And all the things that people just sort of sigh about, and act cool about, and take as normal, just amaze the fuck out of you.
— Ta-Nehisi Coates (@tanehisicoates) February 5, 2015
And I hope to never be one of those cool people. Let me always come on twitter and be amazed by the world that bores everyone else.
— Ta-Nehisi Coates (@tanehisicoates) February 5, 2015
I guess it is the profile pic of Ta-Nehisi Coates. I think that is Grant. Well here is maybe the best letter ever written. Ken Burns did it well.
Then this happened.
I agree with TNC. I’m constantly amazed at the world around us, and especially at the amazing things that man and society have accomplished. It boggles the fucking mind when people say things like “vaccines are too dangerous for my kids” or “white men are victims of a feminist and affirmative action society.” I seriously go off on people, but still can’t fathom the lack of perspective so many people have. So many people obsess over first world problems, taking for granted the basics that our ancestors struggled with for 100,000 years: food, shelter, health, heat, etc. etc.
Major Major Major Major
This clinic is amazing, I feel human again with some mild adjustments. Yay!
@Arclite: When I was a kid, 50 years ago, a computer took up a room. A computer with alot of processing power took up a very large room. I have a computer on my wrist.
It is assuredly the Man Himself, U.S. Grant.
You silicon jockeys have it easy. I remember knaping flint chips for a motherboard made out of rhyolite.
I’ve been to Rhyolite, NV(36.903174, -116.829046).
Is it as bleak and desolate as its reputation suggests?
@Morzer: Quite. I went with my parents as a kid, but I recently scanned the slides of that trip.
Rhyolite(I’m the shorter kid)
Villago Delenda Est
@Arclite: Yes, and I credit one of my Russian History professors at the UofO for my ability to be amazed at things others take for granted. He digressed a small bit from the subject matter to bemoan our complacency at how incredibly complicated (and wonderful) our society is compared to say a few centuries ago. Grapes? In the supermarket in January? Unheard of until the last quarter of the 20th century. Flown up from Chile! Bread? You call this crap in a balloon bag bread?
When I was in the Army, it was summed up this way: Amateurs talk tactics. Professionals talk logistics.
Your sidekick looks alarmingly like Edmund in the Narnia films.
@Villago Delenda Est: Yes, but the balloon bags are useful for putting over your shoes if you’re an Iowa US Senator.
@Morzer: He was the son of one my dad’s co-workers.
I’m just back from a show by the Golden Gate Wingmen, a mile from my house in Long Beach, CA. Been here 15 years and didn’t know such a scene was happening here. Suffice to say I’m blown away by the cool things going on totally under the radar.
This is what comes from spending some time in France (even Charlie Hebdo France) – and coming back and thinking, “WTF!” As always, T-NC, we thank you….
@BillinGlendaleCA: Summer of 66 right before I went in my and my old man drove a Riviera from LA to Chicago via this place. Didn’t we marvel at John Cobb and Mickey Thompson?
John Cobb died in 1952, attempting to break the world water speed record at Loch Ness in the jet speedboat Crusader at a speed in excess of 200 mph (320 km/h). The boat hit an unexplained wake, which some believers of the Loch Ness Monster claim was caused by the wake of a large animal. Nearby, there is a memorial to him erected by the people of Glenurquhart. He is buried at Christ Church, Esher.
@raven: I remember Mickey Thompson’s murder, it went unsolved for almost 20 years.
Dog save me, I am surrounded.
Missouri boy’s family stages kidnapping to teach him the dangers of strangers
@OzarkHillbilly: Well, you all there are the “Show Me” state.
@BillinGlendaleCA: Yea I had somehow forgotten about that until I ran across an article when I was looking for a picture of the Spirit of Amercia.
@OzarkHillbilly: I will have to flag that as about the most sad but happy thing I’ve read this week. From the intro of the story you linked to:
He was too nice to people.
Unfortunately, boy decides life of hygiene and hot water beats what he had before and petitions to stay with kidnappers.
@Morzer: I am in rural Illinois but only a few miles from MO. The major paper anfd all my local TV stations from MO. Feel like I know more about that state then the state I actually live in. With that said pretty sure MO is telling FL we are more crazy than you. Look over here!
they believed he was too nice to people
@sm*t cl*de: I flagged that above. I don’t have any kids, but if I could say that about one, he was too nice to people, I’d wear that with a huge badge of honor. Felt like I might have done my job as a parent.
@Tommy: it sounds more like a gang hazing ritual than child rearing, although the two processes have a lot in common most days.
@Peale: What got me about the story is it wasn’t the mom. It was the mom, grandmother, an aunt. This was a group effort.
Regarding Brian Williams “witch hunt” on the thread below (and this sort of “witch hunt” against journalists, in general) it matters. It matters a lot.
If Brian Williams can get bullied over doing a favor for a military veteran, but misremembering something in the letter he wrote about it, what is to stop the right-wing (and I god-damn-guarantee the people going after Williams, a “liberal media” mainstay are right-wingers) from ripping apart any journalist from the “liberal media” establishment, when they either (a) make an honest mistake and more importantly (b) report on something the right-wingers do not like?
Dan Rather had a distinguished career end because some blogger raised questions about font type and such, but did not come up with definitive answers that Rather’s reporting was wrong.
If Williams takes a hit over something this trivial, then any MSM attempt to accurately report on right-wingers is also dead, because right-wingers can cost journalists their jobs for unfavorable reporting.
@gene108: They want the entire media to be Faux Noise.
Yes they do and they seem to be succeeding.
@gene108: True, they’ve collected a good number of heads. KO, Martin Bashir…
Well, you can all blame Massey. And the Keystoners. And whoever made that pipeline that’s despoiling the Yellowstone River in Montana (for the 2d time in 4 years), for another small environmental tragedy.
The check-engine light in my repaired, superannuated Sentra, came on some 30 miles after I passed the emissions inspection. After I got the registration renewal done.
Understand that when the light is on, there is no passing the emissions exam, and no two-year reg renewal. I repaired it, reset it, drove it a couple hundred miles as directed, and it worked.
Now it doesn’t, theoretically. (Mind you, the exhaust from this car is so clean you may not be able to off yourself in a locked garage with it.)
Have I learned my lesson? Hell, yeah. I’m gonna let the light just sit there. Maybe cover it up with the “Click and Clack Check-engine Repair System” (black electrical tape).
The best part is, I’m gonna get away with it. If only Massey, et al, set a better example, I’d be a better corporate citizen.
More snow on the way. The poor kids are going to end up in school until July.
@Major Major Major Major: I’m so happy for you. That’s a big deal!
And I believe that is the point.
@Morzer: Rhyolite is nice to visit and a typicsl high desert and low mountain environment. Its right outside Death Valley and very near the beginning of the Titus Canyon drive which is a great back road adventure. Rhyolite is often used as a location shoot for movies.
@WereBear: It’s a play they’ve been very successful at before.
We are expecting 2 days of a heatwave bringing 40 degree temperatures to SWMI. I’m excited, because my furnace hasn’t worked for about a week! (I have space heaters, so the critters and I are fine). And sun, glorious sunshine. All-out!
Louis CK said it best (and funniest):
Everything is amazing and no one is happy.
@satby: SO successful, in fact, that they are now attacking allies instead of actual “enemies.”
“When all the devils are banished, you will find them in each other,” kind of thing.
@WereBear: We live in strange times when Bill O’Reilly lectures Brian Williams.
The Shockwave Rider. If you sat around and acted amazed at all the amazing stuff, you’d starve. Meantime, what should also be amazing, is that human society often appears to be run by complete idiots, yet it still vaguely functions. But if you were constantly sitting around shocked by idiocy (particularly the idiocy of the smart people) then you’d either starve or commit suicide at the pity of it all.
Life is short, and you can’t swallow the ocean of knowledge of all things. Or the immense icebergs of trash that float in it.
@Tommy: What got me about the story is it wasn’t the mom. It was the mom, grandmother, an aunt. This was a group effort.
They see stuff on TV. Obviously it must be true, so obviously they must panic about the danger and obviously they must Do Something. So they Did Something.
[‘Fear is the mindkiller.’]
@max: I can get stupid. I really can. But when it becomes a group effort that worries me. When I do stupid shit there is usually somebody telling me I am doing stupid shit and I might stop it. These parents kidnapped their own child.
@max: In that kidnapping story, I sense a family-wide insistence on paranoia, distrust, and sticking to family no matter how much they stick it to you.
The poor kid was “too nice.” They had to “fix” that. I hope he gets a better family, now.
Re: Missouri kidnapping case
Since research has indicated that liberals tend to be less fearful than conservatives, the boy’s family was just trying to prevent him from falling into the hell fire of the Democrats.
@Major Major Major Major: Yay indeed! There’s nothing worse than being tired all the time.
Gin & Tonic
Good thing, too. We haven’t had snow here in what, two whole days?
@WereBear: My mom and dad where hardcore people. Tough. I can assure you if I forwarded this story to them they’d yell more than any of us has here. I am also sure after the initial shock they’d focus on what I have. The child was too nice. Pretty sure my parents raised me in a manner where if it was said of me, “Tommy is too nice” they would have felt they did their job as parents well.
It’s well into the morning over there. Shouldn’t there be a new thread?
@Amir Khalid: Yeah, but it’s Saturday, and all of the posters have gone shopping or to the bank or the mall, leaving the rest of us here locked in the car.
Gin & Tonic
@Amir Khalid: Looks like everybody is sleeping in.
Gin & Tonic
@Amir Khalid: Correction. Looks like Cole listens only to Amir.
Dafuq is wrong with those people?
@Morzer: claiming measles have gluten would probably target under half of anti-vaxxers.
Saying Obama or liberals love measles outbreaks would probably target more people.
@Tommy: Yes, that was what struck me as so creepy about it. The child was actually a sweet, normal, kid… and they couldn’t have that!
I get that vibe as well.
Ignorant, circle-jerk dogma reinforced by repitition and little contact with anyone outside the back yard.
Sett’n around the shack all day listening to fux would be hard on anyone.
The gullible don’t stand a chance.
Thanks for posting that link to the speed records- haven’t been there in a while.
I’ve been covering the fast boat world here for 8 years now and have seen a number of accidents as they happened thru a telephoto lens or watched it happen right in front of me- it’s like it’s in slo-mo and that lens makes it seem like in the boat.
With the speeds that pleasure boats are reaching these days (160-190) there have been numerous accidents just over the time I’ve been around it.
I’m paraphrasing an old boat racing quote-
the first one is free, but the second one is gonna cost you.
‘skipping stone’ analogy to a boat accident. If a vessel leaves the water due to speed and re-enters at any position other than a very tiny window of variation… boom.
Fatalities are common around the water for lots of reason-
add a lot of speed and you need an angel on your shoulder.
Here’s a 46′ catamaran sailing by me on the second skip from a blowover at 180.
You want to see something amazing? Here is a protoplanetary disk 450 light years from us. Yes, it looks exactly like the model for planetary formation that scientists have discussed and improved for over 2 and a half centuries. But the amazing thing is that that’s not an illustration, or a computer model–it’s an image of the real thing, happening now! (Well, 450 years ago, but it’s still continuing.)
(I’ll just point out that the creationist types deal with it by simply refusing to believe it, like everything else.)
Bob In Portland
Well, BJers. Your choice: Back away slowly or WWIII. You know, when you’re done with the puppy pictures.
Gin & Tonic
@Bob In Portland: Hey, tell me something, Bob. These Russian passports and Russian military ID’s taken off of captured “separatists” in eastern Ukraine, that Poroshenko showed at today’s Munich conference – where’d they come from if there are no Russian troops in Ukraine?
I guess Russia could also “back away slowly.” Think that’s an option?
Mnemosyne (iPad Mini)
@Gin & Tonic:
If we know nothing else, we know that Russia is 100 percent blameless in this situation because shut up, that’s why.
Far be it for me to accuse someone else of delusionality, but I can’t help suspecting that BinP overestimates the influence of John Cole’s readership.
Bob In Portland
The war is grinding down. Anyone think that sending more weapons to the Kiev government is going to make things better?
@sm*t cl*de: You’re right. But at least there was a chance to prove me wrong. It’s been a year now. You haven’t proved me wrong.
@Mnemosyne (iPad Mini): The US has special forces in 150 countries in the world. Do you actually think that there aren’t any in Ukraine?
Yes, there are undoubtedly Russian soldiers and Russian weapons in Donbass. Just like there are US special forces in 150 countries around the world.
So what to do? Let’s supply the moderate fascists with defensive weapons. Yeah, that’s the ticket. Always works.
As it is, I think the US has destroyed a state that really wasn’t much of a state. It may have had a chance, but backing a coup by the oligarchs and Nazis just wasn’t the correct strategy for bringing everyone together.
A brief study of election returns from the last election that was actually all of Ukraine and the current status in the war pretty much indicates how the sections of Ukraine will fall apart. Donbass will undoubtedly be part of a federation, or federation in name. The folks in Crimea are pretty happy, as ther standard of living has gone up in the last year and they don’t have to worry about the Nazis. When a deal is cut for Donbass under rebel control Kharkov will want the same deal. So will Odessa. The areas where Yanukovitch got the majority of votes are the rebellious areas, and in fact are the ones not recognizing the fascist coup.
As far as the war, it’s not going well for the Ukrainian army. They aren’t getting what Kolomoisky’s Azov Battalion is being paid and most of them don’t have that Nazi fervor in their bellies. Thousands of them are about to die in Debaltsevo. There are already reports of defections and desertions and that orders have been given to shoot anyone who retreats.
So what can we expect? I would guess more false flags. False flags work well, and most people, to include the Juicers here, are too naive to notice that they’ve been manipulated. While Juicers can identify propaganda directed at others they are clueless as to propaganda aimed at them. That will give the US cover to load up Ukrainians with weapons. What do you think that will do? Do you think that Russia will allow more ethnic Russians to be slaughtered without more aid to the rebels? Do you think that more bloodshed in Donbass will ensure peace and harmony throughout the whole of Ukraine?
I suspect that Poroshenko will be removed in a coup, either by someone more extreme who follows marching orders from Washington more closely, or, hopefully, by someone backed by the EU, who do not want an American war of choice in Ukraine.
I suspect that BJers will remain cautious, will not do anything. Probably won’t have any blog discussions because, hey, we like Gin and Tonic and we don’t like Bob In Portland because Gin supports Ukraine and Bob is delusional. And, of course, if this spills into nuclear hell then none of us will be around to tell the other I told you so.
Ah, the joys of constant war. We don’t know how it happens. It just suddenly is.
Bob In Portland
For those curious as to what the other side is saying, this.
If you don’t care, or think you might be polluted by Russian propaganda, feel free to ignore it. Pretty much like how you’ve been ignoring things over the last year.
@sm*t cl*de: Or how long we can look at puppy pics. I mean, come on, we’re talking piglets here! There was a bonus this week of Steve(!) in a pic AND a vid. We have to spend our time looking for the other piglets and waiting for the next installment of BALLOON JUICE! PIGLETS AND NAKED MOPPING!