Jun 17, 2013
In Texas, we have all kinds of restaurants that specialize in cooking the fat bird, such as Chick-fil-A, Church's Chicken, Chicken Express, the previously mentioned KFC and Popeye's, Raisin Cane's (which has delicious sauce), Babe's (my favorite), and many others. Now everyone has their favorite restaurant, but honestly, besides the sauce, I don't find much difference in the frying. It's all artery clogging nightmare of fowl, but it's so tasty many will gladly put their health on hold to grab a seasoned bite.
What differentiates the chains is the spices and sauce, and while some are more appealing than others, the brand loyalty some of their customers have is akin to European nationalism. Now some, such as Babe's, offers a great atmosphere and other delicious food to those who grow tired of taking years off their heart (and they serve RC cola instead of Coke or Pepsi interestingly enough). Still there's little substitute for fried chicken, something Texas takes regional pride in, and no yankee establishment can live up to.
"The food in Europe is pretty disappointing. I like fried chicken. But other than that Europe is great." - Donnie Wahlberg
Jun 10, 2013
Then Obama comes, offering change and wisdom and ponies. While he in my opinion hasn't been a particularly bad President, he hasn't been all that effective in my opinion. Wall Street regulations remains the same as it did before the horrible crash of 08, Guantanamo Bay is still open for business, and Obama is having a hell of a time responding to the numerous accusations thrown at him by the GOP. Still, with all the good things he's done, such as health care, DPRK, and other things too numerous to mention here, I'm sort of happy with how he's managed the country.
And then comes the phone tracking data, which no one is happy with. I understand the need to fight terrorism as much as anyone, but never at the expense of our values. As Americans we were outraged to find out torture was used against suspects, and we should feel the same outrage when the government collects our information without a warrant or our consent.
Not only did he come out and try to defend the indefensible, but much like Bush, he seemed to try and talk down to his critics, which is just insane.
Sadly though, nothing will be done about this as the opposition party is still trying to stick him to Benghazi after failing numerous times, and they still have a hard on for Fast and Furious.
When someone criticizes Obama, the knee jerk reaction at this point is to think them a conspiracy theory freak, but soon more people from the left will have to accept that this behavior is not acceptable, and will have to put the blame exactly where it belongs, at the White House.
I'm kind of sad about this as I had high hopes for Obama, but not shockingly he disappointed me/us. Yes I know, you should contain your shock that a politician can be anything but excellent at his job.
“Is it just me, or is secret blanket surveillance obscenely outrageous?” - Al Gore
Jun 5, 2013
A few years back a group of Muslims decided to plan a community center in lower Manhattan. For whatever reason (bigotry) people were upset about this as it brought up painful memories of the 9/11 attacks, and felt that followers of Islam shouldn't have a community center in New York. Mislabeling it as "The Ground Zero Mosque", people wrongly believed a Muslim place of worship was being built across the street from where the World Trade Center once stood, and took offense to that for reasons unclear (bigotry). Most people had no idea the planned community center is about two blocks away, nor really cared because big scary brown people are infiltrating Merica and implementing Sharia Law so severe I can't walk down main street without a guy named Mohammad trying to cut off my wiener, because I don't require a foot washing station at my place of work. Controversy arose, and still does, because of this issue that should've never been one.
Years before that, a landmark study showed that domestic violence was highest during the Super Bowl. Yes women and children were at greater risk of being beaten by some lite beer guzzling jackass who gets their frustrations out by beating up his family over a game. Since all football fans are nothing but wife beating slack-jawed louses, it only made sense, and people the country over believed it.
Problem was, the study never existed, and women and children are at no greater risk for domestic violence during the Super Bowl than any other day of the year. Actually if they're going to get their asses beat, Christmas and Thanksgiving is the most likely day for a whooping. Yes the day we honor the birth of Lord and Savior is one of the highest days for domestic violence.
The truth was told, football fans are no more harmful than anyone else, including hockey, UFC, and even soccer fans, but no one wanted to hear the truth. The fraudulent non-existent study was called out for what it was, and the country collectively said "yeah, but I still think women are more at risk, because I saw a guy get mad at a game once, and he looked like he was going to hit somebody, but he didn't, but people who get mad always smack others around," or something equally as insipid. People wanted to believe that men are nothing but oafish brutes who want nothing more than to hurt females, and those who happen to enjoy the sport of football are the worst of the lot, so everyone remembers this bullshit, while the truth was widely ignored.
Lately I've been hearing a lot about the Monsanto Protection Act, which according to the illiterate sources, is all about protecting Monsanto from being prosecuted for being all evil. Yes Monsanto, the company that makes genetically modified foods that cause cancer, creates toxic chemicals that cause autism, and the company that sues small farmers out of business and takes over their land to grow franken berries that don't taste as good as the ones out of the farmers' market you claim you shop at, but you don't. But I digress...
So what is the Monsanto protection bill according to those who coined the phrase? Well according to groups like Food Democracy Now, the bill protects the biotech agricultural giant from litigation while they continue to grow foods that'll make us all sterile and the human race will die off, because that's what they think Monsanto wants, and killing off the world's population would be such a stellar business model.
So what does the bill actually say? Well pretend you just read the following:
Sec. 735. In the event that a determination of non-regulated status made pursuant to section 411 of the Plant Protection Act is or has been invalidated or vacated, the Secretary of Agriculture shall, notwithstanding any other provision of law, upon request by a farmer, grower, farm operator, or producer, immediately grant temporary permit(s) or temporary deregulation in part, subject to necessary and appropriate conditions consistent with section 411(a) or 412(c) of the Plant Protection Act, which interim conditions shall authorize the movement, introduction, continued cultivation, commercialization and other specifically enumerated activities and requirements, including measures designed to mitigate or minimize potential adverse environmental effects, if any, relevant to the Secretary’s evaluation of the petition for non-regulated status, while ensuring that growers or other users are able to move, plant, cultivate, introduce into commerce and carry out other authorized activities in a timely manner: Provided, That all such conditions shall be applicable only for the interim period necessary for the Secretary to complete any required analyses or consultations related to the petition for non-regulated status: Provided further, That nothing in this section shall be construed as limiting the Secretary’s authority under section 411, 412 and 414 of the Plant Protection Act.
That's a lot of legal mumbo jumbo. Well since I'm sure you've read and comprehended everything that was just copied and pasted, I shouldn't have to explain what it means, but I will anyways.
It means that if someone planted a crop with a seed that went through years of approvals and red tape to be able to be put unto the soil, and somehow someone notices the paperwork was poor or that their was some oversight on the government's part, the farmer, whether thay be some big giant monolithic destroy the world corporation, or a simple resident of Hooterville, can petition a judge to allow their once legal crop to not be destroyed until it's deemed legal again.
So let me try to put it another way. You're building a home, and after the nightmare of getting the proper permits together and hassling with all the fees and ridiculous red tap, you start construction. Suddenly someone at the office of "Make Home Builders Die of Combustible Hemmroids" (MHBDCH) sees they missed something on the paperwork, and decided your yet to be completed abode was in violation of the law and God almighty and must be torn down in ceremonious fashion. This bill will allow you to go and front of a judge and explain why you shouldn't suffer because of gross incompetence of underpaid civil servants and get to keep building your home until sufficient evidence arises that should do otherwise. The same would apply if someone is suing you for building your home for whatever reason, and you can plea to the court to not have your place destroyed until the case is settled.
So that's it. Monsanto may be an evil corporation with their ridiculous patent lawsuits and what not, but seriously do you expect a corporation not to wield their muscle in order to make money? I mean it's in their very nature to turn a profit, for obvious reasons. Those entities exist for that reason alone, and if they can use the law to their advantage, well the public (YOU) allow it.
Still this Monsanto Protection Act is nonsense. It's a made up term by anti-Monsanto activists who know nothing about science, who are misguided about their GMO phobias, and who should be safely ignored. For whatever reason, anti-GMO fucktards have entered themselves uninvited into the progressive movement, and need to be removed, forcibly if needed.
Yes Monsanto may be crooked and is out to make a profit, just like every other corporation. No there's no evidence that GMOs are harmful, despite what one fraudulent study may say, and it's still wrong to brand this act as some sort of conspiracy with Obama being in bed with them, especially when it protects everyone. If someone is against the so called Monsanto Protection Act, then they're against all farmers, large and small.
You know what? The GMO Truthers have won, for no one will remember what the Monsanto Protection Act actually does, for instead they'll think big bad Barrack Hussein Obama is in bed with Satan's corporation, and they're out to poison your children. The truth will be swept under the rug, while the misinformation is widely spread thanks to your moronic Facebook friends and misguided and uneducated activists.
"Since 1997, we have only filed suit against farmers 145 times in the United States. This may sound like a lot, but when you consider that we sell seed to more than 250,000 American farmers a year, it’s really a small number. Of these, we’ve proceeded through trial with only eleven farmers. All eleven cases were found in Monsanto’s favor.
A very small number of farmers involved in patent infringement cases with Monsanto have sought publicity around their cases, and have characterized the company’s actions in a negative light. In some other situations, outside parties have portrayed particular cases negatively. We take exception to any misleading allegation of wrong-doing. Our employees and contractors respect our customers and their property" - Monsanto
Jun 4, 2013
Yes I saw Star Trek: Into Darkness, and since I had a lot of fun drafting the James Bond films after watching Skyfall I figured I'd tackle another long running movie franchise. So yeah, ranking the Star Trek movies from worst to best.
Star Trek: Insurrection: The crew of the Enterprise rebel against their superiors to save a race of people who don't get old or sick after somehow halting the aging process somewhere around 43. I've only seen this movie once, and there's a reason for that. I hated this movie. Hated every goddamn second of the miserable creation. The plot was completely nonsensical and would rank as one of the worst TNG episodes, but for reasons I can't fathom (cocaine), this was given the big screen treatment, and was so terrible I vowed never to see a TNG movie in the theater again.
Star Trek: Generations: Fans were ready to see Kirk and Piccard team together to save a planet who's inhabitants were never seen nor cared about by the audience. It's so easy to not like this movie as the villain's plan to destroy a star to somehow change the trajectory of some happiness space cloud so that he could whisk himself to play time land is absurd enough, but to use this nonsensical plot device to get Kirk and Piccard together in the least climatic way possible was a letdown for even the most forgiving of Star Trek fans. Everything failed in this movie, the attempts at comedy, the misfires when it tried to be tender, and the dissapointment everyone felt when the two greatest captains in the fictional universe joining forces to go fisticuffs with some unmemorable villain was too much to bear.
Star Trek: Nemisis: Piccard and the crew face an adversary so diabolical you won't recall a single thing about him once the credits roll. Now some would say this is the worst Star Trek film, and it's difficult to argue with them, but I don't think it's the worst of the TNG films. It happens to be the only Star Trek film I've never seen in the theatre, which is a dubious honor I know, and I've only seen it once, and if good fortune permits I'll never see it again. After the dismal release of this drek production on another Star Trek film wouldn't happen for many years.
Star Trek V: The Final Frontier: The original crew of the starship Enterprise take their geriatric asses on a search for the Lord almighty. Oh and Spock's brother appears as a tour guide on the quest. If anyone tells you they like this film, then it's a good sign they're wrong about everything related to cinema. It's not only the worst film featuring all of the original cast, it's one of the worst Star Trek films ever. A failure both critically and commercially, this William Shatner directed bomb would do well to be forgotten as it adds nothing to the series. I've heard many a fan try to make apologies for this miserable drek, but there are none. It is crap, pure unadulterated horse shit.
Star Trek: First Contact: The Enterprise goes back in time to fight the Borg, who are hell bent on taking over pre-24th century Earth. It's not so much that it's a bad film, but it's just disappointing considering that the Borg is a great villain, but didn't have much to do besides emote themselves through a hive queen, which is sillier than it sounds if you can believe it. The humor is so damn corny it just falls flat. The Piccard channeling Ahab subplot almost worked, but if they just toned it down a bit and made it more subtle it could've been compelling. It's the best out of the TNG films for sure, but that's saying very little.
Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home: Admiral Kirk leads his crew to San Fransisco circa the 80s to bring some whales back to the 23rd century to communicate with an alien probe that only speaks humpback and fuck I don't care. Sure, the plot is preposterous, and often times silly, but damn it it if I don't kind of like this film. It has a lot of charm and it's clear the actors are having a lot of fun with the script. Many fans hate this film, and it's not a conventional Star Trek film by any means, but it's fun and never takes itself too seriously.
Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country: The Federation and the Klingons try to make a peace accord, and obviously there has to conspiratorial forces trying to make that not happen. Nicholas Meyer's return to directing a Star Trek film after the crowd pleasing Wrath of Kahn was less than triumphant, but certainly not terrible. Sure this movie wasn't stellar by any means, but it's fun watching Christopher Plummer be a Klingon, and the acting is far superior than the script should've allotted for.
Star Trek III: The Search for Spock: Admiral Kirk and his associates risk everything to find and resurrect their friend Captain Spock. While I like this movie, it can be a real downer. The cast really started to show their age, and it seemed like it would be the end of the series when I first watched it. With the Enterprise blowing up, Kirk's son getting killed before he could establish a relationship with his father, and the grim locales this movie doesn't really uplift the spirits, but it has some real tension and Christopher Lloyd made a good Klingon.
Star Trek: The Motion Picture: The crew of the Enterprise go in search of a big scary space cloud that threatens Earth. I don't think fans really were screaming for this kind of adventure for Kirk and company in their first big screen outing, but I enjoyed it for a lot of reasons. It's ambitious, interesting, and very thoughtful; however slow and prodding it may be. Sure it could've used a few more action beats, and less long sweeping shots of a space entity and even the Enterprise herself, but it's still a wonder after all these years, and I still find myself enjoying it.
Star Trek: Into Darkness: Kirk goes after an evil man who does evil things, and finds all sorts of evilness lurking about. JJ Abrahms second outing as director for the newly rebooted franchise has been a successful one, and it kept the right balance of action and character development. Sure the third act had more than it's share of lame cop outs, but still it's entertaining as all get out. With a memorable villian and familiar characters that are likable as well as interesting, Star Trek: Into Darkness makes a great addition to this long running series.
Star Trek: After a many years absence from the cinemas, JJ Abrahms rebooted the franchise. Originally met with skepticism, his creation became a solid hit for fans and non alike. Combining elements that made Star Trek so endearing, such as relatable and fun characters, with non-stop action, this movie is fun and engaging. Sure some of the plot elements don't rival Shakespeare, but it does everything it sets out to do incredibly well. The cast and crew did the almost impossible task of pleasing geeks, something I hope they continue to do for years to come.
Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn: Kahn and his crew seek revenge on Captain Kirk for deserting them many years ago on an almost inhabitable planet. Kahn is one of the greatest villains in not just Star Trek lore, but all of sci-fi, so his return from the original series' episode "Space Seed" was indeed a welcome one. Ricardo Mantoban plays a great villain, and it's one of his finest performances ever. Throwing such themes as the crew accepting their age and giving a tear jerking ending, The Wrath of Kahn will be a tough film to top.
"A man either lives life as it happens to him, meets it head-on and licks it, or he turns his back on it and starts to wither away." - Gene Roddenberry
Apr 26, 2013
When I started here, I was but a directionless failure at life. Had no real marketable skills outside of taking pictures and wrestling wild boar, and was unsure of how I would support myself. I was hired on, much to my surprise, with little knowledge of technology and the various products this corporation sold. Still they took a chance on me, and after a few months of contract work they hired me on full time, and finally I had what seemed like a career.
I had great benefits and a good working environment. I made many friends, and procured a few enemies along the way I'm sure, but my experience here as been a great one. I've learned many things in my time here that proved invaluable to me, even things not directly related to my daily duties. I'm a better person for having known a lot of the people I've worked with and they've all helped me grow professional and personally as well.
I'm truly grateful for my time here, but this new job offered me better benefits, pay, and the chance to expand my knowledge even further. So I sit here, bittersweet about leaving as I do like my job, but it was time to move on.
To new adventures....
"Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life." - Confucius
Apr 19, 2013
I believe the often missed children's' television host's quote will ring true as long as humanity still exists. When terrible tragedies occur, such as 9-11, Katrina, etc, there are many willing to give aid to the victims, sometimes making difficult sacrifices to see them get back on their feet and rebuild their torn lives. It's comforting to know that the work of evil is often outmatched by those willing to do good for no reward other than it's the right thing to do.
So in the wake of the terrible bombings in Boston many runners, public servants, and spectators ran into harms way to assist those wounded in the senseless act, and once again we saw humanity at its best. It's easy to dismiss the goodness of humans when you witness such naked and hateful aggression, but to see those who'll gladly risk life and limb to save others gives me the warm fuzzies. I can't help it, but it does, and it makes me proud again to be part of the human race, for there are more good people than not.
Still after an attack of this nature, we also see the worst in humans. After 9-11 and Katrina, many opportunists set up fake charities and sold merchandise to exploit the horrific events for personal and financial gain. Not to be outdone, conspiracy theorists and their nut job, mindless followers decreed almost immediately that this was the work of the government in some sort of false flag attack designed to rob us of our personal liberties and to make money for the corporations that have them in their pocket.
Now I hate giving the likes of Alex Jones and Mike Adams the attention they don't deserve, but they're doing a disservice and must be held accountable for their despicable "reporting" on the Boston Marathon bombings. Not content with recent media reports about the manhunt for the suspects, Infowars.com and the equally insipid NaturalNews.com, as well as countless others, have drawn conclusions, based on little to no evidence, that the government was behind the bombings. Everyone from police to the Obama administration apparently wanted to kill these people to do any number of scary things to the American public, but yet were so incompetent at covering up their involvement that somehow these theorists are on top of this.
It's amazing to me the ego of these people, and not just the morally reprehensible Adams and Jones, but their followers as well. They all feel they're smarter than us about everything, calling those who look to actual evidence to draw a conclusion as the none so clever title of "sheeple". Instead they want the public to draw a conclusion first, and then search for clues that are easily debunked to pad their warped thinking.
This kind of bullshit is doing a great disservice to the victims. The real perpetrators need to be brought to justice and soon, and no public servant should have their good names dragged through the mud to bolster someone's ego, nor to sell quack products and advertising space. Not only are conspiracy theories such as this a complete and total waste of time, but try to imagine actually being hurt in the blast or losing a loved one, only to have some moron with a grudge to pick with his elected government exploit it for financial gain. It's despicable and should not be tolerated.
So when you see someone talk or post about how they believe this story is not adding up to the conclusions they want, please feel free to remind them of how wrong they are. It's ok to ask questions of any investigation, but in this day and age where misinformation is easily debunked the truth should be told. The victims deserve as much.
Let's take one example of a FB conversation I'm having. One friend decided to post about a serviceman, Lt Nick Vogt, who lost his legs in service to this country. Conspiracy theorists have quickly determined that a man who lost both lower limbs in the Boston blast was in fact Lt Vogt, who for whatever reason decided to be an actor in the so called staged bombing. Of course this is a lie and a slap in the face to the injured soldier who gave more to this country than most. Lt Vogt sacrificed the use of his feet to serve us, and now his name is being dragged through the mud by sick people. When I pointed this out, no one responded, because they couldn't, and changed the subject swiftly, which was again easily pointed out as stupid.
The real man who lost his legs, Jeff Bauman, was instrumental in helping identify the current suspects, and we're thankful for that.
As for Lt Vogt, I apologize on behalf of all rational people, and this nation is grateful for your service. You deserve better than to be accused of being part of a heinous act, and I hope one day any and all people who claimed you were a willing participant in the Boston bombings at least apologize, or better yet, have their own legs amputated as repentance.
"I think the most and possibly only relevant question when it comes to whether or not a conspiracy theory will spread is, "Does this fill people's emotional needs?"" - Amanda Marcotte of Slate
Apr 9, 2013
And yes, there were a few occasions I would witness the behavior of parents and shake my head, hoping that I would never become like them, but of course, as soon as my child entered the world I instantly became like all those that once annoyed me. I flood my Facebook friends' News Feeds with so many pics and videos of my daughter that I'm certain most have me on "hide". Instead of dining out on good local cuisine I meet friends, who are parents as well, at chain restaurants that cater to families and serving food that is neither interesting nor all that good. I eat dinner at 5p, so anyone that accompanies me to dinner has to be on the same schedule as that of a retired person. I make a poor drinking companion as I can't recall what it's like to sleep in past 8a and have to retire to bed by at least midnight.
But when I read complaints about parents online I have to wonder about a few of them:
- I was at restaurant/plane/theatre/etc and there was this screaming brat and the parents couldn't shut them up. Call CPS, for they're obviously failures at child rearing: If the parents made absolutely no attempt to calm their child, I can understand the annoyance and admit you have a right to complain about them, especially if they encourage the behavior, but if they do attempt to shut their noisy kid up and all their attempts are in vain, suck it up. If you are hearing this, chances are you're at a place targeted towards families, and there are many other venues or means of travel that'll lower the odds of you hearing a loud noise emitting from a wee one. It won't ruin the ambiance of fucking Olive Garden, so grow up and be glad you live a lifestyle that's consider lavish to 80% of the world's population. Getting a kid to quiet down can be as simple as asking Rick Santorum to donate money to GLAD. You can't reason with the unreasonable.
- Those parents didn't discipline their children according to my standards. Clearly they aren't suited to breed: This is something parents and non do alike, and I can understand it, but I've got a secret for you, kids are different and react to modes of discipline differently. Parents now live in fear of spanking, because godless communists will lock us up and take away our crotch fruit, so an immediate solution has been made more difficult. Sure there is time out and taking privileges away and all that, but to paraphrase Alfred, some kids just want to see the world burn.
- Parents are selfish because they're adding to the burden of the planet with an already non-sustainable population: That sound you hear is the breath taken from me upon hearing such eco-friendly wisdom. While this can be a decent point, it's made by douches who really like to sound like they're eco-warriors, but in reality they give two shits about the environment, and they know it. Now if the point was made about adopting a child who needs a home, well I can't argue that, especially being adopted myself, but really engaging in a biological act that'll help carry the species hardly seems selfish. If you really feel for those poor neglected children, adopt one, until then, don't make any judgments on my non adopting ass.
- I hate seeing all those photos of people's kids in my Facebook feed: You know what, I hate seeing those numerous posts of your political analysis, which is almost always stupid and pointless and it bothers me how you think you're smarter and edgier than you really are. I hate seeing those stupid quotes with accompanying drawings of people dressed from decades ago that are neither funny, clever, or insightful. I hate seeing those posts that tell your friends "This is why I (insert action that's supposed to make people be impressed with how much of an educated person you are of whatever the fuck subject you linked to). I grow tired quickly of hearing how your significant other is the best in the whole wide world. They're not, not matter how many times they put their dishes in the dishwasher or buy you a video game, or do any other task that anyone else could do just as well if not better. I'm sick of seeing all your damn pictures of dogs, cats, or any other animal doing things that every miserable beast of the same species does. I don't care what you purchased, eat, or visited. But you know what? I click like, because if any one of those behaviors make you happy, it does me joy to see that, because I'm your friend, and that's what friends do.
- Parents think they know everything: There's some truth to this, and it's made apparent with stupid mommy bloggers who hate vaccines and love alternative medicine and other associate nonsense, but these people are easy to ignore. And really they should be looked upon with pity rather than angst, as they're dumb people and haven't received the upstanding education you have. Sure there are the people who project some sort of smug superiority about being parents, but when I think about that, I've never met anyone like that in real life. Seriously, sometimes I wonder if those types only exist on the internet. Really, if you don't want to listen to a holier or smart than thou parent, it's easy not to, well unless you're their unfortunate offspring. Then it sucks to be you.
- Parents are responsible for everything that sucks in pop culture as they keep buying crap for their kids, like Justin Bieber tickets: Yes, I'm so glad your parents denied you the privilege of watching He-Man or Jem, and instead forced you to read Dante throughout your childhood, because that's exactly what you wanted to do. Since as a child you had such a refined sense of aesthetics, it only makes sense that the rest of the population follows your folks' lead. Oh and fuck off. Seriously fuck you for trying to take away a simple joy from a kid. You sucked as a kid, and you suck now. If your life is so centered around pop culture, then it's empty and hollow and meaningless. You really need to start examining what it is you bring to humanity, if anything.
- Parents who say "you have to be a parent to understand" as the end statement to their illogical behavior need to be punched in the face: OK I kind of agree, but I think violence may be going a bit far. Saying something to the effect of "by you stating that means your argument is groundless and has no basis in reality; therefore I win and you lose. Neener, neener, neener."
"Everybody knows how to raise children, except the people who have them." - P. J. O'Rourke