Land of the Free?

Michael Kidd worked as an engineer at KDFW for 23 years. He retired in 2001 with a pension, retirement account, and social security. Last month, he called the station for help. The Kidds have no children or relatives nearby. In November Michael fell and broke his hip. He was taken to a Plano hospital and into surgery. After a few days, the hospital called the state Adult Protective Services to report Jean had been in the waiting room for days and wasn’t eating. What happened next is a complicated, legal tale told in hundreds of pages of documents filed with the Collin County Probate Court… [source]

Politics aside, it’s a disturbing story no matter how you slice it, not to mention an appalling abuse of state power.

Demonic Black Man Resigns

Well, it seems that the right-wing noise machine has succeeded in hounding Van Jones from his position as Special Advisor for Green Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation at the White House Council on Environmental Quality (aka “Communist CZAR!!!”). That’ll teach that uppity radical for founding Color of Change, an organization that launched a successful boycott of Glenn Beck and Fox News! Congratulations, wingnuts.

Like many perhaps, I didn’t know much about Van Jones, so I decided to check out some of his past speeches such as the following keynote at the Texas Energy Future conference held at the Texas Capitol back in February of this year.

You can see quite clearly what a wild-eyed extremist this guy is, huh? All that “crazy talk” about thrift, savings, re-building the economy along the lines of production instead of consumption, etc. Madness, I tell you, madness!

New Liberal Campaign Ads

(Brave New) “Worldview”

The first of what I would presume is a series of campaign ads for the Liberals.

My reaction? Meh.

The ads for the Quebec market that have been released so far take on a different character. I’m not sure if there will be equivalents of both in French and English, or whether there’s some other reason why they were posted in this order…

There’s another one called “Bilan Environnement” that’s essentially the same (at least in style and character). Again, it’s understated — or underwhelming — depending on your point of view, I guess.

Huxley on Tranquilizers & Acid

A fascinating little “retrobite” from the CBC archive of a 1958 interview with Aldous Huxley speaking about the growing prevalence of prescription tranquilizers in western society at the time.

His comments could apply just as well today to the widespread use of pharmaceuticals to treat a plethora of psychological “disorders”…

One has to ask the question: tranquilizers are certainly good for people with violent, neurotic or psychotic afflictions, but is it really very useful that immense numbers of people take it on at every provocation? I mean there are situations where it’s very good for us to be non-tranquil, to have a certain amount of tenseness… and to have something which you can always rely on to create a kind of complacency, I think might be very dangerous; I think that could be an over-tranquilization.”

Huxley also touches on various mind-altering substances such as mescaline and LSD. Very prescient, that fellow. (CH3)C6H2(NO2)3 + Hg(CNO)2 = well, what?