election timing

I have long suspected that Karl Rove has been dreaming about engineering a high profile arrest close to the election. Even if they captured somebody now they’d probably just come up with some bogus reason to hold him in secret until the political climate is more attractive for maximum possible votes.

Just to pass on some added information, about which we’ll be saying more. There is chatter in Pakistani intelligence circles that the US has let the Pakistanis know that the optimal time for bagging ‘high value’ al Qaida suspects in the untamed Afghan-Pakistani border lands is the last ten days of July, 2004.

— Josh Marshall [via Talking Points Memo]

hong kong – the arrival

So I made it to the other side of the world. The flight is fucking long – no joke. 21 hours with a stiff head-wind. Thankfully our otherwise stingy company flies us business class internationally so we get to sit upstairs on the 747 and sip champaign and eat warmed nuts. Personal on-demand video provided me with a few movie options and I chose 21 Grams based on a recommendation from my traveling coworker compainion. I liked the movie, but I don’t know if I would have made it through the whole thing if I had not been captive. (Side note, did you know that Benecio Del Toro is the “attorney” in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas?) I started reading Pattern Recognition by William Gibson and browsed Cargo magazine, which has been described to me as a Lucky for men.

The buffet at our hotel (Kowloon Shangri La) has a diverse “station” selection which can easily induce over-indulged, cross-culteral food sickness. An omlette does not go well with mu-shu Pork. Similar to the KFC/Taco Bell where you can’t decide so you opt for the #12 taco/fried chicken combo and regret it big time afterwards.

Photos forthcoming.



ferrari  I’m a big Formula One fan. Tivo is taking care of recording this Sunday’s Spanish Grand Prix race, but I won’t be home for two weeks to watch it. The one side benefit of the almost total lack of state-side F1 coverage is that most likely I’ll be able to make it that whole time without finding out who wins and spoiling it for me.



Side F1 note: When I first met Hollie’s brother (1995?) who introduced me to the sport, he called me Schumacher cause I kindof look like him. He still calls me Schumacher, which is fine by me because he has since become the all-time winningest driver in history and makes up near $100million/year.


Binary scale

I was just introduced to the binary scale. Assign 0 for you wouldn’t, 1 for you would. Excruciatingly beautiful in design and execution.

Replace your outdated, inefficient 1-10 opposite sex ranking today.


tee hee

Just in case I haven’t offended enough people yet.

Average IQ by state and how they voted in 2000

  State Avg. IQ 2000
1 Connecticut 113 Gore
2 Massachusetts 111 Gore
3 New Jersey 111 Gore
4 New York 109 Gore
5 Rhode Island 107 Gore
6 Hawaii 106 Gore
7 Maryland 105 Gore
8 New Hampshire 105 Bush
9 Illinois 104 Gore
10 Delaware 103 Gore
11 Minnesota 102 Gore
12 Vermont 102 Gore
13 Washington 102 Gore
14 California 101 Gore
15 Pennsylvania 101 Gore
16 Maine 100 Gore
17 Virginia 100 Bush
18 Wisconsin 100 Gore
19 Colorado 99 Bush
20 Iowa 99 Gore
21 Michigan 99 Gore
22 Nevada 99 Bush
23 Ohio 99 Bush
24 Oregon 99 Gore
25 Alaska 98 Bush
26 Florida 98 Bush
27 Missouri 98 Bush
28 Kansas 96 Bush
29 Nebraska 95 Bush
30 Arizona 94 Bush
31 Indiana 94 Bush
32 Tennessee 94 Bush
33 North Carolina 93 Bush
34 West Virginia 93 Bush
35 Arkansas 92 Bush
36 Georgia 92 Bush
37 Kentucky 92 Bush
38 New Mexico 92 Gore
39 North Dakota 92 Bush
40 Texas 92 Bush
41 Alabama 90 Bush
42 Louisiana 90 Bush
43 Montana 90 Bush
44 Oklahoma 90 Bush
45 South Dakota 90 Bush
46 South Carolina 89 Bush
47 Wyoming 89 Bush
48 Idaho 87 Bush
49 Utah 87 Bush
50 Mississippi 85 Bush

[Via MetaFilter “Morons for Bush?”]

UPDATE: Great quote from the comments on MetaFilter

It is well known that IQ is not a relevant way to measure “true” intelligence, and that many factors go into determining the political makeup of a stare’s electorate, including historic tradition, perceived affinity with the candidate, differences in campaign targetting, media influence, and haha ha hahaha ha ha ha!


frat house <> torture chambers

Lettin’ off a little steam …

Rush Limbaugh from yesterday

This is no different than what happens at the Skull and Bones initiation and we’re going to ruin people’s lives over it and we’re going to hamper our military effort, and then we are going to really hammer them because they had a good time. You know, these people are being fired at every day. I’m talking about people having a good time, these people, you ever heard of emotional release? You of heard of need to blow some steam off?

Should we take a look at the photos again Rush?
[via Talking Points Memo]

UPDATE: A fantastic chronological guide in quotes on the subject: Slate’s ballot box


The vending machines of Japan

 I’m going to be leaving for Hong Kong on Saturday and will be there for not quite two weeks. As much of a cultural shock it can be, it falls down when you compare it to the Japanese. I had seen Lost in Translation right before my previous trip to Hong Kong and had really high hopes it would be just-like-that.


Another Marquee event

 I know Christian Finnegan and he’s quite funny, but given his “host” title, he’s probably only on stage for 10 minutes. I don’t know the other guys.

christian finnegan hosts his monthly show “sob stories
TONIGHT at the marquee.
come watch your favorite comics talk about this month’s theme:
“tragic drunkeness”
here’s our lineup…
JONATHAN CORBETT (comedy central’s “premium blend”)
EDDIE PEPITONE (“last comic standing”)
JOEY GAY (director of the upcoming comedy documentary,
“the owner heckles”)
and more!
here are the details
tuesday may 4
356 bowery (between great jones and e. 4th)
8pm, doors at 730pm
$ 5
call 212.664.5892 for more information. 


Hey wait a minute – oh I guess you’re right

From this article

You can imagine the scene: a well publicized funeral featuring a NFL star turned soldier. Flags everywhere, lots of “true-American-hero”, “with God in heaven now” talk.

Then this happened:

Tillman’s youngest brother, Rich, wore a rumpled white T-shirt, no jacket, no tie, no collar, and immediately swore into the microphone. He hadn’t written anything, he said, and with the starkest honesty, he asked mourners to hold their spiritual bromides.

“Pat isn’t with God,” he said. “He’s fucking dead. He wasn’t religious. So thank you for your thoughts, but he’s fucking dead.”


Seriously though – I can imagine his brother sitting there seething at all these people attempting to make what is a horrific personal event for his family into a circus. I find it odd that this Tillman story has seemed to fill people with a kind of proud, war hero mentality that makes them feel almost better about war rather than dealing with death directly? Am I wrong on this?