely covered beneath a serious exterior.
The character has five o'clock shadow, wears a dress and has female breasts. It is clear that he is a she-male. His voice is that of talk show host Larry King.
An earlier scene in the movie features a wolf dressed in grandma's clothing and reading a book when Prince Charming encounters him.
TVC's report...explains the transgender agenda and the effort to deconstruct the biological reality of male and female.
You can almost hear the distaste in a West by-God Virginia accent under that. "She - mahle".
And of course, they miss the most serious threat. They don't even mention the transspecies agenda and the effort to deconstruct the biological reality of wolf and grandma. We've gotta get on that, before them Goddam heathens and liberals have wolves in grandma's clothing on every corner, in your kid's school, teaching them that it's an "acceptable lifestyle". What if your kid comes home one day and wants you to meet their new friend, and it's a wolf with poofy white hair and a flower-print dress? Then what will you do?!?
Send me fifty bucks and I'll tell you how to combat this growing threat to our society and our children.
See also, Jeff's Beautiful Atrocity
for a fuller lineup of offenders and Sondra K
seeing inside the minds of these gender-bending freakazoids.
those other geeks
Like a dumbass, I didn't bother to google "Geek Empire" before I created this blog, and after I had allready been using it for a while I realized that there was allready a geekempire.com. They run a good site, though, mostly video game stuff as well as a hosting division and their own online community. If I ever get off blogger I'll change the blog title, but they don't seem to mind me using it for the time being.
The geek who authors this blog is not affiliated with the geeks who author that one in any way, but they actually seem to be doing stuff with their time, so check them out
, especially if you're into video game news or looking for hosting services.
I'm a day late, but this is too important to miss.
Iran is today's Soviet Union. Just as we fought many wars in relatively minor countries during the cold war, today we are fighting wars of one variety or another in a dozen relatively minor middle eastern countries. Just as they were all part of the larger war against Soviet-style communisim and the USSR, these are all wars against Islamist theocracy and it's heart in Iran.
And, as with the USSR, America can bring them down without ever having to face the horrendous consequences of a war with that major power. A huge factor in this war is the courageous people within Iran's borders that are willing to speak out against their dictatorial government.
I'm no blog triumphalist, but technology is playing a very important role in this war. The spreading of what life is like outside Iran and communication from dissenters to a wider audience is greatly facilitated by the internet and Iranian bloggers. Of course, the government isn't exactly thrilled by these people, and responds by throwing them in jail.
I prefer not to imagine what the insides of an Iranian jail look like.
So, I missed Free Mojtaba and Arash Day. Tommorow, I'll be doing more research and trying to spread the idea. But I encorage everyone, no matter what your political leanings, to help out. I don't expect that the Iranian government will let these people go anytime soon, but do what you can
. A letter to my local fishwrapper is coming, because popular American understanding, and support, also helps the resistance inside Iran.
And really, I'd be hard pressed to think of anything more important out there right now than fighting the Mullahs in Iran.
Link curtosey of Babalu Blog
, who is dedicated to ridding the planet of another piece of garbage.
In response to dumb comments made by some penis-equipped members of the blogosphere, it is offically Estrogen Week
at Ilyka's place. I assume us males are still allowed in, however, and she is working on a series
comprising of the best posts from a bunch of female bloggers this week. Which, of course, is pretty damn good and well worth your time.
I was going to write a whole big thing on my opinion on why there are fewer "successful" female poli-bloggers, but, eh, who wants to hear that. Maybe when I have more time, but they do a better job
of it than I could anyway.
So instead, go click thru some of the stuff over there
, and visit Ilyka often. For some reason, she apparently reads this drivel, but don't let that stop you. She's a great writer and a clear observer, both valuable (and sometimes rare) commodities.
Which is to say, she's pretty smart. You know, for a girl
Also, break out the cootie sheilds, here's my little contribution to estrogen week. A few other "smart girls": Moxie
, Army of Mom
, Donna of those frigging pajama people
, 1/2 of the Yuppies of Zion
, Joan of Seven Inches of Sense
(whom I Just visited for the first time tonight and am allready impressed with), and two of my personal favorites along with Ilyka and some of the very best bloggers out there, Sadie
my gin has a hat
And, after two martinis and four gin and tonics, I feel that I can authoratatively say that this gin is excellent.
I have a whole big long political post worked out, but I'm afraid that it's going to have to wait till tommorow. For now, I just wanted to pass that along.
not bad for a redleg
American Digest links to
a video on Armor Geddon
on their assault on Fallujah. Good for reminiscing or, as with the blog itself
, getting a look at how the boots on the ground view their position.
I never had much experience with the Armor divisions, even though my right-shoulder patch is 1st AD. It's an honorary thing, and a respect thing, and a very long story. But aside from the wonderful sounds of an outgoing response, the big guns are as much a mystery to me as to most folks that just read about them in magazines. Maybe moreso, which makes this video that much more interesting to me.
Somewhere, floating around in this disaster area I call a spare room, I have a cd-video similar to that made by some guys in my platoon, although not as well mastered. But it's neat, alot of the old Baghdad daily routine. The guys that made it, at one point, strapped the camera onto the SAW rifle in front of the gunner that hangs out the top of the truck, so as they ride down Market Street and into the green zone the video bounces along, all the while with the barrel and sights of the saw at the bottom of the picture. Hm. I'm going to have to figure out where that went.
estrich's deepest secret
this is what happens when i try to use photoshop:
I've been taking lessons in pshop off my girlfriend, but I use it so rarely that every time I try it's like starting over again. And the result is what you see above, even worse than my first attempt.
Although it still amuses me...
What I really need to learn is web graphics. I want to turn this pos page into something halfway respectable-looking, and I have neither the money nor the humility to pay someone else to do it. I want to learn how to do it myself, but so far the major obstacle has been learning how; not a lack of desire on my part, but a lack of websites willing to teach me for less than it would cost for me to simply pay them to do it themselves. Or, for that matter, for free. Somewhere out there, some geek has a tutorial that will teach me how to do all this nonsense; unfortunatly, it's rather well hidden.
Maybe I'll buy a "For Dummies" book. From my experience, that would take me about as far as creating a hyperlink in IE 3.0. "Click on the 'e' on your desktop. this opens a 'webpage'. it displays information on the internet
." Yee ha.
The next step is writing bloggers that I know write their own pages and harrasing them to see if any of them know a webpage or even a book that will help me, but I'm trying to avoid making enemies by pestering people for as long as possible. Begging for help simply because I'm an idiot never seems to come across too well for some reason, but it may come down to that.
Until then, enjoy the shitty photoshops, lousy design, and oh-so-witty commentary that we both have become accostumed to.
supermom my ass
both have posts up on a Newsweek article
about the stress of being a supermom. I confess I didn't read the entire article, but in this case "Supermom" seems to be defined as "Type-A college-educated anal-retentive career-and-child-oriented perfectionist control-freak bitches with not enough to complain about so they just make shit up and then expect 'society' to fix it for them."
Listen, I go to community college. One of the girls in a class with me this past semester is a recovering junkie with two kids, dirt-poor while trying to hold down a full time job, go to school so she can better herself and her future, while still parenting and providing for her kids. The father? Are you kidding me? I think her parents helped her out some, and of course she got (deserved) government assistance, but still, that's a challenge greater than most anyone living in this country today has to face, and it is far from an uncommon situation.
And these stupid bints in this article are bitching about matching FELT TEXTURES?!? About what the other Stepford Wives think about their kids' Arts and Crafts projects? Oh shit, we're late for fucking soccer practice, it's the end of the fucking WORLD!?! Replaying nonsense conversations over and over in your head all night isn't driving you insane, lady: you were fucking crazy a long time ago, talking to yourself is just another symptom. While you're whining to your professional-journalist $100k/yr pillow buddy about how freaking hard you have it, people all over the country are burning the midnight oil trying to fix their lives, pushing themselves to and beyond the limit daily to feed their kids and work their job and maybe make something of their future. Do you think that maybe, just maybe, it's possible that there are worse things in life than getting the wrong shade of fucking TABLET PAPER!?!
And of course, the author wants society to fix it. They don't just want to have their cake and eat it; they want to dance in it, they want to throw it at people, and they sure as hell don't want to have to make it themselves or pay for it, then they'd be being "forced to take it all onto themselves", and God knows that's just cruel
. Of course, when they say they want "Society" to fix something, they don't really mean society at all, they mean tax exemptions and changes in corporate policy. They want to live their lives how they want, without the responsibilities that come along with it, and how dare you
want to live your
life the way that you want. How unfair! How unprogressive!
How about this. A progressive government option: instead of repealing the tax cuts, we can create a new branch of the government called "The Department of Overstressed Career Mommies". The only function of this "arm" of the government is, when some yupster mum bitches about matching fucking paper colors the government will simply send out an agent to promptly slap that woman until she gets back to reality. Repeated offenses will result in an automatic bump into the next-higher tax bracket, so they can see what it's like to have real stresses on your life, like, say feeding your kids and having gas to get to work, and the money earned will go to people who actually do have severe problems in their lives and raising their kids.
today's lesson: do not send strangers emails about your sex life
Okay, keep in mind, I'm a genius, especially when it comes to lit classes. I'm not afraid to open my mouth in class, and usually whatever falls out of it makes sense and contains at least some insight. (Ignore what falls on this blog, I like to think it's not really representative) So when some dude asks if I could study for the exam with him sometime, I just assume he has recognized my supreme book-dork abilities and wants to work with someone who knows what the hell he's talking about. I did the same in high school science classes: I never would have passed chemistry if I hadn't latched onto the two smartest people in the class for group work.
When I tell him I'm sorry but I have to work, but he shows up with a study guide for me on the day of the exam anyway, I figure he just had one printed out and felt like helping a guy out.
Then today, he kept looking at me goofy during class, like he wanted to say something but didn't. Then I check my email, and this:
> On Sat, 12 Feb 2005 04:44:32 +0000, D__ <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> Hey Frank,
> What's up man? What are you doing this weekend? I thought I should tell you
> something just in case you deside to never talk to me again. I am gay, but I
> wont hit on you. I'm just looking for really cool friends, and you seem like
> a cool guy. Ok, so I told you now the rest is up to you...haha
> see you on Tuesday.
> Have an awesome weekend,
Notice that that was sent days ago, I just didn't get it until after my class today. God only knows what he was thinking today.
Now, what the hell am I suppossed to say to that? He's nice enough and everything, and I'm sure in what he at least percieves for some reason to be an akward situation; but I am not only not gay, I don't have time for friends that I made months ago, much less someone that, honestly, seems kindof boring.
How does one say "I don't care if you prefer women, men, or barnyard animals" without sounding either flippant or overly concerned? I have this problem whenever any stranger feels the need to tell me something personal about their sex life or health or something: either make a joke, and risk offending them, or try to be serious, and risk sounding like some kind of shrink, or like you're trying too hard.
I think what I went with was something like "As to your being gay, good for you!" I think that pretty effectively says "I don't care" in a way that sounds like "I care, but don't mind."
Unfortunatly, convincing someone that I really don't have the time to be making friends without sounding like I'm just avoiding them is a trick I haven't yet figured out, everybody seems to think that I would much prefer sitting at work over going to the bar on a friday night.
My only saving grace is that, in the long run, I don't really care how he takes the response. If he gets offended, or thinks I'm avoiding him, then fine, I don't have to deal with it anymore. I don't set out to offend people (well, not usually, anyway), but I can't bring myself to be overly bothered if it happens.
Now, I just have to hope that this guy dosen't somehow land on my blog; otherwise, I could have a highly offended gay man waiting for me in class on Thursday.
There, that should give you nightmares.
See also Enjoy Every Sandwich
, and scroll down for some thoughtful posts on libertarianism as well as some women who can
wear thongs safely.
been so long, I thought I forgot my passoword.
Anyway, I'll return to our regularly scheduled blogging shortly. For the time being, I have a question: anybody who follows the rightie blogs knows the name of Ward Churchill. One of the things he is being bashed on is his assertion that at one point the US army intentionally gave smallpox-ridden blankets to his "brothers", the American Indians.
So, his particular story has pretty much been proven to be bullshit. Based on footnotes that never existed, and all that. My question is, is he the only one that has posed this event, and is it true at any time or another? I know Churchill's is bunk, but is there a more factual record of us deliberatly poisoning indians?
The reason I ask is because I had an American history course last semester, and the teacher repeatedly mentioned this scandal. She taught it as a proven fact, a regualar part of the lecture. I'm pretty sure it even showed up in one of the videos she had us watch. And wow, would I love to tell her that she is wrong on this one. I don't want to say I'd throw it in her face, but she'd certainly be getting an email from me. But I can't really do that if it actually happened, except when Churchill asserted it did. I need to find out if there are any proven
records of it.
Anybody out there on the vast internets know? Did the American Army, at any point, deliberatly give Indians smallpox? And if not, want to help put the "Ah ha!" to a hardcore lefty college prof? Or if so, then put the smackdown a rightie blogger? All I want is somewhat substantial proof one way or the other, if possible.
UPDATE: (I hate that. There has to be a better way to say "I have more to say about this" than that ridiculous "UPDATE" tag, like this is some kind of serious news story)
I HAVE MORE TO SAY ABOUT THIS STUPID NON-INVESTIGATION: This essay
by a prof at Lamar University (which, presumibly, is a real school that I've simply never heard of, unlike Churchill's degree-by-mail alumnus) named Thomas Brown pretty much says that, although there was a smallpox epidemic, there is not and never was any evidence that it was intentionally perpetrated by the US Army, although apparently some folks considered it, which still ain't pretty but not nearly as bad as actually doing it. I haven't finished it yet, but that seems the general thrust of the argument.
And I think my history prof may be getting a Christ
mas present, suggested by Ilyka
as a referance in the comment(s). The only decision to make is whether to buy it and give it to her, or buy it, read it, and then constantly argue with her. As if I didn't allready.