1. rq says

    I was trying to find something with ‘target’ for the first, but it’s not so easy. For sportsmanship, athleticism and/or fair play or something like that usually works… Not really good synonyms, as I’d say sportsmanship is more respect (for the rules and your opponent and your teammates) on the field (athletic respect?). But. *sigh*

  2. opposablethumbs says

    Shrek. They’re both “ugly”, and princess Fiona explicitly rejects the conventional-pretty-and-slim makeover. Only one I can think of.
    Girlies gotta be pretty, what else are they for, ammirite?

  3. blf says

    I am tempted to suggest NIPS and ASKP (Not In Professional Soccer and Ancient Skill to Kill People), but which acronym replaces which word is not very clear.

  4. chigau (違う) says

    I did the laundry.
    I hung the towels outside.
    It’s +10°C, they may actually dry.

  5. Ichthyic says

    awakeinmo, Ruiner of Things

    Lars Andersen is a really good shot and gives a bit of historical goodness.

    actually, no. He’s not a good shot. what you see there is a LOT of video editing. frankly, given how he changes his positioning and style nearly constantly, he CAN’T be a good shot.

    and the historical goodness? meh, that’s actually mostly a whitewash job to cover the fact that really what he’s doing is trying to sell videos.

    here’s an excellent takedown:

    seriously, Anderson’s “technique” is more a circus act than an actual workable combat technique or historical representation of anything.

    but I guess most people who aren’t into archery would probably never know. At least this video is slicker than Anderson’s first one, which was laughable.

    anywho, yeah, read the takedown, it covers almost all the bases.

    …and FFS, could people maybe STOP posting Anderson’s crap all over Facebook?

    it becomes tedious having to debunk it over and over and over again.

  6. A. Noyd says

    @opposablethumbs (#3) [#503]
    The problem with Shrek is they cheated by having Fiona stay conventionally attractive—at least, from Shrek’s and the audience’s perspective—till the reveal at the very end. But that’s definitely the closest example I could think of, too.

  7. cicely says

    But, since D&D is a fantasy role-playing game, this is perfectly legit as documentation, in that context.
    :D :D :D

  8. says

    Regarding the scary storm, my daughter lives in New York. She got home safely from work and is now in hunker down mode.

    Here’s an interesting tidbit that explicitly connects global warming (warmer ocean) to the severity of the storm:

    The low pressure area at the heart of the storm is tracking along the East Coast in a way that lets it exploit the contrast between the cold air over land and the warmth of the oceans, which are running more than 2°F warmer than normal along much of the coast, said Kevin Trenberth, a climatologist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colo. The warmer ocean waters mean more moisture in the atmosphere for the storm to suck up; the cold air over the continent ensures that moisture falls as snow.

  9. opposablethumbs says

    A Noyd @12, yes, you’re right – they did cheat, didn’t they. I’d actually forgotten how much of the film she’s conventionally “pretty” for and just remembered the choice she makes (it’s been ages since I saw it).

    What about the later films, isn’t she ogre-y throughout in them?

  10. says

    opposablethumbs @19, she is ogrey throughout the rest of the films.

    MyMouse was supposed to be heading up this morning, but since she’s driving right through the heart of the storm, in the PA mountains, we convinced her to wait til the storm’s mostly past before setting out. This kind of storm, combined with the terrible cold, can easily kill people trying to travel through it.

    As for me, I’m starting to think the pills really are helping. It’s kind of amazing. I took out some recycling today, and some garbage, and wrote three different blog posts (writing one more this evening, on my third blog, for four today). And I’ve got solid outlines for the next post after that on each of them. I’ve even been randomly washing dishes – every time I go into the kitchen for a Coke or a sandwich or something, I’ve been washing a plate and a few bits of cutlery.

    I cannot (nor do I think I will ever be able to) explain how incredible that feels, to be actually accomplishing things in midwinter of a cold, forbidding example of the genre, to know the things I plan to do later, and to think there’s a chance I might do them.

  11. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    All the Horde in the NE USA. Keep warm, and let the roads get plowed before venturing out.

  12. says

    Think Progress also published a thoughtful article on the climate science behind the big storm.


    […] it is warm over the oceans and the contrast between the cold continent and the warm Gulf Stream and surrounding waters is increasing. At present sea surface temperatures are more the 2F above normal over huge expanses (1000 miles) off the east coast and water vapor in the atmosphere is about 10% higher as a result. About half of this can be attributed to climate change. […]

  13. says

    Oh, FFS, Catholics, this is ridiculous.

    A Catholic Bishop compared requiring all couples to be treated with equal dignity to “the cruelty and torture of the Roman Empire” last week. His statement was a response to a Catholic health system’s announcement that they may extend benefits to the legally married spouses of their lesbian, gay, and bisexual employees.
    Mercy Health is a large Catholic health care system with over 40,000 employees in seven states. They recently announced that “in line with recent changes in government regulations, we will extend benefits to all legally married spouses effective this spring.” (Though, in another statement, they added that they are still “exploring how best to expand health care benefits for our co-workers.”)
    This indication that Mercy intended to extend equal rights to their gay employees prompted Bishop James V. Johnston, the Catholic bishop of Springfield-Cape Girardeau, Missouri, to raise the specter of Roman torture. “No believing Christian worthy of the name should violate God’s law because of ‘regulations,’” Bishop Johnson said in a statement. “Our ancestors refused to abandon the faith even when subjected to the cruelty and torture of the Roman Empire, but in our age unspecified ‘regulations,’ government funds, and fear of public ridicule is sufficient in order to secure the compliance of some.”


  14. says

    Mike Huckabee said some more stupid stuff:

    During a speech earlier this month at televangelist Morris Cerullo’s annual conference, Mike Huckabee said that school shootings wouldn’t take place if public schools organized daily prayers, religious assemblies, Bible readings and “chapel services.”

    “Because we were bringing Bibles to school people weren’t bringing guns to school, except for the deer hunters who left them in their trucks,” Huckabee said. “What has happened to our culture? What’s happened is we have lost our landmarks. When we reject the Bible as the objective word of truth, when we say that the Bible is no longer the standard by which we live and we make it whatever we feel, what we think, what we believe, then we have no landmark at all because that landmark is always being moved to accommodate our lifestyle rather than make our lifestyle accommodate the word of the living God and the power of the Holy Spirit.” […]

    Right Wing Watch link.

  15. says

    CaitieCat, good news! So glad to hear that you are appreciating the simple act of getting a few things done. People don’t realize how awesome that ability can be until they lose it. Hope you continue to feel better. Keep on keepin’ on.

  16. opposablethumbs says

    CaitiCat that’s fantastic – it’s great to hear you’ve got some good meds! Hope the improvements go from strength to strength.

  17. Morgan!? the Slithy Tove says

    Please all you good Hordlings who are in the path of yet another storm of the century, be prepared, be safe, and if there is any help you need that the Horde can provide, please let us know.

  18. A. Noyd says

    opposablethumbs (#19) [#519]

    What about the later films, isn’t she ogre-y throughout in them?

    I think so. I’m not sure I’ve watched the sequels. (It’s been a while.) They don’t feature the message that you should care about what’s on the inside, though, do they?


    Lynna (#20) [#520]

    29 million people are in the “blizzard alert” area for the big storm.

    Meanwhile, it’s a ridiculous and record-breaking 61F (16C) in Seattle today.

  19. says

    Someone should tell Huckabee about the 1927 Bath School massacre, that saw 44 people killed, including 36 children. I’m sure Bible readings were common fair at the schools the killer, Andrew Kehoe, attended as a child. School violence by teachers and students in US schools goes back to at least the mid 1800s, including various shootings.

  20. says

    Big Snow Storm

    The amount of snow we are supposed to get in the Philadelphia area has been lowered. From what I understand, from about 15 cases of wine down to just 12 bottles. Oh, I meant what it will take to get through the storm.

    They have really said lower totals, but it seems, in this area, little changes in the path of the storm could mean big changes in totals. Thanks, Obama.

  21. rq says

    re: Shrek
    In part 2, both she and Shrek get turned into good-looking humans for most of the movie, but end up making the right choices in the end. I don’t remember much about the third and fourth movies.
    And I’m not sure that movie counts, as it’s not exactly a flip of the ‘ordinaryugly boy + beautiful girl’. You’d need an extraordinarily handsome boy and an ordinaryugly girl in order for a true flip to exist.

  22. chigau (違う) says

    They did not quite dry outside.
    Towels are inside, draped over … everything.
    They will be dry by morning.

  23. says

    Good morning
    Everybody in the way of the storm, keep safe and warm.
    …makes having to remove half a centimetre of solid ice from the car in the morning look like a treat…

    Re: Shrek
    My favourite part is in the third movie when all the princesses and Queen Mum get locked up. In order to “rescue” themselves they fall back on their fairy tale roles, Cinderella starts scrubbing the floor, Sleeping Beauty plays dead, showing exactly how those roles have no agency whatsoever. Then Queen Mum knocks her head through the wall (a scene I liked in particular, because at least in German “wanting to go with your head through the wall” is an expression that gets often thrown at headstrong little girls)

  24. rq says

    I’d forgotten about that part! :D Shows how long it’s been since I’ve watched the movies.

  25. rq says

    I think my body is trying to tell me something: “Hey look, Husband is back, you can relax now! I SAID RELAX! Here, I’m letting this head cold get the upper hand to force you into it!!!”
    Seriously, Body, you should know by now, things don’t work that way! [/whine]
    I sense ginger tea in my future – I hope I still have a lemon in the fridge!

  26. birgerjohansson says

    (sinister background music)¨
    NYC Mayor: ‘Reconcile Yourselves With Your God, For All Will Perish In The Tempest’,37850/
    Family Lets Cars Come Inside House During Snowstorm,37854/
    I Don’t Vaccinate My Child Because It’s My Right To Decide What Eliminated Diseases Come Roaring Back,37839/

  27. rq says

    Honestly, for feeling this shitty, I’m rather disappointed I don’t actually have a fever.

  28. ledasmom says

    Fuck, this is a lot of snow. And a shutter blew off somebody’s house, possibly ours. I’m not interested enough in finding out to go outside and check.
    The drifts on the cars are cool, though.

  29. birgerjohansson says

    Ancient star system reveals Earth-sized planets forming near start of universe
    These planets are too hot to have water, but the interesting thing is the great age of the system.
    Origin of life: “Micropore labyrinths as crucibles of life”
    Even more important: Using stem cells to grow new hair

  30. says

    birger @44, those Onion articles were great. I especially enjoyed the last one, the anti-vax satire. I live in an area with a lot anti-vaxxers. They drive me to head-desking on a regular basis.

  31. says

    The Koch brothers and their allies are gearing up to dump a fuck ton of money into the upcoming elections.

    A network of conservative advocacy groups backed by Charles and David Koch aims to spend a staggering $889 million in advance of the next White House election, part of an expansive strategy to build on its 2014 victories that may involve jumping into the Republican primaries.

    The massive financial goal was revealed to donors here Monday during an annual winter meeting hosted by Freedom Partners, the tax-exempt business lobby that serves as the hub of the Koch-backed political operation, according to an attendee. The amount is more than double the $407 million that 17 allied groups in the network raised during the 2012 campaign.

    Washington Post link.

  32. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Pitbulls and other breeds also have an enormous biting power, which probably means that while they may not be responsible for more accidents, they probably get into the news more.

    In fact, basically any medium-to-large dog that bites a person is reasonably likely to be described as a “pit bull” by the media.

  33. says

    A new strategy from far-right politicians who are fed up with the “liberal” media, start your own taxpayer-funded propaganda machine:

    Gov. Mike Pence is starting a state-run taxpayer-funded news outlet that will make pre-written news stories available to Indiana media, as well as sometimes break news about his administration, according to documents obtained by The Indianapolis Star.

    Pence is planning in late February to launch “Just IN,” a website and news outlet that will feature stories and news releases written by state press secretaries and is being overseen by a former Indianapolis Star reporter, Bill McCleery.

    Indianapolis Star link.

  34. rq says

    In fact, basically any medium-to-large dog that bites a person is reasonably likely to be described as a “pit bull” by the media.

    Unless it’s a German shepherd, they seem to recognize those.

  35. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    We have a pitbull-boxer mix. Sweetest dog you’d ever want to meet. Dumber than owlshit and willful as hell, but sweet. We cannot leave any cans of food anywhere within her reach, because she will CHEW THROUGH THE FUCKING CANS. She started with aluminum catfood cans–childs play. Then she started chewing her dogfood cans. So those, too got moved to the basement. Since then, she has devoured cans of pumpkin, green beans and on and on. When she is done with the can, it is flattened, shredded, perforated, dented and barely recognizable as a former can. We’ve thought about putting some cans out on the porch with a “Beware of Dog” sign above them to scare away the Mormons.

    In other news, I think I’ve got the Brazilian Pao de Queijo (cheese bread) recipe about perfected. Next experiment: Can you refrigerate the dough and cook the bread as needed? They are amazing right out of the oven.

  36. says

    a_ray @58:
    Exactly how dumb is owlshit? :)


    ajb47 @33:

    The amount of snow we are supposed to get in the Philadelphia area has been lowered. From what I understand, from about 15 cases of wine down to just 12 bottles. Oh, I meant what it will take to get through the storm.

    This made me laugh out loud.
    I hope you and everyone else caught in the winter storms are able to stay warm and safe.


    Verily shall the heads of misogynists everywhere go splodey (Scanner style):

  37. Saad says

    What a wonderful U.S. ally

    If only Kim Jong-un, China or Russia were treated so nicely. Will Kim be showered with praise from world leaders after his death and will his successor tyrant be welcomed like the scum King Abdullah’s half-brother was?

  38. Saad says

    Tony, #59

    Oh, snap. I can’t wait for her new videos!

    Nothing better than enjoying something both for its content and for the frustration it causes assholes the world over.

  39. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Indeed, there is a long and proud tradition of establishing traits and hierarchies of feces from various critters. In terms of hierarchies, I believe snakeshit is the lowest and meanest–as in, “Damn, he’s meaner ‘n snakeshit.”

    Batshit is of course associated with craziness and apeshit is associated with unpredictable and violent behavior (He just went apshit!). Bullshit has a negative information content, as does horseshit, albeit a less negative content than bullshit.

    After years of our dog Tazzie getting exactly what she wants and always being forgiven a posteriori by me, I have concluded that owlshit is indeed pretty stupid, but still smarter than me.

  40. azhael says

    Good, the sheer concept of masculinity is stupid and poisonous, i hope she tears into it.

  41. says

    Faux News and some other media outlets are so committed to the Keystone XL pipeline that they have edited out news of other pipeline spills.

    CNN and Fox News repeatedly reported on the Keystone XL pipeline without connecting it to a major oil spill near the pipeline’s proposed route. By contrast, MSNBC and others in the media have reported on the spill, which occurred in the Yellowstone River in Montana, in the context of concerns about Keystone XL’s environmental risks. […]

  42. rq says

    It’s like having cake, and EATING ALL OF IT!!

    Thanks for the heads-up, Tony @59, that really is something to look forward to!!

    I’ve got containers under all USB ports, as I’m not sure which one you have reserved. (Serious? You pick your own lemons? That is divine!! (Coming from the northern hemisphere, that just seems like MAGIC to me.))

  43. rq says

    And thanks for the chikkensoop, cicely!
    *floats away on a sea of chikkensoop, ginger tea and freshly squeezed lemon juice*

  44. says

    Representative Linda Sanchez (a Democrat from California) took the House Select Committee on Benghazi to task. Good video. Kind of long (a little over 4 minutes), but the content is excellent.

    Yes, these guys are still pushing a Benghazi conspiracy to damage Hillary Clinton. The Republicans have their own report (report #7) in hand. That report debunks all of the conspiracy theories. Not satisfied with that, Republicans are now proceeding with investigation #8. While doing so, they are spending about $1.5 million in taxpayer money to pull “facts” out of their ass, to hide rebuttals of their key witnesses, etc.

  45. says

    I’m in the northern hemisphere too, but it’s southern California. We have a small lemon tree in a big pot in the backyard, and it’s producing a lot of lemons right now.

    Oddly enough, the lemon tree in the ground isn’t nearly as prolific. Might be the variety, though.

  46. David Marjanović says

    Too many crashes, I have to dump links on you without catching up:

    Why won’t The Princeton Review make college sexual assault information public?” – Petition: “High school students and their parents have a right to know if a college campus has a problem with sexual assault. Please include sexual assault prevention and response in your ranking of colleges.”

    If any of these signs are true, you might not have a gluten issue

    An amazing woman fields a troll on MLK Day and it was nothing short of inspirational” – that’s Ijeoma Oluo, you’ve probably heard of the incident; read the tweets (in the article), it really is inspirational.

    City of Paris, France to Sue Fox News“. Also, commas are important people.

    Petition to Obama, “Modi and other leaders”: “Save affordable medicines” – “India produces cheap HIV, malaria and cancer drugs, but American drug companies want to stop this, to sell their own products at higher prices. Their fierce lobby has got the US to push their line hard, even threatening trade sanctions if India doesn’t change patent laws which put people before profits. Now pressure is rising, with talks set to begin on an investment treaty.”

    In German: Hunters in New Hampshire baited bears with 45 kg of chocolate and donuts. “Soon after, a few meters away”, two dead adult females and two dead cubs were found; necropsy sez heart failure from theobromin poisoning. Apparently there’s now a discussion about new hunting laws.

  47. UnknownEric the Apostate says

    Good news to share for once! :)

    My wife got a travel grant (she teaches Modern European History), so it looks like I’ll be visiting Munich & Berlin this summer with her (with a possible sidetrip to Salzburg for Mozart-related reasons).

  48. rq says

    Also, if it ever turns out that we were created by a god with a sense of humour, I have a few words I’d like to say to xir regarding this whole sinus drainage concept.
    Or lack thereof, as it were.

  49. David Marjanović says

    All in German:

    As of January 23rd, the US has killed about 6000 IS fighters, said Stuart Jones, the US ambassador to Iraq, in an interview on al-Arabiyya. Unnamed “representatives of the DoD confirmed” this; Chuck Hagel only confirmed “thousands”, including some “leaders”, but warned to judge progress in a war by “body counts”, explicitly mentioning Vietnam. Hagel went on to say that the IS has “trouble recruiting new fighters, preserving supply routes and communicating on the battlefield”. 6000 fighters would be about 20 to 30 % of the estimated total size of the IS force. Still, the offensive to liberate Mosul is only planned for “spring or summer”, said Gen. Lloyd Austin (chief of Central Command) to the Wall Street Journal.

    ECB starting to buy bonds for 60 billion € each month in an attempt to stave off the danger of deflation. German government whines about meddling in economic policy.

    UN reports show Israel supports the an-Nusra Front on the Golan. An-Nusra is said to be the Syrian branch of al-Qaida. Israel’s biggest enemy in the war is al-Assad + Hizbollah + Iran, who apparently plant bombs in Israel, and an-Nusra fights them… Israel doesn’t deny providing humanitarian help and not asking if the people in question are fighters. UN reports mention “boxes” being delivered from Israel to an-Nusra.

    Ties between Pegida and AfD: Saxony’s AfD sent out a press release about Bachmann’s resignation two hours before the resignation was even announced. Oopsie. The two press releases apparently read like plagiates of each other, too. AfD, “Alternative for Germany”, is the incoherent, deeply xenophobic party that was founded about a year ago and got lots of votes in the EU parliamentary elections.

    Photo of anti-Pegida demonstration: “Deport Arabic numerals till MMXVI“; also a reference to brown, the color of the NSDAP.

    Court: if you rent an apartment, you’re allowed to piss standing in it. One man did that, roughing up the marble floor; the owner wanted to keep 1900 € of the deposit, but the judge says the owner should have told people how sensitive the floor is. If you engage in the custom of pissing upright which used to be widespread, the decision reads, you have to expect considerable conflict with – particularly female – cohabitants, but not damage to the floor!

  50. David Marjanović says

    Yay! UnknownEric the Apostate, I’m in Berlin, tell me if you want to meet me!

  51. says

    Tony 59

    I can’t take credit for it. Someone posted a satellite picture of the east coast covered in clouds with increasing numbers of bottles the closer to the center of the storm it got instead of expected inches of snow.

    Well, it was mostly a dud here. We got maybe three inches. We did manage to contribute to the local economy by paying a neighbor kid to shovel the snow off our driveway and walk. I spent the day playing Destiny with both with and without my son.

  52. Menyambal says

    It is 60 degrees F here in the Ozarks, and I just saw a spider’s “ballooning” silk. It may be winter elsewhere, but here it is scarily nice.

  53. Acolyte of Sagan says

    First up, please forgive lack of blockquoting. I’m using a tablet and can’t work out how to highlight blocks of text to copy. Having rather sausage-like fingers doesn’t help!


    a-ray @ #58, keeping the dough refrigerated until needed shouldn’t be a problem as long as you wrap it in cling film to prevent drying out. Don’t just put in a bowl and cover, the whole ball of dough needs to be wrapped. It can help to give the film a light coating of oil before wrapping as it helps to retain moisture and prevents the dough from sticking to the film. Tear off as much as you need and allow it to come up to room temperature before baking.

    Sounds delicious, by the way.

  54. says

    I’m listening to a new podcast from This American Life called If you don’t have anything nice to say, say it in all caps. It features a interview between Lindy West and someone who used to viciously troll her. This individual went well beyond what many Internet trolls do. I don’t want to spoil much, but a few years back, the (now ex-) troll harassed her by pretending to be her dead father. I’m currently listening to Lindy speaking to the ex-troll (I won’t spoil what happens to make him an ex-troll), and I’m nearly in tears when she begins her interview with him. Her goal is to get some insight into the mind of a troll like this guy (who remains nameless) who would be such an utterly unempathetic misogynistic asshole. So she’s asking him what his thought processes were when he was harassing her. Listening to the video, it sounds like she *is* in tears (or on the verge of it). Moreover, so does the ex-troll.

  55. Saad says

    My post #60

    What a wonderful U.S. ally

    If only Kim Jong-un, China or Russia were treated so nicely. Will Kim be showered with praise from world leaders after his death and will his successor tyrant be welcomed like the scum King Abdullah’s half-brother was?

    Oh, never mind.

  56. ledasmom says

    It was a very bad idea to try to keep up with the young guys from upstairs while shovelling snow. Finally gave up, came inside, collapsed for rest of day. Got up around five and threw food into oven. Youngster is on computer again. Youngster can stay on computer until morning for all I care, as long as I’m not required to move.
    You know you’re tired when peeling an orange is rather more effort than you are prepared to go to.

  57. chigau (違う) says

    I thought that building codes were standardized.
    How is it, then, that my stairs have gotten steeper?
    Sometimes while I have slept?
    Don’t say anything about my age.
    If you do, speak up, sonny.

  58. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says


    ….I seem to have fallen in love with someone inconvenient. >.>

  59. says

    Thank goodness for Wednesdays.
    I’m going to give myself half a sick day.

    Also: Postfeminism my ass…
    Yesterday, while we were waiting for our professor to show up, we were wondering how she manages all that. I mean, she’s a professor already at the start of her 40s, she has published and achieved about as much as many profs do during their lifetime. She’S vice president of the university and at 6 pm she still looks fresher and more styled than most people do at 8am. When does she sleep. Now, we all agreed that she probably neither does her own laundry nor does she sweep the floors herself, and one of my fellow students was looking for a word. “How do you call somebody who comes in and cleans and washes and cooks?” Another one volunteered “Wife!” That’s all college women, women who clearly want to have a career and a professional life, but they’re all fully aware that chores are not divided equally. But hey, let’s not criticise the 579th chick flic in which the professional woman decides to give up her career for her true vocation of raising kids and doing laundry….

    Why do all people always visit the cool cities like Berlin and never the boring coutryside where I live?


  60. says

    The none identikit comic challenge Very cool idea. It’s funny how the author clearly demonstrates the constructed nature and performative character of gender and sex, but doesn’t seem quite to notice herself.
    Thinking about it, aren’r comics and animated characters the ultimate proof that sex and gender are constructed and perfomative? I mean, we clearly accept those people as male and female, yet their genitals are never on display unless it’s Oglaf and they don’t have inner organs or chromosomes to analyse. No, their gender comes solely from a set of added features deliberately chosen to signify “male” or “female” within a given time and culture. A comic version of little Teddy Roosevelt wouldn’t be read as male…

  61. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    Note: Keyboard broke, typing with on screen, which takes so long and is so irritating. Have commented when pissed enough to tolerate this keyboard. Won’t be as much until replaced and quality will suffer . sorry.

  62. opposablethumbs says

    Azkyroth @87, um … good luck? I hope it turns out to be a good thing, nonetheless :-)

  63. FossilFishy (NOBODY, and proud of it!) says

    That TAL segment made me cry Tony (82). It was the best bit of radio(podcasting) I’ve heard in a long time.

  64. opposablethumbs says

    Seen on tumblr:

    What Would You Do? television show, showcases the contrast in responses to young white male criminals vs black criminals. Not only did people call the cops 10 times more to report the black vandals, but even sleeping black teenage boys were perceived to be more inherently threatening than the white teenagers who were actively vandalizing a car nearby.

    In two parts:
    (NB dislaimer: I haven’t checked out any of this myself, just going off the bits I saw on tumblr)

  65. opposablethumbs says

    Of course, rq – I should have thought of that!
    The captioned stills I saw are pretty telling, and don’t look sensationalist. Haven’t checked out the actual clips (I’m supposed to be wooooorking … ha!)

  66. bassmike says

    Hello lounge people!

    *hugs* dropped off. The pile doesn’t look that low, but you can never have too many hugs.

    I’ve been busy lately so I’ve not had the chance to post. Also, to be honest, things are pretty settled and I haven’t had much to say. I think it’s safe to say that my daughter is now toilet trained. Which is a relief, as all you parents will know!

    Suddenly we seem to have a lot more time, I can’t really say whether the toilet training is the reason, but everything is more relaxed now.

    Anyway, I have a question: is anyone familiar with soundcloud? It has been suggested that I put recordings of the orchestra on there. But I’ve looked at it and it seems more like a venue for new music rather than anything else. Also I’m concerned about the copyright rules regarding posting of recordings of someone else’s music. Any observations would be appreciated.

  67. Saad says

    rq, #90

    *gasp* Michelle Obama didn’t wear a headscarf. Go, FLOTUS!


    Islamophobic Bus Ads In San Francisco Are Being Defaced With Kamala Khan


    I didn’t know Ms. Marvel was Pakistani, and a Khan no less :)

  68. rq says

    TW here, rather largish one. I keep wanting to put this out there. HUUUGE TW for rape, violence and all kinds of other human evil. Truly. It’s about non-Jewish victims of the Holocaust – those who were persecuted for sexual orientation, state of mental health, or some other defining characteristic.

  69. UnknownEric the Apostate says

    I’m in Berlin, tell me if you want to meet me!

    Cool! As soon as we make our arrangements, I’ll let you know when we’ll be there!

  70. K.R. Syncanna says

    Thought I’d leave this here for you all.
    So now the CDC is making awful recommendations, including some that go against our knowledge of opioid-dependence treatment. Read the RH article for more info. I am starting to think people really do not know what the year is, I mean how else can they keep doing this backwards ass shit? Urgh. It’s just disgusting, women and those who look like women but are not* already experience under treatment when it comes to pain medication. Here’s a study about that linked from Everyday Feminism.

    On the bright side, my newly inserted IUD may be the best thing that has ever happened to my uterus. So there’s that. And I hope all you northeastern pharangulites made it through the storm okay.

    *Non-binary (like me!), non-conforming folks

  71. says

    A word problem:

    A family of four sits down for dinner. There are 25 ounces of meat. The eldest family member will eat 5% more meat than the others. Assuming the three younger family members all eat the same amount, how long will it take the mother to bring up your marriage status?

  72. Ogvorbis says

    awakeinmo @110:

    how long will it take the mother to bring up your marriage status?

    There are many possible variables within this equation: are you a man (add 10 minutes) or a woman (subtract 10 minutes); is mother religious (add 5 minutes) or not (subtract 10 minutes); are you aged 15 to 20 (add 15 minutes), 20-25 (add 5 minutes), 25 to 40 (subtract 30 minutes), or older (add 1 hour). So, worst case scenario — she will bring it up about 50 minutes before the meal begins. Best case (which would be me (were I single) — it would not be brought up until we were well into the second bottle of liquor.

    (This is meant as humour. I hope I didn’t hit too close on what actually happened.)

    A student who used to work here had a grandmother who, from the age M turned 15, kept asking her when she would get married and start producing great grandchildren (a question grandmother never asked the brothers). Finally, when M was about 20, at Thanksgiving dinner, M looked at her grandmother and said, “If all your want is great-grandchildren, the wedding is optional. I could go off the pill tomorrow and you should be a great-grandmother in less than a year. Or you can start treating me like an actual person and not a baby machine.”

    There was dead silence around the table. Her entire Irish-Catholic family traded glances of terror and shock back and forth across the table. M’s mother dropped the gravy boat. Her brother spilled his beer. Then grandmother said, “If they had had the pill when I was your age, I could’ve been an engineer. I was good at math. I was also good at your grandfather. You do know I only carried your uncle for 5 months, right? Good on you. But I still want great-grandchildren before I die.”

  73. cicely says


    It is 60 degrees F here in the Ozarks, and I just saw a spider’s “ballooning” silk. It may be winter elsewhere, but here it is scarily nice.

    The Voice of Pessimism says that we’ve got the whole of February scheduled for Relentless Ice Storms, with a final icy blast penciled in for the weekend after the last of the plants finally blossom out, on the assumption that Spring Has Come.

    A. Noyd:

    Best hold music ever?

    The homes that squirrels build in treetops are called preferable to the ones they build in my attic. No matter what their formal designation may be. Regardless of how many rooms and nurseries they may contain.


    Pretty planet with lots of rings.

    *astonished whistle*
    Guess what I’m putting in the sky of my next D&D setting….

    *hugs* for JAL. Sorry about your keyboard woes.

    Hi, bassmike!
    Congrats on the toilet training; and I hope that the string of plagues has given you some let-up.

  74. says

    Yeah, I don’t have it terribly bad. Just the usual mother/daughter nonsense. Lately, I’ve been making an effort to humorize it all rather than get snarky with mom.

    I LOVE your story about M. Surprise ending from grandma there. I miss my grandma. She seemed to understand these things better than my mom does. Perhaps a trait that comes with elder wisdom.

  75. says

    Ogvorbis @112:

    A student who used to work here had a grandmother who, from the age M turned 15, kept asking her when she would get married and start producing great grandchildren (a question grandmother never asked the brothers). Finally, when M was about 20, at Thanksgiving dinner, M looked at her grandmother and said, “If all your want is great-grandchildren, the wedding is optional. I could go off the pill tomorrow and you should be a great-grandmother in less than a year. Or you can start treating me like an actual person and not a baby machine.”

    That is so full of win.

    BTW, what happened to the Ogg nym?


    awakeinmo @110:
    Ugh. I’m sorry you have to go through that.


    Saad @104:
    Yup, Kamala Khan is a teenaged Pakistani-American Muslim female superhero. And she has her own comic book (I’m still shocked she has a comic book given the climate of anti-Muslim bigotry in the U.S.) Which is written by a Muslim woman. And sells quite well.

  76. blf says

    This is a cheese commercial. (The castle is in Latvia, but as far as I know, there’s no dragon there.)

    Neither the dragon, kneejit, castle, drawbridge, nor other things are an accurate representation of the mildly deranged penguin. You can tell by the lack of feathers.

  77. blf says

    I thought that building codes were standardized.
    How is it, then, that my stairs have gotten steeper?
    Sometimes while I have slept?

    Either yer house is tilting, or else you have discovered a collection of Dark Matter gravitationally bending the staircase. Ask Dirk Gently.

  78. K.R. Syncanna says

    Coolio. Is that the one that (nearly?) eliminates the periods?

    It can, hopefully it will.

  79. blf says

    Is that the one that (nearly?) eliminates the periods?

    The full stop is an important punctuation mark Without it reading text is rather difficult And better writers than I can construct ambiguous constructions I am aware ancient texts and scripts did not have a full stop and to the extent anything was used it was spacing changes and other conventions difficult to intercept In a sense the full stop is like the numeral zero A very simple idea with profound consequences This text is cheating by using Capital letters To indicate the probable start of a new sentence

  80. says

    Anti-abortion activists have increased their threatening, stalking, berating behavior toward doctors that provide abortion services.

    […] “I think the average legislator, and certainly the average citizen, has no idea what is really happening to the abortion providers who care for women’s comprehensive reproductive health. If they did, they would be truly horrified,” Gaines said. […]

    There are more details and a helpful chart/graph here.

    The graph shows an alarming increase in, among other things, “wanted” posters, stalking, posting personal information of doctors and their staff on the internet, etc. These activists are also picketing the private residences of abortion providers, and openly advocating violence (including killing) abortion providers.

  81. says

    Oh, FFS! More religious rightwingers are combining politics with whacko religion:

    Iowa Religious Right group The Family Leader, a key player in the GOP’s first-in-the-nation caucus, has a new plan to encourage legislators in Iowa to “do what God has asked them to do.”

    The group is soliciting funds to purchase $100 leather-bound copies of “The Founders Bible” — which is annotated by hack historian David Barton with his thoughts on “our Judeo-Christian history as a nation”— for each member of the Iowa state legislature.

    In “The Founders Bible,” legislators will find such educational passages as a retelling of Exodus that portrays Moses as the inventor of republican government; a made-up story about the early American government printing Bibles; an endorsement of the “Christian nation” concept from a notorious defender of slavery; information on the “many areas in which the Constitution specifically incorporated Biblical principles”; and an argument for the biblical origin of DNA evidence. All of this is intended to advance Barton’s view that the U.S. government exists to carry out his interpretation of the Bible’s commands. […]

    Right Wing Watch link.

    The “biblical origin of DNA evidence” is causing me particular distress.

  82. Ogvorbis says

    Tony @115:

    BTW, what happened to the Ogg nym?

    It was an experiment to see just how many versions of my ‘nym are being autosearched to generate emails. Most of them are spam trapped, but some get through. Ogg, Oggie, Ogvorbis, all being tracked.

    Yeah, I know what I did. Thank you for reminding me. Again.

  83. says

    In Alabama there’s a justice who is so bad that I do think he should be removed from the bench. Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore is virulently anti-gay, and he uses his position as a judge to promote his views.

    […]Chief Justice Roy Moore, who is calling on his state to flout a federal court ruling striking down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage […]

    […] in 2002, the Alabama Supreme Court heard a case regarding a custody dispute in which a woman who had previously allowed her ex-husband to have primary custody of their three children sued to modify the custody agreement because of reports that the children’s father had been committing verbal and physical violence against them. The woman, who had since entered a same-sex relationship, lost in the trial court phase but won on appeal, with the appeals court finding that the children’s father did in fact abuse them.

    However, the Alabama Supreme Court reversed the appeal court’s decision, finding that the trial court judge “was in a better position to evaluate” the evidence of abuse.

    Moore filed a concurring opinion making it clear that he saw the mother’s same-sex relationship as the main reason that she should not have custody over her children.

    He cited biblical law, including the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, to make his case that “a sexual relationship between two persons of the same gender-creates a strong presumption of unfitness that alone is sufficient justification for denying that parent custody of his or her own children or prohibiting the adoption of the children of others” since “homosexual conduct by a parent is inherently detrimental to children.”

    Homosexuality, Moore wrote, is a “criminal lifestyle” that is “abhorrent, immoral, detestable, a crime against nature, and a violation of the laws of nature and of nature’s God upon which this Nation and our laws are predicated.” […]


  84. blf says

    All of this is intended to advance Barton’s view that the U.S. government exists to carry out his interpretation of the Bible’s commands.

    Perhaps, but with a price of 100USD per book’o’lies, I rather suspect the hack historian and others have a few other reasons.

  85. A. Noyd says

    cicley (#113)

    The homes that squirrels build in treetops are called preferable to the ones they build in my attic.



    blf (#120)

    The full stop is an important punctuation mark Without it reading text is rather difficult […] This text is cheating by using Capital letters

    A lot of my beginner ESL students seem to think doing without punctuation or capital letters would be grand and prefer to use line breaks to convey the beginnings and endings of sentences. They also tend to read this way. It doesn’t seem to matter what their native languages are, only how much formal schooling they’ve had.

  86. David Marjanović says

    In German:

    Pegida: Kathrin “Number Two” Oertel has resigned because of all the hate she says she gets, including “disadvantages in her job” and unspecified “massive threats” from the extreme left. Two more people on the top rung of Pegida have resigned because of Bachmann. Bachmann has partially resigned from his resignation and wants to stay in the “organization team” in some way.

    A politologist says this is the beginning of the end for Pegida. He likes that, saying “this is an hour for democracy and against othering”. Further, Pegida has canceled the next protest (which was planned for Monday) without stating reasons.

  87. blf says

    Why do all people always visit the cool cities like Berlin and never the boring coutryside where I live?

    Well, besides the problem of finding someplace called “coutryside”…  </snark>

    Insufficient cheese shops. Too many peas. Horses. Possibly even Miracel Whip. (All of these are, of course, the real reasons to create some “no-go areas” in Europe.)

  88. cicely says

    Some superpowers have specific issues.

    A friend once ran a character (in the Marvel RPG) that was a sorta cross between Wolverine and Magneto—only significantly less powerful, of course.
    It is a bad thing, when you have claws that shoot outa your hands, but no regeneration ability. His second major action—after nearly bleeding to death from his first—was to find a guy who could insert a set of grommets-and-sheaths thingies for the claws to slide out of.

  89. David Marjanović says

    The full stop is an important punctuation mark Without it reading text is rather difficult And better writers than I can construct ambiguous constructions I am aware ancient texts and scripts did not have a full stop and to the extent anything was used it was spacing changes and other conventions difficult to intercept In a sense the full stop is like the numeral zero A very simple idea with profound consequences This text is cheating by using Capital letters To indicate the probable start of a new sentence


    *closes book*
    Word of the Living God.
    *raises roof*
    [crowd:] Thanks be to God, the Lord.

    (Spaces are an early medieval Irish invention. They did catch on pretty quickly, but till then you were generally shit out of luck. – Note I haven’t tried to simulate the many, many medieval abbreviations.)

  90. blf says

    A lot of my beginner ESL students seem to think doing without punctuation or capital letters would be grand and prefer to use line breaks to convey the beginnings and endings of sentences.

    There is a style of writing input text for various typesetting programs — notably troff and, to a lessor extent, (La)Tex — which does almost precisely that.
    “Almost” because there full punctuation is still used.
    The style looks a lot like this comment (albeit not quite because there are usually line breaks in the middle of the sentence instead of very long lines).
    The reason for the style is because a full stop (and some other punctuation marks) at the end of the line can be reasonably inferred to be the end of a sentence (and not, e.g., the “.” in e.g. or Mr.).
    That helps the typesetting program typeset the text in the conventional manner (for English, at least), where there is more horizontal space following the end of a sentence than is normally present between the words of the sentence.

  91. cicely says

    Note I haven’t tried to simulate the many, many medieval abbreviations

    And the capitals which, while sometimes stunningly beautiful, cannot necessarily be identified as letters. except from positional evidence.

  92. Ogvorbis says


  93. blf says

    Spaces are an early medieval Irish invention. They did catch on pretty quickly, but till then you were generally shit out of luck.

    Yes, that is why I said “ancient texts and scripts did not have a full stop and to the extent anything was used it was spacing changes and other conventions…”.

    You indeed had nothing. You also can find

  94. blf says

    I have no idea what happened to the rest of my comment @142. (Actually, I do, I gave an example of an ancient interword / intersentence marking at precisely the point where my comment seems to have “terminated” — I seem to recall the blogging comment software at FtB previously choking on some unknown class on non–US-ASCII characters.)

  95. Ogvorbis says

    blf @144:

    First off, gross.

    Second, shouldn’t that read:



    Or is this getting silly?

  96. Ogvorbis says

    Okay, try that again.

    blf @144:

    Shouldn’t that read:



  97. opposablethumbs says

    Assorted hugs to assorted Horders (good to see you, Ogvorbis! and, yes, good news bassmike :-) )

    Superpower issues …. yup. Shakespeare’s sister.

    In UK mainstream press, the Grauniad, on the (electronic) “front page” no less (well of UK news, I mean, not world news): an article about how some high-ranking UK police and lawyers have talked about rape in terms that actually relate to reality.

    At the police and the Crown Prosecution Service’s first joint initiative on rape, prosecutors said they had established an emerging pattern of behaviour where rapists constructed “false narratives” after the crime. One technique described involved rapists contacting victims the next day, sometimes by text or social media, thanking them for a sexual encounter. Defendants can try to rely on such messages should there be a trial.

    Alison Saunders, the director of public prosecutions, told the event of the potential for social media to be used to “set up the scene” and warned that false messages could be used to set up a defence.


    Martin Hewitt, a Metropolitan police assistant commissioner, who is the national lead officer on rapes and sexual assaults, told the conference: “The rise in reporting of rapes is something which I unreservedly welcome. The issue that causes me concern is the significant level of under-reporting. The reality is that we are still only getting 20-25% of those who suffer the offence … 75% of those [who are raped] are not coming forward.

    Hewitt said it should be understood that there were very few examples of false rape allegations. “The number of such cases is tiny. In cases of wrongful accusation, a person who has been accused has a right to fairness as anyone else does. It would not be legitimate to get to a place where we say this could not happen,” the assistant commissioner said. Saunders said: “For too long society has blamed rape victims for confusing the issue of consent – by drinking or dressing provocatively for example – but it is not they who are confused, it is society itself and we must challenge that. Consent to sexual activity is not a grey area – in law it is clearly defined and must be given fully and freely.

    “It is not a crime to drink, but it is a crime for a rapist to target someone who is no longer capable of consenting to sex though drink. These tools take us well beyond the old saying ‘no means no’ – it is now well established that many rape victims freeze rather than fight as a protective and coping mechanism.

    “We want police and prosecutors to make sure they ask in every case where consent is the issue: how did the suspect know the complainant was saying yes and doing so freely and knowingly?”

    Under section 74 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003, consent is defined as being when anyone agrees to have sexual relations while having the freedom and capacity to make that choice.

    Consent can be given to one sort of sexual activity but not another, or with conditions, such as wearing a condom. Consent can be withdrawn at any time during sexual activity and each time activity occurs.

    In investigations detectives are expected to establish what steps, if any, a suspect took to obtain the complainant’s consent. The prosecution must prove that the suspect did not have a reasonable belief that the complainant was consenting.

  98. says

    Mormon Moments of Madness, anti-gay category. This time, mormons have been caught trying to punk the press. Some media outlets are not buying their drivel.

    The Mormon church punked the national press yesterday by calling a press conference purportedly about their support of some basic rights for LGBTQ people. The press conference was, in fact, mostly about defending Mormons’ right to discriminate.

    Major news organizations led with headlines claiming the Mormon church had come out in favor of LGBTQ rights.

    The New York Times: “Mormon Leaders Call for Measures Protecting Gay Rights.”

    ABC: “Mormon Leaders Call for Measures Protecting Gay Rights.

    CNN: “Mormon church backs LGBT rights — with one condition.”

    But if you go to the Mormon church’s own website, what you’ll find is a news release titled “Mormon Leaders Call for Laws That Protect Religious Freedom.” The Mormon church’s latest maneuver is not about gay rights. It is primarily about giving believers the right to discriminate.

    […] While calling for LGBTQ people to be protected from those who hate them for non-religious reasons (and who are those people, anyway?), they have hidden their real agenda, which is to legalize such discrimination by anyone who claims their prejudice is backed by faith.

    Yes, that sounds like all the sneaky mormons I’ve ever met. Surprised the NY Times let them get away with that shit.

    Today’s press conference took place in a twilight zone where parents are in danger of being jailed for teaching their kids about Jesus, and where believers can’t “share their views openly in the public square.” Oh, please. Show me the Mormons who have been jailed for sharing their views. There are none. And if you can point to one instance of the government preventing good Mormons from practicing their religion in their homes, we’ll eat our hat. […]

    The LGBTQ movement only demands equal rights. We want to be treated fairly. It is the religious people in this country who demand special treatment, who receive special treatment, and it is profoundly inappropriate.

    If these Mormon leaders were true disciples of Jesus, they would […] apologize for the hatred and intolerance that their church has shown gay people for decades. […] And they would unconditionally endorse legislation that protects gay people from discrimination, especially from religious people.

    Don’t believe for one second that the LDS church this morning showed compassion or humanity. They’re just trying to codify their right to discriminate against LGBTQ people.

  99. Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate) says


    I have a jury trial tomorrow. well, one of the partners has a jury trial and he asked me to actually try it since he hasn’t done one in a while.

    I just realized I hadn’t drafted jury instructions.


    Also since he only gave it to me a few days ago there’s a bit of other prep I should probably do…

  100. says

    This is a followup to my comment #148. At least one section of the New York Times did get the story right.


    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints held a rare news conference in Salt Lake City today that is drawing headlines about a supposedly new, accommodating stand on gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender rights.

    The Mormon Church is now willing, news accounts says, to support anti-discrimination legislation in the realms of housing and employment. In return, all the Mormons want are laws that “protect religious freedom.”

    We already have that. It’s called the Bill of Rights. So what is the church really after?

    The news conference, said D. Todd Cristofferson, one of the 12 apostles of the church, was held to raise concerns about “the increasing tensions and polarization between advocates of religious freedom on the one hand and advocates of gay rights on the other.” Another apostle, Jeffrey R. Holland, said church leaders were calling for “laws that protect faith communities and individuals” against unfair treatment.

    That’s fake “war on religion” speak. What they want is legal permission to use their religion as an excuse to discriminate.

    The Associated Press explained: “Mormon leaders still want to hire and fire workers based not only on religious beliefs, but also on behavior standards known as honor codes that require gays and lesbians to remain celibate or marry someone of the opposite sex. The church also wants legal protections for religious objectors who work in government and health care, such as a physician who refuses to perform an abortion, or provide artificial insemination for a lesbian couple.”

    Substitute the word “black” or “Jewish” or “Catholic” or, say, “Mormon” for LGBT in these statements, and everyone would be outraged. […]

  101. says

    For fuck’s sake. I finally convinced myself to go and fix my tire, and once again I had a flat before I got home. This is getting ridiculous and problematic; I can’t afford to keep taking the bus, but I can’t afford to keep replacing my tubes either. Do any of the bike types on here have any advice about what to do about this kind of problem?

  102. Rob Grigjanis says

    Dalillama @151: Do you partially inflate, then bounce the wheel around a bit to work out possible kinks, before full inflation? I don’t know if that’s bike wisdom or just bike folklore, but I did it for decades.

  103. says

    Good morning

    Yay for potty trained child.
    As Mr’s been saying for the last 7.5 years, times will get better. And he’s right, they do. Remember how you had to get up in the middle of the night to feed the baby and change the diaper? Now you get up in the middle of the night to pee!

    +++ To you all+++
    I really appreciate all the art links and cool stuff links you all post, but unless something really sticks out to me, I don’t comment on them because, yeah. But I don’t want you to think “why am I posting this, nobody is interested anyway”

  104. chigau (違う) says

    I really don’t expect a response to my #156.
    It was more a reminder to myself to turn off the fucking internetses an go to bed.

  105. chigau (違う) says

    Most of the time, I don’t have actual PAIN.
    But boyohboy would I ever like the DISCOMFORT to stop.

  106. rq says

    Michelle Obama Is More Than a Mascot. I kind of wish that, eventually, she would run for office herself. I think she’d kick ass (and no, she’s not perfect, but she would still do rather well, I think).
    Oh, and the focus may have been on her, but Michelle Obama isn’t the only high-profile guest to not wear a headscarf in Saudi Arabia. She joins a list of women like Madeleine Albright, Laura Bush, Condoleezza Rice, Nancy Pelosi, Angela Merkel, and Hillary Clinton.

  107. bassmike says

    We have snow! And lots of it. Could be a tricky trip home.

    No one has any experience of soundcloud then?

  108. rq says

    Sorry, no, only with listening to things – do they have a policy or FAQ that you can read on sharing music? I’ know I’ve listened to music uploaded by other people on the platform, so I’m sure it’s okay – I wonder if you need permission from your orchestra director or something, though.
    Also, yay snow – just remember to keep your distance and adjust your speed! Drive safe!

  109. katybe says

    I haven’t seen this mentioned here yet, and it struck me it might be of interest (sorry if I’ve just missed seeing it). I was in a bookshop yesterday and noticed that this – has just been reissued in a beautiful edition to mark the fact that there’s a film being released this year, starring Meryl Streep in the role of Emmaline Pankhurst. The book jacket said it was a Hollywood film, but it looks like it’s British, based on Wikipedia, so I’m cautiously optimistic –

  110. says

    Here’s some news that is sort of good, Bryan Fischer has been fired as the spokesman for the American Family Association.

    Fischer has been their director of issue analysis, the director of issue analysis for the American Family Association forever. He’s basically quoted everywhere for years now as the organization’s spokesman. […]

    The president of the American Family Association telling us tonight, that as of today, Bryan Fischer should no longer be described as the director of issue analysis for that group, he should not be quoted as a spokesman for the group. As of today, the American Family Association tells us that Bryan Fischer is, and I quote, “just a talk show host.”

    Fischer is the guy who spouts so much ridiculous stuff on a daily basis that you’ve seen me quote him here many times. He’s a powerful force on the ragged edges of the religious rightwing, and I wish someone would take his talk show platform (a “radio host” for AFA) away as well.

    The timing of this unexpected shakeup is probably not a coincidence: the American Family Association, despite years of right-wing extremism, is partnering with Reince Priebus and members of the Republican National Committee on a trip to Israel, which created an awkward dynamic. Why would the RNC team up with a group whose spokesperson says things like, “Counterfeit religions, alternative religions of Christianity have no right to the free exercise of religion”?

    Nearly 100 RNC members are scheduled to participate in the AFA-sponsored Israel trip, which begins this weekend. It’s against this backdrop that, all of a sudden, Fischer is no longer the religious right group’s spokesperson.

    Rachel Maddow link. Great video. I recommend this segment.

    Fischer’s background includes being famous among the radical fundie/political rightwing of Idaho. [groan]

    […] Fischer began working with the American Family Association (AFA) as the head of its Idaho affiliate, the Idaho Values Alliance (IVA). Sarah Posner of Religion Dispatches reports that while leading the IVA, Fischer hosted radical anti-gay activist Scott Lively, who has been tied to a Uganda bill that would make homosexuality a crime punishable by death, and extremist Rusty Thomas, who blamed the Sept. 11 attacks on legal abortion and homosexuality and seemingly condoned the murder of abortion doctors.

    Fischer made his mark when he successfully pressured Hallmark stores in Idaho to refuse to carry greeting cards for same-sex weddings, campaigned against allowing undocumented students to receive in-state college tuition and fought legislation that would provide workplace protections for gays and lesbians. Following a plane crash that killed an abortion doctor and his family, Fischer gained notoriety by suggesting that the prayers of anti-choice activists had helped to bring about the deaths. […]

    People for the American Way link.

  111. says

    I want to provide some more info on Bryan Fischer. It’s one thing to say he’s a big deal when it comes to influencing the rightwing in USA, it’s another to document that claim.

    […] Fischer is the host of Focal Point, the principle talk show on AFA’s American Family Radio, which consists of nearly 200 stations and affiliates in 37 states and reaches about two million listeners. […]

    Fischer’s radio show has become an obligatory stop for Republican presidential candidates, prominent Republican politicians and top social conservative activists.

    […] Fischer frequently hosts likely presidential candidates who are looking to make inroads among Religious Right voters. Former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty, former House speaker Newt Gingrich, Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann and businessman Herman Cain have all appeared on Fischer’s radio show. In addition, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee and Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour were both guests on Fischer’s show while they were weighing runs for the presidency. […]

    When they were Fischer’s guests, all of these Republican politicians readily agreed with anything Fischer said, no matter how extreme.

  112. says

    I didn’t list all of Bryan Fischer’s associations (talk show guests, political rallies, conferences, etc.) with the political rightwing, but here’s a partial list:
    Mitt Romney
    Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell
    Indiana Rep. Mike Pence
    Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina
    Sen. Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma
    Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi
    Rep. Lamar Smith of Texas
    Rep. Chris Smith of New Jersey
    Rep. Steve King of Iowa
    Rep. Jack Kingston of Georgia
    Rep. Raul Labrador of Idaho
    Rep. Tim Huelskamp of Kansas
    Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council
    David Barton of WallBuilders
    Phyllis Schlafly of Eagle Forum
    Amy Kremer of the Tea Party Express

    These people, and more, will most likely to continue making appearances with Fischer and joining him on his radio show. They are not ashamed to be associated with a guy who said this:

    Hitler recruited around him homosexuals to make up his stormtroopers, they were his enforcers, they were his thugs, and Hitler discovered that he could not get straight soldiers to be savage, and brutal, and vicious enough to carryout his orders, but that homosexual soldiers basically had no limits in the savagery and brutality they were willing to inflict on whoever Hitler sent them after. So he surrounded himself, virtually all of the stormtroopers, the brownshirts, were male homosexuals.

  113. rq says

    Thanks for the link to the book, it looks beautiful – I also did not know about the movie!! Yay! I think?

  114. says

    Hmm, does anybody here know if there’s something going on with Indian cooking and salt?
    Because tonight I’m making chickpea curry and lemon dhaal and while the dhaal recipe adds the salt after cooking, there’s none at all in the chickpea curry?
    Or was the writer simply careless and forgot to mention it?

  115. Esteleth, RN's job is to save your ass, not kiss it says

    Ten days I signed the contract for a job I’m okay with, I get a call from a place I’d absolutely love to work for.


    Such is life.

  116. Esteleth, RN's job is to save your ass, not kiss it says

    On the other hand, the commute would be hell and the pay package is insultingly low. I’ll stay where I am, and maybe in a few years I’ll qualify for something above entry-level crap pay there.

  117. Esteleth, RN's job is to save your ass, not kiss it says

    Start date is the 9th, Tony! Looking forward to it.

  118. opposablethumbs says

    Great that they called you, Esteleth! – and your 173 sounds like the smart way. Maybe if you were able to go there at above entry level in a few years’ time the package would be enough to make it worth moving, even, to avoid the bad commute? (no idea if you’d want to consider a move, of course, but just if it’s a place you’d really love. Me, the thought of moving is Scary!!! even though this location is quite ordinary)

  119. Esteleth, RN's job is to save your ass, not kiss it says

    Opposablethumbs, the place is 200 miles from where I currently live, so a move would definitely be happening. It’s just that the building is in an awkward location WRT places I’d consider living in that region, especially being in a mass transit dead zone in a major metropolitan area.

  120. blf says

    Over at Ed’s the consensus seems to be that Fischer has not been fired, he has simply been quasi-dissociated. He is still doing the same thing, only as an “independent contractor” instead of a clear-cut “official” employee, apparently so that They can claim his opinions are not Theirs.

    The “problem” seems to be They are involved with a thug’s junket to Israel, so the antisemitism Fischer has been expressing on Their behalf is now awkward.

  121. blf says

    Giliell, No idea about Indian cuisine and salt (other than Gandhi lead a famous march to obtain tax-free salt). My opinion is that, possibly with some exceptions in baking, you rarely — fecking close to never — need to add salt before, during, or after cooking. (I admit that on the rare occasions I do add salt, it’s usually in the form of soya sauce or similar.)

  122. blf says

    I should probably do the dishes before I go to bed.

    Why? Are they going to migrate, mutate, or mutilate during the night? If they are going to multiply I can see a point…

  123. blf says

    Dalillama, Assuming the punctures are caused by things like glass, there’s a couple of things to do. But first make sure it is NEW debris, and not, as three common examples, some glass still stuck into the tyre, a protruding spoke, or a damaged bead (or other tyre damage).

    I had fairly good success on my racing bike with Kevlar™-belted tyres plus being careful to brush off any debris you happen to roll over.

    That can be done, at least for the front tyre, whilst still riding by lightly putting your gloved hand on the top of the tyre. (Some people can also do this with the rear tyre, I wasn’t too good at it, and there is a much bigger danger of sticking yer hand into the spokes.) Do not do it with a bare hand (for obvious reasons), or at high speed, or when / where you are in a tricky control situation. In those cases, consider stopping as soon as practical and brushing off the tyre(s).

  124. says

    blf @178:

    […] the consensus seems to be that Fischer has not been fired, he has simply been quasi-dissociated. […]

    Yeah, I think that’s right. It’s a cover-our-ass move on the part the parent organization, and it still leaves Fischer in place to spew vile stuff on the radio. Fischer’s two million listeners are being fed some awful swill.

    What is kind of nice is that the parent organization was embarrassed enough to remove the Fischer bio page from their website. And they said they disagreed with Fischer’s take on Nazis and homosexuals. Baby steps.

    rq: Fischer just ignores the fact that Nazis persecuted gay people. He’s a fan of Scott Lively.

    In other news, Texas legislators are talking about passing yet another stupid, dangerous gun law.

    People who are concerned about the use of excessive force by law enforcement may have to deal with another fatal can of worms. If Texas state Rep. Dan Flynn (R) gets his way, teachers will have the right to use deadly force against students in Texas classrooms, in the near future.

    The Lone Star State already permits teachers to have firearms in the classroom, but H.B. 868, also known as the Teacher’s Protection Act, would authorize instructors to use “force or deadly force on school property, on a school bus, or at a school-sponsored event in defense of the educator’s person or in defense of students of the school that employs the educator.” Instructors would also have the right to use deadly force “in defense of property of the school that employs the educator.” Moreover, civil immunity would be granted to those who use deadly force, meaning they would not be liable for the injury or death of student.

    Such a bill could have disastrous consequences for students of color. A coalition of civil rights organizations found that black and Latino students face much higher rates of disciplinary action in schools, which exacerbates the so-called school-to-prison pipeline. By extension, if students of color are already disproportionately targeted by school authorities for their behavior, they could also become the targets of deadly force used by educators. […]

  125. says

    I’ve had the experience of poverty making me dumber than usual, and prone to making hasty or bad decisions.

    The mental strain of living in poverty and thinking constantly about tight finances can drop a person’s IQ by as much as 13 percent, or about the equivalent of losing a night of sleep, according to a new study. It consumes so much mental energy that there is often little room to think about anything else, which leaves low-income people more susceptible to bad decisions.

    One of the study’s authors, Harvard economist Sandhil Mullainathan, told the Washington Post, “Poverty is the equivalent of pulling an all-nighter. Picture yourself after an all-nighter. Being poor is like that every day.” […]

  126. says

    Republicans in Congress are using Loretta Lynch’s confirmation hearing to air old grievances against Eric Holder and against President Obama. This crap has nothing to do with confirming Lynch as Attorney General, but it has everything to do with providing Faux News and other rightwing outlets with sound bites. Talk about confirmation bias.

    Here’s a truncated roundup of some of the doofuses that are testifying today:

    Sharyl Attkisson, now a contributor for a conservative news website run by the Heritage Foundation, is currently suing Holder and the Justice Department […] a vocal critic of the Obama administration in recent years, producing shoddy reporting on its culpability for the casualties resulting from the 2012 attacks on U.S. facilities in Benghazi, Libya. [Attkisson is also a “Fast & Furious” conspiracy theorist.}

    Catherine Engelbrecht is the head of a Tea Party group called True the Vote that bills itself as an election watchdog.[…] Engelbrecht described DOJ efforts to prevent the disenfranchisement of minority voters as a “radical, racialist assault on voting rights.” Engelbrecht and True the Vote have consistently misinformed the public about the prevalence of voter fraud. […]

    Jonathan Turley is a law professor at George Washington University […] He previously appeared before the House Rules Committee to express support for a lawsuit that would alter the ability of the president to implement and enforce laws related to health care reform and immigration. After the two previous attorneys hired by House Republicans to litigate the case quit, Speaker John Boehner retained Turley. Turley also called for Holder to be fired in 2013, labeling him a “sin eater” for reasons such as justifying Obama’s push to “expand secret and warrantless surveillance” and for defending the drone program.

    Also testifying is Milwaukee County Sheriff David A. Clarke, who has been widely praised by conservative media and the National Rifle Association. Clarke often engages in inflammatory rhetoric and has been honored as sheriff of the year by far-right fringe group Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association (CSPOA). […] Clarke has been a critic of involvement by Obama and Holder in the aftermath of the police shooting of an unarmed teenager in Ferguson, Missouri. While appearing on Fox News, Clarke claimed that Obama had encouraged violence in Ferguson by calling for calm “with a wink and a nod.” […]

  127. says

    Faux historian and rightwing dunderhead, David Barton, is going to teach Congress how to prevent courts in the USA from ruling in favor of marriage equality. (He may be a little late for that, but rightwing irrational hope springs eternal).

    Barton thinks congress can pass a law forbidding federal courts from hearing gay marriage cases, and that Congress can abolish all courts that rule for gay marriage … with the exception of the Supreme Court.
    More details here.

  128. K.R. Syncanna says

    I think I need to stop posting in threads. My psychotic disorder just is interfering too much with my ability to interpret and communicate with others. It’s a shame, I’d like to contribute to a community, but don’t think I can handle it :/

  129. says

    Who is replacing Bryan Fischer as the spokesperson for the American Family Association? (see comments #165, 166, and 167.) The replacement is none other than David Lane. This is not an improvement.

    […] Lane […] shares Fischer’s view that God is preparing to violently punish America for its tolerance of homosexuality. […]

    Argued that “homosexuals praying at the Inauguration” of President Obama in 2013 will provoke God’s wrath in the form of “car bombs in Los Angeles, Washington D.C. and Des Moines, Iowa.” […]

    Urged conservative Christians to prepare for martyrdom in their fight to “save the nation from the pagan onslaught imposing homosexual marriage [and] homosexual scouts.” […]

    Explained why homosexuality is a threat to freedom: “Homosexuality is debauchery. God’s loyalty and fidelity — that guard the nation — make sustainable freedom dependent on seeking virtue.” […]

    Said homosexuality is part of a Marxist “psychological conditioning” plot. […]

    Compared Republicans who support marriage equality to politicians who backed slavery in the run-up to the Civil War. […]

    Lane has also outlined his strategy to further entrench his radical ideology in the Republican Party by holding prayer rallies like “The Response,” sponsoring events featuring GOP leaders, known as “restoration” and “renewal” events […] and recruiting 1,000 pastors to run for elected office.

    […] Lane wants conservatives to embrace his exclusionary Christian Nationalist beliefs and abolish the separation of church and state. Lane:

    Called the separation of church and state a “lie” and a “fabricated whopper” […]

    Said America needs a “thorough cleaning from pornography, abortion, homosexuality, filth from TV and Hollywood, racism, and injustice.”[…]

    Asserted that the “false gods of multiculturalism, political correctness and secularism must be removed from Christian America.” […]

    Right Wing Watch link.

  130. Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought says

    K.R. Syncanna,

    Maybe stick to the Lounge for a while, until you feel ready to try other threads again?

  131. K.R. Syncanna says

    I don’t know. I may just not have it in me to keep up an online presence. I wish I did.

  132. Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought says

    K.R. Syncanna,

    I wish you well, however you decide.

  133. K.R. Syncanna says

    @194, Thanks Caitie, I was planning to still lurk. I’m just a bad participant. But you all are really great, so I still want to see what you all have to say :3

  134. blf says

    [Bryan Fischer‘s] replacement is none other than David Lane. This is not an improvement.

    Sure it is! Now you have two loonies doing basically the same thing for the same Them, increasing the entertainment — especially if they get into a kook-fight, or say contradictory things and someone in the thugechosphere notices, or start trying to dig deeper holes faster in an attempt at onedownkooksship.

    (I am a bit puzzled, actually. The only David Lane I can recall died several years ago. So this Mr Lane is a mystery to me, unless the original — who was extremely vile and would probably fit right in with Them — has returned as a zombie pea or something?)

  135. K.R. Syncanna says

    @197, Thank you Tony, I’ll figure myself out eventually. Thank you all for being awesome.

  136. opposablethumbs says

    200 miles from where I currently live

    ah, I misunderstood the “bad commute” bit!

    K.R. Syncanna, hope this place isn’t being bad for you and sorry if it is.