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Archive for July, 2007

Canadian Justice James J. Keaney found a 75-year-old man guilty of issuing death threats against a city official after the man posted a poem about burying her in a pothole around the neighborhood in which she refused to fix potholes. The man claimed it was satire.

Keaney (said) because Batista does not have a high level of education it’s unlikely he knows what satire is and therefore the poem could not have been written in jest.

(Via Sabotabby)

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Oh my god, they’re on to us. That’s right. The largest “pro-life” organization in the world, Human Life International, has stumbled upon us pro-choicers’ dirty little secret.

It was bad enough when people knew we were all just degenerate liberals, dreaded atheists, or — god forbid — baby-hating feminists. But now the president of Human Life International has gone and outed us all for what we really are: SATANIC CULT MEMBERS WORSHIPPING AT THE ALTER OF THE DEAD FETUS, obviously.

Rev. Thomas J. Euteneuer, president of Human Life International, the world’s largest pro-life organization, has stated that abortion is the same bloodthirsty and ritual sacrifice of babies to a demonic god that occurred throughout history and across cultures.

“And you thought abortion was just a surgical procedure, performed by doctors in a clinical setting, to end unwanted pregnancies,” scoffs Trailer Park Feminist.

Because Euteneuer has years of experience as an exorcist(and thus is obviously completely sane), he knows better:

Approaching abortion from a spiritual perspective, he explained, “The spiritual dimension of this grisly ‘business’ is its systematizing of ritual blood sacrifice to the god of child murder, Moloch.” He also noted that this “bloodthirsty” beast is well known not only through the Old Testament but in many different cultures throughout history as well. “This demon is not content with a single act of murder here and there,” he said. “His insatiable appetite for the death of innocents seeks public endorsement to justify his gruesome deeds, and he needs a systematic expression of it to increase his worship.”

“In short, the abortion industry is a perfect demonic system which offers a perverse form of worship to the devil.”

And then things in the article got scary for a moment:

Referring to July as the traditional month of the Precious Blood, he exhorted people to “cover every abortionist, abortion mill and client of the abortion industry with Christ’s Blood in order to conquer the blood sacrifice of the devil with the greatest force of good known to man.”

I mean, that kind of sounded like a call to violence, no? But then I remembered — duh! my 10 years of good Catholic schooling! — that Christ’s blood is really just wine. And, you know, I’m down with that. Bring on the wine dousing, please ….

Okay, but seriously, how very very creepy.

[Activist Mommy has more here.]

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Via Reason , a middle-school principle in Washington state who was convicted of felony rape charges but is still getting paid to serve as principal.

Wright, 36, continues to collect his $8,245-a-month salary, something he’s been doing since February, when he was first charged. So far, the district appears to have paid him at least $45,000 for time he wasn’t working. There are not many other jobs where commission of a felony can earn the perpetrator a sweet paid vacation.

But in Washington’s public schools – all public schools, not just Tacoma’s – even convictions for grave crimes do not permit administrators to simply fire the convicts. State law explicitly gives all educators the right to a potentially lengthy process of responses, hearings and appeals.

The law does specify crimes that, for good reason, are cause for immediate discharge. All of them involve the injury or sexual exploitation of children – promoting the prostitution of a minor, for example. Wright’s crime, however, involved the 2004 rape of a 19-year-old woman – slightly older than a minor. The jury found that, at a minimum, he helped a friend forcibly rape her. In this state, that’s apparently not grounds for automatic dismissal from a position of immense moral authority over schoolchildren.

The woman had been a student at a high school where Wright was working as assistant principle. Commenters at Reason bring up the fact that with the sex offender witch hunts that sometimes take place these days, a little para-judiciary due process by the school board can’t hurt. I don’t know. I know there are plenty of judicial mistakes made, but I figure if we consider the judicial process good enough grounds to put people in prison, and even sometimes take their lives, we should probably consider it good enough grounds to dismiss them from state employment.

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It seems DC-dating-scene blogger Roosh V has written an entire book telling men how to get laid, titled “Bang: the average man’s modern guide to getting laid.”

In my humble opinion, anyone who needs an entire book telling them how to get laid is actually never going to get laid. Ever. Anyone who even has the first inclination to pick up this book (for anything other than mocking purposes) WILL NEVER ACTUALLY HAVE SEX.

Please — can we stop perpetuating the myth that there is some secret set of rules, some intricate game, or whatever, that men need to use to trick women into having sex with them? That’s really needlessly complicated and deviant, kids. You want to know how to get laid?

1. Talk to people of the opposite sex (be they friends, co-workers, people you meet in a bar, whatever), AND
2. Don’t be a complete dickhead who’s only thinking about how to trick them into sleeping with you while doing it.

The sex will follow. Really. Do you think that advice seems too simplistic? Yeah, well, it’s a hell of a lot better than this:

“The next common question girls ask is, “How old are you?” Your answer to this question will be, “Guess!” Constantly giving straight answers sucks energy out of male-female interactions. Again, be the mysterious and shady character that she always has to work to get stuff out of.

You will run into girls who respond to “Guess” with something like “I don’t want to play games and guess.” This translates to, “I want you to answer me in the way that I desire.” Not only do these types of girls want their needs served first, but in a way that they dictate.”

Ahh, yes. Stay away from girls who would rather have a conversation with you in a bar rather than act like one of those amusement-park-guess-your-name-age-and-weight-game hosts. Sage.

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So I know I said earlier that I was sure the Republicans-love-Simpsons-because-it-espouses-family-values bit would be the stupidest thing I read all day, but …

Along comes Cary Tennis, Salon advice columnist extraordinaire and perennial favorite of people who like to point out dumb things in the media …

In today’s column, someone wrote to Tennis about feeling guilty because they had a racist little jingle from their childhood stuck in their grown-up enlightened now-apparently-non-racist head, and didn’t know what to do about it. If you ask me, that’s a pretty dumb problem to begin with (dumb is my oh-so-eloquent word of the day, apparently), or at least a dumb problem to write in to an advice columnist about. But so be it. The letter writer is afraid he’s going to blurt it out at some inappropriate time, which I think is something that enters everyone’s head at some point. As a little kid in Catholic school, I remember thinking, “What if I just ran up on the alter during the priest’s homily and started doing cartwheels?” That’s a pretty lame example, I know, but you get the gist. Everyone has that what-if-I-do-something-completely-inappropriate-just-because-it-pops-in-my-head anxiety from time to time.

So what is Tennis’ advice?

It doesn’t matter anyway because there are homeless people and poor people and do you think it would matter if a man working at a soup kitchen had a racist ditty in his head? Now get out there and end world hunger, and then talk to me about racism.

Honestly, that’s the gist of what he said. That’s not even me taking a little snark liberty with it. See for yourself:

I wish that all we white Americans, instead of skulking around in shame because some ditty from childhood comes unbidden into our heads, could come out and say yes, many of us as children were raised in a racist way and yes, there is racism in white society.
But this is my biggest, fondest wish: I wish we could feed and house everybody. I wish we who are lucky enough to be born and raised in the richest democracy in history could agree on a simple premise: Nobody should have to live on the streets. Not here. Not in this luxury hotel of a country. Not in this gleaming ice rink awash with money.

So you’ve got a stupid song playing in your head. What did you see on your way to work this morning? Did you see any poor people living in the streets? Did you see any people begging for food? Did you see anyone living with open sores because they have no money for medical care? What did you do about that? Did you stop to sing them a song? Did you stop to inquire about their plight?

What could it possibly take to care for all these poor people of all races “ill-housed, ill-clad, ill-nourished”? A billion dollars? Ten billion dollars? A hundred billion dollars? What could it take to build a big building in the center of town and give everybody a bed who needs a place to sleep? What could it take to give everybody a good meal who is hungry? Keep it open 24 hours a day. Staff it with ministers, cooks and bouncers. Have drug and alcohol recovery meetings there. Put all the soup kitchens there. Put all the cots there. Put the mayor’s office there. Put all the deacons and elders and mullahs and bishops and rabbis there. Put all the columnists and communists and free-marketeers and Christian fundamentalists there. Put everybody there who pretends to give a shit. Put me there. Put us all there. Give us showers and hot soup. Keep us there until we make it work. Do the same thing in every city and town. How hard could that be?

The first paragraph here actually makes some sense and seems like it’s going to lead into a non-insane answer, but … sadly, no. And it just gets weirder and weirder from there. It’s not that what he ends up saying is absolutely without merit, it’s just that it has absolutely NOTHING to do with the question at hand, really. It’s like he just had this tirade planned, and thought, okay, next time someone writes in anything even loosely related to, oh, society or life in general, I’m gonna answer with this nonsensical screed. It gets so bad at the end, if it were on videotape it would probably be the equivalent of Ann Althouse’s don’t-ask-me-about-boobs tirade or Leslee Unruh i-love-babies flip-out. Or, who knows, maybe this is just par for the Cary Tennis weirdness course.

A few choice quotes to end with:

Our publishing industry has been hijacked by soap companies and toy makers.

I’m just standing here watching the empire crumble.

Maybe this tune is a little ray of hope. Maybe it’s a wake-up call from the front desk of the Dignity Hotel.

Oh, if only there was such a hotel, and it’s next wake-up call would go directly to Cary Tennis. I’m not sure what it would say, but something along the lines of “stop being such a fucking crazy-ass weirdo, you crazy-ass weirdo,” would be a good start.

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So AP reports

Monitoring blogs is the newest tactic in Belmar’s long-running effort to keep its notoriously rowdy group rentals under control in one of the Jersey shore’s last true party towns.

The article covers the beach town’s metamophisis from land of summer-rental-party-houses to land of fancy shmany condiminums, and how this has led to a police crackdown on noise violations and rowdy parties and the like. But I don’t understand this whole “monitoring blogs” business. The article is called “N.J. town monitors blogs to fight rowdy summer visitors,” and notes this little anecdote:

A blogger using the name “Belmar Benny” sat down at his computer and tapped out his prediction of what the summer of 2007 would be like at the group rental he shares with his buddies by recalling last year. “Partying ’till daylight, banging pots and pans together, tossing the kitchen table on the roof, hanging the furniture upside down from the ceiling, waking up the neighborhood with a contraption called The Horn On A Board, smashing glassware over each other’s heads,” he wrote.

But local officials were reading his blog as well, promising to counter “Horn On A Board” with their own favorite: “Cop On Your Porch.”

But it leaves it at that, which I find strange. Because I mean, really, what could police do with this information they’ve found on blogs? Some kid with a psuedonym talks about beer bongs and flip cup and … what? Even if they’re blogging under their real name, what are the police going to do? It’s not as if the police can prevent them from renting a beach house in the town. They could, maybe, check and see if that blogger is renting somewhere and then stake out the house or something, but wouldn’t that 1) be such a complete waste of police time and resources, and 2) possibly amount to harrassment?

That the article makes no mention of what is actually being done with this information police are gathering from “monitoring blogs” makes me suspect it’s all just kind of a scare tactic, and a very silly one at that. I actually hope it is a scare tactic, rather than the alternative, which is that policemen are actually sitting there getting paid to google or Technorati “Belmar, partying ’til daylight,” “Belmar, beer pong,” “Belmar, hanging furniture upside down from ceiling.”

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I suppose it’s kind of a cop-out to pick the “dumbest thing I’ve read all day” from the first news article I’ve read this morning, but I just really can’t imagine reading anything more silly today than the quotes in this:

In a 2002 National Review Online op-ed titled “Homer, Conservative Hero,” Deroy Murdock wrote, “Conservatives and libertarians should appreciate ‘The Simpsons’ for regularly showcasing much that they hold dear.”

Namely, the nuclear family, church on Sundays, stay-at-home mothering, community, the individual and maybe even big hair with pearls.

“They’ve had their problems, but they always come back together as a family.

No matter how many dumb things Homer does, Marge always sticks with him,” explained Joe Carter, director of Web communications at the Family Research Council, a conservative Washington-based policy group that “champions marriage and family as the foundation of civilization, the seedbed of virtue and the wellspring of society.”

FreeRepublic.com, an online community for conservatives, held a discussion in 2003 about whether “The Simpsons” were red or blue. There were more than 200 posts about all the conservative crumbs tossed out in any given episode, like when Maggie attends the “Ayn Rand School for Tots.” They also wondered whether Springfield’s corrupt, womanizing mayor, “Diamond Joe” Quimby, was Ted or John F. Kennedy — either way, he’s a Democrat.

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