[x]Blackmoor Vituperative

Sunday, 2017-05-28

Alien: Covenant

Filed under: Movies — bblackmoor @ 10:06

We enjoyed Alien: Covenant. Horror movies should be rated “R” (if we must suffer under these infantile rating systems at all). I also learned several things from the Ridley Scott School Of Space Exploration.

  • Embrace the weather! When landing on an alien planet, find the worst storm you can, and land in the middle of it. Why wait for the storm to end? You have a planet to explore!
  • Take a walk! If there is a specific location on the alien world that you want to see, land five miles away from it, and walk there.
  • Immerse yourself! Don’t use drones or remotely operated vehicles to explore. Pull on your space-galoshes and tromp around the alien biosphere.
  • Breathe it in! Don’t wear a space helmet, or even a hard hat. Stop and smell the flowers (or alien fungus pods). Inhale deeply of the space exploration experience!

But we really did have fun. 🙂

Thursday, 2017-05-25

Guardians Of The Galaxy 2

Filed under: Movies — bblackmoor @ 12:14

Have I mentioned how much fun we had at Guardians Of The Galaxy 2? We really enjoyed it. I think it’s probably the funniest comedy I have seen in ages. Some of it was in-your-face and obvious, but some was pretty subtle, like how a character named Ego has life-size dioramas of scenes from his life in his house. Because of COURSE he does! I am laughing just thinking about it.

“And this was when I bought my first car. It was a blue 1973 Chevy Vega with a Kraco tape deck. The eject button was broken, so all it ever played was Prince’s ‘Purple Rain’ album.”

Tuesday, 2017-05-23

Let it go, because it’s five o’clock somewhere

Filed under: Music — bblackmoor @ 16:25

The drinker’s version of “Let It Go”. I’d like to hear a mashup of this and “Let It Go”, actually. 🙂

Death In Paradise

Filed under: Television — bblackmoor @ 09:22

My current favourite television show is Death In Paradise. The setting is a beautiful place, and the main characters are basically happy, decent people. Bad things happen, but they are always wrapped up by the end of the episode, and the bad people are brought to justice. And the episode usually ends with friends sharing a drink and laughing.

Monday, 2017-05-22

Morgellon’s disease

Filed under: Science,Society — bblackmoor @ 10:46

I recently heard about a phenomenon called “Morgellon’s disease“. Reading about it, I am finding the situation eerily familiar: amateur “experts” think they know more than actual experts, and construct elaborate conspiracy theories to explain why scientists don’t agree with them, when in fact the amateur “experts” are in denial (some even suffering from legitimate mental illness).

Saturday, 2017-05-20

Republicans are not conservative

Filed under: Politics — bblackmoor @ 11:09

We really need to stop calling Republicans “conservative”. They are not, by any objective measure, conservative: not fiscally, not socially, not philosophically, not environmentally. The Democrats are conservative; the Greens and Socialists are liberal; the Republicans are batshit crazy. Call them fascists, or religious extremists, or just cut to the chase and call them evil. But don’t call them conservative. Because they aren’t. They are the party of lies, hatred, and death.

Friday, 2017-05-19

Euphemisms

Filed under: Philosophy,Society — bblackmoor @ 12:40

I am reminded, once again, that the original Star Trek remains an example to which we can aspire. I hope that some day we will care more about people’s intentions than we do about their vocabulary.

Tuesday, 2017-05-16

The return of Republican Hitler

Filed under: History,Humour,Politics,Society — bblackmoor @ 10:41

It appears that Hillary Clinton has replaced Barack Obama as the bogeyman responsible for all of the evil things in the world that the Republicans are so bravely fighting against. So I updated my #republicanhitler meme. I guess when given a clear choice, Republicans really do hate women more than they hate black people. I am mildly surprised.

Moving forward

Filed under: About Me,Philosophy,Society,Travel — bblackmoor @ 09:03

I realized yesterday that I don’t want to move to somewhere I have already lived. I think of that as moving backward. It occurs to me that this is not how most people think.

Also, I would really like to move somewhere not populated by ignorant bigots and ruled by a death cult.

Monday, 2017-05-15

The problem of “free speech”

Filed under: Civil Rights,Philosophy — bblackmoor @ 09:13

For most of my life, I have been a steadfast supporter of “free speech” — the principle that anyone should be allowed to say anything, as long as they do not cause physical harm to another person. By “allowed”, I mean legally allowed, which is not the same thing as being socially acceptable. I have opposed laws against “hate speech”, for example, even though I think that in everyday conversation, such remarks should be condemned by others who hear them.

The problem is that we have somehow become a society that does not recognize the vast gulf between “socially acceptable” behaviour and “legally permitted behaviour“. Americans have accepted the premise that anything legally permissible is also acceptable.

I’m not sure how this happened. I suspect that it is a result of our attempts to legislate against things which have been considered socially unacceptable (the American war against drug users being the most obvious example). If socially unacceptable behaviour is against the law, but ruthlessly harassing someone for being female isn’t against the law, it must be okay, yes?

Whenever challenged on their obnoxious behaviour, the worst examples of human garbage proclaim they are simply exercising their right to “free speech”. The cry of “free speech” has accompanied the rise of “talk radio” in the 1980s (which is little more than Nazi propaganda masquerading as news), the spread of white male supremacist asshat movements like “gamerhate” and “sad/rabid puppies“, culminating with the election of a vulgar narcissist as President of the United States.

How have Americans come to value vulgarity above civility and factuality? I think it is because we have placed too much emphasis on our “right to free speech”, regardless of context, content, or factual basis. It has become a sort of idol, which we worship by saying — and defending the right to say — the most egregiously offensive things possible. That is bad enough. What concerns me more is that we have entire media empires spreading fiction as though it’s news, and huge portions of the population are rejecting facts and embracing the most ludicrous of falsehoods.

Frankly, I think it’s too late to fix it. The avalanche of lies has started, and it’s too late to stop it. We elevated “free speech” to a religion, and we are paying the price.

But I have a suggestion for the survivors of the next revolution, when they begin writing the next set of sacrosanct documents by which they will chart their destinies:

Limit “freedom of speech”. Prohibit the promotion of discredited scientific theories and outright falsehoods, and give serious thought to prohibiting language that encourages the victimization of any category of people. Somehow, make it clear that there is no need to “tolerate intolerance”. Tolerance is not a moral absolute: it is a peace treaty.

Maybe if the next civilization extols civility, factual accuracy, and scientific inquiry, rather than “free speech” and “freedom of religion”, they can avoid our mistakes.

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