“Here’s that bad advice you were hoping for” is a Tumblr that picks out letters to advice columns (as well as direct requests from readers) and writes scathing, hilarious responses:… (Image: Free Advice, a Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike (2.0) image from swanksalot’s photostream)
To quote the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy (one of my favorite online resources): “Almost every major figure in the history of philosophy has proposed a theory, but after 2,500 years of discussion there has been little consensus about what constitutes humor.”…Considering what we know about MacFarlane’s politics – he’s a liberal, an Obama donor, a supporter of LGBT rights, etc. — it’s unlikely that he actually intended to come off as a sexist boor who was belittling women. Indeed, it’s possible he intended quite the opposite – but as any grad student in literary theory could tell you, artistic intention isn’t that important. His shtick was fundamentally confusing: What kind of comedy was the boob song – juvenile and sexist mockery, or institutional parody? Or both at once? And who was its intended target? Worst of all, the confusion evidently struck many viewers, especially women, as profoundly unfunny.
You have to give the Republican party credit. Faced with a down economy and a vulnerable incumbent, the GOP has managed to put together not only an incredibly mediocre field of candidates, but also a nominating process that seems to have been designed by angry ferrets on crystal meth. It is an altogether remarkable parlay.
Take, for example, the events over the weekend in Missouri. A while back, Rick Santorum won a non-binding primary in that state and the problem with non-binding primaries is that they’re not, well, binding. Consequently, the parceling out of delegates — which is, after all, the point of the entire exercise — was left to local Republican caucuses. And, while all politics is indeed local, it does not necessarily follow that all politics is sane. I know from following the Republican presidential candidates that the soul of America is in its small towns full of white people where reason and good old common sense prevail. And, when it doesn’t, well, hell, just call in the law.…
An off-duty police officer, hired as security, eventually filed a trespassing complaint against the Paul supporters and notified on-duty police in the area municipality of St. Peters, who, along with police from other jurisdictions, arrested two Paul supporters and ended the caucuses early. A joint-jurisdictional police helicopter arrived on the scene. Kipers said about 10 officers arrived in total. “Two people were arrested for trespassing after receiving numerous warnings to leave the school property,” the St. Peters police said in a press release. “Both subjects were transported to St. Peters Justice Center where they were booked for Trespassing and released on a summons.”
“Well, he’s just lying,” Frank told MSNBC’s Chris Matthews on Thursday. “It is, of course, lobbying.”
He added: “He is clearly the highest paid historian in American history. People complain if you go into the humanities, you don’t make as much money, but this may do a lot for that career path.”
Gingrich has repeatedly accused Frank of helping to cause the subprime mortgage crisis by failing to stop Freddie Mac from loading up on bad loans while serving on the House Financial Services Committee. But he defended himself on Thursday, blaming Republicans for turning a blind eye to reforming the mortgage giant during their decade-plus in the majority.
“If Tom DeLay was taking my advice during the period when I was in the minority, Bill Clinton wouldn’t have been impeached, we wouldn’t have gone to war in Iraq, and he wouldn’t have gone on the dance show,” he said.
Frank brought up Gingrich’s recent comments that since the payments were handled by his firm, the Gingrich Group, he couldn’t recall all the details about them.
“Frankly, I thought the ‘Gingrich Group’ were his wives,” he said in a jab at the thrice-married Republican.
The comedy routine continued as Matthews brought up a recent interview with former lobbyist and convicted felon Jack Abramoff’s in which he said Gingrichs was “engaged in the exact kind of corruption that America disdains.”
“Don’t you mean ‘historian’ Jack Abramoff?” Frank deadpanned.
Frank said Gingrich’s anger over his and Dodd’s role in the financial meltdown was absurd given that Republicans were in charge of the House and — excerpt for a brief period — Senate, from 1995 to 2007.He noted that he worked on reform legislation on mortgage in his first year as chair in 2007.
“It’s interesting, the charge is failure to stop Newt Gingrich and Tom Delay from deregulating,” he said. “This notion we caused the problem that started while they were in charge even by Gingrich’s standards is very odd.”
Santorum by and large stayed on message but was tripped up a bit when a student asked him if he knew that the choice of his slogan, “Fighting to make America America again,” was borrowed from the “pro-union poem by the gay poet Langston Hughes.””No I had nothing to do with that,” Santorum said. “I didn’t know that. And the folks who worked on that slogan for me didn’t inform me that it came from that, if it in fact came from that.”
Though walking down lower Broadway near Wall Street, I did see a not uncommon New York City street scene with a man pulling down his pants and underwear and adjusting his clothing naked while everyone just hurried by. Given it was so close to Wall Street, I also took it for a metaphor for what the country’s financial center has done to the average person.
That pill-popping, boy-crazy nincompoop Ayn Rand has got a lot to answer for. Indeed, it’s not too much of a stretch to say that we owe at least part of the recent economic crisis to her and her philosophy of Objectivism, since former Fed chief Alan Greenspan was a lifelong disciple of both. The two first met in the ’50s. Back then, a gang of acolytes, calling themselves the Collective, used to gather at Rand’s apartment on East 36th Street every Saturday night so they could tell each other how smart they all were. Along came Greenspan one evening, shy and somber.
America has two national budgets, one official, one unofficial. The official budget is public record and hotly debated: Money comes in as taxes and goes out as jet fighters, DEA agents, wheat subsidies and Medicare, plus pensions and bennies for that great untamed socialist menace called a unionized public-sector workforce that Republicans are always complaining about. According to popular legend, we’re broke and in so much debt that 40 years from now our granddaughters will still be hooking on weekends to pay the medical bills of this year’s retirees from the IRS, the SEC and the Department of Energy.
Why Isn’t Wall Street in Jail?
Most Americans know about that budget. What they don’t know is that there is another budget of roughly equal heft, traditionally maintained in complete secrecy. After the financial crash of 2008, it grew to monstrous dimensions, as the government attempted to unfreeze the credit markets by handing out trillions to banks and hedge funds. And thanks to a whole galaxy of obscure, acronym-laden bailout programs, it eventually rivaled the “official” budget in size — a huge roaring river of cash flowing out of the Federal Reserve to destinations neither chosen by the president nor reviewed by Congress, but instead handed out by fiat by unelected Fed officials using a seemingly nonsensical and apparently unknowable methodology.
The budget plan that Budget Committee Chair Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) has put forward for the House Republicans is truly stunning. It takes the war on America’s middle class not to the next level but about three levels down the road.
There’s something we should start with, though, when we think about this budget. And that’s where we are now. Mark Sumner points us to this graph:
That’s the deficit, and that big orange stripe, the one getting wider by the year, is how much of the deficit the Bush tax cuts are creating.
Apple Inc. has added a do-not-track privacy tool to a test version of its latest Web browser for keeping customers’ online activities from being monitored by marketers.
The tool is included within the latest test release of Lion, a version of Apple’s Mac OS X operating system that is currently available only to developers. The final version of the operating system is scheduled to be released to the public this summer. Mentions of the do-not-track feature in Apple’s Safari browser began to appear recently in online discussion forums and on Twitter.
The move by the Cupertino, Calif., company leaves Google Inc. as the only major browser provider that hasn’t yet committed to supporting a do-no-track capability in its browser, called Chrome. Microsoft Corp. and Mozilla Corp. both offer do-not-track features in their latest browsers.
Funny tale from a former professional food critic, Steve Silberman, which begins:
It’s easy to imagine that being a restaurant critic would be one of the best jobs on Earth — particularly when millions of people are eager to churn out lengthy reviews for free on sites like Yelp and Chowhound.
As someone who was the food critic for a glossy magazine in San Francisco in the 1980s and quit, however, I can tell you that being a roving palate-for-hire is a mixed blessing. While dining out is one of life’s most enduring pleasures (and is certainly a rare privilege on a planet where one in six people are starving), having to eat in restaurants several nights a week, while manufacturing an opinion about every bite, can get to be a drag.
Of course at first, being a critic in one of the great restaurant cities on Earth felt like getting paid to have sex with someone you love.
takes a detour through some well told anecdotes, and leads to a moment I can relate to:
I returned just as the chirpy waiter brought the coup de grâce, which looked like evidence from a crime scene: a dish of angry red flesh with a knob of pale bone jutting out of it. This, apparently, was my “grilled veal chop with wild forest mushrooms.”
I had ordered the chop medium-rare, but it arrived bleu, as the French say; ultra-rare, chilly in the center (calf sashimi, if you will), with crimson blood pooling on top, drowning the chanterelles, porcini, Hen O’ The Woods or whatever they were in the unmistakable taste of pennies: copper-laden hemoglobin. This was like veal à la Dexter.
Having only recently re-embraced meat-eating, it was as if all the gluttonous karma of the West took its revenge on a lapsed vegetarian in a single meal. I feared that if I tried to choke down all that raw meat, I’d end up strangling — spewing bloody chunks of calf, clots of cream, and skeins of raw fettucine across the starched tablecloth as a horrified busboy tried to administer the Heimlich maneuver.
In 1964, Lyndon Johnson needed pants, so he called the Haggar clothing company and asked for some. The call was recorded (like all White House calls at the time), and has since become the stuff of legend. Johnson’s anatomically specific directions to Mr. Haggar are some of the most intimate words we’ve ever heard from the mouth of a President.
We at Put This On took the historic original audio and gave it to animator Tawd Dorenfeld, who created this majestic fantasia of bungholiana.
In “The Soul of A Man,” director Wim Wenders looks at the dramatic tension in the blues between the sacred and the profane by exploring the music and lives of three of his favorite blues artists: Skip James, Blind Willie Johnson and J. B. Lenoir. Part history, part personal pilgrimage, the film tells the story of these lives in music through an extended fictional film sequence (recreations of ’20s and ’30s events – shot in silent-film, hand-crank style), rare archival footage, present-day documentary scenes and covers of their songs by contemporary musicians such as Shemekia Copeland, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Garland Jeffreys, Chris Thomas King, Cassandra Wilson, Nick Cave, Los Lobos, Eagle Eye Cherry, Vernon Reid, James “Blood” Ulmer, Lou Reed, Bonnie Raitt, Marc Ribot, The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Lucinda Williams and T-Bone Burnett.
Former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr tweeted on Thursday that he is planning to write an autobiography. According to Marr, no deal has been made but he has been approached with a serious offer to pen a tell-all about his time in the Smiths.
How’s this for true grit? Famously combative, alcoholic, and drug-addled filmmaker Sam Peckinpah (The Wild Bunch, Straw Dogs) is, as Chevy Chase might joke, “still dead” (he passed away in 1984 at the age of 59) — but that doesn’t mean Bloody Sam can’t make a comeback. Vulture has learned exclusively that producer Al Ruddy (The Godfather, Million Dollar Baby) recently unearthed a script for a Western called The Texans that Peckinpah wrote in 1980 but never got around to making.
Antonio McDyess is the chillest chill bro in the Association. He’s Serge Gainsbourg, stubbled, disheveled, and in love. McDyess is the serpentine rise of smoke from Tom Waits’ cigarette. He’s Chet Baker’s My Funny Valentine—the especially long version that forgets you’re listening. Antonio McDyess is all these things and a Quitman smile.
Orson Welles and I were talking one time about the relative merits of John Ford and Howard Hawks at their best, and finally Welles summed it up: “Hawks is great prose; Ford is poetry.” There haven’t really been very many poets in pictures, but the one pretty much everybody agrees about now is the Frenchman Jean Renoir. He was also Orson’s favorite director—as he is mine—and Ford was so impressed by Renoir’s Grand Illusion (l937) that he wanted to remake it in English. Luckily, studio-head Darryl Zanuck told him to forget it; he would “just fuck it up.”
I was renting a two bedroom condo by the beach with my son. It had all the comforts and conveniences of home. Nice furniture, a short walk to the beach and close to work. Then my son moved out on his own for the first time. He left his cat, Pepper, with me because he couldn’t take it with him. I didn’t like cats but I agreed to keep him. I wasn’t used to being alone and I guess Pepper wasn’t either.
We slowly began to get along. A couple months went by and I found out Pepper was pregnant. Oh great, now what? She had five kittens. I wanted to give them away because I didn’t want my beautiful home destroyed, but my son told me they had to stay with their mother for 8 weeks. Over that time I learned that every cat had his own unique personality and it wasn’t long before the kittens were swinging from my curtains. I didn’t care. Something had changed… I didn’t want to give them up.
But with six cats, complaints started from the condo owner and the neighbors. I knew I had to look for other places to go. They weren’t safe in the neighborhood. I found a B.B. lodged in the side of one of my cats and another was bitten by a pitbull that I know was set loose on purpose. Something had to be done. I wasn’t sure what to do at first, so I built a shed in my son’s yard and lived in it for a while. Then I found an advertisement in the paper from a realtor offering five acre partials on a tree farm; owner financing, low money down and low monthly payments… the problem was that it was 100 miles west of Jacksonville. I drove out to see it and I loved it.
Over the next months I bought five more partials. I now have 25 acres. I cleared a small area and bought an office trailer as a shelter for my cats. I put in a pet door and padded shelves for them. We moved out there in November of 2003, the day after Thanksgiving. By that time I had 11 cats. I had taken in abandoned and stray cats from the neighborhood and areas that I work as a contractor. I had 22 cats by the spring of 2004. I moved the shed out to the property and made a little cabin out of it. I thought it would be for me, but many of my cats wanted to sleep next to me… so I moved back into the office trailer where we had more room.
How many of these cables, rather than being the unvarnished facts which reveal the public lies are actually another layer of lies from bureaucrats trying to appease their bosses? It’s funny how transparency can reveal all sorts of unexpected things isn’t it? If only there were professional people who gather facts and research issues and interview subjects who could be called upon to investigate such things.
SOUTHLAKE, Texas—Police officer Ric Salas is mounting a sting operation to catch a gang of vandals terrorizing this affluent Dallas suburb.
His plan: lure them with corn, trap them in a pen—and avoid their pointy tusks.
The police officer is on feral-pig patrol, charged with fighting back the stout, smart, snouted invaders that are tearing up flower beds and street medians in search of roots and grubs. One evening recently, they dined at—and trashed—the parking lot of a Verizon office building.
Wild pigs, descendants of animals brought by the Spanish conquistadors, have foraged in Texas for centuries and have long been a pest on ranches. But as cities and suburbs swallow up more land, they are becoming an urban nuisance as well.
Eradication methods common in rural Texas, such as shooting feral pigs from helicopters, don’t lend themselves to a more urban setting. So police departments and animal-control officers are trying new ways to stymie the wily wild swine, methodically tracking the marauders’ hoofprints and setting up night-vision cameras to monitor their movements.
I think it was Michael Eisner, the head of Disney at the time, who was quoted as saying, ‘He’s ruining the movie.’ Upper-echelon Disney-ites, going, What’s wrong with him? Is he, you know, like some kind of weird simpleton? Is he drunk? By the way, is he gay? … And so I actually told this woman who was the Disney-ite … ‘But didn’t you know that all my characters are gay?’ Which really made her nervous.”
On the commentary track of the 2004 “2 Disc Special Edition” DVD for the film Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life, Terry Jones stated that to his knowledge Ireland had banned only four movies, three of which he had directed: The Meaning of Life, Monty Python’s Life of Brian and Personal Services.
Lawmakers Alin Popoviciu and Cristi Dugulescu of the ruling Democratic Liberal Party drafted a law where witches and fortune tellers would have to produce receipts, and would also be held liable for wrong predictions, a measure which was part of the government’s drive to increase revenue.
Romania’s Senate voted down the proposal Tuesday. Popoviciu claimed lawmakers were frightened of being cursed.
I know it is an ad for a probably inane film, but I still laughed.
Shot with my Hipstamatic for iPhone
Lens: John S
From IMDb: Four guys, one camera, and their experience chronicling the exhilarating and terrifying rite of passage: losing your virginity. As these guys help their buddy get laid, they’ll have to survive friends with benefits, Internet hookups, even porn stars during an adventure that proves why you will always remember your first
There are days when I miss working in an office with other people, and not just with cats and computers.
Listen up. I know the shit you’ve been saying behind my back. You think I’m stupid. You think I’m immature. You think I’m a malformed, pathetic excuse for a font. Well think again, nerdhole, because I’m Comic Sans, and I’m the best thing to happen to typography since Johannes fucking Gutenberg.
I’d love to print this entire rant and leave it out by the coffee machine. Sigh.
People love me. Why? Because I’m fun. I’m the life of the party. I bring levity to any situation. Need to soften the blow of a harsh message about restroom etiquette? SLAM. There I am. Need to spice up the directions to your graduation party? WHAM. There again. Need to convey your fun-loving, approachable nature on your business’ website? SMACK. Like daffodils in motherfucking spring.
When people need to kick back, have fun, and party, I will be there, unlike your pathetic fonts. While Gotham is at the science fair, I’m banging the prom queen behind the woodshop. While Avenir is practicing the clarinet, I’m shredding “Reign In Blood” on my double-necked Stratocaster. While Univers is refilling his allergy prescriptions, I’m racing my tricked-out, nitrous-laden Honda Civic against Tokyo gangsters who’ll kill me if I don’t cross the finish line first. I am a sans serif Superman and my only kryptonite is pretentious buzzkills like you.