Wednesday, August 26, 2009

New Rules From My Favourite American


This ain't exactly hot off the press, I saved it as a draft sometime last week and then forgot all about it.
This week, last week, What's the difference the message is the same.

But first a New Rule of my own: When a person is so fucking dumb, so incredibly stupid, that by comparison that person makes G Dubya Bush look like an Oxford Don, then Republicans must start to live in the real world and tell Sarah Palin to sit down and STFU.

Only in America could a woman so mindblowingly stupid, so mindblowingly dumb, that were she a teacher you wouldn't trust her with your children's education, only in America could such a woman find herself on a Vice Presidential ticket, truly only in America.

The inimitable and irrepressible Bill Maher.

Bill Maher New Rules: The Sorry Party

New Rule:
If Mitt Romney, Karl Rove and Sarah Palin all think America has never done anything wrong, we must be doing something wrong. Look at them: an empty suit, an empty heart and an empty head. It looks like the news team on Good Morning Hell. And what they've been competing about lately is who would not apologize the most. America is infallible, and apologies are horrible things that must never, ever be given. Except by me when I make a joke about the Pope. "We're perfect -- deal with it," is their new handshake. But I say, what's wrong with America occasionally saying, "I'm sorry"? Because these are the three sorriest white people I've ever seen.

If in your eyes America can do no wrong, you should really look into Lasik surgery. There's the rational, mature assessment of our country: that it's a great nation -- especially if you like fried foods -- but it also has its faults. And then there's the Republican view: that it's perfect and pure in every way and it's always right all the time, just like Leviticus and Ronald Reagan.

If the founders were alive today, Republicans would be giving them shit because the Preamble to the Constitution says, "In order to form a more perfect union? Hello, it's already perfect! Why are you suggesting American apologetics, Ben Franklin?"

One of the things that makes Republicans furious about our current president is their idea that Obama is always apologizing for America's biggest mistakes. Unlike President Bush. Who was one of America's biggest mistakes.

In his first week as president, Obama did an interview with Arab TV in which he said, "We sometimes make mistakes. We have not been perfect." Thought crime! And then he went to Cairo and violated one of those absolute eternal rules the Right Wing is always making up out of thin air: "The president must never apologize on foreign soil. Lest our allies begin to doubt that we're assholes. "

But what did Obama actually say to make Karl Rove's head explode and the popcorn fly out? Cover your children's ears: When he was asked if he believed in American exceptionalism, he said he did, the same way "the Brits believe in British exceptionalism and the Greeks in Greek exceptionalism." Yes, our so-called president actually said people in other countries might like their countries better. I was so shocked I nearly dropped the Bible I was using to help me masturbate into my gun.

In her farewell speech -- if only -- Sarah Palin kept telling us "how she's wired." Now I'm not a doctor, or an electrician -- but this is faulty wiring, this worldview that, in her words, "we should never apologize for our country." Really? Never? Not for slavery? Or Japanese internment camps, or if we tortured the wrong guy at Guantanamo? The Indians? Nothing, Sarah? "The Real Housewives of Atlanta"? Shouldn't John McCain apologize for... you?

When did intractability become a virtue? Mitt Romney's new book is called No Apology: The Case For American Greatness. You can find it at Borders, in the "Suck-Up" section. It's such a perfect title, combining paranoia with arrogance: "No one has yet asked me to apologize but, if someone ever does, fuck them."

Conservatives think apologizing is a sign of weakness. It's what liberal pussies do, when they're not busy driving electric cars and feeling empathy. When in fact it's the weak and the scared who are too insecure to apologize. Apologies are actually a sign of strength. That's why six-year-olds hate them.

In Rwanda, after a genocide that killed a million people, they set up special courts where people stood up and said, "Hey, sorry I macheted your entire family. My bad." And believe it or not, in most cases, that was enough. That's the power of an apology. A recent study reveals that doctors who are willing to apologize to patients for their mistakes are sued for malpractice about half as much as doctors who aren't willing to apologize.

Apologies can do great things, and they can enable great things. And if you still don't believe me, I have three words for you: make-up sex.

Palin's interview with Katie Cuiric, can anyone translate or actually tell me what she saying? (8mins)

But the Cuircic interview wouldn't be complete without Palin's views on foreign policy and diplomacy, or, how to loose the will to live in (10 minutes.)

Footnote: This post is directed more towards my European readers, you Yankees already know the score on this one.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Valencia F1 Loosing The Will To Live

Without the slightest shadow of doubt, Valencia, the most dismal poxy ridiculous god-forsaken venue to ever host a Grand Prix.

A venue where you can never get an overall view or perception of the race. A venue that in terms of atmosphere reflects only and exactly what it is, an industrial dockland and absolutely no place to hold Formula One event.

Not last year, not this year not ever.

Combine that above with the incessant over emphasised ramblings of Jonathan, I'm such a loud mouthed ignorant fucking gobshite, Legard, then it really takes away my will to live.

So to Bernie Ecclestone who brought this dismal place to the Formula One calendar, you are a cunt.
To the BBC, if next year you continue your otherwise excellent coverage with Legard as part of the team then you can stick your licence fee* up your fucking arse, and I ain't kidding, I will watch it as a re-run on line,... so endeth the rant.

The winner, Rubino well done you old bugger, if it wasn't going to be a McLaren win then I cannot think of who I would rather see on the top step.

I do like Rubens he's a nice bloke and whereas I thought him well out of order with his recent outburst I can empathise with him. Having to play second fiddle to Schumaker all those years can't have been at all easy.

Not as a racing driver in his own right it can't have been, and let's face it, Rubens is racy racing driver, far more so than half the lacklustre pedestrian buggers that turn up at each race and only go through the motions.

I have done a fair bit of racing over the years albeit in a totally different animal to a F1 car, but I shared something that Rubens has, the overwhelming desire to win, and it's that overwhelming desire coupled with frustration that on the odd occasion has clouded Rubino's judgement somewhat.

That desire to be first is fundamental to all successful sportsmen not just racing drivers, it's what I believe makes the Yankees so successful in the sporting arena, we Brits might celebrate a silver or bronze medal and think we did well, to the Americans silver is the first looser.

On a slightly different note, and I don't want to write too much on the subject for I'm hoping to write much more in the near future.

It was with much wailing, wringing of hands and gnashing of teeth that I greeted the news that Juan Pablo Montoya was moving to NASCAR.
Three years leaning a new trade, two of those years operating with inferior kit, JPM is now doing pretty well, lying seventh in rankings with I think just four races to go before the cut-off for the Sprint Cup Chase where only the top twelve drivers compete for the actual cup in a series of ten races.

Whereas redneck racing wouldn't normally hold a great deal of interest for me, with Juan the man in contention I do watch it live online, race times vary depending on daytime or evening starts unfortunately a late start tonight 7pm EST here are two feeds for live viewing if don't want to watch the whole thing you can watch highlights or lap by lap at usually within twenty four hours of the end of the race.

Hubtvonline Dead as the proverbial.

Bugitty bugitty bugitty let's go racing Boys!

*License fee: £140-$230 per annum obligatory payment to the BBC by TV owners.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Hey Coppers, Leave Them Kids Alone

Totalitarianism, dontcha just love it? Rule Britannia!

Previous: Another Nail in The Coffin of UK Civil Liberties.

By Murray Wardrop
Published: 3:01PM BST 04 Jun 2009

Police 'arrest innocent youths for their DNA', officer claims

Hundreds of teenagers are having their DNA taken by police in case they commit crimes later in life, an officer has disclosed.

Officers are targeting children as young as 10 with the aim of placing their DNA profiles on the national database to improve their chances of solving crimes, it is claimed.

The alleged practice is also described as part of a "long-term crime prevention strategy" to dissuade youths from committing offences in the future.

The claim comes amid widespread criticism of government proposals to store DNA profiles of innocent people, including some children, on the database for up to 12 years.

Civil liberty campaigners have condemned the tactic of as "diabolical" and said it showed contempt for children's freedom.

A Metropolitan Police officer made the claims after figures were released showing that 386 under-18s had their DNA taken and stored by police last year in Camden, north London.

The officer said: "Have we got targets for young people who have not been arrested yet? The answer is yes. But we are not just waiting outside schools to pick them up, we are acting on intelligence.

"It is part of a long-term crime prevention strategy. If you know you have had your DNA taken and it is on a database then you will think twice about committing burglary for a living.

"We are often told that we have just one chance to get that DNA sample and if we miss it then that might mean a rape or a murder goes unsolved in the future."

Last month the Home Office drew up plans to amend the DNA database after the European Court of Human Rights ruled that a blanket policy of retaining profiles of innocent people indefinitely was illegal.

However, adults and children arrested, but not convicted, of terrorism or serious sexual or violent offences will still have their profiles held for 12 years before they are deleted.

Children not convicted of any other offence will have profiles erased after six years or when they reach 18, whichever is sooner.

The Home Office announced last year that the DNA of children under 10 will not be retained.

Shami Chakrabarti, director of the human rights group Liberty, said: "This is diabolical and proof positive that Liberty's fears are being realised.

"The current law has created an incentive for the abuse of police power so that youngsters are being targeted purely for the purpose of stockpiling their DNA for the future.

"We hope that dealing with this outrage will be high on the list of priorities for any new Home Secretary.

"Politicians can no longer demand due process for themselves whilst showing such contempt for the freedoms of others."

Figures obtained via a Freedom of Information request show that a further 139 youths arrested in the Camden area have had their DNA profiles added to the database this year.

Lib Dem parliamentary candidate for Holborn and St Pancras, Jo Shaw, who applied for the data, said: "The Met and the Home Office have some serious explaining to do if this is the case.

"Innocent children should not have their DNA profiles kept for years."

There are an estimated 5.3 million profiles on the DNA database – accounting for about one in 10 people – making it the largest of its kind in the world.

However 850,000 are of people who were never convicted of any crime. source

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Is This What We Are Fighting For In Afghanistan?

And this is the government not the goddamn Taliban.

Row over Afghan wife-starving law

An Afghan bill allowing a husband to starve his wife if she refuses to have sex has been published in the official gazette and become law.

The original bill caused outrage earlier this year, forcing Afghan President Hamid Karzai to withdraw it.

But critics say the amended version of the law remains highly repressive.

They accuse Mr Karzai of selling out Afghan women for the sake of conservative Shia support at next week's presidential election.

The law governs family life for Afghanistan's Shia minority.

Sexual demands

The original version obliged Shia women to have sex with their husbands every four days at a minimum, and it effectively condoned rape by removing the need for consent to sex within marriage.

Western leaders and Afghan women's groups were united in condemning an apparent reversal of key freedoms won by women after the fall of the Taliban.

Now an amended version of the same bill has passed quietly into law with the apparent approval of President Karzai.

Just ahead of this Thursday's Afghan presidential election, human rights groups suggest the timing is no accident.

"There was a review process - Karzai came under huge pressure from all over the world to amend this law, but many of the most oppressive laws remain," Rachel Reid, the Human Rights Watch representative in Kabul, told the BBC.

"What matters more to Karzai is the support of fundamentalists and hardliners here in Afghanistan whose support he thinks he needs in the elections."

Women's groups say its new wording still violates the principle of equality that is enshrined in their constitution.

It allows a man to withhold food from his wife if she refuses his sexual demands; a woman must get her husband's permission to work; and fathers and grandfathers are given exclusive custody of children. source BBC

Despite whatever the header might infer, I have no truck with this or any other totally unnecessary illegal war.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Pigs In Space, And The Rabbis Too

Whereas I try to treat all religions with equal contempt, I think this is a first for featuring the Jewish faith in these unhallowed pages.

Not by design that Judaism has previously slipped under the radar, unless of course I have subconsciously given them a free pass because I know I'm never going to get a Jew knocking at my door trying to sell me a Bible or their god.

That said, and perhaps after watching the forty second clip, you might agree with me that they are just as loopy and batshit crazy as all the rest of the nutters.

A group of rabbis and Jewish mystics have taken to the skies over Israel, praying and blowing ceremonial horns in a plane to ward off swine flu.
About 50 religious leaders circled over the country on Monday, chanting prayers and blowing horns, called shofars.

The flight's aim was "to stop the pandemic so people will stop dying from it", Rabbi Yitzhak Batzri was quoted as saying in Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper.
The flu is often called simply "H1N1" in Israel, as pigs are seen as unclean.
Eating pork is banned under Jewish dietary laws.
According to Israel's health ministry, there have been more than 2,000 cases of swine flu in the country, with five fatalities so far.
"We are certain that, thanks to the prayer, the danger is already behind us," added Mr Batzri was quoted as saying.

Television footage showed rabbis in black hats rocking backwards and forwards as they read prayers from Kabbalah, a form of Jewish mysticism which counts the singer Madonna among its devotees.
The shofar is the horn of a ram, and is used to mark major religious occasions in Judaism.

TV (Ratings) Can Be Injurious To Your Health

There aren't many stories like this in a week, you would be hard put to find a plot like this in a dime store novel. Utterly bizarre.

Brazil TV host 'ordered killings'

By Gary Duffy
BBC News, Sao Paulo

Police have accused a TV presenter in Brazil of being involved in organised drug trafficking and ordering killings to get rid of rivals and boost ratings.

Wallace Souza, who is also a state legislator, says the claims are an attempt by rivals to smear him and that there is no evidence to back them.

But the police say he ordered killings in the state of Amazonas and alerted TV crews to get them to the scene first.

His TV show was halted late last year as police stepped up their inquiry.

If what the police say is true, then this is the TV show that not only reported crime, but was actually behind it as well.

Son charged

The authorities believe that Mr Souza commissioned at least five murders in order to get rid of drug trafficking rivals and to boost his programme ratings.

They say he wanted to prove his claims that the region he represented in the state of Amazonas was plagued with crime.

A local police chief told the Associated Press that the order to execute always came from the presenter and his son, and that TV crews were alerted to get to the scene of the crime first.

State Security Secretary Francisco Cavalcanti says the truth has now become clear.

"On several occasions they fabricated the facts, they fabricated news," Mr Cavalcanti said.

Wallace Souza faces a variety of charges, including drug trafficking and weapons possession, but remains free because for the moment his political role gives him immunity.

His son Rafael, meanwhile, has been arrested on charges of murder, drug trafficking and illegally possessing guns.

Lawyers for Wallace Souza, a former policeman who was expelled from the force, say the accusations are an attempt to smear him and that there is not one piece of material proof to back the police claims. Source and short clip.