Instant karma’s gonna get you

From a Fox News story:

300 Irate Chinese Taxi Drivers on Strike Smash Cars, Demand Crackdown on Unlicensed Cabs
Sunday, November 30, 2008

BEIJING — About 300 taxi drivers went on strike in a southern Chinese city, smashing cars and demanding a crackdown on unlicensed taxis in the latest protest against illegal taxi competition in China.

Hundreds of cab drivers gathered Saturday in front of government buildings in Chaozhou, a city in Guangdong province, said an official Sunday from the Chaozhou city government who would only give his surname, Chen.

More than 200 taxis were parked in front of the gate of a government office as drivers sought greater enforcement against unlicensed taxis, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.

Excuse me while I replace the batteries in my irony meter.

In the country notorious for unlicensed knock-offs and counterfeits of products invented and developed in the West, the country in which one can buy in open market stalls bootleg copies of software ranging from Adobe Photoshop, to Microsoft Office (costing hundreds of dollars), to expensive manufacturing and CAD/CAM software (costing tens of thousands of dollars), in the country which has refused to work with US and European patent, trademark, and copyright agents. . . cab drivers are rioting and destroying private property because they want their government to crack down on the unregistered cabs, which is estimated at approximately 5% of the current transportation force.

I’m just saying, you know?


Colorado Springs School Bans Tag on Playground,

From Fox News this morning.

Submitted here without comment, mainly because I can’t post a video of my head shaking in disgust.


Colorado Springs School Bans Tag on Playground, Citing Conflicts

Thursday, August 30, 2007

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — An elementary school has banned tag on its playground after some children complained they were harassed or chased against their will.

“It causes a lot of conflict on the playground,” said Cindy Fesgen, assistant principal of the Discovery Canyon Campus school.

Running games are still allowed as long as students don’t chase each other, she said.

Fesgen said two parents complained to her about the ban but most parents and children didn’t object.

In 2005, two elementary schools in the nearby Falcon School District did away with tag and similar games in favor of alternatives with less physical contact. School officials said the move encouraged more students to play games and helped reduce playground squabbles.

I Can Haz Sidecar?

For some reason known only to the gods of teh int3rw3bz, one of the most consistently popular blogs on WordPress is a place where people send in terminally cute pictures of cats (they allow token other animals, but it’s mainly a feline blog) that have been “capped” – tagged with sickeningly cutesy captions. The blog has spawned several parodies, and I can envision a time in the not-too-distant future when the phrase “I can has ___ ?” will be as ubiquitous as “All your ____ are belong to us.”

No, I’m not going to give you the name; I have no wish to be linked to it. Go to WordPress and find it yourself.

So it’s probably no surprise that when my Harley-riding, camera-wielding sister sent this out, it was the first thing that popped into my head.

The dog’s name, by the way, is Polly.

Go ahead. Ask me.


Because she had a parrot named Rover, of course.

Just to show that my sister really is not a crazy cat dog lady, here’s the link to her own websites:

Shoot Photography
The World in Black & White

Learning Experience


When I read the news blurb the other day, it seemed so far-fetched that I figured there had to be a mistake. Or that the news was not reporting all of it, and there was some “rest of the story” that would, in context, help everything to make sense.

I was wrong.

In case anyone missed it, in Murfreesboro, Tennesee a group of middle-school children on a class trip were suddenly terrorized by their teachers subjected to a “learning experience:” they were told that a gunman was attempting to attack them, that it was “not a drill” and spent the next five minutes believing that a crazed killer was rattling the doors trying to get at them as they hid under tables, crying and pleading for their lives.

The Fox News report suggested that the teachers considered it to be “a prank,” as well as a “learning experience” because after they finished terrorizing the students, they explained that it was to foster a discussion on what they would do should it have been a real situation.

In what could well win the Understatement of the Year Award, CNN reported that some parents were “upset by the staff’s poor judgment.”

Over the last few years, we have seen dozens of reports of schoolchildren being disciplined for writing book reports or essays in which violence was suggested. Teenage frustration, expressed on web logs, MySpace accounts or in email has been used to subject students to suspension or expulsion, and even legal action. But so far, the Murfreesboro school board has not taken any disciplinary action against the so-called adults responsible for this “learning experience” that would have landed any other teenager in jail.

Now, I’ve been guilty of poor judgment in my life – we all have. But on a trip with 69 students, we know that there must have been more than one adult. Could one adult have dreamed up a stunt gone wrong? Sure. But out of the several other teachers on this trip, how is it possible that the other adults did not intervene, to point out the flaws in the plan?

Apparently, it’s because they were all crazy. What are the odds?