OK, this is just surreal.

From the Daily Herald, a bit about the Utah County Republicans convention.

Utah County Republicans ended their convention on Saturday by debating Satan’s influence on illegal immigrants… Don Larsen, chairman of legislative District 65 for the Utah County Republican Party, had submitted a resolution warning that Satan’s minions want to eliminate national borders and do away with sovereignty.

In a speech at the convention, Larsen told those gathered that illegal immigrants “hate American people” and “are determined to destroy this country, and there is nothing they won’t do.” Illegal aliens are in control of the media, and working in tandem with Democrats, are trying to “destroy Christian America” and replace it with “a godless new world order — and that is not extremism, that is fact,” Larsen said.

Published in: on May 3, 2007 at 14:24  Comments (5)  
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We live in a strange world.

From the news today: In response to a mounting scandal over the firing of federal prosecutors for failing to prosecute enough Democratic candidates and political targets, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales has said that “mistakes were made,” presumably by space aliens or some other third party.

Halliburton, the contractor formerly run by now-VP Dick Cheney, and recipient of over $25B in no-bid Iraq contracts (several of which are under investigation for things like fraudulent cost overruns) has announced that it plans to move its corporate headquarters to Dubai. Predictably, people are not amused.

And Israel recalled its ambassador to El Salvador after he was found drunk and wearing nothing but bondage gear and a ball gag in the embassy complex. (You know, Israeli politics is just fascinating some days…)

Published in: on March 13, 2007 at 13:49  Comments (24)  
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In slightly less apocalyptic news…

Check out Israel’s entry to this year’s Eurovision, Push the Button. It’s disturbingly catchy. Lyrics (in a combination of English, French and Hebrew) are here. The runner-up, Salaam Salami, is also pretty… um… extraordinary.

(For those of you who have never seen the Eurovision song contest before, yes, pretty much all of the music is that bad. But of course, there’s controversy — the contest organizers want to ban Israel’s entry because of “inappropriate political content.” This link also has translated lyrics)

Since nobody seems to have translated Salaam Salami, here’s a go at it

Published in: on March 2, 2007 at 10:49  Comments (8)  
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Silly buggers

For those of you who haven’t seen this, the Rev. Ted Haggard, a prominent conservative leader, (and who was prominently featured in the recent documentary Jesus Camp, btw) recently resigned after admitting to the at least partial truth of allegations that he’s been popping meth and screwing male prostitutes. But he qualified his admission:

One of the nation’s most influential conservative Christian leaders, the Rev. Ted Haggard, said today he bought methamphetamine and received a massage from a self-described male escort. But Haggard denied allegations by the man that he ever used the drug or had sex with him.

You know, this makes me miss straightforward bullshit like “I didn’t inhale!”

(Incidentally — this story is prompting so much amusement in no small part because, what a shock, the Rev. Haggard spends a lot of time preaching against homosexuals. Until a few days ago, he was one of the up-and-coming powers of the religious right wing. Hey, with habits like these, maybe he should run for Congress…)

Published in: on November 3, 2006 at 14:53  Comments (13)  
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And another thing

Apparently, as “his frustration rises and his influence ebbs,” our president has been using the word “unacceptable” much more often. The article says:

In speeches, statements and news conferences this year, the president has repeatedly declared a range of problems “unacceptable,” including rising health costs, immigrants who live outside the law, North Korea’s claimed nuclear test, genocide in Sudan and Iran’s nuclear ambitions… Having a president call something “unacceptable” is not the same as having him order U.S. troops into action. But foreign policy experts say the word is one of the strongest any leader can deploy, since it both broadcasts a national position and conveys an implicit threat to take action if his warnings are disregarded.

The article avoids (explicitly) saying:

You use that word a great deal. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Published in: on October 13, 2006 at 14:30  Comments (10)  
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And now for something mostly different

From Reuters: Troops battle 10-foot marijuana plants.

One soldier told him later: “Sir, three years ago before I joined the Army, I never thought I’d say ‘That damn marijuana.'”

Published in: on October 13, 2006 at 11:47  Comments Off on And now for something mostly different  

Random snippets from work

Things which will probably make sense only to other computer people.

One of the things I do at work is code readability reviews, which are the intense initial reviews that everyone has to get before they’re allowed to check anything in. (Style correctness, etc) I just noticed that one of the people doing Python readability reviews is Guido van Rossum.

From a thread at work:

> So this is undefined behavior, and the compiler is free to do
> _anything_, including always returning 0x1234

Language lawyers and compiler people are always threatening to do
things like this when standards call for undefined behavior, but they
never actually do it. The world would be a much more fun place (and
we’d probably find more latent bugs) if gcc had a –psychotic mode.

Truer words were never spoken.

Published in: on September 28, 2006 at 12:31  Comments (13)  
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Dialogue in my office

Me: Here’s a headline you don’t see in civilized countries. “Fatah Gunmen Attack Parliament.”
Officemate: Sure you do. Whenever Fatah comes and attacks people’s parliaments.

Only in the Middle East…

Published in: on June 12, 2006 at 13:03  Comments (12)  
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Protected: Caption contest!

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Published in: on March 17, 2006 at 10:21  Enter your password to view comments.  
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Not tonight, dear, I have a haddock

I always knew that being in Israel occasionally made tourists go a little odd, but normally it happens in Jerusalem rather than Eilat. And, um, doesn’t involve dolphins.

Published in: on March 8, 2006 at 15:09  Comments (20)  
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