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Ugh. I just watched the opening film for the Copenhagen climate summit for the first time. It’s awful. No, don’t bother — it’s not fun awful, it’s just bad.

Surprisingly bad. I mean, it’s not even a good example of tear-jerking child exploitative propaganda. It’s perfunctory. It doesn’t connect. It could be titled Girl Makes Mildly Distressed Faces In Front Of a Green Screen.

And, yes, her teddy bear is a polar bear. And, yes — of course she drops it into a huge crevice that opens in the earth. And, sure, we get a shot of her hand reaching for it. Languidly. The way you might reach for the potato chip you dropped. You’d like it, but on second thought, you know it’s probably better to let the dog have it.

I thought the left was supposed to have all the clever creative types on board?

Good weekend, everyone!


Comment from S. Weasel
Time: December 11, 2009, 5:34 pm

The left’s idea of a scandal: Rachel Maddow discussing an American Petroleum Institute brochure where they bought a stock photo of people and Photoshopped one of the white guys black and another one Asian.

While I agree it’s tacky to Photoshop race, I’m not sure I get the problem. The API didn’t want to pose models themselves so they bought a stock photo. Big deal. Do they think minorities aren’t all in favor of cheap gas? Pff!

Incidentally, I might possibly be the inventor of that tacky maneuver. Or at least the first person to use it. I turned my boss into an African American using an early photo manipulation system that predated Photoshop by several years. Management was horrified (though they couldn’t quite explain why) and made me destroy the file with extreme prejudice.

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: December 11, 2009, 7:00 pm

Photoshop be buggered!

The Weasel and I live in a vastly white corner of England, where not only do the scattered remains of the Saxon and Celtic tribes gather and gaze in horror as our cities are turned into hell-holes, but they also age and die. Lots of old coots around here, mostly wondering WTF happened to their country.

Recently, the local area health authority sent us a brochure pimping their ‘services’. The cover shot depicted what has become the default image of Euroweenie advertising in reecnt years. A group of young people (not one over 30) in a racial mix that you might find on the campus of a third level ‘university’ in some urban nightmare like Liverpool. or London, or Leeds.

My immediate reaction was to put in a Freedom of Information request for all correspondence relating to this cover, because you can be sure this image didn’t appear out of nowhere. It was a message. We were intended to take note.

Then I remembered I had a living to earn and barely sufficient time in which to do it.

And that is how the bastards get away with it. No Photoshopping skills required. Just our money and an evil intent.

Comment from Roman Wolf
Time: December 11, 2009, 7:35 pm

Stop climate change NOW! It’s for the children!

Incidentally, I’m sure I’m not the only one who got a weird feeling that the kids at the end saying “stop climate change now” had an oddly cultish tone?

Oh, Uncle B, I’m wondering what the fuck happened to my two countries and I’m barely in my early twenties. We’ve gone mad it seems.

And one reason why it’s always young people on the cover of brochures and the like is that people(my age and a bit older) don’t like being reminded that one day we will die(barring a fiery chariot from the heavens). Old people are reminders of mortality you see.

Comment from Allen
Time: December 11, 2009, 7:43 pm

Kee-rist, what a load of bushwa. That’s OK, it helps me channel my inner anarchist. I’m sorta hoping all sort of nasty things happen due to the Climate Summit fucking up economies worldwide. And, it puts me in the mood for this song

Famine, war, disease, and poverty. The horsemen are riding in Copenhagen.

Comment from Scubafreak
Time: December 11, 2009, 7:51 pm

One of these days I need to get off my arse and learn to use GIMP. I can’t afford P-Shop, and GIMP is supposed to be almost as powerful. They also have a new release that makes it more “Photoshopper friendly”….

Comment from Scubafreak
Time: December 11, 2009, 7:53 pm

Badger, I can tell you what happened to your country. It’s the same thing happening to MINE..

The Libs are importing turd-world migrants as quickly as they can to dilute the more conservative BRITISH voting population and get what they never could before.

Comment from Mrs. Peel
Time: December 11, 2009, 8:31 pm

Scuba, I used the Gimp first, so now I don’t like Photoshop’s interface. Go figure. But I use it only for really basic stuff, so I can’t really comment on how powerful it is. It reduces red eye pretty well!

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: December 11, 2009, 9:18 pm

Whichever you learn first, you’ll be frustrated with the other, for sure.

For vector, I used Corel Draw for years, after which I could *never* get the hang of stupid Adobe Illustrator. When I sit down to Gimp, I’m equally annoyed.

Comment from LordFlashHeart
Time: December 11, 2009, 9:24 pm

I don’t know about you Weasels -but I’m going to war.
Pass the ammo Scuba!

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: December 11, 2009, 10:11 pm

OK LordFlashHeart, just tell me what time we meet and whether you need any more tar and feathers to help the party go with a swing.

Or rope. I could do rope.

Comment from Allen
Time: December 11, 2009, 10:14 pm

Weasel, you said the magic word, Corel! I made a fair bit of coin on that stock in the crazy run-up in the market in 1999. I bought at $2 and it went to $40 in a matter of months. I short sold it too when it crashed. Lummee some Corel stock.

Hey, that bit about me violating trading rules was true, but there were no fines involved. I was just suspended from trading for a bit. Which was funny when I think about it. It’s okay to be a pirate, if you’re a nice, rule following pirate.

Lord, love a duck. There’s a piece of software called “Gimp?” I think I need to write a new language called “Tard.” On second thought, I think the folks at CRU have cornered that particular market.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: December 11, 2009, 10:19 pm

Graphic Image Manipulation Program. 🙂

I was a beta tester for Corel for years. How long ago? The last version I tested came on 20 floppy disks. And I had to upgrade to Win95 to test it.

Poor bastards are declaring bankruptcy any time now. They offer me a deal on Painter or Wordperfect every other day.

Comment from Allen
Time: December 11, 2009, 10:43 pm

Well, my proposed new software, “Tard,” stands for Totally Awesome Data Reduction. 🙂

Yeah Corel used to build some pretty fine products but they went downhill pretty damn quickly when they became part of the “new economy.” The CEO at the time, IIRC, got his wife a boob job on company money. Something about corporate image I think.

Comment from Scubafreak
Time: December 11, 2009, 10:49 pm

Allen, it’s called “FORMAT C:”


Comment from Blast Hardcheese
Time: December 12, 2009, 8:07 am

So AGW now causes earthquakes? Is there anything it CAN’T do? It’s the climate’s version of a ninja!

And polar bears…when they’re very young, I can kinda see why people think they’re cute. The grown-ups just look like what they are: a ton of furry carnivore that eats anything that moves. Nightmare fuel!

Comment from dfbaskwill
Time: December 12, 2009, 9:52 am

“I think I need to write a new language called “Tard.” On second thought, I think the folks at CRU have cornered that particular market.”

hehehe, Penn State was the original home of Fotran, I believe, so Michael Mann probably has already authored Tard and has been using it since 2006.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: December 12, 2009, 9:57 am

Wait, no…it’s Gnu Image Manipulation Program, isn’t it?

A couple of weeks ago, I dreamed Uncle B and I were playing a game called “tardball.” It was a variant of cricket (like I understand the first thing about cricket). I’ve been meaning to work “tardball” into a post ever since.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: December 12, 2009, 10:45 am

Creatives always wander off the reservation; it’s part of what makes them creative. When the reservation was Eisenhower era white optimism, the creatives were tilting Left. The reservation these days, of course, is the Left, which is being abandoned by the creatives as they again enact their eternal migration. What remains on the reservation are invariably hacks.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: December 12, 2009, 3:59 pm

WordPerfect was the absolute best, back when SSI developed it, and even after it became WordPerfect Corporation. Then (as the story goes) Microsoft intentionally gave the WP boys bad hooks into the Windows OS and suddenly the best word processing software in the friggin’ world turned to shit. Corel picked it up for a song and maybe a lunch at Olive Garden, and WordPerfect (for all intents and purposes) ceased to exist. Buit for a while, WordPerfect made WordStar look like the piece of geek-think shit it was.

Comment from David Gillies
Time: December 12, 2009, 4:26 pm

I have GIMP on my Mac because a) I rashly formatted the main partition as case-sensitive and PSCS won’t run and b) as someone who is not a graphics professional forking out $700 for an image manipulation program is nuts. I vastly prefer PS to GIMP (and I never got the hang of Corel Draw, or Freehand either, having used Illustrator practically since its inception). For flinging pixels around for a long time I used a program called MacBits. It had a feature that let you draw at your printer’s native resolution so I used it for some serious technical drawing, like circuit schematics for a robot telescope I was designing.

WordPerfect was superior to MS Word for a while, but for my money the best MS Word version was the original Mac one back in 85 or so. It’s only a goddamn text editor, so it should be able to fit on a floppy. I mean, I want to know why TextEdit is 22MB. (It’s all the internationalisation stuff – the executable’s only 264K).

The Gerbil Worming video sucks donkeys, but almost all agitprop is leaden and dull. The Left ran out of ideas decades ago.

Comment from EW1(SG)
Time: December 12, 2009, 4:55 pm

Sniff. My favorite was always the Leading Edge Word Processor s/w for PC. Closest thing you could get to a hardware Wang word processor on a PC, but it didn’t catch on much.

/I am so NOT going to watch that video. It’s Saturday, fer crying out loud. And I hafta fly to Miami tomorrow.

//I am sooo going to get me some goreball warming….

Comment from The Dread Pirate Neck Beard
Time: December 12, 2009, 8:00 pm

The GIMP is okay, but some of the simpler functions (like “select all of the same colour”) need to be a bit easier to access, if you ask me (& you didn’t, but I forgive you).

If I’m just banging words into a text file, one of easyedit or nvi or nano works just fine (though nano frequently has to be severely reprimanded for illicitly wrapping long lines). For actual word processing, I simply love the WordStar emulator for /usr/local/bin/joe. Man, I do miss a (very) few things about the 80s.

Comment from David Gillies
Time: December 13, 2009, 3:45 am

Dread Pirate: for actual code-wrangling, there are two choices outside of XCode: emacs or BBEdit. If your code-editing tool is not scriptable it is broken. I wrote a plugin for BBEdit that enabled me to complete my MSc thesis in time, and I regularly write emacs LISP functions that let me do bigtime intelligent search-and-replace edits on our approximately million-line codebase. Plus, if you don’t have egrep, xargs, tee, tr, cut, sed, awk, php, perl, bash and python as standard, your machine is the smelly kid with the permanently-blocked nostril that always gets called last for team games.

Comment from francis
Time: December 13, 2009, 11:56 pm

Best graphics program for non-graphics types, imo, is Paint.NET. It’s ridiculously easy to use, and does most of what I need from photoshop, for free. I’ve actually switched back and forth between windows and linux boot drives just because it was faster for me to swap drives and use paint.net than figure out the GIMP.

Comment from weirdsister
Time: December 14, 2009, 12:12 pm

Have you seen this yet? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUtzMBfDrpI

They used an armed guard to intimidate a journalist who was asking inconvenient questions about Climategate at the Copenhagen Global Warming Festival, I mean, Summit. Unfuckingbelievable.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: December 14, 2009, 2:58 pm

I did, weirdsister! But now Al Gore has landed, I’m sure everything will work out.

Comment from Scubafreak
Time: December 14, 2009, 7:13 pm

Oh, and just a heads up, everyone. Apparently the movie AVATAR is just a little bit to the left of CHE GUIVERA. So don’t waste your money……..



My recommendation is to go see Planet 51. Pretty good, and they did a cute job of recycling Sigourney Weaver’s perenial menace into the local family pet…….. 😉

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: December 14, 2009, 7:45 pm

I’ll wait for Avatar on Amazon’s Born Again (what Uncle B calls Buy It Used). That way, I can see the cool CGI, but he doesn’t get my money.

I don’t remember what the 3D thing is, though. Special screens? Polarizing glasses? I’ll have to live without that bit.

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: December 14, 2009, 7:54 pm

It’s getting panned here too, Scubafreak. And that’s from our film critics, who are somewhere to the Left of Mao.

It must really stink.

Comment from David Gillies
Time: December 15, 2009, 12:32 pm

Best line on Avatar so far: someone dubbed it ‘Dances with Smurfs’.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: December 15, 2009, 4:35 pm

Only review I’ve read of Avatar is a slob-job that I can’t remember the link to. But the Dances With Smurfs line certainly jibes with the storyline as described in that review.

Comment from Enas Yorl
Time: December 15, 2009, 5:37 pm

Oral Roberts has passed on. Did anyone have him in the Pool Stoaty?

3D films – they give you polarizing glasses to wear. Works pretty good too! I saw the last Final Destination that way. Having actual blood squirt out from the seat in front of you really heightens the realism too.

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: December 15, 2009, 6:14 pm

Yeah, I’ve been to cinemas like that, too 😉

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: December 15, 2009, 8:30 pm

Nope, Enas. Nobody had the unfortunately named Mr Roberts.

HOLY SHIT! Click on the link and check out dude’s earlobes. He prolly died of the weight of those things, like the elephant man.

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