"Where else would you go when you have an ax to grind?"

Friday, December 25, 2009

Have yourself a merry little Christmas

Christmas in the Woodshed

Radio Woodshed will be running special seasonal programming starting Dec. 23 straight through Christmas Day and into Boxing Day. And by special, I mean holiday music, comedy and stories ranging from David Sedaris' hilarious Santaland Diaries to stories from the Vinyl Cafe to Tim Curry reading "A Christmas Carol" and lots, lots more.

The holiday fun will kick off at 7 pm EST Dec. 23 with Tim Curry reading Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" in its entire unabridged glory and continues in about a 16 hour loop with stories from O. Henry, Paul Auster, William Burroughs, Dylan Thomas, Lord Buckley and others roughly on the hour, interspersed with music from holiday music by Carly Simon, Neil Diamond, the Crash Test Dummies, Aretha Franklin, Bing Crosby, the Asylum Street Spankers, and Tom Waits among many others and comedy by John Cleese, the Arrogant Worms, the National Lampoon, Steve Martin and many, many more!
Just click the radio over on the right to tune in.

Special thanks to technowizard PB for fixing my Shoutcast connection from his iPod Touch while in the middle of dining out. Santa will be extra good to you this year.

The Tim Curry Christmas Carol will be rebroadcast again at 8 pm (EST) Xmas Eve and from noon on Xmas Day with lots of music and other stories long and short in-between.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Stay Klassy Kate

Kate McVillan of Small-minded Roadkill has apparently clutched her pearls in a swoon at the incivilitiy of those of us on the left who took issue with her celebration of journalists dying on the job. She hasn't come after me, because I'm small enought to pass unnoticed in the larger scheme of things, but she has loosed her flying monkeys on some other blogs. In particular, she seems to be stamping her little jackboots in the direction of the esteemed Dr. Dawg. When she didn't get the retraction she demanded, she had this to say in an email reproduced by the good doctor:

I have to say I now wonder why anyone on the right gave you so much as a passing snort when your wife passed away. I know I certainly regret it now. I had assumed you were a human being.

Stay klassy, KKKate.

Canada's Lowest Common Denominatrix (tm PSA) apparently took offense to this post by Dr. Dawg in which he pointed to his own noting of McVillian's at the very least tacit, if not effusive approval of the deaths of dozens of journalists over the past year in the context of talking about the right wing fascist cult of death. While KKKate said little enough herself in her post, the comments that she let stand are illustrative of just how deep a sinkhole her blog is and give a general picture of the kind of people who hang out there, lapping up her every word.

I wish I'd bought the T-shirt:
"Journalist. Rope. Tree. Some assembly required."

Posted by: Jim at December 19, 2009 8:02 AM

Well darn. I thought I was linking to a story about something bad happening.What's that old saying..I'd rather have a mother as a whore then a journalist?

Posted by: Justthinkin at December 19, 2009 8:05 AM

I've said for years the only way to save the US is to hang all of the media first. Looks like my views aren't so out of the main stream.
"Freedom of the press requires you support it, not subvert it."
When your group works to subvert our freedoms (speech, guns, property rights, etc) don't be surprised if we wouldn't like to see you pay for it.

Posted by: paulcr39 at December 19,2009 8:11 AM

It isn't a pretty picture and it goes a long way to explaining why Canada has strayed so far into the weeds in the last few years.

Don't bring a gun to a snowball fight

Another cop who should be flipping burgers. And another set of brain-dead 'moran' commenters who's mouths should be filled in with cement. And yes, I'm talking about you "Ganhdiablo," "jblackrupert" and "nos744"

Now THAT is what I call a war on Christmas!

Fortunately, or unfortunately I don't live in a place where people put up a lot of external decorations and Christmas lights, so I'm unlikely to be confronted by something like this. I'm not sure how I feel about it, but you gotta give the guy credit for originality.

Controversial Christmas Display, Jesus versus Santa

NIPOMO – One Nipomo man's holiday decorations has his neighbors banding together to get it removed.
The display is of Jesus and Santa, the two icons of Christmas. However, Jesus is holding a shotgun over the dead body of Santa Claus.
Neighbors want the display taken down citing that there are children in the neighborhood and they find it disturbing. "I know its freedom of speech, but it's pretty disturbing and there are lots of children, that's our main concern," says neighbor Susana Cruz. The artist, Ron Lake, who is house sitting where the decorations are on display, says that it represents the commercialism of Christmas.

More pictures here

Christmas special reruns

Someone commented over on the Galloping Beaver that I had posted the same favorite Christmas song this year - Christmas in the Trenches - as I did last year. Guilty as charged, it's still my favorite after all. And all the television networks recycle all their Christmas specials year after year so why not? Here are some holiday favorites from the Woodshed:

Yes Virginia, your cynical little friends may be right in the purely physical sense, but they still don't know what they are talking about.

Christmas wishes from some guy in a white suit with a banjo

David Sedaris' Santaland Diaries

And just so you know - Radio Woodshed will be on the air Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with a broad selection of Christmas music, comedy and a number of Christmas stories ranging from John Cleese's five minute rethinking of the "The Night Before Christmas" to a three-hour reading of "A Christmas Carol" by Tim Curry. Click on the radio to tune in.

Monday, December 21, 2009

the naughty list

Nice list: Richard Colvin, Progressive Bloggers, the usual suspects from the blogroll
Naughty list: Stephen Harper and the Conservative Party of Canada, Joe Lieberman, Kate McVillain and commenters at Small Dead Animals, Blogging Tories

who has the best readers?

I do. Theo sends me a couple of his original cards every year and they are among the nicest gifts I get from anyone, anywhere.

the rest of the year in pictures

Part three of the Associated Press' best photos of the year

And you wonder why reporters drink

It's not enough that most of us work long, hard hours for crap wages in a dying industry that is constantly criticized by people who don't know what they are talking about most of the time, or that we are constantly being pushed to lower our professional standards, dumb down coverage or devote time to writing about idiotic crap instead of real news.

People in the news business with those problems are the lucky ones. In a lot of places, writing the truth about what is going on around you, can get you killed.

As depressing as this story is, the comments are downright frightening.

CC shows us how Canada's Lowest Common Dominatrix (a term coined by PSA) and her Stormfront farm team get their jollies off dead journalists, too. Apparently, having someone look around and tell people when the government or other powerful people are trying to screw them is a terrible, terrible thing to some idiots on the right and shooting the messenger seems sensible to them, mostly because they are batshit crazy. Talk about hating freedom...the mind boggles at some of the comments. I don't want to say that Kate McMillan and her gang of flying monkeys are the worst people in the world--they probably aren't out there setting fire to children on a daily basis or anything-- but they are certainly among the worst people on the internet.

What they fail to understand is that everything they know about the world around them is the result of a reporter doing their job. The only reason they know enough about what goes on in Ottawa or Washington or Afghanistan to criticize the decisions being made is because they saw a reporter on TV telling them about it or read a story in the newspaper. Those on the right that fear the government is going to take their guns or complain that it is wasting their money - where the hell do they think that information comes from? the government? And spare the "the blogs will replace newspapers/radio/TV news" bullshit. No "citizen journalist" is going to spend 50 hours a week, 50 weeks a year sitting through government committee meetings for the thrill of being the first on the internet to report that taxes are going up 1.8% or that the government is looking at establishing a rutabega marketing board.

I'll admit that the press doesn't always do its job as well as it should, but the journalists on that list are not dead because they were lazy or biased or crappy writers. Journalism is one of the few jobs in which people die not because they made a mistake, but because they did their jobs very well.

As people in a democracy get the government they deserve, so too do consumers get the media they deserve in a capitalist free-market. You want to know why the cable networks and news magazines are full of bullshit stories about Michael Jackson's plastic surgery or Paris Hilton's latest panty-flash or reports about water-skiing squirrels? Because that crap sells. Because reading about what the government is doing about the deficit is borrrrrrrring! Because consumers want mind-candy, not difficult to process information that might make them uncomfortable.
"Don't show me starving children in Africa or the government violating the constitution, then I'll feel bad because I'm not doing anything about it, it's depressing. I want good news!"
Nobody really cares that Tiger Woods slept with a bunch of women and fucked up his marriage, we just like to see that rich, successful people have the same problems as the rest of us. Nobody wants their opinion challenged, they want to know they were right all along -- that's why FOX News is making a fortune telling idiots that Obama really is a marxist muslim from Kenya and that illegal aliens are plotting to impregnate their daughters just so they can be forced to get an abortion. They knew it all along!

If you don't like the stories you see in the press because you think they are stupid and pointless, write the editor and tell them to quit publishing trivia. Believe me, the reporter who is sent out to cover the waterskiing squirrel would much rather be doing something that matters. If you don't like the stories you see in the press because you think the reporter hasn't done his job and has messed up the information, write the editor and complain. Make the media do a better job, because an informed electorate is essential in a democracy and the only way for it to be informed is by having a free press that does its job.

Reporters who do their job well are not the problem. Consumers who reward media organizations for not doing their jobs, who demand more eye candy and less real information about important things, are the problem.

And if you are one of the knuckle-dragging blar-har-har nitwits who like to cheer for reporters dying on the job, well, fuck you very much. Thanks for doing all you do to make the world a worse place.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

another several thousand words

The Associated Press photos of the year part two