"Undermining my electoral viability since 2001."

BattleStar Shining / Lost Losing

I believe I'm mostly caught up on the two network shows I follow: BattleStar Galactica and Lost. The former is having a gangbusters third season, the latter losing its edge.

It's not an easy thing to make a good network serial drama. The form demands you have 25 episodes or so, each 45 minutes long and broken up by commercials. That's a lot of chapters to fill. Network executives mess with the work in progress trying to tease out better ratings, and they're usually not looking at making a great piece of culture, just how to get more eyeballs next sweeps.

The people who work for HBO have a much easier time of it: 12 one-hour episodes with no commercials and you pretty much get to make the whole thing. Input from the parent company comes in the off-season and you've got an entity that sees the long-game of DVD sales as a big part of their margin, so they want a quality product.

That being said, it's instructive to watch what happens as one show ripens and another deteriorates.

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Yeah, baby, I still got it...

I surfed past a link to OkCupid -- which does the most interesting stuff with online dating, even if I don't really do that -- so I thought I'd re-take their personality test. Turns out they think I'm the same cat as I was three years ago. I think I've matured a bit, but I can't say that this is inaccurate per se.

The Playboy
Random Gentle Sex Master (RGSMm)

Clean. Smooth. Successful. You're The Playboy.

You're spontaneous, and your energy is highly contagious. Guys therefore find you fun to be around, and girls find you compelling. You have lots of sex, and you manage it all without seeming cheap or being hurtful. Well done. You probably know karate, too.

It's obvious to us, and probably everyone else, that you're after physical rather than emotional relationships, but you're straight up with potential partners. And if a girl you want isn't into something casual, it's no big deal. You move on. BEFORE sleeping with her. Usually. At least you try to. Such control is rare.

If you're feeling unfulfilled, maybe you should raise your standards. New conquests will only be satisfying if there's a possibility of rejection.


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Why I Don't Think Hillary Will Do Well

Mike beat me to it, but for anyone who thinks Hillary is an unstoppable juggernaut, just wait.

This is dumb on the merits and politically. She's talking junk on the studies and statistics: there's just positively no correlation between gaming and antisocial behavior. In fact macro trends on youth crime (falling) in relation to gaming (rising) suggest the opposite, so this is a classic solution in search of a problem. It's a purely cultural issue.

Clinton either really believes this is a pressing problem (unlikely), or else thinks she scores political points here with parents who worry about this stuff and don't quite understand the world their kids live in (likely). I think this is poor calculus given the increasing importance of younger and more technologically savvy voters, and the fact that most individuals who care enough about this to cast a vote one way or another on it are Republicans.

Also, just listen to her talk. Not. Gonna. Happen.

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New Compy

Got a new lappy. Built in camera. Fun:

glamor shots

Glamor shots whenever I want!

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Great White Father Bill O'Reilly Calls For Redeployment

O'Reilly suggests it may be time to put down the White Man's Burden:

Do I care if the Sunnis and Shiites kill each other in Iraq? No. I don't care. Let's get our people out of there. Let them kill each other. Maybe they'll all kill each other, and then we can have a decent country in Iraq.

My only quibble w/O'Reilly here are that in-context he's not talking about the country as a whole. Basically saying let's make the trouble-spots TAZ's for the civil warriors, hope they run out of bloodlust, and then "we" can have a nice country in Iraq.

Personally, I don't think "we" should have any kind of country there. But then, I'm opposed to American Empire.

Anyway, it's interesting to see this line from him and Limbaugh. Signals that the last bedrock of the pro-war base is all but eroded away. Indeed, all popular measures say that the occupation should end. Give the people what they want.

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Rich Get Richer / Poor Stay Poor

2% of all adults control 50% of the world's wealth, a UN study that looks beyond just income an rather at assets minus debts has concluded.

This is important, because it shows just how stagnant economic life is for so many people. For instance, even though we live well by global standards, many Americans have more debts than assets, and are among the most wealth-poor people in the world. Folks in this situation, like me, have a sharply limited range of options.

I'm virtually certain that I'll fight my way out of that. I'm in the 99th percentile in standardized aptitude, a white male with career prospects. I also have family and a social network that's rich enough to catch me if the unthinkable should happen. Most others with negative wealth have little beyond the service industry in terms of work, and a much less affluent network to draw on. This is the new serfdom.

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Oh Eight

We're headed square into the jaws of another presidential primary season. Bowers begins the roundup process, and it's looking like a lackluster affair all around.

I don't know what if any part I'll take in this. Probably not much other than to commentate, maybe do some stuff to try and alert my friends and family that John McCain and Rudy Guiliani are both pretty undesirable as presidents.

The other thing I want to do is try a little issue advocacy. I think using a similar process to the artistic cycle I outlined below, one could create a series of persuasive political message pieces that, in absence of an exciting campaign, might get the juices flowing.

Some topics I'd like to address:

  • Ending the occupation in Iraq, and generally why our foreign policy should be to diversify ownership of the 20th Century empire we built.
  • Free health care for everyone, because goddamnit it's time.
  • Pushing the Public and State to evolve and become more like the internet: free, open, transparent, inclusive, connective.

These ideas are not represented very well by any of the candidates at this point. Realpolitik says the #1 thing is winning, and I think there's an even chance of that, but I also think those chances improve if the eventual nominee is powered by an authentic decentralized network.

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