Friday, April 28, 2006

Neil Young: "Impeach the Sombitch!", Part 2

Via This Modern World, news of the new Neil Young album, "Living With War", being streamed in its entirety for free from a couple of sites starting today. One is; another is the one TMW links to, "hyfnTRAK".

The album will be out for digital purchase (e.g., from the iTunes Music Store) next Tuesday, and available as actual CD in mid-May. I just finished listening to it once through from the stream. The songs kind of go along, pretty good, Neil-ish, folky, protest-y, not bad at all.

Then comes track #7: "Let's Impeach The President", and that one's the ringer. Of course you get the full effect listening to it, but here are the lyrics:
Let's impeach the president for lyin'
Misleading our country into war
Abusing all the power that we gave him
And shipping all our money out the door

Who's the man who hired all the criminals
The white house shadows who hide behind closed doors
And bend the facts to fit with their new story
Of why we have to send our men to war

Let's impeach the president for spyin'
On citizens inside their own homes
Breaking ev'ry law in the country
By tapping our computers and telephones

What if Al Quaeda blew up the levees
Would New Orleans have been safer that way?
Sheltered by the government's protection
Or was someone just not home that day?

"flip / flop" [chanted, and mixed with various contradictory Bush soundbites]

Let's impeach the president for hijacking
Our religion and using it to get elected
Dividing our country into colors
And still leaving black people neglected

Thank GOD he's crackin' down on steroids
Since he sold his old baseball team
There's a lot of people lookin' at big trouble
But of course the president is clean

Thursday, April 27, 2006

The Show with Ze Frank

Ze Frank
Via Daring Fireball, a link to an awesome and hilarious amateur video show: The Show with Ze Frank (warning: the page includes the latest show, which will autoplay immediately. Turn down your volume or plug in headphones so you don't disturb your cube- bunk- or cell-mate).

As DF's John Gruber says,
It’s like a three- or four-minute-long concentrated, faster-cut, and more sarcastic version of The Daily Show. Absolutely fantastic. The archives go back about a month; I’m rationing them out at just a few a day. I predict this is going to make Ze Frank famous.

And yesterday it was true that the archives went back about a month. As of today, however:
due to bandwidth limitations only the last five shows will be available for viewing. yes. no. i. this is.

this is only temporary, the archive will be back soon.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Onion Issue 42.17

Amazon 1-Click Bankrupts Area Parkinson's Sufferer
Amazon 1-Click
Bankrupts Area
Parkinson's Sufferer

A decent Onion this week:
  • EPA Didn't Know Anybody Was Still Drinking Water
    "if there really are people out there still drinking tap water, all I can say is you're better off not knowing what's in there." Johnson added that official EPA policy is that Americans should stick to sports drinks.

  • Search For Wallet Self-Narrated
    "Did I leave it in [coworker Nelson] Duffy's building?" he inquired, opening and closing the refrigerator door. "Because if I did, I can kiss the cash in it good-bye. Then again, that one time I dropped it on the street, I told myself the same thing, and I got every penny back," he continued, providing relevant background and context to no one but himself.

  • Infographic: Other Enron Scams
    • Betting heavily on Cincinnati Reds games, but disguising it as natural-gas commodities purchase
    • Tricking IRS into thinking Enron building was haunted
    • Repeatedly selling Houston Bridge to gullible tourists
    • Trademarking phrase "Motherfucking Enron Bastards" and collecting dime every time it is used

  • Last but not least, a sweet and thoughtful gift for that special someone in your life: The Onion mug

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Happy Republican Earth Day

Bush gives Earth Day the finger
Via Jesus' General, the story of how King George celebrated Earth Day: by mountain biking through wilderness areas that are sensitive breeding grounds for endangered species. The Palm Springs Desert Sun has the full story:
the Clara Burgess trail is also among those monument managers ask people to avoid part of the year to prevent disrupting endangered Peninsular bighorn sheep.

The trail is one of about 10 in the monument under a "voluntary avoidance" program. People are asked to stay off the Clara Burgess trail from Jan. 1 to June 30 during the sheep lambing season, he said.

It was uncertain Sunday night if White House organizers accompanying President Bush knew about the "voluntary avoidance" program.

Yeah, sure. Somehow the President of the United States, plus his entire entourage of Secret Service dudes, simply slipped into the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument without anybody noticing. There's probably motorcades of black limos up there all the time.

More believable is they were fully aware of the "voluntary avoidance" program, but they slapped the managers on the back, had a nice big good-ol'-boy laugh together, and then did whatever the hell they wanted to anyway.

And if that's not a Republican way to spend Earth Day, I don't know what is.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Neil Young: "Impeach the Sombitch!"

Via This Modern World, a link to a good TV interview with Neil Young regarding his very shortly forthcoming album, "Living With War". More on the album in this Rolling Stone article:
just months after the release of his studio album Prairie Wind, the legendary singer-songwriter is returning with the incredibly politically charged Living With War. On the album, whipped up in just two angry weeks earlier this month, Young takes aim at the war in Iraq and President Bush -- through songs including the Bush-basher "Let's Impeach the President."

Living With War features what Young describes on his Web site as "metal folk protest" and "a metal version of Phil Ochs and Bob Dylan"

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Progressive Patriots' "W"

Via Wake Up Democracy!, a clever little video/commercial called "W".

Produced by Russ Feingold's Progressive Patriots Fund, it's obviously a work of fiction. It shows a president with a backbone and principles, and ends with this crazy assertion: "We can fight the terrorists without breaking the law or sacrificing our freedoms".

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Nuking Iran: Not Just Crazy and Wrong, But Stupid, Too

Via Bob Harris, an interesting Flash animation from the Union Of Concerned Scientists: The Nuclear Bunker Buster.

This 21st century filmstrip includes illustrative projections of how effective such an attack would be on deep underground facilities (hint: not at all), where the nuclear fallout would go (sorry about that, India! Our bad, Pakistan!), how chemical and biological stockpiles could be released rather than destroyed (irony is dead, and so are millions of innocent people!) and other happy happy fun info.

To recap this whole Iran plan: in addition to being a complete fucking disaster strategically and politically (see previous: How To Make The Iraq Quagmire Look Not So Bad), and being based on paranoid neocon fantasies dating from the 1930s (see Glenn Greenwald's Fighting All The Hitlers), it won't even work.

Is This A Good Idea?

Is this a good idea, evolutionarily speaking?

Living Longer For Dummies cover
Living Longer For Dummies

Update: Upon further discussion with people at work, it was decided that by the time in their lives that the dummies would be interested in reading this book, they would probably have already procreated, if they were going to. So, their dummy genes having already been passed on, the damage is done, and letting them live longer doesn't really impact the species any further.

However, ideas were put forth suggesting an alternative book, something like "Having An Absolute Blast For Dummies". It would be marketed to dummies who haven't yet procreated, and might feature chapters such as, "Motorcycle Helmets: Optional", "Tasty Tasty Tobacco", "Bungie-Jumping On The Cheap", "Triple-Scoop Cholestrol Bonanzas" and "Time-Saver: Drying Your Hair In The Tub".

Sunday, April 16, 2006

How To Make The Iraq Quagmire Look Not So Bad

By attacking Iran. Via This Modern World and Whiskey Bar, an op-ed in today's New York Times by Richard Clarke and Steven Simon, "Bombs That Would Backfire":
any United States bombing campaign would simply begin a multi-move, escalatory process. Iran could respond three ways. First, it could attack Persian Gulf oil facilities and tankers — as it did in the mid-1980's — which could cause oil prices to spike above $80 dollars a barrel.

Second and more likely, Iran could use its terrorist network to strike American targets around the world, including inside the United States. Iran has forces at its command that are far superior to anything Al Qaeda was ever able to field. The Lebanese terrorist organization Hezbollah has a global reach, and has served in the past as an instrument of Iran. We might hope that Hezbollah, now a political party, would decide that it has too much to lose by joining a war against the United States. But this would be a dangerous bet.

Third, Iran is in a position to make our situation in Iraq far more difficult than it already is. The Badr Brigade and other Shiite militias in Iraq could launch a more deadly campaign against British and American troops. There is every reason to believe that Iran has such a retaliatory shock wave planned and ready.

No matter how Iran responded, the question that would face American planners would be, "What's our next move?" How do we achieve so-called escalation dominance, the condition in which the other side fears responding because they know that the next round of American attacks would be too lethal for the regime to survive?

Bloodied by Iranian retaliation, President Bush would most likely authorize wider and more intensive bombing. Non-military Iranian government targets would probably be struck in a vain hope that the Iranian people would seize the opportunity to overthrow the government. More likely, the American war against Iran would guarantee the regime decades more of control.

Dear god. I can't believe this is actually, really in truly happening.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Republicans Decide It's Okay Now To Criticize Bush

Via Crooks and Liars, Glenn Greenwald of Unclaimed Territory has an excellent essay on AlterNet, "Gingrich Criticizes Bush, Aids Enemy". In it he busts Newt Gingrich and his ilk for trying to get away with criticizing Bush now that things are going so well, after creating a criticism-intolerant environment for the last five years:
The greatest evil of the last five years isn't that our government pursued disastrous and illegal policies, it's that the administration and its supporters attempted to immunize themselves from criticism for those actions, thus depriving our democracy of its greatest strength. To watch the people responsible for that dissent-quashing now stand up and voice the very criticisms they've long equated with treason is far too infuriating to celebrate. It is important to ensure that the people responsible for the indescribable mess our country is in on so many levels not be allowed to extricate themselves from responsibility. There has been one political faction that has run every part of our country for the last five years, and they are responsible for everything that has happened. We know who they are, and it is critically important that they not be permitted to play-act as a legitimate opposition.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Fun With College Republicans

I came across an especially good cartoon in my shiny new copy of the new Tom Tomorrow book: "Supporting The Troops - Featuring The 18 To 22-Year-Old Republican Think Tank Interns".

(I bought the book, and as other reviewers have said, the comics really are better back-to-back instead of a week apart. Well worth $10, even $15, trust me.)

This reminded me of something I'd seen recently on Jesus' General: Operation Yellow Elephant Bingo (be sure to read the instructions):

Operation Yellow Elephant Bingo

Then, just to help me out with this connection, another great and vaguely relevant post from Jesus' General just yesterday, as he recounts going to a Kos book-signing with his family in Olympia:
I approached the two senior seditionettes in attendance stealthily, but just as I was ready to yell "God Bless Our Leader" and bludgeon them down to the floor, one of them turned towards me, exposing me to a face marked with deep lines of cruelty and limitless depths of viciousness. That single look shot tazer darts of fear into my heart and paralyzed every muscle in my body. I felt like a statue, unable to move, even to take a cookie from the plate she offered. Thankfully she moved on quickly, offering her evil wares to others before noticing the Dark Stain of College Republican Valor that was spreading down from my crotchal area and forming a puddle on the floor around my shoes.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Windows on a Mac: Intel Freezes Over

When I first saw "Boot Camp", in which Apple will officially support running Microsoft Windows on a Mac, I felt ill. The thought of that OS on a beautiful Mac made me feel queasy, and I had to lie down. A coworker saying "so, Apple's getting into the clone market, huh?" didn't help my general level of nausea.

But then I realized that now my oath to never buy a computer other than Apple was clinched, even if I have to use Windows for work! Also, the possibility of having the company buy me a Mac for my next computer started to open up.

So I was already feeling better, and then I read Daring Fireball's Windows: The New Classic ("Classic" as in the Mac OS 8/9 "Classic Environment", not in the dictionary meaning of the word).
This is a move of supreme confidence — Apple relishes the comparison between Mac OS X and Windows XP, and Microsoft has shown enough of Vista via its widely-available beta seeds that Apple quite obviously isn’t afraid of that comparison, either.

Windows is so ubiquitous that the vast majority of Mac users are already quite familiar with it; I see no chance that Boot Camp is going to cause any Mac users to realize that they’ve been missing out on something better. But from the other side, Apple is confident that most Windows users who give Mac OS X a shot are going to prefer it — again, much in the same way that most long-time Mac users preferred Mac OS X to the old Mac OS.

So this is it, Windows people. Get ready - your next computer should be a Mac.

This software is still "beta", but it will be included in the next version of Mac OS X, 10.5 ("Leopard"). You can buy a Mac Mini for $600, and soon the iBook laptops will have Intel processors in them, too. I believe that once you go Mac, you'll never go back, but having this dual-boot ability is a nice piece-of-mind insurance policy to have. It is possible to have a computer that you not only don't hate, but that you love. Trust me on this one. Have I ever steered you wrong?

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Apr. 5 Onion

April fresh Onion.
  • Critics Blast Bush For Not Praying Hard Enough
    The White House Office of Communications, which has denied any wrongpraying, released transcripts of Bush's inner dialogues with God from May 12 through Oct. 22, 2005 and tried to paint the president as "very close" to the Almighty, saying he speaks with Him "regularly."

  • Tom DeLay To Pursue Corruption In Private Sector
    "I can say with a clear lack of conscience that, after 21 years of public disservice, I have done everything I could to the American people," DeLay said in a televised statement to constituents.

  • Infographic: New Religious Fiction
    • How Estelle Got Her Piety Back
    • 40 Nights On the Ark: An Erotic Memoir
    • Prejudice And Prejudice

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Couldn't Happen to a Nicer Bastard

You've heard, right? Sure you have. DeLay is OUT! Since you can't see me dancing today, I present instead a quick rehash of my favorite DeLay links.
  • 3/24/05 - Without DeLay
    The only partisan witch hunt underway is being carried out by the Republicans, who have trashed the ethics process to protect Delay and have retaliated against their own colleagues for admonishing Delay.

  • 4/13/05 - What Do You Think? Embattled Tom DeLay (Onion)
    "There's a big difference between the letter of the law and the spirit of the law. Sure, he broke both, but there's a big difference."

  • 4/27/05 - Guess What—It's Tom DeLay's Frisbee Now (Onion)
    Don't tell me the Washington Mall is the official property of the people of the United States. I am Washington! That's right... keep talking. You can talk until you're blue in the face for all I care—it's not going to get you this Frisbee back.

  • 5/5/05 - Tom DeLay Is Going DOWN
    ...I hope. His troubles are continuing, that's for sure.

  • 9/7/05 - Hurricane Tom
    Suppose Tom DeLay is heading to my 2nd grader's elementary school, carrying a machete in one hand and a spiked club mace in the other. His eyes are wild, his back is hunched, and he is growling an unending stream of obscenities, through which phrases like "blood, blood!", "mess them up" and "KILL!" are readily audible.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Delusion in Iraq and America

Via Talking Points Memo, an interesting contrast of how much we know about both sides of the Iraq invasion, noting that we know more about Hussein's strategies (or lack thereof) than we do of Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld's strategies (or lack thereof). In the New Yorker, "Deluded":
After the fall of Baghdad, three years ago, the United States military began a secret investigation of the decision-making within Saddam Hussein’s dictatorship. The study, carried out by the U.S. Joint Forces Command, drew on captured documents and interviews with former Baath Party officials and Iraqi military officers, and when it was completed, last year, it was delivered to President Bush. The full work remains classified... it is easy to imagine why the Administration might resist publication of the full study. The extracts describe how the Iraq invasion, more than any other war in American history, was a construct of delusion.

...extensive interviews with the Army and Marine generals and colonels who commanded the invasion show that they had almost as little faith in Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and his aides as their Iraqi counterparts had in Saddam and his sons.

The whole article is fascinating, and not long; read all, I entreat you. Back on TPM, Josh Marshall goes on to point out the ongoing craziness:
The president, his key advisors and their public defenders keep looking over the horizon to history's more positive verdict on their gamble. But there's little reason -- either from what we know of this war or the evolving view of past wars -- to think this adventure will be remembered as anything but a disaster.

And yet, only last month the country was knocked off the rails into a dingbat debate about whether things were actually bad in Iraq or whether the media was just telling America things were going badly and hiding all the good news.