Dec/17
2005
I’ve commented before on my hatred for ad campaigns. In nearly any given commercial break, you’ll hear a stupid ad. It’s like clockwork. After reading a recent thread on another forum, and blatantly ripping off some of their examples, let me take a few pot shots at some of the ads on the air. First and foremost is this one god awful SUV commercial. It features a man kissing his wife good bye, walking down the walkway, and jumping off the mesa they apparently build the house on. Of course, he opens up his parachute (because he’s EXTREME!) and lands in the rocky valley, gets into his SUV and drives off. Ok, the obvious question is how the fuck does he get home? Followed by why the fuck would you build a house there and why the fuck would anyone living there go to work in a suit and tie? But think about this for a second… if the SUV was that great, shouldn’t they have it parked on top of the mesa next to the house instead of stuck down in the valley? Huh? Huh? Think about it. The next example is an older ad for some shampoo or another. Woman is in a airplane bathroom, washing her hair, apparently going orgasmic over it, and accidentally presses the intercom so the entire airplane can hear her. Couple problems here. First… why the fuck would you wash your hair on a plane. Second, have you SEEN the airplane bathrooms? There is barely enough room for you, let alone the gesticulations required to wash your hair in there. Finally, what the fuck is the purpose of an intercom in the bathroom on an airplane??? Anyone? This next one is a cell phone ad. Two parents and two kids in the mall. Dad says that they will split up shopping. And in order to get back together, Dad will call Bobby, Bobby will call Mom, Mom will call Sue and then they will meet back here. Of course, it turns out that none of them owns a cell phone. It makes me want to kill everyone involved in the ad honestly. Writers, actors, agency. All of them. It assumes a level of mind numbing idiocy that not only kills my inner child… it confirms the theory that cell phones cause brain cancer. Next up are Burger Kings ads. Now, they started out with just a kinda creepy guy with a big head who showed up and made you want fast food. But now, I think the ad agency is cashing in on the fact that everyone finds him to be overwhelmingly creepy. There really isn’t a true flaw that can be pointed at like my other examples. Just that I don’t see how making your customers uncomfortable really helps sell burgers. Drug ads are always amusing in a semi-twisted kinda way. I don’t know what medication it was for. Drug ads crack me up anyway, but this one had some 'special' side effects. “Side effects may include dizziness, drowsiness and diarrhea.” Think about that for a second, and ponder this… what if you get all three? Nuff said. Finally, I have another fast food faux pas. McDonalds went out and decided to improve their coffee. They partnered with some coffee company and all and now their coffee is allegedly improved. The ad? “Finally… McDonalds has good coffee”. What the hell. You’re not supposed to admit that you’ve been giving us crap for decades. What the hell kind of thing is that. “Man, we fucked you over for years, but now it’s good so give us money”. Hell, everyone know their coffee was a far cry from good, but admitting it is hardly going to make me try your new and improved blend, now is it?! There are some very good ads out there. Some sell their products well. Others amuse you enough to remember their products. I still laugh at some of the great dot com ads from back in the day. But some of the ads out there make me remember the products in a bad way, and somehow, I don’t think that’s what they want.
Dec/16
2005

Sick Of The God Damn Cryassing!

You know what I hate - ENDLESS BITCHING! "Someone cut me off ... Commercials are annoying ... You got your chocolate in MY peanut butter" -- BOO FUCKING HOO! Shut the fuck up and deal with it! It's amazing that the people who bitch and complain the most usually have the least right to say anything. Do you know who should be bitching up a storm (if he weren't dead)? Jonny Kennedy. No, not your martyr of a President, but a guy from England who managed to live 36 years with a condition that CAUSED HIS SKIN TO FALL OFF! Dystrophic Epidermolysis Bullosa - otherwise known as EB - is a rare genetic condition that causes ones skin to be so damn sensitive, that it bruises at the slightest touch. Blisters form, pop, peel away, skin grows anew, bruises, blisters form, poep etc etc etc - ALL OVER THE FRIKIN BODY! Eventually so much scar tissue forms that you're pretty well fucked from ever being able to do a damn thing besides sit there. Even wearing clothes was incredibly painful. So Jonny had a right to bitch. He had the right to say - GOD DAMN THIS SUCKS! But he had enough good humor to produce a show about his last few months alive in order to get some awareness going about the condition. He threw his own funeral just before he died! Who else has the right to say shit about the crap life deals you? NOT YOU! Samantha Allen perhaps. She was eight fucking years old when she was hit by a car. The accident (at least you hope it was an accident) left her paralyzed in a wheel chair. EIGHT FUCKING YEARS OLD. Who has the mental fortitude to deal with much beyond missing the fucking Charlie Brown Christmas Special at eight years old, much less being a paraplegic? Not me, I can tell you that much. So the next time you think about opening your craw about how there's another fucking Starbucks on the corner, or that people on the internet are dicks, or how your favorite television show sucks ass now that they added the cute side-kick, just shut it. 'Coz it doesn't matter.
Dec/16
2005

They are persistent...

Is there even a market for these things anymore? I mean, I would suppose someone would have looked into it at some point. I mean, there is no way they’d keep doing it if they didn’t get results from it. Even AOL isn’t dumb enough to keep sending out free software CDs if they didn’t get enough response. Right? I mean, I understand the late 90’s. Even up through 2002 or so. But at this point, it would seem to me that they must be facing diminishing returns here. Even with 5 million free hours, a 6 month trial, a Yiddish goat that sings Christmas carols and a hooka that creates stardust and dreams! Quite frankly, I’m sick of getting them. But I was sick of getting them about the time I got my first one, so that’s not really the point. Really what I’m annoyed at is that they’ve never really tried to reinvent their business model. They still prey on the poor and computer ignorant. In an age of broadband, they fight to keep dialup alive. The still send out these discs, covered in lies and misrepresentations, in the hope of catching a few more suckers. To be honest, it offends me that this company continues to be one of the leading faces of the internet. Shameful. Even beyond the crap I have to deal with coming from their network on a professional basis, their entire business model should offend anyone who sees the internet as a powerful force in the global world. As I said though, I would have thought they were starting to run out of the uninformed. Or at least, most of the uninformed would have friends and family smart enough to warn them by this point. I just don’t see how these CDs can still be effective. They must be, but damn… I am incredulous.
Dec/15
2005

RTFA

It’s a simple idea. Just read the fucking article. In my constant attempts to kill time at work, I spend a lot of time reading forums. Politics, general life, video games, all manner of topics. Generally, they have new posts often enough to kill a substantial amount of time. One constant source of annoyance to me is people who don’t read the fucking link. When someone posts a link and begins a conversation about it, you need to read it if you want to talk about it. Otherwise, you don’t really understand what’s being talked about. For example, I posted up a rather long article that discussed the problems with the ‘dumbing down of America’ and the effects of that trend on politics and media. Now, this was a 15 page article that ranged over a long litany of examples and topics. Three minutes after I posted the link, someone replied with the platitude “if you don’t like it, move’. Come on people, even if that wasn’t trite and tired, they didn’t even read the article. There is NO way you can read a 15 page article in 3 minutes. And that assumes they saw my post seconds after it was posted. I’m a speed reader and I don’t think I could get much past the third page that fast. And that doesn't count hitting the reply button, typing a response (even a short one) and clicking submit. I don’t understand the desire to reply to something that you didn’t even take the time to understand even the gist of the article. Particularly when all you offer up is a meaningless expression. If you didn't care enough to read it, don't reply. If you feel the desire to reply, read it. I don’t know. I mean, there are rumors on the internets that a lot of people are just dumb, but that just seems too easy an answer. It seems as if they deliberately avoid taking an interest in conversation and instead want to just exchange talking points. I take it as the height of idiocy to say something without reading the link to understand what is being discussed. I know, I know… I’m raging at the internet for being the internet. But every once in a while, my stupidity meter just gives the fuck up. Then I just want to whip out my sniper rifle and help Darwinism along.
Dec/12
2005

But it's crap...

I've never really understood some people's choice in beer. I do not consider myself a beer snob. Honest. I drink what I drink because it tastes good. Has a good beer flavor. But what makes a man decide Natty Ice is the best beer? And defend that choice to the bitter end? Coors light? MGD? Bud E? Pabst Blue Ribbon? None of these are good beers. They do not taste good. They don't taste like beer. Maybe you have to hate the taste of beer to enjoy these "beers". And if you don't like the taste of beer, drink something else. The only answer I can come up with is money. Cheap beer generally tastes like crap. So, if you need cheap beer, you generally buy crap. Maybe you get used to it after a while. Your taste buds curl up and die. In horror at the flavor of Pabst, they go on permanent vacation, never to return. So you never actually find out how bad it tastes. The thing I never understood is why some people swear that those crappy beers are good. It boggles my mind. I makes me wonder if they've ever had good beer. They're dedicated. Fanatical. All to beers that taste like urinated water
Dec/10
2005

Kansas, Kansas, Kansas

Link: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10372148/

Is there something in the water down there? I mean really... what is wrong with the people in Kansas? So, kid there is in the hall with his buddy, his buddy asks him to lend him a dollar in Spanish. He says no problem, also in Spanish. Now, these kids both speak Spanish and English fluently. Result? Teacher overhears it and sends them to the principle. Who promptly suspended the kid. For speaking Spanish. You read that right. He was suspended for speaking Spanish and sent home. The school and principle even admit it. They don’t attempt to say he was doing anything else.
This is not the first time we have [asked] Zach and others to not speak Spanish at school.
When the father confronted the principle to produce the rule that forbid the kids from speaking Spanish, the principal was unable to do so. Probably because a rule like that would be illegal. The father took it to the Superintendent, who recognizing the major PR disaster at hand, rescinded the suspension. A formal apology was also issued. That’s great, but what the fuck people. I mean, there are still a teacher and a principal in that school who are clueless. And I’m going to take a step out and guess racist. Because I bet if they had been speaking German or Italian, this never becomes an issue. Where do people get off with this type of bullshit anyway? The kids weren’t in class, let alone disrupting one. They weren’t talking to or about teachers. And anyone with a simple grasp of languages can tell that “Me prestas un dolar?” “No problema“ has nothing to do with teachers or class. Hell, someone that watched Terminator 2 could figure that out. Just mind boggling.
Dec/09
2005

I'm struck blind!

Ok, not really. In truth, I clawed my eyes out. Or maybe I should have seared them with hot irons. You see, as a youthful male, I have ventured out onto the internet for the purposes of gathering and viewing pornography. For years, I've done this. I remember when the internet was young and the porn was normal. And men the world round rejoiced, for no longer did we have to go into seedy back rooms of video stores, or into even seedier adult stores. And teenage boys cheered for they could get it just by clicking that they were 18! Soon, it became the big business of the internet. The seedy underside that wasn’t hidden anymore. And people were ok with that. Sure, the occasional morally police would scream, but eh… screw them. But as time passed, I came across more and more odd sites. There were always a handful of truly bizarre sex sites, but they became more and more frequent, while at the same time becoming totally batshit crazy. Time and again, I would click an otherwise normal enough link and find my self scarred. Soon, even the simplistic WHAT THE FUCK™ could no longer contain the oddity on the screen before me. There are certain things man should never see and most of them are on the internet somewhere. Take for example, a site that has bible porn. That’s right, it contains stories and drawings of David and ‘Goliath’. Or Mary Magdalene pulling a train. John the Baptist getting a golden shower. Jesus loving his fellow man. Truly fucked up stuff. The people inside my brain are scrubbing it away with steel wool. What about stories about professional hockey players. Normal enough, right? Not my cup of tea, but hey, it’s reasonable for someone to be into it. Until you change all the stories to those same hockey players being pregnant. Then things get fucked up. I don't want to know where the baby eventually comes out. Lucky for me, I'm adept at clicking the back button to leave a page. What about an entire full length movie that is entirely made up of men in pterodactyl costumes in a giant orgy. Once again, the bizzaro meter seems confused. I mean, I suppose I could accept this as just odd... but who the hell can watch such a thing and not spend half the time laughing. Not really useful as porn that way, is it? Comedy maybe, but not porn. I’m never one be a prude. Nor do I have an aversion to people enjoying the things they enjoy. I don’t get a kick out of most of the odd fetishes out there, but I thing people should enjoy what they want to enjoy. All that, without even getting into the illegal variety of porn. Or the stuff made in Japan, which I think truly deserves it’s own category of odd.But I have to say, there are some sections of the internet that are just truly bizarre. And disturbing. I don’t know. This rant doesn’t really have a point. Just a mindless (closed for cleaning) babbling about the occasional web site that has left my inner child weeping in the corner.
Dec/08
2005

Late night pickup

So, my coworker headed out to McDonalds. He decided to buy some extra food in case we're snowed in. He goes through around 11:30 so they're on their late night, reduced item menu. Let me give you the conversation he had at the drive though. Buddy: Can I get a quarter pounder meal? Employee: What kind of drink would you like? B: Coke. And can I have 2 apple pies? E: No, we're on the late night menu, so we don't have that B: Ok, make it 2 double cheeseburgers. E: Sorry, those aren't on the menu either. B. Oh my bad. Alright... just give me chicken selects then. E: Ok sir. Pull around He pays, and then waits. For like 10 minutes. Finally they bring out his food and then they say the following sentence: E: I'm sorry for the long wait sir. To make up for it, we put two apple pies into your order at no extra charge. ...... I... But.... Nevermind. I don't think there are words. I'm sure there is logic involved here somewhere... but I don't want to think about it.
Dec/08
2005

A small dose of reality

It’s not too much to ask. At least, I don’t think so. I know Hollywood loves to stretch the limits of reality in order to keep the drooling masses enthralled, but every new movie I see goes a little further into bizarro land. Yes, it’s a movie. Yes, I need to suspend disbelief when possible. Yes, not every movie adheres to the same rules as reality and those mythos should be accounted for. But the stuff I’m talking about isn’t the Matrix moves effects. They had an explanation for it, so I can suspend disbelief in the interest of enjoying the movie. No, what annoys me is every time a car explodes into a fireball for no apparent reason. News flash: cars do no inherently have an explosive charge built in. And gas tanks are not that volatile. Or every time a computer terminal explodes with a pyrotechnic blast of sparks. News flash: despite the urge for sys admins to punish lusers with such devices, we don’t install them to explode every time a power surge occurs. Ditto for light bulbs. When you shoot someone, they don’t generally fall down dead. There are only a handful of locations on the body that cause instantaneous death, though you’d never know that looking at most action movies. Pistols do not have hundreds of shots, and generally they are only accurate out to a few dozen meters. A little tiny pistol will not actually cause a guy to go flying 10 feet through the air when he’s hit. Once again, action movies to the contrary. Cigarettes… are not actually a good ignition source. Even when smoked by burly testosterone hero types and dropped onto a pool of gasoline. Amazingly, a hero can be hit by a train, shot, clubbed by a nuns, kicked by a mule, and tossed of a cliff, but somehow still be man enough to take the bad guy down. Lasers are not generally visible. To make them visible, you generally reduce effectiveness. Even worse then the special effects bullshit are the complete failings of logic. Especially true in the romantic dramas where someone decides to get really pissed off at some minor infraction and storm out of the relationship despite them being the perfect couple. How a movie robot can suddenly decide to do something totally illogical. Hackers can always get the right login info within 3 tries. And better yet, can run amazing programs to take over computer networks with simple command line commands like “access network / reroute power” Or better yet, bring up incredibly complex 3D CAD drawings of a building with just the touch of a button. Large groups of bad guys will always attack in singles to make the fight even instead of pummeling the guy with overwhelming force. The dreaded “alien computer taken down by a apple”. Apparently Steve Jobs is an alien and built his systems to be compatible. Speaking of the mac, if you believe Hollywood, the entire fucking world uses Apple. Once again on computers… if you believe the movies, we possess amazing Photoshop filters that allow you to zoom in on a nanite sitting on the eyelash of a guy that is only a tiny background blur in the original Polaroid I could go one for days. It’s just hundreds and hundreds of little things that take me out of movies. Not so much that I don’t really enjoy them, but the little guy inside my head rolls his eyes every time this type of BS happens. I know you want your movie to be spectacular, but a little realism goes a long way sometimes.
Dec/06
2005
I was reading an article yesterday from the Times, it was on Colorado and how Longmont CO. had decided to create a privately funded position called "immigrant integration coordinator". They felt they needed it to help aid some of the Mexican immigrants in melding with their community. As you might suspect it caused a huge stink - from the locals who felt that enough time and money went to supporting immigrants, some portion of which are here illegally and from the immigrants who felt that to be "American" was to lose their identity... more specifically their culture. It's this last bit that I'm choosing to rant on, but first let me get the exact quote so you can see how it strikes first hand:
"Integration means I will participate fully in American culture," said Marietta Vigil Gonzales, who teaches English as a second language and volunteers among Longmont's Latino residents. Ms. Gonzales, whose ancestors first came to the American Southwest from Spain in the late 1500's, said she was proud that after so many generations she still spoke Spanish. "Assimilation means that I will have become like the stereotypical American, with no culture, no ethnic background and no roots," she said.
Ok maybe there's a subtle line in her phraseology between integration and assimilation - but for most people who can't handle any polysyllabic words it means the same thing... adopting and embracing the idea that to be American means nothing about where you came from, but about who you are now. If you've ever travelled abroad, you're almost immediately struck with just how much American tourists can stand out. It's almost like they have a marker over their heads in many cases. Europeans are well known for their sense of displeasure in accepting filthy American lucre in the name of tourism, and this destain has once been translated into "Omg American! You have no Culture!". Culture... Well I suppose if you mean that we don't have castles that date back to the Dark Ages, yes then it's true. But culture isn't just archeological findings, it's music and food, dance and social quirks, it's part the influence of history on our society and part popular myths - Paul Bunyan, Marilyn Monroe, "George Washington Slept Here", etc.. What struck me as offensive in the comment on having no culture was the same feeling I got from reading the article in the Times, that to claim that to ~be~ American is to shed all ties to your ancestors is bullshit. The problem, as I see it, is that these people who come from a (I'm inventing this word as far as I know) Mono-Cultural background just can't grasp what American culture is. They're so used to thinking in single terms of who they are that they can't see that when white kids embrace Bob Marley, that when we stop and eat at Taco Bell, that when the community has it's annual "cultural festival", or when Kawanzaa became a recognized holiday... that America is pan-cultural, greater than the sum of any of it's parts. Maybe the point is we are no longer a "melting pot" so much as a "mixing pot". What people outside the US need to (but can't) recognize is that America doesn't have a high standard of living (food, health care, no wars) because we have a nice piece of turf... it's because the people ON that turf know how to get along and make the best of what we have. It means that when you piss us off we can suddenly turn around and enable and re-elect a president that will put the weight of nation behind a bitch-slap on a global scale. America mixes yes, but it also churns and thrashes, and 100%predictable we are not. This is an aspect of our culture. My final say on this subject is to the people who have come to America to take and not give. I have a problem with illegal aliens who have no intent of integrating/assimilating/whatever. If you think you can be here and keep your "culture" you're wrong. Sure you can send back money. Sure you can get health care and social services. But remember this, you left your country for America for a reason - because here was better than where you were. And if you wonder why that's true, then maybe if you opened your eyes to the Americans around you then perhaps you'd see that our culture is part of our success and not the other way around.
Dec/02
2005
Mortgages for people who lost their homes in the hurricanes have now come due after a 3 month grace period. That's it in a nutshell. Can you imagine owing tens of thousands of dollars on .... nothing? Or worse than nothing, a mess, debris, or toxic schmutz? Damn that sucks. Better yet, you have nothing to pay off the debt with - no job, no possessions, in fact you don't even have a home right now. Put aside the emotional devastation of losing everything you own, and all artifacts of your youth, your ancestors, any physical legacy you might have inherited - Grandma's china, your Great Great Uncle's peg leg, whatever. Think on just the basic necessities of life, food, shelter, warmth, .... hope. With a multi-thousand dollar burden on your head, and no job to earn money to even support your family, much less pay this off what do you do? Yes, the housing industry doesn't want to suffer a crash - with so much property destroyed and so many people without regular income they have to understand that just paying off this debt after 3 months of grace isn't very likely. Further they don't want the rotty destroyed property either. They want their money. It's unlikely, given the fact that our government has shown that it cares more about big industry than individuals, that the administration will take steps to mitigate the situation. That is until it becomes a hot news item. The more likely scenario is that the banks will realize that without customers they too won't survive and thus work for some compromise that enables both the lenders and borrowers to shoulder some of the loss. Or so I hope. So what will it be for mortgage lenders this holiday season - Scrooge or no?
Nov/30
2005

Wussy Piñata

Birthday parties are a fun tradition. Almost everyone has good memories from them growing up. A few bad too, but generally the idea is a good one. There are a lot of traditions associated with these parties. Pin the tail on the donkey. Clowns. Magicians. Streamers. Balloons. Cake, ice cream. All kinds of stuff that is good and wholesome. Not everyone does all of those things. Most people skip a lot of it. But that are all associated with childhood parties Another one is the piñata. It’s a great time for children. You blindfold the little bastards, give them a bat, spin them around and tell them to whack it. Once they break it, everyone gets candy. What could be more fun for little kids? Turns out, there are evil people in the world that apparently hate the idea of piñatas. They have spent their evil thoughts and spiteful minds on destroying the tradition. They came up with the following idea: A pull piñata. Basically, they attached a bunch of strings to the piñata. One of the strings opens the piñata. Take turns pulling until candy is released. What the mother fucking hell. I mean god damn people. This is a fucking staple of growing up. If you don’t want your children to have the ‘violent’ piñata, throw candy on the floor and walk away. There is no fucking reason to fuck with the piñata concept here. Jesus fuck Christ on a fucking pogo stick. The candy is good, but half the fun is hitting the damn thing. What's the mother fucking point if you take that way? If you don’t want your spawn to enjoy the 'whacking with a stick' fun… that’s fine. Don’t have one. Many a party has gone fine without them. But these crappy imitations are a mockery of the idea. A mockery of the tradition. And what the fuck... let them hit something with a stick! Fucking pull strings. I swear.
Nov/30
2005

Long message guy

Don’t be that guy. Or girl. Or whatever. Just don’t be that guy. When you’re leaving a message for someone, be concise. Think before you ramble. For example, I have a friend of mine who was born to ramble. To be fair, he does this regardless of it being a voice mail or actually speaking in person. Instead of briefly summarizing the reason for his call, he goes into a long winded explanation. Sometimes it goes on for nearly the full length of the time allotted per message I don’t want all of that. I really don’t. I want who you are, contact info, quick reason why you called. Not the fully explained reason, just the light version will do. Because when I all you back, you can give me those details. You’re probably going to review it when I call back anyway. And it forces me to listen to a longwinded and mostly pointless voicemail just to make sure there isn’t something important at the end. Let me give you another example. A co-worker (Hi if you actually decided to come back and read the site again!) recently got tickets to a football game this week. He has an extra and wanted to call a friend. He left a message that included name, contact info, and a much longer explanation than was needed. He told them why he didn’t mention it sooner, and what time he was leaving to tailgate and a handful of other extra details that could have been summed up much easier, or better yet, discussed when the person called back. Watch my version:
Hi Joe. this is Rou. I got an extra ticket to the fish-heads game Saturday. Probably leaving around 11am that morning to tailgate. Call me back and let me know. 555-1212.
Short simple and concise. Don’t be long message guy.
Nov/30
2005
Rumsfeld: Don't Call Them 'Insurgents' WASHINGTON (AP) -- More than 2 1/2 years into the Iraq war, Donald H. Rumsfeld has decided the enemy are not insurgents. ''This is a group of people who don't merit the word `insurgency,' I think,'' Rumsfeld said Tuesday at a Pentagon news conference. He said the thought had come to him suddenly over the Thanksgiving weekend. ''It was an epiphany.''
Fucking Brilliant. Really. We need more epiphanies like these. When it comes to strats for Iraq this guy is a goddamn mental tyrannasaurus. Rawr. You know the "people formerly known as insurgents" will be so upset that they can no longer use the word on their resumes that they'll just have to look for a new line of work. Man why didn't we think of this sooner? Guess that's why they pay him the big bucks eh? When asked to provide an alternative the Secretary of Defense offered this gem "Enemies of the legitimate Iraqi government". Ooooo catchy. A total slap in the face. Deterrant-city. Massive pwnage. What more can I say? The title says it all. Yawn.
Nov/30
2005

UnGrateful Dead

HEADLINE: the remaining skeletons in the Grateful Dead have decided to have a "Metallica" moment. Really I don't listen to them, I tried when I was in High School because they were so popular, but it just wasn't for me. Still it's surprising that a band that thrived on the faith and love of their fans are is now turning it's back on them just for the money. The heart of this issue is file sharing. To precisely identify the issue the Dead have put the screws to a popular website (Live Music Archive) that had available for download a shitload of personally taped Dead concerts. Further, these aren't bootlegs - no sah - the Dead used to encourage the taping and sharing of concert tapes among fans (so long as no one charged money). So what's changed? Well Jerry is actually dead, but that's besides the point. I mean technically these were fan-tapes, which were legit. And no one was charging for the down loads. So where's the rub? It's the green, baby, the green. See the remaining members of the band, who are still touring as "The Dead" sell full-length recordings of performances for about $15 a pop. And the boys aren't digging the competition. Oh they gave some sort of bullshit excuse about how the physical sharing of tapes "builds" a community while the anonymity of computer downloads doesn't - but the "anonymous" community decided to become less anonymous and start a petition which shows just how invisible they really are. "One-to-one community building, tape trading, is something we've always been about," Mr. McNally said. "The idea of a massive one-stop Web site that does not build community is not what we had in mind. Our conclusion has been that it doesn't represent Grateful Dead values." Values. Heh. Funny. Still it's like the kid with the finger in the dam, the stuff is already out there.... and Dead fans LIKE to share... So. What are they gonna do to stop that? ps If the Category fits.... :D
Nov/29
2005
Statement: I find it infuriating that people deliberately put themselves in harms way against all sound advice and STILL receive assistance when the inevitable happens. Here let me explain... I'm talking about people like reporters, humanitarian workers, treasure hunters (people being paid big bucks to do a commercial job) in war zones. Imho the only people who -should- be there are the military and those directly associated with the military. They understand and are trained to deal with the consequences of being captured. They go into their job knowing and maybe expecting the worst. On the other hand the folks I formerly referred to blithely go into the dangerous area expecting the best. Their personal beliefs are strong enough to override common sense and very often they suffer the consequences. Of course at that point they expect their governments to bail their asses out, and become a lever to be used against their own countries. Governments need to adapt to the fact that terrorists do not respect conventions - thus if you become a victim of terrorists as a clear result of your own willful actions - you should forfeit the protection of your nation. Simply put, if you get captured by terrorists in a war zone where you were warned not to go, then you do so all on your own. No begging your nation to withdraw troops. No ransom. Nada. I believe the Russians did this in Afghanistan - some troops were taken hostage... they just bombed the holy shit out of the whole area killing everyone and then some. No more hostages taken after that. I'm tired of seeing hostage videos, gruesome executions. The money spent on saving people, the public PR of the terrorists who simply grabbed literally low-hanging fruit, is bullshit and easily prevented. Policy: Any citizen choosing to enter a war zone on their own forfeits the protection of their country. Plain and simple. You want to take the risk - feel free it's all on your own. I'm sure most people who are driven to go will still go, but those few on the edge will stay home and become one less risk.