Jun 09 2014

[Lounge #464]


This is the lounge. You can discuss anything you want, but you will do it kindly.

Status: Heavily Moderated; Previous thread


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  1. 1

    I don’t trust that fish. It tries to look cute to lure its victims closer.

  2. 2

    Ah, I thought I felt a change in the Force on the continent! Glad you arrived ok, rq. :)

    From further back:

    The cost of a college degree in the USA has risen by 1200% in the past 35 years

    Is that total cost, or cost passed on to the student? There’s a difference. Students used to pay only a small fraction of their college costs, and the rest was covered by state funding of public colleges and by Pell Grants (directly from the federal government to the student). Those have both gone way, way down, so even without an increase in the overall cost, the cost to the student would have skyrocketed.

  3. 3

    Ottawa… In the early seventies, Swedish TV imported a TV series set in Ottawa. Since then, silence. Glad to hear the place still exists.

  4. 4
    CaitieCat, getaway driver

    Here I is. :)

  5. 5
    Lynna, OM

    Great photos from the Pride Parade in Utah, parade was yesterday.

  6. 6

    A general question:

    None of us were asked to be brought into this world, therefore we should at least have the final say when we want to end our life.

    Agree or disagree?

  7. 7
    Lynna, OM

    This is a followup to my comment in the previous thread, the one in which Bloomberg News talked about the cost of education (increase in cost outpaces other categories, including medical, by far).

    President Obama is working with Elizabeth Warren to do something about student loan debt. Senate Democratic leaders are on board, Republicans think it is socialism and also Obama is ignoring them and acting like a tyrant. Some snippets below:

    The financial industry, perhaps not surprisingly, is less enamored with the proposal. The bill would allow borrowers to refinance loans owned by the private sector into new loans made by the Education Department. Paying off loans early deprives lenders of future interest income, causing paper losses.

    And because the debt burden has risen significantly faster than inflation, up a whopping 361.3% since 2003 according to the New York Federal Reserve, the total pile of student debt in the United States now sits at almost $1.2 trillion dollars.”

    To address the problem, the president is moving forward on a worthwhile idea. As Libby Nelson explained, Obama intends to expand a program “that lowers student loan payments to 10 percent of borrowers’ monthly discretionary income” through something called Pay As You Earn, which “offers lower payments for borrowers with low incomes than the traditional 10-year loan repayment plan.” This will not require congressional action.

    Under the policy, “Borrowers pay for 20 years or until they’ve paid off the balance, whichever comes first. People working for a nonprofit or for local, state or federal governments are done making payments after 10 years, whether they’ve paid back the loan or not.” Something similar already exists, but Obama’s new executive order will expand eligibility.


  8. 8

    Goddammit! Rik Mayall has died, aged 56. He played the politician Alan b’Stard in The New Statesman, and the anarchist in The Young Ones.

  9. 9

    The Game Show Network is one of those channels that I’m compelled to accept and pay for in order to get the channels I really want, and lately, their commercials on other channels have been . . . well . . . I’ll let you decide. There is a fairly new game show called ‘American Bible Challenge,’ hosted by Jeff Foxworthy and apparently the contestants are quizzed on the contents of scripture. I’m not at all religious, but I question the depth of the respect that some Christians have for their religion if a game show based on their sacred book is okay with them. Seems cheap and cheezy. The second game show is called ‘It Takes a Church,’ and it is a dating game in which the congregation of your church picks out your date. Sounds like a sure winner and loads of fun . . . sure.

  10. 10
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    @Varady72, #6:

    A general question:

    None of us were asked to be brought into this world, therefore we should at least have the final say when we want to end our life.

    Agree or disagree?

    You’ve been around enough to know that the lounge isn’t the place for this. Take it to ThunderDome, please.

  11. 11
    morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor

    Hey Horde,

    This is in reply to CD’s “Power Mad” post. I’m happy that my confusion on how to talk about gender was the impetus for the excellent online workshop. Unfortunately I am unable to participate online, however I am playing along at home.

    I have been letting out information about myself in small bits. I am by nature extraordinarily introverted, had a really unpleasant childhood, possess myriad nasty physical and emotional complexities and now live as a near recluse. The prospect of openly participating in the gender workshop felt like I was setting myself up to reveal much more than I am comfortable with. (Bad construction there.) The degree to which I’ve been able recently to interact online in the Lounge is massive progress for me. I ALWAYS feel as if my comments are inappropriate, and my intellect is insufficient to the task. But WTF. I’m pressing on. Dear Loungers, you have no idea how much you have helped me and I love you all unreservedly.

  12. 12
    morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor

    rq, this is for you and all acolytes of The Great Potato. The perfect house pet for those of our ilk is the Spudhound.


  13. 13
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Sterile hugs. Little ones with diareha and puking are about the worst. Wishing the whole bass-family a speedy recovery. German home remedy is coke and pretzels.

    [unhappy things to follow warning]
    Went to see my grandma which inevitably means seeing my parents. My mother has a face the colour of yellow amber and a belly swollen with water, I think it must be 20 kilograms at least.
    Am I a horrible person to hope that gran dies before we have to tell her that her only child is dead?

  14. 14
    Nick Gotts


    That is a sad piece of news. Apparently Mayall had been in poor health since an accident in 1998. While I enjoyed The Comic Strip Presents and The Young Ones, I thought his best role was as Alan B’Stard in The New Statesman.

  15. 15

    The man and woman suspected in Sunday’s Las Vegas shopping center attack that left two police officers and a shopper dead often talked about killing officers and didn’t believe in the government, a neighbor says.

    They were also white supremacists.

    I’m sure most have heard about the latest mass murders in Las Vegas.

    These people do this a lot. The last before was the one in Georgia a few days ago who was determined but not too competent.

    In the last few years, Sovereign Citizens have killed 7 police officers, up to 9 now.

    Among the Sovereign Citizesn are Kent Hovind and Cliven Bundy. Not only are these not nice people, they are potentially dangerous.

  16. 16

    Lynna OM #7, that sounds a bit like the UKnian set-up (except we have to pay for longer – 30 years … or is it 35 now …. :-( ). But even so it’s still better than having it work like a normal commercial debt.
    bassmike, my sympathies. As FossilFishy says, it ain’t zero-sum or a scale; if it helps in even the smallest way to vent here, then I’m glad if you do (if you see what I mean. Glad if it helps, not glad that you have the troubles!)
    Giliell, fuck but I’m sorry. That’s awful in every possible way. I’m sorry the family has to deal with this :-((((

  17. 17
    Reginald Selkirk

    The precipitation in the Kingdom of Spain falls primarily on the humid regions of the north and northwest.

  18. 18
    Lynna, OM

    This is a followup to Raven’s post #15. Yes, as details trickle out about the shooting in Las Vegas it is looking more and more like the couple who did the shooting were white supremacists, and they were anti-federal-government nut jobs in the Cliven Bundy mold.

    Neighbors of the couple who ambushed two police officers Sunday in Las Vegas told local newspapers the pair had bragged about spending time at Cliven Bundy’s ranch during the standoff with the federal government earlier this year.

    The two suspects, whose names have not yet been released, fatally shot two police officers who were having lunch at a CiCi’s Pizza restaurant before killing a third person at a nearby Wal-Mart. The female suspect then shot the male suspect and then herself in an apparent suicide pact.

    Neighbors […] said they “had a reputation for spouting racist, anti-government views” and boasted about their gun collection […]the two bragged about being present for the standoff between militia members and the Bureau of Land Management. […]

    Carol Bundy, the Nevada rancher’s wife, told the newspaper she had no reason to suspect that militia members at the ranch harbored violent intentions. [yeah, right, disingenuous much?]

    […] Another resident of the apartment complex, Brandon Moore, told the Las Vegas Sun that the couple had also spoken about their plans to commit a mass shooting.

    “They were handing out white-power propaganda and were talking about doing the next Columbine,” he said.


  19. 19
    David Marjanović

    I ALWAYS feel as if my comments are inappropriate, and my intellect is insufficient to the task.

    *spontaneous hug* ^_^

    Hugs for Giliell, too.

    the humid regions of the north and northwest

    So, mostly mountains, right?

  20. 20
    Rawnaeris, Lulu Cthulhu

    Husband ended up not having “real” pinkeye.

    Went and saw Maleficent, it wasn’t bad. Had several funny moments.

    And woooooo! E3 starts today!

  21. 21
    Lynna, OM

    A foolish Republican Congress critter calls climate change data “foolish.” Okay. I heard this interview this morning and couldn’t believe it. But Representative Jeff Miller (R-FL) is for real. Excerpt below:

    Miller said. “The issue of climate change has been happening for a long time, and for us to be able to think that we, as matter of fact, can change what’s going on right now to any substantive measure is really kind of foolish in my opinion.”

    Miller argued that the climate has been changing for centuries and that scientists, whether they believe human activity contributes to climate change or not, acknowledge that the issue is not settled.

    “So you agree that it is changing?” Lui asked.

    “I’ve never said that it wasn’t changing,” Miller responded.

    “To a deleterious effect?” Lui asked.

    “It changes. It gets hot, it gets cold, it’s done it for as long as we’ve measured the climate,” Miller said.

    “But, manmade, isn’t that the question?” Lui pressed.

    “Then why did the dinosaurs go extinct? Were there men that were causing — were there cars running around at that point that were causing global warming? No,” Miller concluded. “The climate has changed since Earth was created.”


  22. 22
    Lynna, OM

    Bribes and other shenanigans have flipped the Virginia Senate in favor of the Republicans, all to defeat the Governor’s plan to extend Medicaid coverage to approximately 400,000 Virginians.

    […] Virginia state Sen. Phillip P. Puckett, a Democrat, “will announce his resignation Monday, effective immediately, paving the way to appoint his daughter to a judgeship and Puckett to the job of deputy director of the state tobacco commission.” Currently, the Virginia senate is evenly divided between Democrats and Republicans, with Democratic Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam holding the balance of power. If Puckett resigns, Republicans will gain control of the body for at least as long as it takes to elect a replacement. […]

    If Puckett was offered the seat on this commission in exchange for his decision to resign from the state legislature, however, he may have committed a very serious crime. Under Virginia’s bribery law, it is a felony for a state lawmaker to “accept[] or agree[] to accept from another … any pecuniary benefit offered, conferred or agreed to be conferred as consideration for or to obtain or influence the recipient’s decision, opinion, recommendation, vote or other exercise of discretion as a public servant or party official. […]

    […] a Democratic senator throws control of the state legislature to the GOP, and then immediately receives a job from a commission controlled by a Republican chair and vice-chair — is suspicious. It also could have very serious consequences for Virginia’s least fortunate residents.

    Gov. McAuliffe is currently embroiled in a fight with Republicans, who control the state house, over whether Virginia should accept Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act. If Republicans take the state senate, even briefly, they can use their control over the entire legislature to pass a budget that does not include the Medicaid expansion. Though McAuliffe could veto the budget, Republicans could use that veto to try to blame him for an ensuing government shutdown.

    Think Progress link.

  23. 23

    There’s a dog whose purpose is to dig up potatoes?? Holy shit, how did I not know this?
    Also, *[gesture of reciprocated love, appreciation and support of choice, up to and including pouncehugs, as desired]*

    *hugs* :(
    It doesn’t make you a bad person, it makes you a good person in a shitty situation.

  24. 24
    Lynna, OM

    I’ve posted quite a few comments in recent Lounge threads about the nefarious dealings of the LDS church as they try to weaken the primary secular newspaper, Salt Lake Tribune, in Utah. Here’s an update that includes some history of similar mormon church business deals:

    […] Deseret News [cooked] its Sunday circulation numbers by including its national edition and Church News that it provides as a supplement to weekly newspapers for free. […]

    […] To recap: The circulation comparisons between The Tribune and Deseret News are germane because of the recent deal between the Deseret News and The Tribune’s hedge fund owner that changed the profit share of the two papers from 58-42 percent in favor of The Tribune (based on its superior circulation numbers) to 70-30 percent in favor of the Deseret News.

    The Deseret News got the ownership of the presses that the newspapers share and the outrageously favorable profit share, while the hedge fund got a boatload of cash. [Deseret News's "boatload of cash" came from the LDS church. They bribed the hedge fund.]

    […] this has happened before — with sugar.

    […] the Mormon church-owned Utah-Idaho Sugar Co. squeezed out competing sugar companies by getting the faithful sugar beet farmers to sell only to U&I [Mormon church-owned Utah-Idaho Sugar Co], even when competitors offered more money. […]

    Charlie Schmalz, of Ogden, wrote that he spent 40 years in the sugar industry — 12 of them with U&I Sugar — and he witnessed firsthand the tactics designed to eliminate the competition and create a monopoly.

    “While the church as an entity did not engage in the less than honorable [by today’s business standards] activities [Bagley] recounts, individuals who were also highly placed in the church did act to constrain trade and coerce growers to limit their contact with competing sugar companies,” Schmalz wrote.[…]

    In 1959, Layton Sugar’s board of directors was mostly appointed by the church. Antoine Ivans was named chairman of the board and a proposed sale of Layton Sugar to U&I Sugar Co. took place.

    “The bottom line is that is just the way the church does business. Eliminate the competition no matter what the cost,” Ellison wrote.


  25. 25
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    @rq –

    Yay! we’re in the same country! Practically neighbors, really! Woohoo!

    Okay, there’s that 4000km between us, but still.

  26. 26

    the two bragged about being present for the standoff between militia members and the Bureau of Land Management.


    Carol Bundy, the Nevada rancher’s wife, told the newspaper she had no reason to suspect that militia members at the ranch harbored violent intentions. [yeah, right, disingenuous much?]

    What a liar. Why were they waving their military style weapons around and threatening to shoot anyone associated with the government?

    I was wondering when someone was going to get killed by the militias. Well, 2 cops and one civilian down, more to come I’m sure.

    “They were handing out white-power propaganda and were talking about doing the next Columbine,” he said.

    Quite a few people have said they talked openly about killing cops and mass murder. Well hello, didn’t any of them think of notifying the FBI and local police? What in the hell were they thinking? If they had, it is possible 3 victims would still be alive.

  27. 27
    morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor


    The “spudhound” is a joke among Welsh Corgi aficionados. The puppies, with their short legs, look remarkably like potatoes. Of course, the Corgi will eat potatoes, or anything for that matter, with abandon.

  28. 28
    Lynna, OM

    Quite a few people have said they talked openly about killing cops and mass murder. Well hello, didn’t any of them think of notifying the FBI and local police? What in the hell were they thinking? If they had, it is possible 3 victims would still be alive.

    One of the neighbors explained that the reasoning was that the couple was too “crazy” to actually do anything, and there was the idea that the couple always talked big but never acted on any of their plans.

    So, I guess “Sovereign Citizens” don’t act on their plans for revolution … until they do.

    U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder was right to put more emphasis on renewed investigations of domestic terrorists.

  29. 29

    That’s still amazing. :D

  30. 30

    @rq –

    Yay! we’re in the same country! Practically neighbors, really! Woohoo!

    CD – do I remember you being in Toronto? Any chance of triangulating a meetup between rq and the eastern Canucks and the northeastern USAians, maybe around Kingston or Belleville?

  31. 31
    Lynna, OM

    Update on the rightwing response to the shooting in Las Vegas:

    Today on “InfoWars,” Alex Jones continued to argue that the Las Vegas shooting was a false flag operation and suggested that Facebook and President Obama are working together to falsely connect the killings to right-wing extremism.

    While reading a list of the Facebook “likes” of alleged shooter Jerad Miller, Jones claimed that he was being set up as part of a plan to “demonize” conservatives like himself.

    Right Wing Watch link.

  32. 32
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought


    Have fun in Ottawa!

    *hugs* for Giliell

    FIFA World Cup starts this week. Oh joy.
    I would probably enjoy watching a couple of games, but all football all the time everywhere has put me off before the whole thing even started.

  33. 33
    Tony! The Queer Shoop


    I don’t trust that fish. It tries to look cute to lure its victims closer.

    The fish is lonely and wants company, not dinner.


    Response to varady72 deleted, per CD’s wisdom.



    The degree to which I’ve been able recently to interact online in the Lounge is massive progress for me.

    I wish there was a way to convey how deeply happy I am for you (the words are there, but it’s hard to put the emotion into an online comment).

    I ALWAYS feel as if my comments are inappropriate, and my intellect is insufficient to the task.

    I don’t think I’ve read anything from you that is inappropriate.
    As for intellect…I often feel very insecure around some of the people who frequent here (and around Pharyngula in general). That’s not a result of any attempt [on their part] to be intellectually superior, but rather my own doubts and insecurities (having only completed 2 years of college plays into that). Those doubts and insecurities are not sufficient to prevent me from commenting here, as the positives overwhelmingly outweigh the negatives (which are entirely of my own brain<—((I was about to say "dumb" brain there)) ).

    more information on the "sovereign citizens" who went on a killing spree in Vegas:

    Wonkette identified the shooters as Jerad and Amanda Miller. Their Facebook pages reveal an affinity for gun rights, Cliven Bundy, Tea Party politics, chemtrail conspiracies and New World Order paranoia.


    These two were assholes with a staggering lack of empathy and compassion. They are responsible for their actions.
    That said, they were clearly influenced by rhetoric from the far Right, and that “movement” bears responsibility. *This* is what they’ve created.

  34. 34
    Lynna, OM

    Update on the Las Vegas shooters, from Southern Poverty Law Center.

    Late Sunday, law enforcement officials say, [Jerad] Miller and his wife, Amanda Miller, embarked on a shooting spree […] Witnesses said that they shouted “this is a revolution” and draped the officers with a Gadsden flag — a symbol of liberty used by both the antigovernment “Patriot” movement and many Tea Parties […]

    Miller posted a series of comments on his Facebook page indicating that, in order to restore “freedom” to the United States, the “best men” would strike for “a free and just world with our blood, sweat and tears as pavement,” he said on June 2. “There is no greater cause to die for than liberty,” he wrote on May 2. “I will willingly die for liberty.” […]

    Amanda Miller, who married Jerad on Sept. 22, 2012, didn’t sound very different on her own Facebook page on May 23. “[T]o the people of the world… your [sic] lucky i can’t kill you now but remember one day one day i will get you because one day all hell will break lose [sic] and i’ll be standing in the middle of it with a shot gun in one hand and a pistol in the other.”

    […] On April 9, shortly before traveling to the Bundy ranch, Jerad Miller wrote that the standoff was “the next Waco,” a reference to a deadly 1993 standoff in Texas.

    Miller also posted a photo of himself with Richard Mack, a former Arizona sheriff and leader of the Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association, a radical Patriot group whose members were also at the Bundy standoff. The two met at a Feb. 8 campaign debate for libertarian candidates held in Clark County, Nev., where Bundy’s ranch is located. […]

  35. 35
    Lynna, OM

    Other things to learn from the Facebook postings of the Las Vegas shooters: Jerad Miller received a toilet brush with a fake assault rifle handle as a Christmas gift. So, yeah, you too could clean your toilet with an assault rifle.

  36. 36

    @ dhall #9
    Our current culture has no concept of propriety.
    The ‘Bible quiz’ is a popular and effective means in fundamentalist circles of instilling knowledge of the scriptures in children.
    Some of the people in my church would be horrified that it had become a television game show and point to A. as the cause.
    There are Machiavellian fundamentalists, however, that believe any method is acceptable as long as you get the Bible or Jesus in front of an audience.
    Your question about the depth of respect is sometimes a topic of discussion and even brought up in sermons in my church. The consensus is invariably that such ones have none and do harm.
    I agree with that: they have none.
    As for the second show, that’s…that’s…that’s… I don’t know what.

  37. 37

    I’m appalled at the callousness and pointlessness of the Miller’s murder spree. So they killed 3 people. So what.

    It makes the Tea Party/noPatriot/Militia/Sovereign Citizen movement look like a bunch of soulless murdering Zombies.

    The numbers are high. At least 9 police officers killed. From Stormfront alone, 100 people dead by its members.

    That being said, how many people are they going to kill and how many bombings and arsons before the US people get sick and tired of them?

    I don’t have an answer here. Seems like it should be long ago, but the Tea Party controls the house and a lot of state governments. Being killers and supporters of killers hasn’t seemed to hurt them at all.

  38. 38

    birgerjohannsson, I join you in regretting a bloody good and very funny actor. RIP the man with the biggest majority in the House of Commons.

  39. 39
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    dhall @9:
    I went digging a bit on “It Takes A Church”.
    Their Facebook page is gag worthy.


    Reaction to the first episode was mixed apparently:

    Christian dating programme, “It Takes a Church,” premiered last night on GSN to mixed reviews.

    The programme, hosted by Grammy-nominated singer Natalie Grant, follows churches around the country as they try to find a mate for one of their parishioners.

    The premiere episode took place at Rock Worship Center in Charlotte, North Carolina.

    The congregant in need was a 30-year-old woman, Angela, who protested, “I can’t find a man.” Her pastor and fellow church members introduced her to several potential suitors, and also eliminated those they felt were a poor match. From the two finalists, Angela chose Nick – a celibate motivational speaker.

    A SingleRoots blogger took issue with the episode’s focus on Nick’s celibacy, and questioned why it was only brought up in regards to him. The blogger and social media commenters also wondered why Angela was taken aback by Nick’s choice.

    “@NatalieGrant I really enjoyed the show “It Takes a Church”. However, Christians shouldn’t be shocked that a potential mate is Celibate,” Wilda Graham tweeted.


  40. 40
    David Marjanović

    The experiment of frying kohlrabi has worked fairly well. I’m eating it with rice. :-)

    Frage: Wie heißen die Früchte, die an Brennnesseln wachsen?
    Antwort (mit englischem Akkzent lesen): Brennberries

    While that’s obviously a pun on cranberries, I’m also reminded of brambury, a Czech term for potatoes that used to be common in Viennese.

  41. 41
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    *wraps herself in hugs*
    Thank you all.
    I have to remember myself that this is, in a way, my mother’s choice, even if she does not consider herself an agent.

    Never heard that term.
    Regional word for potatoe would be “Grumbeere” (beere as in pear, not as in berry)

  42. 42
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden


    You know how when highlighting icons on the desktop, you click-drag and create a rectangle, with everything in it selected?

    yeah. Last night I had a dream my rectangle overlapped my browser and I deleted Pharyngula. Just gone. Every post, every comment.

    Now I’m afraid to touch my mouse.

    Yay for kohlrabi, David Marjanović. I enjoy it myself.

    Also, the source of “Kohl comma Rabbi” jokes.

    @morgan, #11 & @Tony!, #33, who said:

    As for intellect…I often feel very insecure around some of the people who frequent here (and around Pharyngula in general). That’s not a result of any attempt [on their part] to be intellectually superior, but rather my own doubts and insecurities (having only completed 2 years of college plays into that). Those doubts and insecurities are not sufficient to prevent me from commenting here, as the positives overwhelmingly outweigh the negatives

    This. I’m acutely aware of doing college so late in life and having my dramatic successes be things like, “I got invited to teach a course despite no having a degree!” (which I admit was special and was a nod to unusual expertise) instead of having undramatic successes that are, in many ways, a much bigger deal, like: “Yep, got a full time teaching job, though it will be in a cow town.”

    There is so much intelligence and expertise here. Moreover, people get to compose over time and proofread (though they don’t necessarily do so) and edit and choose not to comment when the subject drifts out of their areas of interest, etc… This means that, unlike with persons you’re sharing physical space with over a period of time (where not joining in the conversation would be weird even if it’s now drifted out of your area of expertise), you tend to get a more carefully thought out statement from folks, and their statements tend to be more restricted to areas where people have actual knowledge.

    It makes hanging around a place full of smart people seem like hanging around a place full of super-geniuses.

    So relax, Tony! If we restricted commenting to the super-geniuses, the place would only be half-full. :-P

    [but at least you & I could then have an empty corner to jabber about Black super heroes. I **loved** Monica Rambeau as a kid. I don’t know Nyong’o’s work, but people keep calling her “regal”. So maybe she wouldn’t be the best Misty Knight, or at least, maybe Misty Knight wouldn’t be the best role for her, but I’d rather see her & Rambeau brought to the screen than Moondragon – sorry.

    1. Did you catch the Black Lightning revival mini-series a few years ago? I know you’re more Marvel, & I am too, but I actually had the original Black Lightning #1 as a kid. I liked the character then and still like him now.

    2. Have you seen this? Because **damn** I want that movie made.

    3. WHAT? They’re bringing Luke Cage to Netflix Original?

    This may be controversial, but I wish that they weren’t making it PM/IF. I wish it was just LC, H4H.

  43. 43
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden


    I’m don’t know what to say. I want to say something wise enough that you haven’t already thought it yourself. I want to say something that lessens your distress, that helps your family.

    And all I have is this: you’re loved. You will be before they die and you will be after. More than that I don’t think I can guarantee.

  44. 44
    Lynna, OM

    In the USA, prisons for juveniles (often called something other than “prison”) have a near 100% success rate at turning juveniles into adult criminals. They also have a near 100% failure rate when it comes to helping juveniles grow into responsible adulthood. A few outlier “boutique” programs do a much better job, but few states sponsor them, and even within the states that do sponsor such programs only a small percentage of kids are lucky enough to take part.

    The economics of incarceration are part of the problem. It’s an industry that protects itself. Ignorance on the part of many officials also plays a part. (I want to say “willful” ignorance on the part of mostly Republican officials since mountains of data exist to indict the current system.)

    Children are abused, sexually abused, and taught they are criminals within the prison systems of the USA. Blacks and Latinos are incarcerated more frequently and for longer periods than whites. Whites often escape incarceration entirely.

    “Burning Down the House” makes these points much better than I am indicating here. The link is to an interview on NPR’s Fresh Air program.

    The American rate of juvenile incarceration is seven times that of Great Britain, and 18 times that of France. It costs, on average, $88,000 a year to keep a youth locked up — far more than the U.S. spends on a child’s education.

    But the biggest problem with juvenile incarceration, author Nell Bernstein tells Fresh Air’s Dave Davies, is that instead of helping troubled kids get their lives back on track, detention usually makes their problems worse, and sets them in the direction of more crime and self-destructive behavior. […]

    “The greatest predictor of adult incarceration and adult criminality wasn’t gang involvement, wasn’t family issues, wasn’t delinquency itself,” Bernstein says. “The greatest predictor that a kid would grow up to be a criminal was being incarcerated in a juvenile facility.”

    The interview is 37 minutes long. Well worth the time.

  45. 45
    Lynna, OM

    Mother Jones has more info on Jerad Miller, one of the Las Vegas shooters.

    He had connections to the NRA (of course), Rand Paul, Freedom Works, and other rightwing organizations like the American Patriot Media Network, American Crossroads (are you proud, Karl Rove?), and the Heritage Foundation.

    Jerad’s wife, Amanda, was cut from the same cloth:

    On her YouTube page, Amanda Miller liked videos called, “Shooting Cops,” “Citizens Can Shoot Police,” and “When Is It Okay To Shoot a Cop.” She posted a video of Jerad Miller interviewing people at the Bundy ranch. Her Facebook page contains photos of a woman posing with guns and she shared a picture of the “best coffee table ever”—it was a table with a drawer full of guns. […]

  46. 46
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    @Lynna, #45:

    The way “connections” is used in your comment is horrendously unfair, though.

    The connection? Miller “Liked” the NRA, Rand Paul 2016, Freedom Works, etc.

    Don’t do that to your readers, Lynna. The information you provide is usually very good, but turning a murderer’s Facebook “likes” into some kind of bilateral “connection” with **anyone** is not cool.

  47. 47
    Tony! The Queer Shoop


    [but at least you & I could then have an empty corner to jabber about Black super heroes. I **loved** Monica Rambeau as a kid. I don’t know Nyong’o’s work, but people keep calling her “regal”. So maybe she wouldn’t be the best Misty Knight, or at least, maybe Misty Knight wouldn’t be the best role for her, but I’d rather see her & Rambeau brought to the screen than Moondragon – sorry.

    Oh, I’ll take her in whatever role she gets, TBH.
    I like Moondragon bc of her personality. While heroic, she’s incredibly arrogant, and is often the source of tension in stories (and we both know that tension is important in storytelling).
    but yeah, I’d like her as Misty Knight as well.

    1. Did you catch the Black Lightning revival mini-series a few years ago? I know you’re more Marvel, & I am too, but I actually had the original Black Lightning #1 as a kid. I liked the character then and still like him now.

    No, I missed that. I’ve never been a big Black Lightning fan. Also, I am a pretty big fan of DC…before the New 52 relaunch. I keep up with the events in the current DCU, but I’ve boycotted the entire line since the relaunch (I think I’ve written-here-about the many things I dislike about the relaunch-some big and some small). I can’t say if my boycott will be forever (TBH, I think that would be stupid of me to say), but it’s for the forseeable future (I boycotted the Spider-Man titles following One More Day and the dissolution of MJ/Peter’s marriage; that lasted 2 or 3 years, until I saw the quality of the writing on Amazing Spider-Man).

    2. Have you seen this? Because **damn** I want that movie made.

    For some reason, I can’t view that on my laptop. I’ll check it out on my Nexus later.

    3. WHAT? They’re bringing Luke Cage to Netflix Original?

    This may be controversial, but I wish that they weren’t making it PM/IF. I wish it was just LC, H4H


    They’re not exactly doing PM/IF. They’re doing 4 interconnected series- Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Jessica Jones, and Daredevil. Then those four will team up as the Defenders. I’m sooooooooooooooo looking forward to it.
    For all that I don’t like a lot of what Brian Bendis has done (his talking heads annoy the crap out of me, and I think he fails to write distinguishing dialogue for many of his characters; I also *loated* Avengers Disassembled, especially his retcons of the Scarlet Witch; I have other problems with his writing too) I applaud his use of Cage. Cage was languishing in limbo for so long and Bendis took him and put him on the the premier super team in the MU. A black guy, standing toe to toe with Cap and Iron Man?! Yowza. And he ditched the cliched phrases like “Sweet Christmas”.

    Have you ever read Christopher Priests’ run on Black Panther? OMG, I didn’t appreciate it when it first came out, but looking back, Priest did a marvelous job weaving political intrigue, relationship drama, and superheroics into that book. And boy could he write complex stories. You *had* to pay attention to everything. I especially loved the way he wrote the interactions between T’Challa and Tony Stark (I’d read a Priest written Iron Man book in a New York minute).

    BTW, have you heard of/read the current Mighty Avengers book? It’s a very diverse book with a PoC dominating the team (Monica and Cage are both there; as is White Tiger, Blue Marvel and the new Power Man)

  48. 48
    Tony! The Queer Shoop


    Am I a horrible person to hope that gran dies before we have to tell her that her only child is dead?

    Not in the slightest.
    I’m sorry you’re having to deal with this stress.

  49. 49

    I made a comment on Yahoo article on the Ghostbusters movie suggesting that a female Ghostbuster would be great addition if a new movie is made. I got ten thumbs down compared to five thumbs up for the comment and someone replied that adding a female just for the sake of having one is idiotic and pandering and shoehorning characters ruined plenty of movies, video games.

  50. 50
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Well if that’s pandering and shoehorning, I’ll take more please!

  51. 51
    chigau (違う)

    Just make them all women.

  52. 52
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Happy birthday Donald Duck!


    DC Comics brings another character to the small screen with NBC’s ‘Constantine’


    Tom Hardy, Benedict Cumberbatch among possible actors to play Doctor Strange on the big screen. Scott Derrickson will be director.


    This upcoming sci-fi movie starring Chris Evans reminds me of the economic inequality facing the US:

    The future doesn’t look so bright in director Joon-ho Bong’s sci-fi drama, “Snowpiercer.” Based on the French graphic novel “Le Transperceneige” by Jacques Lob, Benjamin Legrand and Jean-Marc Rochette, the movie finds most life on Earth wiped out by an ice age while the remaining survivors have taken up residence in Snowpiercer, a massive train that endlessly circles the globe. The elite live it up at the front of the train, the harsh conditions of the outside world a minor hiccup to their comfort, while the passengers stuck in the train’s rear wallow in poverty. The underprivileged Curtis, played by “Captain America’s” Chris Evans aims to change all that by claiming leadership of the back end and leading a revolt.

  53. 53

    Last week Slate previewed some photos from a new book titled Purity, a project about dads and their virgin-pledging daughters dressed up as if they’re going to a purity ball. Disregarding all the other things that are wrong with a “purity pledge,” some of the daughters simply look way too young to even understand what a pledge like that actually means.

    I think it goes without saying considering the creepiness of the subject, but cold shower trigger warning on that link.

  54. 54
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    I’m fine with that.


    Given the opposition to making one of the Ghostbusters a woman, I wonder what type of reception Brian K Vaughn’s Y: The Last Man would have (I think it’s in some movie limbo right now, but it may happen some day)*:

    Y: The Last Man is a dystopian science fiction comic book series by Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra published by Vertigo beginning in 2002. The series is about the only man to survive the apparent simultaneous death of every male mammal (barring the same man’s pet monkey) on Earth.

    *Not completely the same thing, I know (though not unrelated). I’m referring to the opinion many people have about women as the stars of a movie.

  55. 55
    A. Noyd

    Tony (#33)

    That said, they were clearly influenced by rhetoric from the far Right, and that “movement” bears responsibility. *This* is what they’ve created.

    The mainstream media really needs to start asking the the conservative fuckfaces who spout this sort of rhetoric how serious they are and what they think their supporters are supposed to do about it all. That is, before someone takes them at their word and shoots up a bunch of people. And if the media can’t even manage that, they should at least stop letting the instigators get away with saying, after the fact, it’s crazy and wrong to have believed their claims.


    DC Comics brings another character to the small screen with NBC’s ‘Constantine’

    Well, that looks waaaay better that the movie version with Keanu Reeves. But then, a dirty cocktail napkin wrapped around a wad of chewed gum would have been better than Keanu Reeves as Constantine.

  56. 56
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Ugh. Purity culture. Fathers attempting to control their daughters like property ::spits::. Fathers stifling the sexual expression of girls in an attempt to keep them spiritually pure for “the one”…::spits again:: Why not control the sons? Why not try to influence them to keep it in their pants?*

    I noticed a striking similarity in the races of [most of the ] dauther/father photos.

    *I’m not advocating this. Just noting the sexism and misogyny.

  57. 57

    coreyschlueter @49-

    They just have to do something with the character, and any argument against the idea on grounds of tokenism vanish.

    And, hey, they’d have to handle the loss of Harold Ramis. The second movie released in 1989, 25 years ago. That is *easily* enough time for Egon to have an adult daughter, especially when you consider that it would be a couple years at least before the movie is out.

    So why not bring in Egons daughter to fill his spot on the team?

    Then make the sexists heads explode and have the other three retire at the end of the movie, and Egons daughter starts interviews for a new team headed by herself.

  58. 58

    Loving this right now, more sea-life natural disasters. A “clampede” was also suggested.

  59. 59
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    My first thought was ‘shoehorn? What do you mean? Just move Janine into being an active ghostbuster instead of the secretary. This would combine will with your idea, though. Developing more on the idea, I like the idea of the active team being Janine Melnitz, Winston Zeddmore, Raymond Stanz, and young Spengler (first name unknown), while Venkman (who is a serious misogyinistic tool in the first movie, IIRC) is a washed-up has been, totally at sea in the modern world, who ‘runs’ things by sitting behind a desk, answering the phones and taking messages, and is basically there to be ridiculous comic relief, while the others make all the actual plans and do all the actual stuff.

  60. 60
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Not a comic book I read, but this movie sounds intriguing:

    Directed by Don Hall and Chris Williams, “Big Hero 6″ is based on the Marvel Comics superhero team of the same name, created by Steven T. Seagle and Duncan Rouleau. The film is scheduled to debut Nov. 7, and centers on robotics prodigy Hiro Hamada and his robot friend Baymax as they join forces with a team of new crime fighters to save the futuristic city of San Fransokyo (a hybrid San Francisco and Tokyo) from a criminal plot.


    I appreciate that one of the main characters is not a white guy.


    More on Big Hero 6:

    When the Japanese government wanted a team of state-sanctioned superheroes at their disposal, a top-secret consortium of politicians and business entities known as the Giri was formed to recruit and train potential superhuman operatives for “Big Hero 6.” Despite reservations by some members of the Giri, Silver Samurai, a freelance ronin and former bodyguard of the terrorist Viper, was appointed as field commander. Secret agent Honey Lemon, inventor of the nanotechnology-based Power Purse from which she could access any object, also agreed to join the team. The tough-talking GoGo Tomago, able to transubstantiate her body into a fiery force blast by uttering her code-name, was released from prison on the condition that she serve on the team. The Machiavellian bureaucrat known only as Mr. Oshima was appointed as the Giri’s spokesperson and coordinated Big Hero 6′s activities.[1]
    Government scientists next identified 13-year-old boy genius Hiro Takachiho as a potential operative. Unimpressed with the Silver Samurai, Hiro declined joining the team until his mother was kidnapped by the Everwraith, the astral embodiment of all those killed in the 1945 nuclear attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Joined by Baymax, a synthetic bodyguard capable of synthforming into a dragon which was created by Hiro using the brain engrams of his dead father, Hiro reluctantly joined forces with Big Hero 6 to prevent Everwraith from slaughtering millions in downtown Tokyo. During the battle, Big Hero 6 was joined by Sunfire, Japan’s premiere superhero and a mutant with the ability to super-heat matter into plasma, who was instrumental in the Everwraith’s defeat.

    I don’t know how close the movie will stick to the source material (Hiro sounds reasonably close to his comic book inspiration so far).


  61. 61
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    Have you ever read Christopher Priests’ run on Black Panther?

    yep. I did. I loved Thor, probably mostly because I was a mythology buff as a kid. Looking back I realize that even though I did like Thor for himself, the issues I treasured *all* had Sif playing a major role (which she does in the original BRB/Scuttlebutt arc, I might add).

    But other than Thor, the only white-man hero I can remember sticking out of the crowd for me was Hawkeye, and only for a brief period of his writing (I wish I could remember who was writing that period, or even which specific period it was). The rest of the white-guy heroes were mostly uninteresting to me. Not bad. It’s not that I **disliked** them. But with LC H4H and Misty Knight and Monica Rambeau (who was, IIRC already a friction’ Lieutenant!!!! in her local police force before she became Captain Marvel! – black woman makes lieutenant in major city police force in 1978??? Go you!) and Storm and Phoenix and, let me be specific here, Shadowcat, and Moira McTaggart and Black Panther (holy crap, did I almost forget BP?) and Sunspot and Xi’an Coy Manh and Danielle Moonstar and Rahne (the last four ALL ON ONE TEAM in the only team with majority PoC AND majority women I saw until, like, well, still) …

    …well, you can see why I wasn’t scrambling to buy issues of Cap or Spidey.

    The FF made me sick until Sue got written by Byrne and took out the entire rest of the team. [Think of what he did with the Sprite/Shadowcat transition and you can see a trend]. Now *that* as epic…and should have had an effect on team dynamics forever, but no, the fact that she can take them all out at once seems to have just been forgotten. Because, y’know, white guys gotta be the stars.

    hell, even though Janet Van Dyne made me uncomfortable when she was with the men of the avengers (as, occasionally but more rarely, did Jocasta) I couldn’t wait for the pages when she was doing something heroic with the guys off-screen. Even when it was bashing Avengers commo-gear back into shape (actually, I think she might have been blasting a hole in the side of a crashed quintet to get to the commo gear, but never mind. It was a while ago, and that’s accurate enough) and not directly confronting a super-villain. It was clear that writers didn’t want her to upstage the guys…so when they were in panel, her dialog was more deferential, more often coquettish, more often just dang problematic. But she had to justify being an Avenger, not just a super-hero, but an elite super-hero, so the writers didn’t have any problem with her kicking butt as long as it wasn’t emasculating some *guy* on the Avengers.

    I want to see Avengers: Defeated! where the whole team is taken out and immobilized in a hidden base, necessitating an ad-hoc group of heroes to come together. Black Widow gets a coded message back to SHIELD, but without the Avengers, the Power that took out the Avengers is running rampant and SHIELD doesn’t have the resources to assault the base – maybe political factors and accountability owed to national governments that provide funding affects this. So, of course, Misty Knight gets a message from her SHIELD contacts (a leak sort-of-authorized by Maria Hill to provide Fury plausible deniability) and starts getting some heroes together. Obviously Luke Cage is in. Monica Rambeau, having a beer with Misty when the message comes in will of course join. They quickly contact Storm, who brings along her husband. The FF isn’t available, but they catch Jennifer over at Baxter Building, so they have a green-skinned titan. Danielle gets a call from Storm, but most of the Xs are away. Not knowing what’s going on with the new Ms Marvel, she gets roped in, thinking that they are getting Carol Danvers.

    The force does some detective work (y’know, they want to go get the one slip of paper that they need to find the hidden base and the bad guys, instead of sending one person with a pocket lighter to the office to get rid of the evidence, sends 60 goons and 4 bad asses to get beaten up), then mounts their assault. On the quinjet’s descent, they take a missile hit, with LC & BP thrown clear and the quinjet traveling so fast that they are left to save themselves from the fall and the ocean while Misty, Ororo, Jennifer, Danielle, Monica and Kamala try to crash land the plane and take on the baddies.

    Things are furiously awesome, but the 6 are clearly facing defeat until Danielle manages to get through to Asgard. Sif comes in a boom of rainbows, throws Dani a sword and *wham* she gets her valkyrie powers back…just in time to save her body from a wound that would have killed her more vulnerable, natural body. Getting Dani back from the edge of death and adding Sif greatly changes the battle – especially since Jennifer Walters, Esq. can no longer be triple-teamed. While Monica is incredibly useful in a fight, with Sif here and Dani powered-up, she takes on the role she does best: scouting at light speed while her teammates mop up the opposition (dramatically taking one or two out on her way off the battlefield, of course).

    With Monica’s intel, they break into the center of the fortress, and, in a total reversal of expectations, actually save the earth from some global-destruction threat without releasing the Avengers. The BigBoss, EndofLevel is revealed. You may have stopped BBEL’s plan, but resources can be reacquired and with just punching this button, the avengers all die…assuring eventual victory anyway. Buahahahahaha.

    Misty Knight is way overmatched, but tries to join the fight anyway, and nearly gets killed. Dragging her wounded body around the edge of the fight, she frantically re-wires her damaged arm, writes a little code on the fly and manages to release one – just one – Avenger: Carol.

    The battle which would certainly have gone in favor of Monica, Jennifer, Ororo, Dani, Sif & Kamala had all of them been fresh, instead sees them losing. But with Misty tagging out for Carol, things really change. Carol can’t take the BBEL by herself, but gets Sif, Jennifer, Monica & Ororo to hold off the BBEL while she plans with Dani. Dani, having failed at misdirection in the earlier part of the battle with BBEL had been relying on simply playing the badass. But with Sif and Jennifer, she wasn’t adding too much. Carol recognizes some Stark tech or some Kree tech (or maybe it’s Pym Tech and Janet was released with Carol, but doesn’t have her devices and so what she adds is crucial knowledge of Pym Tech weaknesses). Armed with new knowledge, and right after Sif and Jennifer topple BBEL, congratulate a little too soon, and start screaming, “When is that plan going to start coming together!?” Dani successfully deceives BBEL, creating a crucial moment of vulnerability, at which point Carol, Monica and Ororo together pound as much energy as they can into BBEL, ending the fight.

    If Janet was already rescued, she goes about releasing the other Avengers. If not, now that Misty Knight has more time, Dani helps her limp over to a control board where she goes to work releasing them.

    After a little denouement, the credits roll until:

    Entirely surrounded by water, you see two Black faces:

    BP: Soooo… just bullet proof?
    LC: Well, and I’m pretty strong.
    BP: But no swimming?
    LC: [treading water, looks annoyed]: Sweet Christmas, if I was some kinda “waterman” don’t you think I’d be out of here already? I notice you can’t fly.
    BP: I’m a king. I’ve got jets.

    BP: And Ororo carries me when I need to get somewhere quickly.
    LC: Yeah, where the hell’s Ororo?
    BP: She’ll be here.

    BP: Soon. …I think. [digs in costume with one hand while treading water with other limbs] Want a power bar? [package say, "PowerMan Snack Bars!"]


    Rescue team after missile hit? 4 women of color, 2 white women.
    Fighting team after Misty tags out: 3 women of color, 3 white women.
    If you add in Janet, you get a total of 4 women of color, 4 white women saving the day.

    I’d pay actual movie theater prices to see that shit.

  62. 62
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    Speaking of comic book movies that need to be made, when are we going to see Greg Rucka’s Whiteout?

    And, Tony!, no, I haven’t read the Avengers books in quite a while. Any particular story arc I should look for? A best writer?

  63. 63
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Have you read Avengers: Siege?
    It was a multi part epic toward the tail end of Roger Stern’s run (he created Monica Rambeau and put her on the team and made her leader and did *sooooo* much wonderful stuff with her character, such as standing between Hercules and Namor). He had Jan stand up to the Absorbing Man–and take him down! It was one of the first times I ever went DAMN! Here was this character who could shrink down to wasp size (I could write a lot about the passive abilities of Silver Age Marvel women–argh!), fly and shoot energy blasts, taking on a guy who has gone toe to toe with a god. And she beat him!

  64. 64
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    btw, Storm and BP aren’t married any more. I’m fine with that, as their relationship was only hinted at in the past, and not developed sufficiently IMHO to justify their marriage.

    As for current Avengers books, I’ve only been reading collections on my pad, and those are stories from last year. The current Mighty Avengers book is the one headlined by a cast who are predominately PoC (in fact, Spider-Man and She-Hulk were/are there, and IIRC, they’re the only two white people on the team). Blade, Blue Marvel, Monica (going by Spectrum), Cage, the new Power Man, and White Tiger round out the team. 6 PoC’s. I haven’t gotten the collection of the first 6 issues, but I’m dying to. Only drawback is the artist: Greg Land. He’s very static and his use of models as references is clear in his art. His art just isn’t dynamic for a superhero comic.

    Also, I like your story idea :)

  65. 65
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    (last thread)

    As I watched Sherlock last night I noticed one of the tropes of toxic masculinity. One of the running jokes of the show is that Watson has to constantly deny being in a relationship with Holmes. Because two guys can obviously only be close to each other and love each other when they’re gay. Conventional masculinity does not allow for that kind of relationship among them.

    I was pleasantly surprised to see the opposite in an episode of Fringe I watched last night. Olivia Dunham (by god I love her character) get a new partner, Lincoln Lee, a former FBI agent. Lee’s FBI partner, Robert, was killed in the episode and Lee grieves. No one accuses him of being gay. No one questions his masculinity because he’s showing emotion. He’s simply a guy who’s close friend died and he was noticeably upset and grieving. I really liked that.

  66. 66
    Lynna, OM

    Good point, Crip Dyke, in comment #46. That was sloppy of me. Sorry.

  67. 67
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    He had Jan…

    D’oh! That’s right. Name is Janet, but goes by Jan.

    …stand up to the Absorbing Man–and take him down!

    Something is telling me I should remember that, but I don’t. I don’t think I’ve read it. (maybe I heard about it but didn’t read it so the reference rings a bell, but there’s no memory to wake up?)

    But, damn, I want to see it.

    btw, Storm and BP aren’t married any more. I’m fine with that,

    I was annoyed with it when it happened. I *hoped* that they did enough backstory and slow development over time that the wedding would make sense, but feared that they wouldn’t. I heard from someone else that they really hadn’t. So then my knee-jerk annoyance was retroactively justified.

    If this wasn’t seriously developed over years, then I’m glad they are unmarried, however if happened.

    But still, I want to see BP kick some on-screen ass, so he can still come along for all the fights before the missile strike.

    Oh, and BTW: I have a theory why we haven’t seen BP in the Avengers movies. You’re not going to like it: They already have Black Widow, and
    1) two characters with “black” in the name
    2) two characters whose schtick is really acrobatic HtH combat + a few high-tech devices in reserve
    3) that would be **2** characters on the team that aren’t white men
    4) he beat Cap. More than once. Cap has to be the best at **something** or why have him on the team?

    I figure they will probably add a little cultural diversity by having one white guy learn Tibetan mysticism so he can start throwing spells around and one white guy study Chinese martial arts, thereby becoming …a ninja (WTFBBQ?).

    Oh, and I’m glad that IF will be only 1/4 of the series and even more glad that we’ll get genuine, LC H4H episodes. I can’t tell you how long I’ve been waiting for a movie starring Luke. Really. Since 1976, I think. 1977 at the latest. Like, as soon as I read superhero comics for the first time.

  68. 68
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    If you go looking for those Avengers issues-This is the collection you’re looking for.


    Oh, and BTW: I have a theory why we haven’t seen BP in the Avengers movies. You’re not going to like it:

    It may be irrational, I have confidence in Joss Whedon that this isn’t the reason. I do remember reading that for Avengers 2, he wanted characters with a move diverse power set. Something about how most of the characters in the first movie were ‘punchy’ people. That’s one reason he chose Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch. I cannot wait to see how he handles Pietro’s character. Also, I hope he touches on Pietro’s overprotection of Wanda, but does it in a good way (i.e. lets Pietro be that way, but treats Wanda as someone who doesn’t need protection and is empowered) .


    Oh, and I just remembered, if you want a good, nay *great* Avengers book, check out Uncanny Avengers. In the wake of the X-Men vs Avengers battle, Captain America decides that the Avengers did not do enough to support mutants, and creates a Unity team comprised of himself, Havok, Scarlet Witch, Wolverine, Thor, Rogue, Wasp, Wonder Man and Sunfire. The idea is to show the world that mutants and humans can work together (I have to avoid spoilers so I can’t tell you much more than this). Cap gives the leadership reigns to Havok as well. The last trade I read ended in such a stunning, OMG way that my jaw dropped. Moreover, while I don’t know if it was deliberate, so much of the last story arc reminded me of the inability of mankind to get along and work to stop adversely affecting the climate and reverse what we’ve done. The themes in the book are quite relevant, and that makes it that much better IMO.

    It’s written by Rick Remender and has had rotating artists. He’s telling a long form story that is *strong* with characterization.

  69. 69
    Tony! The Queer Shoop


    I’ve never been to a Comic Book convention (it’s hard to believe given that I’ve been a fan for ~33 out of my 38 years), but I came across the above link and thought the first image (a woman dressed as Nightwing) was so cool. Years ago, I stopped dressing up for Halloween. It just didn’t seem like something I wanted to do any longer (plus, at the time, I associated dressing up with being a child–I don’t think like that any longer). Now I kinda want to go to a con one day and dress up. I’m thinking Carol Danvers’ current costume as Captain Marvel.

  70. 70
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    Assuming that this is the current version of the costume, L can make one for quite reasonable rates. :) (You know, in future, when you’re working again).

  71. 71
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    It *is* the current costume and I would absolutely be down for that!

  72. 72

    Is it out of line to say that would be pretty hot, Tony?

  73. 73
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    Foods. I maek them. :3

  74. 74
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    No. Not out of line at all. And thank you :-)

  75. 75

    Social media accounts paint chilling portrait of Las Vegas cop killers

    The ADL says in the past five years, there have been 43 separate incidences of violence between domestic extremists and U.S. law enforcement. All but four of the attacks were perpetrated by right-wing extremists, according to the ADL.


    There have been 43 violent domestic terrorist incidents in the last 5 years. 39 of them involved right wingnuts/fundie xians.

    There is a terrorism problem in the USA for sure. The vast majority of them involve angry white people. People are starting to talk about the US’s Euro-american problem.

  76. 76

    Well I made it back from our trip. Catching up on comments. Snacking on some raw kohlrabi. It is delish. No nuns to be seen this time. The Methow River is beautiful. The Columbia River is Mighty. Twisp, WA is super weird. Nice campground though. Another week begins, but at least tomorrow is Box Day, and in this one we will have our first Garlic Scapes, a most delicious part of the garlic plant. I can’t wait. Anyone have any recipes they would like to share?

  77. 77
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Sadly, I have no recipes to share. I hope you had a pleasant time on your trip.


    Zambia attempted to enter the space race in the 1960s:


    Cristina De Middel’s new photography exhibition, called “The Afronauts,” explores the space program started in 1964 by a schoolteacher who dreamt of sending Zambians to space at the height of the space race between the Soviet Union and the United States. The exhibit, now on display at the Dillon Gallery in New York City, mixes found artifacts from the time and De Middel’s photos inspired by the short-lived space program.

    “The beautiful part of it and the part of the story that I really focus on is not what they actually did, because their training was very rudimentary,” De Middel told SPACE.com. “I don’t know, but I don’t think they were really, really serious about going. Everything happened in 1964, that is when Zambia gained independence, and they wanted to show the rest of the world that they were a big country, as big as the ones that were doing the space race at the time.” [See photos of 'The Afronauts' exhibition in New York]

    The photos used in “The Afronauts” were taken or doctored by De Middel, but a news article and letters at the beginning and end of the exhibit are original, yet reprinted.


    The letter quoted Nkoloso describing his somewhat unorthodox astronaut training methods, which included rolling the would-be spacefarers downhill in a 40-gallon oil drum to simulate the experience of spaceflight. He also had them swing on a rope, cutting it while the trainees were in midair to help them experience free fall.



    A group of international astronomers and astrobiologists have published new research that assesses the possibility of complex life on other worlds. Their calculation in the Milky Way alone is staggering: 100 million worlds in our home galaxy may harbor complex alien life. One. Hundred. Million.

    It is a lot—although maybe a bit disappointing when you consider that a) there are 17 billion Earth-sized worlds in our galaxy alone and b) these worlds are likely to be too far away from us (unless we can get a warp drive.) Also keep in mind that, according to the authors, “this study does not indicate that complex life exists on that many planets [...] only the conditions to support [complex alien] life.”

    100 million worlds possibly housing complex life? I wonder if god treats them as his chosen people too.


    Inside the municipal garage of this small lakefront city, parked next to the hefty orange snowplow, sits an even larger truck, this one painted in desert khaki. Weighing 30 tons and built to withstand land mines, the armored combat vehicle is one of hundreds showing up across the country, in police departments big and small.

    The 9-foot-tall armored truck was intended for an overseas battlefield. But as President Obama ushers in the end of what he called America’s “long season of war,” the former tools of combat — M-16 rifles, grenade launchers, silencers and more — are ending up in local police departments, often with little public notice.

    During the Obama administration, according to Pentagon data, police departments have received tens of thousands of machine guns; nearly 200,000 ammunition magazines; thousands of pieces of camouflage and night-vision equipment; and hundreds of silencers, armored cars and aircraft.

    The equipment has been added to the armories of police departments that already look and act like military units. Police SWAT teams are now deployed tens of thousands of times each year, increasingly for routine jobs. Masked, heavily armed police officers in Louisiana raided a nightclub in 2006 as part of a liquor inspection. In Florida in 2010, officers in SWAT gear and with guns drawn carried out raids on barbershops that mostly led only to charges of “barbering without a license.”

    I really don’t understand why a police department would need a 9″ armored truck.

  78. 78
    Tony! The Queer Shoop


    A Fort Smith, Arkansas police officer has resigned after being arrested and placed on administrative leave for firing a gun inside his home and holding a gun to a five-year-old child’s head.

    Officer Naaman Adcock had been placed on administrative leave with pay while Sequoyah County authorities conducted an internal investigation into the incident.

    County authorities said Adcock fired several rounds into a wall inside his home after he got into a drunken dispute with his wife, Tabatha. Both children at the scene stated Naaman Adcock put a gun to the head of Tabatha Adcock’s son and threatened to shoot him, according to the report.

    He was arrested on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, possession of a firearm while intoxicated, reckless conduct with a firearm, felonious pointing of a firearm and child endangerment. The County confirms they took nine guns from Adcock’s possession after the arrest.

    This was a police officer. Someone who is (or was) charged with ‘serving and protecting’…and he held a gun to a child’s head. He shouldn’t have been anywhere near a gun, or people for that matter. He should be fired and in jail.
    I bet people consider him to be a responsible gun owner too.


    That story may disgust you, but this one is heartwarming:

    Spaulding was called to the gym, where instead of being met with a mess, he was presented with a check for $1,900 – money that the students had collected all year with the intention of raising enough to fly Spaulding and his family to Italy, where his son Jacob was stationed with the U.S. Navy. It had been a year since Spaulding saw Jacob and had never met his new grandchild, now 2 months old. Spaulding was overwhelmed:

    What an incredibly kind thing to do. That’s compassion. That’s caring for others. That’s some of the best of humanity!

  79. 79
    Lynna, OM

    Rachel Maddow explores the backgrounds and political dispositions of two anti-government extremists who killed two Las Vegas police officers and a third person before killing themselves in a deadly spree on Sunday.


  80. 80
  81. 81

    FossilFishy email sent to you.

    I’m still suffering. The thing with most mental health issues is that there are no physical signs. If I was feeling as unwell physically, I’d be off sick from work and no-one would bat an eyelid.

    Daughter still has the same problem as yesterday. But still no other symptoms. All very odd.

  82. 82

    Maybe she’s feeling some kind of low-key stress, too? Dunno, riffing off you or something? Kids are awfully perceptive like that, especially little ones, plus they’re not very good at explaining themselves or putting labels to their own feelings… Mine go the super-high, sudden, unexplainable fever route, usually. Perhaps more *hugs* for both of you?
    I’m sorry you’re having such a terrible time of it. :( I hope things get better very soon!

  83. 83


    So, sharing is not a good idea? Or is it just being implemented the wrong way? This version sounds slightly libertarian to me…


    I really want to go to Toronto-and-area this weekend. But with my grandma gone, we don’t have a default place-to-stay anymore. :( This makes me sad.

  84. 84

    (PS carlie See email! You too, Cait!)

  85. 85

    rq maybe she does detect a difference in me. But her digestive issue started before I noticed my depression kick in. It’s possible that she can pick up the signs before I even know I something is happening., but I’m not sure.

  86. 86
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    There are days when I don’t mind that thete’s several of us in the same room and then there are days when I can’t decide who I’m going to strangle first- the whistler or the chair squeaker.

  87. 87

    Beatrice ideally get them to strangle each other. Problem solved and none of that messy explaining to the police.

  88. 88


  89. 89
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought


    I like your idea.
    Now to figure out how to turn them on each other…

  90. 90
    David Marjanović

    Regional word for potatoe would be “Grumbeere” (beere as in pear, not as in berry)

    Independently, various versions of Grundbirn are common in southern Austria, leading to krumpir in Slovene, krompir in Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian/Montenegrin, krumpli in Hungarian and kumpir in Turkish.

    100 million worlds possibly housing complex life?

    Considering the history of life here on Earth, I’m not buying it.

    And keep in mind that “complex” doesn’t mean “intelligent”.

    So, sharing is not a good idea?

    The sharing economy described in the article is creepy.

  91. 91

    Neatness – an inventor sets up an experiment to determine whether Vermeer could have used small mirrors to paint photo-realistically, and the experiment involves recreating an entire room over the course of a year. And also crafting his own lenses.

    The project was filmed throughout and edited by Penn and Teller into a movie called Tim’s Vermeer.


    Looking at Vermeer’s paintings, it seemed to me that he must have had a way to not only trace the shapes, but capture the colors of a projected image. If he could do that, his paintings might be a form of photography, achieved not with film and chemicals, but with the human hand. Vermeer’s paintings might be 350 year-old color photographs.


    The harpsichord in the painting is called a Ruckers virginal. I found a harpsichord expert in Scotland named Grant O’Brien who provided blueprints and patterns to build the instrument. The legs of the instrument turned out to be a few inches too long for my wood lathe so I pulled the lathe out of the milling machine and cut it into two pieces on a band saw. I then bolted both pieces back into the mill, separated by a few inches. Now the lathe could accommodate a longer piece of wood.

  92. 92
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    hugs bassmike

    Thank you all for your love and support.
    I am truely privileged: I have a wonderful family apart from that trainwreck called parents, I have a wonderful community and I know where I can go when things get really tough.

    Uff, I’ve got a full 10 minutes to sit down between college, grocery shopping, picking up kids and going to work. I need coffee

  93. 93
    David Marjanović

    LOL!!! Spam claiming to come from [email protected]: “The choice of a new generation:New inhibitors for May 2014″!

    “Eric Prokopi, the ‘one-man black market in fossils’, given lenient sentence on felony counts for his cooperation with attorneys”: The Guardian (short), The New Yorker (long and detailed).

    Petition to implement this plan to stop the rape epidemic in India.

    Add your voice to say it’s time for the Waltons to act responsibly and time for an independent board chair.

    Join me and speak out for change at Walmart: Tell Rob Walton to resign as chair of the board.”

  94. 94
    David Marjanović

    Annnnd another petition that assumes everybody lives in the USA:

    Governor Corbett is at it again.

    Over the Memorial Day weekend, Corbett shamelessly issued an executive order to open the doors to fracking in our state parks and forests.

    This means Pennsylvania state parks could become the epicenter of drilling and destructive fracking.

    I’m calling on Gov. Corbett to immediately stop his plans to drill in Pennsylvania parks.

    [large font, personalized link] David, sign our petition to demand Corbett overturn his order to allow drilling in our parks >>

    Look, Corbett won’t lift a finger unless we send him a loud and clear message. That means getting 10,000 STRONG to raise their voice and demand action.

    Please help us by signing your name.

    [large font] 10,000 STRONG: http://action.kevinstrouse.com/Protect-Our-Parks

    Thanks for taking action,


    “Kevin” is Kevin Strouse, who wants to become or stay a member of Congress and wants you to donate to his campaign.

  95. 95
    David Marjanović

    Immediately got an e-mail with the subject “Forward this to 3 PA friends”.

  96. 96
    Lynna, OM

    David M. @95, I really dislike that. You sign a petition and then find that your email address is used to send you junk. Unfortunately, you can probably expect an unending stream of junk.

    In other news, we have crossed another line that makes US Americans look like uncaring, illogical humans, with a government run by a bunch of dunderheads. Three million citizens who are unemployed do not qualify for unemployment benefits. For each of these individuals this is a disaster, for the USA in general this is an economic disaster that affects everyone. And the fault lies squarely on the shoulders of Republicans in Congress.

    The number of Americans who would qualify for federal long-term unemployment benefits — a program Congress allowed to expire in December — has now hit 3 million, according to Democrats on the House Ways and Means Committee. [...]

    Under the federal unemployment system, someone who loses a job typically receives unemployment benefits from the state for 26 weeks. But in 2008, Congress voted to provide additional aid that made checks available for as long as 99 weeks in the hardest-hit states. Last year, lawmakers cut the maximum benefit to 73 weeks. Then, at the end of December, Congress let federal aid lapse altogether.

    Washington Post link.

    This state of affairs is a first. No previous Congress has allowed extended benefits to lapse when the unemployment rate is as high as it is now.

    As Steve Benen of the Maddow Blog notes:


    Senate Democrats have made repeated attempts to extend jobless aid, and while most of those efforts were blocked by a Republican filibuster, in early April, the upper chamber approved a bipartisan compromise to extend unemployment benefits.

    House Republicans soon after announced it would ignore the bill, refusing to even allow members to vote on it, even after independent economists said the measure would be worth hundreds of thousands of American jobs.

    If Republicans oppose the Senate Democratic approach, what’s the House GOP’s alternative solution? It doesn’t have one. There is no alternative bill. […]

  97. 97
    Lynna, OM

    In my comment #96 I forgot to include one of the Republican reasons for not extending unemployment benefits. We’ll let a Republican from Texas explain:

    Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Texas) recently argued that it’s “immoral” to extend jobless aid to “long-term unemployments”

  98. 98

    The experiment of frying kohlrabi…

    I first read that as as flying kohlrabi, and wondered if you’d run off to join The Flying Kohlrabi Family Kircus..

    …has worked fairly well

    Wait 24 hours or so and see from which end it emerges, and at what velocity.

  99. 99

    I really don’t understand why a police department would need a 9″ [sic] armored truck.

    Some of the male police officers, and certainly some of the male supervisors, think their pensises are too small.

  100. 100
    Lynna, OM

    Moments of Mormon Madness, modesty for females category.


    A reporter had to sport a winter jacket after she was barred from a Utah courthouse for wearing a sleeveless blouse.

    It was Morgan Briesmaster’s first time at the Ogden’s 2nd District Court covering a new beat for the Standard Examiner, but a guard wouldn’t let her past security to cover a story because her seemingly professional blouse violated the dress code.

    “He probably just had a bad day,” Briesmaster told the Daily News, but “I was shocked that I couldn’t do my job because I wasn’t wearing capped sleeves.”

    Her boss compared the incident to officials at Heber City’s Wasatch High School that Photoshopped students’ clothing in portraits that violated their dress code.

    “Unlike administrators at Wasatch High, we can’t just paint capped sleeves on our reporters,” Andrew Howell wrote in a June 6 article.

    The blouse showed off Briesmaster’s shoulders, but not her chest. A photo taken by the Examiner shows the conservative neckline went right up to her clavicle. […]

    Photo at the link.

  101. 101
    Tony! The Queer Shoop


    I’m starting to wonder how many people in Utah are aware of these Mormon inspired dress codes or the stupid Zion curtain, or any of the multitude of ways the mormon church is enmeshed in the state.

    (stupid laptop doesn’t recognize mormon with a lowercase ‘m’, but it does with an uppercase ‘M’)

  102. 102
    David Marjanović

    Photo of Michigan Republicans reaching out to, and understanding, women.

    The incredible shrinking Karl Rove“. Contains a video of what it calls his meltdown on election night 2012; I can’t see a meltdown, just a bit of denial.

    What “guns everywhere” means.

    I’m shocked – shocked! – to find that, allegedly, there’s selling of votes going on in this establishment.

    I knew that Japanese soldiers captured in Iraq were shamed for daring to survive when they were released. I didn’t know that about the same is going on with Bowe Bergdahl.

    Las Vegas shooter confirmed to be participant in Bundy Ranch standoff“…

  103. 103

    Bobby Jindal Signs Bill Blocking Lawsuits Against Oil and Gas Companies http://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2014/06/06/bobby-jindal-signs-bill-to-block-lawsuits-against-oil-and-gas-companies
    “Rejecting the advice of his own attorney general and dozens of legal scholars, Louisiana governor and potential presidential contender Bobby Jindal effectively blocked a New Orleans-area levee board from suing oil and gas companies for allegedly destroying the state’s coasts – and in so doing, may have also derailed state and local claims against BP for damages and tax revenue lost following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill.”

    (And by “frivolous lawsuits,” he means any lawsuit that his benefactors might actually lose.)
    “It’s good, pro-business laws like this that have made states like Mississippi the engine of the American Economy.”

  104. 104
    David Marjanović

    What the FBI considered terrorism during the years of Captain Unelected. Several people very similar to Cliven Bundy are on that list.

    Commentary on this NBC article and what’s considered normal these days. By now everyone knows there was a Good Guy With A Gun present at the shooting in Las Vegas, right?

  105. 105
    David Marjanović

    David M. @95, I really dislike that. You sign a petition and then find that your email address is used to send you junk. Unfortunately, you can probably expect an unending stream of junk.

    Not “probably”. I’ve been getting that stream since 2012. I’ve written to a few of the organizations in question, telling them that 1) I’m not a citizen or permanent resident of the US, so I can’t (legally) donate to any political cause in the US; 2) I don’t in fact live in the state of New York, it’s just the web forms of some petitions that force me to pretend so because they don’t let me put “D-” in front of my zip code. No reply ever.

    Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Texas) recently argued that it’s “immoral” to extend jobless aid to “long-term unemployments”

    Protestant work ethic, combined with faith in the willfully ignorant idea that jobs grow on trees.

    Wait 24 hours or so and see from which end it emerges, and at what velocity.

    It’s been 24 hours, and nothing has happened! :-) Even though I know people who’d have had such a reaction to the sheer amount of butter I used.

  106. 106

    It’s been 24 hours, and nothing has happened!

    Ah, you are(? it is?) going for the “all directions at once” option, also known as explode.

    I know people who’d have had such a reaction to the sheer amount of butter I used.

    Exploding Marjanović with added butternapalm! Have you been taking lessons from the mildly deranged penguin?

  107. 107
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    *hugs* for the situation with parents and ancestors.

    Speaking of Rucka, where’s my Queen and Country movie (or better yet series)?

  108. 108
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Here’s some casting news about the upcoming Daredevil Netflix series (DD will be the first series out of the gate-in 2015):

    Veteran actor Vincent D’Onofrio has been cast as the Kingpin in the upcoming 13-episode “Daredevil” Netflix series, Marvel announced on Tuesday. D’Onofrio is the second actor announced for the show, following Charlie Cox in the title role of Matt Murdock/Daredevil.


  109. 109
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought


    Independently, various versions of Grundbirn are common in southern Austria, leading to krumpir in Slovene, krompir in Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian/Montenegrin, krumpli in Hungarian and kumpir in Turkish.

    That would be krompir in Slovene/Bosnian/Serbian/Montenegrian and krumpir in Croatian. While in some regions of Croatia, krompir is used, krumpir is standard.

  110. 110
    David Marjanović

    The organizers of this petition want to reach a million signers, and they’ve come pretty close! It’s for *gulp* a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United.

    While in some regions of Croatia, krompir is used, krumpir is standard.

    Ah. I’m not surprised. :-)

    I’m surprised I got Slovene wrong, though. Well, thanks.

  111. 111
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought


    Well, there could be regions of Slovenia where they say krumpir. But the other is definitely standard.

  112. 112
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    John Boehner is an asshole.

    Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) was asked Tuesday if he considers the Las Vegas shootings on Sunday to be “an act of domestic terrorism.”

    “I — I’m not sure how I’d describe it,” he responded to reporters in the Capitol. “But clearly we had a couple of sick individuals who engaged in a horrific crime. And our hearts go out to those families, especially the families of those two officers who went down.”

    They were anti-government shitheads who wanted to incite a revolution. If that wasn’t terrorism, I’m not sure what is.
    Oh, and that last line pisses me off. Yes, the families of the two police officers deserve support and condolences, but no more or no less than the families of the all other victims of shooting crimes. Having a badge should not entitle anyone to more respect.

  113. 113
  114. 114
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    I ♥ Amanda Marcotte:


    But the argument that we are “here” to reproduce is nonsense. We aren’t here for any reason. We’re here because a series of accidents led to the development of life on this little rock we call “Earth” and it evolved and because those genes that propagate happen to continue to exist while those that don’t didn’t. But “continuing to exist” isn’t a purpose. Propagation isn’t a purpose. It’s a thing that happens. There’s nothing in my particular DNA sequence that is transcendent or meaningful. And even if there was, having children doesn’t really do much to preserve it. Each only will only be 50% me. Each grandchild, only 25%. And so until my magnificent, oh-so-important DNA sequencing is thoroughly reshuffled. The fact that propagation is a thing that happens has no more moral significance than the fact that gravity is a thing that happens. Just because we all walk around on the ground and always have doesn’t mean that you’re wrong if you suddenly start to fly.*

  115. 115

    I hate it when the kids throw tantrums and generally do not behave as they should.
    I hate it even more when some people see this as an opportunity to explain to me how I should do things differently.
    (Yeah, I’m living with my dad again. It’s not nearly as exciting as it could be.)

  116. 116
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    aw geez rq I’m sorry.

  117. 117
    morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor

    I awoke this morning before sunrise and did not want to get up. Eventually I fell back to sleep and had a dream. I usually recall my dreams easily. Unfortunately for the last several decades I’ve only had nightmares, and those nearly every night. At times I wish I could remove my head and place it on a shelf so I can get some rest.

    But this was different. I was in England and I had to get a beautiful horse home to the U.S. She wasn’t a large horse. She was the sleekest blue-black without a speck of white. She was gentle, a little shy. Her name was Blackbird… I called her Birdy.

    The machinations involved in flying a horse between continents were exhausting. I was being meticulous, and the long flight was rough. I was nearly panicked with worry. The airline would not let me travel in the cargo hold with her.

    When we disembarked we were met by a large group of people on horseback who demanded that we saddle-up and follow along. I was intimidated, so we followed orders. After a long ride, approaching dark, I asked Birdy, “Are you tired?” She quietly said “Yes, I’m very tired.”

    We left the group who became angry. There was much further to go. I said no, we are going home. We came to a big beautiful barn and went inside. It was clean and smelled of fresh hay. I took Birdy to a stall, gave her water and hay and carrots. Then I gave her a warm bath and brushed and brushed and brushed. I put a clean blanket on her back and kissed her nose and told her that as long as she was with me she would be safe and happy and loved. And she would be with me forever. She smiled (I know, horses don’t smile) and went to sleep. I laid down in a corner in the hay and was overcome with a tsunami of love. I imagine it was akin to the primal love that parents can have for a newborn. An astonishing love. And then I awoke.

    I love this dream.

  118. 118
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Anyone know how trustworthy these flea treatments are?

    Also, one of my cats has some kind of skin condition. She keeps biting at her back side and scratching around her neck. I’ve seen no fleas (I check often after that flea problem from last year). She has visible skin irritation from the biting and scratching. Obviously without a job (or car) I can’t take her to a vet. I’m kinda lost on what I can do to help her.

  119. 119
    SC (Salty Current), OM

    Eric Cantor seems to have lost his primary.

  120. 120

    While perfectly capable of fending for himself, my dad seems incapable of any kind of kitchen work when there is a female* in the house. Dishes are used like he’s never/rarely had to wash them (which, you know…). He’s never noticed before that store-bought cucumbers for salad are always peeled because he’s never done it himself. ‘Assistance’ is reduced to polite questions about EET and “are you sure that is enough / too much?”, and it’s perfectly fine to sit at the dinner table doing nothing for 20 minutes while waiting for dinner to arrive.

    * Term used consciously.

    I know, my life is hard.

  121. 121
  122. 122
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Sorry to hear that. How long are you going to be staying with your dad?

  123. 123
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    That story is…bizarre. Sometimes headline articles are misleading. This was not one of those times.
    Glad to hear no one was harmed.

  124. 124
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    …I guess I need to stop buying tickets for things based on plans with friends. Or at least, this friend in particular.

  125. 125

    Another week and a half, probably, and then some more later, but at least then Husband will be around to buffer things. And my mom, and at least two of my brothers. And my sister.
    It’s not all terrible, it’s just really, really frustrating.

  126. 126

    Positive message: I missed the beginning of the conversation, but it had to do with god, because I heard my dad asking Eldest, “What about the meteors? Who created them? Or did they just develop on their own?” and Eldest was all, “Yes, of course!” Then I walked in and the conversation ended, but I was very proud in that moment. Though I couldn’t say so openly. :P

  127. 127
    Rob Grigjanis

    rq @120: That seems like standard Latvian behaviour. Luckily for me, my dad wasn’t like that.

    When I accompanied my dad to Latvia in the early 90s to visit his family for the first time since WWII, we stayed with mum’s aunt for a few days in Liepāja. One of us spilled some sugar on the floor, and we both started to clean it up, only to be scolded by auntie, because men didn’t do that.

    Then, staying with mum’s cousin in Rīga, at dinner her husband ordered her to cut his pickles, which were sitting right in front of him while she was busy cooking. Dad and I looked at each other, gobsmacked.

  128. 128

    That, on the other hand, seems pretty extreme behaviour. :/ But for some reason, I am not surprised…
    My dad’s a Latvian-Catholic cross, though. So yeah, standard behaviour. Doesn’t make it any less frustrating, though. :P
    (Liepāja’s a beautiful city, by the way. I was there a couple of weekends ago with the choir, and it has a great atmosphere – half rundown, half modern, half historical charm…)


    A dinosaur family tree that is probably full of mistakes, but I like it, okay?

  129. 129
    Dhorvath, OM

    X-post from T-dome. Some people who I seek read here and not there. Indulge my double post if you will.
    I have had better days. Crystalizing experience: I am now quite sure that reputation and plausible deniability are more important to the owner of the business I work for as well as the owner of the chain he franchises from, than satisfying their customers. I had suspicions after the last major complaint from a customer and how it was handled, but I am now quite clear that store reputation means more than individual experience. I may be done. They actually told me not to contact the customer in question to apologize and offer to help while they draw up a response detailing how we have just followed instructions from the customer. Maybe I am not suited to working at all, clearly being my own boss went poorly, and now that I think about it I have railed against every place I have worked.
    Anyways, I come home to find an envelope addressed to me in hand writing. It’s close to my birthday so I think no further, (well I did read the return address but didn’t really think about the number and street,) and open it. It’s from my Uncle. Who died last month. A last bequest to his ‘expert bicycle mechanic nephew’. A very substantial portion of my passion for cycling came from this man. I cry.
    Hugs for anyone reading. I have them to share.

  130. 130
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    Another headline I saw ages ago: Far-Right Extremists Chased Through London By Women Dressed As Badgers.

    Another case of “exactly what it says on the tin.”

  131. 131
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy


  132. 132
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    *hugs* for Dhorvath.

  133. 133


  134. 134
    chigau (違う)


  135. 135
    A. Noyd

    Tony (#118)

    Anyone know how trustworthy these flea treatments are?

    I think if they worked worth a damn, no one would be able to sell Frontline or Advantage. You’re better off using a flea comb on the cats several times a day, concentrating on the neck, under the chin, the base of the tail, and between the back legs. (Although, unless your comb is a halfway decent one with tight teeth, you might not catch any but the biggest, fattest fleas. You can also check for fleas by setting the cats on a piece of white paper and ruffling their fur. If you see a fine black or red-black grit which turns red when you add water, that’s fleas. Or rather, their poop. Flea eggs will show up on dark paper.) If you don’t have any flea combs, they’re usually not too expensive. Some pet stores give them away free as promos. Also, change the cats’ bedding and yours as often as possible and vacuum carpets and furniture every few days.

    If you have any local pet rescues or pet stores that do rescue adoptions, you might call them and ask if they have any donated Frontline or Advantage to give out. Sorry, I don’t know what to do about the itching besides getting rid of the fleas.

  136. 136
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    Aaaaand I’m now apparently having a minor? fight by txt with my de facto primary partner re: my being insufficiently considerate of the feelings of neurotypicals re: neurotypical privilege.

    “Check please.”

  137. 137

    Dhorvath, I would be glad if you would care to accept a delivery of non-Dome, Lounge-appropriate hugs. I’m very sorry about your uncle. I have few enough decent relatives that the loss of one would hit hard; my sympathies – and about the shit going on at work, too. Being practically forced to be a party to shitty dealings like that is disgusting.
    rq, aargh it’s the awful thing about staying with parents as an adult child – that instant slide back into old behaviours and expectations – but yay for Eldest, holding his own!!!!
    But those behaviours of his do sound like a royal pain in the arse, not to mention setting a bad example. Here’s wishing you equanimity and unaffected blood pressure (and I hope your combined rightness drives your Dad nuts).

  138. 138
    WMDKitty -- Survivor

    I’m going in for an abdominal u/s in the morning. No food or drink for the next 10 hours. I do NOT do well with fasting, and that’s before getting into the lovely blood sugar issues I recently discovered. On top of that, NPO also means no AM meds, which means that my anxiety and other issues — especially the pain — will be going full-steam. Oh, and let’s get up at dumb-thirty AM, because we schedule all these things for the MORNING!

    Yeah, I’m just so fucking thrilled.

  139. 139

    Dhorvath You have my sympathies and *hugs*.

    rq I hate the casual sexism that you’re experiencing. I’ve known similar situations and it infuriates me.

    Catching up with the lounge: @ Lynna :

    Moments of Mormon Madness, modesty for females category.


    A reporter had to sport a winter jacket after she was barred from a Utah courthouse for wearing a sleeveless blouse.

    It was Morgan Briesmaster’s first time at the Ogden’s 2nd District Court covering a new beat for the Standard Examiner, but a guard wouldn’t let her past security to cover a story because her seemingly professional blouse violated the dress code.

    “He probably just had a bad day,” Briesmaster told the Daily News, but “I was shocked that I couldn’t do my job because I wasn’t wearing capped sleeves.”

    Her boss compared the incident to officials at Heber City’s Wasatch High School that Photoshopped students’ clothing in portraits that violated their dress code.

    “Unlike administrators at Wasatch High, we can’t just paint capped sleeves on our reporters,” Andrew Howell wrote in a June 6 article.

    The blouse showed off Briesmaster’s shoulders, but not her chest. A photo taken by the Examiner shows the conservative neckline went right up to her clavicle. […]

    Photo at the link.

    So there is somewhere in the US where women don’t have the right to bare arms?

    ……..I’ll get my coat.

  140. 140
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    *hugs* to Dhorvath

    There’s nothing like having a big blue ocean between neself and one’s parents, right? Sorry he’s being such an ass and YAY for eldest being a badass smartass

    *yawn* I’m tired. But only 1 more day until I get my FREE weekend, going to an internet community meeting with my 2 BFFs.
    I also managed to lose my car yesterday. Not really, but since I’m going to that meet-up, I have the big car this week. Only that I temporarily forgot that yesterday and wandered around in the car park looking for the bright red Citroen Berlingo (an easy to find car)…
    After a short amount of PANICCCCC!!! I looked at the keys in my hand and discorvered a lack of Citroen keys with a surplus of Peugeot keys…

  141. 141
  142. 142
  143. 143
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    hugs to Dhorvath & rq…and anyone else in need. I’ve got ‘em to spare today.

  144. 144
    Anne, Old Gumbie Cat

    Hugs to Dhorvath, rq, and anyone else who wants/needs some. I also have cat purrs and snuggles in fluffy Angora and soft (like silk velvet) shorthair (and a lot of fur, but you probably don’t want that).

    Giliell, you are not alone. I drive a silver Toyota Matrix. When we bought my Amazon, the car was new and rare in parking lots, but now there are lots of them. So I have walked up to a silver Matrix and tried to open the door with my key, then realized it’s the wrong car.

    I have a Darwin fishie, several odd bumper stickers and a license plate frame with a Kate Bush quote; one would think that would be enough to identify my car from all the others, but no…

  145. 145

    I’ll take a hug or two if that’s okay.

    Talking of cars: one of my recurring dreams is of going round a car park looking for my car and it not being there….also the breaks failing while trying to stop.

  146. 146
    CaitieCat, getaway driver

    *hugs* gladly offered, fellow bassist. Sorry you’re spending so much time walking the Black Dog. I thought it’d been baying ’round my window less.

  147. 147

    Thanks Caitie . Yeah the Back Dog’s been around here a lot longer than I’d like. I just wish it didn’t visit any of us. However, t is a source of comfort that there are others here who understand the experience and who empathize.

  148. 148

    I have a big stick I can throw the Black Dog in that general direction waaaay across the prairies, there, towards the empty parts of the north… Think it’ll fall for that old trick?

    Thanks for all the *hugs* everyone, I can offer several stacks-worth in return (esp. bassmike).
    I’m feeling pretty good otherwise, dad’s out at the hospital so I took the kids on a tour of the neighbourhood, to see some giant rocks (heh, if you want to experience a real-life joke, visit me in Latvia and I’ll show you some ‘big rocks’) and to clamber through what little is left of the forests I grew up with. Enough exercise to warrant a second breakfast, so yes, I’m still living in a hobbit-house, and some positively exhausted children. And it’s not even 11 yet.

  149. 149
    CaitieCat, getaway driver

    Well, chop-chop, missy, it’s almost time for elevensies!

  150. 150
    CaitieCat, getaway driver

    AnneD and Giliell, back when I was in university, I once not only put my key into the wrong car, it opened, and I was able to get in. Whereupon I noticed that the upholstery was black, not dark blue like mine, though otherwise it was the identical silver 1985 Jetta. The owner came out of the bank while I was getting out, and it took a couple of moments to get him to understand that it was pure coincidence, and show him that he could also unlock my car with his key.

    We’d parked right next to one another. :)

    Looking back, I’m now awfully glad that didn’t happen in Florida or some other Stand Your Ground state. Yipes.

  151. 151

    I just wish it didn’t visit any of us.

    Seconded, bassmike – hope it walks away from your window soon. Have an e- {{{hug}} if you’d care for one!

  152. 152
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    On a holiday with my parents when I was a kid we were approached by a young couple with an old Mercedes. Could my parents try to open their car? They accidentially locked their keys in the car. It worked perfectly…
    Oh, something else, I almost forgot. You asked me a question about football magazines. Mr. says a colleague of his reads “11 Freunde” and says it’s not so biased.

  153. 153
    CaitieCat, getaway driver

    Giliell, thanks very much, that’s just the sort of thing I wanted. :)

    Also, that’s hilarious, about the old Mercedes. Coming from a place where a Mercedes was always a luxury car, sign of massive success, it was a real culture shock when I was posted to West Germany (as it was in those long-ago days; I never got to go to Berlin, because I’d have had to cross the Eastern territory to do it) to discover that they were used as taxis. :)

  154. 154

    Ha, we even had elevenses today.

  155. 155
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    There is very little in life better than elevenses.

    Me, I would prefer to have just a morsel on getting up, then another morsel around 10, with a generous meal @11. I know that this is in part the idiosyncrasies of my metabolism, but my body feels so much better when I’m able to do this, I’ve actually had to stop myself from thinking that this is how people “should” eat.

  156. 156

    Yeah, I don’t understand big breakfasts, either. Snacks, then some activity, then a giant meal, followed by more activity. Seems to work better for the kids, too, otherwise they eat about half the big meal and get hungry way too quickly for lunch.

    Yay for bodily functions – Middle Child has taken to drawing all sorts of monsters. Lately, they have all started pooing various things (like fire, smoke, and lightning). Don’t ask what they eat. I have no idea, but David Attenborough would have fun narrating these guys.

  157. 157
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    [Brit voice coming deep from the Paunch, with a few too many words emphasized per sentence:] But observe a little more closely, and you begin to notice something remarkable.


    Fire comes out of their asses. But that’s not all. Only a few dozen kilometers away, in the much drier environment of the central mountain’s rain shadow, we find this species. Unable to generate fire, it nonetheless has a defense mechanism of its own. It farts smoke. With the mottled charcoal coloring of its scales, the reptile is able to guarantee a favorable environment for its camouflage where ever it goes.

    Yet even this is not the most remarkable. Above the timber line, in between these two species, lives yet a third of this spectacular beast. About 2 meters shorter than their fiery cousins, this mottled blue-green monster uses its short legs to drag a bright, copper-colored belly along the rocks. If you look closely, as I did, you will see hints of this animals most noteworthy feature. Sparks.

    These are most notable at dusk, before the creatures sleep for the night, when the deep shadow of early evening permits the sudden, sharp lights to be seen as trails of light, slow-moving sparklers decorating the twilight. Here they are beautiful, but in the morning, they can be deadly.

    This individual is stalking a tuddi, a kind of local antelope. Watch how it angles its hips to aim, keeping track of its prey by using its long neck to direct its eyes entirely backward. Then, all in a moment, it is over. It’s powerful, electric feces have stunned the mammal. In some cases the shock even stops the poor creatures heart. Now the monster moves in to feed…

    I would pay good money to have David Attenborough actually record that script.

  158. 158
    Hekuni Cat, MQG

    Hi everyone! It feels like forever since I last had the time and energy to post in the Lounge, but I have missed you all.

    Tony! – I’m sorry you were treated so badly by your former employers. *many supportive hugs and lots of chocolate*

    bassmike – *hugs* Take as many as you need. I can use a few myself.

    Dhorvath – *many hugs* I’m crying with you–only part of it can be attributed to the pain medication I’m on.

    David M – *many pouncehugs and American cookies* I look forward to reading your latest paper.

    opposablethumbs – *pouncehugs and lots of chocolate* I hope all is well with you.

    Gilliel – *pouncehugs and chocolate* I hope you enjoy your free weekend immensely!

    cicely – *many pouncehugs and lots of chocolate* Have you ever played Shadowrun?

    rq – *many pouncehugs and chocolate* May your sharing living quarters with your dad have as few difficulties as possible. Also,

    Eldest was all, “Yes, of course!”

    Yes! ♥

    David Attenborough would have fun narrating these guys.

    I would love to hear this. :D

  159. 159
    Hekuni Cat, MQG

    CD – I’m sorry I don’t have time right now participate in your Online Gender Workshop, but I am reading along when I find a few minutes, usually when my cat has positioned herself between me and the laptop, making it difficult to do anything but read. :D Thank you for doing this. I am learning a lot. *gentle hugs and chocolate* if you want them.

  160. 160
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    CD, should questions or thoughts about the Gender Workshop from people who aren’t formally participating/doing the exercises go here, or in the comment thread for those posts?

  161. 161
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    @hekuni Cat:

    I’m sorry I don’t have time right now participate in your Online Gender Workshop, but I am reading along … Thank you for doing this. I am learning a lot. *gentle hugs and chocolate* if you want them.

    Thank you for that. Chocolate always appreciated.

    I’m glad that you and a couple others have mentioned reading along without commenting. The exercises and all can require quite a bit of time. Watching 4 videos, then thinking, summarizing, reanalyzing your summary, and adding personal thoughts? At least 1/2 hour. So I know that there are people getting use out of it even when they aren’t posting, but I it’s hard to know how useful things are if no one says anything, so…

    Thanks back. And you’re welcome. If you’ve read number 3, you know that I take issue with the framing of “X is gendered” as opposed to, “I gender X”. I see it on a continuum with, literally, murderers’ excuses for killing trans* people (not with the murder, with the excuse…that too often works).

    It’s hard to say that kind of thing and have it be heard as anything other than hypersensitive without giving it a lot of context and doing some serious preliminary work. So I frequently *don’t* say such things. Having this space provided by PZ, and knowing that people read it and are taking it seriously, is doing me good.

    Which does not, however, render obsolete gifts of chocolate. Hey, where’s the chocolate? I can’t have eaten it all already?


    All I ask is a kilogram a day. Is that so much?

  162. 162
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden


    Hrm. I guess it could be sufficiently off topic to not belong there, though the perfect recommendation isn’t possible til I know the content…and then it’s too late.

    Why don’t we say here or thunder dome? I can import them to the thread if I find that they will be useful there.

  163. 163

    Hey, Hekuni Cat! Thank you so much for the pouncehugs and chocolate (I love pouncehugs! (as long as I can see them coming :-) I kind of imagine pouncehugs as being a bit like when the Spawn were little and would sometimes suddenly fling themselves into a hug unannounced; when they got a bit bigger and heavier they discovered that sometimes a parent could suffer minor damage if caught off-balance … :-) ) and I love chocolate!)

    I am very sorry for the need for pain medication. Glad you’ve got some, but wish you didn’t need it in the first place :-(
    I hope you are OK, and that you have more time and energy (to do whatever you want with, but if that happens to include posting here then that is all to the good!).
    It is exam season here. The dread A-Levels are upon us, but on the bright side they will also be over soon.
    And – possibly – a major yay: I got a phonecall today to tell me that SonSpawn may be getting a referral for a proper assessment for Aspergers – an assessment we couldn’t afford to pay for privately if self-referred, but which will be free on the NHS if referred by an appropriate professional. Tentative yay! Fingers x’d! This might, maybe, possibly, perhaps, be of considerable practical use to him in terms of being able to access support after he finishes this A-Level year. All tentacles crossed!

  164. 164

    Crip Dyke @157
    Oooooooh ye gooooods, thank you for that!
    Maybe a HordeFund? David Attenborough and the Fiery Flatulence? Another one of those times where I’m rather disappointed I didn’t marry a multi-billionaire.
    Also, I am now an expert at mailing chocolate, should that give you any ideas.

    Hekuni Cat
    *pouncehuuuuuuuuugs* Yay, nice to see you here!!!
    Things are at least peaceful, mostly because I’m determined not to start anything. My patience, so far, is better than I would have expected. So far.
    Also, tonight I see my first friend (as opposed to family members up until now). I’m excited!

  165. 165
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    What’s the local Latvian chocolate like?

    My favorite chocolate is Blanxart, from Spain. It’s located in Barcelona now, but either it’s very popular in Spain generally or there is some specific connection to northern Spain b/c I originally found it in a Basque foods store.

    I’d definitely be interested in trying Baltic chocolate – provided it had no dairy or nuts. (for some reason I’ve never really liked nuts in chocolate).

    yeah, if I had a billion, I might offer it to DA and some really good CGI folks to mock up that bit as if a real documentary…

  166. 166

    Crip Dyke
    I’m biased, but I would say it’s excellent.
    At the moment, you can ask Portia for reviews, though she has only experienced a small fraction of the available selection.
    I’ll have to get back to you on the no-dairy, but I’m pretty sure it’s doable. (No lactose, no milk chocolate, etc.?) Do you mind fruits in your chocolate (just in case)?

  167. 167
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    Fruits are okay, sure. I tend to eat it straight up the way I drink my tea, but I don’t dislike fruit in chocolate, and some has even been a really delicious change of pace, it’s just that I love chocolate so why add anything? So I’ll probably continue to eat 50-80% of my chocolate straight up with only a minority of my consumption containing fruits, etc. (Incidentally, I found a chocolate bar with baobab fruit. I’d never had baobab, so it was a complete gamble, but it was really good.)

    But yes, no lactose, no milk chocolate, no whey.

    So it sounds like it’s fun being back in the stomping grounds?

  168. 168
    David Marjanović

    Wanna become a “Reptile and Amphibian Conservation Coordinator” in Florida? Requirements here!

    In German: Today is the last day of the transition period to a new alcohol advertisement law in Turkey. From tomorrow onwards, all advertisements for alcohol are illegal, booze producers must not be visible sponsors anymore, or at least their logos must not be seen. Drinking alcohol in bars/pubs/restaurants remains legal without restrictions; shops haven’t been allowed to sell booze between 10 pm and 6 am since September 2013. “The Islamic-conservative AKP government claimed public health as the reason for the law.” *mock* *mock*

    Also in German: The “terror group” Islamic State in Iraq and Syria has conquered Mossul, from where 500,000 people are now fleeing (out of a population of 3 million), and more recently a place called Bayji that’s just 200 km north of Baghdad. This is gonna be fun. Psaki sez the politicians in the region, including al-Maliki, “should do more”.

    David M*many pouncehugs and American cookies*

    Yay!!! ^_^ ^_^ ^_^

    I look forward to reading your latest paper.

    It’s behind a paywall; if that doesn’t stop you, maybe you already read it almost a year ago, when it was published online-only.

    (If it does stop you, let me know.)

    My favorite chocolate is Blanxart, from Spain. It’s located in Barcelona now, but either it’s very popular in Spain generally or there is some specific connection to northern Spain b/c I originally found it in a Basque foods store.

    The x basically means it can’t be Castilian; that only leaves the north and the east (Catalan). Given the obvious similarity to the French name Blanchard, it can’t be Basque*, so it’s probably Catalan, which is spoken in Barcelona.

    * Rule of thumb: If it makes sense, it isn’t Basque.

  169. 169
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    I’m looking for cruise line jobs right now and I just realized I’ve never put together a resume. Never thought it was necessary since I’ve only ever worked in restaurants or bars. I guess I need to create one, but I haven’t the foggiest idea how.

  170. 170
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    Tony: There’s probably some good information here, though it’s A) oriented towards tech/engineering jobs and B) prone to noisily sucking off the status quo of cultural/corporate expectations at points.

  171. 171
    David Marjanović

    Awesomeness: while it’s still not clear how plesiosaurs swam, trackways now show how their swimming style evolved!

  172. 172

    Latvian chocolate

    Very tasty :-)
    The one rq gave me was a pretty dark chocolate – is that typical?

    The x basically means it can’t be Castilian

    I’d have thought Galician … but I was wrong and you’re right: Catalan

  173. 173
    Lynna, OM

    In addition to not having the right to bare arms (phrase shamelessly stolen from up-thread), mormon women cannot be part of the “priesthood,” (open to all worthy men, too many “priesthood holders” to shake a stick at). And mormon men cannot express opinions contrary to those of mormon leadership.

    I don’t think mormons in Utah realize how frigging weird this looks to the rest of the world.

    Two Mormons who have gained national attention for pushing their church to ordain women to the priesthood and to accept openly gay members have been notified this week that they face excommunication for apostasy.

    The two are Kate Kelly, a human rights lawyer who founded the Ordain Women movement, and John P. Dehlin, the creator of a popular online forum for Mormons and a doctoral candidate in psychology who has published his research into the problems faced by gay church members.

    It is the first time since 1993, when the church ejected a handful of intellectuals known as the “September Six,” that it has moved so forcefully to quash such prominent critical voices. […]

    New York Time link.

    Squash away, oh flea brained church officials — that’ll just prompt more sheeple to leave the fold, and to stop paying tithes.

  174. 174
    David Marjanović

    Two new gaps in the fossil record of the origin of vertebrates!!!

  175. 175
    Lynna, OM

    More on the Moment of Mormon Madness outlined in #173: this is how the LDS church is handling Kate Kelly:

    […] Ms. Kelly received an email on June 8 from her local bishop in Virginia informing her that she faces “disfellowshipment or excommunication, on the grounds of apostasy,” and calling her to a disciplinary council hearing on June 22. Disfellowshipment means limiting the participation of a church member, while excommunication is removing someone from membership.

    Ms. Kelly’s stake president had warned her in a letter in May that if she did not shut down the Ordain Women website, dissociate herself from it and repent, she faced excommunication for “openly, repeatedly and deliberately acting in public opposition to the church and its leaders after having been counseled not to do so.”

    The letter said, “you are not required to change your thinking or the questions you may have in your own mind,” but that she must keep her questions private and resolve them by talking to her bishop. […]

    “What you’re asking me to do is to live inauthentically, and that’s not something I’m willing to do. Because then I would have to go to church every week, but I would never be able to say what I really think.” […]

  176. 176
    David Marjanović

    Oh wow:

    Extended Data Figure 4: Metaspriggina walcotti (Simonetta and Insom, 1993) from Marble Canyon. (918 KB)

    a, ROM62948, specimen showing the fusiform posterior tip of the body, flipped 90 degrees to the rest of the body. b, ROM62932, camera lucida drawing showing details of pharyngeal area (see also Fig. 1i). c–f, ROM62933, overall view of oblique specimen (c, see also Fig. 1d, e) and close ups (d, e) of area outlined by rectangle in c. Backscatter scanning electron microscopy (BSE) images (c, e) and energy dispersive spectrometry images (f; except the first frame, which is a BSE image) showing the distribution of elements (from left to right and top to bottom: carbon, oxygen, sodium, magnesium, aluminium, silicon, potassium, titanium, iron) emphasized by whiter zones across one eye (blue rectangle in c). Specimens are photographed under dry, direct light (a); and dry, polarized light (d) conditions. Brv, branchial bars (ventral element); Brd, branchial bars (dorsal element); Bv, blood vessel; Cc?, possible cranial cartilage; Ey, eyes; Ke, keel; My, myomere; Na, nasal sacs; No, notochord; Not, notch. Scale bars: 5 mm in a, b; 2 mm in c; 1 mm in d, e; and 50 μm in f (and following frames).

    That’s a method for making the sorry remains of soft tissues visible!!! And the figure, being part of the Supplementary Information, is open-access. Have fun. =8-)

    LOL @ BSE.

  177. 177
  178. 178
    Lynna, OM

    David M. @168, I saw that news about Mosul. Very bad indeed. It’s like the Louie Gohmert’s of the Middle East are taking over whole cities in Iraq.

    They have also taken over Tikrit:

    The Baiji oil refinery is next.

  179. 179

    Just found out there’s a Queer Index.

    David beat me to Metaspriggina. It looks so cute, though! Teeny tiny and cute! Life at its fiercest.

  180. 180

    (Except I read this article and day-um but my internet is sucky right now.)

  181. 181
    David Marjanović

    I got about 10 to 15 e-mails telling me to donate to various & sundry campaigns because Cantor has lost reelection. Some of them are about ditching Mitch McConnell next.

    Sign the petition: Tell Target to stop letting people openly carry guns in their stores.

    The e-mail this came in also said:

    “Recently, extremists armed with semiautomatic rifles have walked into Target locations around the country, weapons out and loaded, making sure customers saw their guns. The man in the image on the right is standing in one store’s baby aisle!

    And what’s worse is that news broke last week of a loaded gun being found in the toy aisle of a Target in South Carolina!

    Target is holding its annual shareholder meeting TODAY — meaning important decisions about policies could be made in a matter of hours. The company’s executives need to know where we stand.”

    “The image on the right” is repeated in this article.

    “Join us in support of refinancing by signing in favor of the Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act.” Accepts non-US zip codes.

    And another petition about the same thing.

  182. 182
    David Marjanović

    They have also taken over Tikrit:


  183. 183
    David Marjanović

    Herbivory, herbivory, herbivory and herbivory: not all the same.

    Open-access paper: “The Functional and Palaeoecological Implications of Tooth Morphology and Wear for the Megaherbivorous Dinosaurs from the Dinosaur Park Formation (Upper Campanian) of Alberta, Canada”.

  184. 184
    David Marjanović

    …eh… …here it is.

  185. 185
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    I”m not an expert by any means, but I’m happy to try to help with the resume. You’ve got my email.

  186. 186
    A. Noyd

    My best friend and former roomie used to make chocolate chip cookies on a regular basis. I’m not a big fan of chocolate (straight up dark chocolate is way too bitter) but I looooove the dough part of standard chocolate chip cookies. Homemade ones, anyway. So my friend would make a few cookies without chips just for me every time. Of course, she loves chocolate, and that meant more chips in her cookies. Win win.

  187. 187


    I need help to find information and I have the feeling someone here might be able to help.

    We want to have another child (or more…) but for medical reasons we should not have another one by our-self. So we were thinking adoption. It seems to crystallize from our discussions that if we are going to adopt, we should go all the way and adopt a child that has very little prospect based on chance of birth. In particular, we were thinking about adopting a girl from one of the permanent war zones in sub-Saharan Africa.

    There must be people out there who thought about the same thing and did it and wrote about it and also some good read up on ethical/legal matters, organizations you should never deal with, organizations that are recommended etc. etc.

    I was looking for information myself but want to know more. Any kind of input is welcome.


  188. 188
    Dhorvath, OM

    Dalillama, Esteleth, rq, chigau, opposable thumbs, Bassmike, Giliiell, Crip Dyke, Anne D, Hekuni Cat, thank you so much.

  189. 189
    FossilFishy (NOBODY, and proud of it!)

    I’m tardy to the hug pile, but here, have another Dhorvath.

    I doubt it will help but there are good people out there doing business, even in our industry. I like to think I’m one of them. My evidence of this is I have a bike that I’m going to deliver to the customer’s home tomorrow. He’s getting the whole service and the new parts for free because I feel so bad about this job that I can’t in good conscious take any money from him.

  190. 190
    FossilFishy (NOBODY, and proud of it!)

    Good on you and your partner yubal. That’s a beautifully ethical choice.

  191. 191

    Lynna thanks for noticing my comment @139.

    yubal you have my admiration for your adoption decision. Unfortunately I can’t help, but I hope you are successful.

    FossilFishy it’s good to see conscience in business. I’d like to think that I’d do the same.

  192. 192
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-


    If two people do a pouncehug at the same time, do they collide in mid-air?
    I definitely will enjoy the weekend.

    I mentioned that I was working on an Octopus T, right? Like a million times?
    And I also made myself a matching T for my new summer skirt
    And since I often mention it: my balcony
    Yeah, that pic is like 2 weeks old, you can see how much the tomaties* have grown

    *this started as a typo, but it is cute, I’m leaving it

  193. 193
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    I can’t offer any assistance, but I think it’s a good thing you and your partner are doing.

  194. 194
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Thank you my friend. I may take you up on that.

  195. 195
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Denmark decides against violating the autonomy of its citizens and that state sanctioned transphobia is not a good thing:

    As of 1 September, all Danes over 18 will be able to apply to be recognized as their true gender by simply stating they are that gender.

    This means they no longer have to undergo the physical procedure before obtaining a new gender on their identification card.

    ‘Today we have dropped the requirement of sterilisation when transgendered people need a new personal identification number as part of a legal sex change,’ Margrethe Vestager, the Minister for Economics, said.


    ‘Instead of keeping the state in charge of a person’s body and life, the parliament recognised that these are rights pertaining to the individual.’

  196. 196
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    A disabled gay couple has won a case after being ‘humiliated’ at a Glasgow gay bar.

    Last year, cerebral palsy sufferer Robert Gale was forced to crawl up the stairs of The Polo Lounge.

    Nightclub bosses refused entry to him and husband Nathan, saying he was in a wheelchair and there was no facilities for him at their venue.

    When the couple said they did not need disabled facilities, it led to a humiliating scene of Gale getting out of his wheelchair and pulling himself up a set of stairs and into the nightclub in front of customers on a busy city center street.


    I can’t decide if I’m annoyed at sites that automatically include their URL when copy/pasting…

  197. 197
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    11 year old schools Australian PM:

    ‘My name is Orlando Burcham, I am 11 years old and I would like to know why you don’t allow ‘gay marriage’ in Australia

    ‘Because the majority of Australians are happily married, so why are you stopping all the gay men/women to be married in this beautiful country?

    ‘My mother is gay and even worse your own sister is gay! And thousands more are as well.

    ‘You have actually met my mum Councillor Cordelia Troy who is a member of the Liberal Party and she was deputy major at the time.

    ‘It is so pathetic that you aren’t letting the gay people of Australia and other countries get married here.

    ‘Millions of people in the world and when they come to Australia and think “wow this place is great! Let’s get married here!”

    ‘And then they remember that they can’t. So they spend thousands of dollars to go somewhere they can get married. My mum is married but she had to go to New York, which took a lot of money.

    ‘You were elected to represent our country, not yourself.

    ‘Just because you think it’s wrong, does not give you the right to make it illegal.

    ‘Doesn’t our opinions matter to you? Just because you’re the Prime Minister, which by the way does not give you all the power.

    ‘I hope you change your mind.’

    A few days after sending the letter, Orlando received a reply from Abbott himself.

    I don’t think it’s the stunning takedown the article claims, but it was still good.

  198. 198
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Just because you think it’s wrong, does not give you the right to make it illegal.

    Quoted for everlasting fucking truth!

  199. 199
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Bleach used in homophobic attack in London.

    Fuck! Bleach in the face-simply for being gay.
    This is part of the problem…when you treat a segment of the population as unworthy of human rights, you’re going to get extremists that act this way. While not all opponents of queer rights are extremist, their arguments give weight to those who are. They create a climate in which it is acceptable to some people to act in such a manner.

  200. 200
    jrfdeux, mode d'emploi

    You guys. You’re infiltrating my dreams.

    I dreamt that a reporter had found a weird looking coin that had a big ‘Z’ on one face, surrounded by perfectly Euclidean lines and shapes. If you looked carefully you could see some other writing in a strange typeface around the inner circumference: “The Odious PZ Myers”. The reporter had only spotted the ‘Z’ on the coin and thought it was suspicious. I pointed out the other writing and gave him an explanation of who PZ was, what Pharyngula was, and that there were many vile groups out there that opposed what PZ and Pharyngula and the Horde stood for. His eyes lit up and he wrote a column which magically appeared on the front page of every printed copy of the NY Times, replacing a story about “Kale Pirates of Equatorial Guinea.” The reporter deduced that the coin was from one of the PZ-opposition groups, and was being used as a secret currency to undermine social justice non-profits.

    Yeah, I have no idea how that logic works either. Vivid dream though.

  201. 201
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    You’re infiltrating my dreams.

    Last night, I dreamed I was down in a tenement basement in Philadelphia doing union organization work for some creatures that looked like the dragon thing from the Muppets. Then it morphed into me trying to get a gas-fired furnace (which was set up like a glass-blowing glory hole). Then I stood up and gave a short monologue about Philadelphia, stating that Bill Cosby was right — this is a tough place to grow up (though he never mentioned the Muppet-like monsters forming a union). Then Dr. Myers stood up and explained that the stress of the area had aged him and claimed he was only 35. To which I replied, “See? Bill Cosby was right!” I have no idea who else was in my dream. I, at one point, stated that I don’t recognize anyone because I am not wearing my cowboy boots and cowboy hat. Which makes no sense.

  202. 202

    jrfdeux and Ogvorbis
    Those are some awesome dreams.

  203. 203
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.


    No. Just weird (for my dream anyway). Nothing awesome. Brainfart.

  204. 204
    Lynna, OM

    The school shooting in Troutdale, Oregon turns out to have also been a Moment of Mormon Madness, though it is unlikely that mormonism had anything to do with this tragedy. Didn’t prevent it either, and keeping kids doing mostly good is one of mormonism’s big claims.

    Reynolds High School freshman Jared Michael Padgett was known by his classmates as a quiet student with a need for order and a fascination with guns.

    Padgett, 15, who came from a large family with a history of military service and ties to a Gresham Mormon church ward, was identified by Troutdale Police on Wednesday morning as the gunman in Tuesday’s shooting. Police investigators said Padgett shot freshman Emilio Hoffman and teacher Todd Rispler before killing himself. Hoffman died; Rispler was injured. […]

    Among those who showed up at the Padgett family home Wednesday afternoon was Earl Milliron, 86, a member of the same Mormon church ward as the family. They all attended the Hartley Park Ward in Gresham.

    Milliron knew the entire family, in part because he performs monthly home visits with church members to talk about spiritual and family issues. He said Jared Padgett was a deacon in the church and “was a quiet young man who was very involved in the church.”[…]

    More details in the article:

  205. 205
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    The best in LGBT books:

    The Lammys, as they’re known, recognize the best lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender books of the previous year. The prizes are sponsored by the nonprofit Lambda Literary Foundation, a legacy of Washington’s Lambda Rising Bookstore, which closed in 2010.
    Here are the Lammy winners in other categories:

    GAY GENERAL FICTION: “Mundo Cruel: Stories,” by Luis Negron; translated by Suzanne Jill Levine (Seven Stories).

    LESBIAN GENERAL FICTION: “Happiness, Like Water,” by Chinelo Okparanta (Mariner).

    LGBT DEBUT: “Descendants of Hagar,” by Nik Nicholson (AuthorHouse).

    TRANSGENDER FICTION: “Wanting in Arabic,” by Trish Salah (TSAR).

    TRANSGENDER NONFICTION: “The End of San Francisco,” by Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore (City Lights).

    BISEXUAL NONFICTION: “The B Word: Bisexuality in Contemporary Film and Television,” by Maria San Filippo (Indiana Univ.).

    GAY EROTICA: “The Padisah’s Son and the Fox,” by Alex Jeffers (Lethe).

    LESBIAN EROTICA: “Wild Girls, Wild Nights: True Lesbian Sex Stories,” edited by Sacchi Green (Cleis).

    LGBT ANTHOLOGY (FICTION): “Queer Africa: New and Collected Fiction,” by Karen Martin and Makhosazana Xaba (MaThoko’s Books).

    LGBT ANTHOLOGY (NON-FICTION): “Who’s Yer Daddy?: Gay Writers Celebrate Their Mentors and Forerunners,” edited by Jim Elledge and David Groff (Univ. of Wisconsin).

    LGBT DRAMA: “Tom at the Farm,” by Michel Marc Bouchard (Talonbooks).

    LGBT SF/F/HORROR: “Death by Silver,” by Melissa Scott & Amy Griswold (Lethe).

  206. 206
    Lynna, OM

    This is a followup to my post #173 in which the possible excommunication of Kate Kelly is discussed. Kelly formed a group of mormon women to push or ordination of women into the mormon priesthood. The resulting hullabaloo has brought renewed interest to the subject of mormon disciplinary councils, and to how they work.

    LDS Church discipline was outlined in a 1990 talk given by apostle M. Russell Ballard, and some other information the church has posted on its website. […]

    • When an LDS bishop learns of a serious transgression, usually by a confession, he first counsels with the member. […]

    • In serious cases, church disciplinary councils may be held. The faith’s governing First Presidency has instructed that they must be held in cases of murder, incest or apostasy, or when a prominent church leader commits a serious sin. [Kelly is accused of apostasy.]

    • The bishop and his two counselors — who oversee local congregations — have authority to hold disciplinary councils for all ward members. However, if excommunication of a male holder of the faith’s higher Melchizedek Priesthood is thought to be a possibility, the three-member stake presidency and a 12-member high council may convene a stake disciplinary council. […]

    • The LDS Church says the purposes of disciplinary councils are to save the souls of transgressors, protect the innocent, and safeguard the purity, integrity, and good name of the church. […]

    • Councils are seen as the beginning of a process, rather than an end. When leaders feel the member has progressed sufficiently, the bishop or stake president has authority to call a new disciplinary council to consider restoring full fellowship. That may include rebaptism for someone who was excommunicated.


    Most mormons call the disciplinary council a “Court of Love.”

  207. 207
    Lynna, OM

    More instructions for mormon disciplinary council:

    […] six of the 12 high councilors are instructed to ensure that the member’s rights are protected and six are assigned to safeguard the church’s good name. […]

  208. 208
    Lynna, OM

    Poor people are being nickel and by the justice system in the USA, and sometimes they are being jailed for not paying these petty fines. It’s the “poor house” of Dickens’ time all over again, the “debtor’s prison.”

    […] Eileen DeNino, 55, was put in the cell where she died […] she could not pay thousands of dollars in fines relating to her children’s truancy from schools in the Reading, PA area.

    The cause of DeNino’s death is not yet known, but investigators “found no evidence that the death was suspicious,” according to the Eagle. She was reportedly on medication for high blood pressure and other health issues. “Prison officials said they issued no medication to DeNino before her death,” however.

    […] On top of the individual fines for truancy, the Pennsylvania courts applied a variety of fees that amplified DeNino’s debt. “DiNino’s court file shows a laundry list of court fees for one case alone: $8 for a ‘judicial computer project’; $60 for Berks County constables; $10 for postage,” the Associated Press writes.

    The two judges who preside over truancy cases in the county where the DeNinos live expressed regret and frustration over DeNino’s death. “She didn’t have a job. She was living in a house owned by a family member. She was on welfare. We sat and talked for a long time in my office and I could see that she couldn’t pay the fines,” Reading District Judge Wally Scott told the Eagle. “I cleared all her cases last year.”

    District Judge Dean R. Patton sentenced DeNino to 48 hours in jail after she failed to produce documentary evidence of her inability to pay the more than $2,000 in accrued fines and fees. The sentence could have been as long as 45 days of jail time. […]

    Thousands of people have been jailed over truancy fines in the county since 2000, and two in three of those jailed have been women, according to the AP. But the criminalization of poverty is a much broader national phenomenon, with court costs and fees magnifying the statutory penalties for a variety of minor infractions such that the financial penalty snowballs into an unpayable debt for low-income people.

    The results, as catalogued in a year-long National Public Radio investigation, are staggering: a 19-year-old jailed for three days after catching a smallmouth bass during rock bass season, because he couldn’t pay the fine; a homeless man sentenced to a year in jail over $2,600 in penalties incurred by shoplifting a $2 can of beer; a recovering drug user sent to jail three times for being unable to make payments on nearly $10,000 in court costs.

    […] At the federal level, jailing someone for unpaid debt has been illegal since the 1830s. A Supreme Court decision 30 years ago reaffirmed that judges must determine that an offender is able to pay overdue fines before jailing her, but some states appear to be breaking with that requirement.

    Reminds me of all the fees and fines Romney was so fond of when he was a state governor — pay a fee if you want the state to recognize you as blind, for example. Wring a few more pennies out of poor and disabled person.


  209. 209

    You shouldn’t argue with me about my own opinion. :)
    But you can have your own, too. I’ll prefer to disagree and go with mine.


    Looks like we’ll be making the attempt for Toronto this weekend, with an extension to London. I need a break from this household.
    The kids are heading towards an emotional overload, but we have a couple of empty days planned in, too.

  210. 210
    Lynna, OM

    “nickel and dimed” — not “nickel” — Sheesh. Messed up comment #208.

  211. 211
    Lynna, OM

    More anti-abortion legislation from Michigan:

    A group of 16 male lawmakers in Michigan have introduced a package of bills that would criminalize abortions after a fetal heartbeat can first be detected. So-called “fetal heartbeat” measures, which can outlaw the procedure as early as five or six weeks, represent the most radical type of abortion ban that’s ever been approved on a state level.

    House Bill 5643, House Bill 5644, and House Bill 5645 were introduced as companion measures this week. The first measure requires doctors to find the fetal heartbeat and offer women a chance to listen to it before proceeding with an abortion; the second two would ban the procedure altogether after that point, and level a $50,000 fine against doctors who violate that rule.

    In order to detect a fetal heartbeat at the earliest stage, doctors typically need to use an invasive transvaginal probe — something that has sparked outrage in the past, as women’s health advocates have decried mandatory probes as state-sponsored rape. […]


  212. 212
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Hey kids, it’s Captain Citrus!

    The Florida Department of Citrus is hammering out a roughly $1 million deal for Marvel to give its mascot Captain Citrus a superhero makeover in an effort to market orange juice to teens and children.

    The Lakeland, Florida, Ledger reports that the contract, expected to be finalized later this month, calls for Marvel to transform the cartoonish anthropomorphized orange (above) into a buff male superhero who will preach the nutritional benefits of orange juice. The company will publish 1 million comics for free distribution through schools, summer camps and the like, and create an additional two stories to be released online.

    What’s next, Aquafina commissioning DC for the use of Aquaman’s image to promote the importance of drinking water (not a horrible idea actually–just use glass bottles)?

  213. 213
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    Don’t we already have the Thing?

  214. 214

    Oh how I wish. :D

    Put it to music: dancing spider gif.

    For bassmike – today I saw an awesome bumper sticker: “Like all musicians, you are following a bass player.” Made me smile and made me think of you.

    This is how I felt today when I went to try and renew my Canadian driver’s license (I know the town, I swear, but seriously, it’s never looked like this before… drove past the place three times before I stopped at the library to ask for directions… and it was… right across the street).

  215. 215

    Oh, and a thing about climate scientists. I couldn’t get a bigger picture, sorry. But it’s an awesome cartoon.

  216. 216
    CaitieCat, getaway driver

    Home for a couple of hours’ rest in the middle of election day here in Ontariariario. Was on the phone all morning and early afternoon, calling supporters to offer rides to the polls, and taking the occasional call from a voter whose English isn’t as confidently fluent as they’d like. Our one Cantonese speaker has been pretty busy, though.

    Enjoying the day and the work, as well as the energy of being in the campaign office; latest polls have my candidate (NDP’s Catherine Fife) about 10 points up in a three-way race. Hoping that will be enough for Catherine, and that the party follows her lead. The idea of a Tory government, pledged to the usual Talibangelical bullshit, as well as their typical reliance on the ‘lower taxes on the rich because a rising tide lifts all yachts’ approach: they’ve promised to cut 100,000 jobs from the public sector, which will create 1,000,000 jobs by the magic of the Confidence Fairy. Apparently rich people are just desperate to use all that money they’re having ‘stolen’ by the government for all those services they never use* to create thousands of great jobs for all the rest of us, because that’s just how altruistic they are. *gag*

    Ye gods and fishes, how I hate the Lawful Selfish.

    Hoping to be out late at Catherine’s victory party. :)

  217. 217
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    rq @209:

    You shouldn’t argue with me about my own opinion.

    Sorry. You are correct.

  218. 218
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Over the past two weeks, I have successfully taught myself (with the aid of on line tutorials) Adobe InDesign.

    Which I had to do because three major projects had to go to the printer. With bleeds and printers marks.

    And I had to learn by actually doing the projects.

  219. 219
    CaitieCat, getaway driver

    Og, that’s awesome, well-done! That’s how I learned Pagemaker 3, back at the dawn of time. Hard but rewarding. Yay you! :)

  220. 220
  221. 221
    Lynna, OM

    I kinda, sorta want to give Rick Wiles an award for smooshing together more bizarre conspiracy theories than any of his fellow dunderheads. He did the Über Smooshing in connection with predictions of the end of the world. Oh, wait, I think that’s only the end of the USA.

    “The takedown of the constitutional republic of the United States of America is in full motion in 2014, this is it,” Wiles said yesterday on TruNews. “The Illuminati Free Masons are determined to dismantle the original republican form of government in order to finalize the transformation of this country into a godless, pagan cesspool of Free Mason fascism.”

    He added that officials in “the Obamanista communist regime in the White House” are attacking “the American people from every direction: homosexual rights, gun confiscation, illegal immigrant amnesty and so on.”

    Right Wing Watch link.

    Wow, Rick Wiles. Just, Wow. The “godless, pagan cesspool of Free Mason fascism” sounds, well, confusing.

  222. 222
    Lynna, OM

    Okay, the “science” of Vincent Rue has been thoroughly debunked, discredited, and “de” whatever you like. That doesn’t stop Republican state governors from continuing to use Rue to back up their draconian anti-abortion legislation.

    Over the past two years, at least four Republican-controlled states have paid nearly $200,000 in taxpayers funds to Vincent Rue—a marriage therapist whose testimony has been repeatedly disregarded by judges—to help defend ultra-strict abortion laws in court.

    Rue, who holds a doctorate in family relations from the University of North Carolina School of Home Economics, has claimed that “abortion reescalates the battle between the sexes” and “abortion increases bitterness toward men.” For decades, he has strived to convince mainstream researchers to recognize “post-abortion syndrome,” a supposed mental illness resulting from abortion.

    But “after submission for peer review by scientists with the Center for Disease Control, the National Center for Health Statistics and other scientific institutions, [Rue's] study was found to have ‘no value’ and to be ‘based upon a priori beliefs rather than an objective review of the evidence,’” according to Daniel Huyett, a federal judge who disregarded Rue’s testimony in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, a landmark 1990 abortion case that eventually ended up before the Supreme Court. “His testimony is devoid of…analytical force and scientific rigor,” Huyett added. “Moreover, his admitted personal opposition to abortion, even in cases of rape and incest, suggests a possible personal bias.” Rue “possesses neither the academic qualifications nor the professional experience of plaintiffs’ expert witnesses,” another federal judge wrote in 1986 after hearing Rue’s testimony in another landmark abortion case, Hodgson v. Minnesota. […]

    The Republican governors who continue to use Rue’s testimony to justify abortion legislation include mostly older guys from the following states: Alabama, North Dakota, Texas, Wisconsin and North Carolina.

    Taxpayers are paying for Rue to travel around spewing quack science. Rue even has peeps, a posse of “expert” witnesses he brings along. Rue sometimes writes their testimony for them.

    When conservative governors don’t step up to pay Rue with taxpayer money, outside anti-abortion groups do.


  223. 223

    Client just gushed over my designs! I get to reward myself with Candy Crush. Or client was just blowing smoke and actually hates designs. In which case, screw it, I’m playing Candy Crush.

  224. 224
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    The Florida Department of Citrus

    That’s a thing?

  225. 225
    David Marjanović

    Link dump!!! First the good stuff.

    Open access!!! With lots of pictures “” – it’s one of the oldest jawed vertebrates and one of the oldest bony fish proper, it’s a shell-crusher, and it’s easily twice as long as vertebrates were supposed to have grown back then, to the point that some have even thought growing bigger wasn’t possible because there wasn’t enough oxygen in the air (which is always difficult to estimate). PZ! Blog about this!

    Growth rates and metabolic rates are connected. This new paper confirms this based on a new & improved dataset, then adds some Mesozoic dinosaurs with well-understood growth rates, and finds them in the lower part of the endothermic range. Because this is where certain tuna species, a great-white-or-similar shark, a platypus or echidna* and the leatherback turtle are found, and because the regression line of growth rate vs. adult body mass is identical to that of the tunas, the authors make a new category for this, which they call “mesothermic”, and proudly proclaim that the dinosaurs they investigated where neither endo- nor ecto-, but mesotherms. …Note that if the estimated body masses are overestimated, the regression line is closer to the ectothermic range than it should be.

    Diamond made from buckyball onions has peculiar internal structure and is harder than anything found in nature.

    The genome of Eucalyptus grandis

    On to politics and fun.

    Cartoon: The Bergdahl test” – it’s like a Rorschach test.

    How to tell the difference between an open-carry patriot and a deranged killer“. The fear of mental illness is mocked in the cartoon.

    * They don’t tell. ~:-|

  226. 226
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    So, my laptop broke so I’m stealing a few minutes after hours to comment in the Looounge, I’ve been reading on my phone but commenting on my phone drives me bonkers. So. Hi. I can’t catch up on all the things I wanted to say, but, this made me think of all of us here. *hugs*

  227. 227
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    I can definitely relate to the annoyance that is commenting on your phone.
    Btw that toon perfectly encapsulates this community. Loved it!

    I hope you will be able to get your laptop fixed soon.

  228. 228
    David Marjanović

    *facepalm* Trying the first link again.

    Link dump!!! First the good stuff.

    Open access!!! With lots of pictures “The largest Silurian vertebrate and its palaeoecological implications” – it’s one of the oldest jawed vertebrates and one of the oldest bony fish proper, it’s a shell-crusher, and it’s easily twice as long as vertebrates were supposed to have grown back then, to the point that some have even thought growing bigger wasn’t possible because there wasn’t enough oxygen in the air (which is always difficult to estimate). PZ! Blog about this!


    They don’t tell. ~:-|

    From breezing through the references, it seems to be the good old short-beaked echidna, Tachyglossus aculeatus.


    NASA scientist is working on space distortion for Alcubierre drive, has signed too many non-disclosure agreements to say anything except that it doesn’t require “exotic matter” with negative mass.

    The economist who defeated Eric Cantor doesn’t have an opinion on whether a minimum wage should exist.

    Jon Stewart: “Congress’s current golden age of cooperation and productiveness is over!”

    Kentucky Southern Baptists Draw Crowds With Gun Giveaways” while bibles are only for sale.

    GunFAIL LXXII. Too much to summarize right now (I have to run), but take a look – I promise you will laugh, in spite of the eight accidentally dead children. (That number, BTW, is a new low.)

  229. 229
    David Marjanović

    Washington Post editor defends Will’s column on the ‘coveted status’ of being sexually assaulted

    Petition: “Don’t Allow Anti-gay Diplomat to Represent the United Nations” – “Uganda’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Sam Kutesa has enacted one of the cruelest anti-gay measures in the world. So why has he been appointed as the United Nations’ president of the general assembly?”


  230. 230
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    Thanks for the well-wishes, but the IT guy says it’s underwater – no point fixing it. So I’ll just be without for a bit : / Thank gods for the Roku box otherwise I’d go into Netflix withdrawals and no one wants to see that.

  231. 231
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    Uganda’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Sam Kutesa has enacted one of the cruelest anti-gay measures in the world: so why has he been appointed as the United Nations’ president of the general assembly?”

    From the category of self-answering questions.

  232. 232
    David Marjanović

    Oh. Petition for “real, effective” “common-sense gun control NOW”. No details are proposed.

  233. 233
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Roku box? Is this some newfangled technology that I haven’t heard of yet?


    David linked to the Daily Kos’ GunFAIL upthread (his last link @228). I loved how they referred to guns as Handheld Instant Death Machines.

    So, yeah. We’re running nearly 20 percent above the record-breaking pace of last year, and the number of handheld instant death machines allegedly forgotten entirely by their carriers has nearly tripled since 2005, when the TSA first started keeping count. I wonder why?

  234. 234
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    Maybe:) It’s just a little box with a remote that funnels your wifi to your TV so you can watch streaming shows like Netflix and Hulu and HBOGo, etc.

  235. 235
    Rob Grigjanis

    Swallows busy feeding their little squeakers in the carport, red-winged blackbirds nesting in the backyard, exact location unknown. The red-winged blackbirds are more aggressive in their nest defence this year. Last year, they just yelled at me. This year, I’ve been attacked several times in the backyard. Shriek, hoarser shriek, then smack! on the noggin. It will be an interesting summer.

  236. 236
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    This year, I’ve been attacked several times in the backyard. Shriek, hoarser shriek, then smack! on the noggin. It will be an interesting summer.

    Wear a hardhat for a couple of weeks.

  237. 237
    Rob Grigjanis

    Nerd, my main concern is that I don’t want to stress them out, so I’ll probably just avoid the backyard for a while. Luckily, I’m a crappy and unenthusiastic gardener.

  238. 238
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    Nerd, my main concern is that I don’t want to stress them out, so I’ll probably just avoid the backyard for a while. Luckily, I’m a crappy and unenthusiastic gardener.

    Sorry to make the suggestion then.

    I am required to wear a hard hat at work, when I go into certain areas. Better to have the hard hat crack from falling objects than my skull.

  239. 239
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    Better to have the hard hat crack from falling objects than my skull.

    Bwuh? Does you skull regularly crack hard hats?

    This sarcasm brought to you by, English,HowDoesItWork™

  240. 240
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    This sarcasm brought to you by, English,HowDoesItWork™

    Ah, the old you/your problem I have (one of many). Oh well, I have some potatoes baking I need to check on. *goes to find potato stabber tester*

  241. 241

    This is how I felt today when I went to try and renew my Canadian driver’s license (I know the town, I swear, but seriously, it’s never looked like this before… drove past the place three times before I stopped at the library to ask for directions… and it was… right across the street).

    Every time I visit home I’m scared driving around because I don’t want to get lost and I know I’ll be so embarrassed if I do, but I really don’t know my way around that well. I didn’t start to drive until just before I went to college, and I had never really paid attention before that, and once I got to college I never really lived there again.

    Thank gods for the Roku box otherwise I’d go into Netflix withdrawals and no one wants to see that.


    I hope I’m not ignoring anything important, but I’m drowning at work. It’s just…yeah. Kind of sucks right now.

  242. 242
    FossilFishy (NOBODY, and proud of it!)

    I have no idea if this is actually a good thing or not but there’s now a bell hooks hotlinebut it made me laugh. The idea is for women to give this number out when they don’t feel comfortable giving their real one. I answers with quotes from bell hooks’ work and will even respond to text messages.

  243. 243
    FossilFishy (NOBODY, and proud of it!)

    Holy hell, that’s a mess of a comment. Have a “t” and you’re on your own parsing the rest. I’m going to go eat popcorn and pretend to work.

  244. 244
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    I hope I’m not ignoring anything important, but I’m drowning at work. It’s just…yeah. Kind of sucks right now.

    Yeah, I know that feeling. I’m dealing with four major projects at the moment, although one appears to be done as of today. Being the old fart means if something goes wrong with older products, guess who gets to fix it…and then put out two new products this year.

  245. 245
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    If sooulmates existed, and existed wrt television preferences, we would be that. OTG. If I weren’t also drowning at work, I’d be binging on oitnb. Hugs for the work btw

    And some hugs for nerd on that front too.

  246. 246
    A. Noyd

    Crip Dyke (#239)

    This sarcasm brought to you by, English,HowDoesItWork™

    I just bought myself some books about English grammar, since it would be helpful to know the technical side for teaching purposes. One of them is in English, the other two in Japanese. I figured if I’m going to be explaining grammar in Japanese (hopefully, eventually), I need to know how people talk about English grammar in Japanese. The plan was to get just one Japanese book to start with, but I was looking through them at the store to see which was the most comprehensive and found one written in this really sarcastic and irreverent tone. It focuses on problem areas for Japanese people learning English, so it’s not as comprehensive as I wanted. However, I couldn’t pass up a sarcastic and irreverent book about English.

    This is how the intro starts:

    Please take a look at the following Japanese sentences and the corresponding English.
    1. 僕たち テニス する。 → We play tennis.
    2. 僕 音楽 聞く。 → I listen to music.

    They’re very short and simple sentences, but if you look reaaaal closely…

    You’ll notice the structure of 1 and 2 are completely the same in Japanese.
    Yet, despite that, one of the corresponding English sentences has a “to” and the other lacks it!

    “Huh? Wha…?? What the hell???” you say, having become a little bit concerned.

    Don’t worry! This book is for people like you.

    And how the first chapter starts:

    Have you ever heard the word “hinshi!” [part of speech]?

    I’m not talking about the “hinshi” that means “about to die” (though, there were many grammar-phobes among my students who felt they were about to die at the mere mention of “hinshi!”).

    (I don’t know why there’s an exclamation point after two of the “hinshi”; it doesn’t appear to be significant.)

    The other book is so comprehensive, it has the word “comprehensive” both in Japanese in the title and in English right on the cover. Plus, it’s gone through 7 editions in the last 17 years. Given how competitive the English,HowDoesItWork™ industry is in Japan, that would seem to indicate it’s a decent reference.

  247. 247
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    carlie @241:
    Have you read this article about the conditions at the Long Island jail where they filmed the second season?
    (I don’t watch the show, I just recalled the article and thought to share it. Apologies if you’ve already read it)


    What color is ‘shocked’? Whatever it is, that’s my color right now:


    “Money controls Washington,” according to Congressman Vance McAllister (R-LA), who also told an audience of Louisiana accountants that Congress is caught in a “steady cycle of voting for fundraising and money instead of voting for what is right.”

    A GOP Congressman said that?

  248. 248
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    Every time they visit the storyline of the inmate/guard romance, I want to yell “HE’S A SEX OFFENDER”

  249. 249
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Ever wonder what…snicker…heh heh…your spiritual power is?

    I got love. Henceforth I shall be known as Tony! The Queer Shoop Ambassador of Love (and undisputed worldwide Pictionary Champion)

  250. 250

    As Tony already knows, I am the Official Ambassador of Joyful Snark. Don’t worry, it’s a lot of sarcastic fun.

  251. 251
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    Alright, Tony!, let’s see that ‘nym change!

    @A Noyd

    I love that book. I can’t help but love books that snark while teaching. That’s part of why I loved:
    my old statistics book.

    Of course, it wasn’t the one assigned for my stats course, but I read it when I **wasn’t** going to school. It’s that good.

  252. 252
    chigau (違う)

    I took a Stats course at University
    oh the humanity

  253. 253
    A. Noyd

    Crip Dyke (#251)

    I love that book. I can’t help but love books that snark while teaching. That’s part of why I loved:
    my old statistics book.

    Ooh, I can just imagine stats gets along great with comic books as a medium. Maybe that would have helped keep me from coming out of my stats course with no real knowledge of how to do anything with stats. (And, absurdly, a 4.0 grade.)

  254. 254
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    @A Noyd

    yeah, I maxed out the grade when I had to take it as well. It was all calculator stuff. Learn how to use a programable calculator and which function does what, then write down the answer it spits out. Easy peasy.

    The only thing anyone might have found challenging was interpreting the results. But me, I didn’t have any trouble describing a distribution as normal, non-normal, right-skewed, left-skewed, etc. Nor did I have any trouble with saying that having a z of greater absolute value meant a statistically rarer event (in a normal distribution) than having a z of lesser absolute value. There were a large number of people who came out of that class with a 3.0 b/c they could input the numbers in their data set correctly and knew which button to press when the teacher asked for a median, but had no memory whatsoever of anything actually useful – like what a median actually is, or what the z score indicates, etc., etc.

    I know that your current chosen profession doesn’t require it, but if you want to understand scientific papers better and have some time and enjoy yourself some snark, that book is pretty good and makes learning stats fun and significantly more intuitive than other books I’ve seen.

    Oh, hell, the above can be for chigau too.

  255. 255
    A. Noyd

    @Crip Dyke
    I stuck it on my wish list, which is such a nice service for Amazon to provide considering if I ever buy the things from the list that are not available in a decent Kindle edition, I’ll go through an indie brick and mortar store. Now if only paper book publishers would stop driving me more toward ebooks by slapping covers that feel like rubbery corpse skin on everything. I don’t know what the material is called, but I can’t stand to touch it.

  256. 256
    chigau (違う)

    CD #254
    That’s why I got a “D” (minimal pass).
    We got lumps of it round the back.

  257. 257
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    Hrm. I guess it could be sufficiently off topic to not belong there, though the perfect recommendation isn’t possible til I know the content…and then it’s too late.

    Why don’t we say here or thunder dome? I can import them to the thread if I find that they will be useful there.

    Hmm. I was reading through your post and, if I’m parsing the “forcefield” metaphor correctly… the forcefields feel wrong to me. Especially mine. It’s not so much “my forcefield is the wrong shape” as “I can’t breathe in a forcefield,” though. This is a really good way of clarifying things, maybe. >.>

  258. 258


    For bassmike – today I saw an awesome bumper sticker: “Like all musicians, you are following a bass player.” Made me smile and made me think of you.

    Sounds like my kind of bumper sticker! Are you sure there wasn’t a drummer in front of that car with a sticker saying: ‘The bass player is following me?’

    The Black Dog is sticking around longer than I would like. Go away mutt.

  259. 259

    *high five*
    I barely squeaked through stats, too. Though I think I had a C+ in the end.

    My issue wasn’t interpretation, though, it was the actual data and recognizing what test to use – starting things off right. No fancy calculators for us, our prof was all ‘do it yourself or you’ll never know!’ And I did it all myself, which made me proud because it was one of the few subjects that wasn’t intuitive to me (even organic chem was better), but I still don’t remember a thing. Except that it’s the only time in my life I have ever been happy with a C+.

    It was in a parking lot, so I can’t vouch for what the bassplayer follows. *hugs*


    Went to the Museum of Nature last evening, because they have free entry from 5 – 8 and we take advantage of things like that. The dinosaurs are excellent, but it was the deep-sea sub ‘simulator’ that caused the most difficulties in child removal. It even beat out the volcano and earthquake simulators.

  260. 260

    rq from the photo of the ‘simulator’ I think there would have been tears if I tried to remove my daughter from in there.

  261. 261

    difficulties in child removal

    Oh, that takes me back! Interactive exhibits at the science museum ftw :-)

  262. 262

    There were tears. And some screaming. But all the other parents understood. :)

  263. 263

    Mesotherm dinosaurs: Not too fast, not too slow: Researchers untangle energetics of extinct dinosaurs http://phys.org/news/2014-06-mesothermy-mesozoic-untangle-energetics-extinct.html

    —- —- —-
    Scientists closing in on new obesity drug http://medicalxpress.com/news/2014-06-scientists-obesity-drug.html
    (280-lb ehvil Swede cheers. )

    — — — — —
    New tumor-targeting agent images and treats wide variety of cancers http://medicalxpress.com/news/2014-06-tumor-targeting-agent-images-wide-variety.html
    Y ippeee!!!

    — — — — — — —
    ‘Trust hormone’ oxytocin helps old muscle work like new, study finds http://medicalxpress.com/news/2014-06-hormone-oxytocin-muscle.html
    -Since this is a well-known substance, can we please get it into service for the elderly in a hurry?

  264. 264

    ‘Game changing’ drug could be effective in suicide prevention http://medicalxpress.com/news/2014-06-game-drug-effective-suicide.html
    The inflatable concrete dome http://phys.org/news/2014-06-inflatable-concrete-dome.html This renders timber structures obsolete, saving time and money.
    Timothy Geithner as Chauncey Gardner http://freethoughtblogs.com/singham/2014/06/09/timothy-geithner-as-chauncey-gardner/
    Leukemia drug found to stimulate immunity against many cancer types http://medicalxpress.com/news/2014-06-leukemia-drug-immunity-cancer.html
    Brain retains signs of childhood trauma—and a warning for substance abusers http://medicalxpress.com/news/2014-06-brain-retains-childhood-traumaand-substance.html

  265. 265

    Regarding “‘Game changing’ drug” -so ketamine still has some (positive) surprises after being used for so long?
    “The inflatable concrete dome” Perfect for my “Wolfschantze II” HQ. This will be far cheaper than the hollowed-out volcano option. And I can build a dome over my pirhana pool, for year-round operation.
    Fair Isle inhabitants ask “Where are my f*cking sweets?!” http://satwcomic.com/where-s-my-f-ing-sweets
    Despite its British origins, Americans get a bad rap for using the word ‘soccer’ http://phys.org/news/2014-06-british-americans-bad-rap-word.html Apparently, in the fifties some Brits thought soccer was too “common” a word, so it faded from use.

  266. 266
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    My spiritual power is Patience.

    Which is odd as I said I didn’t want to be a doctor.

    Chigau @252:

    I took a Stats course at University

    So did I.

    Luckily, one of the stats courses that filled the requirements was “How to Lie With Statistics.” And, more important, how to spot suspicious and decietful statistics.

    It was fun.

  267. 267

    I guess he wasn’t expecting the newly refurbished version. It’s so annoying when you stub your toe break your ankle against the new door frame. (Although this could be a lot more sinister – revenge for taking so long on the sequels? “Why did you leave me here for so long?”)

  268. 268

    I wish my dad would mention some of his plans for us before I basically settle on my own plans, because then it sounds like I’m being an ungrateful wretch for making my own plans when he had all these things where he needs help.
    Is it that difficult to mention, when I’m telling you three fucking days ago about my plans to go to Toronto, that you were hoping for a slightly different plan?
    And yes, we’ll be leaving Sunday evening and arriving at night, because I want to spend a few extra hours with my BFF, whatever your ideas about leaving during the day and arriving in the evening. You’ll have the car on Monday, as agreed.

  269. 269
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    Okay, what the hell?

    I was reading about megastamax yesterday and there was this weirdness where some author called the Silurian the “early Devonian”. I laughed it off as a mistake. Then today read another article and they did it again, but this time very clearly as a clarification, “this fossil is from the early Devonian, sometimes called the Silurian….”

    Now I’m freaked out. Have I really been wrong all this time? Is it “really” the early Devonian, or “really” the Silurian? Does it change in different disciplines (a “geologists tend to use one, paleontologists another,” kind of thing)? What’s going on?

    Man, I feel as stupid as when I realized a few weeks ago that Tertiary is on par with Mesozoic, not with Cretaceous. I thought Cenozoic was on par with Mesozoic, and Tertiary was on par with Cretaceous b/c duh, the Quaternary. But then looking things up online, the Tertiary is right there on the same level as Mesozoic.

    My ability to date things accurately in deep time is apparently completely for shit. How do I make sense of all this? Did I have it wrong from the beginning or did I have the use right according to literature at one point, but science has come to a new consensus on the best way to describe these periods?

    I mean, holy heck, now I really do have to use K-Pg extinction. What about the end-Ordovician? Is that an O-D extinction event now? And what about the description of the Devonian as the age of fishes?

    Jeez, what’s next? Is the Mississippian now just the Lower Pennsylvanian?*

    I am befuddled and this is not helping me prepare for my Evidence final. Law school will not receive any attention until someone knowledgeable helps me out here. My future spot on the British Columbia Court of Appeal is at risk if you deep-time-knowers don’t cough up the info, stat!

    *geographic pun intended

  270. 270
    Lynna, OM

    Rachel Maddow covers Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal’s efforts to shut down all abortion clinics in his state.

  271. 271
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    Okay, and now for the math nerds. I’m trying to put some bounds on something.

    Where the toy function is f(c), can any bounds be put on the sum of f(c), from c=domestic short hair kitten to adult tiger?

  272. 272
    Lynna, OM

    This is a followup to my comments #173, 175, and 206. It seems even Buzzfeed senses an end to positive PR for mormonism. Excerpt below:

    Excommunicating Mormon intellectuals would seem to mark the end of the Mormon Moment.

    The Mormon Moment ends in two ways. First, from a media perspective, excommunicating thought leaders like Kelly and Dehlin will mean getting rid of some of the people who have made Mormonism interesting. This means there’s simply less to report on.

    After Kelly and Dehlin revealed their pending punishments, Mormonism suddenly seems less cool and diverse. That may or may not matter to church leaders, but it’s certainly a shift from the type of public image the church had in 2012 at the height of the Mormon Moment. […]

  273. 273

    Although I do stats and probability in my day job, I never had a formal class in the subject. I just picked it up as I needed it–it was just intuitive. I was also the sort of kid who loved story problems. That’s why I started having to lift weights so the other kids couldn’t beat me up anymore. ;-)

  274. 274

    CD, does f(c) measure blood loss?

  275. 275
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.


    Jeez, what’s next? Is the Mississippian now just the Lower Pennsylvanian?*

    Mississippian and Pennsylvanian are North American constructs (similar to the Comanchic of the middle Mesozoic (mostly the Morrison Formation)) which, to the rest of the world, are both part of the Carboniferous. One of the programmes I present on the train discusses the geology of the Nay Aug Gorge. And, just to confuse things, geologists cannot decide where, between the Mauch Chunk (sandstones and shales), the Pottsville (sandstones and conglomerates from a moderate to high energy fluvial environment) and the Llewellyn (which has nine named anthracite coal measures), the division line between the Mississippian and Pennsylvanian actually lies.

    Okay. Silurian. The transition from the Silurian to the Devonian is at about 416 mya. Give or take. There is always some argument as to whether a particular formation is, say, upper Silurian or lower Devonian and, unless it is located at the recognized type stratigraphy, it can be really hard to tell. Whether a particular member or formation is Lochkovian or Pridoli (Lochkovian is the beginning of the Devonian, Pridoli the end of the Silurian) can be a matter for debate.

    That said, according to the Commission for the Geologic Map of the World, the Silurian and Devonian are two separate eras, just as the Jurassic and Triassic are different. We may argue about where the division point is in a particular point, or in absolute terms, but they are still completely different.

    And what does this have to do with Canadian law practice?

  276. 276
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    Thank goodness for the pledge thread and Joanne Minish for giving me an excuse to post (over there and cross-post here) this link.

    Damn. Why do I need outside reminders to listen to this stuff?

  277. 277
    David Marjanović

    “this fossil is from the early Devonian, sometimes called the Silurian….”

    Oh, that’s just wrong. The paper is in open access; you have no reason to read science journalism instead.

    Mississippian and Pennsylvanian are

    now official global standard names for the Early and Late Carboniferous, respectively. That’s a fairly recent development, but it’s at least 10 years old.

    And, just to confuse things, geologists cannot decide where [...] the division line between the Mississippian and Pennsylvanian actually lies.

    That must be why Global Stratotype Section and Point (GSSP) for the base of the Bashkirian and thus the Pennsylvanian isn’t anywhere near Pennsylvania or for that matter Mississippi, but instead in the Arrow Canyon in Nevada, at 36.7333°N and 114.7778°W, “82.9 m above the top of the Battleship Formation in the lower Bird Spring Formation”.

    The transition from the Silurian to the Devonian is at about 416 mya. Give or take.

    419.2 ± 13.2 by the latest dating. :-)


    Přídolí. Takes a bit of practice to pronounce.

  278. 278
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    Watching a clip about censorship of pop music (I believe it’s from a show about censorship in the UK, specifically, but it might just be a UK based program).

    Pompous Brit sitting in a well appointed sitting room in front of a display cabinet full of ornate china plates, all identical, all facing out at the camera, with the bottom halves of a couple of original oil portraits – probably of Pompous Brit’s ancestors – on the side wall:

    I mean it had the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, of course, who had upset a few. But the sheer dis-GUST-ingness of the Sex Pistols did offend a lot of people.

    Ah, the juvenile, juvenile sex pistols. I can tolerate a lot of puerility to see pompous Brits so uncomfortably sitting on restless bums trying so nakedly to justify their hatred of coarseness.

    I only wish I could see George Takei doing a send up of this.

    Oh, my.

  279. 279
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    I posted too soon:

    Pompous Brit:

    I think it bordered on treasonous, and you know, you can be sent to prison for a very long time for that.


  280. 280
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    That must be why Global Stratotype Section and Point (GSSP) for the base of the Bashkirian and thus the Pennsylvanian isn’t anywhere near Pennsylvania or for that matter Mississippi, but instead in the Arrow Canyon in Nevada, at 36.7333°N and 114.7778°W, “82.9 m above the top of the Battleship Formation in the lower Bird Spring Formation”.

    Makes sense. The Pottsville Formation is described as completely below the Mi/Pe line to the South (down around Hometown and Shenandoah) but up in Scranton, the transition is described as the lowest layer of the Pottsville. Which makes sense. The Pottsville is a fluvial sandstone and conglomerate mess that consists of source material from a big mountain range that was down near Philadelphia. So it filled up the valley, sequentially, south to north right over the division line. Damned inconsiderate of the layer, if you ask me.

    And I had no idea that the Mississippian and Pennsylvanian were now official. Is the Carboniferous still official, too?

  281. 281
    David Marjanović

    Apparently, in the fifties some Brits thought soccer was too “common” a word, so it faded from use.

    Football teams in German-speaking places still often have SC in their names, short for soccer club.

    I realized a few weeks ago that Tertiary is on par with Mesozoic, not with Cretaceous

    WTF, no. In fact, the Tertiary has been abolished for good; I’m disappointed that the Quaternary is back, but that must be because there are so many Departments of Quarternary Research out there.

    And what about the description of the Devonian as the age of fishes?

    As right and wrong as it has always been. :-)

  282. 282
    David Marjanović

    So it filled up the valley, sequentially, south to north right over the division line. Damned inconsiderate of the layer, if you ask me.

    Yep, happens a lot.

    Is the Carboniferous still official, too?

    Yes! Follow my first link! :-)

  283. 283
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    Okay, Cenozoic & mesozoic = eras with Cretaceous & Paleogene = periods.

    “Paleogene thou shalt not count, saving thou procedest directly to Neogene. Quaternary thou shalt grandfather in. Tertiary is right out.”

    I think I’ve got it now.

  284. 284
    David Marjanović

    Now for the link dump!

    Watch a thousand Danes eat ghost chili.

    Petition for marriage equality in Florida.

    Remember Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst, the former bishop of the dioecese of Limburg (Germany) who was fired when it came out that he had had his residence rebuilt for some 41 million € in church money? He’s going to become bishop of somewhere else, far enough away so that a clean restart is possible = people don’t remember him. (Link in German, almost no text, but pretty pictures of the residence at the bottom.)

    Also in German: Cameron is throwing some kind of tantrum, claiming that the two biggest parties in the EU parliament supporting Juncker for President of the Commission is against the EU treaties, and truly bizarrely claiming that (my retranslations) “Juncker didn’t run for election anywhere and wasn’t elected by anybody” and “the citizens who went to the election wanted to vote for their MEP, not for the President of the Commission”. Welp, Juncker ran a personal campaign in most or all EU countries, complete with the slogan Juncker for President, and while Germany’s conservative party put Merkel (who wasn’t running) on their billboards instead, small Juncker signs did appear late in the campaign; the Social Democrats of Germany put a huge photo of Schulz, their candidate for prez, on their full-sized billboards, while those of Austria put Eugen Freund, their top candidate for MEP, on theirs. In Germany, ads for MEP candidates were only put up by the (abovementioned) two biggest parties, and they were all small and generally fairly easy to overlook. Finally, I voted in Germany, and there weren’t any candidates on the ballot, only parties! – The Tories no longer belong to the mainstream conservative caucus of the EU parliament (Cameron took them out at some point), but to the next more conservative one, which has recently accepted the membership application by the German protest party AfD (“alternative for Germany”); the leaders of the AfD have said very, very, very right-wing xenophobic things.

    So, the Iraqi government is under threat from armed fundies called Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. Well, the government is dominated by Shiites, while ISIS are Sunni. Iran has noticed and “promises unlimited solidarity in the fight against the ISIS terrorists” (in German again). – Meanwhile, the autoplay video in the article says, “Kurdish militias have taken over the oil city of Kirkuk”. – Obama, also in the video, when asked about air strikes: “I don’t rule out anything” except boots on the ground, because

  285. 285
    David Marjanović

    …he feels “we” have a responsibility to make sure that “the terrorists are not getting a permanent foothold” in Iraq “– or Syria, for that matter”.

    Clicked “submit” here instead of pausing the video in the other tab.

    “Paleogene thou shalt not count, saving thou procedest directly to Neogene. Quaternary thou shalt grandfather in. Tertiary is right out.”

    I think I’ve got it now.

    *nodnod* :-) :-) :-) :-) :-)

  286. 286
    David Marjanović

    And then I got an e-mail from Daily Kos, so there are more links to dump now.

    Also, heaps and heaps of fundraiser e-mails; one for Democratic candidates for the state senate of NY, because two of the Democrats there caucus with the Republicans, preventing the whole Democratic agenda from being passed.

    Allegations of campaign corruption (R-TX).

    CNN Decides 80% of Reported School Shootings Don’t Count” – for example, it isn’t a “school shooting” when the shooters happen to be members of a gang, or when you can get away with mentioning “drug deals” in the same sentence. Oh, liberal media.

    David Brat wants to discourage people from going to the doctor. He wants to bring the cost of healthcare down, after all.

    A West Virginia hospital plans to raffle off a set of firearms later this month in an effort to raise funds to construct a new hospital facility.

    Is Fox News Trying To Kill The Republican Party? Or Is It Just A Happy Accident?” Most of this article consists of the author saying, with quotes, how right his 2009 article on this topic allegedly was; the new parts are 1) a study that found that Fox watchers are more ignorant and politically more extreme than other Republicans, and 2) a prediction: “The median age of the Fox News audience is 69 years old. That’s six years older than the median for their competition at CNN and MSNBC. And yet, Fox is embarking on an anti-Hillary Clinton crusade that is largely based on her age. That surely won’t go over well with the seniors tuning in to Fox.”

    Last night, Stephen Colbert looked at how Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) has now formally renounced his Canadian citizenship.” Stills and transcript!

  287. 287
    David Marjanović

    Ooh. One of the latest fundraiser e-mails implies that donating makes you a Majority Maker.

  288. 288
    David Marjanović

    Up there in comment 121:

    Drunk Teen Disguised as Flowerpot Uses Chainsaw to Rob Gas Station


  289. 289
    David Marjanović

    Even higher up:

    Happy birthday Donald Duck!

    The duck is become man, it has been said.

  290. 290
    Nick Gotts

    The median age of the Fox News audience is 69 years old. That’s six years older than the median for their competition at CNN and MSNBC. And yet, Fox is embarking on an anti-Hillary Clinton crusade that is largely based on her age. That surely won’t go over well with the seniors tuning in to Fox.- David Marjanović quoting Daily Kos

    I dunno – they might think: “Hell, I don’t want someone who’s as knackered as me trying to run the country!”

  291. 291
    David Marjanović

    For fuck’s sake, the fundraisers are becoming even dumber. Here’s one from the DSCC (Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee).

    David — Our jaws are LITERALLY on the floor:

    Since Eric Cantor’s loss on Tuesday, which Rachel Maddow calls “SHOCKING,” the GOP has been FLIPPING OUT — and over 8,000 Democrats have pitched in to help crush McConnell and the GOP!! ASTOUNDING!!

    [red] If we can get to 10,000 Democratic donations before midnight, it will send SHOCKWAVES through the Republican Party. [/red] Get this: A new poll shows we’re leading McConnell 49-46. All of the momentum is on our side — and if we defeat Republicans like McConnell, we’ll put the Senate and even the White House out of the GOP’s reach.

    [huge font] Will you pitch in to help push us over the edge??? We still need 2,000 more donations by midnight.

    Supporter Record: [censored]
    Deadline: 10 hours

    If you’ve saved your payment information with ActBlue Express, your contribution will automatically be processed when you click the [obviously deleted, personalized] links below:






    Or donate another amount.

    Let’s seize this moment!
    DSCC Rapid Response


  292. 292
    David Marjanović

    (I have no idea what the “Supporter Record” is even supposed to mean. It’s a long alphanumeric code.)

  293. 293
    Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden

    Our jaws are LITERALLY on the floor:

    Look, I know the word has been misused so many times that this is now no longer a misuse, but a common understanding of “literally”.

    Nonetheless, you’re a professional writer, being paid to write about things that are ostensibly serious issues. If you can’t find another intensifier that won’t make a good 10% of your audience giggle with the stupidity of your imagery, I can’t take *you* seriously as an advocate on those issues…and you won’t get a dinar from me.

  294. 294
  295. 295
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    David and CD:

    Keep in mind that the vocabulary of many people is quite small.

    I work in a professional environment. I was in a meeting yesterday regarding website redesign. Nine people in the meeting. Three with masters degrees. Seven with bachelors degrees. I figure about 154 years of formal schooling (not including kindergarten). One person points out a typo in a paragraph covering the legalese for special use permits. Eight people agree. I ask which word.

    “Right there in the second sentence. Where it reads, ‘or leads to derogation of the park’s laws or policies’.”

    I said it looked like to me. Another ranger pulled out his cell phone and started looking it up.

    Our historian (with a masters degree) said, “But its not a word. Not spelled that way.”

    I said, ” Sure it is. It means to relax a law for a specific group.”

    The ranger with the phone said, “He’s got it.”

    My boss said, “Well, we should use an English word.”

    I said, “It is.”

    She said, “But nobody knows what it means.”

    I bit my lip and did not agree, or disagree, with her labeling of me as a nobody.

    We then spent fifteen minutes rewriting the legalese that developed by lawyers down in Washington. The proper verbiage will still be on the actual permit application, but we watered it down for the web site.

    Anyway, even professional communicators, professional writers, professionals in all walks of life, can, and sometimes do, have limited vocabularies.

    That said, I agree. What a great way to engender a giggle and, and the same time, lose some donations.

    “Thou shalt avoid unnecessary Hyperbolization when thou art begging for moolah!”

  296. 296
    Tony! The Queer Shoop


    World Wrestling Entertainment veteran Pat Patterson came out as gay on the finale of the WWE network reality series Legends’ House, reports TMZ.

    In an emotional reveal, the 73-year-old told his fellow wrestling legends that he had not only been keeping the secret of his sexuality away from the prying eyes of the public for more than 50 years, but that he had also had a partner for 40 of those years who died of a heart attack.

    “For once in my life I’m going to be me,” Patterson told the others, adding that while it was hard to keep his secret, he was proud he survived.

    “We love you, Pat,” his teary-eyed Legends mates told him, in a heartwarming show of support. “We’ve always loved you.”

    Glad to see he got supportive responses.
    I wonder what society would look like without the social, political, and religious pressure that keeps many queers in the closet.

  297. 297
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    What your boss said was wrong.
    There are people that know what the word means. You’re one of those people.
    And you are not nobody.
    You are somebody and you matter.

  298. 298
    Lynna, OM

    I commented recently about actions President Obama took to lower student loan debt, and about separate, complementary action taken by Elizabeth Warren. Republicans stopped Warren’s efforts.

    Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) can’t catch a break. Senate Republicans voted Wednesday morning to block her latest piece of liberal reform. The Senate voted 56-38 in favor of Warren’s bill to help ease the burden of student loan debt. Despite a majority of senators approving the measure, it failed to reach the 60 votes needed to overcome Republicans’ filibuster of the measure.

    Warren’s bill is a simple concept. Current students can take out government loans at 3.86 percent interest, a cheaper rate than many of the loans held by past generations of students. The bill would also allow borrowers to refinance their current loans down to that lower rate. […]

    The main reason Republicans objected to the measure has less to do with the idea of easing student loan debt, and more with the mechanism Warren used to offset the cost of refinancing those loans. It would cost the government $51 billion over the next decade to allow borrowers to refinance. But Warren’s bill would have actually reduced the deficit, bringing in $72 billion in new revenues by implementing the so-called Buffet Rule, an added surcharge tax on millionaires to ensure that they pay at least 30 percent of their income in taxes. […]

    […] anything with the whiff of a tax increase is off the table for Republicans. Instead, it’s easier to ignore the troubles of young Americans wallowing in debt. […]


  299. 299
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Hillary Clinton doesn’t get it:

    “What’s it like when you’re in office and you have to do all these political calculations to not be able to support something like gay marriage that you actually believe in?” Gross asked the presumptive 2016 presidential candidate. “And you obviously feel very committed to human rights and you obviously put gay rights as part of human rights, but in doing the calculus you decided you couldn’t support it — correct me if I’m reading it wrong.”

    “Well, I think you’re reading it very wrong,” Clinton told Gross. “I think that, as I said, just as the president has said, you know, just because you’re a politician doesn’t mean you’re not a thinking human being. And you gather information. You think through positions. You’re not 100 percent set — thank goodness — you’re constantly reevaluating where you stand. That was true for me. We talked earlier about Iraq, for goodness sakes. So, for me, marriage had always been a matter left to the states. And in many of the conversations that I and my colleagues and supporters had, I fully endorse the efforts by activists who work state-by-state and in fact that is what is working.”

    Media Matters has a full transcript of the seven-minute exchange, including Clinton’s testy closing remarks, after Gross said she was attempting to clarify the former first lady’s views.

    “No, I don’t think you are trying to clarify,” Clinton said. “I think you are trying to say that I used to be opposed [to gay marriage], and now I am in favor, and I did it for political reasons. And that’s just flat wrong. So let me just state what I feel like you are implying and repudiate it. I have a strong record. I have a great commitment to this issue and I am proud of what I’ve done and the progress we’re making.”

    The interviewer was trying to understand the shift in Hillary’s thinking. Why does she now openly endorse marriage equality when she did not do so in the past? Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad she’s onboard. I think the pursuit of equality is greatly aided by powerful political allies.
    But none of that changes the fact that Hillary Clinton did not support marriage equality until relatively recently. “Leaving it up to the states” is not an expression of support. It’s an endorsement of the status quo. Opposition to marriage equality can manifest in a variety of ways, from the open condemnation of it by the Republican Party to simply remaining silent as discrimination continues.
    She supported how things were, rather than how things ought to be. She should own that.

  300. 300
    Lynna, OM

    This is a followup to my comments number 173, 175, 206, and 272. It seems that Dehlin and Kelly are telling even more truths about the LDS (mormon) church, including the fact that people are leaving in droves and that the LDS leadership is being forced to combine wards and stakes.

    The founder of the popular website ‘Mormon Stories’ [Dehlin]—in his first TV interview since he was given the choice of resigning his LDS membership, or possibly being kicked out—told 2News he loves the church, but suspects the Quorum of the Twelve is behind his potential ouster.

    “I value my membership, and my hope is that this all goes away,” said John Dehlin, a former professional with high tech concerns, turned doctoral student in psychology, and avowed podcaster. “I believe the biggest problem with the church is our collective inability to talk about difficult things openly.”

    […] He’s also supported same sex marriage, favored ordination of women to the LDS priesthood, and questioned foundations of Book of Mormon accounts, saying historical evidence for them is lacking.

    Dehlin maintained LDS “brethren…are scared. They don’t know what to do about the tide of people leaving the church.”

    The image of the LDS church, cultivated perhaps in church pronouncements, is of a faith that is robust and growing, with swelling numbers of young missionaries.

    But Dehlin said the “church is collapsing wards and stakes all throughout the world.”

    In his view, LDS leaders have taken a “kill the messengers” response.

    “I’ve been told by friends who are associated with the Quorum of the Twelve that they’re specifically concerned about myself and Kate Kelly,” he said. “So I believe it goes there.”

    Kelly, founder of the group Ordain Women, has a disciplinary council later this month—a session she does not plan to attend. […]

    No matter what happens, Dehlin said he will still consider himself a Mormon.

    To that last sentence, one has to reply, “Why?”


  301. 301
    Lynna, OM

    Video and Transcript of the story of the two mormons threatened with excommunication, (Dehlin and Kelly), on ABC

  302. 302
  303. 303
    Lynna, OM

    The Daily Beast article on the mormons threatened with excommunication highlighted another aspect of the LDS disciplinary procedure, that it is easier to excommunicate a mormon woman than it is to excommunicate a mormon man:

    The ultimate irony to Kelly as a Mormon feminist is that although she and Dehlin are facing the same threat of ex-communication, it is easier to remove her because she is a woman. She explains that as a woman in the LDS church, only thee people—a local bishop and his two council members—are needed to approve of ex-communication. If you are a man, and therefore a priesthood holder, it takes a council of 15 men to agree on ex-communication. In that situation. “there is much less of a chance for individual bias,” she said. “For me, it’s an individual leader who is making a decision about my eternal salvation.”

  304. 304
    David Marjanović

    Same thing again!

    David — This is EYE-POPPING:

    Since Eric Cantor’s loss on Tuesday, which Rachel Maddow says “legitimately is SHOCKING,” the Republicans are TERRIFIED — and 9,254 Democrats have pitched in to help crush McConnell and the GOP!! We’re TRULY STUNNED!!!

    [red] If we can get to 10,000 Democratic donations before midnight, the GOP will enter PANIC MODE. [/red] You won’t believe it: We’re leading McConnell 49-46, and every ounce of momentum is on our side! If we defeat McConnell and other vulnerable Republicans, the Senate and even the White House will be out of the GOP’s reach for years to come.

    [huge font] We’re SO CLOSE!!! Will you pitch in to help put us over the top? Just 746 more donations to go before midnight!

    Supporter Record: [etc. etc.]

    Let’s finish this strong!
    Stop the GOP

    BTW, it’s 8 minutes past midnight over here. :-]

    Bieber says Jesus forgave him so everyone else should too. Uh huh.

    Dio perdona – io no!

  305. 305
    David Marjanović

    (…Oh wow. Watch the first four minutes of that one.)

  306. 306
    David Marjanović

    I commented recently about actions President Obama took to lower student loan debt, and about separate, complementary action taken by Elizabeth Warren. Republicans stopped Warren’s efforts.

    Not for long, it seems. BoldProgressives.org just sent me an e-mail:

    “Hours after Senate Republicans voted to block Elizabeth Warren’s student loan bill, the #3 Democrat in the Senate, Chuck Schumer, told Jon Stewart:

    You can refinance your home, you can refinance your car, but the federal government doesn’t allow you to refinance your college loan if you’re paying too much. Why shouldn’t we do that? We’re gonna keep going at it. We’re going to bring this bill up over and over.

    Elizabeth Warren also declared she will barnstorm the country with key Senate candidates, campaigning on this issue.

    Can you sign the petition in support of Warren’s bill to help make sure this is a big campaign issue this year?

    “Just before the vote this week, PCCC members made hundreds of calls to their senators, and Elizabeth Warren saw support for her bill jump from 39 senators to 57 senators. Now she just needs three more.

    As Warren barnstorms the nation campaigning with Democratic candidates who support her student loan plan, even more petition signatures at local events will show media that the public is on her side.”

  307. 307
    David Marjanović

    These are the guns I want to fondle.

    Except maybe the last one (“today at 3:51 pm”).

  308. 308
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Re: the student loan rate-
    Given that higher education costs are enormous, is there any way for the state and federal government to provide funding so that students aren’t saddled with so much of the cost?

  309. 309
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    Given that higher education costs are enormous, is there any way for the state and federal government to provide funding so that students aren’t saddled with so much of the cost?

    Of course there is. Require that all state-funded universities must only charge tuition and room/board at rates that can be handled by a summer’s work at minimum wage. But the, the state has to make up the difference….

  310. 310
    chigau (違う)


  311. 311
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls


    Then the question becomes, why should people be paying commercial banks for their education, rather than mortgage monies as home-owning responsible adults…..

  312. 312
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    Given that higher education costs are enormous, is there any way for the state and federal government to provide funding so that students aren’t saddled with so much of the cost?

    Make the pigs pay their share.

  313. 313

    Given that higher education costs are enormous, is there any way for the state and federal government to provide funding so that students aren’t saddled with so much of the cost?

    That’s exactly what used to happen. It’s called “public universities”. But in the last 20 years, state legislatures figured out that the easiest way to cut their own costs was to cut the funding to the public universities and make the students pay more of the cost.

    (It’s also called “Pell Grants”, which are the federal version of “here, have money to go to college”. It has remained a stagnant amount since 1976. The linked graph shows it in inflation-adjusted dollars. In 1980, a Pell Grant covered 69% of college tuition; today it covers less than 33%. (source).

  314. 314
    A. Noyd

    So here’s a pic I took in a waiting room of two recent Time covers side by side. They were published just two weeks apart, and both feature cover stories about saving someone. The first is about preemies, the second about Bergdhal. I didn’t read the articles, but it struck me how different the headlines were and how much the difference parallels the values of forced-birthers.

  315. 315
    A. Noyd

    Or, rather, they’re the same values, and preemies are honorary fetuses.

  316. 316

    *jumping aboard*
    *massive hug-dump*
    Howdy, y’all!
    *narcissistically starting with ‘nym-searching* (’cause getting caught up is Not Happening This Week).
    Hekuni Cat!
    *reciprocating pouncehugs, with interest*
    I played in one Shadowrun campaign; it was a short journey by rail, and no one in the group was familiar with the game—including the GM—leading to dragged-outedness in combat situations, so…not a success.
    Which was a shame; it sounded like a fun (in a grim and gritty kinda way) system.
    Crip Dyke, if you’ll check out the pavement leading up to Hell’s Gates, you’ll see my good intentions wrt your seminar (?) exercises. I’m sorry.
    *yet another drive-by pouncehugging*
    With *chocolate*, of course! :)
    Oh, no!
    *warm&fuzzy hugs* for Dhorvath.
    I’m so sorry.

    Denmark decides against violating the autonomy of its citizens and that state sanctioned transphobia is not a good thing


  317. 317
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    My laptop is running slow again and I notice that when it does so, I get a little message saying “waiting on cache”.
    Anyone have advice on what I can do?

  318. 318
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Does the ’200′ have any significance at the end of your comment?

  319. 319

    I made it to Toronto. Tomorrow we compare dinosaurs.
    And I’m becoming more and more convinced that the few people I’ve actually kept in touch with from high school and university are amongst some of the best real-life people ever. Seriously. Leaving a key out for me and the kids to have a place to crash for one night even though they’re not home? I feel (un)worthy, if you know what I mean.
    And y’all just rock, too. Portia’s minion gif from upthread definitely embodies the lot of you for me, too.

  320. 320
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    It’s vewwy, vewwwy, quite tonight. I hope you fine folks are having pleasant evenings.



    Interesting article discussing how politics in the US have gotten increasingly polarized. I was initially disappointed that no specific political issues were used to give examples of this polarization, but apparently this is the first in a multi-part series:

    The current report is divided into five parts: The first two focus on measuring the nature and scope of political polarization, emphasizing the difference between growing ideological consistency and rising partisan antipathy. The third looks closely at how polarization manifests itself in people’s personal lives. The fourth looks at the relationship between polarization and practical policymaking, and the fifth digs deeper into how political participation both amplifies and reflects polarization.

    It looks like part 4 is where my concerns will be addressed.

  321. 321

    heyall. I’ve been using a pay-for-bandwidth vpn service to get US and UK programming down here in the wilds of Kiwiland.

    All the free ones I tried last year were crap, but things change.

    anyone have any good free vpn or something like a proxy that will work for BBC programming and things like netflix?

    internet is expensive enough down here.

  322. 322
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    O.O I am at a bar in Midtown with my primary and secondary partners. I have been subjected to drinks not bought by me. There are threats of karaoke.

    Send help. O.O

  323. 323

    Wow, now that’s quiet. I’m sorry I can’t save you from the scourge of singing off-key, Azkyroth! But at least I can’t hear you….

  324. 324
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    hello, rq.

    I’m not working from home. :)
    How are you doing?

  325. 325
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    Now I’m going to reward myself with episode 20 of shield.

    … I’m going to work for my reward afterwards.

  326. 326

    Ah, play first, then try to work? :D
    I’m doing alright, about to head out to see more dinosaurs (at the ROM). I had to do a lot of subtle negotiation last night to make sure we could get a night’s sleep in before going (you know, because even if we arrive after closing time, someone will let us in).
    Glad to be out of the Ottawa house for a bit. :)

    How’s work Shield?

  327. 327
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    Phil Coulson, at the end of ep20:


    Well, that was an understatement.

    Shield is great. Work…. would be better if not for Shield.
    But I’m taking some vacation time next week so that’s great. My first at this workplace.
    In fact, this is the first vacation time I’m taking since August… I think.

  328. 328
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.


    You are somebody and you matter.

    And that is a good clue to tell me that I am going through one of my periodic episodes of depression. My first thought, when I read that, was, “Well, the juries still out.” Which is a nice little mental warning to watch myself.

    Been feeling rather useless the last week or so. Well, more useless than usual.

  329. 329
    Lynna, OM

    David M., @306, thanks for that additional information. Here’s hoping Elizabeth Warren and her fellow senators can round up 3 more votes to break the Republican filibuster.

  330. 330
    Lynna, OM

    A new report on the “Persecution Complex” of the religious right makes some interesting points. A few excerpt below:

    The tales of horror keep pouring in: Two middle school girls are forced into a lesbian kiss as part of an anti-bullying program; an Air Force sergeant is fired because he opposes same-sex marriage; a high school track team is disqualified from a meet after an athlete thanks God for the team’s victory; a Veterans Affairs hospital bans Christmas cards with religious messages; a man fixing the lights in a Christmas tree falls victim to a wave of War-on-Christmas violence; an elementary school student is punished for praying over his school lunch; a little boy is forced to take a psychological evaluation after drawing a picture of Jesus.

    None of these stories is true. But each has become a stock tale for Religious Right broadcasters, activists, and in some cases elected officials. These myths – which are becoming ever more pervasive in the right-wing media – serve to bolster a larger story, that of a majority religious group in American society becoming a persecuted minority, driven underground in its own country.

    This narrative has become an important rallying cry for a movement that has found itself on the losing side of many of the so-called “culture wars.” By reframing political losses as religious oppression, the Right has attempted to build a justification for turning back advances in gay rights, reproductive rights and religious liberty for minority faiths. […]

    Within the report at the link, additional links are given to debunk the persecution stories, and in some cases the persecution stories are debunked within the report itself. One example:

    The most prolific manufacturer and promoter of apocryphal stories of American Christian persecution working today is Fox News reporter Todd Starnes.[…]

    For an example of how the Starnes myth machine works, take the story of Air Force Sgt. Phillip Monk, “relieved of his duties,” according to Starnes, “after he disagreed with his openly gay commander when she wanted to severely punish an instructor who had expressed religious objections to homosexuality.” […]

    It appears that Monk’s story was being shopped around by his attorneys at Liberty Institute, one of several Christian Right legal groups that devote themselves to digging up and publicizing alleged cases of persecution. The Alliance Defending Freedom and the American Center for Law and Justice have played a similar role […]

    But Monk’s story just wasn’t true. In Starnes’ very first report on Monk, he quoted an Air Force spokesman who explained that Monk hadn’t been punished but had simply come to the end of his assignment. A subsequent Air Force investigation found, according to the Military Times, that “Monk was not removed from his position, but rather moved, as scheduled, to another Lackland unit, an assignment he was notified of in April.” […]

  331. 331
    Lynna, OM

    There’s a whole section in the “Persecution Complex” report (see comment #330) that discusses “Duck Dynasty.” Dear Religious Right, dafuq?

  332. 332
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    I forgot to mention I’m jealous of you and your kids. Getting to visit museums and see dinosaurs sounds like a lot of fun. I haven’t been to a museum in decades (not since I was a kid), and I still have a soft spot for dinosaurs.

  333. 333
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Lynna @330:
    Long article, but well worth reading. Thanks for the link.

  334. 334
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    What have they done to the blue lined notebook? They’ve punished the poor thing? After its years of service in the name of education, this is how it is treated?



    It has long been suspected that some of the old masters may have relied on optical devices such as the camera lucida to help with scale and proportion in their paintings, leading to more lifelike interpretations of landscapes and portraits. Tim Jenison, a Texas-based inventor and computer graphics specialist, became obsessed with one such painter: Dutch master Johannes Vermeer, who created such realistic paintings that they seemed to have more in common with photography than paint. Could Vermeer have created a system for replicating scenes in front of him using lenses and mirrors?

    Jenison embarked on an experiment to recreate one of Vermeer’s most famous paintings, The Music Lesson. It’s an obsession that would consume five years of his life involving the actual construction of the entire room seen in the painting down to the most minute details, the (re)invention of a 17-century optical technology using period-appropriate tools and materials, and then seven months spent painting.

    The entire endeavor was filmed and turned into a documentary titled Tim’s Vermeer, the trailer of which you can see above. The film began its theatrical run in January, but just became available as a Blu-ray combo pack and digital download today. Jenison also wrote a detailed article about the entire step-by-step process that was published yesterday on Boing Boing.


    The interiors of the new headquarters of the Pathe Foundation are neat. The staircase is beautiful and was the first thing that grabbed my attention.


    Ever want to live in a Boeing 727?

  335. 335
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    Tony! Bartending question. Sorry if I’ve asked this already.

    Is there any trick to stop Bailey’s or the like from curdling when used in a drink that also has an acidic ingredient (port in this case)?

  336. 336
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    I’m not going to be much help here, bc I don’t think there’s any way to stop Bailey’s from curdling. I’ve only served a few drinks containing Bailey’s: Cement Mixers (which are meant to coagulate in your mouth), variations on White Russians, and B-52s (Kahlua, Bailey’s, Grand Marnier)

    Your question made me curious though.
    Wikipedia sez:

    As is the case with milk, cream will curdle whenever it comes into contact with a weak acid. Milk and cream contain casein, which coagulates, when mixed with weak acids such as lemon, tonic water, or traces of wine. While this outcome is undesirable in most situations, some cocktails specifically encourage coagulation.

    Looks like it’s going to curdle as long as there is a weak acid present. It doesn’t make the drink bad to the taste, just visually unappealing.


    Speaking of alcohol- a little something for beer lovers.

  337. 337
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    Wow, now that’s quiet. I’m sorry I can’t save you from the scourge of singing off-key, Azkyroth! But at least I can’t hear you….


    I got the loudest/longest applause of the night. :3

    Which is amusing because I don’t actually have any vocal range overlap with the original singer, to speak of.

  338. 338
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    (You know, that would have been clearer if I put the link on “Original Singer.” Ah well).

  339. 339
    David Marjanović

    It’s bedtime and link dump time.

    Activists Poured Concrete All Over Some ‘Anti-Homeless’ Spikes This Morning

    Tea Party’s cool older brother pulls the rug out from under them” – misleading headline, but I’m too tired to improve on it

    ‘Hipster’ Christianity: 9 hilarious attempts by the religious right to be cool

    Fox News’ lone ranger: Why Brit Hume’s show of decency got a ballistic response” – if you’re conservative in the US, you mustn’t show any compassion for poor children who immigrated, illegally, on their own, without parents; at least not if they’ve immigrated from the wrong direction.

    The Onion debuted its mind-blowing Buzzfeed parody” – “The amazing thing about Clickhole is how much it doesn’t seem like parody at all. For proof, take a look at some Buzzfeed and Clickhole pieces side by side:”

    And the good news:

    Atheism explodes in Saudi Arabia, despite state-enforced ban” – where “atheism explodes” means the number of atheists is growing really, really fast.

  340. 340
    David Marjanović

    And the ugly news:

    Libertarian pundit Adam Kokesh defends Las Vegas shooters for ‘not necessarily unjustified violence’” – see, cops are so evil that you can just shoot them, like you apparently would someone who, like, just stabs people at random. They’re anti-freedom! (Automatic quotation marks unintended. Only anti-freedom is a quote.)

  341. 341
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    (from David’s link @340)

    “Let’s say someone is going around stabbing people, like, just stabbing people,” Kokesh said. “It’s not murder to kill someone in that situation. And [as] has been pointed out about the Vegas shooting, when you have police officers that are going around and doing violent things all day long, and then they take a break for lunch, well, it doesn’t mean all of the sudden they’re innocent or they’re being peaceful because they’re taking a break from all of their other anti-freedom, rights-violating violence,” he continued.

    Kokesh argued next that the Millers had, if anything, saved lives by murdering two police. “Think of how many lives might have been saved by this incident,” he urged his audience. “How many people would these cops have killed had they not been killed?”

    “We can only hope that some of the officers in America are listening — if you care about your own safety — to understand that you are hurting people,” Kokesh threatened, “and you can only push them so far before they hit a breaking point.”

    Some cops have unjustifiably killed people, so that makes it ok for citizens to kill cops?
    Not only that, but he thinks threats against police officers is a good thing?

    Dude, you’re not even wrong. You’re deeply FUBAR’d.

  342. 342
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    In the past 48 hours I have:

    -Played Sims for about 13 hours
    -Watched Godzilla (entertaining! they aimed – successfully – for the “B” movie style)
    -Worked a shift in the maternity ward.

    I have not done much sleeping.

    Also: I have strawberries! They’re in season again! :D :D :D

  343. 343
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    In other news, I have to be at the hospital for my overnight-in-OB shift in 90 minutes.

    At some point, I should:
    -Put pants on
    -Put a shirt on
    -Put any variety of clothing on, let’s be honest.
    -Put my hair up
    -Find my glasses.

    Instead: YouTube videos of cats wearing neckties!

  344. 344

    People of Color in European Art History
    (Hat tip: Making Light.
    I assume we aren’t talking about veggies of an allium persuasion, here?
    Portia, that little animated gif-thing is soooo cute!
    :) & *hug*
    *nostalgic flashbacking*

    Does the ’200′ have any significance at the end of your comment?

    Only to me.

  345. 345
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)





  346. 346
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    Conversationally… most people aren’t mind readers.

  347. 347

    on the bailey’s thing….

    try a triple layer instead of a double?

    get something that has the right density to form a layer between the bailey’s and the port.

    what that something could be? haven’t a clue, but it would work.


  348. 348
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    Hm, in moderation at Butterflies and Wheels. I must not have commented there for longer than I thought.

  349. 349

    I have to be at the hospital for my overnight… shift in 90 minutes. … I should …[p]ut any variety of clothing on

    Why? It could make the patients happy. Which, I understand, is generally A Good Idea. (If yer uncomfortable, then take a hint from the trebuchet ammo, and put on a necktie. However, you might want to skip the being videoed part…)

    Or, I suppose, it could scare them. Even with a necktie. Hum… Tough one… I know! Compromise: Put on something transparent.

    Necktie optional.

    Problem solved.

  350. 350

    Ever want to live in a Boeing 727?

    Well, there is one in the TARDIS somewhere. Still flying, I think — not capable of flight, but actually doing the flying thing…

    However, the TARDIS also contains the extremely angry mouse.

    Sans said mouse, I’d prefer to live in the TARDIS. The 727 can do whatever it is 727′s do… wellllll… within reason, of course. For instance, no flying off to Teh Planet of Teh Peas and spreading fertilizer. Or falling out of the sky on my head.

  351. 351
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Ever want to live in a Boeing 727?

    I once spent seven hours in Boeing 727 on a runway in Salt Lake City. Started as a ground delay for Chicago O’Hair. Became a bad sensor in an engine. Became the plane ain’t moving because neither engine will throttle up. Became, eventually, dragging the plane back to the gate. After seven hours.

    So my answer is, “Not only no, but hell no!”

  352. 352
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Okay, I have to ask. Is the “the extremely angry mouse” a good fiend of the Mildly Deranged Penguin? Or, perhaps, has the MDP learned how to shrink and expand at will? and disguise herself as a mouse? an extremely angry mouse?

  353. 353

    Is the “the extremely angry mouse” a good fiend of the Mildly Deranged Penguin?

    (Answer delayed until the Universe stops giggling…)

  354. 354
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.


    Good fRend. Not fiend. Friend.

  355. 355
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Oh, for Pete’s sake.

    Good fRiend. Not fiend. Friend.

    Shut up, Universe.


    Thought just hit me.

    If the Universe were cyclical, would that be a unicycle?

  356. 356

    Oh, for Pete’s sake.

    What did Pete do to deserve this wanton abuse of conventional spelling?

    Or is Pete a disciple(? priest? acolyte? …?) of Tpyos?

  357. 357

    Thought just hit me…

    Not surprising. The Universe probably just fell off its tricycle. Again.

    The training wheels don’t seem to be working.

  358. 358
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Hi there
    I’m back from my wonderful but way too short weekend with my friends.
    I wished I could have such get togethers with the lot of you, too.

  359. 359

    I wished I could have such get togethers with the lot of you, too.

    Gulp! What did unnamed poopyhead minions do to deserve that…?
    Well, Ok, some of them are alleged to have eaten — and even liked — peas, but besides that and numerous other heresies, isn’t that overreacting a bitlots!?

    (And cheese was not mentioned…)

  360. 360
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    Great. Now I’m talking to myself.
    Colleagues apparently worked most of the weekend, but now that I’m giving them feedback and need feedbackback, there’s no sign of life from anyone.

    Nada. Nothing. It will be such a fun day tomorrow at work.

    I want a good quality troll and some popcorn. I need a distraction and I have watched all the episodes of Shield.

  361. 361

     now that I’m giving them feedback and need feedbackback, there’s no sign of life from anyone.

    Feedback is generally e-mail, phone calls, and similar, and in extreme cases, wasabi-flavoured peanuts.

    Shelling with 16 inch naval guns, followed by a charge of horse-mounted peas, is usually not recommended due to the result mentioned.

  362. 362
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought


    Damn, I knew I was doing something wrong.

    Could you please send MDP to steal their cheese? MDP jumping up and down on them until they surrender all the hidden stacks of cheese should be enough to wake them from dead.

  363. 363

    wake them from dead

    You want zombies? You want zombies? You want zombies?

    Well, I guess then you will be feedback…

  364. 364
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Happy Fathers Day to all fathers out there (lurkers and commenters).

  365. 365
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.


    Happy Fathers Day to all fathers out there (lurkers and commenters).

    Thank you. And I, too, wish a happy Father’s Day to all men who have inflicted their genes on the next generation.

  366. 366
    Lynna, OM

    This is a followup to my comment #204. Police have discovered the journal of the mormon teenager that shot a fellow student and wounded a teacher in Troutdale, Oregon. Seems the young man wanted to “kill sinners.”

    The 15-year old gunman at Reynolds High School planned to kill classmates, who he called “sinners,” according to a journal police found in the suspect’s home.

    Police found the journal while searching Jared Padgett’s father’s home. Investigators also searched the freshman’s locker at school.

    According to a law enforcement source, Padgett wrote about a plan to go to the school and kill students or “sinners.”

    Mormon elders called Reynolds suspect ‘quiet, spiritual’
    There were no specifics in Padgett’s personal notes about how or when the shooting might occur. No specific students or teachers were named as potential targets, according to the source.


  367. 367
    Lynna, OM

    More from Jared Padgett’s journal (see comment # 366): Jared also wrote in his journal text that police described as “railing against those who smoked cigarettes or took the Lord’s name in vain.”

    Mormonism didn’t help this kid.

  368. 368
    Lynna, OM

    Bibles for niche markets, “branded” bibles, and bibles illustrated for teenage girls … all very strange, and unappealing in my view. The latest branding effort comes from Duck Dynasty.

    The controversial Robertson family of “Duck Dynasty” fame has announced it will publish a branded devotional Bible this fall, spurring debates about blasphemy on the Internet.

    Aptly titled the “Duck Commander Bible,” the book will present a King James version of the Bible, highlighting the Robertson’s core values of “faith, family, fellowship and forgiveness,” Thomas Nelson publishers said in a release. The book will also feature “30 life-changing testimonials.” It hits Amazon and shelves Oct. 28.

    […] Roberston [the patriarch] said that homosexuals would “not inherit the kingdom of God.”

    Branded or “niche” Bibles aren’t a new development. […] a 2006 New Yorker article dug into the issue of commercial versioning of the Bible stemming largely from market research.


    As you can tell from the link, this is big news in the Morridor, though why mormons love Duck Dynasty so much, I don’t know. The Duck Dynasty guys are Baptists, IIRC. Last year some mormon Pioneer Day parades featured people dressed like Duck Dynasty stars riding on the floats, and Glenn Beck (a mormon) is shilling for Duck Dynasty on The Blaze. Maybe it is a function of the way that fads sweep through cults.

  369. 369
    Lynna, OM

    Oh, my lord. If you thought The Bachelor and The Bachelorette reality shows were bad, take a look at this. Even worse dreck is coming your way.

    […] The biggest story in faith-based reality TV this summer is “It Takes a Church” on Game Show Network (GSN). The series premiered on June 5 following the network’s other popular religious program, “The American Bible Challenge.”

    “Each week the show visits a congregation and matches up one of its single members with a prospective mate,” The New York Times reported. Combining “The Bachelorette” with “The Dating Game,” the series allows church members to make the initial selections before the single Christian in question makes his or her final choice. […]


  370. 370
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    Passing thoughts:
    I am very, very bad at names and only marginally better with faces. I have great difficulty keeping track of what name is attached to what person, and even which person has just spoken to me. This is not helped even a little bit by the fact that so many of the people I’ve known habitually go in disguise and use aliases*.
    I’ve tried to explain this a little bit to my coworkers(many of whom are drag queens), but I don’t think it’s really gotten through to them. I don’t mean to be rude, but I literally do not know the names of more than about half the staff, and can only reliably attach faces to about half of those. The queens make it worse because they come through in various stages of makeup and costume, which throws my already spotty facial recognition capacities into a tailspin. When one of them wants some food, 90% of the time I end up just wandering around the dressing room waving a plate until someone claims it.

    *Drag queens. LARPers, SCAdians, etc.

  371. 371
    David Marjanović

    Avicenna gets mail from a teacher who explains how soccer is ruining America. Ruining, I tell you, by somehow not being played in accordance with a weird mixture of Christian, patriarchal and libertarian values.

    The post contains lots of videos. Watch at least the one with the curveball; you’ll have to watch it several times to believe it.

  372. 372
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Any sci-fi movie geeks in here?


    The list contains obvious weapons like the phaser and lightsaber (both of which I think are cool), as well as the proton pack from Ghostbusters (the only other one on the list I like). The rest of the stuff is too outrageously destructive (the Death Star), or too generic (oooh, a Star Wars blaster or Robocop’s gun ::eyeroll::). I’m on the fence on the Avatar mech suit (that I don’t like it enough to include in on my list of cool weapons probably means something).

  373. 373
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    SCA-Society for Creative Anachronism?
    I was able to find out what LARP meant pretty quickly, but there are multiple definitions of SCA (some which are obviously not what you were talking about).

  374. 374
    Weedless Monkey


    I think the list is fundamentally flawed as it excludes video games, and misses the charged gravity gun from Half-Life 2 – the high point of the game when you suddenly feel all-powerful.

    Krull’s glaive is just as ridiculous as the movie Krull.

    The pulse rifle from Aliens is quite powerful, but as you said, generic.

  375. 375
  376. 376
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    (from David’s link above)

    Rowland Atkinson, co-director of the Centre for Urban Research at the University of York, suggests the spikes and related architecture are part of a broader pattern of hostility and indifference towards social difference and poverty produced within cities.

    “If you were being a bit cynical but also realistic, it is a kind of assault on the poor, a way of trying to displace their distress,” he says. “You have various processes coming together, including economic processes that are making people vulnerable in the first place, like the bedroom tax and thresholds on welfare, but the next step seems to be to say: ‘We are not even going to allow you to accommodate yourself in the most desperate way possible.’ ”

    This ↑
    I’ll add that I don’t think it’s cynical to believe this is the case. The article mentions the desire to deter “anti-social behavior”, but doesn’t discuss what type of behavior they’re referring to. The only behaviors described are homeless people sleeping on benches or teenagers playing on skateboards. Since when do either of those count as anti-social behavior?

  377. 377
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    Indeed, that is the SCA to which I was referring. Also, I’m with you guys about that list; those are mostly pretty crap, and a bunch of them (Robocop, Blade Runner, Aliens,) are just perfectly ordinary guns, not meaningfully different from those used by police and military forces today (Except the one that Deckard Cain uses; that would actually be considered dated verging on obsolete).
    Meh. I hate being poor. Barely scraped together the internet payment to keep it turned on today, now have no budget for groceries or L’s supplies, and the dog may be getting sick; he’s been acting funny and shivering.

  378. 378
    Weedless Monkey

    Hostile architecture.

    Nasty shit, and talks volumes about who is welcome and who should just stay out of sight and die.

  379. 379

    Dalillama, I feel your pain.
    Oddly enough, Ordinary Mortal Phone Directories are no help.
    Plus, the joke-from-real-life the punch-line of which is, “We’ve come for our king!”.

  380. 380
    David Marjanović

    cicely! *pouncehug with heaps of chocolate*

  381. 381
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy


    . Since when do either of those count as anti-social behavior?

    Since they offend the sensibilities of upper middle-class white people. Some of whom are also actively afraid of both skateboarders and homeless people for reasons I’ve never adequately understood. Seriously, I recall an instance where someone asked me if I wasn’t afraid to go through a particular alleyway (in Eugene, Oregon, no less, not exactly a hotspot for street crime), because of all the scary people there. After a great deal of confusion and eventually queries to other people, I finally realized he meant the homeless and semi-homeless teenagers who hung out near there, better known to me as my chums from the local coffee house, but apparently to this fellow were fucking orcs or something.
    cicely 379
    I’m afraid I don’t know the reference.

  382. 382
    Weedless Monkey

    I’ll have to say I do like the way the triangular targeting beams of Predators plasma cannon zoom into its prey, but it’s still just a fancified rocket launcher.

  383. 383
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    I never knew this about the lightsaber:

    In the early incarnations of the Star Wars storyline, lightsabers were not exclusive to the Jedi and other Force-users, but were in fact very mundane. Early concept art depicts lightsabers being wielded by Rebel and Imperial soldiers alike. George Lucas later limited the lightsabers to exclusively the Jedi in order to make them feel more unique, and heighten the mystique of the Jedi. Also, in early drafts of the script, lightsabers were referred to as “lazerswords.”


  384. 384
    Weedless Monkey

    Hostile architecture reminds me of something chilling and morbidly fascinating: the way to warn the future generations of sites with nuclear waste.

    Here are some designs http://downlode.org/Etext/WIPP/

    The original message intended was

    This place is a message… and part of a system of messages… pay attention to it!Sending this message was important to us. We considered ourselves to be a powerful culture.

    This place is not a place of honor…no highly esteemed deed is commemorated here… nothing valued is here.

    What is here is dangerous and repulsive to us. This message is a warning about danger.

    The danger is in a particular location… it increases toward a center… the center of danger is here… of a particular size and shape, and below us.

    The danger is still present, in your time, as it was in ours.

    The danger is to the body, and it can kill.

    The form of the danger is an emanation of energy.

    The danger is unleashed only if you substantially disturb this place physically. This place is best shunned and left uninhabited.

    From http://www.damninteresting.com/this-place-is-not-a-place-of-honor/

    I think I’ve read it with even more details, but it was two computers ago.

  385. 385

    London to Ottawa with three kids in eight hours. Not bad, I say. Not bad. Wanted the extra night in London, though. But I guess some people, who own cars that I borrow, get to make some demands that I’m just too scared to challenge.

    Annnyway. Canada is beautiful.

    Eldest, somewhere around Actinolite: “Hmm… A rock as grey as… like a horse. No… nooo… ummm, a rock as grey as… a rock. Haha! That’s so funny! But no. Hmmm… A rock as greeeey… aaaas… the evening. Oooh, that’s a good one! I’ll remember that one! Okay, next, umm… a maple. A maple is as good aaaaas… No. No. Maple is good, syrup flows. Yeah, that’s good. I’m going to make up so many new words on this trip!! [etc.]” (I loved the wordplay.)

  386. 386
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    Dang, been a long day here at Casa la Pelirroja. Yesterday, took the Redhead to a restaurant to visit with a friend back in the area for a visit after moving to Arizona. Good time, but tiring for both of us. Today, opened, shredded a lot of mail, and paid a couple of bills from an accumulated pile. Took most of the afternoon. Need to switch the health insurance to e-mail notifications. The garbage bag is burping up confetti.

  387. 387
    chigau (違う)

    I saw some Taiko tonight.

  388. 388
  389. 389

    The garbage bag is burping up confetti.

    Sighs… Ok, let’s try this again. Pay attention, please, this time. It’s a cookie monster. That means you should feed it cookies. Not confetti. And certainly not cookies made from confetti. Chocolate-chip cookies. Ok?

  390. 390
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Chocolate-chip cookies with confetti sprinkles :)

  391. 391
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Good morning!

    I know what you mean.
    I’m bad at names, too. I’m good at visual cues, though. If you want to completely confuse me, just change your avatar…


    Hostile architecture.

    Well, the public sphere is obviously only for those who can afford a cappucino in a café.

  392. 392
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Good morning Giliell :)

    I just started reading Jenny Trout’s (Jennifer Armintrout) Buffy:TVS reviews. I love how she critiques the episode and tosses some snark in there. I wondered where the Snark! hat went to. Anyway, first episode in and she doesn’t rip it apart as much as I feared (as she did with 50 Shades–which was entirely justified, from the sound of it). She makes a snarky comment that I think would actually be fun to see:


    Buffy asks if there were any marks on the corpse, then takes off to play CSI: Hellmouth in the locker room. The scene neatly sets up Buffy’s super strength (she breaks a locked door to get inside), but one has to wonder why an apparent murder victim would be left unattended in a high school. Sure, the door was locked, but where are the police? The crime scene tape? Someone just threw a blanket over the body and took a lunch break, I guess, because Buffy is able to get in and get a good look at the clear vampire teeth impression in the dead dude’s neck.

    I think CSI: Hellmouth would be kinda awesome. Hell, the CSI shows are already in the realm of SyFy. It wouldn’t take much to push them into SyFy/Horror.

    (and yes, I used SyFy bc I know people here love that :)

  393. 393

    I thought SyFy really only applied to the channel, that changed its name for legal reasons?

  394. 394
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    AFAIK, it only applies to the channel, I was just being silly.
    I didn’t know that was the reason for the name change though.

  395. 395
  396. 396

    When going to work, I discovered my cat roommate had marked his territory in my bag. Then I noticed the town bus service has entered its midsummer phase, with only one bus every half hour. Arrived late, only decompressing now.

  397. 397

    When going to work, I discovered… Then I noticed…

    Well, at least you noticed these things. That is an improvement on not doing so, which would be painful — in the case of trying to get on a non-existent bus — with the added “hilarity” of falling face-first into the trebuchet ammo’s gift…

    But since “bad” things come in threes, you may rest assured, there is something you didn’t notice.


  398. 398
    David Wilford

    A highly informational piece on some Vatican intrigue that’s worth taking the time to read:


  399. 399

    Speaking of Vatican intrigues, there was a recent opinion piece in the New York Times on the efforts to “clean up” the notoriously corrupt Vatican Bank, Cleaning Up the Vatican.

  400. 400
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    I tried to read that, but only got through the first third. It may be informational, but I don’t care enough about the inner workings of the raping children church to plod through the rest of that. Perhaps others are.

  401. 401
    David Wilford

    Thanks, blf. That was a terrific piece from the NYT.

  402. 402
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    My great uncle died. A week before, my great aunt called asking for advice about wills. I hadn’t called her back. No one told me he wasn’t doing well. I worked up my anxious gut and called Great Aunt. She said don’t feel bad, we got another lawyer locally who could help us and it’s all ok. I still feel like a shit but at least they got the will done in time.

    I know it’s silly to whine about people relying on you for important things (that’s were I get my purpose) but…I feel like I’m about to crack under the pressure.

    *hugs* and *minion-umbrellas* for everyone who’d like them. (I just realized that *minion umbrella* is a nice non-invasive gesture of support ^_^)
    Sorry to drop in and do a feelings-dump. I wish I could hang out more. I need to get a new laptop : /

  403. 403
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    All hail Tpyso. *where not were

  404. 404
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    I’m so sorry to hear about your great uncle. My condolences.

    I know it’s silly to whine about people relying on you for important things (that’s were I get my purpose) but…I feel like I’m about to crack under the pressure.

    I take it too many people are relying on your for things. It sounds like you feel bad, and while I can understand that, your health is also important. Please don’t overextend.
    ::hugs under the minion umbrella::

  405. 405
    Lynna, OM

    Republicans in the USA House of Representatives continue to block the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA).

    Last week, we saw something unusual. Rep. Frank LoBiondo of New Jersey announced he would add his name to the list of co-sponsors of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, becoming only the eighth Republican to do so. He brought the new total for the pending legislation, which has already passed the Senate, to 205 co-sponsors — well within striking distance of the support needed to pass the GOP-led chamber.

    Except, that won’t happen. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) has said he will not allow the House to vote up on down on ENDA, falsely claiming, “People are already protected in the workplace.” […]

    President Barack Obama has directed his staff to draft an executive order that would ban workplace discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees of federal contractors, […]

    For those who need a refresher on this debate, under federal law, employers can legally fire employees if they’re gay, or even if they think the employees are gay. Some states prohibit this kind of discrimination, but most don’t.

    The proposed remedy has been the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. Current law already prohibits job discrimination on the basis of race, gender, age, religion, national origin, disability, or genetic information, but ENDA is needed to extend protections to include sexual orientation and sexual identity.

    There’s ample evidence that most Americans believe LGBT Americans are already protected against employment discrimination, but those folks are mistaken. […]


  406. 406

    Your shipment of chocolate should be arriving any day now. :) If that’s any comfort!

  407. 407

    Portia, all the hugs. You had no way to know he was unwell if nobody thought to tell you, dammit. I’m sorry for your loss, and I’m sorry that inevitably you feel bad (and glad that they got the will done anyway).
    I’d happily share minion-umbrella-shelter for a while. Hope you are OK.

  408. 408
    Lynna, OM

    Wielding the threat of sectarian slaughter, Sunni Islamist militants claimed on Sunday that they had massacred hundreds of captive Shiite members of Iraq’s security forces, posting grisly pictures of a mass execution in Tikrit as evidence and warning of more killing to come.

    The possible mass killing came as militants cemented control of the city of Tal Afar, west of Mosul, after two days of fierce clashes with Iraqi troops, residents and senior security officials said. […]


  409. 409
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought


  410. 410
    Lynna, OM

    The Open Carry Texas advocates continue to stage disturbing gun rallies at Target stores:

    On Saturday in the Dallas suburb of Irving, a group of men armed with semi-automatic rifles gathered in a parking lot outside a Target store for a demonstration led by the group Open Carry Texas, whose goal is the loosening and abolishment of gun regulations. […] Open Carry Texas drew Target into the ongoing political battle over gun laws by encouraging its armed supporters to parade through the store’s toy aisles, tote Oreos along with their ammo, and boast that “Target is very 2A friendly.” […]

    In response, the national advocacy group Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America has put pressure on Target via social media, a petition campaign, and a protest outside Target’s annual shareholders’ meeting last week, which happened to be in Dallas.

    While Moms Demand Action has now helped push seven corporate food and beverage chains—including Starbucks, Chipotle, Sonic, and Chili’s—to reject firearms at their places of business, to date Target has essentially dodged the issue […]


  411. 411
    Lynna, OM

    Seventy thousand minimum wage workers in San Jose, California got a raise, and not only did the sky not fall, but unemployment did not rise. The predictions of conservatives were wrong, wrong, wrong.

    Here’s another example to point to when opponents of a higher minimum wage claim that it would cost jobs. The minimum in San Jose, California, has gone from $8.00 an hour to $10.00 and then $10.15, and University of California-Berkeley economist Michael Reich has been studying the results:

    […] San Jose restaurants, which Reich says were most affected by the pay increase, raised menu prices by an average 1.75%, according to his study. He says there has been no discernible impact on employment.

    The unemployment rate in the San Jose metro area, in fact, has fallen to 5.4% from 7.4% in March 2013. The San Jose Downtown Association says the number of restaurants in the district has increased by 20% the past 18 months. […]

    Daily Kos link.

  412. 412
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Strong Female Protagonist:

    In just a short nine hours, Strong Female Protagonist went from a popular webcomic to an upcoming graphic novel thanks to a quickly funded Kickstarter. On day one the crowdfunding campaign reached its $8,000 goal and as of Thursday has raised more than $45,380, fulfilling four stretch goals. Writer Brennan Lee Mulligan and artist Molly Ostertag have been floored by the response and are extremely grateful to their supporters.

    “I can look at the number of people who check the site each day, but it’s just a number. Seeing the names of our fans, getting their support, and hearing from them has been a truly wonderful experience,” Ostertag told the Daily Dot.

    Strong Female Protagonist follows the story of middle-class American retired superhero Alison Green who has super-strength and invincibility. She also has a crippling sense of social injustice and while going to college tries to figure out how to improve problems larger than the supervillains she battles. It deals with a number of superhero tropes and the idea of what exactly makes a female protagonist strong.

    “Molly and I both had problems with the use of that term and the characters it tended to describe, so the early ideas of the comic were almost like a writing exercise. How do you create a character who is ‘strong’ in every sense of the word? What are all the various connotations of the word ‘strong’ in describing a literary character?” Mulligan said.

    It’s free to read online? I think I’ll check that out.

  413. 413
    Lynna, OM


    No comment needed. The cartoon stands on its own.

  414. 414
    Lynna, OM

    This is a followup to my comment #405:

    WorldNetDaily is startled by the introduction of the International Human Rights Defense Act, a bill put forward by Sen. Ed Markey to help protect LGBT rights — or as WND refers to it, “alternative lifestyle choices” — abroad.

    Cheryl Chumley, a WND Books author, tells WND that the legislation is not only unconstitutional, but will “make America look even more impotent on the international stage.” […]

    “Markey wants our U.S. State Department to take a politically charged stand on homosexual rights and try and push his liberal views onto other governments. Really? Doesn’t America under President Obama have enough problems with its foreign policy without jumping into the hot-bed that’s called gay rights?” she said. […]


  415. 415
    Tony! The Queer Shoop


    • word for word, Samuel L Jackson recites his famous ‘Pulp Fiction’ speech
    • info from the the set of FOX’s upcoming ‘Gotham’ tv show (similar to Smallville and Arrow, ‘Gotham’ centers on the world of a young Bruce Wayne before he goes batty)
    • Powerpuff Girls are getting rebooted in 2016

  416. 416

    Yay, new tropes VS women in video games video is out!

  417. 417
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy


    Pretty much. AFAICT, conservatives are motivated exclusively by bile, malevolence and fear.

  418. 418
    David Marjanović

    *restocks hug truck*

    In German: Surprisingly, illegitimate children are not excluded from the succession to the throne of Spain. Juan Carlos being de Borbón y Borbón, he has had an extremely long list of mistresses; sure enough, in summer of 2012, Albert Solà Jiménez (58 years old) and Ingrid Sartiau (48) came forward and claimed to be illegitimate children of the king. Solà Jiménez filed a paternity suit, but the king is immune and didn’t have to submit to the test. It is possible, though unlikely, that this immunity is now gone. In that case, things might get interesting – crown prince Felipe, scheduled to become king on Thursday, is only 46!

  419. 419

    Ooooh, a fight for a throne, in modern times? Fun!
    Probably no dragons, though. Boo.

  420. 420
    JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness

    Hey Everyone!

    I’m sporaic as usual. Dealing with drama when I’m already exhausted. Ugh. But I am taking the day off, so let’s just avoid all that mess.

    In much happier news {Period talk maybe TMI for some}:
    I’ve done a lot of research and think I’ve finally found my menstrual cup, The Lunette Large. It has larger holes and is stiffer than the Diva, which would help make removing easier and lessen suction when breaking the seal, which I choose because of concerns with my IUD. It’s one of the highest capacity while shorter than the Diva because my cervix is easily reached when normal i.e., not menstruating or ovulating.

    Also, so much learning. And why the bloody fuck was I never taught any of this? Like figuring out how to measure my cervix and that it changes. And not just with pregnancy, that I learned while doing. It sits lower when menstruating which explains a lot – like why I find period sex painful.

    It’s so weird finding out about menstrual cups in my twenties. Why isn’t this known more? They were invented in 1930 and I’m just now seeing the disposable cups in stores. And only disposable cups. Apparently, The Keeper is manufactured in the U.S.A. as of the late 1980′s and still around. That little fact shocked me, never would’ve guessed it.

    Of course, it’s also weird when first looking at them and balking when I’ve never had a problem thinking about inserting a penis.

    I’m actually excited and so damn relieved to be getting one of these, if y’all still okay with funding it. It’s $40 (same as Diva) and $6 for shipping. I also have several resources if anyone wants to look into getting their own.

  421. 421
    JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness

    Oh, bonus on ordering the Lunette cup from their website: Cheapest shipping that comes in 2-5 days and they accept PayPal so no waiting a week for the funds to hit my bank account.

  422. 422
    David Marjanović

    Fiona the unemployed bettong explains unemployment in Australia!

    In the early incarnations of the Star Wars storyline, lightsabers were not exclusive to the Jedi and other Force-users, but were in fact very mundane.

    And Luke Skywalker was called Annikin Starkiller, and Han Solo was huge and green.

    Also, in early drafts of the script, lightsabers were referred to as “lazerswords.”

    …That might explain why they were dubbed as Lichtschwerter “lightswords” in German, even though Lichtsäbel “lightsabers” would have fit the lip movements better!

    Cleaning Up the Vatican

    From there:

    Shrewdly, as before, he has brought in outsiders. The U.S. regulatory and compliance consultants of Promontory Financial Group are combing through the bank’s 19,000 accounts. They have found poor cash-flow checks, inadequate documentation, ignorance on due diligence and a system of proxies that clouds who really controls many accounts. When the clerics in charge were asked how they answered to the regulator, they replied: “We answer to God.” Now they answer to Mr. Brülhart. Some 1,600 accounts have been closed so far.

    :-D :-D :-D The new director of the Vatican’s “Financial Information Authority” has a very apt name: brüllen “to roar”, hart “hard”, likely “hardy” ~ “strong” in old names. I imagine him shouting people out of the room like in a comic!

    One click away is Krugman being cautiously hopeful about Obama, brought to you by the word shambolic. :-D


    I particularly like the “anti-immigrant” panel.

    One click away: Surprise! Iraq War architect goes on Meet the Press to argue for endless war – it’s Wolfowitz, who once upon a time wanted to get out of Iraq very, very quickly.

  423. 423
    David Marjanović

    Ooooh, a fight for a throne, in modern times? Fun!

    *rubs hands in glee*

    I really don’t expect Juan Carlos to be declared no longer immune, though.

  424. 424
    David Marjanović

    Jesus Haploid Christ.

    Dear David,

    On Father’s Day each year, we take time to recognize Dads everywhere. That’s why I wanted to send a quick note from my family to yours, wishing everyone a Happy Father’s Day.

    That’s been sent to me under the name of Jeanne “Shaheen for Senate” Shaheen. Her campaign wants donations, so I’m treated to a photo of her family, a biography of her father, then this:

    I hope you all enjoyed this weekend and were able to spend time with friends and family. I can’t thank you enough for standing with me throughout this campaign, and I look forward to seeing and speaking with you all in the coming months as I travel across New Hampshire.

    Thank you,


    and a big, centered, light red CONTRIBUTE button.

    …For the record, I’ve never written anything that might be interpreted to imply that I live in New Hampshire or have indeed ever been to that state.

    Is the campaign reaching out to the people who want to have a beer with the POTUS? Or what the everloving fuck is going on here?

  425. 425
    David Marjanović

    Republicans in the USA House of Representatives continue to block the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA).

    …aaaannnd of course there’s a petition to Congress to pass the ENDA.

    Accepts non-US zip codes, even though, if you enter an e-mail address with a national top-level domain, it asks “did you mean [e-mail provider].com”, which doesn’t even exist in my case.

  426. 426
    David Marjanović

    Another petition: “Reform our campaign finance system and put an end to the disastrous effects of Citizens United.” Only accepts US zip codes, but the URL is delicious.

  427. 427
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Wow. Cancelled tv shows continue to see life in comics form. Buffy TVS, Angel, X-Files, and Charmed have all see official continuations of their adventures in comic book format. The same has happened to the Six Million Dollar Man and soon the Bionic Woman will get a fourth season in comic book form.

  428. 428

    The new store manager we have had a reputation for running a tighter ship than our previous manager. Which, to be honest, we probably needed. There are issues with sales volume and customer satisfaction that could be fixed with a more detail oriented manager.

    He immediately sent down a few “fix it” orders for some of the smaller and higher priority issues. But for the most part, over his first week and a half, he’s been quiet on that front.

    And now, the big fix it orders have come down. And they are all good ideas. And he’s giving us a realistic timeframe for implementation. A couple things he wanted, he saw we simply can’t do for one reason or another and he’s having no trouble bowing to the demands of reality.

    He’s pretty much exactly what we needed as far as I can tell. Stricter where we need him to be stricter, able to accept reality, and what I find really important- he took time to understand why we do what we do, and what resource concerns we are facing in doing it, before cracking down on stuff.

    I’m expecting our customer satisfaction and sales figures to start going up soon. And I’ll be spending less time hunting down the items I need to send out.

    I hope he stays this good going forward.

  429. 429
    A. Noyd

    Some of my neighbors are trying to make up for soccer’s lack of prestige in the US by being as loud as possible while watching the World Cup. Which just provoked another neighbor to holler “soccer sucks” at them. Also, earlier today I saw a guy fall on his face trying to play soccer in the middle of the street. Ahh, America.

  430. 430
    A. Noyd

    Now the loud neighbors are standing on the roof of the building across the street, waving soccer flags, and chanting, “USA! USA! USA!”

  431. 431
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    *Sounds like I had better check the Pullet Patrol™ Betting Board. Not one bet for men’s soccer. Yawn.*

  432. 432
    Rob Grigjanis

    A. Noyd @429:

    Also, earlier today I saw a guy fall on his face trying to play soccer in the middle of the street.

    Must’ve been an Englishman.

  433. 433
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    Must’ve been an Englishman.

    Maybe, as I would expect an USAian to fall on his bum and face at the same time…

  434. 434
    Rob Grigjanis

    Nerd @433: Well, they did OK today, beating Ghana 2-1. If they beat Portugal next (possible!), A. Noyd may have to put up with loud chanting for a while longer.

  435. 435
    chigau (違う)

    Maybe, as I would expect an USAian to fall on his bum and face at the same time…

    This would be possible only if he were a comic-book super-heroine.

  436. 436

    Anyone here read The Maze Runner? By… that guy? James Dashner?
    I’m the first few (short) chapters in, and I’m wondering if this introduction of the only girl into a group of boys is going to improve at any time? I mean, the only way they’ve talked about her yet is in terms of getting her first, and her being hot/beautiful (and everyone having negative ideas about these thoughts because she’s in a coma but not for any other reason – like her being a person and all). I understand that that’s apparently how teenaged boys think, but you know, if you want to educate kids out of rape culture, it would be great if things didn’t start off that way…

  437. 437
    Rob Grigjanis

    I have a problem. A baby swallow came out of the nest way too early. The parents are feeding it, but it’s very exposed on the carport floor, and a bold little beggar (checking the mailbox took me within a couple of feet, and it didn’t even budge). Every instinct says to leave it be, but I’m wondering whether I should at least try to shepherd it to a corner, or put it on a shelf. That would, however, freak the parents out, as well as the baby. But there are cats, raccoons and skunks in the neighbourhood. Crap. I’ve grown to love swallows, despite all the shit.

  438. 438

    Rob Grigjanis
    If you can see the nest, and can reach it, you should be fine with placing it back inside. Apparently that myth about the parents being afraid of the Scent of Human is a myth. Here’s a nice flowchart that might help a bit more.
    The more swallows, the better – you’ll have a (slightly) less of an insect problem.

  439. 439
    Rob Grigjanis

    Thanks, rq. The nest is out of reach, but I can move it to a safer spot. I’m not concerned about the scent thing. Just don’t want to cause more stress than they already have.

  440. 440
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    Beatrice, rq, and Dalillama, thanks :)

    Sorry if I miss things. The email subscription to the coents isn’t working great off me lately. They’re all out of order even when they do arrive in my inbox.

    At any rate, I’m happy to volunteer to funnel (heh) cup fund donations to our JAL.

    No spaces




  441. 441
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    The same has happened to the Six Million Dollar Man.

    Of course, there were also 3 sequels to the original book that the movie (and eventually show) were based on,

  442. 442
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    @412 I commented on a webcomic called Strong Female Protagonist. I’ve been reading it off and on for the last few hours. The creators are pretty darned good. The art is a little unpolished, but it’s not being put out by a big comics company, so that’s to be expected. One big thing about the art that’s really good–emotion. Molly Ostertag is the artist, and she knocks it out of the park. She’s also really, really good at drawing different people. Different races, different genders, different sizes…everything. Then there’s the writing. Brennan Mulligan writes about many of the tropes of superhero comics, but he applies real world consequences to them (as much as possible). The heroes and villains (such as they are) have emotions and motivations. They have hopes and dreams, flaws and strengths. It’s pretty cool to read. Two scenes stand out in my mind so far:
    A: a novel idea about how someone with a healing factor could use their abilities for the betterment of others
    B: a telepathic former “villain” watches Bugs Bunny & Daffy Duck’s ‘Duck Season’ and breaks it down. I’m reading this and I’m like “Holy fuck! Now it makes complete sense!”

    I’m hooked. In case you couldn’t tell.

  443. 443
    Funny Diva

    OMFSM, you guise!!!

    I just saw the gooogl-y doodle thingy for the Belgium v Algeria match. It’s got a Holy Octopus trying to, either pick the winner or just handicap the match for the punters…

    but–HOLY OCTOPUS!!! How cute and cool is that?!


    OK, not as cool as the comic that Tony! The Fucking Queer Shoop! describes just above. But it’ll only take a sec to check out the doodle on your way to checking out the comic!

    (I’m mostly lurking these days, but I still think Teh Horde is Teh Awesome with Sekrit Sauce!)

  444. 444
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Funny Diva:
    Yeah, that Google doodle was pretty nifty.

    Boy, you can just tell this comic is being written by people with a social justice mindset. One scene (set in the past) shows our hero dressed as a fairy. Her father (who just exudes awesomeness) sits down next to her and tells her that they have other costumes she can dress up in, such as a cowboy, soldier, or a knight. He tells her she only has to dress up as a fairy if she wants to.
    It’s just a little thing but it brought an ‘awwww’ and a tear or two to my eyes.

  445. 445
    Funny Diva

    Hey, Tony!

    How ya doin’, shoop? You know you’re one of my fave folk ’round here-abouts, right?
    Hear you’ve been havin’ a bit of a rough go lately. Very sorry and wishin’ you the best, always. U R Good People.

    And I really liked this morning’s doodle, too. With the letter “L” a half-beat behind the alphabet/crowd’s “wave” because it’s reading a book! I totally resemble that letter “L”! Down to the spectacles on the nose that’s buried in a book!

  446. 446
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Funny Diva:

    You know you’re one of my fave folk ’round here-abouts, right?
    Hear you’ve been havin’ a bit of a rough go lately. Very sorry and wishin’ you the best, always. U R Good People.

    Y’know, sometimes people say things that you didn’t realize you needed or wanted to hear, but when they do, you realize it was exactly what you needed.
    Thank you. That means more than you know.

  447. 447
    Funny Diva

    You’re more than welcome.
    You hang in there. …and hang out here, of course!

    And now, back to the adventures of Alison, Strong Female Protagonist!
    (*exit, humming the “theme” from Mitchell and Webb’s “adventures of Sir Digby Chicken Caesar*)

  448. 448
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    I’ve reached the most latest update. Nothing more to read for now.
    Razzum frazzum rackum frazzum!
    And of course it’s a friggin’ cliffhanger….
    (how I became invested in a fictional character–and her supporting cast– over the course of a few hours, I have no earthly idea…)

  449. 449
  450. 450
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)
    Also, earlier today I saw a guy fall on his face trying to play soccer in the middle of the street.

    Must’ve been an Englishman.

    Wouldn’t that be the wrong side of the street, rather than the middle?

  451. 451
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    The more swallows, the better – you’ll have a (slightly) less of an insect problem.

    And even better, they tend to crowd yappy toy-Nordic dogs out of the habitat. As I understand it, it’s a matter of either spitz or swallows.


  452. 452
    WMDKitty -- Survivor

    Fellow Horde Members

    So… here’s the sitch:

    I need reliable information on which dog breeds are biters. I’ve got a breed-bigot claiming that Pitties are, like, “the most. dangerous. dog. EVAR.” Meanwhile, I recall reading (three computers and quite some time ago) that the breeds most likely to bite are dogs with a “friendly” reputation (e.g. goldens, labs) and small breeds (e.g. chihuahuas, poodles). But I don’t have a source for this, and I’d really like to have something to point to and go, “I told you so.”

    Please and thank you!

  453. 453
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)


    I require this. >.>

  454. 454
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    I need reliable information on which dog breeds are biters. I’ve got a breed-bigot claiming that Pitties are, like, “the most. dangerous. dog. EVAR.” Meanwhile, I recall reading (three computers and quite some time ago) that the breeds most likely to bite are dogs with a “friendly” reputation (e.g. goldens, labs) and small breeds (e.g. chihuahuas, poodles). But I don’t have a source for this, and I’d really like to have something to point to and go, “I told you so.”

    As much as it pains me to recommend her, I believe ERV posted a fair amount of information on the overblown pit-bull scares back in the day. I don’t have any links handy, unfortunately.

    I’ve also heard that pit bulls are popular for dog fighting precisely because they, in addition to being push-ton-weight-herbivores-around-physically powerful, have extremely even temperaments – most dogs simply go insane when subjected to that kind of stress. No sources to hand, though. :/

  455. 455
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    I wish I could help you, but I’ve got nothing. Perhaps you should crosspost to the ‘Dome.

    Although I couldn’t help with that, I do have these adorable, squee worthy pics. You were the first person here that I thought of when I saw these pics. I nearly collapsed from the KYOOT!

  456. 456
    WMDKitty -- Survivor

    Holy shit, Tony, those are just ADORABLE! (And so much attitude in the little ones!)

  457. 457
    Tony! The Queer Shoop


    Perú-based artist Ana Teresa Barboza uses yarn, thread, wool, and fabric to produce unique, tactile embroidery works. The artist has no boundaries to the way she creates, blending drawings and photographs together with embroidery and knitting to produce unexpected forms that extend beyond walls and frames.

    Barboza explores the interactions between the materials that form the fragmented human forms, plants, animals, and landscapes. In many of the works, colorful threads cascade out and beyond any limitations of frame edges. Barboza creates motion, texture, and human emotions that radiate out from the colorful stitching and towards the viewer.

    “I’m interested in the different concepts one can arrive at by using clothing and embroidery as an artistic medium,” she explains. “By using embroidery, which is a traditionally feminine language, the images acquire new meaning as they produce a marked dissonance between image and technique.


    For the bicycle enthusiasts.


  458. 458
  459. 459

    Tony, you post the coolest stuff. Thank you!

  460. 460
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Good morning

    WMD Kitty

    I need reliable information on which dog breeds are biters.

    Unneutered males.
    Problem with the pits isn’t so much the frequency but the intensity. A bit like talking about mass stabbings vs. mass shootings.

    Big hugs

    I believe the reason why mens cups are pretty unknown is that they are extremely cheap. I’ve been using them for 4 years now, I spent 25 bucks and half the money was due to my losing the first one. That money wouldn’t have paid for conventional hygene products for ONE year, so why should the regular drug store sell them?
    I needed to buy new swimwear. My tits are falling out of the swimsuit and my ass is falling out of the tankini pants :) It’s nice to be able to buy stuff in a regular shop again without having to pay huge sums of money in special “big fashion” shops.

    football world cup
    I hate it already. Again. For the next 4 weeks I’m supposed to pay attebtion to the needs of football fans while they don’t have to pay attention to anything like the fact that folks might want to sleep or traffic rules. If you turn on the news you gte the weather forcast for Brasil instead of information about massacres in Iraq (didn’t we do a great job at liberating them?)

  461. 461
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    My phone has proven it’s smarts. It woke me up (buzz buzz) to tell me to take shelter as a storm is coming. A tornado apparently touched down a bit west of here. Yay. I moved a large piece of furniture aside to reach the basement door. The basement is a separate apartment but it’s currently vacant and I don’t think my landlord will begrudge me the intrusion… Thankfully the hutch in front of the door was the only barrier. No lock.

    Opposablethumbs. Missed your kind words before. Thank you. Hugs. Why would no one tell me?! Indeed.

    Giliell. Thanks hugs. Yay new swimsuit:)

    I’m tired. Hope this storm passes quickly and realizes that this house has been here long enough that one silly tornado won’t take it

    I lugged a kitchen chair down on the fly for somewhere to sit. Wish I could have grabbed a bed.

  462. 462
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Take care
    Hope it passes quickly and doesn’t cause too much damage.
    Yay for smart phone

    Ordered the kid a tablet for her birthday.
    I guess I can’t just give her my old one and keep hers, no?

  463. 463

    OK, this is a first for me. DaughterSpawn is leaving this evening, heading for her first-ever long-haul flight – she got a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to visit her dad’s extended family.

    And I am suddenly terrified. Heart racing, hands trembling, unable to concentrate, chills, the lot. Doing stupid things like looking up the airline’s safety record (which it would have made sense to do before she bought the ticket etc. but doesn’t make all that much sense to do now). (Air France, btw. and afaik it’s a Boeing 777).

    I’ve never done this before. What is wrong with me?!?! How do I deal with this?

  464. 464

    opposablethumbs – would it help to stop and think about all the things that you did at her age that probably scared your parents? Maybe would help with perspective a bit? *hugs*

    Portia – so sorry about the family. Spouse had an emotionally close relative who died and his family didn’t tell him until after the funeral, so I’ve seen the “too late” feeling up close even though I haven’t experienced it myself. If they had really needed you to be the one to do the will, they would have told you what was going on.

  465. 465

    Hi carlie, thanks! I sort of did think about what I was doing at her age, but I seem to have managed to get myself into such a state that instead of calming me down by the comparison it’s just making me nervous retrospectively! I’d laugh if I weren’t twitching too hard … it’s ridiculous, I know. Thank you for the hugs, they’re much appreciated.
    I have never looked up air safety records in my life before, despite the fact that one of my brothers flies all the damn time. I’ve flown a few times, DaughterSpawn has flown quite a few times … I should know better, right?

  466. 466

    safe hugs.
    — —
    Up here, the weather system does not have enough energy to cause dangerous storms, just the kind that makes it cosy to stay indoors and listen to the noise.

    — — — — —
    Hahaha! “Christians Try to Keep ‘Psychic’ Out of Town” http://freethoughtblogs.com/dispatches/2014/06/16/christians-try-to-keep-psychic-out-of-town/#comment-328082
    I see a business opportunity: “Pay me, or I will set up my psychic business in your town” As remarked in the thread, the local religious ones apparently think his predictive powers are real (headdesk).
    I could set myself up as a reindeer augur, making predictions from reindeer poop (or whatever critters they have. Porcupines? Gila monsters?)

    — — — —
    “trying to get on a non-existent bus”
    blf, I assure you there are Mondays I would have been capable of that. Mondays suck.

  467. 467

    Re. minimum wages.
    The very existence of Scandinavia disproves 90% of what the Republicans claim. Also, handling the recession better, firearms ban without dictatorship, atheists in the conservative party…. and the sky is not falling down.

    — — — — —
    strong female protagonists

    If they make graphic novels based on Richard Kadrey or Kate Griffin, there are plenty of strong female characters. Some of them are not the main characters, but would be great for spin-offs.

    Also, I recall Garth Ennis “The Pro”, a graphic novel about a sex worker who refuses to be tagged in any category. No traditional morality just a single mom doing a shitty job during the recession, who suddenly gets superpowers.
    And uses it to beat the shit out of violent johns that have terrorized her colleagues. As usual Garth Ennis has a very gross sense of humor.

  468. 468

    John Oliver challenges FCC head Tom Wheeler to prove he’s not a “f*cking baby-eating dingo’ * http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2014/06/16/john-oliver-challenges-fcc-head-tom-wheeler-to-prove-hes-not-a-fcking-baby-eating-dingo/

    UKIP councillors told they can’t withdraw Doncaster from European Union http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/politics/politics-headlines/ukip-councillors-told-they-cant-withdraw-doncaster-from-eu-2014052386896

    Resigning House Leader Cantor Reflects On All The Accomplishments He Thwarted http://www.theonion.com/articles/resigning-house-leader-cantor-reflects-on-all-the,36268/

    * If you wonder what a dingo is, John Oliver describes it as “Australia’s favourite baby-eating animal”

  469. 469
    Nick Gotts

    football world cup
    I hate it already – Giliell

    Hasn’t really affected me yet. But I’m amused that my son – who almost never watches sport, or plays anything more competitive than frisbee – remarked that “we” lost to Italy. That “we” seems weird to me – neither of us are in the Enlgand team, and he only lived in England until some time before his second birthday!

  470. 470

    Nick Gotts, that surprises me. Whatever happened to “default = support whichever team is playing against England” ? ;-)

  471. 471


    spitz or swallows

    You have earned the giantest morning groan EVER.

    Be safe! Keep a roll-up mattress down there! And candles! And extra wine! And chocolate!
    Hope the storm touches down in a relatively uninhabited area. With little to no damage. :/

    She’ll be fine. Really. Really! She’s only crossing Europe, which means lots of intermediate airports in case of emergency landings. She’s not going to any high-profile location, just a few hours up and then down. I’m pretty sure she’s in more danger if she would be travelling the same amount of time in a car across the country. Good luck to her, and good luck to you!!
    *hugs* for you (haha, that means I’ll be holding ‘thumbs!)!

    (I just took the kids across the Atlantic and my one thought was “at least we’ll all be together”. That’s not particularly comforting, though. :/ )

  472. 472
    Kevin, Youhao Huo Mao

    Good morning. It’s been a while since my presence graced the hallowed halls of Pharyngula and I’m sure you’re all dying to know what’s been going on.

    Well… not much. Wedding stuff is taking shape and slowly getting to the exciting part. I’m trying to write a new novel (or group of novels in the future.) I’ve been obsessively playing Minecraft, though also Thief. That’s really about it.

  473. 473

    It’s nice to see you!! :)

    I may have forgotten where your OH’s extended family is, because for some reason I thought they were in Spain, and I realized that they’re not because DaughterSpawn was going to Spain for school(ish) stuff, which means ‘long-haul’ flight is… across an ocean, so all my attempts at comforting previously are, basically, a big mistake. :/ Apologies for getting my info so wrong. But I still offer *hugs* and assurances that things will be fine!!!

  474. 474
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    The storm system touched down far to the west and killed one person in Nebraska that I know of so far. The damage here is mostly measured in terms of power outages, from what I’m hearing, which is good as long as they get the power working in time for the high temps predicted today. I’m fine, my house is fine.

    rq: I like the idea of wine and chocolate stashes down there :D Maybe it’ll stay unoccupied and I can pull that off:D

  475. 475
  476. 476
    Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    carlie: thanks. *hugs*

    birgerjohannsen: Thanks, hugs. :)

    opposablethumbs: *hugs*

    Tony: Thank you, my friend. umbrella hugs right back at you: ) This is what I chose, I just need to manage my stress. Coffee and cigarettes ftw….

  477. 477

    Yay for surviving, boo for the fatality. :(
    Also, I realized that I mailed out the chocolate last Saturday, which means it should arrive sometime this week.

    I have not been engaging my brain lately, and it looks like I won’t be engaging it anytime soon. At least Husband arrives tomorrow, then I get to spend another couple of weeks herding Choir around. Anyone got a spare cattle-prod?

  478. 478

    rq and Portia, thank you and {{{many hugs}}}

    She’s flying across the Atlantic … 13.5 hour flight aaaaallll the way to America.

    Off to take her to the airport soon, for the initial short hop to Paris where they change planes for the long flight.

    Thank you, I really really really appreciate the good thoughts.

    Portia, I’m so glad you’re OK.

  479. 479
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    I first went to Las Américas alone when I was 18. I even survived it ;)

    I don’t understand that “we” either. Although I will admit that last night I asked myself what I had personally done to the whole of Portugal that they would do this to me…

    Ahhh, the joys of finding out that your husband didn’t check the kid’s rucksack on Friday for leftover food by sticking your hand into a disgusting mess on Tuesday.

  480. 480
    Lynna, OM

    Regarding the swallows, if you really want guard birds to patrol your yard, try magpies. They’ll run off squirrels, cats, large dogs and maybe even you. Pica hudsonia.

  481. 481
    Lynna, OM

    You know what we don’t need? Another Koch brothers-funded super PAC, that’s what.

    Well, we’ve got another one anyway.

    During a closed-door gathering of major donors in Southern California on Monday, the political operation spearheaded by the Koch brothers unveiled a significant new weapon in its rapidly expanding arsenal — a super PAC called Freedom Partners Action Fund.

    The new group aims to spend more than $15 million in the 2014 midterm campaigns — part of a much larger spending effort expected to total $290 million […]

    The pack of PACs supported by the Kochs usually focuses on issues like reducing “big government,” fewer regulations for extractive industries, and better tax breaks for corporations. Their new PAC is taking a different track. Freedom Partners Action Fund is going to back conservative candidates directly, and they’re going to oppose liberal and moderate candidates.


  482. 482
    Lynna, OM

    I think it’s a sign of the End Times. The RNC is using a giant squirrel, or a large human dressed as a giant squirrel, to fight Hillary Clinton: “Another Clinton in the White House is Nuts.”

    […] The so-called “HRC squirrel” even has its own Twitter handle and donation page filled with groan-inducing puns like Clinton is “trying to hide her record on #Benghazi the way I hide acorns” and “Don’t squirrel around, vote Republican.”

    The RNC said the squirrel will make additional appearances in coming days. “Known for its keen memory, the squirrel recognizes the dangers of a Hillary Clinton presidency and will continue to dig up her record, no matter how hard the liberal media tries to bury it,” the group said in a statement. […]

    A rodent as a mouthpiece. That’s appropriate. Maybe we shouldn’t tell the RNC that children don’t vote. They seem to have pitched their elementary puns and lame jokes at seven year old kids.


  483. 483
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Another shooting:

    Two attendees at a high school reunion were shot dead Saturday night, in a violent altercation that ended when an off-duty FBI agent killed the shooter in an East Peoria, Illinois bar. Several sources said the victims were the shooter’s ex-wife, and new boyfriend. All three were killed in front of more than 100 witnesses.


  484. 484
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    This week, two universities at opposite sides of the country announced incredibly lenient punishments for male students found guilty of sexual assault: one at Stanford will have his degree withheld for two years, and another at Brandeis will simply need to attend “sensitivity training.”

    The Stanford case, in which the accused male student who claims to have “sexsomnia” (a supposed sleep disorder that he said makes him sexually aggressive while sleeping) was found to have taken advantage of fellow student Leah Francis, has led to wide protests on the Stanford campus. At a rally on June 5, students demanded mandatory expulsion for students who are found guilty of sexual assault and an expansion of services for victims. Though Francis has appealed Stanford University administrators’ decision, the administration reportedly responded that her attacker was not a threat to the campus.

    “That makes no sense,” Stanford law professor Michele Dauber told San Jose Mercury News. “A student who is responsible for sexual assault by force is a danger to the Stanford community by definition.”


    I agree. It makes no sense. “Sexsomnia” or not, the guy sexually assaulted a woman. That makes him a danger to the community. What happens if he does it again (which is possible given that many rapists are repeat offenders)?
    Besides that, even if “sexsomnia” is a thing, sexually aggressive is not the same thing as non-consensual sex.

  485. 485
    Lynna, OM

    This is a followup to comments number 173, 175, 206, 272, 300, 301, and 303.

    The LDS church leaders are lying about who instigated the excommunication of Kate Kelly. They claimed that local leaders in her former congregation in Virginia raised the questions and started the disciplinary process. Not true. Church leaders in Salt Lake City are responsible, including the apostles M. Russell Ballard and Whitney Clayton.

    Effing cowards are still denying the part they played in going after this woman. “While senior leaders do provide training, these decisions are made by local leaders and are not directed or coordinated by Church headquarters.” — Jessica Moody, LDS Church Public Affairs

    http://www.kutv.com/news/top-stories/stories/vid_12001.shtml Most of the info is in the video.

    Ballard and Clayton were the main guys who drove mormon participation in California’s Proposition 8, and in other anti-gay activities. So now we find out that they are really anti-woman as well. Figures.


  486. 486
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Scientists wish people would stop using these 10 terms.

    Here are five of them:
    • statistically significant
    • theory
    • natural
    • proof
    • quantum uncertainty and quantum weirdness

  487. 487
    morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor

    I need reliable information on which dog breeds are biters. I’ve got a breed-bigot claiming that Pitties are, like, “the most. dangerous. dog. EVAR.” Meanwhile, I recall reading (three computers and quite some time ago) that the breeds most likely to bite are dogs with a “friendly” reputation (e.g. goldens, labs) and small breeds (e.g. chihuahuas, poodles). But I don’t have a source for this, and I’d really like to have something to point to and go, “I told you so.”

    Anything with teeth can bite. That said, here is the thing about PitBulls. Most of the “bully breeds” are very irresponsibly bred as fighters by backyard breeders. Genetically, they generally give no indication of when they are going to bite. They have very strong jaws which can lock. This isn’t to say that they will attack, just that they can do so unpredictably. I could find no reliable stats on which breeds bite the most, but a general rule is that most dog attacks are the fault of the owners.

    See http://www.examiner.com/article/pit-bulls-and-euthanasia-rates for numbers on PitBull euthanasia.
    “Pit Bulls and Pit Bull mixes average about 33% of shelter intakes nationally, but in large cities the numbers are as high as 40%-65%. About 75% of municipal shelters euthanize Pit Bulls immediately upon intake, without them ever having any chance at adoption. Those that are offered for adoption are usually the first chosen for euthanasia when overcrowding forces the shelter’s hand and decisions have to be made.

    Studies estimate that up to 1 million Pits are euthanized per year, or 2,800 per day. Some estimates are up to double that number. In the Los Angeles area alone, 200 per day are put to sleep. A study by the organization Animal People reports a 93% euthanasia rate for Pit Bulls and only 1 in 600 Pits finding a forever home. ”

    Don’t know if this is the info you need, but I hope it helps.

  488. 488
    Lynna, OM

    Jon Stewart nails the cheerleaders for war in Iraq.


    Scroll down for video.

  489. 489
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    Hi JAL, Kevin!


    The very existence of Scandinavia disproves 90% of what the Republicans claim.

    They’re on that. They’ve been claiming for as long as I’ve been alive that Scandinavia’s economy(s) are on the verge of collapse, and the whole system will fall apart inside 10 years. (The fact that I’ve been alive for 30+ makes this about as tenable as the rest of their positions, but conservatives have never been the sort to let things like facts or reality stand in their way.
    The short answer to ‘What breed bites the most?’ is “Whatever breed violent assholes like owning to show off their machismo. For the past 20-odd years, that’s been pitbulls, hence their current rep as uber-violent dogs, but before that it was Rottweilers, who had the same reputation at that time. The problem’s not with the breed, it’s with people who don’t know what the fuck they’re doing keeping large predators around the place.

  490. 490
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy


    Genetically, they generally give no indication of when they are going to bite.

    Bullshit. Some individual dogs (notably those which have been badly abused) will bite with no or minimal warning, but that’s in no way genetic, nor is it limited to pitbulls, or any other breed.

  491. 491
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Hello to JAL, Kevin, & morgan!

  492. 492
    morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor

    Dear Sweet Dalillama @490.

    You may be correct. I may be incorrect. But this is the Lounge and you are being an aggressive asshole. No response, please.

  493. 493
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    Dear Sweet Dalillama @490.

    You may be correct. I may be incorrect. But this is the Lounge and you are being an aggressive asshole. No response, please.

    Dalilama was not “being an aggressive asshole.” “Bullshit” is an accurate description of the media myths you were uncritically repeating and without reference to a credible source as requested (the “locking jaws” thing, in particular, is absurdly false, see here and here.

    You are attempting to abuse the lounge rules for rhetorical advantage. That ought to be the most severe violation of them recognized, frankly.

  494. 494
    Dalillama, Schmott Guy

    I was actually going to mention the ‘locking jaws’ thing as well. Pitbulls, along with basically every Molosser and Terrier breed, have got quite a bit of bite force and a tendency to grab and shake whatever they’ve bitten, but there’s nothing unique about their jaw arrangement that makes it lock up. They’re just reluctant to let go.

  495. 495
    morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor

    You are attempting to abuse the lounge rules for rhetorical advantage.

    Wow. You may take this to the ‘Dome, but I will not follow.

    Peace, brother.

  496. 496
  497. 497

    The short answer to ‘What breed bites the most?’ is “Whatever breed violent assholes like owning to show off their machismo. For the past 20-odd years, that’s been pitbulls, hence their current rep as uber-violent dogs, but before that it was Rottweilers, who had the same reputation at that time. The problem’s not with the breed, it’s with people who don’t know what the fuck they’re doing keeping large predators around the place.

    QFT. It’s 99% the owners, 1% the occasional outlier dog (stats purely rhetorical, obviously. I just mean that in my experience (of hanging around with a LOT of dogs and their owners by dint of helping out at a dog club for years) it’s far more down to (lack of) socialisation, training, nervous owners, irresponsible breeders than it is to any specific breed.
    I hope it’s not unLounge-like to write the above; I just want to say that I agree with Dalillama with regard to dog behaviour. I don’t want to jump on anyone.

    Hey, Giliell – thanks :-) I’m not worried about her once she’s there, I think it’ll be fine – I just have this massive irrational terror of plane crashes, all of a sudden! Which I’ve never had before. Meh.

  498. 498
    Weedless Monkey

    In Finland we don’t have minimum wage laws at all, we have strong unions instead. Of course, we’re not Scandinavian either…

  499. 499
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    Back in the day, I dated someone who trained dogs. She said that you can tell quite a lot about doggy temperament (breed-average, that is) by looking up what breeds were bred for. The little yippy dogs tend to be vicious, because many were bred to kill vermin. They also tend to suffer from not being disciplined and trained properly (because they’re “so cute!!”). Many of the famous dog-mauling cases actually were from things like Chihuahuas, for example. Pit bulls were bred as catch dogs and to drive livestock.

    This is relevant: a vermin-killing dog will attack on sight of its prey. A catch dog and herd dog will attack when provoked. The terrible reputation of pit bulls is largely based on the fact that they’ve been popular in the dog-fighting and “I want a big mean dog to scare/hurt people” crowds. They’re reportedly quite intelligent and have historically been therapy and police dogs.

  500. 500
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Oh god damn! Get me out of Florida:


    9. Leads U.S. in home foreclosures and second in underwater mortages.
    8. State spending for social welfare also bad.
    7. State spending on education at rock bottom.
    6. Tremendous unmet job creation needs.

    How disheartening.
    Added to that is the mild annoyance that I couldn’t cash a money order at my bank or Publix. My parents sent me a money order to help me out, which was great. Took a cab to Publix and was told they can’t cash money orders (despite my parents buying one at a Publix). Went to my bank (Wells Fargo) and found out they can only deposit it, and I have to wait till tomorrow for the funds to be available. Thankfully my cab driver is one of my regular guys and he said I didn’t have to worry about paying him, which was great bc the remaining $14 I had was able to be spent on food. Ugh.

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