Wednesday, September 2


• The remains of the Sunday Indianapolis Racist Beacon are five columns wide, still include a Metro section (but not, my Poor Wife moans, Femme Fare, the fondly, if perhaps slightly emotionally and occasionally crankily remembered collection of advice columns, wedding announcements, and hamloaf recipes aimed at The Distaff Side), which itself still includes Behind Closed Doors, a page-dominating guided tour of Insider Indiana poop.

And perhaps they were fresh out of poop at the close of August, because this week the thing--which barely extended below the fold, to begin with--featured a four column, 5-1/2 x 7-1/4 inch picture of Mitch (The Spork) Daniels, fist resting pensively on his enormously productive cranium. The picture accompanied the story--it was not the lead story, by the way, and there were only two--that Mitch Daniels hadn't done anything that week.

I am not making that up. "Just a Quiet Week for Daniels". Two paragraphs were taken up by quoting from the series of platitudes he'd hurled at state employees being honored for spending thirty-five years on the public dole, during his one public appearance of the week. Two more graphs set up the Mark Sanford joke at the end. The Mark Sanford joke. I'm not making that up, either.

Daniels appears to have been sitting in a wing-back chair, so even his Homo floresiensis-scale forearm seems squeezed in at an odd angle, like he asked the photographer to hold off while he selected a pose from his repertoire of two (Pensive Brainy Guy, Rage-Fueled Brainy Guy), decided on the former with slight overtones of the latter, and tried to work it into position. The arm of a full-grown human would have passed completely behind the head with the fist sticking out the other side, like he was doing Yoga, which, I believe, still tests poorly with likely Republican Presidential primary voters.

[UPDATE: I finally gave up looking online and scanned the thing, as seen below. For tech heads eager to learn how this is accomplished: 1) crank up old G3 Mac; 2) load Photoshop; 3) pull down File/Import menu; 4) remember the reason you're using the old G3 Mac is that the scanner doesn't work with OS X; 5) restart with System 9; 6) relaunch Photoshop; 7) scan; 8) remember that the G3 quit accepting hot-swapped USB connections, like the memory stick you need to transfer the thing to your desktop, in late Fall, 2006, which is why it always starts up in OS X, because you're always switching back; 9) save scan, restart in OSX; 10) remember, too late, that you can never find the System 9 desktop, which is where you saved the thing, while in OS X; 11) manage to find it; 12) Voilà! Plug and play.

It should be noted that the above is still faster than using the Racist Beacon's "search" feature, which is not simply the absolutely worst one on the internets, but a stunning rebuke to any and every mention of the efficiencies of outsourcing, privatization, specialization, and the theoretical possibility that literacy levels can decline. Though I have to admit it is a perfect accompaniment to what is quite possibly the world's worst commercial website. Matt Tully has been the Racist Beacon's political columnist since 2005, having joined the "paper" in 2002. Aside from those rare occasions when his column gets a home-page blurb, I defy anyone to find it in less than three clicks. And when you finally give up and try the search box, it asks you--after a suitable wait reminding you what it's like to be placed on Hold by the world's most understaffed Tech desk--whether you meant Matt Dully.]

• Meanwhile, on Monday night the World's Worst City-County Council east of the Mississippi and north of the Ohio voted to prohibit holding signs or speaking to drivers within 50 ft. of a stoplight or stop sign, a matter squarely aimed at Panhandlers and other Unsightlies, and almost certainly in violation of their First Amendment rights. Although if I see 'em frog-marching the guy in the chicken suit from in front of the Chick-fil-A on 82nd St. I may have to rethink my absolutism.

But two things, here: one, the measure had been brought back to life after a woman claimed she was carjacked by a guy at an intersection while she was trying to give him a sawbuck. We have no reason to disbelieve her, though it should be pointed out that she looked capable of beating the shit out of a phalanx of deadbeats with only her rolled-up copy of Jailhouse Tattooing Quarterly. And, two, the Racist Beacon saw fit to inform its readers that the 15-13 vote was "mostly along party lines" without bothering to mention the, you know, exceptions. So I went searching, wound up at the Council site, which didn't have details, either, but which was busy touting the $300,000 it had saved the City last year by not meeting. Which I'm all in favor of, but they might wanna get it back to cover the cost of the litigation they just committed us to.

And I clicked the link, being an inquisitive sort, and learned that, among other cost-cutting measures:

Equipment was purchased to perform previously outsourced work in-house

This from the same bunch which just voted a 10% cut in the Parks budget, which will partly be made up by outsourcing work perviously performed in-house. I wonder if ad-men every worry that they're overestimating the intelligence of the public?

• 14:58…14:59…

Former Miss California sues over firing

By ANTHONY McCARTNEY, AP Entertainment Writer
Mon Aug 31, 5:58 pm ET

LOS ANGELES – Former Miss California USA Carrie Prejean sued pageant officials Monday for libel, slander and religious discrimination, accusing them of telling her to stop mentioning God even before her controversial remarks against gay marriage.

Oh, do tell!

Upset, too, that somebody revealed the California authorities had paid for her God-given breast implants. Not enough to sue The Donald, though. (That's the sort of priceless legal advice she could have used before the pageant.)

And, look: we don't care about Ms Prejean & Associates; we think her First Amendment rights should be no more abridged than anyone else's, and we think she has every right to sue if she feels she's been wronged. The fact that we find her a tiresome, small-minded opportunist of the common sort is no more material than the fact that if she were merely stating her grievances by sign, rather than suing for an unspecified dollar amount, within the Indianapolis city limits she could wind up in the pokey.

Nah. I just wanted to steal the comment from World O'Crap, the one whose author I forgot to note and am now too lazy to look up, to the effect that we shouldn't let the fact that it travelled past capped teeth and a re-sculpted proboscis, with the assist of lungs slightly impeded by the Maxim-aired sandbags bolted atop them, blind us to the important point she makes about God's natural law.

Alex Koppleman, "The Beatles Rockband: finally, a video game even old people can get excited about".

Y'know, sonny, if I gave a shit about you, what you say, video games, or crap-flavored crap in general, I'd beat you to death with my fucking cane. If my prostate would allow me to get out of the chair fast enough.

And good luck with that Aughts nostalgia thing when your time comes. The Sarah Palin full-function home android should be a real hoot. And the Blu-Ray nostalgia shops.


stAllio! said...

tully's column can be found right where you'd expect to find an opinion column: in the news section.

as for finding behind closed doors, i believe a dowsing rod is required.

Scott C. said...

I can't stop looking at that picture of Mitch's head. Slip an eyepatch on him and he's Master Billy Quizboy, from The Venture Bros.

Kathy said...

Mitch's fist appears to be attached ot a flipper, or short tentacle.

Anonymous said...

I don't LOL every day, Doghouse, but your description of scanning that page from the Beacon had me chuckling and slapping the table gently! But I do computer graphic stuff as part of occasional money-making activities, so my POV is a little skewed...

Mitch seems to have unusually long fingernails on his right hand. If he's lefthanded, I suspect him of committing music on some strummed instrument. Do you know if he practices any of the Arts? Or perhaps he uses them to extract ideas and other troublesome objects from the side of his head, as he appears to be doing in that pic.

Your last item reminds me of a bit in some column or other I read in the late 70s or early 80s. The author was in a music store and overheard two early teen girls discussing a Beatles LP. One said, "Did you know Paul was in a band before Wings??"

Li'l Innocent (verification word is "inituff". I can only reply, Yes it certainly in.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, he wouldn't have to a lefty, would he? Confused by that weird thing that happens when you're facing a person, yet again. Or maybe I was confusing Mitch with Paul McCartney.

Li'l Innocent

Marion in Savannah said...

A friend of mine says of some folks that they're so narrow minded they think in strips, like old ticker tape machines. It looks to me as though Mr. Daniels is preparing to extract some "thoughts" from his ear...

R. Porrofatto said...

One of the reasons the Daniels pict looks so odd is that usually the head is inclined toward the hand in this kind of pose. With his head being pushed by his fist in the opposite direction and his elbow at eye level Mitch looks like he's tightening one of the bolts on his temple. As you point out, there are lots of other reasons.

As for Aughts nostalgia, I wish I could live to see the Antiques Road Show of 2090 -- nothing but crap in awful condition, and no one blinks at the news that "it's not worth a goddamn thing."

heydave said...

Mitch is so very, very obviously a Deep Thinker. Wow.

Here in Ioway, we're just pleased to find our politicians reasonably ambulatory and not drooling. Openly.

Anonymous said...

Instead of putting yourself through all that rigamarole every time you want to scan something, you should just purchase Vuescan. When I was converting to OS X about five years ago, my big stumbling block was that the software for my ancient Umax Astra 600S scanner wasn't available under OS X. Vuescan got my scanner working with my G4 'Mirrored Door Drive' model under OS X 10.3. It still works perfectly after an upgrade to OS X 10.4 that supposedly broke support for the Adaptec SCSI card the scanner's plugged into. Vuescan ought to work with your USB scanner as well. Of course, you'll have one less thing to complain about, but you can't have everything.

Regarding governors, ours is such a giant asshole, Mitch would probably vanish completely if he fell in.