20 June 2012

Romney ad "misquotes" Obama

...by which I mean "lies," of course, but I'm just using the language that ABC did in their article on the blatant falsification of history in which Romney participated.

Yes, the article's from November, but I just read about it today. The internet is a weird place.

From the article!
The Romney video uses footage from Obama’s trip to New Hampshire in 2008. In the ad, text rolls over the screen reading, “On October 16, 2008, Barack Obama visited New Hampshire. He promised he would fix the economy. He failed.”

As video footage shows vacated business and foreclosed homes, Obama can be heard saying, “If we keep talking about the economy, we’re going to lose.”

But the ad does not make clear that in the speech Obama was actually quoting an aide to his Republican opponent at the time,  Sen. John McCain.

The Romney campaign did not deny that it took the president’s words out of context and even provided Obama’s full quote in a press release accompanying the ad: “Senator McCain’s campaign actually said, and I quote, if we keep talking about the economy, we’re going to lose.”
Yeah. So you've taken a quote that was from a McCain aide, gotten a recording of Obama saying it, and put it in Obama's mouth. Good freaking job.

Family values, my ass.

09 June 2012

Loki in my Pocket like Grains of Sand

We're plotting to steal time itself from you.... We're going to spike it to the floor as it slips by. And just as you come over to see why it's so still, we'll pull it out from under you--and send you spinning off around the galaxy's edge. We're planning to pluck all the best stars out of the sky and stuff them in our pockets... so that when we meet you once again and thrust our hands deep inside to hide our embarrassment, our fingertips will smart on them, as if they were desert grains, caught down in the seams, and we'll smile at you on your way to a glory that, for all our stellar thefts, we shall never be able to duplicate.

  - Samuel Delany, Stars in my Pocket like Grains of Sand

08 June 2012

#ShellFail was intentional?

So, as it turns out, the video from the Shell Oil party that I linked to yesterday wasn't actually the kind of guerrilla video that I thought it was - it was a video made by The Yes Men, whose previous "hijinks" have been among my favorite culture-jamming operations of the last several years.

Making-of and explanation (I really should have recognized Dorli in the original video!) -

07 June 2012

28 Days Later: Wisconsin Recall Edition

Just something that I ran across today that I felt was worth sharing.

From the city of Milwaukee's Voting Information Guide:

Any person registering to vote within the 20 days preceding an election (or after the close of registration) must provide an acceptable proof of residence document as listed below.


You may register and vote at your voting site on any Election Day. To determine your voting site, click http://itmdapps.ci.mil.wi.us/electedreps/electrep.jsp and enter your voter registration address.

Any person registering to vote and voting on Election Day must have lived at their current address for at least 28 days before the election with no present intent to move and must provide an acceptable proof of residence document from the list below.
So that set me to thinking. When was the University of Wisconsin's graduation?

Answer: May 18, 19, and 20. Which is to say, less than 28 days ago.

Which is to say, if you're one of the (heavily left-leaning) many thousands of people who graduated from the University of Wisconsin and then moved (like, out of a dorm, back with your parents, anything), you weren't allowed to register to vote on election day.

Gotta say: that kind of sucks. Unsurprising, but it still sucks.

Shell launch party goes wrong

Via RawStory, a Shell Oil party at the Space Needle (hey, that's my neck of the woods!) just went amazingly, horribly, hilariously wrong.

Basically, they're about to set up two new drilling platforms in the Arctic. As part of their celebration, they set up a little bitty model oil rig to dispense drinks.

It's a metaphor. Or it turned into one when they, first, couldn't get it to work, and then couldn't get it to stop squirting drinks everywhere.

The clip is also brilliant because of the way Shell handled the incident - trying to take the phone of the guy who was filming it, then throwing him out. Video!

06 June 2012

Four proposed collective nouns

A barrie of pansexuals.

(also considered: an agenda, a cuddle, a joy)

an affliction of casual UFC fans

(also considered: a testosterone, a tribal armband tattoo, a situation)

a no, really, go ahead, it's fine, of Seattleites

(also considered: a passivity, a spandex, a latte)

a pretension of collective nouns

(also considered: a meta, a mobius, a blogger)

...and three things that need collective nouns but don't yet have them settled, for which I'd welcome ideas:

- recovering religious kids
- English graduate students, or, heck, graduate students in general
- hardcore Whedonites

Bradbury lives on (line)

The One Who Waits
I live in a well. I live like smoke in a well. Like vapor in a stone throat. Overhead I see the cold star of night and morning, and I see the sun. And sometimes I sing old songs of this world when it was young. How can I tell you what I am when even I don't know? I cannot.
It fell to the floor, an exquisite thing, a small thing that
could upset balances and knock down a line of small
dominoes and then big dominoes and then gigantic dominoes,
all down the years across Time.  Eckels'~ mind whirled.  It
_couldn't_ change things.  Killing one butterfly couldn't be _that_
important!  Could it?
The Veldt
The nursery was  silent. It was  empty  as a jungle  glade at  hot high
noon. The  walls  were blank  and two dimensional.  Now, as George and Lydia
Hadley stood in  the center of the room, the walls  began to purr and recede
into  crystalline  distance,  it  seemed, and  presently  an  African  veldt
appeared, in three  dimensions, on  all  sides, in color  reproduced to  the
final pebble and bit of straw.
 All Summer in a Day 
It had been raining for seven years; thousand upon thousands of days compounded and filled from one end to the other with rain, with the drum and gush of water, with the sweet crystal fall of showers and the concussion of storms so heavy they were tidal waves come over the islands.  A thousand forests had been crushed under the rain and grown up a thousand times to be crushed again.
 Fahrenheit 451

Montag felt the slow stir of words, the slow simmer. And when it came to his turn, what could he say, what could he offer on a day like this, to make the trip a little easier? To everything there is a season. Yes. A time to break down, and a time to build up. Yes. A time to keep silence and a time to speak. Yes, all that. But what else. What else? Something, something...

01 June 2012

Hackers! OH NOES!

I thought I liked Gizmodo. I mean, they're not the most thoughtful site, but, for a young and somewhat tech-literate (I SAID SOMEWHAT) person like me, it's nice to have that kind of blog up.

Then they pull some ish like this hit piece against Anonymous.

For about a year, Anonymous has been the Internet's greatest spectacle: raucous hacks, federal takedowns, scheming, betrayal and giggles. It's hard not to be entertained by the nihilistic marauders—unless they're threatening your life and children.

This is the other side of Anon.
Really, Gizmodo? That's what you're going to go with? That's what you're going to lead off your article with, under a headline that says "This Is What Happens When Anonymous Tries to Destroy You"? Because, to me, the information a few paragraphs down provides just a little bit of nuance to this "hackers attacked my kids" story you're trying to lead with:
Emick took her hacking background and close ties to Anonymous' core and spun them into a business: Backtrace Security. Backtrace, now operating under a different name, specializes in what you might call tattling. Snitching. Ratting people out. Emick expertly collects insider contacts, dossiers, and informants to use against Anonymous. Her most notable colleague, she says, is the FBI, but she caters to other undisclosed enemies of Anon as well. These clients remain secret. It's a simple business plan: she digs up the dirt and sells it.
You catch that? This isn't some innocent lady that a bunch of script kiddies just decided to attack. SHE'S SELLING THEM OUT TO THE F*CKING COPS. That makes her a legitimate target. The Enemy. She's a professional snitch, and she's using the personal connections she made while she was an Anon to make money by getting her old friends arrested.

But do you feel like emphasizing that, Gizmodo? Noooo... you just want to talk about how TERRIBLE it is that this pretty young lady is having people make threats against her on the internet.
The menacing calls are just the start, Emick explains, her voice surprisingly free from—or entirely dulled by—fear. "There's nothing stopping them. They feel like they have the right to do anything they want to anyone who gets in their way." What they want, in this case, is to hurt her and her family. Or at least to jabber at length about maybe doing it.

Jen Emick makes this harder. Jen's gotta go. So let's make her life hell until she quits.
See, the problem with Gizmodo's article is that it's portraying Anons as a bunch of mindless attack dogs who're going after this girl for no reason. "Jen Emick makes this harder", the article imagines them saying, as though they're up to some terrible scheme.

"This" means "not getting your personal information sold to the FBI by an old friend."

Funny how, when you put it that way, them attacking her makes a lot of sense.