[x]Blackmoor Vituperative

Tuesday, 2017-02-07

The gods themselves

Filed under: Society — bblackmoor @ 16:51

Against stupidity the very gods
Themselves contend in vain
— Friedrich Schiller, Die Jungfrau von Orleans (The Maid of Orleans) (1801), Act III, sc. vi

I have tried to defend the virtues of the South against those who attack from without, and those who seek to defile it from within — bigots, generally speaking. I’ve defended the rebel flag, affirming that it is an unofficial symbol of the South, and not a symbol of oppression or slavery, nor a celebration of the worst of our history. Like the American flag, the rebel flag has been associated with terrible injustice in the past, but that is not what it means.

That has been my position.

I am surrendering that battle. Not because of people who still blame people in 2017 for atrocities committed 150 years ago, but because of the people who seem intent on living up to the very worst stereotypes laid at the feet of the South. People who revel in ignorance, bigotry, and malice, all while waving the goddamned rebel flag.

Once upon a time, the swastika was considered a sacred and auspicious symbol. The Nazis, and the horrible people who continue to admire them, have ruined that, at least insofar as Western civilization is concerned. If the stigma currently associated with the swastika is ever washed away, it will be be many generations from now. Lifetimes.

Against my best efforts, I have come to the conclusion that the rebel flag has become so tainted that it will not be redeemable in my lifetime. Not tainted by tragic events 150 years ago, but tainted by people here and now who wave it proudly while proclaiming themselves to be scum of the absolute worst sort.

Was I wrong all along? Foolish? Maybe so. Maybe so.

Sunday, 2017-02-05

Happy birthday to William S. Burroughs

Filed under: Books,Philosophy,Poetry — bblackmoor @ 21:04

Happy Birthday to William S. Burroughs — American novelist, short story writer, satirist, essayist, painter, and spoken word performer.

William S. Burroughs

Sunday, 2017-01-29

I was wrong

Filed under: Politics — bblackmoor @ 11:37

I didn’t think that President Trump could possibly be the horrific disaster that folks were afraid he would be. That he’d be himself — a vulgar, self-serving narcissist — was obvious, but he could not possibly be as bad as the pearl-clutchers and hand-wringers were afraid he’d be.

I owe an apology to the pearl clutchers and hand wringers. I am sorry: you were right.

Friday, 2017-01-27

The strange case of Reggie Bannister and Dean Norris

Filed under: Movies — bblackmoor @ 22:49

From the files of… IT’S THE SAME GUY! We bring you the case of Reggie Bannister and Dean Norris. We saw ONE of these men tonight playing a small part in one of our favourite films, The Last Seduction (1994). Which of them was it? YOU make the call!

Reggie Bannister or Dean Norris?

Saturday, 2016-12-10

No One Lives

Filed under: Movies — bblackmoor @ 20:09

The second feature on tonight’s horrorfest (following “A Christmas Horror Story“, 2015) was “No One Lives” (2012). I would have linked to a trailer, but every trailer I found gave away important plot points (boo!) and was infested with that obnoxious seizure-inducing strobe-to-black that every goddamned trailer seems to have nowadays (double boo!). So do yourself a favour, and avoid any trailers before you see it.

No One Lives (2012)

That being said, we enjoyed this much more than we expected. Despite the impression made by the first scene, it is not humourless torture porn (which I can’t stomach). It is a slasher movie (lots of blood, a fair amount of nudity), but it also brings a new angle to the genre, and there was some humour. I enjoyed it. I might even watch it again.

Friday, 2016-12-09

A better class of wingnut

Filed under: Politics,The Internet — bblackmoor @ 17:23

I might sound like a grumpy old man, but I think we had a better class of angry white wingnuts back before the Internet. Nowadays, every halfwit with a keyboard thinks he’s William F. Buckley.

Sunday, 2016-12-04

Should The Electoral College Ignore Our Votes?

Filed under: Politics — bblackmoor @ 11:42

I haven’t signed this petition. Not yet, anyway. I have… concerns.

Would President Trump do terrible things to our country? He appears to have every intention of doing so. His cabinet, this far, is full of ultra-wealthy people, united in their opposition to basic human rights for my gay friends. His grasp of international diplomacy seems… lacking. Also, the next President will likely appoint several justices to the Supreme Court of the the United States, with ramifications for generations to come (the Court has not exactly been a beacon of justice in recent years, but I can’t imagine that it would get any better with justices appointed by Trump).

But is getting rid of Trump enough reason to tell Americans (not just those who voted for Trump — all Americans), “No, your vote actually doesn’t count”? Is preventing the election of President Trump enough reason to start the next civil war? Or does permitting him to take office make that war inevitable? What will my nieces’ and nephews’ children say about us, thirty years from now? That we caused the war, or that we simply failed to prevent it?

I rather like the idea of the electoral college making itself relevant by being the voice of sanity it was intended to be. But I find myself wondering at what point “the consent of the governed” becomes less important than “doing what we know is right”. It’s a very dangerous thing, to “know” that one is right.

And yes, I know that this petition, like all such petitions, is absolutely meaningless. It’s an impotent and pointless gesture.

But that’s how it always begins. Very small.

Monday, 2016-11-28

How to copy a folder and retain its permissions in Windows 10

Filed under: Windows — bblackmoor @ 10:25
  1. Click the Start button.
  2. In the search box, type “command”.
  3. Right-click the “Command Prompt” item, and select “Run as administrator”.
  4. In the command prompt that opens, type

    xcopy sourcepath destinationpath /O /X /E /H /K

    and then press ENTER, where sourcepath is the source path for the files to be copied, and destinationpath is the destination path for the files.

  5. For example:

    xcopy C:\Users\Public D:\Public /O /X /E /H /K

Sunday, 2016-11-27

The weeds are all around us and they’re growing

Filed under: Music — bblackmoor @ 02:04

Early every year, seeds are growing
Unseen, unheard, they lie beneath the ground
Would you know before the leaves are showing
That with weeds all your garden will abound?

If you close your eyes, stop your ears
Hold your mouth, how can you know?
The seeds you cannot see may not be there
The seeds you cannot hear may never grow

In January you’ve still got the choice
You can cut the weeds before they start to bud
If you leave them to grow higher, they’ll silence your voice
And in December you may pay with your blood

Close your eyes, stop your ears
Close your mouth and take it slow
Let others take the lead and you bring up the rear
And later you can say you didn’t know

Everyday another vulture takes flight
There’s another danger born every morning
In the darkness of your blindness the beast will learn to bite
How can you fight if you can’t recognize a warning?

Close your eyes, stop your ears
Close your mouth and then you know
Let others take the lead and you bring up the rear
And later you can say you didn’t know

Today you may earn a living wage
Tomorrow you may be on the dole
Though there’s millions going hungry, you needn’t disengage
For it’s them, not you, that’s fallen in the hole

It’s alright for you if you run with the pack
It’s alright if you agree with all they do
If the fascist’s party slowly climbing back
It’s not here yet, so what’s it got to do with you?

The weeds are all around us and they’re growing
It will soon be too late for the knife
If you leave them on the wind that around the world is blowing
You may pay for your silence with your life

Close your eyes, stop your ears
Close your mouth, they’re never there
And if it happens here, they’ll never come for you
Because they’ll know you really didn’t care

— Solas, “Song Of Choice” (1998)

Wednesday, 2016-11-23

What do I want?

Filed under: About Me,Civil Rights,Politics — bblackmoor @ 19:52

I just had a conversation with someone who said that President-elect Trump’s intended cabinet appointments so far indicate that he is “reaching out to the opposition”. Initially, I though that was a particularly funny comment, and congratulated them for their sarcastic humour.

Except they weren’t making a joke. They apparently actually believed that. Which left me speechless.

They then went on to explain how they were reasonable, and thoughtful, and in way of example of their reasonableness, gave me a short list of their horrific beliefs. They concluded with, “We all want the same things, just have differing opinions as to how to get there.”

I replied, “I strongly suspect that you and I do not want the same things.”

“What do you want?” they asked.

What do I want? That’s a good question. I want zero-calorie, 80-proof rum. I want a reliable 200 Mbps Internet connection that costs less than $100 per month. I want every movie and TV show ever made to be available on, at most, two or three Roku channels, and for them never to be removed. I want a house where I can look out my window and see nothing but trees, and live in peace with my wife and my cat. But that’s small stuff. When it comes to the world outside my window, what I want is less easy to define, so it took me a few minutes to distill it down. So this is what I said:

I want a world where people who are decent and kind can live their lives in peace without fear of being deported, or having their basic civil rights denied because they love the wrong person, or being hooked up to electrodes to shock them “straight”, or being put into internment camps because they picked the wrong invisible friend, or being harassed and driven away because they have the wrong ancestors.

They replied that they considered themselves a realist, and they considered me an idealist.

I replied, “I consider myself someone who doesn’t want their friends treated like sub-humans by people like you.”

Which was probably not the most constructive thing to say. So it goes.

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