Friday, September 04, 2009

Tricky - Dear God

Just caught Tricky's cover of XTC's Dear God. Thought it appropriate for today's mood.

If you are unaware of Tricky, well, here's some more. Poems:

Thursday, September 03, 2009

A Practical Video on Why We Need Not-for-Profit Health Care

Shamelessly stolen from Liberality who shamelessly stole it from Walled-In Pond. I suggest Republicans take a careful look at a logical explanation and reevaluate their ignorance gap.

Walmart and Rape Vans

I thought I'd tie in a bonus Van Mural today:

Dirty Git R Done Van

...which isn't in any way a mural, but black spray paint. But recall that this whole thing did begin with a focus on rape vans, and this is certainly one.

But please notice in the lower right that this image belongs to the site I just discovered: People of Walmart. Yes, it is a photoblog of people who shop at Walmart. And as you' expect, it is both entertaining and sad at times. But mostly funny. A worthy distraction if ever there was one.

UPDATE: I love the internets. One of the images on the blog was of the back of a jean jacket that had a YouTube page address painted on it that led me to this video. It is 30 seconds that you will never get back.

On Race and Republicans and YouTube: Jenkins and Steele

Over at I found this little gem:
TOPEKA, Kan. — A freshman Republican congresswoman apologized today for telling a gathering in her district that the GOP was still searching for a "great white hope" to stop President Barack Obama's political agenda.

Rep. Lynn Jenkins used the phrase during an Aug. 19 forum as she discussed the Republican Party's future and tried to reassure members that the GOP has promising young leaders.
Oh, shit man. Olbermann can toss some commentary on this mess better than I:

And if you don't yet believe this freshman representative is an ignorant automaton towing the party line, check out this bit where she berates a single mother and her child because she (like so many other Republicans) cannot engage in dialogue when faced with how the reality of their rhetoric is harming real people and retreats into a "You're not making sense" posture.

And this brings us to Michael Steele, who also berated an audience member concerning health care. This young man talked of his mother who died of cancer because she couldn't afford her chemo meds. Steele flapped his arms and said that makes great teevee. Watch it:

And that cycles back around to race. Also reported in the above article:
On the Huffington Post, Dave Zirin also notes that Steele’s “effort to connect with young black students got off to a rather cringe-worthy start when right before the billed ’student dialogue’ two dozen white members of area young Republicans arrived to sit in the reserved first two rows of the packed room.”

Between ignoring the issue of the uninsured - even when they're standing right in front of them - and failing miserably, as they always have, at connecting with minorities - even with a minority leading your party - is there any reason to believe Republicans will be much of a threat in 2010? There are many things I'm not thrilled about with the Democratic Party right now, but I still wouldn't trust the Republicans with a potato gun, let alone Congress.

Verizon Sponsors Coal Teat Event

Check this out from the folks over at Think Progress:
On Labor Day, tens of thousands of people will be gathering for the coal-powered “Friends of America Rally” in Holden, WV. The point of the gathering is to rail against the Waxman-Markey clean energy legislation. It will feature right-wing guests such as Sean Hannity and Ted Nugent (who once ranted about killing Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton), and is being pushed by mountaintop-removal mining company Massey Energy. Last week, Massey CEO Don Blankenship even recorded a video inviting people to attend the rally, saying they would learn about how “environmental extremists and corporate America are both trying to destroy your jobs.”

Click that link above and follow it to the action link. This is bullshit. If you use Verizon, make certain you do something. Your money is your voice in this case.

The Green movement has NOTHING to do with employees of the coal industry losing their jobs, nor is it a current threat. The single largest reason why people in the coal industry lose their jobs is the greed and increasing efficiency of the coal companies themselves. To avoid backlash they blame it on the environmental movement and ignorance reigns, especially if you're CEO of Verizon and apparently suckling at the money teat of the coal industry.


Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Van Mural Wednesday: Mayan Techno

It's the Maya! It's a microchip! ...and a monkey ...and a volcano? WTF?

Mayan Techno

Gout Follow-up: Blood Labs and X-Ray

For those of you following the gout story, I spent the weekend icing and living in the boot like it was a break and I'm down from a 9/10 to 1/10 on a pain indicator, though driving a manual (it's my clutch foot) sucks, even in the gimp boot.

It's not gout as gout doesn't just linger for 2 weeks, especially with my low uric acid numbers. So Monday I went in for an x-ray. And nothing's broken. I got back with the doc and they said "If it still hurts on Thursday, give us a call and we'll try to figure it out." WTF?

So quick review and if anyone has insight, I would really appreciate it:

2 weeks ago, during the course of the day on Tuesday, the joint of my big toe - where it meets the foot - went from sore to stiff to throbbing and stabby. It was red and swollen and tender to the touch. Changing foot elevation would send shooting pain through the joint for about 5 seconds. Every step was painful and the throbbing kept me up most of the night. Wednesday and Thursday the pain was at a 9 and I didn't do much moving about. Friday was better, and Saturday was down to about a 2, so I started moving again. Sunday through Tuesday returned me to a 9 on the pain meter. Research on gout was looking iffy as it usually flares and then declines and I'd been way over on water consumption.

I went to the doctor who said gout didn't really last that long and my inflammation wasn't as bad as expected. When I got home, I fished out the gimp boot (immobilization shoe from a previous foot break) and iced the joint and wore the boot whenever I moved. In 24 hours I was down to a 3 in pain and for the past 5 days it has evened out at a 1 or 2.

I still don't have full range of motion and there is still pain when I walk. Stuffing my foot into a regular shoe causes the pain to worsen. Gimp boot makes it better, but not go away. I limp, which is always attractive.

This is probably more than you - or anyone - would want to know, but since we're getting all personal here and it might give further insight, here's my labs:

What - Mine - (normal/good)

Uric - 8.3 - (2 - 8.2)
Cholesterol - 235 - (under 200)
   LDL - 122 - (under 100)
   HDL - 41 - (over 39)
   Ratio - 3 - (0 - 3.6)
Triglycerides - 360 - (under 150)
   SGOT - 91 - (0 - 40)
   SGPT - 168 - (0 - 55)
   Hep test negative
Kidney function normal
Thyroid TSH - 5.82 - (.45 - 4.5)
Sugar - 81 - (under 100)

I've got to lose a couple pounds, eat oatmeal and fish oil, and exercise. And knock down on the drinkin'. The pain in my foot prevents the exercise. Almost certain it's not gout and x-ray is clean.

Any thoughts?

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Obama Engages Youth: Right Freaks Out

On September 8th, 2009, President Barack Obama is going to give a speech directed at students from Pre-K to 6th grade that they will watch during school hours. The White House has released study guides to help teachers lead the kids in discussions afterwards.

And holy shit everyone on the right is going batshit crazy. I've seen online comments about how Barack Obama is more and more like Hitler. I heard a Hannity caller say that this is how the Nazi Youth started - and Hannity shift away but not denounce the caller's sentiment. The caller went on to discuss the president's upcoming speech like they were going to show a snuff film "without consent" and "without supervision."

I think it's an interesting idea and that engaging the youth of America is and has been an important missing piece in every administration ...ever. Kids are confused right now because they're parroting their parents and are up against others parroting their parents. Irish Dancer, at 13, doesn't give a shit about politics except when she asks for clarification because someone said something that sounded stupid ("Colm said Obama is going to turn the country communist." - obviously coming from his idiot parents).

Obama's address is not going to change everything, but it's a step in the right direction. For too long, politics has held the air of "the grownups are talking - go on, git!" But kids should be involved. Now. And what better way to bring them into the circle than for the President of the United States to give a speech just for them, to let them know that they are as much a part of politics and America as everyone else?

[Sidenote: Hannity also asked, while talking about the CIA torture investigations, how Obama would like "a Palin justice department." I just about peed myself while alternately trying not to vomit.]

Monday, August 31, 2009

Minesweeper: The Movie

You know and love it: minesweeper, bastion of the bored. Love it.