It’s time to #GiveYourMoneyToWomen

June 25, 2015 - Leave a Response

God’s Oscar Plan: Get Matty the Gold!

March 3, 2014 - Leave a Response

Matthew McConaughey thanked God for his Oscar, and attributed the “blessing” to actions of “no human hand”.

This was all part of God’s plan for him, see? You can see it, plain as day, if you think about it. It’s a pretty long term effort, all in all. Over 30 years of step by step manipulation to get his pal Matt that much deserved Oscar.  Here’s how I think it might have gone:

1) G gets crafty with it, creating HIV, a virus capable of crippling the human immune system and leading to AIDS, a condition where one’s collapsed immune response leaves him or her vulnerable to even the mildest infection.

2) Now for the dirty work.  Infect humanity with the virus, and confound efforts for a cure.  This part takes the most attention and effort, but hey, if it gets Matt that statue, it’ll all be worth it.

3) Take Plan Matty Gold to the next level! Allow pharmaceutical corporations to use their vast wealth to control the US’ Food and Drug Administration, keeping dying patients from exploring medicines which don’t line their pockets with cash. BOOYAH!

4) It’s all starting to come together now, bitches!  Because of the aggressive pursuit of the FDA, “Buyers Clubs” attempting to get unapproved medications into the hands of patients will collapse.

5) Hard part’s over! Big G on the home stretch. Simply wait around while over 30 million people are killed worldwide.

6) Give the idea of making a film about AIDS Buyers Clubs to certain filmmakers, and make sure the film gets made.  Easy peasy for the guy who came up with things like skin lesions.

7) Ensure the casting of My Boy Matthew.

8) Presto! Give that man his Little Gold Statue and DO THAT HAPPY DANCE!

Alright, alright, alright!  Not a human hand to be found in any of it.  God’s in the house and all is right with the world!

Congrats, Matt!

-JDC

Need your help, friends.

December 4, 2013 - Leave a Response

Friends,

As many of you know, earlier this year my car broke down. The repair estimate was well over $4000, which effectively meant I was without a car for the foreseeable future.  I’ve been sharing a vehicle with my mother since then, not an ideal situation but we’ve been getting by as best we can.

Yesterday, my mother’s car broke down, and the estimate for her repairs is over $2000. Again we are faced with a situation where we just don’t have the means to take care of that right now.  We are pursuing our options, but frankly I’ve reached the point where I am forced to ask for help.

I don’t like doing it.  No one likes asking for help, especially in these times when everyone is in a bad situation of their own.  No one likes being panhandled, and I understand that.  I wouldn’t do it if I weren’t in place of desperation.

I have added a PayPal Donate button to my blog.  Obviously I have no expectation of anyone, but I ask if you are able to help even with a small amount, please do so. Thank you for any help you are able to give.

I intend to continue to provide free content for this blog.  Additionally, my works on Smashwords are currently “Set Your Own Price” until Christmas Day, so please by all means take advantage of that sale to get my eBooks for free or a reduced price.  (For free especially if you donate here!)

-JDC

Why I Won’t Be Playing “Ender’s Game”

October 31, 2013 - Leave a Response

Writer Orson Scott Card’s “Ender’s Game” is, by all accounts, a terrific science fiction story. As a comic store manager for a year and a half, I saw how popular the comic adaptation of the novels was to our customers. As a proud geek and lover of all things nerd, you would think I’d be lining up to see this.  The trailer looks excellent, and stars Harrison Ford and Ben Kingsley are definite pluses for any movie.

But I won’t be seeing “Ender’s Game”.  I won’t be buying the books, the comics, or any other work by Orson Scott Card.

By now, you may already know why.  There have been lots of articles already written as the film approaches about Card’s anti-gay views. But just in case you haven’t read any of them or were not aware, Orson Scott Card is as homophobic and bigoted a person as you are ever likely to find.

I’ll be linking you to a site that has several quotes and sources for his statements expressing his hate and fear, so you can familiarize yourself with just how awful a human being he is.  But let me just say that if it were ONLY his views, I might not boycott the film.  After all, everyone’s entitled to their opinion, we live in a nation where the right to free speech is cherished, and though I disagree with someone, I don’t try to silence them.

It’s more than that, though.  Card is an activist, a very wealthy and prominent activist, who has sat on the board of anti-gay lobbying groups and campaigned not only against marriage equality but for the outright CRIMINALIZATION of homosexuality across the country and the WORLD.  Every dollar he makes from the purchase of his works has the potential to fuel anti-gay campaigns literally everywhere.

There has been a post spread at the last minute by Lionsgate that Card is listed as a producer but will receive no profits from the film.  Even if this IS true (and if so why is it suddenly being said in the final hour?) the success of the film will CERTAINLY lead to greater sales of his books, and so the success of the film is directly linked to money in the coffers of hate groups. So that’s not an excuse to contribute to it.

Bottom line: I don’t want my money going to hurt people I care about. Point blank. No, thank you.

Each of us has to make their own decision. I won’t judge anyone who decides to see it. But I encourage you to avoid the movie, books, or anything by Orson Scott Card. Here’s a link to a great site that gives more information and also has a petition to sign. Please help spread the word!

Skip Ender’s Game

 

Your Attacks on Miley Say More About You

August 26, 2013 - Leave a Response

Miley Cyrus made quite a splash last night. Twitter blew up with an outrage not heard since…uh, the day before, when they were outraged over Ben Affleck being cast as Batman. As outrageous as casting an award winning actor/director to play a major role may have been, Miley committed even more unpardonable sins on the VMAs, such as dressing scantily and behaving in an overtly sexual manner, which in our modern society are seemingly worse than murder.

Using one of these attacks today? Perhaps you should take a step back, and look at what you’re saying actually says about you.

1) Her body is gross, her ass is flat! (etc etc)

Body shaming is so crass. Just because you are ashamed of your own body, don’t hate on someone else for being comfortable with theirs. I think it’s great that Miley is at home with her body and enjoys showing it off. We should all be that happy with ourselves. And so what if it doesn’t look like your “ideal” body, who the fuck are you that we should all conform to your ideals. Fuck off.

2) Oh my God she’s half naked! So inappropriate for a former Disney star!

Do you realize how many people have appeared in movies or television produced by Disney and Disney affiliates? Are you really suggesting that none of them should behave in a manner inconsistent with a G-rating for the rest of their lives? Miley is 20 years old, she’s an adult, she can show skin if she wants. What this statement means is that you are repressed and uncomfortable with the human body.  You probably react this way every time a celeb appears showing some skin. The VMAs aren’t a Disney kid’s show, they’re an adult venue with a history of adult behavior. Grow up, become an adult yourself, or don’t watch it.

3) That was so trashy! All that sexual behavior, grinding and sexing up stuffed animals! Disgusting!

Number one, this is slut shaming, because you’ve decided that an adult woman displaying an enjoyment of sex is somehow “trashy”, and at the same time have not applied this judgment to men (including the man ON THE STAGE WITH HER). Number two, this also shows a pretty deep level of repression. Grinding and simulated sex, even with animals, are not the real thing happening on stage there, it’s all in the name of putting on a wild, raunchy show, which apparently you aren’t able to handle due to your own issues with sex.

4) How dare she grind on Robin Thicke like that? He’s a married man!

Again, and it’s really sad that I keep having to repeat this but: IT’S A SHOW! It’s not real. You don’t complain when married men are with different women in movies or television shows, do you? Well that’s what this was, a venue of entertainment.  They weren’t caught out at a club together.  Your inability to separate fantasy from reality is really a problem at this point.  Additionally, you appear to level all blame for your outrage on Miley, and none of it on Robin, which shows quite a different problem, and a raging double standard.

5) She’s appropriating black culture with all that twerking!

I don’t even know where to start with this. “Twerking” is now “black culture”? Seriously? The majority of the audience for hip hop are white people. Even if you don’t like it, that ship has sailed. White kids all over the nation are rapping and twerking and there’s really nothing you or anyone else can do about it.  And performers have been adopting various musical and dance styles without regard to what race they “belong” to since Elvis. That ship has sailed too.  So even if I do allow that “twerking” somehow “belongs” to black culture, your complaint really has no merit.  But I won’t allow that, because music and dance really have no color. Once they’re out there, they’re out there, for anyone to adopt and perform, and enjoy, as they see fit.  I wouldn’t want anyone telling me I can’t buy the latest Kanye CD because I’m not allowed to enjoy black culture, and I don’t want anyone telling Eminem he can’t rap for the same reasons. So as far as I’m concerned, twerk it up, Miley.

Hey, if you didn’t like the show, fine. I’m not telling anyone to like something they don’t like, or not to express their dislike.  I’m just saying there are certain complaints that have major implications for your worldview behind them, and if you take a moment to unpack them, you might find that what you’re saying about Miley Cyrus this morning says way more about you than it does about her. Our society is still so repressed and so in the grip of ancient, mothballed concepts of what’s “sinful” and “inappropriate”. Really, we need to look at these and understand them so we can get past them and move on. Otherwise, we’re no better than those who threw Pussy Riot in jail, or throw acid in a woman’s face for not wearing a veil. 

Fuck that nonsense, right?

New Author Interview

August 19, 2013 - Leave a Response

I have a new author interview up at BookLOADS. We discuss MISSING TIME, and writing in general. Check it out!

http://bookloads.weebly.com/august.html

Soda, Jerked

March 16, 2013 - One Response

NYC Mayor Bloomberg’s ban of large sodas was in the news a lot this week, and discussed on lots of TV shows, etc. after a judge struck it down.  Bloomberg promised to appeal the decision, and I think he should, because there is solid ground for this law.

I’ve heard lots of pundits criticize it as a “Nanny State” law, and the crazier Facebook posts of course proclaiming it a threat to their soda drinking liberties, yadda yadda, but let’s look past the rhetoric and hype to reexamine this issue, because I think most people are coming at it from the wrong direction.

Most people seem to be comparing it to smoking ordinances, which prohibit smoking in certain areas, mostly indoor public spaces, although some towns go much further, prohibiting smoking just about everywhere except your home.  But I think this is a bad comparison, because that law exists not to stop you from smoking, but to keep you from exposing to cigarette smoke those people who do not choose to smoke (including children).  The soda ban isn’t using the same basis.  No one is exposed to your overconsumption of sugar except you.

And, in fact, the ban doesn’t keep you from drinking sodas, anywhere.  You can still drink your 16oz cup of soda and refill it until your kidneys explode if you so desire.

This is, in fact, not a law to prevent consumers from doing anything at ALL.  It’s a law that targets the salesperson, and enforces them to sell responsibly.

Think of a bartender.  If a bartender sees that you are inebriated, the law says she cannot continue to serve you alcohol.  It’s irresponsible on her part to do so.  The law does not exist to prevent you from drinking; it exists to prevent a business from taking advantage of your condition to line their pockets, while putting you at risk.  It stops a predatory practice from taking place, and as such, it is there to protect your rights, NOT curtail them.  In the same sense, the business owner selling sodas can sell a reasonable size drink all day, but selling a giant bucket of soda even though she knows it is a dangerously large amount of sugar to drink in one sitting is irresponsible.  She would be taking advantage of your inability to control yourself by doing so.  Now, with the ban in place, your rights are protected, and in fact, the onus of responsibility for yourself is placed back in your hands.  You can go back and refill that 16oz soda all you want.  When the doctor bill comes, you will have only yourself to blame.  Freedom.

Some might argue that the alcohol law exists to protect those you might harm in your inebriated condition, driving, etc.  But I would argue that the soda law does the same, just in a longer-term viewpoint.  If you end up hospitalized your family could be endangered, if you die your family could be endangered.  And heart attacks on the road home do happen too, that’s not out of the realm of possibility.  So even this is not a solid argument to strike down the soda ban.

I am hopeful that on appeal, the court will consider that business should sell their products responsibly, and not endanger their customers by selling a portion of product that is blatantly harmful to them.  Allowing companies to do whatever they want to get rich while putting all of our health at risk is one reason why our health costs are so high and our country is in so much economic trouble.  Uphold the soda ban, and maybe NYC will be a little healthier, then maybe other areas will follow your example. That’s worth fighting for, Mr. Mayor.

Argentine Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio chosen as Pope

March 13, 2013 - One Response

Today, Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, a Jesuit from Argentina, was selected as the new Pope, taking the name Francis I.  He succeeds retired pontif Pope Benedict XVI, aka Joseph Ratzinger.

We all know about the constant scandal the Church has been mired in with Benedict, who organized the cover-up of child rape worldwide, and we can only assume this will continue with Francis.  At least until the Catholic Church starts turning priests involved with child rape over to authorities.  In addition to this, the end of the cover up of child rape, I think there are several things people with any sense would like to see from the new Pope of the Catholic Church:

1. End Priests’ Vow of Celibacy.  Let’s face it: this was always a bad idea, and is a huge part of the problem.  Let Priests marry, let them have relationships, let them have sex with men, women, ANYONE except the children in their care.

Prospects: Pope Francis is a JESUIT.  Their order takes a vow of celibacy of their own, and he is unlikely to suddenly feel it is a bad idea at age 76.  Nope, this one is not going to happen under this Pope, so Catholic kids remain at heightened risk.

2. Integrate Women into the Priesthood.  The Church seriously needs to join us in the 21st century and take this step to end their millennia of discrimination against and repression of women and start letting women join the men in leadership.  I know the book of Timothy expressly forbids it, but come on, they’ve found their way to reinterpret and work around other Biblical goofs and they can do it again.

Prospects: Ah, no. Not happening.  Jesuits are a very traditional order, and no way in hell Francis is letting this happen on his watch.  Sorry, ladies!  Of course, if you’re a woman still in the Church, you’re blind to the way they’re treating you anyway, so…no harm done.

3. Stop Condemning the Use of Birth Control.  Not only is this just a backward way of thinking, it’s done incredible harm worldwide, keeping masses of people in poverty and dying of hunger, as well as propagating the deadly AIDS virus.  In Africa alone, this aspect of the Church is, in my mind, tantamount to acts of genocide.

Prospects: Dismal and dismaller. Francis has campaigned against the use of birth control himself.  He is, ironically,  lauded as a champion of the poor, while this key stance is a deadly attack against them. And keep reading, it only gets worse from here…

4. Stop the Church’s Anti-Gay Stance.  Again, join us in the 21st century, where LGBTs are people and deserve to be treated with the same respect and love as the rest of us.

Prospects: No fucking chance.  Francis has campaigned against gay marriage, saying it will “injure the family”, against adoption of children by gay parents (the irony of which, a Catholic protecting children from supposed immorality, is so ironic it smacks you right in the face with irony), on the basis that it would “deprive them of the human growth that God wanted them given by a mother and a father”.  Right, because they’re getting so much human growth in the orphanage with no parents at all.  Genius.  Basically, this guy is a one man anti-gay army.

Sorry, folks, but it doesn’t look like the new Pope is any better for the woes of the Vatican than the old Pope.  It’s the old Popemobile Shell Game, where you keep the audience distracted while you shuffle things around and hope they never notice the bait and switch you pulled, resulting in no change at all.

Only the names have been changed to protect the guilty.

February 27, 2013 - Leave a Response

(facepalm)

emma wolf

Apparently Rand Paul thinks that if health care is a right, doctors will be enslaved.

With regard to the idea whether or not you have a right to health care you have to realize what that implies. I am a physician. You have a right to come to my house and conscript me.

Um…no. And to prove my point, let me draw your attention to something. It’s called the Constitution. Have you heard of it? The Sixth Amendment says, in relevant part:

If you have been arrested, you have the right to an attorney. Just like if you sneeze, people are arguing that you have the right to healthcare. If you’re where I practice, your attorney might be me. This does not mean I am a slave!…

View original post 53 more words

Book Review: “Griftopia: Bubble Machines, Vampire Squids, and the Long Con that is Breaking America” by Matt Taibbi (Nov, 2010)

February 17, 2013 - Leave a Response

I realize I’m late getting to this book, but better late than never.

The subject matter of this book ranges from the depressing to the terrifying. Greed and corruption at the top levels of the financial and political powers of the world conspire to rob us blind and leave our country at the brink of disaster. And no one is doing anything about it. Luckily, you have guide Matt Taibbi to ferret out the wrongdoers and expose them to the light of day, all the while relentlessly illustrating how screwed you are in the deal.

Taibbi has a great gift for taking complex and mind-numbing subjects like housing markets, commodities trading, and credit default swaps and boiling them down to easy to understand, bite size chunks. And his biting humor helps you to be able to stomach the horrifying, rapacious greed and lack of ethics at the heart of the power structure.

There may be no hope, but information is power, and Taibbi brings you the information. Once armed, it’s up to you what to do with it.

Rating: 4/5

Recommendation: If you care about politics or finance at all, this is a must read.