Friday, June 27, 2008

YOUR FRIDAY DOSE OF NERD ROCK: Knit caps and swells

Courtesy of the THURSDAY promo sheet called "The Guide" at the Los Angeles Times, we have that newspaper's weekly choices, the nerdiest of nerds, chosen by their appeal to an imagined readership of hipsterschosen by entertainment reporters nerds for the delight of the many milchtoasts who washed out of graduate school before clinching the MFA.


"It's been less than a decade since pianist Taylor Eigati -- as a 15-year old prodigy -- was on the teaching staff at Stanford..." Stop! You're already making us sick.


Knit cap, eye-liner, and everyone else heroically out of focus. The name of Palmerston's lead guitarist is Basilio Fernando Ferreira, don't you know. Desperate to get signed, they moved to LA from Toronto and took the name from a town near the latter because Pasadena didn't sound hip.


"Wanna see the new MySpace page I built with my Mac?" asks Jesse McCartney. "This iced chocolate milkYoo-hoo is really great!"

Thursday, June 26, 2008

DO YOU BELIEVE IN MAGIC: You must to swallow the current phlogiston on biofuels

Americans currently find reality unpalatable. This manifests in many areas but is most noticeable in the rhetoric surrounding high gas prices and what the nation needs to do about them. Taking a cold shower and realizing a two hour commute to work in southern California just ain't right is news too tough for many to handle. So we put it on our credit cards and allow leaders and businessmen to blow smoke up our blowholes on how we'll achieve energy independence through new technologies.

A rich variety of schemes have been put forward delivered with the traditional slogan that occurs to every editorial writer who believes children's fairy tales about American ingenuity and exceptionalism.

There must be a new Manhattan Project!

A sampling, identities omitted because although geographically separated, they're alike in groupthink: "The United States needs to organize a Manhattan Project for alternative energy... [We] need a Manhattan Project for renewable energy ... [Let's] put some real money to work and get another 'Manhattan Project' up and running, this time for a simple solution to the energy crisis."

But the best laff-riots in the current crop of energy-independence suggestions come from the biofuel sector, an industry prone to desperate exaggerations now that corn-to-ethanol has acquired a coat of tarnish. For the moment we'll pass over offshore drilling and the phenomenon of hydrogen car leases for Hollywood celebrities.

Read the entirety of your host's analysis at the Reg here.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

YOUR SUNDAY DOSE OF NERD ROCK: Crapwear fashion plates

Courtesy of the New York Times, Sunday Arts section, indie nerd rock, selected by the upper middle class nerds who write the section, for the restricted milchtoasts and pantywaists who like music as pseudo-intellectual air-freshener. Best played on National Public Radio, promo photos always shot to look like its winter in Scranton. Or Sheffield.


Brrr, sure is cold here in New York in June, imply Hercules and Love Affair. Art department refused to run photo with 'em wearing snoods.


Bad hair, bad clothes, bad knit cap, dead bush and bags under the eyes. Ceramic Dog looking good if "looking good" means "zombie movie shot in Pennsylvania." Do you really wanna know what they sound like?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

HAPPY TIMES FROM THE EASTERN FRONT (AND HOLLYWOOD): Will flog dead horses for cash

Today's Los Angeles Times featured Curveball on the frontpage. Again.

You would have to have been a Trappist monk to miss the story of the US government's prime convenience -- the Iraqi petty crook who made up stories about mobile germ warfare laboratories, sold overtime because it fit the Bush administration's arguments for war.

Reporter Bob Drogin was responsible for the piece, one which reveals no new information. Big surprise, Curveball runs from reporters. He insists it wasn't his fault. And he lies, lies, lies, and lies.

Did you know Curveball lies?

Cue snippet of Star Trek episode "I, Mudd" -- the part where Mudd tells Norman the android he is lying. Smokes comes out of the head.

Curveball was last mentioned here because Hollywood optioned a movie on him, specifically built around reporter Drogin's book of the same name.

From this readers can intuit the only reason why it is being made is because Drogin must have a powerful agent.

So, saddle up to flog Curveball around the block for the umpty-umth time, squeezing every last bit of value from the sick little worm, first for the benefit of the Bush administration's war, then the journalist still trying to hump some more blood out of it.

Would you go to see Curveball, the movie?

It's been allegedly appraised by Leonard DiCaprio's management company as one of the "hottest unproduced screenplays of 2007," solidly in at #5, just ahead of "I Want to Fuck Your Sister."

No, DD does not make this up.

"Curveball - Eastern Promises screenwriter Steve Knight’s adaptation of award-winning Los Angeles Times reporter Bob Drogin’s book Curveball ... about an Iraqi informant code-named ‘Curveball’ who gave 'flawed information about biological weapons that the U.S. government used to justify the war in Iraq.' The book cover reads 'an inside story of intrigue and incompetence at at the highest levels of government.' Project is set up at Focus Features," reads a Net article here.

In the past DD has slathered the superciliousness on thick when it comes to Hollywood purporting to furnish high drama on the Iraq War. Movies of this nature have been sent to the glue factory and shot. Deservedly so.

DD is predicting that if "Curveball" actually gets made, it will be DOA its first week in theatres, rushed to DVD and Pay-per-View as quickly as possible.

How many movies on the heroics and laugh-a-minute antics of the US government and military in Iraq do theatre-goers yearn to see?

Coming on HBO is the mini-series adaptation of "Generation Kill," a movie on the charge of the Marines' First Recon into Iraq. Written by Rolling Stone reporter Evan Wright, it was immensely popular in about the same time frame as the joy over "Mission Accomplished!"

Yeah, yukking it up over Iraqis standing along the side of the road as the bombardment goes down up ahead sure is enticing. A sure winner in 2008.



Theoretical movie titles probably already pitched to Hollywood.

Hanging Saddam: Follows the story of the flight of the Iraqi dictator from Baghdad until his execution in 2006. During captivity Hussein is befriended by a kindly American soldier who brings him meals and advice, softening the merciless tyrant into realizing the enormity of his crimes and allowing him to meet his end with grace.

The Bomb in My Garden: The story of a kindly Iraqi scientist and his flight from Iraq, aided by the heroic and kindly journalist, Kurt Pitzer. Mahdi Obeidi, played by Omar Shariff, is keeping atom bomb parts from the tyrant Saddam Hussein. They are hidden under his roses but what can Obeidi do now that the forces of anarchy are swirling in Iraq as a result of invasion? Oh wait, this is being made.

Who's Laughing Now -- The Fast Life and Times of Comical Ali: The story of Mohammed Saeed al-Sahhaf, the Iraqi briefer famous as one of George W. Bush's favorite comics -- at the beginning of the war. The movie starts with
the comical one delivering the lines: "I told you yesterday that the shock has backfired on them. Indeed, they are shocked because of what they have seen. No one received them with roses. They were received with bombs, shoes and bullets. Now, the game has been exposed. Awe will backfire on them."

Comical Ali is brought to America to face trial for lying during a war but a mistrial is declared when no one can be found for jury duty who doesn't laugh inappropriately during voir dire. Ali is given a faux news show on cable called "You Don't Say!" and it becomes very popular, particularly for his reassuring motto: "No I am not scared, and neither should you be!"
THIS IS A JOB FOR WHITE BASEBALL CAP-WEARING MAN! Gay marriage in California

"California has just given Pennsylvania legislators a wake-up call ... If legislators say they are for marriage and don't vote to protect it, they will contribute to the end of marriage, a decline of the family, more children being raised without dads, and a deep erosion of our freedom of religion," sayeth Pennsyltucky's throwndown Republican Senator, Rick Santorum, in the Philly Inky here.

In the US, free speech is always guaranteed, especially when you're white-trash-without-money. From Virginia, by way of the LA Times, fundies furnished their two cents.

"It's wrong, wrong, wrong ... especially when they bring children into it," Sharon Bailey of Virginia told the newspaper. The LA Times ran a pic of two women kissing with their daughter between them in a ceremony yesterday.

"...[Honestly], I think it's just gross."

So, white baseball cap-wearing man to the rescue!


"It ain't right, that's all. I'm not big on religion but when you see 'em kissing, well, I just turn the tube off." -- Buck Fones, 59, retired blue-collar worker from VA.
OPPOSING A LAWLESS GOVERNMENT: If Muslim, jail for pre-crime

In the United Kingdom a vigorous opposition to that government's practical suspension of the rights of the accused, as long as they're Muslim, has risen up. This stands in some contrast to the attitudes of the Republican right in this country, a segment which considers the recent Supreme Court decision to correct the Bush's administration suspension of habeas corpus in Guantanamo to be a very bad thing.

"The way the US and Britain are tackling terrorism is entirely wrong, former Lebanon hostage Terry Waite said in London this week," reported a UK agency here.

" 'It is entirely wrong to incarcerate people when they don’t even know what they are imprisoned for,' he said, in a criticism of the British government’s top secret trials in which neither the accused nor the lawyers are told the exact charges or details of the alleged evidence."

Over the years, this blog and your friendly neighborhood GlobalSecurity.Org Senior Fellow have covered terror cases in England. Often, the reported material has dealt with men who have been pulled off the street and thrown into Belmarsh -- a high security prison -- on the flimsiest of charges.

This transpired with the notorious London ricin case, a prop which was subsequently used by the Bush administration as part of its rationale for war with Iraq.

"Lawrence Archer, the foreman of the jury in the 'ricin terror plot' trial of five Algerian men – 'where there was no ricin and no plot' - recalled that although four of the accused were found to be innocent, within weeks the government said it would deport them to Algeria even though it knew they would face a risk of torture," continued the report.

The critics of UK terror policy were gathered at an art exhibit -- "Captivated - The Art of the Interned," a presentation of "art by men detained in Belmarsh prison" held in London.

Currently, the UK government is attempting to extend the time alleged terrorists can be held without charge from 28 to 42 days. However, the passage of the law is not guaranteed and there is a strong opposition movement.

"Moazzem Beg, who was detained for years at the US prisons in Bagram in Afghanistan and Guantanamo Bay said that though 42 days detention without charge was under discussion, 'the government already has powers to detain people for eight, nine or 10years..." said the news article.



Recently:

Britain's War on Terror.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

USAF CYBERMEN ON THE MARCH: Much needed morale boost for beleaguered service



The USAF is in trouble. With not enough need for strategic bombing, skills have been allowed to lapse, leading to well-publicized butterfingering of nuclear weapons and triggers.

However, USAF cybersoldiers are ready to lend a hand, injecting a much-needed shot of elan and esprit de corps back into the service.

See here. And here. Remember: Above All!

Monday, June 09, 2008

THE ZEN WISDOM OF SECURITY EXPERTS: Presented by PowerPoint

This country is drowning in security experts who enjoy writing inane fiction. Often they put the work into slide presentations for the lecturing of the hapless at security conferences hosted by the government or the military.

This next excerpt comes from "Mitigating the Effects of Alleged EBOLA Attacks at Multiple Airports" by Dorothy A. Canter, Ph.D., of John Hopkins University.



"If you have seen one bioattack, you've seen one bioattack."

"That's brilliant!" says the cartoon guy in the Guinness commercial. Ineffable!Indubitable! Words fail your host.

Mind-rotting military security conference, from 2005. Apparently about training, although they may have been shamming.

The last winner in the PowerPoint terror presentations, category: Unintended Comedy.
CHINESE CYBERMEN SAID TO BE IMPURIFYING OUR PRECIOUS BODILY FLUIDS: Cyber-Arclight strikes eyed as remedy



Script fragment from a hypothetical remake of Strangelove: "Now, if we can speak freely, sirs, we think the Chinese flash a big game but, frankly, they're short on know-how. You can't take a bunch of ignorant peasants and expect them to understand a machine like one of our boys. If you see one of our cybermen from the Air Force - their slogan's "Above All" - they're really sharp. They'll barrel our DDOS attack in so low, you've just got to see it sometime!"

See the entire piece at el Reg here.




A black man for President? I know that just ain't right.

"Robert Miller, 72, who lives in a government subsidized room in Bedford, said the Constitution should be amended so it will 'not let any colored people run for the White House,'" reported AP. "He seemed unsure about his voting record in recent elections, but vividly recalled voting for Dwight Eisenhower in 1956."

Huh! DD was born in '56.

See Pennsyltucky codgers and common riff-raff, not for Obama, again. By AP -- here.


Thursday, June 05, 2008

THE PENNSYLTUCKY MONOLOGUES: Far right group in Pennsy in fear of gay people

If you just read your news in cyberspace, never getting a good ol' newspaper, you miss some good stuff on the state of the nation.

In today's Los Angeles Times, "The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property" took out an ad which spanned two full pages of the newspaper.

The TFP was "Battling for America's Soul -- How Homosexual 'Marriage' Threatens Our Nation and Faith..."

Certified as a right wing organization by RightWingWatch.Org, the TFP hails from Spring Grove, Pennsyltucky, a small town near York, technically in the heart of the state's little Bible Belt as identified in Kevin Phillips' "American Theocracy."

TFP is a Catholicism-based organization, one virulently opposed to "pro-homosexual clubs" on campus and performances of "The Vagina Monologues," chastely referred to as the "V-Monologues." Their tongues cleave in two, you see, if they say the polite word for cunt or pussy.

So, in terms of southern California or San Francisco, when the TFP visits it must consider us to be what it calls "secularists," misguided humans promoting the overthrow of the remnants of Christianity. Homosexuality is immoral -- blah, blah -- and if you defend it, so are you, which makes the Republican chief justice who wrote the opinion leading to gay marriage in California an enemy of "Our Nation."

"Legalization of Homosexual Unions Weakens Private and Public Morality" maintains the TFP. After browsing the literature and website, the message is fairly clear: Homosexuality is a contagious immorality, threatening to corrupt children into the gay lifestyle.

Finally, gay marriage is "a public sin that can draw God's punishment upon our country. We must sacrifice and do penance..." to avoid this. It has the familiar rattle of the fundamentalist minister, explaining that 9/11 or Katrina or any disaster, perhaps an earthquake or large fire, is an angry God's punishment for not sufficiently giving the lash to gays.

Biblical in its genteel wrath, TFP invokes Sodom and Gomorrah. "The So-Called Cultural War is gradually becoming a Religious War," it is said.

Your host couldn't agree more. As has been printed in previous essays on the blog, the differences between tribes in fundamentalist Pennsyltucky and here are unbridgeable. Bring on the religious war faster, chaps.

After scouring the TFP website, it was seen that there was no shortage of text on the evil of homosexuality. What was missing was any attention to the US Catholic church's inglorious position as the go-to place-of-shelter for priests who enjoy buggering young boys. Funny how that works. And DD says this as someone raised in the Catholic church, Pine Grove/Tremont parish.

Naturally, not everything in York County can possibly be tainted by right-wingers and old time religion. It remains a locale where one can buy the best-tasting potato chips in the world. DD does not hand this praise out lightly.


"First it was Barack Obama. Now, California Sodomites impurify our Nation. Lord, is this a sign of the end of times?"