Faster Than Comcast

Comcast’s worst nightmare: How Tennessee could save America’s Internet http://www.salon.com/2014/07/18/comcasts_worst_nightmare_how_tennessee_could_save_americas_internet_partner/ via @Salon

Great article about how public utilities are serving customers better than the telecommunications companies.  It shows both that public investments are sometimes better than private companies, and if big corporations lose they will abandon their free market principles faster than rats on a sinking ship. 

Police Throw Flash Grenade in Crib

A SWAT team blew a hole in my 2-year-old son http://www.salon.com/2014/06/24/a_swat_team_blew_a_hole_in_my_2_year_old_son/ via @Salon

I have talked quite a bit about how our police force is becoming militarized.  A good deal of this is because of the military-industrial complex.  Weapons from our endless wars are making their way home.  The war on drugs, even though there have been improvements on some fronts, continues in its degrading absurdity.  Although I find libertarian economic policies to be utopian and unrealistic, I do agree with them when it comes to personal freedom.  This topic should be one place liberals and certain elements of the right should be able to reach an agreement on. 

In other news my computer is still down which is making it hard for me to do more long form writing.  Hopefully this will be a problem solved soon. 

The Beautiful Strange World of Hayao Miyazaki

Don’t call him the Walt Disney of Japan: How animator Hayao Miyazaki became a cultural icon by doing everything Pixar doesn’t http://www.salon.com/2014/06/23/dont_call_him_the_walt_disney_of_japan_how_animator_hayao_miyazaki_became_a_cultural_icon_by_doing_everything_pixar_doesnt/ via @Salon

The above article is a really interesting one about the famous Japanese animator.  His films can appear very strange to the Western eye.  After traveling to and reading I have learned about how the Japanese are more comfortable with abstractions.  Abstractions are part of their everyday language.  Because of their complex social behavior they often speak in abstractions and convey certain nuances through how things are said and facial expressions. 

I love Miyazaki’s beautiful and surreal movies.  They are art and entertainment all in one.  If you are looking to go someplace you have never been give his films a try. 

Koch Brothers Steal Ohio

http://www.salon.com/2014/06/18/how_the_koch_brothers_stole_ohio/

The above article at Salon is about how the Koch brothers have played a role in preventing Ohio from moving forward with renewable energy for the next two years.  They are a true threat to our democracy.  How we can let these emotional mutants to play such a big role in running this country is beyond me.  To paraphrase Klaus Kinski: I hope fire ants piss in their lying eyes!  

Our Secret KGB Lust

http://www.salon.com/2014/06/03/the_day_i_left_my_son_in_the_car/

In the above article a woman gets in trouble with the police when she leaves her son in the car for five minutes on a cool day to go into the store.  The police only know about this because someone with a camera phone, who clearly wishes they were in the KGB, informed them.  The best part of the article is when another mother talks about the odds of a child being harmed left in the car for five minutes vs. driving to the store.  People’s threat factors are way off these days.  Also, just watch Mad Men to get an idea how our parents grew up.  As Terry Gilliam says, “kids bounce.”

How many times has some virulent anti-gay figure turned out to be gay?  Is the reason that we claimed to hate totalitarian Communism all those years, and I am referring to the Soviet kind for the moment, because we secretly loved it?  Why do we need a secret police when citizens feel that it is their duty to inform on other citizens for things other than serious crimes?

One of the things that I find most disturbing about modern social interaction is how nothing is private anymore.  It is one thing if someone wants to disclose their own information online, but we now no longer give people the choice most of the time.  From the disgusting world of TMZ to friends checking you into places on facebook without them asking, it is just getting ridiculous.  Are we Big Brother?

If there is a flip side positive to any of this it is when people use their electronic devices to speak truth to power and protect their fellow citizens.  I am thinking especially of when people take videos of police abuse.  If only more people would realize that we’re all in this thing together.

Bullshit Jobs

Here are two really interesting articles from Salon:

The first is about how we were supposed to get more leisure time as productivity rose, but we didn’t.  Instead we have become a country full of “bullshit jobs”.  I’ve worked a few of them!  Here is the article:

http://www.salon.com/2014/06/01/help_us_thomas_piketty_the_1s_sick_and_twisted_new_scheme/

The other is about Henry Ford’s incredibly corrupt private security force:

http://www.salon.com/2014/06/01/henry_fords_reign_of_terror_greed_and_murder_in_depression_era_detroit/

Just remember that a lot of the things we’ve come to believe are really just made up mambo jahambo!