The Plot to Destroy America's Beer

If anything will turn ordinary Americans against the Corporate State, this is it.

One Friday night in January, Rinfret, who is now 52, stopped on the way home from work at his local liquor store in Monroe, N.J., and purchased a 12-pack of Beck’s. When he got home, he opened a bottle. “I was like, what the hell?” he recalls. “It tasted light. It tasted weak. Just, you know, night and day. Bubbly, real fizzy. To me, it wasn’t German beer. It tasted like a Budweiser with flavoring.” He examined the label. It said the beer was no longer brewed in Bremen. He looked more closely at the fine print: “Product of the USA.” This was profoundly unsettling for a guy who had been a Beck’s drinker for more than half his life. He was also miffed to have paid the full import price for the 12-pack.

(link) [Business Week]

19:13 /Politics | 0 comments | permanent link

Mourdock’s mistake is speaking for God

The Republican Party scares me more and more with every election cycle. They are rapidly becoming religious fascists, and if anybody out there seriously thinks they'll stop with opposition to abortion and gay marriage they'll be in for a rude shock if the Teavangelicals get control of House, Senate and Presidency. Contraception will be next on the target list - even the humble condom is an affront to their almighty god. Who knows what their god will demand after that?

Steinberg correctly points out the dangers of this attitude in this piece, albeit from a Christian perspective. He's a bit more optimistic than I over their minority status, but that could be due to his location in Chicago and mine in rural Indiana.

I actually witnessed an incident similar to what he uses to illustrate his point. Some years ago I co-officiated at a funeral for two young boys who died in a fire. The family (and the funeral) was heathen, and before the service a relative of the grieving mother approached her and said "It's really OK, your little boys are in Heaven with Jesus now, and all things work for the glory of God." The mother wheeled and literally punched her cousin out cold.

These theocrats have got to be stopped, and soon, but it can't just be done in the political arena. It's going to take a cultural change towards tolerance to get any lasting good effects. Steinberg seems to think that change is underway. I hope he's right.

Indiana GOP Senate candidate Richard Mourdock joined a growing list of Tea Party Republicans — Joe Walsh, Todd Akin — who stumbled into a briar patch by telling women what to believe, in this case when Mourdock said when a women conceives after a rape, “it’s something God intended.”

(link) [Chicago Sun Times]

19:20 /Politics | 0 comments | permanent link

Rights? You have no right to your eBooks

Future tyrants won't have to burn the library, they'll just turn it off.

News spread quickly on the web today of the predicament faced by a woman in Norway, Linn, who has lost all access to the eBooks she legitimately purchased from Amazon. The story first emerged on a friend's blog, where a sequence of e-mails from Michael Murphy, a customer support representative at were posted. These painted a picture some interpreted as Amazon remotely erasing a customer's Kindle, but in conversation with Linn I discovered that was not what had happened - something just as bad did, though.

(link) [ComputerWorld UK]

08:27 /Copywrongs | 0 comments | permanent link

Who needs lawnmowers?

Not only is the grass nicely clipped, it's automatically fertilized...

The Near Eastside has an enormous number of vacant lots with overgrown grass and weeds, and almost as many abandoned houses. Instead of calling the city to take lawnmowers to those lots, or a letting a handful of good Samaritans do it themselves, the neighborhood association decided to buy sheep and let them graze.

(link) [Indianapolis Star]

08:15 /Agriculture | 0 comments | permanent link

Caller Wants Deer Crossing Signs Moved

What can I say?

If we moved deer crossing signs off of highways, deer would finally stop running into oncoming traffic.

(link) [Huffington Post]

22:27 /Humor | 0 comments | permanent link

Come Home, America

George McGovern, RIP

To the slanting wall above my desk is taped a large “Come Home America/ Vote McGovern Shriver ’72” poster. Designed by artist Leonard R. Fuller, the collage fills an outline of the United States with iconographic images, historic statuary, and photos of unprepossessing but individuated Americans. The message is peace and brotherhood and a return to the ideals of the Founders. The mood is civics-class hippie, antiwar wife-of-a-Rotarian, liberal community-college-professor-who-cries-at-“America the Beautiful.” Like George McGovern himself, the poster suggests that a hopeful and patriotic mild radicalism resides on Main Street America. Or as Elvis Costello and Nick Lowe once asked, what’s so funny ‘bout peace, love, and understanding?

(link) [The American Conservative]

via C4SS

18:57 /Politics | 0 comments | permanent link

A Long Year

It's been a year since my heart surgery. I'm still vertical and taking fluids, so I guess that's good. The anniversary has effected me more than I anticipated. I suppose when one comes that close to one's own mortality one shouldn't be surprised to find it's effects prolonged. Oh, well. With any luck whatsoever, I'll have a few more anniversaries of this date to reflect on.

19:59 /Home | 2 comments | permanent link

A Trip to the Faroe Islands

In pictures, not in person (unfortunately). Perhaps I have a soft spot for a place whose capital and largest city is Tórshavn ("Thor's Haven"), or perhaps it's the sheep and the mountains, but for whatever reason I find these 33 of the most stunning pictures I've ever run across. Makes me want to book a flight or hop a freighter.

In the North Atlantic, halfway between Norway and Iceland, the Faroe Islands are home to more than 50,000 people. The rugged, treeless archipelago is part of the Kingdom of Denmark, and has been inhabited by humans (and sheep) since the early 8th century. The local economy relies heavily on fishing and maritime industry. The unique landscape and location attracts photographers with its fantastic play of light between sun, cloud, meadow, cliff, and sea. Collected here are images of the Faroes from recent years.

(link) [The Atlantic]

23:27 /Home | 0 comments | permanent link

Monsanto Seed Patent Case Gets U.S. Supreme Court Review

This could huge: if the Court comes to it's senses and stops this idiocy we're back to some semblance of sanity in the patent regime. If it allows it to stand the slippery slope towards conversion of every idea into "intellectual property" of some sort or another will have become a water slide.

The U.S. Supreme Court agreed to consider how patent rules apply to self-replicating technologies, accepting an appeal from a farmer seeking to circumvent Monsanto’s planting restrictions on its genetically modified seeds.

(link) [Business Week]

11:29 /Copywrongs | 0 comments | permanent link

Billy Graham Endorses Romney Then Scrubs Site Calling Mormonism A Cult

Because Oceania has always been at war with East Asia.

Billy Graham last night endorsed Mitt Romney for president, and shortly thereafter, his website was scrubbed of a statement Graham or his organization made calling Mormonism a “cult.”

(link) [The New Civil Rights Movement]

11:23 /Politics | 0 comments | permanent link

Winter Nights 2012

Tonight we name the Winter Nights and once more Ravenswood will gather here at the farm for the celebration. The weather doesn't look like it's going to cooperate, with thunderstorms in the forecast. But a grand time will be had by all nonetheless.

09:56 /Asatru | 0 comments | permanent link

Bill Nye Blasts Todd Akin

The Science Guy lays it down - I gotta find the video this references!

Bill Nye may still be The Science Guy, but he's no longer Mr. Nice Guy.

(link) [Daily Current]

Update:Damn, I wish this was true.

09:46 /Technology | 0 comments | permanent link

Multiple-Choice Romney

Best. Political. Quote. Ever.

As for Romney, the best summation of his flip-flopping was provided by Ted Kennedy in a 1994 debate in Massachusetts: “I am pro-choice,” Kennedy said, before adding of Romney, “My opponent is multiple-choice.”
The subject then was abortion and Romney declared, “I believe that abortion should be safe and legal in this country.” In response to Kennedy’s jibe, he shot back, “You will not see me wavering on that or being multiple-choice.”

(link) [New York Times]

22:16 /Politics | 0 comments | permanent link

If I Fly a UAV Over My Neighbor's House, Is It Trespassing?

can of wormsInteresting questions! When I was a kid I had a model rocket that had a still camera as it's payload - it snapped a picture when the parachute deployed. Was that spying?

Better yet - what if one of this fellows neighbors shoots down his UAV over the neighbors property? Who's liable for what?

Now does the illustration make sense?

My poor kitten, who my unfortunate Instagram contacts know too well, gets beat up every time he goes outside. There's a bully cat in the neighborhood who appears to relish in attacking cute, fluffy things as soon as they get out of human oversight. So, naturally, I bought a Parrot AR.Drone.2.0, a remote-controlled quadcopter with an HD camera attached, to see if I could spot where the punk bully cat hangs out.

(link) [The Atlantic]

19:42 /Technology | 0 comments | permanent link

CEO emails 7,000 employees: Defeat Obama or else

"Tone deaf" doesn't due this guy justice. If Florida goes for Obama in November the Dems should send this idiot a thank you note.

Surprise. David Siegel, the resort CEO who is building the biggest private home in the country, really, really doesn't like President Obama.

(link) [CNN]

20:12 /Politics | 0 comments | permanent link