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Sisyphus Shrugged
Lasciate ogni speranza and put your feet up.
to everyone who's too busy surviving to follow all of this on Twitter, a short history of this century in progressive political thought:

Afterwards, we jumped on your behalf.

Sorry about that.
So, Assemblymember Grace Meng seems like an admirable candidate, particularly when her victory would ensure that I won't be forced to vote for Lancman (although I'll admit the luminous transparency of his lurch to the left for the purposes of this campaign has been as amusing as I'm going to find that sort of thing in the wake of the 2008 primaries, particularly sitting on the fluffy pillow of his endorsement by Ed Koch).

In any case, I would have no trouble voting for Ms. Meng, with the possible exception of the fact that Ms. Meng's campaign apparatus is sorely tempting me pretty much daily to stay home on primary day.

So far, we've had the canvasser who came to my door, would not take no for an answer, visibly lost his temper when I declined to discuss the election with him, and demanded to speak to my husband; the (this is not hyperbole) dozens of hangup calls from her campaign; and the six calls where I actually spoke to an operator and asked them to take my name off of their list (of course, that didn't work when I contacted their campaign directly to ask them to do it, so I don't know what I was thinking).

Sorry, had to go answer the phone. It was Ms. Meng's campaign. 

Which, I think, unless they have unlimited funds budgeted for discouraging yellow dog frequent primary voters from voting for their candidate, might want to consider a slightly more responsive phone banking operation.

For the record, my husband, whose opinion appears to be highly coveted in all this, agrees.
ahhhs. -- hmmm?
Originally posted by write_light at BAD Internet Laws Heading Your Way

From the flist: 

Spread the word, even you're not a US citizen, it is important for everyone!! It easy to do and it can change everything. More info by clicking on the banner.

Website Blocking

The government can order service providers to block websites for infringing links posted by any users.

Risk of Jail for Ordinary Users

It becomes a felony with a potential 5 year sentence to stream a copyrighted work that would cost more than $2,500 to license, even if you are a totally noncommercial user, e.g. singing a pop song on Facebook.

Chaos for the Internet

Thousands of sites that are legal under the DMCA would face new legal threats. People trying to keep the internet more secure wouldn't be able to rely on the integrity of the DNS system.

Read this analysis from boing-boing.net

Get on the phone and call your representative. Express your disapproval. Tell him or her exactly how you feel, and that you don't support this. Tell your friends to call their representatives, their Congressperson, and complain. Mention that you are a registered voter that takes your civic responsibility seriously and that you will use that vote to express your feelings about this.


“We support the bill’s stated goals — providing additional enforcement tools to combat foreign ‘rogue’ websites that are dedicated to copyright infringement or counterfeiting,” the Internet companies wrote in Tuesday’s letter. “Unfortunately, the bills as drafted would expose law-abiding U.S. Internet and technology companies to new uncertain liabilities, private rights of action and technology mandates that would require monitoring of websites.”  The chamber-led coalition in support of the bill includes Walmart, Eli Lilly & Co. and Netflix.

Google and other opponents of the legislation argue that restricting the Internet in the U.S. sets a bad international precedent and that the language defines infringing too broadly.

and the sign said the words of the prophets are written by bloodthirsty lunatics

"We will definitely not burn the Quran, no," Pastor Terry Jones of Florida told NBC.

"Not today, not ever," he said when pressed whether his planned demonstration might happen at a later date.

He explained that it would not happen even if the Islamic center is built near ground zero, NBC reported.

"Even though we have not burned one Quran, we have gotten over 100 death threats," Jones said.

"We feel that God is telling us to stop...

9/11 greetings and welcome back to New York, apparently the only place in America where outside considerations trump (as it were) the right to unfettered property development. We always appreciate your brief biennial flurry of giving a shit about us (although I suspect our first responders would probably prefer that you find some other way to express it). We've marked our calendars for 2012, when I understand another national election is being held.

Nec audiendi qui solent dicere, Vox populi, vox Dei, quum tumultuositas vulgi semper insaniae proxima sit.

*And those people should not be listened to who keep saying the voice of the people is the voice of God, since the riotousness of the crowd is always very close to madness.
ahhhs. -- hmmm?

long and tv-relatedCollapse )
So it's the holidays, and you've decided voluntarily to spend them in Manhattan for some obscure reason that reason knows not of, and maybe it's started to filter through the misty fogs that surround you that people are kind of looking at you funny.

Naturally this is because we New Yorkers all suck immoderately and just don't have that holiday spirit you brought with you (the elves set up the decorations while we're skipping the Thanksgiving parade). Still, we have our little folkways, and it makes us as close to cheerful as we get, miserable bastards that we are, if you observe them.

It has become clear to me this past week that nobody is providing you guys with the list.

5. We keep to the right when we're walking. It's just like driving, but with feet. This makes it far less likely that someone is going to collide with you when you stop dead in the middle of the flow of traffic to look at the shiny electronic equipment, which, I agree, is much more exciting than the identical electronic equipment in the branch of the same store in your local mall.

4. It's touching, it really is, how much you guys want to be together, and better people than we would just smile and enjoy the sight of you walking four across with your arms linked and taking up the entire sidewalk. Unfortunately, they don't live here.

3. Aw, you finally got to Century 21, and there was a sale on inflatable toolsheds in the basement, and now you have to get them back to your hotel. Amongst the places on public transportation you might want to consider not resting them: the seat next to you, and between the door a carful of people are trying to use to get on and off the train for work-related reasons and that big empty middle part where most of the space is.

2. Look up, and then to your left and right. Can the space you're standing in be described as a portal of some kind? Perhaps there are stairs leading to it, or a turnstile, or some form of delineation between the space you started in and the space you're heading toward? This often serves as a source of inspiration for our visiting brethren from elsewhere. Maybe it's the heady sense of endless possibility. All the same, we'd really, really appreciate it if you could summon up the continence to take a few steps out of the direct portal area before you come to a screeching halt and share your shining epiphany with the group.

and in first place, it's a tie between

1a. I swear to you with all my heart, still in the original wrapping, it's truly not the last elevator out of Saigon.


1b. Point B is a fixed point, and the shortest distance to it is not a sine wave.

Happy holidays. Enjoy the tree.
ahhhs. -- hmmm?
the number of people who are expected to vote in today's runoff elections in New York, for Public Advocate and Comptroller, is expected to be spectacularly low. Like, between 5 and 10% of eligible Democratic voters low.

If you pay taxes here, you're paying a really lot of money for this, so you might want to carve out a few minutes from your day and do the whole exercising your franchise in a participatory democracy thing. It's not as if you're going to face lines at the polls. Trust me on that.

FWIW, the Working Families Party are supporting Liu and de Blasio, and Mr. Green is against lack of fastidiousness in campaigning. Thought you'd like to know.
Paterson/Obama: do what now?

edit: oh, this just keeps getting better. Now Michael Steele doesn't quite say at some length on Face the Nation that Obama's going after Paterson because Paterson's, you know, not quite in the market for the same level of SPF in his sun block as the other governors

edit again: Paterson's not out. Lazio is in. Giuliani hasn't made up his mind yet.
ahhhs. -- hmmm?
Do not imagine me ignorant of their condition.

George W Bush on Sarah Palin:

"This woman is being put into a position she is not even remotely prepared for," he said. "She hasn't spent one day on the national level. Neither has her family. Let's wait and see how she looks five days out."

Neither has her family.

So she's got exactly the same record he had, except for the family name and the family political connections and the family money and the legacy admission into a Good School and the mean drunk thing and the millions of dollars of other peoples' money poured into the dry hole of keeping his parents from having to support him.

The only thing that could make this a more perfect picture of the devolution of Republican politics into a sinecure for the least lively plutocrat sperm and the people who sucked up to them in college would be if the guy telling the story referred to that remarkable speech as "a rare dose of reality"

Oh, wait.
ahhhs. -- hmmm?
from 2006, when she was very much against nazi comparisons, calling the President a liar, and playing the race card
ahhh. -- hmmm?