wombat_socho: Wombat (Catholic)
"I went to my niece's wedding at the pastor went off on some rant in his sermon about marriage is between a man and a women and anything else is wrong... I about wanted to punch him in the head. REALLY? at a wedding, not the time or place to preach that crap."

Well, um...where else are you going to preach that message? Aside from the usual Sunday sermon, of course. I excerpted this from a Facebook comment stream stemming from a friend's post that "you can tell it's an election year, even weddings are getting political." Me, I think somebody's confused about the difference between morals, religion, and politics. Preachers gotta preach the Word, preferably in churches but sometimes not, and let's face it, if you don't belong to the congregation, you get no say in what the preacher says. For that matter, if you don't belong to a Protestant church or Jewish synagogue where the minister/rabbi is an employee of the congregation, you don't get even that much say; us Catholics have to sit there and put up with whatever the priest wants to dish out on Sundays.

And if you're just there for the wedding, hey, feel free to ignore what the preacher is saying. It's not your church and not your preacher. So really, what do you care? Unless, of course, you're one of those narcissistic fucks who thinks everything in the world should be done to suit you.
wombat_socho: Wombat (WTF)
Meghan McCain’s Dirty, Sexy Politics | The New Ledger:
On June 20, 2002, the United States Supreme Court decreed, in the case of Atkins v. Virginia, that the mildly mentally retarded were categorically exempt from capital punishment, reasoning that fully functional adults of diminished mental capacity were as a matter of law not as culpable for their acts. Writing eloquently in dissent, Justice Scalia drew a sharp distinction between the severely mentally retarded (who are truly not responsible for their actions), and the merely stupid (the category into which Mr. Atkins undoubtedly fell). Scalia argued forcefully that, with respect to the merely stupid, at least sometimes they deserve to be punished for their antisocial and destructive behavior.

This article, of course, is not about capital punishment. It is a book review of Dirty, Sexy Politics by Meghan McCain. However, the above discussion is relevant because I initially had reservations about writing this book review at all. After all, it is clear to everyone who has read Meghan McCain’s twitter feed, her “articles” on The Daily Beast, or her ill-fated campaign blog that Meghan is not a paragon of clear reasoning, exemplar of familiarity with facts, nor a model of English language expertise. And after subjecting myself to 194 continuous pages of her “writing,” it became clear that none of the above-described works truly plumbed the depths of mental vacuity in which Ms. McCain aimlessly and cluelessly drifts.

This presented a dilemma.

It is impossible to read Dirty, Sexy Politics and come away with the impression that you have read anything other than the completely unedited ramblings of an idiot. This being a professional website for which I have a great deal of respect, I searched for a more eloquent or gentle way to accurately phrase the previous sentence – but could not find one.


And that's just the beginning. This is without question one of the most brutal, unsparing book reviews I've read in my life, and I've read some doozies. TL; DR: it made the reviewer want to burn his copy, even though it was a Kindle edition. But don't let that stop you from buying a copy of Dirty Sexy Politics. If nothing else, you're helping keep a deserving young accounting student in bacon, What better reason do you need? ;)

(h/t The Other McCain, also Ace of Spades)



*"You're going to want to put some ice on that." - W. J. Clinton
wombat_socho: Wombat (Politics)
Imagine: Protest, Insurgency and the Workings of Astrology - Cobb:
Let’s play a game, shall we? The name of the game is called “Imagine.” The way it’s played is simple: we’ll envision recent happenings in the news, but then change them up a bit. Instead of envisioning races as the primary characteristic of people we’ll envision zodiac signs of folks. The object of the game is to imagine the public reaction to the events or incidents, if the main actors were defined by something we know is meaningless, non-deterministic and not to be taken seriously, rather than race which fast-talking, know-it-all people obsessively invest with meaning and seriousness. This will help you gain the insight into the workings of race hustlers in America who keep loading meaning into the social construction of race by racializing every event that comes on the news.


I wanna know where this alleged Libra Privilege is that these hustlers keep claiming is keeping them down, It's never done me a damn bit of good.
wombat_socho: Wombat (SSuiseiseki)
Ironically enough, I'm writing this on a Friday afternoon before the monthly PRSFS meeting.

P returned from the Great American Desert, where Convergence is held every Independence Day weekend, and had much news, most of it amusing in a "ha-ha, funny!" way and some of it amusing in a bitter, cynical "LOOK HOW STUPID YOU ARE" way.
LOLWUT? )
wombat_socho: Wombat (die now)
Readers by Author « Lauren Leto:
Stereotyping People by Their Favorite Author

(by the way – I respect every author on here, kind of)


Yeah, suuuuuuure*.
Deprecated for a nearly complete lack of SF authors and an excess of trendy mainstream authors that nobody reads except intellectualoids, lit majors, and people who desperately want to be thought of as cool.

*This sarcastic reply from Jim Bouton's Ball Four doesn't get nearly enough love.
wombat_socho: Wombat (unhappy)
I note that Stacy McCain is not so covertly hoping that Perez Hilton winds up in legal hot water over a photoshopped pic of Miley Cyrus exiting a vehicle in a, shall we say, less than ladylike manner. I don't generally pay a lot of attention to celebrity gossip, but when I see something like this hit the news, it makes me feel sad. Probably because I have a daughter myself, and Lord knows I wouldn't want her in the glare of the spotlight like that. As with Britney Spears, the whole sordid mess reminds me of a Jason & The Scorchers song, one that never made it onto their studio albums - the very evocative Too Much Too Young.
wombat_socho: Wombat (Boss Coffee)
Gee, why will no one hire them? « Don Surber:
The Oregonian newspaper has a sad story: “Oregon college graduates struggle to launch careers in grim job market.”


Strangely enough, the only member of the class of '10 who has a job in his field is the engineer. Or maybe not so strange, RTWT.
wombat_socho: Wombat (SSuiseiseki)
Spent the evening at Mark Taylor's place with P, talking about booze and mead and SF and movies and grilling meat. It was a pretty good evening, and I think we're going to do it again pretty soon. It's what happened on the way there that inspired the title to this post.
Would you like to know more? )

I'm back down to 390 this morning, with the BG at 91 despite bedtime yogurt snacking to make the metformin rest easy on my tummy. So far I've lost a touch over three pounds since the beginning of the month, and am on track to hit the target of 385 pounds at the end of May if the trends continue - and I see no reason why they won't. The longer I stay on this high-fat, low-carb diet, the easier it is to stay on it, and then I'm grooving.

Looking ahead to next month when I'll have a little extra money, I'm probably going to replace the CD drive in the Failbox. If I recall correctly, it's a legacy from the old Optiplex, and may even be older than that. In any case, it does a horrible job burning CDs, and I wasted a CD-R yesterday finding that out.

Heading out this afternoon to hang with [livejournal.com profile] therevdrnye and get caught up on what he's doing.

UPDATE: Owner of lost cards called. Turns out she and her boyfriend just moved in upstairs, and were enormously relieved that the cards turned up. She came down to pick them up, profuse thanks. My good deed for the decade having been done, I can go back to being a complete bastard until 2019. ;)
wombat_socho: Curly W (baseball)

(Joe Posnanski)
wombat_socho: Wombat (FGSFDS - Technoviking)
Technology Review: The Changing Nature of Privacy on Facebook:
TR: A lot of people wonder why it matters if companies share personal data. How are people affected by privacy violations?

DB: The easiest one to explain is the case of teachers. They have a role to play during the school day and there are times and places where they have lives that are not student-appropriate. Online, it becomes a different story. Facebook has now made it so that you can go and see everybody's friends regardless of how private your profile is. And the teachers are constantly struggling with the fact that, no matter how obsessively they've tried to make their profiles as private as possible, one of their friends can post a photo from when they were 16 and drinking or doing something else stupid, and all of a sudden, kids bring it into school. We want teachers to be able to have a teacher relationship to our kids that is different from what the teacher has to their intimates. Yet the technology puts the teacher constantly at risk.

The stupidity, it burns! )
wombat_socho: Wombat (Politics)
Harsanyi: "Immigration" isn't the problem - The Denver Post:

But if you, like me, believe it's possible to advocate for a broad-minded immigration policy — one that creates more expansive guest-worker programs, offers amnesty (though not citizenship) to some immigrants already here and enforces border control — this administration is not making it easy on you, either.

The uplifting tale of the hard-boiled immigrant, dipping his or her sweaty hands into the well of the American Dream, is one thing. Today, we find ourselves is an unsustainable and rapidly growing welfare state. Can we afford to allow millions more to partake?

When the Nobel Prize-winning libertarian economist Milton Friedman was asked about unlimited immigration in 1999, he stated that "it is one thing to have free immigration to jobs. It is another thing to have free immigration to welfare. And you cannot have both."

Dependency programs incentivize not only those who want to work, but those who don't want to work. That's why we need to allow a generous number of immigrants and visitors to take a shot at the American Dream and become part of our economy. I'd just like them to do it on their own and check in first.

Perhaps I'm experiencing an abnormal spasm of quixotic delirium, but I can't imagine most Americans would find a policy that offers both true security and robust immigration very controversial.



This is another way of stating Jonah Goldberg's "high walls, wide gates" philosophy on immigration, which I enthusiastically support. The whole problem with immigration policy of late is that while everybody talks a good game on enforcement at the Federal level (and there are a wealth of laws on the subject dating back to the 1940s) nobody funds it very much until something awful happens - as it did recently. Unfortunately, expecting the current administration to do something about enforcement is dumb like rock. The blacks most directly affected by illegals are so far into the pocket of the Democratic Party they can't see daylight any more, and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus is full of the kind of irredentist-pandering Chicano blowhards who fully deserve to live in the kind of violent chaos they'd get if their more deranged supporters' dream ever came true. Sure, the labor movement isn't too keen on the idea of more illegals, but most of the union members in this country work for the government these days, and they no doubt see illegals as a growth opportunity. So if you want to see anything substantive done about border enforcement, and you live in Texas or New Mexico, you better start leaning on your state legislators to do something, if you don't want to wait until 2013.
wombat_socho: Wombat (FGSFDS - Technoviking)
...to being a horrible person and trolling my Facebook friends with this quote from Pumpkin McPastry of Sports Argument Stadium:
Doing steroids means taking tremendous legal, professional, and health risks in order to benefit your team and help them win. Doing steroids is the quintessence of being a team player.


All the more so because I really don't care about the steroid issue in baseball. Steroids are not some kind of magic juice that artificially boosts the power ratings of baseball players; they have positive effects on healing and muscle growth, apparently, but not to the extent that illiterate sportswriters and retarded fans are going on about. I'm okay with McGwire going into the Hall of Fame; he has done quite a few of the things commonly associated with Hall of Fame power hitters, and if it were a straight-up matter of counting up the stats he'd be a shoo-in. I don't think his apology for using steroids is going to move public opinion that much one way or the other, but I do think some water-brained baseball writers are going to use the whole sorry episode as an excuse not to vote for him. I submit that we should retroactively apply the same standards to Ty Cobb (a thuggish fellow who on one occasion attacked a man in a wheelchair), Babe Ruth (an alcoholic who used to conduct orgies in his room), and all baseball players who played before 1948, who played in a racist environment where they didn't have to compete against black players. I could probably come up with some other examples in the post-Jackie Robinson world of baseball but I've wasted enough time on this already.
wombat_socho: Wombat (SSuiseiseki)
...but definitely in the top ten.
wombat_socho: Wombat (Happy)
I've gone back to looking at Megan McArdle's Atlantic blog a couple times a week, not because I agree with her about a lot (as she's a soft not-really-libertarian, I tend to find her policy preferences more annoying than not) but because at least once a week she comes up with a post like this.

What's not to like about this combination of enraged daughter's intemperate Facebook post, a Heinlein quote on management techniques straight out of Despair.com, and this beautiful headshot:

"But it's not clear to me where they're going to get this impressive outside talent they want to sweep in and save GM from itself, given the pay restrictions that Treasury is imposing on the company.  Treasury's line is that they're allowed to sweeten the deal with significant stock grants.  This seems sort of like trying to entice volunteers for a suicide mission by offering a lavish deferred compensation package."

LOOOOOOOOOOOOL!
wombat_socho: Wombat (WTF)
Jim the Realtor shows us the Rock House.

(Lileks)

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