Shoulda just mooned 'em and gone home

A US teenager has been ordered to say sorry to his home town after running across stage dressed as a giant penis during graduation.

[From Ananova - Teen says sorry for penis stunt ]

Of course, now that you mention it, it was the graduation ceremony of the Saratoga Performing Arts Centre.

Glass bricks

Glass bricks, originally uploaded by tedcompton.

I think we know

On...larger issues, the evidence is in, merely awaiting adjudication. Mr. Bush’s 2005 proclamation that “we do not torture” was long ago revealed as a lie. Antonio Taguba, the retired major general who investigated detainee abuse for the Army, concluded that “there is no longer any doubt” that “war crimes were committed.” Ms. Mayer uncovered another damning verdict: Red Cross investigators flatly told the C.I.A. last year that America was practicing torture and vulnerable to war-crimes charges.

Top Bush hands are starting to get sweaty about where they left their fingerprints.

[From Op-Ed Columnist - The Real-Life ‘24’ of Summer 2008 - Op-Ed - NYTimes.com]


Astounding electric Christian pickle: A shocking demonstration

"Don't do this at home"


Blooms, originally uploaded by tedcompton.

I guess truth is his specialty

Bud Day is best known for his work with the Swift Boat Veterans For Truth, attacking John Kerry in the 2004 election. He's now a member of McCain's Truth Squad.

[From McCain Surrogate: "The Muslims" Are "Going To Kill Us"]

Or something.

Neither health nor human services: HHS

The New York Times reports that the Bush Administration’s Department of Health and Human Services is drafting a rule that would place new restrictions on domestic family planning programs. While current law allows health care providers and professionals to refuse to provide abortions based on their religious beliefs, this provision would threaten the funding of organizations and health facilities if they do not hire people who would refuse to provide birth control and defines abortion so broadly that it would include many types of birth control, including oral contraception.

[From The Gavel » Blog Archive » Bush Administration Tries to Redefine Contraception as Abortion]

Why are these people so freakin' unmitigatedly mean?

Great moments in Newspeak

Iraq and the US have called for an agreement on a "general time horizon" for the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq, the White House has announced.
No, it's not a timetable. It's a general time horizon.

But wait! That's not all!

"Improving conditions should allow for the agreements now under negotiation to include a general time horizon for meeting aspirational goals - such as the resumption of Iraqi security control in their cities and provinces and the further reduction of US combat forces from Iraq," said White House spokeswoman Dana Perino in a statement.

[From BBC NEWS | Middle East | US seeks 'time horizon' on Iraq]
Aspirational freakin' goals! Oh dude, that's sooooo hot!

I guess that means goals they don't really have to meet, huh? Because they were just, you know, aspirational in the first place.

It can't be better than that.

So we could spend $100 million...

...just so these parties can have their parties?

St. Paul has been allocated $50 million in federal funding to cover security costs, a sum that will be used mainly to purchase para-military equipment -- from riot gear to weaponry and vehicles -- and to pay cops. Denver officials have indicated they might spend up to half their $50 million Democratic convention allotment on hardware. In St. Paul, Walsh tells MnIndy, the plan is to spend roughly $33 million on personnel.

[From Convention cops: St. Paul struggling to recruit enough officers for RNC security - Minnesota Independent: News. Politics. Media.]

Why, exactly, is it my to pay anything for these party conventions? Just asking here.

Oh well. At least the cops will have fun with their new toys.

Speaking of which, why is it my job to pay...

...oh, never mind.

Yeah, but that was before he became, you know, perfect

In May 1998, at the urging of the state's coal industry, the Illinois Legislature passed a bill condemning the Kyoto global warming treaty and forbidding state efforts to regulate greenhouse gases.

Barack Obama voted "aye."

The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee now calls climate change "one of the greatest moral challenges of our generation," and proposes cutting carbon emissions 80% by 2050. But as a state senator, from 1997 to 2004, he usually supported bills sought by coal interests, according to legislative records and interviews.

[From Green Change : Obama embraced coal industry, condemned Kyoto treaty]

Hey, who needs mechanics anyway?

July 18 (Bloomberg) -- AMR Corp.'s American Airlines, the world's largest carrier, will cut 1,300 mechanic and maintenance jobs, accounting for almost 20 percent of the positions it plans to eliminate this year.

[From Bloomberg.com: U.S.]

All they do is...

oh, wait.

But what the hell

The Food and Drug Administration revoked its warning against eating certain kinds of raw tomatoes on Thursday, even though officials said they had yet to pinpoint the source of the nation’s largest food-borne outbreak of illness in the last decade.

[From Warning on Tomatoes Is Withdrawn - NYTimes.com]

A few new wallpapers

In the gallery.

Because not being able to take a nap is terrifying, all right

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Top U.S. Air Force officials sought to spend millions of dollars in counterterrorism funds on "comfort capsules" for military planes used by senior officers and civilian leaders, The Washington Post reported on Friday....

Air Force officials said the government needed the new capsules to ensure leaders could talk, work and rest comfortably in the air, the report said.

[From U.S. antiterror funds sought for comfort pods: Post | Politics | Reuters]

Think flat

Photo of Chicago at night by myelectricsheep via Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial license.



Colorado was the least obese, with about 19 percent fitting that category in a random telephone survey last year by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention....

Colorado...is a state with a reputation for exercise. It has plentiful biking and hiking trails, and an elevation that causes the body to labor a bit more, Dietz said.

[From The Columbus Dispatch : We're No. 15: Mississippi tops list of most obese states, CDC reports ]

All right! I'm going to work this in to my Aerobics While You Sleep plan.

See, the idea is you sleep in some kind of altitude chamber, simulate being in Denver. So your body works harder (see above) and when you wake up you're healthy. And thin!

How perfect is that?

Oh oh, graffiti in Duluth

I'm not kidding. And on the India Palace, too. (It's a restaurant. In Duluth.)

So it's official, then. I'm adding Duluth to my Scholarship for Aspiring Graffiti Artists program. As soon as I win the lottery I'll be in touch, Duluth.

Why not just hire a shrink?

Seattle sells 5 of its troubled toilets on eBay

[From Seattle sells 5 of its troubled toilets on eBay - BostonHerald.com]

Oh never mind. I take it back. I'm just sooooo glad I don't do eBay. Eeewwww.

"The irony is positively suffocating"

You just have to read it for yourself.

On the pole

On the pole, originally uploaded by tedcompton.

But I bet we have more pills

Despite spending $230m (£115m) an hour on healthcare, Americans live shorter lives than citizens of almost every other developed country. And while it has the second-highest income per head in the world, the United States ranks 42nd in terms of life expectancy.

[From Development: US fails to measure up on 'human index' | World news | The Guardian]

Truth be told, neither would I

Fed officials are walking a fine line – and at the moment they'd rather not be forced to focus on inflation as their top priority. They're also trying to revive a moribund economy and prevent a crisis in the financial industry from growing more severe.

[From Inflation surge puts Fed in a quandary | csmonitor.com]

Makes you just want to reach out and hug 'em, doesn't it?

We do all want fun stuff

You still think everyone should be allowed to own their own taser? This is why the rest of us can’t have fun stuff . . . it’s idiots like this that ruin it for everyone else. A guy in Grand Junction, Colorado is accused of using his stun gun to try to force his girlfriend into having sex with him, saying, “I don’t normally do this to anybody, but …” .

[From Man Arrested for Using Taser to Get Girlfriend to Have Sex With Him | Taser Times]

On the wall again

On the wall again, originally uploaded by tedcompton.

And it leaks

Massachusetts residents got a shock when state officials, at the peak of construction on the Big Dig project, disclosed that the price tag had ballooned to nearly $15 billion. But that, it turns out, was just the beginning.

Now, three years after the official dedication of the Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel, the state is reeling under a legacy of debt left by the massive project. In all, the project will cost an additional $7 billion in interest, bringing the total to a staggering $22 billion, according to a Globe review of hundreds of pages of state documents. It will not be paid off until 2038.

Contrary to the popular belief that this was a project heavily subsidized by the federal government, 73 percent of construction costs were paid by Massachusetts drivers and taxpayers.

[From Big Dig's red ink engulfs state - The Boston Globe]

Oh dude, this is just plain grim

DENVER – In a Convention first, the Democratic National Convention Committee (DNCC) today selected Camco International Group, Inc. (Camco) as the Official Carbon Advisor for the 2008 Democratic National Convention, to be held August 25-28 in Denver. The move further bolstered Convention organizers’ efforts to design waste out by applying sustainable planning principles to every decision in the lead-up to the Convention.

To help minimize the four-day event’s overall impact on the environment, Camco will be working with the DNCC during the coming months to measure the Convention’s carbon footprint, strengthen existing programs and make recommendations about how to minimize and/or offset the Convention’s carbon output.

[From Camco International Group, Inc. Named First-Ever Carbon Advisor For Democratic National Convention - Democratic National Convention]

Does this mean no balloons?

Like little kids at Christmas...

...the way these economist people are so easily surprised.

US wholesale inflation jumped a surprisingly strong 1.8 percent in June from May amid soaring energy and food prices, the Labor Department said Tuesday.

[From The Raw Story | US wholesale inflation jumps 1.8 pct in June]


So it's official

I've been bitten by the B/W bug again.

Crisis averted: A YAME homemaking tip

If the lid on your Fluff jar gets stuck just hold it under the hot water tap for a minute and it'll twist right off.


Up a tree

Up a tree, originally uploaded by tedcompton.

Follow the money

To hear Bush touting Western oil shale as the answer to $4 per gallon gasoline, as he did again yesterday in the Rose Garden, you would think it was 1908 . . . or 1920 . . . or 1945 . . . or 1974. Every couple of decades over the past century, the immense reserves of the oily rock under Colorado and Utah reemerge as the great hope for our energy future....

The governors of Wyoming and Colorado, communities and editorial boards across the West agree that the administration's headlong rush is a terrible idea. Even energy companies, including Chevron, have said we need to proceed more cautiously on oil shale. With more than 30,000 acres of public land at their disposal to conduct research, development and demonstration projects (in addition to 200,000 undeveloped acres of private oil shale lands they own in Colorado and Utah), they already have more land than they can develop in the foreseeable future.

So why is the president hurrying to sell leases for commercial oil shale development in the West's great landscapes?

[From Ken Salazar - Heedless Rush to Oil Shale - washingtonpost.com]

Junk, revisited

Junk, revisited, originally uploaded by tedcompton.

Just fooling around with some software here



Alleyway, originally uploaded by tedcompton.

Shirts with pins

What sadist dreamed that one up, I wonder. I don't encounter too many shirts of that calibre any more but I received several as a gift a while back and saved one out. This morning I found myself with no clean shirts, which was exactly the special occasion I was waiting for. I must have pulled a dozen pins out of that thing. And it has short sleeves.

Speaking of which, I wish I had saved a few dishes out too. Oh well. I don't have to work this afternoon. So maybe I should do a little work.

So all you need to do now is hook one of these up to your car

Experts said the slow digestive system of cows makes them a key producer of methane, a potent greenhouse gas that gets far less public attention than carbon dioxide.

In a bid to understand the impact of the wind produced by cows on global warming, scientists collected gas from their stomachs in plastic tanks attached to their backs.

[From Cow farts collected in plastic tank for global warming study - Telegraph]

Oh please, not that too

Found in a "hot news" email from Apple:

We’re all creatures of habit, even online. So if you’re web browsing routine has you visiting the same websites every day, you can use Safari...

Man, it really has been a bad week, hasn't it?

Watch it there, whelp

WASHINGTON - So how old is John McCain? Six-packs, automatic transmissions and the American Express card were all introduced after he was born — not to mention computers, which McCain admits he doesn't use.

[From Born before computers, McCain is `too old' to some - Yahoo! News]

Does Congress ever remind you of Charlie Brown trying to kick that football?

"Congress gave up the authority of inherent contempt under an agreement with the Justice Department that it would be an honest broker, that it would take these cases to the grand jury," Turley [a "legal professor" (sic)] explained.

[From The Raw Story | They're not going to lock up Rove, Former Bush aide insists]


Nekkid girls in chicken coops

From PETA, they're demonstrating in front of an Australian KFC. Save the chickens!

Responds the top chickenman:

"We buy our chickens from reputable suppliers all of which are members of the Australia Chicken Meat Federation. These suppliers are subject to some of the highest standards in the world."

[From The Sydney Morning Herald: national, world, business, entertainment, sport and technology news from Australia's leading newspaper.]

Talk about yer reassuring, huh? We don't even want to know what the lowest standards are.

BTW, are the chickens still trying to kill us or did that chicken flu thing just go away?

Tasteless! Offensive! OMG!

Jonathan Swift must be spinning in his grave.

"The New Yorker may think, as one of their staff explained to us, that their cover is a satirical lampoon of the caricature Senator Obama's right-wing critics have tried to create," said Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton. "But most readers will see it as tasteless and offensive. And we agree."

[From UnionLeader.com - New Hampshire news - "New Yorker" caricature of Obamas is widely criticized - Tuesday, Jul. 15, 2008]

And these Obamaniacs must be the biggest wimps on the block. Also the most humorless. From Chicago, no less. I bow my head in shame.

Dude, if you find the New Yorker cover offensive go read something else.

Hey, New Yorker - next week, how about a cover with Eustace Tilley eating babies?


How many times do we have to tell you - don't smoke in the bathrooms?

A senior government official with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has expressed great interest in a so-called safety bracelet that would serve as a stun device, similar to that of a police Taser®. According to this promotional video found at the Lamperd Less Lethal, Inc. website, the bracelet would be worn by all airline passengers (video also shown below).

This bracelet would:

• Take the place of an airline boarding pass

• Contain personal information about the traveler

• Be able to monitor the whereabouts of each passenger and his/her luggage

• Shock the wearer on command, completely immobilizing him/her for several minutes

[From Washington Times - Politics, Breaking News, US and World News - "Want some torture with your peanuts?" by Aviation Security ]

Well. Considering the source, this may or may not be beyond the outer fringe of reality. But it does illustrate the technofetishism that has grown up around security: The more gadgets you buy the safer you will be.

Or the more totems you acquire.

And that's not even counting Lake Wobegon

Already, Shideler has paddled her hand-built kayak on 908 of the 1,007 lakes in Itasca County.

[From Duluth News Tribune | Grand Rapids woman closes in on her goal of paddling all 1,007 lakes in Itasca County]

Itasca County is, like, a county in northern Minnesota. And Mary Shideler is 46 years old, 4' 9", 94 pounds, and has been paddling 12 years, says the Duluth News Tribune.

Alas, reading the whole story requires registration.

Gimme that old-time religion

An Oklahoma church canceled plans for a gun giveaway Friday at its annual youth conference, a local news station reported.

The church's youth pastor, Bob Ross, said the AR-15 semi-automatic assault rifle was a means of luring young people as far away as Canada, according to Oklahoma City's KOCO Channel 5 News.

“I don’t want people thinking ‘My goodness, we’re putting a weapon in the hand of somebody that doesn’t respect it who are then going to go out and kill,'” said Ross. “That’s not at all what we’re trying to do.”

[From The Raw Story | Church lures teenagers with assault rifle giveaway]

Not even a token or two?

Monserrat Morilles believes her fellow Chileans are just too conservative and prudish. So, this week she decided to spice up the morning subway commute in Santiago, the capital.

Dressed in a black leather coat and boots, she stripped to her underwear and pole danced between stops. She chose cars containing no children and stripped in time to jump off at the next station. (She refused tips.)

[From Pole position: Chilean stripper takes it off on subway to take on prudes - On Deadline - USATODAY.com]