Turning Eagles Into Vultures

So Chris Cornell is gone.

I'm not going to pretend I was the biggest Soundgarden fan in the world, but for a while in the late 80's - early 90's, I was definitely a very big fan.

It's true, I was one of those guys. Loved them up through Badmotorfinger, but then they got really popular, so of course my fondness for them had to be crushed. Although the rationale was dumb, it was what is was and I was far from the only kid with that mindset. Point being, post-Badmotorfinger, I am pretty unfamiliar with anything beyond the hits. I have never heard an Audioslave song, and honestly, prefer to keep it that way (that elitist kid still lives on inside me).

I really did love that early stuff though. For me, Louder Than Love was the high watermark, and "Gun" was the high point (followed closely by "Hands All Over").

But if I needed to clear a room, nothing beat "Beyond the Wheel".

Great singer, seemed like a great guy. R.I.P.


Name That Book

Plot summary:
The antagonist is a tall, "no-nonsense" television journalist named Shannon Michaels, described as the product of two Celtic parents, who is pushed out by Global News Network, and systematically murders the people who ruined his career.
Uh oh.


The Logical Outcome of Palinism

“I thought it was important that we went outside,” Pence said. “I thought it was important that people on the other side of the DMZ see our resolve in my face.”
Problem solved, I guess?


Spacial Ed

Saw this while looking at self-warming cat bed on Amazon, because I'm super cool.


Stars and Stripes of Corruption #trump #newyorker

Photographer: Michael Steele/Getty Images 
The latest issue of the New Yorker has an Adam Davidson piece linking the Trump Organization, corrupt Azerbaijani officials, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). It's worth a read, but it is very complicated. The TL;DR is captured here:
The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, passed in 1977, forbade American companies from participating in a scheme to reward a foreign government official in exchange for material benefit or preferential treatment. The law even made it a crime for an American company to unknowingly benefit from a partner’s corruption if it could have discovered illicit activity but avoided doing so. 
The Trump Organization's definite ties to corrupt Azerbaijani officials and through them, possible ties to the Iranian Revolutionary Guard are not new news. But hopefully this article and the Trump Administration's continued Iranian warmonger will put this back on the radar, because there's a lot more than smoke there.


The Shining City

(Stephanie Keith/Getty Images)
I've spoken of the shining city all my political life, but I don't know if I ever quite communicated what I saw when I said it. But in my mind it was a tall, proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, windswept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace; a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity. And if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here. That's how I saw it, and see it still.
- Ronald Reagan's Farewell Speech, 1989

Ronald Reagan. I'm quoting Ronald Effing Reagan. A sad day, made a little more hopeful with the actions of those gathering at airports around the country, immigration lawyers, and the ACLU.



Had to bring in Der Creuzenvessel in to get some self-afflicted dings repaired. Insurance paid for a rental while it was in the shop. A 2016 Dodge. 2016. As in the year that just passed. And yet:

Look at that thing! Could be straight off my 1979 Mustang! I didn't even know they still made these. Does Dodge make you get a more deluxe model to get luxuries like a modern antenna? What's the cost trade off there? A completely different assembly process to charge a couple hundred of bucks for an antenna that doesn't look like it's from the Soviet era? Weird.