June 7, 2003

Well, this isn't senseless and stupid at all

Rape counselors say victims may be discouraged from reporting attacks under the Air Force Academy's new policy to handle sexual assault cases.

Announced Friday, the policy creates a team to handle cases but denies confidentiality to cadets who lodge complaints. Air Force officials say every effort will be made to keep their identities private, however.

"The best way to help a victim start to heal is by giving them choices about what they want to have happen," said Cari Davis, executive director of the Colorado Springs-based rape crisis center TESSA. "What if the victim just wants to talk through what happened to them in confidence? There is not an option for that under this policy," she said.

Brig. Gen. Johnny Weida said sexual assaults cannot be treated the same way in the military as they are in the civilian world.

"In the profession of arms, warriors have a responsibility to the whole, a responsibility to take care of teammates; that means victims need to get proper care across the board and perpetrators cannot be tolerated on the team," said Weida.

Weida said every possible effort will be made to keep the information about attacks private, and no victim will be punished for reporting attacks. "Bottom line: we won't blame the victim," Weida said.

He said victims will be granted leaves of absence to recover if needed.

The policy was rewritten as part of a probe into the academy's treatment of female cadets who said they were punished or ostracized after reporting sexual assaults. Air Force Secretary James Roche earlier promised to protect the privacy of those cadets.

Except, of course, he's not going to, seeing how he just explained how confidentiality isn't guaranteed. Nor, of course, did he mention any policies about how committing sexual assault would get you kicked out of the military or, you know, thrown in jail seeing how it's a fucking crime, you assholes.

Coming soon: more explanations from the military on why being unable to control yourself from assaulting a member of your own unit somehow doesn't cast a light on your stability in committing acts of assault on complete strangers from other countries.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 6:56 PM

Site update

In the "Toons" section, the most recent semester of XQUZYPHYR & Overboard strips have been uploaded.

The older strips will come up sometime, but it'll be a little longer since I want to "remaster" a few of them and clean up the fonts so they're, you know, readable and stuff.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 5:30 PM

June 6, 2003

Have a great weekend with the kids, folks

The JWC company, maker of sewage equipment, wishes to issue a press release informing small children everywhere that contrary to scenes in the hit Disney movie, flushing fish down a toilet drain will not set them free in the ocean, but rather melt them with chlorine disinfectant before shredding them into particles with processing machinery:

"In truth, no one would ever find Nemo and the movie would be called 'Grinding Nemo,"' wrote the JWC Environmental company, which makes the trademarked "Muffin Monster" shredding pumps.

I provide you that quote to emphasize that there is, without a doubt, absolutely nothing enjoyable about it.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 12:40 PM

All employees wishing to be gay must provide Prof. Ashcroft a note from Mom

The Justice Department has barred a group of employees from holding their annual gay pride event at the department's headquarters, the first time such an event has been blocked by any federal agency, gay rights leaders said today.

Justice Department officials told the group, called DOJ Pride, that it could not hold its annual event at the department because the White House had not formally recognized Gay Pride Month with a presidential proclamation, Marina Colby, a department policy analyst who is president of the group, said.

Clearly, you understand, the First Amendment provides the right to assemble peaceably subsequent to the express written consent of the President of the United States.

I guess the President and the Justice Department didn't want to get too political and promote any kind of day that might have an air of anti-Americanism. You know, like calling May 1st "Loyalty Day." Yawol, Herr Ashcroft!

Posted by August J. Pollak at 12:19 PM

June 5, 2003

The unstoppable juggernaught that is the Gay Agenda strikes again against the forces of good.

...I'd like to think Limbaugh would say, as California has passed legislation granting domestic partner rights nearly equal to that of married couples.

Ah, so the valiant Republicans foiled our devious attempts at rampant flag destruction and baby slaughter, but one out of three for the week ain't bad. Carry on, Comrades!

(via Oliver Willis)

Posted by August J. Pollak at 9:26 PM

Site update

The weblog archives are now all active.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 9:10 PM

You are SCARING the CHILDREN.

Reader John Harvey sends me these links to Reuters photos of our beloved Attorney General. You have been warned.

Here's one, here's the other.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 3:48 PM

What the hell?

News poll I was watching last night, I think on NBC: "Is Martha Stewart getting a raw deal?"

This is the question being raised by the vigilant, objective news media: you know, those that declared Wen Ho Lee, Richard Jewell, Bill Clinton, O.J. Simpson, Scott Peterson, and Winona Ryder guilty the milisecond an announcement was made about their respective indictment.

Yes, as many of you are suggesting- many of those listed were in fact found guilty of what they were accused of... my point is that that's not the point. The point is that the very idea that the media can push aside the last ten years of pre-emptive suggestion that anything newsworthy about a personality and their legal problems in favor of instant bias towards their own percieved verdict (still waiting for the payoff from all those pundits willing to bet money on Clinton's resignation) and then pretend that they're shocked- SHOCKED that a celebrity has recieved harsh legal scrutiny is laughable.

So I don't know what else to say except in the long run, I don't really care. I can't stand Martha Stewart, but the only reason I'd want her to go to jail for insider trading would be if she's actually guilty of insider trading. All I can remember is the famous Doonesbury cartoon- "That's GUILTY! GUILTY GUILTY GUILTY!" and think to myself, "hey, remember when public opinions of famous people weren't considered viable evidence in a court of law?"

Posted by August J. Pollak at 3:22 PM

Well, screw that

It appears that, once again, I've garnered interest in an internet paradigm only to come across the beginning of its ruin.

If I've read the news right, it looks like I might be taking a little longer to set up a store with CafePress, seeing as how they just modified their user agreement which, among other things, assumes intellectual property rights to your work for purposes of promotion and distribution, raised the limit of minimum profit balances to $25 a month, and, get this folks: charges a 5% "transaction fee" on sales commissions.

Gosh, I'm struggling to ponder why CafePress wouldn't just raise the base prices of their merchandise- something understandable and visible to the users of their service and online consumers- rather than subversively add to the user agreement a requirement that you forfeit 5% of your profit back to them in addition to the- what- 80%?- of the cost they take in the first place. Nope, haven't a clue. No sir.

Update: Okay, following my typical case of flying off the handle, CafePress and some readers have provided a little bit of clarification: the "property rights" thing is in regards to CafePress' own logos and images, and their claiming of the right to use your icons and thumbnail with said logos to use in ads and such.

As for the money issue: apparently they want to deal with small-time no-profit clients by charging anyone who doesn't make $25 within 180 days a handling fee- of $25. In addition, they want to combat cost-of-production overhead by charging 5% of the profit you make off of items so they don't take a bath on, for example, someone charging twenty bucks for a bumper sticker.

In the long run, it's understandable, but in the short run, this policy hinders people like, well, me- who likely will NOT be garnering large profit with such a small fan base- not to mention, it's basically like you're getting a 5% tax thrown on your store. My hope is that such unfair taxation will lead to the CafePress Tee Party, in which CafePress users will dress up like Indians and dump crates of Hanes Beefy Tees into a nearby harbor. I'm an idiot.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 10:25 AM

June 4, 2003

Site update

The links page is now up.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 5:13 PM

Don't say I didn't warn you

The news today has noted that the GOP-led Congress has made broad success on both a "Partial-Birth Abortion" ban and the equally-perennial anti-flag-burning amendment.

I don't have the comics back up on the site yet, especially since I plan to go through a bunch of the older ones and re-ink the fonts to make them cleaner, but I really wanted to put up this one I did back in November 2002.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 2:26 PM

MANLY TORSOS!

Life is remotely worth living again, for Hercubush has returned.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 1:49 PM

I don't CARE that it was made in Italy!

I'm a list fanatic. I'll admit it. I'm one of those people who loves to make lists, itemize things, rank stuff, etc. So combined with the Film degree (oh, look at who's bragging after only three weeks) I have an unhealthy addiction to those AFI "100 years..." list shows. The recent one on CBS ran last night, with a list of 50 villains and 50 heroes of American films.

This, right off the bat, annoyed me a little, because it was only until they were at about #3 that I was reminded that since Sergio Leone made all his films in Italy, hence the genre "Spaghetti Western," the greatest hero in all of human filmmaking wasn't going to be on the list at all, let alone my predicted #1. I'm referring of course to Clint Eastwood's Man With No Name, and if you're writing e-mails now to disagree, consider this pre-emptive reply: you're wrong. Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong wrong.

I'm also annoyed Bandit didn't made the list. Because, of course, I'm weird.

Here's the list if you're interested, and you'll notice something interesting: women make up about three places on the list of fifty heroes... and fifteen places on the list of fifty villains. I'm sure this notion's going to get arguments, but I'm sort of in the camp of people who understand that people percieve women as "villains" just my making them nasty in a way that they never do for men.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 1:47 PM

Foolish Christians, it was all so Mickey could push forward his gay agenda!

Turns out there's an interesting benefit to Disney's recent evoking of anti-terrorism to set up "no-fly zones" around Disneyworld:

The airspace above Walt Disney World has been free of aircraft since March, when the government said the resort was a terrorism target of symbolic value. But a Christian organization that wants to send banner-towing planes over the theme park during this week's Gay Days festivities believes the no-fly zone equals no free speech.

The Virginia-based Family Policy Network seeks to preach during Gay Days "the truth that Christ can set them free from the sin of homosexuality," according to the organization's Web site.

Part of FPN's outreach program, said FPN president Joe Glover, would be planes pulling banners reading: "JESUS CHRIST: HOPE FOR HOMOSEXUALS.COM." The same banner was flown in 2001 without incident, FPN said.

But Federal Aviation Administration restrictions now prohibit aircraft from flying within 3,000 feet of ground level or within three nautical miles of the resort, located about 25 miles southwest of Orlando. No-fly zones also cover Disney parks in Anaheim, Calif.

I'd like to state for the record that this could, seriously, be one of the funniest things I've ever heard in my life.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 12:47 AM

Site construction update

Hee hee. Kitty in a hardhat.

Anyway. All links on the sidebar menu should now work, though some pages are still under construction. The "contact" and "about AJP" pages are loaded up. The next thing up will be the weblog archive, but it's taking a bit of time since I'm not really updating the Blogger template since IT WON'T WORK ANYMORE YOU PIECE OF SHIT BLOGGING SOFTWARE so I'm instead re-coding the archived blog pages on the local site. Which, of course, sucks.

Update: A few people have asked if, now that I'm running Movable Type, I'm going to be setting up a comments section. The answer to that is an emphatic no. I actually mentioned this to Tom Tomorrow once, and though it was a while ago and his position may have changed for all I know, mine hasn't, which is essentially this:

Regardless of the blog being the principal part of this site, I consider myself still a cartoonist with a blog, not a blogger who draws cartoons. Adding a comments section requires a much higher commitment to moderating, monitoring, and modifying the website and necessitates taking time away from said cartooning and animation work to so so. I have enough trouble as it is responding to all the e-mails I get; comments will make my head explode. Additionally, I'm a ridiculous control freak and have little interest in anything that reduces the control over what is currently 100% of this site's content.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 12:35 AM

June 3, 2003

Duly noted

As a few have mentioned, I'm well aware of the recent Al Franken/Bill O'Reilly "incident" that happily managed to be completley aired live on C-SPAN2. No need to send me the transcript links, as courtesy of my sister I actually have a copy of it on tape; I just haven't had time to watch the damn thing yet.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 1:05 AM

June 2, 2003

Says Ernie and me, we won't let the FCC be; says FCC, tee-hee

Straight off the last stop of the train to Well No Friggin' Duh Like I Didn't See That Coming is the long-expected 3-Republicans-to-2-Democrats ruling by the FCC to allow three or four rich old white men control over even more of everything you see, read, watch, and listen to. (I'm summarizing, of course.) The ruling was pretty much a foregone conclusion to anyone who can put 2 and 2 together, or rather anyone who can put 2 parties and more money that you'll ever goddamn see in your life in lobbying together.

The ruling is facing a challenge by Senators Ernest Hollings and Trent Lott which is opposed by, among others, Senator John McCain, which of course instantly makes most of you reading this go hey what the hell, why am I suddenly siding with Trent Lott and opposing John McCain on a corporate power-enlarging legislation issue. Frankly, I don't know, and my brain already hurts from thinking about just how much more of the entire American media industry Clear Channel is going to own on, well let's say next Wednesday, by which point they'll likely have grabbed as many loose small-scale radio outlets available to them as if they came in little plastic bubbles from those vending machines outside the supermarket next to the rusted potentially-dangerous quarter-operated mechanical duck ride thing.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 11:19 PM

Welcome back my friends, to the show that never ends

...We're so glad you could attend... don't come in yet.

The first thing the more astute of you may notice is that this is, at least for now, the only relatively working page on the site. The flash menu to your left, though (at least in my own mind) quite spiffy, is not actually set to link to anything yet, as the pages they allegedly link to aren't done yet.

Why is this happening? Because it's been over two weeks, and frankly someone, likely me, was going to go nuts if this thing didn't get back up.

I'll be adding the remainder of the site hopefully over the next week, and after that I'll start gathering details about the merchandise section... no specifics are planned yet; much of it is sort of dependant on just how many of you actually stayed after this hiatus. But I have a feeling there's going to be some CafePress actionin the near future.

For the long-time readers, you'll notice the name change. This site is now emphasizing me personally instead of the now-defunct comic strip XQUZYPHYR & Overboard. Rest assured one of the first items on the "put back up on the site, you lazy bastard" list is the strip archives, but now that I've gradugamated I'm sadly without a school paper to publish a weekly cartoon in. But, since this site is now my professional site, part of that is going to include information about where my comics and animation work is heading... right now those pages are blank because right now I really don't know. Go easy on me, people- I only graduated two weeks ago and I've just started the job search.

Now then. The redesign. I'm sure that many of you have already started the e-mail programs up to explain to me in eloquent detail how horrible you think the new design is, and by all means, constructive criticism is welcome. For starters, I'm pretty sure that I've officially made an enemy-for-life out of anyone using a 800x600 browser resolution. I'm trying to work around that problem, but I'm gonna be honest in saying that's likely the first victim of the New Site Design Regime.

The next victim is the X & O color scheme. Though I'm likely to maintain at least some presence of the famous Purple And Blonde, I recieved a mixed reaction for the last two years over the white-on-black text, but wheras resolution issues were a matter of aesthetics, the white-on-black yielded complaints of outright illegibility. However, I really liked the white-on-black too, so there's a much higher chance than the screen resolution issue for this to be reconsidered. Either way, long quotes will remain blocked, because even I can't handle italicized block quotes.

With the lack of a web lab from now on, I'm sans the quick ability to check compatibility on anything other than a Windows machine running Internet Explorer. If you're having horrific graphical glitches with something other than that, please inform.

Though I doubt it matters to the readership, the weblog has moved from Blogger to Movable Type, a compliment to the site's host change. (Thanks by the way to Sam for the site host recommendation, and thanks again to all of you who offered suggestions when I first asked a few months ago.)

That all said, it's basically clean-up work from here on out. Xoverboard.com is officially back online.

Update: Oh right, I forgot all the "what I did on my vacation" stuff. But more important that that, I forgot to note the overwhelming (and gratifying) flow of e-mails from all you guys in regards to my graduation from NYU. I am more sorry than I ever have been before about not replying to everyone who wrote to me, because I was really, really touched by the sentiment. Extra thanks as always to Tom Tomorrow for sending so many well-wishers my way.

Second Update: Oh yeah... complaints, comments, and inquiries can be addressed to .

Posted by August J. Pollak at 1:39 AM

More testing!

Still testing, same rules apply as they did to the prior post. If you're reading this first, you ain't ready to read it yet. So there.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 12:13 AM

June 1, 2003

Testing

The site is now undergoing testing for the new version. If this is the most recent post, then you're probably seeing something crappy right now. Please check back a bit later when the site will be... less crappy.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 11:37 PM

My spoon is too big.

I am a BANANA!

Posted by August J. Pollak at 10:14 PM