“Hey, where are you from?”

Me:  lots of different places.  I was a Navy Brat, we moved around a lot.

Student:  I mean, like, where were you born?

Me:  In a naval hospital in Rhode Island.

Student:  Yeah, but… what race are you?

Me:  Doesn’t exist, but I’m pale as shit, so you can call me white if you want.

(this conversation actually happened)

Greens mocked widely

Actually, they’re getting thrashed to bits, over at Classical Values.  Check out the comments section for a laugh.

Quick, Smuggle my Brother an Oreo!

You know, iirc, all those trans-fats that the People’s Republic of California just banned under Ahnold… weren’t they produced because The Virtuous People were biotching about the dangers of saturated fats?

Trans fats occur naturally in small amounts in meat and dairy products. Most trans fats are created when vegetable oil is treated with hydrogen to create baked and fried goods with a longer shelf life.

So much for lard. What is Mexican food going to come to? Next time I head west, I swear I’m going to eat fatback on buttered toast in public.

Violations could result in fines of $25 to $1,000. Food items sold in their manufacturers’ sealed packaging would be exempt.

The bill’s author, Assemblyman Tony Mendoza, D-Artesia, said he hoped the legislation would lead to similar laws in other states.

Uh, don’t hold your breath, Mendoza. The “where California goes” strategy just went out the window the moment you allowed me to legally ship my brother a mass-manufactured Oreo cookie. The rest of us are going to be laughing our asses off at you guys over our bacon-and-sour-cream-covered hamburgers…

Putin, Putin…

You can’t play at both Caesar Augustus and Stalin, bay-bee.  You gotta pick one or another, not pretend to surrender power, and then pop off with monologues like this:

“We have a respected company, Mechel,” Putin said in introducing his subject.

“By the way, we invited the owner and director of the company, Igor Vladimirovich Zyusin, to today’s meeting, but he suddenly got sick. Meanwhile, it is known that in the first quarter this year the company exported raw materials abroad at half the domestic, and world, price. And what about the margin tax for the government?”

He added: “Of course, sickness is sickness, but I think Igor Vladimirovich should get better as quick as possible, otherwise we’ll have to send him a doctor.”

The writing’s been on the wall since the 90s, and just in case nobody’s noticed it, Putin just went over the letters in neon spray-paint.  Russia is a stalinist thugocracy, and at this point, anybody stupid enough to do business with them deserves what they get.

Next Big Future does rewrite on Heat Article

I got the NBF guys to do a rewrite on one of their articles, because science-literate liberal arts guys like myself still weren’t quite getting the picture.

What they rewrote handled the problem in spades, and pointed to stuff that I thought was only general-purpose good news, and demonstrated why it’s actually really exciting good news.  Seriously suggest the read, and adding these guys to your links/rss.

More liberals should have abortions

Wow, okay, Happycrow’s getting offensive.

But, wait a minute.  In the late 80s to early 90s, abortion was celebrated by many liberals.  The current “safe, legal, and rare” attitude on the pro-choice side is a serious change from the sorts of positions NOW used to push.  Something’s changed.  Is it the so-called “Roe Effect,” thus moving the country relatively towards a more conservative public consensus?  If I put “every woman should be able to have an abortion” on a t-shirt, nobody would notice me at a pro-choice rally.  But if I put the title of this blog post on a t-shirt, I’d be lucky to make it out of said rally with my teeth intact.  I think that’s b/c, deep down, people realize that there’s some truth in Taranto’s “Roe Effect” theory.

I was wondering about this because yesterday morning while I was sick of hearing NPR, I flipped over to WBAP and caught their conservative guy Mark Davis.  Not a bad guy, but apparently he regards evolution, and particularly, natural selection, as a theory shot full of holes.  Well, that resonated beautifully with his (relatively ignorant) caller… but we can also speculate, that not only are biological creatures subject to natural selection (a fool can notice that people with sufficiently strong birth defects are less likely to reproduce, for example– if the idea didn’t work, that sort of genetic diversity would make no difference), but that memes also effect selection.

Thus, Hollywood, one of the prime movers of public US liberal thinking, has seen the typical starlets suddenly experiencing a pro-natal “having kids is fashionable” phenomenon since the beginning of the century?

I was curious, b/c Davis is very much against the Fundamentalist LDS guys out at their ranch, and his pretentions to neutrality regarding these folks were paper-thin at best.  Had a couple hundred students from monogamous marriages been seized, he’d have gone nuclear.  So… are the conservatives right, and we should keep only to those ideals that we know promote stable, self-reproducing societies… or should we open up the floodgates, and allow people to do their own thing, secure in the knowledge that if they’re unhealthy…. they’ll be counter-survival and disappear all by themselves?

Bernanke and continued stealth inflation

Some continued dire warnings, and a possible way out.  Only one of which is, sadly, firing Bernanke.

Carbon Nanotubes dramatically increasing in both length and strength

According to Next Big Future, 30cm-long nanotubes are now being created, with meter-long jobs in the offing.

This is fantastic news, not merely for the space-elevator applications they’re watching like hawks, but for simple human construction.  We’re good at building suspension bridges and woven material, and with the sorts of strengths they’re discussing (how’s tripling the strength of polyvinyl tape by increasing the weight by 1%?) it shouldn’t be too long until we start seeing CNT in all sorts of things that AREN’T body armor, space elevators, and other such things.

Be careful what you wish for (war protestors)

(hat tip: Instapundit)

Be careful what you wish for when you define “freedom of expression” to include messing with other people. If, as Instapundit suggests, everything old is new again, something else from the ’60s just might catch on again, too…

lead pipes and anti-war protestors with broken knees.

Comic Book Movies You Don’t Take Kids to See

I wonder… what’s with all these suckers of the more serious genre finally making it to screen?

I mean, they said THIS “raised the bar…”

If Batman raises the bar and your critics and radio talk geeks are raving over its “seriousness and moral dimensons” … what do you call THIS? Besides, of course, a genre riff on Juvenal….


EDIT: Apparently these trailers are getting yanked off YouTube faster than they can actually get put up. So, rather than constantly putting up material you won’t get to see, voila, A LINK.

I gotta say, when they’re cranking out movies like this, Marvel’s brand just suffers terribly by comparison.

And can they explain how I magically lost my header image?

Argh.

EDIT:  That being the case, I will very likely give the blog a facelift soon, as I’m inserting more images than I used to, and this particular format’s locked-in width doth buggeth me.  There’s some wider landscapes I’d like to show off.

RSS feeds

Got convinced last night that going RSS is worth the time and energy.  Su-pOSEDLY I should be enabling RSS off this sucker… but am utterly failing to figure it out. Any ideas while I’m in CluelessLand?

How to get 14-year-olds to pay attention

I’m guessing having hot blondes giving micro-historical lectures PROBABLY could keep some attention….

Only in India: Come see our Thugs!

Actually, not Thugs, but Dacoits… see our beautiful terrain, and the thug-type people who make it dangerous… although I guess it would let us US tourist types see both terrain and talk guns while we were there.

Will probably get obscenely popular.

Medieval Baby Bottle Found in Old Novgorod

This is kewl.  Makes me wonder how many other modern conveniences they had in forms that generally didn’t survive because of the materials with which they were working…

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