What a wild ride was the news cycle this week.  Between Trump’s first State of the Union Address and the FISA Memo drama, I’m spent and taking it easy this weekend.

Here in the US, I guess that Super Bowl thing is going on?  Most of you are big sports fans, am I right?  Well, I’m not.  Sports fandom is a toxic pasttime filled with a lot of time-wasting and jock-sniffing.

But I’m not going to ruin your fun today.  Enjoy watching people throw and catch a ball in between all of those commercials.  Today, the Thrill family is having a sort of Anti-Superbowl Party.  We’re just sitting around, snacking, and watching anything other than football.  The topic is verboten.

Hey, I have an idea.  Since I have a lifelong embargo on the NFL, let’s see if I can find a few stories to discuss that have nothing at all to do with Trump either.  I’ve met my quota for the week.  Besides, I’m sure all you football fans would appreciate a nice, relaxing break from all these divisive politics.

Ooooh.

Uma Thurman has now come forward as the latest known victim of Harvey Weinstein.

Afterwards, she says Weinstein made an unwanted advance in a hotel room during an argument, and later “pushed me down. He tried to shove himself on me. He tried to expose himself. He did all kinds of unpleasant things.” Thurman says that she later confronted Weinstein about the incident, but “her memory of the incident abruptly stops there.” One of her friends recalled that when Thurman returned, she was “disheveled and so upset and had this blank look,” and said that Weinstein threatened to end her career.

Weinstein and Tarantino.  Yuck.  She almost ended up with one guy jerking off in her hair and the other on her feet.  Trump would have grabbed Ah, damn it.  Sorry.

The Japanese, after decades of making radios, televisions, and other electronics smaller than Trump’s hands have made another achievement.

Japan has set a new spaceflight record — and unlike most of these feats, it’s defined by what wasn’t involved. The country’s Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has successfully launched the smallest-ever rocket to carry a satellite into orbit, a modest SS-520 sounding rocket modified with a third stage inside its nose cone to get its payload into orbit.

Are you ready for Star Wars: The Last Jedi in 16-bit?  Come on, even if you didn’t like the movie, this is great.  Especially because it’s a story about a diverse group of female-led Resistance fighters taking on a Nazi-like group of authoritarians led by angry white males, just like the current Administration

Speaking of Star Wars, the Alt-Right has been subjecting the Black Panther to the same treatment they gave The Last Jedi.

A Facebook group called “Down With Disney’s Treatment of Franchises and Its Fanboys”, whose moderator describes himself as “alt-right,” recently created an event calling on its followers to intentionally give “Black Panther” bad reviews on Rotten Tomatoes once the movie hits theaters on Feb. 15.

I have no plans to see this film, not because of pressure from the Alt-Right or disdain for a story about a black protagonist, but because I have zero interest in capeshit movies and will be far too busy glorifying the God Emperor with some new dank memes.

Some Israelis are suing a couple of New Zealanders for pressuring Lorde to cancel her Tel Aviv concert.  I can certainly vouch for the sheer effectiveness of activist trolls from New Zealand (lighten up, I’m just screwing with you).

On Wednesday, Shurat HaDin, the Israel Law Center, announced it had filed a lawsuit on behalf of three Israeli teenagers — fans of the Grammy Award winner who had purchased tickets to her Tel Aviv concert — against two New Zealand-based activists linked to the BDS (Boycott Divestment and Sanctions) Movement who it says persuaded Lorde to reconsider performing in Tel Aviv.

There’s more to come.

In July, rock band Radiohead went ahead with a performance in Tel Aviv despite pressure from BDS activists not to play because of the oppression faced by Palestinians. Award-winning British filmmaker Ken Loach tweeted: “Radiohead need to decide if they stand with the oppressed or the oppressor. The choice is simple.”

Lead singer Thom Yorke responded in a statement:  “Playing in a country isn’t the same as endorsing its government.”

Boy, I’m glad he gets that.  Wouldn’t otherwise be a single band playing in the US ever since November 2016

California’s marijuana is apparently bad for the environment.

Marijuana doesn’t just suddenly appear on the shelves of a dispensary, or the pocket of a dealer. Someone’s gotta grow it, and in Northern California, that often means rogue farmers squatting on public lands, tainting the ecosystem with pesticides and other chemicals, then harvesting their goods and leaving behind what is essentially a mini superfund site. Plenty of growers run legit, organic operations—but cannabis can be a dirty, dirty game.

Would you save the endangered Barron’s Buckwheat if it meant no more Barbara Bud?  Maybe Californians will rethink their priorities if their love for the environment outweighs all other considerations.  Nah, Californians won’t surrender to the Trump/Sessions regime of drug criminalization Nah, Californians have a solution that applies to all situations and circumstances, with unsurprising results.

That safety comes at a price, though. To fund the oversight of recreational marijuana, California is imposing combined taxes of perhaps 50 percent. “They’re too high,” says DeAngelo. He’s worried that the fees will push users back into the black market, where plants don’t have to hew to the same strict safety standards. “This shop should be a lot fuller than it is right now.”

In a rare victory for civil libertarians–who are themselves getting to be pretty rare–a small village in Ohio that existed for no other purpose than to issue automated speeding tickets has lost its appeal and must pay back $3 million dollars in fines it collected improperly.

“While it is true that New Miami has the authority to enforce its traffic laws, it must do so in a constitutional manner,” Judge Michael E. Powell wrote for the appellate court. “New Miami does not have the authority to do so in an unconstitutional manner.”

It’s good to see a judge ruling according to constitutional law, unlike certain federal Hawaiian judges.

YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki announced her latest stupid initiative to utterly screw up YouTube with additional automated tools to harass content creators and promote censorship.

Some of our policies are no-brainers, like preventing people from impersonating other channels or using misleading thumbnails. But others are far more nuanced and unique to YouTube. We realize we have a serious social responsibility to get these emerging policy issues right, so we seek advice from dozens of expert advisors and third-parties. For example, on issues of hate speech we work with the Anti-Defamation League in the U.S. and on issues of self-harm, we work with the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

When will the Board at Google finally #DemonetizeSusan?

What?  That’s all I have to say about that topic.

On a personal note, my bi-weekly paycheck that I received on Friday had a noticeable increase in my net pay.  I have benefited from the tax reform that was passed by Congress and signed into law by….uh…by….that is, uh, it was signed into law with a pen.

I’ll be adding this extra money to the savings jar each week.  Years from now my children will use that worthless currency, destroyed by inflation, that I’ve saved up to wipe their asses when the toilet paper runs out.

In all seriousness, I’m glad for the tax cut.  It seems that I’m not the only one as the approval ratings for Congress and the, uh, pen…signer…have increased as millions of other Americans have been surprised to find a bump in their take home earnings after months of the news media lying to them about the effect of the GOP tax bill.

This is a channel I recently discovered.  I’ve added his books to my wish list and am looking forward to checking them out in the coming months.  Hopefully, I’ll be able to put together some more book threads on these and more very soon.

Ah, thankfully there’s no way to connect Russia and Trump DAMN IT.

If real, this would blow out the Super Bowl in ratings.  I’d watch.

Feel free to discuss your football game (New England’s going to win and you already know this, you fools) or anything else in the comments.  I should be drunk by 6:00 PM (US Central Time) so look for my replies to become more reckless and free-form as the day progresses.

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It will be the Patriots, unless Tom Brady is struck down with the flu, turns into a zombie, and starts eating his teammates. And even then…

Meanwhile, Justin Timberlake won’t be performing with a dead guy:
https://www.yahoo.com/news/sheila-e-timberlake-wont-prince-hologram-super-bowl-214018496.html

Because John Candy is racist:
http://www.foxnews.com/us/2018/02/03/massachusetts-school-cancels-cool-runnings-viewing-citing-racially-insensitive-subjects-in-film.html

CMNZ

Watching in a packed pub in Sydney, loads of Patriot fans here. Perfect timing for a long boozy lunch.

CMNZ

Lol the whole ignoring it thing is going well I see.
Crunch time.

Well the Eagles pulled it off.

CMNZ

Great result.
I learnt black people cant kneel and play football but MLK should be used to sell trucks during the SuperBowl.

Zurvan

The Central Valley city went bankrupt in 2012

Well giving away money to every person who comes calling is definitely going to help with that.

Judge Dredd, Pro Se

Santino, how are you liking those YouTube channels so far?

Planets found outside our own galaxy for first time:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2018/02/05/scientists-discover-the-first-planets-outside-the-milky-way/

I knew something was wrong when I heard a gunshot on the other end of the line while talking to my stockbroker:
https://www.cnbc.com/2018/02/04/us-stocks-interest-rates-futures.html

Judge Dredd, Pro Se

Universal pay is still very new as an idea so I wish Stockton well with the experiment. I think you’re absolutely right, thrill. Stockton put the money aside for it so they aren’t exactly betting the farm on it for votes. Which means they can sit back and see what comes of it. I really hope it works out so it can be adopted in favor of other forms of social welfare, maybe even reducing things like welfare. The issue to me comes down to whether it can eliminate other government agencies as a measure of success. My pie in… Read more »

Thrill

I’m extremely interested in seeing how it pans out. Assuming that the results of the experiment are reported accurately and unbiased, it will definitely provide some evidence that your approach might be a better way forward.

Santino

Santino, how are you liking those YouTube channels so far? I watched the older guy and took his advice on the diet. When I started watching it, I took a couple of weeks off of weight training, my right leg was pretty tight/sore (my guess is I tend to that leg when doing squats). I spent a couple of weeks just stretching out my leg, and watching my diet. I managed to lose about 5 pounds. I’m back to the weights again (doing the strong lift plan), and working in stretching in between workouts. Given my age, I’ve just accepted… Read more »

Judge Dredd, Pro Se

No problem my dude. So, when you have one leg problems like you mentioned there’s a fix I can look up to try. First, you’re absolutely right to stretch. There’s an advanced form of stretching called “mobility work” that weightlifters are swearing by in favor of static stretching. It’s the same basic premise but promotes the stretch mimic the movement you’re going to do. For things like squat and deadlift it’s really good because you practice getting into the position like the squat and get limber specific to the exersize you’re going to do. Usually with squats you have two… Read more »

Santino

Cool, my own personal online trainer! I really do appreciate your interest and advice, thanks JDPS. If you want to take this offline and hash it out I’m cool with that (I’m sure I have your email address from way back in the VO days). I’m okay with it here as well. A few things. I’ve had a few sessions with a massage therapist, he suggested to do non-static stretches (gave me a few to do). The only static stretch I do is on my hamstrings, that seems to work best. I use a roller to self massage as well.… Read more »

Judge Dredd, Pro Se

Yeah just email me. We have very similar issues with regard to an imbalance of leg power and I agree it affects everything including hip and low back pain.

Santino

I love Deadpool.

Me too! It’s basically Van Wilder in a morph suit, violence and hilarity ensue.

CMNZ

Love Deadpool.

From the Marvel movies, Ant Man and Infinity War are both rated equally highly.

Ah I think they’re showing as 99% as a default because they haven’t been rated yet (because they haven’t come out yet). Of the released films, the original Ironman appears to be the next highest on 94%, closely followed by the first Avengers, the latest Thor (Ragnarok), and Spider-Man: Homecoming (all 92%).

CMNZ

Yeah I’m putting a memo together about that.

Santino

That is brilliant (now everyone at work is staring at me, wondering WTF is so funny)!!! You definitely need to start a YouTube channel.

CMNZ

Seems like an easy mistake to have made then, I’m more shocked that you still can get milk delivered. Do they still come and collect dead bodies in a hand-drawn cart too?

CMNZ

I fondly remember having the job of taking the empty glass bottles and money out for the milkman, and then collecting the full bottles (every so often we’d get cream too, in half sized bottles). Pretty sure it stopped in the mid 1980s here in Auckland. Ending that killed off a lot of jobs for teens (the actual milkman would only drive the truck and lift off the heavy crates for big deliveries, mostly it was kids doing the bulk of the bottle swapping and money collecting. I opted for the early-morning paper round option, every morning without fail from… Read more »

Zurvan

I had milk delivery in SLC as a kid, glass bottles, the whole bit. Good milk too. Looks like the same Dairy still does it there. Many of us in Red State America spend half the year wondering if a mile-wide arm of pure, twisting wind is going to descend and Hiroshima our neighborhoods and throw our houses into the next county while we sleep. And that’s just one of the reasons I put up with checking my bed for scorpions, and driving around several months each year wishing I had oven mitts in my car. I’ll happily deal with… Read more »

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