Monthly Archives: October 2004

Yeah, I got some stuff to say

This half is about the debate, the other half is general commentary.

I enjoyed last night's Cheney v Edwards debate (script), mostly because I have a lot of respect for both of them — they're both incredibly intelligent, accomplished, and hardworking men at different ends of the spectrum. There are polls claiming each one won — personally I think each did a good job stating their case as well as knocking holes in each other. So I won't argue “who won” — clearly each side believes their guy won…

However, this debate really frames what question the election is going to actually answer. In simple terms, are Americans stupid, gullible people?

Cheney is a loyal soldier. He does what the party asks of him. I agree with Edwards — I believe that Cheney loves his gay daughter, and I believe that his answer to the question about her showed that in the clearest of terms. However (and more importantly), Cheney has consistently voted against gay rights, AIDS issues, and women's rights — because that's what the party has told him to do. But it's also his downfall.

When Cheney plays the “talking points” game where he repeats these bizarre and obvious lies like claiming Kerry wants the US beholden to a “global test”, or parrots that Edwards is too inexperienced, when in fact he has more years of federal government experience than Bush had when he took office in 2000, or says “we've added 1.7 million jobs” when in fact there has been a net loss of jobs, or says that over ten million people are going to vote in Afghanistan when there are less than ten million eligible voters even if there was 100% voter turn out, or the myriad of other lies. I could go on and on. It's really quite shocking when you look at it from outside.

Now, some of these subjects are very disconnected from day-to-day life and I don't expect the average uninformed person to understand them. But when it comes to lies like jobs, the economy, or even the constant stream of misrepresentation like “global test”, one has to wonder: are Americans stupid? There should be no question to anyone with even a hint of objective reasoning ability that the Bush team both now and during his term have lied pathologically to the American people and the world — and that alone should be more than enough to kick them out, wherever your political views may lie.

I know that a lot of you reading this can see through the lies. But disturbingly, at the same time I know that somehow there are a lot of people reading this that really do believe all those claims (more) like the ones I mentioned two paragraphs earlier… why? How is it even possible for someone to believe these things? What brings them to a point in their lives where they are able to so suspend reality, believe things they should know are false, and then to vote for someone who is literally hurting them?

It's not really related to this commentary, but have you ever seen Harold and Maude? If you haven't, you should. Go learn to play the banjo (more). Maybe I'll do that today.

Oops, it turns out that Saddam not only had no al Qaeda ties (more), but that he destroyed his WMDs back in 1991 like he was supposed to, and that none are left in the country, and Iraq was not a threat according to the chief US arms inspector in Iraq (more, more, more). Sorry about that Iraq, please excuse all the killing. Ignore the fact that the US knew the intel they were using was fraudulent at the time (more)… Both Bremer and Rumsfeld as well have admitted that things were fubar (more) — and please ignore the cockpit videos of American pilots going out joy-killing innocent civilians (more). They're just kids having fun, you know.

Whatever you do, don't criticize the President — even if you're a military expert, questioning the war empowers the enemy (more). What??? You thought poor strategy and bad planning empowered the enemy? Modern war is fought exclusively by good vibes, positive thinking, and the power of prayer.

In other great news, thanks to help from their North Korean friends, Iran says it's got a 2,000 km range missile (more), and the US has said that it won't take steps to keep nukes out of those missiles (more). Even in rural Iraq, American soldiers keep dying (more), with some of them killing themselves upon returning home (read this) — thanks to neo-con lies, there is so much more grief and pain and suffering in this world (more).

The Bush Cabal is terrified that people — especially young people — are going to wake up and vote. For starters, der Schutzstaffein the Secret Service has been collecting names of Kerry supporters and threatening them with arrest (more), and Bush has refused to debate his opposition other than the absolute minimum required, but instead plans on hosting huge rallies where he can speak without being questioned (more)… but this is an administration cloaked in lies. As I mentioned earlier, Bremer said Iraq is a mess because Bush refused to give him the troops he needed — the White House again has wrapped this in silence and refuses to comment (more). Does it not bother anyone that their government acts, quite possibily incorrectly, in secret? Is America a country of secret governments? I mean, I know America likes puppet governments, having put into power in Iraq a 30-year CIA veteran… hell, they even write his speeches (more)! But hey, everything is a secret these days — even network outages (more).

Let's see what else… Remember how Bush and Cheney have been whining about trial lawyers since Edwards is possibly the best trial lawyer to work in the last twenty years? As well as pointing out what Edwards did — that this amounts to one half of one percent of healthcare costs — I'll add that corporate lawsuits outweigh private lawsuits by a margin of four to one (more). Addressing other lies, Bush has said that there won't be a draft. Well, the Navy, the Air Force, and the Army are all reporting lowered applications. We already know that the US is short on troops and is back-door drafting (more, more), and we already also know that a lot more troops are needed if America “stays the course” (the hole already dug is quite deep — even under Kerry this could happen). With applications down, there's only one place they can come from, and that is a draft (more).

It gets boring just pointing out lies, but Cheney also made noise about small businesses (and as a US small business owner, his tax statements are simply inaccurate in my experience)… Turns out the $47 billion put aside for “small businesses” all went to companies that had all made over $100 million from the DoD over the past six years. Oops, fuck you Joe Dirt.

Sorry, Dierté.

Oh, and I linked on this earlier, but took it down because I wanted to check the sources some more. Here's the new link: Is Bush Wired?

Image update posted

I've just posted a new image update with 2,465 new pictures (everything that was submitted before about noon today). Thanks to all the contributors, and to Steelhawk for being the cover model (work by The Fog) — come on — how could I not put that on the cover? Anyway, new stuff in BME/shop as well:

Other than that, I just talked to Todd Bertrang via prison phone. I mentioned to him that his shirt and petition is doing well, and sold out first in the girlie-t sizes. He mentioned that 90% of the support letters he and his lawyer are getting are from women as well, which I found interesting. Thanks again to everyone who is helping out on his defense.

From: Curtis
Subject: BME/risks

do you have any other photos of girls taking risk like the one pictured. that is a beautiful photo and a wonderful risk.

Oh baby.

Oh baby.

BME/Risks ≠ BME/HARD.

The rest of this entry is politics.

Not having been born at the time, I'm not quite old enough to remember when in 1968 Pan-Am announced that it was beginning to take reservations for moon vacations, and ultimately took nearly a hundred thousand reservations (Rachel and I are already on the list over at Virgin Galactic for early flights). Although neither ever managed it, TWA as well announced similar plans… Even if you're too young to remember any of this, surely you remember seeing the Pan-Am ships in 2001: A Space Odyssey, taking leisurely trips to orbiting and moon stations.

I hope there are others among you reading this who feel that we may just be entering the point in history we dreamed about as kids. Come on? Does anyone here still dream about the future? Sure, a pig stole my bomb shelter and my lettuce is radioactive, but hey, book me flight on that moon rocket please, this blue planet is all humaned out.

And the best thing about this new age of space travel? The drinks!

It's funny — the Air Force is currently starting to experiment with anti-matter weaponry, which of course has the potential to blow mountain-sized holes into our planet (or worse). Keeping that in mind, physicist Kelvin Lynn makes an ironic comment about anti-matter's potential as an energy source (from that article I just linked):

Besides, Lynn is enthusiastic about antimatter because he believes it could propel futuristic space rockets.

"I think," he said, "we need to get off this planet, because I'm afraid we're going to destroy it."

Yeah, an anti-matter rocket exploding on the launch pad sounds just great. Remind me again where I put that Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster?

Onward now to the overstated: It was suggested in my whatever forum (as it has been elsewhere) that casting a vote for a third party (like Badnarik and the LP) is “wasting your vote” because they're not fielding a “real” Presidential candidate, but are rather trying to just get their voice heard in the national debates. Let me propose that the purpose of voting is not singularly to have “your guy” elected — the purpose of voting is to institute political change that you feel is positive.

If you buy the “anyone but Bush” or “lesser of two evils” type argument, let's take a look at what you're doing in the context of the above definition. By voting for a “lesser of two evils”, you are voting for — as you put it — for something you know is evil. Your vote will not institute positive political change, as much as it stops some “evil” in your mind. You will literally be voting for a system you hate and a leader you don't want — if anything is “wasting a vote”, by definition, that's it.

If on the other hand disgruntled independents and Republicans vote for someone who they can believe in on an idealistic level, like Badnarik, they're voting for something they can actually support with a clear conscience. It's true that the next President — nor quite likely any President in the foreseeable future, it is a real possibility that a party like the Libertarian Party could get enough votes to swing the Republican party back to honorable and American ways, and maybe even get itself into the mainstream televised debate — either of these outcomes, while not selecting a President, will have a real effect on politics.

So… what's really wasting a vote?

Voting to empower a President you don't want, or voting to empower politics that you do want?

What's that you say? It didn't work in the last US election? Maybe not, but it's worked in many countries around the world, and American's two one party system” is a modern change brought about by massive corporate cartels — it's not the way things have always been in America, and it's not the way they always are going to be. Remember, just because you don't succeed at something the first time you try, doens't mean you should quit. Some victories are more difficult to win than others, but those that are the hardest are often the most important.

That said, if Kerry doesn't get elected, we're all fucked.

Let me be very clear on one thing: No political party will entirely meet your ideals, even if you're the leader of that party! If Kerry (or Bush) mostly meets your needs, you should vote for them over a third party candidate. But if you're totally disillusioned with the system, or are a Republican who hates Bush's big government, big war, big business, and anti-gay, anti-woman, and anti-civil rights policies, maybe you should be considering these ideas.

Shatner

I've always been a fan since sitting in my high chair as a baby watching Star Trek, but I really like where Shatner is going with this new album he's doing. Check out the interviews and you can listen to a lot of it by clicking the picture below. The cover of Pulp's Common People (a duet with Joe Jackson, produced by Ben Folds) is great — I don't think I'm going to have it done in time for tonight, but I've been prepping an all-covers show for a guest spon on Saira's show on CHRY that I'm going to play that during… Thanks to those of you who sponsored last week by the way.

Don't write him off because of his self-depreciating self of humor. Shatner is very smart and insightful, and is an artist in every sense of the word. Give it a chance, you won't regret it (modified people will appreciate the interview at the start of Real, the closing track). I don't know that it's something I'm putting on my nonexistent iPod, but still, I liked it.

Long day…

Just finished sending off interviews to two people who I really like on a personal level and have amazing mods. These interviews are for my new book (the sequel to the ModCon book) which showcases some wildly beautiful people and the things that make them happy. It's finally starting to congeal and I think it's going to be something we can all be really proud of.

I've also got the modified escorts interview approaching readiness, so that'll probably go up later in the week unless it gets bumped to a print magazine that's expressed interest in it (a new high-end tattoo magazine). Other than that I placed 1,500 images into tomorrow's update, including this x-ray photo from fellow German and fellow pilot Elna (it's also on his page at higher resolution):

I've highlighted the outline of his penis to make it clear… it's pretty neat seeing his urethra like that (hello radioactive piss!). I still really want to do that book of modification x-rays, but that's a project for another decade I think. If anyone wants to rip off the idea and do it themselves, I'll buy the book!

Also in the new update is this photo series, which is in the Habakuk bonus gallery (not yet posted so don't look yet). I know some of you are real proud about your stomach and ass suspensions (and I agree that you're righteously feeling fucking hardcore if you've done those)… but this is the best photo set of scrotal suspension I think I've ever gotten:


Pulling himself up

Swinging free

Ok, now it stings a bit

Hey, if you survived that, you'd be kissing your nuts too!

Obviously, if you're under 18 (or easy to disturb — as if any “easy to disturb” person comes anywhere near BME), please don't go clicking on those. There are more in his gallery, and there are quite a few really really pretty photos of outdoor suspensions in gorgeous environments in the new update… I'm always really happy when I see those, being a dirty hippy and all…

Well, I hear a stove calling my name.

Do I look like a tattooed psychopath?

So the last few nights someone has been hammering at odd hours. I've got a real hair-trigger anger when it comes to low level irritation… my father always told me when I was young — or at least this is how I heard it — that the worst way to die is the death of a thousand duck bites.

Anyway, the hammering was going on again, and making it hard for Nefarious to sleep and for me to keep my cool. I thought it was coming from the apartment below us so I went downstairs and pounded on their door. No answer. However, the pounding had stopped so I went back to work. But then, a few minutes later, bang… bang… bang…

At this point I'm starting to shake slightly and my muscles are all tensing up and my vision blurs around the edges. I really start becoming a different person, or at least a dramatically more dangerous person. I'm really very laid-back most of the time, honestly. It's probably something I should worry about, but anyway. I went downstairs again, and pounded on both the apartment below us and the one next to it. The Chinese stoner kid that lives below us, and the Chinese grandmother that lives next to him both opened their doors at the same time.

“Are either of you two doing construction right now? As in hammering?”

“No, we thought it was you!”

They're scared of me so they didn't want to say anything. I went down another story and pounded on that door. A vacuum was running. I pounded insistently and a woman in her late thirties answered the door. The apartment was unkempt and it was obvious they were just moving in. I had found my culprits. The woman looked somewhat disturbed by me. While I was restraining myself, she must have been able to tell that the person she was talking to had just a little bit too much “twitch” going on.

“Listen, I don't care if you want to vacuum, but don't hammer at night. It wakes our baby. I live two stories above you and it's very loud in my apartment.”

The woman looked somewhat distraught — “You'd better talk to my husband.”

Her husband, slightly taller than me, probably five to ten years older than me and balding came to the door. He stood very close to me, presumably to demonstrate his manliness. I stepped in closer — god, I love that feeling where you're waiting for the other person to fuck up and hit you so you can pulverize him (it's a middle-class building in yuppietown Canada, so it's not as if I'm risking getting shot) — and let him know I didn't want him hammering at night. He backed down, said he understood, and I assumed that was the end of that.

But within minutes of me getting back upstairs he was hammering again! Rachel shouted at me that she didn't want me going and getting myself arrested, but I was already out the door. I clubbed their door with my arm, which I'm sure all 27 stories could hear and opened it. The woman jumped off the couch and I could hear hammering from the back of the apartment. Barely resisting the urge to enter the apartment, I shouted — extremely loudly — something along the lines of, “what the fuck do you think you're doing?”

I slammed their door and went back upstairs. If I'd stayed I'd be in prison right now.

Maybe five minutes later our door got knocked on. Rachel told me to stand back and opened the door. I could see it was the hamming jackass and stepped in front of Rachel. He started retreating down the hallway, keeping fifteen feet between us. As he ran away he called out, “Thank you very much for coming to the door — 2701 — now I know what to tell the police when I file tresspassing charges.”

After he ran away, he kept hammering down in his apartment — it was 9:20 PM now. Since he'd decided to play it this way, I figured I'd better make an official noise complaint. I hate calling the police about little things that could more easily be solved with physical violence — or at least a little common decency — but I didn't really have a choice. At 10:15 he was still hammering, but then it stopped.

About five minutes after he stopped, another knock on my door.

This time it was the police. A little (maybe four inches shorter than me, with about my build) white cop and a very large South Indian cop for backup were at the door. I stepped out into the hallway — never invite vampires into your house — “my daughter is trying to sleep.”

“So, did you talk to the guy in 2501?”

“He says you came into his apartment and verbally assaulted him and his wife.”

“He's lying to you.”

Shockingly, the smaller of the two cops actually appeared intimidated by me… and I'm smaller than I've been in five years (to say nothing of the fact that I'm a shoeless guy in summer wear and he's carrying a Glock). He didn't even try and argue with my story and let me force the account to be flipped around entirely. At the end of the whole thing they left to lecture the guy in 2501, letting me know that if he ever made noise I didn't like again — even in the middle of the day — they'd be happy to take my call.

And he hasn't hammered since.

Anyway, I suppose I'm just lucky I didn't get arrested!