US Days as a Superpower Numbered, Record Anti-Trust Fines Logged for 2012, Minors Held in Detention in Afghanistan: P.M. Links

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  • "Firefly" may not be our future, but we're still working on Adam Baldwin cloning technology, right?

    The National Intelligence Council predicts that the United States will lose its status as the world's superpower by 2030. It doesn't, however, predict that China will take its place, much to the dismay of those who still think about the background setting of Joss Whedon's Firefly.

  • The federal government recorded a record $1.13 billion in criminal fines from anti-trust cases, mostly coming from Asian-based companies.
  • A report shows that the United States has held hundreds of minors in Afghanistan in detention, potentially in violation of an international treaty. That's something to keep in mind when drug warriors try to bring up violations of international treaties in response to legalizing marijuana.
  • Software magnate John McAfee now wants to return to the United States to try to stay out of the custody of authorities in Belize, where he is still wanted for questioning in the shooting death of a neighbor.
  • A member of Seal Team Six, the same group that raided Osama bin Laden's compound and took him out, was killed in Afghanistan during the rescue of an American doctor kidnapped by the Taliban.
  • That fiscal cliff is so serious that President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner finally got together to actually talk about it for a bit, before the president went back to campaigning for tax hikes for the rich.
  • Syrian rebels are claiming Assad's regime may have already used chemical weapons.
  • Support Reason's 2012 webathon today.

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  1. That fiscal cliff is so serious that President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner finally got together to actually talk about it for a bit…

    You can’t golf in this weather.

    1. Three weeks in Hawaii coming up.

  2. The National Intelligence Council predicts that the United States will lose its status as the world’s superpower by 2030.

    If we go down, we’re taking the world with us.

    1. We should put a gun to China’s head: “Put 50 Trillion dollars in this bag or I’ll ice you bitch!”

      Oh, and ;”No dye packs”!

      1. I’m not the tiniest bit worried about China. They have endemic problems that are only going to get worse.

        I am, however, worried about us.

        1. ^Plus our worrying about China is one of the factors in our own downfall. Our politicians are becoming progressively more anti-trade and pro-protection out of their ridiculous fear of the Yellow Economic Peril.

          1. We need to bring back the Smoot Hawley tariffs to protect American jobs!

            It worked so well last time.

            Also, what Pro Lib said. The Chinese bubble is gonna crash, and it will be ugly.

            1. Pertekt mi jerb!

          2. Yeah they got their own fissures forming along wealthy coastal areas and medieval rural zones, and an angry islamic thing growing too.

            1. I’m thinking that The Diamond Age/Boxer Rebellion scenario is becoming more and more likely.

        2. Are you saying your days of not taking China seriously are coming to a middle?

        3. They have endemic problems that are only going to get worse.

          Actually the worse they get the more they will pull us down with them. And the worse we get the more we pull them down.

          That is the thing about law of comparative advantage. Less trade hurts us all.

          If anything we should want China to become more rich not less.

          1. I want us all to be rich and even the poorest amongst us jetting in the outer solar system in private spaceships, each with money bath facilities.

            Unfortunately, our current collective plans seem to be aiming in a different direction.

      2. We should put a gun to China’s head: “Put 50 Trillion dollars in this bag or I’ll ice you bitch!”

        Bro’s ICING Cho’s

    2. I briefly skimmed the report earlier and it’s fascinating reading. I’d advise going straight to chapter 3 which presents 4 likely scenarios for the near future. The report declares the “U.S.-China BFF!!!” scenario the best, but I’m partial to the “Non-State Agent World” scenario, myself.

      1. Well, I figure we’ll have full-blown bacteriological warfare, with tailor-made diseases, forcing us into small city-states armed to the teeth, with very little travel allowed between polities.

        1. And reavers.

          1. Sure, why not? Another reason to stay within the walls of your city-state.

      2. I figure Austria should reclaim its rightful place as the Superpower.

        1. Austria? You mean home of Hitler?

          1. They did try to get rid of him. Instead, they were friends with Mussolini, who was pretty much the FDR of Italy. Probably a bit more libertarian than FDR… Not a good time…

            1. Austria: Home of skiing, music, pastries, and Hitler. Come for the culture, stay for the Kulturkampf.

              1. Austria: West Virginia with better antiques!

            2. Well, it was all about trains which were high speed and ran on time.

    3. lol pretty much this.

      When (not really if) we go down China will collapse even harder and their central party will have 2 choices, massive liberalization in hopes of creating a robust internal consumer market (thereby killing the central party) or Mao style crackdowns to hold off the rebellion.

      Neither choice leads to their emerging as a global power.

      Similarly when we go down Europe will collapse economically as well, if they havn’t already done it. Japan may well implode and pretty every other 1st and 2nd world economy will fall into depression.

      I am sure that someday someone will emerge to claim superpower status, thing is the most likely contender is whatever entity emerges from America’s collapse because we’ll still have all that military technology sitting around.

    4. The National Intelligence Council predicts that the United States will lose its status as the world’s superpower by 2030.

      In the end, there can be only none.

  3. So this is a Firefly thread now? Shiny. I’ll get us started:

    You know what the chain of command is? It’s the chain I go get and beat you with ’til ya understand who’s in ruttin’ command here.

    1. Just watched the series again.
      Man it ended too soon.

      1. I just got the series for about $13 on Black Friday. Anxiously awaiting being able to watch it all… currently I’m distracted by the first season of Spartacus.

        1. It’s streaming on Netflix, along with “Serenity”

          1. Did anyone else see the anniversary special? Brought a manly tear to my eye.

            1. Not sure why Reason didn’t live stream the original airing?

    2. I often look around at the world and say,

      “This is what going mad feels like!”

    3. I believe Summer Glau is a method actor who used her memories of sighting Warty while going walkabout in Cleveland to guide her performance when she saw Shepherd Book’s hair running wild and free.

      1. you had me at Summer Glau

        1. I’ll be in my bunk.

      2. I think you might be on to something here.

      3. She looked so much better in Sarah Connor Chronicles. Who would have thought not looking totally insane was so nice?

        1. Do you talk at the theater, Episiarch?

          1. Of course. I also applaud when anyone dies.

            1. You thought Platoon was a comedy, didn’t you? DIDN’T YOU?!?

              1. Epi likes to have Schindler’s List running while he works out. He also watches Shame with his mom every weekend.

                1. He also watches Shame with his mom every weekend.

                  Hey, leave NutraSweet outta this.

              2. I laughed my ass off.

              3. Platoon was a comedy!

                I mean, there is no way Oliver Stone could be actually serious about all the crazy shit he come up with, right?

                It’s all one big spoof…

                1. It needs a sequel, but set in the even more cutthroat world of capitalist America, where villages are exterminated on a daily basis.

        2. She also got six years older. I think she needed to grow into her looks or something.

      4. He’s also the one who gave her the “it’s just an object, doesn’t mean what you think” line.

        1. Wart was talking about his “penis?

          1. Does he ever talk about anything else?

      5. But it wasn’t Warty’s hair that was running wild and free…

      6. Sorry bros, but when it comes to Firefly hotness, it’s all about Jewel Staite.

        1. +shiny

        2. Oh god yes!

          Inara screams high maintenance. River is nuts. Jewel will help you fix the car and share a brew with you and think you are the most awesome person in the world if you give her a nice backrub and then make sweet sweet lo… I’ll be in my bunk.

          1. Um, I should point out that there was another highly-attractive woman on that ship, who was neither high maintenance nor nuts.

            1. It does seem odd that tarran would skip right over Zoe like that doesn’t it?

              Still and all, I’d prefer a woman who wouldn’t/couldn’t pull my spine out and floss with it.

              1. “Have you ever been with a warrior woman?”

            2. I’m good with any or all.

            3. She was married.

          2. When they finally perfect the downloadable sexbot, I’m putting Jewel Staite, as Kaylee, on heavy rotation.

        3. I can’t disagree.

      7. http://www.fohguild.org/forums…..reaker.gif

        Warty is the last guy in the gif.

    4. I recently read a Wired article on Whedon and Avengers. Lots of Buffy and barely any acknowledgement that Firefly even happened, let alone that it was the superior property (quality-wise, I mean, of course).

      1. I wonder how he feels about libertarians glomming on to that show.

        1. He’s come out and said that he’d probably, in real life, be Alliance. Apparently, it was the co-creator or other exec producer or whoever who put most of the libertarian shit in.

            1. Minear?

              My favorite gay libertarian.

              1. My favorite gay libertarian.

                Is there any other kind?

              2. Gay libertarians are the best libertarians. I’m friends with many gay libertarians on Facebook.

          1. That’s right, he’d be all for making Reavers out of common folk.

          2. He has whined about the fact that all of his heroes basically end up being libertarian.

      2. Best part about Buffy? Sarah Michelle Gellar came out for Romney.

        The Jez reaction was delicious.

    5. So this is a Firefly thread now?

      I’ll be in my bunk.

  4. Novak Djokovic is buying the world’s entire supply of donkey cheese

    1. Look, you can’t be one of the three best tennis players in the world forever. Eventually you have to corner the market on donkey cheese.

    2. Monopoly!!! Someone regulate that greedy bastard!!!!

  5. Chinese miners’ work permits face more union challenges

    Unions in B.C. will be back in court this week trying to stop a group of foreign workers from coming to Canada to work at a new coal mine in Tumbler Ridge.

    Seriously, fuck these unions.

  6. Today, I will be posting links from the queer feminist site Autostraddle, which is like feministing, if they allowed comments and were all about gay women, all the time. Occasionally, they post nudie pics, although only half those are erotic, because apparently feminist porn means showing real (ie unattractive, generally speaking) bodies.

    Anyhoo, let’s get started with showing the disturbing side of some in the gay rights community. Unlike the gay people who post here (Doctor Whom, Tonio) they aren’t content with gay marriage and general legal equality. They want everyone to have to accept them. To wit:

    OMG! Teh Catholic Church isn’t okay with gay sex!

    My first emotion upon reading this was rage. This University is essentially condemning a part of their student population as being unequal to another part of their student population. And they are encouraging an unhealthy repression of a healthy desire, a healthy act. Deciding to be chaste is an extremely personal decision? it could have to do with your religious calling, your personal circumstances, your identity. It cannot be prescribed. It cannot be mandated. And while it is a totally valid decision one can make about expressing sexuality, it is in fact a choice that one person has to make for themselves. That is not what is happening here.

    1. “Notre Dame, a Catholic university, a private university, is being shitty to its gay students. ”

      Boy, that sure is some high quality prose. What is it about becoming a feminist that totally ruins writing ability? Is quality writing patriarchal?

    2. Autstraddle? Is that like scissoring a robot?

    3. Yes, yes, its a choice you make exercising your own free will. You know, free will? The baseline assumption of any and all moral systems? The kind of choice that can have moral content?

      And thus, the kind of choice on which people will make moral judgments. Obviously, you disagree with this particular judgment, which is fine, but I wouldn’t start down the road of “my choices and exercise of free will have no moral content”. I don’t you’ll like where that road ends.

    4. And the icky Mormons feel the same way!

      But there’s nothing progressive or liberating or even acclaim-worthy about telling queers it’s okay to feel queer as long as you never do anything about it, ever. There’s nothing comforting about Kelly’s video, in which he testifies that he left behind same-sex attraction and returned to the church because he “couldn’t imagine living an eternity without my mom and dad.” He continunes: “And so I knew I needed to change and do something different. Because even though I felt happy and felt content at the time there was a huge hole that I was afraid of losing my family.”

      Any joy wrought from this compassionate tone extinguishes when you realize that beneath every paragraph on loving somebody is an implication or direct order for gay people to stop being gay people. Furthermore, the Mormons deep financial stake in anti-gay politics makes it difficult for me to take any public message about gay people at face value. In fact, my first thought was,”Is the Mormon Church afraid of losing their next generation of Mormons now that homophobia isn’t as cool anymore? Is that why they’re doing this?”

      1. the Mormons deep financial stake in anti-gay politics

        I’m curious: How are the Mormons making money on anti-gay politics? I can’t figure an angle, which is too bad, because I’m always looking for good investments.

        A little help here?

        1. You don’t understand. Everything is the fault of money. We must do away with this means of trade, lest it make people hate gays.

          1. I never got the love for communism in queer politics/theory myself. Feminist theory at least makes some sense, because there are some pretty concrete examples of the Soviets trying to be a genderless society for a time and allowing women into positions that they never attained under the czar.

            But when have communist countries every treated gays even half way decently?

            1. Why do we call communists “Pinkos”?

              1. Actually, IIANM, “Pinkos” is the term for “fellow travelers” or domestic liberals seen as appeasing or otherwise abetting the Soviets.

                Communists (ie, members of the CPUSA, the Soviets, Chinese etc) were called “Reds”. “Pinkos” was for the “useful idiots” in the liberal wings of the Democratic and Republican* parties.

                *Really. Once upon a time there was a wing of the Republican party that was absolutely as pink as any leftist Democrat.

            2. Don’t you know?

              This time it’ll be different.

            3. AuH2O, while the noisiest gays are involved in leftist politics, it is significant that the Log Cabin Republicans and GoPride manage to add to their membership rolls people who do not not want to be taxed and regulated to death.

              Those groups have concentrated on lowering actual legal barriers (regulations) like eliminating “don’t ask, don’t tell” and legalizing gay marriage. They’re not looking for free money.

    5. Deciding to be chaste is an extremely personal decision?

      As is deciding what university to attend.

      The people act like people are assigned randomly to different universities without thought of the schools’ founding missions.

      1. *These people

      2. BUT THEIR PARENTS MADE THEM GO THERE!

        They had no other choice!

        /Seriously what these fuckers believe

      3. Seriously. They whine about a few religious colleges when almost every other one will bend over backwards for LGTBQ (is that the current correct acronym?)

        1. when almost every other one will bend over backwards for LGTBQ

          Are you sure it’s “backwards”?

          I keed. I keed.

        2. Hell, they could go to a Jesuit college and be catered to just as much as any state school, and still get the Catholic-style hectoring they seem to crave.

        3. LGBTQQ

          Seriously

          1. Needs moar letters!

  7. Massive price-fixing fines levied against DENSO and Yazaki, auto-parts suppliers, and AU Optronics, a company that makes liquid-crystal-display panels, account for nearly 90% of 2012’s fines.

    Does that mean my replacement ball joint with the digital readout is going to cost me double next inspection?

  8. I seriously doubt anyone will initially take America’s place as the world super power should our decline continue. No other country really strikes me as being in a position to do that. It seems more likely that there’d be a situation where you end up with regional super powers; the U.S. in North America, Germany/England in Europe, South Africa in southern Africa, China in East Asia, etc.

    1. More like 1914 than 1945.

    2. Germany/England in Europe

      I think Russia would have something to say about that, especially in a post-NATO world.

    3. No other country really strikes me as being in a position to do that.

      Top 4…maybe Chile?

      Economic Freedom

      All it takes is liberty.

  9. Guess which Staples store will be closing soon?

    1. It’s fucking Staples!

      1. Sorry, my head exploded. Taking deep breaths.

    2. Wow, and that’s in one of the square provinces, too. I thought they were generally smarter about such things.

      1. Manitoba tends to have some pretty left leaning citizens.

      2. Manitoba has elected NDP governments almost as often as Saskatchewan has and, IIANM, more often than Ontario or BC. And certainly more often than any Maritime province.

        Saskatchewan has the longevity record, though, 1944-64. And those guys were real in your face “nationalize the means of production” “Regina Manifesto” socialists, not the pussy social democrats the party is since the old CCF linked up with the CLC to form the NDP.

        Quebec, OTOH, has never elected an NDP government. But the Bloc Quebecois* is uniquely crazy so we’ll leave them out of it.

        *Liberty used to have a contributor who was the parliamentary to a BC MP. From his writing there you might have gotten the impression that the BQ were a bunch of libertarians. Sadly, no.

        1. Also, FWIW, while the “square provinces” are more socially conservative in general than the rest of Canada, they are not necessarily more free-market oriented.

        2. Also, I think you might also be thinking of Alberta, which is a “square province” but one which caught the 1930s economic radicalism in a generally equally crazy but different way than Saskatchewan and Manitoba did.

          Alberta adopted the Social Credit model which is more rightwing populist, while Saskatchewan and to a lesser extent Manitoba adopted the leftwing labor-socialist Co-operative Commonwealth Federation.

          This seems to have been a Prairie phenomenon, rather than a national one. For comparison look at contemporary political movements in the Dakotas and Montana and also in Minnesota and Wisconsin.

          The interesting thing in all movements was that all of them include guarantees of right of land tenure for farmers (the Regina Manifesto specifically includes such a plank). These prairie rebellions were mostly against eastern banking and financial interests.

        3. The Bloc is only in Federal politics, I thought. Quebec has elected some crazy PQ governments, though. (Bill 101, I’m talking to you.)

          1. Ted, you might be right, The PQ was definitely the separatiste (accent egou over the e) provincial party. The bloke I remember from Liberty was definitely the parliamentary secretary to a Federal BQ MP. I don’t know what his political master thought but this guy was definitely trying to present the libertarian case for Quebec separatism.

            That aside, my largest point is that in spite of the serious redistributionist agenda of PQ politicos of all stripes (Quebec receives payouts from the Federal government far out of proportion to its relative population) the PQ has never actually elected any significant NDP (or its much more “ture” socialist predecessor) representation.

    3. “When a company doesn’t respect their workforce, the workers have an option, said Jeff Traeger, UFCW Local 832 president, in a press release. “In this case they stood up for themselves and joined a union.”

      Umm. I guess he doesn’t think the company has any options, either?

    4. I have only been in two Staples.

      One in Portland Oregon and one in Central Washington.

      In both the managers are always scowling and the staff have the look pure fear.

      May not be a Union/no-union thing…I don’t see the same phenomena in the wall-marts i have visited.

      1. I’ve been to a bunch…never seen this. I have noticed the staff tend to be overhelpful unless they are running the register–then they’re either slow or efficient.

  10. Paul Krugman: Asimov’s Foundation novels grounded my economics
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/book…..-economics
    Hari Seldon didn’t do his work by convincing the emperor to change his policies ? he had to conceal his project under a false front and wait a thousand years for results. Now, there isn’t, to my knowledge, a secret cabal of economists with a thousand-year plan to save our current civilisation (but then I wouldn’t tell you if there was, would I?)

    1. I love this fact about Krugman because it makes it so obvious that he never actually considered or thought about his economic opinions. He literally got into economics under the assumption that people are capable of wielding control over economic matters, and then proceeded to never reconsider his position.

      1. a lot of his recent articles have mentioned Ayn Rand, derisively. it’s funny how he now feels a need to get his childhood hero out there.

        the best socialist tell Krugman ever gave was at the beginning of the Paul vs Paul debate on CNBC saying sheepishly “i believe in capitalism” where if you read b/w his lines he doesn’t believe in private property.

        1. on top of that him and his buddy Matty Y have been name dropping Marx lately in their articles…they know they are losing…

        2. Even Krugshit can see Rand’s Atlas world evolving around him.

          Won’t be long now.

      2. He literally got into economics under the assumption that people are capable of wielding control over economic matters, and then proceeded to never reconsider his position.

        There are people who still believe FDR’s economic policies ended the Depression, so it’s not surprising that the belief in the power of a Deus Ex Machina to manipulate the economy still persists amongst elites.

    2. Shoulda read Heinlein.

    3. The bizarre thing about Krugabe’s fascination is that the first Foundation book contains several stories where it was the free traders who advanced the Seldon Plan against the statists.

      And of course, the empire didn’t last beyond the second book.

      1. That’s not the most obnoxious thing–it’s that he routinely mocks people who read Rand (and, in this case, Tolkien) as emotionally juvenile goons, yet admits that his entire career is based on his fascination with a character in a book written for teenage boys.

        1. He’s an incredibly childish individual. Every time someone argues with him or wins a point, Krugman runs to his blog to angrily yell about how no one understands him. After he got curb stomped by Ron Paul, he went to his blog and said that he’s been thinking ‘for a long time’ about how oral debates are bad because it doesn’t allow you to make your point as perfectly as you could.

          In other words, oral debates are not good because Krugman has to deal with an opposing viewpoint. It’s unfair that the other person won’t just sit there and let Krugman talk!

          1. I thought that he was going to cry when he got called out in Spain earlier this year.

    4. I thought Ozymandias was his inspiration…

    5. Paul Krugman makes me sad. He’s a smart guy, but I can’t figure out what he gets out of being a “TEAM BLUE” water carrier. It’s just a damn shame.

  11. A show about nothing in today’s world

    Kramer uses grinder to meet new friends, doesn’t know it’s a gay hook-up app. Jerry refuses to admit he cried on @wtfpod.
    ? Modern Seinfeld (@SeinfeldToday) December 10, 2012

    Elaine has a bad waiter at a nice restaurant, her negative Yelp review goes viral, she gets banned. Kramer accidentally joins the Tea Party.
    ? Modern Seinfeld (@SeinfeldToday) December 10, 2012

    George thinks his GF is faking a gluten-intolerance, feeds her real cookies, sending her to the ER. Autocorrect ruins Jerry’s relationship.
    ? Modern Seinfeld (@SeinfeldToday) December 10, 2012

    1. damn blockquote tags didn’t work…

    2. saw those . awesome

    3. None of my unwilling experimental subjects experienced anything more harmful than cramping. Perhaps I need to up the dose of glutton and expand the number of participants.

      1. BTW, you can make a pretty decent peanut butter cookie by following the standard recipes and leaving out the wheat.

        1. I’ve had some gluten-free pretzels that were just outstanding.

          1. My sister in law was diagnosed as gluten intolerant, but since I’ve known her she has been wound up pretty tight. Really, you can hear her teeth doing that clinching thing crazy people do, so I really think her doctors missed diagnosed in her case.

            But, it is a pretty good idea to minimize your gluten intake, nonetheless.

            1. My wife can’t eat gluten OR dairy. Since that must be hell for her, I suspect I may actually be the devil.

              1. I had a bad bean allergy as a kid, and it may still exist, but I wouldn’t know because I’ve refused to eat them since then. The only intolerance I’m aware of at this point is egg plant. I can eat it, but my lips, mouth and tongue swell up.

                1. Food allergies suck. So sorry Mad Scientist and Killazontherun.

            2. Oh, and the other thing she does — she holds her breath for like a half a minute at a time, and releases. I’m convinced she is constantly counting in her head.

              1. So it’s your sister you’re on the run from?

                1. She’s actually a very nice person to be so bonkers.

          2. And thanks for not calling me on the ‘glutton’ usage. I just like the sound of the word. Like a Jewish female friend in college who was totally understanding when I chuckled at the word ‘pogrom.’ It just sounds funny!

            1. I’m saving up to call everyone out later on. YOU’LL ALL PAY! DON’T THINK YOU WON’T PAY!

    4. People always say that ‘if they had cell phones Seinfeld couldn’t exist,’ which is true for a certain type of Seinfeld episode, but not as a general rule (which I think the account shows).

      Who the fuck says that?

    5. Kramer accidentally joins the Tea Party.

      Didn’t he already get an honorary membership when he yelled the N word repeatedly in a public place?

  12. Software magnate John McAfee now wants to return to the United States to try to stay out of the custody of authorities in Belize…

    United States citizenship comes preloaded with extradition agreements.

  13. I was going to point out that The Simpsons made fun of Hipsters last night, but then nobody watches The Simpsons anymore.

    1. Are you implying we’re too hip to watch The Simpsons?

      1. Went out of my way to watch it. It was OK. As a resident of the Portland, OR area, I can affirm they managed to cover at least 100 hipster douche references. My favorite part was the grumpy hipster kid’s birthday bash and all his hipster toys, like the old fashioned accordion camera “Oh like I don’t already have a million of those.” And the bowling shoes – pretty obscure but funny hipster reference.

        1. My favorite part was the ending when they all left after discovering Springfield was popular. I’ll bet Brooklyn would love to pull off that trick.

          1. He used the phrase “humblebrag”.

            1. Please tell me the writers made that one up!

    2. I saw part of that while surfing. It looked like it was actually funny.

      1. How do you watch TV from a surf board on the ocean?

        1. OT: The UN predicts that atmospheric episiarch could reach 400 PPM by the year 2100.

          1. I AM EVERYWHERE

    3. It’s a shame too. I remember many years ago I would never miss a new episode.

      1. I was such a fan once upon a time, that my car’s vanity tags said, “BORT.” I haven’t watched a new episode in probably 10 years.

    4. Evidently you did.

      And so did I. I thought it was pretty good.

      1. I watched it for the Portlandia stars.

    5. An okay episode with some pretty good moments thrown in. The breast feeding circle was nice with Marge muttering ‘mammals’ under her breath as an insult to the hipster wymmens.

      1. My highpoint was when the Springfield Tire Fire was replaced by the Springfield farmers’ market.

  14. The National Intelligence Council predicts that the United States will lose its status as the world’s superpower by 2030.

    Does that mean we can finally close our world wide network of military bases?

    1. No. We’ll still be paying to guard rich Europeans, Japanese, Koreans and (some) Chinese. It’s just what we do.

    2. Of course, with our insane military edge and our move away from limited government, coupled with our economic woes, will we (1) quietly collapse, (2) go imperial and take what we want?

      1. When the feds eventually run out of money I suspect one of the hardest things for the military to maintain will be supply chains. We’ll end up like the WWII Soviet army, flush with tanks but no fuel or shells.

        1. Which is why going imperial will happen sooner rather than later. First we’ll start small, like Cuba. Then the rest of the Caribbean, then Mexico, then Canada. . .well, you see where this is going.

          Why would we do such things? For the plunder to fund our socialism.

          1. I’m going to leave counter-historical artifacts at strategic locations.

            1. Okay, I simply did not place this comment here. Where is our money going, anyway?

              1. Commentary inflation?

            2. Consider it a counter-historical artifact at a strategic location.

      2. One of my FB friends posted pics of his family’s trip along Hadrian’s Wall and some of the Roman and medieval military forts in the region. It’s surreal to think that, 2000 years from now, people are going to be doing the same thing with our bases there.

        1. I’m going to leave counter-historical artifacts at strategic locations.

  15. Notice: Not everyone likes pot.

    CU Police spokesman Ryan Huff says officers were called Friday morning after a history professor complained of dizziness and losing consciousness. The professor, who was not identified, was hospitalized. Two students in the class who ate the brownies also were hospitalized and five others were sickened.

    1. So he took a nap. Why were they hospitalized? There’s not much detail in that post.

      arrested Saturday on suspicion of second-degree assault and inducing the consumption of controlled substances by fraudulent means, along with two conspiracy counts

      Would the “victims” have to press charges for the case to proceed?

      1. No, crimes are also committed against the State.

    2. Police say Cunningham and Essa baked the brownies and brought them to class as part of a “bring food day.”

      I understand people being upset if they were not notified that they were pot brownies (the article doesn’t say); it could be similar to slipping someone some roofies. But the hospitalization is bullshit. What a bunch of fucking pussies at Colorado University.

    3. That happened at my high school once. A guy in my class thought it’d be amusing to add new meaning to the term “bake sale”, which caused a couple dozen students and at least one teacher to feel faint. No one could prove anything, since those brownies disappeared pretty quickly. We long suspected it, but he didn’t confirm it until our 10 year HS reunion.

      Coincidentally, I discovered during that incident that I must have a very high tolerance (or unaffected) to THC.

      1. We did this to our high school Spanish teacher back in the 70s in our senior year. We found him later that afternoon singing at the top of his lungs.

      2. We long suspected it, but he didn’t confirm it until our 10 year HS reunion.

        The only way to get away with a “crime”. TELL NO ONE! At least until the statute of limitations runs out.

  16. It’s like Christmas for the rest of us.

    Stevens said he had been trying to get the city to remove the Nativity scene for five years, and this year he decided to ask for space to express his own beliefs.

    “It’s just 23 beer cans stacked 8 feet high and conveniently located 6 feet from Baby Jesus,” said Stevens.

    “Think of how many people have died over the years to give us our freedoms,” Stevens said. “So I’ve got to push back a little.”

    1. Does he also find tinsel distracting?

    2. I like how he’s doing it not because he’s a perpetually offended atheist, but because he’s unapologetically trolling.

    3. Never, ever listen to someone named “Chaz”.

      Unless, of course, you need a diuretic. Or, his last name is (Chazz) Palminteri.

    4. I’m confused. What’s wrong with not wanting the city to pay for religious decorations?

  17. Just to break it up a bit: Public Nudity bans are okay because of the “offense principle”

    ecause it’s so difficult to ignore. The late political philosopher Joel Feinberg’s “offense principle” offers one persuasive theory for why nudity is illegal. Feinberg argued that an act need not be objectively harmful to merit prohibition?it need only produce an unpleasant mental state such as shame, disgust, or anxiety in observers. Plenty of obnoxious but legal behaviors, like chewing with an open mouth or failure to bathe, can create the same reaction, but Feinberg claimed that nudity has a unique ability to demand our attention. He wrote, “The unresolved conflict between instinctual desires and cultural taboos leaves many people in a state of unstable equilibrium and a readiness to be wholly fascinated, in an ambivalent sort of way, by any suggestion of sexuality in their perceptual fields.” We are drawn ineluctably toward the sexual suggestiveness of the naked body, Feinberg argued, then ashamed of our own reaction.

    Feinberg sounds like the most odious human being ever.

    1. Plenty of obnoxious but legal behaviors, like chewing with an open mouth or failure to bathe, can create the same reaction,

      When your theory supports jailing people for chewing with an open mouth, it may be time re-examine your premises.

      1. I know, those people should be executed.

    2. You know, 10 years ago if these naked protesters held a protest in John Ashcroft’s office, Slate would have dug up some philosopher who argued why it’s ok to be naked all the time.

      1. I wonder what their staff said about the nude protest of the AIDS patients at Boehner’s office last week.

    3. Someone ought to produce an unpleasant mental state such as shame in him.

  18. Reasons Mommy Drinks #85: The weather

    1. “Pumpkin, has daddy told you how much he loves you today?”
      “No, daddy”
      “You might want to think about that.”

    2. Wow, she’s already up to her 85th drink since giving birth? Way to go Banjos!

  19. Butch lesbian whines about having to wear clothes she doesn’t feel like wearing to get a job.

    I’ve reached a point where my faithfulness to my identity no longer feels unfailing, but something I know I might have to put aside to survive. Do I want to work in a place where my butchness won’t be accepted? Under most circumstances, no, but I feel that I don’t have the luxury of that choice anymore.

    It made me think of all the times I and other butches I know have “borrowed pearls” to get jobs, to avoid harassment, to slip through a crack in the system. We’ve patched up the things that otherwise define us, the identities we’ve given life and limb to protect and preserve. A necessary sacrifice, maybe, but a tough one nonetheless.

    Has this woman never heard of a pant suit?

    1. Truck drivers have to wear pearls now?

      1. I be afraid of getting caught in the fan belt while I was checking the oil.

    2. She probably has one. A leather one. With chains all over it.

    3. They also get into one of those awesome gender vs sex debates,starting here

      I love it, because either gender is purely a social construct and all that matter is how you preform it, meaning it doesn’t matter what parts you were born with, or sex is and does matter, and you should be able to get hormones and your dick chopped off.

      1. It must be pure hell to be obsessing over your own sexuality all the time. Thank Jeebus I’m completely comfortable with my own vegisexuality.

        1. It must be pure hell to be obsessing over your own sexuality all the time.

          The social version of Calvinball that is PC is probably the worst disease academia ever foisted on western civilization.

          1. PC is now just as much a disease of the Right as of the Left.

    4. Butch lesbians like to complain about things. News at eleven.

  20. The thing reads like a science fiction novel! I wonder how much money the report cost to commission.

  21. Worst Free Throw attempt of all time?

  22. Towns where everybody has a job. Most of which make obvious sense. Because why the fuck would you stay there if not for your job. I mean, I’m sure Bismark, ND and Lincoln,Neb have their own charm, right?

    1. Lincoln, Nebraska Vampire Killer?

    2. Hey, there used to be a great strip club in Lincoln. “After Dark Lounge” or something like that.

      Or so I’m told.

      … Hobbit

  23. What does the Internet look like in North Korea?

    1. Hahaha. Nice meta-joke.

      1. I would far more champion the cause of ousting NoKo’s dictator to free up TEH INTERNETZ for all over making sure women in Africa and wherever can get an abortion on demand. Obviously SLD for non-interventionism, but the restriction of information and speech in my mind far outweighs whatever the hell “choice” means in today’s world.

  24. Boy, I hope another NFL player dies this week, so we can once again hear Bob Costas be a fucking prick. I hope its a Seattle or Denver player, and they get hit by someone driving stoned, so that Costas can lecture us about the societal danger of marijuana.

    Did anyone else have to change channels when that asshole started his drunk driving spiel?

    1. I’m hoping it’s a Bears player who dies. We really need a win against the Pack next Sunday.

      1. I’m not sure even that could save the Bears season. But if has to be someone, please make it J’Marcus Webb.

        1. Well everyone else has run over J’Marcus Webb. Might as well have some random drunk join the fun.

        2. Chuck Pagano got cancer, and the next week the Packers blew an 18-point halftime lead against the Colts. 🙁

        3. You know who sucks worse than J’Marcus Webb? His backup.

    2. he suffers from white guilt making $M off bread and circus. maybe it’s a subconscious thing where he must protect his product (property). guns laws killed the gf. society’s acceptance of drinking killed Jerry Brown.

    3. Yes. I also call BS on the “players are turning their guns into the team HQs” narrative they are pushing.

      1. All of 7 players out of over 1700 in the league turned their guns in, but you’d think half the teams were coming out in favor of total gun bans with the way the media is carrying on about it.

  25. Interesting idea:
    Why the left hates “the division of labor”

    1. George Reismann characterized capitalism as a system of private ownership and division of labor. Agrarian lifestyles, even with a degree of trade, don’t necessarily rely on a medium of exchange (or constant exchange values) and, without the cost-accounting that provides, do not always engage in specialization to maximize gains. Thus, it is no surprise that an anti-capitalist message does not need to rely on anti-propertarian ideas to be effective, so long as it promotes “self-sufficiency” that works to eliminate specializations and exceptional profit.

  26. It’s for the children!

  27. Pacquiao vs Marquez knockout gif

  28. Oh Lord:

    Some teenagers fall under the sway of Ayn Rand, others of Tolkien. For Paul Krugman it was Isaac Asimov

    1. We were having a discussion about that up above. The guy really is a fascist though, isn’t he?

      1. Shit you’re right. I think I came through a nexus and missed that.

    2. I like Asimov and didn’t become a statist fuck like Krugman. Why not?

      1. Because you’re (mostly) not functionally retarded?

          1. Ooooh, that’s right out!

      2. Because you were not programed with Zeroth law. Why do you hate humanity Pro Lib?

        1. Hate is a strong word. Want to subjugate is better.

          That’s the Negative Oneth law.

  29. Study shows that the Americans who watch Fox News have an average IQ of 80, whereas the national average is 100. Researchers were not “shocked” by findings.

    “Fox News’ content is presented at an elementary school level and plays directly into the fears of the less educated and less intelligent.”

    1. One of the tests involved showing people pictures and studying their vitals. What does this prove about IQ?

      I forget what the guys name was, but there was a writer back in the day who used to write books about how our biases effect scientific studies. He was talking about legitimate scientific issues and legitimate scientific studies. Now, if real science, like drug trials or actual testing, can be effected by the biases of the researcher, then it makes you wonder how flawed ‘social’ science studies must be.

      1. We know how flawed they are: utterly. It’s interesting how these “social science” studies seem to almost always confirm the biases of the people running them, isn’t it?

    2. “Less intelligent animals rely on instinct when confronted by something which they do not understand. This is an ancient survival reaction all animals, including humans, exhibit. It’s a very simple phenomenon, really; think about a dog being afraid of a vacuum cleaner. He doesn’t know what a vacuum is or if it may harm him, so he becomes agitated and barks at it…”

      Sounds like proglodytes discussing the free market.

      1. Yeah, it’s not their sensitivity to high volumes of noise that makes dogs bark at a vaccum cleaner, it’s that they don’t “understand” that the vaccum won’t physically harm them. Jesus.

        The funny thing is that these “ancient survival reactions” have lasted through hundreds of thousands of years of evolution and even the domestication of the species for a reason, yet this goon can’t even be bothered to take that into account.

        1. The Monolith was just something that happened to “other people,” wasn’t it?

        2. ‘Nother problem here: I’ve seen (and owned) several dogs who not only didn’t mind a vacuum, they liked being vacuumed after getting trimmed.
          And if noise is a problem, every non-gun-shy dog has some thinking to do.

    3. Study shows that the Americans who watch Fox News have an average IQ of 80, whereas the national average is 100. Researchers were not “shocked” by findings.

      I wonder what the people who did this study (and the author of the article) thought about The Bell Curve.

  30. Federal Judge Rules NC license plate Choose Life as unconstitutional “unless the state offers similar plates supporting abortion rights”.

    As the plate is advocating making a choice not to abort wouldn’t the opposite view be “Kill Your Unborn Baby”? The Tar Heel State legislature should offer this as the alternative, although I suspect the demand from feminists and “deep ecologists” will be very low.

    1. Choose Death

      If I lived in NC, I’d want Choose Life on a pearlescent white vintage Eldorado convertible, and Choose Death on a blackout tint, jet black LP700.

      1. Alternatively, “Guns don’t kill people, I kill people.”

        Or, for cop cars, “Lock up your dogs, peasants.”

      2. Choose Death

        Too cool.

        How about

        Choose Abortion

        or better yet

        1 Luv Abortion

  31. That actualyl makes a lot of sense dude.

    http://www.Got-Anonz.tk

  32. The only thing standing between homeless bums and a job is a lack of cell phones.
    We know this, since all welfare is just the absolute minimum to keep people from dying in the streets:
    “PUC set to OK free phones for homeless”

    http://www.sfgate.com/news/art…..104121.php

    Surprisingly, the comments in the Comical laugh at the notion.

    1. I sure hope those are smartphones with unlimited data; otherwise, it’s just another form of oppression.

      1. If I owned a green energy company I would drive a BMW 750i with the vanity plate:

        OBMA BMMR

  33. …”before the president went back to campaigning for tax hikes for the rich.”

    Can’t let details get in the way of important things!

    1. Why campaign so hard when he doesn’t really want the job?

  34. I’ll most likely post it again in the morning links, assuming I’m not destroyed with a hangover.

    I give up. Obama should take the tax rates up as high as necessary. The federal government simply must have the resources to regulate hemingway cats.

    Nothing can be cut, Jebus, don’t even think about touching PBS. Won’t somebody please thing of the polydactyl cats?!?

  35. Shackford, you magnificent bastard and your Jayne picture!

    1. My own effort to try to lure in donations for the webathon.

  36. From what I understand, that doctor who was kidnapped is part of a Christian missionary group wandering around Afghanistan for some reason.

    As a Christian, I would like to remind my brothers and sisters that suicide is a sin.

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