Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Death Parties III - Rest in Hell Oral Roberts

Drink up!

Glory be to the gods, the evil spreader of hate, dissension, and stupidity in the name of Jesus, Oral Roberts is dead. If there is a hell there's a special pit of molten lead waiting for his eternal soul.
Unfortunately his influence will continue to corrupt and destroy this world we live in. Fuck you Oral Roberts, you should have died fifty years ago.

This is the beginning of a list those who have died and whose death is reason to at the very least drink a toast to their absence. I'm keeping this list to people who would be less than a hundred if they hadn't died:

April 15 - Pol Pot
April 22 - Richard Nixon
June 5 - Ronald Reagan
September 13 - George Wallace
September 17 - Spiro Agnew
Novemeber 9 - John Mitchell
December 15 - Oral Roberts

This is the updated list of people whose death will be a reason for celebration (new additions are in bold). Each of these people has made the world a worse place and their departure from it cannot come soon enough as they will continue to do damage through existing:

John Ashcroft
Robert Bork
Pat Buchanan
Barbara Bush
George H.W. Bush
George W. Bush
Dick Cheney
Ann Coulter
Newt Gingrich
Alberto Gonzales
Billy Graham
Ted Haggard
John Hagee
Sean Hannity
Henry Kissinger
G. Gordon Liddy
Rush Limbaugh
Chris Matthews
Rupert Murdoch
Pat Robertson
Karl Rove
Donald Rumsfeld
Michael Savage
Justice Antonin Scalia
Jimmy Swaggart
Robert Tilton
Paul Wolfowitz

Saturday, December 12, 2009

The Shrill Voices in the Week's "News"

Incitement 5 - "Watering the Tree of Liberty"

When even former Bush speech writer and all around conservative shill David Frum warns against incitement, shouldn't the right wingers listen? The very idea that the man pictured above is not threatening violence is ludicrous. The quote is from a letter by Thomas Jefferson about the threat of violent revolution (not necessarily in support of it, but that goes right over these peoples' heads). If his gun isn't enough to clue you into his threatening nature then how about this guy? Looks like a threat to me.

Media Matters published a great piece about this and other crazed right wing tactics. How long 'til they start bombing Democratic offices (or, knowing them, bombing GOP offices and blaiming Democrats)?

Monday, December 7, 2009

It's About Joe

Actual ad from Boldprogressive.org. Yes, that guy really is the head of the Connecticut for Lieberman Party. A little clarification from a Bold Progressive e-mail helps:
The Connecticut for Lieberman Party was taken over by progressives after Lieberman failed to maintain it. Today's tongue-in-cheek ad holds Lieberman accountable for putting his ego ahead of his constituents.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Car Crash Meme Bubbles Back For a Moment

It's been a long time since a good car wreck metaphor in a cartoon. I wonder why. Of course I am not counting the Tiger Woods cartoons.

Much Ado About Nothing

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

What's Important?

Why American journalism is dying and why it deserves to die:

Meet the New Boss, Same as the Old Boss

Still ignoring habeus corpus, still detaining prisoners without trial, still maintaining a notorious prison in Bagram where we continue to torture people, still failing to give more than lip service to reducing our consumption of fossil fuels, and still failing to find Osama Bin Laden while throwing tens of thousands of young American troops at an enemy that never attacked us directly until we invaded their country (and gave them the support to rise up from near oblivion). At least when Carter failed we could blame the Congress or the George H.W. Bush led CIA.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Confusion Never Helps Scientific Discussions

A.P. London December 1, 2009 [Nicholas Stern, chair of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics, t]he leading British climate change economist says the science of climate change is based on sound scientific methods and those who doubt the science of global warming are 'muddled and confused.' Hackers broke into the computer systems of the University of East Anglia climate research unit last month and posted documents online. Some bloggers claim the document shows scientists have overstated the case for global warming and have attempted to manipulate data.

So surely you've heard of these e-mails that show scientists actively worked to block publication of bogus climate studies in peer reviewed journals. If you're like most scientifically literate folks (as we all should be to some degree) you probably thought nothing of it, just some new meaningless tidbit the climate change deniers have glommed onto. And you would be right except the amplification level has been cranked up to the "let's make shit up about this" level.

Even George Will is lying about the e-mails. Read about it here for yourself.
PAUL KRUGMAN (New York Times columnist): That's not -- it's, you know, part -- all those emails -- people have never seen what academic discussion looks like. They don't -- there's not a single smoking gun in there. There's nothing in there. And the travesty is that people are not able to explain why the fact that 1998 was a very warm year doesn't actually mean that global warming has stopped.

The fact is that peer reviewed means just that: a group of scientific peers reads your article, runs your experiments, adds up your numbers, and on and on and on and if none of them can disprove your study's conclusions it gets published. Sometimes this does not compensate for the rare unethical scientist or errors in underlying principles but corrections are continually being made and science moves forward. That's how it works. The thing is, even the things that are in error usually are very close to being right. Science does not consider "close" to be correct unlike the religious ilk for whom belief is absolutely right. Science is not some nerdy guys you hate sitting around in a room making shit up. That's Fox News. That's the Rush Limbaugh show.

The problem here is with the news media and the way it has decided to approach problems like climate change and war. They are too chickenshit to ignore the bullshit or at least report on it as bullshit. When the conclusions reached from hundreds of millions of points of data from centuries of time, from all over the globe, studied by hundreds of thousands of scientists all looking at different aspects of the data with the most powerful computers on earth is called into question because one guy with a PHD questions it you've got to wonder what is wrong with this country. When CBS News is playing an entire clip from a climate denier/lunatic like Senator James Inhofe as if he has the faintest idea what he's talking about you have to wonder if they were awake during journalism school. You don't print something that ain't true unless it's in big quotes and is described as being false. If it's false it's false and the idea the earth is cooling is FALSE. You really don't need to have two opposing guests in the room when the difference is ten million to one. You don't have David Duke on every time you have Barack Obama on but I'd bet David Duke got some votes from Klan members last Presidential election... more votes in proportion than there is evidence contradicting climate change.

I can find you a guy with a doctorate from Oral Roberts University that believes the sun rotates around the earth. But that guy doesn't have the backing of the energy industry so he's not going to bully his way onto every 24 hour news channel show every time astronomy is discussed. And he most assuredly does not go from Fox & Friends to NBC News like climate change deniers. It's like if you always had a Scientologist on when you discussed psychiatry. There is not one scientific organization that disagrees that the world is getting warmer. NOT ONE. The last organization to switch sides changed back in 2007. Guess which organization was last: The Society of Petroleum Engineers. That's right, even the scientists that drill for oil agree we are changing the climate by our actions.

So one of the scientists whose e-mails is involved, Phil Jones, head of a research center at the University of East Anglia, has stepped down. Temporarily. Again something completely unlike that which goes on in the faith based universe. I do believe Marc Sanford is still in office because he is like unto King David. Rubbish.
"It has created confusion and confusion never helps scientific discussions," Nicholas Stern told reporters in London Tuesday. "The degree of skepticism among real scientists is very small."
Yes, Nicholas, confusion does not help scientific discussions but it is exactly what the energy industry depends on to keep us from forcing them to change and put their immense short term profits into keeping the earth livable for humanity. And god forbid we should force people to alter their lifestyles. What kind of madman would require us to conserve energy?