What If Every PSA Was Like This One?

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I’m not sure the country that this drunk driving awareness public service announcement is from, though I’m pretty sure it’s Sweden, not in the least because the username of the person who put this video up on YouTube is “SwedishFuck.” What I am sure about is that the ad flat out rocks. Enjoy!


Why Pay Attention to WI?

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Why should you pay attention to the hubbub that is happening in Wisconsin right now? Are you frustrated that so many public sector employees currently receive much better benefits than you do Mr. or Ms. Private Sector? Does it strike you as unfair that their future well being is taken care of as they are set to receive relatively generous pensions while you not only will not get a pension when you retire but you aren’t sure if you are even going to have a job next week?
These are valid but misguided feelings. Paul Krugman makes a very compelling argument that we need to pay attention to what our government did in Bagdad in 2003 to truly understand what Gov. Walker is doing in WI right now and why Unions are being unfair demonized. From the article:

The story of the privatization-obsessed Coalition Provisional Authority was the centerpiece of Naomi Klein’s best-selling book “The Shock Doctrine,” which argued that it was part of a broader pattern. From Chile in the 1970s onward, she suggested, “right-wing ideologues have exploited crises to push through an agenda that has nothing to do with resolving those crises, and everything to do with imposing their vision of a harsher, more unequal, less democratic society.”

Klein’s statement rings very true because in all of the oxygen that has been given to the “unions are evil” rants that you’ve heard so much of these days, no one has ever said that if the ultra-rich just paid their fair share in taxes, then we would have more than enough money to pay for our pension commitments. The George W. Bush tax cuts to the rich which were supposed to expire somehow haven’t yet and the great redistribution of wealth from the lower, middle and even upper classes to the upper-upper class, a.k.a the wealthiest of the wealthy, continues unabated since Reagan started this trend back in 1980.
Here is more from the article:

[It is] an attempt to exploit the fiscal crisis to destroy the last major counterweight to the political power of corporations and the wealthy. And the power grab goes beyond union-busting….For example, the bill includes language that would allow officials appointed by the governor to make sweeping cuts in health coverage for low-income families without having to go through the normal legislative process.

Wow. How is the MSM not reporting these facts? It is because somehow the powers that be, the ultra-rich, have been able to turn the masses against each other, distracting them from their real targets, namely the Koch Brothers, the Chamber of Commerce and other all of the other organizations that basically want us to return to an almost jungle-like primal state.
In Leviathan, Thomas Hobbes postulates what life would be like without government, a condition which he calls the state of nature. In that state, each person would have a right, or license, to everything in the world. This, Hobbes argues, would lead to a “war of all against all” (bellum omnium contra omnes) Hobbes’ description contains what has been called one of the most best known passages in English philosophy; which describes the natural state mankind would be in, were it not for political community:

In such condition, there is no place for industry; because the fruit thereof is uncertain: and consequently no culture of the earth; no navigation, nor use of the commodities that may be imported by sea; no commodious building; no instruments of moving, and removing, such things as require much force; no knowledge of the face of the earth; no account of time; no arts; no letters; no society; and which is worst of all, continual fear, and danger of violent death; and the life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.

I feel that many if not most Republicans, and every single Tea Party person, wants our country to get back to a place where most would have solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short lives, while the privileged few would be chowing down on cucumber sandwiches all day long.
Post idea via Brian, data via Wikipedia


The Goal of Goals

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If you have not heard yet, Wayne Rooney, football star & bad boy for England and Manchester United, scored a ridiculously sublime bicycle kick goal against Manchester City in this year’s Manchester Derby. Some are calling it the best goal ever.
The bicycle kick is notoriously an incredibly hard shot to convert – as Wayne said himself, “nine times out of ten the ball can go anywhere.” As the Wall Street Journal wrote, “When done properly, as in Mr. Rooney’s case, it’s a feat of precision, coordination, athleticism and power.”
It came at an incredible time – he scored with approximately 13 minutes to play in a tied and pressure packed very important league match.
It came amongst incredible players – the combined payrolls alone for City and United total $350 million. Both teams have bought and imported the best of the best from across the world and they were all playing in the match.
I’ll let Steven Rushin from Sports Illustrated explain it for you:

I watched Kirk Gibson’s limp-off home run to win Game 1 of that year’s World Series. Like Jack Buck, I literally could not believe what I had just seen. Lacking any other witnesses to confirm it, I lay in a torpor in front of the tube, wondering if the pictures were real.
I can’t recall a single other instance of being alone, not-quite believing what I’d just seen on TV, until this past Saturday morning, when my wife and four children unaccountably left me alone in the house for the first time in six years.

I really wished I watched the goal live because as an aside, I remember watching Kirk Gibson’s home run as it happened and it was as unbelievable as Mr. Rushin stated and that goal came about 25 years ago. I believe I was listening to the game in my bed on radio and then ran down stairs to catch the immediate reply, my mom yelling at me because she thought I was asleep.
After watching the video below, you’ll see why everyone is making such a fuss.
<a href="http://msn.foxsports.com/video?vid=d0c22342-6f41-4bd7-938c-d5f9a31eb7e8" target="_new" title="">Rooney&#8217;s Bicycle Kick from all angles</a>


How Twitter Works

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Designer / Illustrator / Blogger Jessica Hische developed an infographic for her mother on how Twitter works that I found enormously useful. I used to tell people that Twitter is “basically the Facebook status update feature as a stand alone site” and/or it’s “a real time search engine” which I’ve learned is true but not really true. There are parts of the site I come to understand, like how tagging works: you put a hash tag in front of a word, like #nyc, and then whatever is in your tweet is tagged as something as NYC related. Then, if you search by #nyc you will get every single tweet that has that tag in it, which is why I call it a real time search engine. When the plane landed in the Hudson a few years back, the easiest and quickest way to find out what happened was by using #hudsonplanecrash or something similar.
Well, after reading the infographic, I’ve learned a whole lot more which makes a stat I recently read make a whole of a lot more sense. The stat said that email use across most age groups has dramatically fallen and one reason was that people were tweeting much more. Well, now, again after the graphic, I understand how Twitter is robust and unique messaging platform. Want to learn more? Click on the image below:
Via Elizabeth


Snow Adventures

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Anything related to a Dungeons and Dragons adventure makes me smile. My world has become full of responsibilities and stress so anytime the pleasant memories of spending an entire weekend rolling dice and aiming to get a plus two times three vorpal sword from some dragon’s hoard while sustaining myself with slices from a Pizza Hut “Big Foot” pizza are jogged, I get to go to my “happy place.” The comic below that I read back in January put me there. Enjoy.
Snow Dungeons and Dragons