"The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing."


Glenn Reynolds:

Barack Obama:
"Impossible to transcend."

Albert A. Gore, Jr.:
"An incontinent brute."

Rev. Jeremiah Wright:
"God damn the Gentleman Farmer."

Friends of GF's Sons:
"Is that really your dad?"

Kickball Girl:
"Keeping 'em alive until 7:45."

Hired Hand:
"I think . . . we forgot the pheasant."

I'm an
Alcoholic Yeti
in the
TTLB Ecosystem

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Gentleman Farmer Has Never Left The Country

Perhaps THIS will get him to reconsider.
THERE is something perversely satisfying about soaking in a tub of beer. First there is the yeasty aroma of malt and hops, followed by a warm and sticky sensation as the brown liquid envelopes your body. You think to yourself: this must be every lad's dream. Whatever comes next will surely have to involve a supermodel, an Aston Martin and a fat cigar.

John Kenneth Galbraith (1908-2006)

Conventional wisdom dictates that the Times would write him a five-page obit.

Friday, April 28, 2006

This is NOT About Abortion

Nor is it about euthanasia. It is not about the "right to die." It's about a completely different matter, without the slightest connection to those complex and difficult issues.

This involves a wholly separate set of questions, though they are similarly fraught with nuance.

What do you know about Andrea Clarke? Nothing, right?

You knew all about Terry Schiavo, and you knew her story was just one more example of the insane and dangerous theocratic plans of the religious right. You felt the pain of her anguished husband, as he strove to do the right thing.

But you've never heard of Andrea Clarke.
The bioethics committee at St. Luke's Hospital in Houston, Texas has decreed that Andrea Clarke should die. Indeed, after a closed-door hearing, it ordered all further medical efforts to sustain her life while at St. Luke's to cease. As a consequence, Clarke's life support, required because of a heart condition and bleeding on the brain, is to be removed unilaterally even though she is not unconscious and her family wants treatment to continue.

Andrea Clarke may become an early victim of one of the biggest agendas in bioethics: Futile-care theory, a.k.a., medical futility. The idea behind futile-care theory goes something like this: In order to honor personal autonomy, if a patient refuses life-sustaining treatment, that wish is sacrosanct. But if a patient signed an advance medical directive instructing care to continue — indeed, even if the patient can communicate that he or she wants life-sustaining treatment — it can be withheld anyway if the doctors and/or the ethics committee believes that the quality of the patient's life renders it not worth living.

Contrary to how it sounds, medical futility is not a matter of refusing treatment that will not provide the medical benefit the patient seeks. Refusals of requests for such "physiologically futile care" would be proper and professional. For example, if a patient demanded that a doctor provide chemotherapy for an ulcer, the doctor should refuse, since chemo will do nothing to treat the ulcer.

But Clarke's case involves value judgments rather than medical determinations. In such "qualitative futility" cases, treatment is stopped in spite of a patient's or family's objections — the intervention is necessary not because the treatment doesn't work, but because it does. In essence then, it is the patient's life that is deemed futile and, hence, not worthy of being preserved.
Comments? Questions?

Tsk, tsk. Your reaction is so Twentieth Century. How unsophisticated of you. How ignorant you must be.

Read more HERE. Want to learn more? Don't bother with newspapers or magazines, but a Google search of your own might help.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

A Distorted Reality Is Now A Necessity To Be Free

Regular readers will note that I rarely, if ever, post on political matters, leaving that for the senior (cough) author on Glib & Superficial. However, a story today has really, really, REALLY gotten my goat. If I hadn't read it in the newspaper, I almost certainly would have believed it came from a Christopher Buckley novel.

The NYT reports:
WASHINGTON, April 27 — Republican senators offered a relief package today for a public dismayed by rising gasoline prices. Trying to get out front on an issue that seems certain to be a factor in this fall's elections, the senators proposed a $100 "gas-tax holiday" in the form of a rebate check for every family.
You have got to be kidding. In the midst of the Bush emergency "must pass" budget supplement worth a cool $92 bn, already pumped up with $14 bn in pork, and a year in which we've doled out another $23 bn in farm subsidies (despite our aversion to all things French), we're going to hand out $100 to every American family "to pay for gas."


Of course, Americans want cheaper gas (even those of us without cars). But does the Senate really believe that Americans will appreciate this gesture instead of properly viewing it as a horribly myopic piece of energy policy and a hackneyed attempt at saving votes in 6 months?

Again, try to determine whether this is actual news, or an excerpt from a Buckley satire:
"It will show people that Washington gets it," said Senator Jim Talent of Missouri, "and that it's time to provide some relief to Americans, to Missourians who are trying to support their families and are paying these very high gasoline prices."
Emphasis added. Now excuse me while I go jump out a window.

*Image courtesy of defenselink.mil

Not the New York Times

From today's Washington Post:
"Since George Bush and Dick Cheney took over as president and vice president, gas prices have doubled!" charged Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), standing at an Exxon station on Capitol Hill where regular unleaded hit $3.10. "They are too cozy with the oil industry."

She then hopped in a waiting Chrysler LHS (18 mpg) -- even though her Senate office was only a block away.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

With just a little foresight . . . .

Via the Oldtimer.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

That's One Way To Do It

When the Hired Hand was but a wee lad, Gentleman Farmer and sons #1, 2, and 3 found themselves standing in the backyard, locked out of the family house. After much hand-wringing and profanity, GF found a brick and, with painstaking care, hurled it through our basement window and unlocked the door from the inside.

That's not what this guy did:
The 23-year-old man came home early Saturday morning and, finding himself locked out and without his keys, tried to enter the single-story house through its chimney.

"He told us he took off his clothes because as he was going down the chimney the clothes would rub up against it and slow him down," Branson said. "If it was skin on cement he felt he would go down easier."

[His] effort ended disastrously when a cable-television wire he used to lower himself snapped. He fell and was wedged in a section of the chimney tapering into the home's fireplace.
Well, that's one way to do it.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Happy Birthday Hubble

The Hubble Space Telescope is 16 years old today, and in honor of the occasion the composite photograph above, of the galaxy Messier 82, has been released. More information HERE.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

It Makes You Wonder

Imagine that this is what you think:
As Alexis de Tocqueville once said: "America is great because she is good. If America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great."

In January 2001, with the inauguration of George W. Bush as president, America set on a path to cease being good; America became a revolutionary nation, a radical republic. If our country continues on this path, it will cease to be great - as happened to all great powers before it, without exception.

From the Kyoto accords to the International Criminal Court, from torture and cruel and unusual treatment of prisoners to rendition of innocent civilians, from illegal domestic surveillance to lies about leaking, from energy ineptitude to denial of global warming, from cherry-picking intelligence to appointing a martinet and a tyrant to run the Defense Department, the Bush administration, in the name of fighting terrorism, has put America on the radical path to ruin.
You are entitled to your opinion, of course, however feverish the terms in which you determine to express it. But what might such opinions lead you to do with your life?

These are the opinions of the moonbat BushHitler crowd, the unhinged who suffer from Bush Derangement Syndrome.

Except they're not. Retired Army Col. Lawrence Wilkerson was Chief of Staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell between 2002 and 2005. His opinion appears in the Baltimore Sun.

It is fair to ask whether it is honorable -- or even honest -- to hold such views and yet to pretend to work to implement them as the policy of the elected Government of the United States. Only a truly astonishing level of hypocritical dishonesty, or a disabling mental condition, could permit such a thing. Did Secretary Powell, to all appearances himself an honest and honorable man, know that the most senior member of his staff believed that Mr. Powell's superior, the Constitutional official at whose pleasure he served, was responsible for putting America on the radical path to ruin?

What -- exactly -- is going on here?

[UPDATE] And, by the way, the quotation from de Tocqueville is phony (but common). See HERE.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Facile et Superficiel

For our Francophone fans, ICI.

Looking for Mr. Darcy

She says:
I don't like weddings. I'm famous for saying, every time the violin group I'm in gears up for playing five hours of Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring at another wedding, that the only difference between a wedding and a funeral is that at a funeral, at least one person is at peace.

In fact, the only thing I really like about weddings is the cake. And there's no reason to get married just for good cake. All you need is some flour and cooking oil and a few other things. I can make my own good cake, and frosting, without all the hassle and uncomfortable shoes.
She says:
But then one surreptitious day, an email found its way to my inbox advertising the eHarmony website offering a free personality profile. I'm gung ho for personality profiles, because I'm always curious to know if I'm insane.
She says:
One guy listed, in his "must haves" and descriptions of who he was looking for, a woman who fit the following bill: not overweight at all, always stylish, agree with traditional gender roles, interested in arts, music, drama, literature. Good with house and family concerns. She must be neat, orderly, feminine, hygienic...the list went on and on. He wanted a Barbie doll.

I closed that match really fast, but found myself thinking that I'd like to meet such a woman myself. It sounds like she'd make a great maid and would be handy to have around to rub my feet after a day of chainsawing fallen trees.
She says:
Don't get me wrong. I'm not down on marriage, and think it's a great institution, kind of like the Smithsonian. It's there if you're interested in going. But you don't have to go if you don't want to. Before you freak out, no, I'm not busy "visiting other museums". I'm just staying "museum" free.
Read the whole thing, HERE.

My Grim Future

I HAD TO run a few errands downtown, but I hesitated to go.

What if I ran into bloggers?

Ever since the total, irretrievable collapse of the Internet in a chaos of viruses, worms, spam, terrorism and busts by the FBI anti-porn squad, that archaic species of human had become a bigger street menace than mimes, Jehovah's Witnesses, or panhandlers ever were.

Still, I had some banking business that had to be conducted in person, and I couldn't put it off much longer. And I hated feeling like a prisoner in my own house, living in fear of the depradations of this class of homeless attention-grabbers.

From "Brother, Can You Spare a Hyperlink?"

Hat tip to Mike Godwin (yes, that Mike Godwin).

Friday, April 21, 2006

Travel Alert

If you’re planning to travel anytime soon to the far West (specifically Arizona, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, California, Alaska or Hawaii), you should be on notice that you’ll have to be very careful about what you say. The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (which has jurisdiction over those states), has declared that it is unconstitutional for you to express the opinion that homosexuality is morally wrong.

No, the court didn’t rule that it was impermissible for you to scream at or otherwise intimidate someone because he was a homosexual. No, they didn’t rule that you were barred from burning down the home of a homosexual.

Instead, the court ruled that it was Constitutionally impermissible for a student to wear to school a shirt that said, “"Be Ashamed, Our School Embraced What God Has Condemned," and on the back, it said, "Homosexuality is Shameful." The unconstitutional student apparently wore the shirt in response to an event sponsored by his school's “Gay-Straight Alliance.”

The Circuit Court opinion does not rely on the possibility that such speech might disrupt the educational activities of the school, but instead simply insists that some opinions are sufficiently offensive that they cannot be expressed. And presumably judges will decide what is and what isn’t a permissible opinion.

The mind rebels. Let us know which of these t-shirt slogans are permissible in the Ninth Circuit: "Black is Beautiful," "White Power," "White Men Can't Jump," "Girls Rule, Boys Drool," "I Have Two Mommies." How about a shirt sporting one of those Danish cartoons of Mohamed? Or one which instead says "Death to America?"

You see, it appears that it is not the subject matter of the opinion, but the opinion itself that is offensive and impermissible. That is, one side is right, while the other side is not only wrong, but not allowed to talk anymore.

Read it for yourself: Harper v. Poway Unified School District.

The Honorable Alex Kozinski dissented, HERE.

Via The Volokh Conspiracy.

Opportunity Knocks

It is reported from London:
Britain's best-selling newspaper apologises to Desperate Housewives star Teri Hatcher for a story that claimed she had sex with men in a van outside her home.

The Sun tabloid acknowledged the article, which it ran last August, was "totally incorrect" and apologised to Hatcher "for the embarrassment caused."

In December, Hatcher, 41, accepted undisclosed libel damages from another tabloid, The Daily Sport, which had earlier made the same claims.

The Daily Sport agreed to pay "very substantial damages" and Hatcher's legal costs, print a front-page apology and promised not repeat the allegations.
Story HERE.

But, of course, we must observe that in both instances a great deal of publicity was generated, a great many newspapers were sold, and a great deal of money was made. Very possibly more -- all things considered -- than has been paid in damages.

Thus, G&S feels compelled to disclose that Teri Hatcher romped similarly in the Gentleman Farmer's garage, just behind the roto-tiller, and a bit to the left of the zero-turn mower. Upon leaving, she stole the hood ornament from GF's 1923 Maxwell, a desecration she seemed to find amusing. Really.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

April 20, 2005

Whatever it is that we do at Glib & Superficial, we've now been doing it for exactly one year. There have been more than 13,000 occasions on which otherwise perfectly ordinary people have looked at something here. Go figure.

Things We Didn't Need to Know

Editor and Publisher reports:
In an interview in The New York Times Magazine that will appear this coming Sunday, Madeleine Albright reveals, among other things, that even at 68, she works out three times a week "and I can leg-press up to 400 pounds." This follows a discussion of how she does not expect to re-marry, partly because, as she says, "I'm intimidating, don't you think?"

Smell The Glove

While the reference to This Is Spinal Tap is oblique at best, apparently NTT Communications (aka DoCoMo, don't ask) in Japan has licensed technology to incorporate smell into movies. From Geekologie:
A movie theater in Japan will begin pumping different smells into the audience to correspond with scenes taking place on the screen. . . .

The first movie to use this technology will be "The New World" in which a floral scent will accompany love scenes, peppermint and rosemary for sad scenes, citrus for scenes of joy, and new car smell for the scenes when Colin Farrell and Pocahontas tear up the streets of the new world in a bitchin' Trans Am.
I'm just glad they didn't test this technology out on the foul-smelling Brits of This Is Spinal Tap.

You May Kill Me Now

Because everything that could possibly happen has now taken place.

Please recall that, according to conventional wisdom (i.e., The New York Times and virtually all Democrats) the President of the United States is an idiot because he failed properly to heed international opinion before invading Iraq. To take action without the support of Germany and France, not to mention the United Nations, marked him as a dangerous, unpredictable cowboy.

But now the Democratic Leader of the United States Senate thinks the President of the United States is an idiot because . . . well, you'd best read it yourself:
RENO, Nev. (AP) - The Bush administration is relying too heavily on other countries in the international effort to stop Iran from developing nuclear weapons, according to Sen. Harry Reid.

Reid, D-Nev., said the administration should be taking the lead, but instead is relying on Germany, France and Great Britain to convince Iran to end its uranium enrichment program.
Read it yourself HERE.

These are not the statements of a serious person. I leave it to others to ponder whether these are the statements of a person with a diagnosable mental condition. And it's hard to take the Democratic Party seriously when it selects silly people like Harry Reid to leadership positions.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Happy National High Five Day, everybody.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Great Move!

Stolen from GOP and the City.

Why There'll Always be an England

The Coventry Evening Telegraph reports:
LANDLORD Tim Platt took matters into his own hands when he was barred from his local pub - he stumped up the cash and bought it.

The 52-year-old was banned from his local, the White Lion, in Hampton-in-Arden, where he had been drinking for 30 years, after criticising the new decor.

He didn't like the pub's change from a traditional boozer to a gastropub and was overheard airing his views to other regulars.

The next thing he knew, he was sent a postcard of the pub, saying he was no longer welcome.
God Save Stout!

Getting Religion

Betimes we here at Glib & Superficial comment on religious matters, offering our opinions and directing attention to those of others we find interesting. But it is always most gratifying to be able to share the good news when someone finds God.

Self-described "Queen of Hip Hop Soul" Mary J. Blige tells "Blender Magazine" (as recounted by MSNBC) that she has done so:
“My God is a God who wants me to have things,” the singer tells May’s Blender magazine. “He wants me to bling. He wants me to be the hottest thing on the block. I don’t know what kind of God the rest of y’all are serving, but the God I serve says, ‘Mary, you need to be the hottest thing this year, and I’m gonna make sure you’re doing that’.”
Such explicit communication with the Creator of the Universe has so far eluded your humble and obedient servant. But we can always hope.

When Janis Joplin sang her prayer for a Mercedes Benz, she was kidding.

iTunes News

CUPERTINO, CA—Apple Computer, producer of the successful iPod MP3 player, is now offering consumers limited rights to buy their own home movies from the media store iTunes for $1.99 each.

"Ladies and gentlemen, the future of home-video viewing is now," Apple CEO Steve Jobs said at a media event Tuesday morning. "As soon as you record that precious footage of your daughter's first steps, you'll be able to buy it right back from iTunes and download it directly to your computer and video iPod."

Jobs emphasized that the videos will be presented unedited and in their original form, save for a small Apple logo in the lower right-hand corner of the image to protect the company's copyrighted materials from Internet piracy.

Full story HERE.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

April 18, 1906, 5:12 a.m.

Embarcadero Street,Telegraph Hill in the distance

San Francisco City Hall

Memorial Church, Stanford University

And the Hired Hand (#1 Son) reports:

Monday, April 17, 2006

Tax Day, 1913

Crying "Wolf"

From Cox & Forkum.

More Islamic Political Dialogue

TEL AVIV, April 17 — A Palestinian suicide bomber killed eight people and wounded 59 at a sandwich shop in Tel Aviv today, a medical official said. The Palestinian factions Islamic Jihad and the Al Aksa Martyrs Brigades both claimed responsibility for the attack, news agencies reported.

The attack took place just weeks after the newly installed Palestinian cabinet, led by Hamas, took up its duties in the Palestinian Authority government. A Hamas spokesman, Sami Abu Zuhri called the attack "a natural result of the continued Israeli crimes against our people," adding that Palestinians were "in a state of self-defense and they have every right to use all means to defend themselves," according to Reuters.
More HERE.

I Know I Feel Better

The Sydney Morning Herald reports:
"Cheerleaders have been banned from baring their midriffs, with their governing body fearing it might be encouraging anorexia. Gymnastics Australia has given cheerleader troupes until the end of the year to find new uniforms, saying current revealing costumes make other teenagers feel uncomfortable about their weight."

Entire story revealed HERE.

Ah, but we've been here before, 45 years ago, in Kurt Vonnegut's "Harrison Bergeron:"
THE YEAR WAS 2081, and everybody was finally equal. They weren’t only equal before God and the law. They were equal every which way. Nobody was smarter than anybody else. Nobody was better looking than anybody else. Nobody was stronger or quicker than anybody else. All this equality was due to the 211th, 212th, and 213th Amendments to the Constitution, and to the unceasing vigilance of agents of the United States Handicapper General.


He tried to think a little about the ballerinas. They weren’t really very good – no better than anybody else would have been, anyway. They were burdened with sashweights and bags of birdshot, and their faces were masked, so that no one, seeing a free and graceful gesture or a pretty face, would feel like something the cat drug in. George was toying with the vague notion that maybe dancers shouldn’t be handicapped. But he didn’t get very far with it before another noise in his ear radio scattered his thoughts.

George winced. So did two out of the eight ballerinas.

"He just felt like he was skipping class."

But, alas, THIS STUDENT at the University of Michigan-Dearborn, was doing something else entirely.

They're kidding . . . .

Right? Please tell me THESE GUYS are kidding.

Via NRO. (I do sometimes wonder how those serious people at NRO come across stuff like this.)

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Easter Sunday

And when the sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him.

And very early in the morning the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun. And they said among themselves, Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulchre? And when they looked, they saw that the stone was rolled away: for it was very great. And entering into the sepulchre, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a long white garment; and they were affrighted.

And he saith unto them, Be not affrighted: Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: he is risen; he is not here: behold the place where they laid him.

But go your way, tell his disciples and Peter that he goeth before you into Galilee: there shall ye see him, as he said unto you.

Mark 16:1-7

Friday, April 14, 2006

Good Friday

And they that passed by reviled him, wagging their heads, and saying, "Thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, save thyself. If thou be the Son of God, come down from the cross."

Likewise also the chief priests mocking him, with the scribes and elders, said, "He saved others; himself he cannot save. If he be the King of Israel, let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe him. He trusted in God; let him deliver him now, if he will have him: for he said, I am the Son of God."

The thieves also, which were crucified with him, cast the same in his teeth.

Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour. And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, "Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?" that is to say, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" Some of them that stood there, when they heard that, said, "This man calleth for Elias." And straightway one of them ran, and took a spunge, and filled it with vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink. The rest said, "Let be, let us see whether Elias will come to save him."

Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.

Matthew 27:39-50

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

This Just In From The Unintentionally Hilarious Headline Department

It wasn't THAT bad, Bartolo, was it?

From the Long Beach Press-Telegram.


Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Death to America

The ombudsman for National Public Radio, Jeffrey A. Dvorkin, has filed his quarterly report to the public. It's available online HERE.

Mr. Dvorkin reports that during the first quarter of 2006, NPR received 385 emails complaining that the network is "too left-wing," and 261 emails complaining that the network is "too right-wing." This is featured as a "highlight" of the report, because, "For the first time, more complaints [were] received about NPR’s 'left-wing bias' compared with complaints about NPR’s 'right-wing bias.'"

That is, of those listeners complaining about political bias at NPR, a majority normally find a conservative tilt.

Do we make this stuff up? We do not.

Consider what a listener's own political views must be to think that NPR's reporting is "right-wing."

H/T to NRO.


"... and so, by the power vested in me
by the Supreme Court of Massachussetts."

Stolen from Caption This!

Seems Low to Me

Savage Chickens

Monday, April 10, 2006

Gospel of the Moonbats II

In First Things, Richard John Neuhaus writes:
When these holy days roll around, segments of the media, as reliably as clockwork, roll out the latest alleged debunkings of historically recognizable Christianity. There was, for instance, an item a few days ago about a climatologist who opined that back in the old days Galilee experienced cold snaps, so maybe Jesus didn’t walk on water but was standing on a block of ice. This, it is suggested, will force Christians to reconsider the foundations of their faith. It does raise a new question about why St. Peter stripped before jumping in to join his Lord on the ice.

But the big news this time around is the discovery of a fourth- or possibly fifth-century copy of what may be a second-century “Gospel of Judas.” Christians will be surprised, we are assured by the New York Times, that there are more than four gospels, and I suppose Christians who know little about the origins of Christianity will be surprised. The National Geographic Society disgraced itself by puffing this latest discovery. Elaine Pagels of Princeton, an advisor to NGS who has for years been touting sundry gnostic gospels, wrote an op-ed in the Times saying that the latest discovery will make her Easter ever so much more mysterious.
You'll want to read the whole thing.

Well, I Hadn't Actually Thought About It, But . . .

A female academic type opines: "The prettiest urinals I ever saw were in the Stanford math department."

She reports further on her experiences at Harvard, Princeton and Stanford where, apparently, they just don't have the money to remove those pesky urinals from what are now women's bathrooms.

Read it all, in The Chronicle.


Reuters: "More than 15,000 marchers rally before the start of a protest march for fair immigration laws near downtown San Diego, April 9, 2006."

The Editorial Board here at G&S has not yet set our policy respecting reform of America's immigration laws. Accordingly, until that time, we are neither for, nor are we against, fair immigration laws. Similarly, we do not favor, nor do we disfavor, unfair immigration laws.

Thank you for your attention.

This Is a Test

Before following the link, read the quote that follows, and decide whether we've made it up or not. Got it? OK. Here goes:
Rep. Mark Larson, R-Cortez, attempted to amend the budget so that state money is not spent on circumcisions for children of poor people.

Larson figures that the state could have saved $273,000 next year if the state eliminated the "cosmetic surgery of circumcision" as a covered Medicaid benefit.

Opponents said the measure was unfair to the poor.
And here's your LINK.

Dumpster Diving Goes High-Tech

Want to know where the closest stinky free couch is? What about an abandoned desk in Berkeley?

Adding to the lengthy and growing list of Google Maps mashups is now GarbageScout, a currently-crude site with significant potential.

Check it out. H/T CurbedSF.

I think my favorite is still Craigslist Housing + Google Maps, though.


Sunday, April 09, 2006

Mark 11:1-11

And when they came nigh to Jerusalem, unto Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount of Olives, he sendeth forth two of his disciples,

And saith unto them, Go your way into the village over against you: and as soon as ye be entered into it, ye shall find a colt tied, whereon never man sat; loose him, and bring him.

And if any man say unto you, Why do ye this? say ye that the Lord hath need of him; and straightway he will send him hither.

And they went their way, and found the colt tied by the door without in a place where two ways met; and they loose him.

And certain of them that stood there said unto them, What do ye, loosing the colt?

And they said unto them even as Jesus had commanded: and they let them go.

And they brought the colt to Jesus, and cast their garments on him; and he sat upon him.

And many spread their garments in the way: and others cut down branches off the trees, and strawed them in the way.

And they that went before, and they that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna; Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord:

Blessed be the kingdom of our father David, that cometh in the name of the Lord: Hosanna in the highest.

And Jesus entered into Jerusalem, and into the temple: and when he had looked round about upon all things, and now the eventide was come, he went out unto Bethany with the twelve.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Yes They Do

"Big balls of ice sometimes fall from the sky without any real explanation."

Well. I feel better already. Story HERE.

There He Goes Again

If the oldest still active (pace) political party in the world had not nominated him for President of the United States, we would leave Senator John Kerry alone. Anyone who must simultaneously be both "the other guy from Massachusetts" and "the other guy who married Terry Heinz," has enough problems.

But they did, so we won't.

According to The New York Times:
A Roman Catholic who has struggled at times to talk about his own faith, Mr. Kerry also told the group that he believed "deeply in my faith" and that the Koran, the Torah, the Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles had influenced a social conscience that he exercised in politics.

"I will tell you, nowhere in there, nowhere, not in one page, not in one phrase uttered and reported by the Lord Jesus Christ, can you find anything that suggests that there is a virtue in cutting children from Medicaid and taking money from the poor and giving it to the rich," Mr. Kerry said.
Which prompts Martin Peretz of The New Republic to allow that he'd give Kerry the benefit of the doubt, and suggest that The Lord never mentioned Medicare at all. Peretz goes on:
My God, what bullshit politicians feel obliged to utter! Or maybe the bullshit is already second nature, or even first. But since Kerry raised it, let me ask: What hadith of the Prophet influenced him the most, and why? And here I have a personal interest: Which of the injunctions of Leviticus and who among the Prophets have the most meaning for him? Ordinarily, of course, I wouldn't ask such personal questions of a politician. In the spirit of Jesus, Kerry will certainly forgive me for doing so.

Sounds Good to Me

While I normally don't take political advice from Helen Thomas -- the reality challenged former Associated Press White House correspondent -- she may have come through respecting John McCain's presidential credentials. In a column titled "Want more Bush? Elect McCain," she explains:
With his "hail fellow well met" persona and tendency to jaw with the media and pundits in the back of the campaign bus, he has created the impression in some quarters that he is a "moderate."

Forget it. His voting record speaks for itself.

McCain is working hard to prove his staunch conservative credentials as he woos the far right in his party.

If he wins the presidency, the country can expect a continuation of Bush's aggressive foreign policy and ultra-right domestic programs.
As the chances are great that she's making this up (as she has most of her "work" for many years) it's probably not true. But it's worth a look.

Friday, April 07, 2006

The Gospel of the Moonbats

Your host is no theologian, amateur or otherwise. Nor is he a reliable student of church history, or the history of Christian error. But theology, history and heresy are subjects that have long held his interest, and with respect to which he has done a good deal of reading and thinking.

Fortunately, my inexpert meanderings have benefitted from the guidance of my friend The Vestryman who, while he would deny entitlement to the label “theologian,” nonetheless has a remarkable knowledge of that subject, and of church history as well. My “studies” have long since fallen into a pattern. I will explain to him that I have been reading such-and-such, which led me to this-or-that, and that it seemed to me that one might put these notions together in a certain way. I am full of enthusiasm, because I have indeed fit these pieces together all by myself.

My friend will then patiently explain, for example, “Ah yes. Very clever. An excellent argument. That is Pelagianism. Condemned in the 5th Century. Argued against by St. Augustine, no less. But you see the difficulty with Pelagius is . . . .” There will follow an explanation of the problems and errors to which it leads. [The Vestryman believes that my thinking is somewhat tainted by “semipelagianism,” which he ascribes to my upbringing as a Methodist.]

I was at first frustrated as this sort of exchange repeated itself. But I came to be rather flattered, in that my own untrained and ill-informed thinking kept independently stumbling upon theological questions thought important enough to have caused great controversies, albeit centuries ago.

I say all this by way of introduction to my reaction to the current “Gospel of Judas” that has the secular media all atwitter. And they are indeed sweaty and breathless as only the innocent can be. And innocent of knowledge they most certainly are.

My own interest in this “revelation” and its underlying text unfortunately could not withstand reading of the document itself. My first reaction, given my own experience, was to guess that this sort of writing was probably well-known, and probably well-known quite some time ago. My second reaction was, “I don’t know much, but I know Gnosticism when I see it.” And from Gnosticism, it's but a hop, skip and a jump to Antinomianism, certainly the heretical flavor of the week for our Age.

Today’s Washington Post report is far better than most have been:
The text's existence has been known since it was denounced as heresy by the bishop of Lyon in A.D. 180, but its contents had remained an almost total mystery. Unlike the four gospels of the New Testament, it describes conversations between Jesus and Judas Iscariot during the week before Passover in which Jesus tells Judas "secrets no other person has ever seen."

The other apostles pray to a lesser God, Jesus says, and he reveals to Judas the "mysteries of the kingdom" of the true God. He asks Judas to help him return to the kingdom, but to do so, Judas must help him abandon his mortal flesh: "You will sacrifice the man that clothes me," Jesus tells Judas, and acknowledges that Judas "will be cursed by the other generations."
Gnosticism! And old, well-known Gnosticism at that!

And I see that I am not alone in finding this sort of thing tedious. Mark Shea, at Catholic and Enjoying It!, observes:
In a culture so theologically and historically illiterate as ours--a culture that takes the Da Vinci Code with utmost seriousness--it goes without saying that the selfsame people who are exacting to a degree when it comes to the canonical gospels will drink in the Gospel of Judas without a dram of critical thought. You've seen it all before. "Mark places two angels at the tomb, but Matthew only notes one! The witnesses are hopelessly contradictory and worthless!" Likewise, if you point to the overwhelming testimony of the early church on the apostolic origins of the four gospels, you get nitnoid "analyses" of this or that Greek word which somehow is supposed to prove that the gospels are fabrications without any relation to the apostolic testimony.

But when somebody drags out an *obvious* second century document bearing every earmark of a typical gnostic school of thought (Jesus jabbering about "the man that clothed me" and all the typical stuff that went with the whole "spirit=good/body=bad" mindset so foreign to both Jesus and the apostles, credulous gulls in the MSM are ready to treat the notion that this is a genuine record of an eyewitness as settled fact.

The most hilarious irony of all of this is that many of the hedonists and "sacred feminists" who are so eager for the gnostic Jesus would not want to have touched a real gnostic with a barge pole. After all, when your religious theory tells you that matter is a prison and women are the means by which spirit is imprisoned in matter, this tends to give rise to a rather low view of women.
Just so. But none ought be surprised that in this Age, when our most popular actively religious public figure is an actor of extremely modest talent, there should bob to the surface the bloated corpses of heresies that promise salvation through knowledge of secret mysteries and the performance of magical rituals. [There is not a dime’s worth of theological difference between classical Gnosticism and contemporary Scientology, except the steep Bill of Fare that comes with the latter.] In an Age when sexual deviance is promoted by the State, it is inevitable that religious and philosophical doctrines which deny the existence of moral norms should reawaken.

Thus, our continued fascination with nonsense such as The Da Vinci Code, the Gospel of Judas, and American Idol.

I think I’ll take a nap. I can do no other.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

This Game Is Way More Fun Than It Should Be

Enough said. Play it HERE.
H/T Hedonistica.

Global Conflict, Here We Coooooooooome

While my feelings for Yalies generally consist of contemptous [What a retard. -Ed.] disdain, I was made aware of a YDN article today that was published in February, which shares its title with this post. It's, well, it's pretty much hilariously awesome. A sample:
Welcome to the I.R., bitch. This is how it's done in International Relations:

The part of Ryan Atwood would be America. . . .

Seth Cohen is Israel, the Jewish son of Great Britain [Sandy]. America is his best friend and bodyguard, which gets America into lots of trouble because Israel isn't very popular at school. Sometimes America thinks if he were to drop Israel as a friend, many of America's I.R. problems would be gone.
Pretty great stuff. Full article HERE.

[Gentleman Farmer adds: Tonight at 9:00 o'clock America, Israel, Iraq and Italy will be receiving their assortment of thin and thick envelopes from college admissions offices. This may lead to significant international tensions, and even the breakup of formerly solid alliances.]


You have read little about immigration on G&S for a very simple reason. Our speciality is telling you what we think, and on this topic we have no idea on God's Earth what we think.

One thing we do think is that this debate is characterized by much nonsense thrown around from every side.

To pick just a small corner for illustrative purposes, we offer the simplification that the problem, at base, involves a great huddled mass sponging off the largess of the generous American welfare state.

But TigerHawk observes:
I am sure that illegal aliens, like other poor people, are a burden on social services in areas where they concentrate. This isn't because they are illegal, though. It is because they are poor. Poor people are a load, which is why we should want as few of them as possible. Of all poor people, though, illegal immigrants, who have gone to great lengths and at least some peril to cross into the United States and who then do very tough work at abominable wages, strike me as the least likely to remain poor for the long haul. In general, they are struggling against their poverty in the great American tradition. We are a nation that has grown wealthy in the struggle against poverty, and should not turn our back on that successful strategy today.
Just so.

Sigh . . . .

The Houston Chronicle ran this story yesterday, which we think offers interesting perspectives on the current national debate regarding the complex issue of immigration:
Rudy Rios was stripped of his duties as junior varsity baseball coach at Chavez High School last week after using a district copying machine to make a flier encouraging Latino students to attend a rally protesting restrictions on illegal immigration.
The flyer reportedly urged:
We gots 2 stay together and protest against the new law that wants 2 be passed against all immigrants. We gots 2 show the U.S. that they aint (expletive) with out us.
The Chronicle reports that Senor Rios retains his academic duties at the Cesar Chavez High School, where he teaches English as a second language. Sort of.

Hats off to HolyCoast.com.

Death and . . .

During 2003, Ruth Ann Gillings of Sparks, Nevada, worked as a respiratory therapist, and was paid almost $55,000. She filed no tax return, and paid no taxes.

Not amused, the Commissioner of Internal Revenue made her cough up the tax she owed, and imposed penalties for her failure to file a return, and failure to pay estimated tax.

Unwilling to pay, Ms. Gillings took her case to the United States Tax Court, which explained her defense:
Petitioner contends that the section 6651 and 6654 additions to tax are not applicable because her parents raised her to believe that the Internal Revenue Service was an illegal organization and taught her not to file tax returns or pay taxes. As a result, petitioner believes that if she ever filed a return or paid taxes she would be “disowned” by her parents.
The Tax Court wasn't buying. See Gillings v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo. 2006-65 (April 4, 2006). Hat tip to Joe Kristan.

Of Course You Are

Via Engrish.com.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

In Which I Patiently Remind Gentleman Farmer That San Francisco and San Diego are Different Cities Approximately 600 Miles From One Another

The top photograph from the most recent post, snarkily entitled "San Fran, My Man!", is a photograph of Barry Bonds playing in the Giants' regular-season opener at Petco Park, home of the San Diego Padres. This would be a home game for the Padres, indicated in the photo primarily by Barry wearing the Giants' road uniform.

Just so there's no confusion here, the San Diego Padres play their home games in San Diego.

San Diego is a city in Southern California, about 600 miles south of San Francisco.

Here in San Francisco, where the San Francisco Giants play their home games, there is a 20-foot-tall billboard with this photograph on it:

There is also a significant number of crazy-looking people on drugs wandering the streets. Some things never change.

San Fran My Man!

Apparently baseball fans in San Francisco are unhappy with Barry Bonds.

Does this have something to do with drugs? Really? In San Francisco?

Well, times change, I guess.

Fragments from Steroids! The Musical

I'm skinny.
I'm scrawny.
I'd rather be brawny.
But bulking up is such hard labor.
I won't do it without
An easier route.
Maybe I'll go ask my neighbor.

more at McSweeney's.

It's a Mystery!

In the very odd alternate universe inhabited by John Amato and Duncan Black, the video posted HERE is belly-hugging, milk-through-the-nose hilarious, and also constitutes incisive grassroots politicking aimed at the ouster of Joe Lieberman.

It's really quite hard to account for the fact that while the Republicans support Lincoln Chafee, many of the most vocal Democrats are working against Joe Lieberman.

Could it be the whole "Lincoln" thing?

Is it because Lieberman doesn't seem to be a victim of the stage 4 fever that afflicts the Democratic leadership?

It's a mystery.

Monday, April 03, 2006


  1. Compare and contrast THIS with THIS, and write no more than three (3) jokes;

  2. What is the Yiddish word that describes the fellow whose exploits are reported HERE?

  3. Provide at least three (3) captions for this photograph of a United States Senator:

  4. Provide at least three (3) captions for this photograph of a Member of the Congress of the United States:

For extra credit, bring me a burger from HERE.

Liberté, égalité, merde

Let’s make sure we have this straight.

What happens when the government decides that, once hired, no employee may be fired?

Easy: A youth unemployment rate of 23%.


Also easy: Because employers are quite rationally concerned that if they increase their employment, and then experience a business downturn, they are entirely unable to trim their labor costs by firing their least-productive, now unnecessary workers. Hilarity -- or bankruptcy -- ensues.

So what happens when the government decides that, to help dilute the unwillingness of employers to hire, they will be permitted to fire employees who have worked less than two years?

Well, if the government is France, then THIS:

All of which leads Dominic Hilton, writing in the Toronto Star, to ask:
Am I the only one who thinks France is nuttier than frangipane?

Here is how I understand last week's wave of marches, riots and blockades in the land of loitering existentially in smoky cafés while making meaningful hand gestures:

Lots of over-educated youths with too much black in their wardrobes are desperate to dress up in balaclavas and bandannas and torch things because (now let me word this correctly) they are disillusioned that their government wants to help them get jobs, because when you get a job there is a big danger you might one day lose it, especially if you are crap at it.

I could have sworn that not long ago French youths were rioting because, thanks to workplace-protection laws so rigid you could dry your pantalons on them, no one under the age of 65 can break into the job market (unless their grand-père is head of the Union of Permanently Picketing Fonctionnaires, in which case there is always room for one more shop steward).
Read it all, HERE.