May 19, 2007

The Announcement

There is so much... so much I have to do right now. And yet I'm sitting here. Awake. At 2 in the morning. Refreshing pages to get news from South Korean reporters.

Whatever. I am a nerd. I am a dork. I do not care. I have waited ten years for The Announcement.

Update: Oh sweet crap it's starting. Both 1up.com and Blizzard.com are down. About half the internet is loading their pages right now.

Second Update: Starcraft 2. If you just felt a slight tremor, that was the sound of the entire nation of South Korea shitting itself.

Third Update: Oh my god they have gameplay footage already. I have to go lie down now.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 1:11 AM

May 18, 2007

Border lines

Oliver asks:

But why does the Republican base act with so much revulsion at any sort of immigration deal short of closing America?

a) They don't like hispanics
b) They don't like all immigrants
c) They're afraid increased immigration means more Democratic voters?

I'm honestly asking.

I think it's various percentages of all three, depending on where you look. The far-right sites, like LGF or FreeRepublic, will have an equal mix of all three because they both believe Democrats will stop at nothing to commit voter fraud and want hordes of illegals coming into the South to vote Democrat, while also openly using the "losing the country" newspeak- that being the country is "lost" somehow if the majority race is no longer white.

The isolationist Republicans of the Buchanan and Tancredo crowd are solidly in choice B, worried that the importation of a non-white race will somehow destroy the European-origined manifest destiny of the grand Columbian republic or whatever he called it in his last three books. There's a little of A in there, because obviously there are allusions to the non-white races being more criminal and violent, etc. But keep in mind that these are the same type of people who two hundred years ago didn't think the Irish counted as "white people."

And of course, the A-all-the-way faction is helmed by Michelle Malkin, who is both wildly racist and completely insane to the degree that she truly believes Mexicans are part of a "reconquista" movement to swarm the country and kill all the white people and make them all live on reservations- but as a Pacific-American who wrote a book about how great American internment of Pacific-Americans was, we've already established Malkin is completely deprived of the concept of irony.

The problem, of course, is that there are also choices D through Z6 as to why you can have a problem with illegal immigration, and most of them are valid. It's just that gut reactions always dominate the debate, and as Oliver pointed out, those reactions are very often racist and/or nonsensical. And often, it's just a case of wanting to have your cake and eat it too: illegal immigration would be a much smaller problem if we had safer and fairer workplaces, easier pathways to citizenship, free trade that doesn't exploit international workers, and increased foreign aid to impoverished regions like South America- but of course, Republicans are opposed to all of that too.

Meanwhile, conservatives are actually correct for once in their depiction of the northeast liberal naive to the plight of southern Americans facing illegal immigration. The reality of worker exploitation, environmental damage to border property, and increased crime from completely unregulated and undocumented entrance of violent criminals is something many do not recognize in the debate. It's fair to accuse opponents of immigration as racists when they are actually being racist; it's unfair to ignore when (very often) they are not.

I'll be one of the few people to openly admit I don't have a solution to this in mind. I have no idea how the problem can ultimately be solved, but I know that the ways proposed are, again, just silly: talks of giant walls and deporting 12 million people are just going to get the conversation nowhere.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 4:21 PM

May 17, 2007

I would prefer not to have sex with Jessica Alba while she was in a persistent vegetative state

Okay, I rarely jump into the "which celebrities are teh HAWT!" pool, but what the hell? That's from Jessica Alba's latest spread in GQ. I know about the time-honored practice of slow-mo water-falling-over-bikini-clad shots, but drooling?

That is not sexy. That does not say "hot." That says "come do me while I'm in a coma" and that is really, really disturbing.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 9:17 AM

OMGOMGOMGOMG

The Announcement.

The Announcement is coming.

CLAP HARDER. ALL OF YOU CLAP HARDER YOU FOOLS.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 7:56 AM

The most lucrative punking ever

Yesterday someone sent a popular tech weblog, Engadget, a fake e-mail suggesting that the iPhone was going to be delayed. The result? About an hour later, Apple stock dropped 3 points. In pure money terms, that means the overall value of Apple dropped about four billion dollars.

Turns out it was all fake, and when that was revealed the stock jumped back up, leading many to wonder if the people who sent the fake e-mail may have also been the people who just bought lots of the dropped stock and made themselves potentially millions of dollars in the span of a few hours.

When I was in high school we just TPed each others' cars.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 7:25 AM

May 16, 2007

Empty void said Fred

I, too, am perplexed at how this cutesy video "dis" from Fred Thompson to Michael Moore is actually a beneficial and supportive contribution to his possible presidential run. In about a minute, Thompson has proven basically three things:

1. When challenged with a legitimate issue question (however obnoxious you may find the asker to be) he chooses to say it's "not worth his time" to respond to it,

2. His masterful debate strategy is to simply insult his opponents and/or suggest they need mental help, and

3. He is able to deliver clever and poignant-sounding responses to political challenges as long as he has proper lighting and an editing crew.

So, in other words, Thompson continues to prove that he's a good actor while continuing to refuse to actually offer any proof he's a qualified candidate. It's not worth his time to answer Moore's question about his alleged hypocrisy supporting Cuba (if they're not Cuban cigars, a one-sentence press statement would have finished the incident) yet it's apparently worth it to head to costuming and makeup to film a video. Despite the fact that Thompson served two terms as a U.S. Senator, there are ten times as many links to videos of his more memorable movie lines and his snappy comebacks in Townhall columns than to actual policy proposals he made as an elected official. And the right-wingers are eating this up because, as last night's debate proved, the one thing the base wants is their candidate to be the biggest asshole as possible. And so there you have it. Fred Thompson, conservative darling: he's a bigger asshole than the other guys.

I would like to join the right-wingers in the chorus demanding that Thompson actually announce he's running. This video, like his previous weak columns and lowly pandering to RedState, continues to indicate how fast he will crash and burn the moment he is forced to actually address an issue without props and setup. Thompson, like I said, is a good actor, but he's going to be destroyed on live television and in public appearances, and it's cutesy little video releases like this that only prove more and more how scared he is of being an actual candidate. I for one look forward to Fred Thompson's actual campaign run and the look on all the right-wingers' faces when they learn the hard way that everything just looks that way on the teevee.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 12:40 PM

May 15, 2007

Momma

Posting was lax today because I took an extended Mother's Day weekend. In addition to the usual holiday, this morning I attended my mom's graduation from Graduate School. If you ever think that you've missed on chances or it's too late to find new and wonderful things to do in your life, my mom is near 60 and is now going to become an English teacher.

So congrats, Mom. And happy mother's day to her and all you mommas out there. May all you readers be treating your momma right.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 8:29 PM

May 14, 2007

"Church 2.0"

Latest comic - click here!

Despite the irony conveyed in panel #2, there's far more to this that's a bit... well... oogy than just adding technology to the refined religious art of ancient ceremony. The "giving kiosk," as noted in the source article, isn't just a convenience for the megachurch attendees. It's a profitable industry, the creators of the machine earning themselves a percentage of the house take. The article notes how the creators and sellers of the machines plan to "give a significant sum to their church." This is, of course, a perfect example of a study in logic- logic which would suggest that giving a "significant amount" to someone implies that you are, in fact, keeping something for yourself. Now, needless to say there can be an argument about reaping the rewards of making religious donation more expedient. For after all, as I'm sure we all agree, if there's one thing we can all support about the predominant religion in this country, it's that it certainly is pressed for cash.

In this dirty little religion there are but two commandments: Buy some crap and join the list.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 12:10 AM