Full up like a landfill

That leaves the punk rockers, who know what it’s like to be outsiders.”

“A Republican state senator from Arkansas who is leading a legislative committee on the subject of giving guns to school teachers accidentally shot a teacher during an ‘active shooter’ drill earlier this year.”

“The only way I can see to consistently avoid the problem of assuming respondents actually care about the issue of interest as much as do poll commissioners is to expand the usual response format of ‘Yes, no, or don’t know’ to include the option ‘Don’t care.’

“Public health experts estimate that as many as 90 percent of Americans do it, and they want us to cut it out.”

“We have to stop assuming that the water available for future use is the same as in the past.”

“Deception is found to be virtuous in the story when it is used to interrupt the powerful.”

The Bible is not a book God wrote, it is a book that human beings wrote about God.”

“What if our calling is to imagine engaging the world so as to make the good things of the world better versions of themselves?”

“Just make sure you are hanging out regularly in a group where you are the minority when it comes to your beliefs.”

The truth cannot be that long.”

“I hope the tree will love the soil of the old world and no doubt when we have gone the tree will still be alive.”

Statute Forbidding Any One to Annoy or Unduly Injure the Freshmen. Each and every one attached to this university is forbidden to offend with insult, torment, harass, drench with water or urine, throw on or defile with dust or any filth, mock by whistling, cry at them with a terrifying voice, or dare to molest in any way whatsoever physically or severely, any, who are called freshmen. …”

“After losing his fortune, Norton took the unusual step of proclaiming himself Emperor of the United States in 1859.”

“The idea that all, or even most, or even a lot, of the stars you can see in the sky are already dead is simply wrong.”

Draw your own conclusions about gerbils, folks.” (via Ed Yong)

Church Sign Epic Fails: ‘Eat Your Pastor'”


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  • Derrick Murphy

    I’d already heard about Norton because Neil Gaiman’s SANDMAN story “Three Septembers and a January” had Norton as its protagonist. Who says you never learn anything by reading comics?

  • P J Evans

    A SoCal legislator wants the bridge to be renamed for Willie Brown, who is still alive and still unpopular. Most people in the Bay Area don’t like the idea, and will still call it the Bay Bridge
    But naming the bridge for Emperor Norton I is a cool idea.

  • Jamoche

    For all the gushing over the bridge that KPIX has been doing this past year (except for when the bad bolts story came out) I’ve not heard them mention this.

    I don’t think it’ll stick, even if it’s official – Northern CA doesn’t seem to be much on the named-freeway thing. Rather like Dallas vs Ft Worth (where the hell *is* the LBJ freeway, anyway? I heard so much about it from the traffic reports I never want to be anywhere near it)

    I do like this comment, though:

    I signed that petition to rename the bridge for Emperor Norton a few weeks ago, but then I realized that I was mistaken to do so. Going to Sacramento, petition in hand, asking for permission to rename the bridge after the Emperor? That is not the way to honor his memory. What Norton would have done is simply declared, fait accompli, that the bridge was and had always been named for him. And that is what we should do as well.


  • P J Evans

    AFAIK, there are only three named freeways in the Bay Area now: the Nimitz, the MacArthur, and the Bayshore.
    I live in L.A., where all the freeways have at least one name and one number, and you usually have to have both, to identify the correct section of road being referred to. (Exception: the 118, which is named for Reagan, and no one wants to use the name.)

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    “Statute Forbidding Any One to Annoy or Unduly Injure the Freshmen

    It’s interesting that there have been laws and rules banning hazing since the MIddle Ages.

  • Wednesday

    Although I notice they didn’t prohibit Upper Class Counselors from having ice cream nights with their assigned group of freshman to see how things were going with the transition to college. Which was temporarily banned as hazing by a Dean of Students at my alma mater.

  • Lori

    What in the world? What combination of unusual life experience and logic FAIL brought on that flash of brilliance?

  • LoneWolf343

    “In the first place, God made idiots. That was for practice. Then he made school boards.” -Mark Twain.

  • Wednesday

    The rational was that it was that it singled out freshmen, and was therefore potentially Hazing. It was also an Organized Social Event, all of which temporarily required advance written permission from aforementioned Dean. (He also cancelled the spring musical, already being rehearsed, because Freshman Might Spend Too Much Time on it. I have no idea if any freshmen were even _in_ the cast or crew.)

    He’s still dean, and has done a number of terrible and stupid things, including several things that have opened up the school to lawsuits for discrimination. Wheee!

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Why is it douchehats like your dean can keep their $300k a year jobs and not be thoroughly thrashed for the stupid things they do? If all it takes to be a Dean is be a rules-lawyering martinet, hell, I can do that.

  • Lori

    Deans are like CEOs—once you’ve reached that level it’s almost inconceivable that you will face any negative consequences for incompetence, no matter how egregious and it’s highly unlikely that you’ll face any real negative consequences for breaking the law. Too big to fail is a way of life for the big cheeses.

  • themunck

    That SMBC was beautiful.

  • FearlessSon

    Especially the last panel.

  • eamonknight

    Indeed; brings a tear to the eye.

  • Baby_Raptor

    And then we could see a whole bunch of new ways Republicans could twist things by using the “don’t care” percentage.

    I was trying to think of a positive for this, but I got nothin’.

  • J_Enigma32

    Once again, insurance companies prove they have more sense than the rest of us. This sort of thing (teachers being shot) is one of the reasons insurance companies refuse to cover schools where teachers are armed – because nobody is John Wayne, you can’t live you your Diehard fantasies in real life, and just about every single shooting I’ve heard of has had the shooting wearing body armor – which is designed to mitigate bullets.

    Seriously, there’s a reason why I see, “Guns are allowed on the premise” and turn around to take my business elsewhere. I won’t get shot because some yahoo thinks life is a goddamn FPS.
    Reason #120491021 why I don’t trust polls. Two different types of liars, and all that.
    It’s only the stars you can’t see that can legitimately have said aphorism applied to them. In particular, once you move out beyond Andromeda (about 2.5 million light years away) that you start to get into the low lifespans of stars (O/B White-Blue types), which only last for a few million years before they spectacularly got boom. Most Population II stars alive now have a long time to go.

    Fun thought: Imagine being able to live on the scale of a star. Imagine what you’d be able to see, and experience, in a life span that ran billions of years – but one day ended in a dramatic, earth-shattering “Kaboom”?
    Conclusion: Gerbils are some hardcore mofos.

  • Kirala

    Re: guns and schools: STUDENTS at my school can now legally bring loaded guns on campus, as long as they leave them in their cars.

    On a completely unrelated note, our district is debating whether teachers should have all-clear signs to put on their doors in case of a gunman on campus. On one hand, an all-clear sign could help the cops canvas the locked-down building more quickly and prevent teachers from having to distinguish between cops and criminals; on the other hand, the all-clear sign would be a clear indication that the room is, in fact, occupied, despite all lockdown procedures designed to keep shooters confused about whether a locked room is full of victims or abandoned.

    My comfort is that if I am shot on campus, I will no longer have to deal with this *$#&%#$.

  • J_Enigma32

    Wait, wait, wait.

    STUDENTS can bring them, so long as they’re LEFT IN THE CAR?

    What kind of stupid ass bullshit is this? How is that even useful? What could they even hope to accomplish? I .. uh.. I can’t… I…


    “Hold on teacher, we’re in the middle of a shoot out against a murderous nihilist armed with an fully-automatic AR-15 (sorry, semi-automatic, because a bullet fired from a semi-automatic that hits my four year old in the head kills them differently than one fired from a fully-automatic) and Kevlar body armor, may I run to my car and get my handgun?”

    I’ve got my teaching cert. What state/city are you in, so I know never to teach there?

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    I can only imagine the shitstorm that’ll happen when someone gets their gun stolen from their vehicle. (-_-)

  • Rhubarbarian82

    One or two Fridays a month, someone could go into the trunk of my car and get some handguns. They’re locked inside of cases, locked inside my trunk, which allows me to disable the trunk release so that it can only be opened by my key. I do this to avoid an hour of driving after work in rush hour traffic on days I’m going to the target range. It’s not like the guns are particularly more safe locked inside of cases, locked inside my apartment, which is uninhabited while I’m at work and has a ground floor sliding glass door that is easily broken. Can you imagine the shitstorm that’ll happen when someone gets their gun stolen from their house? If so, you can imagine the shitstorm that’ll happen if someone gets their gun stolen from their vehicle.

    The laws aren’t intended to allow people to have a firearm in case someone starts shooting up the school; they’re intended to allow you to avoid a trip home after school or after work. I personally am against the laws for K-12 schools, but for colleges I think it’s fine.

    Also, I don’t know what the laws are in NC, but in California it’s illegal to carry loaded weapons without a permit. You can carry weapons and ammo separately, obviously, but carrying a “loaded gun” is strictly prohibited.

    But who knows, maybe I’m wrong and criminals randomly go around breaking into trunks to see if there are guns inside.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Did you even read the thread? The SCHOOL is allowing students, in the name of allegedly making the school safer, to bring weapons onto the vicinity of the campus inside their vehicles.

    All it takes, your hectoring lecturing at me aside, is for one person to not lock his or her gun in the approved manner, and one enterprising auto thief.

    Humans being human, as soon as an incident like that makes its way into the news, there will be a kerfluffle. And since said kerfluffle involves a weapon and a policy regarding such, it will become a shitstorm.

  • Rhubarbarian82

    STUDENTS at my school can now legally bring loaded guns on campus, as long as they leave them in their cars.

    Look up gun transportation laws. All this does is allow guns to be transported within a 1000 feet of schools, the same way they’re allowed to be transported anywhere else: in locked cases, separated from their ammo, in a locked trunk. You can’t carry them inside the vehicle, so there’s no visual way of identifying which vehicles have guns inside and which don’t. Pro-tip: even if these laws passed, the majority of them won’t. Also, please show me where she wrote that the purpose of these changes was to make the school safer. What she actually wrote was:

    The logic is not that students are armed, but rather that they can just keep their gun in the car all the time without worrying about school crimping their hunting style too much.

    Looks like the one who didn’t read the thread… was you.

    And you’re seriously suggesting that “enterprising auto thieves” are going to go around breaking into car trunks – unmolested by law enforcement, school officials, or other students – and get guns that suddenly everyone is going to start transporting to school to re-enact their Die Hard fantasies. Because that’s why I carry my guns once or twice a month, is so that I can run down to the parking lot if my office building gets attacked by a deranged gunmen.

    As I said earlier, I’m personally against weakening restrictions 1000 ft around k-12 schools, but this “OMG, people carry guns in cars?!?!?!?!?” stuff is seriously stupid. People carry guns in cars. That’s how people go hunting, go target shooting, take them to gun smiths, take them to a friend’s house to do a gun cleaning day, etc. Did you think that people just buy guns, stick them in a safe, and never take them out until some robber breaks in?

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Refresh the page, re-read who made the post you’re replying to, and edit your response accordingly. I didn’t say the part about “crimping hunting styles”.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    And by the way, I don’t like how you’re acting as if you’re the instant expert on all things gun just becase you happen to actually use them. That sort of snotty attitude is one I usually only expect to get from NRA shills who bank on the fact that even if a person who owns guns doesn’t personally buy into the He-Man gestalt of conservative American culture, there is a decent probability that they still tend to think of non-gun-owners as being unintelligent wimpy milquetoasts and so devalue and dismiss anything they have to say.

    Which, incidentally, you’re doing.

  • David S.

    My Kindle doesn’t leave my possession except in my house. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to demand that people keep their guns in a locked gun safe or in their physical possession. Yes, car thieves are going to go around into car trunks unmolested by other people; happens all the time, and nobody sees or at least nobody gets involved.

  • J_Enigma32

    Why not? It’s not like it stops them from breaking into cars to steal CD players and other electronics. Especially if the car happens to be left unlocked? Which isn’t that hard to do if you’re running late for school and not really paying attention?

  • Rhubarbarian82

    Leaving the car unlocked, and the guns unlocked, is illegal. Do you know how these laws work?

    Have you ever had someone break into your car to grab something? I have; they smashed a window to grab a messenger bag that they were assuming had a $1000 MacBook in it (I hope they enjoyed the drawings in that $15 sketchbook). They left the iPod that was sitting in plain sight, and didn’t go into the trunk. Why? Because this was a crime of opportunity – they saw the bag, assumed it had a computer, broke the window and grabbed it, then booked it before someone saw them. Do you understand why this is different from going around, systematically breaking into trunks in order to maybe find guns? Do you understand how low the odds of any particular vehicle having guns, and the likelihood of getting caught while doing this? You’d be one terrible criminal.

    And again: how is this different from someone breaking into a house in order to get a gun?

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Oh yes. being illegal means it totally never happens.

  • Lori

    You’re assuming that the person doing the breaking in is some total random and has no knowledge of the owners of the cars. This is not necessarily the case. When I was in school if it had been legal for my fellow students to have guns in their cars I would have known who was most likely to take advantage of that rule. Also, people talk. Many of them talk a lot.

    If I have a pretty good idea that a person may be carrying I’d rather try to steal the gun from their car than from their house. It’s easier and if I get caught the penalties are lighter.

    ETA: It’s also possible that a school having a rule that specifically allows students to have guns in their car would change the calculus of crimes of opportunity. You’re correct that in general the odds of finding a gun in any given car are low enough that most thieves with no prior knowledge aren’t going to be looking for them. The rule could change those odds, or at least the perception of those odds, enough that thieves might consider it worthwhile to add popping the trunk to their smash & grab routine.

  • Kirala

    NC, of course (not sure if the city’s relevant, and I tend to avoid giving that out on the net). The logic is not that students are armed, but rather that they can just keep their gun in the car all the time without worrying about school crimping their hunting style too much. Still stupid.

  • Lori

    Re: guns and schools: STUDENTS at my school can now legally bring loaded
    guns on campus, as long as they leave them in their cars.

    So basically, any local criminal looking for a gun knows where there are probably a few in unattended vehicles? What could possibly go wrong?

  • David S.

    Of what use is an all clear sign? It’s a sign that tells the cops that someone in the room doesn’t want the cops looking around… which, I guess, if the shooters don’t understand that and the teachers do, is a point.

  • Kirala

    It’s actually more of a codeword dilemma: how does the teacher know that the person demanding to come in and check the room is a cop on a grid search? It’s pretty easy to imagine scenarios where the gunner could fake being a cop long enough to get a sightline into the room, or barge in. (The school-wide lockdown password is bolstered by the fact that the all-clear MUST be given by the same voice as the person who called the lockdown to begin with.)

    If you have a sign the teacher actively puts out instead, the teacher can know that there are NO circumstances where a stranger ought to be admitted during lockdown.

    At the cost of giving away the presence of at least one human in the room.

  • Matri

    Or giving the gunman a safe haven from the police.

  • Kirala

    Yeah, but temporary – I mean, if the cops look everywhere and don’t find anyone (and that’d go quickly in a labeled building), they’d start over and ignore the signs.

    I agree that they’d probably cause more problems than they’d solve, and that’s probably why the system hasn’t settled on using them, but the idea isn’t COMPLETELY ridiculous.

  • Lori

    The school-wide lockdown password is bolstered by the fact that the
    all-clear MUST be given by the same voice as the person who called the
    lockdown to begin with.

    Not to be overly grim, but what happens if the person who originally called the lockdown gets shot?

  • Kirala

    I don’t recall for certain, but I believe the plan is some combination of other familiar voices, police authority, and common sense. Personally, I figure we could rely on crowdsourcing with my kids’ ubiquitous cell phones if it came down to it. No need to hurry the decision under most circumstances.

  • BaseDeltaZero

    Wireless jammer?

  • FearlessSon

    On a completely unrelated note, our district is debating whether teachers should have all-clear signs to put on their doors in case of a gunman on campus.

    So I am currently in San Antonio for WorldCon (George R.R. Martin and John Scalzi are both here!) This is my first time in Texas and, man, I have never seen more signs on buildings indicating either the forbidding or allowing of guns on premise.

    Back in Seattle, the only time I see signs of that nature is in bars (typically stating no guns allowed, drinking and weapons are a bad combo.)

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    :) Hope it isn’t too warm down there. As for what you describe, it seems very odd and bizarre to me that such signs exist.

  • Brad Ellison

    Hey, welcome to my neck of the woods, sort of! I bitterly curse the fact that I couldn’t afford to go to WorldCon this year. It’ll be a long time before it’s just a couple hours drive away again.

  • http://www.oliviareviews.com/ PepperjackCandy

    There is (or used to be) a car dealership here in town that had a sign in their garage that said something to the effect that people should remove guns, whiskey and other valuables from their vehicles before leaving them for service.

  • Jenny Islander

    Wow, what a cultural sea change. When I was a kid, teenagers continually brought guns onto school property and nobody blinked as long as their cars were securely locked. They were not treated as Magical Rings of Make Ya Wanna Kill Everybody Arrrrr; they were expensive, they were valuable tools (being hunting rifles), and quite often the gun rack in the back window of the locked pickup truck was the most secure place for them.

    But that was before the era of semiautomatic fetishism and wishful thinking about zombie mobs.

  • P J Evans

    At least the senator used a rubber bullet.

  • Jessica_R

    It’s worth remembering, and so it’s telling it’s not getting talked up much at all, is how the near tragedy in a Georgia school was avoided when an incredibly brave female teacher *talked down* the shooter. But naturally that doesn’t play into the bullshit masculinity Yippie Ki Yay motherfucker mentality American culture and the NRA need to exist on.

  • J_Enigma32

    That or, iirc, she was Black.

    But far be it from me to assign racial motivations to something that happened in what any one can clearly see is Post-Racial Murka. Hell, we’re colorblind society. We only see black and white.

    That’s why it’s important to remember shooters are not monsters. They’re not mentally ill, they’re not inhuman, they’re not othered. You go into it with that mind sent and yes, people will die. You treat them like humans, and talk to them, and sure, people might still die – but you stand a better chance of getting to them and saving more lives than acting like you’re John-fucking-McClaine and blowing your own foot off.

  • Kirala

    If that story doesn’t become a movie within a decade, I will be bitterly disappointed.

  • Lori

    Don’t hold your breath.

    Antoinette Tuff (who was the school clerk, not a teacher) was interviewed on CNN, but apparently wasn’t invited on any of the morning shows. I haven’t heard so much as a hint about a book deal. Not like, say, Ashley Smith. Maybe if Ms Tuff had talked more about The Purpose-Driven Life things would have gone differently. I feel totally sure that if she’d given the would-be gunman meth things would have gone differently for her*.

    Ms Tuff used her very brief, very limited time in the spotlight to raise money for a charity for underprivileged kids that she works with.


    The effort has to date raised less than 1/10 the amount of money that was donated to the retirement fund for that bus monitor who was a victim of bullying. I have no beef with the bus monitor or the people who chipped in to make it possible for her to retire and escape from those kids, but the contrast does seem to say something.

    *Isn’t it funny how the pretty blond lady reading to the scary black man about Jesus got all the press, instead of the pretty blond lady sharing her meth with the scary black man?

  • Amaryllis

    The Unification Times /NRA House Newsletter acknowledges that incident. But what if what actually happened wasn’t what happened? What then?

    Luckily, Antoinette Tuff, who works in the front office of the school,was able to talk [the shooter] down. What if she hadn’t been able to?

    I think that very shortly, carrying a firearm will become more common among teachers and school administrators. If teachers aren’t comfortable with that, they may need to find a new profession.

    A school should be a safe haven where children can learn and grow. Right now, arming teachers is the only practical solution.

    If some things had been different, other things would have been otherwise, I suppose.

    But I do not see that the ultimate sentence of that piece follows from the penultimate as clearly as Mr. Siebold seems to think.

    Note: edited to provide link. So much for trying to be clever too late at night.

  • Jessica_R

    Oh that SMBC made me tear up, how beautiful, and that’s the humanistic world view I believe in.

    And I love string covers of popular tunes. Here’s my contribution, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dl9kI1yQKZk

  • http://checkpoint-telstar.blogspot.com/ Tim Lehnerer

    String covers of popular tunes, you say?


  • FearlessSon

    I love Taylor Davis. I have been subscribed to her for at least a year or two now. She does absolutely beautiful covers.

  • damanoid

    Tree-killing vandals have to be just about the bottom rung of the ladder among vandalism society. What kind of bragging rights does that get you? It’s barely a step up from mowing the lawn.

  • dr ngo

    “Christian doctrine has never taught that God wrote the Bible” – Really?!? What narrow version of “Christian doctrine” are you [Scott Paeth] referring to? Or is this just a variation on the “No True Scotsman” argument: those who say God wrote the Bible, no matter what their ecclesiastical or theological credentials, are not really “Christian”?

    I’m not saying, BTW, that God did write the Bible. It makes sense to me to say that it’s a collection of stories people wrote about God. But I am objecting to this caricature of “Christian doctrine,” which is grossly misleading in terms of church history.

  • Brad Ellison

    The Quran was written by God. Transcribed by Muhammad from the revelations of the angel Gabriel, apparently dictated from a celestial source text.

    The Bible was written by men. Throughout the history of Christianity and of Judaism has there been the belief that, for instance, God dictated the Psalms to David, or that the book of Ruth was entirely transcribed by someone acting as God’s ammenuensis. The authorship of the Epistles has been much debated, but while people argue about what was actually written by Paul, no one’s claiming that Paul signed his name to a document written by the hand of the Almighty.

    Most branches of Christianity teach that the Bible is divinely inspired, to a greater or lesser degree, containing prophetic utterances and divine law, but we’ve always known it was written by men. Written, and translated, and edited by men, over the course of several thousand years.

  • Guest

    “Most branches of Christianity teach that the Bible is divinely inspired, to a greater or lesser degree, containing prophetic utterances and divine law, but we’ve always known it was written by men”

    That must be why, growing up in the American Midwest, I saw a million variations of the bumper sticker that shows a Bible with the slogan “God said it. I believe it. That settles it.”

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    I respectfully submit you have as much evidence for the divine origin of the Koran as for Joseph Smith’s angelically-bestowed golden plates of the Book of Mormon.

  • Brad Ellison

    To clarify, I’m not myself a Muslim, just contrasting the claims made by that religion about its scriptures with what Christianity claims about its own scriptures.