New Adventures of the Compassionate Curmudgeon

In which I tend to rant. A lot. But compassionately...

Here's Hoping the Door Hits Its Mark

Professor Krugman expresses his opinion of Andrew Sullivan in his latest blog posting. My take—which shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone who has been reading my email for the past few years—is that Sullivan is a hate-filled, pseudo-intellectual who posts mostly incoherent drivel that his fans mistake for erudition; he’s a weather vane who sticks mostly to “conventional wisdom” while occasionally peppering his writings so he can come off like an iconoclast; and he’s a standard-issue racist who deeply believes all non-white “races” are inherently inferior. That every 20 or 50 posts he writes something that is eminently quotable only hi-lights the vapidity of the majority of his work.

I could go on and detail his paranoia, conspiracy mongering, and other crimes against reason, but why bother? I hope the door does hit him on the ass on his way out.

People Are Stupid - #10 in a Series

Not sure which idiot is stupider, Mark Ramiro, 30, who was arrested for shooting his friend, or Darnell Mitchell, 28, who just stood there and let himself be shot. They were “testing” a bullet proof vest, while a third friend recorded it on video.

In the video Mitchell brags that he is about to take a “deuce deuce in the chest” — a shot from a .22-caliber bullet — but Ramiro is such a lousy shot, in addition to being terminally stupid, that he missed the vest and killed his friend.

How stupid is that?

What Lennon Might Have Said

I was out for dinner last evening and one of the TVs in the restaurant was tuned to a "news" channel but with the sound mercifully turned down. The caption had the latest hate-filled, anti-gay, conservative, christianist rant from that master of such things–Rush Limbaugh…

And for some reason John Lennon's lyrics began running through my head.

It wasn't long before I had posted an imaginary alternate line to Lennon's “Revolution” to my Facebook account:

But if you go quoting the shit of Rush Limbaugh

You ain't gonna make it with anyone anyhow.

I wonder how Lennon might actually have phrased it?

An Atheist's Guide to the Good Life

PZ Myers wrote a great little piece for the WaPo's On Faith section, An atheist's guide to the good life.

Ditch the Sunday church services first thing. Hanging out with friends and neighbors is great, we atheists do it all the time, but guess what? We do it without a boring dude in a dog collar droning away at us, without sitting in those uncomfortable pews, without snoozing through the same old homilies. It’s like church where you skip the tedious bits and cut straight to the coffee social or the Sunday picnic.
The Happy Atheist
By PZ Myers

And more like that. 

If you enjoy it, you might also like his book The Happy Atheist

Trayvon Martin Rally in Love Park

The rally at Love Park (Center City Philadelphia) for the verdict in the Trayvon Martin killing.

I'm not much of one for rallies, as I tend to think they're often counterproductive, but I thought I'd take a look at the Trayvon Martin rally in Love Park, since it's only about five blocks away. 

There were signs calling for boycotts of Florida tourism and orange juice; those seem to me to be misplaced, as those industries have nothing to do with the case.

I had no sooner arrived at about 6pm, when the rally turned into a march, and the people started heading down 15th street, blocking traffic as they went. 

The Trayvon Martin rally in Love Park becomes a march down 15th street; don't know where they were headed. 

Drinking in Jersey May Be Hazardous to Your Wealth

Operation Swill they call it.

State investigators say at least one bar in New Jersey was mixing food dye with rubbing alcohol and serving it as scotch.

Others were simply selling cheap rotgut at top shelf prices.

As a public service, I'm reprinting the list of establishments that were caught in the sting:

Railroad Café, East Rutherford
The Brick House, Wycoff
Sunset Tavern, Burlington
Graziano's Ristorante, Chesilhurst
Villari's Lakeside, Gloucester Township
Yesterdays, Marmora
TGI Fridays, West Orange
Italian Affair, Glassboro
Bells Tavern, Lambertville
TGI Fridays, East Windsor
Brunswick Grove, East Brunswick
TGI Fridays, Old Bridge
TGI Fridays, North Brunswick
TGI Fridays, Piscataway
TGI Fridays, Freehold
TGI Fridays, Marlboro
TGI Fridays, Hazlet
Murray's, Dover
TGI Fridays, East Hanover
Sona Thirteen, Morristown
Blackthorn Restaurant, Parsippany
Ruby Tuesday, Bridgewater
TGI Fridays, Linden
Café 34, Matawan
Applebee's, Kearny
Cucina Calandara, Fairfield
TGI Fridays, Woodridge
TGI Fridays, Springfield
TGI Fridays, Clifton

Never did like the name TGI Fridays. It just sounds so cheap.

People Are Stupid - #9 in a Series

It seems that Mark O'Rubio is on the receiving end of the latest teabagger delusion. Wonder if he is enjoying it?

To get a sense of what Republicans are up against, consider that Marco Rubio — a member of the Gang of Eight — is already getting hammered over the claim that the plan supposedly creates “Marco-phones.” The assertion, which is a play on the “Obama-phones” widely ruminated about on the right, is that the bill would grant taxpayer-funded cell phones to immigrants who enter the country on a work visa.

Rubio is working furiously to debunk the claim, issuing a detailed fact sheet pushing back on it, but it appears to live on. Details aside, this observation from Ed Kilgore gets at the larger story here:

I’m having trouble feeling bad for Rubio getting a taste of what it’s like to be on the receiving end of a Tea Party delusion.