Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Election 2016: The Funnies

#TrumpBookReport #MuslimsReportStuff #LockerRoomTalk #MakeAmericaBrannigan #TecateBeerWall

"Tens of thousands of voters in Texas want Harambe, the gorilla shot dead in the Cincinnati zoo in May, to become the next leader of the free world.

Public Policy Polling released its latest survey on Tuesday, revealing that the Internet famous gorilla is polling at 2 per cent, the same number as Green Party presidential hopeful Jill Stein. And for those interested, Donald Trump is leading Hillary Clinton 50-44, largely thanks to white voters in the state."

A 12-year-old boy is running Donald Trump’s presidential campaign office in one of Colorado’s most vital counties, according to a new report. Weston Imer runs operations for the Republican presidential nominee’s camp in Jefferson County, KDVR News said Sunday. KDVR News said Jefferson County is one of the most populous counties in Colorado, as it includes part of the Denver metro area. Imer is responsible for gathering volunteers and helping get out the vote for Trump in the critical swing state, the news station added.

“Get involved,” Imer said Sunday when asked what he hopes to accomplish in his role. “That’s what I’m going to say. Get involved. Kids need to be educated.

by Luke Choice, velvetspectrum (instagram)

CINCINNATI (The Borowitz Report)—Republican front-runner Donald Trump was crying foul on Monday after Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders allegedly dispatched an army of vegan thugs to attack a rally of peace-loving Nazis in Cincinnati. According to Trump, he had begun to address a group of “orderly and civil Nazis” at a downtown arena when his audience was suddenly set upon by an unruly mob of angry vegans, many menacingly clad in Birkenstocks and sustainable garments.

The Sanders supporters, singing an alarmingly militant version of Simon & Garfunkel’s “America,” marched into the arena and began “intimidating and threatening” the Nazis, Trump said. “Make no mistake about who is starting the violence at these rallies,” Trump said. “It’s the vegans.”

Carol Foyler, a Nazi from suburban Cincinnati, said that she feared for her life when one of the vegans “ripped a Trump sign” from her hands and “tried to recycle it.” Harland Dorrinson, a Kentucky Nazi who drove to Ohio to hear Trump speak, said he would never have attended the rally if he had known “there would be troublemaking vegans there. One of them tried to swing an NPR tote bag at my head,” the terrified Nazi said.

Vermin Supreme Says He 'Paved The Way For Donald Trump'
Who is Vermin Supreme and why does he say he "paved the way for Donald Trump"? newsy.com/56839
Posted by Newsy on Sunday, February 7, 2016

"Donald Trump on Thursday retweeted an insult to Iowa voters, just hours after a poll showed him behind retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson in the state.

"@mygreenhippo #BenCarson is now leading in the #polls in #Iowa. Too much #Monsanto in the #corn creates issues in the brain? #Trump #GOP"
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 22, 2015

"'@mygreenhippo #BenCarson is now leading in the #polls in #Iowa. Too much #Monsanto in the #corn creates issues in the brain? #Trump #GOP,'" Trump's retweet states."

"More than anyone I knew, Ted seemed to have arrived in college with a fully formed worldview,” Butler College colleague Erik Leitch said. “And what strikes me now, looking at him as an adult and hearing the things he's saying, it seems like nothing has changed. Four years of an Ivy League education, Harvard Law, and years of life experience have altered nothing."

Craig Mazin said he knew some people might be afraid to speak in the press about a senator, but added of Cruz, “We should be afraid that someone like that has power.”

And the idea that his freshman roommate could someday be the leader of the free world? “I would rather have anybody else be the president of the United States. Anyone,” Mazin said. “I would rather pick somebody from the phone book."

Republican consultant Rick Wilson denigrated supporters of Donald Trump on Tuesday, painting them as anti-Semitic lacking ambition, Crooks and Liars reported.

“The fact of the matter is, most of them are childless single men who masturbate to anime,” Wilson told MSNBC host Chris Hayes. “They’re not real political players. These are not people who matter in the overall course of humanity.”

The GOP, Wilson insisted, is still being driven by the belief in a limited-government platform.

“I don’t think that this other stuff that Trump is toying with is part of the mainstream conservative movement by any stretch of the imagination,” he added.

» 7 Ways Hillary Clinton Is Just Like Your Abuela (Because we all love #hispandering right?)

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) on Monday said he plans to introduce legislation banning all Muslim refugees from Syria from entering America. Christian refugees from Syria, however, would be allowed.

“There is no meaningful risk of Christians committing acts of terror,” he said. “If there were a group of radical Christians pledging to murder anyone who had a different religious view than they, we would have a different national security situation.”

Fellow candidate Jeb Bush had just finished answering the question, bragging that he's 7-0 in his fantasy football league before saying that “there should be some regulation” with fantasy sports betting.

"Are we really talking about fantasy football," an incredulous Chris Christie yelled after the question was asked. "Wait a second, we have $19 trillion in debt, people out of work, ISIS and Al Qaeda attacking us and we're talking about fantasy football?"

"Amid his outburst, however, Christie may forgotten an email his own campaign sent supporters just weeks ago, equating the 2016 presidential race with fantasy football. 'Have you set your lineup this week,' Christie campaign Digital Director Lauren Fritts wrote in the Sept. 24 email. 'This is a friendly reminder to double check and submit your lineup before the start of the Giants ... game tonight at 8:25 p.m.'"

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Bob Dylan, 2016 Nobel Prize in Literature Winner

"The winner of the 2016 Nobel Prize in Literature will be announced in Stockholm in early October. The London betting houses have Haruki Murakami (5/1), Ngugi Wa Thiong’o (7/1) and Philip Roth (8/1) as the favorites—the only contenders with single-digit odds. Bob Dylan is listed at 50/1, behind such authors as Joyce Carol Oates and Amos Oz, but even with the likes of Thomas Pynchon and Milan Kundera and ahead of Tom Stoppard, Cormac McCarthy and Salman Rushdie. Dylan has had better odds in the past and may be slipping."
Bob Dylan is a notoriously reticent man. As our own coverage of Desert Trip can attest, during his entire 90-minute set, he never said a word to the audience. And despite doing multiple shows since it was announced that he won the Nobel Prize in Literature, Dylan hasn’t responded to it publicly.

As it turns out, he hasn’t responded privately, either.

According to The Guardian, the Swedish Academy, the body responsible for awarding the Nobel Prize, hasn’t heard from Dylan at all, despite multiple emails and calls to the elusive star. The secretary for the Academy, Sara Danius, said they’ve stopped trying to contact Dylan directly: “Right now we are doing nothing. I have called and sent emails to his closest collaborator and received very friendly replies. For now, that is certainly enough.”

So what does that mean for the ceremony on Dec. 10? Danius said, “I am not at all worried. I think he will show up.” Typically, recipients come to the ceremony to be given the award by King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden and to deliver a speech, but Dylan’s not known for being “typical.” The Academy doesn’t seem too hung up about it, if Dylan is in fact ghosting them. Danius said, “If he doesn’t want to come, he won’t come. It will be a big party in any case and the honour belongs to him.”

The Nobel Prize has often been given to writers who transformed their literary genre so thoroughly that their influence on other writers is almost as important as the original work. William Faulkner and Gabriel Garcia Marquez won for transforming the novel (though James Joyce was snubbed), and T.S. Eliot for transforming poetry (though Allen Ginsberg was snubbed). But it’s hard to think of a writer who has revolutionized a genre as completely as Dylan has the song lyric.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Spotlight: Anthony Bourdain

Washington Post:
‘This is going to be the worst day of Anderson’s life,” Anthony Bourdain announces gleefully as he settles behind a table at Takashi, a ­Japanese-Korean fusion restaurant in the West Village. Before Bourdain’s CNN docu- series “Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown” premieres each season, he and Anderson (Cooper, obviously) sit down for a meal and film a special preview. Cooper hates trying new food, and Bourdain — the TV host and chef who eats everything — takes great joy in watching the cable news anchor squirm.

Cooper walks in a few minutes later in jeans and a maroon T-shirt; Bourdain is wearing the standard Cooper uniform of jeans and a black T-shirt. “We mirror,” Cooper says, gesturing back and forth. “I look to you for my styling,” Bourdain explains. The banter continues as the cameras roll and they discuss the eighth season of “Parts Unknown,” the food and travel series that kicks off Sept. 25 with a guest appearance by President Obama in Hanoi.

The White House reached out to Bourdain’s team about getting the president on the show; when Cooper asks whether it’s because the president is a fan, Bourdain deflects. Instead, he talks about how he drank beer with Obama on plastic stools at a small, ­family-run restaurant. To the joy of the locals, they ate a uniquely Hanoi dish called bun cha, which includes cold rice noodles and grilled pork.

“That puts that ‘secret Muslim’ thing to rest, by the way,” Bourdain adds.

The Secret Service wasn’t thrilled about the “hard to control” environment, but ultimately Bourdain and Obama dined for about 90 minutes. The meal cost $6 and Bourdain picked up the check — quite the unconventional presidential meeting. “But for whatever reason,” Bourdain tells Cooper, “they seemed willing to play.”

‘A different kind of storytelling’
Actually, there are a few obvious reasons President Obama might stop by. Namely, “Parts Unknown” has developed a fiercely loyal audience in the 3½ years since its debut, and Bourdain’s fans follow his every move as he explores international cultures and cuisines. This month, the show won its fourth consecutive Emmy Award for Outstanding Informational Series or Special. (It won another in 2013 for cinematography.) The show is a great press stop for, say, a world leader who wants to talk about his trip to improve relations between the United States and Vietnam.

But in early 2013, when CNN first announced plans for the series, some inside and outside the cable news network scoffed.

“There were people who were naysayers. . . . ‘Why are you putting someone who’s not a journalist on CNN?’” says Amy Entelis, executive vice president for talent and content development. “People thought that change in strategy was threatening to CNN in some ways. . . . It wasn’t a huge ordeal, but there was some skepticism about whether this was the right direction.”

At the time, the network wanted to launch a few hours of original programming every week to combat its “peaks and valleys” ratings problem: Viewers flipped to CNN in droves for big news events, but when the story died down, the audience was gone. During a development meeting in 2012, Bourdain’s name came up.

Bourdain, of course, was a cultural phenomenon with the long-running, food-centric hit “No Reservations” on Travel Channel, which started in 2005. He also was known for writing books, such as the best-selling, secret-spilling “Kitchen Confidential.” In 2011, he landed his own book line at Harper Collins imprint Ecco, presenting works by what he called “strong voices,” including Roy Choi’s “L.A. Son: My Life, My City, My Food” and Daniel Vaughn’s “The Prophets of Smoked Meat: A Journey Through Texas Barbecue.” (Bourdain’s first cookbook in a decade, “Appetites,” will be released Oct. 25 and centers on home cooking.)

Although CNN was wary of airing something that looked like a reality show, executives could see a sharp, engrossing ­documentary-style series.

“He made you want to go on a journey with him around the world, which is really what CNN wants to do every day as well,” Entelis says. “He studiously avoids saying he’s a journalist, and we were really looking for a different kind of storytelling on CNN.”

‘You can eat anything’
Bourdain headed to CNN after his contract with Travel Channel ended; “Parts Unknown” started airing Sunday nights in April 2013. He relished CNN’s resources and the freedom to go beyond topics that were more impactful than, as he puts it, “Is it salty or sweet?”

Bourdain, 60, insists he doesn’t take himself too seriously on “Parts Unknown,” even though he’s gone in-depth on issues including the drug problems in Mexico City, kangaroo courts in Myanmar and the changing atmosphere of Cuba. He often features journalists. In Iran, he met with Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian mere weeks before Rezaian was arrested and detained for more than a year.

Dispatches on food are mixed into every episode. At lunch with Cooper, Bourdain talks about his favorite meals of the season as the two dine on hand-sliced Kobe beef tartare served with quail egg, sea urchin wrapped in seaweed and calf’s brain cream served with blinis and caviar. (“It’s actually really good. Wow, I like brain,” Cooper says, almost to himself.)

Season 8 goes all over the map: Bourdain details the hot chicken that almost “destroyed” him in Nashville and his spicy adventures in Sichuan. He was eating roasted bone marrow in London during the time of Brexit and found the city in “a collective mental breakdown.”

As Bourdain and Cooper dive into the chef’s selection, which includes various barbecued organs and sweetbreads, Cooper balks at the aorta. “I didn’t know you could eat aorta,” he says doubtfully.

“You can eat anything, Andy,” Bourdain responds.

‘Part of . . . popular culture’
Bourdain’s food fearlessness is famous enough to be a punch line. During the 2015 White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner, host and “Saturday Night Live” star Cecily Strong joked that “it’s just comforting to know that whenever a big story breaks, I can turn to CNN and watch Anthony Bourdain eat a cricket.”

CNN president Jeff Zucker — who came to the network just a few months before “Parts Unknown” launched — says that over the past four years, CNN has proved it can “walk and chew gum at the same time” in terms of content. When there’s breaking news, Bourdain’s show gets pulled: The Season 7 finale featuring Buenos Aires was preempted for coverage of the Orlando nightclub shooting in June. (The episode will air as part of Season 8 on Nov. 27.)

“I think that the beauty of CNN today is that we have evolved to a place where we can juggle both original series and films and documentaries with our coverage of news and politics and breaking news,” Zucker says. “There are people who criticize us for doing too much coverage of certain stories, and there are people who want to talk about our original series. So the bottom line is everyone’s talking about CNN, and that’s a good place to be.”

Next year, CNN will have 13 original series on the air. Ratings-wise, “Parts Unknown” has stayed fairly steady over the years, averaging 880,000 viewers on Sunday nights in the first season and 828,000 in the seventh season. News of the Obama appearance got plenty of attention when it was leaked over the summer; Zucker says he wasn’t surprised that the show gets such high- profile guest stars.

“We get requests left and right from people who want to be in it. Almost none of those are honored or done,” Zucker says. “But the president was in Vietnam and wanted to be part of the show. . . . I thought it was just another sign of just how deeply the program has become a part of American popular culture now.”

‘A guy who likes food’
After the filming at Takashi wraps and Cooper departs, Bourdain sits at another table while a downpour continues outside. A passerby suddenly taps loudly on the window and dashes into the restaurant, even though it’s closed. “I just have to tell you how much I love your show,” she gushes. “I am, like, obsessed with you.” Bourdain smiles politely and says thanks.

Although Bourdain can cause a commotion in public, thanks to fans who have watched his shows for years and/or plan their vacations inspired by his travels, he doesn’t ruminate on his success — even about his presidential visitor, as he emphasizes that he and Obama just talked like two everyday guys having dinner.

“I did not wander outside my area of expertise, let’s put it that way,” Bourdain says. “I spoke to him as a fellow father, as somebody who loves Asia, as a guy who likes food and cold beer, and that’s it.”

More information:
» Guy Fieri Fires Back at Anthony Bourdain: ‘He’s Definitely Gotta Have Issues’

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Saint Motel

Their forthcoming album saintmotelevision is due out Oct. 21 via Elektra.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

"I Can Do All Things"

The verses below reportedly were written on the wall of Mother Teresa's home for children in Calcutta, India, and are widely attributed to her. Some sources say that the words below were written on the wall in Mother Teresa's own room.  In any case, their association with Mother Teresa and the Missionaries of Charity has made them popular worldwide, expressing as they do, the spirit in which they lived their lives. They seem to be based on a composition originally by Kent Keith, but much of the second half has been re-written in a more spiritual way.  Both versions are shown below.
The version found written on the wall in Mother Teresa's home for children in Calcutta:
              People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered.  Forgive them anyway.
            If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives.  Be kind anyway.
            If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies.  Succeed anyway.
           If you are honest and sincere people may deceive you.  Be honest and sincere anyway.
            What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight.  Create anyway.
            If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous.  Be happy anyway.
            The good you do today, will often be forgotten.  Do good anyway.
         Give the best you have, and it will never be enough.  Give your best anyway.
         In the final analysis, it is between you and God.  It was never between you and them anyway.


The Original Version:
The Paradoxical Commandments
by Dr. Kent M. Keith
  1. People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
    Love them anyway.
  2. If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
    Do good anyway.
  3. If you are successful, you win false friends and true enemies.
    Succeed anyway.
  4. The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
    Do good anyway.
  5. Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
    Be honest and frank anyway.
  6. The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
    Think big anyway.
  7. People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
    Fight for a few underdogs anyway.
  8. What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
    Build anyway.
  9. People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
    Help people anyway.
  10. Give the world the best you have and you'll get kicked in the teeth.
    Give the world the best you have anyway.
© 1968, 2001 Kent M. Keith
"The Paradoxical Commandments" were written by Kent M. Keith in 1968 as part of a booklet for student leaders.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

4WD vs. AWD


It Starts With a Differential

When you take a turn in your car, truck, or AWD wagon-cum-SUV, the outside wheels travel farther than the inside wheels, so, they need to spin faster. To allow this speed differential, there’s a device called a differential between the wheels on an axle. Your front wheels also travel further than your rear wheels, so in an AWD or 4WD vehicle, there’s a need for a differential between the front and rear axles as well.

This system is great on the road, where you have good traction. But all this fancy no-crashyness in high-traction road conditions gets in the way once you encounter the kind of low-traction situations you’ll find off-road or in bad weather. You see, the nature of a differential is to direct all an engine’s torque down the path of least resistance—the tire with the least grip.

If you’ve ever tried to drive up a snowy slope, you’ve probably noticed this. When you hit the gas, one wheel will spin freely, while the other does nothing. To find grip in these conditions, you have to lock the wheels together. And how a vehicle does that is what defines its capability.

Why Drive All Four Wheels? 

Let’s stick with the short answer: Traction. Everything else being equal, four wheels have twice the traction of two. Of course, as we began to get into the above, getting power to all four wheels is pretty complicated. 

How All-Wheel Drive Works

Thanks to that differential between your axles, an AWD car will send your engine’s power down the path of least resistance—the wheel with the least grip. Where a two-wheel drive car can only choose between two wheels, an AWD system looks for that least resistance across all four wheels.
To counteract this, the better AWD cars are fitted with a center differential that contains a clutch or viscous drive unit. This splits torque front-to-rear, directing it away from the spinning wheel. Because it does this on-the-fly, automatically, without any driver intervention, good AWD vehicles can help a driver maintain traction through variable conditions. AWD can go from grippy pavement (where the differentials need to allow different speeds side-to-side and front-to-rear) to slippery snow, rain, or dirt (where torque also needs to be apportioned to wheels with grip), virtually instantaneously. That’s why AWD is the better choice for most drivers and why it helps you safely navigate both inclement weather and light off-road driving. A big differentiator in AWD systems is how much torque they’re able to apportion—the more the better. Make sure to look for that number when researching your next car purchase.

How Four-Wheel Drive Works

4WD works by locking the front and rear axles together, splitting torque 50:50 between them. This provides great traction, but a vehicle locked in 4WD cannot safely be operated on dry pavement because its front and rear axles are forced to rotate at the same speeds. In addition to potentially causing the vehicle to spin out of control, that also causes a lot of stress on the powertrain and can damage it. Locked in 4WD, a vehicle needs wheel slip to compensate for the different axle speeds—in 4WD, a truck is able to find traction on loose surfaces, but also needs loose surfaces to work. So you only really ever use 4WD off-road, or in deep snow.

Just to make matters as complicated as possible, some 4WD vehicles can also operate in AWD. Wes’ Land Rover Discovery is a great example. While driving around Hollywood, on paved roads, he won't have the front and rear axels locked together. To repeat our previous topic, that means torque is sent to all four wheels, but not split front to rear. Torque goes to whichever of the four wheels has the least grip. Then, when he’s off-road in Baja, he locks that center differential, enters 4WD, and power is split evenly front-to-rear, doubling his traction. With this arrangement, a full-time 4WD vehicle is able to operate safely on the road with its center differential unlocked, then traverse loose terrain by locking that differential.

While 4WD can split power evenly front-to-rear, it can’t apportion it side-to-side, across an axle. This means that in 4WD, torque is still traveling to the wheel with the least grip on each axle. To fix that, you need a locking differential, which forces both wheels on an axle to rotate at the same speed. This is the last piece of the puzzle to maximizing mechanical traction off-road. With a locked center differential, and locked differentials on both axles, torque is apportioned equally to all four wheels.
“Lockers” can work via mechanical, electronic, or pneumatic means. Advanced off-road vehicles such as the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon or Mercedes G-Wagon, come outfitted with front and rear lockers as stock, which means they’re the only vehicles truly capable of simultaneously driving all four wheels in low-traction conditions. If your vehicle does not have front and rear lockers, they’re the best investment you can make to achieve more off-road capability. ARB’s air lockers are completely invisible to your vehicle’s handling, until you hit the switch, engage them, and get instant grip.

Low Range Multiplies Torque

If you’ve ever tried to drive your car up and over a curb, you’ll have noticed how much gas it took just to creep over that simple obstacle. And your car probably didn’t like it. Wondering how 4x4s crawl up giant, steep rocks? It’s not with more power, it’s with lower gearing. Low-range gearing multiplies an engine’s torque (typically by a factor of two to four). It’s like shifting into the granny gear on your mountain bike—suddenly climbs require much less work. This also has the effect of multiplying the effects of engine braking; low-range gearing allows you to go down very steep terrain without using the brakes.

By enabling you to tackle technical terrain at lower speeds, low-range gearing also makes the obstacles easier on your gearing, enabling your suspension to absorb the bumps, and maximizing safety. Always be in low-range if you’re around anything steep off-road.

Technology Is Replacing Mechanical Capability

Off-road, your vehicle’s capability used to depend on 4WD, locking diffs, and other specialty components. Technology is changing that. These days, people want the vehicles to be able to crawl the Rubicon Trail and lap the Nurburgring. Traction control is making that possible.

Who needs an expensive, seldom-used locking differential when you can just trick your ABS system into doing the same job? By selectively actuating the brake on a spinning wheel, this technology mimics the effect of a locker, directing torque to the wheel with traction. These days, traction control has become so effective that it’s able to catch a spinning wheel within 1/100th of a rotation. It automatically provides the benefits of a locker, without you needing to know when to use one. The only downside comes from the fact that you’re robbing torque from the engine to get traction—fine, if you have more than enough torque, but bad if you don’t have the gearing to find it.

You can actually use your left foot to mimic this. The next time your AWD Subaru is stuck, with one wheel spinning uncontrollably, try left foot braking while modulating the gas pedal with your right. That should send power towards the wheel that has grip, allowing you to drive right on out.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Dawes - "When the Tequila Runs Out"

Along with Dawes' album announcement comes the official video for “When The Tequila Runs Out,” the California folk-rockers' fuzzed-out, boozed-up lead single. The Kevin Hayes-directed visual captures a wild party in slow-motion, as if the camera itself tossed back one too many. The track itself sounds a little slicker than your average Dawes song, with heavy emphasis on its fun-loving hook: “When the tequila runs out, we’ll be drinking champagne.” Works for us.

We’re All Gonna Die was recorded in Los Angeles and produced by Grammy-nominee Blake Mills, who was actually a member of an earlier iteration of the band alongside Goldsmith. The ten-track album includes contributions from Brittany Howard of Alabama Shakes, Jim James of My Morning Jacket, Holly Laessig and Jess Wolfe of Lucius, Mandy Moore (who appears in the “When The Tequila Runs Out” video) and Will Oldham.

“The record sounds so fresh—yet fills me with a strange nostalgia for things that haven’t happened yet,” James said in a press release. “I hear it at the beach and blasting out of car windows on future summer nights … easily having become a natural part of people’s lives.”