Fear of Clowns

"Faith may be defined briefly as an illogical belief in the occurrence of the improbable."
- H. L. Mencken

Friday, July 25, 2008

Damned if you do or don't 

The McCain campaign feebly attacks Obama not only in a ridiculous manner but in a ridiculous manner that is equally applied to McCain.

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Thursday, July 24, 2008

FOX push-polling 

I've gotten used to the fact that FOX NEWS is a crypto-Republican public relations firm, but even unscrupulous public relations firms stay away from push-polling. The assimilation of FOX News into the Republican party apparatus is now complete.

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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

McCain knows what the Iraqi PM really REALLY wants deep down inside 

Iraqis are begging for us to stay, nomatter what they may say. McSame,

"I have been there too many times. I've met too many times with him, and I know what they want."

Full interview (with commentary) is a hoot.

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Sunday, July 20, 2008

Frog update 

Three of my four new banded D. leucomelas froglets. They are about two months out of the water (meaning two months since they morphed from tadpoles to froglets). They're really tiny.

banded leucs

Sexed pair of adult/sub adult D. azureus. The males are smaller and have broader toe pads.

D. azureus

Sterilizing wood for the vivariums. I had it in a 225° F oven for 3 1/2 or four hours.

Sterilizing live oak leaves for the vivariums. boiled in R/O water for about a half hour.

Here are the plants I've collected so far for my four frog vivariums. As you have to throw out plants that have been exposed to frogs with parasites, I'm waiting until I test the frogs fecals before planting them in with the frogs.

The azureus have not yet figured out they can jump into the petri dish and chow down ... both repeatedly try to nab crickets through the plastic.

The last few seconds of a cricket's life.

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Friday, July 18, 2008

Coctau Twins videos 

Carolyn's fingers
Iceblink Luck
Pearly Dewdrops Drops
Love's Easy Tears
Swallow Me
From the Flagstones
Wax and Wane
Musette and drums
Orange Appled
Throughout the Dark Months of April and May
Sugar Hiccup
Pink Orange Red
Heaven or Las Vegas
Treasure Hiding
Ella Megalast Burls Forever
Rilkean Heart

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A week of terror 


About 1,200 people of a tribal village in Chhattisgarh have moved to safer places on Friday to avoid a night of fury of a wild elephant that has razed a dozen houses and killed an elderly woman.


Please let it be the beginning of a long prison sentence 


In a release Thursday, House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers (D-MI) announced he will hold a hearing July 25 examining "the imperial presidency of George W. Bush and possible legal responses."

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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Working in the Land of 10,000 Lakes 

A few photos I took from the balcony at work using my new and awesome and wallet sized camera.



One out of the five D. leucomelas I received today didn't survive shipping.

D. leucomelas corpse

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Republican myth vs reality II 

The goal of the "Iraq surge" was to give breathing room to Iraqi political leaders to find political reconciliation. Republicans are not claiming the surge has succeded.

Although violence is down, the mission has failed.

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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Republican myth vs reality 


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This is about par for the course 

"I believe 9/11 could have been prevented if we'd had a Republican president at the time."

- Mike Meehan
Republican Voter

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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

SC Governor on economic differences between Bush and McSame 

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Monday, July 14, 2008

New camera 

Bought a PowerShot DS1100 IS.

The water fountain at work,

water fountain

A drain in the bathroom at work,


Diet Dr. Pepper at work,

soda bubbles

Bird splat in the skyway,

bird splat

Dinner at Tao Foods,

Tao Foods

My D. auratus, scared into a corner,

Dendrobates auratus

My D. imitator,

Dendrobates imitator

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Killer elephant trapped in field by villagers 


A lone tusker, which had strayed out of a forest near Jalpaiguri town today, trampled to death one man and injured another who came in its way, before around 2,000 villagers confined the animal to a jute field for more than 10 hours.


Saturday, July 12, 2008

Degree of candidates' liberalness depends on who they're running against 

Steve Sauerberg,

Dick Durbin has become the most divisive and liberal Senator in the entire Senate.

Or John McCain,

Democratic Rep. Dan Boren of Oklahoma said Tuesday Barack Obama is "the most liberal senator" in Congress and he has no intention of endorsing him for the White House.

Both Senators from Illinois are the most liberal in the entire Senate.

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Friday, July 11, 2008

Herd kills whole family 


Four members of one family were trampled to death today after a herd of wild elephants strayed into a remote village in southeastern Bangladesh, police said.


Thursday, July 10, 2008

Teen pregnancy and national debt up, military stretched! 

It's no wonder that an anti-government party's legacy would be failure at obtaining their stated policy goals following their most ascendant point.

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So, a candidate walks in to a foreign language class and says 

Q: Europeans call people who speak two languages bilingual and those who speak one language trilingual. What do they call Americans who speak one language?

A: American.

From TPM (the language thing is near the beginning, hang out to the end to see McCain hop off his stump long enough to tread onto Obama's (Obama "is living proof of the greatness of America")

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Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Ex Post Facto FISA + Obama presidency = no retroactive immunity 

Obama voted for the FISA Bill which keeps in place the original protections for domestic communications but gives retroactive immunity to telecoms who colluded with the Bush Administration's illegal spying on Americans.

When Obama is President, he could direct the DoJ to file a suit claiming pointing out that such Ex Post Facto legislation is blatantly unconstitutional allowing suits to move forward.

I mean, why not?

UPDATE: Russ Feingold doesn't see why not.

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A step back from Republican rhetoric 

We hear it in Republican rhetoric so often it easily slips by, but the entire Republican brand centers on the claim that Republicans love their country and Democrats do not. In a Bush fundraising email I just received, it's first claimed that Republicans will retain the WH and take back the Senate and House. Then the explanation,

The reason that I am confident about Republican success is because when the American people look at our ideals versus the ideals of the Democrats, the people are with us.

Our ideas and values are those embraced by the American people. They may not be the ones who the pundits listen to, but they are the ones who are out working every single day to make America a great and hopeful place.

That this type of Real Americans are with Us appeal has worked well for Republicans is a testament to the fact their base is an emotionally pliable shallow group easily motivated and angered by buzzwords. It's the same thing every election: flag flying vs flag burning, your kids vs your kids being converted to homosexuals, you opening up a storefront in your retirement years vs being sent to a labor camp by communistic Democrats ...

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Two more elephant incidents 


On noticing a tusker eating a jackfruit there, [Lata ] raised an alarm. The tusker immediately followed her and trampled her to death.

When Madhab came out hearing the screams of his wife, the tusker also attacked him. Madhab died on way to Angul hospital. The tusker retreated into forests after the incident.


A WILD elephant has killed a villager and ransacked thatched shelters of the locals in mineral rich Joda area in Orissa’s Keonjhar district, about 300 kilometers away from the state capital of Bhubaneswar.

... according to figures available with Orissa Forest Department, as many as 256 elephants have died in the last five years beginning from 2002-03, while 187 persons have been killed due to man-animal conflict.


Tuesday, July 08, 2008

But McCain's a Republican 

From The Strib,

The head of the Minnesota Gambling Control Board said that a solicitation for funds on the national website of the Barack Obama presidential campaign may constitute a raffle, which is a violation of Minnesota gambling laws.

Tom Barrett, executive director of the board, said he will ask the state Department of Public Safety to look into the matter.

... The Obama website, which is soliciting funds of up to $2,300, says anyone who makes a contribution to the Obama campaign of $5 or more between now and July 31 "could be one of 10 supporters chosen to meet Barack backstage" in Denver.

From John McCain's website,

Be the lucky supporter to ride with John McCain on the Straight Talk Express on an upcoming bus tour. Everyone who donates between now and June 30th is eligible.

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Friday, July 04, 2008

It really gets going a little before half the way through 

Happy Independence Day.

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Thursday, July 03, 2008

Obama on strategy vs tactics 

One of the flaws in the President's approach is to say that [Bush] is doing what General Petraeus tells him is the best thing to do; that's not the President's job, the President's job is to tell the general's what the mission is because you have to take the entire strategic interests of the United States in mind not just one particular front when it comes to our national interest. And so the mission I will set for our generals is to bring this war to a close.

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Jonah Goldberg: idiotarian 

Jonah Goldberg cries that a call for volunteerism from Barak Obama is tantamount to serfdom,

[T]he American revolution was all about escaping from the European model of servitude .... Incredibly, Barack Obama somehow believes that advocacy of a return to European style serfdom is a good way to celebrate the American Declaration of Independence from the oppression of English tyranny.

I especially liked this part of Obama's speech:

when I'm President, I will set a goal for all American middle and high school students to perform 50 hours of service a year, and for all college students to perform 100 hours of service a year. This means that by the time you graduate college, you'll have done 17 weeks of service. We'll reach this goal in several ways. At the middle and high school level, we'll make federal assistance conditional on school districts developing service programs, and give schools resources to offer new service opportunities.

So 17 weeks of service is sort of like European serfdom. I can't imagine what Goldberg would say had he wanted to write a snarky article about Bush's 2002 State of the Union address,

My call tonight is for every American to commit at least two years, 4,000 hours over the rest of your lifetime, to the service of your neighbors and your nation.

Or for that matter, the Gippers legacy.


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Candy ass liberal freaks out during fraternity hazing 

The pussy.

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Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Dart frog food day 

Flightless fruit flies are the staple food for most captive dart frogs; I've so far been more successfull with other feeder insects. My cricket ranch is producing hundreds of pinhead crickets.

pinhead crickets

This is the bedding I removed from the main colony - it's now in a 6 quart Seralite container with some dry catfood, powdered milk and damp sphagnum moss. What else could a baby cricket need?

cricket bedding

By the way, I'm watching Dave Letterman interview a very drunk Jack Black at the moment.

I'm not exactly sure what these are - I've read them referred to as bean beetles and bean weevils. They're amazingly easy to culture - all they need is dry black-eyed-peas. No water, no anything else. There were 8 or a dozen individuals in my starter culture - all dead for weeks now. Three days ago, a single beetle emerged, yesterday two dozen, today swarms. I split the "used" beans into two new cultures and added fresh beans to the original culture.

They must emerge from the beans sexually mature as all they do is crawl around and mate with each other.

bean beetles

Here I have a mixture of vermiculite, small pebbles and LECA. On top I've layered damp corrugated cardboard. This is a culture of isopods - similar to pill bugs, rolly-pollies and woodlice - the things that roll up or scatter when you lift up something that hasn't been lifted up in a while. They are all isopods.


This page and video was really helpful to me. Not sure what to try for food, I'm giving them a smorgasbord: watermelon rind, banana peel, yeast, oatmeal and a tortilla.

isopod food

Covered with a final layer of cardboard as these are the things you see when lifting up something that hasn't been lifted up in a while.

isopod food

Springtails - another animal you'll only see when looking under things. I'm using charcoal as a medium as their buoyancy allows one to harvest them by flooding the container and scooping a mass of them off the top of the water.

springtail charcoal

Food for the springtails: yeast and oatmeal.

springtail food

For my tadpoles, bloodworms. Purchased frozen from a pet store.

frozen bloodwords

I moved my tads to larger containers.


I killed two of my three turquoise and bronze and auratus tadpoles by using straight reverse osmosis water. By osmosis, the mineral free water sucks minerals and salts out of the tadpole. Here is the single turquoise and bronze that made it - you can see its eyes here.

turquoise and bronze tadpole

Finally, some food for the human.

human food: Summit IPA ale

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Dart frog auctions: buy and sell jewels of the rainforest 

As eBay prohibits the sale of live animals, my new brainchild Poison Dart Frog Auctions allows buyers and sellers to do just that: buy and sell poison dart frogs.

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