Saturday, March 19, 2005

Vampire Duck Terrorizes China. Bunnicula Strangely Absent.

LITTLE BILL
That is you there, ain't it, Bob?
The Duck of Death?

WW
(daring)
Uh... Duke.

http://www.weeklyworldnews.com/features/suspects/10548

Comedy Gold.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

The Bouncin' Blue Beast!

Aint it Cool News is reporting on the new mutants joining the X-Men's ranks this time around.

http://www.aintitcool.com/display.cgi?id=19662

How do I express my unbridled excitement at hearing that Hank McCoy, the Beast, is going to be suiting up for this installment without sounding like a pathetic drooling fan-boy?

If someone knows, let me know. These random outbursts are getting embarrassing.

As a young kid, the Beast was my favorite super-hero. He had the whole "noble guy trapped in a monstrous form" thing going on, he had what I still consider to be one of the niftiest and most realistic of super-powers, and he was a genius to boot.

I credit comic books for my life-long love of literature, and I credit the Beast for getting me curious about words like pugilistic and loquacious.

Can't wait to see who they go with. I'll go ahead and nominate the Rock, Mr .Dwayne Johnson. He's funny, well-spoken, a capable dramatic actor, and totally lacking in vanity. He'd never do it, and we'll end up with a Cirque Du Soliel guy in a suit speaking in the voice of Kelsey Grammer/Lawrence Fishburne, but do I care?

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.

http://money.cnn.com/2005/03/15/news/newsmakers/ebbers/index.htm

A federal jury in New York, on its eighth day of deliberations, convicted Ebbers on all nine counts that he helped mastermind an $11 billion accounting fraud at WorldCom, now known as MCI.

He faces up to 85 years in prison, but sentencing guidelines are expected to result in a shorter term that legal experts say could nonetheless put Ebbers behind bars for the rest of his life. Sentencing is scheduled for June 13. Ebbers will appeal the verdict, his lawyer said Tuesday afternoon.


I was honestly convinced that these guys (worldcom, enron, et al.) were just going to do the legal shuffle until the public forgot about them, then cash in their favors.

But consider my faith partially renewed.

Execution Video Leaks From N Korea - Bush Shakes Finger Vigorously At Diminutive Despot. Tells Him "No Dessert!"

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1363808/posts

Does this mean we're going there next?

This must be how King Richard felt.

Kerry Pacer is a Brave Woman.

Ah...the anger...feel it flooding my veins....

Kerry Pacer was used to the whispering behind her back, the
name-calling and the snickering when she walked down the hall. But when almost
the entire student body at White County High School booed as she accepted a rose
from a female friend during a Valentine's Day (
news - web sites) program last month, she knew it was time to do something.

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/chitribts/20050313/ts_chicagotrib/highschoolgaysgetaharshlesson


"I just don't think it's right to have a club like this. It
ain't in the Bible," said Gary Colwell, 18, a brick mason who grew up in the
area. "We see them walking around holding hands, and it makes everybody feel
uncomfortable."

And that, in a nutshell, is why my friend Charles cannot live in his home state.

At the end of the day, its about whether or not he makes Billy-bob here uncomfortable.

Good luck with your club, Kerry. Consider me a member-in-spirit.






They Are Manipulating You

I haven't really been inspired to write about anything over the last few days. I'm in my last semester of law school, and that's been slowly cheese grating away at my soul.

But I was reading the latest Newsweek in the shower this morning and noticed an ad about tort reform (ie: lawsuit reform) that I just had to comment on.

From the ad:

IT DESTROYS YOUR JOBS.
IT RAISES YOUR TAXES.
IT TAKES YOUR MONEY.
AND IT'S ALL LEGAL.

"Your state's legal system may hurt you more than you know. Companies are hesitant to do business in a state with a reputation for unfair court systems..."

Now, I'm a law student, so that kind of dispels the notion of impartiality on my part.
But I'm also a libertarian, socially progressive, fiscally conservative, free-thinking individual with the ability to post my thoughts on the internets.

And my thought is this: This ad is fuckin' bullshit.

Now. While there is merit and necessity to the idea of tort reform, make no mistake about where this ad, and others like it, are coming from. They are the PR weapons of corporations, already well-insulated from the law in far too many respects, to perform advertising's oldest and most reviled task.

To get you to buy something you do not need.

The first sentence of the ad's body text should tell you exactly who lawsuits are hurting, and who this advertisement is backing. It's a primary rule of advertising (and anything, really) that your most important points go first and last, with other, less attractive stuff sandwiched between. It has something to do with our ever-increasing lack of intellectual focus.

So, the "headline" ("It destroys your jobs!") is pretty damn catchy, in a "Lawsuits are coming to murder your bretheren, rape the women-folk, and make off with the scalps of god-fearing settlers" kind of way.

But notice the advertisements first real, tangible point: Lawsuits make big businesses less likely to come to states with a "reputation for unfair court systems."

If you've ever had a Business Organizations class, you'd know that corporations have enormous leeway in the law. Enormous. Corporations are legally people, but with none of the moral/ethical strictures placed upon real people. And despite what their fuzzy ads (or, in this case, their apocalyptic ones) claim, corporations ACT like people with no moral or ethical constraints. In reality, they do not need additional insulation from real, worthy lawsuits. And there's no distinction made here between lawsuits that benefit you and I (such as class action suits against chemical companies for dumping toxic materials in drinking water - suits now far more difficult to bring under the bill President Bush signed in to law a few weeks back) and frivolous suits.

When people talk about the problem of lawsuits, inevitably, the subject of the "McDonald's Coffee Woman" comes up. It's a perfect picture for reformers to complain about the injustice of the court systems.

But if you'd had your genitals melted off by coffee that was super-heated to the point where courts had warned McDonald's over 30 times to lower the heat of their machines, maybe you'd want some money for your hospital bills and pain and suffering.

Read the facts on this case. They're interesting and easy to understand.
http://www.centerjd.org/free/mythbusters-free/MB_mcdonalds.htm

If you still think that suit is frivolous, you are one George Bailey-esque dude and/or dudette.

Tort reform is necessary, but not to ease the burdens of corporations. It's necessary because people like you and I are being prevented from recieving justice, monetarily or otherwise, by an increasingly complex and overly-costly system that favors corporations far more than it does your poor ass.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

HULK BLOG!

Even mindless gamma-irradiated monsters are blogging these days.

http://incrediblehulk.blogspot.com/

WHY IS IT THAT BECAUSE HULK IS STRONG PEOPLE THINK HULK
WILL SHOVEL SNOW FOR FREE?You give Hulk $10 and he will do your steps and your
sidewalk. It is not expensive and Hulk does a good job! He does a lot better job
than those stupid kids like Tommy McGill! Tommy doesn't sweep after his job, he
just leaves all those little bits there! HULK SWEEPS!

Heh.

(courtesy of "misfit"'s post over at www.chud.com)