Off to Port

So Kuwait is overloaded with Soldiers. So many that the handful of wireless routers on this camp are overloaded and webpages load at paint drying speed. Even logging on FtB takes a good twenty minutes.

The slow internet has me tearing my hair out (if I had hair long enough to tear out), so I am going to take a break for the next week until I head down south to the port. From what I hear there will be some extra bandwidth there and not so many thousands of people to hog it all. I am a digital person and without my intertubes I am withering.

Till then, I am gonna catch up on all the shows I missed over the last few months and enjoy sleeping in conditions that the Department of Corrections considers cruel and unusual punishment. Damn, I hate that I love my job!

The Art of War

Website collects pictures, port-a-john scrawls, and art from a decade of war.

Every war has its art. Farewells to friends, celebrations of victory, escapes from reality, and bitching about the boss are common subjects. Art in war is a coping mechanism, a way to express feelings that are difficult to talk about in the American warrior caste. Graffiti of War, is a project to preserve some of my generations conflict art, works by American Soldiers and civilians, Coalition partners, and the citizens and Soldiers of Iraq and Afghanistan. [Read more…]

WoW’s 99% Feels the Hurt Too

A study of the economy of the world’s most popular MMO, World of Warcraft, reveals income inequality in the virtual world.

I used to play wow. A lot. When college ended and it was time to move on to “real life”, I managed to sell my virtual character for real money, to the tune of $2,500. Which I promptly blew on buying even more electronic entertainment gadgets, turned out that “real life” still had some room for a bit of Xbox live.

Any serious WoW player will tell you that there is money in that game, viruses have been distributed over the web to steal accounts, there are dozens of MMO specific auction websites, and there are the Asian gold farmers. All these outside influences destabilize the virtual economy of the game, so much so that a recent study concluded that if Azeroth was a real country it would have the second worst economy on Earth in respect to income inequality. The 99% of elves, orks, gnomes, and so on are somehow getting more screwed than the 99% of real people, but at least Azeroth has better health care. [Read more…]

Showdown at Zuccotti Park

My Twitter feed is ablaze.

As I write this, NYPD are in the act of evicting the OWS protestors from Zuccotti Park. And the cops must feel justified in the rightness of their actions because they are doing it at 2 am under the cover of darkness, barring any reporters from getting near the scene, and telling nearby residents that they are unable to leave their homes until the repression is complete. [Read more…]

Victory Through Superior Billboards

American Atheists reveal their holiday billboard, Christian eyes forced to something they don’t like, hilarity ensues.

Even before American Atheists’ latest billboard is hung in New Jersey on December 11th, extensively to poke a little fun at god and perhaps lure a few more pho-Christians over to our side of the fence; some Christians are not pleased. The billboard (picture below the fold) displays pictures of Jesus, Poseidon, a Satan-like fellow, and Santa Clause and will implore persons commuting through the Lincoln tunnel to spot which of the above figures are myths. Clearly, as some Christian figures have already pointed out, this goes too far. God will smite the American Atheists, ok maybe not. But the next natural disaster that befalls an unrelated group of people will surely be a manifestation of god’s wraith against the nonbelievers and of course, the gays. [Read more…]

Meet Virginia

I am now out of Iraq! For the next few weeks I will be at lovely Camp Virginia as the pullout from Iraq continues at a breakneck pace. Best of all, this place has a Starbucks, so I know America is just a step away. Once I figure out my work schedule here and catch up on some reading over the intertubes, posts will resume.

Islamaphobia and Islamists

The devil is in the details. One last post before getting out of dodge.

I have written several articles about Islamaphobia in American, the Arab Spring, and Islam inside the Middle East. Sometimes earing the ire of the Far-Right for my views. But today I took some time to watch fellow FtB blogger Maryam Namazie give a speech in Copenhagen (The video can be found on her post entitled “Simplicity is killing us”).

She spoke about how some in the left have been hesitant to criticize Islam due to a perception that any such criticism is seen as racist, to which I have asserted that the far right’s claims of “Creeping Sharia” in America are racist. This deserves some explanation from myself. [Read more…]

SSSD is in Effect

Moving around again.

 

Adios Kirkuk, hello redacted destination. I will be moving to my next base over the next few days and will be disconnected from the intertubes. I have no idea what  internet options are available at the next stop or how long I will be there. Last time I asked my XO when I would go home, the answer was “When I tell you when you can,” so I have a sneaking suspicion that I will be around until all of the thousands of tons of army equipment are out of theater. So it might be a while. Worst case, I will be sending my updates and articles to someone who can post them here for me. [Read more…]