Reader blogs

I haven’t done this feature in a while so here goes:


  • Apocalypse Now: Redshirt’s Lament checks in on the optimists who think the world will last til May 21.
  • You’re damn right I’ve got the blues: Ronni Bennett samples the music of Big Joe Turner, T-Bone Walker and Otis Spann.
  • Blame it on Howell Raines: I agree with BrendanCalling’s analysis of why so many people believe the Donald Trumps and Alex Joneses of the word.
  • Nostalgia for the future: cleek is right that these  Yugoslavian monuments look like they could be used on Pink Floyd covers (EDIT: interesting related link).
  • Provencal song and sunburnt mirth:  Central Coast Foodie checks in with one of my favorite grapes, mourvedre.  (BTW, if you like wine-tasting trips, Paso Robles is one of the very best places to visit in the United States.)
  • There’s a stain on my notebook: The Barman Cometh samples a new coffee liqueur I’d like to try.
  • Somewhere in her youth or childhood: Libby Spencer gets a well-deserved mention of sorts from the New York Times.

What’s going on on your blog?

76 replies
  1. 1

    My cat blog:

    The Way of Cats

    just posted an article on how to help with the senior cats’ mental challenges.

  2. 2

    What’s going on on your blog?

    Oh! You mean lil’ ol’ me?


    Well I already blogwhored myself over here today but since you asked … “Oil Speculators & Gas Prices: Is Feature, Not Bug?”

  3. 3
    freelancer says:

    This isn’t my blog?

  4. 4
    Jay in Oregon says:

    OK, I had to check up on the whole “May 21 is the beginning of The End!” thing.

    As usual, you have to play semantic games to interpret the “literal” word of God.

    God told Noah that in seven days, the Great Flood would begin, and Peter said that with the Lord a day is as a thousand years and a thousand years is a day. So obviously that means that the world is only going to last for 7000 years. *boggle*

    Apparently, the spirit of God left the world in 1988 and the churches have been ruled by Satan ever since. Actually, that kinda makes sense…

  5. 5
    artem1s says:

    those are sets from Stargate SG1, amiright?

  6. 6
    Scott says:

    My blog is a never-ending fountain of irritation. Fucking goddamn comic books are taking up all the storage space in my house.

  7. 7

    I don’t think those monuments could look any more like products of Roger Waters’ fevered imagination if the artist had consciously tried. Might have to throw on Animals later today…

    In my little corner of the blogosphere, I’ve decided that in response to what seems to be consistent approval from the Free Market, I should stop being so Galt and ditch the silly barely-there-pseudonym and go with my real name instead.

  8. 8
    Hawes says:

    My blog is keeping a close eye on bin Laden’s status.

    As of 1:08 PM ET, he is still dead.

  9. 9
    cleek says:

    my blog continues to wonder why it exists.

  10. 10

    Thanks for the shout-out to my alcoholism cocktail blog –

    And whoa,those Yugoslavian brutalist scupltures are frickin’ amazing. Something about intellectuals living under brutal communist regimes sure brings out the creativity.

  11. 11
    The Dangerman says:

    Central Coast Foodie? Neighbor!! Pismo Beach here.

    I’ll have to check your Blog; do you have Linn’s Farm there? Not the restaurant, the farm. I have more tips, but I gotta run.

    Since you are in Paso, there’s a really good Japanese place next to the train station. Yes, in Paso; whodda thunk it? I used to live by the owners, so I’m biased as they did some comping for me. I can be bribed easily with good sushi or sake.

    Now, really gotta run.

  12. 12
    Mark S. says:

    Huh, all those Yugoslavian monuments look like they’re out in the middle of nowhere. They are almost all hideously ugly.

  13. 13
    bkny says:

    well, i don’t have a blog, but this is definitely worth reposting.

    for all of you who have evangelical friends just awaiting the rapture — here’s an offer to take care of the kittehs and doggies left behind:

  14. 14
    freelancer says:

    OT – but here’s Sully writing about the Tony Kushner kerfuffle:

    To say I am embarrassed to be defending Tony Kushner is an understatement. I was one of very few gay men with HIV who found Angels in America to be pretentious, boring propaganda, and like most propaganda, endless and laden with stereotypes and cartoon figures. In the internecine fights in the gay movement in the 1990s, we were on opposite sides. I’d rather have pins stuck in my eyes than attend his new play, ominously titled “The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide to Capitalism and Soshulism With a Key to the Scriptures,” which like other Important Plays, clocks in at four hours. His sad attempt to exonerate traitors like the Rosenbergs was once perverse; now it just seems at odds with reality. I have no beef with him personally, I should add, although after writing all that, he may feel somewhat differently toward me.

    With a few edits, that could describe Sullivan completely:

    To say I am embarrassed to be defending Tony Kushner Sullivan is an understatement. I was one of very few gay men with HIV serious minded readers who found Angels in America Sullivan’s reacts to the Ryan Plan, the Iranian Green Revolution, weekend spiritual blatherings, and Trig obsessions to be pretentious, boring propaganda, and like most propaganda, endless and laden with stereotypes and cartoon figures. In the internecine fights in the gay movement in the 1990s, we were on opposite sides. I’d rather have pins stuck in my eyes than attend his new play, ominously titled “The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide to Capitalism and Socialism With a Key to the Scriptures,” read his innumerate musings on 19th and early 20th century political philosophers, which like other Important Plays and Serious writings, clocks in at great paragraph length and is so “high-minded” and obscure as to be rendered incorehent. His sad attempt to exonerate traitors like the Rosenbergs past incongruities like the Bell Curve and “fifth column” statements was were once perverse; now it they just seems at odds with reality. I have no beef with him personally, I should add, although after writing all that, he may feel somewhat differently toward me.

    Petard, prepare to hoist thyself, with your own passive-agressive, dickish and petty preamble. I don’t find Kushner’s writing that profound either, doesn’t mean I need to be an asshole when I point out that what was done to him was wrong.

  15. 15
    Dave S. says:

    Not much apart from an obit for the last surviving combat veteran of World War One and a less-than-erudite discussion of Game of Thrones.

    But thanks for asking!

  16. 16
    freelancer says:

    Goddamnit, quoted Sullivan twice and he used the Soshulist word. I fixed the first one, but let the second go and now am in mod hell.

  17. 17
    Woodrowfan says:

    is there is a rapture I am taking my pets with me!

  18. 18
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    My blog has been exploring the nuanced differences between Oakeshott and Burke with an appreciative eye on the simplicity of Hayek coupled with a desire to fully understand the subtle and dangerous attractions of Strauss.

  19. 19
    Hawes says:

    @Southern Beale: I’ll blogwhore blogsexworker myself right back atchya.

    I had the same impulse here.

    Yours just has facts and evidence and stuff.

    Well played.

  20. 20
    hilts says:

    I don’t have a blog, but these blog posts are so dumb that they deserve wider dissemination in order to receive the ridicule and mockery they richly deserve:

    Motivational Poster for George W. Bush’s Library
    “VINDICATION: When the loudest critic of your policies achieves his greatest success because of them.”

    Confirmed: President Barack Obama is an Anti-American

  21. 21
    Yutsano says:

    @The Dangerman:

    Pismo Beach here

    And all the clams you can eat?

    I can be bribed easily with good sushi or sake.

    And you still left Seattle? Though you can get really really good Japanese in Little Tokyo in LA, so there is that.

  22. 22
    artem1s says:

    You’ve committed your life to Jesus. You know you’re saved. But when the Rapture comes what’s to become of your loving pets who are left behind?

    why does jeebus hate teh kittehs and puppehs?

  23. 23
    Captain Howdy says:

    I could be wrong but it looks like cracktwo completely lifted the post on Soviet (sic) monuments from here without so much as a thank you or a link. That ain’t cool.

    Blogger ethics panel!

    (Not for nothing but there is much needed context on the ASC’s page)

  24. 24

    This is a few days old, but entirely noteworth considering the jobs report that just came out: Will Rogers speaks to the 21st century.

  25. 25
    Bobby Thomson says:

    Nice Squeeze reference.

  26. 26
    jacy says:

    I’ve got my short stories up on Amazon! And also some free on Smashwords. So I am currently blogging about formatting ebooks.

    That is while I’m not hacking and coughing and figuring out if vodka or ginger tea is better for a cold. I’m thinking both are in order.

  27. 27
    cleek says:

    wow, that really is a stupid person.

  28. 28

    On the front page right now I lament the death of a hard drive and necessary replacement of the machine, show a picture of a purty flower in my back yard, and have a picture of homemade Portuguese Sweet Bread which we’re still eating.

  29. 29

    @WereBear (itouch): I just send you an e-mail via contact form. would appreciate if you would respond. kthnxbai.

  30. 30
    Dan says:

    Governor Christie’s Attorney General is doing her best impersonation of Andrew Jackson

  31. 31
    Culture of Truth says:

    I’ve seen ads for the May 21st ending in the subway. Not sure how to plan for that.

  32. 32

    Nada. Nothing going on at my place or, for me, at ABL’s place. A bit of the writer’s block I have, yes, indeed. I think I have been going Galt without even realizing it.

  33. 33
    Culture of Truth says:

    @artem1s: Curb Your Dogma

  34. 34

    Primarily a photoblog, my recent posts are focusing on disparities of living conditions and expenditures within cities. Mainly via imagery, so the commentary may be too subtle, but the interesting thing to me is that there are essentially two types of workers in new urban plans: the rich and their professional service (lawyers, doctors, etc). There is no place in the new planning for the working class.

    Maybe I should actually write that on the blog…

    A few days ago the focus was on graffiti. Last week was centered around architecture and autos.

  35. 35
    Yutsano says:

    @asiangrrlMN: Your Republican-fu goes stronger by the day. Soon you shall become more powerful than they ever imagined.

    Or something.

    Hi hon. I don’t wanna go to work today but I have no real good reason for not going.

    EDIT: Plus I just remembered my manager isn’t in today so I can’t call in anyway. Cwap.

  36. 36


    Yours just has facts and evidence and stuff.
    Well played.

    Aw shucks, thanks. But yours has brio. Brio trumps facts and evidence every time.

  37. 37

    At the shallow sage this week, we are lamenting the fact that we can’t leave our garbage cans on the street all week without people complaining.

  38. 38
    jacy says:


    Maybe you have the Creeping Galt. I think I saw it in a British sci-fi movie from the early ’60s. Either that or a hygiene filmstrip in grade school.

  39. 39
    Yutsano says:

    @Southern Beale:

    Brio trumps facts and evidence every time.

    And is rather tasty wrapped in puff pastry with apricot preserves and walnuts. Served with a nice crisp chardonnay or pinot noir.

    And BTW oil speculation was already around in 2008, so why it shocks anyone that the cashino gamers on Wall Street are taking advantage of that is beyond me. I think what really needs to be instated is a material interest rule. An airline has a reason to speculate on the price of oil. A bank does not.

  40. 40

    @Dan: Whoa. I’d missed this story completely. How the hell does she/Christie think they can get away with this kind of crap? In New Jersey!

  41. 41

    @Yutsano: Yutsy! How you be? I’ve missed you.

    Yes. DESPITE the fact that I was NOT invited to last night’s debate, I still shall triumph over adversity and win the future as a Republican. Or something.

    @Culture of Truth: Alan Rickman!

    @jacy: Ew. That sounds nasty. I hope there’s an ointment for it.

  42. 42
    artem1s says:

    @Culture of Truth:

    saw what you did there! ;D

    seems Jeebus really does hate puppehs! and servants too. :P

    Question: What would Jesus do if his dog bumped up against his friend’s maid or servant?

    Answer: Jesus would give the friend the equivalent of 30 shekels of silver and then stone his dog. He would give nothing to the maid or servant though. This is dictated by the Lord in Exodus 21:32.

  43. 43
    Yutsano says:

    @asiangrrlMN: And now you know who your greatest adversary will be: Ron Paul. Because I think temperatures in Hades get comfy for you before the Republicans put up anyone but a white straight Christian male as their standard bearer. Someone needs to let Willard know he doesn’t qualify in their eyes.


  44. 44
    freelancer says:


    Pismo Beach here

    And all the clams you can eat?


  45. 45
    Joax says:

    BJ is one of my daily contacts to the crazy world known as El Norte. Life in Oaxaca is very different, but better.

  46. 46
    Lv Bu says:

    A post on China’s urban rural divide and the beginning of a series on why China keeps their currency pegged to ours and what it actually means to the US.

  47. 47

    @Yutsano: Ron Paul? No no. I am afraid that it mayhaps be Ratface Pawlenty. But, I can take him down. I have my evil ways.*

    *Back-up plan is to be Stephen Colbert’s VP nominee.

  48. 48
    piratedan says:

    well I don’t post to my blog often, but when I do…..I drink Dos Equis while doing so…..


  49. 49
  50. 50
    Chris says:

    From the Brendan Calling link,

    And that’s what happened to my friend. He now believes a pile of bullshit that reaches the moon (which is not, as you may have heard, made of cheese), because the people who should have told him the truth fell down on the job. They didn’t want to offend the people they cover (too busy partying down) or had an agenda of their own, and bought into this bullshit idea that every claim, no matter how wacked out, dishonest, or uninformed, deserves to be treated seriously.

    Perhaps, but it’s also true that people want to be lied to. If the media, whether traditional or modern/crazy/NewsCorpish went on the air proclaiming that the Apollo 11 landing never happened, for example, most people wouldn’t believe that. It’s not the sort of lie they want to believe. It denigrates their country and one of its greatest, proudest achievements, and most people don’t want to hear that. On the other hand, a lie like “Vietnam was a noble effort in the defense of freedom which only failed because we didn’t drop enough napalm” is much more likely to be believed. It partly rehabilitates one of the darkest moments in our history by suggesting that it really wasn’t that dark and that the fault lied not in ourselves but in a few stab-in-the-back turncoat cowards from the liberal elite.

    It’s a vicious cycle. Yes, people are uninformed because the media’s increasingly lying to them, but a lot of people also want to be lied to, and a lot of pundits tailor their lies to be the kind their audience will want.

    I use the Vietnam example deliberately. Seems to me that a big part of the backlash against the anti-war protesters and the media in the seventies (which fed into the Reagan-love of the eighties, and the war-as-video-game coverage of the Gulf War) happened because reporters were broadcasting ugly truths about Vietnam. A lot of people found those truths too uncomfortable, shot the messenger, and demanded never to get that kind of news again.

  51. 51
    Mike Mundy says:

    One (or two) photos a day, from California, at the mikereport.

  52. 52

    @JD Rhoades: Sigh. My hometown Republicans are getting more and more ridiculous every day. Gaiman’s reply to him was perfect.

  53. 53
    eemom says:

    Ain’t got time for a blog. Too busy wasting it here.

    ETA: however, as a community service project, I urge you all to go give some love to yesterday’s Not Helping thread — it has a REAL chance to overtake the champion record-holding 900+ comment Greenwald thread from last year!

  54. 54
    Sly says:

    To be fair to crazier-than-a-shithouse-rat Harold Camping, who is popularizing the whole 5/21/2011 deal, the Rapture will occur on May 21st. All the True Christians will be beamed up to Heaven, and Jesus will spend the next six months massacring all the The Others and destroying their souls. The actual end of the world, when everything gets blown up, is on Oct. 21st, 2011.

    And apropos of nothing, if you ever find yourself suffering from insomnia, the ultimate cure listening to Harold Camping for thirty seconds. The man’s voice could put a coked-up Jack Russell to sleep.

  55. 55
    Chris says:

    @JD Rhoades:


    Reminds me of the Glenn Beck rally here last summer/fall. On the DCist blog, the Overheard In DC article featured an angry just-in-town-for-the-rally guy flipping out on someone at the local CVS because the prices, supposedly, were too damn high, and he suspected that the uppity greedy bastards were trying to screw him just because he was from the heartland. The manager finally came out, talked to the guy, and confirmed that yes, that really is the local price for everyone and nobody’s trying to screw you.

    Angry Tourist: “Well, that’s un-American.”
    Store manager: “No, sir. That’s capitalism.”

  56. 56

    thanks for the link to brendancalling, today featuring another one of my masterful takedowns of the Shame of Philadelphia (TM).

    I’ve also been doing some scripts for Scrapple news, specifically AP Ticker’s Piggie of the Week.

  57. 57
    cleek says:

    @Mike Mundy:
    that second shot here is awesome. nicely done!

    off to wallow in jealousy..!

  58. 58
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @WereBear (itouch): Thanks, WereBear. Our two cats are getting up in years (16 and 11), some health issues have crept in recently, and it’s good to have additional resources.

  59. 59
    ruemara says:


    not. getting. out. of. the. boat.

    No blog, but I am writing about the futility of home gardens to provide self sustaining kitchens. IOW, no matter what, we’re gonna have to ship in flour, sugar, coffee & chocolate.

  60. 60
    MikeJ says:

    No thread about the election? AV was up for a vote. Long touted by smaller parties in the US as a way to break the two party stranglehold.

    In the UK, the tories didn’t have enough seats to form a government last election, so they went into coalition with the Liberal Democrats. LibDems are actually much closer to Labour on policy, but they went with the Conservatives.

    LibDems have yelled for years that first past the post was awful and should be replaced by AV. The problem: now everybody hates LibDems. LibDem voters explicitly voted against the Conservatives, but now they’re in government to just act as a rubber stamp. So everybody hates them, and more importantly, hates their ideas.

    So AV is a bold experiment that won’t happen because people expected a pony after voting for a third party and found out that they’re politicians and human too.

  61. 61
    sparky says:

    i tend to do my caterwauling here, as it’s at least a possibility that someone might read it and do me the favor of insulting me personally.

    or not.

    and thanks for the linky collection

  62. 62
    Chris says:


    I don’t follow British politics much. Why did the LibDems go with the Tories? What were they offered that made it more attractive than Labour?

  63. 63

    I don’t much care for Reihan Salam (“I can’t speak to whether or not torture is a good thing, but I sure can speculate!” ) sometimes.

    It’s very important to note that Elvis Costello sang backup on and, I think, produced Black Coffee in Bed.

  64. 64
    MikeJ says:

    @Chris: Basically, they got the referendum on AV and Cameron’s hand up Nick Clegg’s ass.

    They were convinced that if people could rank their votes, well of course they’d rather have a LibDem, but they could be safe and vote Labour second place. You could vote the way you feel *and* not waste your vote! But now AV is associated with them, and they’re hated.

    Which is too bad. I would have liked to see what happened with AV.

  65. 65
    evap says:

    I don’t have have a blog, but I just had to pop in to say that I loved the Squeeze reference (to one of my favorite Squeeze songs). Doug, you are awesome!

  66. 66
    M--pop says:

    Thanks for opening this up for reader blogs. I am a (relatively) new commenter/lurker on Balloon Juice and I have an environmental blog, The Accidental Environmentalist. Right now I’m complaining about how I didn’t know it was National Bike Month (it is!) and how I miss my microwave oven.

  67. 67


    allergies, his uptight virginal mother couldn’t stand the thought of breast feeding.

    its always a give and take. jesus gets to be born without original sin, or innate knowledge of human sexuality by not being born by way of fucking, but he snots up and sneezes the bejeezus out of everything, when ever any thing furry is near by, bear-apostles excepted.

  68. 68
    Dan says:

    @Elias Isquith: Yeah, I don’t know. I think Christie shoots his mouth off a lot and maybe for once he’ll really be called out on it because this is just ridiculous

  69. 69
    dmbeaster says:

    Chris at 49

    On the other hand, a lie like “Vietnam was a noble effort in the defense of freedom which only failed because we didn’t drop enough napalm” is much more likely to be believed. It partly rehabilitates one of the darkest moments in our history by suggesting that it really wasn’t that dark and that the fault lied not in ourselves but in a few stab-in-the-back turncoat cowards from the liberal elite.

    You don’t have to speculate on this topic – a similar lie promulgated in an op-ed by former defense secretary Melvin Laird was seized upon and become part of wingnuttia belief ever since – which is that we lost cause Congress did not provide a few hundred million in aid to South VietNam in 1974 (after previously pouring billions into building it up to its 1974 strength levels).

  70. 70
    A Farmer says:

    My blog has horse racing, peak oil, highlighting Kay bashing Mitch Daniels, global warming and agriculture, bashing on Jim Tressel and other random crap.

  71. 71
    mzrad says:

    Thanks for exposure, Balloon friends. You and TNC are my favorite blogs.

    @The Dangerman: Hello Pismo! Send me an email: I’d love to chat food. Also, if you know of anyone who might enjoy the Mourvèdre event we’re doing on the 12 in Paso, please help spread the word. It’s so convenient because it’s right before the rapture.

    ; )

  72. 72
    Tom Hilton says:

    What’s going on on your blog?

    Still following the travels of William H. Brewer 150 years ago at Up and Down California.

  73. 73
    No one of Importance says:

    That Firelit liqueur sounds absolutely delightful. Can’t buy it here though :(

  74. 74

    Over at Bark Bark Woof Woof, I’m watching the Republicans commit voter fraud in Florida.

  75. 75
    No one of Importance says:


    The fact that they weren’t Labour. The Labour/Lib Dem feud goes back a very long way. The Lib Dems were formerly the Social Democratic Party:

    Which was formed by refugees from the Labour Party. Since the Lib Dems and their ancestors have widely been seen as splitting the left wing vote and keeping the Tories – especially Thatcher – in power well past their sell by date, there is nothing more that Labour party members hate more than a Lib Dem, and vice versa.

    It’s the British version of the circular firing squad.

    Also, Lib dems are squalid little opportunists with no morals and will sell their grandmother for 50p if it will help them get into power. Another reason Labour hates them. The rest of the country just figured out the truth that people in places like Tower Hamlets (where Lib Dems pushed race baiting to a high level to gain control) have known for a very long time.

  76. 76
    Redshirt says:

    @Culture of Truth: I’ll vouch for that. I snapped a pic just yesterday on the Orange Line in Boston. Someone is spending a lot of money on getting out the Good Word about the coming Tribulations of the Wicked. Gosh! I wonder where all the money is coming from?

    The 27%, of course.

    That would be a good blog title, by the by: The 27%

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