Thursday, December 16, 2010

Stem Beck

While discovering that the Fox News description of Glenn Beck's show "provides an unconventional look at... everyday hassles" I thought, finally a teary-eyed Andy Rooney. But then I thought "Have you ever noticed that the product displayed above the description which is labeled Stem Cell Therapy is at odds with Beck's stance on Stem Cell Research? I mean, him being a Christian and all." So when I watched the advertisement posted below, I wondered, why the change of heart?

So I dug around to find out what Glenn has to say on the topic of stem cell research. Short story, he's against it. Long story, he spoke about Michael J. Fox on his radio show and how you shouldn't let the family of victims make decisions in the court room because wanting scientists to research Parkinson's Disease is purely emotional and if his daughter was raped, he'd want to cut the guy's head off. I mean, you know, you listen to the recording, but that's the gist of what I heard.

"Barack Obama going in and spending the money on embryonic stem cell research, and then some, fundamentally changing – remember, those great progressive doctors are the ones who brought us Eugenics. It was the progressive movement and it science. Let’s put science truly in her place. If evolution is right, why don’t we just help out evolution? That was the idea. And sane people agreed with it!

And it was from America. Progressive movement in America. Eugenics. In case you don’t know what Eugenics led us to: the Final Solution. A master race! A perfect person."

But if stem cell researchers are Nazis, why would he allow a product called Stem Cell Therapy to advertise on his show? And then I realized that HIV, Parkinson's Disease, diabetes, infertility, paralysis... had nothing on the most unforgivable career killer of them all... wrinkles. And that looking "up to 15 years younger starting the very first day" is the most important research that this nation can conduct. You know the old adage: To age is human, to greatly slow down the process of aging is divine.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

I Guess We're Just Gonna Have to Disagree to Disagree

A group called American Atheists has put up an anti-Christmas billboard near the Lincoln Tunnel which reads "You KNOW it's a Myth. This Season, Celebrate REASON!"

And so you would figure that an article reporting on this topic would of course inspire Christian individuals to post comments concerning the billboard. But the real question is: how quickly do the posts get to the topic of Obama's birth certificate? Well, here's the progression that gets us there: 11 posts in, Obama's an "atheist":

Because of course he's a communist Muslim. And a mere 4 posts later VOX114 is back with "Christians don't attend a 'church'":

And then 29 posts later, VOX114 is back with "militant homosexuals join the atheist movement..."

I'm beginning to suspect a troll and then we're almost thrown off track by abortion:

But thankfully, "someone else" comes along with the Obama birth certificate question:

And so we find that in the most ritualistic of ways, any comment section can get off topic into something that isn't a topic at all. Happy Cyber Monday, to the most famous red suited socialist in the mall.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Musings on Quincy

Tattooed hands of a man I met in the Hancock Cemetery in Quincy, MA. He claimed to be a Freemason, as per the clove tattoo, but then asked me if I knew what the skull and wings symbol at the top of the headstones from the 1600s meant. You'd think a guy with a skull tattooed on his hand would know these things. But we got to chatting and one of his other two friends pulled up his shirt sleeve to show me the name Robin encased in a dagger tattoo on his forearm, placed there as a commitment to a long ago ex-girlfriend. And I replied, my name's spelled with a y.

Here's the skull and wings from the previous story.

Kinda reminds me of the Day of the Dead.

Not a bad sign to wear at the airport.

Birthplace of John Adams (the guy who was President)

Monday, November 22, 2010

The State of Journalism

Really, Washington Post, "dressed in a Luke Skywalker costume"? I mean, breaking the Watergate story was great but since then, your fact checking has gone down hill.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

God Agenda

The It Gets Better Campaign has drawn attention to the prevalence of suicide among homosexual youths which has prompted some school systems to include homosexuality in their tolerance curriculum which in turn is coming up against Christian outrage.

Pastor Rick DeMato of Liberty Baptist Church in Montana, while shocked by the new guidelines in his school system, said "Of course we’re all against bullying." But is he really? It's difficult for an anti-bullying campaign to get through to people who worship the biggest bully in history. Read his book, if you don't agree with his agenda then... wrath, vengeance, it doesn't get better. It's like the vicious cycle of battered children becoming abusive parents, they don't know any better because that's how they were taught to deal with those who don't follow their rules.

Pastor DeMato went on to say "But the Bible says very clearly that homosexuality is wrong, and Christians don’t want the schools to teach subjects that are repulsive to their values.”

Here's the thing, I get it that you don't agree with homosexuality but don't claim you're against bullying, because you're not. It's part of your curriculum. And that is why we have separation of church and state. No matter what Christine O'Donnell "thinks."

Friday, November 5, 2010

Hypocrisy, Thy Name is Olbermann

"Keith Olbermann was suspended over political donations."

How long till he gets scooped up by FOX? Oh, wait, never mind, they're looking for racists and failed politicians. Silly me, ethics violations are a requirement at the corporate level.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Sane Insanity

Argument between a Tea Partier and Ralliers for Sanity and/or Fear which I captured on my iPhone in DC. It was the only argument that I witnessed at the event. Political that is, I mean, I'm sure there was a lot of, I can't hear a thing, if we had gotten up an hour earlier like I said, then we wouldn't be in this mess.

As compared to the crazy town of insane protesters that I experienced at Obama's inauguration, that was just a conversation inspired by a prop truck. Near the end of this video are some of those megaphone types from 2008.

Here are some of the photos that I captured at the rally as well.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear

At first I thought his message was about having your head up your ass but then he turned around and the statement became more obvious.

The subway was so crowded that my back was arched over someone's backpack. On the plus side, I did have good lumbar support.

One of two protesters. The other one was much more extreme, I'll upload later as those photos are on another camera.

I feel the need to say that this is Dr. Strangelove for those of you who wonder why I'm taking a picture of a man in a wheelchair putting his gloves on.

Okay, this is definitely a Comic-Con crowd.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Picked a Look and Basically Stuck With It

I found some of The Rent is Too Damn High Guy's earlier work in a film called "Mom and Dad Save the World" starring Jon Lovitz and Teri Garr.

In case you missed it, here's the trailer to give you an idea of how groundbreaking this film was in 1992.

And if you're familiar with the platform of The Rent is Too Damn High party, then here's that.

The Body of Language

Oh, the difference a photo choice makes. Below I've placed the front page photo choices by the top three 24-hour news outlets of Obama's appearance on "The Daily Show".

Let's start with CNN:

Stewart's smiling and Obama's on the defensive. That's an accurate portrayal of how the interview went overall. And the headline reads "Obama, Jon Stewart Square Off Over Audacity Vs. Timid". Also very accurate as that is what they indeed did.

Now let's take a look at MSNBC:

Okay, so MSNBC used the exact same photo as CNN, they're both leaned forward, Stewart's smiling and Obama's on the defensive. The headline reads "Obama on 'The Daily Show': 'We have done an awful lot.'" MSNBC chose to highlight Obama's achievements rather than what will more likely be concentrated on and that is the debate itself resulting from Stewart not backing down from the questions that many wanted him to ask.

Now, let's take a look at FOX News:

This, to use a term that Bill O'Reilly is so fond of using, tells you so much about the body language of the two individuals. Here, we can see Obama on the attack, hand outstretched, as Stewart recoils in fear and the headline reads "Obama Rejects 'Timid' Characterization on 'Daily Show'". Yes, Obama rejected the word "'Timid' when applied to his legislation but the use of the word "Characterization" implies that Stewart was calling the President himself timid which is funny for FOX to do when the photo tells me more about the body language that FOX News wants to portray than anything else, which is that he's angry and hostile as this photo implies that he's physically attacking anyone who dares oppose him.

So CNN says "audacity vs. timid", MSNBC says "Obama... done a lot" and FOX News says "rejects timid." Let's break down some of the simple language used by the reporters in their articles for these three outlets in order to show their "take" on things:

CNN article: "Obama said", "Obama said", "the president said", "Obama said", "Obama invoked".

MSNBC Article: "the president said", "the president responded", "Obama added", "the president replied".

FOX article: "Obama shot back", "Obama lamented", "Obama said but went on to argue", "Obama joked", "Obama defended", "the president argued".

First off, MSNBC, CNN, and FOX, I know you're probably just bloggers but the p in the President is capitalized. You should know that if you're going to use it that often, MSNBC. Second off, I'd say that CNN and MSNBC used basically innocuous words in this circumstance but FOX, the use of "shot back" and especially "lamented" really shows us your point of view. I get "defended" and "argued" because that is what he did but you know "lamented" makes him seem sad and "shot back" goes towards that violent thing that FOX likes to project. And I do mean project.

Now, the photo I used above for FOX was the one in the body of the article and not on the front page. So here's the front page photo.

This one puts Stewart on the defensive but they do look like they just might kiss. So it's a combo of an MSNBC and a FOX News photo choice. But let's take a look at the other articles you can link to just beneath it.

"Obama Says Summers Did 'A Heckuva Job'", is a link to a Wall Street Journal Article which of course then talks about it being a Bush reference concerning former FEMA Director Brownie and Hurricane Katrina which we all know, so anyways. But the photo at the top of the article is the same one that I posted above with the outreached hand and when you go to the actual Wall Street Journal article there is an entirely different photo.

So FOX chose to repost their choice of photo rather than the one to the left that the Wall Street Journal chose to go along with their article which has both men smiling and leaning forward.

The next article link which was below the FOX News front page photo above is "OPINION: Obama's Sad, Surprising Words". Now this link has nothing to do with the interview, it has to do with the newest FOX News creation which stems from a quote from a speech that Obama made in Philadelphia on October 10th, "It's the Republicans. And they say, what are they saying? They say, we want the keys back... They can't have the keys back. They don't know how to drive... They can ride with us, if they want. But they got to get in the back seat, because - because we want to go forward. We don't want the special interests riding shotgun. I just want everybody to notice when you get in your car and you want to go forward, what do you do? You put the car in "D," if you're going backwards, what do you do? You put the car in "R." That's not a coincidence."

FOX News has decided that the above Obama quote was an allusion to riding in the back of the bus. Last time I checked, passengers on buses don't tend to ride shotgun and taking the keys to the car is, well, he said it, it's an obvious allusion to his feeling that Republicans were leading the country in the wrong direction and he would like to have a turn for a little while. And he most definitely was not literally saying that there should be separate seating for Republicans on public transportation.

So as I was saying, journalists can influence opinions through simple image and word choices but when you start adding things that weren't even there like when Sean Hannity of FOX News said on his very own show that "President Obama actually said Republicans can go to the back of the bus." When what he said was "back seat". Well, you can read into all the implications you want as I have in my assessment of photos but how in this time of easily accessible recordings can you make up quotes? I know why you do it. It's just amazing that it works. I know that you want to influence your base and have your reporters report on you and then bloggers repeat what you have said and then suddenly it's a quote but it's your quote, not Obama's quote and that's what gets lost and then suddenly they're printing it on T-shirts.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Man Up?

What's the not my first thought way to get to the topic of gay marriage you ask? Write an article about your 3-year-old son wanting to dress up as a princess for Halloween and watch the gender-identity-must-be-maintained-at-all-costs comments roll in.

A female sports writer for the Chicago Tribune wrote the article of which I speak. I've captured some of the choice comments posted herein. The one below is by a commenter named "VOICE OF REASON" who has not only used a photo of a chimpanzee scratching his chin in contemplation to identify himself but he has also used the number one catch phrase on the list of the Top 10 political catch phrases according to Fox News: "man up." Now, immediately after stating that the author's husband should "man up" he continues that he should "be his own person, with his own ideas, instead of a mindless drone." I can't tell you how much I enjoy the use of the term "mindless drone" when used by someone doing exactly what they are accusing someone else of doing. Especially when the accused is doing the opposite of what the accuser is himself actually doing. Which is to say that "VOICE OF REASON" is being a mindless drone in his adherence to rigidly guarded gender roles.

I mean, Republican candidate for Governor of California Meg Whitman obviously has no issue with men in dresses. In fact, just last week she linked to the following video in her Twitter feed.

This next commenter "Chicagobrother" "doesn't have the time", and he also "doesn't have the patience to REALLY break this down," and yet the bulk of his comment comes after this statement, therefore some "time" must have been freed up and his "patience" must have been restored. I don't know, that whole saying a lot of words after saying that you were planning on not using a lot of words sounds sort of girlie to me. But when he's done breaking down his offense at the idea "that boys are 'naturally' drawn to pink" and that "it seems to me you wished you had a daughter instead of a boy", he does finally definitively tell us that he in fact has "got nothing left to say."

And so with that finished, "SwingingChad" decided to pick up the torch of the comment section... AND the contested 2000 Presidential election AND very likely a dick reference, all in one screen name AND then go on to make the first gay marriage comment of the section. "SwingingChad" posits that "by the time the tike is an adult, gay marriage will be legal", he even goes so far as to plan the wedding outfits with "the only question is, who is the wife and who is the bride. I think you know the answer." And so the only question is, "SwingingChad", where in this sentence does the question mark go. I'm not sure if you know the answer, tyke?

In conclusion, which is more shocking? This?

Or this?

Friday, October 22, 2010

Nose Poop

Is this what graffiti's been saying all along? Well, that's not so bad.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Warehouse 13: Buried

Since I was out of the country when my episode posted online, I thought that I'd link to it now.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Pistol Lipped

When they ran out of holsters, Brett could only see one option.

Brett had a gun in cheek style about him.

Brett had a shoot from the lip style about him.

Brett had an inside his face style about him.

Brett was particularly nervous his first day of gun fighting school.

Brett's orthodontist had unorthodox yet highly ineffective methods.

Brett was a quick if woefully inaccurate gunfighter.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Good Eyeball Work

Bora Indian Girl

I did a report on Ocelots in elementary school but I just can't help feeling like this one's looking right through me.

And yet, it's the orange color, not its tarnished reputation, that keeps me from drinking it.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Iquitos Logistics

After my MacBook Pro decided that vibrating at 2 second intervals was the way to react to the usual ungrounded Peruvian electrical source, I mimed my way through the purchase of a power strip, then pried the outlet cover off and bent the grounding prong so that it touched one of the screws. More MacGruber than MacGyver. I know, I know, vibrator and screw.

Otherwise, this is my favorite entrance to the jungle sign...

And this is the most efficient use of a road...

And this, is the plane that they should wash so that I might not think that they have abandoned planes on the side of the runway at Iquitos airport.

Packing for the Amazon

I fit all of this...

... into these...

Then, I went to the airport, dropped my ticket and after retracing my steps, found it in the furthest restaurant from the gate where they were calling final boarding. Now, I'm at Lima Airport where my 5 hour layover turned into 6 hours and 10 minutes and they moved the gate downstairs. But everything fit and that was really the hardest part... so far.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Truthfully Incorrect

Tea Party Senate nominee, Christine O'Donnell claimed 12 years ago that she wouldn't lie to Nazis if she were harboring Jews in her home because lying is wrong. Would sending a pregnant Jew to death count as accessory to abortion? Tune in for the sinful conundrums and stay for the nostalgia of Eddie Izzard's transvestite period.

This is the portion that everyone's a twitter about.

And this the portion that proceeded it.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

My EP of Warehouse 13

Here's the promo and it airs next week (9/14).

Monday, September 6, 2010

Oh, No Comment Section

Hey, MSNBC, do you read the articles that you link to? Cause, the article, "Hiker Rescued in Angeles National Forest", which you linked to from has all of the qualities of a blog post that someone didn't bother to proof before they posted it.

The first sentence just seemed a little redundant: "...was seriously injured when she was hurt..." So, she was injured, as well as hurt. Very thorough.

But then the second sentence, that's where it starts to really get sloppy: "The 20-year-old woman was at the goofing around near..." What a coincidence! The goofing around near is my favorite spot to hike.

And then there was this sad spelling situation: " was all for not..." Well, at least he didn't spell it knot. Naught that he would no the difference.

Finally, my favorite part of local LA news laziness: "That was good new for the female hiker who was hurt and really need help." Oh, person who works for the evening new. I really need that.

My last post was about the inanity of comment sections but at least those inane comment sections were allowed to exist, this article has no comment section for to make fun of its content with.

Here's a screen capture just in case they take it down:

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Oh, Comment Section

You are the most reliable source for a laugh on this big blue planet of ours. Obviously, if you're at the bottom of an article about politics, then you're going to get over the top political from the get go but it usually takes about 20 comments for an article about a dog saving its owner from a coyote attack to get around to questioning Obama's birth record. But this one, I mean, I thought, "Sunbather Run Over by Newport Beach Lifeguard Seeks $850,000", well, that makes much more sense than 3 million for a lap full of McDonald's coffee. But take a look at this screen capture of the first three comments:

Right from the first post, it gets fairly silly and then by the third we're on to immigration reform. From actual broken pelvis to assumed illegal immigrant in no time flat. I mean, how did you skip right over health care reform? This was a great opportunity for that. But what I think we should all learn from this is that welfare queens, global warming myth, terrorists.

Monday, August 23, 2010

So You Say You Have Written a "Visitor's Guide" to DC?

Take a look at the web page for the "MAINE REFOUNDERS/ Tea Party. Dedicated to Preserving the Constitution!" I know, it's a mouthful. And what is immediately evident is that they really enjoy varying uses of punctuation. Just take a look at their and my equally inspired blog title, "So You Are Coming to the Glenn Beck 8/28 Rally on Washington?" You'll notice that they didn't use a contraction when any native speaker knows that "So You Are Coming to the Glenn Beck 8/28 Rally on Washington?" should actually read "So You're Coming to the Glenn Beck 8/28 Rally on Washington?" Therefore, I do have to call into question the nationality of Andrew Ian Dodge for his non use of contraction as the "author" of this blog. I mean, if someone says "lift" instead of elevator in a movie, we know that's the spy, that dude definitely learned English from the KGB and not growing up in a working class suburban family like the rest of us Americans.

And so, I was equally inspired by his further use of punctuation when he noted: "(Dupont Circle, gay area)". Therefore, I will translate his punctuation prevalent punditry parenthetically:

"Many parts of DC are safe beyond the areas I will list here, but why chance it if you don't know where you are?" (black area)

"DC's population includes refugees from every country, as the families of embassy staffs of third world countries tend to stay in DC whenever a revolution in their homeland means that anyone in their family would be in danger if they went back. Most taxi drivers and many waiters/waitresses (especially in local coffee shops like the Bread and Chocolate chain) are immigrants, frequently from east Africa or Arab countries. As a rule, African immigrants do not like for you to assume they are African Americans and especially do not like for you to guess they are from a neighboring country..." (foreign black area)

"If you are on the Blue or Orange line do not go past Eastern Market toward the Potomac Avenue stop and beyond; stay in NW DC and points in Virginia. Do not use the Green line or the Yellow line. These rules are even more important at night." (black area) Though, I'd like to add, not exactly. You know these lines all cross through The Mall which is coincidentally where the rally is being held. Oh, my god! Glenn Beck is black!

"But you don't know where you are so you cannot go, especially at night, unless you take me with you." (is this guy hitting on me? area)

And finally, there's just one travel tip missing from this blog: What's the exchange rate at the border crossing? (these white people sure are scared of black people area)

Monday, August 16, 2010

All Balls, No Brakes

What do you want to bet this guy doesn't wear a helmet?

Balls of steel, brains of mush.

Trophy balls.

Go nads.

Career Metaphor

Gibson crashes Maserati into a Malibu hillside. Was he disappointed in his a)

self, b)

midlife-crisis-mobile or c)

geological formations?