30 Aug 2011

Watercooler – Automata

Halloooo firedogs! I find myself endlessly fascinated by automata – little self contained machines that do something purposeful, or just for entertainment or whatever. Many cultures make them in some fashion or another. Here are two charming ones; don’t worry about figuring out Japanese or French – the little robots

30 Aug 2011

Shhh! Don’t Talk About the Tar Sands Protesters!

An exercise for the reader: Google “minneapolis tar sands obama” or “minneapolis keystone xl obama” and see how many articles you find by the StarTribune, the Pioneer Press, WCCO, KSTP, TPT2, KARE, or FOX9 on these protests: When President Obama arrives at the Minneapolis Convention Center he will be greeted

30 Aug 2011

America’s Hearing Problem

The problem isn’t that all experts are worthless, the problem is that the worthless experts are the only ones that get heard.

30 Aug 2011

WikiLeaks Down Under

There’s been a sudden explosion of interest in Wikileaks cables down under, after every single one of the US diplomatic cables on Australia was suddenly released online to the public this week. While hardened Aussie journalists insist there are no major “bombshells,” plenty of intriguing new stories are now exploding onto the media landscape. Overall, the US cables reveal a sovereign nation absurdly subservient to US foreign policy, with Australian ministers queuing to discuss confidential party deliberations with their friends in the US embassy.

30 Aug 2011

Why is the University of North Texas Donating to Republicans

The University of North Texas is usually considered a liberal university, The school is especially known for its environmental program and its emphasis on the environment. A study from the early 2000s found: “More than half (57 percent) strongly or somewhat agreed same sex couples should have the right to

30 Aug 2011

Perry’s Iowa Remarks Reveal Republican Strategy on Social Security

The media have portrayed Governor Rick Perry’s description of Social Security as a “Ponzi scheme” at a recent Iowa campaign event as the latest extreme statement of an unconventionally candid, conservative presidential candidate. But Perry’s full remarks reveal just as much about the Republican Party’s strategy for cutting Social Security

30 Aug 2011

Labor: The Pit and the Pendulum

There’s a holiday coming up. It’s…it’s…30% Off at Penny’s Day? Um, how about Toyota Salebration Marathon Day? No, that’s not right. Small Business Entrepreneur Day? Damn! That’s what happens in July. It’s that holiday about working folk. CEO Bonus Week? Unemployment Office Stand-in-Line Day? Nah, ooo, ooo, it’s right on

30 Aug 2011

9-11?s Surveillance State Legacy

We had one moment where this was subject to any debate at all, during the fight over the FISA amnesty legislation. But that was really about a small portion of the total data collection. Most of the surveillance remains a secret. Ron Wyden and Mark Udall tried to tease out a little more this summer, when they tried to get the intelligence community to admit to how they were misinterpreting the Patriot Act to allow for more data collection. But that never went anywhere. From NSA surveillance to national security letters to the AT&T room on Folsom Street in San Francisco, what bits and pieces we do know about point to a giant network Hoovering up every piece of information you let out into the world digitally.

30 Aug 2011

Jamaican “Kill LGBT” Performer Mavado in New York City 09/02/11 and 09/04/11

Mavado at Reggae Sumfest 2008 Photo by Psycler – Creative Commons Jamaican dancehall performer Mavado doesn’t get as much attention as some of the other “kill LGBT” performers such as Buju Banton, Beenie Man, Bounty Killer, Capleton and Sizzla. Mavado is more known for the violence of his lyrics and

30 Aug 2011

Bam Bam Barber thinks the Homosexual Agenda wants him “Behind Bars”

I don’t know how many of our new FDL readers have heard about Matt “Bam Bam” Barber of Liberty Counsel, but he’s one of the most disturbing and entertaining figures of the anti-LGBT movement. He’s one of those culture warriors who spends an enormous amount of time watching and writing