Politics

Bush the Scab

Although the Daily Show is in reruns for the strike, Bush continues to write is own material anyway. See: Bush More Emphatic In Backing Musharraf. Some of the best lines:

[T]he general “hasn’t crossed the line” and “truly is somebody who believes in democracy.”

“Today, I thought, was a pretty good signal, that he released thousands of people from jail.”

“Musharraf has made a mistake and took a detour — we are hopeful that he will restore the constitution and get the country back to that path to democracy.”

“He’s been a loyal ally in fighting terrorists. He’s also advanced democracy in Pakistan,” Bush said. “He has said he’s going to take off his uniform. He’s said there will be elections. Today he released prisoners, and so far I’ve found him to be a man of his word.”

And when he takes off the uniform, of course everything will be hunky dory and he’ll just pat those nice lawyers he jailed on the back and say “I’m sorry” and then he’ll restore the Supreme Court and also rule over all of Imagination Land.

We might want to chastise Biden, too: “If the president sees Musharraf as a democrat, he must be wearing the same glasses he had on when he looked in Vladimir Putin‘s soul.”

Via J-Walk.

A complete turkey

One thing about this administration: it’s completely predictable. Whenever it promises us some kind of great program, you can be sure it’s complete and utter nonsense. So about that plan to “speed up” Thanksgiving air travel? Not so much:

The plan does nothing at all about the fundamental source of most airline delays: that big hub airports simply don’t have enough runways for all the flights the airlines would like to schedule for busy times. Don Brown’s comparison is right: it’s like thinking you’ll be able to fit 300 cars into a 200-space parking lot if you open an additional entrance ramp.

Have a good holiday! And consider taking the train.

Via Making Light.

Saturday Night Linkdump Fest

I think these are mostly for Seth, but the rest of you might enjoy them, too:

Dadlabs: a short, funny vodcast on the dad-life.

The Economic Consequences of Mr. Bush: Joseph Stiglitz on the fallout we can expect from this administration after January 2009.

Composters.com: I’m looking for an easy-to-use urban composter. Any recommendations?

No Alternative: A surgeon questions unproven medical practices.

Three Things Cloning Isn’t: so much for the Great Clone Army.

Feminist Gamers: on the intersection of politics, pop culture, and Carcassonne.

Religious scholars mull Flying Spaghetti Monster: papers to be presented include “Holy Pasta and Authentic Sauce: The Flying Spaghetti Monster’s Messy Implications for Theorizing Religion” and “Noodling around with Religion: Carnival Play, Monstrous Humor, and the Noodly Master.”

Not a Cough in a Carload: how the tobacco industry used advertising to downplay the effects of cigarettes.

Top 10 Myths About Thanksgiving

The New Dawn of Solar: the amazing nanosolar power sheet.

Via lots of places, including The Presurfer and Boing Boing.

Can you float away from taxes?

China Miéville is skeptical whether Floating Utopias are the libertarian tax havens they are made out to be.

Comedy Central Link Dump

Harvesting the recent release of pretty much every clip ever made on The Daily Show, After Elton has assembled A Look Back at Jon Stewart’s Greatest Gay Moments. This is brilliant.

What’s it like to be on the Colbert Report? Seems pretty fun, actually.

Meanwhile, The Younger Set prefers Colbert over other Republican candidates.

LOL Shrub?

Bush tells school kids: “As yesterday’s positive report card shows, childrens do learn when standards are high and results are measured.”

Is our children learning? Certainly, our president is not.

Oh, wait. There’s more:

As Bush addressed the U.N. General Assembly on Tuesday, a marked-up draft of his speech briefly popped up on the U.N. Web site, complete with a phonetic pronunciation guide to get him past troublesome names of countries and world leaders.

Like “France” and “Gordon Brown”.

Beginning of the week links

Found these in my tabs:

Bloxorz: a nice little geometric-based game. Sounds easy enough: get the block in the hole, and don’t let it fall of the sides.

MetaFilter discusses Famous First Words in pop music (as well as some infamous ones).

This Ask MetaFilter question, Marriott ruined our wedding night!, has some pretty good advice on how to approach service industries who do not perform. Best idea: be sure, when asking for compensation, to ask for somethings specific and reasonable (that is, “We’d like 50% off or our bill” works better than “We’d like free service for life” or “Someone Must Pay!”).

How to Store Your Food So It Lasts Longer: turns out you can store your bananas in the fridge.

A. Whitney Brown advices his nephew to not enlist in the Air Force. A reminder that the media has been, over the last few decades, very quiet about how our country actually uses its military forces and who we have killed.

Some things are just not worth it

So it’s been found that a substance that gives microwave popcorn its buttery flavor, diacetyl, is not especially good to breathe. Are you likely to breathe it at home? Probably not, but the workers who make microwave popcorn have been hurt by it, and now many need lung transplants. More here: That buttery aroma might be toxic, too.

Now, people can ingest a lot of things they can’t breathe (see, for example, water). And diacetyl can occur naturally in dairy and wine. This suggests it should be safe to eat. That said, why isn’t the FDA testing it and why hasn’t the EPA released the results of its studies? Worrisome behavior from an administration famous for being less than forthright.

While companies like Pop Weaver are responsibly turning to alternatives, if you have a stove, you don’t need microwave popcorn at all. You can make perfectly good (and far better tasting) popcorn in just a few minutes. Coat the bottom a large, lidded pot with oil. Put in just enough popcorn to coat the bottom of the pot. Turn on the heat (I find medium works pretty well). Pop the corn until the popping’s finished. Voila, homemade instant popcorn. If it’s something I can make, it’s got to be really easy. And the workers will appreciate being able to focus on turning out products which won’t kill them.

Me? President? Unlikley

But test yourself. Maybe you’re ready.

Fun quiz (just one of many to be found on the Internet some place). Requires knowledge of what is, to most, ancient history. Good luck!

If only they continued to make this much sense

Dick Cheney explains why toppling Iraq would have been a bad idea. When does he get to resign? (Give to MoveOn, or not, but at least take a look at the video.)