The Most Frightening Quote I’ve Seen This Week

holyshit

That is Altoona State Rep. John McGinnis.  Quoted in the May 29th Altoona Mirror.  I can’t find the Political Notebook column at the Mirror’s site, but here’s a screen shot from the behind the paywall copy.

McGinnis said that.  In front of people.  On the record.

Jesus fucking Christ on a Crutch.

Another Thing To Add To The List

Normally I tend to shy away from the line, “I’ll believe it when I see it.”  Personally seeing something isn’t the best reason for belief, honestly, once you have an adequate understanding of how the human brain operates.  Let’s just say that if I saw a ghost or an alien spaceship, it wouldn’t necessarily result in me believing in ghosts and/or alien spaceships.  A preponderance of evidence is much more important to my acceptance of somethings existence than personal experience.  I hike/backpack quite often, and yes, I have seen and heard several things that could have possibly been sasquatchi.  (Fight the man!  Help make “Sasquatchi” the proper plural form of “Sasquatch.” Fuck “Sasquatches.”  No, not literally.  Well, I guess if you find one, if that is what you are into, and the Sasquatch consents, then take my comment as literally as you wish.  Who am I to stand in the way of consenting human/Sasquatch love?  Just make sure the Sasquatch consents, Bobo.)   They also could have been bears, bucks during the rut, or a myriad amount of animals so extensive that I refuse to list them all.  I could go around saying that I saw or heard Bigfoot, but reality and the preponderance of evidence suggest one of the other possible explanations are exponentially more likely.  Was that thing I saw in Wildwood Cemetery a ghost, a demon, or light reflecting from a car’s headlights?   Is that an alien spaceship, or am I misinterpreting something in the sky?  I can come up with a nice sized list of reasons to doubt what you personally witness before even bringing hallucinations into the discussion.  So yeah, I’ll accept/believe something not when I see it, but when I see a preponderance of evidence.

All of that being said, there are still a few things that I truly will only believe when I see it.  This election season seems to be the genesis of most of them.  One of them, that one of the two major political parties in the United States would actually nominate Biggest Loser contestant( I know it is the wrong reality show, but tell me it doesn’t fit), horrific hairstyle model, wannabe dictator,  bankruptcy claiming con artist, xenophobic misogynist, fascism tinged populist who claims to have way more money than he actually has, who espoused  fairly run of the mill liberal political positions up until a couple years ago Donald “Not Joking” Trump as their Presidential candidate, was witnessed yesterday when, anticlimactically, enough unbound delegates to put him over the top expressed their intentions to vote for Donald “The Death of Serious Politics” Trump, thereby saving any of the remaining states and territories the horrible distinction of being the one that clinched him the nomination.  Yep, I admit it completely.  Even with my low opinion of the Republican base, I would have bet a seriously large amount of cash against him.  I mean, sure, I knew the racism and xenophobia, along with his faux populist message was going to play well, sadly, among the white working class.  But I was positive a combination of evangelical Christians along side horrified moderates (well….those that still exist in the GOP) and embarrassed movement conservatives would find some way to stop his campaign.  I mean, I don’t believe in a religious test for office to be sure, but Evangelicals sure as hell do, and Trump is about as Christian as I am.  No, I take that back.  I could fake it much better than he could since I’ve read the Bible and studied apologetics.  There is no way they believed his religious pandering, especially with Ted Cruz, a man so wrapped in the faith that the Westboro Baptist Church thought he should tone it down a bit (I kid….Or do I?), running against him for comparison.

I was wrong.  So were quite a few Evangelical candidates.  All those years the GOP spent pounding the Bible while carefully playing their racist dog whistles and it turns out the equation for victory was simply exchanging the Bible pounding for half-assed pandering and the dog whistle for outright bigotry.  Who knew?

“That’s okay,” I thought.  Even if Donald “Goodbye, America’s Reputation” Trump manages to use insanely unrealistic campaign promises along with  the bigotry the GOP’s been seeding with the “Southern Strategy” for decades now to somehow win the nomination, all that means is at least 4 more years with a Democratic President.  I mean, you heard these high ranking members of the GOP during the campaign.  Trump’s middle name may as well be “Not Qualified for the Office of President.”  Fox News used the first debate and Megyn Kelly to try and take him down.  The National Review dedicated a whole issue to #NeverTrump.  The last GOP nominee was practically begging someone, anyone, else to get in the race.  The base may make him the nominee, but the elite members of the party realized that not only would a Trump presidency be a national nightmare, but even being associated with him would be an asterisk after their names in the history book.  Sure, it would cost them the White House, but they could come back stronger in 2020 and they would have the added admiration from independents and moderates for standing up against Donald “Not Qualified for the Office of President” Trump.

Did you see Megyn Kelly’s softball interview with Donald “She had blood coming out of her…..wherever” Trump?  She was harder on the Duggar’s.  Anyone else having fun watching people who insisted he wasn’t anywhere near qualified for the Presidency endorse him?  For as much of a jackass as he is, I really thought more of Chris Christie, and yet there he was, the first to cross the line.  I mean sure, there are a few members of the GOP who are more concerned with their personal integrity than victory.  Last I checked George Will was still writing anti-Trump columns.  I don’t see endorsements coming anytime soon from Romney or anyone named Bush.  Senator Ben Sasse has drawn the ire of his own state’s GOP leadership with his anti-Trump stance.  The communications chair of the Young Republican National Federation,  Katrina Elaine Jorgensen, resigned over his nomination.  And the Governor of New Mexico, Susana Martinez, skipped out on Trump’s rally in her state the other day, and was vocal about skipping the convention until she realized her position as chairwoman of the Republican Governors Association kind of obligates her to be in attendance.  I doubt Glenn Beck is planning on jumping on the Trump train, and I believe at least one influential right wing news site is still #NeverTrump.

Other than that?  Watch them fall in line.  Anyone really expect Paul Ryan isn’t going to endorse Donald “nice tits, no brain” Trump?  A bit of advice for all the #NeverTrumpers now stampeding their way to his campaign?  Don’t neglect the balls.  If you do, he will fire you.  And don’t forget to toss the salad, although I would skip that on days he pandered to Hispanics by eating taco salad.

So what’s left this year for me to believe when I see?

I’ll only believe their are enough white men in this country to elect Donald “The Man Who Single-Handedly Caused the Entire World to Reevaluate Their Foreign and Economic Policies Towards the United States” Trump when I see ……  Okay, scratch this one. Thanks to 100% unverifiable touchscreen voting machines, I will never believe this one, no matter what happens.  (Are you stunned at the thought of 100% unverifiable voting machines?  Yeah, I was as well.  Go to The Brad Blog and follow his reporting.  Our elections are so shady they make corrupt dictators look honest.  )

I’ll only believe people in the United States are fucking stupid enough to either outright elect Trump, or come close enough that our rotten election system, through honest errors or malicious hacking, is able to tilt the count in his favor when I see the final election results, with 100% reporting.

I’ll believe the Justice Department is going to indict Hillary Clinton over those emails when I see her do the perp walk live on the network news.

And finally, and just as unlikely as the two above, I will believe Bernie Sanders is enough of a selfish fuck to give Donald “Pocahontas” Trump the priceless Christmas in June present of a televised debate when the only realistic chance Sanders has of winning the Democratic nomination is the previously mentioned extremely unlikely indictment of HRC, resulting in the only possible beneficiary of such a debate being Donald “that low life” Trump as he commiserates with Bernie over how rigged the Democratic nominating system is as he actively courts Sanders supporters, all the while saving any negative thing Sanders says about HRC for future campaign ads, when I fucking see it on my television screen.

Sorry.  I still have too much respect for Bernie to actually think he would go through with this horrid idea.  I’ve been wrong before, and if I am, believe me, I will be back to tear into Mr. Sanders with all the vitriol I can muster, but until then, I’ll chalk it up to a joke gone awry.

Maybe Republicans should debate with Democrats during the primary season.  Sanders floated that idea at the beginning of it all, and it is an interesting one to think about.  That debate should definitely not be between one parties Presidential nominee and the other parties second place finisher.

No matter how much it could raise for charity.


I love politics.  Love it.  I’m addicted.  It is just about all I read about.  Politics and ASOIAF.  Hell, half the reason I love ASOIAF so much is the political wrangling in the series.  But this particular election is getting hard to watch, and therefore, hard to write about.  My 80 year old mother, who largely ignores politics, is openly scared over this.  This 4’11, 93lbs little old lady brought up Hitler in comparison during a conversation yesterday.  I laughed and told her about Godwin’s Law, which made me think:  Is Godwin’s Law harmful in some instances?  If something really is Hitler like, then shouldn’t we be able to go with the comparison that makes the most sense without instantly losing the argument and being seen as a crank?  I’m not saying that Trump wants to kill all the Muslims and Mexicans.  He just wants to evict them from the country.  Which is how Hitler started with the Jews, by the way.  He didn’t start with gas chambers.

I am not saying that Trump could become a Hitler.  The United States isn’t suffering under an unfair treaty imposed upon us after a war that killed an entire generation.  We aren’t going to invade Canada.  There are never going to be death camps gassing Muslims and Hispanics.  In 2020, Trump is not going to declare martial law and put an end to free elections, declaring himself President for life, no matter how many right wing nut jobs were convinced Obama was going to do that by now.

I am saying, however, that there may be comparisons to be made and lessons to be learned that can only be discovered by scrapping Godwin’s Law for a period of time.  Perhaps I just found something to write about.

All I know for sure is this:  If you aren’t at all concerned about the wave of xenophobic bigotry and hate that Trump is currently riding, then you haven’t been paying attention.

 

Good News for Those of You Who Wish I’d Stop Posting About Game of Thrones.

I really don’t watch much television.  I have a ton of websites that I read, a backlog of movies I still need to watch, and countless hours of rpg goodness to play on my Steam account.  Oh, and stacks of books that I could be reading as well.  If I’m going to devote a portion of my limited free time to watching a tv show, I better be getting something out of it.  There are a few shows that I’m fairly confident I would enjoy that I do not watch, simply because I feel my time is better spent elsewhere.  Don’t take this as elitism, or intellectual snobbery.  I’m not looking down on television, and its not like all the other media I consume is high art.  For me, as things work out, television draws the short straw.

And after last night, the time I spend on it has shrunk a bit more.

I quit watching Game of Thrones last season, not because of the multitude of problematic issues layered through each and every episode, issues that have been discussed in great detail over at GoTGifsandMusings/the cultural vacuum, even though that would have been a legitimate reason to quit watching.  No, I quit watching because I wanted an adaptation of A Song of Ice and Fire, and after getting that for the most part for two fucking awesome seasons (1 &3), and two mostly enjoyable seasons (2&4), the show had become fan fiction, full stop.

If the almighty showrunners would have faithfully adapted (within reason, I never expected a word for word, scene for scene, character for character adaptation) the published material and then, after running out of published material, went off in their own direction, telling the rest of the story the way they saw fit, I would have more than likely given them much more benefit of the doubt.  But that’s not what they did.  What they did instead, right after spending two seasons bringing A Storm of Swords to the screen, was take Feast and Dance, combine them so they would burn quicker. set them ablaze, ignore just about everything that was in them, and change Game of Thrones from an adaptation to an originals scripted series.  There were many reasons to stop watching last season, but mine was simply the desire for something D&D were obviously no longer interested in providing.  I wanted an adaptation of G. R. R. Martin’s epic fantasy series, not Jaime and Bronn go to Brazil Dorne!

Why did I come back this year?  Mainly because as an ASOIAF nerd, I knew I’d be visiting sites that talk about the show so I wouldn’t be able to stay spoiler free anyway, and also because of the enjoyment I got last season from Kylie and Julia.  Yeah, 99% of my reasons for watching this season were snark related.  I also figured that they might have some enjoyable scenes I can project the book on to, and poor innocent naive me, believed it couldn’t get any worse than last season anyway.

Yeah, I was wrong.

I’m not going to list all the problems I had with last nights episode.  I’m not going to whine, bitch, and complain about it.  If anyone is interested, ask me and I’ll fill you in, but other than that, I’m just done.  I don’t even enjoy MST3King it anymore.

So yeah.  No more GoT posts.  Hopefully later this week I’ll snap out of my “OMG Trump is going to be President” funk and make a few posts.  At least they won’t be about horrid HBO shows.

It’s Monday, So That Means Game of Thrones.

Okay, so I’m going to type as I watch.

So Sansa seemed to take Jon being resurrected surprisingly well.  I guess after everything she’s been through, she’s now unflappable.

Davos never asked Mel what happened with Stannis until now?  Wtf?

Lady Brienne: Stone Cold Killer.  When D&D were reading the later novels, did they skip Brienne’s chapters because they didn’t feel they were “dramatically satisfying” enough?

Look, it is the Vale!  Seems like chaos is still a ladder.

So here is my prediction.  The character played by Sophie Turner formerly known as Sansa, Totally unchanged by death Jon, and the wildling army are going to march against Ramsey Sue the Great and his brainless Northern Lords.  Things are going to be looking really bad for the Wildling Bunch, but just before they are routed from the field, Deus Ex Baelish shows up with the Knights of the Vale to save the day.

Now that would be “dramatically satisfying.”

I’m going to save my many objections to that possibility for when/if it happens.  Not going to critique them for something that may just be in my head.

After three attempts, I have come to the conclusion that there is no way for me to properly critique the show’s handling of Meereen outside of a thousand word minimum essay.  Instead, while waiting for those essays to spring up at Fandom Following or other similar locations, let me utter 3 simple words: Fuck that noise.

Oh, it’s the Jorah and Daario roadshow!

Damn, they are sneaky.  Gratuitous sex for 100$, Alex.  Jorah really became a shitty fighter quick, didn’t he?  Wait….just because he smashed his head in, wouldn’t the stab wound still be visible?

Why is Marg in jail again?  Giving food to the poor?  Raping the King?  Oh, it was perjury, wasn’t it?

Dude, I’m an atheist that borders on anti-theism and I am uncomfortable with their portrayal of religion.

Poor Carol!  Such a loving tiger mom who has been treated so poorly by the patriarchy.

Seriously, what would people have done if Peter Jackson turned Saruman into a hero?

/mourn Jaime Lannister’s book character.

How the fuck did Theon get back to the Iron Islands that fast?  Does he have some of that Sand Snake Teleportation Magic?

How did he get over his torture that fast?

Hey everyone, its the most important character in Game of Thrones, Ramsey!!!!!!  Will he rape Osha then kill her, or just kill her?

Huh, just killed her.  See, they did rethink their treatment of women.  *roll eyes*

The Pink Letter?  Is it?

Yep.  Sure is the “Pink Letter.”  Well, some form of the Pink Letter.  Sure would have made sense if that letter would have came last season, and I don’t know, resulted in the assassination plot?  Meh, silly idea.

Okay.  Seriously now.  Jon knows about the White Walkers.  His personal plan is to move south and live a normal life for a year or so until the others wipe out humanity?  Why would he even start arguing with Sansa?  I guess I could see if his argument was “Winterfell isn’t important, we need to fight the real enemy” but instead it was “I’m done fighting”?

And dammit, something tells me I better just start writing my thousand word meta on why Littlefinger and the Vale knights showing up as a Deus Ex Petyr is so idiotic.

 

So after telling her they didn’t care what she had to say, they listened to her instead of slapping her down and telling her to shut up.

Wait…..is she psychically calling Drogo?

No, even stupider.  She is fire proof.

Even her hair!

 

Okay….Ratings.  For a television show, I guess I’ll give it a 3 out of 10.  Or a 2.  Nah, a 3.  I enjoyed the hug between Jon and Sansa, cheered for Cersei, Jaime, Kevin, and Olenna as they hatched their plan to take out the over-the-top  High Sparrow, breathed a sigh of relief that Marg is far from broken and still scheming ways to get out of this instead of becoming a true believer, and while admitting that it is very problematic for a myriad of reasons, enjoyed Dany taking over the Khalasar.  On the negative side, Tyrion’s scenes are now physically painful to watch, the Iron Island stuff is pointless, and just about nothing makes any sense.  Wasn’t Davos the president of Jon’s fan club last week?  Now he suddenly cares about Stannis again?  How much vengeance does Brienne need?  Does she have to be a stone cold killer to be a strong woman?  Petyr is just getting to the Vale?  Does anyone ever move at any speed that isn’t plot speed?  Did Jon forget about the others?   The Faith really has Marg locked up for perjury?  Is Cersei a villain or hero?  What was there in that Ramsey scene that was so important that we had to see it?  Seriously, they could have just said Osha was killed off screen when they handed over Rickon.  No, instead they had to bring the actress back and take up screen time that could have been given to any other plot line, all so….what?  We could find out Ramsey was evil?  I think we knew that already.  Just….why?

As an adaptation?  0 out of 10.

I know, I said it was a firm 1-10 scale and all, but I can’t give it a 1.  It isn’t an adaptation anymore.  It is pure fan fiction.  None of the plot lines this week have anything in common with the novels.  I mean, I guess I could say that there was the “Pink Letter,” but so what?  Just because Jon got a letter from Ramsey doesn’t mean they adapted that plot line.  Everything relating to it has changed.  I guess they are adapting Dany’s Meereen plot, except with Tyrion in the place of Dany….but that doesn’t make an adaptation.  At this point, I firmly expect the show to end with Ramsey married to Cersei, ruling from the Iron Throne, with Tyrion as the Hand of the King, after those three become dragon riders and save humanity from the others.  Because why not end with D&D’s three favorite characters triumphant?

More Anti-Intellectualism in Advertising? Never, Not in America!

Continuing the grand tradition here at Foster Disbelief of highlighting especially idiotic television commercials/ ad campaigns, which began way back in October of 2014 with this take down of Toyota’s “Bold” campaign for their Camry, then continued recently with Cracker Barrel’s anti-intellectual ad for mac and cheese, I give you “No Debate” for the Dodge Charger and Challenger.

At least the Cracker Barrel spot was kind of amusing?  I don’t get this at all.  I mean, I guess that guy is famous for something, and his fans might enjoy seeing him in a commercial?  And it is funny when he interrupts the debate?  I mean, “NERDS!!!!”, amirite?  And then the girl is the one to slap the notes out of the boys hand at the end, which is supposed to be hilarious because the girl is bullying the boy dork instead of the opposite?

Sure makes me want to buy a Dodge.

 

Future headline:  “Dodge Stock Soars As Trump Supporters Flock To Buy Challengers and Chargers.”

I Can’t Even….

Game of Thrones thoughts, of course….

As a tv show only?  Were there a shit ton of long, meandering, pointless conversations?  Is Gilly’s baby supernatural, staying that young while years pass everywhere else?  Did we really need to see the dead face of a 13 year old in multiple shots?  Remember, seeing Stannis die last season would have been “gratuitous.”  Did they really bring Osha and Rickon back just so Ramsey can kill them?  As a book reader, I fully expected Jon to leave the watch, as his death technically fulfills his oath to remain with the Night’s Watch until death, but I have no clue if they are doing that, or if they are making him an oath breaker.  The Tower of Joy scene was the second worst fight scene ever in Game of Thrones, only ahead of Snake-Fu.  Fun, more Arya getting hit with a stick.

God that was boring.  And disturbing.  But mostly boring.  2/10

As an adaptation?  HAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

Seriously, I can’t even.

1/10

Now I Remember Why I Stay Away From Twitter….

Everything was going fine.  I stopped by Twitter to check out a tweet directed at me that I missed, see who started following me, and follow a few people, when I noticed that #PeopleAreTiredOf was trending.  I clicked on the hashtag to see what was going on, and this was the first tweet I saw….

and then a bit later….

I don’t even have words.