Frat Boy

A challenge for you. Watch this movie without thinking of the phrase “Frat Boy”. Warning: the image is work-safe, but you may find it offensive.

(Note, this video is apparently real, and was shot while Mr Bush was governor of the great state of Texas, i.e. after he’d stopped drinking and been saved. But not after his impulse control problems were addressed apparently)

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A sad day

From the BBC:

Veteran BBC broadcaster John Peel has died at the age of 65, while on holiday in Peru.

Peel, whose radio career spanned 40 years, was on a working holiday in the city of Cuzco with his wife Sheila when he suffered a heart attack.

For those of you who have never heard of him, he was a DJ in the UK for over 40 years, including working at BBC Radio 1 since it was created in 1967. He supported independent bands throughout his career, when it is routine for older broadcasters to switch to more ‘easy-listening’ stations as their era of music ends. At the same time he had a regular program on Radio 4 (something like NPR), showing that he had perhaps mellowed with time. He was also popular in Eastern Europe before and after the end of communism, with regular programs on the BBC World Service and Radio Eins in Berlin. He is famous for his ‘Peel Sessions’; recordings by independent artists done for his show. I doubt there are many musically significant bands in the UK over the last 30 years that haven’t done a Peel Session.

Some of his honours include an OBE from the Queen, 7 honorary degrees, Melody Maker’s DJ of the Year 11 times, The Sony Gold Award in 2002, and perhaps most fittingly in 1994 he received NME’s “Godlike Genius Award”. In the world of independent music they may have been right.

Update: Slate has an article about the impact on the US.

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Jon Stewart moment

I hope that the Daily Show has this. Some months ago 380 tonnes of high explosive were looted from the Al Qa Qaa military facility in Iraq. Now I’m no expert on munitions, but 380 tonnes of anything is quite a lot, so this seems pretty significant. There are many reasons to be outraged about this, including:

  • It’s used to detonate nukular weapons
  • It’s probably what’s being used to blow up coalition soldiers
  • The Department of Defense tried to suppress the information, and asked the Iraqi government to do the same
  • The president’s spokesman can say that the facility is the responsibility of the Iraqi government, like that was relevant when the stuff was almost certainly stolen before that government even existed
  • A pentagon official could also say that they *did* secure lots of explosives, so the fact that they missed this batch isn’t such a big deal
  • The National Security Advisor only found out about this last month, and took it so seriously that she’s spending her time campaigning, sorry, responding to invitiations to speak, in swing states.

I could go on, but here’s the bit that I wanted to highlight as being a Comedy Central moment. From the CNN article, quoting a senior administration official:

The discovery was not made public sooner because standard intelligence practice is not to let the enemy know such information.

WHAT? Don’t let the enemy know? The ones with the huge bulging sacks full of high explosives? The ones who are trying to work out where the hell to put 380 TONS of bomb material? The ones who had to find the money to pay for 40 standard containers (the ones you see coming off ships) needed to transport the 22,000 cubic feet of putty-like stuff that goes bang? Well, I’m glad we’re keeping them in the dark, because who knows what mischief they could get up to if they put 2 and 2 together…

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