Print Story Because what America really needs is more stray cats
By lm (Fri May 23, 2008 at 04:24:24 AM EST) (all tags)
I am an ecstatic ray of glorious sunshine, intent on exploding your mind and eating your brains.

So there.

Last night my eldest daughter called me a douchebag. I asked her if she knew what a douchebag was. She didn't. So I told her to go look it up in the dictionary. Our copy of Miriam/Webster's Unabridged Collegiate dictionary didn't make sense to her. So my wife explained how it works. Once understanding set in, I gave her a wedgie to help her learn to mind her manners.

George Packer argues for the impending death  of conservatism in the US:

Rove’s declared ambition to create a ``permanent majority'' seemed like the vision of a tactical genius. But it was built on two illusions: that the conservative era would stretch on indefinitely, and that politics matters more than governing. The first illusion defied history; the second was blown up in Iraq and drowned in New Orleans.
Over all, it's a very interesting article with a few interesting points. But I think it misses the real problem, conservatism is not a single movement but a coalition of movements that increasingly do not share common ground. In the seventies and eighties, there were two issues the conservative movement really coalesced around, abortion and the cold war. For a brief after 9/11, that coalition looked like it was going to translate into the dual memes of abortion and the war on terror. But not only did the GWB administration drop the ball on the war on terror but various wedge issues started coming up over competency, etc. And some conservatives started noticing that after decades of having a supreme court populated by Republican appointees and several years after having both the white house and congress controlled by Republicans, abortion was still legal.

I tanked up my commuter car this morning. The price of gas at the pump adjusted for inflation is almost twice what it was when GWB was sworn into office. I'm glad my dinky little car gets > 30mpg. If the real estate market wasn't presently in a downward spiral and if I wasn't uncertain as to whether or not I'm going to move come late summer, I'd sell my house and buy one within walking distance to work.

David Brooks gives a mildly interesting history of the relationship between geek and nerd. The most surprising thing to me is how recent vintage the word nerd is. Apparently it's a Seussism. (Although Geisel's use of the word may be independent of its use in spoken language. I don't think that 4 letters strung together in a Dr. Seuss rhyme necessarily implies anything at all about language usage.) The most interesting thing is the flip/flop in which one signifies someone unpopular but smart and which one signifies someone merely unpopular. His application of the terms to politics, however, is, uh, excessively nerdy.

Excellent overview of John McCain's view on war. I found the way that his view of the justness of war to stop genocide is tempered by realities on the ground to be very sophisticated. Having a commander in chief like McCain at the beginning of the present Iraq war would have been the best shot of the US to win it. By this point in time, I have doubts as to whether the war remains winnable.

And I'm off to blah, blah, blah.

< And a good time... | Fraud >
Because what America really needs is more stray cats | 8 comments (8 topical, 0 hidden)
I remember when I first got my car. by debacle (2.00 / 0) #1 Fri May 23, 2008 at 05:06:43 AM EST
I couldn't put $20 into it because my tank wasn't that big.

Did you stop to think that you may, in fact, be a douchebag? That single fact keeps my behavior in check (everywhere but the internet).

I don't consider myself trendy enough to be a geek. I'm just a lowly nerd. An comforting truth, when you can face it. I also don't consider many geeks to be nerdy enough to be considered true geeks. Ah well, eventually I will destroy them all.


The wife and I have had the by MartiniPhilosopher (2.00 / 0) #2 Fri May 23, 2008 at 05:24:57 AM EST
"nerd" vs "geek" debate a few times. While it still comes up from time to time, we tend towards having "nerd" designate someone with vast, detailed and often trivial knowledge over certain subject matter. Doesn't matter what. Could be baseball, computers, comics or weasel breeding. This leaves "geek" to simply denote those who have a knowledge and interest in a certain topic.

The difference being that fine detail of desire. How much does one want to be knowledgeable in a given area? How much does one want to be obsessed with pursuit of that topic? The further one is willing to justify their race, the "nerdier" one gets.

Whenever I hear one of those aforementioned douche bags pontificate about how dangerous [...] videogames are I get a little stabby. --Wil Wheaton.

They're easy to tell apart: by greyrat (4.00 / 0) #4 Fri May 23, 2008 at 06:35:07 AM EST
Geeks are alcoholics trapped into making a living at carnivals by performing disgusting feats: Such as biting the heads off live chickens and drinking the blood. Nerds are not.

[ Parent ]
two issues ... coalesced around by wiredog (2.00 / 0) #3 Fri May 23, 2008 at 06:02:34 AM EST
I'd add one more: Fiscal conservativism. That is, cut spending and cut taxes. Which Reagan sort of followed (mostly on tax cuts), as did Bush the Elder and Clinton (courtesy of Gingrich). But which Bush the Younger interpreted as "cut taxes and damn the consequences".

By now I suspect most of the fiscal conservatives are voting Democratic.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

I thought about adding that one but didn't by lm (2.00 / 0) #5 Fri May 23, 2008 at 08:29:01 AM EST
While Reagan and Bush '43 both gave lip service to fiscal conservatism, I don't think either could really be construed to be fiscally conservative. Nor do I think preaching fiscal conservatism has much draw on anyone outside the libertarian faction of the GOP.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
There hasn't been by riceowlguy (2.00 / 0) #8 Sun Jun 01, 2008 at 03:45:27 AM EST
a single fiscally conservative president (or congress) since Herbert Hoover.

[ Parent ]
what prompted the smartass comment? <nt> by yankeehack (2.00 / 0) #6 Fri May 23, 2008 at 01:06:16 PM EST

"...she dares to indulge in the secret sport. You can't be a MILF with the F, at least in part because the M is predicated upon it."-CBB
which comment are you referring to? by lm (2.00 / 0) #7 Fri May 23, 2008 at 02:25:31 PM EST
The one about cats, my daughter's, something else?

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Because what America really needs is more stray cats | 8 comments (8 topical, 0 hidden)