I read about this prototype sensing device for the twats at the Homeland Insecurity department in the US on Boing Boing (bad enough US authorities have such a belief in their ‘lie detector’ technology which most psychology lecturers I know find laughable, now they want these stupid things which will never catch a bad guy but will get stressed travellers into trouble for no reason) and I couldn’t help but think of the Voight-Kampff test used in Blade Runner to try and detect who was a Replicant.
Free your mind, style monkey
I love this story on Boing Boing – a man bought an Ipod for his daughter for Christmas, but when she opened the box instead of the over-priced product there was a note, written in classic ‘ransom note’ style of cut-up newspaper lettering, reading: “Reclaim your mind from the media’s shackles. Read a book and resurect [sic] yourself. To claim your capitalistic garbage go to your nearest Apple store.” When they returned to the store it transpired others had the same experience. I think if this had happened to me I’d have rather mixed feelings – annoyed but also quite amused at the same time. Mind you it would be more appropriate for the Iphone, really, wouldn’t it? Not that I dislike the product (in fact it looks quite cool), just the mercenary (and anti-competitive) way Apple screw their loyal customers (and also stupid fashion junkie monkeys) with over-inflated costs and tying them to a single service provider, which seems to me to be so anti that freedom Apple was originally supposed to be about…
Creationist whackos get science teacher fired
Yup, once more the intellectually feeble throwbacks who constantly espouse ‘intelligent design’ (which is basically the utterly discredited Creationism dressed up in laughably bad science clothes) have made a move to decrease the IQ of the world a bit more: they used a flimsy excuse to get a science education officer in Texas fired. Christine Castillo Comer’s crime? She forwarded an email as an FYI which she had received from one science educational professional to some interested groups about a talk by an author in the area, an author who has looked into the fake ‘science’ these Intelligent Design wankers keep trying to sneak into school curriculums while also trying to have evolutionary teaching curtailed (no, they haven’t realised the 19th century is over).
Her boss’s boss dropped her in it claiming simply forwarding this message was tantamount to the education board endorsing it, which is ridiculous since she didn’t express an opinion, simply passed on details of a scientific talk to science professionals. Besides which anyone who works for a government department or large corporation knows full well their emails are usually issued under a ‘the ideas expressed in this email do not necessarily promote the ideals of the blankety blank department’. Interestingly enough this boss is a political appointee – a Bush-loving one. And the head of the board openly endorses Creationist nonsense and talks yet hangs out one of his science professionals for simply passing on details of a talk involving scientific matters to other scientific professionals.
Sadly this sort of attack on actually using our brains to logically interpret massive amounts of careful scientific date amassed over many decades by many people from paleontologists to genetic researchers is not confined to a few religious crackpots in Jesusland (as Richard Morgan terms the Texas area in his recent novel Black Man) since there have been attempts to push this nonsense in schools in the UK too. This really does infuriate me – NPR has a radio interview with Christine on their site and the whole thing stinks of a political-religious set-up for these right wing fundamentalist eejits to shove someone out the way so they can then install a new person who will agree with their retarded ideology. And if you are a Creationist don’t bother explaining to me why your view point is valid, because it just isn’t. You’re entitled to hold your view but please feck off and don’t inflict it on others much less try to infect schoolkids with your idiocy. If you believe this crap you are an anti-intellectual moron brain-washed by fundamentalists who like using their religion as a way to gain more control over people and what they can say or think – and that’s the nub of it, these idiots don’t just believe this fairy tale nonsense themselves, they demand it be taught to the rest of us. Thankfully the few attempts here have been laughed at in much the same way as trying to each that the Earth is flat would be, but these idiots keep trying… (link via Boing Boing)
Yanks to the world – fuck you all, we can do what we want
The Times reports on a rather chilling legal message (and I use the term ‘legal’ quite wrongly) from the Home of the Free – America claims that it is perfectly legal under their barbarous legal system to kidnap foreign citizens in any country, even kidnapping citizens of allied countries such as British citizens in their own country. Bad enough the extremely dodgy and morally bankrupt practise of extraordinary rendition but now they claim this highly immoral and illegal (at least in any civilised country which has actual rule of law) is perfectly acceptable according to their own legal standards.
Well, what laws they set in their own borders is up to them, of course, but to act in this arrogant, cavalier manner in other countries, breaking the laws of those nations, is normally what we would refer to as the actions of a ‘rogue state’. And since that’s a rogue state who ignores international law and has weapons of mass destruction then by the warped logic of their own retard monkey president then surely they should invade themselves and impose a regime change? I mean we all know the current administration is of the opinion it can do whatever it wants anywhere and get away with it, but it is chilling to see such a barbarous set of actions given official blessing by the judiciary of a supposedly civilised democratic society. (link via Boing Boing and Warren Ellis)
Following the Biblical rules
Kevin Kelly has some of a Newsweek interview with a man who spent a year trying to follow some seven hundred rules he found in the Bible. I’ve made the contempt I feel for organised religion in general and those shagwits who persist in applying literal belief to scriptures in particular many times, but this was still pretty interesting stuff. (link via Boing Boing)
Mmm, tastes like chicken…
Boing Boing has a link to a story from a PBS documentary of a tarantula which is almost a foot across, which apparently devours chickens. Yikes! Man, I’m not overly arachnaphobiac – I’m not keen on spiders, but I’m not utterly terrified of them either – but this would give you the heebie jeebies! I wonder if this crittur is related to the giant spider of Metebelis III who brought Jon Pertwee’s era in Doctor Who to an end? I think this is one spider my cats probably wouldn’t want to chase and eat…
Assassination memorabilia for sale
Only in America: the window Lee Harvey Oswald is alleged to have fired from to assassinate President John F Kennedy in 1963 is up for auction on Ebay, according to Boing Boing, with a current bid north of $3 million. Got to love that American dedication to making a buck from anything, even the murder of a young president – I seem to recall the Zapruder family received a generous amount of money for the famous footage of the actual moment as well. It all seems rather ghoulish and vulgar to me. Meantime I keep remembering my patron saint, Bill of Hicks, talking about visiting the Texas Book Depository and the Assassination Museum (very Texan) where he said the room where the gunshots were supposedly fired from is extremely authentic in detail – because Oswald isn’t there! And you can’t get up to the window niche he was supposed to have fired from, “because they didn’t want thousands of American tourists looking out the window and going ‘no fuckin’ way! I can’t even see the goddam street from here, holy shit they lied to us!!!” How long until we see a Magic Bullet auction? “Back and to the left… back and to the left…”