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Jan 15 2014

Poor put-upon wingnut flings silly accusations

Last semester, I wrote about our vile, racist, ‘alternative’ campus newspaper, the North Star. I seem to have annoyed its editor, John Geiger, who slipped a complaining letter (pdf) under my door last night. In it, he comically accuses me of stealing their November print run (his evidence? The distribution locations smelled like chloroform and other sciency things.), and ploddingly goes through his calculations of how much it was worth, adding things like 20% interest and a 40% “charity tax”, to demand that I immediately pay him $4,017.

Ho hum. Right wing humor.

I suggest that he chalk it all up to the White Man’s Burden that afflicts him so, and just hit up the far right dink-tanks that subsidize these awful papers all across the country. Forward the letter to the Koch brothers, I’m sure they’d respond with sympathy and cash.

From me, though, he demands checks, cash, paypal, debit, credit, bitcoin, appreciating assets (such as real-estate or valuable time-pieces), and tangible assets (like gold and silver). I don’t see eye-rolls or mocking laughter on the list, so I guess he’s out of luck.

103 comments

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  1. 1
    Rey Fox

    Revenge of the Lunkhead

  2. 2
    chigau (違う)

    Slipped a letter under your door?
    How … quaint.

  3. 3
    Kaintukee Bob

    Pay him in fractional grandfather clocks.

    Or, better yet, sundials.

    Hey, he said timepieces.

  4. 4
    Irène Delse, on dry land among seabirds

    What, no demands for high-end cameras? Tsk.

  5. 5
    IslandBrewer

    I have to wonder if those on the right actually understand what humor is.

  6. 6
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    If the lunkhead is thinking his letter is funny, it isn’t. Like his idiotic piece, not humorous, not satiric, nothing but pathetic ramblings from a pointless mind.

  7. 7
    richardelguru

    “smelled like chloroform and other sciency things.”

    Have you been chloroforming your fish?
     
    …again…

  8. 8
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    So pay him with one copy of Timepieces . I’m sure Eric will appreciate the sales.

  9. 9
    mothra

    Slipping a letter under a door (not using e-mail or campus mail) is more like stalking as an attempt at intimidation. PZ might wish to contact campus security.

  10. 10
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    Ah, the white conservative male view of “diversity”. Cannot understand that in centuries past, his “black friend” who had the same qualifications would never have had a shot. And because John Geiger seems to think he still be chosen over “his black friend”, it shows why diversity has to be embraced and encouraged.

    Love how he has to the accusation of fascism and how he is being disallowed to say his bit. As shoddy as his “proof” about stolen papers and demands of payment. And about as funny.

    Such a brave hero.

  11. 11
    zenlike

    T’is beautifull how these bigots stamp their little feet.

    Also, 4000 bucks for 350 copies of a newsletter? This guy should really renegotiate his rates at his print shop, because he is getting swindled.

    Also, what is up with the reference to a stethoscope? This guy knows that not all ‘doctors’ (like PZ) are medical doctors, right? At least, he should know, he is a student at a freaking university.

    Also, a fee because he had to ‘restock’? That doesn’t make any economic sense: he already charges for the newspapers, the cost of reprinting should be calculated in the price of the newly printed edition and charged to the new customers.

  12. 12
    mikeg

    Seriously? Ugh.

    A few years back, my mother was cleaning out some storage space in her house. She had some boxes that I looked through that contained my ‘work’ when in primary school (4th grade). I remember rolling my eyes at how pathetic my attempts were to be witty. I can’t say my grasps at intelligence were any worse than Geiger’s. Except for the fact he is a grown- ass human being.

  13. 13
    Josh, Official SpokesGay

    I would be so pissed if someone slipped a poison letter under my door. Because I’d so want to be crouched there in the dark, waiting for a finger to peek out so I could shove a stake knife in it and keep the bastard pinned there. While I laughed.

  14. 14
    Lynna, OM

    Well, PZ, that’s quite the missive you received. What troubles me is that a guy that far off the rails is not predictable. I second the suggestion that you should notify campus security.

    Also, stop dousing your nonexistent stethoscope in chloroform.

  15. 15
    Jason

    Dear John,

    Fuck you.

    Love,
    Paul

    You’re welcome.

  16. 16
    tbp1


    I have to wonder if those on the right actually understand what humor is.

    I’ve often wondered about this. Conservative humor is almost an oxymoron, and most of it’s really pretty painful (Mallard Filmore? Please! And does anyone remember The Half Hour News Hour?). Post Evelyn Waugh I can only think of maybe two conservatives who actually manage to be funny. P J. O’Rourke is sort of funny, but only sporadically. Christopher Buckley is consistently pretty damn funny, but perhaps not as doctrinaire a conservative as his name would indicate—after all he publicly supported Obama and was banished from the National Review as a result. That’s pretty much it. I don’t think Dennis Miller was some sort of comic genus before he became a conservative, but I enjoyed his rants and his snark doing the fake news on SNL. Apparently he was occupied by a pod person the moment he switched political allegiances (was he one of the 9/11 converts?) and became instantly humorless.

  17. 17
    Becca Stareyes

    Tangible assets includes a lot more than gold and silver. I mean, it’s anything you can feel and sell. That could mean anything from precious metals to cattle.

    (If you had $4,000 worth of cattle or other large livestock you could spare lying around, I’d suggest giving them to this fellow, just to see what he’d do. Sadly, zebrafish probably wouldn’t leave the same impression. But if you had $4,000 worth of livestock that you were willing to spend for a prank, I suspect you wouldn’t need the grant money for the zebrafish.)

  18. 18
    robinjohnson

    I love the whiny bit about how his “black friend”, singular, would be considered “more diverse” than him.

  19. 19
    Jonquil of Mars

    @richardelguru “Have you been chloroforming your fish?”

    I keep telling people that is not the way to make lutefisk. They don’t listen.

  20. 20
    Avicenna

    Did no one pick up that his name is signed with “Right Wing Genius”?

  21. 21
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Ehm, libel and blackmail?
    I’d contact campus security, too

  22. 22
    Thumper: Who Presents Boxes Which Are Not Opened

    “For Liberty”? He signs off with “For Liberty”? What a sanctimonious little twerp. He also appears to think that everyone with a doctorate must have a stethoscope, and that chloroform is commonly used in developmental biology. So he’s an idiotic, sanctimonious little twerp.

    @Avicenna

    I assumed it was a reference to something PZ said in the original post.

  23. 23
    Bernard Bumner

    What a boring attempt at humour.

  24. 24
    Zeno

    To be fair, Avicenna, he did put it in quotes. I agree that he is a “genius.” But not a genius.

  25. 25
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    Did no one pick up that his name is signed with “Right Wing Genius”?

    I did. I had an image of Wile E Coyote: Super Genius.

  26. 26
    carlie

    The problem seems to be that they all think that satire is the best form of humor, and all try to do satire, but then can’t keep it going and end up just writing what they believe in the first place. And then they get belligerent when other people point out that you can’t just mix hyperbole and truly-held beliefs and expect anyone to see anything but word salad.

  27. 27
    Rey Fox

    I assumed it was a reference to something PZ said in the original post.

    It is.

    One incident with John Geiger, the right-wing genius in charge of this demonstration…

  28. 28
    Rey Fox

    Something else from that post:

    Not that it will help much. I’ve been told by one of our students that they’ve made arrangements with our town newspaper, the Sun Tribune, to have their evil rag distributed with that paper every week.

    Awww, the poor put-upon truth-tellers.

    Left-wing extremist groups meet in city basements and publish via home computer. Right-wing extremists hobnob with media outlets and elected officials.

  29. 29
    Feats of Cats

    Why does he know what chloroform smells like? It’s not something one tends to come across in day-to-day life.

  30. 30
    Trebuchet

    Slipping a letter under a door (not using e-mail or campus mail) is more like stalking as an attempt at intimidation. PZ might wish to contact campus security.

    Or the local police, depending on whether it was PZ’s office door or his house.

  31. 31
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    I would be so pissed if someone slipped a poison letter under my door. Because I’d so want to be crouched there in the dark, waiting for a finger to peek out so I could shove a stake knife in it and keep the bastard pinned there. While I laughed.

    *skims to end* …what, no spurious tsk-tsking about “invoking violence”?

  32. 32
    CX316

    Does this count as an attempt at extortion?

  33. 33
    Thumper: Who Presents Boxes Which Are Not Opened

    @Rey Fox

    Thanks; I read the original post when it was first posted. I just couldn’t be bothered to go and check when that seemed like the obvious logical assumption :)

  34. 34
    Sastra

    To the Right-Wing Genius of Morris Northstar:

    So, anyway, a few words with one central purpose: find better evidence that Dr. PZ Myers stole your papers or cut an apology. Think of it as an investment in justice.

  35. 35
    Alteredstory

    Is this supposed to be humor or extortion?

  36. 36
    David Marjanović

    Why does he know what chloroform smells like? It’s not something one tends to come across in day-to-day life.

    Translation: Smells like chemical.

    *skims to end* …what, no spurious tsk-tsking about “invoking violence”?

    We’re regulars. We know that Josh regularly has unusually violent fantasies. It’s old news, so we don’t comment on it…

    Frankly, Josh, it’s disturbing that you fantasize about inflicting quite that much pain.

  37. 37
    HappiestSadist, Repellent Little Martyr

    Frankly, I’m with Josh, there’s not a damn thing wrong with fantasizing about pushing back against such asinine attempts at harassment.

  38. 38
    Alex

    Why does he know what chloroform smells like? It’s not something one tends to come across in day-to-day life.

    I rather suspect that he got his sciencey vocabulary a bit confused and actually meant formaldehyde solution…

  39. 39
    Alex

    Frankly, Josh, it’s disturbing that you fantasize about inflicting quite that much pain.

    @David M

    I don’t find it unusual. Or did you mean it’s disturbing “that you publish your fantasies about inflicting that much pain online” :D

  40. 40
    daemon23

    “My papers! Where did they go?! I, I…”

    [quiets, sniffing; eyes narrowing]

    “… I smell science.”

  41. 41
    gregfromcos

    Seems a little to over the top to me to be real.

    Did he confirm that he’d sent it?

  42. 42
    Travis

    What a sad little tantrum, a sad delayed tantrum at that. Did it take him 2 months to come up with this? I haven’t really seen a humourous conservative in a long time, the attempts that I do see are often terrible, and the satire never seems to work. They do not seem to understand the concept very well.

  43. 43
    nich

    Him and that Kw*k guy should start a support group…

  44. 44
    nich

    Perhaps they could call it Johns for Justice.

  45. 45
    Thomathy, Such A 'Mo

    He didn’t ask you for a Leica M7 Rangefinder?

    I’m surprised …

  46. 46
    woozy

    So, PZ, are you thinking of running for mayor of Morris?

    Okay, that’s a pretty obscure joke that only citizens of Berkeley California will get. On election morning some years back the campus paper, The Daily Californian, endorsed some other candidate than our incumbent Alan Bates and in an impulsive and massive display of poor judgement, Mr. Bates stole a few hundred copies and trashed them in a dumpster. He won the election but this became a bit of an embarassing joke. (As though Berkeley needs more to make us look silly.)

  47. 47
    changerofbits

    @17 Manure is also tangible

    Hard to get a good lock on the price, but this

  48. 48
    changerofbits

    (con’t from @47, damn submit button next to preview button)

    … link says $38.11 per ton, so $4,017 comes out to about 105 tons of manure. Presumably he’d like it delivered on his front doorstep.

  49. 49
    Inaji

    Goodness, he certainly seems to think he’s witty. Mr. Geiger, here’s a free pro-tip for your next extortion attempt: end the letter after spelling out your demand. It’s only polite.

  50. 50
    screechymonkey

    tbp1@16:

    Conservative humor is almost an oxymoron, and most of it’s really pretty painful

    I think it’s because so-called “liberal humor” tends to start with the “humor” part, and of course it ends up skewing liberal because a liberal’s sense of humor will tend to reflect liberal views. But it’s not like The Daily Show never ticks off liberals, especially when Jon Stewart indulges in his occasional fits of High Broderism.

    But all the attempts at “conservative humor” seem to start with “what’s conservative,” and then try to force the humor from there. Dennis Miller being a good example. I think he still can be funny — he’s enjoyable when he’s interviewing some of his old SNL colleagues — but when he’s doing conservative media, it’s like he’s thinking “oops, haven’t done an Obama joke in the last 2 minutes, better shoehorn one in!”

  51. 51
    justsomeguy

    @50 and 16 and anyone else on this subject:

    My own suspicion about conservatives’ difficulty with humor is that they can’t discern a good target from a bad one. The wealthy and powerful make excellent targets for humor, because they often prop themselves up to such ridiculous heights that a good taking-down is in order. The marginalized and downtrodden are not good targets for humor, because they already get dumped on in society. In my experience, conservative humor targets the latter group, and thus comes off as gloating and bullying.

  52. 52
    FourCorners Atheist

    Submit it as a “Letter to the Editor” of the NorthStar and see if they will publish it.

  53. 53
    stripeycat

    My first thought for the chemically smell was printing inks. Fresh newspapers stink regardless of content.

  54. 54
    sasquatch

    it’s pretty funny when people on here deconstruct jokes and explain what’s funny and what’s not. i bet you people are a BLAST at parties.

  55. 55
    sasquatch

    also, so much groupthink and circle-jerking up in this bltch

  56. 56
    chigau (違う)

    sasquatch
    Bless your heart.

  57. 57
    Al Dente

    Caine @49

    Goodness, he certainly seems to think he’s witty.

    He’s half right.

  58. 58
    Inaji

    sasquatch:

    also, so much groupthink and circle-jerking up in this bltch

    Yes, yes, dear. Now go find a nice mud puddle to play in.

  59. 59
    PZ Myers

    Gosh, how are you going to get a job in politics and keep it if you talk like that, sasquatch?

  60. 60
    Desert Son, OM

    Caine at #49:

    here’s a free pro-tip for your next extortion attempt: end the letter after spelling out your demand. It’s only polite.

    And to add that extra special quality that really clinches the sell, compose the text in letters cut out from a variety of newspaper and magazine headlines.

    From PZ’s post:

    smelled like chloroform and other sciency things.

    So, presumably Geiger composed the letter after regaining consciousness . . .

    I’m inclined to agree with Alex at #38: I wonder if he was thinking of formaldehyde but couldn’t quite remember the term.

    And I llove the irony of someone sharing the name “Geiger” talking about sniffing out things that smell “sciency.” Do you think he vocalizes in rapidly increasing ticking sounds the closer he approaches “sciency” things?

    Still learning,

    Robert

  61. 61
    Lofty

    Chloroform? More like cats piss. PZ has been training up his furry feline friend to mark right-wing papers with pungent commentary.

  62. 62
    Inaji

    Desert Son:

    And to add that extra special quality that really clinches the sell, compose the text in letters cut out from a variety of newspaper and magazine headlines.

    But, but he couldn’t, some evil person smelling of science stole all his letters!

  63. 63
    Desert Son, OM

    Apparently, I love the irony so much, I spell “love” with two ls.

    Still learning, (to spell, evidently)

    Robert

  64. 64
    Desert Son, OM

    Four Corners Atheist at #52:

    Submit it as a “Letter to the Editor” of the NorthStar and see if they will publish it.

    Thread won.
    ____________________________

    Caine at #62:

    some evil person smelling of science stole all his letters!

    Ah, good point. Clearly I haven’t thought Geiger’s plight through. Won’t someone think of the conservative newsletter publishers?!
    _____________________________

    sasquatch at #55:

    so much . . . circle-jerking

    If this is circle-jerking, I’m woefully disappointed. I haven’t even orgasmed! Last Pharyngula circle-jerk I ever attend! Harumph!

    Still learning,

    Robert

  65. 65
    alexmcdonald

    You guys (and PZ) have this letter all wrong.

    This is a love letter; or more accurately, a love me letter. John wants you to like him. He wants you to see him as a witty and ever so slightly alternative kind of guy. An independent thinker, unafraid yet somehow — caring. While being ironic. He wants a witty reply, a letter where he can feel PZ’s warmth towards him. All in a jokey blokey sort of way of course; deep voices, gruff humour, ho ho ho. and back slaps all round.

    Seriously, read it again. “PZ, I’m trying to be witty, because you like that kind of stuff, and I want you to be my friend. Please.”

    On the other hand, he may just have a cashflow problem.

  66. 66
    Josh, Official SpokesGay

    We’re regulars. We know that Josh regularly has unusually violent fantasies. It’s old news, so we don’t comment on it…

    Frankly, Josh, it’s disturbing that you fantasize about inflicting quite that much pain.

    Oh for god’s sake. It’s disturbing to me that what started here at Pharyngula as genuine concern for the way discourse can harm people has turned into almost a parody of itself. It’s disturbing to me, David, that you seem to think my snarking is the sign of some genuine psychological problem. It’s disturbing to me that anyone is so literal-minded (especially people who know me) they’re actually worried about an obviously over the top bit of slapstick violence being anything other than that. It’s disturbing to me that you think you’ve found some window into a dark recess of my soul that indicates something truly sinister.

    Get some perspective, David.

  67. 67
    David Marjanović

    Frankly, I’m with Josh, there’s not a damn thing wrong with fantasizing about pushing back against such asinine attempts at harassment.

    A steak knife? Really?

    I don’t find it unusual. Or did you mean it’s disturbing “that you publish your fantasies about inflicting that much pain online” :D

    Oh no. I’m not trying to recommend hypocrisy.

    It’s disturbing to me that anyone is so literal-minded (especially people who know me) they’re actually worried about an obviously over the top bit of slapstick violence being anything other than that.

    I never thought you’d actually do it if given the chance. But even so, I do find it disturbing that you fantasize about inflicting such an excess of pain, and I can’t see why I shouldn’t say so.

  68. 68
    Josh, Official SpokesGay

    David, you’re fooling yourself if you think lots of people don’t have similarly over the top fantasies about X situation. Many of them you know. They don’t say it here for obvious reasons, but I’m not some outlier. At most you can accuse me of poor form for not filtering myself.

    I don’t particularly care that you find it disturbing; that’s all you. I do care that you arrogate to yourself the right to express your shock and condemnation of an obvious joke in the form of a strong moral implication about the worthiness or soundness of my mind. That’s offensive. Or rather, it would be if it weren’t so twee and ridiculous.

    You have nothing, absolutely nothing, on which to base your ejaculations about how “unusually violent” my fantasies are. Nothing but your own offended sense of decency. You may not proceed to characterize me as exhibiting pathological mental characteristics (and that is, absolutely, your implication so spare us the protestations) without being chided for it. Because it is ridiculous.

  69. 69
    Josh, Official SpokesGay

    And with that I won’t participate in the derail you started any longer. If you feel you must take a principled stand and denounce my ethical failings, please do so in the Thunderdome. That would pretty much be a total yawn fest though, so I don’t think I’ll make it over there.

  70. 70
    Inaji

    David:

    and I can’t see why I shouldn’t say so.

    You can, in Thunderdome. You should know better than to contribute to a thread derail, which is against the commenting rules.

  71. 71
    chakolate

    He has accused you of theft? In writing? Ask your lawyer to send him a letter explaining that he’s guilty of libel unless he has proof.

    What a maroon.

  72. 72
    Zeno

    Why does he know what chloroform smells like?

    Perhaps from his social life. Maybe that’s how he gets dates.

  73. 73
    YOB - Ye Olde Blacksmith

    Zeno @ 72:

    Not cool

  74. 74
    ivyshoots

    YOB it’s not cool to refer to rape as a “date,” but it IS the most obvious explanation for why a guy who admittedly is not at all “sciencey” would be so familiar with what chloroform smells like.

  75. 75
    Rey Fox

    it’s pretty funny when people on here deconstruct jokes and explain what’s funny and what’s not.

    It’s part of the package that comes with having a brain and being able to think analytically. Yeah, I miss the days when I could just waste a Saturday with a marathon of “Ow My Balls”, but this gray matter comes with a price.

  76. 76
    LykeX

    Ask your lawyer to send him a letter explaining that he’s guilty of libel unless he has proof.

    I’m not sure he is, unless he published those accusations elsewhere. Accusations made in a private letter doesn’t constitute libel, as far as I know.
    The fact that PZ has published the letter here could also be used to argue against it. After all, if the accusation is so harmful, why is PZ making it public?

    So, no. Asinine and insulting, but not libel.

  77. 77
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    PZ:

    From me, though, he demands “checks, cash, paypal, debit, credit, bitcoin, appreciating assets (such as real-estate or valuable time-pieces), and tangible assets (like gold and silver).”

    Do you have any Monopoly money handy?

  78. 78
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    ivyshoots:

    YOB it’s not cool to refer to rape as a “date,” but it IS the most obvious explanation for why a guy who admittedly is not at all “sciencey” would be so familiar with what chloroform smells like.

    No, it’s not.
    You don’t know why (of if) Geiger is familiar with the smell of chloroform. Don’t argue from ignorance that he’s a rapist.

  79. 79
    skeptifem

    He seems kinda scary to me. I hope he doesn’t freak out when he realizes you aren’t gonna pay.

  80. 80
    peanutcat

    Is this what he’s considers “humor”?

  81. 81
    peanutcat

    Crap, let me try again: Is this what he considers “humor”?

  82. 82
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    @Desert Sun:

    If this is circle-jerking, I’m woefully disappointed. I haven’t even orgasmed! Last Pharyngula circle-jerk I ever attend! Harumph!

    Still learning,

    …to circle jerk, apparently.

    Y’know, I think that’s the real problem that people like Sasquatch (who bring up circle-jerking) have:

    They *think* it’s a circle jerk, but they haven’t gotten off. The problem, of course, is not the existence of a circle jerk, it’s that no one is paying sufficient attention to them to get them off.

  83. 83
    NelC

    It’s either because it’s early in the morning or that I’ve missed a bit of the story, but why is this loon missing his November print run? From this post it sounds like they were confiscated, maybe? Or activist-minded students decided to steal his rag after delivery?

  84. 84
    Desert Son, OM

    Crip Dyke at #82,

    …to circle jerk, apparently.

    Well, we can’t all be good at everything. :)

    The problem, of course, is not the existence of a circle jerk, it’s that no one is paying sufficient attention to them to get them off.

    Perhaps its the worry about any climate supporting cooperative endeavor as inclining toward [stage whisper] socialism. [/stage whisper]

    Still learning,

    Robert

  85. 85
    barnestormer

    He does appear to be trying to be funny. :/ And, sometimes he succeeds a little? I admit I giggled a little at the 322% tax rate. Nicknaming himself “Right-Wing Genius” would potentially have been funny if the letter were shorter and funnier.

    Is the name North Star a deliberate reference to Frederick Douglass’ paper of the same name?

    Re: conservative humor: G.K. Chesterton is fairly awful, but I’ll grant that he’s capable of being funny and conservative at the same time. Unfortunately, the only contemporary “conservative humor” I can think of is Mallard Filmore and Umbert the Unborn, both of which are pretty dismal all the time (and both examples of the “character talking at the fourth wall for four panels” school of comics.

  86. 86
    Ron Sullivan

    Pay him in cats.

  87. 87
    nomadiq

    I think this letter is an attempt to get attention and approval – probably from his “North Star” colleges. I fear publishing it on here has given Mr. Geiger an even bigger hard-on than when he was writing it in front of his friends. Its not written to provide any message to the reader at all, much like wacking off to porn is not an attempt to have a deep and personal relationship to the person/persons depicted in the porn.

    I’d check the paper under ultraviolet light, its probably covered in semen stains. The kind only self-indulgent self-satisfaction can produce.

  88. 88
    carlie

    Auntie Ron!!!!

    *frenetic waving of hello*

  89. 89
    Chaos Engineer

    Here’s my take on the subtext.

    What he really wanted to write was: “Last November, you said that our newspaper had ‘worn out its welcome and must go’, and said that people should treat it as ‘trash, and dispose of it appropriately’. Later on, somebody stole all the copies of our newspaper from the distribution sites. I’m not saying that you or your associates were involved, but I think you should choose your words more carefully in the future, to help prevent this kind of tragedy.”

    But he’s aware (on a subconscious level) that Dr. Myers’ response would be along the lines of: “You’re not really in a position to complain about inflammatory language, are you? In particular, are you ever going to apologize for the thing that I was talking about in my article? You know, where you published a photo of Trayvon Martin’s dead body, and captioned it with an unfunny ‘joke’?

    What a dilemma! Of course the solution is to take what he really wants to say and hide it inside a bunch of distractions.

    So he gets to make his point without having to fear rebuttal, and then he gets to go back to his friends and say, “Stupid liberals, they’re too unsophisticated to appreciate good satire. Also, they admitted that we were the victims of a grievous wrong in the Case of the Stolen Newspapers. At least, they didn’t try to deny that we were victimized.”

  90. 90
    paulburnett

    Feats (#29): “Why does he know what chloroform smells like? It’s not something one tends to come across in day-to-day life.”

    How about night life? Perhaps he knows of the use of chloroform as a date-rape drug.

  91. 91
    lorn

    How can one attach a price onto something that is given away for free? If he really wanted to enforce a one-per-person policy in a legally meaningful manner he would have this rag handed out one copy at a time by hand. Leave a stack and people are free to do as they will.

    Perhaps there was a spill that needed immediate containment so they grabbed the nearest absorbent material. Perhaps it was a chloroform spill.

    Perhaps someone got caught with a flat tire but no jack. I once used a dry stack of newsprint in a recycling bin to jack up my car. Wedge the stack under the suspension with a board on top and add water. The newsprint swells and the car body lifts. I changed my tire and I kicked the saturated newsprint out to get the wheel back on the ground. The sodden mass was recycled in my compost pile.

    Using a stack of the North Star to do real work, like jacking up a car, or mopping up spilled chloroform, would seem to be the highest possible use and the most socially constructive development to emerge from the publication of this newspaper.

    Perhaps the problem is not with distribution but with materials. If North Star was printed on rolling paper … It wouldn’t be read more often but it would much more popular.

  92. 92
    chigau (違う)

    paulburnett
    We’ve already discussed that.
    see #72
    It was stupid the first time.

  93. 93
    cactuswren

    @16, 26, 50, 51: In his “Glass Teat” column for 21 February 1969, where he dealt with the ABC right-wing comedy-satire-variety series What’s It All About, World?, Harlan Ellison formulated “what will henceforth be known as Ellison’s Theorem: the further right your position, the less telling your satire. A corollary of which is that you can’t lampoon anywhere near where you stand, because you’d annihilate your own troops.”

  94. 94
    Monsanto

    Why did you do something as silly as marking your territory with “sciency things”?

  95. 95
    =8)-DX

    Another of the Luddites – aparently “sciency” is now a term of derision (instead of a mark of awesomness similar to the word “space”). That letter was a horrible attempt at humour, but I laughed at: “county-renowned blog-posts”. I think, taking just the spread of readership, “world-renowned” is more accurate.

  96. 96
    carlie

    Why did you do something as silly as marking your territory with “sciency things”?

    He can’t help it – we all get a scent gland implanted before the terminal degree is officially granted, in order to better identify each other in the wild.

  97. 97
    Markita Lynda—threadrupt

    Hi, Desert Son! I hope you’re well. *waves*

    It doesn’t sound like a joke; more of a falsely jolly demand for money. If he publishes a version of it or an accusation in his “news” rag, it will be libel.

    “Reign in”? He can’t even write.

  98. 98
    Ron Sullivan

    Hi, Carlie! Hi, all! Good to see you, Desert Son.

    All y’all, please send some of that excess water out/down here, eh?

  99. 99
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    @barnestormer:

    Nicknaming himself “Right-Wing Genius” would potentially have been funny if the letter were shorter and funnier.

    I find this the most serious part of his letter. “Genius” might have been satirical. The fact that he needed to qualify it by saying, “Right Wing” might in his mind have made it quite plausible.

    And I’m not sure it didn’t.

    Is the name North Star a deliberate reference to Frederick Douglass’ paper of the same name?

    This came up in the original thread about it, and I remember someone answering in the affirmative. You could, of course, always visit their website for a more definitive answer.

    I won’t.

  100. 100
    Desert Son, OM

    Markita Lynda at #97 and Ron Sullivan at #98:

    Likewise good to see you both! *smiling doff of the hat and a bow*

    Apologies I did not see your salutations earlier. I’ve had a migraine since around 5:30 this morning, and only now is it starting to fade such that I can stand to look at a luminous screen. I hope this finds you well.

    We now return you to your regularly scheduled thread!

    Still learning,

    Robert

  101. 101
    qwerty

    Apparently Mr. Geiger doesn’t know that you are suppose to pull these kind of pranks on April 1st.

  102. 102
    Ryan Cunningham

    “smelled like chloroform and other sciency things.”

    Not sulfur and brimstone? Clearly PZ is innocent!

  103. 103
    rnilsson

    Sneaking up late to this party too:

    Actually, I think Josh chose the exact right implement for imaginary impaling: a stake knife.

    Also, 50 or 70 years ago* someone called Geiger would perhaps not have felt this privileged. I doubt he is very black or has many black friends.

    Please continue, don’t mind me.

    * In some locations, more recently than that.

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