June 2, 2007

Steve Gilliard

I just came home to the news that Steve Gilliard passed away this morning.

I was very thrilled to meet Steve a few years ago when he graciously offered to be on a panel at Campus Progress' first student conference. He was one of my site's earliest supporters, one of the world's first leading progressive bloggers, and a fellow NYU alum. Most important of all, he was a funny and intelligent writer. Steve spent the last few years of his life making political debate, cultural commentary, and the world in general a better place. Political debate, cultural commentary, and the world in general will truly be poorer without him.

My deepest condolences to his friends and family, who knew him far beyond words on a computer monitor.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 8:12 PM

June 1, 2007

Highway to heaven

I love you, Notely.

I love you so god damned much.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 6:14 PM

May 30, 2007

They claim T-Rexes ate coconuts. I'm not kidding.

Just to stave off the inquiries, yes. Oh yes, I am aware of the opening this weekend of the "Creationist Museum" in Kentucky. I didn't really have anything to add because I think almost every rational article about it speaks for itself.

Someone on MetaFilter made a great point that if there's only one thing this place proves, it's that there should be a legal requirement for what can be classified as a museum. The building proposes, essentially, concepts last seen on The Flintstones. I have friends who are deeply religious, and if anything because of that I imagine they would be more embarrassed by this than I am. The only thing you can really do at this point is try not to think about how many children twenty-seven million dollars could have fed.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 9:56 PM

Next Monday, they'll rule on how tightly their feet should be bound

Lots of commentary from Pandagon and TAPPED on yesterday's beyond-absurd Supreme Court ruling that, essentially, declared it perfectly alright for companies to pay women less as long as they get away with it for the first six months. In a stunning two-fer, Alito once again writes a majority that by saying the problem is the employee's lack of filing a complaint in the alloted time, not that the complaint isn't valid (it was), suddenly makes this the woman's fault.

A lot of bloggers, not just feminist-issue ones, have been pointing this out, and it's something others (especially Democratic candidates) need to start understanding and talking about better: the Roberts majority isn't just anti-abortion. It's anti-women. And the sooner liberals and progressives start telling moderate and even conservative women that even if they don't like abortion, these people also want your daughters to not get the same pay, not get the same education, not have the same chance to play sports or even try and have the same jobs, the better. Because even if a mother thinks abortion is wrong, I doubt there are many mothers who think a judge has the right the tell them their daughter isn't allowed to do something because she's a girl.

And Atrios is completely right as well. I find it hard to believe slipping in a provision that fixes this in a major bill will cause right-wingers to try and scuttle it, but I'm even more doubtful that if it's phrased in the form of "not letting there be time limits on getting equal pay for equal work" opinions on it will lean in opposition. Democrats control both houses of Congress. If their ability to correct this absurdity isn't the very definition of "checks and balances," I'm not sure what is.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 9:12 AM

May 28, 2007

"The conspirators"

Latest comic - click here!

Few of you are checking in on this lovely Memorial Day so I'm hopeful you won't mind the comic's a tad tardy today. As far as I'm concerned I promise new comics on Monday and I'm keeping to it. One of the main reasons is actually a funny story: I had to drive up to my old home in New Jersey practically every weekend this month: first for my brother-in-law's bachelor party, then for Mother's Day and my mom's graduation, and then again for the wedding on Friday, which I am still recovering from. If you're ever interested in being emotionally stirred to the point of your legs failing, look no further than a rendition of Come What May via my brother's girlfriend, delivered mid-ceremony with an impact that blew away even the follow-up act, which is only more impressive when you consider his special talent is talking personally with Jesus.

Anyhoo, the running gag I had all month was how much damned driving I would have to do, and how pretty much everything would go kerplooey if anything went wrong with Roland the Headless Saturn 4-Door. So the oft-repeated line I made, even to the day of the wedding, was "just don't let anything go wrong with the car until Saturday. I don't care if on Saturday morning the engine explodes from the hood and shoots twenty feet into the air, just as long as it happens after the wedding." I'm sure you can imagine just where this is going, and are merely left only to wonder what exact time on Saturday morning I found my car unable to start. I haven't ridden Amtrak in a few years now; it's a shame there's still so little support for it I have to pay half an iPod to ride home on it. So while it will not technically be May next Saturday, you will be pleased to know I'll be making yet one more trip north to pick the car up from whatever the mechanics are doing to it to make it not explode. I'll be the guy on the bus ready to kill the first thing that looks at him.

That all said, you have noticed I've been out of the loop for a tad, so I'm catching up in one big burst with all the latest things I as a liberal have been accused of secretly wanting to do through, usually, democracy. Buy some crap and join the list.

Posted by August J. Pollak at 12:13 PM