Archive for November, 2007

Corporation – n. “An ingenious device for obtaining individual profit without individual responsibility”

Ambrose Bierce

The Radium Girls.

Sounds like an all-girl punk rock band, right? Well, unfortunately, it describes the murderous actions of an American corporation; the willful disregard of the disposable human beings working for the company: US Radium.

In 1922, a bank teller named Grace Fryer became concerned when her teeth began to loosen and fall out for no discernible reason. Her troubles were compounded when her jaw became swollen and inflamed, so she sought the assistance of a doctor in diagnosing the inexplicable symptoms. Using a primitive X-ray machine, the physician discovered serious bone decay, the likes of which he had never seen. Her jawbone was honeycombed with small holes, in a random pattern reminiscent of moth-eaten fabric.As a series of doctors attempted to solve Grace’s mysterious ailment, similar cases began to appear throughout her hometown of New Jersey. One dentist in particular took notice of the unusually high number of deteriorated jawbones among local women, and it took very little investigation to discover a common thread; all of the women had been employed by the same watch-painting factory at one time or another.

Check out the whole agonizing story.

In 1925, three years after Grace’s health problems began, a doctor suggested that her jaw problems may have had something to do with her former job at US Radium. As she began to explore the possibility, a specialist from Columbia University named Frederick Flynn asked to examine her. Flynn declared her to be in fine health. It would be some time before anyone discovered that Flynn was not a doctor, nor was he licensed to practice medicine, rather he was a toxicologist on the US Radium payroll. A “colleague” who had been present during the examination– and who had confirmed the healthy diagnosis– turned out to be one of the vice-presidents of US Radium. Many of the Undark painters had been developing serious bone-related problems, particularly in the jaw, and the company had begun a concerted effort to conceal the cause of the disease. The mysterious deaths were often blamed on syphilis to undermine the womens’ reputations, and many doctors and dentists inexplicably cooperated with the powerful company’s disinformation campaign.

What sane VP would masquerade as a doctor to befuddle some poor, ill women? What else could make a man act like this?

The organizational structure of the corporation allowed and even encouraged these individuals to act in a criminal conspiracy to protect profits for the shareholders.

Certainly, the individuals involved are responsible for their actions, but look the role of the corporation in this. They were all acting for the benefit of the corporation. Why do we set up amoral, profit-driven corporations and then act surprised when their employees do awful things in the name of greed?

But here’s another question for you: What penalties did the VP and the toxicologist face for their subterfuge? My guess is: NONE.

These ladies died because of the coordinated action of a group of people. If we accept that one person engaged in such behavior is immoral, what do we call a group of immoral people acting the same way? A corporation.

Corporations concentrate power in the hands of a few (management and shareholders) so that the average joe (or jane in this case) has very little leverage.

Corporations have unique powers which enable them to escape prosecution for repeated lawbreakings. Nobody goes to jail because you can’t put a corporation in jail, only people. In that way, a corporation is superior to a mere human. It is a master of humans, not subject to laws that normal humans must endure.

Only individual officers and henchmen (management & staff) can be prosecuted for individual crimes that the corporation conceived and covered up. A corporation lives forever and can replace the personnel lost to jail in little time. Corporations are made of humans, but humans are abundant. Humans are irrelevent.

Those humans within the super-human corporate personhood are excempt from the law, and can’t help but feel a bit superior. Hiding behind a squadron of lawyers and a phalanx of security guards is easy for the VP of US Radium, but that’s not the case if he’s just some unemployed guy. Corporations grant humans power, not the other way around. Because they 0wn.

The special powers granted to the corporation make it damn near impossible for the individual human to stand against the mighty corporation in court or even in the public sphere, like the halls of Congress. Corporations rule the roost there, too. Everywhere there’s power or leverage, the corporations are already there. Their power and reach is such that corporations are superior to mere mortals under the code of law. They can’t vote but they can do pretty much anything else.

The conclusion is awful, but unavoidable.

Corporate Man is Super-Sapien.

]] art by Zbigniew Libera [[

If corporations decide that we “normal”, non-corporate-officer humans are too plentiful (oversupply lowers demand), they will simply draw up plans to wipe us out, buy the necessary politicans and carry out the fiendish plot.

We live in the corporations’ world. We who are not of the corporate body (“blessed be the name of our CEO”) are infidels in this land.

It’s a Corporate Holocaust©®™!!!

Ladies and gentleman, I have just read the stupidest article ever written. It was awful. So awful I can hardly think; in fact, I think I just lost 5 IQ points… which still puts me 130 ahead of the author of the shittiest, most servile, most idiotic article ever written.

His name is John Cloud and he masquerades as a journalist for Time magazine. He has apparently managed to learn how to read and write, but I have no idea how given his feeble mental faculties.

Many of you may have already read this article, but I just found it today as I was catching up on some reading. Here I am, flipping through Time and I see a story called “The Psychology of Hypocrisy” which is about the recent Republican sex scandals, including Larry “Wide Stance” Craig, the homo-hating Senator from Idaho.

Cloud takes them to task, right? He presents an in-depth analysis of how the perverted mind of sanctimonious fucks like Larry Craig works, right?

No. The “article” is a six paragraph defense of hypocrites like Craig. Cloud claims — with a straight face — that poor Craig is a victim! A victim of his own “moral weakness” and not a hypocrite at all!

The real bad guys — of course — are the evil bloggers and their readers who have tormented poor Larry and his “friends”.

For a legion of bloggers, what’s so delectable about these stories is the apparent hypocrisy, the dissonance between the outwardly conservative politics of these men and their private same-sex behavior. But while these guys may be liars–Craig’s “wide stance” inanity has already entered the world-historical lexicon of political b.s.–it’s not clear that they are conniving hypocrites.

It’s “not clear”? It’s not fucking clear that they’re hypocrites?! If you’re deaf, dumb, blind and live on Mars it might not be clear, but if you have half a fucking brain you know they’re hypocrites! Shit, even the Republicans know that, but Mr. John Cloud is far stupider than a Republican. He’s a Vichy Democrat; you know the kind: The Hillary-voting kind who would let Bush attack Iran with no justification whatsoever. Republicans may be evil, but at least I can respect them; the Vichy Democrats are contemptible, spineless weasels who aren’t worth a pint of warm piss.

Hypocrisy is among the most universal and well-studied of psychological phenomena, and the research suggests that Craig, Haggard and the others may be guilty not so much of moral hypocrisy as moral weakness. The distinction may sound trivial at first, but as a society, we tend to forgive the weak and shun the hypocritical.

Trivial? No, the distinction is utterly fallacious and disingenuous. It makes me think he knows he’s full of shit.

John Cloud is the perfect example of a sell-out journalist hack. He afflicts the afflicted and comforts the comfortable because he’s a boot-licking shill for his corporate masters and has no soul left. Real journalists do the reverse, of course, but I’m not expecting that much from Mr. Cloud. Just a lucid thought or two would impress me at this point.

Assume for a moment that Craig and Haggard actually believed what they said–that homosexuality is sin. They spent most of their lives fighting for the conservative cause. But in Craig’s case, the Idaho Statesman has published allegations that there were at least three other slipups involving men, beginning in 1967. What if, like the radio host who gets fat but commits to losing weight, the moralizers were trying through their “pro-family” endeavors to expiate their lustful sins?

Let me explain this to Mr. Cloud as succinctly as possible since we might be looking at a buffer-overflow if I use to many big words: If you go around saying homosexuality is immoral and a sin while you’re secretly engaging in homosexual activity then you are a hypocrite! End of story. How hard is this to understand?

I certainly agree that people should be forgiven for most moral failures, but this is not just a “slipup.” Maybe Cloud “accidentally” fucks other men in the ass so he and Craig are kindred, klutzy spirits, but most of us do not have that problem (throughout the article Cloud implies homosexuality is indeed a moral failure). But it’s clear that this is a pattern in Larry Craig’s life, going back, at least to 1967.

Here’s a thought: If you have a “moral failing” that leads you to accidentally get blowjobs from other men, maybe you shouldn’t get on a stage and tell people that homosexuality is sinful behavior that only degenerates and Democrats engage in! Maybe if Larry Craig didn’t want to be a hypocrite he could have, I dunno, NOT RUN FOR SENATOR????!!! Maybe he could have (just a thought here) NOT DEMONIZED HOMOSEXUALS AT EVERY FUCKING OPPORTUNITY FOR 40 YEARS!!!!!??

…Just a thought. Clearly, it’s one that John Cloud didn’t think of while he was standing in line at men’s room outside of Larry Craig’s office. Maybe this is all a closeted homosexual thing and cognitive dissonance has set in, but I kind of doubt it. I think it’s more likely that John Cloud is an intellectual whore and his opinions are up for auction to the highest bidder. But even that is charitable. Worst case: the guy really is as stupid as I’ve been saying.

You may think they are wrong about homosexuality (I do), but that doesn’t make them hypocrites.

No, John, they are hypocrites, and no amount of waffling on your part will disguise that. In fact, they are textbook hypocrites.

Hey, I know! Why don’t I consult a “dictionary” (it’s a book where words are defined, Mr. Cloud). Here’s Merriam-Webster’s definition of hypocrite:

1 : a person who puts on a false appearance of virtue or religion
2 : a person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs or feelings

Hmmm…. “false appearance of virtue” … does that sound like Mr. Larry “wide stance” Craig?

Craig never said anything like, “Homosexuality is wrong and immoral, but I am not a perfect man. Indeed, sometimes I like to head down to public bathrooms near my house and solicit gay men for sex.” Nope, Larry Craig always implied that he was a paragon of (hetero) virtue. How else do you get elected Senator in a red state?

Clearly, the man has acted in contradiction to his stated beliefs. It’s right there in black & white, but John Cloud is intent on casting a cloud of confusion over the matter when this is probably one of the most clear-cut, bald-faced acts of hypocrisy (that we know about) in modern politics. Only Mark Foley can hold a candle to Larry Craigs hypocrisy.

Is there anybody out there who isn’t convinced that what I’ve described is hypocrisy? Is there anybody out there who actually agrees with John Cloud that poor Larry and Mark are victims of a cruel and fickle public?

How is it that I, a lowly, potty-mouthed, mudslinging blogger was able to tear into this article with such ease? No doubt others have already done the same; how did Cloud’s piece of shit article get past his editor? Do they not have dictionaries at Time headquarters? Budget cutbacks, perhaps?

It makes me wonder if stupidity is actually valued in the mainstream press because stupid people will never investigate how the Corporate Oligarchy r
eally works. Everybody knows what goes on in Washington… Or do we? Without better reporters than John Cloud the Clown we’ll never know for sure.

So what of Mr. Cloud, then? How did this idiot manage to write the stupidest article ever written? Was it training? Nature? Nurture? Luck?

Who cares; the man is a fucking moron. What amazes me is that this guy is a journalist at a mainstream publication and they haven’t canned his ass yet. How fucking stupid can you be and still keep your job? Near as I can tell John Cloud has only one person in serious contention with him for that award and his name is George.

Then again, maybe both of them were chosen for their stupidity, rather than in spite of it. I guess, in both cases, the joke is on us: The morons are in control and livin’ the good life while the rest of us suffer like fools under their mindless tyrrany.

Life’s not just unfair … it’s fucking stupid. Maliciously so.

Disclosure is needed.

More and more people are waking up to the fact that we are not alone in the universe. Personally, I think a lot of problems on this planet could be solved if we just recognized that there is other (more) intelligent life out there. For one thing, the knowledge of extra-terrestrial life would lead us to some feelings of embarrassment about the stupid shit we’re doing to our planet and each other. I’m thinking of war, environmental degradation, political arrogance and conspicuous consumption, amongst many other problems.

I mean, it’s humiliating enough that the Bush/Cheney cabal is bleeding liberty away (somebody make a photoshopped pic of Bush waterboarding Lady Liberty please), but if we knew aliens were watching the whole thing unfold maybe we’d say, “You know, maybe we should ask the aliens for help. Maybe they know what to do about the dichotomy between security and liberty.” Maybe that’s why they’re being kept underwraps. Maybe the powers that be don’t like the message they bring.

It’s important to remember that not all high-ranking officials want to be a party to this coverup, though. One such group is putting their reputations on the line to call for disclosure and a real investigation.

An international panel of two dozen former pilots and government officials called on the U.S. government on Monday to reopen its generation-old UFO investigation as a matter of safety and security given continuing reports about flying discs, glowing spheres and other strange sightings.

“Especially after the attacks of 9/11, it is no longer satisfactory to ignore radar returns … which cannot be associated with performances of existing aircraft and helicopters,” they said in a statement released at a news conference.

The panelists from seven countries, including former senior military officers, said they had each seen a UFO or conducted an official investigation into UFO phenomena.

The subject of UFOs grabbed the spotlight in the U.S. presidential race last month when [Dennis] Kucinich, a member of Congress from Ohio, said during a televised debate with other Democratic candidates that he had seen one.

Former presidents Ronald Reagan and Jimmy Carter are both reported to have claimed UFO sightings.

Everybody in this group probably already knows that we’ve made contact. It’s just less nutjob-y to call for an investigation. As for me, I’ve never seen a UFO, never met an alien, and never had anything shoved up my ass. I can just tell. You know what I mean? Probably not, so let me explain: I can tell not only that ETs exists, but that the government knows about them and has in fact made contact with them, simply by monitoring the government’s behavior.

It’s simple: the U.S. government has approached UFO investigation in a secretive, yet lackadaisical manner. The secretive part makes sense, since, under the respective political milieus of the last 60 years, the UFOs could be (and most likely were, from the U.S. government’s perspective) threats from our Communist or Terrorist adversaries. So it makes perfect sense to be reticent about speaking to the public on the matter. However, the lazy, half-assed attitude the government took towards actually investigating these phenomenon belies their obsession with secrecy. In fact, many UFO sighters have noted that the government was more concerned with shutting them up than actually finding out what happened.

This leaves us with two possibilities. One is the ET theory, the other is the “secret project theory.” This theory states that the government has been behind the UFOs from the beginning. This theory has strong supporting circumstantial evidence since the government has been known to work on secret projects (from the Manhatten Project to the stealth bomber) and the military had to explore any option to get a leg up on the Soviets.

However, this theory has several holes. One, the technology is far beyond what we have even today. And this technology would have to have been available in 1947. Another problem with the secret project theory is that the UFOs seem to want to be discovered. What else can explain The Phoenix Lights? Why would the government make vastly more dull coverup work for themselves when they could test the secret craft over deserted land instead of a major metropolitan area, home to 1.5 million people? It just doesn’t make sense unless you start using conspiratorial contortions far more convoluted than the idea that there’s life out there. I heard a good one today: Somebody suggested the Phoenix Lights were a secret government project involving nuclear-powered stealth blimps!

Oh, I should note that former Arizona governor Fife Symington is a member of the group agitating for disclosure I mentioned earlier. He had this to say about the event:

I’m a pilot and I know just about every machine that flies. It was bigger than anything that I’ve ever seen. It remains a great mystery. Other people saw it, responsible people. I don’t know why people would ridicule it.

It was enormous and inexplicable. Who knows where it came from? A lot of people saw it, and I saw it too. It was dramatic. And it couldn’t have been flares because it was too symmetrical. It had a geometric outline, a constant shape.

“I don’t know why people would ridicule it.”

I do. Ridicule is a very effective weapon if your aim is to affect a coverup. Heck, ridicule is probably your best bet, besides threats. If you organize an effective campaign of ridicule then the victim spends more time trying to defend his reputation than talking about what he saw, and then it has the dual purpose of preemptively ridiculing all other similar claims by association.

It must be stated clearly: Ridicule is not a logical argument. It is an ad hominem attack and is thus a fallacious argument. Attack arguments, not people. Now, anybody who disagrees with my assessment is free to say so, but simply ridiculing me is not an effective argument. It might be effective in that it makes people agree with you (for fear of being ridiculed if they don’t), but it does nothing to bolster your argument. In fact, it makes you look like you don’t know what you’re talking about.

I wish I didn’t need to make the above statement, but I’ve been on the internet far too long to believe otherwise.

Anyway, I want to address the idea that the alien life is highly improbable. For one thing, so is our very existence, but here we are. For another, there are billions upon billions of stars
out there. We’re finding extrasolar planets at an amazing rate. It’s not unfair to say the universe is probably swarming with planets, many of them habitable by carbon-based lifeforms. But we must already remember that there’s no guarantee that extra-terrestrial life would be anything like us.

I think the whole question is summed up nicely by this excellent comment on digg (yes, I’m surprised too):

Believing alien life exists does not necessarily require seeing, and it certainly doesn’t require faith. It’s just a matter of deduction, probability, and simple reasoning.

Think for a moment of the things you accept as true without the benefit of having seen them with your own eyes. You very likely accept the fact that not all life on Earth has been discovered. Although you have no tangible proof of that, you have an intuitive understanding of mathematical probability and an idea of what the limitations on exploration are. You probably accept as true that there are more stars in the Universe than there are grains of sand on Earth, but in reality, no one’s ever really counted them. We see far off galaxies, most too far for our satellites to define, and we just assume they’re composed of hundreds of billions of stars, just like our Milky Way is (never counted those either). It’s a sound assumption, for sure. But an assumption nonetheless. What I’m trying to convince you of is that mathematical probability can be just as strong a proof as observation, which is itself limited by perception.

Now, what do we know about life that might help us get a better grasp on the alien question? Well, for starters, we know there’s life on Earth. We’re not exactly sure how it came about, but most of us are convinced it wasn’t by way of magic. We believe it had much, if not everything to do with the composition and solar proximity of our planet. We know that each Earthly life-form adapts to its respective environment, and we suspect they evolve in order to better compete with their rivals. We know our world has at times been uninhabited, inhabited, uninhabited, and inhabited again. We know there are great extinctions and new births. And we know, eventually, our planet will die.

There is not one single aspect of our planet, that makes life as we know it possible — i.e. vulcanism, atmosphere, water, carbon, etc. — that we have not yet detected on another planet. I’m talking about the basic ingredients, not the recipe. So we have to ask ourselves two questions: Are these the only ingredients to life?, and, is our particular recipe for life the only one capable of rising in a solar oven? If we presume both to be the case, we must then ask a third question: In a Universe of at least 100 billion galaxies (each with some 200 billion stars), and tens of trillions of planets; what are the likely odds of a recipe similar to ours repeating itself? For that matter, what are the odds of Venus’ recipe repeating itself? What are the odds for that of Jupiter, or that of Mars? How about Mercury? Is Neptune a one per galaxy anomaly? Are all planets in the Universe unique?

If you’re like me, you’re likely to conclude that the odds of our “recipe” type repeating itself are just as good as those of any other planet. But, whether or not alien life has come upon Earth can be debated. I’m personally convinced that it has. But I don’t believe that that topic can be seriously broached without more people first coming to terms with the all-too-probable existence of life outside our own world.

Indeed, the possibility of life outside our world is more than just a possibility. I would go so far as to say it’s probable. But some people seem oddly reluctant to acknowledge the logic above.

Remember when I said that the U.S. government has taken a lazy approach to investigating the UFO phenomenon?

The former governor says the incident remains unsolved, and deserves an official investigation. The U.S. government has never acknowledged that something was in the sky that night.

Former Phoenix city councilwoman Frances Barwood, now living in the Prescott area, was the only elected official to launch a public investigation in 1997, but she said people stonewalled her at every turn. Barwood spoke with more than 700 witnesses. “The government never interviewed even one,” she says.

That pretty much says it all.

Flying Squirrel Suits!

Real flying squirrels are gonna be pissed when they see this.

I wonder who was the first guy who said, “Hey, let’s make suits that mimic flying squirrels and then jump off a fuckin’ mountain!!” ‘Cause these guys actually did it:

That’s probably just about the most insanely stupid thing I’ve ever seen. I’m not objecting, though. We need space monkeys to do dangerous and stupid shit so the rest of us don’t have to. And these guys are breaking new ground in the field of… uh… um…

Okay, they’re just crazy.

I would like to sincerely thank David Rockefeller, chairman of every internationalist organization you can think of, for coming out and admiting that there is a global conspiracy to unite the world under a one world government.

It gets annoying, you know, constantly explaining this to people, only to receive blank stares or mockery in response. I’ve long wished the Establishment (or “Illuminati” if you prefer) would just come out and admit it. It’s not like we’re in a position to do anything about it anyway. Well David Rockefeller (or D-Rock, as his friends in the international finanace ‘hood call him) has finally cleared the air:

“For more than a century, ideological extremists at either end of the political spectrum have seized upon well-publicized incidents such as my encounter with Castro to attack the Rockefeller family for the inordinate influence they claim we wield over American political and economic institutions. Some even believe we are part of a secret cabal working against the best interests of the United States, characterizing my family and me as ‘internationalists’ and of conspiring with others around the world to build a more integrated global political and economic structure – one world, if you will. If that is the charge, I stand guilty, and I am proud of it.” – From Rockefeller’s “Memoirs”, (p.405).

Uh, yes, that is the charge, Rockie, and what’s more we charge you with using any and every means at your disposal to accomplish this, including bribery, murder, lying, fraud, coups, mind-control, and, ironically, belligerent nationalism.

He continues with an even more revealing passage:

“The anti-Rockefeller focus of these otherwise incompatible political positions owes much to Populism. ‘Populists’ believe in conspiracies, and one of the most enduring is that a secret group of international bankers and capitalists, and their minions, control the world’s economy. Because of my name and prominence as the head of the Chase for many years, I have earned the distinction of ‘conspirator in chief’ from some of these people.

“Populists and isolationists ignore the tangible benefits that have resulted from our active international role during the past half-century. Not only was the very real threat posed by Soviet Communism overcome, but there have been fundamental improvements in societies around the world, particularly in the United States, as a result of global trade, improved communications, and the heightened interaction of people from different cultures. Populists rarely mention these positive consequences, nor can they cogently explain how they would have sustained American economic growth and the expansion of our political power without them.”

You will notice that he does not deny it. If anything he has confirmed that their is a “secret group of international bankers and capitalists, and their minions, [who] control the world’s economy”. What more is there to say?

Just this: Certainly we all appreciate the many benefits of modern capitalism and the technological goodies we’ve gotten our hands on. But at what cost? Politically, economically and ecologically it’s a loser for those of us who aren’t moguls. Who is going to control the one-world government he so fervently desires? If past performance is any indication of future performance, we can expect these internationalists to keep all the power to themselves. Democracy is simply “incompatible” with his smooth, orderly, one-world utopia.

The scary thing here is the idea, now realized before our eyes, that not all people who want to conquer the world are madmen. Some of them, clearly, know exactly what they’re doing; they plan decades ahead, carefully lay the groundwork and, with considerable patience, skill and cunning, achieve their goals through whatever methods required.

The whole affair is amazingly complex, but then again, so is collecting stamps, memorizing Tolkein or learning to program in C++. I suppose when you’re the billionaire son of a billionaire you need to have a hobby to keep occupied.

There are still many, many unanswered questions about 9/11. One of them revolves around the radios that firemen were using on that day, and a shady no-bid contract between the city of New York and Motorola. Was it just standard corruption, or was there something more? And why isn’t the Media covering this story? Robert Greenwald takes a look:

Quotes worth thinking about

I just saw these quotes online today. I believe they warrant some thought:

“Necessity is the plea for every infringement of Human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.”

– Colonial America sympathesizer William Pitt, British House of Commons, November 18, 1783

“If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or your arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.”

Samuel Adams

“Doctors have been caught using poisons, and those who falsely assume the name of philosopher have occasionally been detected in the gravest crimes. Let us give up eating, it often makes us ill; let us never go inside houses, for sometimes they collapse on their occupants; let never a sword be forged for a soldier, since it might be used by a robber.”

– ancient Roman educator Marcus Fabius Quintilian, Institutio Oratoria, II, xvi