Comments or suggestions: Gerard Van der Leun
Something Bizarre: Slide Walking? Japanese dancer Kazumi has the rather unique style of breakdancing/yoga and 'side-walking'.

I'm only showing you this so your mind will know to a dead certainty there are always new levels of bogglement...


Posted by Vanderleun May 31, 2011 8:09 PM | Comments (6)  | QuickLink: Permalink
"What the wife selects on her console will be paid for by the husband at his counterpart console."

Visionary film about the future of computers in the household from 1966:


Posted by Vanderleun May 31, 2011 6:51 PM | Comments (3)  | QuickLink: Permalink

"What Karzai is demanding is a free-fire zone for 'insurgents.' " -- Diana West


Posted by Vanderleun May 31, 2011 6:33 PM | Comments (8)  | QuickLink: Permalink
The current Gaia Cult is a cunning mixture of science, paganism, eastern mysticism, wicca and feminism.

"Have you ever noticed just how needy this goddess Gaia seems to be? She can never seem to get anything done without help from the liberals." -- Commenter edaddy


Posted by Vanderleun May 31, 2011 4:01 PM | Comments (8)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Whondunit? Dunno!: Memorial Day Mayhem Caused By Unknown Gangs of "Urban" "Youth"

Police baffled! Reporters flummoxed! Truth confounded! Citizens confused!


Posted by Vanderleun May 31, 2011 11:52 AM | Comments (6)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Of course you know this spam means war...

Posted by Vanderleun May 31, 2011 8:02 AM | Comments (3)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Hanson: "Without the law, there is nothing."

Posted by Vanderleun May 31, 2011 7:22 AM | Comments (2)  | QuickLink: Permalink
The Flower Duet: "As you drifted off, you knew in your heart they'd play it at your funeral"

Posted by Vanderleun May 29, 2011 10:30 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Romney: They snooze I win

Posted by Vanderleun May 29, 2011 9:00 PM | Comments (7)  | QuickLink: Permalink
"I said, 'Look but don't touch.' "

Posted by Vanderleun May 26, 2011 8:28 PM | Comments (4)  | QuickLink: Permalink
RIP SPIRIT: NASA Announces Death of Rover on Mars

Posted by Vanderleun May 26, 2011 1:15 PM | Comments (5)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Don Surber Strikes Again

Posted by Vanderleun May 25, 2011 6:04 PM | Comments (17)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Dance Me to the End of Love: Leonard Cohen in the 74th Year of His Age

Posted by Vanderleun May 24, 2011 6:57 PM | Comments (8)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Everybody Knows

Posted by Vanderleun May 24, 2011 3:58 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Closing Time

Posted by Vanderleun May 24, 2011 3:55 PM | Comments (1)  | QuickLink: Permalink

Posted by Vanderleun May 23, 2011 5:20 PM | Comments (9)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Principles of Tyranny

Posted by Vanderleun May 22, 2011 9:02 PM | Comments (15)  | QuickLink: Permalink
El Cheapo vs Obamagas: Pull On In and Put Some Hope in Your Tank

Posted by Vanderleun May 19, 2011 3:23 PM | Comments (11)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Slow Impoverishment in Middle Class American Life


Lo, our president hath spoken unto his people and he hath said:

The confidence I have in the American people, in their decency, that’s undiminished. My faith that we can make tough choices on behalf of future generations, that’s undiminished. -- Obama: “My People, You Continue to Have My Blessing.”

It's a good thing that this slacker's faith is undiminished, because at this rate his "faith" will be the only thing left "undiminished" on the American landscape. For the rest of us our lives will be, as they are presently becoming, ever more diminished.

I was thinking about the slogan made into a bumpersticker yesterday and posted on my sidebar, "You can't put Osama in your gas tank." That's an obvious truth seeing as how we don't have access to the body, vats of lye, and a rendering plant, but it's a broader sentiment than that. What it means is that there are a lot of things now that you discover, week in and week out, you do have to put into your gas tank. And more and more they are the things, large and small, that make your life worth living.

Do you like to ski, surf? Well you'll have to start adding the cost of gas to the cost of lift tickets or beach parking times the distance from your house to the slopes or the sand. Too much? Into the gas tank go the lift tickets and surfboard.

Do your kids like to be picked up and taken to their friends' houses for sleep overs and playdates? Distance to the house and back and back to the house and back home times miles per gallon times cost per gallon equals a lesser social life for your kids. Into the tank with playdates for kids.

Grocery shopping much? Watching "Extreme Couponing" more and taking notes? Looking for those little stickers on products that tell you the manager is cutting a couple bucks off the price because the food is just about to its expiration date and buying them? It adds up. Just eat them quickly.

In these and a hundred other small and yet relentless ways you are entering into, directly as a result of this president and his party's policy, the new American era of "Slow Impoverishment."

You probably don't think of your current economic situation as being "impoverished" (it's such a scary word, contains "poverty..."), but that is what is happening to you and your family and your friends and your neighbors. You might not be "poor" in the classical sense or even in the way that the Federal government currently defines the "poverty level," but you are being made poor day by day, week by week, month after month.

Im·pov·er·ish : To reduce to poverty; make poor. To deprive of natural richness or strength.

Now you may be well-off relatively speaking. You may be gainfully employed or own a successful business. It doesn't matter. It only means that this spiteful president and his party are impoverishing you more slowly and to less immediate effect than less fortunate Americans. Even so, unless you are a member of the wealthy, ruling class, you can -- if you put your mind to it -- feel in a very visceral way that you are not doing as well now as you were a couple of years ago. You may even have "more" money, but can't escape the knowledge that it buys less. And you also know that, given the path this man and his party, have put the country on you will be feeling ever more impoverished as time passes.

It is a strange president and party that relentlessly pursues policies that work actively day by day to beggar and weaken the country they rule so maliciously, but that is what we have come to.

In the grocery store the wands and the scanners beep and the total rises up. But the clerk is nice and polite and is in the same fix you are so the final total doesn't seem so bleak. And besides you probably splurged just a little (Maybe got the not-quite-stale cookies on final markdown) so you at least have a small pleasure to look forward to later as you watch "The Biggest Loser."

When you and the rest of us buy gasoline, however, any pleasure gleaned from consumption is far, far away. You stand in the cold and the wet and you push a steel nozzle into a hole in your car and you stand there in the fumes with all the other vaguely pissed-off Americans. And you stare at the madly multiplying number panel that is draining your dollars from your debit card in a blur.... $20, $30, $40, $50, $60, $70....

Isn't that a quality feeling? That's "slow impoverishment" in action. Press "Yes" if you want a receipt, "No" if you just don't give a damn any longer.

Killing Osama felt good, didn't it? But that's it. Breaks over. Everyone back on your heads.

Strange that the only ones who are enjoying the slow impoverishment of Americans are its enemies and the president and his party. They are laughing at you and their slowly impoverished base at their dinner parties. At the top, where the buck starts, his continuing pleasure in your slow impoverishment is one other thing that is "undiminished" in the mind of the strange and un-American "faith" of Obama.

Posted by Vanderleun May 17, 2011 6:39 PM | Comments (9)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Something Wonderful: "Tonight Is What It Means to Be Young"

Posted by Vanderleun May 17, 2011 1:33 PM | Comments (13)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Ann Barnhardt: The Boston Speech.


Hello, my name is Ann Barnhardt and I am the person who says the things that everyone else is too terrified to say.

This is the speech that I was going to deliver in Boston today, May 15, 2011 had a facility been available to me. Unfortunately, no facilities were willing to host my speech, sponsored by Rabbi Jon Hausmann, because I was deemed to be “hateful”, “bigoted” and “potentially violent”. Well, we’ll see about that.

In this speech we are going to cover a lot of intellectual and theological ground. I tend to set my goals extremely high, and this speech is no exception.


Posted by Vanderleun May 15, 2011 11:11 PM | Comments (28)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Barn (and Koran) Burning Ann Barnhardt is Back

"Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito!"

Ann Barnhardt's web page is HERE. No, it doesn't have permalinks. No, she's not on Facebook.


Posted by Vanderleun May 15, 2011 10:32 PM | Comments (17)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Something Wonderful: True Humanity at its finest

When this autistic man started having trouble singing the national anthem, something happened that could bring you to tears. Stay with it until the rockets come in with their red glare.

Will. Make. Your. Day. Week. Month. Year.....


Posted by Vanderleun May 14, 2011 11:28 PM | Comments (14)  | QuickLink: Permalink
The Republican/Conservative Purity Test: Please Double-Tap It in the Forehead Once and for All
"One of the dumbest things that the Right did in the 2008 primaries was to operate under the assumption that tearing down Candidate X was the best way to get Candidate Y the nomination. As near as I can tell, this only ended up resulting in: tears; a lot of resentment and bitterness between various factions; and John McCain." -- Moe Lane サ The Quiet Man.

As Ronald Reagan once said to Jimmy Carter, but now would say to many in his beloved Republican party, "There you go again."

Reagan would also remind you of his 11th Commandment: "Thou shalt not speak ill of another Republican."

Purists attitudes among purity-seeking "Republicans" helped boost Barack Obama into the White House in 2008. Now the same factions are at it again even though it is early innings in the drive to unseat the most malicious pretender to the White House ever to occupy the porcelain throne in the president's private quarters.

Yes, the party of PlaysNiceWithProgressives is busy being rotten to its core yet again. This was the sort of behavior that handed the election over to the progressives in 2008 and it looks to be on track to doing it again in 2012.

From the Paulist Purists to the Romney Revisionists of late it would seem that again nobody is "pure enough" to inhale the heady fragrance of their refined conservative flatulence. Instead we seem to be in for an extended session of Republicans eating their own and then blaming the progressives for their extended heartburn.

Dear Republicans,

With all due respect I say unto you: "If it were not for the progressive democrats you would be the dumbest political party in the history of the republic."

Please try to remember that your party's job in 2012 is to kick Obama's ass not kiss it. That line forms to the left and, since it stretches from Ghettozonia in the East to the Republic of Rimming in the West, it is very, very long.

I had thought about writing you all a long letter but then I remembered I had already done so in February of 2008. You didn't listen then and you won't listen now, but here it is again just for the laughs.

The McCain name may change but your brains, evidently, do not. Which is why they continue to drop kick your ass through the goal posts of history and spike your balls just to drive the point home.

Keep it up and that's what's going to happen to you again in 2012. If so, give me some warning so I won't have to watch you slip into the Speedo, lube up, and assume the position. You just aren't that attractive. If this turns out to be same Speedo / different McCain both myself and a lot of people are going to be very disappointed with you.

Some years ago I recall leafing through a slight volume of the collected sayings of New York City taxi drivers. One that stuck in my mind was that of a Bengali driver who observed, "Bicycle messengers, they thirst for death."

Watching the blistering salvos fired against a McCain ascendency throughout the net in the past week has put me in mind of that observation, only applied to the incondite arguments of recondite Republicans:


The gist of the Republican argument against McCain seems to be that he is not pure enough for many conservatives. I submit that that is precisely the point. The pure products of extreme ideology don't win elections in this country. The pure products of ideology start, well, civil wars.

NeoNeoCon has a long exegesis on this bizarre phenomenon at Conservatives jump the shark: party purity über alles where she states the obvious:

Candidates don't win by ideological purity. That's a delusion to which the extreme wings of both parties are subject.

But it turns out that for some, it's not even about winning. It's about party purification, about who owns the soul of the Republican Party.

It reminds me of the Biblical wandering in the desert. Forty years of that, and the Jews were ready to enter the Promised Land.

If you'd like a crash course in the current extreme Republican insanity, you might take a brief tour through the comments to that post above. Most illuminating when it comes to understanding that not all moonbats inhabit the cave on the left.

Does all this spuming and carping about McCain bode ill for his candidacy? I like to think not. I like to think that what we are seeing in the last week is simply the froth that always rises to the top of a hot cup of blather on the Internet.

Still, it is instructive to follow the heft of the arguments that shore up the ruins of the Republican party. These seem mostly to stem from McCain's real or imagined positions on "The Big 3 Issues" -- abortion, immigration, homosexuality -- plus -- just for fun -- some sort of running around outside his marriage a decade or more back. The latter is often thrown in because it just wouldn't be politics as usual without some mud in the mix.

Why the blow-up on the Right. It's not really about McCain. The conservative rage to my mind is powered not by the actual prospect of McCain candidacy itself. The looming reality of McCain's nomination brings a deeper failure into focus. That knowledge is powered by the unconscious awareness that, on "The Big 3 Issues", the culture war is over. And the conservatives have lost. Reaction? Consume your own.

Here's the news on "The Big 3 Issues:"

Abortion: Alas, this is a done deal. There will not come a time in the foreseeable future when abortion on demand will not be available in the United States. The best that can be hoped for at this point is a widespread understanding among the populace that abortion, though perfectly legal, is morally wrong except in certain, widely understood, circumstances. (And, no, I'm not going to spell those circumstances out -- that's up to you. Work it out with yourself, your family and your friends.)

The law and public morality are not coterminous, nor should they be. When they are the result is dhimmitude. Not really the state one is seeking, correct?

Homosexuality and gay marriage: This too is a done deal. To paraphrase Gay Rights activists from years ago, "They're here. They're queer. Get used to it."

Democracy, at the bottom, runs on a simple axiom: "Everybody's in. Nobody's out;" although these days you might want to cast the last part as 'Everybody's out.' If people want to enter into a state of marriage, that's up to them, not the state. The official recognition of gay people's right to be married or not married is merely generational. It will roll forward, couple by couple, state by state. As the poet says,

The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,
Moves on: nor all your Piety nor Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
Nor all your Tears wash out a Word of it.

-- Omar Khayyam

Indeed, rather than resist the desire of gay Americans to marry, it seems to me that insecure straights who for some reason have it in for gays should welcome their entrance into the twisted state that secular marriage has become. After all, it is a staple of comedy that straight marriage brings not bliss but woe and regret and the death of romantic love. Think of the decades of rich comedy material gay marriage will bring all Americans. Think positive. Think -- "Gay Divorce Court." Ratings to the moon, Alice. To the moon!

Reversing Illegal Immigration: Done deal #3. I know that, like visions of sugarplums, visions of some sort of "fence" protecting America from the hordes of marching Mexicans dance in the heads of Americans who just want them all to turn around and march back. But, alas, that too joins the previous two issues in the category, "It Ain't Gonna Happen."

I know, believe me, all the designs for a kinder and gentler fence that will have hi-tech detectors and some sort of ready interdiction corps sitting on helicopter scramble pads across the southern border. I know all the arguments for expanding the ever-so-effective techniques used to stop the flow of illegal drugs to stop the flow of illegal aliens. None of these will prove any more effective than "The War on Some Drugs" we've be squandering billions on over the decades.

What would work would be some sort of East German wall 1,969 miles long. This monstrosity would have guard towers, mine fields, attack Dobermans, armored cars, and about 100,000 armed border guards with a shoot on sight policy (3 shifts of 17 guards per mile). After around 500 Mexican civilians were shot dead, this might have some effect on reducing the flow. I'm not quite ready for this draconian a solution. Are you?

Then there is the extended policy of finding those illegals here and, well, just deporting them. Another 25-watt idea.

Okay, let's follow that one home with the vision of hundreds of buses chock full of thousands of illegals (rounded up in armed swoops through the US barrios) departing daily for Tijuana and all points south. The first problem is finding and then imprisoning the illegals. That would mean raids into homes and apartment buildings around the country as well as stop and frisk identity checks on the street for "looking Mexican." Then you'll have to refurbish those Japanese internment camps in the Owens valley and elsewhere as holding pens. Think the Manzanar Concentration Camp to the 10th power on the outskirts of every major city. You start opening those up and armed Mexicans are going to be the least of your problems.

Which brings up the small problem of resistance since male members of La Raza are not known for their submissiveness. No, not all of these armed roundups would be met with a tug of the forelock submission. And it is best to remember that this America is, first and foremost, a heavily armed country -- especially in the barrios. Are you ready for gun fights across the US? I'm not sure I am. But that's what we'd get since many illegals, faced with internment and deportation on a mass scale, would not go quietly.

Next, let's suppose that, after countless "regrettable" deaths (Each one of which is given the full "Pobre Maria Treatment" on NPR and in the New York Times. Yes, your head will explode.), that after these deaths hundreds of thousands of Mexicans did indeed show up at the border in surplus Greyhound buses. (Don't kid yourself, we're going to need a lot of buses.) What if Mexico decided, "Hey, we don't recognize any of these people as ours, and just what do you mean 'looks' Mexican?"

Are we then going to use the armed forces to force Mexico to take back their huddled masses? And even if they did, do we really want a country as corrupt and unstable as Mexico to become even more unstable? If you want to see a wall come up on the southern border overnight, just wait until a full-scale revolution breaks out in Mexico. Think "American Civil War" X 2 with automatic weapons and plastique explosives. If one side wins you get Nazi Germany to the south. If the other side wins you get Communist China during "The Great Leap Forward." Neither is what you'd call a "desirable outcome." Either will make you wish for the status quo ante when decent yard work and fine tacos everywhere were a staple of American life.

For these reasons and many more, the concept that a McCain candidacy and presidency would be "unacceptable" to Republicans and Americans is, in the land of realpolitik, simply delusional. When you want "everything" out of a president, you get "nothing." Huckabee is not the answer since he's too evangelical for the middle. Romney is not the answer since, well, the middle feel -- no matter what you say about it -- there's something too weird about being a Mormon. McCain's not only the best shot at the middle, he's really -- when you come down to it -- all the Republicans have in their quiver. And in politics, you don't beat somebody with policies and purity. You gotta beat somebody with somebody.

This, of course, will neither still nor stifle the true believers among conservatives. Like the sorely afflicted BDS democrats who have yet to get over the fact that Al Gore lost the election of 2000 fair and square, so there will always be those MDS conservatives among us who have not gotten over the fact Goldwater was skunked by Johnson in 1964. History has no lessons to teach the true believer.

Many of these mossbacks seem to feel that four more years of the Clintons or the first four years of Obama will be a small price to pay for ideological purity.These folks simply will not see that, as the TV infomercials say, "AND... it doesn't STOP there!" I know I am shoveling seaweed against the tide here, but I would ask those people, for but a brief moment, to consider these two potential line-ups:

Clinton/Obama 2008
Obama/Clinton 2008

This is, for so many reasons, the Democrat dream ticket and the pure Conservative's worst nightmare. Not the least because it means, at the outside, the potential of 16 years of a Democrat with a big socialist jones in the Whitehouse. Let's spell that out: S I X T E E N - Y E A R S.

Give one party sixteen years in power and you could, dare I say, appoint every single justice of the Supreme Court. Especially if you've got congress on your side.

"Not voting" to register a protest is also, in this case, not an option. A "not vote" counts as two against you; the vote you did not cast and the vote you did not cancel.

So, what the Republicans have to ask themselves before signing off on the No-McCain purity test is, "Do you feel lucky? Well, punks, do you?"

Posted by Vanderleun May 13, 2011 11:08 AM | Comments (23)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Bill Whittle. As Usual He Speaks for Me

"Genes carry hereditary information. MEMES carry cultural information. Problem is, many memes are defective -- they're based on falsehoods. We used to have an immune system -- called the "press" -- that caught errors. Now the "press" generates most of the falsehoods themselves.


Bill Whittle in MEMEBUSTERS! THE OSAMA BIN LADEN EDITION gives the lie to all the lies of the past 10 years.

Posted by Vanderleun May 12, 2011 5:30 PM | Comments (4)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Something Wonderful: Red Skelton's Pledge of Allegiance

Via Rodger The Real King of France and ruler of Curmudgeonly & Skeptical who notes, wisely,

A "skit" from one of Red Skelton's 1969 T.V. shows... WOW.....just think about it, he said this on his TV show in 1969 & had no clue his words would ever come to fruition.

Posted by Vanderleun May 10, 2011 9:51 PM | Comments (4)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Over vs. Under: The Summing Up

Posted by Vanderleun May 10, 2011 10:54 AM | Comments (16)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Something Wonderful: "Jersey Shore" Gone Wilde (In which we reach for a "mind condom.")

In an exclusive video series created for Playbill by "Earnest" stars Santino Fontana and David Furr, the Roundabout Theatre Company cast puts "Jersey" in the mouths of Oscar Wilde's famed Britons. Think of it as a comedy of bad manners. Part 1 in a multi-part series.

Posted by Vanderleun May 6, 2011 6:23 AM | Comments (5)  | QuickLink: Permalink
ימח שמו וזכרו: "May his name and memory be obliterated."

Posted by Vanderleun May 4, 2011 6:48 AM | Comments (18)  | QuickLink: Permalink
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