October 31, 2015
— CDR M
Happy Halloween morons! Don't forget to adjust your clocks back an hour tonight as daylight saving time ends. Or do it in the morning. Or just leave it flashing 12:00. Whatever floats your boat.
— Ace I haven't finished. I'm finishing tonight. But if you want to comment, please do so here; this thread will be bumped tomorrow afternoon (and I'll put up more in this post).
So far, I'm just in London, and Watson has only now departed for Devonshire. A commenter mentioned that Holmes isn't in the story much; I guess what's going to happen is that Watson -- that oaf! that clod! -- will be left at the Baskervilles estate to be scared by noises and sightings out on the moors, and will come to all sorts of clotwitted conclusions that ghosts are real and the Hound is the devil's hunting dog.
And then Holmes will show up in the last three chapters to say "Why no, my splendidly cretinous buffoon; you've got it all wrong. The Hound is really none other than ____."
Doyle has to do this this way, I think, because Heroism is the antithesis of Horror; a Hero is confident and in control, whereas the entire premise of Horror is that you are afraid and at the mercy of something you don't understand.
If Holmes were around for the Baskervilles section, he's be providing reassurances, and his courage and let's-get-after-them attitude would dispel the sense of fear.
So, I'm just on chapter six or so, and I imagine the poor, poor stupid semicretin Watson is about to have a time of it being scared by owls and such.
By the way, I have to say, I like the way Holmes is portrayed in modern depictions more than he's depicted here. In modern depictions, it is underscored that he is rude and kind of a jagoff. In Doyle, sometimes I don't know, are his constant insults of Watson supposed to be taken as rude, or just funny...?
I know in a previous Holmes story, Watson commented upon his rudeness, but Watson doesn't call it out here; he just takes Sherlock's constant insults as normal.
I don't know, am I as the reader supposed to laugh along with Sherlock at the dribbling imbecile Watson?
Because I'm not laughing; Holmes is just an asshole.
I know Holmes is an asshole; but does the story itself know? Were readers at the time supposed to understand that this guy is a total asshole to the only person in the world willing to be a friend to him?
So anyway, to be honest, I'm kind of happy to see the back of Holmes for a while. Let him show up in the last few chapters to do some Rude Explaining, but let me enjoy some time with people who aren't assholes for a while.
Just let me be at peace with ghosts and murderers, without Holmes' constant insults of his slow-witted moron chum.
I'm still reading. Sorry, I didn't get this done. I will bump this up again tomorrow, if anyone wants to talk about it then.
— Ace First a couple of cute things:
Father of the year. pic.twitter.com/kDlu4ieodT— jon gabriel (@exjon) October 31, 2015
Take all my candy pic.twitter.com/S8aj5qtBcM— Marcus AureliUS (@UnacceptableOne) October 31, 2015
Okay, with the cute stuff out of the way, here's the creepy bit.
I don't know the exact definition of "Creepypasta" but it appears to be some kind of brief, urban-legend style scary story spread via the internet.
One of the cleverest ones I've heard of concerns a children's show called "Candle Cove." On some forum message board, years back, someone began asking if anyone else remembered this show called "Candle Cove" that used to run on a local tv station when he was a kid. (I forget the locale -- maybe Pennsylvania, or Ohio.)
Then other people began supplying the details of the show that they could remember, though no one could remember too much about "Candle Cove."
Some of the message board exchanges are collected here.
It's important to keep in mind this wasn't presented as a "story" anywhere; if you had stumbled across this, years back, you would have just found some people talking, it seems, about a kid's tv show they say they remembered from their childhood.
Top Ten Worst Halloween Treats
10. New Gender-Fluidity Jolly Ranchers (TM) that taste like Strawberry Peach on one side and Chewing Tobacco and snakeblood on the other
9. A little coloring-book pamphlet of Michelle Obama's "Let's Move!" initiative
8. A small tube of survival seeds, because there's no candy as sweet as Being Prepared
7. Handfuls of Kaboom Cereal in factory-irregular lunch bags
6. A fun-sized Carbon Credit
5. An index card containing a set of customized pronouns, including xis, xer, xyzyr, and Lolo
4. A CD download of Hilary Clinton's sweatiest Yoga Routines
3. A laminated card explaining the steps of securing Affirmative Consent
2. "Gender Equity" candies made in 77% the size of a full-sized candy, to let children know The Struggle Continues
...and the worst Halloween treat...
1. A ten minute "Spoooooky Lecture" about the dangers of not signing up for the Affordable Care Act
Joke credit: @timjohnsonMD for the carbon credit joke (and the premise of the list), @Kanamit2 for the Affordable Care Act gag. more...
— Open Blogger Gun of the Week
Stalker, Stalker, Burning Bright
Whatcha goona do when they come for you Everytown? Peering in your windows as you shower, fondeling themselves, strung out on meth and God knows what else? Whatcha gonna do when your husband isn't home? Whatcha gonna do if you don't have armed, trained men paid to protect you 24/7 while you work to deny law abiding Americans their rights? Huh? What would you do?
For this lady, the answer was to rack a round in her newly purchased pump shotgun (love that sound). The prev ran away, and though he continued to haunt the neighborhood, he never returned to her house. I wonder why...
— Open Blogger Y-not: Greetings, gardeners!
2 WITCH. Thrice and once, the hedge-pig whin'd.
3 WITCH. Harpier cries:--'tis time! 'tis time!
1 WITCH. Round about the caldron go;
In the poison'd entrails throw.--
Toad, that under cold stone,
Days and nights has thirty-one;
Swelter'd venom sleeping got,
Boil thou first i' the charmed pot!
ALL. Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and caldron bubble.
--W. Shakespeare, Macbeth
In honor of the day, how about some Smashing Pumpkins?
Where were you in 1979?
My contribution this week is a CONTEST. (In other words, I'm copping out and not giving you much content!) Winner gets an all-expense paid* trip to the dumpster in the alley behind Ace's apartment.
*Send your check paying for this glorious trip payable to me at Acme Hobo Vacations in Schenectady, New York.
Now, for the contest. Identify this tree which I spotted during a walk last week.
Here's the bark: more...
— Open Blogger
It's been a while since I updated the Saturday Gardening Thread archives, so here you go:
— Open Blogger #3 Clemson visits North Carolina State for some bbq and an easy win 3:30pm
#8 Stanford travels to Pullman to play Washington State 10:00pm
#9 Notre Dame tries to avoid getting mugged in Philly...@ #21 Temple 9:00pm
#10 Iowa hosts Maryland at 3:30pm
#11 Florida welcomes their neighbor Georgia 3:30pm
— Open Blogger How about a roundup of political stories outside the Presidential primary?
First, from PENNSYLVANIA! In a shocking turn of events, Democrat Attorney General Kathleen Kane may actually be removed from office.
On October 26, 2015, the Pennsylvania Senate established a special committee to determine whether Kane should face a removal vote. The committee is chaired by Sen. John Gordner (R) and the other members are: Sens. Lisa Baker (R), Art Haywood (D), Judy Schwank (D), Sean Wiley (D) and Gene Yaw (R). Senate President Pro Tempore Scarnati will serve as a seventh voting member. The committee is tasked with evaluating whether the Senate should move toward removing Kane by holding a formal hearing. The committee plans to submit a preliminary report within 30 days. Kane's defense team said it will fight the Senate's removal effort.
— Open Blogger Amsterdam is pretty awesome in a lot of ways. I spent some quality time at the Rijksmuseum. I've always been a fan of classical art simply from the 2D renditions I've seen in books, and what little I've experienced in museums stateside. The Rijks did not disappoint.
Seeing the works here I was struck by just how shallow and talent-less contemporary artists and their work is today. Good art is not easy. Great art is neither easy, and I will admit, not often fully appreciated in its day. Rembrandt's reputation, I learned, received a hard blow when he completed what is now known as The Night Watch. Its gritty realism, displaying his subjects' worn features & all the weathering of life is now a star attraction in Amsterdam.
That said, the propensity of modern artists to literally throw trash on a floor, or to present bodily excretions up for public display, has all the artistry and staying power of Ace performing his one-person act "How I almost Met your Mother" in off off off Broadway (AKA "Ewok in the alley behind a titty bar, standing on a dumpster while attempting to peek into the changing room window").
Off to London today, via rail. I hesitate to ask the "Just one Meal - London" question. But if anyone has any suggestions, I will take all answers under advisement.
Happy Halloween, my pretties.
October 30, 2015
— CDR M
So for those of you going to some costume parties, what are you going as? more...
— Ace She's just so wonderful.
— Ace I'm just going to throw this up and get another post ready to go.
Earlier Politico claimed that Sean Spicer and maybe others were calling CNBC to complain that Jeb wasn't getting to speak enough; then later, Politico walked it back to say Spicer and others were calling to complain about the speaking time afforded to candidates, generally.
Spicer denied the original story.
Politico has made a hash of this so I don't know if it was 1, bullshit from the get-go, or 2, true from the get-go, but reported contrary to the rules (that is, it was supposed to be off the record or something) so now they have to walk back a true story.
I have no idea.
Jeb Bush's Campaign's Chief Operating Officer Says Hasta Luego: Losing blood, pulse quickened and thready.
— Ace I can't say it's the scariest movie of all time, but The Conjuring was the last movie I was really scared by, and I kept turning it off at night because it was making me feel... not good. Interestingly, there is no cursing, no sex, no "mature themes," and only the briefest shots of blood and dead things, but it got an R- rating anyway: for "terror." They can't point at why this kids aren't allowed to see this, but it's so scary they're slapping an R on it anyway.
That's quite an advertisement. (I don't disagree, by the way: Kids shouldn't see this. It will give them nightmares, for years.)
Another recent movie I thought was just great was The Strangers.
One odd thing about my idea of "scary" is that I don't really think supernatural stuff is scary. Usually I just think it's kind of fun and dumb with some occasional pop-up shocks.
What scares me is just murder. I'm bothered especially by movies that take an almost lighthearted view of murder, like this movie that used to plague the the Channel 7 Midnight Movie slot in NYC.
And then there is the music around murder. The music and stingers in Murder on the Orient Express are just stuck in my mind as frightening noises. The flashbacks of the all the deaths in the past, with those scary music cues... always gives me a little scare.
And speaking of scary music, while the movie itself isn't so good, the opening sequence, and then the super-scary music, of Francis Ford Coppolla's first movie, Dementia 13, is great. Very scary. (Like I said, rest of the movie, meh, though I was surprised at what you could show back then -- nudity, decapitations.)
As far as books: I'm not sure I've read a really scary book. I thought Misery and the Shining were kinda scary. Again, the books that actually scare me are just books about murder.
Oh -- I did read one that was very weird, and so was kind of scary -- House of Leaves. Before you read it, though, make sure you check the description, to read how weird and experimental this book is. It's very odd indeed.
BTW: I'll put up a Hounds thread later, or maybe just wait for tomorrow. more...
— Ace Remembering that part of Jeff Sessions' immigration reform plan.
Realizing how badly he screwed up Wednesday night in his immigration comments, Donald Trump engaged in damage control Thursday, both at a rally in Nevada and through an interview with Breitbart.
At the rally in Sparks, Nev., near Reno, he clarified that he wants only the top foreign students from only the top universities to be able to stay. "With the workers youre taking about " he told an audience member who asked about foreign workers imported on H-1B visas replacing Americans, "we have to make sure our people are working first. I don't mind taking people at all, but we have to make sure we need them, and we have to make sure that our people are taken care of."
He went into more detail with Breitbart, and was more strident. He denounced the practice of replacing Americans with H-1Bs (most notoriously by Disney), acknowledged that no tech labor shortage exists because we are producing more STEM graduates than STEM jobs, denounced Rubios I-Squared bill to triple H-1B admissions, called Rubio a "puppet" of Silicon Valley who is "incapable of telling the truth" and who "should be disqualified for dishonesty alone," adding that "Senator Rubio works for the lobbyists, not for Americans."
More from Mark Krikorian at the link.
Krikorian wonders, as I do, whether Trump, sensing maybe he could actually win, is going to begin casually walking back the issue set that put him in first place to begin with.
— Ace Okay, they don't quite go that far -- they say for the moment they're "suspending" discussions about NBC's scheduled debate in February -- but they are taking the sorts of actions that precede a full firing.
Michael Walsh has some general thoughts on media bias.
Wednesday night's CNBC Republican debate turned out to be a tussle between the three left-leaning "moderators" and the candidates on the main stage, most of whom can safely be described as center-right. And finally -- thanks largely to the huge ratings bonanza that is Donald Trump -- the American people got a chance to see the true, ugly, partisan, smug, self-righteous face of what we used to call journalism, but now is simply political advocacy employing computers and television cameras under the shield of the First Amendment.
[T]hink of the MSM as a small Scandinavian village, so far untouched by "diversity." Since everybody knows each other, and follows the same rules, life is calm and good. It's only the outsiders -- those conservatives -- who disrupt the natural harmony. Like foreign bodies, they must be mobilized against and expelled by the progressive immune system. To quote a famous Leftist, Benito Mussolini, the founding father of Fascism, "everything within the State, nothing outside the State."
Now heres the thing
There arent that many of them. The Leftist MSM may seem like a monolith, but mostly its a collection of rueful men and women who wish they were doing the things theyre assigned to cover, instead of actually covering them. Like groupies, they derive satisfaction and self-worth from orbiting the heavenly bodies they watch, and around whom they revolve. As I wrote on Twitter last night:
Dirty lil secret of MSM is that most would really rather be doing what the folks they cover do, Serious jealousy and fanboydom at work here.
What the candidates did the other night to the MSM should not be underestimated. At last, it was not just a lone Newt Gingrich bashing the ideological inanity of his interlocutors, but a number of them, including Cruz and Rubio. By presenting a relatively united front against the clear animosity emanating from the three CNBC hosts, the candidates were able to keep the focus off the stupid questions ("are you a comic book version of a campaign?") and onto the biases of the moderators themselves.
Which is why the morning-after headlines were not so much about who "won" but how CNBC -- and by extension the entire MSM -- disgraced itself. Bashing the media may not be a policy platform, but it's nourishment and sustenance to a long-suffering conservative constituency which doesnt much care whom or what is being bashed so long as somebody or something is being bashed.
Let me disagree with the premise that bashing the media is not a "policy platform." Okay, it's not technically policy -- but it is imperative, and it's more important than any particular policy initiative.
I might be biased here myself, because this is what obsesses me, and this is what angers me. I could care less, to be honest, about the GOP or its programs.
What keeps me interested in politics at all is my loathing for the self-appointed Preistly Class of the media.
The media doesn't just argue with conservatives, nor does it just demean them.
Rather, the media serve as the shamans and witch-doctors of an enemy Tribe, and the purpose of those shamans is to relentlessly disgrace outsiders to the Tribe, which is pleasing to those within the Tribe, while also keeping the shamans in power (because they have no other skills which would earn them money or sex, except the denigration of those considered Unclean).
Their mission is not mere delegitimization of those who do not worship their strange gods. Certainly they do that, endlessly. But it's more than that -- their mission is the full denigration, humiliation, and ultimately dehumanization of the outsiders to the Tribe.
I'll say this three times because it's important:
Cultural Power is Political Power.
Cultural Power is Political Power.
Cultural Power is Political Power.
Having been promoted to a position from which they can exert their Cultural Power to thereby exert Political Power, they do so, and they are less and less concerned with pretending they don't do so.
The very rich have developed codes over the years to not be quite-so-obvious about the tremendous power they actually have, in order to keep the mobs from hanging them in the streets, and they get quite angry at those (such as Trump, actually) who do not abide by these codes, and who flaunt their wealth and power. Partly they get angry because they have internalized the code of not exhibiting their wealth (except among the other wealthy), and partly it's because they realize Trump's flamboyance is actually a threat to them -- what if people start noticing how very rich they are?
For a time, I think the media attempted to hide how much Unearned political power they had.
I always think it's absurd that the media has political power. Consider: Your doctor is one of the most important professionals you know. He is well-educated and knows, literally, the pathways of life and death.
And yet does he use his position to propagandize politics to you when you go in for a check-up? Does he tell you that the Benghazi Committee was a partisan witch-hunt as he depresses your tongue with a strap of wood?
Now, some doctors do get into the political game -- scolding parents about this or that. Guns in the house, for example.
And people quickly fire them.
The media is a weird thing because the media is not made up of experts in politics. Your family doctor is an expert in health, and if he propagandizes you about health, well, at least that's in his balliwick.
The media are not historians nor political scientists. They are literally, and I say this with all intended denigration of myself, merely fucking people who write sentences, and, increasingly, who don't even write sentences -- they just talk words on the Television.
How on earth did people whose skill-set used to consist chiefly of shorthand notation and fucking typing elevate themselves into "experts" on politics, history, economics, and foreign policy?
They are fucking morons. They have no skills nor special knowledge.
Most of them are among the dumbest "professionals" of any "professional" class, except for teachers.
Lawyers are generally acknowledged as a smart class, as a profession. Not as smart as doctors, but smart.
But Cultural Power is Political Power, and the fact that these imbeciles populate our Idiot Boxes and speak words to us at night puts them in a position where they can serve as the witch-doctors of a heathen, ugly, wicked tribe, if they choose to.
Not that they're qualified to do so -- not that they're entitled to do so -- but that they can do so, simply because they're on the Television, the Morality-Play Theater of the masses.
Delegitimizing the media -- questioning how, exactly, shorthand elevates your opinions any higher than the next asshole sitting on the next barstool -- is absolutely critical.
Cultural Power is Political Power, and to take away the latter, we need to strip the former from them.
How do we let these dumb-bunnies and prom-queens and Law School Legacy Admittances (like Chris Cuomo) pontificate to us without objecting:
do you imagine
yourselves to be?
Where are your credentials, you stupid nothings?
And if we're talking about credentials, should I not seek out someone with more relevant credentials -- historians and political scientists (though, come on, that last one's a joke), or at least more rigorous credentials (doctor, lawyer, scientist, engineer, author of things that are more than 700 word recaps of what someone else said)?
These charlatans, these Priests with no Religion save the dumb vanilla religion of corporate-friendly socialism, deign to tell the world what is Sacred and what is Profane, and I say to them: I don't listen to Priests, and I especially don't listen to idiot Priests whose fucking gods are Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and Sandra Fluke.
They have been delegitimizing us and dehumanizing us for as long as I remember, and we've said fucking boo about it.
It's about time we began delegitimizing and dehumanizing them.
They are Enemy, they are the weird priests of strange gods, and they're not even American -- they define themselves as transnational cosmopolitan progressives who are too swank for any nationality.
They should be treated as such, and rather than play into their fantasies of being the Moral Conscience of a Nation, they should be jeered at every opportunity for the shabby, grasping failed nothings they are, and invited to go preach at different churches, to different people.
Who the fuck are these people, and what qualifies them to tell anyone anything apart from the fact that television make-up successfully sticks to their not-attractive-enough-for-Hollywod faces?
— Ace I think there's a lot of truth there. Still, probably won't help him to say, and when you're knocking voters (even if the knock has truth to it) it's a sign you're failing.
Like you needed more signs.
Jeb actually distributed this memo to "select" reporters, hoping to influence their coverage, so I guess he was okay with this getting out there.
Bush's top lieutenants convened with donors in sopping wet Houston on Monday to calm their fears and retrench for the unforgiving haul ahead.
After the confab, Bush's team distributed a 45-page PowerPoint presentation to select reporters, summarizing an optimistic view of the race, touting the Republican candidate's cash and organization, and assuring supporters that early polls are rarely indicative of ultimate success.
But in that leak to select media, the campaign purposely left out more than half of what was furnished behind closed doors.
The full presentation, obtained exclusively by U.S. News, spans 112 pages and includes a trove of new details, including Bush's internal polling, his vote goal in Iowa and his advertising plan for January.
Of course, it includes further attacks on Marco Rubio.
While the slides released to the press highlight Bush's Sunshine State endorsements and Rubio's lack of experience, another page for donor edification gets dirtier.
It's titled "Marco Is A Risky Bet," and it bullet-points Rubio's "misuse of state party credit cards, taxpayer funds and ties to scandal-tarred former Congressman David Rivera."
When Rubio was a state lawmaker, he used the state party credit card for personal expenses, a decision he later called a mistake. In 2005, he and Rivera jointly purchased a home that later faced foreclosure.
Another bullet point says Rubio's "closeness with Norman Braman, who doubles as personal benefactor[,] raises major ethical questions."
Braman, a billionaire auto dealer, is expected to pour $10 million into Rubio's White House endeavor, The New York Times reports. He's also paid Rubio's wife to oversee his charitable work.
The Bush team also mocks Rubio's "tomorrow versus yesterday" argument as one that would be "widely ridiculed by media" should he run against the first potential female president.
The most cryptic slight is left for last: "Those who have looked into Marco's background in the past have been concerned with what they have found."
A Bush aide says that line refers to concerns Mitt Romney's team unearthed when they vetted Rubio for vice president in 2012.
Romney's people immediately disputed that.
[I]n an email to POLITICO, Beth Myers, a longtime Romney political adviser who in 2012 oversaw his vice presidential search, pushed back on the assertion.
"As the senior Romney advisor who handled VP vetting and had access to all the vetting documents, I can say that Senator Rubio 'passed' our vetting and we found nothing that disqualified him from serving as VP, wrote Myers, who counts herself a Bush supporter. "The Bush aide referred to in this article is simply wrong."
So I guess the fact that Beth Myers is a "Bush supporter" should put this question to bed... except, are Bush supporters still really Bush supporters?
Rubio is contacting Bush donors, and the Rubio camp claims they're getting positive vibes.
According to one of the people, the Rubio camp is finding open minds, some anger over Bush going negative; some Bush bundlers are saying they need a "decent interval"; Rubio camp is casting the discussions as base-touching rather than "grave-dancing" and know it's a "delicate courtship"
For more like that -- on the immense fallout from Jeb's performance, and widespread claims that he is absolutely finish -- see AllahPundit's quotes of the day, which read like eulogies for someone no one much liked.
Generally, people in the media and commentariat overreact to things, and hype things, because that's what they're paid to do. People don't read political "analysts" because they want a sober reflection on what happened; they read they to get a hysterical overreaction, because hysterical overreactions are fun to read. Like a digest of a soap opera.
Most of the time I'd look at the Quotes of the Day predicting Jeb's demise and say "Well then that's not right, if all these imbecile agree."
But they may be right here. When stupid, hysterical people all say the same stupid, hysterical thing, it still creates a fact on the ground that stupid, hysterical people believe this. And these stupid, hysterical people are media writers, so their stupid, hysterical claims are read by other people (many of whom are stupid and hysterical).
My point is, even if I thought these idiots were wrong as a starting matter (and I'm not sure they are), they may wind up vindicating themselves and making themselves right by simply declaring Bush dead so frequently that the two words become roughly synonymous.
Maybe Bush really is done. Maybe that debate performance -- another bad one, listless and, if I may say, Low-T -- wasn't as cataclysmic as the hysterics are saying, but the fact that they're all saying it (they are cowards and are only comfortable expressing pungent, hard-hitting commentary that everyone else already believes and has already written) may make it turn out to be true.
Maybe... Drew's longstanding prediction that Jeb would win is wrong.
I certainly see Drew shifting his attacks to the New Half-Built Death Star (Marco Rubio).
— andy Over at his paying gig, AoSHQ Special Hillary Correspondent Andrew Stiles has assembled a collection of the most frightening images you'll ever lay eyes upon.
Hillary Clinton continues to reach out to the ruthlessly unimaginative members of the millennial generation whose support shell be counting on in 2016. Her campaign, for example, recently put out a list of DIY Hillary Clinton costumes for Halloween advising mature trick-or-treaters how to dress up like old photos of Hillary Clinton. It was a very spontaneous and fun thing that they did.more...
We thought it was a great idea, and decided to put together some Hillary Clinton costume ideas of our own.
William Stewart MacGeorge, "Halloween" (n.d.)
— andy Friday!
May all your ghouls come true this weekend.
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