Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Choices

Facebook

I made the choice recently to get off Facebook. I vowed back in March that if they were going to force "Timeline" onto me, that I would stop using the service. I vowed to go to Google+ as it seemed to still exist in a format I enjoyed. Granted I'd be (at best) the seventh person on Google+ but I was probably the seventh person on Facebook too. Between March and the notification I got a week ago that Timeline would be forced on me, Google+ appears to have switched its format to include cover photos and basically become a carbon copy of Facebook. I'm not particularly surprised, and also not particularly interested in using the service anymore. Alas, I'll probably post outrageous things to Twitter instead and restrict/parse down that list to ensure it doesn't become something carried in media outlets.

The thing I'm quickly realizing is that we're redefining "necessities" as a western culture. This is a fad because surely at some point there were people that felt like Crocs were a necessity. So as Facebook sees this, they changed from a company that was trying to woo potential users, to dictating terms of use. For example, for a long time I could keep my profile picture hidden to those who were not my friend. That is no longer the case. On one occasion I had to go in and change my publicly listed email address because Facebook had decided to change it to the email they were now providing. Then Facebook told me they were changing the layout again and making "Timeline". That was enough. There is no NEED to use this service and the fact is the service is barely a shadow of what I signed up for 5+ years ago and offers very little of what I found attractive anymore. It's not simple, or clean, or easy to control my information. So I made the choice to leave.

With all that said, I understand a good portion of my traffic here came from posting the blogs to Facebook, so this is going to become an even lesser known blog. I'm entirely ok with that.

Another Election

Americans are faced with a pretty distinctive choice on November 6, 2012. The choice is fairly stark. Mr. Obama and Mr. Romney have exceptionally different backgrounds. Mr. Obama, of a middle-class grandmother who worked in middle management in her adult life. Mr. Romney, with the proverbial silver spoon. His father ran for President, was Governor of his state,  and ran a major auto manufacturing company. From the perspective of a relatively centered outsider, I'm flabbergasted to see national polls at a dead heat.

If I lived in the US, I'd be one of the people you call an independent. Fiscally conservative, and socially liberal. So the question becomes of the man (and eventually, woman). This is not an even remotely close decision. Mr.Romney has changed his mind on abortion, Iraq, Afghanistan, the auto industry, and almost any other subject of any consequence. Mr. Romney isn't a principled man looking to lead the nation to the promise land. Mr. Romney is a man willing to do whatever it takes to outdo his father and become the most powerful man on earth.

I strongly disagree with the way Mr. Obama has dealt with some of the economic issues his nation faces. Fixing a massive debt problem by borrowing more money isn't close to an effective strategy. However, for the most part the man seems true to his word. There have been a few occasions where he hasn't pushed congress hard enough (see: Guantanamo Bay) but for the most part what's been holding back his agenda is not a lack of political will, but another branch of government. This is a no-brainer for anyone with a brain. There is no reason what-so-ever to consider Mitt Romney to be a trust-worthy individual.

 The Weak Blue Jays

What follows is a rant. It's entirely possible it will contain many curse words.


Toward the end of the year the Jays shortstop Yunel Escobar painted on his eye black (the spanish version of) "you are a faggot". Toronto is one of the most gay-friendly cities in the entire world, and the Jays responded to this act of intolerance with a 3 game suspension. We all know that the Jays are not dictators in a situation like this and they would need to be mindful of any possible labor actions by the players association. With that said, there was nothing to stop the organization from paying him, and sending him home. Toronto fans should not have needed to see him on the field again, but they did. The Jays took the easy way out, and provided a slap on the wrist.

For the last two months of the season there was rampant speculation that the Boston Red Sox had interest in hiring the Jays manager, John Farrell. The speculation no doubt came from the organization directly, as they can't have direct contact with Farrell. The media gets some inside info from an owner, and next thing you know they're asking questions of the manager. None of this is extraordinary. The Jays had one year left on their deal with Farrell and if they were going to let him go, it would make sense to have your name out there. The Jays weren't planning on letting him go though. So they negotiated a trade, so Farrell could go there. Great! We got a useful player, right? No... actually not. We got Mike-fucking-Aviles. The man who tied for last in qualifying palyers for OBP in the AL, second last in MLB. By the way, want to guess who was 9th worst? Colby Rasmus.

So let me get this straight. The Jays hated rival, Boston Red Sox, want something they have, the Sox value him highly... and you give him away for NOTHING!? The Red Sox are a mess, and you're HELPING!? Who the fuck is in charge at Jays headquarters because right now it looks like it might be my nephew who, if you ask nice enough, will let you do just about anything. Show some fucking backbone for crying out loud. They want him, you have him. The answer you're looking for is "no." Even a variation of "no" would be good. How about, "Middlebrooks, or no" or something like "Oh, you seem to be rolling around on the floor bleeding profusely, let me open my bucket of salt and pour it over you, because you're my rival and I fucking hate you. Hell, even if I don't hate you, I know my fan base does - so fuck you. You make us a deal that we win, clearly - or go fuck yourself." I'm sick and fucking tired of this god damn team just rolling over. Make some fucking hard choices instead of the easy ones.

/rant


Thanks for reading.

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