Newspaper office

Newspaper office by Ted Compton
Newspaper office, a photo by Ted Compton on Flickr.

Here's one thing, at least, you can probably cross off your list

Penny Bloods were serialised fiction that provided cheap, entertaining reading for the working class population of 19th century Britain. The colourful stories full of unsavoury characters and sensational plots were accompanied by gruesome illustrations. They were the violent video games of their day; perceived as corrupting influences that would inevitably pervert the minds of their readers towards depravity and crime.

Writing Britain

That Clinton thing

Clinton is the original political rock star, and the media remain utterly captivated by his every burp, cough, and hiccup. Dems worship him as their only two-term president since FDR. And in a bit of crazy, shameless revisionism, Republicans are suddenly singing Bill’s praises as a sensible moderate Dem whose legacy is being trashed by lefty-extremist Obama.

At this point, Clinton may pack greater political punch than any other figure out there. Well, except maybe Hillary.

The Daily Beast


Oh no. We are doomed. Again.

The FBI is worried that an explosion of new Internet numeric addresses scheduled to begin next week may hinder its ability to conduct electronic investigations.

A historic switchover that will give the Internet a nearly inexhaustible supply of network addresses -- up from the current nearly exhausted total of 4.3 billion -- is planned for next Wednesday. AT&T, Comcast, Facebook, Google, Cisco, and Microsoft are among the companies participating.
One Drop

iPhone photo: Phil Compton



White House accuses Republicans of nakedly political campaigning…

“Last week, Republicans conceded this is not serious and instead a nakedly political, taxpayer-funded crusade to hurt the President’s re-election campaign,” White House spokesman Eric Schultz told TPM.


Bodies for votes

Dennis Blair, director of national intelligence until May of 2010, gave the Times a simple analysis of Obama's penchant for drone strikes: "It is the politically advantageous thing to do--low cost, no U.S. casualties, gives the appearance of toughness. It plays well domestically and it is unpopular only in other countries. Any damage it does to the national interest only shows up over the long term."

From the Atlantic piece on Obama's killing campaign.


Just don't be standing near one

White House Unveils Initiative To Fight Computer Viruses
By Eric Engleman - May 30, 2012 11:54 AM ET

Obama's wars

Take today’s lengthy article by Jo Becker and Scott Shane, which describes how Mr. Obama has placed himself “at the helm of a top-secret ‘nominations’ process to designate terrorists for kill or capture, for which the capture part has become largely theoretical.” He “signs off on every [drone] strike in Yemen and Somalia and also on the more complex and risky strikes in Pakistan — about a third of the total.”
–Andrew Rosenthal, today's New York Times

So then it's official? Yemen and Somalia too? In addition to Pakistan, of course,and is it over in Libya yet?

A lot of warring for a peace prize guy. But the Dems like it, I guess, because this time it's they who get to be the steely-eyed tough guys, stone killers.

I say it sucks either way. If we're going to have a war let's have a war. Otherwise stand down.


Slouching into the post-computer age

We are going all iPad. Mostly all. So things will change.

Maybe you've noticed some of them already. There's a Twitter feed now in the right column for some of the leaky newsy items we've posted here in the past. We are going with the Twitter feed because it's easy, and easy is what we are all about. So, that taken care of, we'll post here in the main column less often but longer. If you see what I mean.

Maybe it will all work out. Or maybe we will think of something else, easier, and change the whole thing again.

Meanwhile, it's official: Computers are a passing fad, passing.

Sucks to be Anne of Cleves

Also, is this the dumbest poll ever or what?



Summer by Ted Compton
Summer, a photo by Ted Compton on Flickr.

A very small parade

I always thought having a flyover for the Memorial Day parade was a little excessive, so I was surprised how much I missed it when it didn't happen this morning. I guess that was due to a budget cutback, although we are practically in the landing pattern for an Air Force Base so how much would it cost? (Plenty, I suppose. But still.)

It was a pretty small turnout too – much smaller than usual. And I couldn't help but notice that, aside from the uniformed cop on the corner, I was the only guy on the block who put his hat or even his hand over his heart when the flag passed by. That's the price of being ancient, I guess.

I hear a lot of people complaining these days about troops behaving badly. I'm sure some do, just as some have in every war for all time. But most don't. And very few of them are there because they really want to be.

What Memorial Day should remind us, it seems to me, is that it is a very grave responsibility to send young men and women to war, and a responsibility we all share.


Hitting the road

Hitting the road by Ted Compton
Hitting the road, a photo by Ted Compton on Flickr.

From my local newspaper…

Greenfield’s town website will be getting a facelift, and a little zip…

Sounds like something Sinclair Lewis would write.

What if

Somebody figures out how to turn binary numbers into heat. A little tinkering around, and he can power automobiles with spam email. Suddenly, all that spam is worth something. People start hoarding it. Whole islands in the Marianas are in danger of sinking beneath the weight of massive file servers. The spammers themselves no longer want to give it away free. The CIA attacks with drones. Oil companies need bigger subsidies. Meanwhile, people start fainting from breathing air with too much oxygen in it.

Panic everywhere…

And you wonder why

I just got an email from USA.gov advising me that May 19 is Armed Forces Day (here's a link, you can see for yourself). I suppose it's possible they were alerting me about May 19 next year, but somehow I'm not really convinced. More likely, they just laid everybody off.

Nonetheless, don't forget.