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There can be viable third party runs at the local, state, and federal levels. We need 300000 people giving 5 bucks a month to change the world. You can give here.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Great romance comics that never happened featuring tearful Modok

Great comics that never happened.



New episode of Lucky Ducky called "Deficit Hawk Down"



And here's another episode of Lucky Ducky called Deficit Hawk Down. A brief preview and a riddle: Are republicans for deficit reduction even when it comes to taxes for the rich? Oh its a conundrum

Friday, August 20, 2010

Vast Wasteland: I don't think the Oregon Vampire Equal Rights amendment is going to pass and other reviews.


ITEM: Let this mark the grand return of my Vast Wasteland TV Column. Last seen here.

I've been watching a lot of television lately, which is a good way to put off Ken Macleod books I should be finishing. Just short impressions:

True Blood: I don't think that the Oregon Vampire Rights Amendment is going to pass. I still think that our real world Just Say Now Marijuana legalization campaign has a shot, even though the Mormons and Barack Obama will probably be on the other side. I guess I should passively hope that a marijuana supporter won't fly into some Christian Broadcasting station and kill someone on camera by plunging a hand through the poor guy's chest and then snarl something about "eating your children". That wouldn't be helpful to the anti prohibition efforts I would think.

Rubicon: How does the lead character get his hair like that? I've seen characters with hair like that in anime but never real life. Its like some kind of arrow hat. Meanwhile, the side story of deciding to murder somebody with a UAV felt pretty realistic. Apparently, its always a go. I can believe that. No, really I can.

Burn Notice and Covert Affairs: I find these shows very entertaining. But, for the most part, we're the bad guys. We usually murder Democrats and replace them with Dictators. If you watch Burn Notice, then you'll understand why I think Simon would be the agent in good standing and Michael, who "helps" people, would be the one sent to some off the books black prison site. On the other hand, perhaps that's why Michael got burned: refused to assassinate Chavez. Related: Too poor for cable? I might be in that category myself soon. You can watch both of these shows online.

Related: Okay, you are too lazy to have read the Nation or the Progressive or Mother Jones for the last 28 years to know how evil our foreign policy is abroad. Can you watch a video? Try this one or this one or this one. I'll embed these over at Mirror Universe when I get a chance.


Oh, and one more thing: Jessica Centers is not credible.


And that Jessica Glynn Centers isn't credible either.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Let us have a moment of silence and a moment of song for the late Abbey Lincoln.


Let's all say a non denominational atheist prayer for the late Abbey Lincoln. Here's my fave Youtube vid of her with Max Roach. Check out the last notes here and that wonderful expression on her face:


More on Examiner.com, Jessica Centers Fallout. What's next?


I'm still trying to figure out the transition away from Examiner.com. The Examiner is a part of something called a "Content Farm", which you can read about here and here. Content farms don't pay much but if you like to write and don't need to make a lot of money they're fine.

For the next month or so, I'm going to focus on Mirror Universe and here, with an effort to revive the Red Light District. That portion of my website still makes money even though I haven't updated it in over six months...so I guess that tells me something. Let's see how hard I can work...

Oh, and one more thing:

Jessica Centers is not credible!
Jessica Glynn Centers is not credible!

Monday, August 09, 2010

Copy of Hub Pages involving Jessica Centers and Examiner.com

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My Brilliant Career at the Examiner.com is at an end.

50
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By pshropshire


Rationale given by Jessica Centers simply not credible.

(For Working links go here.)


My brilliant career with the Examiner news service, run by apparently the Colorado version of Richard Scaife, appears over. Oh, where will I get an extra 40 to 90 dollars a month? I'd probably make more money panhandling. By the way, my career path over the last 10 years resembles this man.

Anyway, so this is the story that got all of my privileges pulled. I don't know exactly why those privileges were pulled even though I did ask . The reasons given by my "editor" Jessica Centers, our guidelines and high standards and whatnot, would make sense at a place like Firedoglake. Those reasons don't make sense at the Examiner, where writers have routinely just made stuff up so to speak and weren't caught for weeks. Do a search for UFO stories at the Examiner. I mean, the truth could be out there, but not from those writers... It would also have made a bit more sense had you cancelled the first two--stories in the series and not just the third. That would have made sense.

And now that I no longer work for the examiner I can state this: some of the worst writing I had ever seen is printed at Examiner.com. You can definitely apply Sturgeon's law to that particular enterprise. There are some good writers at the Examiner but its very rare that you find an actual "story" of any kind. The only reason I didn't mention it before is that I thought it was bad form and an obvious misplacement of loyalty: Never badmouth a brand that you're a part of. (Although I was about to ask. Some of the Examiner.com occult/paranormal/religious stuff was just too good to pass up at my atheism post...)

By the way, I lost all three of my posts not just the title of Progressive Examiner, but also the elections 2010 post and the Atheism post which I had finally figured out how to localize. Stay classy Jessica. What's also funny: the work I did on the Jim Frank stories was the most reporting and "work" that I did since arriving there. I actually had to do "things" in order to write those stories. I had to research the case law. I had to talk to two reps at the Allegheny County DA's office. I had to look over Wilkinsburg city ordinances. Most times, I'm just reworking press releases. This is why when people talk about the "dignity of work" my eyes glaze over in disbelief. If you have a choice between a "job" at the examiner-- or some other non union no rights private sector job--or unemployment benefits, then take the unemployment benefits. You can rely on those. You can't rely on many private sector jobs. There's an essay there someplace. Long live the 99ers....

More on this later. Oh one more thing:

ITEM: I spoke to high placed sources within the Wilkinsburg city government (sounds way more official than I ran into Jim Frank's boss at the Wilkinsburg Farmer's Market....) and it looks like Jim has taken a leave of absence due to "health concerns". Here's a speculative opinion: Jim Frank would still be on the job and healthy if I hadn't written about his attempt at blackmailing me, then lying about it afterwards. This is why the powerful hate the modern Internet. It allows little people like myself to fight back on an enormous world stage. I have much more power as an online writer than I ever had as a reporter. The powerful hate this as well.


(For Working links go here.)


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My Brilliant Career at Examiner.com is at an end. Not sure why.

ITEM: My brilliant career with the Examiner news service, run by apparently the Colorado version of Richard Scaife, appears over. Oh, where will I get an extra 40 to 90 dollars a month? I'd probably make more money panhandling. By the way, my career path over the last 10 years resembles this man.

Anyway, so this is the story that got all of my privileges pulled. I don't know exactly why those privileges were pulled even though I did ask . The reasons given by my "editor" Jessica Centers, our guidelines and high standards and whatnot, would make sense at a place like Firedoglake. Those reasons don't make sense at the Examiner, where writers have routinely just made stuff up so to speak and weren't caught for weeks. Do a search for UFO stories at the Examiner. I mean, the truth could be out there, but not from those writers... It would also have made a bit more sense had you cancelled the first two--

http://www.examiner.com/x-10379-Pittsburgh-Progressive-Examiner~y2010m7d21-Jim-Frank-Wilkinsburg-Code-Enforcement-or-sleazy-70s-Mafiastyle-goon-demanding-payment-or-else

and

http://www.examiner.com/x-10379-Pittsburgh-Progressive-Examiner~y2010m7d30-Code-Enforcer-Jim-Frank-lies-about-blackmail-attempt-and-runs-away-from-me-like-a-little-girl

--stories in the series and not just the third. That would have made sense.

And now that I no longer work for the examiner I can state this: some of the worst writing I had ever seen is printed at Examiner.com. You can definitely apply Sturgeon's law to that particular enterprise. There are some good writers at the Examiner but its very rare that you find an actual "story" of any kind. The only reason I didn't mention it before is that I thought it was bad form and an obvious misplacement of loyalty: Never badmouth a brand that you're a part of. (Although I was about to ask. Some of the Examiner.com occult/paranormal/religious stuff was just too good to pass up at my atheism post...)

By the way, I lost all three of my posts not just the title of Progressive Examiner, but also the elections 2010 post and the Atheism post which I had finally figured out how to localize. Stay classy Jessica. What's also funny: the work I did on the Jim Frank stories was the most reporting and "work" that I did since arriving there. I actually had to do "things" in order to write those stories. I had to research the case law. I had to talk to two reps at the Allegheny County DA's office. I had to look over Wilkinsburg city ordinances. Most times, I'm just reworking press releases. This is why when people talk about the "dignity of work" my eyes glaze over in disbelief. If you have a choice between a "job" at the examiner-- or some other non union no rights private sector job--or unemployment benefits, then take the unemployment benefits. You can rely on those. You can't rely on many private sector jobs. There's an essay there someplace. Long live the 99ers....

More on this later. Oh one more thing:

ITEM: I spoke to high placed sources within the Wilkinsburg city government (sounds way more official than I ran into Jim Frank's boss at the Wilkinsburg Farmer's Market....) and it looks like Jim has taken a leave of absence due to "health concerns". Here's a speculative opinion: Jim Frank would still be on the job and healthy if I hadn't written this or this or this. This is why the powerful hate the modern Internet. It allows little people like myself to fight back on an enormous world stage. I have much more power as an online writer than I ever had as a reporter. The powerful hate this as well.

Luckily, the current Internet allows for little people and the super hackers behind Wikileaks to fight back.

ITEM: Unfortunately, this is why people are trying to kill the current Internet, or the only show I like that has managed to stay on the air for more than 13 years. Its gets better every year. This all ends if network neutrality ends. An Internet like cable tv would be a very mediocre Internet. It would also be controlled entirely by Fox News types which is why when Democrats like Chaka Fattah and Alan Grayson back the telcos against net neutrality it makes me want to tear my hair out.

ITEM: Sign the Don't Be Evil Google Petition.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Where I answer friendly comments by Patio and Vinny about lying blackmailing Wilkinsburg code enforcer Jim Frank...

I get comments. Imagine me with an ascot, Hugh Hefner robe, and a chilled wine as I read the musings of an adoring public...right.

Anyway, here's Patio. No I can't quite figure out the sex or the name. Is it a person or a lawn accessory...can't tell. Can't quite tell.

So Patio (?) says:

Sorry, but I think you need to keep your private issues private.
This is not the place for your rants.

Well, this is kind of odd. I've never had a lying blackmailing public official knock on my door and threaten me--illegally and I'm of the opinion criminally but I have to present a better brief to the DA--and give me an interesting story. Never ever happened. Of course, back when I worked for print media, which was a very very long time ago, people knew I was a reporter and that they had to be careful about what they said to me. Then again, if Jim Frank knew and truly understood the reach of the modern internet he really wouldn't threaten anybody. Everybody can be a reporter. I guess it was Jim's poor luck to pick on a guy who was an online reporter.

And for the record: I really think the Internet is built for rants and different experimental kinds of writing and reporting. That's why I'm here. I can guarantee you that its not for the money.

Now, here's something I wrote in response that I'm going to edit because I can edit things here where I can't edit the comments I write. Just not allowed.

Do you rent or do you own? If you rent, are you responsible for your landlord's land? Do you have to pay for upkeep if its not a part of your original lease? Is it okay for the code enforcement guy to threaten you with eviction if you abide by your own lease? I think these are big issues and they're certainly worth writing about as opposed to the usual car crashes and weather stories that trad media is usually obsessed with...

So Patio, really that's the presumed fake name that's been given (I hope.), writes something else:

patio says:

Your lease is irrelevant.
The LAW takes precedence.
Yes, really.
Have some consideration for your neighbors. July 31, 11:05 PM

Well Patio, and please don't take this the wrong way, but how fuckin' stupid are you? Yeah sure. The Wilkinsburg City Council can pass a LAW that allows for slavery. It doesn't mean that its constitutional. By the way, and here's a suggestion that they'll probably ignore but here's a suggestion for council. You need to make a distinction between major and minor repairs for tenants. Its one thing to spend a hundred bucks for a lawn repair but there are repairs to this property that could cost thousands. If you concede to the former, then you open yourself up to the latter, which could be catastrophically expensive future liability. Who knows what tomorrow may bring. I must never accept responsibility for somebody else's property or crimes. Its the principle of the thing.

Two, if you read what I've written and have the comprehension that exceeds a 10 year old, then you know that I've offered friendlier non threatening solutions to this problem. Hey, if you know some apartment dwellers who would like to garden then please send them my way. I'm perfectly okay with the city's Weed and Seed program coming in and doing a good deed. I admit no liability for the property that I don't own and will certainly not accept the penalties for somebody else's crimes but if its just the grass you want cut...well, that can be accomplished without threats, lies, extortion or blackmail. Or what I call the JIm Frank style of code enforcement. Oh, for god's sake let's not disappoint the neighbors, Patio. If you would like to keep things nice and tidy then give me your number and you can do it.

Three, and this reflects poorly on your reading skills, Jim has argued that the written lease I've signed is void. Are you routinely this dim?

Four, speaking of the neighbors you so cherish, some of them are also in clear violation of 302.4. I wonder if they've been cited or received warning of a possible citation. I kind of doubt it. Here's something odd that Jim told me several months ago. There was a house that was going to be demolished and he said something that once that was done "they'll be looking at you". I guess the question that comes to mind is who is "they?" I have to admit that I'm kind of curious.

Five, and you might find this depressing Mr. or Miss Patio but they haven't gotten back to me with a date for my board hearing. It's been about a week. If you combine the weakness of a "notice of a possible citation" with their slowness in scheduling a board hearing, then you get a strong sense that they're wimping out on us. I'll give Jim a call Monday and ask when or if they'll be a board hearing. I wouldn't be surprised if they decided that a mistake had been made...because its always a mistake when somebody can publicize the evil you're doing. No secrets.

Which brings us to Vinny.

Here's Vinny:

Dear Fidel,
Oops, Philip, does your morbid obesity prevent you from maintaining your lawn? Or are you just a lazy bastard???

Vinny

Hmmm. Well that's a puzzler. First, I don't think of myself as morbidly obese although I am overweight. I'm kind of Forest Whitaker in Ghost Dog fit.

I don't think that's very fit but its not morbidly obese, either. I can ride a bike...? Hey, how do you know anyway?

As for being a lazy bastard, well that's partially true. First, I know who my parents are so I'm not a bastard, like you Vinny. I am lazy about certain things, however. But here's the thing: I'm really lazy about work that isn't my responsibility. Like my landlord's. Not responsible for that BP spill, either. Don't care if somebody named Vinny who doesn't even have the courage to give his last name--everybody knows who I am--complains about me not cleaning up the BP spill on my own dime. I'll live. Oh, and Vinny, you can come over here and cut the lawn too. You and "Patio" can go crazy on the horticulture. Think of the neighbors, who also have uncut lawns.

Firedoglake begins "Just Say Now" Campaign


Here's a test post.

Let's see if the image picks up.