August 20th, 2012


[links] Link salad heads east again

A review of Die Räder der Welt, the German version of Mainspring — Mixed at best, insofar as my very rudimentary German and Google Translate can puzzle out.

$200 for a Fake Security System — As tipster David Goldman says, the sixth comment really makes it.

American Atheists Billboards Go After Presidential Candidates’ Faith — I find this essay about these billboards far more interesting than the billboards themselves. (Snurched from Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

Dominion Theology — Christianism in a nutshell. Which is pretty much where it belongs. (Snurched from Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

Geology and Genesis: how Noah’s flood shaped ideas but not landscapesIt was quickly clear that the conversation was not really about evidence supporting one position or another. These folks had never gone out to study an outcrop of rock. They weren’t interested in what the rocks had to say—they already knew what the answer had to be. That's actually a wonderful summary of the conservative mindset, and why conservative America sneeringly dismisses the reality-based community. Almost every conservative hobbyhorse from climate change denialism to supply side economics can be explained this way.

"FRC's own activities are what brought this down on them"

Boiled Down — John Stewart on Pennsylvania's new voter ID laws. With, you know, actual facts and direct quotes from GOP leaders. Doonesbury on the same topic, again with the facts. Warning: As usual, facts not valid for conservatives.

Republican Senate Nominee: Victims Of ‘Legitimate Rape’ Don’t Get Pregnantep. Todd Akin, the Republican nominee for Senate in Missouri who is running against Sen. Claire McCaskill, justified his opposition to abortion rights even in case of rape with a claim that victims of “legitimate rape” have unnamed biological defenses that prevent pregnancy. Some people are either too stupid or too evil to live. Yet they get elected as conservative politicians. Slacktivist Fred Clark with more commentary on this, from a liberal religious perspective.

Parties not expected to get bold in platforms — Just the usual Republican oppression of women, minorities and the LGBTQ community in order to curry the votes of Sarah Palin's "Real Americans", and the usual Democratic wishy washiness instead of standing up for principles, for fear of offending those same "Real Americans".

Schmooze or LoseObama doesn’t like cozying up to billionaires. Could it cost him the election?

Obama’s (Perceived) TransformationAmong the ranks of bullies, the only fair fight is the one that ends with them laughing and kicking sand. And so, no longer able to portray Obama as weak, the authors of Willie Horton, swift-boating and modern day poll-taxing have been reduced to other tactics — among them wildly yelping, “Please, Mr. President, nothing to the face.”

Paul Ryan Slams Obama For Not Saving Auto Plant That Closed Under Bush — Because conservatives have consciously opted out of the reality-based community, this kind of "blame Obama" rhetoric will play quite well in Your Liberal Media and with the voters. Even though it is a knowingly told, flat out lie.

Top Ten Paul Ryan Falsehoods, Gaffes and Outrages, First Week — Not that anybody who actually needs to know this stuff will read it, nor will they believe it if they do. Everybody knows the facts are biased.

My ultimate Ayn Rand porn — Hahahahah.

?otD: Omaha or not?

Writing time yesterday: 1.0 hours (WRPA); plus convention time
Body movement: n/a (airport walking to come)
Hours slept: 4.5 (solid, !!)
Weight: 237.2
Currently reading: The Essential Engineer: Why Science Alone Will Not Solve Our Global Problems by Henry Petroski


[travel] Off to Omaha once again

I am away this morning for my (probably) final trip to Omaha this year. I don't expect to go back until I emerge from chemo, possibly around May of 2013. I am going to discuss with my boss the feasibility of one more truncated trip early in the chemo cycle, but it's not clear to me yet what business value that may hold for either me or my employer.

On arrival, weather permitting, I am going hot air ballooning with [info]elusivem. Photos and narrative forthcoming, assuming the weather holds and the flight 'makes'.

If the weather holds, we'll fly about 6:30 or 6:45 Central time today. [info]elusivem's balloon is the Emerald City Express. The flight can be tracked in real time via Enter the call sign: KB0SIS for location information. (The "0" is KB0SIS is a zero, not a capital /O/.)

Meanwhile, another week among the children of the corn.


[cancer|polls] Various updates, plus help Jay name his three tumors

Tough day yesterday. I had a long talk with my parents about mortality, disease progression and my specific fears mostly around finances and lifestyle for [info]the_child. They were quite supportive.

Also had a number of difficult interactions with [info]the_child, who continues very stressed in all the obvious and expected ways. She's a great kid and a magnificent human being, and she is carrying such a load right now, generally with a lot more grace than I could have managed at her age. I am so grateful to all the friends and family who are supporting her.

On the fun and funny side, my parents got together with a number of my friends and family to buy me a new recliner. This came about because we discovered last week that my old recliner had broken springs which could not easily be repaired. At the time, I commented that if I had the money, I'd buy a well-built La-Z-Boy or some such. Quite literally under my nose they organized this group campaign to supply me with a good quality substitute. We went to the showroom late yesterday afternoon and bought a powered recliner with lift assist — as I said at the time, the chair will drive healthy me a little nuts, but it will be a huge benefit to sick me. And to be blunt, sick me in the ascendancy now.

In other news, I've decided to name my three tumors. They have become very important citizens of my body, and achieved an outsized significance in my life. So I need a way to talk about those three little bastards.

I have been collecting suggestions in comments [ | LiveJournal ]. Now I've made a poll with a list filtered from the suggestions, based solely on the criterion of what I liked or found amusing. Help me decide! Drop in on the poll and click a favorite.

Do good, be well, and hug someone you love.