Well, that

If You Liked Vietnam, You’ll Love The War With The Islamic State | Fortuna's Corner

"Less than a month ago, Obama was dismissing the moderate Syrian rebels as a hopeless rabble. One wonders how they have suddenly been transformed into the hope of the region."

Our critic reviews the movie, "Under the Skin"

Mysterious, increasingly terrifying creature from outer space lands in Scotland.

Scotland wins.

Yoo too

Undernews: Obama joins legal forces with notorious John Yoo

"John Yoo, a former Bush administration lawyer and one of the primary architects of the ‘strong executive’ theory of presidential power, told Buzz Feed News, ‘Obama has adopted the same view of war powers as the Bush administration.’"

Until my thumbs bled

Exactly on cue (well, almost exactly—two days ago) my iPhone 5 died. Refused to recharge its battery. I was planning to replace it this weekend anyway, bumping it up to a 5s. (Just between us, I don’t think I’m a 6 kinda guy, plus I’m tired of being the first kid on the block with the buggy phone. The 5s has been around a year now, time to mature. And it’s beautiful.)

All this meant I had to survive two days without Siri. And then spend this afternoon typing passwords until my thumbs bled. 

Many (strangely short) years ago, in Illinois, the local telephone company building burned down, knocking out all the phones where I both lived and worked, and for quite a few miles around. It took them, I seem to remember, about two months to rebuild the switch. In the meantime, my cellular phone was one of the only working phones in town.

Back then we didn’t haul our phones around in pockets, we hauled them in the trunks of cars. They were about the size of a small overnight bag, plus a near full-sized handset mounted on the dash. And a pigtail antenna on the back window (now that’s beginning to ring a bell, right?). So I wasn’t shut out entirely, but I had to run out into the garage to make a call.

Still somehow we all survived it.

But without Siri, two days is enough. 

Umbrellas at the Market
iPhone Art: Phil Compton

Another bad night in Idaho

Rimrock High School (Bruneau, ID) Football Home - MaxPreps.com

"The Rimrock Raiders football team lost Friday's away non-conference game against Castleford by a score of 50-0."

Season totals: Points for: 0 - Points against: 160

Rimrock High School has 176 students enrolled.


Dazzling insight from "The Intercept"

News Organizations Finally Realize Obama's War Plan Is a Hot Mess - The Intercept

"President Obama’s plan to ‘degrade and destroy’ the Islamic State counts on pretty much everything going right in a region of the world where pretty much anything the U.S. does always goes wrong."

Howie Carr gets a little sarcastic with the word, "confusing"

Carr: Anti-war crowd stunningly silent on ISIS plan | Boston Herald

"It’s all very confusing. When George W. Bush considered invading Iraq without a declaration of war, the Democrats wanted to try him for war crimes in The Hague. When Obama does the same thing ... crickets.…

"Have you see a single ‘No Blood for Oil’ sign in Cambridge?"

Now, nagging at network speed

iPhone 6: One-Third Of Doctors Might Buy It By Thanksgiving

"Meanwhile, the iPhone 6′s new Health app — and Apple’s new HealthKit software platform — could lead to an explosion of health care-related mobile applications.

"And that should end up bringing doctors and patients together, Gross suggests. For instance, the iPhone 6′s new fitness tracking elements might help doctors ‘start to have a conversation with their patients about healthier choices,’ he adds."

No, really?

Struggling to Gauge ISIS Threat, Even as U.S. Prepares to Act - NYTimes.com

"Some officials and terrorism experts believe that the actual danger posed by ISIS has been distorted in hours of television punditry and alarmist statements by politicians, and that there has been little substantive public debate about the unintended consequences of expanding American military action in the Middle East."

Imagine our shock.

And no states—zero—could explain what this paragraph means

Chamber of Commerce grades states' schools. How did yours do? - CSMonitor.com
"The states did not receive a composite grade in the report, but seven states earned at least four As: Colorado, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, and Vermont each earned four; Minnesota earned five; Massachusetts six."
Also, do the teachers get to rate the Chamber of Commerce now? An educational lens on business progress, so to speak?

Later: Finally, I figured it out. It is a perfect example of the reason A's plural is A's, not As. (All 50 states should at least be able to explain that.)

Picky, picky

Kerry: We are Not at War With ISIS | The Blog on Obama: White House Dossier

"Out-Orwelling Orwell, Secretary of State John Kerry today said we are not at war with ISIS, merely engaged in ‘a major counterterrorism operation.’

"Well. That’s a bit like calling a bank robbery ‘a very aggressive withdrawal of funds.’"

Meanwhile, on some strange, distant planet…

California drought: Nudist camp accused of stealing water from open space district - San Jose Mercury News

"I was wearing tennis shoes and my little fanny pack. I discreetly turned my fanny pack to a front pack where it stayed for the rest of the conversation."


Security in the mobile world

Study: 15 Million Devices Infected With Mobile Malware

"About sixty percent of the infected devices are Android smartphones. About 40 percent are Windows PCs connecting through mobile networks. Windows Mobile, iPhones, Blackberrys, and Symbian devices combine for less than 1 percent."

Utah elementary school teacher shoots herself in the toilet bowl

Teacher accidentally shoots self in leg at school - Yahoo News

"Authorities initially thought the teacher had accidently shot herself. They now believe she was injured when the bullet and toilet fragments struck her lower leg."

But that won't stop them from bombing the Middle East (wait, what?)

Atheist must swear to God -- or leave US Air Force - Yahoo News

"The air force has been plagued by controversy for years over religion and the role of Christian evangelists."

Woman remembers bleakness of 1999

Pop Candy: The Series Finale — Whitney Matheson

"Today there are websites devoted to every corner of pop culture, but in 1999 there was much less diversity…"

Yeah, I know, it seems like only yesterday. But based on other things she says (linked above), she might be pushing 30 by now. Practically hag territory. Now, that’s bleak.

Raiders go 0-2, fall to Glenns Ferry

Rimrock High School (Bruneau, ID) Football Home - MaxPreps.com

Total score for the season: Raiders 0 - Opponents 110

Fortunately, both games so far have been non-conference games. 

The Bears, meanwhile, are doing slightly better at 0-1.

That sound you hear is the knashing of teeth

Obama Outperforms Reagan On Jobs, Growth And Investing

"What’s now clear is that the Obama administration policies have outperformed the Reagan administration policies for job creation and unemployment reduction.  Even though Reagan had the benefit of a growing Boomer class to ignite economic growth, while Obama has been forced to deal with a retiring workforce developing special needs."

File under People Who Deserve Each Other

Jay Carney Spent His First Night on CNN Being Called a Liar by John McCain - The Wire

We are going back to bed

‘Strong solar storm heading to Earth’ - The Hindu

" …looks like it will barely skim above the planet and not cause many problems."


Long-term use of drugs that chill you out might chill you out, docs say

Anti-anxiety drugs like Valium, Xanax could raise risk for Alzheimer's - CBS News

"While the study did not prove cause and effect, researchers say the findings suggest benzodiazepine use among older patients presents a significant public health concern."

Or, on the other hand…wait…we forget.

Try breathing into a paper bag

Write enough words, you can fill that space right up

With new smartwatch, Apple buys itself some time - CNET

“[The new Apple Watch is] expensive, with a starting price of $349…Also, Apple's early 2015 launch misses the key holiday selling season when the Apple Watch could be a handy stocking stuffer.”

So then, to sum up, it’s either an expensive stocking stuffer or a cheap expensive. Or maybe we’re just missing our nap.

Thanks, but I'll pass

(Screen grab from Yahoo News.)

For a minute there, you had us worried

Join the Internet Slowdown on September 10! | Alternet

"The widgets…display the revolving icon used to symbolize slowly loading content to illustrate how the loss of Net Neutrality would harm websites and other online services.’

"(Not to worry — the icon will not actually slow Internet service…)"

Because what else would they do

GOP cuts funding request to fight Ebola | TheHill

Looks like a snore

In a ‘Seinfeld election,’ does Obamacare matter? - CSMonitor.com

"A poll released Tuesday by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that among the most enthusiastic voters, only 3 percent cited the ACA, or Obamacare, as the reason for their level of enthusiasm. The top reason, at 13 percent, was to elect more Republicans or switch control of the Senate to the GOP. Next was a sense of civic duty. Third was a desire to vote out incumbents."

They're guessing?

Virus striking other Midwest states likely boosting local hospital stays - Toledo Blade

"Toledo-area hospital officials said the respiratory virus that can cause severe cold-like symptoms is likely behind the surge in patients visiting local emergency rooms and being admitted to area hospitals."

Why does this sound to me like something they ought to know? As in, know? They don’t keep track of the cases they treat?

Now a few words from the King of Irony

Dick Cheney warns House Republicans U.S. military ‘unprepared’ to take on ISIS - NY Daily News

"Cheney warned ‘how unprepared the U.S. military is for any kind of medium- or large-scale engagement against ISIS because the administration is cutting the military so much,’ a source at the meeting told the Washington Examiner."


Pretty weird

I’m just getting around to reading about the new iPhone announced today (yeah that’s weird right there, but it’s not what I’m talking about here) and it (the new iPhone) will take your pulse and pay for your latte and make movies and blah blah blah faster better, everybody’s talking, but nobody’s talking about whether it’s any good as a phone. Nobody ever talks about that, as far as I can tell, regarding the iPhone or any other kind. (Well, true, there was Antennagate, but that turned out to be a passing thing.)

So how is it? Eh. It’s OK, as good as any mobile phone, I guess. But none of them come close to a good old-fashioned copper pair. In the phone industry, back in the day, we used to obsess about call quality but it turns out nobody cares all that much. 

Including me. I don’t have a landline any more either.

And not only that…

Homeland Security Isn't Ready To Combat A Deadly Pandemic | ThinkProgress

"In 2006, Congress gave $47 million to DHS to take the necessary steps to prepare for a national medical crisis. So, for nearly a decade by now, the department has been stocking up on supplies like surgical masks, antiviral medications, and hand sanitizer. But…
“…more than 80 percent of the department’s antiviral drugs will expire by the end of next year. Most of the hand sanitizer is already too old. A stockpile of about $5 million worth of antibiotics might not be effective because they’re being stored incorrectly. And because DHS hasn’t kept accurate records of its materials, employees don’t even know how to locate their emergency gear, like personal protective masks."

…whatever happened to all those crackers in all those bomb shelters? And is there enough cheese to go around?

Some judge

Federal Judge Accused Of Assaulting His Wife Strikes A Deal To Avoid Charges | ThinkProgress

"Last month, Federal District Judge Mark Fuller was arrested on misdemeanor battery charges after he allegedly assaulted his wife at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Atlanta. Fuller is a George W. Bush-appointee to the United States District Court for the Middle District of Alabama. His wife reportedly had visible cuts at the time of his arrest.
"Fuller, however, will almost certainly escape this incident with a clean record.…"

Another problem solved

Rice says China, US should avoid close calls between militaries | Fox News

"BEIJING –  China and the U.S. need to avoid incidents that complicate relations between their militaries, the U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice said Tuesday in Beijing following a recent close call between air force planes from the two sides."


Put on a pound or two

Weight Gain Ads



Will the real Jay Cutler please stand up? - Chicago Sun-Times

"All the chatter in the pre-season about the new, comfortable, improved, matured Bears quarterback, now 31, with every tool he needed to construct the ‘‘House That Jay Built,’’ Marc Trestman, architect — all collapsed in one heaping pile."

Fine then, if that's the way you feel

Romney: 'No Question' I'd Be a Better President Than Hillary | The Weekly Standard

"Elsewhere in the interview, Romney said he won't be running for president again."


Why we will never have another great cathedral

Should Buildings Have Expiration Dates? — re:form — Medium

It's come to this


The times, they are a-changing

The Collapse of Obama’s Foreign Policy | National Review Online

"He has gone from blaming Bush to blaming Instagram."

Defining moments

With lots of luck to offset flaws, Bears could win it all — maybe - Chicago Sun-Times

"This might be the last time we can put ‘‘Bears,’’ ‘‘win’’ and ‘Super Bowl’’ in the same sentence this season, so let’s enjoy the heck out of it."

Proving where the dessert fork goes really is a secret

Food missing from NSA fridge? Ask Zelda! | TheHill

"Spies at the National Security Agency (NSA) have their own Dear Abby.…

"The lighthearted ‘Ask Zelda!’ columns are reportedly distributed via the agency’s intranet and only accessible to people with the proper security clearance."

A whole new layer of shills

Foreign Powers Buy Influence at Think Tanks - NYTimes.com

"More than a dozen prominent Washington research groups have received tens of millions of dollars from foreign governments in recent years while pushing United States government officials to adopt policies that often reflect the donors’ priorities, an investigation by The New York Times has found."