Through The Static

September 28, 2008

Are We Under Martial Law?

Filed under: Government,Politics,WTF — bobbleheadedbob @ 9:26 pm

Did Pelosi declare martial law?

Listen very, very carefully.  1:22, “I understand we are under martial law, as declared by the speaker last night.”

Longer C-span Clip

At about 20:50 Rep.Burgess confirms the speaker declared martial law last night.   And listen to the question at 42:22, if you so desireth.

I leave you in peace, and, hopefully, not in pieces.

September 26, 2008

BioMetrics: Welcome to the Novus Ordo SecLorum. And it Fits in Yer Pocket, TOO!

Filed under: Eeeeep!,Government,PoLicing,Technology,Wake Up Call,World News,WTF — bobbleheadedbob @ 7:44 am

Ze bobbLebot has heardeth of the scary, scary tales of biometrics, but never for once believed it could touch those purple mountains majesty or sea to shining sea.  But if biometrics WERE to happen, living in a post-9/11 world, we’d probably be the first place to git it.

Oh wait.  We already did.

In fact, according to Security Info Watch:

In late June, the president signed HSPD-24, which directed federal agencies to integrate processes and interoperable systems to the fullest extent permitted by law - like the FBI’s IAFIS and the DHS’ US VISIT programs — and make available to other agencies all biometric and associated biographical and contextual information associated with individuals who pose a reasonable suspicion of threat to national security. HSPD-24 was a result of the 9-11 Commission’s report that was strongly critical of federal agencies’ lack of communication and data sharing during the national crisis.

Whaaaaat?  And where was the bobbLebot??!

Oh yeah, living under a rock.

its comfy.

::shrugs:: it's comfy.

But HOLD UP.  WHAT IS BIOMETRICS?!

Well YouTube’s glad you asked.

And it’s not just fingerprints – it’s a system of biological data, from the patterns in our irises to our blood samples, that will be used to create profiles for a larger, national database so that, eventually, every citizen’s movements can be tracked via ID cards or even implanted microchips.  Sound unlikely?

YO!  Workers are being implanted with chips!  And we’re not talking Fritos!  Mmmm… Fritos…

::drooLs::

But yeah, the defense is that the technology for implantable chips are so rudimentary that they can’t yet track movement and location.

::makes a face::

1st of all, how do we know this?  2nd of all, does this mean that this technology will always be out of reach?  3rd of all, couldn’t what is being purported to be for our own protection in fact be for our own enslavement?  To jail us?  To put us in a position where our own information can be misconstrued and used against us?

So what can this biometric system be used for?  Well, W explained it best back in 6/6/06:

Sounds a little Big Brother and Conspiracy Theory.

::pause::

AND?

And it’s going beyond sea to shining sea.  In fact, it’s starting to be implemented in the form of ID cards in Britain.  RIGHT NOW. Think about how fast this will spread in 2 years… and by that time, I wonder if the biometrics utilized will hold more sophisticated technologies.

i always feel like... somebodys watching meeee...and ive got no privacy - whoa-oh!

i always feel like... somebody's watching meeee...and i've got no privacy - whoa-oh!

Cory Doctorow, your average, everyday weird/COOL! news and gadgetry blogger explains his experience via boingboing:

Earlier this year, I married my British fiancee and switched my visa status from “Highly Skilled Migrant” to “Spouse.” This wasn’t optional: Jacqui Smith, the British Home Secretary, had unilaterally (and on 24 hours’ notice) changed the rules for Highly Skilled Migrants to require a university degree, sending hundreds of long-term, productive residents of the UK away (my immigration lawyers had a client who employed over 100 Britons, had fathered two British children, and was nonetheless forced to leave the country, leaving the 100 jobless). Smith took this decision over howls of protests from the House of Lords and Parliament, who repeatedly sued her to change the rule back, winning victory after victory, but Smith kept on appealing (at tax-payer expense) until the High Court finally ordered her to relent (too late for me, alas).

Now, it seems, I will become one of the first people in Britain to be forced to carry a mandatory biometric RFID card in a pilot programme being deployed first to foreign students and we spousal visa holders (government is looking to curtail spousal visas altogether, capping all visas at 20,000 per year, including spousal visas, denying Britons the right to bring their spouses into the country once the quota has been filled). The card will be eventually linked to all of the national databases — credit, health, driving, spending. These are the same databases that the government has been repeatedly losing and haemmorhaging by the tens of million (literally).

And so it begins.

Many of my British friends act as if I’m crazy when I say that we must defeat Labour in the next election. We’re all good lefties, and a vote for the LibDems is considered tantamount to handing the country over to the Tories. But what could the Tories do that would trump what Labour has made of the country? The Labour Party has made a police state with a melting economy, a place where rampant xenophobia makes foreigners less and less welcome — where we are made to hand over our biometrics and carry papers as we conduct our lawful business. The only mainstream party to speak out against this measure is the LibDems, and they will have my vote.

To my friends, I say this: your Labour Party has taken my biometrics and will force me to carry the papers my grandparents destroyed when they fled the Soviet Union. In living memory, my family has been chased from its home by governments whose policies and justification the Labour Party has aped. Your Labour Party has made me afraid in Britain, and has made me seriously reconsider my settlement here. I am the father of a British citizen and the husband of a British citizen. I pay my tax. I am a natural-born citizen of the Commonwealth. The Labour Party ought not to treat me — nor any other migrant — in a way that violates our fundamental liberties. The Labour Party is unmaking Britain, turning it into the surveillance society that Britain’s foremost prophet of doom, George Orwell, warned against. Labour admits that we migrants are only the first step, and that every indignity that they visit upon us will be visited upon you, too. If you want to live and thrive in a free country, you must defend us too: we must all hang together, or we will surely hang separately.

Would the bobbLebot be correct in assessing that this sh*t is bananas?

This is REAL, people! This is NOW, people!  And what will it take for us to wake up to see what is going on right in front of us?  We all have the power to say NO.

We’ve already heard of China’s All-Seeing Eye, the US government is already implementing biometrics while private companies are voluntarily implanting their workers with chips.  Meanwhile, in Britain, the government is using biometric data to track immigrants and foreign nationals.

Is something wrong with the picture here?

September 19, 2008

Oh, Bama! Nothing Beats Racism With Your Morning Box-O-Waffle Mix.

Filed under: Food,Idiots,Immigration,Missing Persons,Oh White People...,Politics,Race,WTF — bobbleheadedbob @ 7:31 am

Dammit.  Dammit, dammit, dammit.

The bobbLebot is not happy-eth.  Why?  Because the bobbLebot computes that this election is more than a little ridunKulous.  It’s a friggin circus!!!  We’ve got posterchild of feminism Moosey Lucy Goosey in one corner with the jabbity jabby Tina Fey/Amy Poehler skit in one corner, then we’ve got OWG, Rhetorical brilliance (and yes, that is con a capital ‘R’) with racist-arse buffoonery in the other.

This is not an election, this is made-for-TV!  But – alas… when has America last had a “free” election, anyway.  Que oxymoronic.  <– not cynical, but critical.

Anywho, this robot’s Achille’s heel tends to be, “RACISM?!  WTF??!!!” — and today’s case would be no different.  Oh, identity politics, what you have doneth to me!

BLAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH.  Okay, the bobbLebot cannot help itself.  But… on the other side of the coin, the bobbLebot is ethically opposed to voting.  Besides, robots don’t have rights in this country anyway.

Move over, Aunt Jemima!  There’s a new mix in town!

mmm... thats sho good eatin

mmm... that's "sho good eatin'"

Meet Obama Waffles… with “change you can taste”.  Oh, but wait — it gets better.  Or so says Chip Berlet’s blog post:

The boxes of Obama Waffles for sale at the 2008 Values Voter Summit were certainly racist and offensive, and conference organizers did the right thing by shutting down the sales booth in their exhibit hall.

It was alternative journalists, including those working for Political Research Associates and People for the American Way, that first alerted the mainstream media to the offensive caricatures on the boxes with online posts from the conference.

This is what voting tastes like.

Patriotism at its finest.

Patriotism at its finest.

Now, why would Rev Wright be MISSING?

because hes running from the law or because he got caught up in a lynching

Southern Subtext: because he's running from the law or because he got caught up in a lynching

Dudes.  Racism can be offensive, racism can be completely moronic — and then there are times when racism is downright creepy.

Aaaaaaaand… the party doesn’t stop.

There is a side panel recipe for “Barry’s Bling Bling Waffle Ring” that features a “Recipe Rap” that begins with “Yo, B-rock here droppin’ waffle knowledge” with the rest of the ditty written in such an irritating White caricature of Black rap that even a White 1920s vaudeville blackface crooner would be embarrassed.

mex

Open Border Fiesta Waffles!

Under the caricature of Obama as a Mexican, there is a recipe card for “Open Border Fiesta Waffles.” The recipe card depicts a perforated border between the U.S.A. and Mexico. The text under this says the “greatest danger of all is to allow walls to divide us”…The recipe card on the Obama Waffles box including ingredients such as goats milk and jalepeno peppers, and advises as a “Tip: While waiting for these zesty treats to invade your home, why not learn a foreign language.” The “Recommended Serving” is “4 or more illegal aliens.”

And the clincher’s just as dericious.

hm.

hm.

Though this blog post practically writes itself, there shall be commentary.  As minimal as it will be.

The strategy of not directly addressing race, or to keeping it to a bare minimum has been a brilliant strategy.  Why talk about race?  The ground crew on both sides and in the middle of this issue will do the work for them.  We’ve got Brown people talking about it, Yellow people talking about it — heck, we’ve even got White people talking about it… ALL THE TIME.

2 Reactions:

  • Yay!  We’ve got White people talking about race on major news outlets!
  • ::cringe:: We’ve got White people talking about race on major news outlets.

In any case, if that isn’t Change, this roboT don’t know what is.

::bLip!::

September 14, 2008

Palin, ahem, I mean Fey appears on SNL

Filed under: Elections,Politics — ausaydong @ 12:58 pm

Tina Fey did an impeccable job imitating Gov. Sarah Palin, air rifle and all. This was seriously too funny. Watch this now on SNL.

And while we’re talking about Palin, read this great political profile from the NYT:

Ms. Palin walks the national stage as a small-town foe of “good old boy” politics and a champion of ethics reform. The charismatic 44-year-old governor draws enthusiastic audiences and high approval ratings. And as the Republican vice-presidential nominee, she points to her management experience while deriding her Democratic rivals, Senators Barack Obama and Joseph R. Biden Jr., as speechmakers who never have run anything.

But an examination of her swift rise and record as mayor of Wasilla and then governor finds that her visceral style and penchant for attacking critics — she sometimes calls local opponents “haters” — contrasts with her carefully crafted public image.

Throughout her political career, she has pursued vendettas, fired officials who crossed her and sometimes blurred the line between government and personal grievance, according to a review of public records and interviews with 60 Republican and Democratic legislators and local officials.

September 11, 2008

Death notice: “In lieu of flowers, please vote Democratic”

Filed under: Culture,Elections,Humor,Media,Politics,WTF — ausaydong @ 3:08 pm

I need to think of a clever line in my obituary like this.

I started hanging out with Ken Swanborn when we were both living on Maryland Avenue in Dolton and attending St. Jude the Apostle in South Holland. We played on the same football and baseball teams, we shared a passion for the White Sox, and we loved watching late-night TV and listening to George Carlin, Bill Cosby, Cheech & Chong.

As a comic, Swanny didn’t reach the heights, but he always kept working. He was damn funny.

We lost him last week, without warning. Dozens of his friends raised a glass to him at Bogart’s in Homewood on Sunday night while cheering the Bears and remembering the many, many laughs over the years.

Just behind Ken’s love for his wife and his family and his comedy was his passion for politics. It wasn’t surprising that his notice in the Sun-Times ended with “In lieu of flowers, vote Democrat.”

Read why the Chicago Tribune didn’t run that line.

“Well, it was not intentional, but we do have protocols and we do have rules we have to follow.”

“We have guidelines.”

September 8, 2008

Getting High on High Fructose Corn Syrup

Filed under: Food,Health,Idiots,Love,There's way too many categories,WTF — bobbleheadedbob @ 7:08 am

BOBBLEBOT IS BACK… erhm… miss me?

So has anyone been paying attention to those pro-High Fructose Corn Syrup ads?  Buh… I mean, the liquid sweetness comes from corn, so ain’t it all-natural?

Mmmmm, liquid sweetness…

::drools::

Looks, MA!  It’s fruit DRINK!  ALL NATURAL!!!

1st question: why is the popsicle nots alls meLticated???!

2nd question: don’t you love me???

3rd question: where did they get this pleasantly acoustic soundtrack from?  They must be hitting up the same person who wrote the tracks for yogurt commercials and kitchen products.

Now, the thrust of the argument for PRO-HFCS is that, “Whoa… I don’t know why it’s bad for me… so it must be good.  After all, it’s NATURAL.”  <- but not really.

Okay, if they’re going to launch a non-informative video campaign, here’s a more nutritionally informative video response – buh… cuz I’s too lazy to write a full-blown article at this time.  LAZY!!!

THERE.  HFCS is still honey-sweet smack for the masses.  SMACK I’S TELLS YOOZE!!!  And if you don’t believes ze bobbLebots, feels free to do yer OWN RESEARCH!!!

::ga-DUNK!::

August 29, 2008

Another Take on McCain

Filed under: Elections,Politics — disciplepete @ 9:21 am

I just posted an article from Alternet about what McCain’s presidency might be like, here’s another article on the same topic from The Economist. It gives a different take…I’m like Fox News, fair and balanced.

When anything happens to remind Americans that the world is a dangerous place, Mr McCain’s stock rises. The murder of Benazir Bhutto in December probably helped him win the New Hampshire primary less than two weeks later. Russia’s recent invasion of Georgia made him look prescient. (Mr Bush once gushed that he looked into Vladimir Putin’s eyes and saw his soul; Mr McCain quipped that he looked into his eyes and saw “a ‘K’, a ‘G’ and a ‘B’.”)

But will foreign policy always be a strength? Deliberately misconstruing a McCain comment, Democrats have suggested that he wants to occupy Iraq for 100 years. In fact, the gulf between the two candidates on Iraq has narrowed since the end of the Democratic primaries. Mr McCain wants to make Iraq stable and then pull out. Mr Obama wants to pull out as soon as possible, provided that Iraq is stable. How far apart these positions really are depends on how differently you think each candidate would react to developments on the ground. Mr Obama would doubtless withdraw more American troops more quickly, but perhaps not much more quickly.

A more fertile area of attack for the Democrats might well be Mr McCain’s general bellicosity. Back in 2000, his keenness to stamp American democracy on the world made him the neoconservative pick ahead of the milder Mr Bush. Mr McCain, whose political hero is the warlike Teddy Roosevelt, would certainly be readier to bomb Iran than Mr Obama would. And although he has a much better record of getting on with allies than Mr Bush, his scheme for a League of Democracies has plenty of pitfalls.

On economics, Mr McCain’s record has been pretty sensible. He has favoured free trade, low taxes, light regulation and fiscal responsibility. He has consistently opposed wasteful pork-barrel spending while Mr Obama has indulged in it. Two problems, however, have emerged on the campaign trail.

First, he has lost some of his reputation for fiscal straight-talking. The man who condemned Mr Bush’s tax cuts as irresponsible now proposes irresponsibly to expand them. On the stump, he sometimes spouts populist piffle, suggesting for example that oil prices might be reduced by cracking down on speculators. (Mr Obama is guilty of this, too.) And sometimes he says things that make no sense at all, such as when he maintains that a cap-and-trade system for curbing carbon emissions would impose no costs on the American economy.

Second, when it comes to the details of economic policy, Mr McCain often seems out of his depth in ankle-deep water. Asked in July if he supported treasury secretary Hank Paulson’s plan to offer a line of credit to shore up Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the ailing government-backed mortgage giants, he said: “I do.” Asked to flesh out his answer, he said: “I support it.”

Given Mr McCain’s weakness in this area, his choice of economic advisers matters a lot. His chief economics guru, Doug Holtz-Eakin, a former head of the Congressional Budget Office, is widely respected. But two other advisers, Carly Fiorina and Meg Whitman, are businesspeople rather than economists…

…Another part of Mr McCain’s appeal is his record as a maverick. His opponent has never bucked his own party’s orthodoxy on anything important. Mr McCain often has. He pressed for action against global warming when many of his Republican colleagues were still dismissing it as a hoax. He joined hands with a Democrat to enact a campaign-finance reform many conservatives reviled. With Ted Kennedy, he sponsored a bill that would have granted illegal immigrants a path to citizenship, had congressional Republicans not howled it down…

…On social issues Mr McCain takes conservative positions, but without obvious gusto. He opposes gay marriage, but half-heartedly. He says he wants to ban abortion, but once let slip that, if his daughter wanted one, he would leave the choice to her. Such moderation, though appealing to swing voters, is anathema to those who equate abortion with murder. But social conservatives have nowhere else to turn. They might stay at home on polling day, but they are unlikely to vote for Mr Obama, who has a 100% rating from NARAL Pro-Choice America, an abortion-rights group.

What a McCain Victory Could Mean: No Money for Health Care and the End of Our Volunteer Army

Filed under: Eeeeep!,Elections,Politics — disciplepete @ 9:06 am

Alternet:

In judging the shape of a future John McCain presidency, there are already plenty of dots that are easy to connect. They reveal an image of a war-like Empire so full of hubris that it could take the world into a cascade of crises, while extinguishing what is left of the noble American Republic.

McCain has made clear he would continue and even escalate George W. Bush’s open-ended global war on Islamic radicals. McCain buys into the neoconservative vision of expending U.S. treasure and troops to kill as many Muslim militants as possible…

…McCain’s global war strategy is as hawkish, if not more so, than Bush’s. In late 2001 and early 2002, McCain took the lead in pushing the neocon plan of a rapid pivot from the invasion of Afghanistan toward the prospective invasion of Iraq…

…the Bush-McCain-neocon neglect of Afghanistan has contributed to worsening instability in nuclear-armed Pakistan, where the Taliban and al-Qaeda are expanding safe havens and increasing influence…

Another casualty of McCain’s endless Middle East wars, which soon could include Iran, would almost surely be America’s volunteer army. Though McCain officially opposes a restoration of the draft, it is nearly impossible to envision how his multiple wars could be waged without one.

And McCain also had made clear that he favors a neo-Cold War confrontation with Moscow over another part of the neocon agenda — the encircling of Russia with pro-U.S. regimes and the placement of strategic missile systems near Russia’s borders…

From the perspective of U.S. taxpayers, the neocon strategy of permanent global dominance means funding the military-industrial complex at levels never before seen, especially when one factors in the simultaneous costs of the “war on terror,” the Iraq War, the Afghan War and a possible Iran War.

The combined price tag for McCain’s military adventures, at a time when the federal government is already running about half a trillion dollars in debt, would mean that virtually every other national priority would have to be short-changed or neglected.

There will be little money left to address the energy crisis, global warming, retooling the auto industry, health care, Social Security, education, infrastructure repairs, etc., etc.

 

August 28, 2008

Putin accuses U.S. of orchestrating Georgian war

Filed under: Politics,War,World News — disciplepete @ 12:35 pm

CNN:

SOCHI, Russia (CNN) – Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has accused the United States of orchestrating the conflict in Georgia to benefit one of its presidential election candidates.

In an exclusive interview with CNN’s Matthew Chance in the Black Sea city of Sochi Thursday, Putin said the U.S. had encouraged Georgia to attack the autonomous region of South Ossetia.

Putin told CNN his defense officials had told him it was done to benefit a presidential candidate — Republican John McCain and Democrat Barack Obama are competing to succeed George W. Bush — although he presented no evidence to back it up.

“U.S. citizens were indeed in the area in conflict,” Putin said. “They were acting in implementing those orders doing as they were ordered, and the only one who can give such orders is theirleader.”

White House spokeswoman Dana Perino blasted Putin’s statements, saying they were “patently false.”

“To suggest that the United States orchestrated this on behalf of a political candidate just sounds not rational,” she said.

U.S. State Department deputy spokesman Robert Wood concurred, and labeled Putin’s statements as “ludicrous.”

August 27, 2008

As Food Prices Soar, Brazil and Argentina React in Opposite Ways

Filed under: Economics,Food,World News — disciplepete @ 1:00 pm

NYT:

SÃO PAULO, Brazil — Luciano Alves planted beans, corn and grain on about 7,500 acres of his farm in southern Brazil last year. This year, he is planting 8,600 acres. And he credits Brazil’s president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, with the increase.

“The government is helping us finance the purchase of new machinery,” said Mr. Alves. “They reduced the interest rates we pay and have given us more time to pay off the loans. It’s vital.”

Rising food prices mean many farmers around the world are reaping record profits. And South America’s agricultural powerhouses, Brazil and Argentina, are responding to the farming windfall in exactly opposite ways.

Mr. da Silva’s government recently announced record farm credits, in an effort to get Brazil’s farmers to produce more while the price of their exports are high on world markets, a move that should improve Brazil’s economy. But Argentina, Brazil’s economic and political archrival, decided to share the agricultural windfall at home.

Worried about the wave of inflation rippling around the world, the government of President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner increased export taxes on some crops, a move meant to keep down domestic food prices by encouraging farmers flush from global profits to sell more at home.

“In our country the government is trying to get money to subsidize other sectors of the economy,” said Eduardo Cucagna, president of FN Semillas, an Argentina seed company, objecting to the policy. “I think Brazil is doing the opposite, adapting to what the world is offering now. They’re doing it right.”

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