30 May

Every nerds dream!

Ok, you got me.  It's my dream.  What can I say, I spent a lot of time alone as a child.

Stop laughing at me. 

30 May

The GOP Resume Builder

Get a campaign job --> Committ a crime --> Go to jail --> Get realeased --> Teach
29 May

In a word...




This is clearly a fake. Look at the angle of the shadow on the sign from the woman's hand. Now look at the same thing on the little girls hand. Nevertheless, I'm leaving it up because it's funny and the fact that it's plausible at all says enough!

UPDATE Part Deux:

Well, there seems to be a lot of controversy about whether this is a fake or not.  In fact, most people seem to think I'm way off about the shadows and that the angles actually do make sense.  What do you think?  Operators are standing by in the comments section. 

29 May

Progressive media from below

Jonathan Schwarz over at A Tiny Revolution (one of the most intelligent and fair-minded blogs in the known universe) pontificates on this rant from Media Matters :

At this point, you'd have to be blind to miss the pattern. Every prominent progressive leader who comes along is openly derided in the media as fake, dishonest, conniving, out-of-the-mainstream, and weak. We simply can't continue to chalk this up to shortcomings on the part of Democratic candidates or their staff and consultants. It's all too clear that this will happen regardless of who the candidate or leader is; regardless of who works for him or her. The smearing of Jack Murtha should prove that to anyone who still doubts it.

Meanwhile, any conservative who comes along is going to be praised for being strong and authentic and likable.

But disagrees with the very end:

...for years, the media has employed a double-standard in covering progressives and conservatives...it can't go on.

First of all, the corporate media has ALWAYS employed this double-standard, not simply "for years." And of course it can go on. What would stop it?

Of all the things that drive me crazy about my progressive compatriots, it's this belief that you can change the corporate media with accurate criticism of it. They believe at some point the people within the media will realize they're wrong, and their behavior will improve.

This is insane. The corporate media is the way it is because it exists to make as much money as possible.

I'm one of the first people to caution against the MSMs corporate loyalties. A publicly traded corporation, such as the MSM outlets, are not only driven to make as much money as possible, they are arguably LEGALLY OBLIGATED to do so! As far as I can tell, there is no evidence that this will change in the foreseeable future. Therefore, here are some things that can be done about it right now:

1)There has to be political pressure on the FCC to enforce traditional and existing checks and balances on market share thereby making media less prone to monopoly.

2)The MSM has to be shown that the profit motive lies in appealing to progressive voters. The way this happens is by changing the political dialogue in this country through the electoral process. When a solid majority votes Democrat in the Fall, the MSM will follow the money like good little puppies and start reporting fairly on progressives and progressive issues.

3)Progressives need to come up with a playbook that works to the benefit of corporate finance. This does NOT mean sleeping with the enemy. It does, however, involve demonstrating in solid empirical fashion how sustainable and ethical business practices work towards a stronger and more stable economy and therefore contribute greater net wealth to the long-term bottom line rather than rotting away the economiccore in exchange for short-term wealth (i.e. the Republican economic plan). These studies are already prominent among economists (even among the Christian right), they just need to be dumbed down and brought into the political spectrum.

4)Telling the MSM they got it wrong is like telling your parents they shouldn't ground you.  All told, your petilence amounts to just about zilch in their decision-making process.  Why?  Because you don't pay their salary, advertisers do.  If you have a problem with the MSM that they won't resolve, call their sponsors and complain to them!  These people are looking out for their bottom-line as well and if they feel threatened through their support, they are far more likely to do something about it. 

Of course, this is all assuming that progressives are able to gain in relative power. But if we continue to let people think that the hard-right is in charge, then that's exactly the kind of broadcasting we'll continue to get.

29 May

A good start...

From The Progressive:

I don’t know about you guys, but I am so sick and tired of these lying, thieving, holier-than-thou, rightwing, cruel, crude, rude, gauche, coarse, crass, cocky, corrupt, dishonest, debauched, degenerate, dissolute, swaggering, lawyer shooting, bullhorn shouting, infra-structure destroying, buck passing, hysterical, criminal, history defying, finger pointing, puppy stomping, roommate appointing, pretzel choking, collateral damaging, aspersion casting, wedding party bombing, clearcutting, torturing, jobs outsourcing, torture out-sourcing, election fixing, women’s rights eradicating, Medicare cutting, uncouth, spiteful, boorish, vengeful, jingoistic, homophobic, xenophobic, xylophonic, racist, sexist, ageist, fascist, cashist, audaciously stupid, brazenly selfish, lethally ignorant, journalist purchasing, genocide ignoring, corporation kissing, poverty inducing, crooked, coercive, autocratic, primitive, uppity, high-handed, domineering, arrogant, inhuman, inhumane, inbred, inept, insipid, incapable, incompetent, ineffectual, insolent, insincere, know-it-all, snotty, pompous, contemptuous, supercilious, gutless, spineless, shameless, avaricious, noxious, poisonous, imperious, merciless, graceless, tactless, brutish, brutal, Karl Roving, backward thinking, persistent vegetative state grandstanding, nuclear option threatening, evolution denying, irony deprived, consciously depraved, conceited, perverted, peremptory invading, thirty-five day vacation taking, bribe soliciting, hellish, smarty pants, loudmouth, bullying, swell headed, ethics eluding, domestic spying, medical marijuana busting, Halliburtoning, narcissistic, undiplomatic, blustering, malevolent, demonizing, Duke Cunninghamming, hectoring, dry drunk, Muslim baiting, hurricane disregarding, oil company hugging, judge packing, science disputing, faith based advocating, armament selling, nonsense spewing, education ravaging, whiny, insane, unscrupulous, lily livered, greedy (exponential factor fifteen), fraudulent, delusional, CIA outing, redistricting, anybody who disagrees with them slandering, fact twisting, ally alienating, betraying, chickenhawk, sell out, quisling, god and flag waving, scare mongering, Cindy Sheehan libeling, smirking, bastardly, voting machine tampering, sociopathic, cowardly, treasonous, Constitution shredding, oppressive, vulgar, antagonistic, trust funding, nontipping, tyrannizing, peace hating, water and air and ground and media polluting (which is pretty much all the polluting you can get), deadly, traitorous, con man, swindling, pernicious, lethal, illegal, haughty, venomous, virulent, mephitic, egotistic, bloodthirsty, yellowbelly, hypocritical, Oedipal, did I say evil, I’m not sure if I said evil, because I want to make sure I say evil . . . EVIL, cretinous, slime buckets in the Bush Administration that I could just spit. Impeachment? Hell no. Impalement. Upon the sharp and righteous sword of the people’s justice. Make it a curtain rod. Because it would hurt more.

You forgot ugly, lazy, and disrespectful, but kudos anyway.

28 May

Court victory for "Citizen Journalists"

I saw this post from AP the other day:

The government concluded its "Cyber Storm" wargame Friday, its biggest-ever exercise to test how it would respond to devastating attacks over the Internet from anti-globalization activists, underground hackers and bloggers.


I don’t know how much of this writer’s surprise was feigned for dramatic effect, but if it was genuine then he’s clearly been living in mud-brick hut for the last few years.

Anybody who went to college might remember the Society for Creative Anachronisms (SCA), those fun folk who dress up in medieval garb, occasionally do battle at the park, etc.? The group is actually quite organized and apparently each region of the country has their own rulers, courtesans, etc. whose “known world” consists of 19 kingdoms with 30,000+ paid members (there are countless others, paid membership is only required to hold office).

Anyhoo, I’ve come into contact with a few of these groups in my day, many of whom will cheerfully brag that the SCA is on some kind of spook CIA/FBI watch list since, being so organized, they pose a clear and present threat to the existing government. I have no idea if that is true or not, but if so, it pales in comparison to the amount of influence posed by modern-day netroots. With hundreds of thousands of daily visits to some of these sites (alas, not this one) a single post can ripple throughout most of the citizenry within hours.

With this amount of unchecked influence, my only surprise is that the powers that be are not trying more aggressively to shut it down. Not that they haven’t been trying. Well, this little court precedent ought to come in quite handy in that regard:

In what the EFF called a "major victory" for bloggers and citizen journalists, The Sixth Appellate Court of the Court of Appeal of the State of California rejected Apple Computer's attempt to force disclosure of sources by two blogs (AppleInsider and PowerPage.org) by ruling that bloggers and citizen journalists are entitled to the same legal protections as journalists working for corporate media entities. Specifically, the bloggers were entitled to protection under the California reporter's shield law.


We decline the implicit invitation to embroil ourselves in questions of what constitutes "legitimate journalis[m]." The shield law is intended to protect the gathering and dissemination of news, and that is what petitioners did here. We can think of no workable test or principle that would distinguish "legitimate" from "illegitimate" news. Any attempt by courts to draw such a distinction would imperil a fundamental purpose of the First Amendment, which is to identify the best, most important, and most valuable ideas not by any sociological or economic formula, rule of law, or process of government, but through the rough and tumble competition of the memetic marketplace.

"We are pleased that by ruling as it did, the California courts have discarded the obsolete notion that practicing journalism is somehow a function of 'sociological or economic formula'," said MBA President Robert Cox. "Bloggers who practice journalism are journalists. Period."

27 May

Ahh, memory lane

Fun with Google cache. I found this from an old Campus Progress contest I entered, “Name it like it’s 1984” from back in February. Here are a few of my favorites:

The Freedom Wall Initiative (Winner)
What it does: Closes all US borders, and erects forty foot high electric fences

The Safety in Mining Initiative
What it does: Establish a secure bunker facility and top secret staff for mining internet data received from google, yahoo, aol etc.

The Faith-Based Energy Initiative
What it does: Gives tax breaks to oil companies and prays for the best

It's like they had an inside look into Team Chimpy's Playbook!


Permalink here. 

27 May

Introducing THF Bloggerwear!

26 May

When Reality just isn't enough

From the Galloping Beaver :

In looking for the possible retraction by Amir Taheri, the author of the National Post story which clearly stated that Iranian religious minorities would be required to wear zonnars, or color-coded badges, I shouldn't have been surprized to discover that Taheri is part of an exclusive group of neo-cons responsible for past propaganda and mis-information campaigns.

Taheri's story has been debunked, yet in his press release of 22 May, he stands by his contention even though he has dubious or unattributable sources. Curiously, it is also an obvious attempt to mollify an editor for producing a story so widely off-the-mark as to embarrass the National Post. But the most interesting part of the release is not in the words but the organization from which it originates.

Amir Taheri is a member of Benador Associates, outwardly a New York based publicity firm which is, in fact, a neo-con think-tank, speakers bureau and a notorious ultra-right-wing propaganda organ with clear links to the Project for the New American Century.
26 May

Conservatives Party Hardy!

Remeber that guy in your freshman dorm who was a die-hard conservative?  You remember, the one who never got laid.  Well apparently he was too busy listening to all the glorious conservative rock music on the radio.  The fact that this list clearly betrays conservatives have zero sense of irony shouldn't surprise me.  The way they interpret the bible is every bit as literalist.