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Saturday, November 27, 2010

Surroudned by Idiots, Outnumbered by Boobs...

Sarah Palin is a blithering idiot, but I agree with her that Obama has also made a string of gaffes that everyone but FOX news ignores. Can't we just pass a law banning idiots from politics, or would there be nobody left?

TTFN
-Tony

The Slope is a Might Slippery...

Please try and answer the following quiz:

Today, Homeland Security seized a group of dot-coms they suspected of:
a) supporting terrorism
b) drug trafficking
c) child pornography
d) copyright violation.

And of course, the correct answer is…

d.

Read that again.

Homeland Security- the part of our government that is funded to fight terrorism, is now seizing web sites - not serving them notice- seizing them - based on the accusation of copyright violation.


Oh yes, and for selling knock-off handbags.

Look, everyone feels differently about copyright violation on the internet, but this action is a dangerous foot in the door. If this happened during W’s presidency, everyone would be screaming “Nazis!” at the top of their lungs. No, I don’t care about protecting the rights of copyright violators. What I do care about is the frightening precedent this is setting. What sort of sites will Homeland Security be shutting down five years from now? Ten years from now? With what cause?

There are young adults who have never lived in a world without the internet. They don’t realize that before they were born, only the government and the major broadcasters controlled all the communication and information across the world. When I was in high school it was inconceivable that someone could write an editorial or make a video or draw a picture in his living room, and anyone in the world who wanted to could read or watch or see it immediately - or, that you could read or see or hear any information that someone across the globe made available. That’s a freedom that is new and amazing and wonderful. The ability to be seen, to have your voice heard, or to hear the voices of others anywhere instantly is a new right that should be protected at all costs, and this, my friends is the proverbial slippery slope your mother warned you about. Totalitarian changes don't happen overnight, they happen inch by inch.

OK, you say, but I care about copyright. I don’t want my own work stolen. I agree – I don’t either. People’s work shouldn’t be stolen or used without permission. That’s why we have civil courts, so people can be sued for just compensation. If the government must get involved, then suspected site owners could be subpoenaed, and, if they are found guilty in a court of law after due process has been served, then have their sites taken away. But my tax dollars should not be going to make Homeland Security into the personal police force of Viacom, Turner and Disney (and handbag designers.) That’s what really burns me. Not only is our government bending us over for its corporate masters, but it’s trying to hide it under the umbrella of Homeland Security. Please please please, President Obama, please make the connection between terrorism and copyright violation for me in your next speech. I’d love to hear it. I keep thinking of the Family Guy gag where Lois runs for mayor, and all she has to do is say “Nine Eleven!” over and over and over again to get away with whatever she wants. Uh oh, I just quoted a television episode. It’s been nice knowing you.

TTFN
-Tony

Friday, November 26, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

I'm at my parent's house. When we were kids we always went to my grandmother's house in Brooklyn for Thanksgiving. (And why do I automatically think of it as just her house instead of both my grandparents'? Probably because my grandfather was so relaxed while my grandmother was loud and fiery.) Turkey has been eaten, I've had the drumstick as always. I've never liked white meat, it's too dry and bland. My mother put on Snow White for Mandy but she's not interested, so I'm sitting on the couch eating twisted wheat pretzels keeping mom company. We watched it a few months ago. Once again I'm amazed at what a beautiful labor of love it is, (though I'm sure Disney ran a sweatshop that would have put Kathy Lee Gifford's to shame,) while being bored to tears by the story itself. Oh well, my mother sat through years of Monty Python and Doctor Who just because she wanted to enjoy my company, and her company is priceless. Fifteen minutes of dancing dwarfs is a very small price to pay for it.

I've played there games of pinochle with my father and lost two of them. For some reason I can't fathom BBC America shows nothing but Start Trek TNG every time I'm here. I think their excuse is that Patrick Stewart is British. Most of the episodes they're showing today are so boring I want to cry. Give me Kirk and Spock any day, although anything's better than Voyager. Yes, I suffer from Arrogant Nerd Syndrome.

I'm going to visit my friends Troy and Chris at their parents' house. The Witloxes are good people and have always been friends to me. For them and all the other dear friends in my life I am very thankful.

TTFN
-Tony

Saturday, November 20, 2010

IF: Sneaky


Illustration Friday: Sneaky

It's been a while I know, but I missed contributing to Illustration Friday. Click above for higher resolution.

TTFN
-Tony

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

What do we want? APATHY! When do we want it? MAYBE SOMEDAY!

OK, I'm going to tell everyone my shameful secret. I'm sure some of you share my affliction, but you're too ashamed to admit it. I'm here to tell you you're not alone. You don't have to be ashamed anymore.

I'm an apathetic voter.

The American two-party system has become a ridiculous us vs. them shell game that keeps anything from getting done on a national or even state scale, (I think local politics DO make a difference, actually- things are controlled best at their lowest levels- I'm not talking about that) and I don't see how I'm wrong by refusing to play the game anymore.

I'm sick of being given two package deals - both which are full of some good but mostly bad ideas, and told that I have to chose between one of them or I'm a perverted, bad, evil twisted four-legged smelly disgusting creature. Fuck that noise, I'm sick of it. People tell me that if I don't vote, then someday we'll have no choice. I hate to break it to you, but we don't really have a choice now. If I don't perpetuate and champion the illusion of choice, will that illusion vanish? Is that what everyone is really afraid of?

I'm sick of being told that because I'm a blue-collar worker I HAVE to vote for a party which has done nothing to help us in recent years, under the logic that the other party would probably make life even worse for us. I'm sick to my stomach of being used as a hard-hat wearing voter trophy by people who aren't actually helping me.

See, I don't agree with the current administration's failed economic policies and laughably transparent propaganda (Apparently the recession ended in June 2009 - may Obama be praised - this is just the slowest economic recovery period in U.S. History. Up your ass with broken glass, I just got laid off again. I can't survive on working 4 months a year.) But the thing is - as with the Democrats when Republicans were in power - the Republicans have NO PLAN OF THEIR OWN! They talk about taking the country back by teabagging each other but they don't say HOW. Yes, served in the military, yes, I have some conservative leanings. But the Republicans have become a party of morals instead of ideas, and you can't run a country without ideas, and just assuming that your morals should be everyone's morals. How can people look at Sarah Palin or Christine O'Donnel and say "Well, yes, they have no practical experience, or ideas, and every time they open their mouths they show off their ignorance and blithering idiocy but... they're against the same things I'm against, so I want them to run the country!"

People who want to teach creationism (or Intelligent Design) in a science class scare the living shit out of me. Seriously. Most of the shit I have is dead. It floats or sinks in the toilet based on what I've eaten. But when Christian-right politicians want to get a foot in the door and push us back toward the dark ages, it comes out of me alive and screaming and wriggling... oh God what the hell is wrong with people? I've asked this before - but if you think we're God's instruments and here to do God's work, then shouldn't you want to know how the world ACTUALLY works rather than how goat herders thousands of years ago assumed it worked? Hasn't God answered prayers of healing by helping humanity discover penicillin - WHICH WORKS BY FUTHERMUCKING EVOLUTION? Wouldn't your children better be able to do God's will if they knew the truth about his creation? WELL????

And Democrats aren't any better. You may all have your push-button issues, (LGBT rights, for example) and I may sympathize and agree with some of them. But you're just as bad. You all assume that because YOUR crowd agrees with some of the things you believe in or claim to have sympathy or understanding for you and yours that they should be running the country, and every bad choice and mismanagement should be forgiven because of that. I'm sorry, but it doesn't work that way. It's just all a way to keep an us vs. them mentality running in this country so nothing gets done.

So no, I'm NOT voting today. I honestly don't see the point. I could pretend that I am, that my vote would somehow make a difference, would keep the world safe for democracy, but it ain't going to happen. Not until people can vote directly on issues instead of electing officials who pick and choose for us. I know that's not how a Jeffersonian democracy works and I know it will never happen because our gargantuan government needs us to believe they know what's best for us to keep themselves in power, but I don't feel like casting a vote to decide which side's global corporate masters get to split up my tax dollars.

Here endeth the ranting, I'm off to play with my kids

TTFN
-Tony