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Sorry for inattentive today (yes, we have a Dead Pool winner – congratulations Mrs Carl). I have been under a cat. Specifically, this one – Ol’ Kneewrecker.

Also, I’ve been on Twitter. It’s as awful as you can imagine at the moment. I’m going back to chickens, books and vidya games for a while. But I did want to mention two things I learned from this election.

There are more of us than there are of them. Like, a lot more. Like, so many more that we broke their ballot-cheating mechanisms and they had to get clumsy and stupid and obvious about the steal. Will see if that has repercussions.

It’s possible to do things differently. Trump made huge inroads into Middle East peace – for example – by ignoring the old wisdom about fixing perpetually dysfunctional Palestine first. He successfully brokered multiple individual deals between nations. He deserves a lot of credit for that, which he will never get. That, and bringing soldiers home from various permanently smoldering trash fires.

I guess, for me, that’s the definition of the “Trumpism” everyone’s talking about – approaching old problems in new ways.

Someone said on Twitter that people need to go back and start running for dog catcher and ward captain, with an eye to higher and higher office. But that’s like sending your nice kid away to college and getting back a blue-haired gender studies graduate with a nose ring. The years-long process of grinding through lower office changes people, makes them into politicians. We need to find other avenues.

Trump is a strange and, in many ways, unlikeable character, but he changed me from “anyone’s better than Hillary” to an enthusiastic supporter. I’m afraid he was lightning in a bottle: a well-known celebrity with go-to-hell money of his own. If we see the same combination in play again, it’ll probably be somebody like Cher.

I’m hoping he opens a giant media company, which zooms to #1 in no time (thanks to the collapse of Fox). Then he can be in their faces 24/7.

January 8, 2021 — 8:49 pm
Comments: 22

This smells

A spearhead of identifiable antifa/BLM types break windows and gain access to the capitol building while Trump is still speaking across town. Security non-existent, even though a huge political rally has been scheduled for days – just regular Capitol Police in their everyday uniforms. Some genuine Trump supporters join the mob.

They all take selfies in the offices. Somebody steals a podium. An unarmed MAGA woman is shot by a plainclothesman, for some reason. Then it gets shut down.

Nancy just called this an “armed insurrection” and is demanding Trump is removed over it.

This stinks to high heaven. This was supposed to blow up and didn’t, and everything the left has said and done since is an effort to inflame feelings further.

They’re dying to get an “armed insurrection” aren’t they?

January 7, 2021 — 7:57 pm
Comments: 18

Welp, drinking early tonight

The guys initially clashing with police looked like Antifa to me. Young men, dressed mostly in black.

Perhaps moot now.

January 6, 2021 — 7:44 pm
Comments: 16

A little light reading

The above excerpt is from the official report of an American soldier who died by accident in Korea, unclear what year. A sad story picked out of a mountain of Wikileaks documents.

Yes, Wikileaks has opened its archive. Interesting timing, with Assange hoping for a pardon.

So far, most of the documents I’ve looked at are boring, marked unclassified and/or redacted to uselessness. Hillary’s emails are mostly whiteout (and I think these are ones that had already been released anyway).

The most salacious tidbit is a blurry photo purporting to be Steve Jobs’ positive HIV test.

If you want to paddle around for yourself, some helpful observations. The dump is HUGE and topically all over the place, from military reports to the business operations of a transcendental meditation group. If you see a .pdf or .txt file extension, that’s probably small and manageable in your browser. If you see a .zip file, that’s going to unfold into MANY files, or a whole directory structure of .html files (which implies they were scraped off of web sites). A .7z file is a 7zip file, a kind of compressed file that Windows won’t handle natively, but there’s a good open source tool for opening them.

If you find anything good, I’d like to hear about it.

December 17, 2020 — 5:42 pm
Comments: 3

‘Member me?


I’ll be honest; I kind of miss this face. Obama was easy to caricature (a thing I struggle with), plus you could make an easily-recognizable version of him without accidentally evoking old racist cartoons. He was just goofy looking.

I don’t miss his insufferable vanity, but even that is reduced to comedy now that he’s out of power. Just another shuffling ex-presidential zombie at state funerals.

p.s. in case you missed it, he really pissed off the lefties today by criticizing the slogan ‘defund the police’. The political zeitgeist has passed him by and he doesn’t realize it yet.




December 2, 2020 — 7:27 pm
Comments: 8

Good for you, sir

I see you managed to gnaw through the straps and escape the Home.

Zo! I’ve been dipping in and out of the information stream (treat yourself to at least the beginning of the Pennsylvania hearings today).

One of the weirdest factoids is the rumor about Biden’s $200 tax on rifles. Digging around, it’s unclear who started it. It’s kind of on his website: he says he wants ‘assault rifles’ registered like machine guns are, and I guess the fee is $200 to register a machine gun.

But somebody put those ideas together and put them out there, like he was going to issue an immediate EO or something, and it wasn’t his campaign.

Somebody is trying to make gun people big mad, just when gun people are already huge mad. Hmm.

November 25, 2020 — 8:06 pm
Comments: 6

How to make orange man orange

For this next demonstration, I will need the use of color.

A couple of years ago, I read someone say they’d met Donald Trump and they were surprised to find he wasn’t orange at all. He was ordinary skin color. That made me go ‘hmmm’ with my Photoshop costume on.

Usually, credibly editing a portion of an image is a tedious slog, with lots of outlines and masks and feathering. But turns out making the orange man orange isn’t hard at all. Behold!

Open image. Call up the ‘hue – saturation’ slider. Choose the red channel. Slide it halfway to the right. Save. Done. Like, ten seconds.

See my sample here. I used Gimp this time because I was too lazy to fire up Photoshop, but they work the same.

A handy way to see if this has been done is to look at his tie and see if it’s super-saturated red. In my short hunt for a suitable photo, I noticed he tends to favor red ties with a slight magenta cast. You’ll see that in my sample image – the left one is slightly pinky, the altered one is red, red, red.

There’ve been some screaming pumpkin-orange Trumps on the news lately. I’d tell you I’m surprised at the media pissing away yet more credibility like this, but nah.

Have a good weekend, y’all! Go out and get some sun on your beaks, if you have any sun.

November 20, 2020 — 9:24 pm
Comments: 6

That’s some spicy kraken…

I don’t usually watch live political events. I usually find them cringe-worthy. I made an exception for the Trump legal team’s press conference. Watch it. WATCH IT.

I don’t know what the future holds, but I’m calling that news conference a watershed moment in American politics.

The link goes to C-SPAN. They won’t get to C-SPAN, will they?

November 19, 2020 — 8:44 pm
Comments: 14


The above is a site billing itself as the new alternative to Drudgereport: populist.press. At least, it bills itself that way if you don’t have popups blocked.

They’ve certainly mimicked the look and feel of Drudge. I found when I clicked links, though, it took me to a synopsis of the story hosted on populist.press itself. Then within that item you could click to read it on its original platform. I’m not sure why they’d do it that way – it’s more work for them, if nothing else – and it means you can’t just hover over the link to see if the article is from a source you trust.

Eh. Give it a try. I have a feeling lots of news sources will be shutting down in the days ahead.

November 16, 2020 — 8:23 pm
Comments: 7

Spain does it again

Spain’s latest civic art restoration project was brilliant as usual. Ahem.

So, after a week of using Parler, some tips.

Clicking hashtags is useful, because you won’t be following enough people at first to make it interesting. When you do click a hashtag, the first three or four entries will be busty camwhores advertising their wares. Block them or you’ll see them over and over again, guaranteed (unless you like seeing busty camwhores – who am I to judge?).

I also report them as spam because they piss me off, but I don’t know how Parler feels about that. The platform that bills itself as ‘no-censor’ may have a funny attitude about kicking anyone, even spammers.

Second, the grifters. There are a few accounts hawking Trump commemorative coins and the like. I mute those rather than block (some paid to be promoted and I suppose it helps support the platform, but they made me feel grubby).

Third, the nuts. I mute them, too. There are some goofy-ass people on Parler, as you would expect on a platform founded on Twitter rejects. I suppose some are lefty trolls trying to make righties look crazier, but we’re perfectly capable of turning out genuine right-wing nutbars, thanks.

Follow the same people you follow elsewhere, but beware counterfeit accounts – there are lots of these. Do that enough and it starts to be a little more useful.

Once you’ve done all that…it’s still too slow and lacking engagement to be a Twitter replacement. Worth having open in a tab, though, for sure. Once they absorb the newcomers and tweak their software a bit, we’ll see.

Final tip: the phone app is swifter than the Web app.

Oh, and new Dead Pool tomorrow!

November 12, 2020 — 8:08 pm
Comments: 7