Archive for the ‘Humor’ Category


J. Edgar Hoover

“I regret to say that we of the FBI are powerless to act in case of oral-genital intimacy unless it has in some way obstructed interstate commerce.”

–attributed


Power corrupts.

Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

God is all powerful.

Draw your own conclusions.

* * *

–Anonymous


To mark his first year in office without causing a nuclear war, this week we’re reposting last year’s best posts on Donald Trump. Here’s the one from August 4, 2017:


 

“I usually stay away from politics on here for obvious reasons. They’re too divisive, and this is supposed to be a place about sports [San Francisco Giants], a safe haven. But I think the one thing we can all agree on is that Donald Trump is a dangerously ignorant man-child, the wriggling embodiment of the seven deadly sins, each of them competing against the other for supremacy at all times.”

— Grant Brisbee, “Donald Trump wanted to buy the San Francisco Giants” (on our favorite baseball blog, McCovey Chronicles). We’d highly advise reading the entire piece, as it’s outright hilarious.


Over the next week or so we’ll repost our best posts on Donald Trump during his first year in office. Here’s the one from September 8, 2017:


 

While watching Stephen Colbert last night, I witnessed a first: Bernie Sanders left speechless. It happened after Colbert asked Bernie to say something good about Donald Trump. Bernie sat there looking gobsmacked, about as uncomfortable as a trout gasping on the bank of a stream.

I’m sure that Bernie thought of a number of good replies later, and quite possibly slapped himself on the forehead going, “Doh! Why didn’t I say that?”

The French have an expression for this sort of thing: l’esprit d’escalier, which means thinking of a withering reply after the fact. More literally, thinking of a perfect reply while descending the stairs.

It’s an all too common human experience.

When Colbert asked Bernie the question, I couldn’t think of a single good thing about Trump, either. But I did think of one this afternoon:

“He didn’t say that all of the Nazis were ‘fine people.'”


Charles Stross

“A princess is the larval reproductive host in the life cycle of a parasitic hereditary dictatorship.”

— “Kurt Douglas” in Charles Stross’s terrific new novel, Dark State

(review coming shortly)


TRADITIONALIST, n. One who desires the continuance of dangerous, vicious, and unethical practices because they have already done so much harm.

* * *

— from The American Heretic’s Dictionary (revised & expanded), the 21st-century successor to Ambrose Bierce’s The Devil’s Dictionary. (The link goes to 50 sample definitions.)


It’s been a while since I wrote a post about abuse of the written word. I’ve mentioned some of the following unfortunate trends in posts from years past — and these trends continue to irritate — so, if you’re a longtime subscriber, please forgive any repetition.

To start with the equivalent of discharging a shotgun into a 55-gallon drum of mackerel:

  • English is not German. Of late, a lot of writers seem not to realize this. Thus there’s the regrettable trend of capitalizing Common Nouns for no apparent Reason, or for the transparent but unspoken Reason that the Writer can’t think of a better Way to add Emphasis.
  • Perhaps even worse is the ever-more-common practice of placing hyphens between adverbs and adjectives. The most extreme example of such semi-literate usage is placing a hyphen between an adverb ending in “ly” and a following adjective. As I mentioned ages ago, the “ly” ending is almost literally jumping in the air, waving its arms, and screaming, “Look at me! Look at me! I’m part of an adverb!” This type of barbaric, worse-than-useless hyphenization reveals that all too many people don’t know the parts of speech, nor how to properly use them.  This is a very-bad thing.
  • Misuse of punctuation is rife, particularly the misuse of semicolons. There are only two correct ways of using semicolons: the first is to link two closely related complete sentences; the second is to separate items in a list (usually beginning with a colon). Unfortunately, a lot of writers seem to regard semicolons as an exotic type of spice and toss handfuls of them, seemingly at random, into their verbal stews, at times in place of commas. Or should that be,  “. . . into their verbal stews; at times in place of commas”? No, it shouldn’t. That; would be wrong.
  • Another regrettable example of the Germanization of English is the entirely unnecessary and increasingly common placement of commas between the words in age-old compound nouns comprised of separate words. Or should that be compound-nouns comprised of separate-words? No, it shouldn’t; that wouldn’t make “common-sense.” (The final stage in this trend is the fusing of two words into one. Occasionally this produces a sonorous result, as in “motorcycle,” but more often produces a cacophonous one, as in “thinktank.”)
  • Finally, “and” is not part of the infinitive. Again, most people seem not to realize this, and would see nothing wrong with the following: “I’ll try and write a grammatically correct sentence.” If that’s not ugly enough to convince you, please consider that, in addition to being the correct word, “to” is shorter than “and,” and conciseness is a good thing. If you doubt this, please try and tell us why.

Fark.com headline of the day

Posted: January 8, 2018 in Humor, Livin' in the USA
Tags:

“American tourist helps to enhance the reputation of Americans abroad by overdosing on Viagra and strolling through airport naked, yelling and throwing faeces.”

If you don’t already follow Fark, the ‘net’s best weird news compilation site, Fark subscribers are currently selecting the best Fark headlines of the year for 2017. We’ll post a few of ’em here in the next day or two.

 

Meme of the Day 1-6-18

Posted: January 6, 2018 in Humor, Politics
Tags: ,


We published about 250 posts in 2017, and consider the following the 50 best. We’ve divided them into categories to make navigating easier; as with our past “best of” lists, the Humor, Politics, Religion, Music, and Science Fiction categories account for most of the posts. (Because several of the posts fit into more than one category, they appear in more than one place.) We hope you enjoy them.

Humor

Politics

Religion

Music

Economics

Civil Liberties

Science

Interviews

Addictions

Anarchism

Science Fiction


One of the recurring right-wing laments is that the entertainment industry is biased against right-wing comics. Maybe so, but who are they, and why haven’t Fox “News,” Breitbart, Infowars, et al. catapulted them to stardom? They have all the money in the world plus a mass audience, so where are they? Where are the right-wing, hilarious, world-beater comics? Why can’t anybody find them?

Short answer, there ain’t none. The only one on that side of the aisle who’s a great comic is Dennis Miller, who learned his chops as a left winger.

Again, why? Some have blamed demographics — the comedy audience is primarily young and progressive — but this is not an explanation. That comedy audience is merely a majority: there are a lot of tiki-torch-bearers who would love to laugh at women, jewish folks, gay people, black people, hispanics, the poor, and politically correct whites. The conservative comics have the platform and multiple targets. Where’s the audience?

Of the potential target groups, PC identity-politics whites are the only rich targets, and left-wing comics, such as George Carlin, often savage them. That leaves slim pickings: poor people, women, and minorities (soon to be a majority, thank god).

Comedy is a means of striking back at those in power, exposing their clothing-deficient status. Right-wing comics cannot do this. They ignore beam-in-the-eye obvious injustices and inequities, and instead suck up to the rich and powerful while attacking the poor and powerless.

And that  just ain’t funny.

 


Western Diamondback

“Rattlesnakes are attracted to beer and tattoos.”

— Poison Control Center worker overheard at a party a few years ago commenting on the fact that guys in their teens and twenties account for most rattlesnake bites and that — how did you ever guess? — alcohol is often involved. Not coincidentally, almost all Gila Monster bites involve the same demographic.

(Just in case you’re wondering, the above is a Western Diamondback, the most common type of rattler here in the Sonoran Desert.)


Here’s the latest installment in our ever-popular Internet Crap series, which mixes links to sick and absurd but amusing crap with links to useful crap. Enjoy!

  • Feeling a bit down, a bit left out, like you just don’t fit in? You might be a psychopath. Then again, you might not. Find out now with Channel 4‘s  Psychopathic Traits test. Their Spot The Psychopath game is also good, clean fun.
  • If you’re a writer, you’ll want to check out Ralan.com. It has by far the best collection of useful links for writers that we’ve ever seen. (Thanks to Ted Weber, author of Sleep State Interrupt, for this one.)
  • We hear a lot lately about Donald Trump and fascism. For a good, short dissection of the topic, check out Chris Hedges’ “Trump and the Christian Fascists.” (If the title of the piece aroused your curiosity, no, veteran journalist Hedges is not a militant atheist — he’s an ordained Presbyterian minister.)
  • If you’ve ever wondered why so many MLM and other scams target conservative religious believers, wonder no more. Mette Harrison does a good job of explaining it in “10 reasons Mormons dominate multi-level marketing companies” on the Religion News Service site.
  • The Guardian reports that earlier this year, a 21-year-old Spanish student, Cassandra Vera from the Murcia region, was convicted of “glorifying terrorism” and sentenced to a year in jail for a series of jokes she posted on Twitter in 2013. The funniest one concerned the 1973 assassination of Admiral Luis Carrero Blanco, the Spanish prime minister during the last years of the Franco dictatorship.  Carrero Blanco was killed when the Basque terrorist group ETA detonated a huge bomb beneath a street as Carrero Blanco’s car passed over it, with the explosion hurling the vehicle nearly 70 feet into the air. That’s a long set-up for Vera’s joke, but necessary to understanding it. Here’s the joke, and it’s worth the wait: “ETA launched a policy against official cars combined with a space program.”
  • In these days of “fake news” and deliberate muddying of the waters by the president and his enablers, how do you tell what’s real from conspiracy theories? Hero whistleblower John Kiriakou, who was viciously persecuted by the Obama administration and spent nearly two years in jail as a result, tells us how in “How to Challenge Media Narratives Without Being Called a Conspiracy Theorist.”
  • Ever wonder what’s the most effective thing individuals can do to reduce greenhouse gas emissions? Environmental Research Letters reports that, as should be blindingly obvious by now, the most effective individual action by far is to have fewer kids. (Of course, organized crime — the Catholic Church, LDS church, et al. — will never admit this, because they don’t care about the environment nor the common good; they just want more money and more blindly believing foot soldiers.)
  • We seem to constantly hear about the “civilizing effects” of religion. Here’s a prime example from a deeply devout area, in this case a deeply devout Islamic area. The title says it all in the CNN report, “Pakistani village elders order retaliatory rape of 17-year-old girl.” One can only imagine what these people would be up to without the “civilizing effects” of their “great religion.”
  • Since no Internet Crap post would be complete without at least one link to a cybersecurity how-to story, here you go. The Intercept has an enlightening piece in comic-book format titled “How to protect yourself against spearfishing: A comic explanation.”
  • If you were puzzled as to why so many Alabama “values voters” were ready and willing to vote for an alleged (have to get that in there) pedophile, Kathryn Brightbill does a good job of explaining it in her Los Angeles Times op ed, “Roy Moore’s alleged pursuit of a young girl is the symptom of a larger problem in evangelical circles.”
  • Finally, in still more religion news, the AP reports that “a woman shot her boyfriend in the head after he asked her to kill him because he thought the leader of a cult they belonged to was a reptile posing as a human.”

And . . . Th . . . Th . . . Th . . . Th . . . Th . . . Th . . . That’s all folks!

Porky Pig


REFORM, n. 1) Formerly, a measure designed to improve something already in existence, as in “The reform broadened Medicare coverage”; 2) Currently, a measure designed to worsen or eliminate something already in existence, as in “Tax Reform” and “A shotgun blast to the head reformed the recipient’s life expectancy.”

* * *

–from the revised and expanded edition of The American Heretic’s Dictionary, the 21st-century successor to Ambrose Bierce’s Devil’s Dictionary. (The link goes to 50 sample definitions.)

 


(This one doesn’t reflect well on me, but it’s funny enough to post nonetheless.)

Several years ago, on a Sunday afternoon, telemarketers were bugging me — several irritating calls came in, all from anonymous or out-of-area-code numbers I didn’t recognize.

Since it was Sunday afternoon, chances of getting a business call were almost nil. So, when another out-of-area-code unidentified number came up, I thought to myself, “Self, let’s screw with ’em.”

I picked up the receiver, immediately shouted as loud as I could, “Oh my god! There’s blood everywhere!”, hung up, and then didn’t answer when the caller rang again almost immediately.

Well, it turned out my caller i.d. wasn’t working as advertised, and I would have recognized the caller’s number if it had come up correctly.

The following day the caller i.d. was working again, and I discovered the identity of the caller I’d pranked: it was my brother. He wasn’t amused.