Here’s behind-the-scenes video footage of a 27-year-old bald eagle named “Uncle Sam” hatin’ on Donald Trump. The footage comes from a TIME photoshoot shot back in August for a cover story on a billionaire asshat running for President on the GOP ticket.
I’m not quite sure, but there might be something kinda symbolic here? Do you feel me?
The world’s new hero is Uncle Sam. Good on ya, buddy.
Perhaps one of the dumbest culture-related things I’ve spotted so far this week—it’s ONLY Tuesday, tho—is the “Hipster Santa” as seen in a Portland, Oregon shopping mall. “Hipster Santa” sports stupid hipster hair, skinny black jeans, Ray-Ban eyewear, a Big Lebowski-style sweater, corresponds with a typewriter and rides a bike instead of a sleigh. The only thing that’s missing is his collection of holiday classics in vinyl. Where the fuck is Santa’s vinyl?!
Can we make this official by retiring “hipster” and “man bun” anything? It’s just not funny anymore. It hasn’t been funny in years. It’s about as “hilarious” as the official office “ugly Christmas sweater” party. Let’s mark this as the final nail in the coffin and kill the meme. Douse it in kerosene and throw the match. I demand it.
If you’ve got a beard, you’d best tread carefully around riled-up Fox News viewers.
In one of the single dumbest news stories I’ve read in a year that’s been chock full of ‘em, Benedetto DeFrancisco, a transgender Chicago teaching assistant, was harassed and threatened at gunpoint after he was mistaken for a member of ISIS, apparently solely on account of—drumroll please—his beard.
“I literally just walk around the school, so on my second lap, he was definitely shouting [again], and it felt like it was aimed at me. It was getting louder and more aggressive. A lot of swearing. I honestly thought he was drunk. I took out my headphones and looked at him, and heard what he was saying: ‘I know what you’re doing, motherfucker. You’re scaring my wife — get out of here.’”
At this point DeFrancisco saw Jackson’s .45 caliber Ruger semi-automatic pistol and calmly walked away, calling authorities after he was safely around the corner. Police arrived on the scene soon afterwards.
“They were getting scared, because the ISIS attack happened in France, and getting more scared that ISIS was in Chicago. It’s clear that they had been watching me since the previous Monday — this happened on a Wednesday. I’ve been taking these walks since I’ve been working there. On my walk, I notice the same people come around. My thing to do is say hello. Unfortunately, with this man and his wife, their fear got the best of them. They could have just asked, ‘Hey, what are you doing here?’”
Mr. Jackson is due in court on Wednesday on charges of aggravated assault. He’s lucky that flagrant stupidity isn’t a crime because the judge would be obliged to throw the book at him.
Coming as no surprise to anyone, according to detectives, Jackson and his wife are avid Fox News fans! DeFrancisco’s “look”—which includes a beard—was making Mrs. Jackson nervous and so her husband decided to grab his gun and verbally assault him while waving a gun around. Cute couple.
This is kind of abject idiocy you can’t reason with. Fox News + Islamophobia + Republicans + GUNS = Modern America going completely insane. With his own experience being a vivid example of how this sort of irrational “thinking” can hurt totally innocent people, DeFrancisco believes that the Fox News fear-mongering has negative repercussions:
“[Jackson] is not the only person watching Fox News — it’s a toxin and it’s spreading fear, and this fear leads to hatred. Instead of wanting to know something about a culture or religion, they just shut it down in the most horrible or scary way.”
I’ll say it again: His beard is what set them off!
It’s too sadly moronic to contemplate, isn’t it?
Admirably Benedetto DeFrancisco is taking this unfortunate incident in his stride and although he would like a letter of apology from Mr. Jackson he doesn’t hope for him to spend any time in jail, thinking that his assailant, who was allegedly quite contrite upon his arrest, has learned a valuable lesson.
Fuck that. Make an example of this idiot. At the very least fine him an awful lot of money, so much that it hurts, AND TAKE AWAY HIS FUCKING GUN FOR GOOD.
If Fox News tries to make a martyr out of poor dumb-dumb sap William Jackson—he’s the new Kim Davis, a brave American going after an Islamic terrorist with a gun OR AT LEAST THIS IS WHAT THE FUCK HE THOUGHT HE WAS DOING, this story will crawl up its own ass in ways I can’t even anticipate. Perhaps Mike Huckabee will show up at his arraignment with a guy in a Santa Claus suit and a camera crew and the theme from Rocky playing over the PA system.
Of the 14,000+ McDonald’s franchises in the United States only 8,000 of them carry The McRib sandwich. Your chances of finding a McRib are about 55%. And that’s freaking some people out. So much so that there’s a McRib Locator on the Internet that “was created to help McRib fans locate this tasty yet elusive sandwich.” Apparently, a shitload of folks are hankering for a slab of pig guts tossed with yoga mats, 70 additives, chemicals, fillers, and GMO ingredients all held together by glue and slathered in barbecue sauce that tastes like liquid diabetes.
When it comes to the McRib, sometimes you just gotta make a stand. Strip clubs too. Donald Trump has been strangely silent on these subjects. Not so the fine folk of Santa Clarita, California.
Santa Clarita is the third largest city in Los Angeles County so you’d figure that the city council would be up to their elbows in all kinds of important civic issues. But who is to judge what is important and what is not? This is a democracy gawdammit! So at most city council meetings there’s a period for public comment on any topic… as you will see.
In the following video two Santa Claritians (?) address the council on two pressing matters very near and dear to their hearts: strip clubs and the McRib sandwich. The first one up is a guy who looks like the love child of an overstuffed scarecrow and The Cure’s Robert Smith - a lap dancer’s equivalent of a hard day at the office. But he’s merely the opening act for the pink-haired goofball up next. You can feel the young woman’s pain as she laments that the nearest MaCrib was “seen” 350 miles north of Santa Clarita in the Bay Area. She looks like she’s about to cry over the anguish that it’s caused her poor family, not to mention the Santa Clarita “foodie community” who she claims to represent. Can’t the Mayor call up McDonald’s and DO SOMETHING ABOUT THIS???
Update: Okay here’s the scoop. I hate to be the guy to blow the cover off a great prank, but according to our super secret source, the “foodie” with the Manic Panik dye-job is fledgling comedian Xanthe Pajarillo . She’s pulled off an ingenious stunt. Had us fooled. She’s definitely got a future in comedy and that future is now. So who’s the dude? Robert Benjamin. Another comic. Brilliant guys, brilliant.
The Service Industry’s homage to the McRib “Liquid Meat (Into A Form).”
I have to admit I kinda love this. In honor of Guy Fawkes Night, a giant paper sculpture of a naked David Cameron with a decapitated pig’s head will go up flames tonight on Lewes bonfire, in East Sussex.
Apparently #PigGate is still not over. Fuck him. The Prime Minister I mean, not that poor defenseless pig he (allegedly) molested
(Once we get footage of the burning “pig fucker,” I’ll add it to this post.)
Saturday, October 10th will officially be “Patti Smith Day” in Boston: Boston Mayor Marty Walsh announced the honor via Twitter earlier this morning, and Smith will be in Boston for the event on Saturday, signing copies of her new book M Train at the Back Bay Events Center. (Stereogum)
“A Fireside Chat With An Active Shooter”—Torch of the Mystics demystified: Twenty-five years after its release, Torch of the Mystics, the single best and probably most sought-after album by the brain-melting world/psych band/freakshow Sun City Girls is getting a vinyl reissue. Forced Exposure talked to the band’s Alan Bishop. (Forced Exposure)
Congressman puts Speaker of the House job listing on Craigslist: California’s Mark Takano (D-Unsurprisingly) made a CL posting for the now up-for-grabs Speaker position that was presumed to be a lock for Kevin McCarthy until he bowed out of the running under the shadow of a sex scandal yesterday. The ad is full of pretty funny jabs at the far-right crazies that have thrown the legislative process into total disarry. CL pulled the ad, unfortunately, but here’s a screencap from Takano’s Facebook page:
‘YouTube effect’ has left police officers under siege, law enforcement leaders say: That the biggest complaint of the USA’s hyper-militarized police forces is the citizenry’s exercise of its Constitutional rights might just say all you need to know about what’s become of cop culture. (WaPo)
KidneyBook: You can get transplant organs on social media now: The international organ trade isn’t new. What’s new is social media’s role in this black market, especially in Southeast Asia. According to the Al Jazeera story, brokers based in India or Sri Lanka create fake Facebook profiles (often young women, who are perceived as more trustworthy) and post messages on kidney transplant support groups saying that they are desperately seeking a transplant for a relative. The brokers change their cell phone numbers and account information every five to six weeks so that they can’t be tracked. (Popular Science)
Asshole Ivy-Leaguer says Native Americans should be grateful for Columbus: The Brown University Daily Herald recently ran a rambling, incoherent column by M. Dzhali Maier, a science and society undergrad, called “The White Privilege of Cows.” The Herald later published another column by Maier titled “Columbian Exchange Day.” Both pieces suggested, among other things, that colonialism was a benefit to native populations. Never mind that pesky genocide part, apparently. (U.S. Uncut)
Why Donald Trump will always be a “short-fingered vulgarian”: Graydon Carter famously coined that enduring Trump takedown in the pages of Spy Magazine, and he relates the fallout that’s been forthcoming from The Donald ever since: “That was more than a quarter of a century ago. To this day, I receive the occasional envelope from Trump. There is always a photo of him—generally a tear sheet from a magazine. On all of them he has circled his hand in gold Sharpie in a valiant effort to highlight the length of his fingers.” (Vanity Fair)
Jason Baca has posed for the covers of over 400 romance novels: But how does a guy get started in the trade? How does it feel being the object of so many women’s fantasies? And what happens when you’re holding a scantily clad stranger and a lighting fixture comes crashing down? The Guardian spoke to the man himself to find out. (The Guardian)
That ‘Renoir Sucks’ guy challenged a critic to a duel: This week we (and plenty of other outlets) told you about the protests in Boston against Pierre-Auguste Renoir. The protest’s mastermind, Max Geller, is reveling in the attention: “...he tells me with some amount of glee, he’s pretty sure that dueling is technically still legal in Massachusetts. This is good news for Geller, who can think of no more appropriate response to the Boston Globe article calling his protest of French Impressionist painter Pierre-Auguste Renoir ‘sophomoric’ than challenging the author to a bloody fight to the death.” (HuffPo)
Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood announces world music solo LP and Paul Thomas Anderson-directed video: Rockers dabbling in global ethnic musics were given a bad name by some pretty exploitatively appropriative works that emerged during an ‘80s fad for pop Africana. Since then, people like Ry Cooder and Damon Albarn have rehabilitated the practice, and now Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood has joined that fray. Per Pitchfork’s Jazz Monroe: “Earlier this year, Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood revealed he was working on a new album in India with Israeli composer Shye Ben Tzur. Now, it has a title and release date. Junun, which also features Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich and Indian qawwali group the Rajasthan Express, is due November 13 via Nonesuch. As previously reported, it’s accompanied by a documentary of the same name, directed by Paul Thomas Anderson.” Here’s an advance sample clip:
35 Years of Talking Heads’ ‘Remain in Light’: “They tightened up. They got funky. They set up shop in Nassau. They surrounded Remain in Light‘s eight songs with a worldly blend of global pop, post-punk, American R&B and artsy experimentalism augmented by a handful of session players on horns and percussion. And they played around with loops and samples, still mostly unheard of at the time, which gave the album the otherworldly feeling that the entire project was shipped in from another time and place, nowhere near the end-of-the-century New York City that the group had come to identify with so closely.” Ultimate Classic Rock senior editor Michael Gallucci’s edifying take on Talking Heads’ masterpiece. (Ultimate Classic Rock)
RIP Nunslaughter drummer Jim Konya: Jim was a universally and justifiably beloved fixture in Midwestern underground metal and hardcore (Minch, Nunslaughter, Schnauzer, 9 Shocks Terror, this list could go on for miles), but he suffered a stroke last month, then suffered a still more severe stroke while recuperating from the first. When doctors determined he’d never recover, the decision was made to remove him from life support. He passed yesterday. Konya had a big heart and a big personality, and he will be sorely missed. The ongoing crowdfunding campaign intended for his medical expenses will be applied to his final expenses. (Noisey)
Meet the right-wing rebels who overthrew John Boehner: It is only in recent months that this disruptive force in American politics even has a name: the House Freedom Caucus. Composed of nearly 40 of the most committed ideologues in the House, the Freedom Caucus has a simple mission: to get GOP leadership to deliver on the extreme, anti-government and social-conservative rhetoric that nearly all Republicans spout to get elected. (Rolling Stone)
Kevin McCarthy Pulls Out Of House Speaker’s Race: In a shocking twist to all the current House GOP craziness, the front-runner—by miles—for the Speaker gig removed himself from consideration. Perhaps there’s been motion behind the scenes to annihilate him after he openly admitted that the Benghazi investigations were an expensive, politically motivated character assassination? Not that this means the grownups will be in charge; the resultant chaos from McCarthy’s withdrawal leaves an opening for gross misogynist/Backpfeifengesicht poster-boy Jason Chaffetz. (HuffPo) UPDATE! The other shoe drops: Kevin McCarthy accused of having an affair with fellow member of Congress
Some people think The Martian is a true story: Because of course they do. Read tweets by the exasperated loved ones of the alarmingly credulous. (Time)
Smoke bombs, eggings: Kosovo’s parliament is out of control: A heated argument in parliament today ended with one minister detonating a smoke bomb. Opposition leader Albin Kurti is the alleged miscreant, and he reportedly kicked at least one smoking canister (emitting what may have been tear gas) around the room until two of his fellow ministers fainted. The pics and videos in this article are very nearly unbelievable. (Quartz)
Dream Theater’s drummer rocks a Hello Kitty drum set: Whatever you think of Dream Theater, this is great. (Loudwire)
Ancient Mars Was Wetter and Warmer Than We Ever Realized: OK, first, get your mind out of the gutter. New data collected by the Curiosity rover shows that Mars was once quite Earth-like, featuring river deltas, lakes, and a warm climate. What’s more, the Red Planet may have been able to sustain liquid water at the surface long enough for life to emerge and evolve. Evidence for extraterrestrial life has yet to be discovered on Mars, but this latest finding shows that key ingredients were once available for microbial life to originate and evolve. (Gizmodo)
American democracy is doomed: Accusations that Barack Obama or John Boehner or any other individual politician is failing as a leader are flung, and then abandoned when the next issue arises. In practice, the feeling seems to be that salvation is just one election away. Hillary Clinton even told Kara Swisher recently that her agenda if she runs for president is to end partisan gridlock. It’s not going to work. The breakdown of American constitutional democracy is a contrarian view. But it’s nothing more than the view that rather than everyone being wrong about the state of American politics, maybe everyone is right. Maybe Bush and Obama are dangerously exceeding norms of executive authority. Maybe legislative compromise really has broken down in an alarming way. And maybe the reason these complaints persist across different administrations and congresses led by members of different parties is that American politics is breaking down. (Vox)
Check out Failure’s new video, “Counterfeit Sky’: The sci-fi clip was created by FX whiz Kevin Margo, using footage from his short film Grounded, which was scored by Ken Andrews of Failure. And the log keeps a-rollin’. Failure will embark on yet another tour supporting their comeback album The Heart Is A Monster tomorrow, this time with their mid-‘90s second guitarist Troy Van Leeuwen back in the fold for the first time since the band’s reunion last year.
Who would have thought that doing a fashion photo shoot using a refugee theme—during a time when a major refugee crisis involving Syria is in the headlines every freaking day—would be in poor taste and might piss a few people off?
Well, it apparently didn’t occur to Hungarian fashion photographer Norbert Baksa, who did just that last week, when he did a fashion shoot with visible barbed wire at the Hungarian border and uploaded the photographs to his website and Twitter feed. Within hours of doing so, Baksa became the target of an enormous torrent of criticism in the international press. The name of the series is “Der Migrant,” which is German for “The Migrant.”
One picture depicts a woman taking a selfie at a barbed wire border, using a cellphone with a prominent Chanel logo on the back. Her shirt is unbuttoned and one of her breasts is exposed, which isn’t exactly a tasteful way to depict anyone who might be associated in the viewer’s mind with Syria, where such garb would be surely considered haram under Islamic law.
On October 6 Baksa took to Twitter to defend himself, unleashing a series of self-serving “no harm, no foul”-type tweets that were unsuccessful in deflecting attention from his own responsibility in publishing these images:
Der Migrant people: realize the complexity of the situation and address it in different angles! Neither pro nor con, raising awareness!
Baksa, who has done shoots for Elle, Playboy, and Cosmopolitan, among others, said in a statement that the pictures were “not intended to glamourize this clearly bad situation,” but rather “to draw the attention to the problem and make people think about it.” He added that the images he created were based off of real photographs of refugees attempting to cross the border.
I hoped people would realize that the situation is very complex and see that they are taking stands based on partial or biased information. ... This is exactly what we wanted to picture: you see a suffering woman, who is also beautiful and despite her situation, has some high quality pieces of outfit and a smartphone.
Needless to say, if Baksa’s intent was to provoke and turn himself into an object of controversy (sure to lead to better-paying future gigs), he succeeded—but at what cost?
Jack White showed up at a neighborhood potluck and nobody knew who he was: Celebrated musician Jack White has called Nashville home for a while, but this weekend was the first time that he was able to attend his suburban neighborhood’s annual potluck. We’d love to have seen everyone’s face when he explained Record Store Day to them. “You charge how much? For WHAT?” The wonderful photo above is from the Instagram of White’s neighbor Jedediah Jenkins. (Consequence of Sound)
The Confederacy was a ‘con-job’ on white people: The Beaufort County, South Carolina’s Frank Hyman wants people to know that for a significant share of white Southerners, the Confederacy — and the slave economy it defended — was a huge scam. And in an essay that ran last month in a number of newspapers across the South, he argued that the mythology surrounding the Confederacy still hoodwinks many of his white working-class Southerners to this day. (RawStory)
Brian Blessed claims “I delivered a baby in a park, bit the umbilical cord and licked the infant’s face”: The large ham BRIAN BLESSED, who it’s impossible to forget as Prince Vultan in Flash Gordon and as King Richard IV in Black Adder, made the foregoing claim and more in an interview with BBC Radio 4’s Midweek. We believe it. (The Telegraph)
The Nazis made an exploding chocolate bar to kill Winston Churchill: Fortunately, England’s Prime Minister did not sink his teeth into the candy-coated bomb, and the MI5 hired an artist to illustrate it and the other German booby traps it had discovered. These drawings were lost in a drawer for 70 years, but were recently found and have been published by the BBC. (BoingBoing)
New Tiger Hatchery/Paul Flaherty LP reviewed at Tiny Mix Tapes: Tiger Hatchery ARE what’s happening in under-the-radar jazz today. On their newly released LP, recorded live in fall of 2013, they join forces with saxophonist Paul Flaherty, who’s played with Thurston Moore and Weasel Walter, among others. “Flaherty’s playing astounds in its diversity, encompassing a palette of warp speed atonal trills, yelped cries, and occasional moments of somber melodicism that evoke Albert Ayler’s typically consonant and/or reappropriated head passages. On Live in New Haven, Flaherty locks into symbiosis with Tiger Hatchery saxophonist Mike Forbes, tracing a jagged pathway of legible melodic interplay that breaks off at a moment’s notice into freefall runs of conjoined squalling.” (Tiny Mix Tapes)
Trump, Carson & the rest of the American right seem to actually think they’re Dirty Harry: Trump is a clown, we know that — a very wealthy celebrity clown who has captured the imagination of millions of people. And if there’s one thing he’s known for, it’s his macho swagger so this isn’t exactly a shock coming from him. But who could have guessed that his closest rival, the sober, quiet, respectable neurosurgeon Ben Carson would hold the same delusions of masculine grandeur? (Salon)
Hillary Clinton’s support tumbles in California as Sanders surges: Less than half of likely Democratic voters in the June 2016 presidential primary in California, 47 percent, now say they will vote for Clinton, whose candidacy has been damaged by a scandal over her use of a private email server while she was secretary of state. Meanwhile self-styled socialist Sanders, so far Clinton’s most prominent challenger for the Democratic presidential nomination, has since May climbed from single-digit voter support among California voters to 35 percent, according to the poll. (Reuters)
The mystery of ‘crow funerals’ solved: Scientists say birds are trying to learn about potential dangers to their own lives. “The funeral behaviour of crows is so widely observed, and people often asked about it - but we haven’t known what was happening,” said University of Washington researcher Kaeli Swift. (Signs of the Times)
If Apple didn’t hold $181B overseas, it would owe $59B in US taxes: Microsoft and Google pull the same moves, of course. So OK, Republicans and Randroids, tell us again all about how people on food stamps are leeches? (Ars Technica)
Security footage of Morrissey’s alleged TSA groping has been released: “The Voice” claimed last summer that a security officer got a little too fresh with him at a checkpoint in San Francisco. Gawker filed an FOIA request for the CCTV footage, and their request was granted. Read about it on Gawker, or if all you’re about is the voyeuristic part, watch the video right here:
Frank Miller drew Superman’s wang: This is an actual comic cover drawn by legendary comic artist Frank Miller. It’s the cover to a companion comic to Miller’s upcoming Dark Knight III: The Master Race series, and it appears DC is actually going to publish it despite the fact that 1) it is horrible, 2) it is laughable and 3) you can clearly see the outline of Superman’s junk in his red briefs. (io9)
A glitch in time: How Oval’s 1995 ambient masterpiece predicted our digital present: By virtue of being atmospheric, ambient music tends to make the listener aware of the hardware involved in reproducing it, so it’s always, in a sense, about technology. But Oval’s version was a direct engagement with the up-to-the-minute details of sound recording, storage, and reproduction. With Oval, a critique of the entire system of recorded music was built into every gesture. (Pitchfork)
Antivax activists fund yet another study to “prove” vaccines cause autism, which they don’t:Three dozen dead monkeys later, antivaxxers are STILL WRONG. Heartbreaking and disgusting. (Science Based Medicine)
Who the N.R.A. Really Speaks For: Not that this should come as a surprise to anyone who’s at all attentive and non-delusional, but the N.R.A. does not fight for the rights of America’s gun owners, it’s a lobbying group representing the commercial interests of gun and ammunition manufacturers. (New York Times)
No, Carly Fiorina, a degree in medieval history doesn’t qualify you to fight ISIS: Worst-person-in-the-world contender Fiorina is a approaching Trumpian levels of GOP sideshow amusement lately. (The Guardian)
There’s a “Sexy Pizza Rat” Halloween costume: You thought the “sexy” costume trope shark-jumped ages ago? Nope. IT CAN ALWAYS GET DUMBER. (HuffPo)
Drug Kingpin El Chapo puts 100 million USD on Donald Trump, dead or alive: YIKES! We aren’t over-fond of him either, but holy shit. The world’s most wanted and most dangerous drug lord, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, is offering a US$100 million bounty for whoever delivers billionaire and Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump to him dead or alive. (TeleSur)
Kurt Cobain—“Sappy”: A 7″ containing Cobain’s cover of the Beatles’ “And I Love Her” and an early demo version of Nirvana rarity “Sappy,” alternately known as “Sad”—both used in the film Montage of Heck—is coming out, and today, the latter has arrived. A similar early version of the song has been available on bootlegs and online for a while now, but this is a cleaner, slightly polished up mix, and it sounds both great and heartbreaking. (Stereogum)
The world ends tomorrow and YOU MAY DIE! While our planet may have survived September’s “blood moon”, it will be permanently destroyed on Wednesday, 7 October, a Christian organization has warned. The eBible Fellowship, an online affiliation headquartered near Philadelphia, has based its prediction of an October obliteration on a previous claim that the world would end on 21 May 2011. While that claim proved to be false, the organization is confident it has the correct date this time. (The Guardian)
Hackable DIY synthesizer kit for only $40: This straightforward, three-pot kit looks like loads of beginner-friendly fun. (Tech Will Save Us)
This drunk kid really, really wanted mac & cheese: