Wednesday, March 11, 2015

My first Australian publishing credit (uncredited)

My work-mate Russell and I wrote a headline and sent it to The Shovel, which is Australia's version of The Daily Show if TDS were a web magazine.

Tony Abbott “Sick And Tired” Of Being Held To First World Standards

The Shovel 

To really get the joke you have to have seen the news article where Abott complained about being lectured to by the UN on human rights treatment of refugees.

This writing gig was unpaid and uncredited (which seems fair for 12 words) but who knows? It could lead to bigger things. Why if I play my cards right I could impress a big-shot literary agent and get the attention of a few publishers!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Is this chutzpa, karma, or irony?

Noted anti-Obamacare activist Sheriff Mack now has a GoFundMe page to raise money to cover... his medical bills.

The best part are the comments and the donations, which are utterly dominated by liberals and progressives telling Mr. Mack just how foolish he has been... and then donating money anyway.

I love those people. They are leading by example, showing Mack in the most unambiguous way how to be a better person. Unfortunately, I can't join them, as my own private code of ethics prevents me from giving money to scammers, and past history tells me that anything any RWNJ does is always, always, always a scam for money.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Something else Obama and I have in common

I loved Spock.

When I was a kid I barely tolerated that loud-mouthed, pushy. manic-depressive buffoon of a captain. Spock was quite literally the only adult on the show. At one point he explains to Dr. McCoy, "It's not that I don't have emotions, Dr. Its that I don't let them control my actions." (OK I can't find this quote, but I certainly remember it, so it is an accurate impression of what I thought Spock was all about).

Spock was a role model for all nerds. We knew that our intellect would always be subordinate to some hairy ape's power lust, but at least Spock showed us we could be cool while we did it.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Wow. The mask has been slipping a lot more these days, but rarely does it fall onto the floor and shatter:
Only [raise the minimum wage] if you want to rip the first rung in the ladder of opportunity for teenagers, for minorities, for people who are trying to get into the job market for their first job.

California Republican Rep. Tom McClintock  on Rawstory

I cannot figure what he is saying here. Is he simply equating minorities with teenagers and first-time job seekers - i.e. untrained, unskilled, and unworthy of real careers until they prove themselves? Is he just admitting the existence of white male privilege, since they get to skip the first rung on the ladder? Are these three separate categories, or merely different ways of describing the same category - since teenagers are obviously first-time job seekers, did he mean that category to reflect the first or is it meant to refer to housewives seeking employment after raising their children?

Can anyone think of a interpretation that doesn't make McClintock look like a monster?

Sunday, January 11, 2015

More sightings!

I really like these photos, because I have never actually seen my book on a store shelf, what with living Down Under and all:

Spotted at Changing hands in downtown Phoenix, with the covers already facing out. :)

Thanks, A.B.! (You should also check out her blog; she's a more prolific writer than I am, both in books produced and blog posts about books.)

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

SotBL in the Wild

Spotted in the Barnes and Noble in Santa Monica:

Thanks, Josh!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

The future of capitalism begins here

Workers at the LA Times just lost all vacation time.

This article explains the policy of regular accrued vacation has been replaced with "performance-based" snap judgment calls by managers. Meaning, of course, that getting a vacation now is a bonus instead of a benefit. And you know how frequently bonuses are being given out these days - well, if you work for a living, that is.

Now in any sane world, the LA Times staff would simply resign in mass. But of course there are no other jobs for them to take. It's not that they can't go to a different newspaper; there are no other jobs to be had at all.

How long before some other company notices this? Then they adopt the same policy. What are their workers going to do? Leave for the LA Times? Pretty soon you get to the position where your boss reduces your pay by a nickel every day. As long as all the other bosses are doing it, what can you do about it? And this wonderful race to the bottom doesn't require collusion, or conspiracy, or criminal intent: it is simply the natural outcome of the free market at work.

Here in Australia we have those pesky socialist labor regulations. Consequently even Subway workers get 4 weeks of vacation, health care, and a wage you can live off of. And there's nothing the bosses can do about. Well, other than seizing control of the political system and putting in a Reagan-like puppet who will dismantle government protections by convincing people government doesn't do anything. But what are the odds of that happening?

UPDATE: Faced with a massive staff revolt, they backed off. For now.