Jun 212012
 

June 20, 2012

WARNING: This article contains spoilers for the Justice League episode, “Legends.”

Between the new story and the superhero campaign I’d like to run in a few weeks when we take another break, I’ve had superheroes in the brain. I grew up a Superman fan, then Spiderman, and have moved to Batman. The allegories in superhero stories, those that are well-written anyway, are applicable to a story about a soldier, especially when told partially through the point of view of his young daughter.

In doing a little digging into the old classics, both DC and Marvel, I came across an old episode of Justice League that… well, it’s not the flashiest (no pun intended) and it doesn’t feature the epic villains of the DC universe… but it’s possibly one of the greatest moments in the DC Animated Universe.

“Legends” revolves around Flash, Green Lantern, Martian Manhunter, and Hawkgirl being transported into a parallel world ripped from the pages of 1950’s American nostalgia. It’s all there: the campy villains, the clean and idyllic city, and its protectors, the Justice Guild of America, composed of barely-disguised versions of Silver Age comic book heroes from the DC universe. Green Lantern recognizes the Guild as characters from comic books he read when he was younger, comic books that helped give him the moral compass he would later employ as a member of the Green Lantern Corp. In this reality, he figures, those characters were real…

The big problem, of course, is trying to get the League members back to their own reality, but as the trio gets caught in the Adam Westian crime-fighting of the JGA, hi-jinks so tame that Captain Boomerang looks like flippin’ Darkseid by comparison, they discovered a bigger problem.


Silver Age DC vs Mortal Kombat by ~thechrishaley on deviantART

It turns out the world was devastated in a nuclear war decades ago and the Guild was killed trying to stop it. The heroes the League members have been interacting with are the creation of an insane mutant psychic who’s recreated the “perfect” world of the past to cope with the devastated world around him. As he lashes out against the League and soundly beats them, the Justice Guild of America realizes that stopping their creator will save Flash, GL, Martian Manhunter, and Hawkgirl… but it will mean their own death.

And then one of them utters a line that gives me chills every time I hear it.

“We died once to save this Earth… We can do it again.”

And they jump into the fight. It’s campy. It’s cheesy. It’s every clichéd move you can imagine.

But never have the phrases, “Crime doesn’t pay,” and “Let justice prevail,” as hokey and out-dated as they may seem in a world of Rorschach, Frank Castle, and John Constantine, sounded as awesome and inspiring during that final battle.


JUSTICE LEAGUE by *earache-J on deviantART

The idealism of the Pleasantville-style world was not perfect, though. The episode does have hints that the JGA has its fair share of sexism and even racism, but it’s nothing that would have been out of place in post-WW2 America. The Leaguers don’t shy away from condemning it, though.

But why is this episode one of the greatest?

Because as dark as DC animation can get, it’s expected. Think back to the 50’s or even the 60’s. You would NEVER have had a heroic sacrifice like this. Death in general was something avoided. Criminals got beaten to a pulp, then tossed in jail. The heroes prevailed, moved on to the next case, and wackiness ensued. This episode’s climax involves the realization that billions are dead, the world is a fantasy created by psychotic man-child, and the mutant psychic who created the illusion is something straight out of Tales from the Crypt.

It’s the intrusion of the Other, the concept that something is utterly shocking or disturbing when introduced into a non-standard setting. Imagine a war zone. Someone with a gun is to be expected. Now place that same character in the middle of a school and you get horror. The Guild could easily have doubled as extras in the Adam West Batman series, yet here they showed the kind of sacrifice and bravery usually reserved for heroes in a world where death is very real, and that’s saying something since death has a very buttery grasp on superheroes and supervillains. The final scene, though still tame since it IS a kid’s show, was akin to watching Mickey Mouse go on a suicide mission. It was like watching Archie take a bullet for Jughead from a gunman at Riverdale High.


Paranormal Archie by ~dio-03 on deviantART

I’ve been called everything from a jaded mess to a cynic. I’m a skeptic through a through.

I’m not afraid to say I choked up when the Guild made their sacrifice and showed, not simply said, they were heroes who stood for truth and justice.

I know it’s only a cartoon, but I grew up with stories like this. Later, I found out even death was cheap in comic books. But those comic books also helped me see right and wrong in a world of fantastic villains and heroes. As much as Sesame Street shaped my language, comic books shaped my idealism. It’s not that I think humanity is wretched and unworthy of this world. The reason I get so angry at the propaganda, the lies, and hatred I see, the reason I write and the reason I keep this site going, is because I think we’re better than that. I want to help others realize it.

We don’t have superheroes. It’s just us. I’m not going to wait for a red and blue flash to fly in and save the day.

And in case you still think I’m making too much of this, here’s the full episode.

Nov 072011
 

This hurts. A lot.

November 7, 2011

Don’t make me do this. I don’t… I don’t want to defend Twilight. I really don’t. I don’t… I just don’t have it in me. It’s like asking me to like McDonald’s. The taste it leaves in my mouth would make it impossible for me to like food again.

Crap. Here we go…

Well… frack.

This gentleman went through the Wal-Mart book shelves and picked out all the witchcraft and evil influences on the shelves. He went so far as to point out to the rest of us heathens where to find the Bibles. And these were the real Bibles, the King James Version, not any of the other pagan versions. Seeing as how this fine Youtuber also believes in chem-trails and the government somehow squeezing the life out of him through roadside speedometers, I’m going to guess he’s not the most balanced of folks, but, alas, I will answer his concerns.


- BrainWash - by ~NeonThingy on deviantART

0:24-0:32 “My young daughter is already brainwashed to say ‘Elmo’ when she sees that stupid ass…”

Dude! The kids are right there. For a guy who is trying to raise his kids right, you seem to swear a bit when trying to show your kids the Christian path. Not that there’s anything wrong with swearing but, if I may… you’re going after Elmo.

I happen to like Sesame Street. Tread carefully, my friend.

0:36-0:52 – “Got the stupid cheesy stuff: Sponge-Bob, queer stuff… and of course you get to this section. Yup, it’s still all Wiccan vampire stuff.”

Wiccan vampire stuff? I’m sorry, but I think I missed the part where faerie-like vampires engaged in a story of love and romance went anywhere near Wiccan territory. First of all, the vamps in Twilight have nothing to do with the European concept of vampirism. In fact, they’re closer to faeries.

Second of all, a close reading of the text actually shows Mormon influence, not Wiccan. I’m not sure how many Wiccans would be romanced by the strong male figure who pretty much demands he control every aspect of the female’s life as the female is nothing but a passive force in the universe. But moving on…


Twilight: Scholastic Edition by *otherwise on deviantART

1:01-1:04 – “I should buy this just to burn it… Other books by the same pervert. What’s that triangle object right there?!”

Here, our intrepid investigator is referring to a number of novels by the same author and a strange triangle symbol on the bar code. What could it mean?! Is the government monitoring your reading habits?!

Actually, the triangle is just an aid so the barcode has an easier time scanning the code.

Moving on to the main point, though, what would buying, then burning the book, get you? You bought it, gave money to the author, and you put this video out claiming you burned it. You’ve just given cash and free publicity to the author. Do you know what happens when parents and adults say something should not be read and burned instead?

Kids want to do it. Good luck with that. Oh, and I’m sure when your kids rebel and want to piss you off, that little Bible-burning picnic they set up based on your example will go over really nicely-like.

1:29-1:35 – “This is what is given for kids to read these days.”

Were libraries outlawed in the time it took me to watch this video?

Sir, these are not the only choices kids have. I know you think the government is a socialistic Anti-Christ hell-bent on brainwashing your kids, but we have these things called libraries that have thousands of books for them to read. Since you have access to Youtube, I’m going to assume you also have access to Amazon and can order books. Even used books only cost a few cents if you shop right.

Wal-Mart sells what is popular, not the only things out on the market. I know some books are out of print, but that doesn’t mean you couldn’t find them if you took more than five minutes out of your busy day of identifying chem-trails to look for suitable reading material for your kids.

It’s called being a parent. Wal-Mart is not known as a literary destination for a reason. It sells romance novels and pop vampire romance novels right now because that’s what sells. Don’t like it? Don’t buy it. It’s called capitalism. Anyone who wants to read actual literature or something not written and published without editing will look further than the shelves at Wal-Mart.


GAY PRIDE by =AngelXKairi on deviantART

2:00 -2:04 – “Oh, it’s still got Twilight, which is really gay.”

This will be the second “gay” reference you make this video. Is “gay” a bad thing? Seeing as how you seem to be the kind of guy who would beat up a teen just because he likes choir, let me let you in on a secret.

Using “gay” as a derogatory tells me volumes of your mind-set. It’s like saying, “Oh my god, that’s so black and ghetto,” or “That is such a Jew line.” You’re a bigot. You’re intolerant of others. You have none of the so-called love of Christ in your heart.

Asshole.

2:14-2:30 – “This is the garbage… this is the choice for your thirteen year old here at Wal-Mart. And then when they grow up they can read all these other useless novels.”

Again, if you’re looking to Wal-Mart to provide literary stimulation, you’re out of luck. There is this wonderful thing called the internet. I know you think it’s full of porn and federal agents trying to suck your soul out of the magic computer box, but there’s this thing called Project Guttenberg. They have thousands of free books. I know that sounds kind of socialist, but they’re classic tales.

If you want quality reading for your teens, pick up a good collection of poetry or some classic literature. If Wal-Mart dictates your reading choices, I’d hate to think what it does to your diet.

3:00-3:31 – Opens package with King James Bible to “inspect it.”

…Did you just ask your daughter to open a package in a store? That’s stealing, isn’t it? Well, it’s against the evil Satanic store selling vampire novels, so it’s okay, right? You couldn’t put the camera down for five seconds and do it yourself? You had to teach your daughter it was okay to tamper with products that aren’t yours?


MINECRAFT IS EVIL by *TomPreston on deviantART

4:10-4:14 – He quotes a Bible verse instructing the faithful to “put down” those who worship differently.

And this is the scary part of the video. It’s righteous to “put down” those who worship differently?

People wonder why Christians get such a bad rep. If I may quote the poet Marilyn Manson, “I never really hated a one true god, but the god of the people that I hated.”

You’re going out there and advocating book burning, killing those who believe in things you don’t, showing your daughter that it’s okay to steal and hate those who are different, and you think Wal-Mart offers the only choices when it comes to your reading list.

Well, I hope those kids learn to become productive members of society despite your lessons. You’re a paranoid fundamentalist who probably votes based on what the little voice in your head tells you. You most likely think Fox is too liberal and you own six types of guns on the off-chance someone tries to correct you.

Liberals and free-thinkers are “target practice” where you live, aren’t they?

And once more, in case I didn’t make myself clear…

You’re an asshole.

And now, a look at a real conservative for America.

Jun 082011
 

Behold! You've made apples.

June 8, 2011

Cooking is an art. It’s like writing in many ways. You can add a dozen spices and spend hours working on something like Indian food, a dish that has more plants in it than a greenhouse, and get something that mixes flavors in unique ways to create new sensations. On the other hand, you could use five or six ingredients and make pico de gallo, slow-roast some pork, and you have dinner. Likewise, writing can involve in-depth research and Alan Moore-like layers of meaning and reference, or writing can involve a simple poem on a greeting card that will nevertheless move a person to tears.

Everyone should know how to cook, and you don’t have to make anything fancy. In fact, some of the best meals are the ones made from scratch with only a few ingredients, and if you’re on a tight budget (what artist isn’t?) allow me to share a few of my favorite recipes and some tips for artists who wish to stretch that food dollar.

Keep in mind that I’m assuming you know how to boil water, cut vegetables, and otherwise not murder yourself with a fork.


Mini Cooking Table by ~vesssper on deviantART

Buy in Bulk

If you have a Sam’s Club or something similar nearby, get membership and go shopping. Trust me. The bill may seem huge, but remember that you’re buying olive oil, spices, and canned goods to last at least several months. Don’t buy fresh fruits and veggies here, though, since you’ll likely not go through them before they expire. Instead, stock up on the following:

  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Sea salt
  • Black pepper
  • Minced garlic
  • Carlo Rossi wine, either burgundy or chardonnay
  • Assorted spices

It really depends on what kind of cooking you want to do, but I find that almost everything I make ends up using sweet leaf basil, cumin, dill weed, crushed red peppers, oregano, rosemary, and thyme. If you prefer, you can also get Lawry’s Salt since it’s already a combo of several spices.

I also highly recommend stainless steel pots and pans. Stuff with Teflon tends to chip and wear away if you use it a lot.


Food by ~yimin94 on deviantART

Think Like a Camper

While it might be tempting to just buy instant meals since they’re so darn quick, think about all the sodium and other crap you’re going to be putting into your system. While we may have been brought up with the image of mom slaving away over a hot stove for hours to make a great home-cooked meal, it doesn’t take more than a few minutes of preparation for quick dishes, and even things that take hours usually just require you check in on them every once in a while. Also, do the math on how much it costs to make your food from scratch versus buying ready-made meals.

It’s a HUGE difference.

For a budget, chicken and fish are king. Think fresh veggies or, if you know you won’t use them for a while, canned. In general, avoid things with ingredients you can’t pronounce.

You’ll even find that eating healthy isn’t some yuppie dream. It’s affordable and preferable.


HEALTHY-FOOD2 by ~JackBeretta on deviantART

The Three Basic Food Groups

My dad and I both cook using the dump method. You take the meat, you put it in a pan, and dump a bunch of spices, veggies, whatever.

Done. You made dinner.

Let’s be more specific.

Get a batch of fish fillets. Tilapia works just fine, although Mary and I have also used catfish. I’ll use lime juice, dill weed, minced garlic, and a touch of butter for fish, and then fry them in olive oil. You could also poach them in the pan with a bit of white wine on low heat, reduce the wine and fish oil, and you end up with a thick sauce for your freshly cooked fish.

Chicken? That’s easy. Mix a cup of white wine and two cups of orange juice, then add a dash of olive oil, sea salt, pepper, and a little rosemary. Let the whole thing simmer on low heat for two to three hours. All you have to do is stir it to make sure it doesn’t stick, and when the whole thing is reduced to about a cup or less, you end up with an amazing orange glaze you can use on chicken. Now cook the chicken and add the glaze before it’s cooked all the way.

Beef usually calls for a marinade of beer (cheap 40’s will do), sea salt, pepper, marjoram, lime juice, cumin, and a bay leaf. Let it marinade for an hour or so, or overnight if you can, then cook the meat on its own, reduce the mixture the meat was soaking in, and you’ve just made beer gravy.


Beef, It’s What’s For Dinner by ~gracefuliamnot on deviantART

One Recipe To Rule Them All

You may notice a pattern here. Pretty much everything involves liquid, preferably booze, being simmered down into a thicker sauce for the meat itself. The process is slow, but worth it. It does take between two to three hours depending on how much liquid you have (sometimes minutes for really small amounts like with the beef), but the end result is the same. It’s quick to put together and requires little preparation beyond just getting to know the ingredients and knowing what goes good with what.

You can even make your own tomato sauce by mashing a handful of tomatoes, some wine, and adding basil, oregano, olive oil, sea salt, and pepper. Add some water, let the whole thing boil until it’s reduced to a thick paste, and you’ve got the best pasta sauce you’ve ever tried.

Once you’re comfortable with a few dishes, start adding things like pasta and mess with different techniques like baking, frying, poaching, etc.

Being an artist means sacrifice. Unfortunately, part of that sacrifice translates as a tight budget. I’ve found, time and time again, that just following a few simple rules and taking the time to learn how to cook is one of the best things anyone can do to not only

Plus, the girls dig it when you can whip up beef burgundy with a side of garlic-vinegar French fries.


One Great Dinner by ~BuddhaRocks on deviantART

Let’s get to some links to get you ready for the end of the week.

  • My old professor, Tom Chiarella, wrote this wonderful article on how to be a good boss. It’s so, so true.
  • If you’re going to throw a party and you want to advertise on Facebook, please make sure you set the settings to “private.” Otherwise, you might end up with 1500 guests.
  • And finally, if you need more proof that it doesn’t take much to make wonderful art, check out this video. One woman. One looper. One voice. That’s it. See you Friday! Also, let me know if you try anything on this article.
  • The internet is now classified as a human right. Can I stop paying now?

 

Jun 062011
 

"R" is for REVOLUCION!

June 6, 2011

I’ve fought the good fight here on Randomology. I’ve battled the nitwits and the stupid, the racist and the close-minded. I’ve pushed back against those who would hijack education, the Constitution, and twist the idea of progress into something awful. I’ve ranted against those who likewise hijack religion in the name of ratings or fame.

But when you go after Sesame Street, you better believe I will FUCK YOU UP. I grew up with Sesame Street. Sesame Street helped me learn English. I loved the Muppets growing up, and if you grow balls big enough to go after Jim Henson and this pure, fun, educational part of my childhood, I will personally rip your spleen out through your knee.

Behold the wisdom of going after puppets. No, really. Just watch the video and see how these guys can see the Mongol-like invasion of progressivism in… Elmo teaching kids letters.

Now, maybe you watched the video, but maybe you didn’t. That’s fine. Let me go over a few of the more… interesting points they try to make regarding Sesame Street and the media in general.

0:36-0:51 Sesame Street was created to cater to poor black and Hispanic children who didn’t have reading material at home.

…And? What’s wrong with originally catering to sections of the population that traditionally lag behind in education? I would think this is a good thing. Blacks and Hispanics usually lag behind in education, and this isn’t a stereotype. Research throughout the years have shown this. This is due to a number of reasons, everything from inadequate resources to troubled home life.

And yes, I myself am Hispanic, and while I didn’t have these kinds of problems, the show helped me.

0:51-1:26 Sesame Street’s website tells parents to use gender-neutral nouns, give dolls to boys and trucks to girls, and just this year, an openly gay boy was crowned prom queen in a school in Virginia, so this is a “direct assault on this country’s moral foundation.”

Okay, this string of accusations has three parts, so let’s go through each individually.

First of all, using gender-neutral pronouns isn’t some subversion of morality. It’s the inevitable result of both genders being equal. Do these two clowns have something against equality? Even MLA and APA handbooks say you should use gender-neutral nouns. However, this being Fox, I doubt they’d know the standards of journalism.

Second of all, could someone please tell me where on the Sesame Street website these evolutionary throwbacks found that little piece of information?

And third of all, this thing with a gay man being voted prom queen? How exactly does Sesame Street link back to this? This is really the point of the clip where the discussion goes into generalities and strawmen, but let’s pretend that this has nothing to do with Sesame Street. Let’s say they’re just outraged that the media in general is saying that a gay man can be prom queen.

So?

I guess these are the kinds of people who would also be upset over two lesbians going to prom. The school voted and the kid won. Fair and square. And it was an affirmation that the student body embraced this young man’s decision. Just watching him and how proud he was of his friends and family speaks volumes.


Sesame Street Fighter by ~gavacho13 on deviantART

1:37-2:14 “The values of young people today scare me because we’re robbing them at earlier and earlier ages of their childhood. They know more. They do more.” Our shows used to be more wholesome, and parents aren’t monitoring what their kids are watching.

The children! They invoked the children!

And if you too would like to know how you can tell people to stop using children as a shield for their own ignorance, just click here.

So many things wrong here… What, exactly, is Sesame Street taking from our children? Just read that quote again. The panel is actually mad that children are LEARNING. That’s right. They don’t want children learning things like reading and math or about other cultures. God forbid little Timmy learns that in Mexico, they use a lot of spices and have different kinds of limes.

As for the whole “wholesome” shows thing… as much as I loved I Love Lucy and similar programming… Lucy smoked while she was pregnant. Everyone smoked. Aside from Ricky, name another visible, independent minority. Please. Show me the episodes where they addressed things like racism, inequality, and the rights of women. Show me when the Cleavers had to deal with an unwanted pregnancy.

And don’t even get me started on The Honeymooners.

Yeah, the shows were “wholesome,” and I’ll admit they were funnier than half the crap on TV right now, but don’t hold them up as ethical and moral beacons.


Cookie Monster by ~tioandria on deviantART

2:15-2:26- Artists are liberal, and artists make these shows, so…

Now, our former Miss America got cut off, but if you listen carefully, it sounded like she was going to make a case for “Artists make and write these shows, artists are liberal, and therefore, since we know liberals are evil, these shows are evil.”

I got news for you, Spray Tan. Artists made those shows you and the Right-Wing Brigade were pushing up a few minutes ago. Yeah, artists tend to be more liberal and open minded. We have to be.

But the politics or personality of the artist have no merit on the aesthetics of the art itself. Let me put it another way.

I hate Michael Bay. The guy is a diva who is full of himself and can’t take the blame for his own mistakes. On the other hand, The Rock happens to be one of my favorite 90’s action movies. Not surprising, since Bay made it before he apparently replaced his blood with pure testosterone and diesel fuel. Likewise, H. P. Lovecraft created tales of morbid and alien terror, yet he was an unapologetic racist. On their own, though, the stories created an entire sub-genre: Lovecraftian horror.

Oh, and may I just say that, when you want in-depth commentary on the state of the media, education, and child psychology, your first choice for a panelist should ALWAYS be a former Miss America, right?

Was a former Playmate not available?


Down for the Count by ~poopbear on deviantART

2:27-2:54 If you look at tyrannies, the first thing they do is go after the family and religion. Then, government can become the family and religion.

Again, this has nothing to do with Sesame Street, but let’s ignore that.

How is the media going after family and religion? Can we get examples? Specific shows and incidents? No. All we get are generalizations. The fact is that if you want to make the case for the media destroying families and religion, it’s not because television is preaching against it. It’s more likely that parents aren’t paying attention or being involved with their kids. Religion does not address the issues it needs to address.

I would never raise a child just on Sesame Street, or any other show or book. That’s called bad parenting, so stop blaming the television for parents not doing their job.

2:54-3:15 Liberals think they’re so great, that their morality is so good, and they want to spread their message. They don’t even teach the basics in school like reading, writing, and math! They don’t even use their own money to get their message out.

Yeah, we like to think we’re right. We want to get our message out. So does the right. This is really just Hannity mad that liberals have the balls to say what they believe. I’m serious. He’s just ranting that the Left has the gall to try and spread its message as though it’s some instant thought-converter.

Oh, and that crack about teachers not teaching reading, writing, and math? Well, we’d like to, but your hero, George W. Bush, butchered the educational system and my own state has raped history into submission.

And Hannity, how much of YOUR money do you spend to get your message out? How much does Beck spend? Beck was crying about this Israel trip of his costing a few million dollars even though he is worth $80 million. Even if he spent only 10 million dollars, he could fly more than 2,000 people there for free.


Oscar by ~lolitalorelie on deviantART

The rest of the video is just ranting against how liberals supposedly don’t have their own charities, how there’s apparently between rich liberals and the American elite that involves some weird word-play on Hannity’s part, and Sesame Street is never mentioned again.

There are legitimate concerns about children’s programming. I know this, but at least make a substantial argument. I’m very protective of Sesame Street because it really did play a big part in my childhood, although seeing the raging liberal that I am today, I may have proven the panel’s point.

Sesame Street is one of the best educational tools for young children. Combine it with good parenting, and kids get a lesson at home they might not otherwise get. It’s a great tool for learning English for foreign-born kids, and it’s evolved throughout the years to show a more multi-cultural, open society.

And if anyone goes after Sesame Street, Oscar, Gonzo, or any of the Muppets without some actual justification, I will go after them with extreme violence. Napalm may be involved.


Cookiethulhu by *InfinityWave on deviantART

Well, let’s hit the links, shall we?

  • And finally, because this is a short set of links, let me give you the scariest thing I’ve ever seen. See you Wednesday!

Sep 292010
 

Yup. It needs to roll over and die. Yuppers.

September 29, 2010

America is dying.

Listen to the furor on the right. This nation has been changing, little by little, until it is almost unrecognizable by the hard-working average American. Health care, gay rights, secularism, and a host of other problems are taking this country and changing into something our own parents won’t recognize in a few years.

Good.

Progress is not evil. “Progressivism” is not an evil term. I am not a Marxist. I do not condone genocide. And as much as I cannot stand Beck and the Fox noise machine, I don’t want them censored. I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating. I am a naturalized citizen. I wasn’t born here, so it scares me when I a) can writer better than the “patriots” in the Tea Party, b) understand American history and government better than the voice of the people, Fox News, and c) must explain to people the difference between liberalism, progressivism, Nazism, and communism and that we don’t believe in government handouts.


bleeding heart liberal by *aNg76 on deviantART

What is progress?

Let’s take the evolutionary viewpoint. Everything that lives must adapt to its environment, to different conditions. If it gets too cold, those creatures that could withstand a little more cold will thrive. If food becomes scarce, the more efficient hunters will survive.

Likewise, our country’s changed. In the last twenty years, the internet, television, and mass media have brought us all together. Whether we like it or not, we are living in a global community. What happens in China affects us in America. Drug violence in Mexico stirs up political movements in the Southwest. These connections always existed, but now each one of us can participate. This site alone has readers in the North America, Australia, and a few other places.

With zero advertising budget.

Imagine the kind of impact actual world-shattering events create.

This multiculturalism and melting pot of ideas is the new environment for our country. Like an animal in the wild, we find ourselves in a world filled with new creatures, new neighbors, and limited resources. We have to adapt, learn from others, or else risk sinking into stagnation. There are already signs the United States is losing ground in the global stage.

Of course, the fear that America will change hinges on one basic premise: the United States of America cannot be better than what it already has become.

I’m calling crap.


Miss America by *mbreitweiser on deviantART

Anything can be made better. Anything. Your mom’s cooking? Could use more salt. That perfect date? There were no fireworks. Your favorite movie? Wasn’t narrated by Christopher Walken.

My point is that America can be better than it is. In fact, it can be better than our Founders intended.

What!!? The Founders were WRONG?!

Well, that assumes they all agreed. They didn’t. The biggest mistake we can make is thinking America has a destiny. It doesn’t America isn’t a government. Government is people. Americans come from dozens, hundreds of backgrounds. We came from different countries, spoke many languages, and today we live together and believe very basic principles. We may disagree on how to get there, but if we’re not trying to make this country better, what are we doing?

Every person who says we need to go back to the way things were is dangerous. They’re dangerous because they wish to relieve the mistakes of the past based on some vague sense of duty to the intentions of our Founding Fathers. They want us to just have faith that, somehow, the work we did getting here was a mistake and everything will somehow right itself.

No faith.

Faith is blind. Trust goes both ways.


Blind faith by *ValentinaKallias on deviantART

I can’t trust the Founding Fathers since I’ve never and will never meet them. The only thing I can do is rely on years of education, common sense, and the observations of tangible reality all around me.

Oh noes!

And what do these observations tell me?

We can do better. We can always do better. So next time someone tells you that we need to go back the way things were, or that we’re not doing what the Founders wanted… Tell them that the Founders aren’t here, they were men, flawed men, and that if they know of a way to stop the social inertia of hundreds of millions of people, go right ahead.

If the America of today dies, ask yourself what part of it is dying. Is it the part that clings to outdated ideas, beliefs based on emotion and gut-feelings instead of reason and observation, and a need to fight against the “other”?

Then yes, let it die. In fact, take it outside and shoot it.


New American by ~Chrislore on deviantART

And now on to the links.

  • Ever flown and picked up a Sky Mall magazine? The things in there are neat, sometimes, but sometimes I see something that just… no one needs crap like this. No one!
  • Justin Beiber recently said he was this generation’s Kurt Cobain. There are SOME similarities. Apparently someone took offence and noted the many ways Mister Beiber and Mister Cobain are different.
  • I’m sure most people have heard by now, but Katy Perry was kicked off Sesame Street because she apparently provided a little more boob for the sketch than the kids had seen since breastfeeding. Oh well.
  • Dark Archivist is a blog run by a good friend of mine. She’s got some really good posts, but this one on the Tea Party is one of my favorites so far.
  • Who exactly is fighting the legalization of marijuana in California? As it turns out… it’s the alcohol industry. Guess no one likes competition, huh?
  • And finally, Priest will be coming out in a few months. I’m kind of excited for Karl Urban and Maggie Q, but I understand the movie bears no resemblance to the comic. Oh well. Looks like it might be a decent splatterfest.