Wednesday, January 18, 2006

On a more frivolous note...

Ok, it's time for a post with no politics, cultural criticism, or anything serious like that. Sure, politics is important and all, but sometimes you need to take a breather from all the nastiness and just look at some cute little kittens, and then some more kittens. If you're a truly jaded internet user, and still images just don't do it for you anymore, the Oregon Humane Society's live kitten cam may be more your speed. If you don't like kittens, you're obviously going straight to hell, although in the meantime you can look forward to a lucrative job as a talk radio host, or a neocon think tank apparatchik. Oh, wait, I promised no politics. I hate it when the real world keeps intruding.

Anyway, if you ever get tired of kittens, I'd just like to point out that cows are often cute too. Not as cute as kittens, of course, but they do have the advantage of being delicious, something that's not true of kittens so far as I know. If you're feeling masochistic, here's a collection of horrible poetry about cows. You still won't be able to say you've seen everything, but at least you can check one more thing off the list, I guess.

It's not known whether cows think other cows are delicious, but in recent years we've insisted on feeding them to each other anyway, which (understandably) makes some cows rather mad. Adopting less unnatural animal feeding practices would cost money, and the lobbyists are against that, so instead we're going to a fancy RFID-based tracking system known as NAIS. This may turn out to be more expensive than it would be to feed cows a normal vegetarian diet, and we all ultimately foot the bill either way, but this way we're footing the bill as taxpayers rather than as consumers, which is much better, apparently. This way we can go on enjoying low, low (=subsidized) prices at the grocery store, and turn around and resent Uncle Sam for all those horrible taxes we have to pay. I guess it was a foregone conclusion actually; with the current administration, universal surveillance is always the answer, whatever the problem happens to be.

Interestingly, the program's getting a bit of opposition, not from the usual tofu-chomping vegan hippie crowd, but from rather hysterical religious folks who see RFID as the Mark of the Beast. I'll be the first to say there are legitimate civil liberties concerns with RFID, but these people are just making all RFID skeptics seem like wingnuts and whack jobs. I wish they'd shut up and go back to their Y2K shelters, already.

Oops, more politics again. I guess I just can't help it sometimes. Sorry! Honest! :)

PS Karl Rove is a total scumbag.

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