Archive for January, 2005

Just Plain Nuts

Friday, January 28th, 2005

Okay, we all know the rule that if a foodstuff is advertised as “chocolatey”, you can safely bet that it contains not a speck of actual, bona-fide chocolate. Chocolate is “chocolate”. Artificial chocolate-like chemical flavoring is “chocolately”. ‘Natch.

So why does it suddenly worry me that Dunkin’ Donuts has changed the description of its former “Peanut” donut to “Nutty”?

Somethin’ ain’t right.

Horrible, Horrible, Awful, Terrible, Just Plain Wrong Wrong Wrong Link of the Day

Monday, January 24th, 2005

Put down the drink (i mean it…) have a seat, and check this out [Video]. [Update: that link doesn’t seem to be working. Try this one instead.] This is apparently an ad made for Volkwagon in Europe. It was rejected for some reason and never aired.

Hat Tip: Blackfive

Update: Several people have watched the linked video, and the reactions have ranged from laughing out loud (and my own personal near-spit-take) to… um… less enthusiastic responses. I think it’s quite funny, but as the post title suggests, it is very dark humor. If after watching it you feel the sudden need to rinse off your eyeballs, I offer you… another ad.

“First… kill all the lawyers.”*

Thursday, January 20th, 2005

Over the last few months since buying two new Kensington computer mice (one for office, one for home — both the same model) I’ve noticed a subtle but annoying flaw in how it works. This was not enough to chuck the thing in the trash or anything, but annoying nonetheless. Finally, a few weeks ago, I emailed the manufacturer’s tech support to report the issue. Their reply was, “It’s a problem with firmware; give us your address and we’ll send you a new one.” Long story short, I now have two brand new mice to replace the problem ones…. and yes, the problem is gone. Yay Kensington.

Here’s the funny bit. I don’t recall this being on the original ones I bought, but on the instruction booklet for the new mice, (yes, computer mice come with instructions….) there is a warning sticker that reads in part: “The cord on this product contains lead, a chemical known to the state of California to cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm.”

Somewhere, there is a lawyer who made them put that there. What the hell do they think I’m going to do… eat it???

Anyone who actually does anything with a mouse cord that could cause them to be significantly harmed by the lead contained therein has by definition done something so foolish that they should be locked up for the protection of society. The are simply too stupid to live free.

* Yeah, yeah, Shakespeare was actually complementing lawyers in the full quote… but I still thinks it’s worth considering.

The father of modern media?

Thursday, January 20th, 2005

Another link for y’all. But first a quick excerpt:

[D]uring the 1920’s. Sergei Eisenstein[…] and other Soviet filmmakers found themselves critically short of motion picture film (not to mention bread, toilet paper, electricity, and happiness â?? this was The Big State At Work, remember.) Sergei and his truly brilliant fellow filmmakers had nothing to do but play with editing by re-cutting old films. They just took some hoary old silent classics and re-cut them again and again, trying to make them say something different. They would also experiment, by taking a shot of a man staring into the camera with absolutely no expression on his face whatsoever, and intercutting it with pictures of a sumptuous feast. When shown to an unsuspecting audience, every person in the theater later dutifully reported on how hungry the man looked. When the exact same head shot was cut against gauzy photos of a beautiful young woman, the audience remarked on how lonely he seemed. And so on.

In this society, with the visual language we all now speak, a citizen who does not understand the power of the cut is likely to be taken, and taken badly, by the likes of Michael Moore[…].

Bill Whittle — on his site
EjectEjectEject.com

Bill most commonly writes pieces that are more opinion than this type of historical tidbit, but he’s always excellent. I could pretty much quote him all day. If you’re not reading his stuff, you should be.

An Open Letter to the ACLU

Friday, January 14th, 2005

The following is the text of a letter I just sent to the ACLU:

You website (at this address — http://www.aclu.org/FreeSpeech/FreeSpeechMain.cfm) states “It is probably no accident that freedom of speech is the first freedom mentioned in the First Amendment…”

Actually the first freedom mentioned in the First Amendment is the free exercise of religion. The elipses in your quote, which omits the religion clause, is flatly deceitful.

The sentence begins: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech….”

Is it just me, or does the ACLU rely on people’s ignorance to make its points?

Hat tip to The Smallest Minority for pointing out the descrepancy.

Clarification: where I directly quote the First Amendment at the end, I’m quoting the actual First Amendment, not the ACLU’s elipsis-edited (…) version.

Update (27 Jan 2005): They have corrected the statement on their site.

Please note…

Friday, January 7th, 2005

I am an atheist. Not an agnostic, or deist or any other variety of the “well… maybe…” school of religious thought. I am as sure that there are no “higher beings” as the Pope is that there most certainly is one, thankyouverymuch.

That being said, Michael Newdow can kiss my ass.

Update: With that in mind… a belated Merry Christmas (with a not nice language caution).

Update Jan 18: Gut Rumbles had a similar thought.