Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Boffo Quote 005
“Most people tend to blame their triumphs on internal excellence and their failures on environment, but reverse it for others.”
Amanda Marcotte, "Just admit it", November 26, 2007.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Captain Samuel Vimes 'Boots' theory of socio-economic unfairness
"The reason that the rich were so rich, Vimes reasoned, was because they managed to spend less money.

"Take boots, for example. He earned thirty-eight dollars a month plus allowances. A really good pair of leather boots cost fifty dollars. But an affordable pair of boots, which were sort of OK for a season or two and then leaked like hell when the cardboard gave out, cost about ten dollars. Those were the kind of boots Vimes always bought and wore until the soles were so thin that he could tell where he was in Ankh-Morpork on a foggy night by the feel of the cobbles.

"But the thing was that good boots lasted for years and years. A man who could afford fifty dollars had a pair of boots that'd still be keeping his feet dry in ten years' time, while a poor man who could only afford cheap boots would have spent a hundred dollars on boots in the same time and would still have wet feet."
From Terry Pratchett's Men At Arms.

It's always wise to listen to the comedians and satirists. They usually tell the Truth well in a few memorable lines, as opposed to Serious Thinkers who often can't be as pithy or as accurate no matter how many extra chapters you give them. And this is a perfect example.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Boffo Quote 004

“Popular fiction doesn't just mirror its readers' reality, it inspires and creates it -- which makes it somehow more real than reality.”

Douglas Wolk summarizing Alan Moore’s take on pop culture in Moore’s graphic novel Black Dossier. Quote is found in the review “Who are these unmasked men?”, Salon, November 24, 2007

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Dan Savage remains one of the best reads out there

You neglect generic guy/girl/girl threesomes.

I've neglected threesomes 'cause they're about as controversial as brunch plans for us gay guys...

Savage Love, November 14, 2007

Friday, November 16, 2007

Boffo quote Number 003

"You can say that `anecdote is not evidence', but isn't every day, every experience, every anecdote a sample? Are you not allowed to draw conclusions from thousands upon thousands of cumulative samples?"

Robert Rose, Friday, November 16, 2007


Thursday, November 15, 2007

Nobody did Diefenbaker as well as Duncan Macpherson

Boffo quote Number 002
"Your modesty is so retiring it left for Mexico years ago and never came back. It's sitting on a beach somewhere wondering if you'll ever write..."

The Real Interrobang, November 15, 2007

Saturday, November 10, 2007

More on the Parking.

This is a followup post to "I can guess how this one will turn out", "Well done, the Star" and "Pylons, Impark and a very big bit of weird".

The Star now has a follow-up story on this: "Unit Park responds on use of pylons at Cirque tent". Short version? Unit Park says, `yeah it wuz us who done it but we dids it to maintain da traffic flow and prevent traffic jams, 'cuz ya got a nice traffic flow here and ya wouldna wanted sometin' ta happen to it, wouldja?'.

Note to Mr. Hudson: Nobody delegated law enforcement authority to you. You had no more authority to block that street than I do to rush out and start ticketing people for jaywalking. The difference, though, is that if I rush out and start spewing tickets and collecting money I will be arrested. You, on the other hand, are completely safe and you know it. In fact, you are so confident of this that you admit to your actions in writing to the largest circulation newspaper in the country.

Okay. We have:
>> A blocking of City roads, admitted on the record by the blocker ("Unit Park ... was the operator... [Its]vice president Bill Hudson ... declined an interview but emailed confirmation to us that his company put out the pylons and explained why Unit Park thought it was necessary to eliminate the on-street parking ...")
>> The blocking was illegal ("[The Star] checked it out at city hall and determined that [Unit Park] had no authority to put out pylons").
>> Unit Park may have made a profit of about $150,000 from this illegal act.
In short, a crime: the obtaining of money by false pretenses. And it is clear what law enforcement will do about this.


I repeat: nothing will come of this. If you or I threw up pylons blocking legal parking on our street and earned $5 from drivers having to park on your lot we would be in the back of a cruiser in fairly short order. But you and I aren't corporations, are we? This is not some angry anti-capitalist rant; I'm a capitalist myself. No, it is rather the simple telling of a disturbing and infuriating fact: there is something about crimes committed by companies that causes police forces to go all giggly and shy, the tongue-tied wallflowers of the law enforcement world. Sad and pathetic, but true. Disgusting and a dereliction of duty? Also true.