24 November 2019

Link round-up for 24 November 2019

Various interesting stuff I ran across on the net over the last week.

o o o o o

Animals suck, apparently, and so do insurance salesmen.

Sometimes a cat is in exactly the right place.

I've heard of trolling people, but..... (found via Mendip).

"These aren't the druids you're looking for."

See the aliens (found via Mock Paper Scissors).

Hysterical Raisins looks at the impeachment circus as TV drama.

"Have some quick jokes," said Tom swiftly.

Enter the corn maze.

Three rodents, two blades of grass.

It's a world of gadgetry obsession.

Well, at least he wanted the job.

Trump has a way to punish Republicans who are disloyal to him.

Florida man, meet Florida dog.

Lucille Ball made Star Trek happen.

Halloween is over, but we still have Creepmas.

This Renaissance Faire was a festival of cosplay.

View the election through a crystal ball.  Also, animals.

Wolfnoot was yesterday, but no one will mind if you observe it today.

Blogging will thrive as long as bloggers keep going.  "Social media" are no substitute.

We are moving, the sky is not.

When ads get intrusive enough, they backfire.

This is not what "shatterproof" means.

This software claims it disables the spyware elements of Windows 10.  I'd be interested in what the more computer-savvy readers think of it.

Do atheists "hate God"?

Beware of juice-jacking.

If you live here, you're closer to Texas than Texas is.

Flat-Earthism is a symptom of a broader problem.

If you don't decide, others will decide for you.

It's not just child molesting -- the Catholic hierarchy is also deeply financially corrupt.

An atheist blogger's Twitter account has been locked for challenging the mandatory lies of the day.

Screw this -- don't let Nazi assholes make us re-name things.

Religio-wingnuts rage against Chick-fil-A's retreat from anti-gay bigotry.  NRO calls it shameful -- I thought they supported capitalists' freedom to run their businesses however they choose?

Cities and states take up the fight for net neutrality.

Despite campaign promises, Trump has repeatedly acted to empower anti-gay religious bigotry.

There is a vast sea of dangerous nonsense out there.

Joel Ramírez Palma tried to sound the alarm about a building which later collapsed.  Now he's facing deportation.

A Chicago school district grants boys access to girls' locker roomsThis is madness.

Poor people have needs beyond bare survival.

"No quid pro quo" could become Trump's epitaph.

Here's how recent history looks from the enemy's viewpoint.

When right-wingers denounce "attacks on religious liberty", they mean things like this New York state law protecting employees from being fired for having abortions.

These people exist.

No, religionists, we are not going to shut up.

Darwinfish 2 reviews and debunks the various wingnut defenses of Trump.

Stephen Miller's hypocrisy on immigration is exposed -- by his uncle (found via Hysterical Raisins).

The right wing is becoming divided over just how explicitly racist it should be.

Smartphones could be used to create a "free internet" to circumvent censorship in countries like Iran and China (I can see this being needed in the US and Europe soon as well, if our own pearl-clutching control freaks get their way).

New technology increases the potential of solar power.

There may be a fifth basic force of nature, though it will take a lot more evidence to establish something of that magnitude.

What kind of person rides to the defense of Britain's suddenly-toxic Prince Andrew?

The UK Labour party is getting as idiotically nasty as our Republicans.

Three Dutch teenagers used sexuality to fight the Nazis (found via Mendip).

Australians don't make a public spectacle of religion like Americans do.

Watch Russian troops take possession of a US-built military base in Syria abandoned by Trump.

The world's biggest secondhand book market confronts the arrival of a giant mall (found via Mendip).

India's top diplomat discusses his country's growing role in the world, including in the fight against global warming.  (If you get a greyed-out screen and a box nagging you about your ad blocker, click on "weiter mit Adblocker".)

Texas takes another little step toward purpleness.

One impeachment inquiry, two narratives.

I don't understand why Tulsi Gabbard is considered a Democrat.

Once Trump is out of office, we'll need to limit the power of possible future Trumps.

It takes abject ignorance to believe that the two parties are at all alike.

The current hearings are turning public sentiment slightly more against impeachment, notably among independents.

More links here.

[1,039 days down, 423 to go until the inauguration of a real President.]


Blogger nothoughtsnoprayersnonothing said...

I really did open up every link but a couple .... because I knew I had read them. I always like reading the impeachment stuff, but if they aren't dated 'today', the stuff is most likely outdated. Things are moving!! But probably won't get past the senate.
I like the jokes of course. I have my favorite religion bashing sites so don't need any more of those, but I did bookmark a few other sites. Thanks!

Oh, your headline Texas picture caught my attention! Close to home! Doing my part to purple it up a bit. Of course my surrounding neighbors have got a whole box of red color crayons. :(

24 November, 2019 07:05  
Anonymous Avram said...

News from the British Conservative Party, just in the past week.

One candidate, Amjad Bashir, said (note - this is his anti-Semitic quote),

"Young men are going over from England where I come from - people of the Jewish faith who my grandchildren have grown up with as decent young men.

"But have come back as extremists - as people that are brainwashed. They will not listen to reason."

Meanwhile, Ryan Houghton, the Conservative candidate on the ballot in Aberdeen North, is a Holocaust Denier.

As Labour peer Alf Dubs said,

“As someone who survived the Holocaust, I feel sickened that there will be a Conservative party candidate on the ballot paper on December 12 who claimed events in the Holocaust were fabricated.

“The Conservatives must face up to their problem with anti-Semitism. Instead of using the issue to score political points, they should challenge it in their own ranks.”

So is the British Conservative party idiotically nasty, too?

24 November, 2019 07:29  
Blogger Debra She Who Seeks said...

"These aren't the druids you're looking for" -- ha ha, good word play! And thanks for the shout outs, as usual!

I loved the photos of the Ren Faire -- how I'd love to attend that some day!

I didn't know "Ultima Thule" had a neo-Nazi connection. Bastards! They ruin everything they touch.

24 November, 2019 07:31  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

No Thoughts: Glad to have helped keep you busy. I've been to Texas, but that was almost 18 years ago. I'm glad they acknowledged the gay cowboys and the Riverwalk.

Debra: Thanks for the posts! The work that people at those events put into their costumes is remarkable.

I'm not going to let the Nazis get everything they lay claim to. Hitler was a vegetarian, but we don't let anyone claim vegetarianism is a Nazi concept.

24 November, 2019 10:33  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Avram: Even the sanest political party has some bad individuals -- look at Ilhan Omar, whose dog whistles can stand comparison to any of Trump's. The important thing is that the party leadership reins them in or, in extreme cases, repudiates them. At least the Conservatives "suspended" Houghton. Most Democrats' attitude about Omar seems to be flat-out denial of the reality of the situation, so the British Conservatives are actually doing better than we are.

With the Labour party, by contrast, anti-Semitism has long been a systemic problem that goes right to the top of the leadership.

24 November, 2019 10:38  
Blogger Mike said...

I liked the 'Politics That Work' site. I love charts and graphs. And maps too.

24 November, 2019 12:38  
Anonymous AZGuy said...

Hoping you got word on the effectiveness of the Windows 10 “helper”.

Have you considered an Apple iMac ?

24 November, 2019 20:30  
Anonymous nonnie9999 said...

Hi Infidel!

Late to the party again, but I'll click 'til I drop.

The cat pics were hilarious. My camera is never ready at the right time, so I never get funny shots of my dog. Maybe I need a faster iPad and/or phone or a slower dog.

The trolls are amazing.

You can't beat Stonehenge humor. It rocks!

It's been quite a while since I've seen Tom Swifties, and that was an enjoyable collection, but I am still mulling over Dodge Chargeable. I'm missing something.

Excellent cartoons!

I was just talking to my sister today about missing New Yawk bagels and pizza.

I love Floriduhhh Dog. He drives better than 99% of the population down here.

Of course Lucy made Star Trek and other shows possible and turned Desilu around and made it profitable. Leave it to a woman!

My son and his friends do Princemas every year. Purple tree and all Prince ornaments. It's pretty funny.

Damn! Is it Wolfenoot already? I thought I had marked it on my calendar.

It's that time again when words start to blur and my eyelids start closing. Back again tomorrow. In the meantime, thanks for the links over to the Raisin. Blog on, bloggers!

P.S. The map at the top is too funny, and the other map showing how much closer to Texas than Texas is was eye-opening.

24 November, 2019 23:54  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good day! This is my 1st comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out
and tell you I truly enjoy reading your posts. Can you suggest any other blogs/websites/forums that cover the
same subjects? Thanks!

25 November, 2019 00:52  
Anonymous AZ Guy said...


The Dodge Charger is made and sold today, an electric Dodge.... the Chargable !

25 November, 2019 01:58  
Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

(PT.1) The voting records of parties was interesting, indeed. I think that folks when saying that the parties are alike, is only referring to (at least with me), not so much the party ... but how the dominace of big money has tainted both parties. I feel the excessive money in our politics is devasting to democracy. I been also keeping up with Justice Ginsberg ... only because I would hate to lose her on the bench ... our Supreme Court has been getting too far out of balance.

Hysterical Raisins on Impeachment Hearings. Absolutely incredible as far as the media on this. Everything these dayz is sort of looking like a game show of sort, very entertaining if one's into that, I guess. Lots of money spent too. I've caught some bits and pieces of it, but really can't keep up with it all. I was taking a friend to work yesterday, Oriliana (yes, she's Greek {:-) ... and she is really into this stuff, I mean, she hates Trump big time. But she was telling me all how optimistic she's been over this impeachment, and asked what I think or whatever. I told her, I'm not too optimistic on what will happen to Trump, yet, I see foul play over so many things that Trump has done, in a sane country, not controlled by money only, this guy would have been criminally indicted by law, and many other politicians, at that. But I told her, that I'm more concerned that, if it passes the House, I don't see it going anywhere with the Senate, unless so many Republican Senator's go with it. I really don't know, I haven't followed it in depth. I also told her that I equally don't like Pence, even though he may be a little bit more honest/ straight than Trump (only a little), I would not want to give him the power of Presidency, no way in Hell. I actually think Pence is a hardcore fundamoralist, jst staying silent and hoping for his break. Oriliana thinks Pence is a crook too, I don't, at least nothing like Trump, he don't have that same hustle savvy as Trump either.

The Chick- fil- A thing I had no idea about, as far as them changing their priorities/ thinking or whatever ... I just see it as a business- public relations move, only. As far as fundi's getting the red- ass over it ... believe me, I been around fundis and rednecks for decades, they're alwayz going to get the red- ass ... bitch, moan, bellyache, pick fights, etc (I've actually got in fist fights with them years back ... I mean, when you pick with me and hit me first, you could bet I'm going for your jaw next) ... you have to have a redneck attitude with those types and hit back, or they'll bully you, believe me. That is why I'm a big advocate of Antifa arming themselves ... that's how you deal with mother f*ckers like that, trust me. If you are not from Texas, don't get fundi rednecks confused with cowboys/ westerners ... there's a big difference.

25 November, 2019 09:15  
Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

(PT.2) As far as the Church Militant piece ... absolutely, the Catholic Church is like any other corrupt money making giant. I also pointed this out in postings on my blog concerning the Dioceses, and how they are going to be making changes, because their legal crews are going to be making alot of moves, seeing they are going to have to be shelling out an arm and a leg. This is also why they are making this "accountability" policies nonsense. What folks are missing in that, though ... it IS NOT to hold their clergy accountable, as much as it's to protect the hundreds of clergy that have intentionally, knowingly, and willingly, covered up and withheld felony evidence, which is criminal, even if they didn't articipate in the rapes, they know they're fixin to get hit. Same as Trump's criminal justice/ incarceration reform nonsense, with his rap artists supporters or whatever, for show. This is ALL a front, he's doing it to protect all the white collar thugs, that have increasingly been getting investigated and indicted ... too long story though, how that worx.

She Who Seeks on blogging ... interesting reading the comments on that, as far as how folks feel about blogging. I like it, although, I can certainly see it as an effort, and getting burned out, etc. Blogs are a treat in their own way, because they all seem to have really different personalities, and gives a more in depth view, and personality of the writer. I guess these dayz, alot of folks, at least most I personally know (here in Texas), don't like to read lengthy pieces (such as my comments or long posting on my blog), they like the quick few hundred character stuff, Tweets, etc ... which is cool too, whatever floats your boat. Myself, not being an experienced writer, it's is a handicap for me, I find it too difficult to get my point across with few words ... hard for me to make stuff short, yet have substance, that takes skill, I guess. Blogging is sort of nostalgic too, even though it's only been a couple decades ... I've seen old blog pieces from years ago, which was interesting on how they thought then, and the culture and thinking of now ... just interesting to me, as well as some of the uniqueness layouts and designs of various blogs ... some really good stuff our there.

Flat Earth folks ... was talking to a guy earlier this year, geeezz ... he asked me to also prove to him that the Earth was round. I basically gave up, I really didn't have time to get into all of it, and told him as well, that I had no interest in trying to convince him either way. It's just way too time consuming, whatever your into though, that's cool too ... I just don't have the time.

Politico on Stephen Miller and the hypocrisy of immigration policies and so forth ... absolutely. I have wrote about the insanity of this too ... it is especially big time here in Dallas, I seen it big in LA and Houston too. They actually set up areas all over the DFW Metroplex, and tell cops not to interfere, and for officiuals to turn their heads, that are like meat markets, where illegal immigrants stand in parking lots usually outside a business where they can buy junk food, or whatever, check cashing, etc. They wait from early in the morning (simlar to how prostitutes stand on the corner to get picked up to sell their services), like 5am, standing and waiting to get picked up by home and business owners to do miscellaneous chores on their properties for cheap wages off the books. And like prostitutes, they are treated with disrespect, used, and then face arrest and incarceration, yet, there is an overwhelming demand for both.

25 November, 2019 09:54  
Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

(PT.3) Oh ya, the Texas map and link. I had no idea about the milage thing, interesting. I have covered the entire state of Texas, over many years. I'm a guy that loves driving, I even drove cross country and top to bottom. I have also covered most of California (down to about 50 miles south of LA), except the San Diego area, I have covered Florida entirely and most of New York, except southern central New York state.

25 November, 2019 10:02  
Anonymous nonnie9999 said...

Thanks, AZ Guy. My son had a Dodge Charger, so I thought that might be it. I guess I had to think about it too long, so it wasn't funny to me. Or maybe I don't get car humor. Then again, if you saw my car, most people would think it's pretty funny.

25 November, 2019 11:10  
Blogger Lady M said...

Tee hee - laughing about that Texas map. Spent a lot of years living there.

25 November, 2019 15:03  
Blogger dellgirl said...

The giant wooden trolls are interesting, though not quite what I was expecting when I clicked on the link. I entered the corn maze…the porcupine and the bubble bath gave me a good laugh. This link list is very diverse and so interesting, thank you for sharing.

Wishing you all the best!

25 November, 2019 16:42  
Blogger jenny_o said...

I'd previously read the piece about the possibility of a fifth force of nature - fascinating stuff. I'd also seen the piece on Stephen Miller quite awhile ago; I wish more had been made of it in the intervening months. It seems the height of hypocrisy for him to be promoting his extreme views on immigration, given his background. But then it seems pretty hypocritical for Trump to be going along with him, given HIS background.

25 November, 2019 19:23  
Anonymous Holt the Dolt said...

Infidel, in your comments policy, you say, that comments such as "homosexuality is abnormal", as well as "bigotry and hatred toward gays, Jews, women, racial or ethnic groups, sex workers, atheists, etc." are prohibited.

I've also seen your posts regarding Gender-Critical Feminists and transgender people. I have two questions.

(1) The Implausible Girl has collected a lot of old newspaper articles and letters which are homophobic, and argues that GCFs and transphobes simply recycled them. Some of them state that, say, letting lesbians use girls' locker rooms is wrong. How does this differ from saying letting trans girls use girls' locker rooms is wrong? If you succeed in driving trans people out of locker rooms, wouldn't homophobes just follow up that success by using the same arguments to drive gays and lesbians out, too?

(2) Several non-gender-conforming girls and women (and I'm using your definition here) have been harassed for using women's restrooms and locker rooms because they didn't "look like women." I'm having trouble imagining how to keep trans girls out without keeping "masculine-looking" girls out as well. Looking at genitals would work, but that would be wrong in so many other ways that I can't list them all. Do you have a solution to this problem?

PS - I liked the "aliens."

25 November, 2019 20:32  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Mike: It certainly makes the point clear.

AZGuy: Haven't heard anything, which is unfortunate, because if the spyware can be disabled, the whole problem essentially goes away.

I don't think I would ever buy anything from Apple. Not after what I've heard about their systems being non-repairable by anybody but them, at absurd cost. And I really don't want to have to switch to a different operating system if I can avoid it -- too many issues of potential non-compatibility with my existing stuff.

Nonnie: Animals do have a way of being funny. Of course they don't realize that.

"A slower dog" -- hah!

I'd never heard of Princemas. I wonder how many parody versions of Christmas there are.

Texas really is huge. And a much more diverse place than some people realize if they haven't been there.

Anon: Thanks! Every blog is different, but you could try the ones in my sidebar.

26 November, 2019 03:02  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Ranch: But it's also false to imply that the "tainting" by big money is similar in the two parties. The Democrats have often supported policies that benefit ordinary people, even at the expense of the financial parasite class. Republican economic policy consists entirely of schemes to help the already-wealthy loot the whole society.

Remember that it's not primarily money that's shielding Trump. The Republican base of support is religious fundamentalism (the super-rich alone are too few in number to win elections). Fundamentalist voters are the reason why there are enough Republican senators to protect Trump, and why they're sticking with him.

Chick-fil-A is trying to expand into more cosmopolitan markets, including Europe. The anti-gay stuff is the kiss of death in such places.

The diversity among blogs is what makes them interesting. Every one is different, reflecting the personality of its author.

There's usually not much point in arguing with flat-Earthers. Anyone who believes that has to have rejected so many basic facts about reality that there's nothing left to argue on the basis of. The root of the belief is usually religious (though not always), so it's similar to dealing with creationists.

The similarity between abuses of illegal aliens and of prostitutes isn't surprising. An illegal industry is an unregulated industry. People can't go to the police when they're victimized, because they themselves were technically breaking the law. It's much better to bring these activities within the scope of the law, so people have some protection.

Lady M: Then I imagine at least some of it rang a bell.....

Dellgirl: Thanks! The trolls must be a huge amount of work to build. He's a dedicated prankster.

Jenny_o: It's likely there's still a lot more to discover about physics. There might be many other basic forces, just operating in ways that are hard for us to detect.

26 November, 2019 03:17  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Holt: Any position of objecting to something will have some similarities to any other position of objecting to something. The question is whether the objections have any merit, which depends on the character of what's being objected to. The difference between gay liberation and transgender ideology is that in the latter case there are actual victims -- women and girls in athletics who have to compete with biological males, those who feel uncomfortable or threatened when biological males are allowed into women's bathrooms or locker rooms, women in prison who are victimized when a rapist who claims to be trans gets sentenced to a women's prison (yes, that happens). Equal rights for gay people don't endanger the rights or safety of anyone else in comparable ways. I have no objection to trans rights in other areas, like protection from employment discrimination, where there is no issue of threats to the rights of others. That's the critical distinction.

Do you have a solution to this problem?

Go back to the way it always was -- everybody uses facilities for the gender they actually, biologically belong to. Yes, there are a few people who just naturally look androgynous enough that they could be mistaken for the opposite gender (in such cases people tend to identify gender by picking up cues from clothing styles and suchlike), but it didn't cause the kinds of problems we're seeing now, because a woman who merely looks a bit masculine isn't read as a potential threat entering a women's locker room or whatever, the way a biological man is.

Frankly I see this whole issue as a side effect of the loopy mystical idea that our beliefs about reality shape what reality is. They don't. I can "self-identify" as a hammer-headed shark, but that doesn't mean I am one.

I really think I have more than adequately covered these questions.

26 November, 2019 03:39  
Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

I do realize that most Democrats that have voted in favour of everything from labour rights to rights for women/ gayz ... and so many other things, Infidel. I don't mean to sound unfair as labeling them the same as far as interests, there are certain money interests, that they are more or less forced to be on the same page with republicans on, they call it bipartisanship, and it's not the majoirity of Democrats, but just enough, usually Dems from stronger red states, that make it happen. I mean, look at several Democrats that I have highlighted on my blog for really great stuff that they done. But I also see how the big money is putting more and more pressure on them, for some, they can't even run for office without being smothered with 10s of thousands of dollars and big money paid ads in support from them, the big corporate and money interests are trying to "force" them to move further and further to the right, even certain millionaire donors opening threatened them in MSM, at that. They threatened Hillary on her choices of who to pick as running mate just back in 2016 ... this year they threatened Elizabeth Warren. Look what they done to President Obama after the financial crisis of 08, and his "public option" plan/ proposal, which I just posted on. These enitites, including your biggest like Amazon/ Bezos, are trying to take as much control of our government as possible ... NO ONE spends millions, and even up to a billion, without having a reason, and looking at it as "an investment". For me, I am very big on making a Constitutional Amendment to stop or cripple the SCOTUS "Citizens United" ruling, I am also for public funded elections, auto voting registration, and a list of other things ... and I don't hate corporations, but I feel we can better balance things, than what we currently got ourselves into. I would bet money, that IF we didn't have Citizens United, and the current "unreformed" methods of campaign funding ... you would see a Democrat Party that can really do what they want, as far as for the majority of people. It's not only America that they pull these things, I noticed it in various parts of the globe.

26 November, 2019 07:50  
Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

Ya, that's mainly all that Trump has going for him, is that larger than life evangelical type, alot of blue collar mid- westerners too ... who will soon find out, if they hadn't, that he will not be able to get them much, if any, of what he promised, and miss the mark by a long shot, at that. The only reason some big money may "kind of" like him, is only because he gave that huge trillion plus tax break (as if they don't have enough breaks). I feel the way to help the blue collar class of America, is to make a big investemnt into things for the future and manufacturing, such as green energy/ renewable, we have the capital, the infrastructure/ logistics/ transportation, moderate wages, and a ready to go workforce, and it would be globally huge, considering our population. I do think Trump's base is getting strong, and will be a challenge now, that I didn't feel a year or more ago. They are looking at him as a victim, because of impeachment, and whatever else ... what they don't see, is that Trump made his own bed, he didn't have to be the way he is.

26 November, 2019 08:03  
Blogger Adam said...

Wasn't long ago that it was all Mexico

26 November, 2019 09:26  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Ranch: Well, yes, they use the power they have to get as much influence as possible. My point is that the main driving force in Republican politics is religion, not money. And the fundies have gotten plenty of what they really wanted -- rollback of some laws protecting gays, a lot of wingnut judges who are undermining separation of church and state and possibly eventually abortion rights, that sort of thing. They're so fervent in supporting Trump because he's delivered a lot of what they really want -- most of which has nothing to do with economics or money.

Adam: Well, a century and a half. It's been a while.

26 November, 2019 15:17  
Blogger Sixpence Notthewiser said...

It takes me awhile to go through these.
As if it were difficult to go down rabbit holes online...
thanks for the links!


26 November, 2019 19:57  
Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

Yes, it's been so confusing to me, and very odd, as far as how Republicans focus so much on nonsensical stuff and make issues out of it, such as simple things like a woman choosing what to do with her own body, or maybe some gay folks living their lives the way they want. It is so nonsensical, because it doesn't do anyone a bloody damn bit of good, doesn't even make any damn money, at that. It's so difficult to comprehend that some folks are so consumed with some ancient religious culture or whatever, (besides, simple being art/ literature) that hasn't a thing to do with 2019 America ... and call it "American" on top of it. I voted conservative for many of my younger years, and never cared about what gays or women are doing, who's sleeping with who, who's marrying who or related, in fact, to me, it has nothing to do with being "conservative". Just my view.

27 November, 2019 07:02  
Blogger Martha said...

I had a good laugh with the cats and perfect timing! Hilarious.

And I have friends who are first and second generation Canadians criticizing immigrants. It just boggles the mind.

28 November, 2019 07:02  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Note: I'm not going to post any further troll comments about the transgender-ideology issue. I've already spent more than enough time rehashing the same arguments with people who just keep regurgitating their own talking point instead of addressing the issues raised. This is a blog, not a discussion forum. There are plenty of places on the net where endless bickering is welcome. This isn't one of them.

01 December, 2019 00:11  

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