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Posts Tagged ‘wtf’

After a few weeks in a mystical den somewhere in deepest darkest west central Pennsylvania, a groundhog is imbued with certain magical talents which enable it to see future weather patterns.
 
Unfortunately, the effect of the sun’s juxtaposition with Pennsylvania interferes with the enchantment, since as we all know, any remotely decent enchantments are most powerful under cover of night. By casting his own shadow, the groundhog can recapture enough of the magic to predict a long winter, but when the spring is set to come early, the enchantment fades, and he doesn’t have to cast a shadow. Which is helpful, since as a general rule, groundhogs don’t like throwing shade any more than humans do, and if the winter is ending soon, the groundhog can switch to his regular job as a woodchuck, and get back to chucking wood at a generally unknown rate and quantity.
 
Technically, the enchantment could work on any mammal of the family Sciuridae, but squirrels and chipmunks simply don’t have the memory span to remember the spells, and thus it falls to marmot-kind to undertake this noble responsibility.
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Seems lots of people are up in arms over the proposed building of the Park 51 Community Center, aka the “mosque at Ground Zero”. Of course, this is far from surprising, considering the Islamophobia which has held much of the nation for the last decade.

The people wishing to build the mosque were no doubt aware of the furore which would ensue over this, and it cannot be denied that they were willing to provoke anger. Having said that, if after our near-demolition of Baghdad, a group of American missionaries attempted to build a Christian church there, we would see them as heroes.

Perhaps we should ask ourselves how we justify holding this moral double standard. The 19 hijackers actually involved in the 9/11 incident are hardly going to be worshipping at this mosque.

What would we say of the hypothetical missionaries above? “Despite almost crushing adversity, this brave band of people labored to build a place where Christians could worship in safety and tranquility, a place from which they could bring the local populace to understand that their purpose is not to maim and destroy but to foster peace and understanding.”

How many of our national news outlets are using language such as this to describe the builders of the Ground Zero mosque?

Let us consider for a moment the other establishments in the vicinity: an off-track betting parlor, a Starbucks, a strip club, a McDonald’s, and of course a shitload of street hawkers selling cheap plastic 9/11-themed tchotchkes. If this is to be considered ‘hallowed ground’, as Sarah Palin put it recently, let these also be removed from the vicinity.

Anything else is just pure Islamophobia.

This all comes back to our psychological tendency to see labels. We cannot look at a DeShawn or a Danisha without seeing ‘black’, at a Chihiro or a Chung-Tah without seeing ‘Asian’, at a Faroukh or a Fatima without seeing ‘Arab’.

If you assume a priori that a Mohammed is more likely to tarnish American society than a Masao, Malachi or even Mike, you’re in the label trap.

Regardless of what the President may have to say in favor of it, regardless of what the hysterical wing of the GOP may say against it, regardless of what Jews and Muslims at large may think of it… get out of the label trap and see for yourself.

Allow a small group of people to show you that Islam is not all about evil, and show them in return that you’re not all about prejudice.

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Members of the National Surrealist Association protested in Washington DC early Monday morning, bringing local traffic to a standstill. The specific issue at hand was never quite detailed, with possibilities ranging from the color of Mountain Dew to the involvement of the federal government in cricket matches by mail.

Three members of the Association, who referred to themselves as Larry, Curly and Sauron, held an empty picture frame in front of the Capitol building, captioned with the phrase “When is a rhinoceros!”. Others hung thousands of left shoes from the White House fence, singing Elvis Presley’s “Love Me Tender” in a round.
A spokesman for the group wrapped reporters in clingfilm, repeatedly screaming “Climb that beanstalk now, you fuckers!”.
Other than expressing annoyance at the traffic slowdown, however, District residents largely ignored the protest. “It’s actually still much saner than anything that happens INSIDE the Capitol building,” said one. “The only difference is that I’m not paying these guys to do it.”

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First of all, credit where credit is due: England were outclassed by Germany, and no amount of finger-pointing over Frank Lampard’s disallowed goal will change that. The more deserving side won the day.

Now, having gotten that off my chest:

Would somebody please tell me how exactly this wasn’t a goal? The refereeing at this World Cup has been shockingly inadequate, and FIFA’s continued resistance to introducing goal-line technology or at least goalside assistant referees is little more than idiocy. Too many legitimate goals have been disallowed, too many offside goals allowed to stand.

Having said that, I don’t think that this goal would have changed much. Chances are, England would have lost 4-2 instead of 4-1 had the goal been allowed, and (again) deservedly so.

One could argue that going into half-time having pulled level instead of trailing, the England team might have had better morale for the second half, but… the defense was torn apart for the third and fourth Germany goals, and in almost exactly the same way as for their first.

When a team makes a defensive blunder… well, it happens, you get over it. When the team makes essentially the same defensive blunder three times, perhaps some questions need to be asked, both of the players and the coach. England looked dangerous at times going forward (despite only scoring 3 goals in 4 games), but were a disaster at the back.

Part of the problem, I believe, is that the team was largely constructed around one individual – Wayne Rooney. Any time you build the team around one guy, you’re screwed if that one guy can’t produce the goods. Rooney was underwhelming at best in this World Cup.

Maybe if Robert Green hadn’t let in that goal against the Americans, maybe if Rooney had converted those chances against Algeria, maybe if Lampard’s goal had been properly awarded… maybe, maybe, maybe.

If you can’t perform well enough to overcome maybes, you don’t deserve to be there.

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First Dana Perino, then Mary Matalin… and now Rudy Giuliani?

Today on Good Morning America, Giuliani said:

“We had no domestic attacks under Bush; we’ve had one under Obama.”

Let me revisit the first half of this comment.

“We had no domestic attacks under Bush”

Is there anyone out there reading this blog who has forgotten that the following small matter ever took place?

Anyone remember the guy who was supposedly such a big hero for his handling of that particular crisis? The guy who subsequently got an honorary knighthood from Queen Elizabeth II? You know, that Giuliani fella?

In Mein Kampf, Adolf Hitler wrote that people will more readily accept a big lie [“Große Lüge“] than a small one, because “they would not believe that others could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously.”

Is this what the GOP is reduced to now? It seems unlikely that three prominent conservative figures could coincidentally make the same colossal mistake within a short period of time.

Or – and here is the still more sinister idea – is this an implication that 9/11 was not in fact a terrorist attack? The conspiracy theories have been flying since about 9/12/2001, suggesting that it was an inside job of some kind. Could it be that a big reveal is on the way, and certain out-of-power figures are going to become the fall guys for it?

Giuliani surprised a few people by announcing that he would not run for any office in 2010. Is he intentionally distancing himself? Will he storm back into the 2012 field like a knight in shining armor to save his party?

Something a little odd is afoot.

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I know that the use of language in today’s mass media is geared toward a fifth-grade (or thereabouts) comprehension level. Surely, though, the folks we elect to serve in the highest offices should be at least a little smarter than a fifth grader. Perhaps we should have Jeff Foxworthy come and test the entire lot of our nation’s politicians for actual fitness to serve.

Jeff Foxworthy
Our nation’s savior?

Allow me to illuminate a few things for all of you in national politics.

1. Bush was not a Nazi. Obama is not a socialist. Labels of ‘fascist’ (which few of you appear able to spell) and ‘communist’ are similarly inapplicable to either of them – though it is inordinately amusing to hear words like these applied to two men of quite different ideology. Less amusingly, I believe anyone who has suffered under the rule of such regimes as those of Hitler and Stalin would be rather offended to hear the comparatively trivial measures taken by these Presidents compared to the savagery they were forced to submit to.

Enough name-calling. If you have an issue with a President’s policies, come up with a reasonable alternative and we can all have a civilized debate. If you can’t do that, then keep your mouth shut.

2. Stop talking about whether there is too much God or too little God in the running of the country. Both of these are meaningless. The country was founded in part to ESCAPE the notion of any kind of state endorsement of religion. I have no problem with people worshipping according to their beliefs and legislating according to their values, but don’t use confuse the two and use religion to justify your political acts. In a nation whose founders specifically tried to avoid mixing religion into the law, such actions are hypocritical and offensive.

3. Related to the above: if you’re a bigot, just man up and be a bigot. If you have a problem with blacks, or Muslims, or the poor, or women, or gays, or conservatives, or any other group, just say so. Don’t get into the “un-American” line of bullshit. They’re just as American as you are. They love freedom just as much as you do. (Not that you even know what ‘freedom’ means, if you’re trying to deny it to anybody else.) Last but by no means least: any right which you would claim for yourself, you should also accord to them, whether it’s specifically spelled out in the Constitution or not.

4. Keep your promises. Don’t tell the public one thing and then do another, unless you also give us a damn good reason for the change. Don’t tell one group something and another group the opposite. We live in the Internet age, and we WILL find out. When it happens, enjoy your retirement money. We won’t vote for you to keep darkening our doorsteps.

5. When you watched movies as a youngster, remember how you cheered when the schoolyard bully got his comeuppance. Look at America’s standing in the international community around, say, 2006-7. If elementary school parable is indeed the limit of your understanding, maybe it can at least be allowed to guide foreign policy in years to come.

6. The national media have provided you with a means of understanding whether you are acting logically – whether you identify with the right or left. His name is Jon Stewart. If your name is mentioned on his show more than twice in any given month, you might wish to take a look at your priorities. Jon Stewart, you see, IS smarter than a fifth grader.

7. Perhaps above all, remember this quote from former President Harry Truman – another individual who was smarter than a fifth grader:

“Don’t piss in the soup, boys – we’ve all got to eat.”

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America Can Do Better

What the hell is the deal with Megan Fox?

She’s currently on the cover of Rolling Stone, where she is being called “America’s Sexiest Bad Girl”.

I’m assuming that the look on her face there is an attempt at ‘sultry’. I can only hope I’m not the only one who thinks she just looks like she’s squinting, possibly through a not-entirely-unintoxicated haze.

Also? Somebody get this woman a fucking sandwich.

I have yet to give enough of a damn about any of the movies she has been in to bother going to see one, but the few clips and trailers I’ve seen suggest that she is at best a mediocre actress – and it appears that her co-stars and directors have spoken of her intellect in less than glowing terms as well.

So she’s 0 for 3 on the beauty-brains-talent scorecard. Much like Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian, whose appeal I have never understood either.

If this is the best America can come up with for a ‘sexiest bad girl’, America isn’t trying hard enough.

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