Manly Sunday

Didn’t post much this weekend because I spent all day Saturday in the car and all day Sunday under it. I changed out the heat exchanger on the Mercedes because the flex segment tore. (If that doesn’t make any sense to you, don’t worry, there won’t be a quiz. The short description: My car no longer sounds like I am driving a motorboat.)

So, as I am cleaning up afterwards, getting my tools together again and wiping the grease off of everything, this guy wanders up and starts chatting with me. He seems nice enough, kind of gives me a bit of a hard luck story, and after a fashion, more to get him out of my yard than anything, I give him a couple of bucks. I know, I know, it’s like feeding a cat. Once you do it, you can expect to see them again…

And you’re right, he came back. He was whacking on my door at 11:30 last night like it was the middle of the day. I met him at the door with pistol in one hand and maglight on the other. I bellowed at him, made angry homeowner noises and offered him some advice about walking up to people’s houses in the middle of the night looking for crack money. I don’t think I’ll see him again, but it just reaffirms the cynic’s maxim that no good deed goes unpunished. One day I am going to learn….


I hate to see a site that I enjoy become a haven for trolls. I have been doing as much as I can to mock the trolls over at Pandagon, which was working ok for a while, but when I get tired of being inventive and trying to be funny, they come back like roaches.

Jesse and Ezra refuse to ban these idiots, which is a decision I have to respect, though they really are kind of ruining the experience of commenting at Pandagon. When does one’s commitment to a free exchange of ideas become overshadowed by the crap flood of knuckleheads on one’s site?

I have only banned one person here, and he only commented one time, but he was a truly vile troll that followed me over here from Atrios’ site. Several commenters there reported that he had made harrassing phone calls to them because their info was available to the web. Based on what I had seen him comment there, it was fairly clear to me that he was somewhat unstable and a real nuisance. I sprayed when I say the first roach, basically.

Nice Catch, TBogg

TBogg doesn’t get out of bed without dropping his bullshit detector in his pocket. Check this out:

A news-talk radio station in southeastern Virginia has dumped CBS News because of listener outrage over Dan Rather’s “60 Minutes” report questioning President Bush’s National Guard service.

(That’s from the original article.)

TBogg’s BS Meter goes to 11, and:

Hmmmm. Sinclair Communications wouldn’t have any relationship to Sinclair Broadcasting, would it?:

Tonight, ABC’s “Nightline” will pay tribute to U.S. troops killed in Iraq by airing a 40 minute special – the names of the fallen will be read by anchor Ted Koppel as their photographs appear on screen. But Sinclair Broadcast Group – the country’s largest owner of TV stations – will not allow its ABC affiliates to air the show. In a statement, Sinclair claims the special “appears to be motivated by a political agenda designed to undermine the efforts of the United States in Iraq.”









and finally,


Ain’t that some kinda co-inkydink?

tailgating Josh Marshall

Talking Points memo is my hero.

Seriously, today Josh Marshall is like a sniper.

I guess it started last night, checking the time stamps:

it begins at 9:27 pm:

This afternoon, after John Kerry said that Iyad Allawi was painting an overly rosy picture of the situation in Iraq, Dick Cheney said “John Kerry is trying to tear down all the good that has been accomplished, and his words are destructive to our effort in Iraq and in the global war on terror.”

In other words, democracy in America is harmful to building democracy in Iraq.

Then, at 9:43:

Look at this very odd article on

It’s a Nightly News ‘reality check’ with the headline: “Violence surges even as conditions improve.”

It reads like a classic example of the media’s desire to find balance in cases where there really isn’t any balance to be found.

Then, at 11:08 last night:

Every so often you just have to sit back and marvel at the Twilight Zone we’re living in at the moment.

Here we have a US-installed foreign head of state, whose travel schedule is determined by the US State Department, visiting the US to buoy the president’s election campaign and spouting demonstrable lies in order to support a retrospective rationale for war that the White House wants Americans to believe but lacks the gall to state explicitly.

at 11:49 pm:

Can we re-check the sprinkler system in the Reichstag?

Then the editorial cartoon at I linked to earlier at nine a.m. this morning.

and finally, this at 11:20 this morning:

Don Rumsfeld said yesterday that elections in “three-quarters or four-fifths of” Iraq might be good enough.

In other words, run the place on Florida rules.

That’s why he gets paid for this and I don’t.

I had no idea

Atrios points out that John Kerry was involved in the bust-up of one what the Washington Monthly calls “the terrorists favorite bank.”

Two decades ago, the Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI) was a highly respected financial titan. In 1987, when its subsidiary helped finance a deal involving Texas oilman George W. Bush, the bank appeared to be a reputable institution, with attractive branch offices, a traveler’s check business, and a solid reputation for financing international trade. It had high-powered allies in Washington and boasted relationships with respected figures around the world.

All that changed in early 1988, when John Kerry, then a young senator from Massachusetts, decided to probe the finances of Latin American drug cartels. Over the next three years, Kerry fought against intense opposition from vested interests at home and abroad, from senior members of his own party; and from the Reagan and Bush administrations, none of whom were eager to see him succeed.

BCCI was one shady organization, I did not know that Kerry had anything to do with its demise, but it appears that he did. This is a very good thing.

Of course, to the media, this is far less important than some other trivial bullshit.

Ankle Twisty

Was running with Addison yesterday, was watching him instead of where I put my feet, and I twisted my ankle like a wet dishrag.

I fell down, rolled down the hill, made all sorts of “Agh,” “Argh,” and “UGH” noises, and then when I finally was able to sit up and open my eyes again, this is what I saw:


I can walk today, though with some difficulty. Looks like it’s back to the pool for a week or so while the ankle heals. I am a little concerned. I have a marathon in one month and I was really starting to hit my stride.

Who Knew?

Who knew there were so many bands that painted their faces up and made SCARY CLOWN photos?

Rock and Roll Confidential knew, and they mock them for you. Oh, it’s an hour and a half of side-splitting entertainment.

“The Hall of Douchebags” is their massive collection of bad band photos complete with mocking captions. It’s insanely funny.

Wow. What a load.

The very definition of demagoguery is stretched nearly to bursting by Julia “Clinton Killed his Dog” Gorin in her freshest pile of distortions on the use of the word NeoCon. Jesse from Pandagon pulls this piece of agitprop down off the wall and stomps on it.

Zoe Kentuckey points out in the comments:

It is not anti-Semitic to be anti-neocon or every Jewish person I know (including myself) would be anti-Semitic.

I know, I know…

enough with the YeahYeahYeahs…

But Damn, ok?

“Maps” is so good that it’s hard to listen to. “No no no” is close, though the dub breakdown isn’t the album’s finest moment.

I have to say, there’s no excuse for the fact that it took me wading through five reviews (one of which slags off YYY’s apparent paucity of sprawling releases thusly: “Robert Pollard throws away eight songs before breakfast and you sure as hell don’t see him on the cover of NME.” Um, and…? If ONE of those eight songs meant a fucking thing to me, I’d see the heinous crime in that fact, maybe. Maybe.) to finally find out that it was Alan Moulder that made these drum sounds happen. He’s definitely the George Martin/fourth Yeahyeahyeah of this record.

So much good NYC music this year:
Radio 4
Les Savy Fav (You gotta hear “We’ll Make a Lover Out of You”)

Last time there were this many great bands out of NYC all at once, it was Blondie, the Talking Heads, The Ramones and Television. Radio 4 and Les Savy Fav have that sort of razor thin guitar sounds of Television and Pylon and Gang of Four. You will also notice that of the three bands that I mentioned, two of them are releasing their own records, sans big label. Is this a movement? It should be.