Nuggets of Wisdom

Monday, April 30, 2012

This Week In Review (04/30/2012)

This Week In Review (04/30/2012)
House passes CISPA. H.R. 3523, or the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA), passed the House of Representatives with a vote of 248 to 168. If this bill becomes law, it will allow the federal government to request personal data from web hosts, internet service providers, and other companies if it feels it may pertain to a potential cybersecurity risk. Fortunately, before the bill can become law, it must pass the Senate and be signed by the President—who has promised to veto the bill (though don’t let that get your hopes up!). We can still stop this bill while we can. Contact you senator and tell them to vote against this bill. Also sign the ACLU’s petition. We stopped SOPA. We stopped PIPA. And we can stop CISPA.

Newt Gingrich drops out of presidential race. He will officially suspend his campaign Tuesday, and will use his time and effort supporting Mitt Romney. Good riddance. Gingrich was a poor choice for the Republican presidential nomination—though considering the other candidates, that’s not saying much. He is the very exemplar of a corrupt politician, having been fined over $300 thousand for ethics violations and having accepted $1.6 million by Freddie Mac. (And let’s not forget how he divorced his cancer-stricken wife, whom he claimed wasn’t young or pretty enough to be the First Lady!) The race is now between Mitt Romney and Ron Paul—and considering Paul has been racking up delegates in Iowa and Minnesota, he may stand a chance of winning the nomination (though don’t get your hopes up!).

Two innocent men released from Guantanamo after being held without charge or trial for a decade. Identified by their lawyers as Abdul Razakah and Hammad Memet, the two men have resettled in El Salvador. They along with 20 other Uighurs (a Chinese ethnic group part of a separatist movement) had been "captured at the start of the Afghanistan war and shipped to the base in Cuba because officials suspected they had links to al-Qaida. But it turned out they were not terrorists and had merely fled their homeland in search of opportunities and freedom abroad." So let’s recap what we have learned thus far about the former Bush regime: we had an Iraqi defector admit he lied about WMDs, a leaked memo prove that the administration knew that “enhanced interrogation techniques” were war crimes, and now Gitmo has released prisoners who were innocent yet held for 10 years without trial or charges. At what point do we start charging Bush and the other members of his administration as war criminals? At what point do we start holding those in our government accountable?

Labor Department withdraws farm child labor rule. The Department of Labor was considering legislation that would have applied child labor laws to family farms, preventing children under 18 from working in certain areas. Had these regulations gone into effect, they would have inevitably prevented children from helping out on their own family’s farms or from doing 4-H and FFA projects. After the Daily Caller reported on this, the Labor Dept received huge backlash from rural communities, forcing it to withdraw legislation. Good for them. Children have been working on family farms since the very beginning, and many have gained much needed experience from doing so, especially when it came to developing a work ethic. Making sure that the children are safe is the responsibility of the family, not the government. Children already have nannies and big brothers; they do not need a nanny states or Big Brother government!

California police required to watch porn to enforce condom law. Simi Valley, California recently passed a law requiring porn actors to wear condoms. Seems like a reasonable law. Porn actors should be required to wear condoms the same way fast food workers are required to wear hairnets and gloves. What’s not so reasonable is how this law will be enforced. Under the law, porn companies would be required to submit their unedited films to the police department for review. Considering how much porn is released on a daily basis, that means police officers would be spending most of their time watching porn. (But then how will they be able to write speeding tickets, raid houses for drugs, beat up protesters, and everything else they do other than protect citizens from actual crimes such as murder and rape?) Of course, lawmakers have admitted that the insane regulation has other intended purposes: "The primary purpose here is it's a health and safety issue. And secondarily, we don't want them here. This is a family-oriented community, and we don't want them setting up their studios in Simi Valley." Lawmakers creating laws and regulations meant to intentionally hurt businesses? Inconceivable!

Dumbasses of the Week

Runner-Up: Debbie Wasserman Schultz: Debbie seems to be suffering from cognitive dissonance. During an interview on Fox News, after attacking Paul Ryan’s budget, she was asked by host Bret Baier why the Senate Democrats had not proposed a budget, to which she replied that she doesn’t speak for the Senate—even though she’s supposed to as the DNC Chair! She was reminded by Bret Baier that she had declared in an earlier interview that Senate Democrats would propose a budget. (Obama did propose a budget, but it was rejected unanimously by the Senate!) She continued to insist that she couldn’t speak for the Senate because she was only a House democrat. So which is it? Is she the DNC Chair with the authority to speak on behalf of all Democrats, or is she only a House Democrat with no authority to speak on their behalf? She can’t have it both ways!

Third Place: Paul Krugman (New York Times): Krugman may be a Nobel Peace Prize-winning economist, but that doesn’t mean he knows jack squat about economics—and considering this is the same ideologue who suggested that the Fed create a housing bubble to replace the Nasdaq bubble (and no, Krugman fanboys, that quote wasn’t “out-of-context”), that’s a fair assumption to make. Just this week in his New York Times column, he argued that Britain entered a double-dip recession because of austerity measures: “When David Cameron became PM, and announced his austerity plans — buying completely into both the confidence fairy and the invisible bond vigilantes — many were the hosannas, from both sides of the Atlantic. Pundits here urged Obama to “do a Cameron”; Cameron and Osborne were the toast of Very Serious People everywhere. Now Britain is officially in double-dip recession, and has achieved the remarkable feat of doing worse this time around than it did in the 1930s.” But this all implies that the economic problems and the austerity measures proposed to fix them are the same in the US as they are in the UK. They’re not! As Will Cain of The Blaze explains: “you have to look at the total debt, the sum of both government and private debt, which shows the U.K. and U.S. going in opposite directions,” and that “the U.K. has not even applied real austerity measures, for unlike the U.S., the U.K. total debt has risen because of the lack of cuts to private debt.” But then again, can you really expect a Keynesian ideologue who suggested replacing one economic bubble with another to tell the difference between apples and oranges?

Second Place: Barack Obama: Despite his campaign promise not to “use Justice Department resources to try and circumvent state laws about medical marijuana,” President Obama and his administration have continued the failed War on Drugs by prosecuting medical marijuana dispensaries even in states where medical marijuana is legal. When confronted about this during a Rolling Stones interview, Obama claimed that he had no federal power to do anything about it: “What I specifically said was that we were not going to prioritize prosecutions of persons who are using medical marijuana. I never made a commitment that somehow we were going to give carte blanche to large-scale producers and operators of marijuana – and the reason is, because it’s against federal law. I can’t nullify congressional law.” But the truth is that he can nullify the law! Under the Controlled Substance Act, which governs U.S. drug policy, the president has the authority to change the legal status of a drug without Congressional action. He could very well have the status of medical marijuana changed from Schedule I—which classifies it as a drug without legal medical use, thereby making it federally illegal—to Schedule III—which would make it federally legal for medical purposes. But alas, Obama won’t. An elected official breaking his promises? Inconceivable!

First Place: Anders Behring Breivik: So you’re a far-right white nationalist who not only admitted to killing 77 innocent civilians—mostly teenagers at a summer camp, but that you would have killed 150 (and you would have gotten away with it too had it not been for those meddling kids and their stupid dog!). How do you defend yourself in court? Simple. You claim that your victims weren’t really human! During the second week of his trial, Breivik claimed that he felt no remorse for those he killed, especially the teenagers at the Labor Party Camp, as he considered them traitors to his country and race: "I see all multicultural political activists as monsters, as evil monsters who wish to eradicate our people, our ethnic group, our culture and our country.” If that made you throw up a little in your mouth, you better grab a barf bag for what he had to say next. Later he claimed that the charges against him were racist. As the Huffington Post reports: "Breivik said had he been an Islamist terrorist, no one would have questioned his mental state. ‘But because I am a militant nationalist, I am being subjected to grave racism,' he said. 'They are trying to delegitimize everything I stand for.'" So a lily-white Norwegian goes on a killing spree because he feels his country is being taken over by scary brown people, and yet the people charging him with the crime are the racists? Duh, makes sense to me!

Daily Pony: Korra vs Rainbow Dash

Looks like I’m not the only one to see a striking resemblance between Rainbow Dash and the new Avatar.

Art by AvatarWolfman.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Pony Sunday: A Canterlot Wedding (Part 1 and 2)

Welcome to the last Pony recap of Season 2. It’s the moment you all have been waiting for—the wedding of the century! Here are my thoughts on the REAL two-part season finale “A Canterlot Wedding.”

A Canterlot Wedding (Part 1)

Art by *johnjoseco.

• Fluttershy and her choir get to sing for the wedding, just as they did for the Summer Sun Celebration.
• Funny how Rarity didn’t have her fancy couch to faint upon.
• TWILIGHT HAS A BROTHER?! (Dramatic chipmunk!)
• Twilight makes for a good ventriloquist (especially with a sandwich!)
• Love her jealous expression: “Princess Mi Amore Candenza? Who in the hoof is that? *snort*”
• Twilight’s brother Shining Armor is her B.B.B.F.F. (Big Brother Best Friend Forever!)
• "B.B.B.F.F." has to be Twilight’s best song this season. (Actually, it’s her only song this season. But still—) Really conveys her close relationship with her big brother.
• Does P.F.F. (Pony Friend Forever) really make sense? In this universe, most of her friends are ponies.
• Shining Armor is captain of the Royal Guard. (And again, Rarity faints without her fancy couch. Seriously, that would have made for a great gag!)
• Spike hosts the bachelor party. (And thus a thousand fanfics were made!)
• Only fitting for Apple Jack to consul Twilight—considering her relationship with her brother Big Macintosh.
• Rarity: “Royal weddings do bring out the strangest ponies” Pinkie Pie sneezes confetti. (Am I the only one who considers that normal?)
• Shining Armor calls his sister “Twily.”
• Apparently, Twilight isn’t the only one in her family capable of creating force fields.
• Best Mare? As in “Best Man”? Um, is that allowed?
• Princess Cadence was Twilight’s foalsitter—“the greatest foalsitter in all the history of foalsitters!” (Wait, since when do princesses foalsit?)
• “Sunshine, sunshine, ladybugs awake! Clap your hooves and do a little shake!”
• The fight she broke up was over some pony getting her hooves done? Pretty petty argument.
• Twilight shaking her flank at Cadence: priceless.
• “Absolutely!” Pretty obvious from that point start that this Cadence wasn’t the real one.
• Spike playing with the miniature bride and groom: obvious shout-out to the men who watch this show. (Because real men play with toy ponies!)
• The two ponies working in the kitchen with Apple Jack are recolors of one another.
• Apple Jack makes Fluttershy’s “squee” noise.
• Rarity is working in the same room she stayed in during “Sweet and Elite.”
• Colgate and Lyra are Candenza’s bridesmaids.
• Her bridesmaids love their dresses; Cadenza wants them a different color. LOL! With friends like that, who needs enemies?
• Party games? And the Chicken Dance? For a wedding reception? Yeah, I’m with the princess here: “Perfect—if we were celebrating a 6-year-old’s birthday party!”
• Princess Luna: “Rest, my sister. As always, I will guard the night.” (Most. Epic. Moment. Of the episode!)
• And Spike is still playing with the toy pony—er, I mean miniature.
• One of Fluttershy’s birds is a Kukaburoo. (Who sings off-key.)
• Shining Armor’s uniform was his favorite uncle’s.
• The girl’s bridesmaids dresses: enter obvious product placement here!
• Rainbow Dash complains about her dress—even though it’s just like her Gala Dress!
• And Spike is still playing with pony toys!
• And they just noticed that Twilight wasn’t there? Why would they start the rehearsal without her?
• Really hate to be Twilight right about now. (Being snubbed by her brother and her friends is one thing, but by Princess Celestia, ouch!)
• Epic reprise.
• Epic cliff hanger, too!

A Canterlot Wedding (Part 2)

Art by *johnjoseco.

• Is it me, or does the evil Cadence seem like a Bond villain?
• Yeah, Twilight: shooting a magical beam onto a reflective surface is not the brightest idea.
• And the real Cadence proves herself with their old handshake.
• Nice contrast in the “This Day” Aria between the real and fake Candence. Reminds me of a song from a Disney movie. Really shows how much effort is put into the show.
• Cadence taking flight = Epic! (Up, up, and away!)
• Cutie Mark Flower Girls!
• Zombie bridesmaids! (Wait, wasn’t Lyra at the wedding? Oh well. MLP isn’t exactly known for continuity!)
• And nobody realizes Shining Armor’s glazed-over look?
• Where did Cadence get the bouquet?
• Apparently wedding bouquets are like catnip. (Let’s just hope those three weren’t hurt from that fall.
• Changelings feed off of love. Monsters that feed off positive energy rather than negative energy? How original.
• Really love Queen Chrysalis’s design. She reminds me of a Disney villain like Maleficent. (Wow, many things in this episode reminds me of Disney. Just goes to show how much effort was put into it!)
• Princess Celestia facing off Queen Chrysalis = Epic! (Almost like Obi Wan facing off Darth Vader!)
• Apparently unicorn horns can burn out!
• Twilight squashed that Changeling like a bug! (Then again, it is a bug.)
• Ponies beating up ponies! To quote South Park, the battle between the Mane 6 and changelings was “a battle 10 times bigger than the battle of the Lord of the Rings: Two Towers.”
• And the fake Fluttershys just walk past the real one.
• Pinkie Pie is merely amused at how the changelings change.
• And she goes Rambo with Twilight Sparkle!
• Pinkie Pie brings out the Party Cannon! Aw Yeah! S*** just got real!
• LOL! at Celestia’s expression when she woke up!
• Anyone else looking forward to the fan art of Celestia and the other ponies trapped in cocoons and mutating into changelings? Or is that just me?
• The changelings corner Doctor Whooves and Carrot Top in an alley.
• Epic reprise of “This Day” by Queen Chrysalis. (Funny how I keep using the word “Epic.” I seriously need a thesaurus!)
• And the spell over Shining Armor is broken by the power of love.
• Shining Armor and Princess Cadence combine their powers to defeat the Queen—with the POWER OF LOVE!
You've got to believe, in the Power of Love. You've got to believe, in the Power of Love. It gives meaning to each moment, it's what our hearts are all made of. You've got to believe, in the Power of Love! In The Power of Love! In the Power of Love! (Anyone else reminded of this song? Kudos to anyone who knows the reference.)
• Looks like Queen Chrysalis is blasting off again!
• For once, we have a villain not defeated with the Elements of Harmony. (Good change of pace.)
• Looks like Princess Cadence loves dancing with Pinkie Pie’s music.
• And we get to see Twilight’s parents—of course!
• Cutie Mark Crusader flower girls—again!
• Unicorns wear their rings on their horns. But where do the other ponies wear them? They don’t have fingers.
• Sonic Rainboom!
• Where the heck was Luna during all of this?! She obviously arrived because it was dusk, being the alicorn of the moon and all, but really? Was she really sleeping through the changeling invasion?!
• Pinkie Pie goes “squee!”
• DJ PON-3! (And her eyes are red!)
• Of all the songs, the last one was pretty “meh!”
• Spike/Sweetie Belle, Rainbow Dash/Soarin’, and Rarity/Fancypants are officially canon!
• Rarity catches the bouquet! (Would have been interesting if Spike caught the garter!)
• “Wait for what I have planned for the bachelor party!” (Um, anyone else creeped out by that?)

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Daily Pony: Tryxalis

Fun Fact: Kathleen Barr, who did the voice of Trixie, also did the voice of Queen Chrysalis.

If you think about it, the resemblance is quite canny—or rather, uncanny.

Art by Tzelly-El.

Friday, April 27, 2012

WTF Friday: Hot Problems

It’s Fri-day, Fri-day, Fri-day! And you know what that means? Yet another installment of WTF Friday!

And speaking of Rebecca Black, today’s installment is on a new song that’s so bad it makes Rebecca Black’s “Friday” sound good.

How bad is it? The video has been up for two weeks and has received over 9 million views with over 400 thousand dislikes. The internent unanimously agrees this is bad.

But don’t take my word for it. Listen for yourself:

Where do I even begin?

I can love and tolerate the electronic beat. It sounds like one of those beats you hear programmed on cheap electric pianos—and I’m talking about the cheap ones you find in dollar store bargain bins! But I can tolerate it, being a fan of electronica music, especially Dubstep.

What I cannot tolerate is the singing. Can you even call it singing? They’re not even trying! The singer of The Care Bears Movie opening had more enthusiasm than these two.

I would compare the singing to nails on a chalkboard, but not only has that simile been grossly-overused, but it wouldn’t even compare. This is worse. Far worse! So worse that I can’t even think of a proper simile to convey how bad it is.

And then there are the lyrics: laziest—writing—ever! Just read the chorus:
Hot girls we have problems too.
We’re just like you, except we’re hot.
The whole world needs to open their eyes
And realize we’re not perfect.
And sometime we lie.
To steal a joke from the Nostalgia Critic, it’s like if Homer Simpson, Garfield, Snoopy, and Al Bundy all procrastinated until the last minute and finally came up with these lyrics.

And finally, we have the subject. I’m sorry, but Britney Spears already wrote a song fifteen years ago about how popular girls have it tough: "Lucky." Even if such a song wasn't already done—better!—who cares? Who gives a flying frito how hot girls feel? Yes, they have problems too. We all do. The fact they have to write a song about that just makes them more conceited.

Now if you excuse me, I have to listen to something else to repress this song and make me forget it ever existed. And I know the perfect one:

Daily Pony: The Magic Of Love

He-he-he! Shining Armor is thinking naughty thoughts.

Art by CSImadmax

Thursday, April 26, 2012

CISPA Passes House! (Take Action!)

The House of Representatives recently passed H.R. 3523, or the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA), with a vote of 248 to 168. If this bill becomes law, it will pretty much end internet privacy as we know it. The federal government will have unprecedented power to request your personal information from web hosts, internet service providers, and other companies if they feel it may pertain to a potential cybersecurity risk.

The good news is that this bill is still far from being made into law. It still has to pass the Senate and be signed by President Obama—who has stated that he will veto the bill. (Though don’t let that promise get your hopes up!)

The time to act is now!

The ACLU has an on-line petition. Sign it!

And contact your state senator, either by e-mail or phone, and demand that they refuse to sign this bill. Click here to find their contact information!

In the words of Abraham Lincoln, “All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.”

Mitt Romney in 2007: Porn Filter on Computers

Looks like "Frothy Mix" Santorum may have stolen his "War on Porn" idea from Mittens:

"I wanna make sure that every new computer sold in this country after I'm president has installed on it a filter to block all pornography and that parents can click that filter to make sure their kids don't see that kinda stuff coming in on their computer."
So under Mittens’ regime, all computers would be required by law to filter out Twilight Sparkle stocking art porn. Well, okay, computers would have just been required to carry a chip that would allow parents to block porn if they wanted to, sort of like how the V-chip works in television sets—you know, the same V-Chip nobody uses!

Here’s an idea, Mittens: if parents really don’t want their children looking at internet porn, they can always monitor them while they’re on the internet, or they can install porn-blocking software on their computer. No need to force every computer company to install chips into their systems—especially when many people aren’t going to use it anyway

Remember folks, free-market capitalism dictates that the government should refrain from intervening in the market—unless it’s to push our social conservative agenda, then we need more burdensome regulations. We need to protect the children! You do care about the children?

Oh please! Everyone’s always on about the children. I’ve already tried leaving them alive, but all they do is grow up under my rule or dedicate their pathetic lives to revenge—usually both. Really, killing them is a kindness. I could retract that kindness if you wish, but then who’s the villan? – Frieza, DBZ Abridged

Conan O’Brien And Andy Richter Bid Gingrich Farewell

Somehow I feel this farewell montage was too good for sleezeball Gingrich. Though Conan posing as Gingrich’s wife was pretty hilarious—albeit in a creepy way. (Also loved how they mentioned she was his “third loving wife”—you know, the one not stricken with cancer, the one young and pretty enough to be the First Lady!)

Daily Pony: The Royal Duck Faces

The Royal Duck Faces by *johnjoseco on deviantART

Careful, girls! Don’t press your faces too close together. That’s where fat girls come from!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Gingrich Drops Out

Doo, doo, doo—another one bites the dust.
Doo, doo, doo—another one bites the dust.

Newt Gingrich will suspend his presidential campaign next Tuesday.

And good riddance to the ethics-violating, bribe-taking, separation-of-powers-violating, draft-dodging, wife-with-cancer-divorcing Neocon! Now the race is between Romney and Paul.

Speaking of Paul, he’s won the majority of delegates in Iowa and Minnesota.
I wouldn’t get my hopes up though. As much as I want Paul to win, the reality is that Romney is going to win the Republican nomination, which means Obama will win the presidential election.

Unions To Walker: Off With His Head!

Rev. T. Ray McJunkins of Springfield's Union Baptist Church and USAction's William McNary engaged in violent rhetoric to rile up a union crowd of thousands just yards away from an Illinois appearance by Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker. McNary challenged Walker to "knuckle up" while McJunkins said they're going to "cut off his head," likening Walker to Goliath.
Nothing "uncivil" about a union thug wanting an elected official’s head on a platter. Nope. Not at all. It’s only “violent rhetoric” when a right-winger says something like that.

Daily Pony: My Little Yugioh GX

A pony parody of Yu-Gi-Oh! GX Abridged. (If you don’t know what that is, shame on you! It’s the next best thing to Yu-Gi-Oh! Abridged—and shame on you if you don’t know what that is either!)

Scootaloo as Jaden Yuki is flawless! (Absolutely flawless!)

The user who created this spoof StarswordIsCool has also done pony parodies of Yu-Gi-Oh! Abridged, Naruto Abridged, and None Piece. (And if you don’t know what any of those are, shame, shame, shame!)

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Bill Maher vs. Common Sense

Bill Maher has declared that the Republican Party is at war with common sense. “I think Republicans live in a world now where whatever a liberal says, no matter how sensible, is automatically evil, wrong, and needs to be fought with the fervor of a starving raccoon on crystal meth,” he said during a recent New Rules segment on his HBO show Real Time.

You know what’s the worst part about Bill Maher?

It’s not that he bashes Republicans. They have been wrong on many issues (Patriot Act, WMDs, waterboarding, oil subsidies) and Maher is perfectly justified in bashing them because of it—though to him, Republicans are always wrong and liberals like himself are always right. And to be perfectly honest, that’s not the worst part about him either. We all think we’re right about something, especially when it comes to politics, so why should we expect anything different from a liberal snob like Maher?

The problem isn’t that he believes he’s right and everyone else is wrong. The problem is when he believes he is right when he clearly isn’t! As with other self-appointed “rationalists,” Maher considers himself to be an exemplar of logic, reason, and evidence, even though he believes many things which are illogical, irrational, and without evidence. So for Maher to claim to advocate rationality while criticizing others for their irrationality, not only is it hypocritical of him, but also a disgrace to the very concept of rationality. It’s like someone who believes 2+2=5 claiming to advocate mathematics while criticizing others for their poor math skills.

With that said, here are ten ways Bill Maher is at war with common sense:

10. Race-Baiting. As with other libtarded moonbats, Maher loves to paint the Republican Party—the same party that ended slavery and segregation—as racist, but sometimes he performs serious mental gymnastics in order to race-bait them. For instance, following an altercation on an airplane between Mitt Romney and LMFAO’s Sky Blu (an altercation where Sky Blu, having swung his fists at Romney, was clearly the aggressor), Maher suggested that the incident occurred because “Mormons traditionally have not had a great relation with the black people.” That’s right: Romney “attacked” Sky Blu, not because the rapper annoyed him by having his seat back when it was supposed to be up, but because the rapper was black and he was Mormon—and as we all know, the Mormon Church has historically hated black people. To quote the comedian Bill Engvall, “Not even Evel Knievel could have made that leap!” Had the rapper been a white guy like Eminem, Maher wouldn’t have made such a ridiculous assumption; yet because the rapper was black, Maher assumes he was the victim of racism. (Though has Maher even seen Sky Blu? The guy looks whiter than a slice of white bread drenched in whole milk!)

9. Violent Rhetoric. Following the shooting of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords by crazed gunman Jared Lee Loughner, former Alaska governor Sarah Palin removed from her website a map with crosshairs over Democratic districts—one of which was Giffords'. This allowed many libtarded moonbats like Maher to accuse her of instigating the shooting with her “violent rhetoric.” As Maher claimed, “the go to rhetoric for [the right-wing] is 'wouldn't it be fun to kill the people we disagree with.'” Never mind, of course, that Loughner was inconsistent in his political views (being a fan of both Mein Kampf AND the Communist Manifesto). Never mind that he was a registered Independent who didn't vote in the 2010 election. Never mind that he never watched the news or listened to talk radio (so how could he be exposed to "violent rhetoric"?). Never mind that Arizona authorities admit violent rhetoric had nothing to do with the shooting. And never mind that few Americans blame violent rhetoric for the shooting. Obviously, Palin caused the shooting with her map (which looks similar to one used by Democrats, only with bulls-eyes instead of targets). And of course, Maher is one to preach about civility. This is the same man who called Sarah Palin a "cunt" and "dumb twat," called the Tea Party movement a cult, wished the Pentagon shooter had killed Glenn Beck, accused President Obama of not acting like a "real black man," and suggested that Democrats treat Republicans like Tiger Woods wanted to treat his mistress. (Oh, and he also claimed that liberals aren't as mean as conservatives!)

8. Anti-Homeschooling. I’m no fan of Rick “Frothy Mix” Santorum, but when Maher accused him of keeping his children ignorant by homeschooling them, I took great offense to that, having been homeschooled myself. Using Santroum’s religion against him, Maher argued that “it's no coincidence that the type of tree which god forbade Adam and Eve eating from was the Tree of Knowledge. Rick Santorum homeschools his children because he does not want them eating that f--king apple. He wants them locked up in the Christian madrassa that is the family living room not out in public where they could be infected by the virus of reason.” What Maher fails to realize is that home-schooled children, far from being stupid, statistically outperform their public-schooled peers. For instance, the 2009 Homeschool Progress Report found that home-schooled students scored higher that the norm on standardized tests and exceeded the national average in subjects like language arts, math, and social studies. But hey, why trust statistics when you can trust Maher’s wit? Perhaps we should go one step further and ban homeschooling like they did in Brazil—which I hear has excellent education!

7. PETA. Reasonable minds can disagree whether or not killing animals is immoral (though “pro-death” Bill seems to believe killing human beings through the death penalty, euthanasia, and abortion is perfectly moral). But even if Maher believed animals deserve the same rights as human beings, why would he associate himself with PETA—the Westboro Baptist Church of animal rights? Let’s ignore that the organization hypes non-issues such as Obama swatting a fly or Super Mario having a raccoon-suit power up. Let’s ignore that their leader Ingrid Newkirk, being one card short of a full deck, requested in her will that her corpse be cooked in a human barbeque, her skin made into leather purses, her feet made into umbrella stands, and her liver shipped to France to protest liver pate. PETA isn’t just insane. It’s criminally insane! PETA opposes animal testing—the very cornerstone of modern medicine (though Maher doesn’t care for modern medicine, let alone animal testing). And despite decrying the euthanasia of animals in shelters, the organization has euthanized more animals that it has saved. But perhaps their worst offense was granting over $45 thousand to eco-terrorist Rodney Coronado, the convicted arsonist responsible for the 1992 arson attack on Michigan State University research facilities. Supporting animal welfare is a noble cause, but when your organization supports direct action (i.e.: terrorism) to pursue their goals, you might want to reconsider sitting on their board, especially if you value “common sense.”

6. SOPA. When Congress was considering the Stop Online Piracy Act, a bill that would have allowed the federal government to shut down websites that contain—or even link to—copyrighted material, it was no shock that it was largely supported by the entertainment industry and by entertainers like Bill Maher (though that’s only if you consider Maher “entertaining”). Maher supported the bill (which he admitted he had not read) because his documentary Religulous had allegedly lost profit due to internet piracy— which he called “Caucasian looting” (which implies that most other “looting” is done by “non-Caucasians”). He then argued that “just because you’re sitting at your computer in your pajama bottoms doesn’t mean you’re not stealing.” But contrary to popular misconception, internet piracy isn’t really stealing as it involves intellectual property rather than physical property. If someone shoplifts a DVD from a store, the store loses a DVD; but if someone downloads a movie, neither the store nor the movie company loses the movie. They may have lost potential profit from DVD sales, but they did not lose anything else. Downloading a movie or song is “stealing” the same way making a photocopy of a book page is “stealing.” The ironic part is that Maher supports the Occupy Wall Street movement, which protects “the 99%” against the “1%”; but by supporting SOPA, he is supporting a bill that protects profit for the entertainment industry (the 1%) while hurting everyone else (the 99%).

5. Death Penalty. While most other libtarded moonbats support abortion and euthanasia but oppose the death penalty, Maher is consistently “pro-death” in that he supports all three. “I think capital punishment works great," he once said. “Every killer you kill never kills again.” Maher assumes the death penalty deters violent crime. It does not! States that have the death penalty actually have the highest homicide rates. And aside from failing to deter homicide, the death penalty actually costs more than life imprisonment. California alone spent $4 billion executing 13 death row inmates over the past 33 years—that's $303 million for each inmate, $184 million more per year than just sentencing them to life without parole! (And 78 death row inmates have died while on death row, making their death penalties pointless.) But hey, at least those killers never kill again, right Bill?

4. Gun Control. Despite being “pro-death,” Maher is anti-gun. He supports gun control and opposes gun rights and anyone who supports them, especially the NRA, which he has called the “Assassin’s Lobby.” He has blamed lack of gun control for both the Gabrielle Giffords shooting and the murder of Trayvon Martin—claiming in regards to the latter that “this is what happens in America when one political party, in this case, the Democrats, completely rolls over on an issue, in this case, gun control.” Maher assumes that stricter gun laws would prevent violent crime. But just as the death penalty does not deter murder, gun control does not prevent violent crime, as cities with the strictest gun laws like Chicago and Washington D.C. also have the highest violent crime rates. And while many argue that gun-free zones would have prevented the school shootings at Columbine and Virginia Tech, the irony is that both schools already had gun-free zones in place at the time of the shootings. Stricter gun laws never make us safer; they only make us less safe and less free. So as Benjamin Franklin once said, those that trade liberty for security truly receive neither.

3. 9/11. Maher may speak out against the irrationality of 9/11 conspiracy theories (even enduring heckles and boos from truthers in his audience), but that doesn’t make him completely rational about 9/11. On his former show Politically Incorrect, weeks after the terrorist attacks, one of his guests, Dinesh D'Souza, disputed Bush's claim that the terrorists were cowards, arguing that they were warriors instead. Maher agreed, replying, “We have been the cowards lobbing cruise missiles from 2,000 miles away. That's cowardly. Staying in the airplane when it hits the building, say what you want about it, it's not cowardly.” So let me get this straight: the brave men and women fighting the radicals overseas are cowardly, but those same radicals flying planes into the Twin Towers and Pentagon, killing nearly three thousand innocent Americans, aren't? Makes sense to me! The good news is that Maher received so much backlash for those comments that his show was cancelled; the bad news is that he received his new show on HBO!

2. Alternative Medicine. While most people trust their health with modern medicine, Bill Maher does not. This is mostly due to his paranoid delusion that the pharmaceutical industry has conspired with the government to keep people sick in order to create profit; and as such, they have outlawed alternative treatments to prevent competition. On one Overtime segment, he claimed that practicing alternative medicine in America is illegal. (Not only is alternative medicine legal, but many states require insurance to cover it!) This led to a discussion about alternative cancer treatments such as Laetrile: “I don’t know whether Laetrile works. I know the shit we've tried for the last 50 years doesn't. I know they've made no progress as far as cancer in this country.” First of all, numerous scientific studies have proven that Laetrile doesn’t work; and second, the survival rate for cancer has significantly increased over the last 50 years—so it’s safe to say we’ve made progress. The saddest part is that, for his documentary Religulous, Maher won the 2009 Richard Dawkins Award, which is conferred to individuals whose works “advocate increased scientific knowledge.” As one medical blogger wrote: “That's like Jenny McCarthy getting an award for public health.”

1. Anti-Vaccination. Considering his disdain for modern medicine, it should come as no surprise that Maher also hates vaccinations. He argues that, unlike evolution or global warming, vaccination is not a settled science. So to him, man-made global warming is a settled science—despite having no scientific consensus; but vaccination isn’t—despite having universal scientific consensus. His rejection of vaccination stems from his rejection of Pasteur’s germ theory (also a settled science), which he claims Pasteur recanted on his death bed. But even if Pasteur recanted his theory (which he didn’t), that would not prove it false, as the scientific method has verified it time and again. He argues that flu shots contain mercury (even though the mercury in them is less toxic than the mercury which can be obtained by eating fish), and that taking them “more than five years in a row” makes one ten times more likely to get Alzheimer’s disease. What evidence does Maher have to support this? None, of course! The irony is that believing in something without evidence is faith—something that Maher has railed against, especially when it comes to religion. But apparently, he will make an exception for faith in believing vaccines are poison.

In conclusion, Maher considers himself to be a free-thinking skeptic and rationalist, yet believes vaccines are poison, modern medicine makes people sicker, the 9/11 terrorists were brave, gun control prevents violent crime, capital punishment deters murder, the federal government needs to control the internet to prevent entertainment industry profits, terrorism in defense of animal rights is justified, homeschooling makes children stupid, Sarah Palin was responsible for the Gabrielle Giffords shooting, and Mitt Romney “assaulted” a rapper for being black. If anything, Maher is the one at war with common sense.

Daily Pony: Discord Meets Queen Chrysalis

Looks like I have a new favorite shipping: Discord/Queen Chrysalis. Those two were made for each other—AND CHAOS!

Art by A Dash Of Chaos.

Monday, April 23, 2012

This Week In Review (04/22/2012)

This Week In Review (04/22/2012)

Senate rejects Buffett Rule. The Senate voted 51-45 on the tax increase, failing to receive the 60 votes needed to move it to the House. The Buffett Rule, named after billionaire Warren Buffett, who claims to pay a lower tax rate than his secretary (a story proven to be bogus), would have imposed a 30 percent minimum effective tax rate on millionaires. Let’s ignore the fact that this tax would have targeted the capital gains of the highest income earners, which WSJ columnist Robert Frank claims is “the most unstable income source of the most unstable income group in America.” While this tax sounds good on paper, in reality, the tax would have only raised $47 billion in ten years—barely enough to dent the $1.5 trillion deficit, let alone the $15 trillion debt. But even if the IRS were to confiscate all of the wealth from the country’s 400 billionaires, it would still be short $300 billion of paying off the deficit. Raising taxes would accomplish jack squat in fixing the deficit, jumpstarting the economy, or even establishing “fairness.” The problem isn’t taxes; it’s the spending, stupid!

Connecticut Senate approves bill allowing citizens to videotape police. Introduced by Senator Eric Coleman (D), Senate Bill 245 passed with a 29-16 vote. The bill would allow law enforcement to be sued if they arrest citizens for recording them in public. This is the first bill of its kind in this country—and a much needed one at that! For too long, police have been arresting citizens for doing nothing more than videotaping them. One man even faced jail time of 75 years! Police claim they are simply protecting their privacy and preventing interference with their duty, but in many cases, they have been merely covering up evidence of their misbehavior. The police are our public servants. They work for us, and they are accountable to us. And we need to hold them accountable, and that means videotaping them if they abuse their power.

Obama Administration to continue failed Drug War policies. President Barack Obama released his 2012 Drug Control Strategy report which he claims will “chart a new course in our efforts to reduce illicit drug use and its consequences in the United States”—and by “chart a new course,” he means more of the same failed drug policies such as workplace drug testing, nationwide zero tolerance laws, and school anti-drug campaigns. Hey, remember when Obama campaigned in favor of medical marijuana and promised that he wasn’t “going to be using Justice Department resources to try to circumvent state laws”? Funny how he did a complete 180 with his administration cracking down on California medical marijuana dispensaries. A politician saying one things and doing another? Shocking! (Why do libtarded moonbats love this guy again?)

CIA refuses to release history of the Bay of Pigs. Upon receiving a FOIA lawsuit from the National Security Archive, the CIA has released the first three volumes of a five volume history of the Bay of Pigs incident but has refused to release the fifth volume, claiming that the information within it “could cause scholars, journalists, and others interested in the subject at hand to reach an erroneous or distorted view of the Agency’s role…or otherwise lead to public confusion.” And how would it cause such confusion? Is it because the missing volume contains “inaccurate or incomplete information” as the CIA claims, or is there a chance that it contains information that may contradict the official government narrative behind the Bay of Pigs incident? I don’t know and I won’t pretend to know. I’m not a tin-foil hat wearing conspiracy theorist. But I do believe the public have a right to know about the operations of its own government provided it doesn’t risk national security. I can understand the government withholding information about a recent military operation, but one that happened 50 years ago? How much can you trust a government that refuses to be transparent on a 50-year-old incident? Makes you feel like a sucker for believing Obama when he promised “a new era of open government.” (Seriously, why do libtarded moonbats love this guy again?)

The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms has replaced the American Bill of Rights as the constitutional document most emulated by other nations. A study to be published in the New York University Law Review this June reveals that the Canadian Charter has helped influence the constitutions of other countries while the U.S. Bill of Rights has declined internationally as such an exemplar. How sad is it that a 30-year-old document has usurped the original document to guarantee individual rights to its citizens as a role model for representative government? This is only to be expected when our current government has grossly ignored its own Constitution by passing blatantly unconstitutional legislation (warrantless wiretaps, “enhanced interrogation techniques,” indefinite detention, virtual strip searches). By violating basic Constitutional rights, our government makes our Constitution irrelevant not only to itself, but to the rest of the world.

Catholic League threatens boycott of Daily Show. On The Daily Show April 16, host Jon Stewart mocked how Fox News hyped the War on Christmas while dismissing the War on Women. “What can women do to generate the same sense of outrage from Fox?" Stewart asked. "Maybe women could protect their reproductive organs from unwanted medical intrusions with vagina mangers." He then cut to an image of a nude woman with a nativity scene ornament between her legs. Catholic League president Bill Donahue called the joke an “unprecedented vulgar assault on Christians” and has stated that if Stewart does not apologize for the joke, that the Catholic League would stage a boycott of his show. So in other words, people who don’t watch the Daily Show will continue not watching it? Sounds like an effective strategy! (In other news, not a single F*** was given!)

Kim Kardashian Running For Mayor of Glendale, CA. I could easily laugh at how ridiculous it is for a celebrity to run for public office, but considering that the state’s governor is Arnold Schwarzenegger, perhaps it’s not that farfetched. The presidential race alone featured celebrities such as Donald Trump and Rosanne Barr. At this point, our elections are nothing more that popularity contests with politicians carrying a cult of personality. All to give the citizens the illusion that their votes matter. Bread and circuses FTW!

Dumbasses of the Week

Runner-Up: Michele Bachmann: In an interview with blog The Shark Tank, Bachmann referred to Obama’s proposal to lower gas prices through curbing oil speculation as “waving a tar baby in the air and saying that something else is a problem.” I’ll give Michele the benefit of a doubt and accept that her comment wasn’t racially-motivated. Clearly she was trying to say that Obama was using oil speculation as a distraction from the real source of high gas prices; in which case, she wasn’t being racist, she was just being stupid! Because that’s not what a “tar baby” is! A “tar baby” is “a situation, problem, or the like, that is almost impossible to solve or to break away from.” The real term Michele should have used was “red herring,” which is “something intended to divert attention from the real problem or matter at hand.” But even if “tar baby” was synonymous with “red herring,” why—oh God why—would she use such a racially-charged term? Why would she give the libtarded moonbats ample ammunition to paint Republicans as racists? Michele isn’t racist, she’s just dumb, and nobody should take her seriously.

Third Place: Unknown Tea Party Speaker: Remember when the Tea Party was relevant? Remember when the movement actually protested crap that mattered like the economic stimulus and bank bailouts? What the hell happened to it? Oh, that’s right: after it was hijacked by Republican neocon interests, it began focusing on menial social issues such as gay marriage and abortion. How else can you explain that one of the speakers at a recent Boston event was Scott Lively—an anti-gay bigot (excuse me, “activist”) who supports the Uganda “Kill The Gays” Bill? (Because nothing says limited government like capital punishment for queers!) Because of this controversial speaker, there was a counter-protest by LGBT activists, and the clash between them and the Tea Party protesters became so heated that one of the speakers announced over the microphone “We will not be silenced by faggots!” Yeah, how dare a marginalized minority speak out against a bigot who supports genocide in a foreign country! How very oppressive of them. And this is why I hardly take the Tea Party seriously anymore.

Second Place: Ted Nugent: If Rush Limbaugh underwent massive liposuction and was more hyped-up on Oxycotin, dialing up the crazy levels of his insanity and racism, you’d end up with Ted Nugent—the gun-toting, guitar-playing, teenage-girl chasing, draft-dodging piece of white trash who wants Obama to “suck on my machine gun.” Oh, you thought that quote of his was bad? You ain’t heard nothing yet! Just recently at an NRA convention, Ted claimed that if Obama were re-elected, “I will either be dead or in jail by this time next year.” Now that’s the quote most people in the blogosphere have been focused on, but believe it or not, he actually said something more violent moments before. Earlier, he had compared Obama and other Democrats to a coyote that needed to be shot: “It isn’t the enemy that ruined America. It’s good people who bent over and let the enemy in. If the coyote’s in your living room pissing on your couch, it’s not the coyote’s fault. It’s your fault for not shooting him.” You heard him right folks, we need to shoot us some Democrats! (rolls eyes). And don’t just shirk this off as being rhetoric. The Secret Service is currently investigating Nugent for his comments. Look, I’m all for being outspoken, and I’m not usually up in arms against “violent rhetoric,” but there comes a time when political discourse crosses the line.

First Place: Kevin Forts: What’s worse than a mass-murdering white nationalist like Anders Behring Breivik? How about an apologist for said mass-murdering white nationalist? Now I know what you’re thinking: who the hell could possibly defend Breivik—the crazed Norwegian who shot down 77 people in Oslo (mostly teenagers at a summer camp) because he feared the Muslims were taking over his country? Well, turns out Andy has a pen pal here in the States, Kevin Forts, who’s sticking up for his neo-Nazi BFF. In an interview with a Norwegian news network, Forts claimed that the terrorist attack “demonstrates a sense of nationalism and a moral conscience. He's fighting against cultural Marxism and the Islamization of Norway and he found that the most rational way to accomplish that was through terrorist actions on Utoya and in Oslo.” And what about the defenseless teenagers shot at the summer camp? No biggie! To Forts, “It was a necessary political sacrifice.” Do I even need to explain why this is so wrong?!

Daily Pony: Epic Wub Time

Since my blog tends to have gaps between regular posts, and since my Pony Sunday posts tend to focus on recapping the newest episodes, I decided to offer daily doses of Pony in order to fill the gaps and keep you folks occupied.

Today I begin by sharing the latest video from the creator of Epic Cupcake Time and Epic Pie Time. Epic Wub Time: Musicians of Ponyville is a reality-show style short that focuses on the daily life of musical ponies Octavia and Vinyl Scratch (DJ P0N-3) as roommates.

The animation is exceptional for a fan-made flash cartoon. I’d say it’s almost official show quality. And I also love the gags. Forget Pinkie Pie’s Party Cannon: nothing beats Vinyl Scratch’s Bass Cannon!

Though you have to wonder how one washes the dishes with wubs?

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Pony Sunday: A Canterlot Wedding

Fillies and gentlecoats, the moment you all have been waiting for has finally arrived: the two-part season finale of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic featuring the wedding of the century. Here are my thoughts on the episode (and boy, what an episode it was!):

• Fluttershy not only styled her hair to look more like Rainbow Dash, but she also had a sex-change operation. She wishes she was Twilight Sparkle’s best man!
• Scootaloo also had a sex-change operation and changed her (his?) name to Terry.
• The Canterlot castle is called the Wedding Castle Playset.
• When Zecora wears a fedora, she changes her sex and her name to King Zebra.
• All zebras look alike. (Racism FTW!)
• They’re also cannibals!
• Kidnapping the bride will force the groom to marry another girl instead.
• Twilight Sparkle’s true love is Prince Blueblood.
• Apple Jack is apparently not a friend of Twilight Sparkle. (All my friends are here. And Applejack is here, too.)
• One of her friends is a recolor of herself. (And one of Cherrilee!)
• Confronting a bad guy will make him automatically give up and go to prison.
• Princess Celestia is Twilight Sparkle’s mother.
• Forget money. Forget gold. The real reward to give someone after rescuing them is a balloon.
• Moral of the story: All zebras look the same and should not be trusted. (Racism FTW!)

Trolled you!

Obviously that wasn’t the real two-part series finale. Just the dramatic reading of a poorly-written and poorly-translated German comic. (Seriously, Germany, WTF?!)

Consider this a late April Fools joke!

I’ll have the real episode recap later this week. I’m just too busy to do an entire review of two episodes today. But trust me: the season finale was 20% cooler than any other episode this season!

Friday, April 20, 2012

WTF Friday: The ExtraTERRORestrial Alien Encounter

Walt Disney World is known as the “Happiest Place on Earth” for providing families fond memories with rides such as “It’s A Small World,” “Pirates of the Carribean,” and “Space Mountain.” But not every ride was a happy one. In fact, one nightmare-fuel inducing ride possibly caused children to piss themselves in fear whenever they saw a Disney World commercial.

No, I’m not talking about the Haunted Mansion.

Not talking about the Tower of Terror either.

The ride I’m referring to is ExtraTERRORestrial Alien Encounter (or simply “Alien Encounter”). You probably never heard of it because it was only open for less than a decade, having opened in Magic Kingdom’s Tommorowland from 1995 until 2003; and considering how intense the ride was, it’s pretty easy to see why it was so short-lived.

The story behind the ride is that an alien corporation is demonstrating its new (and untested) teleportation system on earth. Guests are brought into an amphitheater centered around a glass teleportation tube. Once seated, they have their molecular structures analyzed to determine who would be best suited for teleportation; but before anyone can be chosen, the leader of the corporation decides to teleport himself to earth instead. Things go awry when, halfway through the teleportation process, the leader is sent to another planet and a towering carnivorous alien creature is beamed to earth instead.

As can be expected, the alien creature escapes, the lights go out, and the guests are trapped with an alien creature seeking to devour their flesh. A mechanical worker manages to return electricity back to the teleporter, only to get eaten by the alien, his blood splashing onto the audience below. The alien is eventually lured back into the tube where it is destroyed. And with that, the ride is over (and the children are left with nightmare fuel for the remainder of their childhood).

I remember going on this ride once—and once was enough! Even at age ten, this ride made me want to crap my pants—literally! (I had to use the restroom moments after the ride. Thank goodness I didn’t really stain my shorts!) The seats vibrated as the alien ran around the theater behind you, and the safety harnesses sprayed water and blew hot air that made it feel as though the alien was breathing on your neck. And then there was the water splashing on you from above as the mechanical worker was eaten alive. Think about that for a moment: this is a Disney ride where someone dies! No wonder the warning for the ride claimed it wasn’t suitable for children under 12!

The good news (or bad news, depending on whether or not you liked the ride) was that the ride closed in 2003 and was re-opened as “Stitch’s Great Escape,” a more kid-friendlier version with Stitch instead of a scary-as-hell Ridley Scott ripoff. Despite its short run, the ride had garnered a cult-following, possibly because it was the darkest ride at Walt Disney World to date. Just goes to show you Disney is capable of some serious shit.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Demotivational Poster: Voter Suppression

Voter Suppression

This is one of those issues where I’m left scratching my head wondering why this is even an issue. Everyone has to show identification for some reason. If you’re pulled over by a cop, you have to show your license and registration. If you want to leave the country, you have to show your passport. If you want to buy cigarettes, beer, or an R-rated movie, you have to show some form of identification. So why is it an issue to show your identification in order to vote? Yes, voting is a right guaranteed to every citizen, which is why it should be important to prove one’s citizenship before voting, just as it is important to prove one’s citizenship before running for public office (which is also a right).

I know many other libertarians tend to be against voter ID laws, if not ID in general. My hero Ron Paul is strongly opposed to a National ID card, though he supports state ID cards. (What the difference is between them is beyond me.) They claim that having to show identification is an invasion of privacy, but honestly, I don’t see how it is. To me, having to pass through virtual strip searches at the airport is an invasion of privacy. So is having your phone tapped or your library records inspected without a warrant. And don’t get me stated about the recent Supreme Court decision approving of strip searches for any minor offense! But having to flash my ID card before voting? Sorry. I don’t see how that’s an infringement on my rights.

Of course, the main opponents of voter ID are Democrats and other libtrarded moonbats. They claim that these voter ID laws are a form of voter suppression meant to disenfranchise poor minority voters. How? By requiring them to buy identification, of course!


Driver’s licenses and other state ID cards costs about $50 in my state. Granted, that is rather pricey, but hardly enough to break the bank. And as I mentioned before, you need such identification for other reasons as well. So essentially, it’s more of an investment than a burden.

Again, I don’t see what the big deal is—especially since most other countries tend to have some form of voter ID laws. But if anyone wants to enlighten me, feel free to do so in the comments below.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Arguing With Idiots

We all have our addictions. For some, it’s smoking. For others, it’s drinking. And for many others, it’s porn. For me, it’s arguing on the internet—the most fruitless endeavor since Sisyphus rolling a boulder up a hill.

I don’t know what compels me to argue. I guess it’s this naive notion that, if you encounter someone with an incorrect belief and you provide them logic, reason, and evidence to the contrary, that they will abandon their belief. If that were the case, the world wouldn’t be plagued with birthers, truthers, anti-vaccers, Keynesians, and other idiots with blatantly incorrect beliefs. You can lead an idiot to knowledge but you can’t make them think.

So I know that arguing with people rarely changes their minds. So why do I persist with arguing? Do I derive pleasure from it? Hardly! If anything, it gives me grief. There’s nothing more frustrating than knowing someone is demonstrably wrong, and even when you prove to them that they are, not only do they not admit it, but they buckle down and insist that they are right, often with the flimsiest arguments. It’s enough to make one go homicidal. Or suicidal. Or both!

So I realize that arguing doesn’t change people’s minds, nor does it give me any pleasure, yet every day I insist on arguing on the internet. I’m like a junkie who insists on toking up even if it means selling the last of his food stamps to buy his next high, or like a drunk who goes comatose at the bar every night even when his liver has already corroded to mush. I keep waking up every morning, asking myself what I’m doing with my life, and telling myself that today will be my last internet argument.

And yet I continue to argue on the internet. I guess I’m masochistic that way.

Just earlier this week, I was on Reddit—one of my favorite places to argue (well, maybe not “favorite” as it is “most frequent”)—when I came across this thread: There Is No Invisible Hand: "After more than a century trying to prove the opposite, economic theorists investigating the matter finally concluded in the 1970s that there is no reason to believe markets are led, as if by an invisible hand, to an optimal equilibrium -- or any equilibrium at all."

That title suggests that America is a free market economy and that our current economic problems are a result of it. But America hardly has anything remotely resembling a free market. Even the “free market” polices pushed by Republicans over the past 30 years since Reagan are less “laissez-faire capitalism” and more “crony corporatism” disguised as such. Even Ayn Rand herself refused to support Reagan as a “champion of capitalism.” Meanwhile, Hong Kong and Switzerland have freer economies than ours and yet manage to do economically better than us.

So I replied to the thread with the following comment:
So let me get this straight: we have entire industries (gas, farms, sugar, etc.) which are highly subsidized by the government, a progressive tax system where the rich pay a higher rate in income tax than the rest of us (tax statistics don't lie!), federal regulations that have been exponentially increasing for the past half century (look at the pages of the Federal Registar!), currency that is printed out of thin air with no substance backing it, banks and other corporations being bailed out because they're "too big to fail," and a centralized bank privately-owned and government-run that pretty much controls every aspect of our economy without transparency (we know more about the CIA than the Fed), and yet we're supposed to believe that we live in a free-market?

Herp Derp! Makes sense to me!
Now granted, my comment here has been rated as the second highest on the comment thread with 31 upvotes (right under the comment claiming “There's no Easter Bunny, either”—insinuating that the “Invisible Hand” is a faith-based concept like God, when it’s actually just a metaphor for the self-regulating nature of the marketplace through individuals pursuing their own self-interests), so there are a few intelligent Redditors; however, considering that the remainder comprise the libtarded hivemind of r/politics, it was only natural that my comment received flack.

Consider this reply:
This libertarian "let's hate the government" phenomenon has to stop. Yes, American politics right now is pretty messed up; but , God, this insinuation that somehow the government will bring about Armageddon so we must destroy it is just plain ridiculous.
And here we have one of the fundamental misunderstandings of libertarianism: that libertarians hate the government for the sake of hating the government—that they’re rebels without a cause. It’s all too common for libtarded moonbats to shrug off libertarians as whiny teenagers suffering through their rebellious stage which they will simply outgrow once they become older.

First off, being 25 years old, I’m beyond being a teenager; and secondly, I don’t hate the government for the sake of hating it: I hate it for all the problems it has caused. That’s not to say that I want to completely eliminate it (otherwise, I’d be an anarchist), just that I want to fix the problems it has created. (And no, I don’t believe the government is responsible for every problem, just the problems it has caused—which would be an overwhelming majority of them, unfortunately.)

And so I replied to that comment with this one:
You jest, right? Libertarians like myself don’t hate the government for the sake of hating it. We legitimately hate it because of all of the crap it has caused. Perpetual foreign wars. The PATRIOT Act. Waterboarding and other “enhanced interrogation techniques.” Full body scanners and other invasive airport security measures. The individual mandate within Obamacare. The indefinite detention portion of the NDAA 2012. SOPA. PIPA. ACTA. CISPA. Net Neutrality. Bank Bailouts. Auto Bailouts. The 7.7 trillion secret bailouts by the Federal Reserve. The stimulus package. Solyndra and other failed subsidized boondoggles. Post Office. DMV. Public schools. The militarization of our police force. The War on Drugs. Bradley Manning and other political prisoners and whistleblowers prosecuted under the Espionage Act. Oil subsidies. Farm subsidies. Sugar subsidies. Pretty much all government subsidies. Regulatory capture. The ever increasing national debt and deficit. The devaluing of our currency. Runaway entitlement programs such as Medicare and Social Security. The hyper-sensationalism of social issues such as gay marriage and contraception. And the list goes on and on.

TL;DR: Our federal government is out of control and needs to return to its Constitutional limitations ASAP! My hate of the government is justified.
So there you have it. I list every gripe I have with the federal government. So now do people understand why, as a libertarian, I hate it so? (If you answered yes, you’re clearly not paying attention.)

Right after posting my comment, I received “this” enlightening one:
It seems you are accounting for the costs of having a society with a government without considering the costs to a society without a government.
And yet again we have another fundamental misunderstanding of libertarianism: that libertarians want to eliminate all government (to which we are instructed to move to Somalia). No we don’t; otherwise, we’d be anarchists. We believe the purpose of government is to protect the rights of individual citizens; therefore, government should be “limited” to preventing others from infringing on those rights (thus the term “limited government”). The problem we have is that our current federal government has far exceeded that role as laid out in the Constitution, and the problems I listed are a result of that. We don’t want the government completely eliminated; we simply want it rolled back to its Constitutional limitations.

But still people try to convince me that the problem isn’t big government:
Look, libertarians. I am sympathetic to your general outlook but you must understand that the problem isn't government, the problem is concentrated power.
GOVERNMENT IS CONCENTRATED POWER! The government is the only institution with the power to initiate force and coercion in order to pursue its goals. And as of recent, most of that power has been concentrated into our federal government, with little to no power at the local and state level to balance it out. When you have all that power concentrated in a centralized federal government, that’s when you have tyranny—and considering all the problems I previously listed, we’re pretty damn close to it.

But that’s not even the dumbest comment. Check this shit out:
Based on your list, I am led to believe you have no idea why you are so mad at the government.
Really? Really?! Are you really that obtuse? You really mean to tell me that, after perusing my detailed list of grievances with our current federal government, you have no ideas why I’m upset with it (or rather, you claim I have no idea why I’m upset about it)?

Again, I have to ask myself: why do I do this? Why do I insist on arguing with people who clearly have no intention of changing their minds even after being presented with logic, reason, and evidence? Why do I insist on inflicting such pain upon myself? Why, I ask you, why?

But I guess that’s just the thing about addictions. You know they’re bad for you, you know you get nothing positive from it, yet you do it anyway. I guess people are just masochistic that way.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The REAL War On Women

Forget the Democrats’ phony “War On Women.” The real war is not being waged by Republicans, but by the Transportation Security Administration.

Consider the following video of a woman sobbing and trembling as she is sexually assaulted patted down by a TSA agent at a Wisconsin airport:

The blogger who uploaded this video on Gateway Pundit speculates that the woman could be suffering from a post-traumatic stress episode, possibly rape-related. Such speculation has yet to be confirmed.

Regardless of whether or not this woman was suffering from rape-related PTSD, no woman should have to suffer through such humiliation at the airport. No woman! (Not even Hilary Rosen!) Yet TSA agents have been unfairly singling out women for full body scans and pat downs. Then again, when such power over civilians is granted to federal agents, who else do you expect lining up for the job but perverts wanting a quick peep show or wanting to cop a feel?


Monday, April 16, 2012

This Week In Review (04/16/2012)

This Week In Review (04/16/2012)

Rick Santorum suspends presidential campaign. And good riddance! Mr. “Frothy Mix of Lube and Fecal Matter” was the epitome of everything wrong with the current Republican Party. Instead of issues such as the economy, national debt and deficit, and foreign wars (you know, issues the American people actually cares about), Santorum ran his entire campaign on social issues such as gay marriage and contraception. He even had an entire page on his campaign website outlining his plans for a “War on Porn.” (Because the War on Drugs has been such a success, right?) This man did not care about solving the nation’s current problems. He only cared about pushing his own theocratic agenda—and if that agenda meant pushing big government policies and eroding Constitutional liberties (you know, things the Republican Party is supposed to be against), then so be it. After all, to him, “Freedom isn't to do whatever you want to do, it's to do what you ought to do!"

Leaked Bush-Era torture memo admits interrogation techniques are "war crimes." Despite attempts by the Bush White House to have copies of it destroyed, the memo was released to the public earlier this week, having been obtained by George Washington University's National Security Archive and Wired Magazine’s Spencer Ackerman. The memo was written six years ago by former State Department counselor Philip Zelikow, who wrote how there was no legal precedent for the approval of interrogation techniques such as waterboarding. As Zelikow wrote: “We are unaware of any precedent in World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, or any subsequent conflict for authorized, systematic interrogation practices similar to those in question here.” So little by little we see the lies of the former Bush Empire begin to crumble. First we had one of the main Iraqi defectors confess that he lied about Iraq’s WMDs—a lie which cost Americans trillions of dollars and thousands of lives—and now we have an official memo that reveals that the Bush-approved “enhanced interrogation techniques” were really “war crimes.” And yet neither Bush nor Cheney nor any of the other officials of the former Bush administration have been indicted. Meanwhile, Bradley Manning remains a political prisoner for the crime of leaking information that should have been available to the public in the first place had our government been more transparent. How much longer can a Constitutional republic survive when the government is no longer held accountable to its citizens?

Maryland becomes first state to ban employers from asking for social media passwords. In a step forward for internet privacy rights, both the Maryland House and Senate passed legislation that would prevent employers from demanding from employees and job candidates their passwords to social media outlets such as Facebook or Twitter. If signed by Gov. Martin O’Malley, this bill will be the first in the nation to ban such employment requirements. Other states are considering similar legislation includes Illinois and California. A similar bill was considered in Congress, but was struck down in the House of Representatives. Kudos to Maryland for standing up for internet privacy by passing this bill. Every American citizen has a right to privacy, especially on the internet, and no one—neither the government nor business—has a right to infringe upon it. Here’s hoping that similar legislation is passed nationwide.

Connecticut to repeal death penalty. Legislation to repeal the death penalty was approved and passed by state legislators this week and is expected to be signed by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy. This would make Connecticut the 17th state to abolish the death penalty. While I am not personally against the death penalty, I no longer support it—not because I consider executing a convicted murderer immoral, but because the death penalty itself is costly and ineffective. For example, California spent $4 billion executing 13 death row inmates over the past 33 years—that’s $303 million for each inmate, $184 million more per year than just sentencing them to life without parole! (And 78 death row inmates have died while on death row, making their death penalties pointless.) And for those who argue that the death penalty deters violent crime, it doesn’t! The states where the death penalty is legal actually have the highest homicide rates. If the death penalty truly deterred violent crime, and was less expensive than life imprisonment, and was upheld by a legal system that could accurately determine the guilt of the convicted, then I could support the death penalty with a clean conscience; but alas, I cannot.

Former TSA official admits airport security is broken. You know a federal agency is broken when a former official says it is. And Kip Hawley isn’t just any former official: he was the head of the Transportation Security Administration for over three years! In his Wall Street Journal op-ed “Why Airport Security Is Broken,” he wrote about how “more than a decade after 9/11, it is a national embarrassment that our airport security system remains so hopelessly bureaucratic and disconnected from the people whom it is meant to protect....The crux of the problem, as I learned in my years at the helm, is our wrongheaded approach to risk. In attempting to eliminate all risk from flying, we have made air travel an unending nightmare for U.S. passengers and visitors from overseas, while at the same time creating a security system that is brittle where it needs to be supple.” Indeed. Even after the TSA receives more money than other federal agencies such as NASA—even after it has passed draconian safety measures such as requiring passengers to take off their shoes, to hand over their nail clippers and small bottles of liquid, and to either choose between a full-body virtual strip search or invasive pat down before boarding a plane—the TSA has failed to make American citizens safer from another terrorist attack, as there have been over 25 thousand security breaches at U.S. airports since 2001. Trading individual liberty for temporary security does not give us more security, but rather takes away more liberty and security.

Dumbass of the Week

• Dishonorable Mention: Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.): During a town hall event in Palm City, FL, Allen West said that he has “heard” that 80 of the 190 House Democrats are communists. Is that you, Joe McCarthy? I thought the Cold War ended 20 years ago. Why else are we still talking about Communists? How is this any less absurd than a Democrat calling Republicans “fascists” or “Nazis”? I don’t know what’s worse: that Rep. Allen West says that up to 80 House Democrats are secretly members of the Communist Party, the fact that he and others actually believe it, or that the people upset over this comment probably had no problem calling Republicans and Tea Partiers “terrorists.” This only shows how far our political discourse has fallen. Calling our political opponents names like first graders on the school playground will get our country nowhere. It’s time for us to grow up and start taking politics seriously.

• Third Place: Mark Judge (Daily Caller): When bad things happen to us, we tend to get highly emotional and lose our better judgment, thus leading us to say things we’ll later come to regret. I can only assume that Mark Judge of the Daily Caller is now regretting his diatribe “The end of my white guilt.” He wrote about how his bike was stolen on Good Friday, and even though he doesn’t know who stole his bike, he knows for certain it was a black guy. What evidence does he have that the perpetrator was black? Well, as he figures, his bike was stolen in a predominately black neighborhood; so it must have been stolen by a black guy. Because as we all know, only black people steal things! It couldn’t possibly have been anyone of a different race passing through the neighborhood. Seriously, how is this any less fallacious than the accusation that Zimmerman committed a hate crime because he was a white man (actually, half-Hispanic) who shot a black kid? Like the liberal media with the Trayvon Martin case, Judge here is playing judge, jury, and executioner by accusing an entire race for the theft of his bike. Such racism is another form of collectivism which only seeks to divide us and demean our value as individuals. It has no place in a modern free society.

• Second Place: John Derbyshire (National Review): Libtarded moonbats tend to detect racism and bigotry where none exists, like when they claim that calling Obama a “socialist” is coded-language for calling him a racial epithet. But real racists don’t need to hide their racism as they’re openly unashamed of it. Such was the case with John Derbyshire who was fired from the National Review after releasing his column “The Talk: Nonblack Version.” In his racial screed, he writes about how most blacks are “anti-social” and “ferociously hostile towards whites”; as such, he advises white people to stay out of black neighborhoods, to avoid events with large crowds of blacks, and to never help a black person in trouble. (In other words, all black people are scary and need to be avoided at all costs!) What else can this be called but racism? Yes, Derbyshire has every right to spew his hate speech, which is still protected as free speech, but he does not have the right to be taken seriously—and collectivism, especially racism, should never be taken seriously.

• First Place: Foster Friess: I don’t normally complain about violent rhetoric (and in my honest opinion, the left tends to be more violent in rhetoric and action than the right), but there comes a time when someone crosses the line of civil discourse that I have no choice but to speak out. Case in point: Foster Friess. You might remember Santorum’s wealthy donor for his “aspirin between the knees” remark. What could possibly be dumber than that? How about insinuating the assassination of the president? During an interview on Fox Business, he said the following: “There are a lot of things that haven’t been hammered at because Rick and Mitt have been going at each other. Now that they have trained their barrels on President Obama, I hope his teleprompters are bullet-proof.” Granted, Friess was speaking metaphorically, and he apologized afterwards, claiming he regretted making that statement, but the fact that he utilized gun imagery in regards to the President of the United States on national television shows how far our political discourse has fallen. Such a statement would have been considered unheard of years ago, yet today political pundits freely use violent rhetoric against their opponents without any repercussion. I don’t mean to imply that violent rhetoric leads to violent crime (as the left would have you believe, even though they’re guilty of it as well), but such rhetoric does nothing to further political discourse and everything to further divide us.