Thursday, May 23, 2019

Thinking Conspiratorily About Abortion Bans

The big news of the week has been the GOP push to enact abortion bans in several states. As Tengrain puts it, part of the continuing War on Women. While the Cons aren’t coy about jailing abortion providers, they tend to be mum about punishing women who seek abortions. The optics of jailing desperate girls are pretty bad, even for theocrats. Even if long sentences aren’t levied against women, felony records often nullify voting rights, especially in the states banning abortions. This might be a push for a huge voter purge, as well as a bid to control women’s bodies. The GOP will stop at nothing to hold onto power, and this seems like a prime strategy to disenfranchise probable Democratic voters.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

I Believe the Legal Term Is ‘Whomp Whomp’

It’s not a good week for fascist bro culture. At the beginning of the week, the Proud Boys announced that they would be suing the SPLC for slander because the SPLC designated them a hate group. As luck would have it, later this week, reporter Andy Campbell of The HuffPost published messages from a Proud Boy Discord server planning armed, premeditated attacks on ‘leftists’. The timing is impeccable.

I was dubious about the validity of a lawsuit in the first place- I doubt that any of these guys really wanted to go through with the discovery phase. With the evidence of a conspiracy to assault others, indeed to engage in terrorism, this lawsuit pretty much has to go the way of the dodo, because it won’t go the dodos’ way. Once again, the fact that these modern fascists are dumbshits has been the one bright spot in the perennial shitshow.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

A Most Dangerous Grift

In an age of infuriating news stories, this one is particularly enraging scam artists are using social media to convince parents of autistic children to dose them with caustic bleaching agents. The two mothers who are combatting these creeps are doing heroic work.

The ‘bleach cure’ scam was formulated by a former Scientologist, and is being pushed by Qanon freaks, which tells you everything you need to know about it. This scandal is a perfect synergy of snake-oil sales, scientific illiteracy, conspiracy theorist paranoia, and the stigma against neuroatypical people. It’s a toxic stew of fearful parents, taken in by greedy con artists and tricked into feeding their children a toxic stew. The stories related in the NBC item are stomach churning and heart breaking... and the monsters pushing these horrors online really need to be stopped before they harm more children.

Sunday, May 19, 2019

The Poultry Section

This afternoon, I am working at a site which houses a large community of wild turkeys, the site where I was able to snap this picture a few years back. As is typical, when our visitors leave, the critters take over the place. Here we have geese to the left of me, turkeys to the right:




Here I am, stuck in the middle with poo.

Saturday, May 18, 2019

The Keymaster

There's one building on the job that I don't have they keys to... nobody does. I have three keys to get the keys- a master padlock key to get me onto the site, a master door key to open the building in which the keys are stored, and a key to the keybox in which the precious keys are kept. Needless to say, the building these keys open is one I feel squirrely about entering- even though I am not a clumsy person, it's a building in which I feel like a bull in a china shop. It's the one building you might have heard about.

Tonight, our director of special events will be coming with a local bigwig, a model, and a photographer to hold a promotional photoshoot for the region- it's to boost tourism, and it will benefit us as well as the nearby towns. I have to open the gates and then open up the Very Sensitive Building so this process can take place. Thankfully, I won't be the only company representative onsite. Our director of special events is one of my favorite co-workers, she's got a good work ethic and a better sense of humor... she's the type of individual who, regardless of her rank, would pick up a mop and clean up a spill that posed a slipping hazard during an event. She started with the organization in the month of August a few years back, and by the end of our busy fall season, three months later, I felt like I had known her for a decade. She's THAT kind of person, the sort of person who readily instills both loyalty and camaraderie. She's the sort of person you want around when you're holding a key that you treat as if it were a plutonium rod. She's not the kind of person who'd allow herself to be possessed by Zuul:





Funny, poking around the t00bz, I found an ankylosaur named Zuul crurivastator- while the generic name is indeed modeled on the Ghostbusters demon, the real funny joke is the species name, which translates to 'Destroyer of Shins'.

UPDATE: I talk a good game when it comes to pessimism, but everything (of course) went smoothly. It was even fun hanging out with my coworkers (one of the photography crew is a guide at one of our sites) and the other folks involved in the photoshoot. One big joke was that if anything DID happen, we would have to leave the country to escape the ire of our head of curation. Our director of special events told us that we could move in with her parents in England. I called dibs on the room above the garage.

Friday, May 17, 2019

Wee Weird Waterfowl

This afternoon, I had a weird encounter with a gosling at work. At first, it was sitting in a grassy area, not making a peep, and its parents were nowhere nearby. It made no move as I approached it, then walked past it on an errand. On my way back from the task at hand, it started to peep, and I approached very closely to inspect it:




The gosling was mobile, but it had a galumphing gait which suggested a minor leg injury. Oddly, the parents didn't mob me when I leaned over the little critter, suggesting that maybe they knew it was injured and would concentrate on guarding their other offspring. Eventually, as I receded from the vicinity of the wee birdie, they approached it and proceeded towards the water with it. I had never gotten so close to a gosling without its parents going completely bonkers, and I am still wondering why such an occurrence happened.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Teddy and the Pirates

Oh, boy, it never ceases to amaze me when morons exceed their competence level. This week, Ted Cruz claimed that a Space Force was needed to protect US interests from 'Space Pirates' and other threats on the 'space landscape':





It seems like Ted, like myself, has been watching a bit too much Space Ghost lately. Unlike myself, Ted doesn't have a sense of humor, so he got upset that the Twitter CEO allowed 'the left' to dunk on him. He also doesn't seem to make a distinction between pirates and the military forces of our geopolitical, or in this case astropolitical, rivals. I would suggest sending Ted Cruz on a one-way mission to set up a military base on Uranus, but the real danger is that he would become a pirate himself- after all, he was charged with bringing loot back to theocratic despots. Even if Ted doesn't go rogue, he's not very bright and would fare poorly against a real space pirate:





Title adapted from this bit of comic-strip pulp.