July 19, 2012
Ladies and gentlemen, I know I am known for my verbosity. I have a love of words and sometimes that takes the better of me. I think my YouTube videos should attest to that. However, please record the time and place. As of right now, I am speechless.
There are so many things wrong with that speech that it would be easier to list the things that are correct. Let’s start.
“Bane” and “Bain” are homophones. That means they sound the same.
There. We’re done. That’s all that was the same.
Bane was introduced to Batman comics in 1993. He was a formidable foe, just as smart as the Bat but more ruthless. In fact, Bane figured out Batman’s secret identity within a year and put together a plan to finally defeat him. It ended with Bane fighting an exhausted Batman in Wayne Manor, then snapping Bruce’s back like a toothpick. The event was mentally and physically traumatic and it was only through sheer will that Batman eventually recovered. Over the years, Bane has been a recurring villain, and sometimes ally, of Batman.
For The Dark Knight Rises, Bane is re-imagined as a terrorist of sorts. I haven’t seen the movie, but from interviews and promos, it seems he is just as cunning and fearsome as his comic book counterpart and not the movie we will all pretend never happened.
Oh, and did I mention Dark Knight Rises was drafted back in 2008?
That’s right. Four years ago. WAY before this election cycle. Does Rush honestly believe this was planned out on the off-chance that Romney ran for president? Did Nolan magically intuit that Romney would be the presidential nominee and that the Bain Capital would be ammunition from both Republicans and Democrats? And before someone says, “Well, Romney ran in 2008, too, so this must have been relevant back then,” let me remind you of something…
ROMNEY WASN’T CRITIQUED FOR BAIN CAPITAL LAST TIME.
Did I mention the sheer divination powers needed in order for this to make sense? Seeing a conspiracy where none exists with a character that’s been around for 19 years is a sure sign of lunacy. Let’s apply this kind of Right Wing logic to other comic book characters. Here are a few more conspiracy theories…
- Batman is some rich guy who takes his own money to help others out of charity. He even gives jobs to people in low-income areas. This is obviously a dig at rich people who know how the market really works. Batman is an attack on capitalism.
- Captain America embodies the ideals and spirit of the Greatest Generation, but he’s not the strongest or fastest superhero. In fact, he’s just a man. This is clearly an attack on American exceptionalism.
- Superman is an illegal alien who fights for the American way. He’s also the most powerful being in the comics. Whenever he is gone, things go badly. This is obviously a metaphor for illegal aliens being the backbone of this country, even though they’re not here legally.
- Wonder Woman comes from an island populated by women, and you know what THAT means. Making her super-strong is obviously meant to imply that women don’t need men in their lives. This is obviously an attack on the family.
- Green Lantern is an obvious propaganda film for the United Nations and usurping control from local governments. An American gets drafted in a galactic police force and does THEIR will on Earth? And he saves the day when Earth can’t? This is obviously an attack on American sovereignty.
So, no, Rush, Bane is not a stealth smack against Romney. And the Bain debacle? It’s not a made-up conspiracy. It’s real. Romney keeps running on his supposed economic intelligence and ability to fix the economy.
He sent jobs overseas. He SLASHED jobs to make money for executives. John Stewart said it best, so I won’t rehash it too much. The point is that Romney is getting hammered from all sides, Right and Left, because he’s a job-killing ape who couldn’t fix a bendy straw if he tried. It has nothing with him being rich and more with him not realizing his success and wealth came at the expense of others.
Leave Nolan and Batman out of it, Rush! If you were a Batman villain, you’d be the current Penguin. You’re not TECHNICALLY a criminal, but damn if you’re not asking for it.
Sure, Rush. We obviously have a time machine that let us do this. First, we planted the birth announcement. Now, we modified the third in a film franchise that’s made over a billion dollars JUST to poke fun at Romney. If liberals really had a time machine, we would have made George Bush Senior pull out.
Let us now enjoy something far more entertaining: the final trailer for Dark Knight Rises. And if ANYONE spoils this movie for me, I will hunt you down like the dog you are and turn you into barely-recognizable human play-doh.
July 10, 2012
Someone recently told me that by pointing out all the things Fox, Limbaugh, Beck, and others like them do and say and by showing how the contradict themselves, I’m actually feeding into the problem of a biased media. The media, this person said, was extremely liberal and I was ignoring the skewed reports and lies of the left, thereby getting nowhere.
I’m calling bullshit.
Let’s get one thing straight first. The idea of the “liberal media” is just plain wrong. Ask yourself this. How much favorable press has Obama gotten in the last few years? I mean, really good press. How did the press cover the drone strikes? Has Obama really gotten to slide on policy blunders or has he been hammered? What about the Occupy protests? That one’s closer to fifty-fifty, but they didn’t get the kind of fanfare you’d expect from a truly liberal, BIASED media.
The truth is that everyone has a bias. The whole deal with Fox News, their “Fair and Balanced” slogan, is a joke and a lie. The idea of a perfectly balanced story hinges on the idea that both sides of the story are equal. Creationism and science are not on equal footing. Radical right-wing groups don’t have the same kind of point as groups like the Southern Poverty Center or the ACLU. Fox’s years of lying and misleading and giving a voice to the most radical conservative and regressive elements in this country in the name of money are NOT equal to whatever bias the left may have perpetrated.
Think of it this way. Fox has a long history of sexism and misogyny. Limbaugh routinely goes on the air and speaks of women like one would speak of a yapping dog. The Left comes out and says that Romney’s wife doesn’t understand the plight of the middle class because she’s raising children while married to a multimillionaire… and suddenly the left attacked for supposedly attacking a mother.
Things are NOT equal. Yes, the left has its demagogues. As much as I enjoyed listening to Olbermann, for example, he’s not exactly level-headed sometimes… But I dare you to find anything Olbermann has said that is as inflammatory or misleading as anything in the average one-hour block on Fox.
The idea of a liberal media is a myth. The Left is constantly pointing out all the lies of the Right. The Right, one the other hand, can only whine that they’re being called out for being wrong and take this to mean everyone is to blame.
“Fair and Balanced” is a myth. Liberal media is a myth. I go after these clowns because they’re doing real damage to this country. They promoted the Tea Party. They’re influencing policy. Large sections of the population listen and believe them.
Can you say an Olbermann rant or a Maddow segment has done the same thing?
And now, while you ponder these things, please enjoy the ONLY adaptation of his work Alan Moore has gone on record as saying he not only approves, but enjoys.
June 13, 2012
Caiden Cowger explained his views on homosexuality, why he thinks it’s immoral, and the injustice of not being able to preach to homosexuals. He capped it off this week by explaining why he believes homosexuals are evil and yet he himself does not hate them, just the sin.
He sounds like a bigot three times his age. Let’s break this down.
May 4, 2012
Now that “Elves With Shotguns” is in the final stage of production and all I have to do is wait for RPGNow to approve the pdf for publication, I can finally sit back and enjoy the fruitful political and social discourse streaming through America’s media.
By that, of course, I mean foam at the mouth at the utter lack of comprehension at 3rd grade science. Three instances in the last few weeks have left me wondering why conservatives want to gut education since, besides a mountain of evidence that shows a strong public education would help our country, conservatives themselves show their own glaring ignorance of basic scientific concepts.
Limbaugh’s Concept of Science
Rush “Hindenburg of Sexism” Limbaugh is no stranger to denying climate change. He took it a step further recently when he claimed that global climate change created by human interference was a fraud because so many scientists agreed on it. It must be heard to be believed.
Here’s Rush’s argument. Science is not based on opinions. He has that part correct. No self-respecting scientist would agree with a new theory based solely on popular opinion. Here’s the part Rush left out: so many scientists agree with climate change because they have analyzed the data or otherwise performed their own experiments based on repeatable observations. That’s what scientific consensus means.
Scientists get behind a theory when a LOT of them can replicate experiments or verify that data and experiments were accurate. It’s not a popularity contest. By this logic, here are a few more things Rush must not believe in:
- The Big Bang
- Geologic models of the earth
- The existence of extra-solar planets
- The effectiveness of modern medicine
It does, however, reflect modern American conservative thinking: if there is evidence you are wrong, the evidence itself must be wrong.
Arizona Protects Imaginary Babies
The debate over abortion and taking away abortion rights is part of the larger war on women the GOP has been waging in recent years. Arizona also has the distinction of having some of the dumbest lawmakers in the country. Now that’s something to be proud of. This one, though, takes the cake.
From the Huffington Post:
Aside from banning all abortions after 20 weeks, defined from the date of the woman’s last period instead of conception except in the case of medical emergency, it will force women considering abortion because of fetal abnormalities to have counseling [sic], and for women having an abortion to have an ultrasound.
It also says the age of a foetus [sic] is “is calculated from the first day of the last [woman’s] menstrual period.”
Got that? In Arizona, you can be legally pregnant before you conceive. It’s a Christmas miracle!
Aside from the morally reprehensible act of denying women a basic medical treatment that is legal in the rest of the country simply because one ideology is against it, let’s consider the ramifications of this, okay? A woman can now retroactively be considered pregnant when she wasn’t. This opens up a whole can of legal worms. If they’re so set on making sure the potential for life remains, why not make it illegal to have wet dreams while they’re at it?
Seems as logical.
Bill Nye vs Texas
Bill Nye is one of my childhood heroes. The man made science fun and he’s been going and teaching for years now. The man will become a legend in his own right.
But Texas doesn’t like him. In fact, it seems Texas doesn’t like science.
Nye was in [Waco] to participate in McLennan Community College’s Distinguished Lecture Series. He gave two lectures on such unfunny and adult topics as global warming, Mars exploration, and energy consumption.
But nothing got people as riled as when he brought up Genesis 1:16, which reads: “God made two great lights — the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars.”
The lesser light, he pointed out, is not a light at all, but only a reflector.
At this point, several people in the audience stormed out in fury. One woman yelled “We believe in God!” and left with three children, thus ensuring that people across America would read about the incident and conclude that Waco is as nutty as they’d always suspected.
Yes, folks. It appears that pointing out the moon does not glow, a fact we can prove because we have PICTURES TAKEN ON THE SURFACE, is now an affront to Christians. Let me tell you something… if your beliefs are so fragile that having someone call out a two-thousand year old document that uses poetry to describe the world as being a two-thousand year-old document that uses poetry to describe the world… you need help.
And Bill Nye, I know I wasn’t there, but being a resident in this state, I feel I should apologize. Please come back. We have beer and brisket and Mexican grandmothers that know how to cook.
And now, let’s enjoy a trailer for a horror movie that actually looks interesting. See you Monday, and stay tuned for more updates and news on Randomology Games and the upcoming “Elves With Shotguns.”
March 6, 2012
Over the last month or so, I’ve pretty much dropped off the map… and managed to miss the BIGGEST clusterfrak in the history of the GOP. Ever. The whole debacle with Limbaugh and contraception and the hearings with nothing but men talking about ovaries when none of the have been near a vagina since birth…
It’s like when I missed meeting R. L. Stein because I had to work on Saturday. Only worse. And this involves vaginas.
Enough has been said on Current, The Young Turks, Maddow, and everywhere else. Let me just say this.
If you identify as a Republican, please consider that the man who called a woman a slut, a prostitute, a whore, is the de-facto leader of your party. Your political leaders are afraid of him. Even after he mischaracterized birth control and insulted a young woman for wanting nothing more than for her health insurance to cover a medicine that helps balance hormones, he stuck to his guns and insulted her character, insulted women, and made his case that femenists are nothing more than man-hating harpies. Insurance companies, after all, cover things like erectile dysfunction, so why not birth control pills?
An erection, after all, has no point other than to bone. Let us now use bone as a verb…
If a man is allowed to bone on insurance money, why can’t a woman receive a medicine that helps balance hormones and prevents a battalion’s worth of medical problems without being called a slut and a prostitute? GOP candidates were unsurprisingly soft on Limbaugh regarding his statements and subsequent non-apology.
Maybe they need erectile dysfunction medicine for the spine.
Ladies, you don’t deserve this. Limbaugh is not a man. He is a semblance of a person made of oxycotin and lard. He is a man-child who would not know how to treat a woman if you showed him a manual written by the combined forces of 3 billion women. He is everything that is wrong with the Republican Party. He is a misogynistic, racist piece of crap that deserves no pity. Once he is gone, conservative Americans might actually be able to move past this windbag’s rants and actually say something substantial.
As much as I rail against the GOP, it’s not that conservatism by itself is a bad thing. Holding on and remembering the past is a good thing. I think the past should be looked at fondly, but it should not be the only thing that matters. Conservatives of old might have had some points, but today’s GOP is run by Fox, Limbaugh, and the voices of unrelenting hatred.
Maybe this vitriol, as painful as it was, will serve to topple that trinity of evil conservatism.
With that in mind, here’s a video of our medicated puppy trying to get through the day.
July 7, 2010
Imagine a world where all nations work together. Imagine if we rallied around a common cause and once again, with child-like wonder, looked up at the stars and wondered, “What if…”
Well, the right-wing in this country is seriously hampering my dreams, damn it!
In an interview with al-Jazeera, the current NASA administrator Charles Bolden said the following:
One, he wanted me to help re-inspire children to want to get into science and math; he wanted me to expand our international relationships; and third, and perhaps foremost, he wanted me to find a way to reach out to the Muslim world and engage much more with dominantly Muslim nations to help them feel good about their historic contribution to science and engineering — science, math and engineering.
What a lot of the pundits failed to mention, however, is that he made it clear this was not a diplomatic mission. Scientists don’t do politics (most anyway) and politicians don’t do science. This was purely an internal thing. Get the scientists and researchers to reach out to areas of the world they don’t usually reach to for support, knowledge, and inspiration.
But nooooo… Can’t have it. Won’t have it. Behold the Reverend Rush Limbaugh:
I guess this is a man that’s never used soap, math, or a watch. As pro-gun as the right is, you’d think they’d thank the Muslim world for inventing black powder (no, China got it later) and the other things like algebra and the power of medicine. These and many other inventions made our modern world possible. When Europe got stuck in the Middle Ages, the Muslim world took the torch and kept science alive.
That was then.
Now, Iran is actually declaring war of subversive haircuts. And let’s not forget BoobQuake.
Yes, the Middle East has fallen far since they ruled in the scientific fields, but they still have a lot to offer. Of course, don’t tell that to Nostradumbass himself, Glenn Beck:
Note how he goes on about how making a culture feel “good” about its history is such a “progressive” idea. And how he somehow forgot that he himself lauded the moon landing and NASA as one of the great achievements of our country.
I’m sorry, but isn’t this the man that goes on and on about American Exceptionalism? The idea that we are great and should teach our children we are great just because their mothers popped them out on this side of the border? No dice. Whatever the Muslim world is now, in the past, it helped science move along and sheltered knowledge from the Dark Ages.
NASA isn’t sending the scientists and engineers on goodwill missions. They’re still going to launch probes. They’re still going to work on the International Space Station. They’re still going to make you think that astronauts really eat astronaut ice cream.
NASA will continue doing what it does, except now it’s going to look in other parts of the globe for talent, ideas, and support. Is this so bad? I wonder if Beck and Limbaugh look at Star Trek and go, “Yeah, not white enough.”
Bad enough there aren’t Mexicans in science fiction with a few exceptions… now we can’t even work with ANYONE brown.
Beck, Limbaugh, kiss my dark matter cluster you intellectual white holes.
- New Jersey has a new Muslim mayor… and an orthodox Jew for deputy mayor. I smell sitcom!
- Amanda Palmer of the Dresden Dolls is performing in Cabaret. Behold the awesome freak that is Miss Palmer in full costume striking a pose.
- Prince is leaving the internet because he says it’s over. he’s not selling through iTunes and even shut down his website. Do you think this will affect his sales at all? I think we can all agree at this point that the internet isn’t a fad. It’s not Dane Cook.
- This kid? Perhaps about to get jumped by every kid that recognizes him. You don’t talk smack to the internet and just walk away.
- 4Chan strikes again. Justin Beiber held a poll on Twitter to see where he would travel next. Apparently, he’s going to North Korea. Good luck there, buddy. Nice knowing you.
- I’m going to watch the first two Twilight movies this week to prepare for the inevitable reviews at work. And yet things like this remind me I’m not alone.
- Speaking of which, we all know Edward Cullen is no vamp. Want to know the truth and get some hilarious mental images at the same time? Trust me. It’s about the most hilarious thing I’ve read in a while.
- Despite her country losing, Larissa Riquelme will still strip for her nation! Although she’s bared it all before (NSFW), this is still a treat for millions of men (and some of you ladies). If you’re at work, here’s a safe gallery.
- And finally, once Ah-nold is done with this whole governor of California thing, maybe he’ll make the movie we all want to see:
June 9, 2097 Anno Domini
Brothers and sisters, welcome to the Church of America!
This is a new group, and I know we have a lot of new faces, but I’d like to welcome each and everyone of you to this service. Some of you have questions. I know you were brought here under orders of the Federal Religion Bureau, and I know your information packets try to talk to you about your duty to serve your country as God-fearing Christian men and women, so I’d like to explain a few of the finer points of our church to you.
The Constitution of the United States is a holy document. It cannot be changed, except for those pieces we felt we needed to change years ago to better make this the nation our Founders intended. After all, we know what they were REALLY thinking.
Back in the Old Times, in the Age of Progressives, some felt that the Constitution was an imperfect document. Forgive me, brothers and sisters, for even uttering such bile in this holy house of politics! But it’s true. They believed the Constitution, that holy and holy documents next to our beloved Bible, needed changing!
Assuming that you or I, or anyone else, has the right to question the Constitution is an attack on the Founders. They were Christians and we should have faith, just as they did, that the plan laid out by God in this holy document will come to fruition. And how do we know they were Christians? Because great men of past ages told us, and no amount of “facts” can convince us otherwise.
This nation is divinely inspired. As Saint Beck the Weeping told us, our Founding Fathers, servants of God, had a vision. Their vision was this country, a nation of freedom. They were Christ-fearing men, each and every one of them, even the agnostics and deists. I know that doesn’t make sense, but yours is not to reason “Why?”
To speak against authority, righteous authority, is a sin. We know this. It’s hubris to think you know better than someone who has God on his side. If someone tells you that God told them to what to do, that you must follow that person, you do it, no matter how convoluted the explanation.
Our Founders gave us the first Bible. They printed it for us. Oh, I know that you’ve all seen the old news stories where the progressives tried to tell everyone that Congress didn’t really print it and there was a thing called “separation of church and state” implied in the language of the First Amendment, but now we know that these were lies designed to infringe on our rights.
And speaking of rights…
We at the Church of America want to remind you that we are not humans. We are individuals. The concept of “human rights” is a lie of the progressives. If you care for people, you slaughter the people in the name of the common good. As soon as someone became a threat to the whole under the old system, the state took care of them or punished them. It’s like the state thought it had the power to punish criminals.
Human rights are a lie, brothers and sisters. We have no rights other than those given to us by God, and we all know that He didn’t give us any of that religious freedom or freedom of speech the progressives kept whining about. He did, however, give us the right to own guns and make people worship Him. It’s in the Bible. And that is as far as we can go because the Bible tells me so.
We listen to the words of the prophets, brothers and sisters. We listen to the words of Saint Beck the Weeping, High Priest Limbaugh (may he rest in peace in his cryogenic pod), and Mother Palin the Wise.
As God-fearing Christians and experts in the fields of history, government, and sociology, they and their colleagues were perfectly poised to bring us out of the Old Times. Through the magic of the Great Murdock of the Great Fox, they showed us the error of our ways.
It is faith that drives us. Faith that feeds us. Without faith, with nothing but inquisitiveness and questions, we are nothing. We are nothing! We knew the progressives wanted to take our guns and Bibles away. We were just waiting for someone to explain the fear to us. Even though others proved them wrong again and again and again, and even though they filled that Satanic construct known as the internet with the “facts,” we knew better, right?
We knew that facts have no bearing when you have Truth on your side. And we knew the Truth. We were under attack from the Conspiracies.
We knew that every person who disagreed with us was working together. We knew because our fear told us, and since everything comes from God, that fear must be justified. It’s logical, but only if you have faith.
Now that the service is almost over, I’d like to remind you to please check your gas masks and gloves before you go outside. There’s another acid storm headed our way. Also, men, don’t forget to vote. Ladies, you just stay home like the Bible tells you and look after the children you must home-school because we have no public schooling unlike those poor souls in the Old Times.
Oh, let’s be thankful for the things we undid! We’ve repealed those tyrannical Civil Rights Movement laws and reclaimed the Movement for conservatives. Everyone is equal, unless they’re not born here, they disagree with us, or they’re liberals. Be sure you report any suspicious activity to the proper authorities so they can ask for proper papers. And don’t worry, we’ll figure out the internal combustion engine as soon as our Creationists rebuild the heathen writings of those scientists from the Old Times.
God be with you all, and only you. Not the unbelievers. They can go to hell… in God’s mercy.
Yes, it sounds stupid. Yes, it’s ridiculous. But think about it. Beck, the Tea Party, Palin, Hannity, and everyone on their side who wants to “protect the little guy” and bring us back to the what the Founders “intended” are really just wrapping politics in religion. Yes, they’re using Christianity, but they don’t even need to do that.
They’re painting the history of our country as though it were a religious narrative. We have the early Founders, much like Christianity has its ancient heroes in Moses and others. We have holy documents that cannot be contradicted. And now, we have modern-day prophets telling us the error of our ways… and they’re just like us, just like God sent in the book of Judges.
So… they must be real.
Please… If you refuse to see that government, like religion, is written and controlled by people, then you’re lost. Compare the achievements of science and rational thought and compare them to the advances brought on by religious and magical thinking. Make a plan for our country using a religious base and see how long until it turns into a singularity.
Wile E. Coyote has a better chance of catching the Road Runner.
I had, at one point, another blog called Divine by Zero. Sadly, it never really went anywhere, but I like the name so much that I’m going to keep it for these alternating posts. So, what’s going on in the world? What can we gleam from these insights of madness?!
Or these links…
- Did you know that a trend is sweeping the UK that jumped the pond from the US? Soon, it will be socially acceptable to drink vodka through your eye-ball! Or so the Daily Mail will have you believe. Needless to say, some people doubt this is happening, Gawker among them. Personally, I think that if you want to get drunk that fast, just buy a bottle of Everclear and go for it.
- Someone give this man a medal or something for finally letting me hear Ian McKellen recite the poetry that is the theme to The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. And yes, he does the themes to Duck Tales and Saved by the Bell, too. Now if we could only find someone who will do lines from Jay and Silent Bob as Christopher Lee.
- This has to be one of the greatest sermons I’ve ever heard. It’s from David Garcia, one of the pastors at the Crossroads Church in Laredo, Texas, giving a sermon with a twist, like always.
So when I was younger and I was living with my uncle, who was a preacher, I went out one day and said, “I’m going to the movies.”
“The movies?” he asked.
“Yes, the movies.” Of course, I went to this party and came home drunk. When my uncle caught me coming home drunk, he asked me where I’d been. I told him I was at the movies. He said I was lying, and he knew it. I asked him how he knew and he said that God had told him I was going to lie. And that really changed the way I saw God.
That night, I prayed and I said, “God… I only have one thing to ask you… stop telling my uncle when I lie.”
- On that note, this guy puts together a nice argument on how being a blogger is like being a preacher. Anyone up for joining a cult with me as head priest of the Old Ones?
- You know Farmville? Oh, those annoying little status updates you have to block and the hours my students wasted away on planting digital crops. Now, some modern-day Christ has designed FarmVillain, a Facebook application that lets you post status updates on your feed such as “You can now grow hemp on your farm, you know, for making rope,” and “Gift received! Claim your ten illegal farm workers to work on your farm.” That’s it. You click on the story you want and it gets put on your feed. You choose which updates to put up. I’m fond of the “You can now breed wookies on your farm” story, if only for the hilarious shocked wookie graphic.
- Remember that little thing with Arizona and its law that will encourage racial profiling and cast suspicion on anyone who looks like a foreigner? Well, Rush Limbaugh, champion of the people, is here to quell those concerns. We can’t racially profile, he says, because “Mexican” isn’t a race. Therefore, no racial profiling of Mexicans can take place… It’s one thing when talk radio deadens the political debate. It’s another when it says something so utterly stupid that you have to wonder if the speaker didn’t shove his toothbrush in his ear that morning, scrub around for a minute, then remove it and a substantial amount of brain matter.
- Seeing as how everything is being made gritter, Dana Carvey thought good ol’ Chuck Darwin could use the gritty, realistic make-over.
- And for all you grads out there, congratulations! It seems you will not be entering a dismal dystopia where work is unheard of! Of course, let me give you some advice. It’s still a hard job market, and no job is beneath you if it pays the bills. Case in point:
And with that, I’ll see you all tomorrow. The Texas Board of Education voted on the final curriculum changes. To put it mildly, they took a piss on the history books before pleasuring themselves with an American flag. It’s… not pretty.
Ah, crap! Now I can’t get that image out of my head!
May 17, 2010
I have a love-hate relationship with conspiracy theories.
When I worked as a legislative correspondent in Congress, it seemed like 10% of the mail we received was for legitimate concerns and questions, 30% was rehashed party lines and mass mailings, and the rest were paranoia and craziness from South Texas. You wouldn’t believe some of the theories I read, everything from a secret president ordering mass executions, the end of world brought on by the economic crisis knocking Venus out of orbit, to the Jewish cabals seeking to control us.
And that’s just dumb.
We all know it’s Dick Cheney, in the patented Cheney-Cave, who’s controlling the world.
see more Political Pictures
While theories like this are dangerous because they rely either on illogic or false information, they are also quite fun. What can I say? I get a thrill from watching people jump like Chicken Little at the slightest things.
Lately, though, from Obama’s birth certificate to the allegations that global warming are a scientific hoax, it seems that conspiracy theories are more rampant today than they were even when the X-Files was still airing new episodes. Just for laughs, here are two of the funnier theories I’ve heard.
Oh you know me… I can’t start my day until I listen to good ol’ Rush Limbaugh. Man’s like a shot of caffeine right to the eye, and in the last few days, he’s been accusing Obama of blowing up the oil rig that has now created one of the worst ecological disasters in history.
It’s very simple. See, Obama and his radical left-wing progressive sociocommunazi friends want to force environmental protection regulations that will save us from that fakey global warming hoax. Control carbon emissions today… world government tomorrow! Blowing up the rig, says Limbaugh, gave Obama and the eco-terrorists the ammunition they need to pass bans on off-shore oil drilling.
This disaster serves as an example of just how bad things can get if we don’t act now.
So… environmentalists polluted hundreds of square miles of ocean, killed several workers, killed untold amounts of plant and wildlife, and have created a gaping wound in the ocean floor that still floods the water with toxins… all in an effort to save the environment?
By conservative estimates, the oil spill is worse than the Exxon-Valdez accident. There will be repercussions for decades. Entire ecosystems are destroyed. This is a bit like saying that Saddam Hussein secretly instigated the Gulf Wars in order to boost tourism to Iraq. Also, did you notice how Rush ended his segment? He’s just “asking questions.” Yeah, but you have no answers. Asking the question is not the same as addressing it. Hey Rush, did you take so much OxyContin that your ability to use higher brain functions has been destroyed?
I’m just asking.
Okay, that one was fairly easy and could be attributed to political paranoia, so let’s look at another theory that’s… special.
Did you know Earth actually has two suns, just like in Star Wars, and NASA is spraying chemicals to hide the fact from us? Oh yes. Our sun actually has a twin star and, if conditions are right, you can see this elusive second star.
Nibiru, which the cameraman mentions, is an object that is supposed to collide with Earth and cause mass devastation.
The theory for this video and others like it is actually very simple. See, the government is trying to hide this from us because… wait, no, it’s the GLOBAL government! It has to be since this has been viewed as far as Russia. Yeah, they’re spraying chemicals in the sky to hide the second sun from us because…
Yeah, this one is stupid to the extreme. While there are videos and photos of these two suns, it’s actually a very simple effect called a sundog. And if you honestly believe that NASA is hiding evidence of a second sun… where was this second sun, oh, say, the last five billion years? Even if there was a star with one percent the output of our parent star, we would see it and FEEL it! For it to be that far in the sky, it would have to be on a large orbit!
Dear gods, people… a second sun and the government is hiding it?!
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Why do people buy into this stuff? Part of me wants to just say that people are stupid and will believe anything. I want to blame a lack of education. I want to blame it all on the laziness to investigate, to really use the scientific method as it was intended instead of coming to a conclusion first, then finding evidence to support it. If you follow that route, you can justify almost anything. Combine it with a public that is frighteningly ignorant of basic science, history, and critical thinking and you get little nuggets of laughter like this woman:
It’s fraking refraction and reflection through water, lady! It’s not a government conspiracy to sterilize you, although, seeing this video, I would endorse such a measure for you!
Conspiracy theories do have one thing in common. All of them have some small basis in truth. They also rely on information that is either wildly contested or on the fringe of data sets. For any scientific experiment of report, there will be lots of numbers, and geniuses like Beck and his “research” team and others looking for the “truth,” any slight inconsistency in the data means that it’s not reliable in the least.
Let me put it this way. Say you want to measure the height of a building and you have a ruler, a yardstick, and a tape measurer. You use all three and come up with 350 inches, 310 inches, and 333 inches. Most people would see these numbers and simply assume, rightly, that there are imperfections in the method used to gather information, but all methods point to a rough height between 310 and 350 inches or about 30 ft.
It takes a special kind of nut to say that the building must be 500 inches high because someone told you that was the height of the building and no one can prove you wrong, so you must be right.
Personally, I love deflating these little conspiracy bubbles. There are few things I hate more than misinformation or the bastardization of science for these kinds of things. I’m all for keeping an open mind about the world, but people, please, learn to think critically. I know the best conspiracy theories have the big bad villain(s) lying to you, forcing you into blind obedience, and making you the victim… but come on!
Next thing you’ll be telling me is that Kennedy and Michael Jackson are hiding in Puerto Rico with Tupac.
If you have any conspiracy theories you’re fond of, share them in the comments below. I’m always on the lookout for more crazies.