hummingwolf: Part of a julia fractal in colors of fire and smoke. (Fire-flavored fractal)
*whispers into the void* In contemporary use, fact is understood to refer to something with actual existence.


So, I'm kinda fascinated by the whole concept of news conferences in an alt-fact nation. Reading, as usual, Daniel Dale's Twitter feed, specifically this thread on the "millions of immigrants voted illegally!" meme.

As evidence - FYI there is no evidence because it didn't happen - Spicer cited a Pew report from 2012 that does not show anything like this.

Q: Wouldn't millions voting illegally be an astronomical, historic scandal demanding investigation? Spicer: "He won fairly."

Official position of the White House: 1) Millions of people voted illegally. 2) Trump won in a fair election.

Q: How can Trump be comfortable with his win if there were millions of illegal voters? Spicer: "He's very comfortable with his win."

Q: Do you, Spicer, personally believe there was massive voter fraud? Spicer: Not gonna talk about that.

Q: Why won't Trump use his powers to investigate this supposed huge fraud? Spicer: He won an overwhelming victory, "very comfortable." ...


From The Washington Post:
Technically, the proper way to describe claims of widespread voter fraud in the 2016 election is to state that there’s no evidence that it happened. Shortly after the election, we tallied up reports of in-person voter fraud that occurred last year and found a grand total of four examples. There is no evidence that there was fraud at any significant scale at all.

Saying this, that there’s no evidence, is a hedge. We say it just in case somehow there emerges evidence that, indeed, hundreds of people registered to vote illegally and went to cast ballots. If we say it didn’t happen and then some evidence emerges, we are stuck. So we say “there’s no evidence” instead of “it didn’t happen.”

That’s on the scale of hundreds of votes. On the scale of millions of alleged fraudulent votes, though? It didn’t happen. There’s not only no evidence that it did, it defies logic and it defies statistical analysis to insist that millions of votes were cast illegally in the 2016 election.


Trump Aides Can't Stop Blabbing About How He's a Madman. Are this New York Magazine piece and the articles it quotes true? Many people are saying that they seem like they could be true. Maybe they're factually true, or maybe they're "alternative facts." Facts, alt-facts, I don't know. You tell me.
hummingwolf: (My world is askew!)
For those who have somehow missed it, this bit of brilliance is from Scotland's Sunday Herald's TV highlights:

President Trump: The Inauguration

4pm, BBC One/ STV

After a long absence, The Twilight Zone returns with one of the most ambitious, expensive and controversial productions in broadcast history. Sci-fi writers have dabbled often with alternative history stories – among the most common is the “What If The Nazis Had Won The Second World War” setting – but this huge interactive virtual reality project, which will unfold on TV, in the press, and on Twitter over the next four years, sets out to build an ongoing alternative present. The story begins in a nightmarish version of 2017 in which huge sections of the US electorate have somehow been duped into voting to make Donald Trump president. It sounds far-fetched, and it is, but as it goes on it becomes more and more chillingly plausible. Today’s feature-length opener concentrates on the gaudy inauguration of President Trump, and the stirrings of protest and despair surrounding the ceremony, while pundits speculate gravely on what lies ahead. It’s a flawed piece, but a disturbing glimpse of the horrors we could stumble into, if we’re not careful.

hummingwolf: (My world is askew!)
So, Mike Pence went to see Hamilton and the cast had something to say. Which makes sense, since the theater has historically--for centuries--been an important space for public dissent (for a major example from my lifetime, I'm thinking Václav Havel, who I suspect I'll be re-reading a lot in the next few years).

How does the presumptive president-elect of the United States of America respond to this?

Our wonderful future V.P. Mike Pence was harassed last night at the theater by the cast of Hamilton, cameras blazing.This should not happen!

and then

The Theater must always be a safe and special place.The cast of Hamilton was very rude last night to a very good man, Mike Pence. Apologize!

That's right: Trumpelthinskin is demanding a safe space.

2016, I don't even know what to do with you anymore. Maybe you need a nap?
hummingwolf: Drawing of a creature that is part-wolf, part-hummingbird. (Hummingwolf by Dandelion)
Lessons for Americans from the city that elected Rob Ford

"Dear Americans,

"Hello from Toronto. We promise not to be smarmy or condescending.

"It's just that we have some experience electing a uniquely unqualified bigoted demagogue whose stunted emotional maturity and tenuous grasp of reality caused people to fear for things they held dear. But while we can't pretend that our late former mayor was ever nearly as terrifying as your president-elect, there are sufficient similarities that it may be worth comparing notes...."
hummingwolf: Drawing of a creature that is part-wolf, part-hummingbird. (Hummingwolf by Dandelion)
"I’m a mom, a wife, a doula, an urban chicken farmer, a life coach, an extended breast-feeder, a weaver, a kombucha brewer, a yogini, and a Therapeutic Healing Touch practitioner. But most importantly, I’m a mom. And as a mom, I know what’s best for the health of my family: magical thinking."
hummingwolf: hummingwolf in front of brick wall with flower drawn on it (Wallflower)
Some wonderful days, the internet gives me an excuse to quote Shakespeare. “Is possible that disdain should die when she hath such meet food to feed it as lists of women Christian men shouldn’t marry?”

10 More Women Christian Men Definitely Should Not Marry
hummingwolf: (My world is askew!)
Proposal: Name hurricanes after politicians who deny climate change.

But maybe you'll think twice before signing that petition: some folks wonder if the NSA's surveillance program is really meant to spy on environmentalists. Now, that may sound like excessive paranoia to you, but as Paul Bibeau says on his Goblinbooks blog: "The NSA Is Beyond My Ability To Satirize It."

In other news, the olinguito is rather cute. Also, lobster baby!


Friday, January 11th, 2008 11:24 pm
hummingwolf: Drawing of a creature that is part-wolf, part-hummingbird. (Hummingwolf by Dandelion)
For fellow fans of House, M.D.: The Metaphorical Medicine of House. Includes bits of interview with the technical advisor for the series.

The 2007 International Privacy Ranking from Privacy International. According to this report, the U.S. privacy record isn't the worst in the world: in 2007, this country actually ranked better than Singapore, Russia, China, and Malaysia. Woohoo! We only did worse than nearly everyone else on the planet. On the plus side, as about half of you lot have already noticed, "A telephone company cut off an FBI international wiretap after the agency failed to pay its bill on time, according to a U.S. government audit released on Thursday." While one must admire the elegance of the checks and balances set forth in the United States Constitution as well as the nobility of much of the Bill of Rights, one sometimes suspects that the greatest guardians of freedom in this country are general laziness and incompetence.

On an entirely different note: Ghee Happy, "a brand that celebrates Indian/Hindu mythologies and culture thru design and storytelling in a fun and charming way." Do check out the free Kali desktop. (This is one of those links where it's hard for an outsider to tell just how serious/reverent/etc. the artist is being. That odd Spiderman Ganesh photo going around a while back was from an actual Ganesha festival, was a serious attempt to meld East and West, even as it seemed to so many people that it must have been blasphemous. So I at least feel compelled to reserve judgment about the cute little deities, just admiring the cuteness.)

Last and probably least, a link for my own reference, though it could be useful for anyone else with an analog TV: The US Government's TV converter box coupon program.

There was going to be more to this post, but I decided I was too sleepy to say it.

(no subject)

Wednesday, February 28th, 2007 10:16 am
hummingwolf: Part of a julia fractal in colors of fire and smoke. (Fire-flavored fractal)
I woke up at about 4:30 this morning feeling like someone had set large patches of my skin on fire. Since this was not conducive to sleep, I eventually got up and read for a while, then managed to sink into a light and troubled slumber for another hour or so. As a result of the pain and sleep-dep, I am likely to be cranky all day. You have been warned.

This article about Conservapedia might be interesting to those of you who haven't already read a zillion blog posts (probably mostly on liberal blogs and probably much more thorough than the Wired article) about the "much-needed alternative to Wikipedia, which is increasingly anti-Christian and anti-American." I find the article interesting for a different reason, which is that it includes the line "Conservapedia was lampooned by conservative blogger Jon Swift for its brash denial of scientific facts in favor of biblical rhetoric."

People, when some blogger says
I am a reasonable conservative who likes to write about politics and culture. Since the media is biased I get all my news from Fox News, Rush Limbaugh and Jay Leno monologues.

it may not be wise to take them literally. Particularly when they call themselves by the name of a famous satirist. I'm just saying.

Also in the news: Vitamins could kill you. At least, based on results of some of the better studies, some vitamins could kill you, at least some of the time, maybe, if you take really high doses you don't need. People for whom "Too much of anything is too much" is a radically new idea too subtle to be believable may also be interested in the international movement to ban Dihydrogen Monoxide.

Is there anything else in the news that might annoy me this morning? Oh right, there was the Jesus tomb story that hit over the weekend. Could we please stop leaving our science in the hands of movie directors? Surely someone out there must have a better grasp of history and archaeology than James Cameron?


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