"If you understood everything I said, you'd be me" - Miles Davis
"There is much pleasure to be gained from useless knowledge." - Bertrand Russell
"Take away the right to say fuck and you take away the right to say fuck the government." - Lenny Bruce
"Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!" - Homer Simpson

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Thought For The Day
"Neddal Ayad: Do you read much non-fiction? If so, what sort of non-fiction appeals to you?

Thomas Ligotti: I?m completely indifferent to what genre I read provided that I feel in sympathy with how a writer perceives being alive in the world. For instance, I just finished reading an essay called "The Last Messiah" by the Norwegian philosopher Peter Wessel Zapffe. It was written the 1930s and is the only work by Zapffe to be translated into English. In Zapffe's view, human beings in general and human consciousness in particular are a mistake of nature and that the human species should stop reproducing as soon as possible in order to put an end to the tragic horror of our lives as conscious beings who spend all our time deceiving ourselves that life is worth living."
Words to stop reproducing by. I know I feel much better now.
Via Metafilter

What's The Rumpus
"Related Words
Bedlam let loose, ado, affray, agitation, barney, bedlam, blast, bluster, bobbery, bother, brawl, broil, brouhaha, cacophony, chaos, charivari, chirm, clamor, clangor, clap, clatter, coil, commotion, confusion, contention, controversy, din, discord, dispute, disturbance, donnybrook, donnybrook fair, drunken brawl, dustup, ebullition, embroilment, fanaticism, ferment, flap, fomentation, foofaraw, fracas, free-for-all, frenzy, fume, furor, furore, fury, fuss, hassle, hell broke loose, helter-skelter, howl, hubbub, hue and cry, hullabaloo, hurrah, jangle, knock-down-and-drag-out, loud noise, mayhem, melee, noise, noise and shouting, outcry, pandemonium, passion, pell-mell, pother, racket, rage, rampage, rattle, rhubarb, riot, roar, rough-and-tumble, roughhouse, row, ruckus, ruction, rumble, run-in, scramble, scrap, scrimmage, set-to, shindig, shindy, shivaree, stir, storminess, tempestuousness, thunder, thunderclap, tintamarre, to-do, trouble, tumult, tumultuousness, turbulence, turmoil, uproar, upset, wildness, zeal, zealousness "
I love the word "rumpus". It's origin is unknown-though it might be an alteration of robustious.

Oh Hell Yeah
xmas resistance
Oy-don't get me started. I loathe the Holidays with a passion.
Via Metafilter

Q13 TV News has just informed me that they will be treating us to the 911 call from the murder of two little girls by their father (who then committed suicide). I immediately wondered-"how the hell is this news"? There is nothing about this call that is going to be the least bit informative or useful to anyone. Nobody will benefit in the slightest from hearing it. This isn't news-it's classic local TV tragedy porn.

The Past Was Weird
crazy otto lsd
317X is a site chock-full of images of the odd album covers.
Via The Big MoboDaddy

Good Stuff
Broog: Alien Film Critic reviews "The Incredibles":
"In the corrosive sumps of Broog's homeworld, where compounds virulently antipathetic to the birth of life were stomped into atomic oblivion by Broog's mighty monocellular forebears, there is little room for the tender emotion. The cannibalistic leanings of infants of Broog's species and the need for frequent surgical chastisement of one's peer group likewise do not foster a close acquaintanceship with chumminess, let alone the profound meeting of minds and hearts which could be rendered in your culpably inexpressive tongue as 'love'. Broog's people, however, are to these obstacles what Mako sharks are to a beach party, and thus have evolved into splendid if massively violent romantics. Thus Broog himself transcends the boundaries of phylum, convention and reality to announce that he has fallen in love. The inky chambers of Broog's colossal heart are lit with scented candles, and the Chamber of Ten Thousand Fire Beetles is hung with bunting. Though your northern hemisphere slips into gelid winter, in the house of Broog, all is radiant heat energy; where before there was darkness, now there is Edna."
The rest of the review

Unexpected Consequences
"The system demonstrated by Trakstar is one of a growing number of anti-piracy products. "Cam-jam" systems, such as those developed by Dolby Laboratories subsidiary Cinea, prevent video cameras from capturing desirable content. Some of these could work by jamming the camcorders with electronic signals; others modulate projected light so that copies of movies illicitly captured in a theater are degraded."
You know what you get with an effective, affordable, and portable "cam-jam" system? You get something that defeats video surveillance.

Down The Rabbit Hole
"The White House has ordered the new CIA director, Porter Goss, to purge the agency of officers believed to have been disloyal to President George W. Bush or of leaking damaging information to the media about the conduct of the Iraq war and the hunt for Osama bin Laden, according to knowledgeable sources.

"The agency is being purged on instructions from the White House," said a former senior CIA official who maintains close ties to both the agency and to the White House. "Goss was given instructions ... to get rid of those soft leakers and liberal Democrats. The CIA is looked on by the White House as a hotbed of liberals and people who have been obstructing the president's agenda.""
The idea that anyone thinks the CIA is rife with touchy-feely liberals is enough to make my head spin.
Via Daily Kos

Russell Tyrone Jones, aka Osirus, Joe Bannanas, Dirt McGirt, Dirt Dog, Unique Ason, Big Baby Jesus, and, most notably, Old Dirty Bastard, died yesterday. I'll probably never own any Wu Tang Clan, but I took what comfort I could from knowing a character like him walked the earth.

Real Conservative Values
by Chris Bowers
"One of the more preposterous things I see many on the lefty blogosphere post about is how George Bush is not a "real" conservative. In making this argument, many bloggers go on to cite the supposed conservative values that George Bush does not represent. These values go something like this:

* "Real" conservatives value fiscal responsibility and solvency, but George Bush does not

* "Real" conservatives value personal liberties, but George Bush does not.

* "Real" conservatives are not interested in overseas adventurism, especially without the help of our allies, but George Bush does not.

To all of this I say hogwash. George Bush is a self-proclaimed conservative. In this election, 84% of those people who identify as conservatives voted for George Bush, thereby endorsing his policies. I say, and my Catholic upbringing says, that your actions are your beliefs, and there is no difference between the two. Considering this, it is time to face some facts:

* Real conservatives value fiscal insolvency, including irresponsible tax cuts, corporate giveaways, massive spending increases, huge undisclosed pork-barrel spending projects hammered out during congressional conference, rather than actual budget legislation on the Congressional floor that is open to the public and recorded in the public record. You know that conservatives value these things, because these are the things the vast majority of self-proclaimed conservatives do.

* Real conservatives do not value your personal liberties. They like disenfranchising voters, challenging voters, and making it more difficult to vote. They like it when the government is in your bedroom. They want to be able to spy on your personal files. They do not respect your right to privacy. They like to tell you who you can and cannot love, and what you can and cannot do to your own body. You know these are conservative values, because conservatives regularly pass laws of this nature.

* Real conservatives like to recklessly use the military They love war, and regularly resort to it as one of their first choices. They have no respect for the lives their policies destroy, as long as they have more bases overseas. They derive their values from violence, and detest peace. They will come up with any excuse possible, and cynically invent several more, to use force whenever possible, wherever possible. You know these are conservative values, because these are the actions conservatives take.

Real conservatives are bloodthirsty, reckless with our tax money, and want to tell you how to live your life. They are intolerant, warmongering and irresponsible. You know these are real conservatives values, because you can find anyone's beliefs in what they do, not what they say. "

Gutter Still Occupied By Mind
I could have sworn the newsreader on "All Things Considered" said "And today genetically engineered porn was found in Mexico". My mind tried to conjure a image and thankfully failed.
P.S. They meant (and probably said) corn.

No Smart-Ass Title
I want a bumper-sticker that says:"In case of Rapture this car will be heading to the Liquor Store"

"A little patience, and we shall see the reign of witches pass over, their spells dissolve, and the people, recovering their true sight, restore their government to its true principles.

"It is true that in the meantime we are suffering deeply in spirit, and incurring the horrors of a war and long oppressions of enormous public debt.

"If the game runs sometimes against us at home we must have patience till luck turns, and then we shall have an opportunity of winning back the principles we have lost, for this is a game where principles are at stake."

-- Thomas Jefferson, in a letter of 1798, after the passage of the Sedition Act.
Via William Gibson

"Corporate integrity has been restored with the work of your corporate Fraud Task Force. As a result United States Markets have reinforced their position as the trusted allocators of the world?s capital resources.
"Corporate Integrity"-just saying it makes me laugh out loud.
The objective of securing the safety of Americans from crime and terror has been achieved."
Well, I for one am glad to hear that crime and terror have been banished from America. I guess the only thing threatening us now is those darn homos trying to get hitched. Which reminds me, If gays can get married in Canada, the nation just next door-shouldn't we consider invasion? I mean, we have to defend our marriages, don't we? We could use all those police we don't need anymore. The Mounties won't put up much of a struggle.

All Your Lost Frog
Thank Jebbus Boing Boing has cleared up that nagging "what the hell?" feeling all those "I lost my frog" references were causing.

On A Lighter Note
Watching "Austin City Limits": Damn, Sheryl Crow has nice legs. Nice enough to make me stop wondering what was up with that Kid Rock duet. All is forgiven.

I rented the new "Dawn of the Dead" DVD. It is not for the faint of heart. The opening scenes before the titles seriously freaked me out. It's like the filmmakers got into my childhood head and supercharged my vampire invasion nightmares. But I still have to wonder why the zombies surrounding the mall wouldn't eventually just starve to "death".

Earned Is Not The Word
"I earned capital in the campaign, political capital, and now I intend to spend it. It is my style. That's what happened in the -- after the 2000 election, I earned some capital. I've earned capital in this election"
1: "It is my style"-This phrase just stuck in my mind. Until now the only people I've ever heard refer to their style were fashion designers and rappers.
2: I can't decide if it's gall or delusion-the idea that Bush believes he earned political capital in the 2000 election, an election won only because he sued to stop Florida from counting votes, an election where he lost the popular vote.

Kerry Won?
"I know you don't want to hear it. You can't face one more hung chad. But I don't have a choice. As a journalist examining that messy sausage called American democracy, it's my job to tell you who got the most votes in the deciding states. Tuesday, in Ohio and New Mexico, it was John Kerry.

Most voters in Ohio thought they were voting for Kerry. At 1:05 a.m. Wednesday morning, CNN's exit poll showed Kerry beating Bush among Ohio women by 53 percent to 47 percent. The exit polls were later combined with-and therefore contaminated by-the tabulated results, ultimately becoming a mirror of the apparent actual vote. [To read about the skewing of exit polls to conform to official results, click here .] Kerry also defeated Bush among Ohio's male voters 51 percent to 49 percent. Unless a third gender voted in Ohio, Kerry took the state.

So what's going on here? Answer: the exit polls are accurate. Pollsters ask, "Who did you vote for?" Unfortunately, they don't ask the crucial, question, "Was your vote counted?" The voters don't know.

Here's why. Although the exit polls show that most voters in Ohio punched cards for Kerry-Edwards, thousands of these votes were simply not recorded. This was predictable and it was predicted. "
Via Boing Boing

Past Anger To Blame
"But I am sorry, I must say something else. And if I regret it later, so be it. All you have to do is read a book like What's The Matter With Kansas, and it just reminds you how fuckin stupid many of the people in this country are. That's right, I said it. Sue me. What's the old saying, nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people. I cannot think of an aphorism more apt.

Probably, by correlation (and I personally was under the impression there was going to be no math involved in this, so you crunch the numbers), the poorest states with the largest education gaps are the ones who supported President Yellowcake with the most votes.

Why? 22% cited moral values as their top concern. This put this non-issue in a statistical dead heat with the economy, Iraq and terrorism.

Moral values?!? Yes, now apparently the Republic is most desperately threatened by the Saddamites and the Soddomites.

We have poverty growing at a rate that will have us building Hoovervilles, a budget deficit that is growing faster than the dementia in Jim Bunning's "brain," a war raging based on lies and a corrupt government that every week finds a new way to stick it in the average person's ass like they're O'Reilly with a loofah and you're lathering up in the shower. But damnit, two men you don't know may choose to get married, and some other guy might want not want to say "Under God" during the pledge of allegiance. Better vote for the moral Brady Bunch of the former drunk driving/draft dodging Pres/VP team.

As for me, I happen to be fortunate. I am lucky enough to be financially sound (so thanks for the tax cuts Wyoming!!), and healthcare will never be an issue for me. But for the millions of Americans who voted for Bush in the interior and South of this nation who have no healthcare, jobs disappearing faster than Ann Coulter's waistline post-purge and are watching their sons and daughters go fight a war in Iraq that will only get them killed and make us less safe, I can only think of a few words for you. You reap what you sow. I even took them from the Bible. That should make you warm and fuzzy.

Yes, you have probably made my life less secure because I live and work near Washington, and no suicide bomber is wasting their time planning an attack on Butte anytime soon. But in every other way, from financial security to family health to your kids not ending up in President Jacket Bulge's action figure wars, you have just fucked yourselves. Well done.

I will end this tirade with a not so bold prediction of our future. Enjoy watching as England sets up the largest stem cell laboratory in the world, scientists flee this fundamentalist backwoods and Europe, because of "reality based policies" most Democracies adhere to, takes its place at the head of the table again. But at least we'll have strong moral values exhibited daily by a having a pathalogical liar in the White House. Good voting America."
Via Booknotes

Not Mine
"He's all yours

I think the election results boil down to this--apathy and stupidity. Apathy is one of the deadliest of sins in a democracy. Shame on all of you who could, but did not vote. Stupidity--induced and fueled by mindless news as entertainment/propaganda, fundamentalist religion/superstition and rampant consumerism--festers and eats away at the core of our democracy. A little over 50% of the US electorate voted for a moronic megalomaniac. Any rational, thinking person can see that there are ample reasons why Bush should not have been reelected. In fact, some of the best cases against Bush have been articulated, pleadingly, by thoughtful conservatives. It seems that everyone in the world, and unfortunately, a little under 50% of Americans know that Bush is an idiot and that his first four years in office have been a disaster--one of the worst presidencies in the history of this country.

But now there are no more excuses. If you voted for Bush you only have yourselves to blame. He's all yours and the blood is on your hands. Welcome to The Republican States of America. Bush doesn't have to worry about being reelected and now, with his one party state, he can do whatever he pleases. The damage that will be done to this country and the world over the next four years will likely take generations to repair, if, indeed, it ever can be repaired.


We Are So Screwed
"You want to block it out. You want to rend your flesh and yank your hair and say no way in hell and lean out your window and scream into the Void and pray it will all be over soon, even though you know you're an atheist Buddhist Taoist Rosicrucian Zen Orgasmican and you don't normally pray to anything except maybe the gods of really exceptional sake and skin-tingling sex and maybe a few luminous transcendental deities that look remarkably like Jenna Jameson.

It simply boggles the mind: we've already had four years of some of the most appalling and abusive foreign and domestic policy in American history, some of the most well-documented atrocities ever wrought on the American populace and it's all combined with the biggest and most violently botched and grossly mismanaged war since Vietnam, and much of the nation still insists in living in a giant vat of utter blind faith, still insists on believing the man in the White House couldn't possibly be treating them like a dog treats a fire hydrant.

Inexplicable? Not really. People want to believe. They want to trust their leaders, even against all screaming, neon-lit evidence and stack upon stack of flagrant, impeachment-grade lie. They simply cannot allow that Dubya might really be an utter boob and that they are being treated like an abused, beaten housewife who keeps coming back for more, insisting her drunk husband didn't mean it, that she probably had it coming, that the cuts and bruises and blood and broken bones are all for her own good.

And this election, it might be all be very amusing, in a Mel Gibson-y, blood-drenched hamburger-of-Christ sorta way, were it not so sad and dangerous. It might all be tolerable and cute, in a violence-engorged, sexist, video-game-y sorta way, were it not so lopsided and wrong.

This election's outcome, this heartbreaking proof of a nation split more deeply and decisively than ever, it simply reinforces the feeling among much of the educated populace: It is a weirdly embarrassing time to be an American. It is jarring and oddly shattering and makes you rethink what it really means to be a part of this country. The answer: It doesn't mean much at all. Not really. Not anymore.

This is the common wisdom on the progressive Left. Those first four toxic Bush years? A fluke. A phantasm. A stolen election. A gaff, a mugging, a crime. But this? An election this close makes you reconsider. Maybe, after all, we aren't nearly as far along as we think. Maybe we're not all that sophisticated or nuanced or respectable a nation as we sometimes dare to dream.

Maybe, in fact, we're regressing, back to the days of guns and sexism and pre-emptive violence, of environmental abuse and no rights for women and a sincere hatred of gays and foreigners and minorities. Sound familiar? It should: it's the modern GOP platform.

Here's the thing: for tens of millions of us, it is simply unconscionable that we could possibly be led for another four years by a small and spoiled little man who has very little real idea what he's doing and even less of how the hell he got there. It would be funny, in a Adam Sandler, toilet-humored sort of way, were it not so poisonous and depressing. And yet it looks like we're stuck with it, like a shard of glass buried deep in the eye."
1: Shut the fuck up about a "mandate". Yea, Bush had more votes for him then anyone else in history-he also had more people vote against him than anyone in history.
2: The only ray of sunshine in a Bush/GOP victory is that it's all up to them now. Iraq, Iran, North Korea, Huge deficits, Osama, bird flu, the economy-No more blaming Clinton or the gay intellectual liberal media or the boogeyman-by 2008 it ought to be clear even the most Fox-News-addled chucklehead that the Republicans have been boning them like a prison girlfriend.
3: It's too bad people's concern for "Moral Values" didn't cover the sin of lying.

Here We Go Again
Winter begins in Western Washington state and that can only mean one thing: Flood alerts. Every year we are treated to rivers with funny names running over their banks and TV reporters in raincoats standing around in the dark looking worried. I'm just amazed that nobody ever says "Hey, do these damn rivers have to flood year in and year out? Is there anything we could be doing to stop or lessen all the damage these annual floods cause?". But no, the subject never even comes up.