Thursday, April 30, 2009

Smile shutter

Shopping for a digital camera and I came across the description of a smile shutter. Thought this was some stupid gimmick but, no, it is amazing twenty first century technology. Makes me wish I could travel back to the seventies and freak people the fuck out: "In the 21st century they'll have this thing called a smile shutter that detects when a person smiles before it takes the photo"

Friday, April 24, 2009

Dead to rights

Here's what I think, MR.

Leftists have decided that Common Sense makes no difference in the template of the life they've devised for themselves.

Does that make sense?

Every solution that every leftist has ever offered bears no relationship to something that could ACTUALLY WORK.

Yes, or no?
September 23, 2008 5:57 PM
Eowyn said...

My friend, I have to share this with you:

I might be only one lonely voice in the wilderness, but I know I am seen by others.

I think you should be filled with hope that my little occupied space, small as it is, is seen.

And, perhaps, passed on.

September 23, 2008 6:00 PM
Berko Wills said...


Here's why:

1. 'Leftists' cover everyone from centralised beaureucratic types to those who are suspicious of all government. The likelihood that they all lack Common Sense, or have shunned it, is vanishingly small.

2. Many leftists fit the model of, say, a steel mill worker whose fighting for wages and conditions. His stance is a pragmatic one, not idealogical. And you'd probably lose a finger if you tried to do what he does. Then we'd see who has the Common Sense.

3. Which President brought the budget into surplus and fought a quick and successful war? Left or Right? Which President created huge deficits and mounted tactical battles that resulted in thousands of lives lost and no end in sight? Ipso facto,which of these then has offered the best solution?

4. Want the very definition of a failure of Common Sense: the War on Terror. Military strategists in the two World Wars didn't fight wars against, say, Fascism or Evil. They fought them against a tangible enemy that could be defeated, captured or killed. There would be a measurable point at which such a conflict would end. When the terms of surrender were announced and the Emperor signed the document. What is the abstract noun 'terror' and when can it be considered to have been beaten?

eowyn, any time you feel like being thrashed by a 'leftist with no Common Sense' feel free to drop on by.

September 23, 2008 8:54 PM
The Crack Emcee said...


You're the kind of person who blames others for your low self-esteem when you know it's called "self" esteem.

A typical Leftist.
September 24, 2008 12:14 AM
Berko Wills said...


I give you an intellectual response and you talk about "self" esteem, as though putting something ironically in inverted commars substitutes for an argument. You're the one whose talking about keeping it real. Yet every time I hit you in a soft spot, you whine.

How many times have I conceded all the many faults of the left? How methodically have I dissected problems that you'd presented? Or, in other words, for your so much kinder and smarter and braver self to figure out, you wail against liberals and NewAgers and whatever else. The French? Sure, why not? but the minute someone treats you seriously. Really analyses what you've said and gives you a considered response you veer away.

Up to you, man, but you will keep shitting on about how you're smarter than all fucking lefties. I just don't see you walking the walk.

September 24, 2008 5:49 AM
The Crack Emcee said...


You didn't "hit me in a soft spot." All you did was make me shake my head to the idea that you actually believe that stuff. Your formulation is so simplistic, and without nuance, it's laughable - and a big part of why the world seems so grim today.

You, and others like you, are pushing a lie. And as the world's vision becomes distorted under the weight of your lie, things start to fall apart. I can hardly be expected to applaud you for that.

The only thing with "no end in sight" is the post-modern stupidity that currently passes for wisdom. Luckily, I've lived long enough to know reality has a nasty habit of poking it's head above water from time to time, and scaring everything straight again: people get nervous, say the wrong thing, lies are exposed, etc.

"I want you to listen to me: I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinski" is the history of the world, Berko.

Not "it depends on what your definition of the word 'is' is."

And any idiot should know that.
September 24, 2008 7:31 AM
Berko Wills said...

Okay CMC, you're going to have to explain it to me, being a stupid leftist and all. What lie is it that I'm pushing?

The budget surplus? The deficit?

You wish they were lies but all the wishes in the world won't change the facts.

Five years down the track, the Iraq War is either:
* a costly and divisive war that will ultimately prove fruitful as it brings democracy to the Middle East and curtails/reduces the threat of terrorism or;
* a costly and divisive war that will end badly, causing more instability or;
* a [...] war that won't end unless there's a change of administration, or the money runs out

These are opinions, neither facts nor lies. We can't know at this stage what will happen.

I wasn't lying and it's never a good idea to accuse me of doing so. I was just owning eowyn for making uninformed and defamatory comments about leftists. And I'd do it again.

September 25, 2008 5:45 PM
The Crack Emcee said...


I'm a Republican now because I had the balls, as a liberal, to look at what the Democrats were selling and discovered they were lying. You aren't willing to entertain that premise. That's what this post is about. You don't understand why the war was taken on (U.N. resolutions) so you talk of terror because it sounds good now that it's all folded in on itself over time. But it's still a lie, and you're part of it, and you won't stop. Not even to be of any help - which is what you're supposed to do in a war. So you're doing wrong, Berko.

And that's why I shake my head.
September 25, 2008 5:54 PM
Berko Wills said...

Oh I'm willing to 'entertain a premise' if I think it has substance. However, it's pretty clear to me that, if you're looking for liars and snake oil merchants, then you don't have far to look.

If you really had the balls as a liberal to look at what was going on, surely you'd notice there was something wrong with starting a war with someone because they have weapons that you sold to them?!!

Why should I now support a war - through my silence - that I have always opposed? It would be more dangerous to support a war started on a mixture of lying duplicity and faulty intelligence, than to continue to oppose it.
You invoke UN resolutions and yet you know full well that the UN did not support the invasion. That also set a dangerous precedent - taking unilateral action.

The Iraq War deserved to fail because it was ill-conceived, conducted against the will of the international community, diverted resources from the Afghan War and domestic programs. Said that then, saying it now.

September 25, 2008 9:21 PM
The Crack Emcee said...

Ahh, Berko, you're such a NewAge fool:

First, a point of agreement - Ahmed Chalabi - a real piece of work.

It ends there.

"There was something wrong with starting a war with someone because they have weapons that you sold to them"

No, Berko, that's called (and I'm sure this phrase is alien to you:) "the right thing to do."

"Why should I now support a war - through my silence - that I have always opposed? It would be more dangerous to support a war started on a mixture of lying duplicity and faulty intelligence, than to continue to oppose it."

Right. Not your problem. But it was ours. See, we have this thing about mass murderers with rape rooms and a fetish for Stalin - phenomena that surely never troubled your vastly superior sense of morality. But, since you're a NewAge Leftist - a group that's never actually helped anyone - and not an American, it's safe to say your opinion really doesn't matter: oppose away. When we need South Wales we'll call. You guys are known for your efforts on behalf of others, aren't you? Oops - my mistake - no, you're not.

"You invoke UN resolutions and yet you know full well that the UN did not support the invasion. That also set a dangerous precedent - taking unilateral action."

God, you're such a tool. When has the U.N. done anything for anyone? Go ask the people of Rwanda, etc., what good the U.N. is. Who rushes in to help folks, Berko? We do. To spit in our face, now, is just being unnecessarily ungrateful to the nation that's shown the greatest bravery - and the biggest heart - when it comes to others, always willing to give blood and treasure for a better world. And as Colin Powell said, only asking for space to bury our dead. I know, your kind feels better laughing at your friends when the chips are down. To me, that makes you the moral equivalent of pond scum. No disrespect intended.

"The Iraq War deserved to fail because it was ill-conceived"

Name me one war that wasn't.

"conducted against the will of the international community"

Earth to Berko: we are not part of your NewAge One World Government. As a matter of fact, it doesn't even exist. You're positively loopy for that one.

"diverted resources from the Afghan War"

Oh, so now you're conducting our wars for us, too? You are the man!

"and domestic programs"

Here's a suggestion for you, Comrade: you worry about the people in your neck of the woods and we'll worry about ours. I mean, I don't ever remember the United States receiving help from South Wales (or us asking for it) to feed our poor, run our buses, or keep the lights on. Man, you've got such a case of the big-heads. Where does that come from? Where you, in little ol' South Wales, decides you've got any right to tell us what to do with our country? You're a self-important freak in your own mind. It's crazy, Berko. Just pure communist bullshit crazy.

"said that then, saying it now."

But, like I said, you oughta shut up: you're really out of your depth. Tell me, Berko: have you ever been shot at? Stabbed? Ever even been in a fistfight? I know, other than shooting your mouth off, you've never served in a cause greater than yourself (you know: on behalf of someone else - maybe someone you didn't know) so what do you know about anything America engages in? In case you don't remember, we were born fighting for freedom.

You'll just have to pardon us as we decide to keep it up.
September 25, 2008 10:14 PM
Berko Wills said...

At last some real argument. The tone is perhaps a bit off but that's all part of your charm. You're like one of those too-excited guys at the table who always wants to yell down what the last person said.

No amount of calling me a New Ager is going to make it so. And that's the trouble with a lot of your propositions; even when someone demonstrates that some point you've made is fallacious you can be guaranteed to return to it at some stage. Your blog posts demonstrate that you know full well what a New Ager is, and what they stand for. Yet you use it as some sort of all purpose insult even when your opponent has gone to great pains to deny the claim.

Or, as my folks used to say "It's like arguing with a brick wall"

You do make a lot of good points, among the subterfuge, the backtracking, and the appeal to a greater insight and sensitivity that relies almost solely on a pan generational patriotism.

The fact that you want to identify me with any culture creed or clime suggests to me just how much you are captive to an unreflective jingoistic appreciation of your country. I don't think there's anything wrong with loving your country but you need to temper that with an understanding of what will make it truest to its ideals.

I do that often and I'm also shaking my head - in my case, it's at just how long it's going to take before you recognise that 'leftists' are not one group, and not a conglomeration to be waved away with half baked platitudes.

I consider the way I can best appreciate my nation and what it stands for (South Wales, sure why not) is to arm myself with as much knowledge as possible. To interrogate the opinions of myself and others unflinchingly. To know my enemy but also to recognise my friend. If the government of the day enters into that comprehension at some point then well and good.

The best way to be a good citizen is, and always has been, to demand much of ourselves as the individuals we are and to ask of those who govern us, to serve our collective will and deliver the outcomes that we require. I refuse to have the 'servants of the people' going off on their own tangent. And I will never confuse the agenda of the administration with that of the people at large.

As far as America goes, sometimes you do great good and sometimes you fuck the place up. It's important not to be so starry-eyed that you fail to see the difference until too late. I've supported some initiatives and not others. I excuse tactical blunders but not bad faith. 'our side' vs 'your side' is fine for spectator sport. I ask a lot more of people who stir up hornet's nests for a living.

I don't laugh at the military's undoing when it employs bad strategy. I just saw it as inevitable. And reflect that your attempts at trying to stop me from honestly pointing out when I was on the money seems crudely disingenuous.

I also think that your inconsistency is shining through. Let's go along with your scenario: support for the Iraq invasion to get rid of Saddam. No my 'superior moral blah' hasn't dulled my sense of how terrible a dictator he was. I might have been a bit more supportive, though, if the US military and media had shown even a vague understanding of who they were up against, and what the consequence of his removal would be.

If those braying asses had known that Saddam was a secular tyrant, spending his whole time clinging to power and quelling dissent, and if they'd known that he was enemies with the Islamicists in the region, who were a very real threat as opposed to a guy with a bit of yellowcake left after his purchases from Dick and Don, then I might have got some sense that you knew what you were doing.

And you've only partly addressed the fundamental problem with this whole initiative. If Iraq was such a long term abuser of human rights and deserved to be dug out of his foxhole and hung by the neck until dead, then why was it okay to sell him arms? And why would you then support the traders when they turned on their former customer? Shouldn't someone other than those who were deeply implicated be entrusted with helping the region? You want to leave the Dems out of the discussion, call for them to be put in jail for misguidedly trying to help people to buy houses and threatening the heretofor magic economy, but support the scum who sold weapons of mass destruction to the enemy?

Maybe I'm not the one whose got his priorities wrong.

If they're that ruthless at a senior diplomatic level then how is the common schmuck going to be treated? Well we know the answer to that one.

No I haven't been stabbed or shot. Haven't been renditioned either, thanks to my not being from the region. But if I wait for someone from the right to say something, just because they've got combat experience or come from the nation that's committing the atrocities, then I'm afraid I'm holding my tongue for the wrong reason.

I'm not telling you not to be proud of your country. I just want to see the US at its best, not its worst. I know we don't have world government, I shudder at the thought, but if what you do impacts on the world at large then, whether its China, Russia, Iran or North Korea, the world has every right to tell you to pull your head in.

And that goes for the US as well.

September 26, 2008 8:01 AM
The Crack Emcee said...

I don't have time to answer you right now, except to say I think your analysis of foreign policy is as good as you analysis of my country's current financial problems, which (as I've been telling you) is awful. Look at this and learn, man - you're trapped in a mindset (yes, NewAge) dedicated to fighting against the good guys:

You know I love ya, man. You're still an asshole though. You really need to stop. We need you too much.
September 26, 2008 8:13 AM
solerso said...

This post is (Further) proof that the more right one goes, the more one projects ones own neurotic, paranoid resentments and knee jerk rehtorical ploys,onto anyone who is suspected of disagreement
April 7, 2009 1:51 PM
The Crack Emcee said...


Wrong - the more right one goes, the more tolerant of other viewpoints one becomes because you are able to hear them - that doesn't mean you agree - but you, at least, engage. Liberals refuse to do that, which is the road to fascism.

Thanks for writing.


Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Patient reader, you may be pleased to know that I have signed off from commenting on the Macho Response. This was forced by the Crackle emcee, in his typically flatfooted way, impugning the Left as being the sort to lie and exaggerate.

Okay, I want you all to think of that blue suede shoes song "You can do anything you but lay off of those blue suede shoes" Well I'm like that with lying. I've always hated the whole enterprise of untruth and my earliest plans for a then fanzine (the only way to get your viewpoint out if you weren't an officially sanctioned 'writer')was based rigidly on that notion. You can say I'm deluded, you can claim my conclusions are ill considered and illogical, you can tell me I've lived a cloistered life and wouldn't think that way if I'd had more experience. You may be talking through your hat but okay.

But don't ever tell me I'm lying.

All those years of carefully cultivated lessons in logic and instruction in decorum will explode in a ball of feather and you'll find yourself with a good old fashioned punch in the head.
Well I couldn't do that over the World Wide Web so I did the next big thing and challenged him to cite one case where I had been caught doing either. Naturally this conversation came down quickly. Reader, if you can bear the equivalent of wading through raw sewage, please do revisit that history of comments on his blog. In among me handing him his ass on a plate, can you see any personal examples of lies or exaggerations on my part?

That's his problem: baseless assertion. He let's you on to comment because, like all people who deliberately choose to limit their thinking, he knows he's right and that nothing you can say will hurt his position.
He'll merrily contradict himself from one exchange to the next, repeat an accusation you've already countered previously, trail off with some weak rejoinder, and all the while think that he has you to rights.
A more logical person would take the sum of all that he and the other person has said and formulate their next response; researching as necessary.

You can argue that we all have an agenda - mine, to counter the effects of religious doctrine - is even similar to the Crock emcee's; but what distinguished us is that he will state that someone is a liar or fraud - a very serious allegation - and leave it hanging as if, by saying it, he has made it so.

suffering from an ugly case of full-blown rationalism

Puh-lease. That's a very Humpty Dumpty idea on what rationalism is. Replace the 'r' in rationalism with an 'n' and it works though.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Green with envy

When I tell people we've just got back from Tasmania, am waiting for some wiseacre to ask "Oh did you meet Bob Brown while you were down there?" and replying "Yes he came to visit the first night we got there"

Radio Jack

Recently we went to watch a friend at work's radio play, With This Ring I Thee Dead.. He had the honour of an all-star cast performing the piece to a packed audience. We arrived late due to CityRail fuck-up and were battling to get a seat. Thanks to the play and the audience participation, uproarishness ensued. Judging by the crowd, and the meals and beers being ordered (not to mention the thespian credentials of the proprietor), it won't be the last such performance at the Hotel Gearin.