Trump supporters – the stupid goes all the way up

Today on “The stupid goes all the way up” – this is the latest talking point from people stupid enough to actively support trump. The suggestion appears to be that you can’t impeach trump because this map shows virtually all of the country voted for him.
 
Unsurprisingly for trump supporters, this is stupid on several levels.
 
First, that map is virtually meaningless in telling you how many people voted for trump as the red areas are very sparsely populated and the number of voters in the blue areas is orders of magnitude larger. As everyone but trump supporters knows, he lost the popular vote by several million.
 
Second, impeachment proceedings have nothing to do with the public vote. They’re a political process conducted wholly within the congress and senate. The public has zero involvement (except maybe in their ability to sway the votes of congresspeople and senators).
 
The real kicker for me is this takedown by an historian showing a comparison with Nixon’s electoral map. It really is meaningless.
 
And if you’ve never heard of Lara Trump, she’s married to Eric Trump. So that tells you how smart she is.

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Emergency Broadcast Network

You can find almost anything on YouTube. This particular bit of 90s lunacy is a favourite of mine. It’s definitely a specific sort of taste this appeals to – I don’t blame anyone who doesn’t like it. It’s quite abrasive and difficult to like.

I actually saw this at a house party in Sydney in the 90s (probably 94/95) while under the influence of certain hallucinogens which might explain why it imprinted on me so strongly (plus I have a soft spot for industrial techno). A lot of people’s favourite moment is Bush doing “We Will Rock You” (and that is good) but I really like Harrison Ford going “Get Down” repeatedly and the preacher really shook me.

By the way, a content note – if you’re vulnerable to something like a preacher repeatedly saying “I’m going to die” you might not want to watch that bit (it’s at about the 16:30 mark). At the time I remember thinking that would be a bit much for people who were already at risk of dark thoughts.

Two things stick with me: how difficult this would have been to create with 90s analogue technology. I haven’t bothered to look up anything about the creators but the fact they were able to access all of this material and edit it means they were probably working at a TV station. But that doesn’t account for the second thing that sticks with me:

How the hell did I see this on a VHS tape in Sydney – the other side of the world from the people who made it when it was NOT released as a commercial product?

This was pre-internet when things like this were spread by word of mouth and strange artifacts handed from person to person. We’ve lost something with the easy availability of almost everything but I certainly wouldn’t give up the modern world.

But the old world had a weird sort of magic.

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Milkshakes vs fascists – the revolution will be pasteurised

I’m doubtless one of many people who didn’t imagine milkshakes would become the symbol of resistance to ultra right wing bigotry and hate but here we are. As the number of gammon getting milkshaked (milkshook? milkshaken?) increases I have to say I’m completely on board with this as a non-violent protest against these worthless scumbags.

the revolution will be pasteurised

And for anyone who wants to say this IS violent – fuck off. Just fuck right off. The bleating garbage who have been shrieking about how unacceptable this is (going so far as to call it terrorism) will always turn a blind eye to the outright thuggery of right wingers up to including murder (Nigel Farage famously said Brexit had been achieved “without a single shot being fired” despite one of his supporters having gunned down an opposition MP only a week earlier).

I like this as a form of protest because while being non-violent it definitely humiliates the. It makes them look stupid and they hate that. Then when they bleat about how terrible it is, they look even more stupid. And look at how much this kid loves seeing Farage get the treatment:

farage got milkshaked this kid loves it

It’s gotten to the stage where even the representation of a milkshake winds them up. And that’s just beautiful.

milkshake prop

 

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How to spot “Fake News”

I’m going to start posting my videos here again. This one’s a fun 20 minute romp talking about serial fraudster Jacob Wohl (I can’t believe he isn’t in prison) and how to spot “fake news”.

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Scott Morrison spouting crap

You know how writers on shows like Veep have their politicians say absolutely vapid, meaningless word salads when articulating their policies? The idea being we laugh because they’re exaggerating the way real world politicians talk garbage? In Australia, we had an incident recently where the government actually used a Veep slogan, almost word for word.

screen shot of news story

Oh Dear

Apparently wanting to avoid a similar embarrassment, our (hopefully) soon to be ex-government has taken the innovative approach of trying to put the Veep writers out of business by spouting garbage far more meaningless than anything they’ve ever written for their TV shows.

meaningless lnp slogan

If we weren’t on the verge of throwing them out, I’d say we were doomed.

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Another spectacular week of Trump train wrecks

It’s so easy for me to find material with Trump and Co. moving from crisis to crisis. Whether it’s his supporters, his lawyer or Trump himself being neck deep in shit, he’s the gift that keeps on giving. And he topped off the week beautifully with a call in interview to Fox and Friends that got so bad, the hosts themselves ended up cutting him off mid sentence.

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Australia’s Banking Royal Commission and ANZAC Day controversy

It’s somewhere between fun and bizarre to watch the conservative LNP government act like they wanted a Royal Commission into the finance sector now that the scale of malfeasance in that industry is becoming apparent.

Also, with ANZAC Day approaching that means it’s time to get ready for the relatively recent national sport of people who call anyone who disagrees with them a snowflake losing their tiny little minds if anyone’s response to ANZAC Day deviates one iota from their declared orthodoxy.

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What’s worse for Trump – bombing Syria or the Michael Cohen raid?

A spectacular week for trump, even by the extreme standards set by the shitshow that is his administration. When your lawyer who’s been looking after all your dodgy deals for years gets raided, you’re in serious trouble. Also, he’s falling out of favour with some of his staunchest supporters for joining allies in a missile strike on Syria.

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Malcolm Turnbull loses 30 Newspolls in a row

Malcolm Turnbull and his supporters are trying to argue (with some merit) that him losing 30 Newspolls in a row is meaningless in and of itself. But it was one of the key metrics he used to justify knifing then-Prime Minister Tony Abbott and so now Turnbull’s detractors will use it against him.

And the though of more infighting within the conservatives fills my dark heart with glee.

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Otherworld Chapter Three

Read from the beginning HERE

The sunlight that greeted Droban’s departure from the village had seemed so warm and encouraging. Now it lit the scene before him so starkly it seemed the light existed merely to make sure he could avoid none of the details. The body had not merely been killed. It had been utterly consumed. It was barely recognisable as human. All life, all energy had been torn from it.

Droban had not been able to find Jeth when he rose but this had not caused him concern. There were many reasons Jeth may have been out and about and Droban had left without concerning himself about his friend’s whereabouts.

Without realising it, Droban was following Jeth’s path from the previous night as he started his journey. Droban had always left the village via the mountains rather than the plains for the simple expedient of disappearing quickly. This time he had found a grotesque cadaver cast in his path. Slung around the withered remains of its neck was a medallion.

Droban stooped to examine the medallion. It was as he thought. Grimly, he took it and stowed it in his pack. He had brought it back himself, years earlier as part of a goblin hoard.

Death in its many forms was not new to Droban. It seemed violence was a part of his life almost every day he was not in the village. But never this close to home. And never like this. He did not know what could do this to a life. Here was nothing so simple as death. It was as if life had been sucked into a vacuum, made as if it had never existed.

Droban would not survived so long as he had without senses developed beyond the normal range. Here his every nerve ending screamed that whatever had done this was still a present threat. The danger was still here. He was being watched. Danger was moving closer. Droban realised there was more than one threat nearby. He was being watched, had been for some time. The spy had crept closer. Was behind him.

His sword was at the stranger’s throat in an instant. His adversary, wisely, froze. He appeared unarmed and unarmoured. This meant he was either harmless or spectacularly dangerous. He wore deep azure robes with gold stitching around the edge of the hood, obviously expensive but bearing no identifying insignia or coat of arms. Perhaps only a simple traveler but more likely a magic user. A simple traveler was hardly likely to approach an armoured figure such as Droban silently and from behind. And only the most powerful of mages were likely to wander alone in any circumstances.

Droban knew this individual was almost certainly capable of launching an attack with a single word or gesture. He pressed the point of his sword a little harder against the stranger’s throat.

“Not a word,” he rumbled, his voice low and menacing. There was usually a magic user in the adventuring parties Droban joined so he was well aware that this potential mage would have many defenses. And attacks. He was confident none could be deployed at this range before a flick of his sword would open his opponent’s throat, ending any threat.

The stranger was holding perfectly still and, as per Droban’s instruction, silent. Now was a critical time. Droban could learn nothing if he didn’t allow his prisoner to speak but allowing his quarry any freedom of voice or movement could be fatal. The practicality of the situation meant the stalemate could not continue – it was either kill the stranger or allow him a little freedom. If Droban’s suspicions were correct, this mage could have attacked him from a distance before Droban was even aware of him. Still, no reason to let him off altogether.

“Explain why I should let you live.”

“Peace, warrior! I am not the one you seek. What you see before you was not done by me.”

“Who are you to know who or what I seek? I assure you now I have no wish to encounter whatever is responsible for this. I am drawn considerably more to one who would approach me with such stealth, seeking to catch me unaware.”

The magic-user faltered. If he held any prejudices about the intelligence of professional fighters, Droban would change his world view quickly. Droban was not fond of being underestimated. Those who did usually paid a heavy price. The mage held his hands open, palms outward to signify he intended no hostility. He slowly lifted his cowl.

The skullcap on his bald pate showed the first evidence of what looked like an identifying sigil to Droban. A pattern of intertwining spirals went around the circumference of the skullcap, reminding Droban of two snakes fighting. They even seemed to move independently as Droban’s viewing angle changed.

“I am the Magus Jura.” Not just a mage then. A titled wizard. Very powerful. Droban held his sword steady at the Magus’ throat. “You know who I am and what would happen if I were killed.”

It was not a question. But it was not a threat. The Magus was in no position to threaten. Droban held the power here. He could see the Magus was realizing the depth of his miscalculation and Droban intended to press home his advantage.

“I do not wish to know your name, magic-user. All it tells me is I would be a fool to lower my sword for a second. What I do wish to know is why you tried to attack me.”

“I did not attack you,” the Magus sputtered. “I would not have. There is danger enough here without creating more. There is an enemy here that would take great delight in attacking you and it is not me. I know your type, you’ve seen enough of this world to know immense force was required to kill this peasant like this. To kill in such a way is beyond any human power.”

Droban took his eyes off the Magus for the first time. He sensed something behind him had obscured the sun. But there it was, its yellow face beaming down untroubled. And yet he felt darkness growing. It was not the sun – his mind was being darkened. No. His soul. Something was clawing at his soul. Then he saw it.

It seemed like a cloud but it was rising from the earth, not resting in the sky. It was not a cloud. It was both more and less than a cloud. It moved towards them, a rising scud of black consuming the hillside. Roiling. Seething. Absolute nothingness.

“Warrior, it attacks! You cannot defeat it here and now, alone. We must escape. Release me and I will take us to safety.”

Droban’s prior dealings with magic-users and the aristocracy had led him to one conclusion: they couldn’t be trusted. The Magus was clearly both and Droban wasn’t sure which made him less trustworthy. In this case he did believe the Magus when he said the approaching something/nothing would destroy them. He also had no doubt the Magus could escape if Droban lowered his sword. He thought it unlikely, however, that the Magus would care to do more than save himself.

Droban saw two choices. He could either face certain death with the Magus or release him and face betrayal then death. He muttered a curse that he hoped would take the Magus and lowered his sword. The Magus disappeared. Blackness consumed Droban.

Everything disappeared.

Slowly the light grew. He was in another place. A small circular room with stone walls. The Magus was with him.

“You seem surprised, warrior. Yes,” the Magus mused absently, “I could easily have left you to die but you forget: I sought you out. I had no wish to waylay you… I need you. You must help me.”

Droban paid little attention to the Magus’ speech. More important to him was becoming familiar with his surroundings. He could cross this room in three strides if he needed to, although he would need to be careful to avoid tripping over the array of books, scrolls, parchments and mysterious devices that were strewn about the floor. The room was made smaller by the shelves that were also filled with a seemingly casual array of paraphernalia. Despite this apparent disorder, the Magus could secure at will whatever he sought: maps, histories, arcane tomes full of descriptions of otherworldly powers.

Droban could see only one door and one window. There were doubtless others only the Magus could find. Things were rarely as they seemed on the surface with magic-users. A cold wind gusted through the open pane. The narrow view afforded by the window was filled with a mountain range. They seemed to be about halfway up one of the mountains.

As far as Droban knew, this room might be the totality of the Magus’ domain but that was unlikely. He could have been in a tower, one tiny part of a castle or even a town. Even if the Magus was alone there would be magic wards both in this room and beyond to punish anyone acting against the Magus’ wishes. If he was to leave here safely, he was dependent on the Magus. For this reason alone Droban began to listen.

“We are in great danger, warrior. All of us!” His theatrics were as grand as his costume. “You saw that body, you know the dreadful threat of which I speak. I call it the Shadoeforce. It comes from another world, a dark reflection of ours. It is a terrible place of great empty darkness, separated from us by eternity and yet as close as the other side of a mirror.” He seemed like a grandfather telling fireside stories at bedtime to frighten children, not a great Mage saying anything of importance. Droban assumed the Magus thought he was talking down to his level. He let the insult pass. The magic-user amused him.

“Its true existence is in that emptiness, even though it has broken through the membrane separating our worlds only one aspect of its being is visible to us. Here it has found a place of energy, life. It would make this world its own, drawing off its life as we would take milk from a cow. It will steal all the energy it finds here, leaving our world a lifeless husk. It will consume us utterly.

“It must be stopped at its place of being. No power can stand against it in this world. You will not even be able to hide from it. Nor will I. Now will any power or powers in this world.

“Armies will be useless. Governments will be helpless. Mighty kings and heroes will be shown for the fools they are and none will survive.” He laughed. A sound that was not entirely bitter, perhaps thinking of those he would prefer to see dead. “Time is running out. Even now it may be too late. If you would see life continue, any life at all, you must help.”

 

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