Saturday, December 23, 2017

Adage in media feuds

I think this is highly amusing. What a dotard.

From the land of stupid is as stupid does #GOPTaxScam

So the gop managed to mash through their law and was trying to hold it off until next year so the more unpopular parts wouldn't go into effect until after mid-terms.

But the dotard signed it anyway.

I guess in the scheme of things this was amusing and shows a bit of hubris on their part.

Its not much, but seeing as how our congress will not listen to the constituents (by the people, for the people, and of the people indeed!), at least we can see them choking on their own shit. And laugh at their ineptitude.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Dan Le Batard Went For Rob Manfred's Neck

This is all kinds of awesome. A commissioner takes one on the chin from a journalist.

It's cringe worthy and uncomfortable. But delightful.

Read about it here:

Watch the whole thing here:

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Word of the day: hubris

As I listened to members of the gop talk about their "oh so wonderful" tax bill, this word cane to mind. 

This definition from Wikipedia is especially salient:

Hubris (/ˈhjuːbrɪs/ from ancient Greek ὕβρις) describes a personality quality of extreme or foolish pride or dangerous overconfidence,[1]often in combination with (or synonymous with) arrogance.[2] In its ancient Greek context, it typically describes behavior that defies the norms of behavior or challenges the gods, and which in turn brings about the downfall, or nemesis, of the perpetrator of hubris.

We need to get over ourselves and do more. 

Short. Sweet. To the point. That's the beauty Dave's iPhone. 

Star Trek: Discovery

I am finding this show to be most enjoyable.  Good sci-fi.  Good acting. Clever storylines within an episode.  Good story arc.  Interesting characters.  And, the people behind the show clearly know and understand Trek; the episodes all draw on what's known as cannon and they bring in aspects of TOS that are well thought out.

I like the twists and turns. The first two episodes took place aboard the Shenzhou, not Discovery.  And the reason was to set the tone, and to start with character development.

There is certainly some mystery in the show.  We are set 10 or so years before TOS, but nothing "feels" like TOS. The uniforms are different, much of the technology is different, and there is a cool spore drive that never gets mentioned.  Why is all of that true?

I mean, we can simply file it away as creative license.  Or its possible that this was an experimental part of star fleet that got locked up like the ark in the Indiana Jones movie. Its also possible we're in an alternate timeline of some sort. Or its possible that star fleet will get knocked backward somehow in terms of tech.

Of course, there's a fan theory that "Section 31" (which was introduced in DS9 as the shadow group that is chartered with protecting star fleet) is behind all of this.  Heck, the designation of Discovery is NCC-1031.  Could it be?

Here's a summary of the plot line:
  • A Klingon named T'Kuvma lights a beacon to unite the houses
  • He is martyred, but Voq steps in to take over as the leader, but he is abandoned by Kol who steals the cloaking technology
  • Voq is helped by another Klingon L'Rell; who is from a house of deceivers. She promises to help if he sacrifices everything
  • On Shenzhou, Michael Burnham explores an unknown object, winds up killing a klingon and starts a war
  • She commits mutiny and the klingons take out a bunch of star fleet ships.  
  • She and Captain Felipa try to capture T'Kuvma, but wind up killing him and Felipa gets killed too.
  • On her way to a penal colony, Burnham is found by Discovery and taken aboard and offered a job
  • We learn about the spore drive, how it works, and see it in action.  It is a game changer
  • Captain Lorca is captured by L'Rell and subjected to some torture
  • We meet a character named Ash on the klingon ship and he is an enigma, but Lorca trusts him
  • There is some storytelling to help us get up to speed with more details (and make for some interesting episodes)
  • And then as the season closes, Discovery wins the day, and is transported somewhere else.  Another dimension, perhaps?  That's the cliffhanger.

Its all very odd.  Now lets look at the main characters who have some interesting things about them:
  •  Michael Burnham. A woman with a mans name.  Raised by Spock's parents (Sarek and Amanda, and we see Sarek, cool?) on Vulcan.  She is logical and dispassionate.  She inadvertently stared a war and is a mutineer.  But Lorica wanted her on Discovery.  
  • Cadet Tilly.  She is Michael's roommate, and perhaps autistic.  But why is she there? And why does she have such a great job and earn so much trust?  Its another puzzle.
  • Lt. Staments.  He invented the spore drive, and is a scientist, not a soldier. He injected himself with alien DNA to control the drive; he is said to have used Eugenics...interesting.  And he is not himself ever since
  • Captain Lorca.  This guy is a crazy SOB. A war hawk.  We learned about his destroying his previous ship.  He is certainly a rogue character and enormously complicated.  He collects weapons of destruction and will stop at nothing to achieve his goal of winning the war.  He has a sensitivity to light, and keeps a tribble on his desk in early episodes.  Then, after his capture he has neither.  Odd....
  • Admiral Cornwell.  She appears and tries to get Lorca to give up his command, but is instead sent into a trap.  She is captured by the Klingons, but later returns.  Interesting story point here.  She was useful.  But why?
  • Harry Mudd.  Introducing a character from TOS was cute and clever.  But he was on the prison ship and knew a lot about Lorica and probably more. Later he torments the crew of Discovery.  Coincidence? 
  • Ash Tyler.  We met him on the prison ship.  He seems to appear out of nowhere, but Lorica instantly trusts him and they escape together.  His backstory is notably weak. which makes him a complete enigma. And everyone questions this blind loyalty. And she and Burnham have some feelings for each other to complicate things.
  • Kol.  He is the manipulative one in the klingon world. He steals cloaking tech, and gives it to anyone who helps his goals to lead the klingons
  • L'Rell.  She is quite the manipulator.  Her role is understated, but she is a master of cunning and manipulation.  She ran the prison and did tell Voq she could help him.  What will she do?
  • Voq.  The most interesting character who is likely going to play a critical role, or perhaps already is.  The show lists the actor playing him as "Javid Iqbal" but that person doesn't seem to exist.  So why the subterfuge?

So, that's where we are.  I have some thoughts on what it all means.  Here goes....
  • A fan theory is that Voq giving everything meant that the Klingons used eugenics (and cunning) to change Voq to be another being.  
  • If you watch "The Trouble With Tribbles" from TOS we see that this is the kind of thing is not far fetched as the assistant to the grain trasnporting guy turns out to be Klingon, but looks human.  We also learn that Tribbles squeal when confronted with Klingons
  • The popular wisdom suggests that Tyler is actually Voq.  One clue is that the actor who plays Tyler actually has the lastname Iqbal.  But that's too easy.  I think otherwise...
  • I see other clues.  Michael being a woman is one.  Cornwell being abducted, and returned is interesting. And don't miss that the episode where Cornwell is sent into the trap is called "Lethe"....Lethe is the name of a character on TOS "Dagger of the Mind" who came to a penal colony sometime before, after an interesting history that she won't speak of....
  • My theory is that Cornwell was captured, and disposed of in the penal colony.  And Voq is not actually a he, he's a she, and she becomes Cornwell.
  • And Discovery is part of a special bit of research in Section 31, not star fleet proper, and will be swept away at some point because something catastrophic will happen
  • We'll learn more about eugenics and the klingons
  •  Right now, Discovery is in an alternate universe -probably the same one from  TOS: "Mirror, Mirror" and DS9: "Through the Looking Glass", Plus others in Enterprise and DS9. And surely there will be new mysteries to explore
  • Tyler's appearance will have significance, because he gave up info about star fleet; and he may turn our to be a double agent, but not Voq.
  • Lorica's change may indicate he's some kind of double agent too.  Which would be an interesting twist. 
  • Probably one or both will die as a result of their conniving.

But finding out is going to be fun!  I honestly can't wait.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Today’s correspondence with “leader” McConnell


I don't live in your state, nor do I live in Alabama. But your decisions affect all of us.

It seems you have forgotten that the government is "of the people, by the people, and for the people."

Doug Jones was elected by the people, while mr sessions replacement was appointed to fill the role. The people have spoken and they must be heard. He should be seated before any further votes are taken.

You are so set on ramming through your absurd, and wildly unpopular "tax" bill that will increase the deficit by trillions (oh perhaps you were correct when you said it won't add to the deficit by "one penny;" it's a much larger get number) and harm everyday working Americans. All the while adding plenty of items that have nothing whatsoever to do with taxes.

If you had the gene, you would probably feel shame. But clearly you don't.

You will proceed as if somehow this is the most important thing ever in the history of the US with no debate, no CBO score, and really no time to review it.

All the while there are many much more important things that you should be focused on. Guns, climate change, Russian influence, and North Korea to name a few important ones.

But please waste your time trying to please your corporate donors.

Monday, December 11, 2017


America has always encouraged innovation. We've done amazing things as a nation. American exceptionalism really is all about *us* being better than everyone.

It's debatable who invented "the internet" but there is no doubt, no question, that the United States was the reason it took off. The US made the internet what it is today.

It's a place for free expression, collaboration, and commerce. Even a jackass person can freely express world views (even if those world views might lead the unhinged jackass to take us into WW III).

And now some douche who has the best interests of large telecom companies as his primary focus can undo it. All of it.

Essentially we've taken what we know as the internet and said "here are the keys. You decide what to do"

And you can guess it won't be good for any of us. We'll all pay the price (figuratively and literally) for his decision.

Thanks for nothing Congress! Way to give it all away. Y'all are awesome.

Read what it means here:

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Summer sausage

Growing up, we always had summer sausage around this time of year. We'd sell it as a fundraiser. We'd buy it from hickory farms.

That and the port wine cheese spread were always awesome and a part of the holidays.

I don't eat beef anymore, so I haven't had it in years. When I saw it on sale today I was taken back in time....

But my question has always been this: why is summer sausage so popular in the late fall/early winter?