Saturday, April 5, 2008

Know Your Rights (Haw Haw Haw, Suckers!!)

Those of you who don't jump from library to library in an effort to keep one step ahead of the forces of repression are probably already paying the forces of repression for the privileges of reading crap like this & downloading certain films from certain states of the former Soviet Union.
The Associated Press reviewed the "Acceptable Use Policies" and "Terms of Service" of the nation's 10 largest ISPs — in all, 117 pages of contracts that leave few rights for subscribers.
It is not pretty. You have no rights, though you may get a refund.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Spooky Visual Aid

Direct from the pages of the regional wrapper of fish:

The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated as he stood on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tenn., just after 6 p.m. on April 4, 1968. Within hours, Life magazine photographer Steve Schapiro was on that balcony and through the door of King's room.

"The physical body of Martin Luther King Jr.," writes Schapiro in a new book of his photographs, "Schapiro's Heroes," "was forever gone, leaving a few small material remains behind: a wrinkled shirt, a book, a Soul Force magazine, an old Styrofoam coffee cup. The half-drunk coffee cup gave me a moment of pause. He had left his room planning to return."

The TV was on. When King's face appeared on a newscast, Schapiro took this photograph -- history preserved. Now the two motel rooms that housed the King party, along with parts of the rest of the Lorraine Motel, have been turned into the National Civil Rights Museum. In 2006, Schapiro went back to the scene. "The wall on which the television had been mounted was ... gone, replaced with a sheet of thick clear plastic," he said. "Visitors could peer into King's room, but no one will ever get to see that eerie image that is forever imbedded in my mind."

Sorry, we've no available, digitized picture of our bald pate.

Really, It Is All About Us, But Let's Pretend Otherwise for a Few Moments

So you won't think that we think it's all about the staff here (previous item) we'll lead you to Mighty Sorry No Body Cares dot com, where we discover that Martin Luther King's
life, like those of other historical figures -- Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt -- has been simplified, scholars say, his anger blurred, his militancy rarely discussed, his disappointments and harsh critiques of government's failures glossed over.
Also in that story: info on the Memphis sanitation workers strike, & Dr. King's last hours. There were reasons that transvestite whack-job J. Edgar Hoover thought Dr. K. (not fucking war-criminal Kissinger!!) was a commie. Why, King might even have thought that there were better methods than the economic fascism that's been practiced in this country since the original Euro-genocide was committed. (We're guessing that a few Origino-Americans may have committed some genocide against other Origino-Americans before whitey showed up, but at least capitalism wasn't involved.)
King's conclusion? "There must be a better distribution of wealth, and maybe America must move toward a democratic socialism." He didn't say this in the mainstream but to his black colleagues.
Imagine, a pissed-off guy whose anger is swept under the rug until he's murdered. Only in America, right? (And that brings it back to us, us, us!!)

Bald as a Something

Today is the 40th anniversary of the editor here shaving his head, in reaction to being forced by fascist parental units to get a hair cut (things were different 40 yrs. ago). The next day, many of the drooling idiots where we attended school thought we had done it as some sort of reaction to Martin Luther King, Jr. having been assassinated. No connection. And no further threats of haircut imposition when we were still under the alleged control of the parents after that. (Got rid of dandruff too.) In today's modern world, of course, every gangster, police officer & member of the military sports the "displaced person who was just dusted for lice & had all his body hair shaved" look, again confirming the age-old "the more things change, etc." axiom. So our mane remains.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Junior F(1)ascists Club

Oh, wait a minute, here's something stupid & tawdry. Max Mosley, son of Oswald Mosley, has had his fun recorded.
A British tabloid, The News of the World, reported Sunday that the 67-year-old Mosley participated in sex acts with five prostitutes in a scenario that is believed to involve Nazi role-playing.
Max is the president of FIA (Federation Internationale de l'Automobile) .

A video posted Sunday on the News of the World's Web site showed a man identified as Mosley arriving at an apartment and taking part in sex acts with women, one in a prisoner's uniform, while speaking German. The video can no longer be found on the paper's Web site. Mosley is the son of British Union of Fascists party founder Oswald Mosley, a former British politician who served in Parliament for both the Labour and Conservative parties. Oswald Mosley died in 1980.

Found Object

Left on the desktop by a previous user @ the Santa Monica Public Library.

Nada, Rien du Tout

The editorial board here at Just Another Blog™ has absolutely nothing to add to anything today. You're all on your own.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Annals of Secrecy

Below: A patch for "Minotaur," a still classified program of Lockheed's Skunk Works.
How to dig up poop on the black budget ops the Bush admin seems to love so much...

Skulls. Black cats. A naked woman riding a killer whale. Grim reapers. Snakes. Swords. Occult symbols. A wizard with a staff that shoots lightning bolts. Moons. Stars. A dragon holding the Earth in its claws.

No, this is not the fantasy world of a 12-year-old boy.

It is, according to a new book, part of the hidden reality behind the Pentagon’s classified, or “black,” budget that delivers billions of dollars to stealthy armies of high-tech warriors. The book offers a glimpse of this dark world through a revealing lens — patches — the kind worn on military uniforms.

Uh, are we sure this isn't the fantasy world of a 12-yr.-old boy? Granted, one w/ many of our tax dollars w/ which to play. And in our best 12-yr.-old. boy vein, there are some interesting patches to be viewed.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Tuesday, Trash Day

Again comes Jonah w/ this subtitle to the online version of his L. A. Times column of today:
Evolution of religious bigotry The cowardice and intolerance of slapping a Darwin fish on your car bumper.
Dead tree edition:
Christian Baiting
First there's blather about the Dutch movie stating the Quran is pretty vicious & violent. At least as bad as the Old & New Testaments, yes, possibly even worse. But Doughbob doesn't even bother to condemn the dirty Moooooslims, he whines momentarily that
European and U.N. leaders are going through the usual motions of theatrical hand-wringing, heaping all of their anger on Wilders for sowing "hatred."
Then comes what's really on his tiny mind, Jeezis fish & those "Darwin" stickers:
In America, the easiest place to find this ancient symbol is on the back of cars. Recently, however, it seems as if Jesus fish have become outnumbered by Darwin fish. No doubt you've seen these too. The fish symbol is "updated" with little feet coming off the bottom, and "IXOYE" or "Jesus" is replaced with either "Darwin" or "Evolve." I find Darwin fish offensive. First, there's the smugness. The undeniable message: Those Jesus fish people are less evolved, less sophisticated than we Darwin fishers. The hypocrisy is even more glaring. Darwin fish are often stuck next to bumper stickers promoting tolerance or admonishing random motorists that "hate is not a family value." But the whole point of the Darwin fish is intolerance; similar mockery of a cherished symbol would rightly be condemned as bigoted if aimed at blacks or women or, yes, Muslims.
First of all, you stupid fuck, what "cherished symbol" of black people or women is there to "mock?" (You want to make up some bumper stickers that say "Martin Luther Coon?" And of course no woman has ever been mocked by a conservative. Is the "Iron My Shirt!" bumper sticker order ready yet?) Secondly, do you not understand (of course you do, you can't really be as fucking dense as you pretend to be) the difference between something that one is born (a breeding group or a sex) & something that one chooses to be (a Catholic, a Moooooslim, a libertarian, a flat-earther, a UFO-believer, whatever).
It's not that secular progressives support Muslim religious fanatics, but they reserve their passion and scorn for religious Christians who are neither fanatical nor inclined to use violence.
Actually, they're just sick & tired of seeing that stupid Jeezis fish on the cars of morons, so they came up w/ an answer to it. Try unbunching your panties for a few seconds, J. G., it's just a bumper sticker. And in a nation that identifies itself to pollsters as somewhere around 85% Xtian, what exactly is the point of the Jeeezis fish anyway? It's not like the stupid story you tell of the Turkish guy you met in Istanbul, who thought he had to sneak you (a goober of Jewish extraction but not much faith) the "fish sign." And let's think again about statements like "neither fanatical or inclined to use violence." Kansas Board of Education? Eric Rudolph? Some of your little "harmless" Xtian pals are just as ready to impose their religious law over everybody in this country as any Mooooslims are in other nations. And don't think that any Jooooos would get a break, either.
The Darwin fish ostensibly symbolizes the superiority of progressive-minded science over backward-looking faith. I think this is a false juxtaposition, but I would have a lot more respect for the folks who believe it if they aimed their brave contempt for religion at those who might behead them for it.
Just as gay rights advocates condemn, for example, the executions in Iran of people for homosexual activity, but don't make as big a fuss about it as they do about various issues here in the U. S., an alleged democracy where the rights promised to all can, once in a while, actually be extended to all, so there is little point in aiming our brave contempt for obscurantist superstition of the Moooooslim ilk against any one in a country where five-time-a-day foot washers number some two per cent of the population, & are much more likely to be scared of crazed Xtians & /or Jooooos (Remember when Sikhs were killed after 11 September, 2001 merely because they wear turbans, Jonah?) than we are of them. As soon as we see as many crescent moons w/ stars as we see Calvins pissing on somebody on the rear windows of moron-mobiles, we'll find something w/ which to get back at the towelheads. In the meantime, Jonah, who started it? Whose holier-than-thou activities began this entire fish war? Huh?

Annals of Insurance Scams

Well, it's all a scam really, innit? In the case in question, it appears that private insurance cos. are gumming up the Social Security disability works for their own potential profit. Having spent much of the day dealing w/ a governmental bureaucracy, we're doing no further original work on this, but handing it to the NYT & Slate (who brought it to our attention). At least some people pull their weight around here! Slate sez:
The New York Times leads with a lawsuit that claims insurance companies are costing the Social Security system millions of dollars every year by forcing people who file disability claims with them to also apply for money from the federal program even if it's clear that they'll be denied. These insurers often force claimants to appeal the denial, thus costing more money and delaying benefits for people who really need the government program.
And adds:
Insurers who pay out long-term disability insurance want claimants to try to get Social Security benefits because it would cut down on the amount of money the private company would have to pay out every month. The problem is that the government program defines disability much more stringently than private companies and usually doesn't pay out money unless the person can't do any job at all. But everyone still has the right to apply for Social Security benefits and each case must be investigated, which is why even the ones that are obvious denials cost time and money for an already-strapped system. These costs are then multiplied when insurers force claimants to appeal a denial again and again.
We thought we had mentioned this item, covering the underfunding aspect of the backlog, when it first came to our attention, but perhaps it was in private correspondence, as we couldn't find anything in Just Another Bum™ concerning it. Today's story reveals another cause, corporate greed & malfeasance. What would Megan "Free market solutions are groovy, the gov't. always screws things up!" McArdle type about this, one must wonder. A huge backlog, caused in part by fascist corporations, & partly by gov't. underfunding, directly affecting us, the editorial we here at Just Another Bum™. Whom do we murder first?

Monday, March 31, 2008

Sports Update

George W. Bush, looking like the former cheerleader he is. Photo from Deadspin, which appears to be from the folks who bring you Wonkette & Gawker & Defamer & other such sites.
It's compare & contrast time once again. From the Baltimore Sun one has one's choice of:

Bush's first pitch: More cheers or boos?

or (a few hours earlier): Bush on the mound: More cheers than boos

The AP story doesn't decide one way or the other:

He was greeted by plenty of loud jeers, but also determined cheers, as if the fans in both camps were trying to outduel each other.
The comsymps at the LAT:

President Bush set the script into motion, delivering the ceremonial opening-day first pitch, albeit to a chorus of mostly boos.
Voice of America ("A trusted source of news and information since 1942") ignored the whole thing:

The game opened with a ceremonial first pitch thrown by President Bush. Manager Manny Acta caught the ball and says the visit by Mr. Bush made the day special.

"Sitting there in the clubhouse and seeing the President of the United States walk in. He talked to all of us. And he made everybody feel real good," Acta said.

A former Major League baseball team owner, Mr. Bush has showed interest in the construction of Nationals Park. He seemed at ease in the clubhouse, an oval dressing facility in the shape of the President's office at the White House.
The founder of Fire Megan McArdle, brad, was especially unhappy w/ the president's hogging time on the ESPN cablecast:

Motherfucker. He stayed after the commercial break. Bush is just hanging out. The President of the fucking United goddamn States is chillin with the ESPN Sunday Night Baseball crew. I'm trying to watch baseball, you assholes. Joe Morgan is bad enough. Next they'll call up Camille Paglia.

He stayed through a second commercial break. I can't even mute it, they keep showing the shit eating twins grinning at each other in the booth.
This is proof God does not exist.
As if any more were needed.

Sunday, March 30, 2008