Boing Boing went back and quietly deleted everything they had ever posted about Violet Blue, a sex columnist who has written for WIRED, the SF Chronicle web site, and other places. At some point, somebody noticed. Various people got irate. Violet Blue said she had no idea why all the posts were removed. Boing Boing initially tried to ride out the storm by ignoring it, but eventually too many people wrote about it.
There’s a story in the news about a woman who dropped dead in the waiting room of a hospital. She slid off the chair and ended up face down in the corner of the room. Nobody else in the room did anything. It was 45 minutes until another patient drew attention to the corpse. There’s video. Maybe I’m fooling myself, but I’d like to think I’d have at least called out “Hey, you in the corner, face down on the floor, are you OK?
In case you missed it: Congress just passed a new law that will stop your capital — or at least a good portion of it — at the border, should you decide not to be a U.S. citizen anymore. Is it, perhaps, in preparation for the possibility that Americans might rebel at the debt and taxes incurred by their government by leaving for lower-tax locales? You probably didn’t notice this little provision inserted into the Heroes Act of 2008, passed by Congress on June 17.
I woke up early this morning from an exam nightmare. I thought I was over those, really I did. This one was a confused mess, it wasn’t clear whether I was supposed to be graduating or sitting “A”-Levels, which is maybe why I didn’t remember that I’m way, way past having to worry about any of that.
So, in spite of earlier promises to try and bring down the FISA bill and stop retroactive immunity for telecoms providers who illegally wiretapped Americans, Barack Obama quietly avoided voting in the Senate, as did Hillary Clinton. In the House, 94 Democrats had a sudden change of heart and voted the measure through. Why did this happen? Well, it could be something to do with the average of $8,359 per politician that they received in “donations” from AT&T, Verizon and Sprint, compared to the reduced contributions seen by those who opposed the measure.
Now that I’m married to a professional barista, it became time to upgrade our coffee machine. Our Starbucks pump espressio machine had offered loyal service for several years, but rothko wanted something with a full size brewhead, like you’d find on a professional machine in an Italian espresso bar. Fortunately her job, plus a tax refund and bonus from work, meant we could afford to spend a bit. After a ton of research, we settled on the Expobar Brewtus II.
Last week, Sony finally released a PlayStation 3 bundle that actually shipped with the rumble controller included, rather than expecting people to spend an extra $60 to get one. The bundle also comes with Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, the new iteration of one of my favorite games. This new MGS4 bundle promptly sold out everywhere online. So on Saturday, while rothko was helping to run a local election, I figured I’d try a few stores to see if anyone had one in stock.
Just so you can plan appropriately : An elusive group just outside of Abilene, Texas is claiming the end of the world is coming in less than a week. The House of Yahweh recently gave ABC reporter Brian Ross access to their west Texas compound. Yahweh leader Yisrayl Hawkins says a nuclear holocaust will come June 12th and only members of his group will be saved. And in case you were thinking they were harmless:
I’ve never been a smoker, but I think I understand some of the addiction–because I’ve been a Dungeons & Dragons player. Smokers tell me that the addiction isn’t so much about the taste or the chemical stimulation; it’s the ritual and the social aspects that are harder to shake off. So it is with D&D. I can go for years without playing, but like with smoking, you’re always in recovery. Every time I step in a comic book store, there’s the risk that a group will be playing in a side room.
A study of the brains of political partisans shed some scientific light on the obvious, and will be worth remembering in this upcoming year: The Democrats and Republicans were given a reasoning task in which they had to evaluate threatening information about their own candidate. During the task, the subjects underwent fMRI to see what parts of their brain were active. What the researchers found was striking. “We did not see any increased activation of the parts of the brain normally engaged during reasoning,” says Drew Westen, director of clinical psychology at Emory who led the study.