Left Behind, the video game?

I NEVER pay attention to video game releases but I found out about this one via Pharyngula and MAN, is it GOOD!

In Left Behind: Eternal Forces you are a heavily armed soldier for God and your mission is to kill or pacify the unbelievers. Don’t believe me? Then see the movie here or look at the screen shots here.

Who else thinks I am over reacting when I say theocracy is coming to the USA? And this time it’ll be bullets, not bibles baby.

Missouri - The Christiest state in the nation

You just knew that when Scalito was confirmed that every pet idea the religious fanatics, strike that, the Christian religious fanatics would come pouring out in a deluge of crazy. Anything related to abortion being challenged as unconstitutional was a given, we all saw THAT one coming, and just a little further down the road will be the complete restriction of any form of birth control. I guess it was inevitable that a state, perhaps dizzy from the fumes of Republican success flowing from the recent Supreme Court appointments, would decide to pull in the welcome mat and relegate all non-Christian citizens to second class status.

The resolution would recognize “a Christian god,” and it would not protect minority religions, but “protect the majority’s right to express their religious beliefs.” The resolution also recognizes that, “a greater power exists,” and only Christianity receives what the resolution calls, “justified recognition.”

I’m ONLY suprised that it wasn’t Kansas… but give it time.

Bar the door… it’s Domino’s!

Man, how many years has it been since I stopped ordering Domino’s pizza? At least as long as I have known that Domino’s founder, Tom Monaghan, was a major contributor to the right wing anti-choice groups that I would never contribute to myself. I’m guessing 10 years at least. But if I hadn’t I guarantee you that this story would put me off his pizza for life!

If Domino’s Pizza founder Thomas S. Monaghan has his way, a new town being built in Florida will be governed according to strict Roman Catholic principles, with no place to get an abortion, pornography or birth control.

I can hear the applause from the conservative commenters already, a strike has been delivered for the cultural conservatives… but how do they feel about THESE kind of restrictions to personal freedoms?

Homebuyers in Ave Maria will own their property outright. But Monaghan and Barron Collier will control all commercial real estate in the town, meaning they could insert provisions in leases to restrict the sale of certain items.

Restricting personal freedom of choice is one thing, but interfering with the holy right of commerce and property? Sacrilege! Doesn’t Tom know that poking his nose into other peoples sex lives, interfering with their reproductive choices, and limiting access to adult materials is fine but telling people what they can SELL or use their PROPERTY for… what kind of pinko commie IS he anyway?  wink

Being “annoying” online - now against the law.

    Do you post on blogs? Send jokes to colleagues? Say anything at all that might be construed by anyone as objectionable?

    Well, from now on you had better do it under your own name and not a pseudonym or there could be fines and/or jailtime in your future (read the Cnet article here). It seems that on January 6th of this year “president” Bush signed a law called the ‘Violence against Women and Department of Justice Reauthorization Act” which has an section embedded in it (section 113 to be precise) which is titled “Preventing Cyberstalking”. So far everything I have written here seems pretty innocuous, designed to keep women and girls from being stalked and harrassed by online predators, and I’m all for that.  If I had ANY trust in our current pro-torture, pro-spying, pro-empire, criticism averse administration I might not even bat an eye at this. But I don’t have any trust left.

    How do you define annoying? If I asked 10 people for specific examples of what annoys them I am willing to bet I would get 10 different answers. Something that I find annoying, like prosteletizing, might be sacrosanct to someone else – so who decides? Bush probably finds it annoying that his spy ring has been exposed.  I find it absolutely necessary and downright patriotic. Since the audiences for his townhall meetings are preselected I bet he finds surprise questions and contrary opinions annoying. I find them amusing.

    Because I always post my annoying opinions under my own name, Eric Paulsen, I am safe from fines and jail time (at least in theory), but… why make it necessary that an “annoying” post be under a persons real name and not a psuedonym? Why would an administration that was developing the Total Information Awareness database (an enormous datamining tool), that thinks it is okay to tap the phone calls and read the e-mails of American citizens, and is trying to give the Executive branch limitless powers (“If this were a dictatorship, it’d be a heck of a lot easier…just as long as I’m the dictator…” G. W. Bush—Washington, DC, Dec 18, 2000) want your real name attached to an “annoying” post. That’s a real puzzler there. Yup, a real puzzler.

    Well, here’s another post for my NSA file. cool hmm

Fox and the Family Guy

Tonight as I was flipping channels I noticed that Family Guy was playing on Fox and decided to watch for a bit. I have the DVDs but what else is on? I noticed that they bleeped the word ‘crap’, which must have kept them busy since Peter said it a lot throughout the series but the part that bothered me (but did not surprise me unfortunately) was in episode ‘Brian Wallows and Peter Swallows’ first aired on Fox 01/17/02. As Brian is singing to Pearl, a shut in ex-jingle singer from the early days of television, he sings “…noone really knows my dear lady friend, just quite how it all will end…” while flipping over cards dressed as a fortune teller. The first card he flipped was a mushroom cloud, then a tidal wave, then a volcano, and finally Jerry springer?!? Wait a minute!

Now I am kind of a dork when it comes to animation and if I remember anything well it is the totally inconsequential storylines of my favorite bits, so to prove that my mind is not failing I put the DVD with the episode in question into my DVD player and found the bit in the scenes section. Sure enough the words were all the same but instead of Jerry Springer at the end of the sequence it was a grinning G. W. Bush holding a beer bong. An image that spent a fraction of a second on the screen – even when it was ORIGINALLY aired on FOX less than three years ago – after September 11th ‘changed everything.’ I guess it is their right since they own the rights to it but what a humorless bunch of partisan clods. I had some hope when I heard the rumor that Family Guy might be coming back to TV but if they are going to sanitize it by sending it through their political officer first then why bother?

Anyhow, just a pointless rant, now back to Invader Zim and maybe a few more chapters of reading before bed.

The tone has definitely changed…

Everything is more adversarial than it was four years ago and I am not just talking about politics. We have come to a point in history where people will actually argue that torture is justifiable as an American practice. Catholic priests play with the idea of denying the sacrament of communion to politicians who do not march in lockstep with the Holy Roman church (and don’t try to insinuate this is an election year ploy to help out the Republican party, I am SURE it is just a coincidence). And now a surgeon from South Carolina submitted a proposal to the A.M.A.:

The resolution asks that the A.M.A. tell doctors that – except in emergencies – it is not unethical to refuse care to plaintiffs’ lawyers and their spouses.

So many things are NOT unethical these days – torture, denial of communion, denial of health care. It’s amazing that we can find anything unethical these days like stem cell research for example. I guess the researchers don’t have the leverage of inflicting pain, suffering, or death on Bush.

If they did maybe stem cell research would not be unethical.

Fly me to the moon

Maybe $100,000,000 US dollars wouldn’t get you an actual trip to the moon in a space craft (those things cost billions!), but since the moon is on average 239,000 miles away from the Earth at a given time you could probably make that distance several thousand times – in first class in a conventional aircraft. A redeye round trip flight from Detroit to Tokyo (approximately on the other side of the planet) on hotwire.com is going for $1092 so that would mean that since the Earth itself is about 7,926 miles in diameter then a one way trip to the moon would be equal to 30 full trips around the Earth, divide the round trip cost into $100,000,000 and you get 91,575 trips around the Earth. Divide those trips by the 30 it would take to make a one way trip to the moon and you get 1526 ROUND trips from the Earth to the Moon. Now why should you give a crap about ANY of this?

Defense Department spent an estimated $100 million for airline tickets that were not used over a six-year period and failed to seek refunds even though the tickets were reimbursable, congressional investigators say.

The department compounded the problem by reimbursing employee claims for tickets bought by the Pentagon, the investigators said.

And I remember when they had paid hundreds of dollars for a hammer and thousands of dollars for toilet seats, I guess they are moving up in the world.

George Bush, War President…

Ever since I bought my iPod I have used it more to listen to audio books than I have for music and one of the books was Molly Ivins ‘Bushwhacked”. The book is very funny and I thought that I would look online to see if I could find out more about her writing and sure enough she has a column. This one is about how Bush says one thing like how much he appreciates the military, and he should because they are fighting and dying in HIS war, and then he goes and cuts immenent danger pay from $225 to $150 a month and also reduce the family seperation allowance from $250 to $100 per month. I guess thats not really as bad as when he tried to deny National Guard and Reservists access to health coverage. Eh, what the hell, they are only over in Iraq and Afghanistan getting shot at and blown up, why the fuck would THEY need health benefits? If they want health benefits they should get a REAL job!

Just before Memorial Day, Veterans Affairs Secretary Anthony Principi said, “Our active military respond better to Republicans” because of “the tremendous support that President Bush has provided for our military and our veterans.” The same day, the White House announced plans for massive cuts in veterans’ health care for 2006.

Last January, Bush praised veterans during a visit to Walter Reed Army Medical Center. The same day, 164,000 veterans were told the White House was “immediately cutting off their access to the VA health care system.”

My favorite in this category was the short-lived plan to charge soldiers wounded in Iraq for their meals when they got to American military hospitals. The plan mercifully died a-borning after it hit the newspapers.

Bush really knows how to honor those who died or were horribly wounded on foreign beaches on the anniversary of D-Day, he treats the men and women who love this country enough to put themselves in harms way like dogs. What is the health and welfare of a vetran or a soldier when compared to big fat tax breaks for his rich pals? Hmmm, a prosthetic leg and glass eye for a marine with a bronze cross or a semesters tuition at Yale for Muffy or Tad? With a War President like this who needs enemies?

Decisions, decisions.

Xinnis - The Confessions of a Clinic Bomber

So there I was looking for information on the internet to corroborate my post on CalPundits site regarding the increase of abortion clinic bombings and arson during the Reagan administration when I stumbled across… this:

“My name is Maxwell Xinnis. I’m the husband of the murdered Janet Xinnis and the father of the murdered unnamed child.”

Kadill’s head was bowed slightly, but he could see Max put his hand around the gun grip and release it from the holster under his jacket. A thin trickle of blood flowed from Kadill’s forehead and into his left eye.

“Don’t kill me. I’ll give you anything you want.”

“I’m sure you will.” Max aimed the gun at his head and Kadill flinched. “Is there anyone else here?”

I guess I am not surpised that there is someone out there writing about a heroic clinic bomber who murders an abortion doctor but if he is so sure his cause is just why is he writing under the pseudonym Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit (the actual Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit died Sept. 16, 1736 in the Hague)? The scary stuff wasn’t so much what was in the “novel” but what was at the bottom of the webpage:

 

While this story was being written…

Pensacola: Abortionist David Gunn is shot three times in the back as he walks to his clinic by Michael Griffin, March 10th, 1993. Griffin was sentenced to life imprisonment.

Sixteen months later, Paul Hill, armed with a shotgun, kills abortionist John Britton and clinic escort James Barrett, wounding June Barrett in the arm.

Wichita: Abortionist George Tiller is wounded in both arms by Rachelle Shannon’s .25 caliber handgun, August 19th, 1993. Shannon is serving nearly 11 years in Kansas State Prison for attempted murder and aggravated assault. ATF agents suspect her in the arson and vandalism of other clinics.

Shortly after final editing…

Vancouver: Abortionist Garson Romalis is shot and killed by an unknown gunman while eating breakfast in his home, November 8th, 1994.

 

And immediately after distribution in disk form…

Brookline, Massachusetts: Two receptionists are killed and four other workers and patrons are injured at two clinics where a lone gunman, dressed in black, opened fire using a .22 rifle. John Salvi is arrested in Norfolk after firing on another clinic there. Police had been tracking him, having identified him from evidence left at the Brookline clinic.

Previously, other abortionists have died under violent circumstances: Wayne Patterson was killed outside a Mobile, Alabama adult book store; Douglas Karpen of Houston was wounded in a parking garage; and Paul Hackmeyer of Los Angeles was ambushed at his home and shot in the chest. Police have attributed these crimes to robbery attempts, but abortion rights activists suspect a conspiracy.

In the United States, from 1977 to October of 1994, there have been 91 arsons, 66 attempted arsons, 38 clinic bombings, 573 cases of vandalism, 200 cases of stalking, and 200 death threats, according to the National Abortion Federation. There have been between 32,000 and 75,000 arrests (depending on the source of information) outside abortion clinics.

These are signs of an epic struggle in this nation that is dividing families, neighbors, and churches. The proponents of this violence claim it to be the difference between saying a person loves the unborn child, and doing something that proves it.

Now MAYBE I am reading into this but I don’t think so. Is this asshole basically taking credit for COMMITTING the above acts or for merely INSPIRING them? It’s bad enough that he gets his jollies writing snuff literature for the Jesus crowd (that’s unfair, I mean the crazy, fundamentalist, evangelical, American taliban crowd) but is he so far gone to understand that inciting murder is a crime too? You can rail against abortion and accuse those who provide the service as murderers, if that is how you feel I understand that but the bottom line is that unless Roe v Wade is struck down IT IS THE LAW! If you don’t like it you work to get the law repealed, you do NOT grab a gun and a gas can so you can become a terrorist for god. What would Jesus NOT do?

The real problem with this kind of mentality is that it forces everyone else to escalate – churches burn just like clinics, holy men can die by asassins bullets just like abortion providers, and at what point have you won? When everybody else is dead? What would Jesus NOT do?

Thank god he filed his (501-c-3) non-profit forms, I would hate to think this organization was being unfairly taxed.

Is this too soon?

  For the past two days 80% of the channels I get have been running tributes to that most beloved of Presidents, Ronald Reagan. I am actually restraining my hand not to put down in words just how much I reviled him and why, I spent much of yesterday working some of that venom out of my system while contributing eulogies to other blogs. Reagan was only marginally less vile than Bush II in so far as when he was feeding you crap he managed to spread it out thin and got all the lumps out so it went down smooth, even if you ended up gagging on the flavor. Our dear baby Bush serves it up nugget-style straight out of whatever special interest group or contributor he is currently sucking up to. Everything else about their politics is exactly the same.

  Before I finally made it to bed this morning an idea for a t-shirt and/or bumper sticker suddenly came to me, call it the atheist version of divine inspiration. I wonder though if this is too soon considering that a Republican saint still lies in state? Even though I detested the politician I do have sympathies for the family during this time because he was a human being who, I have to believe, had some good qualities. Besides, the idea was not NECESSARILY directed at Rayguns passing (though it will probably be assumed that it was) it just seemed like a clever bit of text to underscore the Bush environmental failings in an election year. And to take a cheap shot at Republican politics in general.

“Old Republicans never die, they just leach into the ground water to poison future generations”.

  On the back I see a portrait of Bush with a list of his environmental record like concert dates (if there is enough room). On second thought maybe it is too subtle.