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Month: August 2015

Grief + ignorance + hypocrisy: tools to rule

I’m sorry for your grief, Mr. Parker. No parent should have to endure what you suffered. I was keeping my mouth shut when you first went on your blame-the-gun warpath. But now I know you’ve added hypocrisy to your repertoire, sympathy stretches thin: The father of slain TV reporter Alison Parker says he thinks he will have to buy a gun now that he has decided to be an outspoken advocate for tougher gun laws. Yeah. So everybody else who owns guns is a maniac waiting to strike. You, OTOH, are … what? Ignorant, for one: He says background checks…


Monday links

“No Cupcake, there is no right not to be offended.” Nicki does it again. They ripped up their kitchen floor and found a secret code + $50,000. Is that cool or what? Commentariat member Stryder informs me this story is a hoax. Wait. Why would they bust a TSA agent for doing this? Isn’t molesting us their job? Annalee Newitz does a follow-up to her expose on the lack of women at Ashley Madison and concludes that, yes, it was outright fraud by the company. Despite hints of sentencing reform and lightening up of the drug war, prison vendors see…


Life sentence

Yesterday I learned an acquaintance is facing a possible sentence of life in prison. He hasn’t killed or maimed anybody. He hasn’t done any drug kingpinning. He hasn’t pulled a Bernie Madoff or spied for the North Koreans.

He’s just a lifelong screwup. A standard, ordinary, bumbling petty criminal. A prosecutor has finally gotten fed up with him and is going for a “three strikes” sentence.


Fabulous fisking by Nicki

In response to some pants-wetting coward who sees every gun-rights advocate* as a threat to him and of course his children. —– * Specifically those sporting NRA stickers. Ha! Little does he know those are only a modest few of the actual gun-bearing population.


Rough wind that moanest loud

Yikes in booties. We’re not only expecting a weekend (and up to a week) of heavy rains ahead. We’re under a high wind watch, too, with gusts possibly reaching 65 to tomorrow morning. Now I know you midwest and southern types are used to sudden summer blowups, but that’s not what we typically get. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’ve never seen a high wind watch or warning in summer in the Northwet. Could get interesting. In any case, I’m not moaning a Shelleyesque dirge (get back to me on that long about November). What I’m going to do instead…


Massive Friday links dump

This oughta keep you busy for a while. Major hat tip to faithful contributor MJR, who went on a link-hunting tear this week. Um … Yes, Wired, you can do something about Spotify’s weird new anti-privacy policy: don’t use Spotify. And y’know, Spotify’s “clarification” doesn’t help one little bit. It amounts to, “Oh, we’ll never, ever abuse all those bits of your life we’re requiring users to give up to us. Trust us …” Now this is funny. How North Korea is handling shooting range budget cuts. Over at TZP, Nicki and Y.B. write about a pair of killers and…


Project pix and Robbie

The complicated ceiling: And here’s what the old beadboard ceiling looked like when the roof above it collapsed last year: The roof peak I painted and trimmed this week: The peak behind it still needs doing, but that’s a job for a pro — and a job that probably won’t get done until 2017. Here’s a before pic. Or rather, a “during” pic. This was taken while the not-a-garage was being torn off and I was just trying out my first paint samples. Sorry I don’t have one taken from a similar angle as above, but I think you can…


Hustling, bustling, and not falling off the roof

I’ve been hustling the last week to catch up on summer projects before the first autumnal rains hit tomorrow. The rains will be much appreciated by the poor, fire-scorched people east of the mountains; what a terrible summer they’ve had! Even here, near the coast, a real rain will be a blessing for downing dust and cleaning sometimes-smoky air. Normally, sea breezes keep our air clean, but it’s been eye-stinging a couple of times this week. I can only imagine what the poor east-of-the-mountains folk have been enduring. —– I apologize to the Commentariat members who left interesting or helpful…


Wednesday links

Continuing to entertain, amuse, and abuse, and demonstrating that airport “security” is brilliant the world over, British officials steal a toddler’s … um, fart blaster This is not a way to celebrate National Dog Day. But you could celebrate George Orwell’s birthday like so. A civil rights activist of the old days laments the rudeness and folly of Black Lives Matter. Jim Bovard is a thorn in the side of contentment. Strange. Within a span of 10 minutes, I ran across two articles — from very different perspectives! — noting how cruel and inhumane the U.S. prison system is considered…