Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Preach it, brother. Let me ask all you proud red state swift boating god is on our side bush voters something: was it worth it? The bungled response to the hurricanes, the scandals, the corruption, the war, the degradation, humiliation and misery forced upon this country: was it worth it, your voting on "values" and "character?" More upstanding conservative values: John McCain should admit that torture worked on him. Just shut the fuck up, okay? Holy suffering Christ, but you people are stupid. "AAAIIEE! Big light in sky!" What's that? Unfair? Conservative fundies not all stupid? Sorry. All stupid. We have a victory strategy now. But but but I thought ... Well, never mind. Still, it all seems very familiar. Tropical Storm Epsilon. Epsilon. Do you believe this shit? Within a couple of years: Hurricane Omega. Forensic investigation of the levees shows signs of greed, imbecility, callous disregard of human life. New Orleans never had cat 3 levees in the first place; it had papier-mâché kiddie forts. I wonder if a true cat 3 rated floodwall would have held. I wonder if this might quell some of the "No one knows what a cat 5 levee is anyway" bellyaching. Or maybe any levee rebuilding is doomed, since the neanderfucks couldn't build a proper wall in the first place. Durrr. "They're welcome to raise it, but I'm not going to spend any money," said Wilson, who added that her house has flooded at least five times. "They've never done anything about it. If they were going to do something they would have done it by now." Five times your fucking house flooded, and you're waiting for "they" to do something about it? I'm no fan of FEMA (as a visit to the Suspect Device store will indicate), and I reject any notion that New Orleans shouldn't get full support in rebuilding because "it's all below sea level" (durr again). but c'mon, Honey. If someone is beating you over the head with a 4x8, do you think to yourself, "Well, if it was bad for me, I'm sure he would have stopped by now"? Let's not mince words any more, okay? All these worries about your nice little communities being endangered by the unknown refugees who might be placed in one of these temporary trailer parks: you people just want to keep the niggers out, right? That's all it is. Y'all don't want any low-class, trashy, NOLA niggers infesting your nice little towns. Well, let me ask you this: If your fucking town is so nice, why do they let sorry, intolerant, bigoted, hateful white trash like you live there? And please, don't even think about coming over here and telling me that I'm wrong, that it's not about race, that you're not bigoted, etc. I'm not wrong. Personally, I think it might just be past time for letting these gomers weigh in on the subject of whether or not people with no homes and nothing left in the world should get some temporary shelter. Put the trailers down, move the people in, and if some uneducated honky butterball starts hooting about his property values going down, help him to understand that the best way to make the property value rise would be to give him one in the temple and one under the chin. TIRED OF THE WHINING. WHINING TIME OVER NOW. What's the over/under on this? I want a piece of this action. They say next week, I say mmmmNEVER. 100 percent of the coastline sustained hurricane damage this year. Hurricane Omega. It's coming, I tell you.

Monday, November 28, 2005

New comic is up. Also new stuff in the store. Don't click if you're offended by t-shirts and mugs with FUCK FEMA written on them in big letters.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Life in the New South Wasteland

So far, Katrina aid does little for local levees

I don't like the sound of these here Boncentration Bamps

The new face of young conservatism -- a National Socialist -- nay, a Communist -- White Worker's Paradise where all are one or else for the greater glory of The State. Is this the best conservative commentary UL can drum up? I expect this shit from the Thunderbolt, not the Vermilion.


Some sad little people right here

CONSUME. CONSUME. Attention predawn Black Friday shoppers: Go home. Get some rest, and then, after you've had a good night's sleep and a cup of coffee, you can make a list of your top ten fucked up priorities.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Doubts Now Surround Account of Snipers Amid New Orleans Chaos - Los Angeles Times

Well well well.

Mississippi hurricane recovery efforts sem to be stalled. In fact, things look pretty goddamn bad in Mississippi. But I seem to recall a time when republican Governor Barbour had nothing but praise for the feds. I seem to recall him getting some digs in at Louisiana during the weeks following Katrina. You'll notice the fat bastard isn't quoted in that WaPo story. How's that '08 presidential bid coming along, Haley? Haley ... isn't that a girl's name? Just hand over your goddamned lunch money.


"I'm doing a lot of good work with some great clients," Brown said. "My wife, children and my grandchild still love me. My parents are still proud of me." Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha god can't breathe need inhaler HAHAHAhahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha [ringing for nurse] oh god he's starting a business helping people to avoid being him ahahahahahahahahahahaha hahahahahahahahahahaha "Here, watch me: UALGHogbluaghulaghgublooalghualgh GDOING GDOING GDOING! Okay, now don't do that. That'll be $120,000." AHAHAHAhAHahahahAHAHAHahahahahah Santa please all I want for Christmas is a copy of his client list cough cough cough ohgod chest tight

Thursday, November 24, 2005

When the New Dawn finally arrives ...

Next week, look for a four-page, full-color, Suspect-Device-in-all-but-name to appear in Fortune magazine. They wanted real reporting and actual facts (cha yeah right), so my usual style of freewheeling incoherence was hobbled a little, but hey, national exposure. Buy a lot of copies and write and tell them how much you like it so they'll do it again and I can retire.


Wednesday, November 23, 2005

I'm really sick of shit like this. Louisiana has always prided itself, maybe more than half-seriously, about being a foreign country, a Banana Republic distinct from America. But the fact is that we are a part of America, and deserve the same support as any other American city would expect in the face of disaster. I've about had it with cow-college academicians who think that hundreds of thousands of poor people can just move somewhere else, or that a major American city should be abandoned, or that the life and culture and history and heart of one of the last truly original places in the country should be crushed and tossed away. And I'm really, really sick of redneck mooks who admit that Louisiana got hit worse than Mississippi and that they really don't know how bad the damage is and yes there are more people there and well sure, it was a much denser area, but they don't deserve the money they're asking for -- why even sit down to write anything? Or, as Lewis Black would say, "Why, why the fuck even open your mouth?" -- and really really really sick of ignorant bloggers and media commentators who seem to revel in placing blame for everything from collapsed levees to missing cats solely on the shoulders of state and local officials. Don't let them get off scott free, they have to accept responsibility for their inaction and their mistakes, but to insist that Kathleen Blanco and Ray Nagin and Mary Landrieu are all democ-- I mean, all solely to blame -- sorry to pull the curtain back too far, there -- ignores the stunningly botched and heartless and inept response from the feds. Speaking of which, regarding Michael Brown on Frontline last night: I've never wanted to watch another human being be burned at the stake. Until now.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Cowards cut and run

Interesting story about Murtha, but scroll down for the real fun: "Colonel Denies Disparaging Murtha" By The New York Times WASHINGTON, Nov. 21 - A colonel in the Marine reserves has taken issue with how his views were represented in a Republican attack last week on Representative Murtha. Speaking on the House floor on Friday, Representative Jean Schmidt, Republican of Ohio, asserted that the colonel had 'asked me to send Congressman Murtha a message: that cowards cut and run, marines never do.' But a spokeswoman for the colonel, Danny R. Bubp, said Ms. Schmidt had misconstrued their conversation. While Mr. Bubp, a Republican member of the Ohio House of Representatives, opposes a quick withdrawal for forces, 'he did not mention Congressman Murtha by name nor did he mean to disparage Congressman Murtha,' said Karen Tabor, his spokeswoman. 'He feels as though the words that Congresswoman Schmidt chose did not represent their conversation.' Asked to respond on Monday, the congresswoman's office said only, 'Mrs. Schmidt's statement was never meant to disparage Congressman Murtha.'"

The weapon also emits confetti each time it is fired. News - Complaint alleges police abuse 11/22/05 BR Police Chief says complaints about displaced Louisiana officers by New Mexico police -- reports of tasing people who were never taken into custordy, beating suspects already in handcuffs, etc -- are "policy violations" as opposed to criminal behavior. "You see, we have a written policy against just tasing people for the fun of it. The confetti? It's ... it has a serious law enforcement purpose, I can assure you ... well, sure I have a copy of the policy right here in my back pocket ... [ZAPBRZTFZTPLBT] HOO HOO HOO HOO Hoo Hoo Hoo hoo hoo..."

Monday, November 21, 2005

Somebody stop us we don't know what we're doing

See, Larry Caillier wasn't so bad. He wasn't a serial rapist. And besides, no one ever appointed a commission to study "what Louisiana can do to create a distinct boundary between cop and criminal." How about not re-electing corrupt sociopathic shitbags like Caillier? How about removing them from office when it becomes clear that they're a liability, or that they're dangerous? How about taking the process and the offices back under public control and demanding accountability? Not a single commission, though! No wonder Caillier stayed in office for fifteen years. What can we do in the face of such apathy, depending as we do upon the kindness of strangers oh BOO HOO HOO HOO (waves hanky)

Sunday, November 20, 2005

I'm sure everyone already knows about republican congresswoman Jean Schmidt's insult to decortated war veteran Juhn Murtha, a 37-year, two war Marine veteran, using a secondhand phoned-in insult (you can see the video here). It took me a while, but the irony finally dawned on me: Jean calls one of America's true war heroes a coward, and when she's met by howls of opposition, she immediately lies and says she didn't mean HIM:
A few minutes ago I received a call from Colonel Danny Bubp, Ohio Representative from the 88th district in the House of Representatives. He asked me to send Congress a message: Stay the course. He also asked me to send Congressman Murtha a message, that cowards cut and run, Marines never do. Ms. Schmidt: Mr. Speaker, my remarks were not directed at any member of the House and I did not intend to suggest that they applied to any member.
So, you have to admit, she's correct: cowards cut and run. And what fun the wingnuts are having with it. (I like how a 37-year veteran is a "supposed supporter of the military" in that second one.) Here's the plain fact: extreme conservative wingnut republicans don't care about military service. They'll insult and degrade and impugn the service of any democratic veteran who dares to stand up to them. They slime Murtha, they slimed Paul Hackett, they slimed John Kerry, and if recent reports about Pat Tillman's views on the war are true, they'll slime him too. They do not respect service or sacrifice. It's just another ideological tool. I'd certainly expect to see fewer deferments and excuses among the top leadership, if they are so besotted with serving one's country -- as opposed to serving one's masters.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Fuck you. Shut up.
"I'm not sure why it was worded that way," he said. Fuck you, too. Is it possible, can there be some way --now put your thinking caps on -- to get someone in charge of FEMA reconstruction efforts who might have a wee drab of management experience? Night shift at Wienerschnitzel, alternate days at Photo Hut, maybe a former assistant district produce manager at an Arkansas Piggly-Wiggly? Anyone? Think, boys, think! Hmm. You know, now that you need a note from the Pope to declare bankruptcy in this country, I wonder what's going to happen to the hundreds of thousands of people without homes and jobs once the banks and the credit card companies start coming after them? Debtor's prison? Pound O'Flesh? Or do we just shoot the poor fuckers? I know! They can apply to FEMA for an extension! (makes jack-off motion) DOI DOI DOI. Since when did HUH WELL THAT'S NOT RIGHT I WONDER HOW COME HUH become an acceptable response from people who fuck up and cause untold billions in property damage and kill hundreds, if not thousands, of people? Why does the media let them get away with WELL GEE I COULDN'T TELL YOU IT'S SURE NOT WHAT I TOLD THEM TO DO? Well, shit, I'm on deadline, better run with it! P.S. to Ivor: How's that media hardon holding up, Hoss? Annnnd here's another one. Fourteen, two, none, I don't know why you yammering little bitchtits are getting hung up on details. This is listed under "Business" on the Advertiser's website. Some chick draws Harry Potter fan art, publishes on web, holy God stop the presses. Dig that broomstick, too. I didn't know Harry was part Airedale. See, here's why I still hate the Daily: 1) The artist used to draw Snape with a goatee, until she saw Alan Rickman in the movies, so now no goatee. But Kayla Gagnet assures us immediately afterward that "Wack's drawings are her own vision..." 2) Further, this vision has been shared with "millions of fans all over the world through the Internet." Take a pill, lady. Her fan art page shows about 200,000 visits. The whole thing is so staggeringly banal ("The first character she drew was Headmaster Dumbledore, but Wack says she liked drawing good and bad characters equally") that it's almost disorienting enough to make one forget one's original query, which is who the hell thought this was newsworthy in the first place? Does Bill Decker play Halo with this girl or something? I don't mean to pick on Alice; I think fan art is retarded, and although I myself used to create elaborate superhero drawings and realized WHEN I WAS NINE that I needed to concentrate on original art and subject matter, she does appear to have some drafting talent. So good luck with the, uh, stuff. (Poke around Alice's website and you can find some devestating Katrina images, too.)

Friday, November 18, 2005

Like I said, there's no way I can compete with the reality of FEMA incompetence. 1500 rent-free housing units ignored by FEMA while they welsh on paying the bills for 53,000 families they put up in hotels. Fuck 'em. This country is about to undergo a revolution and I can't wait. And republican thugs like these and right wing lunatics like this piece of work and the rest of the Generation of Swine will be swept away. Just smell that fresh air. I know this is an unproductive negative feeling, and that the liberal/left/democratic party needs to advance leadership and ideas, but I'm too full of sweet, lemony schadenfreude.
Okay, so I was wrong back yonder about the levees breaking; they did break. People were reporting out of laziness that "levees" had broken, not knowing the difference betqween a floodwall and a levee (There was no way to know that the actual levee has curdled up from the bottom until the water went down); but as it turned out, they were right. I'm stunned that the levee actually failed; I can see a floodwall buckling, but water pushing up under and destroying a fifty-foot-wide berm is a unfuckingbelieveable. And guess what?!?!!?!?!?1? The S&WB knew a year ago that the levees were damaged.WAIT WHERE ARE YOU GOING I WAS GOING TO MAKE BREAKFAST!

Thursday, November 17, 2005

I never posted about my experience working for FEMA (actually, I worked for Fluor, on a FEMA project) because I realized that what I had to say was trivial compared to the staggeringly idiotic behavior FEMA exhibited every day. My brief contract labor gig with Fluor revealed a company overcommitted and unsure of what to do, with people running the work who had never done that kind of work before. My boss, a proposals manager, had never done a daily publication before and contributed to endless delays by vanishing for hours and re-editing edited material and getting in juvenile arguments with her staff ("Okay, you're the boss then. T'm just doing what the client wants, but you're the boss. Have it your way. No, no, you're in charge. You do it your way," etc), but that's typical corporate behavior. Poor behavior, but not sizzling-hot-expose material. The FEMA employees I encountered just seemed bewildered. I worked for the HAC, or housing area command, the group arranging temporary housing and travel trailers, cruise ships, mobile homes, etc., and produced a daily progress summary. The HAC consists of FEMA and the big four no-bid contractors: Fuor, Bechtel, CH2M, and Shaw. Dewberry was involved too, but Dewberry was treated like Dewberry always gets treated, like the retarded cousin your mom would insist accompany you when you went out with friends: give him a coloring book and a soda and try to pretend he isn't there. I have to say that Shaw went about its work with passion and drive, setting internal goals and, in general, acting like a group of people who could find their dicks in the dark. They consistently made the most progress. CH2M didn't have much left to do by the time I got there, but they seemed smart. Bechtel whined. ("Are we supposed to be doing that? We didn't know if we were so we didn't start. We were? Well, then we'll start, but gees, there isn't enough time left now!") Fluor started every meeting progress summary with "Well, the numbers don't look very good today ..." (Nobody from Fluor could ever tell me where FEMA headquarters were. "Oh," they'd say, you'll see a big sign. Renaissance something. It's on Florida, at the end of a dead-end street." Couldn't get a street address. Begged for one. Was given one that turned out to be wrong (Nope, not on the 15000 block of Florida). Finally found it one day, in a panic when I was supposed to drop something off and they STILL couldn't give me a street address: It wasn't on Florida, like they had been screaming at me. It was at Sixteenth and Laurel. They couldn't even get the cross streets right. This is a forty-billion dollar a year company.) Incompetence aside -- and there was plenty, along with great heaping side orders of confusion -- my in-house story is no worse than any other story of working for a fucked-up company, and anything I could tell you about finessing numbers (so their progress in preparing temporary housing, such as it was, would look better) was done with such naiveté and dunderheaded artlessness that it almost seems cruel to bring up. They never managed to finesse the numbers significantly anyway; if they ever did manage to make something look suddenly better, persons whose stake would be adversely effected by the improvement would hoot and bellow until the numbers were rejigged the next day (all of this stuff was internal, I must add, except for a very brief daily one-page summary doled out to the press). So, while my experience was bad, I was outgunned by reality, and I didn't want to appear to be one of those LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT THOSE FUCKERS I USED TO WORK FOR guys. Anyway, back to work.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

C.B. Forgotston's latest e-mail bulletin contains this graph:
According to the media, what happened in South LA as a result of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita are the greatest "natural disaster in U.S. history." Whether the man-made catastrophe in the aftermath of Katrina is the greatest man-made destruction in U.S. history is unknown. My guess is that the Civil War caused more man-made damage in terms of today's dollars and in lives, but it could be close.
Civil war casualties, combined Union and Confederate totals: Combat deaths, 184,594; other deaths, 373,458; wounded, 412,175. Hurricane Katrina deaths: less than 2,000. Financial cost of the civil war, combined Union and Confederate: approximately $45 billion in 1990 dollars, excluding pensions. Katrina's financial impact, as estimated by ISO: $34 billion in property loss. Hard to tell about the financial cost, since definitions and estimations vary widely, but not even remotely close on the human toll.