Gratuitious politics post du jour

Arizona.  Illegal immigration.  Yadda yadda.

I stated my broad opinions on this over in the D&T forum.  Cliff notes: Federal perogative which is not being exercised, situation becoming untenable, “Papieren bitte!” raises my hackles.

But this post isn’t necessarily about my opinions on the Arizona legislation.  If you want those, you can always go read the post on Eccie.

What I find curious and thought-provoking about this whole thing is that, after following the bill and the news on this quite extensively, it ought to be a non-starter.  Arizona has essentially plagiarized the federal law already on the books.  It’s the ultimate in “me too” legislation.  It doesn’t actually DO anything except state AZ now plans to do what the feds said they were going to do all along.

And for this, the President wants the DoJ to get involved?  For this, we get wild violent protests full of swastikas (from the pro-illegal set, y’all!)?

Perhaps it is the cynic in me, but I’m seriously contemplating that this was a casus belli.  Why the overreaction?  Why now?  Well, because it needed to be thrust into the public conscious so the masses could be properly convinced this is a Big Deal in need of Immediate And Drastic Reform Legislation.

I’m waiting to see how this develops.  It’d be nice to be wrong.  Maybe it’s merely that it’s going to be a hot summer, and everyone’s broke, and Greece/Spain/Portugal only make Joe Six-Pack uncomfortable without knowing precisely why – but illegals!  Yes, we understand that one!

Published in: on April 30, 2010 at 8:59 pm  Comments (2)  

Stupid news link of the day: When Happy Meals are outlawed, then only outlaws will have Happy Meals

Today’s word count:  1320

Current project:  Just started a proofreading project for someone else.

Current song on my playlist:  Static-X, Love Dump

A gent posts something I find quite pertinent over in the Dallas Co-Ed.

I realize in this day of texting, facebook, twitter, and on and on, that a lot of messages are exchanged by means of a ton of abbreviations and minimal capitalization and punctuation. I’m not suggesting that eccie has gone to that level, but I came across a post this morning that raised the question in my mind. Where do we draw the line, or do we?

I hate to point it out, but it doesn’t have anything to do with the internet or modern technological wonders.  That’s just the way people are these days.  All people.  Writers.

My writing experience isn’t limited to just freelance articles on spec.  I’ve done proofreading, beta-reading, had an editorial position which involved slogging through a slush pile.  (For the record, a slush pile is a pile of submissions to be read through in the hopes something good is hiding in that massive collection of dreck.  Usually, the answer is no.  Slush piles are why editors drink – true story.) 

Try proofreading for someone (graduate-level work, mind) who consistently can’t spell worth a damn, and then has to have the concept of homonyms spelled out in excrutiating detail when they want to know why they ran a spell-check and still have to correct so many spelling errors. 

Beta-reading was worse.  I’ve had to patiently explain that dialogue punctuation is not subject to artistic license – and then had the little cunt tell me her English professor said it was fine so she didn’t see why she had to listen to me.  (NOT HELPING, you pandering fuckhead pussy.  Are you sleeping with her or what?  Jesus.)

I will never look another slush pile in the face again without reflexively reaching for strong liquor.

It’s an industry truism that if a would-be writer can manage to put together two consecutive paragraphs without a single error in spelling, punctuation or grammar, they are ahead of 98% of all the other would-be writers out there.  Two whole paragraphs!  This gives me sadface.

If writers, the very definition of which is one with a certain facility with the language, are still struggling with the basics, I’m no longer surprised by anything I see posted by regular folk.

Hurrah, public education.

Published in: on April 29, 2010 at 3:22 pm  Leave a Comment  

Music, savage beasts, yadda yadda

Blame Greyhound for this one, he got me started on the topic. 

I’m a music freak.  I’ve got a collection of music which rivals my collection of books.  Seriously eclectic range too – Tocatta and Fugue to Toby Keith to Pantera to Bonnie Tyler.  I think the only music I don’t like is the vast majority of R&B/hip-hop and pop.  No R. Kelly, Lady Gaga or Justin Timberlake; all of them strange, strange people with unfortunate hair (Lady Gaga is at least talented – just don’t personally care for her work).    

Most of y’all who know me will likely recall that my work phone’s ringer is Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite.  I get a kick at the look on a guy’s face when he hears it.  I think he must have been expecting whatever’s hot in rap this week, like every other provider.

My favorite song, though?  I don’t actually have one favorite, but I do have one song that I will never get tired of no matter how often I hear it.  I’ve put it on “repeat” and just let it go over and over while editing some of my latest scribblings.  It’s the ringtone on my personal phone.  I dig it, yo. 

Slipknot – Psychosocial 

I like music, lots of music, but hard rock will always be my favorite genre.  Did you know I used to dance in strip clubs?  Yeah.  This is the music I danced to.  In a crowd of 30-60 girls all fighting over the same twenty hip-hop songs, I stuck out.

Published in: on April 22, 2010 at 3:05 pm  Comments (2)  

A word on reality

People don’t like to be challenged.  By ‘challenged’ I don’t mean a display of alpha male aggression – I mean ‘stretched’.  It’s uncomfortable to take your worldviews and long-held opinions out of their box and take a good hard look at them. 

“I think, therefore I am.”  If that were true then man would not qualify as a sentient species.  Man does not think.  Man accepts.  A person will be fed their opinions early, or occasionally will display “rebelliousness” by reading rhetoric that “feels right”; in neither case will that person ever question these beliefs again, no matter what reality might tell them.  Never let the facts get in the way of a good opinion.  (Hey, it’s less painful than learning to think!)

“Everyone knows” liberals are wild-eyed pinko commie hippies who hate America and smoke pot and want to have us all chipped and ban everything fun because it’s bad for us.

“Everyone knows” conservatives are gun-toting bible-thumping sister-humping rednecks who worship Beck/Limbaugh and only read Fox News and hate anyone who isn’t white.

“Everyone knows” hookers are all crack-whores who are pimped out, abused by their johns, and apend all their money on drugs.

It’s a quirk of human nature.  Here’s something I once wrote on it:

Perception is the filter by which we view reality. In theory this works quite well, but then so does communism. All men are idealists and view the world through rose-tinted glasses, the left hand lens being called Experience and the right Bias, both such being so wound up in who we are that the whole is called Ego. Ordinary pink spectacles they are to others but to our own selves perception is a validation and summation of our existence. Thus will a man choose perception over reality if the latter disagrees with the former. To an intellect, this is irony – to a bastard, this is opportunity.

Published in: on April 20, 2010 at 9:49 pm  Leave a Comment  

I. Am. AWESOME.

I just found out that the ADL has taken a quote from me, hacked and pieced with lots of “…[]” in order to make it sound as if it’s saying the opposite, and published said hacked quote in a report on violent conservative extremists.

I’m almost drunk on the heady rush of importance.  I’m now going to piss them off by quoting myself in all future articles, thusly: “”Ummm…  hi,” states Emily Hemingway, recently quoted by the ADL in an official report.”  There’s not a damned thing they can do about it either, because it’s completely true.

The best part?  The VERY best part?  ADL stands for Anti-Defamation League.  To quote Inigo Montoya, “I don’t think that words means what you think it means.”

I love irony.

Published in: on April 19, 2010 at 1:28 pm  Comments (1)  

Siiiiigh.

And this is a damned good illustration of why I don’t post much.

As far as RJ goes… I’ve always liked the guy.  Nor do I mean that in the “I don’t know him but I like his posts” sort of way.  I actually know him, have laid eyes on him, have enjoyed conversation with him, and did all this before I got on the hobby boards.  And I like him.  Always thought of him as enjoyable, intelligent and a good hobbyist.  This level of ire from him on the topic of healthcare rather has me at a loss. 

I’m choosing to believe he is still the same likable guy, but that I am not in possession of all the facts of his life (which I’m not, we aren’t bosom buddies or anything).  For all I know, his brother died when they were kids because his family couldn’t afford medication.  I don’t know if this is true but I don’t know that it ISN’T, and it would certainly explain why his reaction seems a bit… hostile.

The other guy, though, seems just educated enough to be an inflammatory dickwad in grander language, albeit not educated enough to carry on a  proper discussion.

I make a very long post, taking pains to phrase my opinions as opinions, not bringing anyone’s person/character/their mother into the argument, and offer refuting facts of unquestionably high value from strong sources (World Bank, Census Bureau – no Fox News or weirdo conspiracy sites). 

And in response, I get this:

Just my .02 of inflammatory nonsense, but I wonder how many providers actually claim their services on taxes (or even file)? Easy to be an armchair quarterback when your not in the game, eh?

So passive-aggressive it’s almost cute.  Probably he meant all those other providers posting on the thread, heya?  I call ad hominem.  He responds with, “I’m rubber and you’re glue, nyaa nyaa.”  Pithy!  That’s me told, right enough.

I’m waiting for the Ultimate Hobbyist Smackdown – that he’s taking me off his “to see” list because I dared to speak in front of the menfolk.  Oho, that’d be rich indeed, on many levels.  Throw in likening me to Hitler and we’d have MessageBoard Bingo.

Le sigh.  Look, y’alls, can’t we all – well, certainly not “get along”, but I’ll settle for “act like adults”.  Name-calling, taunts, childishness, sticking your fingers in your ears, “you’re a girl, yucky girls don’t know anything”… I left that sort of behavior behind me more than two decades ago and some hobbyists are old enough to be my grandfather, so they’ve got even less excuse.

I’ll bet I’m the youngest person on that thread.  I’ll be vastly disappointed if I’m also the most mature.

ETA: No one say anything about MBB (MessageBoard Bingo)!  He just called me a bitch in Latin.  If he threatens to take me off his “to see” list, I’ve got a bingo and Mr X owes me lunch.  In San Antonio.  I’m thinking Stonewerks, but their wine list has kind of gone downhill.  Any ideas? 

Silver lining, y’all.  Silver lining.

Published in: on April 19, 2010 at 12:08 pm  Leave a Comment  

It speaks, but does it write?

And we have a journalist outing herself on the Diamonds and Tuxedos forum.

Perhaps.

You know Emily’s got some commentary on this one. 

Reporters, journalists, they are held to that standard. You ahve to be fair and unbiased, Often they makes people unhappy as the truth is not always welcome and can create all sorts of misery for people.

Rubbish.  Reporters always have an angle.  Editors always want to know what the angle is.  That’s what sells copy.  There is no “fair” and there’s damned well no “unbiased”, there is only the angle on the facts.  The facts are supposed to be accurate, for a given value of “accurate”, but that’s all.

Ron Paul takes second in the last straw poll, losing by only one vote to Mitt Romney and getting far more votes (60 more, IIRC) than Sarah Palin.  A mainstream poll sits him as having a 41% vote approval rating, right behind President Obama with 42% in the same poll.  The headline?  “Longshot candidate Ron Paul considering bid”.   Tell me again about “unbiased”.

A recent Rasmussen poll put voters who identified themselves as Tea Party members at 24%, up eight points from the last poll when the number was 16%.  They are labeled a “fringe” group in the media, and as “radicals”.  Tell me again how fair it is to call a quarter of the nation a “fringe”.

Disclosure:  I am not now nor have I ever been a Tea Party member, and neither have I attended one of their rallies.  I have, though, voted for Ron Paul and will bloody well do so again if given the opportunity. 

This talk about “truth” sounds all nice and whatnot but it’s bullshit.  Newspapers don’t sell the truth.  They publish whichever plausible version of the truth will make the most money.  I have yet to meet a reporter who thought different.  Truly a “don’t hate the player – hate the game” breed of cat.

This gal might be a real reporter, and if so she’s blowing sunshine up the forum’s collective arse ends.  Putting out something sugary-sweet in the hopes someone will buy it and give her the story, because she’s such a NICE gal only in pursuit of “the truth”.  Or, and I am not ruling this one out, she’s not a reporter at all, she’s a freelancer or intern hoping to get that big Pulitzer-worthy story that breaks her onto the scene.

Stories about people who lead a quiet middle-class life outside of sessions are boring.  Stories about drug-addicted hookers with a long history of abuse at the hands of men, who make their money off other abusive and misogynistic men that will all become serial rapists and murderers one day when they get up the courage, is what will sell.  People like comfortable caricatures that fit their preconceived notions and tell them what “everyone knows” to be true. 

Which is why I don’t write about the hobby.  My life is not interesting enough to make the news.

Published in: on April 16, 2010 at 5:00 pm  Leave a Comment  

This shit really pisses me off

Freeloading predatory assholes.

Just for f’ing starters, DoL is already cracking down on unpaid internships.  Because they’re ILLEGAL, dipshits.  Interns are only allowed to be unpaid positions when the company can prove the interns are learning something of academic value in their field, are not providing work of monetary value to the company and are not replacing paid positions.

Assigned tasks will include writing stories, copy editing other interns work, and submitting typos and broken links while each guide is in beta.

Clearly doesn’t apply here.  

Further, I’m getting really sick of editors who think they can buy copyrights for bylines only.  You would not believe the number of dickwads who try this stunt, even from (hypothetically) reputable mags.   Bullshit.  Bullshit, bullshit, bullshit.  If you want to publish my stuff, you have to give me a byline anyway as per copyright law (unless you’ve paid for universal, full-rights-in-perpetuity licence, in which case I’m considered a ghostwriter, but you had to BUY such a licence or it’s plagiarism to profit without credit).  Volunteer bylines are considered fluff crap anyway in the market – giving your work away doesn’t impress anyone.  Whoever answers this ad is going to find out they wasted four months of work for what real editors are going to consider the equivalent of writing for your high school’s paper.   

Assholes preying on the gullible really annoy the hell out of me.

Published in: on April 15, 2010 at 1:11 am  Comments (2)  

Because taxes are fuckin’ funny

Today’s Ticker.

The Ticker forum.

I’m rapidly approaching the point where I’d send the Vaseline pic. Along with a pic of goatse.

*snerk*

If there’s anyone left of such tender internet innocence that they don’t know what goatse is… don’t google it, WHATEVER YOU DO.  Dead serious, yo.  You’ll need to scrub your brain with bleach.

I remember years ago, when we’d hyperlink something innocuous sounding (Kitties, or Grandma’s angelfood cake recipe) and it was a link to goatse instead.  The best was some fruitcake biblethumper who’d pissed me off in a debate once.  I bet that tit is still in therapy. 

Good times, man.  Good times.

Published in: on April 11, 2010 at 10:23 pm  Leave a Comment  

*sniffle*

Bleh.  I am so sick.  Here I sit, surrounded by Kleenex, the remains of a chicken soup dinner and a bottle of NyQuil. 

On the bright side, I haven’t left the house in two days so I managed over 1700 words today.  Yay for productive.  Now if I could just stop coughing.

Published in: on April 11, 2010 at 12:38 am  Comments (2)