The Top 10 Logical Fallicies You’re Sure to See Today

If you’re like me, (I know you’re not, but humor me), life is just one big mish-mash of ethanol-fueled what-the-what. Effects have no cause, correlation and causation are the same damned thing, and  a paradox is something that Noah brought onto the Ark. Eminent scholars (read: people on the internet) disagree with this view, however, maintaining that human reason is constrained by the laws of logic. Since they are likely much sobererer than I am, I concede the point and present the following list of logical cock-ups.

10. Argument From Ignorance

Homespun wisdom is, more often than not, bullshit.

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Examples:

“You can’t prove that aliens DIDN’T build the pyramids.”

“If cold fusion were really possible, scientists would have done it by now. ”

“Ok, so you saw someone else’s lipstick on my dick. So what? How do you know you I didn’t put it there myself? ”

Why it’s wrong:

Arguments from Ignorance occur when we use a lack of evidence against a claim as evidence for the claim, or vice versa. Unfortunately, logical arguments aren’t like gambling. In roulette, a bet on red is the same as a bet against black (barring house wins). The same isn’t true in logic. Logical arguments have to stand on their own merits, not the merits of any other claim, including their counter-arguments. To complicate things even further, the same thing is true in reverse. It’s usually reasonable to withhold belief in a claim until evidence arises to prove it, but a lack of evidence for a claim doesn’t actually prove it to be untrue. Just like the fact that I’ve never slept with your sister doesn’t mean I’m incapable of ever doing it. This caveat is summed up by the maxim, “Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence,” which is the kind of thing that sounds really deep when you’re high.

9. Correlation vs. Causation

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Examples:

“Autistic children typically start displaying symptoms within a few months of receiving their 12-month vaccinations. This is proof that vaccines cause autism.”

“Studies have shown that teenagers who display violent behavior are more likely to play violent video games. Obviously, the games are causing the behavior.”

“Nearly all murders are committed by people wearing pants. If we really want to crack down on crime, we should all get naked from the waist down.”

Why it’s wrong

Correlation vs. Causation is actually a whole group of fallacies that I’m far too lazy to name one by one. They all involve an assumption that two related things (your brother and you) must be have related causes (your dad and the mailman, respectively). These assumptions generally fall into one of two categories: 1) assuming that two related things have the same cause and 2) assuming that if two things are related, one must have caused the other.

Also, blue eyes are of the devil.

The first category is exemplified by the Blue-eyed Chopstick Gene. (Stick with me. I’m going somewhere with this.) Imagine that a group of scientists with a massive endowment (dick joke goes here) tested every single person on Earth to see how well they use chopsticks.  In their studies, they find that people with brown eyes, as a group, are several times more likely to be proficient with chopsticks than people with blue eyes. We all know that eye color is genetic. Based on the study, should we conclude that the gene that encodes for blue eyes also makes people bad with chopsticks? (Answer: no. That’s stupid.) Obviously blue-eyed people are less proficient with chopsticks because blue eyes are only common in parts of the world that traditionally don’t use them.

A good example of the second category is personal superstition, like athletes who win a game in a new pair of underwear and refuse to wash them for fear of breaking the streak. The Latin term for this particular fallacy (assuming that an event must be caused by something that happened at the same time) is Cum Hoc, Ergo Propter Hoc. My Latin-American friend has assured me that this translates to “with this, therefore because of this”. You learn something new everyday, huh? I assumed that it meant “fuck-nasty crotch rot logic”.

8. No True Scotsman

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Examples:

“We believe that the best of America is in these small towns that we get to visit, and in these wonderful little pockets of what I call the real America…”

“Sure, the Crusades/ witch-hunts/ Inquisition were perpetrated in the name of Christ, but those people were false Christians.”

“Real men don’t eat quiche.”

Why it’s wrong

The No True Scotsman fallacy occurs whenever a person tries to dismiss counter-evidence by claiming that examples used in the counter lack some vague quality of authenticity. The fallacy gains its name from a hypothetical old man who claimed that no Scotsman would ever put sugar on his porridge (sugared porridge being far too flavorful to qualify as authentic Scottish food). When challenged with an example of an actual Scottish man eating porridge with sugar on it, the old bastard qualified his original statement by claiming that no true Scotsman would ever do such a thing. The fallacy is as common as it is moronic, and encompasses nearly all statements with qualifiers like “real Americans”, “true Christians”,  “genuine craftsmanship”, and “authentic Asian cuisine” (unless you’re actually in Asia).

7. Equivocation

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Examples:

“Evolution is just a theory, not a fact.”

“I’m not yelling. I’m just raising my voice.”

“I did not have sexual relations with that woman.”

Why it’s wrong

Equivocation occurs when an arguer deceitfully uses a word to mean something other than its commonly understood definition or changes the meaning of a word mid-argument. In its simplest form, equivocation is the basis of all puns, like the syllogism, “Nothing is better than God. A ham sandwich is better than nothing. Therefore, a ham sandwich is better then God.” More subtle uses can be truly insidious, especially when they’re used to affect public policy. For instance, M.A.D.D reports that “About three in every ten Americans will be involved in an alcohol-related crash at some time in their lives.” To most people reading this, myself included, this sounds the same as saying that 30% of people will get in a wreck caused by a drunk driver. The equivocation here is in the term “alcohol-related”. While most people assume that it means the same a “caused by drunk driving”, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration defines the term to mean “one driver or nonoccupant (pedestrian or pedalcyclist) involved in the crash has a positive Blood Alcohol Concentration.” A positive BAC is 0.01 or higher, one-eighth the legal limit. Think about all the times you’ve read about an elderly driver, sober as a preacher on Sunday morning, jumping a curb and smashing into a farmer’s market. If one of the unfortunate people on the receiving end of their ’72 Buick had a beer three hours earlier, bingo! You just racked up a dozen “alcohol-related” fatalities. Now, obviously, that’s an extreme example, but the point is clear. “Alcohol-related” is not the same as “caused by drunk driving”. The NHTSA makes a point of defining the term in their reports. M.A.D.D. doesn’t.

6. Overprecision

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Examples:

“Our audio cables are made of fully annealed 99.999% pure oxygen free copper.”

“These fine restaurant-quality knives are laser-sharpened to within a tolerance of three microns.”

“I installed a performance body kit, a stainless steel exhaust with doubled aluminum tips, rear brake coolers, and aluminum carbide rims. Now my Corolla puts out five more horsepower!”

Why it’s wrong

Overprecision is basically the art of making a big deal out of inconsequential numbers. Kind of like that guy you know who updates you every week on how much he can benchpress. Mr. “I bench 307” fails to realize that, while regular exercise will improve one’s quality of life, the difference between “good health” and “bad health” can’t be measured in incremental horsepower. Unless he gets pinned beneath a 309lb. girder. In which case, I’ll gladly admit that I was wrong whilst laughing my fool head off.

5. Poisoning the Well

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Examples:

“The FDA claims that homeopathic medicine doesn’t work, but they’re just saying what the drug companies want them to say.”

“Atheists just don’t want to believe in God so they can continue to live sinful lives. You should take all of their arguments with a grain of salt.”

“I would expect an argument like that, coming from YOU.”

Why it’s wrong:

Poisoning the Well is a rather cunning fallacy that involves attacking an arguer’s motivations, rather than their argument. By implying or asserting that an opponent has an ulterior motive, you call his entire argument, including the truthfulness of his premises, into question. This is a pretty common tactic in religious and political debate, and it often takes the form of a preemptive strike. (“I think we need more grape jam in schools, and anyone who disagrees with me hates children!”) The obvious flaw is that the arguer’s motivations have nothing to do with the validity of the argument. Questioning why an argument has been made does nothing to counter the argument itself. In this view, Poisoning the Well is just a subtle Ad Hominem.

4. Arguing From Is to Ought

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Examples:

“If God had meant for men to fly, he would have given us wings.”

“If God had meant for men to eat oysters, he would have given us little hammers on our hands.”

“If God had meant for people to have sex face-to-face, he would have given men big dents in their chests.”

Why it’s wrong:

The Is to Ought fallacy was first identified by the Scottish philosopher David Hume, who was probably drunk at the time. It is often considered a subfallacy of the broader Appeal to Tradition, wherein one argues for doing something because it’s always been done that way. Is to Ought argues for doing something because that’s the way it’s done right now, which is just circular as fuck. The fact that a certain does condition exists does mean it should exist.

Dolly - miracle of science.

This argument commonly pops up to justify social inequalities (gay marriage, segregation, etc.) and can be seen in Appeals to Law (“Ethically, you should only use low-flow toilets because the high-volume kind are illegal.”) It also forms the basis of every “Things Man Was Not Meant to Know” argument. It’s funny how quickly we, as a society, go from TMWNMTK to “playing god” to “it’s just a fucking sheep.”

3. Weasel Words

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Examples:

“Select items up to 80% off!”

“Mr. President, the claim has been made that you are in fact a transvestite space alien. How do you respond to these allegations?”

“Some scientists believe that Atlantis may still exist in another dimension.”

Why it’s wrong:

Weasel words are not fallacies in and of themselves, but they’re the kind of rhetorical booby-traps that lead to fallacies. In short, they are ambiguous phrases that give the impression of significance without having any actual content, kind of like NutraSweet for words, or CNN. You can make practically any claim if you couch it in enough weasel words. For instance,  “Inside sources claim that your mother may or may not be  a whore.” Did you see what happened, there? Nothing. Absolutely nothing was stated, but long after you’ve read the sentence, the words “mother” and “whore” will stick in your brain like cheese in a frying pan. This gives the person making the claim deniability, allowing them to escape the repercussions of making false claims while still being able to leave listeners with the desired impression.

2. Unidle Speculation

Examples:

“I’m not saying that the president is really a squirrel dressed in a human suit. I’m just saying that would explain his affection for ACORN.”

“What if Mormons really are bent on word domination? Wouldn’t it make sense to eradicate them now? I’m just asking questions, here.”

“If I were the kind of person prone to reading into things, I might say that your fixation on banning gay marriage stems from your own sexual insecurities.”

Why it’s wrong:

The Unidle Speculation is yet another of those rhetorical tricks that is not itself fallacious, but is prone to leading others into fallacy. It occurs when a speaker offers a hypothetical scenario with the intent of making the listener believe that scenario to be true. Like Weasel Words, the technique is used to  avoid that sticky business of backing up what you have to say. By phrasing accusations as questions or innocent speculations, the arguer avoids the blame of making false accusations. Following from the previous example, “I don’t know if your mother is a whore or not. I’m just saying that if she’s a whore, she’s probably not very good at it, what with her age and the bad hip and everything. She probably barely makes enough to pay for her electrolysis. If your mom’s a whore, that is.”

1. Invincible Ignorance

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Examples:

“It doesn’t matter what you say. You can’t shake my faith.”

“I still think Airwolf is the best damned show that’s ever been on television, and nothing will ever make me change my mind about that!”

“LA LA LA LA I CAN’T HEAR YOU LA LA LA”

Why it’s wrong:

Non Sequitur might be the granddaddy of all fallacies, but Invincible Ignorance is at least the creepy uncle. The term was originally used in Catholic dogma to describe innocence based on a person’s complete inability to know that their actions are sinful, but logicians adopted the term around the 1950’s. Since then, it has come to mean the pigheaded dismissal of any argument counter to one’s own position, regardless of validity. Invincible Ignorance  is utterly unassailable on any logical grounds, as it denies logical arguments by simply pretending that they don’t exist. It is my personal favorite fallacy, mostly because it lies at the heart of nearly all tortured logic, rationalization, and cognitive dissonance. If you don’t want to believe something, you really don’t have to, so long as you can convince your brain to ignore the evidence.

That’s what I believe, anyway, and there’s no way in hell you’ll convince me otherwise.

Bad Friends pt. 1

Just a cry for attention.

Much like poor put-upon Patty Hearst, America is generally a nice lady with unfortunate taste in friends. Over the years, we’ve thrown our lot in with dictatorial theocrats, mafia hitmen, Nazi doctors, fascist terrorists, and every other kind of nasty bastard short of Satan himself (though some would argue that assertion). As an exercise in humility, I occasionally try to point out such assholery and am typically met with pointed silence. It’s like bringing up an ex-boyfriend who once passed out and pissed himself at a party. We all know it happened, but no one wants to talk about it.

Thus, in the interest of uncomfortable remembrance, I’ll try present a running tally of people America really should have ignored. Here’s the first:

The Gehlenapparat

Around the time the US government was grabbing up Nazi scientists by the armful, it was taking its first hesitant steps toward the greatest dick-measuring contest in the history of the world. I am speaking, of course, about the Cold War. Truman and Stalin had barely finished stomping Germany a new one when they extracted their boots from Berlin and aimed them at each other’s asses.

For those of you who have never been in a dick-measuring contest (there must be a least a couple of you out there, right?) the one thing you never want to do is actually measure dicks. It’s just bad strategy. Once the flies are undone, the best you can hope for is to awkwardly stare at another dude’s junk. At worst, you find out that his is actually bigger. So instead of measuring, you posture and brag and threaten to whip it out. More importantly, you spread rumors about your manhood’s prodigious dimensions whilst simultaneously surveying your opponent’s most intimate acquaintances for insider info re: his package.

Unfortunately for the world’s newest superpower, its intelligence agencies were deeply enmeshed in Western Europe and the Pacific. The US had little to no espionage resources that would let it get a peek at Stalin’s pecker. (The metaphor might be falling apart at this point. Let’s move on.) Providence provided, however. It just so happened that a substantial spy network already existed on the Eastern front: the one the Nazis left behind.

Snazzy.

Enter Reinhard Gehlen. During the war, Gehlen was a Generalmajor, the highest rank attainable in the German army, and Hitler’s chief spymaster on the Eastern front. He managed to achieve such a lofty post despite having played a minor role in an assassination attempt on Hitler. (The one from that Tom Cruise movie. You know what I’m talking about.) At least that’s what he claimed in his memoirs. It’s entirely possible that he made it up, given that he was Hitler’s goddamn spymaster. Just saying.

Gehlen was captured by US forces in mid-1945. True to Nazi-spy form, he immediately began negotiating for his release. He turned over all of his intelligence archives, gave up his entire spy network, and even outed a few OSS officers as Communists. He was just that kind of guy. US Army Intelligence was so gosh-darned delighted that they released him in 1946 with a mandate to get back to work. Operating out of West Germany, Gehlen established his own personal network of 350 hand-picked ex-Nazis and got busy selling information to the Allies. The organization was informally known as the Gehlenapparat (Gehlen Organization) to the Germans involved. US Army Intel officially named it “Operation Rusty”, for no apparent reason.

Could it be?

Could it be?

“Rusty” did good business, pulling in $2.5 million a year from its inception. (This is in 1946 “movies-cost-a-nickel” dollars.) For comparison, the Strategic Services Unit (an interim agency that transitioned the wartime OSS into the peacetime CIA) had an operating budget of around $400,000. That wad of cash bought “little new or particularly valuable information,” according to the CIG (Yet another precursor to the CIA). In fact, the Gehlenapparat was generally panned by every domestic intelligence agency from its inception. The reasons for this are several, but they generally fall into three main complaints.

Firstly, Nazis adhere to Nazi philosophy (that’s why it’s called that), which incorporates concepts of racial superiority. Besides being completely dickish, the “master race” idea is not congruent with reality, leading its adherents to underestimate their opponents. For instance, German intelligence drastically underestimated the capabilities of the Soviet T-34 tank, assuming that Slavs simply couldn’t build as good a tank as the German Panzer. This is a lot like assuming that Oscar de la Hoya can’t kick your ass because he’s Hispanic. It’s just dumb. The ginormous cock-up helped stall the Germans at Stalingrad and turn the tide of the entire war.

No sweat, guys. We got this.

Secondly, Nazis weren’t exactly winning any popularity contests in Eastern Europe circa 1946. Their personal histories left them wide open to blackmail. I don’t know about you, but when I’m trying to hire foreign espionage agents, I try to avoid the ones that are all blackmailey.

Rounding out the why-Nazis-make-shitty-spies trifecta is a little dustup some people refer to as World War II. Apparently, no one in Army Intelligence noticed it. The Allies had just finished curb-stomping these guys across Europe. Sure, Nazis hated Russian Communists, but they weren’t necessarily keen on buddying up to the Amerikaners either.

There are other reasons why Nazis were a bad choice for post-WWII American spies. If you really want to pare it down, though, all of these reasons can be reduced to one: because they were fucking Nazis. Nothing about these guys made them good spies. By many accounts, they were less like an intelligence organization and more like an alumni association. “Rusty” was a great place for German officers to maintain their lifestyle and status while simultaneously avoiding the whole “crimes against humanity” thing. Gehlen filled the group with his old war buddies, eventually commanding over four-thousand former Nazi officers. Among these were several known war criminals, including Leopold von Mildenstein, former head of the SS’s Jewish Affairs department, Otto Albrecht von Bolschwing, an aide to Adolf Eichmann who helped orchestrate his “Final Solution”, Aleksandras Lileikis, who killed thousands of Jews in Lithuania, Alois Brunner, who gassed 140,000 Jews at the Drancy Interment Camp, and at least a hundred other former SS and Gestapo members. National Archives historian Robert Wolfe summarized it thusly: “US army intelligence accepted Reinhard Gehlen’s offer to furnish alleged expertise on the Red Army—and was bilked by the many mass murderers he hired.” In short, we paid a lot of money for a bag of assholes.

Now, I know what you’re saying… “Ok, so the CIA funded thousands of useless Nazi fucktards for a decade or so, but at least they kept the Ruskies out!” You would be wrong in saying that. Idiot.

Long lost brothers?

Startling similarities.

The Gehelenapparat was the least secure spy corp since ­Get Smart. As mentioned above, the political liabilities of its members made them prime targets for blackmail from Soviet agents. The NKGB had double agents in the organization before you could say “Boris and Natasha”. Those compromised agents quickly recruited Russian moles, giving the Soviets one of their first conduits into the US intelligence community. They used Gehlen’s group as a springboard to eventually infiltrate the CIA.

The Gehlenapparat was handed over the West German government in 1955. It formed the core of the newly minted German Federal Intelligence Service a year later. The best you can say about the whole scaticane (That’s a hurricane made out… aww what the hell. You’re smart enough to get it.) is that they’re someone else’s problem now.

The Skeptics Guide to Christian Apologetics: Biblical Inerrancy

A few years ago, I had the idea to write a sort of pocket-sized survival guide for navigating the convoluted crapforest that is Christian apologetics.  After a many months of rousing from my typical torpidity long enough to bang out a few words on a keyboard, I finally had a finished manuscript. Unfortunately, my excitement at writing a book quickly gave way to the realization that I had written an awful book. All the information was there, but it was written so poorly that I didn’t even want to read it.  Since then, the work has been languishing on my hard drive, taking up precious memory that could otherwise be used to store more tentacle porn.

Imagine this, but with more boobs.

Imagine this, but with more boobs.

Thus, I am faced with a dilemma. Even though the writing is terrible, I produce so little that it seems wrong to destroy it. It would be like stepping on an endangered slug. The world might not really miss it, but I’d still feel bad about it. On the other hand, attempting a rewrite seems like a lot of work.  Thus, in the spirit of compromise (the laziest form of decision making), I have decided to do the rewrites one essay at a time and post them here. Thus, I can continue to blog without actually having to come up with original content. Hooray!

Biblical Inerrancy

Form:

The Bible is a perfect document containing no factual errors.

Ancient humans would not have been capable of producing a factually accurate document of the size and scope of the Bible.

Therefore, God wrote the Bible.

Exposition:

Biblical literalists believe that the Bible is the absolute word of God, the universe and everything in it was formed in six days, and that gay couples are somehow worse for the institution of marriage than divorce. Based on the enormous assumption that God would be disinclined to lie to his creation, they believe every word of the Bible to be true.  An objective reading of the Bible, however, is sufficient to uncover myriad factual errors, ranging in degree from “Wikipedia entry” to “not even remotely fucking possible”. While I can’t be bothered to list every error in the text, the items on the following list provide a representative sample. All examples are from the most popular version of the Bible, the 1611 King James translation.

Objections:

1) The order of creation illustrated in Genesis ch. 1 reads as such: heaven and earth, light, night and day, a “firmament” that separates water in the sky from water on the earth, dry land, grasses and herbs and fruit trees, stars, the sun and moon, sea animals and birds, land animals, man and woman. Of course, people have mentioned this bit before, but it’s such an obvious cock-up that it bears repeating. I’m still scratching my head over how day and night existed before the Sun was created, but I suppose that’s all part of the infinite mystery (or some other such nonsense). It’s also not clear what exactly happened to the firmament or why the space shuttle doesn’t bounce off of it. Oh, and lets not forget that this feat of prestidigitation was supposedly accomplished in six days, after which our omnipotent creator needed a little lie-down. Because apparently he was unclear on what the word “omnipotent” means.

Not pictured: reality.

Lo, the scampi of temptation.

2) Leviticus ch. 11 lists the many dietary and sanitary restrictions placed on the Hebrew people. Besides banning such obviously delicious things as shrimp and bacon, the taxonomy presented in this chapter is vague and, in several cases, incorrect. The passage erroneously classifies bats as a type of bird and rabbits as a ruminant species. The same inaccuracies are repeated in Deuteronomy 14. Lev. 11 also states, “All fowls that creep, going upon all four, shall be an abomination unto you.” I am unaware of any four-legged bird species in existence, now or ever. If you know of any, please get back on your meds. Your parents are very worried.

3) 1 Kings 7 describes a bath constructed in the temple of Solomon. It states that the bath was circular, having a diameter of ten cubits and a circumference of thirty cubits. From basic geometry, we know that these numbers cannot be correct, as thirty divided by ten does not equal pi. As other, smarter, funnier writers have noted it’s odd that you never hear fundamentalists demanding that public schools “teach the controversy” in math class.

4) 1 Chronicles 29 describes offerings that the leaders of Israel made to Solomon’s temple. All told, the reported offerings amounted to approximately 182 tons of gold, 363 tons of silver, 654 tons of brass, and 3,630 tons of iron. That’s more bling than Liberace at Mardi Gras. For the sake of reference, that’s enough weight to load 26 Boeing 747’s and enough precious metals to buy nineteen of them. I shouldn’t have to point out that Bronze Age desert tribesmen weren’t that fucking rich.

I think this might be shopped.

5) The book of Job contains numerous references to aspects of the Earth’s topography consistent with the Mesopotamian model of the Earth (ie. the Earth is a flat disk that lies atop four supporting pillars). Though humans as a species have known that the Earth is round for about 2,500 years,  some organizations used these and other verses to support the idea of a flat Earth well into the 21st century.

6) In Matthew 4, Satan takes Jesus to a hill so tall that he can view every kingdom on Earth. Obviously, this would only be possible if the Earth were flat. It doesn’t make a shit how tall the hill is, if you’re looking down at Jerusalem, you can’t see Panama. One hemisphere at a time is all you get.

7) In Romans 10, Paul claims that the prophets had reached, “…all the Earth… unto the end of the world.” Of course, Paul was unaware of the existence of Native Americans, East Asians, Southern Africans, Pacific Islanders, and many other people around the globe. Hell, he didn’t even know it was a globe.

Great salesman... not big on geography.

Exposure:

The Creation Museum is arguably the world’s largest and most expensive display of biblical literalism, ie. the highest ratio of dollars to stupid outside of the Defense Department. Located on one and a half acres in northern Kentucky, the museum opened its doors in May of 2007. Within its walls, one can find talking serpents, a saddled triceratops, a scale model of Noah’s ark, and animatronic cavemen living in harmony with carnivorous dinosaurs. The museum promotes these exhibits as factual representations of human history, contrary to the best scientific evidence available and the consensus of the scientific community at large.

The Flinstones: Not a documentary.

If you are planning a vacation to Kentucky, you may want to swing by and see the sights, but bring your wallet. Despite the museum’s purported evangelistic purpose, admission is $19.95 for adults and $9.95 for kids ages five to twelve. For my money, I still prefer the Smithsonian in Washington D.C. It is larger, more fun, more accurate, and still free.

The Top 15 Horror Films You Haven’t Seen

Thanks to the good folks over at Cracked and their imitators, the intertubes are awash with lists of all sorts. If you ever need to know the six best ways to milk a camel or the top ten reasons why Verdi’s Aida is better than his La traviata, the internet has a list for you. It is to this proud tradition that I now turn my hand.

Out of the many things I do to fill the time between sleep and liquor, watching awful horror films is probably the most legal. And just like a million monkeys at a million typewriters will eventually produce an episode of Grey’s Anatomy (it normally takes them about a day and a half), decades spent watching obscure horror films have produced a few gems. I’m not staking claim to any horror-schlock geekmastery here, but I will say that you shouldn’t call yourself a horror geek until you’ve seen these.

15. Nosferatu (1922)

IMDB link

Synopsis: It’s German Dracula. ‘Nuff said.

Memorable Quote: None. This one hails from before the “talkie” era.

There seems to be some confusion lately as to what exactly constitutes a vampire. Here’s a handy chart:

vampire chart

Back in the days before the MPAA made it illegal to dream about movies without paying for licensing, filmmakers took the term “derivative works” to new heights. When producer Albin Grau wanted to make a vampire film, he looked no further than the most famous vampire of all time: Bram Stoker’s then 25-year-old Dracula. Of course, making a film adaptation of Dracula would have required vaulting all sorts of legal hurdles (read: paying for it), so Grau and his director, F. W. Murnau just changed some of the names. The titular character became “Count Orlok”, and the word “vampire” was avoided. Despite this intrepid subterfuge, Prana Film (Grau’s production company) declared bankruptcy after the release, for fear of copyright lawsuits.

What nightmares masturbate to.

What nightmares masturbate to.

Nosferatu is filmed in the German expressionist style, which is to say they do fucked up things with shadows. Unlike  the panty-dropping pretty boys of modern vampire fare, the Count is portrayed like a fucking monster, a fiendish, diseased ghoul who preys on the young and innocent. As the original vampire movie, the film laid the groundwork that Hollywood has been spamming for the past ninety years.

14. They Live (1988)

IMDB link

Synopsis: A homeless guy discovers a pair of magic sunglasses that reveal the world as it truly is: saturated with subliminal orders from our horrific alien overlords.

Memorable quote: “I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass… and I’m all out of bubblegum.”

This man has no gum.

This man has no gum.

What, you thought Duke Nukem originated that line? Think again, plebian. It was ad-libbed by none other than “Rowdy” Roddy Piper, who took time away from pretending to fight to take a stab at pretending to act in this late-eighties John Carpenter film. The movie centers around Piper’s character, George Nada, a down-on-his-luck construction worker who stumbles upon a global alien plot to enslave humanity through consumerism and commercial media. It’s the most ham-handed critique of eighties greed imaginable, and you have absolutely no excuse for not having seen it.

13. Bloodsucking Freaks (1976)

IMDB link

Synopsis: A homicidal theater owner tortures, kills, and enslaves pretty much everybody.

Memorable quote: “Her mouth shall make an interesting urinal!”

Bloodsucking Freaks is a film with a serious identity complex. Its original title was Sardu: Master of the Screaming Virgins, which I personally think they should have stuck with. It was released in theaters as The Incredible Torture Show and on video as The Heritage of Caligula: an Orgy of Sick Minds. When Troma finally grabbed the distribution rights, they retitled it as Bloodsucking Freaks, and the name stuck.

The film revolves around Sardu, the effete proprietor of a horror theater. Showing his commitment to drama, Sardu forgoes acting and special effects, choosing to simply murder young women on stage before a live, but ignorant, studio audience. In order to give his show more credibility, he has his resident dwarf kidnap and attempt to brainwash a theater critic and a ballerina. I don’t know how this was supposed to work, but even if the theater failed, he could always fall back on his home sex-slave business.

Of course, all this “plot” is just a vehicle to carry across headfucked torture scenes and subtle dark humor. The clip below says more about the movie in twenty-four seconds than I could ever put down in words.

12. Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon (2006)

IMDB link

Synopsis: A meta-critique of slasher films presented as a documentary.

Memorable quote: “I’ll tell you: never hang out with a virgin. You got a virgin in your crew, either get somebody in her pants or get the hell away from her.”

Behind the Mask is a recent addition to the genre, and one of the best horror films to come out in a long time. It’s the first and only pic from indie studio Glen Echo Entertainment. The movie follows a group of young documentary filmmakers and their newest subject: one Leslie Vernon, the Next Big Thing in costumed mass murder. Taking up the torch passed by Jason, Freddy, and Micheal, Leslie gives the crew a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to be a homicidal legend. I realize the whole “meta-horror” genre has been done into the ground lately, but Behind the Mask manages to stay quick and funny while still following its own formula. It actually accomplishes what Wes Craven failed at so miserably with Scream.

11. Luther the Geek (1990)

IMDB link

Synopsis: A young boy is traumatized by a carnival side-show, then grows up to be a serial cannibal / chicken.

Memorable quote: “Hey chicken-man! Colonel Sanders wants to fry your ass!”

Back in the day, the term “geek” did not describe a guy who sits around in sweat pants drinking bourbon and writing about his favorite horror movies. A geek was a carnival performer who ate bugs or bit the heads off of live snakes or birds. This is what people did for entertainment before Ozzy Osbourne was born. While some geeks were simply performers with high thresholds for nasty shit, like a pre-PETA Jackass, some were die-hard alcoholics who were basically owned by the carnival promoters. Their handlers would let them dry out for a day or two before a show, then pour a bottle of liquor down a chicken’s throat before tossing it into the geek’s cage. Faced with a choice between DT’s and chugging gin from a decapitated chicken, I’m pretty sure I’d choose the chicken, too. It can’t taste any worse than Jagermeister.

Luther the Geek is yet another Troma title that pays homage to this bygone occupation. As a young boy, Luther has several teeth knocked out at a geek show attended by the cast of Deliverance. Somehow, the geek show, the taste of blood, and a childhood spent in the company of abusive dirt farmers transforms Luther into a homicidal maniac who also happens to think he’s a chicken. After the brief scene from his childhood, the story opens with Luther being paroled from prison, thirty years after commiting several brutal murders. Now, I’m all for a progressive justice system that focuses on rehabilitation and forgiveness, but I can’t imagine any situation in which a parole board would release a multiple murderer who only speaks in chicken noises. Seriously. Someone should lose their job over that.

Within minutes of being released, Luther dons a set of metal dentures (which he apparently made in the prison workshop? this isn’t really explained) and starts killing people by biting them. After the first ten minutes, the film has almost no dialogue, with the majority of the soundtrack being taken up by Luther’s clucking and bawking. The actor really gets into it, and one is left to assume that he was cast strictly for his ability to imitate a psychotic chicken. While nearly everything else in the movie is completely forgettable, his portrayal is so compelling, you just can’t stop watching it. Check out this clip to see what I mean:

The fun starts around 1:40.

The only other mentionable parts are two five-minute nude scenes starring the female lead’s truly tremendous tatas. So the movie’s got that going for it, too.

10. A Bucket of Blood (1959)

IMDB link

Synopsis: A wannabe beatnik kills people for art.

Memorable quote: “Life is an obscure hobo, bumming a ride on the omnibus of art.”

Billed as a comedy, Bucket of Blood is a morality play about the dangers of art and bad poetry. The main character, Walter, is a total square. He just can’t fit in with the cool cats down at the coffee shop. Like all ostracized youth, he quickly realizes that killing people will make him popular. While the director’s intent seems to be poking light-hearted fun at beatnik culture, the film is actually pretty compelling. Watching Walter descend further and further into depravity as he finds acceptance in the macabre is a thoroughly enjoyable experience. Like most horror flicks of its time, Bucket of Blood aims for cheap exploitation. Through fate or chance, it manages to hit something real.

9. The Invisible Maniac (1990)

IMDB link

Synopsis: A mad scientist invents an invisibility potion and uses it to kill and rape high school kids.

Memorable quote: “With this injection begins my erection.”

Invisible Maniac is a straight-to-video boobfest from the early nineties. As the film opens, we are treated to a scene from Kevin Dorwinkle’s childhood, wherein he is scolded by his mother for spying on their sexy neighbor. Fast forward to adulthood, and Kevin is a scientist, presenting his theories on invisibility to his colleagues. In accordance with the peer review process, he is laughed offstage. Because science is much like prison, Kevin responds to this disrespect by killing a few of them, just to reassert his dominance. After a few year in a loony bin, he is paroled and secures a job teaching high school physics. Apparently, public schools in the nineties didn’t do background checks. When the school principal attempts to blackmail him for sex, he murders her, injects himself with his newly perfected invisibility serum, and proceeds to rape and pillage the school.

Note that all of this happens in the first thirty minutes of the film. The next hour or so is devoted to watching young women have their clothes ripped off while they pretend to be murdered. These scenes are made especially hilarious by the fact that the main character is freaking invisible, leaving the less-than-stellar actresses to try to figure out what being strangled looks like when you’re not actually being strangled. Add in a voice-over of truly atrocious dialogue, and you end up with something very special. In a “short bus special” kind of way.

8. M (1931)

IMDB link

Synopsis: A pathetic child-murderer is hunted down by organized crime in pre-war Germany.

Memorable quote: “I want to escape, to get away! And I’m pursued by ghosts. Ghosts of mothers and of those children… they never leave me. They are always there… always, always, always! … Except when I do it.”

Acting!

M is a classic in every sense. Peter Lorre plays a serial killer who preys on young girls. For the majority of the film, however, we never see the killer’s face. He is a shadow, or a trenchcoat, or a whistled tune. When the city’s organized criminals finally apprehend the monster, he is revealed for what he truly is, a pathetic, broken man. Lorre’s performance puts everything through, despite the subtitles. It also forever cemented his role as “that creepy bug-eyed dude in old movies”.

7. Hush, Hush Sweet Charlotte (1964)

IMDB link

Synopsis: An old southern belle with a sordid past gets utterly mindfucked.

Memorable quote: “Do you know what it’s costin’ me not to kill you?”

Nobody plays crazy like Bette Davis. In this one, she plays a somewhat senile old spinster who has yet to outlive an accusation of murder from her teenage years. With her ancestral home in peril due to eminent domain, she summons her saner cousin Miriam to save the day. That is, she calls in her last surviving relative. The only one in the will. You see where this is going. The movie is worth watching just to see an aging Bette Davis pretend that she has to pretend to have dementia.

6. Bad Taste (1987)

IMDB link

Synopsis: Aliens invade earth and raise humans / zombies as cattle for their fast food chain.

Memorable quote: “I’m a Derek… and Dereks don’t run!”

Before Peter Jackson became a meteoric Hollywood megahobbit, he was a nerdy film kid in New Zealand. Bad Taste was his first feature, and it shows. Jackson cast his friends and filmed mostly on weekends, to avoid schedule conflicts. After four years and $25,000 the result is an orgy of chainsaw-murdering, braineating, sheepsploding fuckedupedness.

I’m not kidding about the sheep thing:

Basically, this is the movie YOU would make, if only you had a camera, friends, and talent.

5. Cannibal Holocaust (1980)

IMDB Link

Synopsis: A group of Italian documentarians enter the Amazon rainforest to document cannibalistic tribespeople. Hololarity ensues.

Memorable quote: “Today people want sensationalism; the more you rape their senses the happier they are.”

A team of filmmakers descended deep into the Colombian jungle to film the savage and cannibalistic Yanomamo people. This is both the plot of Cannibal Holocaust and how they actually made the fucking movie. Director Rugerro Deodato flew his whole damned crew into the rain forest and paid indigenous people to pretend to murder and eat them. Then he paid the actors to fall off the media radar for a year. Then he released his “documentary” in Italian theaters, grossing $2,000,000 1980 dollars in ten days. Then he was arrested on multiple counts of murder. No shit.

I can't imagine why.

Italian horror is typified by tremendous amounts of gore, but Deodato’s effects and cinematography were so realistic that the courts actually charged him with five counts of murder that happened in the freaking movie. He eventually had to dissolve his contract with the actors and have them appear on television before the charges were dropped. The movie was still banned in Italy for its gruesome depictions of rape, torture, and murder. Also, six animals are actually killed on camera… so, yeah.

While it attempts a thinly-veiled critique of modern media, Cannibal Holocaust is pure exploitation with some of the most realistic effects you’ll see on this side of the camera.

4. Unmasked Part 25 (1988)

IMDB link

Synopsis: An outright meta-parody of gory slasher films that doubles as a gory slasher film.

Memorable quote: “Ridiculous isn’t it? I mean fine.. so I have to kill. I have no choice in the matter. But you’d think they’d let me try something else as well. I do have other talents.”

Filmed in the UK (where it was originally titled Hand of Death)  for what appears to be fifteen quid, Unmasked is the story of a disfigured serial killer who preys on the young and horny, all while soliloquizing about the nature of human existence. He ends up falling in love with a blind girl, forcing him to choose between domesticity and the violent life the writers have forced him into. The film really explores… um… you know what? Just watch the clip.

3. Cemetery Man

IMDB link

Synopsis: An exploration of love, existentialism, and human insignificance that happens to take the form of zombie-killin’.

Memorable quote: “He’s only eating me! … Mind your business! I shall be eaten by whoever I please!”

Is it technically necrophilia if she's UNdead?

Yet another entry from those crafty Italians, Cemetery Man is an art flick posing as a zombie movie. It follows the macabre adventures of that guy from Four Weddings and a Funeral who’s NOT Hugh Grant and his faithful but dimwitted assistant Gnaghi. Four Weddings guy is the caretaker of a cemetery where the dead have problems staying down. He assists them to that end with a .44 revolver and various garden implements. He then ends up falling in love with a young widow played by the boobtacular Anna Falchi. As in any zombie flick, however, love is fleeting, as is everyone’s sanity.

Not-Hugh-Grant’s grasp on reality slips further and further as he commits random (and not so random) murders, falls for prostitutes, and tries to have his junk surgically removed. Despite the foolishness (or perhaps because of it) Cemetery Man actually has a lot to say about the strangeness of love, the finality of death, and man’s position in the universe. The fact that it says it through the dual medium of brainsplatter and titties is just icing on the (very disturbing) cake.

2. Let the Right One In (2008)

IMDB link

Synopsis: A story about young love and vampires that’s NOT based on a trashy romance novel.

Memorable quote: “I’m twelve, but I’ve been twelve for a very long time.”

Ah.. young love. The first girlfriend. The first kiss. The first time you lap up blood.

If you haven’t heard about this one yet, I suggest you find a a more productive place to put your head, like anywhere but in your ass. Let the Right One In is a Swedish horror flick that’s won about a kerjillion awards on the independent film circuit. It’s an inspiring coming-of-age story about two misunderstood kids who find love despite all odds, only one of them is Columbine waiting to happen. And the other one is a vampire. Who knew Swedes were so fucked up?

Seriously, this is one of the best movies of any genre that I’ve seen in a long while. The style is utterly organic, and the two leads pull off performances that would make Leonardo Dicaprio sprain something. If you have a Netflix account, it’s available on “Watch Instantly”. Do it.

1. Dead Alive (1992)

IMDB link

Synopsis: Evil monkeys infect a domineering mother with zombie-itis, forcing her son to get all lawnmowery.

Memorable quote: There are so goddamned many, it’s impossible to pick one. Just pick the one you like most:

  • Paquita: “Your mother ate my dog!” Lionel: “Not all of it!”
  • “Stand back boy! This calls for divine intervention! YAAAAHHHH! I kick ass for the LORD!”
  • “They’re not dead exactly, they’re just… sort of rotting.”
  • “OK, OK! I take it back. Nabakov wasn’t a pedophile. Some of my best friends are pedophiles!”

You just knew New Zealand had to make the list twice didn’t you? Fresh off of Bad Taste and Meet the Feebles Peter Jackson somehow managed to secure three million dollars to make Dead Alive (originally released as Braindead).  From watching the film, it is apparent that he used the majority of that budget on corn syrup and red dye. It’s often listed as the goriest film of all time, by volume. The final scene alone used eighty gallons of fake blood.

The plot is about Lionel, a nervous and cowed young man who lives with his queen bitch mother. Out of the blue, love comes his way in the form of the beautiful and exotic Paquita. Then tragedy comes his way when “these great big rats come scuttling off the slave ships and raped all the little tree monkeys”, creating Sumatran rat-monkeys who zombify Lionel’s mother. Go ahead. Read that sentence again. I dare you.

Did your brain explode? No? Maybe I’m not getting my point across. ZOMBIE CUSTARD!

How about now? Still sane in the membrane? Would it help if I told you there’s a zombie baby?

I am totally fucking serious.

You know where zombie babies come from, right? They come from zombie nurses fucking zombie priests. I’m not making this stuff up, folks.

Fuck.

Image links to source.

Oh, and there’s a lawnmower. The prop mower used in the shoot pumped fake blood at five gallons a second.

Imagine the possibilities.

In sum, Dead Alive is everything I ever wanted in a movie. Bless you, Peter Jackson. Bless you right in your little hobbit face.

Idiot Ramblings

Zero tolerance policies…

do not exist out of a serious commitment to safety, or eliminating sexual harrassment, or preventing weapon violence, or whatever. They exist to prevent lawsuits. That’s it. By removing an administrator’s ability to apply discretion, corporations and governments remove the possibility of human error. Thus, they ensure that any miscarriages of justice that they commit are the result of institutional idiocy rather than common error. Way to go assholes.

Why does the fashion industry…

persist in imposing unrealistic expectations of beauty on women? Simple. The fashion industry is dominated by gay men. This is about as useful as taking your car to an amish mechanic. Women around the world are paying obscene amounts of money to be told what will make them attractive according to men who are not attracted to women. If you need time to parse that last sentence, tough. We’re moving on.

The world will not end…

in 2012. I really shouldn’t even have to explain this. And I won’t.

We really shouldn’t be surprised…

when professional football players turn out to be violent criminals. Since childhood, these men have been rewarded for being violent and aggressive. The consequences of these tendencies are ridiculous amounts of money, worldwide fame, and the adulation of millions. We’re giving positive reinforcement for violent behavior. I’m personally amazed that some of them don’t become rapists.

How to Write Political Pap

As an aspiring writer myself, I am more than aware that some literature sells better than others. If you write a 700-page epic fantasy adventure about repressed semi-aquatic warrior women and their society of sex monsters, the major publishers won’t touch you.

Fuck you Random House. You KNOW it would sell.

Fuck you Random House. You KNOW it would sell.

On the other hand, Chicken Soup for the Nascar Soul is a REAL GODDAMNED BOOK! Here’s proof:

Also available on Kindle. Seriously. How fucking small is that demographic?

Also available on Kindle. Seriously. How fucking small is that demographic?

Amazon currently has 106 used copies on their site. Meanwhile Myrmidonia, Queen of the Sea-Harlots languishes in the manuscript phase. What’s the difference between these two books? Three words: “Lowest common denominator.” Why would publishers risk precious wood pulp on a niche market item when they can just copy/paste their last bestseller, stick a new graphic on the front, and sell a kerjillion of them. People forget that writing at a sixth-grade level eliminates FIVE WHOLE GRADES that you could otherwise market to. In short, pap sells.

No. I'm not going to do this joke.

No. I'm not going to do this joke.

A problem arises, however, in the realm of political writing. Politics is traditionally thought to be the domain of the well-informed erudite. Thoughtful and provoking political commentary requires a an incisive wit, a deep knowledge of strategy, and a commitment to constant information gathering. How can the common hack survive?

Fortunately for all of us lazy idiots, conservative pundit Thomas Sowell gave a master class in dumbing it down in a recent Townhall.com article entitled, I shit you not, The Brainy Bunch. Watch and listen as the maestro works:

There is usually only a limited amount of damage that can be done by dull or stupid people. For creating a truly monumental disaster, you need people with high IQs.

Frankly, I beg to differ. Oh please. Please allow me to differ. I could point to the epic forest fires started by careless morons or deaths arising from mass hysteria and stampedes, but that’s too easy. How about the worst industrial disaster of all time? In 1984, a tank at a Union Carbide plant in Bhopal, India released several dozen tons of methyl isocyanate gas. MIC is highly toxic. The local government reported nearly four-thousand deaths from the initial incident, with long-term exposure mortality estimates ranging from 17,000 to 25,000.

Why did this tragedy occur? Was it some mad scientist in a misplaced bid at supervillainy? Did Union Carbide’s cadre of geniuses think so hard that they passed out on the release button? Did a lone maverick polymath blow the tank up with his mind?

Nope. It happened because some idiots decided to clean the tank’s pipes with water. Mixing MIC with water produces an exothermic reaction, which increased the pressure inside the tank until it vented the toxic crap all over half-a-million people. Of course, the tank had safety systems in place, all of which had been turned off to save money. At the very least, valves in the pipes should have prevented water from entering the tank. They probably would have, too, saving thousands of lives, if Union Carbide had used stainless-steel valves on a corrosive chemical tank. Or if they had done any maintenance on the valves to prevent them from rusting out. Or if they had tested them periodically to make sure they worked. Or if the pipes leading to the flare stack (which should burn excess gas before it gets released) had not been removed. Or if anyone had turned on the scrubber that cleans the vent gas. Or if the water curtain (water sprayed over a vent area to force gases downward) had actually been high enough to reach the gas vents. Or if they had decided not to store forty-some-odd tons of cyanide compound in one tank. Or if anyone had noticed that the tank was heating up to four-hundred degrees in the hour and a half before the release.

This is not the work of geniuses.

This is not the work of geniuses.

Okay, so stupid people are at least as good at fucking things up as smart people. That much is obvious, mostly from the definitions of the words “stupid” and “smart”. The thing is, Sowell probably knows this. He’s no dummy himself after all. He graduated from Harvard and Columbia, and holds a PhD in economics from the University of Chicago (renowned for developing one of the two major modern fiscal theories, creatively named the “Chicago School of Economics“). Sowell has taught at Howard, UCLA, Brandeis, and Cornell, and he holds a fellowship at Stanford. Sowell can’t seriously be prejudiced against intelligentsia. The smart money (no pun intended) says that he’s not. He’s simply following the first rule of political patronizing.

1. Justify your audience’s ignorance.

Smart people are scary. They use big words and wash their hands for no apparent reason. By framing intelligence as a vice, nay, a danger, Sowell makes his brain-damaged audience seem almost noble. Not only does he justify their fear of critical thinking, he practically turns stupidity into a moral imperative.

2. Revise history

When writing for the academically impaired, you can be fairly certain that your audience’s grasp of history is tenuous at best. You can pretty much make up anything you want, and they’ll believe you. You’re the one that got published after all. As long as it’s even remotely feasible, they’ll gobble it up without question. For instance, you can’t say that the fall of the Roman Empire was caused by Godzilla, but you could easily claim that it was caused by syphilis, or dung beetles, or the downfall of “family values”.

How cool would that have been, though?

How cool would that have been, though?

Sowell puts this principle to good use with the claim that FDR’s “brain trust” not only failed to end the Great Depression, but actually prolonged it. As he puts it:

They [people who think government spending ended the depression] never ask the question as to why previous depressions had always ended on their own, much faster than the one under FDR, and without government intervention or massive government spending.

Of course, Sowell never answers the question either, and it’s because he knows the answer. When the economy takes a dive, the bottom rung of the economic ladder take the hardest hit. These folks are just a paycheck or two from starvation to begin with. When the unskilled labor market dries up, Malthusian economics sets in. As in the early Depression, the working poor start dying from starvation or disease caused by squalid living conditions and poor access to health care. Either way, as the population dies off, the decreased demand for basic needs stalls inflation in the cost of living. Meanwhile,the ever-shrinking labor pool boosts wages. Everything becomes cheaper, and those that survive make better money. The economy magically resurrects itself! And all we have to do is wait for a portion of the population to contract typhoid! Hooray!

Thomas Malthus. Like Alan Greenspan, but with less interest rate reductions and more smallpox.

Thomas Malthus. Like Alan Greenspan, but with less interest rate reductions and more smallpox.

FDR’s New Deal wasn’t implemented to bounce the Dow a few points. It was put in place to keep people from starving to death. But who cares? Surely Sowell’s readers don’t.

3. Bullshit psychology

Sowell plays this one to a tee by explaining exactly why intelligent people are such fucking idiots:

Such people have been told all their lives how brilliant they are, until finally they feel forced to admit it, with all due modesty. But they not only tend to over-estimate their own brilliance, more fundamentally they tend to over-estimate how important brilliance itself is when dealing with real world problems.

Many crucial things in life are learned from experience, rather than from clever thoughts or clever words. Indeed, a gift for the clever phrasing so much admired by the media can be a fatal talent, especially for someone chosen to lead a government.

Did you get all that? Smart people are dumb because they know how smart they are. They never gain any experience, probably because they’re too busy saying and doing smart things. Dumbasses.

4. Segue to Hitler

When in doubt, go Godwin on their asses. In an article nominally about Barack Obama, Sowell spends fully one-third of his time talking about Hitler. He also throws in a couple of paragraphs on Argentina for reasons of who the fuck knows why.

This, people, is how you dumb it down. Waaaaaaay down. In 700 words, Sowell has lowered the bar further than daytime television ever has. Vaguery, pandering, gross fallacy, gibberish, and outright lying are our tools, and Thomas Sowell has shown us the way.

Phyllis Schlafly and the Gay Agenda

Not continued from previous post. I know I said I would, but I had half a bottle of Tanqueray instead. Fuck it.

It’s late September again, and you know what that means.  No, I’m not talking about Talk Like a Pirate Day. Or Ask a Stupid Question Day. Or even the immensely more kickass Elephant Appreciation Day.  No, for the seething masses of Christian Conservatives in America, late September means only two things: A) Rod Stewart REALLY should be back at school, and B) the Value Voters Summit.

If you dont get this joke, dont bother. Its really not that clever.

If you don't get this joke, don't bother. It's really not that clever.

For those who don’t follow the effervescent soup that is political lexicography (ie: those of you with a life), “Value Voters” are the democratic equivalent of fast-food “Value Meals”: generally bad for you but cheap as hell. All a politician needs to do to court these folks is pray publicly (in direct contravention of Matthew 6:5-6), oppose abortion and homosexuality, and not be an ethnic minority.

Actually, that’s not entirely fair. This year’s Summit had five black speakers over the course of the three-day event. That’s almost two black people a day! It’s also two more African-Americans than they had in 2008, when Barack Obama gave black people the right to vote.* They don’t have any Asians or Latinos yet, but they do have Stephen Baldwin, a.k.a. “The Other White Baldwin”, so that should be enough.

*…for a candidate that doesn’t despise or patronize them.

The ’09 Summit was a doozy, featuring such riveting sessions as “The New Masculinity” (an anti-movement to feminism) and “Global Warming Hysteria: The Face of the New Pro-Death Agenda”. There, attendees learned about startling advances in the field of Biblical environmentalism, which could help end Obama’s policy of coercing abortions to fight global warming. (I swear to Cthulhu, this is real. I’d give half an inch off my wang to be able to  make up shit this good.)

The event that really caught my eye, though, was the first of the breakout session meetings: “True Tolerance: Countering the Homosexual Agenda in Public Schools”. Now, anyone who knows me will tell you that I’m a veritable bastion of tolerance. Most days, I don’t even think about lynching until well into the afternoon. If I see a gay person on the street or in the workplace, I won’t condemn them as the abominations they are to their actual faces. Not while I’m sober, at least. Every right-thinking person has to draw the line somewhere, though. For me that somewhere is having an agenda. It’s just a sneaky word. Merriam-Webster has the etymology as the neuter plural of agendum. Did you catch that? The NEUTER plural. “Agenda” is neither male nor female, but some kind of godless ladyboy word. Why should we be surprised that the gays have one?

Enthralled but fearful, I set out to determine what this mysterious agenda is. After asking several gay people at random, all I managed to figure out is that A) homosexuals are a surprisingly secretive bunch of folks, and B) I really need to do something about my pores. Undeterred, I turned to the one source I can always rely on: Conservapedia. Conservapedia, in case you don’t know, is an open-edited, user-generated online encyclopedia for people who don’t have time for the rigorous neutrality, vetting, and professionalism typically associated with Wikipedia. In fact, Conservapedia maintains that Wikipedia’s stated goal of academic neutrality makes them liberally biased.  I suppose facts, like my testicles, naturally lean left. In order to hit the center, you have to aim to the right. If you really can’t be bothered to check out the site, I’ll sum it up this way: Their article on Phyllis Schlafly is five times larger than their entry on the NAACP. Really.

Comparative example

Comparative example

Luckily for me, Conservapedia came through with an astounding article on the Homosexual Agenda. It’s forty-five times longer than the NAACP article, meaning that the Homosexual Agenda is more important than nine Phyllis Schlaflys. It is unknown how Conservapedia acquired this information, or how many brave men had to sit through the Winter Olympics to get it. What is known is that the Homosexual Agenda is “a set of beliefs and objectives designed to promote and even mandate acceptance and approval of homosexuality”. Are you getting this? Gay people want to be accepted and approved of. We are truly through the looking glass here, people. The article states that some homosexuals even go so far as to “…tell seven- or eight-year-old boys, ‘If you only like boys, there’s a chance you may be homosexual’…” How dare they declare tautologies to impressionable youngsters? Won’t somebody PLEASE think of the children? Luckily, the foolish homosexuals’ efforts are all for naught in this particular endeavor. As the insightful article explains, “Well, at that age, all members of the opposite sex have cooties.”

And don’t think that the Great Gay Plot only entails their unique brand of accepto-fascism. No, the stalwarts of liberty at Conservapedia go on to detail eleven specific goals of the Homogenda. Some of these goals are predictable, such as “11. Pushing for legalized adoption by gay individuals and couples” and “1. Destroying Christian morals”. Some are utterly devious, though. Number seven on the list is “Stopping children as young as 5 years old from attending therapy to repair their sexual preference”. Can you imagine? What kind of America is this where people can’t send their five-year-olds off to be sexually repaired? The most disturbing bulletpoint, however, is easily number ten: “Undermining the resolve of latent homosexuals so that their will becomes too weak to resist the temptations of homosexuality.”

This, it seems to me, is the true threat of the Homosexual agenda. Not content to merely be gay, and thus unaccepted and disapproved of, homosexuals want to recruit others to their side. And should we really believe that they’ll stop with latent homosexuals? Of course not! After them, it will be the bisexuals, then the transexuals, then the metrosexuals, and then… all of us. Every man woman and child, queer as a three-dollar bill. Conservapedia explains it thusly: “…if all Americans turned homosexual it would only take a few generations for the United States to lose most of the population of the country through lack of procreation. This would make the US more vulnerable to attack by our enemies.” Chilling, isn’t it?

This doesnt exist.

This doesn't exist.

Since I’ve never even heard of in vitro fertilization, I am forced to accept this unhappy but clearly logical conclusion. Homosexuals want nothing less than the complete downfall of this great nation. They know full well how alluring gayism is, and they will do everything in their power to make us succumb to our unnatural lusts. We must take a stand now! I call on all straight people to say NO! America will NOT come out of the closet! We will NOT fall passionately into the safety of your oiled, rippling arms and purr like contented kittens against your soft yet manly chest! Our wives will NEVER surrender to their sapphic desires to be touched like only a woman can. We REFUSE to experience hot girl-on-girl action or the exquisite pleasure of knowing another man’s taste!

NO MATTER HOW MUCH WE WANT TO!