Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the President to explain to us what the exit strategy is.    The Honorable Governor of Texas, George W. Bush

I hate quotations. Tell me what you know.    Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Seriously Amusing

The verb muse means to ponder. It's from the French muser, which means snout. I guess it's something like standing there with your mouth open, oblivious to what is going on around you. Think of yourself going "huh?" while pulling back a bit, tilting your head to the side, and scrunching up your upper lip and nose. Go ahead, do it. You can see where the snout part comes in.

So it's not so much to ponder, but to act pretty silly doing it. Amusement, the bringing of one to such a state, is silly stuff, and not serious. A thing can't be serious and amusing. These are mutually exclusive terms (which are different from collectively exhaustive terms, though I don't have any idea how). George Carlin did, and does occasionally still, a bit about mutually exclusive terms, such as jumbo shrimp and semi-boneless ham and wrapping up with military intelligence, and that's some pretty funny stuff.

Is there a point to this? Not yet. I can't think of a good segueway, either. Word doesn't even recognize segueway, so I guess it can't be that important, anyway.


Nothing spawns bad ideas like bad ideas. That's because people have such a fierce loyalty to their bad ideas that they'll shoehorn the most ungainly aspects of these ideas into a fit, while squinting just enough to make it all look right. Take the right wing's privatization mantra. Outsourcing the care of disabled veterans to private concerns does not improve care, nor does it reduce costs. Organizing the Social Security prescription drug program into dozens of programs being offered in many variations by hundreds of insurers does not make pricing more competitive, the only competition is in the effort to confuse the elderly, most of whom long since priced out of the almighty free market.

It just doesn't fit. It's pig-headedly stubborn to stretch the concept of free markets to the point of shopping life or death. Prevention and diagnosis don't pay, treatment does.

What's profitable isn't what is most needed. Somewhere there is a very stupid idea behind this.

In spite of the light bulb in the cartoons, most ideas come from other ideas. I will venture that if an idea has merit, it will generally propagate ideas that are good; since those thinking along the lines of the good idea have already demonstrated superior ability. Same goes for the bad, I reckon. Therefore, it is more likely than not that a bad idea, as in the above example, will have a bad idea as it's source.

This all started as I sat (laid me) down to watch Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, a very disappointing and bizarre sequel to a fairly enjoyable movie, both with The Little Hun's beloved Johnny Depp in the lead. Among the descriptors for whatever the rating was, which I didn't notice, was something I did notice:

mild violence

Huh? I have to admit, I was amused. (see how this whole effort ties together now? Well, maybe ties isn't he right word, but here we are at the beginning)

What the hell is mild violence? Have you ever heard a weather bulletin for mildly violent thunderstorms? Are there victims of mild domestic violence out there, maybe whose husbands wear boxing gloves? Where do they draw that line? One stab and no twisting?

It's totally absurd. I don't know much about the movie ratings system, but I have good reason to suspect that this lunacy is the result of a lunatic notion to rate movies in the first place.

That's how it works with me.