Saturday, October 27, 2007

A Scientist's Fetish, an Author's Gaffe

Bad Ass Jeremy Irons as Über-Morlock
Bad Ass Jeremy Irons as Über-Morlock

I usually don't focus on the author of a particular piece that I reference, but this bit from the Daily Mail by Niall Firth entitled "Human race will 'split into two different species'" is a two-fer:
The human race will one day split into two separate species, an attractive, intelligent ruling elite and an underclass of dim-witted, ugly goblin-like creatures, according to a top scientist.

100,000 years into the future, sexual selection could mean that two distinct breeds of human will have developed.

The alarming prediction comes from evolutionary theorist Oliver Curry from the London School of Economics, who says that the human race will have reached its physical peak by the year 3000.
These humans will be between 6ft and 7ft tall and they will live up to 120 years.
Men will have symmetrical facial features, deeper voices and bigger penises, according to Curry in a report commissioned for men's satellite TV channel Bravo.

Women will all have glossy hair, smooth hairless skin, large eyes and pert breasts, according to Curry.
This part's too easy. While this unoriginal idea may have some fortitude, I'd rock to the side of the razor where the good theorist is fantasizing about approaching his anime-fetish fantasy girlfriend with more height, a deeper voice, and a whole lot more man-meat than he's carrying around right now; and they'd live happily until the ripe old age of 120. It's like how an artist's face subtly emerges from the portraits he or she paints.

But the bigger stinker in the article went thusly:
Dr Curry's theory may strike a chord with readers who have read H G Wells' classic novel The Time Machine, in particular his descriptions of the Eloi and the Morlock races.

In the 1895 book, the human race has evolved into two distinct species, the highly intelligent and wealthy Eloi and the frightening, animalistic Morlock who are destined to work underground to keep the Eloi happy.
Niall Firth, if you're going to make a referential analogy based on a classic piece of English Literature, read the damn book.

The Eloi were not intelligent nor wealthy - while they had possibly evolved from wealthy classes of the past, they had long ago become complacent and lost their curiosity, height, and most sexual distinction between male and female. They were little more than humanoid sheep which were kept happy and abundant by the Morlocks, but only to serve as their food.

Piss poor literature references really burn my biscuits. If it wasn't for the fetish theorist, the entire article would have been most unpleasant.

Friday, October 26, 2007

...Long as I Got My Butthole Jesus...

A college friend of mine went to high school with a girl that everyone called Butthole Jenny because in order to remain a technical virgin, she opted for anal.

That story has absolutely no relevance to this post, but when I wrote Butthole Jesus, I thought of Butthole Jenny, and it would be a shame not to include her in this.

You've seen Garage Floor Jesus...

Concrete Jesus

You've seen the Fire Pope...

Fire Pope

And now I present, from a blog straight outta New Zealand, Dog Butt (or, Butthole) Jesus:

Dog Butt Jesus

(Then the New Zealand guy led me to Madonna of the Toast, a blogtastic collection of all such religious pareidolia.)

Back to the dog butt. It may not be totally obvious at first, but if you step back about 15 feet, it blends and you can see the white glow of Jesus' body, blurring out to golden, his darkened face in a very ethereal vision. Or not. Stare at the butthole as long as you'd like - your brain will make something out of it. It is a good Friday.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Iran and My Senators

Today I was a little terrified by the sanctions on Iran announced under the smoke of the California wildfires. I wrote a piece about it at All Things Democrat. Then I wrote my senators.
Dear Senator --,

I have lived in Ohio most of my life and have only recently discovered the importance of keeping in touch with our elected officials. I know you are a busy man, and want to avoid wasting your time on the 15-20 different things on my mind. For this reason, I would like to voice my concern on one item in particular:

If you and your fellow congressional officials do not vote to rein in the powers that were allotted to the President of the United States after September 11th, we will be looking at a third World War in the President's seemingly naive attempt to stop World War III by bombing Iran.

I'm certain that as a Senator, you probably know this, but Iran links to Russia. Russia links to China. And there are enough other countries tired of us and would look expectantly towards a fresh political world-wide reformation.

I am frightened for me and my family and truly believe that we need to stop a conflict in Iran before it starts. You have that power. We gave it to you. Please do something so that next year my daughter is counting down only to seventh grade, not the day when she will be eligible for military service.

Thank you for your time,


I suggest you do the same.

300 Spartan Apples

Found on Worth every second:

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Medical Marijuana All Over Again: Ouch, that Hurts Man

Longtime readers may recall a commentary I did on medical marijuana called Marijuana Duck, Duck, Goose - Same Old Story that got picked up by Digg and all hell broke loose.

Well, I'm back with a story I snagged off Wired Science entitled A Little Marijuana Helps, but Lots May Hurt. Interesting. Can I get a summary?

Hey, you know how all those people like cancer chicks and MS guys who say that weed makes 'em feel better? Let's do a test on it! We'll take the active "it burns!" chemical from hot peppers (and, subsequently, pepper spray) - capsaicin - inject it under their skin, and get 'em high. Then we'll ask them if it hurts. Dude? Dude.

After 2 minutes, no one noticed any "It burns, oh, God it burns!" difference. After 45 minutes, those who had gotten "moderately" high said it hurt less. But those who got really high said it hurt more, even though they felt much "higher."

Honestly, I'm surprised this bar-closing brainstorm of an idea warranted any merit. Much of what we know about the benefits of marijuana is the relieving of chronic pain or reinstitution of appetite.
  • New Stimulus

    Shooting someone up with capsaicin is the physical equivalent of causing a hairline rib fracture. The problem with the way the experiment was handled was that it did not mimic one important aspect of the reason people - some of whom may never have smoked marijuana before - turn to using marijuana: unavoidable, chronic pain/nausea. The people in the study were completely healthy and introduced to a new stimulus - constant, burning pain. Then they smoked. If you're going to do a study to see if marijuana can "officially" help those with chronic pain, study people with chronic pain.

  • No External Stimulus

    In my limited medical, partial psychological, and extensive marijuana experience, the symptoms that are known to be highly successfully ameliorated - chronic pain and lack of appetite - have one thing in common that can only be visualized or recorded if you put stoned people in front of the television: distractive stimulus.

    In a word: stonervision. Get someone without an appetite stoned. Sit them in a comfortable chair and monitor them and ask them how stoned they feel and if they would like a cracker, they might feel uneasy and eat a cracker or two. Get that same person stoned, sit them in the same comfy chair, and flip on South Park Season 1 (play all), you don't even have to ask them; a subtly-placed bag of Nacho Cheese Bugles will simply disappear.
My point? Don't break someone's arm, get them stoned, and call it a study on marijuana and pain. You're studying the wrong things and getting people way too stoned and asking why they're fixating on the pain. The joy of marijuana (and, in my opinion, the success it holds for millions whether in pain or stressed) is its ability of purposeful fixation. Books, television, video games, and even new places are a release, an external stimulus that can give us joy, meaning, and even reward. Paired with marijuana, these things can "make it better" for millions of people who are too concerned with pain to enjoy anything else.

There are many more variables to consider; if you're going to test it, test it right.

Vote Kucinich Now!

Folks over at Democracy for America are holding an online presidential straw poll to feel the pulse of the Democratic field.

So, if the election were held today, which Democrats hold the top 3 slots (I know, it's flawed; if the election were held today, you'd only have one choice)? Simple drag and drop, validate your information and they say Thank You.

If you'd like to jump on the Dennis Train and start with him in spot #1 (recommended), click here. If you'd prefer to begin with a blank slate, hit it here. Either way, vote!

Wii Play a Bunch of Bulls

Wii Play Bull Racing

Frustrated that Wii Play could not accommodate all five of them, The Chonburi 5 (Thailand) took to the streets and the danger of the real thing.

Chonburi, Thailand Bull Jockeys

Sidestepping the very obvious reality of video games leading to the real thing, after the race, all jockeys lamented not being able to plow through a dancing scarecrow.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Students: A Challenge for You

There's no cure for that. Davis Fleetwood is calling you out.

Do something.

Baptist Sanctimony Hits Mitt

A remnant from last week from the Dallas News:
A prominent Dallas minister told his congregation that if they wanted to elect a Christian to the White House, Republican Mitt Romney wasn't qualified.

Dr. Robert Jeffress, pastor of First Baptist Church of Dallas, said Mormonism is a false religion and that Mr. Romney was not a Christian.

"Mitt Romney is a Mormon, and don't let anybody tell you otherwise," Dr. Jeffress said in a sermon on Sept. 30. "Even though he talks about Jesus as his Lord and savior, he is not a Christian. Mormonism is not Christianity. Mormonism is a cult."
Lest we forget a little cult that was kicking it in the early A.C.E. claiming this cat Jesus was hot for the spot of savior and fit all the indications that he was the Neo of that time. Lest we forget (or perhaps learn) that this little cult was one amongst hundreds, and through charisma or chance, pushed up and through and only hundreds of years later became an imperialistic, sadistic juggernaut capable of the self-labeling of "religion" and garnering the distinction of being able to put down other "cults."

As the "pot" and the "kettle" thing goes, I attacked this back in February on All Things Democrat:
The Christians are pissed at the Mormons because the Christians had a perfectly good religious tradition, canonical texts, and established doctrine solidly in place, about 2000 years in the making. And then some prophet shows up. You got new texts, new rules, new ideas, and the Mormon faith, all shiny and new, is just a tainted, bastardized add-on of an already-lovely religion.

Now wait, that sounds familiar.

Let me switch some stuff up here and - wow, only 4 words - go!

The Jews are pissed at the Christians because the Jews had a perfectly good religious tradition, canonical texts, and established doctrine solidly in place, about 2000 years in the making. And then some prophet shows up. You got new texts, new rules, new ideas, and the Christian faith, all shiny and new, is just a tainted, bastardized add-on of an already-lovely religion.

Mommmm! Joseph Smith won’t stop copying me!
Personally, I've had enough of the sanctimonious bullshit; I've had enough of the walls leaders build in the name of unity.

You want cult? I find I always get a fresh perspective from the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster:
Christians believe that a cosmic Jewish zombie can make you live forever if you symbolically eat his flesh and telepathically tell him that you accept him as your master, so he can remove an evil force from your soul that is present in humanity because a rib-woman was convinced by a talking snake to eat an apple of discernment from a magical tree.
I was just about to say that.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Notes on the Florida FOX Republican Debate

Repub Debate

Yesterday evening, I watched the Republican debate on FOX. For those of you keeping up with the debates, there is little worse than watching a Republican debate, other than watching a Republican debate that is book-ended and punctuated by the neocon myrmidons that inhabit that Death Star of networks. Here, some observations:
  • I would just like to give a shoutout to Sam Brownback who is no longer in the running, and John McCain's ever-growing neck waddle, which is
    troublingly, visibly waving back.

  • Où est le bouffant? Mitt Romney was shooting for the scruffy pseudo-emo look for the kids tonight, a little less product in his hair, which led to a bobbing, distracting Grease curl bouncing on his forehead that was fixed about five minutes in. Classy.

  • And Thompson's out of the gate, and Romney's left of Kennedy - ZING! and he says Kennedy's fat - Double ZING! - and, um, um, um... Stop looking at your paper and they might take you seriously.

  • This is the space where back-patting and ball-kicking met at the middle of a cross-tinkle between McCain, Giuliani, Romney, and Thompson. It was typical and unsurprising: the material was not new, but the knife reach became a little longer. 73 days until the first primary.

  • This is how FOX rolls: Allow Ron Paul to speak, but always bait him with a question that makes him an enemy of the audience. In this instance, gay marriage. Ron is right; all social institutions should be protected. The audience's reactions to him show they have become a single, collective fool, like the Borg, but without intelligence or technology.

  • Carl Carson baited Ron Paul in the gay marriage question and immediately after questioned Romney, calling Mitt a "top tier" candidate, directly implying most of those on stage are not in a tone that suggests they were lucky to be invited. They know this; you don't have to be a total douche about it.

  • Giuliani: "Judicial activism!" Why is it when a judge makes a ruling, effectively interpreting a law like he or she is supposed to do, if that ruling goes against Republican talking points or "conservative Christian values" (you know: killing balls of cells is wrong, killing criminals is justice), it is rampant activism, but a major impetus behind electing a Republican is to appoint conservative Supreme Court Justices so they can overturn the well-established ruling behind Roe vs. Wade?

  • Oh, hey guys, Huckabee's here. I didn't even see him.

  • Note to the set designer: the slow-fade blue/red Christmas lights in the background were not clever; they were distracting.

  • Tancredo talks about the spectrum of conservatives, how they end up floating to the left, and how no one's talking about it. Well spoken.

  • Hunter says that Democratic presidents are weak, but Reagan was strong. Reagan dug in and saved the people of El Salvador, who are now side by side with us in Iraq! Woohoo Reagan. Wait, how many? 300? Seriously? (Seriously; that's not a movie reference) "She's short and skinny, but she's strong. Her first baby come out sideways. She didn't scream or nothing." (That's a movie reference.)

  • Ron Paul makes a valid statement: No one is happy with the health care system except the HMOs - no one backs him.

  • Romney: I don't want the folks who cleaned up after Katrina handling health care. Holy damn, that's smacking your huevos against the government's cheek.

  • Huckabee: "And I just want to remind everybody when all the old hippies find out that they get free drugs, just wait until what that's going to cost out there." Dang dirty hippies ruined America once, and they'll do it again. Hrrumph.

  • Tancredo: "You know, (filmmaker) Michael Moore went to Cuba not too long ago, and wrote this documentary about the greatness of the system, how wonderful it was to be in Cuba and have a socialized medical system." Tom, if you're going to jump on the "Michael Moore's da devil!" bandwagon, at least watch the fucking movie. Unfortunately, you sounded completely rational to the audience because they got their information spoon-fed from FOX just like you did. Ignorance is not just bliss, but a cornerstone of the Republican party.

  • Hey everybody, let's talk smack about Hillary and how much we hate the Clintons! Yay! Republican autoerotica at its best: We know you don't like Hillary and no one in the Republican audience needs further reason not to vote for her, but in an audience where McCain's "I respect her" comment gets answered by lower viewer approval, the wine-swilling masses must be appeased by feeding the Christians to the lions.

  • Romney says Hillary has not exhibited overt business management skills. This is obviously different from our current president who entered office having exhibited multiple examples that he could not successfully run a business.

  • McCain was "tied up" during Woodstock. Heh, heh. I see what he did there. Might have been a little more credible if he didn't smirk and wait for the - wait, what? Really? A standing ovation?

  • Brit Hume valiantly defends our POTUS while interrupting candidates: "He never said privatization," followed by the vapors, fanning, fainting, and a loosening of the girdle.

  • Huckabee: Social Security is an important issue, and a fair amount of joking is appropriate during a debate, but try not to joke about "taking them out" when discussing the elderly; joking about killing old people is never funny. Unless it's a clown killing old people. Then hilarity ensues.

  • Hey, McCain, what about a new cold war? McCain: Looked into his eyes and saw three letters: K-G-B. So you'd be in favor of a fresh start, then.

  • I said this last time: Rudy Giuliani is a jerk. He consistently makes underhanded comments about the other candidates, especially the "second tiers." Allowing those comments (or openly disrespectful laughter) to get air time by leaving his mic open is stupid and validates his asshattery. Stop it.

  • I did like Ron Paul's characterization of how our president "prances" all over the world with the military. Very cute.

  • Thompson: "If a man can do all that and be lazy, I recommend that to everybody. And the most important part is I’m a proud father of five and two of them are under four." Translation: "I work hard and so does my pecker. Whassup? You want some?"

  • Post 1: Hannity had such a cute wave on a 3-shot near the beginning of the spin room. How sweet.

  • Post 2: Ron Paul won the "Who won the debate" text poll. He does every time. Get over it, Sean Hannity, and stop calling your poll invalid simply because you don't like the results.

  • Post 3: I do believe I could've popped every person in Frank Luntz's focus group room right in the nose; I heard a lot of ignorance. Actually, that's all I heard. But there was one guy:

    FOX Focus Group Asshat

    Aside from looking like Robert De Niro's homeless, fat cousin, the man just pissed arrogance, one of those guys that you can't even talk to because he already knows all the answers and all the issues and if you think you do, you're wrong because he's read more and seen more, he understands more and has been following politics longer than you. But really he spends his time blogging and eating Cheetos in three-day-old underwear (and nothing else) in his mother's basement, occasionally masturbating to Sailor Moon and collapsing in tears in the dark. Everyone within fifteen feet of him last night had the unavoidable urge to binge drink until bar close.

Overall, there was some ostentatious language, but no real surprises. Hillary bashing was particularly troubling, but not out of character for these folks. Aside from Ron Paul and except for the fact that none of these guys will win the presidency over a Democrat in 12 1/2 months, every one of them would be calmly comfortable taking over an administration that will have probably just started a war with Iran.