The Guardian must take headlining lessons from the HuffPo

Blazoned across the spiffy new tiled format of The Guardian‘s website were the words, “Amelia Earhart aeroplane fragment identified.” I know these words, and I know that in their particular order they necessarily imply A) there is a piece of an airplane, and B) it has been identified as belonging to Amelia Earhart’s erstwhile Lockheed Electra. Continue reading

Forgetting something, Mr. Speaker?

“Does anybody think that Vladimir Putin would have gone into Crimea had George W. Bush been president of the United States?” asked the Republican Speaker of the House. “No! Even Putin is smart enough to know that Bush would have bunched in the nose in about 10 seconds!”

And the crowd went wild, forgetting, of course, that one time when Putin sent Russian troops into Georgia while George W. Bush sat around with his thumb up his ass.

 

 

Men Behaving Badly, and the idiots who defend them

Hollaback!’s candid video of a young woman walking the streets of New York City is getting quite a bit of traction. Watching it, I can understand why:

Pretty horrendous, right?

Some people don’t think so, I am shocked to learn. They’re out in force, courageously defending these poor misaligned catcalling men from the oppressive rhetoric of authoritarian women and pinko commie social justice warriors like… Rebecca Watson… apparently.

And their argumentation is flawless: Continue reading

The odds I would ever make it to Guyana were slim…

Now, they’re non-existent.

Piotr Naskrecki was taking a nighttime walk in a rainforest in Guyana, when he heard rustling as if something were creeping underfoot. When he turned on his flashlight, he expected to see a small mammal, such as a possum or a rat.

“When I turned on the light, I couldn’t quite understand what I was seeing,” said Naskrecki, an entomologist and photographer at Harvard University’s Museum of Comparative Zoology.
A moment later, he realized he was looking not at a brown, furry mammal, but an enormous, puppy-size spider.

Oh, hell no.

Another reason tipping waitstaff needs to stop

Ask anyone who works as a waiter or waitress: tipping sucks, and it needs to stop.

Queue the same old repugnant arguments about “quality control” and “customer service” from the same curmudgeonly conservative jackasses who have always promoted them, as if paying waitstaff a liveable hourly rate–a luxury just about every other profession affords its workers–would somehow lead to a dramatic, unalterable decline in the quality of service received at restaurants across the country. It’s a bullshit nonsensical argument from bullshit nonsensical people, too quick to upset and too dishonest to admit the real reason they think the tips-as-wages scheme is the way to go.

They like it because it gives them power over people. Continue reading

What Reza Aslan gets Wrong About New Atheism

I really don’t understand the fascination with Reza Aslan.

Whether or not you agree with Sam Harris’ and Bill Maher’s scathing appraisal of one of the world’s larger religions, you’d have to be blind not to see Aslan’s interest in discussing his religion on the public forum. He’s an apologist, and like any other apologist he’s made a job out of twisting himself into cognitive knots trying to convince everyone his religion is anything but anachronistic and regressive. It’s quite stunning that right-thinking liberals who wouldn’t think twice about tossing the likes of William Lane Craig into the crazy bin fawn over Aslan like he’s some monolithic warrior for social justice, defending 1.57 billion people from the tyranny of two middle-aged atheist Americans.

After the much-publicized kerfuffle between Harris and white guilt poster child Ben Affleck, Aslan is still harping on them, and people are still eating his nonsense up like it’s in short supply. Continue reading