Friday, August 17, 2007

Oh, By The Way

  1. Michael Vick is F-U-C-K-E-D! His boys snitched on him. His football career, made primarily of pumping those crazy legs, is pretty much over. It's saddening to see someone with such great talent do something as plainly dumb as dogfighting. If he's not guilty, wow, his lawyer better get a shit ton of cash because s/he is a fucking genius.
  2. Also: what's up with political punditry. Are all of the pundits just shrill hacks now who recite talking points memos from the RNC and DNC with no critical input of their own?
  3. For someone who extolled the negative aspects of beauty, Naomi Wolf looked like she was buying into the beauty myth tonight on Hardball. She was looking like a stone cold fox. It also helped her cause that she was trying to do the best she could to spread some truth over that republican smear from the other guest, who was based out of the gay liberal hotbed of San Francisco.
Oh, here's another Stone Temple Pilots video. This is one of my favorite songs that both reminds me of my youth, but that I also like like Everything Zen by Bush, one of the best songs of the 90s bar NONE.

Watching the Wasteland

As any good football fan can tell you, preseason is meaningless. The only people who benefit from preseason are rookies and players playing for roster spots. Instead of following the system established by the NBA and having a summer league, the NFL tortures us all into watching four weeks of half-speed, uninvolved, error-filled tackle football. Honestly, the football played by those cats in Europe was considerably better than the football played during the preseason, and those dudes sort of sucked. Anyway, I was watching preseason football because I have nothing better to do with my Friday nights, and I heard the following song during a return from commercial. The song was "Big Bang Baby" by the Stone Temple Pilots. It reminded me of the days when I listened to Bush on a tape of songs that I recorded off of 99.1 WHFS, which is now a spanish-language station out of the Baltimore/Annapolis area.

The quality's not too good on the video, but I remember watching the video on MTV and its quality was suspect there too.

Bush Loves The Old Timers

From Houston Chronicle:

PEARLAND — Korean War veteran Nyles Reed, 75, opened an envelope last week to learn a Purple Heart had been approved for injuries he sustained as a Marine on June 22, 1952.

But there was no medal. Just a certificate and a form stating that the medal was "out of stock."

"I can imagine, of course, with what's going on in Iraq and Afghanistan, there's a big shortage," Reed said. "At least, I would imagine so."

The form letter from the Navy Personnel Command told Reed he could wait 90 days and resubmit an application, or buy his own medal.

After waiting 55 years, however, Reed decided to pay $42 for his own Purple Heart and accompanying ribbon — plus state sales taxes — at a military surplus store.

I'm glad to see that the decider cares so deeply for the sacrifices made by the men and women who put their bodies on the line in defense of the principles of our country. While I don't agree with their current deployment, I will support anyone who makes that decision to join the military because, shit, I'm not doing it. I'll contribute in some other way that doesn't involve me going knee deep in the shit.

It's Piling On Now

America's self-appointed mayor Rudy Giuliani has written a policy stance in Foreign Affairs. I'm assuming that all of you can figure out what form of policy he is discussing. Anyway, for most candidates, this would be a good opportunity to gain a lot of valuable voices in the policy and political wonk world as Foreign Affairs is one of those classy, highbrow Washington-type magazines. While this was a good opportunity, it was an opportunity squandered by Giuliani who continues to show that he knows absolutely nothing about American foreign policy or foreign policy in general.

I can't begin to break down all of the internal problems with this document because I didn't get a degree in politics. The only thing that I can say is fundamentally wrong with Giuliani's approach is the fact that he tries to make this into a battle of civilizations, which is fundamentally flawed in a war of ideologies as it truly stands. Additionally, diplomacy is not the imposition of one country's will over the other. Instead, diplomacy is driven by the concept of give and take.

Driving from this point, a note to Rudy: brinksmanship doesn't work anymore. Additionally, Rudy: New York City is not a nation of 300+ million people with local, state, and federal government structures or a system that allows for a unitary figure to make executive decisions without oversight. Just because you did something in a city of 7 million people does not mean that it will work over a country of 300+ million with state governments who can disregard your actions and implement their own plans. Napoleon and Democracy don't get along, Rudy.

From an area that I do know something about (thanks, Evanston Public Library!), Giuliani made a specious connection between the war in Vietnam and our current struggle against that slippery bitch Terrorism. I'll put his problem this way: Giuliani is giving the South Vietnamese far too much credit. FAR too much credit. Their state when America left was on the verge of falling to the North Vietnamese anyway, the group that everyone except for America and France wanted to run the country because they were nasty communists (wasn't the cold war a beautiful thing?).

When not conflating ideas or presenting wrongly intentioned theoretical arguments, Giuliani even has time to make strangely disturbing comments with regards to diplomacy. As he himself states:

To achieve a realistic peace, U.S. diplomacy must be tightly linked to our other strengths: military, economic, and moral.
I didn't think that we were a moral "powerhouse" nor did I think that morality is an appropriate basis for political diplomacy. Giuliani has to know that the implications of morality on other states will lead to situations that breed groups like Al-Qaeda. Giuliani's gang of advisors had to of told him some of this stuff. But, this is secondary.

The gem of this essay is right here (with my own emphasis):

Another step in rebuilding a strong diplomacy will be to make changes in the State Department and the Foreign Service. The time has come to refine the diplomats' mission down to their core purpose: presenting U.S. policy to the rest of the world. Reforming the State Department is a matter not of changing its organizational chart -- although simplification is needed -- but of changing the way we practice diplomacy and the way we measure results. Our ambassadors must clearly understand and clearly advocate for U.S. policies and be judged on the results. Too many people denounce our country or our policies simply because they are confident that they will not hear any serious refutation from our representatives. The American ideals of freedom and democracy deserve stronger advocacy. And the era of cost-free anti-Americanism must end.

This statement made me laugh out loud. I literally don't know what he is talking about. Has he been looking at the current butchery that the Bush administration has done with regards to diplomacy? Additionally, has Rudy even interacted with a diplomat. His statement says that diplomats don't know how to do their jobs of speaking the American interest with foreign parties. This statement really leaves me to wonder how he even thinks he is qualified to run for the presidency. Awful, just bloody awful this lot.

You can read it for yourself. You have to read it for yourself. I've never seen such a poorly structured, unsubstantiated policy paper before in my life. After you finishing reading the document or don't want to and just want the gist, I point you to Slate and Outside The Beltway.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

LNS: Thank You, Alli

During the middle of the day, I wake up from my midday nap and find a message from Alli, a web person like myself along with being a legitimate member of society, linking me to this video.

All her. I take no credit for this video, but I will say that it completely and utterly blew my mind with its awesomeness.

It's Always Sunny...

I had to of talked about this at some point in time, but, if not, here it goes. The best sitcom on television right now is It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. Following in the mold of Seinfeld, Sunny started with four narcissists, which evolved to five after Danny DeVito came on board in Season Two. The situations are just as ridiculous, if not more so. It's also got a bit of Arrested Development going on in there as well as three of the characters are theoretically family (this fact was fleshed out a bit during a Second Season episode).

Anyway, the third season is starting soon. If you haven't watched it before, go to and watch a full preview episode from the upcoming season. I watched it, and it was definitely archetypal Sunny, which means that it was completely hilarious and cracked out. It also involved a favorite from earlier seasons, and it's not the McPoyle twins although those guys are pretty sweet.

A Reality Check


BAGHDAD (AFP) - The death toll from four suicide truck bomb attacks in northern Iraq has risen to 400, a top official said Thursday, making it by far the deadliest attack since the fall of Saddam Hussein four years ago.

Incompetence is Dangerous

Signed back in 2005, The Real ID Act will institute a national identification policy like in some other countries. Instead of our state identifications, we will go to locations within our states or principalities (I'm still fighting for you, D.C.) and get these national cards. Anyway, by May 2008, assuming there are no injunctions or no one realizes how fucking dumb this is, if you do not have the new identification card, you will not be able to do anything on a domestic level. This includes going on domestic flights and entering national parks. The Department of Homeland Security claims that this is an important piece of legislation, one that will protect America from the threat offered by terrorism.

Now, this bill is ridiculous for a few different reasons. Firstly, this whole system is another layer of bureaucracy to the government. As I understand it, I would still have to be licensed in my own home state. So, adding another ID card to the one that is already accepted as a legal form of identification is pretty much pointless as I will still have to adhere to my own state laws.

Additionally, this new system that the government wants is not going to be funded by the government. In fact, it will be funded by the state taxpayers who will only have their privacy invaded by the approach of the government on this issue. This program is meant to cost 23 Billion; the government has only funded 40 Million. As you can well figure if you live in a state, your state cannot afford this program. They will have to build new systems and hire new workers at a great cost to them, a cost that will transfer to you, the taxpaying American citizen. And, if there is one thing that people hate more than terrorists, it's new taxes.

If this weren't all enough, it will not even be adhered to by all the states. Idaho, Maine, Montana, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Washington are all refusing to sign on to the system. Another six have stated opposition to the bill. Another 15 are considering legislation against the Act as well. As your basic math skills can prove, that's 56% of the country (28/50) who are in disagreement with this act. Along with national disapproval, I'm going to note my own personal disapproval here. Mine stems from the fact that this system is redundant. If you want people to prove they are American citizens, make them get a passport. Also, getting an ID in a state isn't easy. As someone who did it very recently, you need a lot of paperwork and your paperwork has to be consistent. It's not as easy as the government would make you believe.

Actually, all of these logistical things are really only secondary to my main complaint with this bill, which comes in the justification from Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff. In an article from CNN, Chertoff justifies the new system as such:

"For terrorists, travel documents are like weapons," Chertoff said. "We do have a right and an obligation to see that those licenses reflect the identity of the person who's presenting it."

Chertoff said the Real ID program is essential to national security because there are presently 8,000 types of identification accepted to enter the United States.

"It is simply unreasonable to expect our border inspectors to be able to detect forgeries on documents that range from baptismal certificates from small towns in Texas to cards that purport to reflect citizenship privileges in a province somewhere in Canada," he said.

I hope that you have noticed the glaring gap in logic here. For those of you who may have missed it, giving Americans new identification doesn't seal the border off from the threat of terrorism. In fact, it does nothing at all except inconvenience Americans. Foreign travelers can still enter the country under little scrutiny. I'm not sure how giving the country "Real ID" will actually make it safer. But, then again, this is a guy who told America to watch out for a terrorist attack because he felt it in his gut. Clearly, Chertoff is a man that can be trusted to tell it to us raw and uncut. Unfortunately, Chertoff, frequently, fails to speak with his head.

Information Stream: Stop Making Shitty Records

The title will come to make sense in due time, but let's start on this one first.

  • In an eerie resemblance to an article from FrontPage Magazine about my alma mater, a teacher in Uganda is in huge trouble for getting involved in a nude dancing orgy with students. There was no sex, but I'm sure there were a lot of flying bits.
  • As you well know if you are a resident of D.C. or a frequent reader of this blog, the city is rife with infrastructure and social problems. But, these are usually problems that cannot be visually sorted out. They require planning of sorts. Today, a story appears about the firing of 3 MPD officers for strip-searching a criminal and putting them into the male processing system. The reason they are getting fired is because the criminal is a female. I have no idea how they failed to notice, after a strip search no less, that this is a woman they are dealing with here. Like, I'm seriously bewildered.
  • I'm not sure if this story is sweet or sad. I'll let you decide. This piece is about a man in Kansas City who kissed his wife goodbye and then threw her off a balcony four stories high. The man says he did it because he could no longer pay for her medical costs. If this is not another case for universal insurance, I'm not sure what does.
  • Iraq has no social infrastructure. Between all of the war and indecision, this would be next to impossible. So, Iraqi women have taken the quest for survival into their own hands by working in the world's oldest profession. I can only hope this doesn't become a trend.
  • I, Ace, today call Hugo Chavez a flip-flopper. How can he say that he doesn't want to rule the country forever but still push for endless terms? That's a flip-flop if I ever saw one.
  • Yo, Peru got its shit FUCKED UP! I hope there are no more deaths than there already have been.
  • And, this last item goes into a perpetual beef of mine with these celebutards. They think that they get a little press on and in US Weekly and can magically sing. All of them release records that are messes of samples, synths, lazers, and club sounds that are about 5 years old. Heidi Montag, i.e., the bitch from The Hills (no, seriously, that's her character's description), decided to release a shitty club track with her boyfriend who can't rap. To its credit, it's about the third worst pop song ever after Jessica Simpson's version of "You Spin Me Round Like a Record" and Paris Hilton's "Stars are Blind." People need to stop telling them that they have talent because they don' all.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

One Post

There's not a lot going on today, so I'm going to take that as a sign and sort of sign out for the day. Before I went left, I wanted to post this link to the GREATEST LAWSUIT OF ALL TIME. Seriously, this one is a gem. Peace.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Information Stream: Downgraded from Information Blast

It's the summer. The stories are a bit thinner, so I can spend more time with them like one would when floating aimlessly down the stream. Anyway, we proceed.

  • Favorite target of The Daily Show Karl Rove retired yesterday from his position as Chief White House political strategist. As can be expected from those dirty hippies over at The Daily Show, there was a buzz of excitement at this prospect. This excitement was hilariously played on by John Oliver in a loving send-up of the classic Disney story Mary Poppins. Raw Story has posted the video.
  • In one of the less surprising pieces of news that I've read in a few years, corporations are taking advantage of the fact that anyone can edit pieces on Wikipedia, the public's encyclopedia. As can also be predicted, many corporations are re-writing their entries in a more company-friendly, personable tone. Wired has written about an action that has been taken against this policy: posting the fact that it actually happens. CalTech grad student Virgil Griffith has tracked down all of the IPs who have made changes on Wikipedia and posted them into a searchable database. So, if some entry seems to biased, you can check to see who has been working on it.
  • Trey Ellis, blogger at The Huffington Post, suggests that because Barack Obama is Black, all Black people will vote for him. I'd like to go on the record and say that I'm Black and not voting for Barack Obama. Unless he stops talking in dialetics and shapeless, optimistic language, he doesn't stand much of a chance of getting my vote. I would vote for him in 2012, but I refuse to vote for him now. He also talks about a Black person in power raising the spirits of Black America. I only have two words against that theory: Clarence Thomas. Done.
That's how slow of a news day it is. There's just nothing to be had discussion-wise. The only other news that has come out is that John from Cincinnati, the frustratingly genius television show that only debuted this summer on HBO, has been canceled.

Look at It!

This is quite the sad piece of irony from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer via

Trapped in the Closet...Again

R. Kelly's seminal study in absurdity Trapped in the Closet has made its return. If you have been keeping up with the past 12 chapters or have only just become familiar with the winding multi-character soap opera voiced solely by R. Kelly and want to see what all of the fuss is about, there have been ten new chapters added to the amusement of everyone, myself included. We can all thank IFC for keeping such a strangely engrossing yet entirely worthless program continuing. A new chapter will be posted everyday at the IFC website.

I just watched the last two chapters, and they were probably the most ridiculous things that I've seen in a very long time. Fights with exes, fighting between an elderly married couple, and a guy who looks like a low budget LL Cool J. This is not to forget the sketchy mouth who was giving out information and the ridiculous dialogue from the movie itself. Honestly, there's no use in me quoting it, but I will say that R. Kelly sings about a fish titty. Yes, Robert Kelly: master of class. I can see why he thought peeing on underage girls was appropriate.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Grizzly Bear

I don't know if I've posted anything from them, but, if I have, I'm doing it again. This is a recorded performance by the Warp folk/electronic project Grizzly Bear. This is a video for Shift.

Just zone out into it. Don't try to understand it. It's more effective that way.

The Mystery of Mystery

Last night, I watched The Pick-Up Artist. For those of you who are unaware, The Pick-up Artist revolves around a group of eight men. These men want to be lotharios (read: players, macks), but lack the requisite skill to do so. This lack of skill was shown in absolutely brutal, and stereotypically VH1, fashion through a montage of the eight men going into the bar and failing tragically in picking up women. The eight men will be trained by a series of three men who are considered master pick-up artists. Their names are Mystery, Matador, and J-Dog. They exude a complete confidence upon first appearances. This fact is fine because this is exactly what the eight men lack. The neophytes are unsteady and fail to realize that women are people just like men. Talking to them about something that interests them is usually a good start. Also, you having half a mind also helps in attracting women. Bringing up inappropriate discussions such as "how did you do in [Hurricane] Katrina" is also not an appropriate pick-up topic.

Unfortunately, Mystery, Matador, and J-Dog didn't really inspire me to want to go out to the club and pick up chicks in my iciest pair of busted chucks and neatly pressed pair of cut-off Dickies. These three guys were definitely good, but they were sleazy. They weren't trying to find someone they would see again; they were finding someone they would kick out in the morning. This is cool and all, but the bars are not really my scene. Watching them do it was really kind of gross, but I sort of expected that. Even though these guys were chauvinist and dressed poorly, I have to say that it was really impressive to watch these guys go out and get girls to do everything for them. I mean, one of the guys had black hair paint, and I think that two of them had soul patches. Clearly, guys who would have women falling all over them.

The sad part is that I would contemplate watching this show all the way through. I, most likely, won't, but I would be one of those cats who would watch a marathon of the show if the timing was right (read: there isn't a marathon on Bravo, or I have something much better to do). It was entertaining, but it was also sad to watch the young men crash and burn. Actually, unless you talk to me about it, this is probably the last time I will admit to actually watching this show.

Stop NASA! Aliens are Laughing at Us!

Today, news has come out about the current difficulties faced by the space shuttle Endeavor. Currently, Endeavor is suffering from damage to its heat-tiled underbelly. The heat tiles are important because they deflect the heat of the exit and re-entry of Earth's atmosphere. About 1.125 inches thick, this is not the first time that the space organization has had problems with damaging pieces of foam. These pieces of foam are the reason that the Columbia disaster occurred. Clearly, this isn't a new problem, but it continues on.

Making this even better, NASA doesn't really know what to do. It has backup kits to help solve the problem, but those kits are unproven to actually stop heat from destroying the ship. Even past astronauts express hesitancy towards using the kits. Clearly, these are kits that people should trust their lives to. Hopefully, everything will work out, and the astronauts make it home safely. Their work has had massive influence in the science world, and that makes the program worthwhile. But, the constant failures and seeming ineptitude of NASA speak to something larger.

While the space program has given us tons of relevant information of science and physics, NASA has to be a joke in space. Other galaxies are looking at us, and just laughing at these huge buckets we are sending up, these machines with little speed and less durability. It almost makes me sad to be a part of this planet just for its sheer ineptitude.

Information Blast: Summer Style

As dictated by the intense heat and frustration with day to day activities, most people have decided to separate themselves from the grind of reporting real news or even locating themselves in a place where they could even receive news. With that in mind, the material is lacking. I have to start generating some of my own material, as I clearly can't rely on the media to give me accurate information or opinion fodder. Let's start, shall we? (Yes, let's)

And, that's summer style information blasting.

A Swift Boat to Decency: The End of the Rove Era

As is well known by now, Karl Rove, top political adviser to El Presidente, has handed in his resignation, effective at the end of the month. Everyone, including myself, is shocked by this latest occurrence. We will have to wait for the news to sort itself out before we can get a clear rationale for why Rove resigned. I'll come back to this tonight after I can get some legit political commentary from a real politics channel, not MSNBC. Eat it, Chris Matthews!

Gay Debates

I give up on trying to report on the Logo/HRC debate primarily because it would require me to watch another debate. This two-year election cycle is nearing me towards crack addiction. I am just so fed up with this constant election cycle. What happened to the days when the top challengers just start announcing their candidacy now? Is that notion to quaint for many? I don't know, but I'm frustrated by this whole situation and all of the aimless pandering. Whatever though, this cycle will continue on. But, I don't have to respect that. And, no, my bias isn't because I hate gay people. I, in fact, like gay people a lot. But, this debate is pretty much like every other debate. The bottom tier candidates are usually the best ones, giving the audience answers they want to hear. These candidates believe what they say, but the fact is that the media won't give theses candidates press.

Instead, we all have to deal with the analysis of the candidates that the media wants us to follow. These "front-runners" sit in the center and have to surf through webs of purposed obtuseness to explain why they are pro-equal rights without giving gays the title of marriage. I think that this aspect of our political campaign system that is so highly flawed. Candidates are unwilling to take a provocative stance because they feel that it will alienate some part of the focus group. These candidates fail to realize that if they spoke their mind, they would be more popular because people might disagree but will recognize their authenticity and candor. But, this all clearly doesn't matter as I am just a lowly blogger on the vast, vast Interweb.

Red Skies

There was a lot of news. In fact, Merv Griffin, the inventor of Jeopardy! aka the best game show ever, has passed at the age of 82 from prostate cancer. Abstract artist Elizabeth Murray has also passed. She was 66. Death aside, I'm not going to post because I forgot what I was going to post. I think that it was a rant about how the bathroom is the best place to get work done. But, as you can sense, it wouldn't have been worth my time to make the rant.

Anyway, I'm going to post a video that I continually see on the VH1 Classic broadcasts of 120 Minutes, the seminal underground show from the days in which MTV actually played non-payola music. This is a video for Red Skies by The Fixx. I'd like you to note the bassist.

I'm back in the morning. Also, realizing that I draft my fantasy football team in a much geekier way than people who do it in person, I'm canceling that rant.