Monday, June 30, 2008

McCain It And Mean It!

Me and two of my awesome coworkers have a new blog, "McCain It And Mean It!"

It will probably die down after November.

(I hope.)

{That's Partisanship!}

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Friday, June 27, 2008

I'm Loving It, This Here Strawberry Shortcake

My friend Ed translated this Japanese for me. He says:
The attached ad has big white letters which say Merry Christmas. The small letters in parentheses say 'Shit!' on the right and 'lie down' (or perhaps something more sexual) on the left.
I know this is satire, but I suspect some comic timing has been lost.

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Change We Can Make Believe In

Your guess is as good as mine as to what inspired this one: a visual interpretation the "When Obama Wins" meme, maybe? [Via Bullshit]

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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Fungus Genome May Be The Key To Cellulosic Ethanol

By decoding the genome of a green fungus with a hunger for fibrous plants, scientists hope to boost the supply of cellulose-based ethanol, leaving more food for consumption and driving down transportation costs.
By way of background:
The high cost of cellulose-based ethanol comes from the expensive enzymes, derived from the fungus Tricoderma reesei, which are used to break down trees, corn stalks, paper, and other wood or pulp-based items.

For years, scientists have tried to economically produce enough enzymes to break cellulose down into simple sugars that can then be fermented into ethanol, but to no avail.

Having the genome of T. reesei "gives you a tool kit with all the tools, where before you were trying to blindly match things up," said Jason Stajich, a researcher at the University of California, Berkeley,
[Via Discovery News]

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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

From The Bowels Of The Internet: Animated GIFs

Less-Than-Valuable Lesson, Learned: You can't directly link to the stuff evar. Sorry, readers. This is how I'ma gonna make eet up to you:

I hope this is new to everybody and that it is funny.

I have to say, wading through the dregs of 4chan's smutty, depressing and vulgar animated GIFs section was maybe not worth finding these, but hell I needed a break:
Back to the drawing board. (Woah, literally!)

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My Candidate Makes This Look Good

While not as laughable as the David Brooks Applebees misfire, Rove's recent dig at Obama is yet another failed attempt to paint the presumptive nominee as a haughty elitist. Says Rove:
Even if you never met him [i.e. Obama], you know this guy. He's the guy at the country club with the beautiful date, holding a martini and a cigarette that stands against the wall and makes snide comments about everyone who passes by.
Hey! What if I've never met Obama and I've never been to a country club?
[via MoJo via ABC]

Aside: BHO should pick Tommy Lee Jones as his running mate; Or, if he wants to secure Florida, Jeff Goldblum.

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Monday, June 23, 2008

Itchy The Killer

Atul Gawande's latest article in the New Yorker sounds like an awesome horror story. Phantom limbs, the nervous system and the science of pyschotic, compulsive and self-mutilating itching:
For M., the itching was so torturous, and the area so numb, that her scratching began to go through the skin. At a later office visit, her doctor found a silver-dollar-size patch of scalp where skin had been replaced by scab. M. tried bandaging her head, wearing caps to bed. But her fingernails would always find a way to her flesh, especially while she slept.

One morning, after she was awakened by her bedside alarm, she sat up and, she recalled, "this fluid came down my face, this greenish liquid." She pressed a square of gauze to her head and went to see her doctor again. M. showed the doctor the fluid on the dressing. The doctor looked closely at the wound. She shined a light on it and in M.'s eyes. Then she walked out of the room and called an ambulance. Only in the Emergency Department at Massachusetts General Hospital, after the doctors started swarming, and one told her she needed surgery now, did M. learn what had happened. She had scratched through her skull during the night--and all the way into her brain.


[via Jonah Lehrer, a bastard who isn't linking to the New Yorker article]

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On Liz Phair's Exile in Guyville 15 Years Later

This Slant magazine review by Jimmy Newlin seems well reasoned.

Update: Whereas this Pitchfork review by Chris Dahlen does not. "On cuts like these, guys can dig Phair because she's one of the guys." Really? Is this a 15 year reissue of your first Exile in Guyville review?

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Sunday, June 22, 2008

Scandinavian Cory Kennedy Doppelgänger

I don't really even know if this person who does the Polkadots & Vodkashots blog is from Scandinavia, but it doesn't matter. I feel creepy, lame and all around worse for having posted about it. Unless people come to this site after combing through their recent issue of NYLON looking for more clothing ideas. In which case, you're welcome, I guess.

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Queen Song About My Favorite Billionaire Saudi Arabian Arms-Dealer And Businessman

In addition to allegedly having once hired Paul McCartney's ex-wife Heather Mills as an escort, Adnan Khashoggi also has a song written about him (and a party on his boat) by Queen:

Khashoggi's rockstar credentials is one of the many reasons Bond movies suck. Attn screenwriters: read more nonfiction!

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Saturday, June 14, 2008

A Pretty Good Simpsons Joke

Some meta-humor after Lisa makes a documentary about her family — displaying their dysfunctional behavior to all of Sundance:

This Hulu makes it so easy to share clips. Amazing.

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Awesome Skull Toaster From Germany!

Do I need to explain anything? Fine, here it is in German:
Totenkopf Toaster SKULL-Toast - Nichts für schwache Nerven! Wer es derbe liebt oder von ganzem Herzen ein Freibeuter ist, kommt am Skull Toaster nicht vorbei. In edlem Schwarz macht er nicht nur eine bemerkenswert gute Figur auf dem Frühstückstisch. Das Resultat seines Toastvorgangs ist auch nicht zu unterschätzen!
And in English (translated by Google):
Skull toaster SKULL Toast - Nothing for weak nerves! Wer es derbe liebt oder von ganzem Herzen ein Freibeuter ist, kommt am Skull Toaster nicht vorbei. Anyone who loves crude from the bottom of my heart or a Freibeuter, comes on Skull toaster is not over. In edlem Schwarz macht er nicht nur eine bemerkenswert gute Figur auf dem Frühstückstisch. In fine black makes it not only a remarkably good figure on the breakfast table.

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Friday, June 13, 2008

Wax Attack to Hold EPA Admin Johnson in Contempt

He won't stop. This Wax burns at both ends:
In letters to EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson and White House official Susan Dudley, Chairman Waxman announces that the Committee will consider holding them in contempt for their repeated refusal to provide subpoenaed documents to the Committee. The subpoenaed documents involve the White House role in EPA’s ozone standards and rejection of California’s motor vehicle emission standards.

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Recent Choice Ed Gonzalez

As is often the case with a film review by Ed Gonzalez in Slant Magazine, I had no intentions of seeing this movie, left his review with every intention of not wanting to see it, and feel supremely edified having read his opinion:
[...] worse than the filmmakers' reductivist worldview is their want to tell an Altmanesque tapestry but actually doing so in the bratty, über-punk vernacular of Faith Akin. Since Marcela's depressing way of life isn't profoundly connected to the havoc of the floods that ravaged Prague in 2002, the many allusions to that tragedy feel at once trivial and shameless. But what is Beauty in Trouble anyway other than a dull, borderline contemptuous portrait a pretty young thing escaping her down-and-out life after falling in with a rich and caring older man? Sadly, Hrebejk and Jarchovský seem to understand that their story runs on empty, which is probably why they settle for lazily collaging snippets from the lives of their characters throughout and setting their montages to the music of Czech singer Raduza. So, can anyone tell me what the Czech word for magnolia is?
His recent review of HBO's Recount is equally cutting and a pleasure to read, despite being pretty obvious:
The puppets from Genesis's "Land of Confusion" video give more multifaceted performances than [Tom] Wilkinson, Laura Dern (as Katherine Harris) or Ed Begley Jr. (David Boies), all saddled with characters that seem to have been struck from either black or white molds (as a shrill signpost of his goodness, Begley's character is seen lapping up vanilla ice cream throughout) [...] Only interested in scoring cheap shots, Recount tells us that conservatives are bullies on a very fundamental level, but it's most effective at conveying the sense that Hollywood liberals are only interested in making movies that showcase how right they are—or, in this case, were. And though they were, that's no excuse for this movie's wholesale smugness.
I personally expected to and did enjoy this movie as delicious piece of heavily partisan junk food. And frankly: Would anyone bother watching this movie unless it was to wrap themselves in that smugness like a warm blanket? Or to avoid having to read a book explaining all the technical bullshit related to the Florida recount?

As it stands, my main problem with this film was that even on a short leash, I hate Dennis Leary. Ultimately, Recount was more boring than smug, due to its frequent and glaring bits of hackneyed dramatic license (e.g. the fictitious chance meeting between Wilkinson's James Baker III and Kevin Spacey's Ron Klain that concludes the film. Whoops: RETROACTIVE SPOILER ALERT!!!11!!). So, if you wanted to curl up on your unbleached hemp futon with some soy- or rice-based organic ice cream and watch this with your partner and your adopted Nambian child, I would say go for it. It's exactly what you were looking for. It even has a funny, vocal impersonation of independent-non-grata Joe Leiberman. (What is up with that guy?)

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Sunday, June 08, 2008

The Infamous "Michelle Obama Whitey" Tape Hits

Via Wonkette:

As an explanation for what just happened, here's a Rocketboom segment on this meme:

Obviously what I love about this particular Rickroll is that it's an "Eff you!" to all the Obama haters who have been spreading ridiculous rumors about the existence of the "Whitey" video — a meme itself that would appear to be based on events surrounding an African American candidate in Stephen Frey’s 2006 novel The Power Broker (at least, according to Jim Geraghty at The National Review).

Also: Based on this Guardian piece, why am I not spending my whole life on 4chan?

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Saturday, June 07, 2008

Al Qaeda Accepting Proposals ["9/11 Was A Job"]

From Wired's Danger Room blog:
"Senior al-Qaida leaders through a password protected Internet message board periodically ask their loyal readers to send in their best ideas for attacking their enemies," reports National Defense, quoting recent remarks by Rita Katz, of the SITE Institute.
WFMU's resident anti-fascist researcher (conspiracy theorist), Dave Emory, has been a big fan of Rita's since her participation in the Operation Greenquest raids, a quashed attempt to hold a few Virginia-based Saudi charities accountable for funding al-Qaeda. She's also been profiled in the NYT's.

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Thursday, June 05, 2008


This insignia, crest, whatever, for the University of Auckland looks like a Jacobian Pringles man. So, I did this:
Why is my diet so barren of new crisps,
So far from variation or quick stopping?
Why with the time do I not snack upon new wisps,
By new-found methods o'er this ceaseless popping?

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"Yes, We (Need To Use The) Can": The George W. Bush Sewage Center

The so-called Presidential Memorial Commission, an informal city-based group of half a dozen left-leaning jokesters, has gathered more than 4,000 signatures since mid-April to rename a county sewage treatment facility the George W. Bush Sewage Center. The Oceanside Water Pollution Control Plant is located beside Great Highway near the zoo, and processes up to 65 million gallons of treated water per day. If commission volunteers collect at least 7,200 valid signatures by July 8, the initiative will go on the November ballot. The initiative's proponents also hope to coordinate a citywide "synchronous flush" at the very moment the next U.S. president is sworn in.
[Via Emily Z., Via at The Dust Congress, Via SF Weekly]

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Hamas Doesn't Like Barry Hussein Obama Anymore

The Obama/Hamas honeymoon is already over — and less than two months after that controversial McCain campaign email that quoted a chief political adviser to the Hamas Prime Minister as saying, "We like Mr. Obama and we hope he will win the election."

Following Obama's strongly pro-Israel speech before the American Israel Public Affairs Council, wherein he asserted that "Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel and [...] must remain undivided," many leaders in the Mid East expressed shock and anger, according to a story from Al Jazeera today, particularly Hamas:
Sami Abu Zuhri, a spokesman for Hamas, the largest Palestinian resistance group, also condemned the speech, saying on Thursday: "These statements slash any hope of any change in the American foreign policy. "[They] assure that there is a total agreement between the two parties, the Democratic and the Republican, on support for the Israeli occupation at the expense of the rights of Arabs and Palestinian interests."
What's the McCain campaign going to do with this?

[Text of Obama's AIPAC speech via the Swamp]

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Sunday, June 01, 2008

Borrowed Nostalgia for the Misremembered 80's

My family's free Entertainment Weekly subscription always brings me face to face with ads for, purveyors of faux-vintage, distressed-printed T-shirts ostensibly referencing all the things you loved about the 1980's — like The Big Lebowski, Seinfeld and the U.S. version of The Office.

While I'm increasingly impressed by the acumen (some of) these designers have shown in replicating the texture and look of an actual Salvation Army find, I'm embarrassed by the entirety of this trend. Embarrassed, because the consumer is my generation, since maligned by the reasonably accurate Robert Lanham and praised by aging boomers at Time as "the Millennials" (though I still think our best descriptor came from The Onion AV Club when The Real Cancun hit theaters: 'the Worst Generation').

The T-shirts I find most repugnant on this site also tend to be some of the most aesthetically on the money (and overpriced): This $30.00 Empire Strikes Back T-shirt; This $20.00 Ninja Turtles shirt, I could swear I actually owned in 3rd Grade; and everything by Junk Food designers Natalie Grof and Blaine Halvorson, two douche bags who've made it their lifes' work to give terrible douche bags the cache earned by the rest of us non-terrible un-douche bags.

These are on sale for $9.99 though:

And this amazing Spiderman3 shirt is now $4.99, an actual thrift store price:

(And, yes: ultimately, I find high-priced, true vintage t-shirt sellers like this tiny pony guy even more deplorable.)

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