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July 31, 2011

Doom has been hanging out with Klaw too much

Dr. Doom Secret Wars Toy ad

Maybe afterward, Dr. Doom would like to have a nice cup of soop-oop-oop?

Spider-Man would like to stop Dr. Doom, but Captain America won't tell him how. He's saving all the glory for the Avengers.

Captain America & Spider-Man Secret Wars Toy ad

By fnord12 | July 31, 2011, 4:38 PM | Comics | Comments (1) | Link



Dear Customer!!!

It's email gold. Just make sure you get to the last paragraph. It totally breaks down at that point.

Dear Customer!!!
We have been waiting for you to contact us for your Confirm able Package that is registered with us for shipping to your residential Location. We had thought that your sender (United Nations) gave you our contact Details. It may interest you to know that a letter is also added to Your package.

We understand that the content of your package itself is a Bank Draft worth of $1,500,000.00 USD (1.5 Million Dollars), FedEx does not ship money in CASH or in CHEQUES but Bank Drafts are shippable. The package is registered with Us for mailing by United Nations Humanitarian Affairs and UNESCO for educational developmental program globally. We are sending you this email because your Package is been registered on a Special Order.

For your information, the VAT & Shipping charges as well as Insurance fees have been paid by your Colleague before your package was registered. Note that the payment that is made on the Insurance, Premium & Clearance Certificates, are to certify that the Bank Draft is not a Drug Affiliated Fund (DAF). This will help you Avoid any form of query from the Monetary Authority of your country.

However, you will have to pay a sum of $115.00 USD to the FedEx Delivery Department being full payment for the Security Keeping Fee of the parcel Been registered by your colleague, FedEx Company as stated in our privacy Terms & condition page. Send your Postal address, telephone and your name In full this is mandatory to reconfirm your Postal address and telephone. Please note that packages are not shipped nor delivered on Saturday, Sunday and on holidays. If your order has been placed on any of these days, Then it may be shipped the following business day.

Kindly complete the below form and send it to the FEDEX DELIVERY POST
With the below informations. This is mandatory to reconfirm your
Postal address and telephone numbers.


FULL NAMES:

TELEPHONE:

POSTAL ADDRESS:

SEX:

CITY:

STATE:

OCUPATION:

COUNTRY:


FEDEX DELIVERY POST

Email: fedex_courierservce@w.cn

Phone number: +234-703-674-0997

Contact Person: Tom Robert.


**ALL PACKAGES ARE SIGNATURE REQUIRED.

If you have any other questions or concerns,

Please feel free to contact us between

Monday - Friday: 9:00am - 9:00pm EST

Saturdays: 10:00am - 5:00pm EST

Sundays: 10:00am - 4:00pm EST

Have a great day!


Federal Express Co-operation.

FedEx Online Team Management.

All rights reserved. © 1995-2011.

I love that the hours for calling are in EST but i'm given an international number to call. And that email address looks totally legit. I'm sending my $115 USD in cash right now. I'm including my SSN and bank account info for just in cases.


By min | July 31, 2011, 3:19 PM | My stupid life | Comments (0) | Link



SuperMegaSpeed Reviews

Captain America & Bucky #620 - So the Captain America comic gets renamed "Captain America & Bucky" the minute Bucky dies. (Or supposedly dies. Since i don't read Fear Itself, i have seen no evidence that he's actually dead.) And this issue is narrated entirely by Bucky (when does the narration take place? I need to know for my Marvel Timeline project!) and repeats stuff we've already seen in the Return of Bucky arc. With some new information like Bucky had a kid sister - is she going to become the new Bucky when this reminiscence arc is over? I hope not. We already have enough Buckys running around, dead and alive. I enjoyed this; i'm just annoyed that Bucky has died - in a book i'm not even reading - after Brubaker spent so much time convincing me that it was ok to bring him back from the dead in the first place. Also, i noticed this book was co-written by Marc Andreyko, but it still felt like a Brubaker book to me. But i won't be fooled. Last time Brubaker co-wrote a book, it was with Matt Fraction.

New Mutants #28 - I don't care if this is just X-Factor #87. I liked it, and i would read it every month. Get Abnett & Lanning on a comic called Psychoanalysis Monthly, and just have them go around the Marvel Universe with variations of this comic.


By fnord12 | July 31, 2011, 1:09 PM | Comics | Comments (1) | Link



July 29, 2011

Favorite Tales of Monsters and Trolls

Nowadays, whenever i blog about politics, i feel i need to make up for it with some non-political stuff. So here's some scans from a book i loved as a young kid: Favorite Tales of Monsters and Trolls.

Here's the cover:

Favorite Tales of Monsters and Trolls by Random House

Here's some pictures from the title page. You know right away it's gonna be awesome.

Runaway Tree

Antler chick

Tail Trail

Piggy back

Walking The Ducks

Tea Cup Head

Now for the first story, which was Three Billy Goats Gruff

Three Billy Goats and lots of strange chickens

Troll with the jailhouse hat

Busy day on the Troll Bridge

Falling Troll.  He looks a little annoyed, but not too worried.

Falling bird.  That bird is crazy.  Doesn't seem to mind falling.  I think he's on drugs.

Those last two pictures were part of a two-page spread, but i didn't want to shrink them down so i broke them up separately.

Next is The Trolls and the Pussycat, wherein a traveler with a pet polar bear stays at a farmhouse that is plagued by trolls (more like goblins, says the D&D nerd). They think that the sleeping polar bear is just a cute cat, until they disturb it.

The book cover depicts a scene from this story, and here's another.

Goblin poking polar bear with sausage

Finally, The Stone Cheese. Three brothers are sent into the forest to chop some wood. The older two are scared away by a giant troll, but the youngest pretends to be super-strong, and proves it by squeezing a piece of cheese that he claims is a rock.

A wagging finger is enough to scare the first brother away.  I guess i would run too.

Can't they see there are things living in those trees?  I think the troll is right to keep the brothers away.

The youngest brother is very ambitious.

I think the book had a cool art style, but what i love most is that in a lot of the scenes there's just this undercurrent of chaos going on. The strange chickens, the weird houses in all the trees, and all the little creatures running around that have nothing to do with the story. Crazy stuff.


By fnord12 | July 29, 2011, 4:32 PM | Boooooks | Comments (2) | Link



#compromise

I'm not kidding:

"The time for putting party first is over," [Obama] wrote. "If you want to see a bipartisan #compromise, let Congress know. Call. Email. Tweet."

We also learned the following today:

First quarter GDP revised downward to a 0.4 percent growth rate. Second quarter GDP grew at a lower-than-expected 1.3 percent.

And

Revised government data released this morning shows the recession was significantly worse than previously thought. Instead of shrinking by 2.5 percent in 2009, the economy actually shrank by 3.5 percent.

Maybe now's not the best time to tweet our representatives with the request that they cut government spending?

Update: As Krugman says:

It's really hard to talk about this without getting into armchair psychoanalysis. I'll try to refrain. But let's just say that Obama's continuing insistence on compromising, his continuing faith in bipartisanship despite two and a half years of evidence that these people don't do compromise and will never make a deal, is looking obsessive and compulsive. It's deeply frustrating.

By fnord12 | July 29, 2011, 3:26 PM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (3) | Link



They really are being serious

I know it sounds insane, but Brad Delong, Matthew Yglesias, and Yale constitutional scholar Jack Balkin all think that Obama can continue to pay the bills by minting gigantic platinum coins.

Look, this may be crazy, but it's right there in the constitution. And when you have this nonsensical debt ceiling law (to authorize payments for spending you already authorized in the budget bill) and opponents who are not willing to compromise, you need to be able to show that you've got an alternative so you're negotiating from a position of strength.


By fnord12 | July 29, 2011, 10:58 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (3) | Link



July 28, 2011

An Example of Why You Should Have to Get Permission Before Using Metaphors

From Paul Halpern's book Collider:

After savoring the delectable appetizer of the QCD findings, it would be time for the main course. The W and Z bosons were ripe for the plucking and - thanks to the capabilities of the upgrading SPS - it would finally not be a stretch to reach for such exotic fruit. The sensitive detectors of each group were primed to taste the characteristic flavor combinations of the rare morsels.

This whole book is full of crap like this. Who talks like this? I'm ready to punch Paul Halpern.

The previous paragraph was all gluons this and quarks that blah blah blah quantum chromodynamics. And then he goes and puts this drivel in right afterward. Do you know how jarring that is? And it does nothing to further my understanding of the content so what purpose does it even serve?

He also changes the "diners" mid-metaphoring. It starts of as the scientists who have "savored" the test results and ends with the detectors themselves enjoying the "rare morsels". If you can't keep it straight in your own head, you definitely should not be using it. Arrghh!

Mr. Halpern, please stop hurting my brain. Jerk.


By min | July 28, 2011, 1:12 PM | Boooooks & Science | Comments (0) | Link



Stick figures in peril

Thanks to Starfaith, i have discovered this group on Flickr.


By fnord12 | July 28, 2011, 10:51 AM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (0) | Link



Gold

I'm not a regular reader of alicublog (it's usually more snark than info), but there is so much gold in these two posts i may have to start.


By fnord12 | July 28, 2011, 10:40 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (0) | Link



New LSS Songs

We've posted 3 new songs (Fuguettaboutit, Cedarwood, and Drowsy Maggie) on our Myspace and Facebook pages. Listen to them. Love them.


By min | July 28, 2011, 10:19 AM | Music | Comments (2) | Link



Thundarr's long lost brother Wundarr

Thundarr and friends were designed by Alex Toth, not Jack Kirby

So i was reading up on Thundarr the Barbarian (and it was a passing planet, not solar flares, that caused the earth to fall apart - and get taken over by wizards, of course), and Wikipedia notes an odd fact:

The series was the creation of Steve Gerber, creator of Marvel Comics' Howard the Duck. Gerber also created the similarly named 'Wundarr the Aquarian' for Marvel Comics.

Now, Gerber did create Wundarr. He was a Superman parody, sort of a "What if the pod that sent Superman to Earth was never found or opened and he grew to manhood in isolation?". He comes out a super-powered idiot, of course.

Art by Sal Buscema

Later, Gerber left Marvel, and in an issue of Marvel Two-In-One, it was Mark Gruenwald & Ralph Macchio who had Wundarr evolve into the cosmically aware hippie, Aquarian.

Art by George Perez

He's never called "Wundarr the Aquarian". He just changes his name from Wundarr to Aquarian. And i always assumed the name was an "Age of Aquarius" reference; it never would have occurred to me that it was actually a deliberate parody of Gerber's Thundarr the Barbarian cartoon.

If it was, there's something of a time paradox, i think. The Marvel Two-In-One comic has a cover date of Dec 79, which means it was published probably a few months earlier than that in actual time. But Wikipedia tells me Thundarr first ran in October 1980.

So did Gruenwald & Macchio have some advanced knowledge? It's possible. Or was Thundarr's name actually a nod to what Marvel did to his old character? I doubt it. Is someone a witch?

Or is the whole thing just a coincidence?


By fnord12 | July 28, 2011, 9:04 AM | Comics & TeeVee | Comments (2) | Link



Embolisms from Too Much Sitting

Read this in the Guardian:

Women who spend most of their time sitting down when they get home from work may be more likely to get a potentially fatal blood clot on the lungs than those who are more active, acording to a study carried out on nurses in the US.

Guess I'm fucked.

Although, why do a study on nurses? Is it because they have a job where they're rarely able to sit so most of the sitting going on would be after work? But then, how do they know it's not embolisms caused by too much walking around at work? Cereally, if i was a nurse, i would lay down, not just sit, after getting off a shift. Would that change my risk at all? Being completely horizontal?

And what about men and their fat ass sitting?


By min | July 28, 2011, 8:57 AM | Science | Comments (1) | Link



Another Reason to Hurry the Hell Up

And get that earthship with the super huge windmill and greenhouse cause when the sun wakes up, we're gonna be in trouble.

The sun has been quiet for years, at the nadir of its activity cycle. But since February, our star has been spitting out flares and plasma like an angry dragon.
...
Sept. 1 of that year saw the largest solar flare on record, witnessed by British astronomer Richard Carrington...Within hours, telegraph operators found out. Their long strands of wire acted as antennas for this huge wave of solar energy. As this tsunami sped by, transmitters heated up, and several burst into flames.
...
Such a "Carrington event" will happen again someday, but our wired civilization will suffer losses far greater than a few telegraph shacks.

Communications satellites will be knocked offline. Financial transactions, timed and transmitted via those satellite, will fail, causing millions or billions in losses. The GPS system will go wonky. Astronauts on the space station will huddle in a shielded module, as they have done three times in the past decade due to "space weather," the scientific term for all of the sun's freaky activity. Flights between North America and Asia, over the North Pole, will have to be rerouted, as they were in April during a weak solar storm at a cost to the airlines of $100,000 a flight. And oil pipelines, particularly in Alaska and Canada, will suffer corrosion as they, like power lines, conduct electricity from the solar storm.

But the biggest impact will be on the modern marvel known as the power grid. And experts warn that the grid is not ready. In 2008, the National Academy of Sciences stated that an 1859-level storm could knock out power in parts of the northeastern and northwestern United States for months, even years. Report co-author John Kappenmann estimated that about 135 million Americans would be forced to revert to a pre-electric lifestyle or relocate. Water systems would fail. Food would spoil. Thousands could die.

The solar activity is expected to peak between 2013 and 2014. Whether or not a solar storm of this magnitude will occur during this cycle is unknown. Hopefully not, since, as usual, we're not ready. The president of the North American Electric Reliability Corp (who came up with this name? it's terrible) is already downplaying the the severity of the threat, saying "the idea of 130 million people out of power for 10 years is an overstatement."

Ok, but how about being out of power for 5 years? Or 1 year? You know how much we whine when we have a power outage that last hours? You think we can deal with years, let alone days? It's summer right now, so picture not having any a/c (unless you're me, this is prolly a horrifying prospect).

Also, water systems would fail - no clean water. I might not need air conditioning, but by god, i NEED clean water.

So...let's go.


By min | July 28, 2011, 8:29 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (2) | Link



July 27, 2011

Is my fascination with choking hazard warnings indicitative of a larger problem?

Baby in a bag

Better or worse than sad Pac-Man?


By fnord12 | July 27, 2011, 4:02 PM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (3) | Link



July 26, 2011

Recap 41

Travelogue - Found a New God to Worship, Killed Some Stuff, Saw the Sights


By min | July 26, 2011, 3:19 PM | D&D | Comments (0) | Link



Wall Street not worried?

Now that i've gotten my rant out of the way (and no, i don't feel better), here is an interesting observation:

Predicting where the market is heading is a daft exercise. But its nonchalance suggests that investors are no more worried about the possibility of a U.S. default now than they were on Friday. The consensus seems to be that the debt-ceiling crisis is an obnoxious piece of political theater that will end as close to the default deadline as possible, and that it is not an actual financial crisis that needs handling now.

Indeed, the current "crisis" is a manufactured one. Of course the United States needs to get its fiscal house in order. Of course the debt has ballooned to threatening levels. But the problem remains long-term and mostly about ensuring job growth and bending down the health care cost curve. Still, it is not clear what the scale of the catastrophe could be should Congress fail to raise the debt ceiling. Some investment banks speculate that the market reaction might not be as bad as people think, with government going into a very short-lived shutdown, voter anger forcing Congress to get its act together, and the market rolling its eyes even if it dumps some bonds.

Not that i think we should legislate based on how the stock market reacts, but this goes along with what Krugman said: better to default and see what happens than cut Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security.


By fnord12 | July 26, 2011, 11:41 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (0) | Link



Worst president ever?

James Buchanan literally had the country fall apart during his term of office. George W. Bush had September 11th, Katrina, at least one war under phoney pretenses, and the greatest economic collapse this side of the Great Depression. For that matter, Hoover had the Great Depression.

So maybe i'm being hyperbolic. But how did we get to the point where our choices are either more economic collapse or cutting our social safety programs?

The average duration of unemployment today is nine months and employers are not hiring people with gaps in their employment records. Those people are without insurance. Many are hanging on the best they can until they can go on Medicare. Many are on Medicaid. And Obama wants to raise the Medicare age to compromise with Republicans on what should be a routine vote? Cut Medicaid? Cut social security (which isn't even a factor in the debt debate)?

And let's remember that whether Obama "wins" or "loses", those unemployed people aren't being helped. This is entirely the wrong issue to be discussing right now. Obama hasn't made that point. He's still talking about "when times are tough, families tighten their belts, and the government needs to do the same" which is exactly wrong.

Obama is now urging voters to contact their congresspeople and demand that we make this grand compromise. No thanks! But where was this call to arms for a larger stimulus package that would have reduced unemployment? For a public option that would have reduced medical costs - which is the main cause of our long term debt?

Krugman says we've got a known danger and an unknown danger and we might as well go with the unknown. There's also the theory that the entire debt ceiling law is unconstitutional and the Treasury can just continue paying its bills regardless. So a smart or clever or brave president still has options, and therefore bargaining power. But Obama keeps going to the Republicans with "here's everything you want", which just encourages them to ask for even more. So we're screwed.

Let me be clear*: The Republicans are obviously the ones who are causing this mess. But Republican opposition should have been anticipated months and years ago. Instead it's been endless attempts at a compromise, on every issue, and that's entirely Obama's fault. It's a failure of leadership.

Update: Yglesias takes issue with people blaming the president. Says blame congress instead. And i do blame all the Democrats for being cowards and chumps. But Obama is the leader of the party. It's his cautious strategy that informs Congressional Dems' tactics.


*Heh.


By fnord12 | July 26, 2011, 10:40 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (0) | Link



July 25, 2011

Budget Cuts


By min | July 25, 2011, 4:56 PM | My stupid life | Comments (0) | Link



July 24, 2011

SuperMegaSpeed Reviews

Captain America Corps #2 - I actually thought the art was better this issue. I know there's no inker but it felt more "inked". I dunno. My one complaint is if you're going to have as bizarre and cool a concept as the Ameridroid shooting his fingers at people, you should really draw it out and show it. Not have him pointing in one panel and then a vague cylindrical object in the next. And look, i'm not saying i thought the art was great. I said "better". Storywise, i'm past the "this is a silly concept" phase (it still is, though), so i'm enjoying it. Roger Stern can still write a good book. Get him a real series.

Herc #5 - Ok, i've been vacillating on this series, but this issue was awesome.

Avengers #15 - I'm not going to sit here defending these talking heads every issue. It's what the Avengers are doing during Fear Itself. Live with it. I thought this issue did a good job delving into Spider-Woman's character. And i think Bachalo is getting better with the story telling aspect of his art.

Avengers Academy #16 - You know who wasn't in this issue at all? The Avengers Academy. This was Henry Pym fighting a super-powered version of the Absorbing Man, who should be able to beat up Giant Man even without a magical Asgardian hammer. So i don't know how Pym gets to beat this guy twice. But this was fine.

Hulk #37 - Wow, after Parker's depiction, i actually want to read Fear Itself. Or at least, i want Parker to go back in time and write Fear Itself. This was great. MODOK is great. I like his new attempt at an ego-free attitude and even the way he admonishes himself and corrects for when his ego comes through. This book has turned around quite a bit from that Zero/One story, and i'll like it even more if next issue MODOK goes and kicks the Zero/One crew's ass. But.. what happened to the Omegex the World Ender plot? I know we kind of jumped back in time for issue #36. Are we still back in time? Or did i misread that entirely. I guess it'll sort itself out eventually.


By fnord12 | July 24, 2011, 10:56 PM | Comics | Comments (2) | Link



July 23, 2011

How to be a good manager? Be an ass.

So i read Talent Management magazine for work. It's about trends in Human Resources. Bathroom reading. Most articles are incredibly bland. But this one is unusual for two reasons. One, it's advice to individual managers (as opposed to explaining the latest type of performance reviews that everyone is using).

And two, well:

Good managers are rude and mean.

So basically, be a dick. Talk too much, interrupt people, act angry. Really surprising for this magazine, and it just amazes me that they'd be so open about the fact that to be a manager you have to be mean. I also think it's bad advice.

Anyway, i was reminded of this when a certain someone wouldn't let a different someone get a word in edgewise about the new Captain America film (i am not one of the someones in this story; i have not yet seen Captain America).


By fnord12 | July 23, 2011, 10:31 AM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (5) | Link



Whyfore Ewok?

So we watched the Family Guy Star Wars spoofs recently (yes, for the first time). And it got me thinking about how George Lucas originally intended Jedi to take place on the Wookie home planet. But then he switched it to Ewoks. Wook-eee. E-wok. I thought i read that it was for budgetary reasons. So i was thinking (warning, unintentional midget joke ahead), what, were Ewok costumes half the price of Wookie costumes? But no, Lucas probably already had Wookie costumes laying around from the Star Wars Christmas special. So it couldn't be that. It must be due to (warning, unintentional midget conspiracy theory ahead) my midget conspiracy theory. Just about every George Lucas movie has midgets in it, often in great numbers. I think he made a dark bargain when his career was first getting started. And this is how they collect.

I've knocked around on the web a bit and see that most people think Lucas made the switch for merchandising reasons. How naive.


By fnord12 | July 23, 2011, 10:18 AM | Star Wars | Comments (0) | Link



July 22, 2011

And now, the cover to the UK version of the second issue of Secret Wars

Because we don't really want to talk about politics, do we?


By fnord12 | July 22, 2011, 12:55 PM | Comics | Comments (3) | Link



And a reminder

The Democrats stupidly agreed to extend the Bush tax cuts in 2010 (with no agreement that the Republicans would in turn extend the debt ceiling; here's Tom Tomorrow on that).

If the Democrats want to increase revenue, they have to do nothing and let the tax cut extension expire in 2012. They don't have to make a deal with the Republicans, unless you really think Wall Street will let the US Government default on its loans.


By fnord12 | July 22, 2011, 12:47 PM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (0) | Link



Plenty of money to be found in tax reform

Often hear liberals say that they don't want to raise taxes, they just want to reform the tax system. It always sounded like weaselly nonsense to me, but Ezra Klein explains:

  • $500 billion to people to buy houses that they would buy anyway.
  • $400 billion to reward people for making money by investing and earning capital gains and dividends rather than by going to work and taking their income in wages
  • $20 billion to employers who subsidize their workers' transportation costs
  • $200 billion to people who make charitable deductions
  • $700 billion to employers who offer health insurance to their employees
Midway through my excavation, however, when I was really just getting warmed up, I realized I had made a mistake. I wasn't looking at the federal budget -- I was looking at the U.S. tax code. So cutting all those costly programs wouldn't count as cutting spending to Republicans in Washington. It would count as raising taxes.

Also, if you like Ezra Klein to explain things to you, here's the debt ceiling issue explained in a one post, including its history. One thing he doesn't mention that i think is worth repeating is that the debt ceiling was raised 7 times during the Bush II administration.


By fnord12 | July 22, 2011, 12:35 PM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (0) | Link



Goodbye to Borders

Yglesias.

Atrios.

Never got the "hang out and drink coffee" aspect, but we sure spent a lot of money there. Not enough, apparently, or not enough recently, anyway.


By fnord12 | July 22, 2011, 11:42 AM | Boooooks | Comments (0) | Link



July 21, 2011

I, for one, welcome our new Ruritanian overlords. I bet they could at least pass a clean debt ceiling bill.

Paul Krugman gets creative:

Suppose that Obama announces that we face a clear and present danger from Ruritania, and that to meet that threat we need immediate investment in roads and rail (to move troops, of course). The economy surges on the emergency spending -- and newly employed men and women at last get to move out of their relatives' basements. Home construction surges.

Then Obama apologizes, says that his advisers have learned that there is no such country as Ruritania, and cancels the program. But we still have the new roads and rail links; plus, the surge in housing demand is now self-sustaining, and the economy remains strong.

Of course, we could do all this without the Ruritanian threat; but we won't.


By fnord12 | July 21, 2011, 11:22 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (0) | Link



Now that's realistic

I like this cover from the new Daredevil relaunch, with a really cool depiction of how Daredevil "sees" (or actually hears) the world.

Of course, that's not enough to get me to read a book by Mark Waid written in 2011 (and that's where i deviate from Mike Sterling).


By fnord12 | July 21, 2011, 10:50 AM | Comics | Comments (1) | Link



July 20, 2011

Underprivileged Senators will join gangs if we cut after-school programs

When i see headlines like "Obama Embraces 'Gang of Six' Deficit Plan", i wonder if the people who dub these Gangs of Six and Gangs of Twelve and what have you realize that the original Gang of Four were a group of Chinese communists who are blamed for the worst parts of the Cultural Revolution and were subsequently arrested after a failed coup attempt (they later went on to form a kick-ass post-punk band, so it wasn't all bad).

When i look at what these US gangs do, it's probably not a bad comparison. The "Gang of Twelve" ensured that Bush's right-wing judges got approved. The "Gang of Six" is ensuring that the Erskine/Bowles Debt Commission plan is enacted along with the debt ceiling vote. There was another "Gang" (i forget how many) that ensured that Obama's healthcare bill would suck. But these gangs are generally discussed with approval in the media so i think it's funny that they're named after a group that was originally part of the mainstream power structure that eventually got branded as traitors and arrested. Can't wait.


By fnord12 | July 20, 2011, 7:32 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (0) | Link



July 19, 2011

SuperMegaSpeed Reviews

Alpha Flight #2 - This was first in my pile this week because i kind of downgraded my expectations after the last issue. Possibly due to Marrina's depiction. And it's probably just a coincidence that Marrina doesn't talk in this issue, but... wow. I'm enjoying the Conspiracy In Canada angle. Great characterizations. And it sure looks to me like they're going to retcon away Puck's ridiculous "sword in my head" origin story. So keep it coming. There's something i don't love about Dale Eaglesham's art, but it's hard for me to say exactly what - the characters are in that grey area where they're too realistic looking but not realistic enough, maybe? And things are a little too stiff - Puck bouncing around the room didn't looke quite right; the Box units are a little too round and not menacing enough. I dunno. Overall, i enjoyed the issue, though.

Captain America #1 - If i recall correctly, Steve McNiven is the guy who converted Captain America's chainmail armor into scalemail without telling anyone. So i'm a little down on him even though he is a good artist. And the art is good this issue. As for the story? Points for Baron Zemo. Minuses for introducing some more goddamn super-soldiers into Captain America's WWII backstory. We'll see where it goes. But if i may: this issue implies that Hydra formed out of Nazi Germany. All Marvel fans know that Hydra was an underground Japanese organization that Baron Strucker infiltrated and took over after he fled Germany when the war wasn't going well. And the original Baron Zemo was never a member of Hydra. Sheesh, people, let's do a little research before writing on a subject. Captain Savage and his Leatherneck Raiders #4 isn't exactly an obscure comic. What? It is? Well then, maybe you should have asked me.

New Avengers #14 - I don't know what the problem is that certain people have about this comic. I know there's a bit of treading water while the ridiculous Fear Itself mini-series wears itself out. I prefer that to actively participating in the mini since i'm not reading it and i don't want just a portion of the story. But this issue has Spidey raising his issues with Victoria Hand, former Green Goblin lackey. It's got Mockingbird learning about her new super-soldier powers. And it's got Luke Cage hurling Wolverine at a giant Nazi robot. Yes, there are four pages of talking heads. But Bendis is great at talking heads. He was a great dialogue writer in Goldfish, and Powers, and he used the talking heads device and we loved it. Now he's doing it with Avengers. I think it's cool seeing characters that i've grown to love over the years engaging in dialogues and monologues that match their personalities pretty well. I don't see the problem. Oh and you know what else i liked about this issue? The art.

New Mutants #27 - I've been looking at my beloved Sugar Man action figure in a new light. "One of the single most capable hand-to-hand combatants" that the X-Men are aware of, huh? Anyway, i thought this was great. Good characterization, a nice use of Steve Rogers, a fun fight, and nice touch at the end with Scott reconciling with X-Man. I like the mission statement for this series and i hope the New Mutants continue to tie up loose ends in the X-Men's backstory even through all of the upcoming Schism stuff. Maybe Abnett & Lanning could write another book just for me called the Continuity Miners - "boldly dredging up bad stories from the past and making them good".

Speaking of Sugar Man, it turns out he was originally a fan submission for the Foom Magazine contest from the early 70s.


By fnord12 | July 19, 2011, 7:06 PM | Comics | Comments (0) | Link



Grockle

grockle  [grok-əl]

-n
a tourist, esp one from the Midlands or the North of England


By min | July 19, 2011, 10:02 AM | Good Words | Comments (1) | Link



Please help me because of God.

I was gonna copy and paste a few lines from the email, but after looking it over, it's sadly not outrageous enough to bother with. The subject was the high point.


By min | July 19, 2011, 8:11 AM | My stupid life | Comments (0) | Link



July 18, 2011

No Elizabeth Warren

NYTimes via Krugman:

President Obama said Sunday that he would nominate Richard Cordray, the former attorney general of Ohio, to lead the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, passing over Elizabeth Warren, the Harvard law professor who was the driving force behind the agency's creation.

Krugman nots that Cordray has no better shot of getting past the Republican filibuster than Warren did, and then says:

What's going to happen, then, is no director for the CFPB in any case. But meanwhile Obama has passed up a chance to symbolically align himself with the public and against the banksters.

By fnord12 | July 18, 2011, 10:45 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (1) | Link



July 16, 2011

I would play Manholes of Venus

AtariSoft Madness At Maxy's

Honestly, i would hang out with that kid just to get some of his delicious bubblegum soda. But i'd be wary of that blond girl. She kinda looks like a psycho.


By fnord12 | July 16, 2011, 11:12 PM | Comics & Video Games | Comments (0) | Link



Anybody hear an elk?

If not, could it be because you're getting too much oxygen?


By fnord12 | July 16, 2011, 2:11 AM | My stupid life | Comments (1) | Link



July 13, 2011

SuperMegaSpeed Reviews

Hulk #36 - I think Jeff Parker must have caught wind of the fact that my decision to continue collecting this series is dependent on the Omegex the World Ender confrontation, so he's doing whatever he can to delay that. First the Planet Hulk Redux two-parter. Now this Zzzax story which doesn't even take place chronologically after the previous issue. And next month is a Fear Itself tie-in that looks like yet another interpretation of the Red Hulk/Thing fight that we saw in Avengers #14 (and presumptively an issue of Fear Itself as well). That said, i have to admit that i did enjoy this issue. Nice nod to continuity, nice New MODOK action, and a good story. Your strategy is working, Parker! Also, if i'm interpreting that Audrey Loeb back-up strip, it looks like Marvel is going to finally stop ripping off Chris Giarrusso.

Thunderbolts #160 - Who doesn't enjoy a Juggernaut fight? I am loving this book. Love Ghost. Love Satana messing with everybody and playing with the Man-Thing (i re-wrote that sentence like 10 times and couldn't make it not sound dirty, so i gave up). I like the machination of the B-team. And i thought the art in the "inside Juggy's head" sequence looked cool (one quibble: i thought Mach-V's symbolic representation should have been a beetle). Yeah. Good book. Too bad it's #64 on the sales charts.


By fnord12 | July 13, 2011, 11:06 PM | Comics | Comments (0) | Link



Word of warning from Iron Fist

Power Man & Iron Fist ad

By fnord12 | July 13, 2011, 11:00 PM | Comics | Comments (0) | Link



Lichenification

Lichenification should be avoided whenever possible.


By min | July 13, 2011, 3:21 PM | My stupid life & Science | Comments (1) | Link



July 12, 2011

New evidence shows Disney's infiltration of Marvel goes way back

Marvel/Disney conspiracy evidence

By fnord12 | July 12, 2011, 1:49 PM | Comics | Comments (0) | Link



I suppose it's too late for me to get my Zorcom and Tanjar posters

Zorcom and Tanjar

By fnord12 | July 12, 2011, 1:44 AM | Comics | Comments (0) | Link



July 6, 2011

Marvel Sales

May.


By fnord12 | July 6, 2011, 6:28 PM | Comics | Comments (0) | Link



Here's someone who actually fixed things

Speaking of fixing things, if you aren't reading Jim Shooter's blog, i don't know what's wrong with you. As a fan of early to mid 80s Marvel comics, this is the most awesome website to ever come into existence.


By fnord12 | July 6, 2011, 2:07 PM | Comics | Comments (0) | Link



Everybody's fixing everything

Some nerd* Wanyas found fixes obscure comic book plots and also attempts to fix the Star Wars prequels (although he gets way too much into the expanded universe stuff for me).

Meanwhile, at MightyGodKing, the Matrix sequels - which i barely remember - are fixed as well.

*Late update, as i clicked through some old posts looking for something else: This "nerd" is now good friend of the site Nathan Adler! "Nerd" clearly meant as a badge of honor!


By fnord12 | July 6, 2011, 2:04 PM | Comics & Movies & Star Wars | Comments (4) | Link



July 5, 2011

My Friday Nights

...with fnord12, Wanyas, and Bob usually go something like this:

Which is fine with me as long as they remember to order the food first. A fed min is a happy min.


By min | July 5, 2011, 5:28 PM | Comics & My stupid life | Comments (0) | Link



July 4, 2011

SuperMegaSpeed Reviews

Settle in, people. It's time for another session of your favorite comic reviews, so make yourself comfortable.

Avengers: The Children's Crusade #6 - This was fine.

Ok, that's it for this week. Tune in again next week when we'll probably have about 16 books to review.


By fnord12 | July 4, 2011, 10:49 PM | Comics | Comments (0) | Link



July 1, 2011

Oh, No He Didn't

In this article about "self-organising networks", I came across this wonderful line:

[Tansley] publicly accused Smuts of what he called "the abuse of vegetational concepts" - which at the time was considered very rude.

Hottentot.


By min | July 1, 2011, 1:39 PM | Liberal Outrage & Ummm... Other? | Comments (1) | Link



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