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October 25th, 2006 - Adventures in Engineering — LiveJournal
The wanderings of a modern ronin.

Ben Cantrick
  Date: 2006-10-25 00:14
  Subject:   Vote? Sure, as soon as you punch yourself in the nuts.

The media continues to prattle about the big "revolution" that will take place this November 7th. In order to encourage our participation in this biennial charade, we are being told that the American people have had enough of the duplicity; special-interest corruption; lying; and engorged appetites for police-state surveillance, secret trials, and torture. These same Americans will march to the polls, we are further advised, to vote the Republicans out of power and replace them with Democrats.

But when a Tweedledum Republican is opposed on the ballot by a Tweedledummer Democrat, even a handful of the Faux-News faithful may recognize the fungible nature of the various Republocrats. I have, in recent years, discovered only one member of Congress who is an exception to this, namely, Ron Paul from Texas. It is instructive that Paul – a philosophically principled Republican – has long been vigorously opposed by both the Republican and Democratic chieftains, a phenomenon that ought to be a tip-off to the identity of the real interests in any election.

I suspect that, like myself, those who have lost their innocence about politics will also be staying home on November 7th. After years of playing the carnival shell-game and losing their egg-money to clever sharpies, many Americans have finally experienced the working definition of "insanity," namely, "doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results."


So go on - vote. And continue to pretend like it matters. Pretend like it will actually cause some kind of actual, measureable change in the government.

I'll apologize for this rant *only* if Bush is impeached. Otherwise, fuck all the "you've gotta vote!" idiots. I tried voting when it actually mattered; in 2k4, before the President and Congress colluded to pass a (blatantly unconstitutional and anti-freedom by any standard) "torture and disappear" law that shreds the Bill of Rights to confetti. Unfortunately, the American electorate is not worth saving, and more than enough of you stupid fuckheads willingly believed the lie that Kerry could have somehow fucked over this country worse than Bush has. And so they voted Bush into office. Again.

So don't tell me to fucking vote. I tried that shit. IT DOES NOT WORK.

Moreover, the 52% who put Bush in office a second time richly deserve what they're going to get. I refuse to stand in the way of the semi truck barreling towards them. They have earned it. When the terrorists declare victory because we've destroyed our own freedom and done their dirty work for them, I for one will NOT be confused about where the blame lies.

Fuck you, America. My disloyalty to this broken, corrupt system did not come to me magically in an instant. It was forced upon me, relentlessly, over a period of multiple years. By the same bad system you insist that I should buy into, as mindlessly as you do.

Now, those of you inclined to look more critically at government and voting might enjoy one of Tooch's better rants on this subject. And if you need a sound-bite to understand, then maybe the words of Albert Einstein - "We cannot solve problems by using the same kind of thinking that created them" - will resonate.

What, you want an easy answer to all this? You want someone to spoon-feed you "the truth" on a silver platter? You want to be spared from the *crushing effort* of actually having to think for yourself for once?? Sorry, asshole - you are not ready for knowledge. I'd tell you, but you'd just call me crazy. And I don't have to take that kind of abuse from you! I've got hundreds of people waiting to abuse me! ;]

You wanna vote? Fine. Your choice. Have at it, with my blessing. I appreciate your idealism, even as I mock your naivety. But don't get on MY case about consciously and intentionally not voting - I will tear you a new one. Your collective pathetic, unthinking sheepitude on this issue pisses me off to no end.
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Ben Cantrick
  Date: 2006-10-25 02:42
  Subject:   Ben is going straight to hell, part the bazillionth.
  Mood:fatal caffeine overdose
  Music:"I laugh because the world makes me hurt really bad inside."

Tesco has been forced to remove a pole-dancing kit from the toys and games section of its website after it was accused of "destroying children's innocence". The Tesco Direct site advertises the kit with the words, "Unleash the sex kitten inside... simply extend the Peekaboo pole inside the tube, slip on the sexy tunes and away you go! Soon you'll be flaunting it to the world and earning a fortune in Peekaboo Dance Dollars". The £49.97 kit comprises a chrome pole extendible to 8ft 6ins, a 'sexy dance garter' and a DVD demonstrating suggestive dance moves. The kit, condemned as 'extremely dangerous' by family campaigners yesterday, was discovered by mother of two Karen Gallimore who was searching for Christmas gifts for her two daughters, Laura 10, and Sarah, 11.


You know, with a product like that, you have to wonder why they didn't try and get a celebrity endorsement deal from the Ramsey family! How does "The NEW "Jonbenet edition" pole-dancing kit! Recommended by four out of five horrifically sexually abused 6-year-olds!" strike you? Catchy, no!

And how much longer before we get the "black-eyed, beaten, strung out whore Barbie" doll[1]?


(thanks zonereyrie)
[1] No, sorry, "gangsta bitch barbie" doesn't count!
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Ben Cantrick
  Date: 2006-10-25 07:00
  Subject:   Psychonauts for XBox.

So, besides playing myself silly with Samurai Shodown II and original arcade Shinobi on my modded, MAME-enabled XBox, I've also acquired a copy (many thanks to you know who you are) of a somewhat obscure platformer called Psychonauts.

The basic plot of the game is that you're this little psychic kid nicknamed "Raz" (short for Rasputin), pictured above with his "psychic stowaway" and mentor popping out of his ear to offer some quick advice. Raz goes into people's minds and basically runs platforming obstacle courses through their psyches, finding "mental baggage" (anthropomorphic plaid steamer trunks) and cleaning up the occasional "psychic cobweb" (which can then be transformed into a powerup when you leave the person's mind).

It's surprisingly fun and well executed. The art style is totally surreal and bizzare, and it perfectly embodies jumping through the dark recesses of people's minds. It's pretty easy (at least so far), so if you're looking for something really hard this may not be the best one. But if you enjoy fun visual style and some good humor, this is a pretty good game. The world is not quite as wide open as the GTA games, but you're still free to go almost anywhere you could possibly want within the confines of the camp grounds, subject the limitations of your current powers. The levels inside people's heads are often sprawling and as mentioned before, sometimes hilariously surreal. There's a surprising amount of depth here for a game that at first glance looks so "kiddy."

I'm not too far in, only rank 25 out of 100, and I haven't seen but a fraction of the levels, so I can't render a full verdict yet. Oh, I think the first level was a bit too long - I would have tossed the pillbox obstacle course or maybe the rope work. But that's a very, very minor complaint.

This is the kind of game that I think people will either love or be totally indifferent to, so give it a whirl and see what you think. I was up until 4:30am last night playing it, so they must have done something right!
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May 2015