insanely ominous footage pic.twitter.com/58Ao9XxVpM
— jack allison (@jackallisonLOL) February 15, 2020
That munchkin voice. If only the lifting cable had a noose.
And then there’s this: [continue reading…]
First this item from daily life in Hong Kong:
Coronavirus: Hong Kong Shows Symptoms of a Failed State Grocery runs in Asia’s financial powerhouse have begun to remind me of shopping in Russia in the chaotic summer of 1998. You grab what you can find, and if there is a queue, you consider joining it. Surgical masks and sanitizer gel are bartered for; detergent shelves are bare. A run on toilet paper last week, after an online rumor, was reminiscent of Venezuela.
Crowds are irrational everywhere, and social media hardly helps. Yet the palpable anxiety in coronavirus-hit Hong Kong these days suggests worrying levels of distrust in a city where citizens have always expected private enterprise at least, if not the state, to keep things ticking over. Both have failed miserably, preparing inadequately even after the SARS outbreak that killed almost 300 people in the city in 2003.
Hong Kong is not, at least for now, as grim as parts of mainland China, where the outbreak of novel coronavirus has people building barricades, or being followed around by drones. This isn’t Wuhan. Yet after 26 confirmed cases and one death, the semi-autonomous territory of more than 7 million people is in lockdown, with schools, universities and museums closed. A $360 billion economy, torn apart by months of anti-government protests, is in tatters. Masks are in such short supply that some clinics have closed, and queues snake daily outside pharmacies.
Hilarious Video Montage of Media Slobbering Love Affair with Convicted Creepy Porn Lawyer Michael Avenatti Eventually, we all learned that Avennati is just a stupid criminal who is now facing more than forty years in prison for his multitudinous crimes. Here’s a fun montage of all the times mainstream media slobbered all over Avenatti and elevated a common criminal because they thought it would hurt Trump.
The cascade of socio-destructive propaganda being pumped out by Western universities these days is catastrophic: cisgenderism, transgenderism, heteronormativity, intersectionality, patriarchy, rape culture, racism, diversity, affirmative action, enrichment and toxic whiteness to mention but a few… a suppurating collection of ideological garbage that is infecting the minds of a whole generation of young people, perhaps several generations..
— Joe Dan Gorman, Intellectual Froglegs (@JoeDanMedia) February 16, 2020
In which we start to see that it was Bloomberg that bought the Drudge Report after all.Testing Waters – Drudge: Bloomberg Considering Hillary Clinton as VP on Ticket…
WARREN: You know me, did the speech and then afterwards did a selfie line, and we were there for over an hour. People are coming through and they’re saying “thank you” and they’re given hugs and talking about what’s important to them. Young woman came up by herself and she said, “I’m a broke college student with a lot of student loan debt.” And she said, “I checked and I have six dollars in the bank. So I just gave three dollars to keep you in this fight.” That’s what we gotta do.
Pete Buttigieg is the millennial candidate in every way. Most likely his support came from his age cohort. Further, it was heavily female, with the male portion being the sorts, who support the case against consuming soy products. On the other hand, Klobochar is picking up the old Hillary vote. These are the old hens, who think having a female president is the only thing that matters. Her bitchy obnoxiousness reminds them of every fight they won with their ex-husband.
Huge red star might explode soon and next few weeks are critical – It’s well known Betelgeuse has no more than about 100,000 years left to burn and could start its death throes just about anytime between now and then. When it does go supernova, it’s expected to result in a dramatic light show that could be visible in daylight and appear brighter than the full moon for a few weeks. The last time humans were treated to such a sight was the 17th century. [continue reading…]
The man does know how to enjoy the job.
An episode of Scott Wadsworth’s spec house series… with grandkids.
“Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, and bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet; and especially whenever my hypos get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people’s hats off- then, I account it high time to….” –Melville
Well, Melville had his methods but my way of escaping the grim times now is to check in on Scott Wadsworth’s spec-house series up in Roseburg, Oregon. The series is now at 73 episodes and the complete playlist is at the “Let’s Build a House” series.
It’s a long video series. It showcases house building but shows you along the way what a decent man with a decent family and with decent values does when he goes to the job. This is how the world of man is built. It is built one nail and brick at a time. It is built by men who have the skill that God gave himself when He walked among us. Built by men who, in spite of everything, “keep up the good work.”
You won’t believe it. I can’t believe it myself. I am 97 today. 1941, age 18. I joined @USArmy Air Corps in WV.1944, age 21; Ace in a day, 1947 age 24; broke sound barrier,1953 age 30 flew 2.5 Mach; now, what’s next? @HISTORY @USATODAY #Friends @realDonaldTrump @DonaldJTrumpJr
— Chuck Yeager (@GenChuckYeager) February 13, 2020
Unlike every invention in human history since rocks and pointed sticks, small hobbyist-level drones will not be weaponized.
No one will ever use the fliegenden flammenwerfer to start brush fires, set oil terminals or LNG facilities on fire, or burn down the houses of opposition leaders at night when they’re sleeping in them, let alone use them at protests either for or against the government.
Never, ever, ever.
And no one will ever make one and use it on, say, homeless mega-encampments.
Or from merchant ships, against Somali pirate motherships.
Or on groups of illegal aliens crossing the border.
Or on gang bangers selling crack on the corner.
Because that would be double-plus ungood.
The “experts” have proclaimed this as unpossible.
Sleep tight, America.
Barnes And Noble Scraps Diverse Editions After BacklashA publishing initiative to celebrate Black History Month by putting cartoon black and brown protagonists on the covers of classics novels written by white people — including The Secret Garden, Moby Dick and Alice in Wonderland — has been scrapped after backlash that called it literary blackface.
Responding to criticism that its initial diversity version of Moby Dick was merely a “fish tale in blackface”, Barnes and Noble vowed to radically restructure Melville’s ponderoous tome
Too begin with, the whale will no longer be a neutral symbol of unstoppable, remorseless nature. Rather, it will be recast as a sort of immense guardian whale shepherd who protects the more vulnerable members of the “oppressed cetacean community” from the “genocidal depredations of a heartless, hypocritical Christo-fascist patriarchy who would despoil the Earth itself in its hysterical racist fear of ….. The Darkness.”
As such, the captain of the vessel will retain many of Ahab’s characteristics, but he will be motivated more by a need to sublimate his fears of latent homosexuality necessitated by living in a patriarchal, hetero-fascist time. It was decided to go in this direction rather than make him a gay man named Gayhab. After all, you don’t want a gay man as criminal
As for the “whiteness of the whale” this was deemed exclusionary of “Cetaceans of Color”; not to mention non-validating of inner city “readers of color” who were eager to delve into cryptic, unreadable 19th century maritime literature. Accordingly, a black whale character has been introduced. Among the names considered were Marcus Dick, Marlon Dick, Moses Dick, Kobe Dick and Tariq Diq. For a moment the name Malick Dick popped up; but resistance soon stiffened; causing enthusiasm to flag.
Moreover, the name Toby Dick surfaced momentarily but was immediately dropped as it triggered some traumatic memories of the show “Roots” In the end the debate swirled around the highly descriptive names Mocha Dick and Cocoa Dick. As the committee found itself deadlocked on this issue, it was decided to adopt two whales of color and call them the “Sperm Squad”….
Humanity on its raft. The raft on the endless ocean. From his present dissatisfaction man reasons that there was some catastrophic wreck in the past, before which he was happy; some golden age, some Garden of Eden. He also reasons that somewhere ahead lies a promised land, a land without conflict. Meanwhile, he is miserably en passage; this myth lies deeper than religious faith. — JohnFowles, The Aristos
How fares the good ship America during this, the 244th year of our voyage? Many would say that with its new captain setting a new course it will weather the current tempests and sail on into fairer days and calmer waters. Many others would say that we tack between Scylla and Charybdis with a more than fair chance of being driven onto a lee shore by the gusting headwinds. All would agree our present position was unforeseeable even four years ago and that our present passage is fraught with danger.
Dangerous passages are nothing new to the good ship America. She’s weathered many but never one quite so close run as that of 1860 to 1865 when a fire in American minds burned so hot it required the blood of 620,000 men to quench them. We did not sail into that maelstrom in a year or so. We were bound there, some would say, from the founding.
“Now small fowls flew screaming over the yet yawning gulf; a sullen white surf beat against its steep sides; then all collapsed, and the great shroud of the sea rolled on as it rolled five thousand years ago.”
The Civil War first loomed on the horizon during the rise of Transcendentalism in New England. That period began in the early 19th century and flowered during the literary period of 1850 to 1855 that is known as the American Renaissance. Transcendentalism was the first secular Great Awakening and perhaps its most enduring. Emerson and Thoreau are the chief avatars of the movement as it is known today and much of contemporary American progressivism bears the marks of those two men.
I’m not interested in them at present. Although entrancing to me as a young man, both Emerson and Thoreau have come to seem softer, more soyish, to me of late. Both much-lauded essayists have taken on the consistency of store-bought bread. Instead, I’d like to look at the more rugged work of an outlier of transcendentalism, a prophet who came late to the dance, Herman Melville.
Moby Dick is not only our greatest American novel to date, it is also a vision of our shared fate on this ship of state.
Melville was, unlike many other transcendentalists, the very opposite of an intellectual dilettante. He was an Abraham in a land of Lutherans. Melville was a man with a harsh experience with ships and how they fare upon stormy seas. Melville was a man with rough hands. Melville was a man that, having voyaged further out, did – for a few years at least – see deeper in. And in seeing deeper in and leaving behind a record of that vision in his masterwork, Melville still has something to say to us today about the state of America, the experimental nation.
Long sea voyages have strange effects on writers as the mystical and melancholy work of Conrad shows most clearly. The same effects, at first submerged, were to surface in the work of Melville in one gigantic book and then submerge again raising only ripples on the surface of his subsequent writing. Prophecy is a harsh taskmaster and more often than not consumes the vessels through which it speaks. So it was, in the end, with Melville.
As a young man, Melville stood many long watches on the long nights in the dark oceans in the early 19th century. Decades later, those voyages and night watches would haunt and inspire Melville as he struggled to finish the career-ending vision that had gripped him in transcendentalist New England in 1850. At first, his book was to be just another adventurous sea story like Typee or its sequel Omoo. In this case, however, the destination was not to be the exotic south sea islands, but a whale as big as an island. Indeed, Melville in contemporary correspondence doesn’t refer to his book as Moby Dick but as The Whale. It was only in the last stages that the book’s title became Moby Dick, a variant of a monstrous real whale of the time Mocha Dick, for reasons that Melville never clarified. Perhaps he just liked the sound of it.
Melville’s first books had been successful and, I imagine, at some point Melville thought that The Whale would be as well. It was not to be. In his lifetime the book was to earn him only a bit over $500. Moby Dick was not a formula novel. It was not, as they say in publishing, “the same thing only different” that his readers were expecting. It was just plain different, and therefore unpopular. Although he no doubt intended at the beginning for Moby Dick to be a rousing whale hunt on the high seas ending in tragedy, it seems that at a certain point something else, something other, took over the writing of the book and drove Melville before it. In the process, the book broke him financially, spiritually, and physically. As it was finally written, Moby Dick was to be and become many things, but “commercial” was not among them.
Those who, like me, are not part of the Trump salary boom but are in the economic situation which is gently referred to as “fixed income” learn to be always on the alert for the bargain, for the scrimp, for the save. Be it a penny or be it a pound we know to a fair thee well the ancient McCawbrish recipe for happiness: “Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen [pounds] nineteen [shillings] and six [pence], result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.”
My mother was a genius at this art since she had, at 104, outlived her money by a good decade or so. I learned many life skills from her but could have learned much more. Still, she did in her closing years teach me the fine art of couponing right down to the neat little coupon wallet she used that kept coupons in nice and tidy sections to be whipped out at the cashier. When I was a child she was big into Green Stamps and would put my brother and me to work from time to time licking the piles of loose Green Stamps (in blocks and in ones and twos) and slapping them into the handy Green Stamp redemption books. Our reward for this chore would be three each of her much loved oatmeal chocolate chip cookies.
Mom passed down the recipe for her cookies and she also passed down a few of her saving money chops. Chief among these was to be alert for the almost expired “Sell By” markdown. This markdown is something I always look for whether flush or skint. She hardcoded it into my shopping DNA. She trained me to expect it and stalk it.
Stalking the sell-bys is one of my shopping habbits and it has been successful. But in all my stalking I would never expect a Sell-By miracle. And yet, there it was today gleaming in Raley’s markdown meats; a bratwurst as big as all outdoors — three days before its sell-by date — for a nickel:
The phenomenon of getting a sausage for a price that would have been cheap in 1920 was so exhilarating to me that I promptly skipped off through the rest of the supermarket and spent at least twenty dollars more on groceries than I had planned, including a fresh-baked sausage roll at fifty cents — or ten times the price of the sausage itself.
When checking out the cashier scanned the package, mumbled: “That can’t be right.” I stood there as she looked down at the package and back up at me.
“It’s Raley’s finest hour,” I said. “It returns the American hot dog to its proper price of a Nickel. When’s the last time you saw anything that sold for a nickel? We don’t even notice the nickel since the dollar became the new dime.”
“How did you manage to get this?” she asked.
“My sainted grey-haired mother taught me.”
“She taught you well.”
“You have no idea. You’re not still giving out Green Stamps, are you?”
Don’t panic but be the kind of frood who always knows where his towel is.[See below page break to review the uses of the universal tool that is the humble towel.]
Rule in the Time of Coronavirus AKA Springtime for Hitler
Xi Jinping may also be thinking of it as an opportunity. Remember that Xi is part of political party that killed an estimated 65 million of its own people, and was happy to put a couple of million Uighers in concentration camps in order to reeducate them about their racial inferiority to the Chinese. They had to hold off tiananmening a few thousand Hong Kong activists only because too much of the world was watching and too much money is at stake.
But now? Now they’ve got tens of millions of people under quarantine, they’re reportedly burning thousands of bodies that died from the virus without reporting them, so many that they’re showing up on satellite photos mapping particulates. With the quarantine and even heavier than usual censorship, the communist government has ideal circumstances for score-settling and purging “subversive” elements.
Imagine how many activists and “agitators” they can make disappear in that chaos, not to mention people with low “social creditâ” scores. And the need to cremate bodies quickly means no one needs ever know that their actual cause of death was acute lead poisoning. The plague ensures it will be a while before their relatives come looking for them. Maybe they can’t get away with it in Hong Kong, but they can certainly get away with it in the “hot zone.”
“Bunny rabbits are adorable enough when they’re just sitting there twitching their pink noses or lapping water up from their little bottles, but when they’re hopping over brightly colored fences like tiny, long-eared horses while their super-enthusiastic trainers cheer from the sidelines, it makes you wonder why rabbit show jumping isn’t on TV all the time.
“We recently spent the day at the Rabbit Grand National in Harrogate in Yorkshire, England, to witness this space-time-bending level of cuteness for ourselves. Showjumping tests bunnies’ speed and agility as they race down the course, dreaming of winning the big trophy or at least of getting treats when they finish. We met a two-and-a-half-year-old bunny named Cherie. Her trainer, Magdelena, says Cherie’s favorite things in the world are jumping, hay, and carrots (and probably fucking a whole bunch, if we know anything about rabbits). Cherie annihilated the competition, finishing the race in just 12.5 seconds! Way to go, Cherie!”
Meanwhile… in other campaigns, the numbers tell the neverending story of chaos, confusion, and stealth communism.