Wednesday, October 31, 2007


Tuesday, October 30, 2007

ok... so this one has been bothering me for a week now. JK Rowling announced that Dumbledore was gay. I've got issues with this...
1) - it's a FICTIONAL character - so it's not like Aldus is going to come to your son/husband/boyfriend and say "i like your hairy ass - wanna experiment?" It's a character in a god damned book. Why the hell would anyone be upset?! (well, except for the story about the guy with the tattoo... that was unfortunate...)
2) - the books dont actually include him BEING gay. At no point in the books does Aldus do anything homosexual. Nothing like that is described. They never catch him in an airport in a wide stance... no toilet paper stuck to the hem of his wizard robe as he leaves the King's Cross railway station bathroom strategically placed next to platform 9¾... So how, exactly, can a fictional character BE gay if he doesnt DO anything gay... this is fiction people - not reality. A character in a book STARTS on page one and ENDS on page N and if it aint ON THE PAPER then what the hell are we talking about? Sure - the author has a degree of latitude with their stories - especially when it comes to interpretation... but this? The author may have 'conceived of the character as gay' and written it that way - but once its on paper, or film, or vinyl, or canvas, the artist is left with a RESULT. Everlong is a song... Dave Grohl can tell us what he was thinking, what its about, but the song is finished - and what it means to people after all this time shouldnt be affected by an admission that it was all a lovesong about HALO's Master Chief. JK may well have written Dumbledore with the idea that he was gay and had a gay past in her mind but if it's not on paper then it really doesnt matter - it isnt IN THE FREAKIN BOOK - just like at no point does Grohl mention Cortana's unrequieted love for MC in the song itself (unless its in that garbage answering machine playback stuff hidden in the background). Must there be a canon for all this crap? Perhaps we could discuss the time Kirk banged a tribble, or Jesus blew a goat, or how Samwise was a hermaphrodite and used to hit the Prancing Pony on Ladies Night! in full drag guzzling saucers of - you get the picture... a book is NOT FREAKING MAGIC - it's a book... and there's NOTHING more to it than the ink and paper. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar - and the mental twists an artist traveled to get to the end product is not relevant to the product. Recently, they did an x-ray examination of the Mona Lisa... and found that originally it had a much more pronounced smile... does that matter?

I just dont see how a fictional character can truly BE X if he/it isnt X in the only place said character exists. That doesnt mean a character must take a crap (though it would be nice if Jack Bauer slept for half a season and suffered with a hangover for 3 or 4 weeks) and if there are never any scenes of Enterprise crew in a restroom that defacto they must be androids from planet Mudd - what i'm saying is even if the character is intended to be a womanizer, or a murderer, or a collector of hello kitty paraphernalia, then how can that be if it isnt established in the book? They're not real... Now - if we're being good Haruhists, then i suppose it could be argued that fictional characters are morphing constructs that can adapt to the wanton desires of an omnipotent albeit irresponsible god... but though i like miss suzumiya rather a lot, i tend to doubt that this sort of finnegan's wake approach to reality is something we want to apply towards our daily 'how am i going to face the cold cruel lonely truth of existence today' world - whether in our actual construct of reality, or that pen and paper fantasy we call storytelling.

3) So Dumbledore is gay... not that there's anything wrong with that... and even if one took personal exception on the grounds of some twisted hate-filled religious screed - this is a FICTIONAL character (much as your god... or do you want to go there...). Like i said - DUMBLEDORE IS NOT REAL... so why do we care?! And - if the idea that an old man who puts on his robe and wizard hat in a book you liked had a thing for polesmoking bothers you... i really think you need to get out more.

S: "So... why Duessa?"
V: "What? oh... you mean as a costume?"
S: "Yeah - why not Una?"
V: "Well, the dress is black and Una is virginal so that just didnt seem to work"

I dont get my ass handed to me in that game very often...

So I'm watching Katie Couric tonight - dont ask me why - i'd been watching the local CBS news about how those assholes at BFI lost the right to build a landfill the size of Mt Bonnell in NE Travis county and i didnt bother to change the channel...

it was the combination of 2 stories that has me posting. First, there's a continuing stink at the SCOTUS today over what constitutes child pornography - and whether representing something as child pr0n that isnt should be a 5-20 offense. I gather some grandfather sent a 'poorly phrased' email with a subject header having to do with pictures of his grandchildren... and another guy had some pr0n with 18 yr olds who look younger... or somesuch... i dont know - the news story wasnt very good... and i think it was only there to tease the viewer into thinking there might be something sexual in the news.

So then the second story is a long feature on Rockstar's latest 'Manhunt 2' for the Wii - where you get to physically act out the part of being an escapee from a mental institution where you dismember policemen with an axe. They let kids play it, they had psychologists, they mentioned in passing that there was no scientific evidence linking the playing of violent video games and acting them out IRL... showed in detail how to lock your console so kids couldnt play mature themed stuff... then she let loose with her opinion - that she didnt know what sort of people would like these games.

Hmmm... well katie... i dont personally care for this stuff - but then i dont like 'Battle Raper 2' either(no, i'm not linking to that one)... still, if some demure little girl wants to practice her axe-chopping on a couple of virtual policemen (with her parents permission) i dont see how it's any business of yours. This is amurika... we solve all our problems with violence - best to train em young. (note - this game was banned in the UK... and though i'm not really a nanny-state person, i can sorta appreciate where they're coming from)

The stories were right next to each other... i really think at some point someone needs to say 'virtually ripping skulls out of people with a meathook isnt something we need to see' - or at least put some of the energy they put into protecting us from people who think they have underage pr0n but dont... Of course, Katie doesn't see that - but she's a spineless moron.

Monday, October 29, 2007

You know... i dont wake up every day and say to myself 'i'm going to post in my blog and sound like Simon' - it just sort of happens sometimes...

that said - WTF is THIS crap. How many times have i personally seen asshole DHS agents... how many asshole DHS agent stories have i read... but i swear they're getting worse. These guys need to be cockpunched - repeatedly - by an angry Mike Tyson wearing a too tight flank strap. No doubt they'll be considered for promotion instead - since thats what you get for being a prick working for this government. When foreigners look at me, as an american - much less from texas, i get frustrated by the first impression i have to overcome. It's getting worse - and i'm sick of it.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

I've been told - if you pick a naked Mann up by the armpits - expect the same...

Friday, October 26, 2007

Saw something I havent seen out here tonight... midnight... full moon... and a pack of coyotes was standing in the middle of my street (saw 3, think there were others in the brush). Why is it that i see a coyote and the first thing that comes to mind is Anthony Kiedis and the second is Homer Simpson... You're welcome here my trickster friends - just be sure to leave the foxes alone. There's a Kitsune out there with my name on it ;)

Mr Buttle - The Ministry of Information would like to speak with you...

ah yes - here we go again... The head of the CDC went before congress where she was testifying in detail on the rather large impact global warming could and most likely would have on her specific realm of responsibility - but someone in the office of management and budget (WTF) revised her remarks by striking 6 pages of her written material. Happily - she was physically present - and simply went off the prepared remarks to make the case - later remarking "I don't let people put words in my mouth and I stand for science."

From the AP: The deleted sections of the draft, covering more than half of the original text, included a list of specific impacts on which ``climate change is likely to have a significant impact on health.'' The list included the effect of more frequent hot spells on vulnerable populations, the impact of extreme weather, more air pollution in drought areas, and greater likelihood of vector-borne and waterborne diseases as well as mental health problems.

Contrast this with the BBC story on the GEO-4 report - something that made virtually no signal in the US press cycle. Then again, with a conclusion like

Geo-4 shows us that if 20 post-Brundtland years have upped the rhetoric, they have done little to change the reality; despite a plethora of good intentions, global society is less sustainable than ever. Without major changes in direction, we had better hope that the people who believe that human ingenuity, technology and economic growth will always solve our future problems turn out to be right.
i dont know if i can blame them from not wanting to talk about it.

Now you might think this sort of 'we need to obscure the truth if its something people wont like' thing might be primarily pointed to protecting big business interests. But this is the Bush administration... Petroleum isnt the only thing George and Dick are tied to... these guys have got quite an erection for torture too. I tell you what - if agents of this government came to me and said 'you will admit to being a terrist or we will see your children tortured' - of course i'd sign whatever they want. Wouldnt make it true... but then there werent witches in Salem either. Dick 'Torquemada' Cheney is leaving his dirty shit-covered cloven-hoof footprints all over the constitution - and i'm getting pretty sick of it.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

that's a lot of money....

this is going to destroy the dollar
i think i need to go somewhere else for a decade or two - not because of anything political - but because my ability to get paid overseas is going to be dramatically higher. Sad. Very sad.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

So I've been thinking about Proposition 15. It's 3 billion dollars... and to me it feels like the sort of thing that's just another taking of public money and moving it into private hands. Govt capital outlays for things the private sector is working on/researching seem to me to be things one should reserve for things the private sector isn't going to accomplish properly (space travel... clean energy so we dont destroy the planet...). I dont know if I trust Texas to spend $3b without it just being a giant boondoggle. I'm going to have to research this one (though from the polling numbers it doesnt look like it's going to pass anyway).

Seems to me spending that 3b on the schools might be a better idea... not that i be panicking or anything.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

In MY name...

next time you think bad thoughts of the chinese... or feel comfy and secure in your bed... remember that the US Govt is torturing people who have done nothing wrong so you can sleep well. Where's the 2nd amendment when i need it...

taking a cue from jake...

beady little eyes
looking for cheese in the dark
i move them outside

yes, my little neighbors have returned... the tip traps are down... very little evidence of them so far, but i figured they'd be headed this way once the temperature dropped. The electronic rodent repelling devices do nothing btw... i hear a second... but the smell of cheese is a harsh mistress - and soon he too will be somewhere down the hill enjoying the weather with his friends and the stoners.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Nice weekend. Dinner with friends saturday. In town to watch game 7 last night. Would have gone in to watch football with Jake sat but i slept in... Fairly uneventful... as usual. You know I must be crazy, to show this as my way of living (no cutting up the pieces though...)

Old company is going south, finally, in a somewhat catastrophic way (or so it seems). Not terribly surprised - i hate working with people who play the work game as an opportunity to make everyone else play the 'it's all about me' game. God but they make me sick.

Writers strike looks more likely... should ping cali... go visit since they'll be stopped. In the mean time - since all the TV is about to get even crappier than it already is... i suggest using something like this - there's some good stuff from england in there and it'll keep you busy. I wont bother suggesting cartoons... no one watches them but me ;)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Mona Shaw is a hero
She's also a terrist

Can terrists be heroes? well, i think the answer quite obviously is yes.

If I were Verizon - i'd have a TV ad up and running inside a week featuring this woman and a claw hammer sporting the tag line 'Verizon, Phone and Internet service, no hammers required'

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

its the new fall season - and yes, there are a couple shows i like (and a couple shows others would probably like, considering the impending hollywood writers strike is going to kill an awful lot of domestic content here in a couple weeks)... but that's not what i'm posting about.

Today the manhunt is on for a pedophile in southeast asia who learned that the twirl function was not a good method of masking one's identity... Yesterday they arrest this guy in nevada who had sex with a 2 yr old girl - and videotaped it. Beyond screwed up. ok. put me in a room with that one and only one of us will come out (sorry, the pain some of my loved ones have suffered on that front may never go away). well, this season in japan there's a series called Kodomo no Jikan (Nymphet for those of you playing along - link to synopsis w/ picture). Lets go through the short version... 23 yr old male teacher's first day on the job, is told by young 3rd grade girl (ah yes, the 8's too late joke rears its ugly head) that since he doesnt have a girlfriend that she'll be his girlfriend... gratuitous fingersucking... gratuitous skirt lifting to expose panties as reward for saving the nice kitty... you get the idea. Now - even the Japanese think this one crosses some boundaries - and they have censored the living hell out of it... and in japan they show it at something like 4 am or somesuch... and even then 2 stations dropped it. But you still get the theme - loli taken over the line and censored back to what must be considered the very edge of socially acceptable storytelling.

This is NOT Nabokov here - though i wonder, would we allow that sort of expression in today's America - have we moved so far in the other direction from the freedoms of expression we shared in 1955 w/ what age does Phoebe Caulfield lose her innocence? are we allowed to have someone, through cartoons or games, explore socially unacceptable behaviors involving sex rather than violence? For anyone who's played a Rockstar game it does beg the question - did you really need to shoot the hooker afterwards to get your money back... or climb over the counter and splatter the guys hiding in the back of the burger joint just because? SAW is about as close to 'socially worthless' and thus 'pornographic' as anything i can imagine - no wonder so many family-values-centric cultures have such a problem with the export of western culture to their wasteland hideaways. Then again the japanese have a whole genre of odd dating/sex games - some of them certainly seemingly portraying youngish characters (though a technically 'of age' japanese girl can be drawn tiny because, honestly, they ARE tiny - something Konota pointed out rather repeatedly in Lucky Star). So where's the line? Is a game over the top? How about the places in japan where you can go to have sex with a sexdoll dressed as a child? That creeps me out... but on cable i've seen the 'vice guide to travel' detailing the howto and whereto (including an amusing if not pathetic sequence of the main host simply unable to bring himself to do anything to his doll). How do we apply local standards (since those are the ones the supreme court has dropped on us for pornography) to materials drawn from international locales? If we make the rule 'you cannot sexualize an underage character' well hell - better lock Britney up for that first video... Gordon Ramsey would have been unacceptable 20 years ago - but now it's fine so long as you censor the cursing a little.

Kodomo no Jikan isnt my thing... it seems its more the scene of the 16 hour a day sleeper... the loner who spends all his time on porn, tv, comics, porn, and porn... the greasy guys with that ogle-look in their eye and the faint hint of spittle on their lip who dont quite know what to do with a girl other than breathe heavily (i'd call that an unfair generalization but, well, it isnt)... but it IS interesting in that it forces you to consider where do we draw the lines between what's acceptable in literature or art and what's acceptable for a sleazebag with a 2 yr old and a video camera. The true otaku basement dweller is a very sad individual - but is his odd loli obsession with cartoon 3rd graders something that must be stopped? I know the domestic licenseholder for the manga dropped the book out of concern that there would be domestic backlash. Do we say games dont hurt anyone - does anything go? And why do we seem so hung up on sex crimes as where we draw the line... you can murder a 2 yr old on tv... hell, cook her grind her up and eat her in an r-rated film, but if there's anything sexual then everyone's goin to jail. Yes - i have a personal and extremely negative reaction to sex-crime - but i wonder, should we be less concerned with the sexualization of extreme unrealistic cartoon characters or more concerned with the gratuitous violence we depict on much more realistic characters for visual gratification in full view of our children. Or as Jake asked yesterday - in how many states is it illegal to buy a dildo?

Loli is twisted and creepy... but doesn't it stop there?

Monday, October 15, 2007

From today's NYTimes

The jokes... they write themselves...

time for corporate america to grow up

apple restricts its products to only apple provided apps? heh... in come the 13 yr old kids.

The latest Sims2 expansion ships with Sony's SecuROM DRM protection scheme that results in disabled DVD drives, crashed computers, and 4,146 posts from 883 people on the EA boards in 24 hours... and a cracked no-DRM version is up on piratebay within the same period.

with Radiohead's album, then NIN and Madonna leaving their labels, i think you're starting to see the artists figure it out - too many involved in the manufacturing process are not interested in the consumer past taking his/her money - and they're going to fail at that if they don't start charging LESS for the entertainment and do LESS to screw with people.

Artists have a right to be paid for their work... but the cost of transport of information has DECREASED the per-unit value of said work, while dramatically increasing the potential marketplace. Sure, a huge swath of radiohead fans will decide to pay nothing for the album - but a huge swath will pay full price or more - and with artists getting 1/9th of the money associated with the sales - i bet they do just fine with this arrangement.

oh - and if you sell me something that screws with my computer? yeah... dont ever expect me to buy your products again.

So I was reading about the idea that people will be falling in love with (and having sex with) robots by 2050. The article is a bit silly - since it seems to think there'll be some sort of legal jurisdictional oversight that would be required/involved before you'd see it happen... and the whole sex with robots thing seems pretty much a near-term event...

what's more interesting here isnt the sex... it's the love thing... and man doesnt it go right after all sorts of classic sci-fi scenarios. I think where this gets interesting is the question of heuristics... when you get to a simulated personality that goes well beyond the turing test, and gets to a point of having unique opinions based upon a wealth of personal experience you're going to have something that people are capable of falling in love with. Now - that doesnt mean they will... and lots of people wont remotely consider the possibility... but i think that as those simulated entities get more and more dynamic (and, honestly, we're almost at the point where they'll be improving upon the simulations themselves... i mean... how many millions of generations of modeled synapse characteristics will machines be able to map in a minute 20 years from now?) I think there's a threshold - and it's going to be different for different people - but there's certainly a point where simulated pets are as real as live ones in the next 5 or 10 years... maybe moreso.

People should be quick to model thereafter.

Is it wrong for Harrison Ford to fall in love with Sean Young? Is it any less real? We can't know what sort of emotions any of our partners truly feel - and speaking from some experience on the subject, it's certainly reasonable that some people we choose to love are really only modeling reality as best they can. Actually - the years spent with a Borderline tend to give me a fine appreciation for the question. Besides which - to be honest - how many people ever reach that state of self-actualized behavior... and for the rest, the vast majority of humanity that never get beyond Ethics 101, that dont marvel at a sunset or a Discovery Channel program on Llamas or the sweep of the milkyway on a moonless night... will they ask for all that much in a simulated partner? When Cherry2000 ships to a store near you, or a Persecom like Chi, wont people abandon their "real" relationships for that Lucy Liu android at the drop of a hat?

This will happen faster than they think (assuming we're all still here).

Sunday, October 14, 2007

want me to vote republican? it seems it'll only cost $15m...

Friday, October 12, 2007

As someone with the experience and capacity to post one of the more detailed, thoughtful, and appropriate responses to this...

toldya so

in honor of Al Gore's award of the Nobel Peace Prize

i'm getting more and more like a rockstar mouse (the ones at the end of the overpopulation experiments who just sit back, let other mice bring them food, and preen themselves as it all goes to hell around them). i'm not proud of that... and i suppose i'll break out of it... but there's a point where the actions of my fellow man seem designed to inspire hopelessness. Then again - maybe that's the effect of living in a red state in a country that elects morons - and then seeing the 'opinion' pieces on CNN that demonstrate that these idiots arent fringe - they're a freaking tidal wave of dumb

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

one that gives me hope...

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Happy Monday

Yeah.. Aya is hot...
but the Tshirt? lol - god how i wish we'd see Britney wearing that one....
Highlight "Did you cum twice too? Feel so dirty!!! I need a tongue bath!" to see what it says.

Monday, October 01, 2007