Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The America

So, instead of helping the entire country wrest itself from a possible depression, congress decided that it would be an awesome idea to whore themselves out for votes. The 700 billion dollar plan that would work got voted no, mostly thanks to the Republican side, which voted two third against, while two thirds of the Democrat side voted for the bill.

Why did they vote it down? They said that it doesn't help the average American. Well, the odd fact is that if this buy out does not go through, the country is like facing a second depression, so I don't think stopping the bill really helps anyway. Also, this isn't quite a "buy out," it's more of a "buy in" to the market as a whole, which means that this money could actually grow and be taken back by the government and spend on something directly helping Americans. Thanks for reading that memo, jackasses, instead of helping your people, you're just appealing to them for more votes, so you can pad your retirement package by staying in office a little longer.

So, once again, American congress drops the ball. In fact, they did worse than that, they just gave the entire world the collective middle finger. The way I see it, all those Republicans who voted it down wee thinking something like this:

"Hey, we know you're screwed too, but we're going to sit on our asses and futz around trying to keep ours seats in office, because we're power hungry and can't go on withot having enough capital to fund our third home in the Bahamas."

Oh, and if the American market goes down, then the whole world is screwed. Thanks Republicans!

Sunday, September 28, 2008


So, Paul Newman died, and now everybody is lauding him as a great philanthropist. That's all fine and dandy, but was it not the man himself who once said "I don't think there's anything exceptional or noble in being philanthropic. It's the other attitude that confuses me."

Ironic, yes, that he was quite a giver, throughout his career. I find the bigger irony is that many people are calling him a hero of giving. Maybe I'm missing something, but I think it's a little silly to elevate someone who obviously didn't believe in such elevations.

Just my two cents.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


Stephen Harper is probably not the best human being on the planet, this much is for sure; he's a politician, after all, but while he might have been able to secure my vote, he certainly lost it now.

Somehow, through his advisorial staff, somebody told him that working class Canadians don't care about culture. Last I had checked, "culture," such as theatre, music and movies, were mostly designed for the working class as a type of escape from the rigors of a badly governed life. (Thank you History 106.)

So, instead of distracting your people from your failures by spending cash on movies, television and other escapes, Harper finds it useful to cut funding.

For the first time in a while, I'm finding it difficult to come up with words strong enough to condemn something along these lines. Almost once a week, I attend a poetry reading (shut up, I'm a writer) which includes featured readers. These readers come from all over Canada to perform at this event, and their travel costs are partially subsidised by the Canadian Council for the Arts, which draws its money from government subsidies. If this service had less available money, then where would my own small corner of poetic solace go? And before anybody says that poetry readings are a small part of this, chew on the fact that the cafe where these readings takes place is standing room only, every week.

Somehow, I doubt that this kind of event would go anywhere but down the shitter, thanks entirely to Harper.

Kind of nice to be able to blame something so grand on one person. Gives you something to imagine on your toilet paper when you're wiping your ass.

On second thought, I don't think Harper is good enough to wipe my ass.

Monday, September 22, 2008

New-school Metallica

As luck would have it, I was given the new Metallica album (Death Magnetic) by my girlfriend for my birthday this past week. The first thing I noticed was how the cover was arranged, especially the rear, with the whole thing laid out the same way as Master of Puppets, Ride the Lightning and etc. This gave me hope. It was not entirely dashed, either.

Say about 80% of the songs on it are pretty good, with both guitars sounding the best they have since the black album. Hetfield's lyrics can get a little bit contrived at times; in The Day That Never Comes, saying that "love is a four letter word" is a little childish and just not the kind of thing I'd would expect to see on any well produced artist's album. That said, the riffage is good times throughout, coming to a very nicely riff-led instrumental, Suicide and Redeption, near the end of the disc. It's far from Orion or Call of Cuthulu, but I like it.

Sadly, Lars has not really become a better drummer in the past 20 years, and seems to be falling on the same patterns, overall. There's a few cool little steady, mid song beat changes and at least one neat fill, but it's mostly same old Lars.

That said, Kirk seems to have a bit of issue breaking out of his old habits, which end up sounding exactly the same over time; you can dress up a chromatic scale, but it's still a chromatic scale. Of course, he has some brilliant moments: Suicide and Redemption has a couple really good solo moments, but most of us know that Hetfield probably wrote those.

Trujillo is a fairly good bassist, as far as I've seen, and it comes across a few times in the album, wherein he can be found riffing away and not doing a bad job, either.

I would summarize it as a well written record that could be a tiny bit better, but, on the whole, is worth the time of any vague Metalica fan. Definitely nothing to get any newbies hooked on the band, it seems, but I could be wrong.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

More from MacLeans

Another interesting article here.

Pakistan and the U.S. have long shared the same feelings on terrorism: kill 'em all and let God (Allah) sort 'em out. Generally, this has led to good relations between the pair; however, as usual, some American troops have screwed things up through following orders. I can only assume that Pakistani officials were not made aware of the American operation.

One would assume that, by now, the U.S. commanders would understand that their allies should be made aware of what American troops will be doing; obviously they have not learned. I am continually amazed at the lack of forethought on the side of the American military hierarchy. Despite being one of the most advanced militaries in the world, the commanders seem to refuse basic information to allies, usually citing the requirement to keep the operation "clandestine." Do they somehow believe that their allies will go to al-Qaida, or whatever other group is being fought, and inform them of what is going on? I might not be a military man, but last I checked, allied militaries don't tattle-tale on other allied militaries.

Seriously guys, grow up.

Sunday, September 14, 2008


This is my stereo.

I like it. Simple, very little maintenance, surprisingly hi-fi and, best of all, I never paid a dime for it.

And they're on the lamp, not my head, for a reason.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Just in case...

...you were not aware and had not already figured it out, the expectations about love and relationships that Disney will give you through the various films...

...are utterly ridiculous bullshit. Don't believe any of it, for your own good.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

It's the Woman's Fault

So, MacLeans has always served me as a source for news, biased or otherwise, and in my readings of their website, I found this.

Quite interesting how, firstly, McCain chooses a female VP with little credential and policies that contradict his own, and, now secondly, he is using her as simple smear leverage against Obama. In the context of what Obama said, he was directing his comment at the Republican party in general; this was obvious. However, knowing the media's usual interpretation, it will cut out the one phrase that can be twisted in meaning and spray it all over the wall.

Kind of solidifies the "lipstick on a pig" ideology, eh?

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Fuck it

Read the title, it's a summary of things.

On loitering

So, instead of being at college and learning new and wonderful things, I find myself sitting in a nearby coffee shop at 8am, wondering why the hell I agreed to college in the first place. It's too early, I didn't sleep for more than twenty minutes at a time and every time I try to stand up, some force tells me that it's too much work and that I should not bother.

It's the exact same feeling I got every day I went to high school. Odd coincidence? I think not.

I guess the only real difference I've managed to pinpoint so far is the fact that this schooling is not free. VERY not free. Three textbooks cost me close to $250, and two of them were used.

Now, all that said, I know I'm not exactly the first person to complain about school fees and book prices and all the regular crap, but honestly, I feel like I've been ripped off by somebody who doesn't even know how to rip you off properly. If you're going to rip someone off, you steal just enough money so that they don't know the difference, so they will come back and get ripped off again. $250 for three books? I really don't want to spend that much on that many books ever again.

By that reasoning, the college book store is the real loser, eh?

Sure it is. I'm the one with the lighter billfold.

At least the coffee is starting to kick in.