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Smith goes to see his supervisor in the front office. "Boss," he says, "we're doing some heavy house-cleaning at home tomorrow, and my wife needs me to help with the attic and the garage, moving and hauling stuff."

"We're short-handed, Smith," the boss replies. "I can't give you the day off."

"Thanks, boss," says Smith, "I knew I could count on you!"


Kristen gave Sally 3 flowers and 2 stuffed animals. Todd gave Sally 5 flowers and 3 stuffed animals. What does Sally have?



True story.

MAY 25 - A woman wearing a “Stop Domestic Violence” t-shirt was arrested on domestic violence charges after firing a gun during an argument with her husband inside the couple’s Maine home, police report.

Emily Wilson, 38, was collared last week following a confrontation with her spouse Kyle over whether he was having an affair. During the argument, investigators allege, Wilson waved a handgun and fired a shot into the couple’s bed.

Wilson, a high school teacher, was subsequently arrested when police responded to a 911 call placed by her husband.


FORT EUSTIS, Va. — The Army’s Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) announced today plans to offer a two-mile Walmart scooter ride as an alternate event for the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT).

“We’ve been seeking to make the APFT more closely approximate the physical demands required of soldiers in today’s combat environment,” said TRADOC Command Sgt. Maj. David Davenport. “The Walmart scooter ride puts to the test one’s ability to walk minimal distances, transition to and from a seated position, and exercise a modicum of fine motor control, which is all that is required of a majority of soldiers nowadays.”

The event will entail parking in a handicap parking space at a local Walmart, walking approximately thirty yards to the entrance, boarding a mobility scooter, navigating a two mile course that winds up and down the aisles, then returning to the parking space.

TRADOC has not yet decided which APFT component the scooter ride will replace, though Davenport speculated that the 800-yard swim was the most likely candidate.

“I consider the swim to be an inadequate test of preparedness for the modern combat zone, as I can’t remember the last time we deployed to a country that wasn’t parched desert,” said Davenport.


At the Battle of Monmouth in June 1778 the weather was hot, over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Sometime during the battle, William Hays collapsed. As her husband was carried off the battlefield, Mary Hays took his place at the cannon. For the rest of the day, in the heat of battle, Mary continued to "swab and load" the cannon using her husband's ramrod. At one point, a British musket ball or cannonball flew between her legs and tore off the bottom of her skirt. Mary said something to the effect of, "Well, that could have been worse," and went back to loading the cannon.

Issue of the Times;
Why Socialism Failed by Mark J. Perry

Collectivism Is Based on Faulty Principles

Socialism is the Big Lie of the twentieth century. While it promised prosperity, equality, and security, it delivered poverty, misery, and tyranny. Equality was achieved only in the sense that everyone was equal in his or her misery.

In the same way that a Ponzi scheme or chain letter initially succeeds but eventually collapses, socialism may show early signs of success. But any accomplishments quickly fade as the fundamental deficiencies of central planning emerge. It is the initial illusion of success that gives government intervention its pernicious, seductive appeal. In the long run, socialism has always proven to be a formula for tyranny and misery.

A pyramid scheme is ultimately unsustainable because it is based on faulty principles. Likewise, collectivism is unsustainable in the long run because it is a flawed theory. Socialism does not work because it is not consistent with fundamental principles of human behavior. The failure of socialism in countries around the world can be traced to one critical defect: it is a system that ignores incentives.

In a capitalist economy, incentives are of the utmost importance. Market prices, the profit-and-loss system of accounting, and private property rights provide an efficient, interrelated system of incentives to guide and direct economic behavior. Capitalism is based on the theory that incentives matter!

Under socialism, incentives either play a minimal role or are ignored totally. A centrally planned economy without market prices or profits, where property is owned by the state, is a system without an effective incentive mechanism to direct economic activity. By failing to emphasize incentives, socialism is a theory inconsistent with human nature and is therefore doomed to fail. Socialism is based on the theory that incentives don’t matter!

In a radio debate several months ago with a Marxist professor from the University of Minnesota, I pointed out the obvious failures of socialism around the world in Cuba, Eastern Europe, and China. At the time of our debate, Haitian refugees were risking their lives trying to get to Florida in homemade boats. Why was it, I asked him, that people were fleeing Haiti and traveling almost 500 miles by ocean to get to the “evil capitalist empire” when they were only 50 miles from the “workers’ paradise” of Cuba?

The Marxist admitted that many “socialist” countries around the world were failing. However, according to him, the reason for failure is not that socialism is deficient, but that the socialist economies are not practicing “pure” socialism. The perfect version of socialism would work; it is just the imperfect socialism that doesn’t work. Marxists like to compare a theoretically perfect version of socialism with practical, imperfect capitalism which allows them to claim that socialism is superior to capitalism.

If perfection really were an available option, the choice of economic and political systems would be irrelevant. In a world with perfect beings and infinite abundance, any economic or political system–socialism, capitalism, fascism, or communism–would work perfectly.

However, the choice of economic and political institutions is crucial in an imperfect universe with imperfect beings and limited resources. In a world of scarcity it is essential for an economic system to be based on a clear incentive structure to promote economic efficiency. The real choice we face is between imperfect capitalism and imperfect socialism. Given that choice, the evidence of history overwhelmingly favors capitalism as the greatest wealth-producing economic system available.

The strength of capitalism can be attributed to an incentive structure based upon the three Ps: (1) prices determined by market forces, (2) a profit-and-loss system of accounting and (3) private property rights. The failure of socialism can be traced to its neglect of these three incentive-enhancing components.


The price system in a market economy guides economic activity so flawlessly that most people don’t appreciate its importance. Market prices transmit information about relative scarcity and then efficiently coordinate economic activity. The economic content of prices provides incentives that promote economic efficiency.

For example, when the OPEC cartel restricted the supply of oil in the 1970s, oil prices rose dramatically. The higher prices for oil and gasoline transmitted valuable information to both buyers and sellers. Consumers received a strong, clear message about the scarcity of oil by the higher prices at the pump and were forced to change their behavior dramatically. People reacted to the scarcity by driving less, carpooling more, taking public transportation, and buying smaller cars. Producers reacted to the higher price by increasing their efforts at exploration for more oil. In addition, higher oil prices gave producers an incentive to explore and develop alternative fuel and energy sources.

The information transmitted by higher oil prices provided the appropriate incentive structure to both buyers and sellers. Buyers increased their effort to conserve a now more precious resource and sellers increased their effort to find more of this now scarcer resource.

The only alternative to a market price is a controlled or fixed price which always transmits misleading information about relative scarcity. Inappropriate behavior results from a controlled price because false information has been transmitted by an artificial, non-market price.

Look at what happened during the 1970s when U.S. gas prices were controlled. Long lines developed at service stations all over the country because the price for gasoline was kept artificially low by government fiat. The full impact of scarcity was not accurately conveyed. As Milton Friedman pointed out at the time, we could have eliminated the lines at the pump in one day by allowing the price to rise to clear the market.

From our experience with price controls on gasoline and the long lines at the pump and general inconvenience, we get an insight into what happens under socialism where every price in the economy is controlled. The collapse of socialism is due in part to the chaos and inefficiency that result from artificial prices. The information content of a controlled price is always distorted. This in turn distorts the incentives mechanism of prices under socialism. Administered prices are always either too high or too low, which then creates constant shortages and surpluses. Market prices are the only way to transmit information that will create the incentives to ensure economic efficiency.

Profits and Losses

Socialism also collapsed because of its failure to operate under a competitive, profit-and-loss system of accounting. A profit system is an effective monitoring mechanism which continually evaluates the economic performance of every business enterprise. The firms that are the most efficient and most successful at serving the public interest are rewarded with profits. Firms that operate inefficiently and fail to serve the public interest are penalized with losses.

By rewarding success and penalizing failure, the profit system provides a strong disciplinary mechanism which continually redirects resources away from weak, failing, and inefficient firms toward those firms which are the most efficient and successful at serving the public. A competitive profit system ensures a constant reoptimization of resources and moves the economy toward greater levels of efficiency. Unsuccessful firms cannot escape the strong discipline of the marketplace under a profit/loss system. Competition forces companies to serve the public interest or suffer the consequences.

Under central planning, there is no profit-and-loss system of accounting to accurately measure the success or failure of various programs. Without profits, there is no way to discipline firms that fail to serve the public interest and no way to reward firms that do. There is no efficient way to determine which programs should be expanded and which ones should be contracted or terminated.

Without competition, centrally planned economies do not have an effective incentive structure to coordinate economic activity. Without incentives the results are a spiraling cycle of poverty and misery. Instead of continually reallocating resources towards greater efficiency, socialism falls into a vortex of inefficiency and failure.

Private Property Rights

A third fatal defect of socialism is its blatant disregard for the role of private property rights in creating incentives that foster economic growth and development. The failure of socialism around the world is a “tragedy of commons” on a global scale.

The “tragedy of the commons” refers to the British experience of the sixteenth century when certain grazing lands were communally owned by villages and were made available for public use. The land was quickly overgrazed and eventually became worthless as villagers exploited the communally owned resource.

When assets are publicly owned, there are no incentives in place to encourage wise stewardship. While private property creates incentives for conservation and the responsible use of property, public property encourages irresponsibility and waste. If everyone owns an asset, people act as if no one owns it. And when no one owns it, no one really takes care of it. Public ownership encourages neglect and mismanagement.

Since socialism, by definition, is a system marked by the “common ownership of the means of production,” the failure of socialism is a “tragedy of the commons” on a national scale. Much of the economic stagnation of socialism can be traced to the failure to establish and promote private property rights.

As Peruvian economist Hernando de Soto remarked, you can travel in rural communities around the world and you will hear dogs barking, because even dogs understand property rights. It is only statist governments that have failed to understand property rights. Socialist countries are just now starting to recognize the importance of private property as they privatize assets and property in Eastern Europe.

Incentives Matter

Without the incentives of market prices, profit-and-loss accounting, and well-defined property rights, socialist economies stagnate and wither. The economic atrophy that occurs under socialism is a direct consequence of its neglect of economic incentives.

No bounty of natural resources can ever compensate a country for its lack of an efficient system of incentives. Russia, for example, is one of the world’s wealthiest countries in terms of natural resources; it has some of the world’s largest reserves of oil, natural gas, diamonds, and gold. Its valuable farm land, lakes, rivers, and streams stretch across a land area that encompasses 11 time zones. Yet Russia remains poor. Natural resources are helpful, but the ultimate resources of any country are the unlimited resources of its people–human resources.

By their failure to foster, promote, and nurture the potential of their people through incentive-enhancing institutions, centrally planned economies deprive the human spirit of full development. Socialism fails because it kills and destroys the human spirit–just ask the people leaving Cuba in homemade rafts and boats.

As the former centrally planned economies move toward free markets, capitalism, and democracy, they look to the United States for guidance and support during the transition. With an unparalleled 250-year tradition of open markets and limited government, the United States is uniquely qualified to be the guiding light in the worldwide transition to freedom and liberty.

We have an obligation to continue to provide a framework of free markets and democracy for the global transition to freedom. Our responsibility to the rest of the world is to continue to fight the seductiveness of statism around the world and here at home. The seductive nature of statism continues to tempt and lure us into the Barmecidal illusion that the government can create wealth.

The temptress of socialism is constantly luring us with the offer: “give up a little of your freedom and I will give you a little more security.” As the experience of this century has demonstrated, the bargain is tempting but never pays off. We end up losing both our freedom and our security.

Programs like socialized medicine, welfare, Social Security, and minimum wage laws will continue to entice us because on the surface they appear to be expedient and beneficial. Those programs, like all socialist programs, will fail in the long run regardless of initial appearances. These programs are part of the Big Lie of socialism because they ignore the important role of incentives.

Socialism will remain a constant temptation. We must be vigilant in our fight against socialism not only around the globe but also here in the United States.

The failure of socialism inspired a worldwide renaissance of freedom and liberty. For the first time in the history of the world, the day is coming very soon when a majority of the people in the world will live in free societies or societies rapidly moving toward freedom.

Capitalism will play a major role in the global revival of liberty and prosperity because it nurtures the human spirit, inspires human creativity, and promotes the spirit of enterprise. By providing a powerful system of incentives that promote thrift, hard work, and efficiency, capitalism creates wealth.

The main difference between capitalism and socialism is this: Capitalism works.

Mark J. Perry is a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute and a professor of economics and finance at the University of Michigan’s Flint campus.

Quote of the Times;
Wow, USA Today did todays cover story on my record in lawsuits. Verdict: 450 wins, 38 losses. Isn’t that what you want for your president? – Trump
The thing I remember most about Grandma's old Bible, with its leathery cover, tattered spine and frayed edges, was that it looked a lot like Grandma.


"My stomach has been bothering me, Doctor," complained the patient.

"What have you been eating?" asked the doctor.

"Pool balls."

"Pool balls?!" said the astonished doctor. "Maybe that's the trouble. What kind do you eat?"

"All kinds," replied the man, "Red ones for breakfast, yellow and orange ones for lunch, blue ones for afternoon snacks, and purple and black for dinner."

"I see your problem," said the doctor. "You haven't been getting any greens!"


A new report says that one in four Americans between 25 and 45 are not working.

And that's just among those with jobs!


A wife asks her husband, "Could you please go shopping for me and buy one carton of milk, And if they have eggs, get 6."

A short time later the husband comes back with 6 cartons of milk.

The wife asks him, "Why did you buy 6 cartons of milk?"

He replied, "They had eggs."

(Read it again…)


After 50 years of wondering why he didn't look like
his younger sister or brother, the man finally got up the
nerve to ask his mother if he was adopted.

"Yes, you were, son," his mother said as she started
to cry softly, "but it didn't work out and they brought
you back."

Issue of the Times;
What your high school chemistry teacher never taught you about gold by Simon Black

One of the more unfortunate developments in human civilization over the last century is the devolution of money.

In fact, the word ‘money’ has now become synonymous with those funny pieces of paper that are conjured out of thin air by unelected central bankers.

Or even more ridiculous, ‘money’ has become the electronic representation of that paper.

Think about your bank account balance; it’s not like the bank has all that paper currency sitting in its vault.

The ‘money’ in your account doesn’t even really exist. There’s just enough of a thin layer of confidence in the system (at the moment) that this is a widely accepted practice.

It seems rather strange when you think about it. Though for thousands of years, early civilizations had some pretty wild ideas about money.

There are examples from history of our ancestors using everything from animals skins, to salt, to giant stones, as their form of ‘money’.

Though I suppose these weren’t any more ridiculous than our version of money - pieces of paper that don’t even really exist, controlled by unelected central bankers.

Of course, over the last 5,000 years, there was at least one form of money that did make sense. And it stuck. I’m talking, of course, about gold.

It’s no accident that gold has become the most consistent form of money in world history.

The metal is uniquely suited to serve as currency, not only amongst precious metals, but compared against nearly everything else on the planet.

You can see for yourself by taking a look at the periodic table of elements, the scientist’s catalog of everything the world has to offer.

Many of the entries on the periodic table are immediately disqualified. Many elements are radioactive. Others are gasses that would be impossible to transport.

Still others are colorless, and hence indistinguishable from air.

Taking these out eliminates most of the list, and you’re left with just a few dozen metals.

Most of these, however, like copper or iron, can be easily eliminated as well. They’re simply too common. And a form of money is useless if it’s in too much abundance… a lesson that modern central bankers have completely forgotten.

Others (like cesium) are highly reactive and explode on contact with water, or at least corrode easily.

Clearly a currency that kills its holder, or can’t even maintain its physical state without debasing itself, is rather useless.

Even silver, which nearly passes every single test falters at the last point, because it tarnishes slightly in reaction to sulfur in the air.

So out of all the elements we’re left with just one that’s just right: gold.

Gold is inert and non-reactive. It’s stable. It holds its form over the long-term. It’s malleable and easily divisible. And it’s rare. But not too rare.

Judging by its chemical properties, it’s no accident that gold became the most widely-used currency in history.

Of course, defenders of the paper money concept call gold a “barbarous relic”, suggesting that it has no place in modern civilization. (Curiously, paper is also relic from long ago, dating back to the 2nd century AD in China...)

Yes it’s true that gold is a very old concept. But so is the wheel. Language. Arithmetic. And many other ideas passed down from the ages.

Just because something is ancient doesn’t mean it’s not RIGHT.

Empires rise and fall. Governments and central bankers come and go. Paper currencies lose their dominance.

But gold lasts.

And if you hold a long-term view, and believe that the path to prosperity is not paved in debt and money printing it makes sense to consider holding at least a small portion of your savings in the metal.

Quote of the Times;
In many modern novels there is portrayed a type of cold, selfish, sexless woman who plumes herself on being “respectable,” but who is really a rather less desirable member of society than a prostitute. Unfortunately the portrayal is true to life. The woman who shrinks from motherhood is as low a creature as a man of the professional pacificist, or poltroon, type, who shirks his duty as a soldier. - Roosevelt

Link of the Times;
Best Fan Theories, Part 2

Doc was suicidal

The doc is ready to kill himself along with Marty in that parking lot during the first time travel scene. Not only has he never tested the time machine, but he claims that many of his inventions have been failures. So during the moment when he’s about to find out if his life’s work was a huge success, or a complete waste, he not only drives the Delorian towards himself, but grabs onto Marty when
he tries to run away. If that first time travel test was a failure, they both would have been killed, which is exactly what Doc wanted had the experiment been a failure.

Forest Gump was lied to

In the end, he isn’t Forrest’s son. Jenny just takes advantage of him after she learns that he’s a shrimp tycoon.

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air is dead

Will actually died in the fight on the basketball court in West Philly. The taxi driver is actually God, who drives a “rare” cab. He takes Will to heaven, where he works out all his issues with his wealthy Aunt and Uncle. Will only sees his mother and father on special occasions, because that’s when they come to visit his grave.

Dr. Claw is not so bad

The Inspector we know is actually the second Inspector, built as a completely-robotic replacement after the first was lost in action. He was loaded with his old memories, and nobody would have been the wiser, except that the original Inspector Gadget didn’t actually die. Upon returning from whatever disaster caused his bosses to give up on him as KIA, and now horribly disfigured, he discovers this replacement living his life, even with his dog and raising his niece. The original Inspector snaps, and vows to devote the rest of his life to the destruction of the ungodly replacement. He disavows everything he once knew and loved, even going so far as to take a new name… DOCTOR CLAW!!

Friday and JFK

The song is about the JFK assassination. The driver of the car he was assassinated in’s name was Samuel Kickin (Kickin in the front seat, sittin in the back seat…). The assassination occurred on a Friday and when he was shot the Secret Service yelled at Jackie Kennedy to “get down” (got to get down on Friday). Parts about the cold war and the spread of Communism are referenced (everybody’s Russian) and to top it all off, in the hotel that morning JFK declined a breakfast of sausage, eggs and toast for a bowl of Bran Flakes instead (got to have my bowl- got to have cereal). Also, the following Monday JFK was supposed to sign a bill into law requiring all public schools to provide bus transportation for their students (got to catch my bus…).

Jon Snow

Game of Thrones fan. In the books it’s believed by everyone that Jon Snow is Eddard Stark’s son by some unknown woman. The fan theory states that he’s actually the son of Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryen (Rhaegar’s abduction of Lyanna sparked the overthrow of the Targaryens). That means that he’s Daenerys’s nephew, an acceptable spouse for her in Targaryen terms, and possibly the legitimate heir to the Iron Throne.

JK Rowling is Rita Skeeter

Harry Potter: There’s a theory that JK Rowling is actually Rita Skeeter who was exiled from the magic world for reporting lies. She is so angry about being exiled that she decides to write books revealing the entirety of the magic world to the muggle world. To her dismay, the muggle world believes her stories to be fiction, but she becomes rich and famous anyway.


Just when I think I've finally met the perfect woman,
I discover she's too tall to fit into any of my mom's old clothes.


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ლ(ಠ‿ಠლ) You dense Mother Fucker



Nobody has seen all of a movie, due to blinking.

School is just "Desk Job Training".

At birth, we were all technically the world's youngest person for an extremely brief period.

When an animal dies, the soil gets fertilized so a vegetarian can eat.

Jump scares are the fart jokes of horror movies

In twenty years manbuns will be in the same category of societal shame as mullets.

I like to think that most of the ocean is unexplored because scientists decided we'd probably all sleep a lot better at night if we didn't know what the hell is down there.

Would an extremely empathetic masochist be a sadist?

Someone should do a garfieldminusgarfield for the movie.

I always wear 2 pairs of socks on a night out just in case I get caught short with no toilet paper.


The policeman was walking his beat when he saw two men fighting and a little boy standing alongside them crying, "Daddy, Daddy!"

The officer pulled the two men apart and, turning to the boy, asked, "Which one is your father, lad?"

"I don't know," the boy said, rubbing tears from his eyes. "That's what they're fighting about!"

Issue of the Times;
This Luke Skywalker Theory Destroys Everything You Thought You Knew About 'Star Wars'

One evening, while geeking out with my daughters I decided to share a theory I had with them about Star Wars -- specifically Return of the Jedi: Luke Skywalker turned to the Dark Side at the end of the trilogy. I shared this story with them because I think my theory is reinforced by trailer for the new movie.

It's pretty exciting stuff, and to me, rather telling. Especially after you watch the first preview again. There's been a lot of speculation on Kylo Ren and the bad guys in general -- if you haven't heard any of it you surely will. As my friend Mike Moore put it:
This, for me, is righting something that has never sat well with me: the oddball and underwhelming ending of Return of the Jedi.
Luke Turned
I've had this argument with friends so many times. Some think as I do; others remain convinced that Luke ended the original trilogy as a good guy.
I say he, in fact, had turned to the dark side and we watched it happen in blissful ignorance, choosing to believe that he would always be the good guy. Lucas wanted it this way so he could sell more toys. But there's way more to this story.
Seeing these previews I think my theory might be correct: Luke gave in to the dark side to save his friends and defeat Vader and the emperor. We don't know what will happen after that, and hopefully we'll find out in December and we'll see if I'm right.
Here are my arguments, in no particular order...
"The Cave... Remember Your Failure at the Cave..."
Yoda knew the whole time that Luke was on the same path as his Anakin. He was reluctant to train him and said flatly that Luke would give in to the dark side if he left Dagobah to save his friends. The most striking part of this whole sequence (Luke's training with Yoda) is the cave.
Many people (my friends included) put it off as foreshadowing Luke's discovery that Vader is his father. I think it's foreshadowing that Luke will become his father. Of course, you don't know Vader's his dad at this point -- but at the end of the film, when I thought back to the cave... it made perfect sense. It's good, solid plot juice. Becoming your parents (or trying not to) is a huge motivator.
And Luke failed, according to Yoda. More than that -- Yoda issued this warning which Luke completely ignored:
Only a fully trained Jedi Knight, with the Force as his ally, will conquer Vader and his emperor. If you end your training now... if you choose the quick and easy path as Vader did... you will become an agent of evil.
There it is: Yoda said it point blank. How many times has Yoda been wrong in the first six films? It's almost like he can see the future sometimes! He knew Luke was on a path to become his father and, by leaving, he failed at preventing it.
Told you I did, reckless is he... now... matters are worse.
This is the start of Luke's slide.
The Original Ending
The original ending of Return of the Jedi is incredibly hokey, but there is a poignant scene where Luke burns his dad's body and you could feel his tension and anger. None of this was supposed to happen according to this 2010 LA Times article (emphasis mine):
"We had an outline and George changed everything in it," Kurtz said. "Instead of bittersweet and poignant he wanted a euphoric ending with everybody happy...
The discussed ending of the film that Kurtz favored presented the rebel forces in tatters, Leia grappling with her new duties as queen and Luke walking off alone "like Clint Eastwood in the spaghetti westerns," as Kurtz put it.
This is where story and solid plot development separate from building a franchise designed to sell toys. It's widely known that Lucas favored toy sales over character and storyline. Again, from Kurtz:
I could see where things were headed," Kurtz said. "The toy business began to drive the [Lucasfilm] empire. It's a shame. They make three times as much on toys as they do on films. It's natural to make decisions that protect the toy business, but that's not the best thing for making quality films.
The first film and Empire were about story and character, but I could see that George's priorities were changing.
I so wish I saw the Return of the Jedi that Kurtz wanted. It would have made so much more sense. Empire built on the mythological core of Star Wars and worked on the natural tension that exists in the way we perceive good and evil. Luke thought he was doing good by racing to rescue his friends. Anakin thought he was doing good by confronting the Jedi Council and destroying the Order itself. A very blurred matter of perspective: trying to do good can be incredibly destructive.
Mark Hamill himself thought that Luke as a dark jedi was the natural turn of events:
As an actor that would be more fun to play. I just thought that's the way it was going from when we finished [Empire]. I figured that's what will be the pivotal moment. I'll have to come back, but it will be I have Han Solo in my crosshairs and I'll be about to kill him or about to kill the Princess or about to kill somebody that we care about. It's an old cornball movie, like World War II movies.
Again: solid plot juice. One has to wonder if Hamill played Luke this way despite what Lucas wanted, recognizing the need for Luke to have a clearer bit of motivation. I think he did just that.
Indeed, there is a clear change of character as we move from Empire to Return of the Jedi. Luke becomes more serious, a little more sinister, and rocks the uniform pretty well.
Nevertheless, I'm taking Captain Solo and his friends. You can either profit by this or be destroyed. It's your choice, but I warn you not to underestimate my power.
Was that a threat? A touch of arrogance perhaps? No -- Luke would never!
As a token of my gratitude, I present to you these two droids. Both are hard working, and will serve you well...
One second. Hold on here -- was that a lie? Why yes, it was. Luke is giving in, he's drawn to the dark side. Wow... Luke lies. Keep that in mind.
You might be thinking nah, no way. Why would he do that? The answer is that he is destructively trying to do good and his training is not enough to allow him to see this. As Yoda warned, he is becoming an agent of evil.
Which actually comes in handy later on, because the only way he could beat his dad in a fight is ...
Luke Turned, We All Watched It
The emperor was working Luke pretty hard, and croaked in his guttural monotone
Take your weapon. Strike me down with all of your hatred and your journey towards the dark side will be complete.
And guess what? Luke tried.
Later in the sequence Luke loses it completely when Vader finds his soft spot (caring about his friends) and squeezes hard...
Saving friends, and now family. Vader has just threatened his sister and Luke gives in. This doesn't make sense if Luke has been a good guy the whole time. It makes perfect sense if he has indeed failed his training (which he did) and doesn't have the ability to withstand his dad. Whom he idolized and wanted to be just like, all of his life.
Easy to see. Easy to believe.
When I first saw this scene as a kid I remember being completely confused. I thought that of course Luke turned -- but only a little bit. After all, he needed the power from the dark side to beat his dad... right? And he acted like a complete maniac but it was only temporary and phew! he came back from the edge!
This, people, is a plot hole. It doesn't make any sense in terms of the story and also Luke's character. It doesn't follow Luke's motivation at all because he quite clearly doesn't have any motivation to stay a good guy. He's just seen what he could do with his dark powers (defeat the bad guys, save people).
"Your Hate Has Made You Powerful"
Luke confronted and defeated his father only by giving in to his fear and hatred -- driven by a desire to protect his sister, whom he loved dearly and who (basically) set him on this whole damn deal to begin with (help me Obi Wan Kenobi...). You can see this clearly as he swings away at Vader violently, beating on him with all the fear and rage that is swelling up in him... fired by a desire to protect his sister and friends.
This next scene is one of the most telling. When I first saw it I thought that Luke was realizing that he gave in and that's bad. What I think really happened was that Luke was filled with blood lust and a surge of satisfaction at his victory. Staring at his fist... marveling at his power. And why wouldn't he be? He just kicked Vader's ass. Come on, tell me you wouldn't feel that too!
The emperor sees this as well. He thinks he has won Luke over -- he even gloats a bit:
Good.... Now, fulfill your destiny... and take your father's place at my side.
From the emperor's perspective it seems like this is all wrapped up, no? Vader is lying there on the floor, Luke just turned, let's close the deal! But...
You can watch what happens next in two very different ways. The first, most obvious, is that Luke looks at his mechanical fist and then at his dad's severed hand and realizes what could happen -- oh no! Let's make sure we come back from this ledge and stay on the Good side. This makes no sense in terms of Luke's motivations.
Or, what I think, is that Luke looked at his fist and realized the effectiveness of his new power. Soaked in the revenge (the movie was entitled Revenge of the Jedi originally, I think this is why) and let the hatred indeed fill him... indeed make him powerful.
Now, watch as he turns, rises, and faces the emperor full of arrogance and brimming with dark power. I think Hamill played this scene brilliantly:
Never. I'll never turn to the dark side. You've failed your highness, I am a Jedi, like my father before me...
This would seemingly blow a hole in my story. Luke just flatly said he would never turn. He monologs for a bit about why he'll be a Good Guy, always. He's also lying through his teeth (like he did to Jabba, above). But why would he lie? Because he has to take out the emperor, and he knows his dad (Vader) is weak and vulnerable.
What happens next is a bit of deja vu. The emperor has realized that he has created just a little bit more than an apprentice -- he's created a rival. Why else would the emperor stop with the taunts right then? The emperor has Luke exactly where he wants him --  it doesn't make any sense to stop now!
Unless the emperor fears Luke. As he should -- he just took Vader out of the equation.
The emperor tries to destroy him with the old shock treatment in the same way we saw in Revenge of the Sith (facing off against Mace Windu). In that scene, Palpatine played on the sympathies of Anakin to cut Windu's hands off so he could toss Windu out the window.
In this scene, Luke plays his dad in the exact same way to toss the emperor into the abyss. Ahh symbolism.
That shock treatment? He basically brushed it off. Luke is a badass. It's the only way this whole scene makes any sense at all.
Watch Those Scenes Again
Watch Luke's eyes as he watches Vader die. Now, rather than the obvious thing (that Luke is thinking about a lost relationship with his dad) -- consider that Luke is upset about not being able to rule the galaxy as father and son.
It might not seem plausible, but it's the only thing that ties up this gaping plot hole.
Consider Luke's primary motivation at the very beginning: to find out more about his father, and to be a great pilot and jedi just like him. Is it so unreasonable to think he did just that? He was betrayed by the person he trusted most (Obiwan not telling him about his dad) and Yoda warned him about his failure. The motivation is clear.
Watch Return of the Jedi again, but this time with the idea that Luke is actually drawn to his dad's power and doesn't have the ability/training to resist using it to destructively do Good. His demeanor is a little more serious throughout and he has a very palpable dark edge.
Jabba the Hutt found out what happens when you cross Luke... which reminds me of something...
I...I killed them. I killed them all. They're dead, every single one of them. And not just the men, but the women and the children, too.

Quote of the Times;
“A little government involvement is just as dangerous as a lot because the first leads inevitably to the second.” – Brown

Link of the Times;

The older I get, the more enthusiastically I respond to people asking if I want some tea.

The Russian subreddit should be called r/ussian

If I have an opinion that a fact is a fact, and that fact is, in fact, a fact, does that make my opinion a fact?

I wonder if Morgan Freeman uses his own voice to sooth himself to sleep at night,by talking about himself in the third person.

When making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, is it best to: Dip the jelly-covered knife in the peanutbutter jar? Or, dip the peanut butter-covered knife in the jelly jar?

Assuming someone is gay is like assuming someone is pregnant. Keep it to yourself or you might get bitch slapped.

Rocking chairs are just old people's kids swings

"secretary" is a great password for porn sites because it's the longest word you can type entirely with your left hand

Any young man who says that he is marrying his best friend should try talking to her about the coworker he'd like to nail. Because that's what real best friends talk about.

School doesn't test your intelligence, it test your memory.

We dump so much stupid bullshit on the internet... Archaeologists are going to be ecstatic !

Does it piss you off that the United states of America is probably the only country that doesn't have a name. Were just some United states in America.

Everyone's body is possessed by their own ghost

All weather is sweater weather if you're a sheep.

What if the people saying "The South will rise again" are trying to warn us about the magnetic poles switching?

You've never heard a real Beethoven, Mozart, or Bach song. Only covers.

Children falling over is funny. Adults falling over is serious.


Obama To Continue Airstrikes On Hospitals In Afghanistan Beyond 2016

WASHINGTON — When President Barack Obama leaves the White House in 2016, his successor will take command of the ongoing mission of bombing civilian hospitals in Afghanistan, sources confirmed today.

“While America’s combat mission in Afghanistan may be over, our commitment to Afghanistan and its people endures,” said Obama, in a brief statement from the Roosevelt Room of the White House. “I will not allow Afghanistan to be used as a safe haven for civilians to shelter from our nation again.”

In a reversal of his previous decision to withdraw thousands of unused American gunships, jets, and bombs from Afghanistan, Obama announced Thursday that he would maintain a presence in the country through 2017, indefinitely prolonging the U.S. mission of counterterrorism at hospitals, wedding parties, and other dangerous hotbeds of civilian activity.


Teacher asks Johnny; “If a=b, b=c & a=c tell me the example.”

Johnny replies; “I love u - u love your daughter - so I love your daughter.”


I really think folks are missing the point.

While Microsoft's alliance with Satan and subsequent plans for world domination are kind of bad, the *real* evil that needs to be exposed is the fact that the Windows operating system cheats at "Hearts."


girlfriend noun girl·friend \ˈgər(-ə)l-ˌfrend\ An addition of problems, subtraction of money, multiplication of enemies and division of friends.

Issue of the Times;
The Last Laugh by David Cole

When a San Francisco high school principal named Lena Van Haren withheld student-body election results last week due to a lack of black and Latino winners (the victorious candidates were Asian and white), the right exploded in understandable anger. To conservative commentators, the principal’s actions conjured up images of racial political correctness gone wild. To me, however, the story conjured up different images: naked high school girls, beheaded students, and the death of “dangerous” comedy in the U.S. at the hands of the left and the right.

National Lampoon magazine, in its prime (the 1970s and very early ’80s), was something that simply could not exist today. With a staff made up of liberal and conservative writers and editors pursuing one simple goal—to be funny—National Lampoon made equal sport of the left and right. Perhaps more important, the Lampoon was politically incorrect to an insane degree (an impossible degree, by today’s standards). These days, when people reflect, nostalgically or angrily, on the Lampoon’s fearlessness regarding things like race and ethnicity, they’re likely to think of P.J. O’Rourke’s “Foreigners Around the World” piece from May 1976. It still gets mentioned because O’Rourke is still a presence on the right. But O’Rourke’s piece has nothing on an illustrated feature from the April 1978 Lampoon. Thirty-seven years before Principal Van Haren decided to give her students a lesson in the heavy hand of “diverse democracy,” Shary Flenniken, a seminal figure in National Lampoon history (she was one of the few women to work her way up from writer and artist to a position as editor), crafted a four-page comic spread that managed to be funny, insightful, and devastatingly politically incorrect. The strip is called “Whiteface,” which should give you an idea of why you can’t find it anywhere online except buried in the National Lampoon Internet archive.

Flenniken’s recurring character Bonnie, a blond, precocious 13-year-old, arrives at school on student-body election day, eager to participate in the grand democratic process. Sadly, Bonnie learns that the faculty members, who are boarded up in the teachers’ lounge, have turned the election over to black nationalist student Itty Bitty Meanie Mohammed, a middle school Idi Amin wannabe who has declared that only black students can participate. Bonnie’s black friend puts her in blackface and an Afro wig so she can be smuggled into the auditorium to hear Mohammed’s victory speech, which consists of promises of “culturally-oriented IQ exams,” an “ethnic dress code,” a Lincoln Continental in the driver’s-ed class, and Boone’s Farm wine in the cafeteria. Mohammed forces all the schoolgirls to strip naked and dance for him, which exposes Bonnie’s white body. Furious that a black traitor has smuggled an evil “Nordic” into his victory celebration, Mohammed seals the auditorium as Bonnie escapes, promising to “eliminate” all disloyal black students.

The final panel is almost certainly the most brutal image ever featured in a mainstream American comic strip. The next day, the white students notice how peaceful everything is, how devoid of racial unrest. As Bonnie goes to her locker, we see the bloody, decapitated heads of the black students, one per locker, murdered in Mohammed’s purge, as Bonnie’s friend explains that Mohammed has now “transferred to a school with a broader power base.”
It’s a gut punch of a payoff. The images are brutal because the subject matter is. Yet it’s impossible to read it in 2015 without knowing that it could never be published today in any mainstream publication, left, center, or right. A mainstream conservatism that declared John Derbyshire a racist embarrassment to be jettisoned and apologized for would never invite the backlash that would inevitably follow publishing the things that O’Rourke and the other Lampoon editors allowed in the ’70s. This gives racial despots like Principal Van Haren an edge. They know that any criticism or satire of their vision of race-based democracy will be limited by boundaries that even their harshest opponents have agreed to adhere to.

I spoke to the cartoonist, Shary Flenniken, about her motivation for creating “Whiteface.” Regarding her own political views, she is the opposite of a conservative or right-winger. She explained that, as someone who identifies primarily with the left, she was always fascinated by the fact that “radical” leftists so often pick on the oppressed they claim to be defending. The desire to satirize this leftist trait began after the Patty Hearst kidnapping. Flenniken, then a newbie cartoonist, was perplexed that the SLA thought it would be effective to kidnap and repeatedly rape a young woman in the name of ending “patriarchal oppression.” By the time she was at the Lampoon, Flenniken saw in the brutal excesses of Idi Amin a vehicle to explore the question “Why are black people killing other black people in Africa?”

“It didn’t make sense to me,” Flenniken told me. “And now it does. I look back and I go, like, ‘Oh, duh, there’s tribal warfare, there’s a lot of reasons that happens.’ But at the time, I was just so naive about, I guess, about race.” Back then, she used her art to work through that naïveté, and she laments that today’s artists, because the climate is so different, would not be able to explore an issue like black-on-black crime—an issue she agrees is every bit if not more relevant today as it was in ’78—with the same freedom she had in the Lampoon’s heyday. But in the end, Flenniken said, the strip was primarily about humor: “I thought that was really funny, to bring Idi Amin into that environment, to put something that evil into a high school environment. Also, at the time, the direction at Lampoon was to be outrageous. And my own instinct is to be outrageous.”

Sadly, these days, that instinct among comedians and satirists is smothered. And while it’s neat and tidy to put all the blame on the PC left, that’s not the reality. The right bears equal responsibility. The left may have dropped the ball regarding outrageous, politically incorrect humor, but the right shows little sign of wanting to recover it. While the left may be blinded by political correctness, the right has never shaken the prudishness that gave birth to the American Family Association and its mindless boycotts (in fact, the AFA was the topic of my very first L.A. Times op-ed), exactly twenty years ago). The AFA’s “kill it if you don’t understand it” mentality is even more prevalent in an age in which social media rewards manufactured outrage. The end result is that conservative-friendly satirists who try to go for Lampoon-style outrageousness more often than not find themselves on the receiving end of angry posts and boycott calls from the right.

Mike Judge (King of the Hill) has always been uniquely adept at inserting conservative-friendly themes into his work, in a manner that is never preachy and (more important) usually funny. Episode 5 of his HBO comedy series Silicon Valley contained a story arc that should have had conservatives cheering. The episode followed the characters’ attempts to create an “edgy” logo for their tech start-up. Looking for “street cred,” they go to a leftist graffiti artist named Chuy Ramirez. Chuy fancies himself an expert on all things Latino, yet he confuses the company’s Pakistani employee for a Latino (a clever twist on the old gag of white Archie Bunker types who can’t tell minorities apart).

The resulting logo, which has nothing to do with what he was paid to create, depicts the Pakistani employee wearing an Aztec headdress while having sex with the Statue of Liberty from behind. Chuy pretentiously explains that it’s a symbol of “the Latino struggle for justice in America,” as the white characters debate how to tell him they don’t like it without appearing racist. The graffiti artist is the butt of the joke; given the opportunity to do something creative, he demonstrates that all he is capable of is crass, obscene anti-Americanism, which he cloaks in faux “Latino pride.” But conservatives didn’t get the joke. The right-wing “think tank” Media Research Center slammed the episode as “anti-American,” and the MRC’s Facebook page was flooded with indignant comments:

GROSS, AND THEY SHOULD BE ARRESTED AND JAILED!!!!!... I think whoever is responsible should be charged with indecency and face criminal charges. ... It is really the Gay Rights Organization behind it!!!!! ... The show was to promote the “Latino struggle in America”??? And this is going to make the so-called struggle better in what way?... Disgusting…....they need to leave our country if that’s what they think is art. ... Is this what Latinos see themselves doing to the United States of America? Raping the nation? Disgusting! ... It’s how Jews train white people to be passive and accept humiliation along with Jewish rule. ... Tell Chuy to go back to Mexico if he is offended by our government and symbols of freedom. ... He should be shot. ... Satan’s maggots!

The one or two commenters who got the joke and tried to explain it were quickly overwhelmed by the others (and, for the record, “Satan’s Maggots” was the name of my college metal band). This exact same situation was repeated with last month’s South Park season opener, which showed Donald Trump being anally violated. Conservative Facebook pages and news sites were filled with the typical chest-pounding: “I don’t watch that piece of filth, but I bet they’d never do nothin’ insulting about Hillary Clinton” (conservatives are so darling when they opine about shows they proudly state they never watch). In fact, South Park, a reliably right/libertarian-leaning show, has most certainly been disrespectful to Hillary, once depicting her as having a terrorist bomb hidden in her vagina. Little difference that made; the Trump episode led to the typical “Ban the show! Arrest the queer perverts!” comments.

Anyone who thinks conservatives can or will step in as the left continues to sanitize comedy is sorely misguided. The kind of merciless, unashamed, unapologetic satire championed by the old National Lampoon will find no quarter these days on the left or the right. It’s to the detriment of society, and to the benefit of today’s Itty Bitty Meanie Mohammeds, like would-be election rigger Principal Lena Van Haren.

Quote of the Times;
"Liberty is not a means to a higher political end. It is itself the highest political end. - Liberty is the only object which benefits all alike, and provokes no sincere opposition - The danger is not that a particular class is unfit to govern. Every class is unfit to govern. - Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." - Lord Action

Link of the Times;
What did the optimist say as he jumped off the building?

So far, so good.


Things That Still Bug Me About Aladdin

5. The Genie's past sounds really messed up

Based on the clues we get in the movie, it's safe to say that Genie is incredibly old and served plenty of masters before Aladdin. One can only imagine how many proposterous and/or disastrous wishes Genie must have granted over the years previous. When we first meet him, we learn the rules of Genie's wishes: 1) He won't kill anyone 2) He won't make anyone fall in love and 3) He won't bring anyone back from the dead. While you might reasonably guess that these rules have been in place from Day One, remember what Genie says about Rule #3:

The first half of that sentence implies that, at the very least, Genie witnessed a reanimated corpse in action, and didn't like what he saw. But the second half implies that he did the deed himself, at least once, and the result was so horrible that a rule had to be introduced to make sure it can never happen again. That basically confirms the idea that the rules weren't always in place, and had to be introduced after the fact. Meaning that at some point, Genie probably killed a guy at his master's behest.

That a lampholder wanted to eradicate an enemy or brainwash a lover isn't especially surprising, though it is disconcerting to think that this lovable character once used his phenomenal cosmic power to murder someone. Really though, it's Rule #3 that has the most disturbing implications.
Given Genie's distaste for the practice, a ressurection probably went wrong in one of two ways. Best case scenario: Genie zapped a dead body what came back was an evil entity, a la Pet Sematary. Worst case scenario: Genie accidentally unleashed a zombie apocalypse. It might seem like a stretch, but it gels with a prevailing theory that places Aladdin's time period in the far-flung future -- admit it, that definitely explains why Genie has such a good Jack Nicholson impression. Bearing that in mind, it could be that one of Genie's wishes kicked off an undead plague that took over the world, and it took humanity 10,000 years to get back to the Middle Ages. Man, the phrase "prequel trilogy" never sounded so good.

4. The Sultan's adorable ignorance is killing Agrabah

Agrabah's unnamed Sultan is the classic doddering cartoon daddy. He's more or less a mix of Homer Simpson and Maurice from Beauty and the Beast. He seems like a sweet man and a kind father -- until you realize that this buffoon lives in luxury while his city festers in squalor. Seriously, look at how the palace towers over the slums of Agrabah (aka every part of Agrabah that is not the palace).

This is a city that contains hundreds, if not thousands of impoverished people. Aladdin is so poor that he has to steal bread, and gives the bread away when he realizes there are children that are even poorer than him. Everything we see in the movie makes it look like a pretty shitty place to live. But hey, at least the Sultan gets to live it up with his toys...

...even though it's at the cost of children longingly looking at rotten fish bones.

The movie never acknowledges this. Aladdin is about a hero's journey to defeat a villain with the help of a friend, and also a princess' fight to marry whoever she wants. The "good guys" do manage to get a happy ending, but the rest of Agrabah still suffers. Al agonizes over whether he should free Genie, when but never considers the idea that the children he just fed are, at that very moment, still trapped in poverty. But hey, maybe they'll have their own magical adventures and go on to ignore the plight of their contemporaries. If we're really lucky, they'll also sing some catchy songs.

3. Is Jafar some kind of technological genius?

Fan theories aside, let's assume Aladdin takes place in the distant past. What would that say about the villain, Jafar? He would seem to have a leg-up on the competition because of the limited magic he can perform, but the supernatural is the least of Jafar's areas of expertise. The evil royal vizier we see in the movie is one that wears cunning disguises, throws smoke bombs and uses secret passageways. Jafar is a strategist, a scientist, an escape artist and a chameleon, but he's not really a wizard until he makes that wish.
The most impressive part of Jafar's arsenal is the machine he uses to find Aladdin. This thing is powered by electricity, hundreds of years before Ben Franklin macked on his first French lady. And he's not just waiting for an electrical storm to power the device, but instead gets Iago to generate the power.

That's basically a lightning strike up to 1.21 gigawatts, all produced by what's essentially a parrot running on a treadmill. It's an incredible feat of technology that's not even possible today, and it's in the hands of the villain. What does Jafar need with a magic lamp when he's obviously so technologically talented that he could rule the world anyway? Dude is clearly an evil goateed version of Batman.

2. The whole thing with Prince Ali

It's really difficult to get mad at Jafar for abusing his wishes when Aladdin does the exact same thing. His grand entrance involved hundreds (if not thousands) of loyal subjects singing about how much of a hardcore G Prince Ali is. But that brings up all sorts of questions, like uh, where did all those people come from? Was Genie "borrowing" some of Agrabah's people, temporarily brainwashing them to serve Aladdin's needs? That would mean thousands of Agrabanians woke up later with no memory of what they did, embarrassed and ashamed that they magically forgot to pick their kid up from school. Or worse, is Genie creating those people out of thin air? Is there an entire nation of adult babies wandering around, afraid and oblivious as to what they should do with their newfound existence?
Even if we assume the people are holograms or at least well-paid extras, there's also another problem: The part where Aladdin stops being a Prince for a while:

Apparently all it takes to be de-Princeified is to have your identity exposed and your clothes zapped off of you. All of the royal credentials that Genie presumably whipped up for Aladdin are somehow gone in an instant, and just like that he's once again a street rat that is ineligible to marry Princess Jasmine.
The whole thing is made more baffling by the ending, in which Aladdin considers using his final wish to make himself a prince again. What exactly is that supposed to change? Everyone already knows he's Aladdin. Is it just about the clothes? There's gotta be a nice tailor in the marketplace in between the sugardates and pistachio salesmen; Jas could probably spot him a few bucks for at least a suit rental. All the hand-wringing is moot anyway when you consider the idea that Aladdin could easily just hand the lamp to Jasmine or the Sultan and have them make the proper wishes.
That might be too much to ask of these people, though. After all, they're the ones who couldn't tell Aladdin was Prince Ali while he was wearing no disguise whatsoever.

1. The movie should have ended 15 minutes sooner

The monkey-flung shit hits the fan when Jafar gets a hold of the lamp and starts making wishes. Despite Aladdin having one more wish on the docket, Genie claimed he couldn't help him anymore. Al had to fight and defeat an all-powerful Jafar with his wits alone, for what seems like no reason at all.
Sure, Jafar held the lamp, but that was never a requirement before. Aladdin only held the lamp when he freed Genie. Both other times, Aladdin's hands were empty; for the second wish, Al was unconscious and underwater, and Genie took great liberties with "wish consent" in order to save his pal's life.

And that's not including the time that Aladdin tricked Genie into getting out of the Cave of Wonders without using a wish. Heck, at the end of the movie, Genie boots Jafar's black lamp into a distant sand dune for no other reason than he wanted to -- no wish needed. It's clear that Genie isn't bound by any iron-clad magic laws, and he really is capable of almost anything. All of these so-called rules that Genie is following, including the ones he has against murder and ressurection, are self-made. Nothing should stop him from granting Aladdin's wish to "wreck Jafar's shit" right here.

That might mean Genie would be still a slave at the end of the movie, but as we already covered, Aladdin could easily just hand the lamp to Jasmine and use those new wishes to solve all of their problems. Maybe she could even wish for Agrabah not to be such an oppressive dictatorship!


In the 1980s, a Soviet citizen was given the rare opportunity to go to the west. He visits some distant relatives now living in the United States, then returns to Mother Russia.
His friends ask him, "Comrade, what is it like in America?"
"Wonderful. But they have some very strange customs there," the Soviet admits.
"Such as?"
"They opened a bottle of vodka and poured me a glass."
"And then?"
"And then," the man says with an incredulous look, "they put the cap back on the bottle!"


National Guard General Resigns After ‘Hurtful’ Pranks By Other Joint Chiefs

ARLINGTON, Va. — Gen. Frank Grass, chief of the National Guard Bureau (NGB), abruptly announced his resignation this week amidst claims of hazing and abuse from his fellow Joint Chiefs of Staff, according to sources.

Guardsmen at all levels report they are often bullied by their slimmer, active-duty counterparts, but sources say this is the first time the bullying has occurred at such a high level, with the situation worsening in 2012, when Grass was given a seat at the table with the Joint Chiefs.

Grass went on the record following his resignation, speaking to reporters outside the Pentagon, flanked by his attorney Gloria Allred and his wife, Sally.

“At first the vibe was just weird,” Grass said. “Odierno would always walk around naked in the locker room so that I would ‘know who the bigger man was.'”

“But like the Stanford Prison Experiment, shit got real in a hurry,” he recalled. “In 2013 they made me teleconference into a meeting from a kiddie table at a local Chuck E. Cheese.”

Other Joint Chiefs, including recently retired Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Martin Dempsey, have confirmed some of the allegations.

“I had to preserve my independence, since he was Army too,” said Dempsey. “So his first year on the job I made a rule that he was only allowed to speak in meetings one weekend a month and two weeks in the summer.”

The Department of Defense Inspector General opened an investigation into the worst claim of misconduct, which occurred in 2012 on a business trip to Las Vegas. The other Chiefs allegedly made Grass pound shot after shot of vodka while “repeatedly calling him ‘Pledge’ and ‘Boot.’”

At some point, Grass allegedly drunk-dialed NGB’s advertising agency and ordered them to spend millions of dollars on NASCAR sponsorships. The Inspector General confirmed that Grass must have been “miles beyond black-out drunk,” reasoning that “no jackass in their right mind would blow half of his ad budget’ on a ‘sport’ that is just cars making left turns for two hours.”

New Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford declined to comment through a spokesman, who noted, “The Chairman has no idea who or what a Gen. Grass is.”


Immediately, he sees the eggs and gasps in horror.
"Be careful! CAREFUL! Put in some more butter! Oh, my GOSH!"
The wife, startled at her husband's violent reaction, dashes to the fridge to get some butter.
"You're cooking too many at once. TOO MANY! Turn them! TURN THEM NOW!"
The wife, concerned by the status of her husband's mental state, forgets about the butter and goes running to the eggs.
"WE NEED BUTTER! Are you CRAZY??? Where are we going to get the butter? They're going to stick! HURRY!"
The wife runs to the fri-
"CAREFUL about the eggs! CAREFUL. You NEVER listen to me when you're cooking! Never! Turn them quickly! Oh not that quickly, don't you know how to cook? Are you insane? Turn the DAMN EGGS!"
At this point, the wife starts crying, since she has no idea what to do.
She gasps "What is WRONG with you? I know how to cook eggs."
The husband simply smiles, remarks "I just wanted to show you what it feels like while I'm driving with you in the car", and leaves.

Issue of the Times;
Screw Finding Your Passion by Mark Manson

Remember back when you were a kid? You would just do things. You never thought to yourself, “What are the relative merits of learning baseball versus football?” You just ran around the playground and played baseball and football. You built sand castles and played tag and asked silly questions and looked for bugs and dug up grass and pretended you were a sewer monster.
Nobody told you to do it, you just did it. You were led merely by your curiosity and excitement.
And the beautiful thing was, if you hated baseball, you just stopped playing it. There was no guilt involved. There was no arguing or debate. You either liked it, or you didn’t.
And if you loved looking for bugs, you just did that. There was no second-level analysis of, “Well, is looking for bugs really what I should be doing with my time as a child? Nobody else wants to look for bugs, does that mean there’s something wrong with me? How will looking for bugs affect my future prospects?”
There was no bullshit. If you liked something, you just did it.
Today I received approximately the 11,504th email this year from a person telling me that they don’t know what to do with their life. And like all of the others, this person asked me if I had any ideas of what they could do, where they could start, where to “find their passion.”
And of course, I didn’t respond. Why? Because I have no fucking clue. If you don’t have any idea what to do with yourself, what makes you think some jackass with a website would? I’m a writer, not a fortune teller.
But more importantly, what I want to say to these people is this: that’s the whole point — “not knowing” is the whole fucking point. Life is all about not knowing, and then doing something anyway. All of life is like this. All of it. And it’s not going to get any easier just because you found out you love your job cleaning septic tanks or you scored a dream gig writing indie movies.
The common complaint among a lot of these people is that they need to ‘find their passion.’
I call bullshit. You already found your passion, you’re just ignoring it. Seriously, you’re awake 16 hours a day, what the fuck do you do with your time? You’re doing something, obviously. You’re talking about something. There’s some topic or activity or idea that dominates a significant amount of your free time, your conversations, your web browsing, and it dominates them without you consciously pursuing it or looking for it.
It’s right there in front of you, you’re just avoiding it. For whatever reason, you’re avoiding it. You’re telling yourself, “Oh well, yeah, I love comic books but that doesn’t count. You can’t make money with comic books.”
Fuck you, have you even tried?
The problem is not a lack of passion for something. The problem is productivity. The problem is perception. The problem is acceptance.
The problem is the, “Oh, well that’s just not a realistic option,” or “Mom and Dad would kill me if I tried to do that, they say I should be a doctor” or “That’s crazy, you can’t buy a BMW with the money you make doing that.”
The problem isn’t passion. It’s never passion.
It’s priorities.
And even then, who says you need to make money doing what you love? Since when does everyone feel entitled to love every fucking second of their job? Really, what is so wrong with working an OK normal job with some cool people you like, and then pursuing your passion in your free time on the side? Has the world turned upside-down or is this not suddenly a novel idea to people?
Look, here’s another slap in the face for you: every job sucks sometimes. There’s no such thing as some passionate activity that you will never get tired of, never get stressed over, never complain about. It doesn’t exist. I am living my dream job (which happened by accident, by the way. I never in a million years planned on this happening; like a kid on a playground I just went and tried it), and I still hate about 30% of it. Some days more.
Again, that’s just life.
The issue here is, once again, expectations. If you think you’re supposed to be working 70-hour work weeks and sleeping in your office like Steve Jobs and loving every second of it, you’ve been watching too many shitty movies. If you think you’re supposed to wake up every single day dancing out of your pajamas because you get to go to work, then you’ve been drinking the Kool-Aid. Life doesn’t work like that. It’s just unrealistic. There’s a thing most of us need called balance.
I have a friend who, for the last three years, has been trying to build an online businessselling whatever. It hasn’t been working. And by not working, I mean he’s not even launching anything. Despite years of “work” and saying he’s going to do this or that, nothing actually ever gets done.
What does get done is when one of his former co-workers comes to him with a design job to create a logo or design some promotional material for an event. Holy shit, he’s all over that like flies on fresh cow shit.
And he does a great job! He stays up to 4:00 AM losing himself working on it and loving every second of it.
But then two days later it’s back to, “Man, I just don’t know what I’m supposed to do.”
I meet so many people like him. He doesn’t need to find his passion. His passion already found him. He’s just ignoring it. He just refuses to believe it’s viable. He is just afraid of giving it an honest-to-god try.
It’s like a nerdy kid walking onto a playground and saying, “Well, bugs are really cool, but NFL players make more money, so I should force myself to play football every day,” and then coming home and complaining that he doesn’t like recess.
And that’s bullshit. Everybody likes recess. The problem is that he’s arbitrarily choosing to limit himself based on some bullshitty ideas he got into his head about success and what he’s supposed to do.
Another email I get all the time is from people wanting advice on how to become a writer.
And my answer is the same: I have no fucking idea.
As a kid, I would write short stories in my room for fun. As a teenager, I would write music reviews and essays about bands I loved and then show them to nobody. Once the internet came around, I spent hours upon hours on forums writing multi-page posts about inane topics – everything from guitar pickups to the causes of the Iraq War.
I never considered writing as a potential career. I never even considered it a hobby or passion. To me, the things I wrote about were my passion: music, politics, philosophy. Writing was just something I did because I felt like it.
And when I had to go looking for a career I could fall in love with, I didn’t have to look far. In fact, I didn’t have to look at all. It chose me, in a way. It was already there. Already something I was doing every day, since I was a kid, without even thinking about it.
Because here’s another point that might make a few people salty: If you have to look for what you’re passionate about, then you’re probably not passionate about it at all.
If you’re passionate about something, it will already feel like such an ingrained part of your life that you will have to be reminded by people that it’s not normal, that other people aren’t like that.
It didn’t occur to me that writing 2,000 word posts on forums was something nobody else considered fun. It never occurred to my friend that designing a logo is something that most people don’t find easy or fun. To him, it’s so natural that he can’t even imagine it being otherwise. And that’s why it’s probably what he really should be doing.
A child does not walk onto a playground and say to herself, “How do I find fun?” She just goes and has fun.
If you have to look for what you enjoy in life, then you’re not going to enjoy anything.
And the real truth is that you already enjoy something. You already enjoy many things. You’re just choosing to ignore them.

Quote of the Times;
“To penetrate one’s being, one must go armed to the teeth.” - Valery

Link of the Times;
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