Musings from Brian J. Noggle
Saturday, November 26, 2005
No Blood for Wheat!
What, no moonbat conspiracy theories to fit this fact?
    With an improved trade environment and financing tools, Iraq has become the second largest buyer of U.S. wheat.
That, my friends, is agricultural imperialism at its worst: we're making the Middle East a dumping ground for our cheap, efficiently produced foodstuffs. Wouldn't it be better just to let them starve?

An Unamerican Thanksgiving
Coming from, of all things, the Macy's Day Parade, we have this stunning display of unAmericanism:
    During its live coverage of the annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade, NBC did not tell viewers that a giant balloon had caught on a street lamp and injured two sisters.


    Sarah and Mary Chamberlain, 11 and 26, were hit by the debris. Sarah needed nine stitches to her head, and Mary, who uses a wheelchair, suffered a bump on her forehead.

    Their father, Stephen Chamberlain, called it a freak accident and said the family didn't plan to sue. He said his daughters are looking forward to the special VIP seating Macy's offered them for next year's parade.
But that's free money, and someone (else) has to pay! What is this country coming to?

Friday, November 25, 2005
Military Deployments the Left Can Support
The War On Animal Abuse:
    U.S. troops found two cheetah cubs _ one of them blinded _ being forced to fight each other for the amusement of jeering children in this dusty, forgotten village.

    The soldiers of the U.S. counterterrorism task force for the Horn of Africa were in the region carrying out humanitarian work when they came across the three-month-old cheetahs "performing" at a restaurant run by Mohamed Hudle. The Djibouti-based task force provides intelligence-gathering help to countries in the region, tries to bolster cooperation and border protection, and mounts humanitarian projects aimed at improving the U.S. military's image among Muslims.

    The troops provided medical treatment to the blinded cub, fed them both and tried to persuade Mohamed to hand them over to wildlife officials. They contacted U.S.-based cheetah experts as well as Ethiopian authorities.
Expending treasure and the blood of American troops to liberate the oppressed in the Middle East, feh. But dying to save cute widdle animals?

Bring. It. On.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005
James Lileks on Monday:
    As a wise giant said in "The Princess Bride" – “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”
James Lileks recants yesterday:
    And yes, I attributed the "Princess Bride" quote to the wrong hero. At least the number of people pointing that out exceeded the number of people who thought Vonnegut made some brave points. There’s hope. See you tomorrow.
I demand a special prosecutor convene a grand jury to determine why Lileks' story changed. He was holding out, trying to mislead Congress and the American people, and should serve time in a Federal prison like every other public conservative who makes a mistake!

At Least Sanford Wasn't On The Cover of an EA Sports Game
The Los Angeles Kings beat the St. Louis Blues last night, 6-3, so here's that logo again:
Los Angeles Kings logo

Once again, Brandon has smack to talk.

But unlike Machelle, I face up to as many Blues defeats as I can actually keep straight and adhere to the rules of the Hockey Whoopass Jamboree and post logos in a timely fashion because if the Blues aren't ashamed of themselves, neither am I.

Why I Don't Read Nick Mamatas
Two excerpts from the article entitled "Why I Write Horror and Why You Might Want To" in the November 2005 The Writer:

    I learned what horror was when, for a school assignment, I read All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque. I had never read anything where anguish and the moral implication of the reader in the death of the protagonists were the goals of the story. Not that I was so sophisticated that I understood the effect; all I knew was that if everyone over at the United Nations would just read Remarque's nocel, we'd have no more war, as the world leaders would finally know what they're putting the world through.
    If it [the theme of his novel Move Under Ground, which depicts Jack Kerouac saving the world from Cthulhu] sounds familiar, it's because that's the world we live in now, where, as I write this, the media has millions of us more concerned over the collapse of Brad Pitt's marriage to Jennifer Anistan than we are over the mounting body counts in Iraq and Afghanistan. Horror is a genre in which the novel of ideas and the social novel are still alive and well.
Here I was trying to glean some insight into writing horror, and I get politics. Perhaps Mamatas even got around to comparing George W. Bush to Azathoth or Karl Rove to Nyarlathotep, but I didn't complete the article.

Monday, November 21, 2005
Geek Checking Lileks
Lileks in today's Screedblog:
    As a wise giant said in “The Princess Bride” – “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”
Lileks is a geek pop culture poser!!1!! It was the Spaniard who said that as the Dread Pirate Roberts' ship caught up with Vizzini near the Cliffs of Insanity, not the giant!

(Pardon me as I cling futilely to the cultural touchstones of my generation of geeks; as The Princess Bride nears its 20th anniversary, I realize a whole generation of geeks grew up after it.)

They've Got An Awful Lot of Coffee in Brazil
Frank predicted this story: "Brazil free school breakfast menu to offer coffee":
    Brazil's coffee industry has brewed up a plan to serve up to 1 million schoolchildren a free breakfast -- complete with a cup of java.

    Brazil's Coffee Industry Association (Abic) is seeking the support of 50 roasters to launch a pilot "Adopt-a-School" programme to feed breakfast to 1 million Brazilian school children aged 6 to 18.
It's best not to dwell upon what the Brazillian Rubber Industry Association provides the children in Rio de Janerio.

(Link seen on Ace of Spades HQ.)

If the Title's Right, Hire On Sight!
Forget the Most Holy and Exalted Overlord of Quality title I already got, I want this one:

Sr Anal Software Testing

Senior Anal Software Tester. Hopefully, that's anal-retentive, not some sort of Java-In-The-Butt application.

Sunday, November 20, 2005
That Line Wrapping Around the Block Must Be For the New Harry Potter Movie
Keen insight from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch's Sylvester Brown:
    I'm convinced there isn't a politician around today with the chutzpah to challenge the powerful Bush machine.

    There should be. Especially now that President George W. Bush's administration is besieged with allegations and scandal. Critics claim the president manipulated evidence in a rush to war while key members of his administration are under investigations for spitefully blowing the cover of a CIA agent. Then there's the fact that more than 2,000 soldiers have died in a war that (according to recent polls) more than 60 percent of Americans feel has been mishandled. Heck, members of his own party are even circling wagons of self-preservation.
Must be that Muthra, Reid, Pelosi, Kennedy, Kerry, Leahy, ad al and et absurdum, just lack chutzpah. No, they've got chutzpah. Perhaps they just lack moxie.

Or their simplistic rhetorical backfilling falls upon American ears who understand principles or lack thereof.

Deviation from Requirements Is Bad
Ask any QA or Project Manager, and they'll agree. So will the St. Louis region as it tries to stomach hundreds of millions of dollars in tax overruns because Metrolink light rail feature creeped and people continued to tinker with design after the development began.

But it's public money and public/private partnership, so nobody will get fired, which is the important thing.

Book Report: Christine by Stephen King (1983)
I inherited the hardback edition of this book from my aunt, whose first anniversary of her death is coming up next week. As I continue reading these books, part of her remains with me, but fortunately it's her taste in books and not her unrelenting fury in the form of possessed books. Because man, that would be creepy, and if my books rose up against me, I would be in trouble, as I'm outnumbered several thousand to one.

But onto Christine. As anyone alive through the 1980s knows, Christine is a possessed old car. Since I'd only seen a single scene from the movie version, that's about all I knew. The story is more than a rehash of The Car, as it begins with a pair of friends who spot the car on the way home form work one day. As the more nerdesque of the two takes possession of the car, it takes possession of him, and it begins killing those who offended him.

It's a Stephen King, so it moves quickly as his masterful foreshadowing pulls you along. The story combines growing up with terror as many of his books do, and it's worth a read if you're one of the other fifteen fourteen other readers alive in the eighties who has not yet read it.

Speaking of Christine, St. Louis has suffered its own spate and spite of demonic vehicles with minds of their own killing and mayhemming: Demonic possession....or demonic passive voice?

To say Noggle, one first must be able to say the "Nah."