28 April 2007

Bill Moyers talking with Jon Stewart

I missed the broadcast, unfortunately, but the transcript has some nuggets:

So, they have a really delicate balance to walk between keeping us relatively fearful, but not so fearful that we stop what we're doing and really examine how it is that they've been waging this.

...you've seen what happens when one of us ends up at the White House Correspondents' Dinner, it doesn't end well.

You know, I think this is gonna sound incredibly pat, but I think you lose your innocence when you have kids, because the world suddenly becomes a much more dangerous place. And you become much more — there are two things that happen. You recognize how fragile individuals are, and you recognize the strength of the general overall group, but you don't care anymore. You're just fighting for the one thing. See and then, you also recognize that everybody, then, is also somebody's child.

Best line of the day, so far*

From Hecate:

...clearly the World Bank still thinks that it can shame Wolfowitz into resigning. They can't; he's George Bush's man and Bush's men apparently are incapable of shame. See, e.g., Alberto Gonzales. You can have their jobs from them when you pry them from their cold, dead hands. An option which becomes more attractive by the minute.

*Post title shamelessly stolen from NewMexiKen.

21 April 2007

Metastable systems

Pound by Pound, Dollar for Dollar, The Complicated Equation for Going Green, via NewMexiKen

I'll regurgitate my comment:

Good article, and it's a good start, but we have a long, long way to go to sustainability, and peak oil and a shift in geopolitical dominance from the US to China are going to complicate things further.

There is a strong likelihood that in some ways it's too late, that a century and a half of large-scale, world-wide anthropogenic change has already set things in motion that will take a century or more to arrest, let alone reverse.

I hope I'm wrong.

In completely unrelated news, I get my first Moleskine today: w00t!

Now all I need is that 17" MacBook Pro and, um, a job, and I'm set!

20 April 2007

Today, we are all Hokies

I've seen a lot of this stuff today.

For some reason, it really pisses me off.

Big surprise, I know: Mr. Angry Used-to-be-young-but-now-middle-aged Man. And ironic, for someone who finds Buddhism so compelling. But I digress...

Maybe I'm pissed because I see it as a way for them to capitalize on the tragedy to sear the Virginia Tech logo into the national consciousness.

Maybe I'm pissed because once people read it, a few of them will be curious enough to go "WTF is a Hokie?" and thereby deeply embed the meme.

Psst, here's a clue: it's an angry turkey. Profound, huh? Yeah, I thought so too.

Maybe I'm pissed because as bad and terrible as the Virginia Tech massacre is, there's some really serious shit going on in the world, much more serious than a mentally ill kid with easy access to weapons taking out 0.128% of the student body (32 / 25,000 as a percentage).

3,300 American servicemen and tens - possibly hundreds - of thousands of Iraqis dead, a war started on lies, the suspension of habeas corpus, warrantless wiretaps, nothing still being done to help the tens of thousands of Americans whose lives were devastated by Katrina and the flooding in New Orleans, etc., and no reaction from the masses, but a good, juicy tragedy that the media can feed on, regurgitate, and feed some more, now that gets people talking.

Throw in Nancy Grace and Glenn Beck and maybe some Anderson Cooper to cleanse the palate and we've got a party.

Maybe I'm pissed because we have to go through this circus of having Gonzo testify in front of a bunch of senators who approved the idiot in the first place. What, did they not realize what an apparatchnik he was then?

Maybe I'm pissed because it's too late to do anything significant to affect the events we've set in motion with respect to global warming and other anthropogenic world-wide ecological calamities, but that's okay, fucking Wal-Mart is only going to sell CFLs now, so that makes it all better, right?

There; I feel better already. I think I'll do what Worst. President. Ever. recommended after 9/11 and go out shopping.

Life goes on, the roads must roll...

PS - this post is caustic, even for me, and I mean no disrespect for Virginia Tech and its alumni, and I certainly mean no disrespect for the victims and their families and friends. The graphic just triggered some profound frustration at people in general missing the forest for the trees.

Marketing gone awry

This is amusing, but I also get a kick out of a couple of the comments:

This is London. Not Boston. I have never met people more grounded in reality and less likely to panic for no reason. You know what most people did during the 7/7 bombings? They went to the pub because they couldn't get to work. The only people that are going to panic about some willy nilly biohazard signs are tourists.

Which is a big part of the reason I love this town.

I lived in London during the IRA bombing campaigns. I expected to be locked out of an underground station at least once every few days because of a bomb scare, and about once every couple of weeks there would be roadblocks stopping me from getting back to my house (I lived in the very center of town). Once , there were two car bombs within a half mile of my house in a period of a few weeks.

Most people were just irritated at the inconvenience of it all, quite sensibly realising that their chances of being run over by a car were enormously much higher than their chances of being bombed.

I don't think you'll see Boston style hysteria about this.

At LIPSinc, we went to a SIGGRAPH in New Orleans and one of our marketing critters got the bright idea to put stickers with our URL everywhere.

This same individual got the bright idea to write our URL on a bathroom mirror in lipstick at a Durham Bulls game and - IIRC - was ejected from the stadium.

Needless to say, I don't miss those days.