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The No True Scotsman fallacy

No true Scotsman - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

As another example, a layman may be debating the merits of different video camcorders. He might assert that: "Any video engineer will tell you that the Matsushiba KYX300 format is vastly superior to the Magnasonic VBX2000." If someone points out, many engineers are on record as saying that the VBX2000 is actually the superior system, the original speaker may modify his premise to state: "Any video engineer who knows what they are talking about."

This is really another form of begging the question. His assertion is essentially self-nullifying, in that, not being an engineer, he is hardly in any position to judge the credentials of people who are.

This is connected to the widespread attempt in debate to assert that positive terms (good, decent) imply, naturally or by definition, the characteristics argued for (opposition to capital punishment, pornography, smoking in public), rather than actually making an argument why they are connected.

The saddest stormtrooper ever

I Had Friends on That Death Star… | Laughing Squid

Tokyopop's new contract is ridiculously awful

radiomaru.lj - Statement

Bryan Lee O'Malley breaks it down. Click through to see his illustrations and hissing cats, too. In essence, the contract gives you $20 a page for your own original work, and you lose all rights associated with the work. And they may not even admit you created it. And if you get sued for any reason because of the work, they do not have your back. It's pretty much the worst possible contract.

I'm going to go through this piece of shit with you, because I'm sure a lot of aspiring cartoonists read my blog and I want to do my part to help you all have a future.

Read my bloggy lips: if you sign this contract, say goodbye to THE FUTURE.

I'm not going to speculate about where they're being untruthful. I'm just going to let them say what they're saying. It's bad enough.

. . .

They have this new Manga Pilot program. It's a thing where you come up with a great idea, you toil over it and create a 24-36 page comic, they put it online with a bunch of other submissions, and "the people" decide who wins. Or, y'know, whatever.

The contract for this fun deal is horrible, draconian, ridiculous. It's like Satan wrote it. I can't believe Tokyopop is getting away with this in broad daylight.

Very extensive coverage over here.

The internet-derived "Martian language" of Chinese teens

"Martian Language" heats up among Chinese teenagers_English_Xinhua

BEIJING, May 22 -- Do you know what "3Q" means? How about "Orz" or "= ="? Believe it or not, this so-called "Martian Language" has become a hit among teenagers in China.

An online survey showed that 80 percent of Chinese teenagers aged 15 to 20 are using Martian Language. Out of a class of 50 in a middle school in south China's Guangzhou city, 70 percent were crazy about the "Martin Language," according to the local newspaper, Information Times.

Since most teachers and parents cannot understand the new "words," it has become an effective way for students to keep their correspondence private. Privacy seems to be the biggest factor in the popularity of the new languages.

However, students feel that, in addition to being a secret tool for communicating with best friends, the language gives them a sense of identity.

The "Martian Language" is a term used to describe words in the Chinese speaking cyberspace that are not commonly recognized. The words are a combination of English letters, Chinese characters, Internet slang and symbols. The language first became popular in Taiwan in 2004, and then spread to the mainland in 2007.

Bush's former press secretary releasing tell-all fuck you memoir

Bush Aide Scores White House War Propaganda

Bush, he writes, is guilty of a "failure to be open and forthright on Iraq and (of) rushing to war with inadequate planning and preparation for its aftermath."

Accusing the president of engaging in "self-deception" when it came to the facts from the Middle East, McClellan explains that Bush "and his advisers confused the propaganda campaign with the high level of candor and honesty so fundamentally needed to build and then sustain public support during a time of war."

"[I]n this regard, (Bush) was terribly ill-served by his top advisers, especially those involved directly in national security," argues McClellan, who is blistering in his description of Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, the president's former national security adviser, as "too accommodating" and too concerned about protecting her own reputation to challenge strategies that she had to know were ill-advised and dangerous.

. . .

"If anything, the national press corps was probably too deferential to the White House and to the administration in regard to the most important decision facing the nation during my years in Washington, the choice over whether to go to war in Iraq," the former spokesman writes. "The collapse of the administration's rationales for war, which became apparent months after our invasion, should never have come as such a surprise. … In this case, the ‘liberal media' didn't live up to its reputation. If it had, the country would have been better served."

Al Jazeera's Everywoman on Saudi women, Chinese plastic surgery reality show

Feministing

I sort of love Al Jazeera English.

Zero Punctuation reviews The World Ends With You

Indiana embarasses us all

Indiana Law Targets 'Explicit' Books : NPR

I wonder how many books that Borders or B&N stock would fall under this rule? The entire Erotica section perhaps? Small swaths of the art, graphic nocel, manga and yaoi sections?

All Things Considered, May 27, 2008 -- A new Indiana law — due to take effect July 1 — would force any bookstore that sold even one book that could be broadly described as "sexually explicit" to pay a $250 license fee and be classified as an "adult bookstore."

(via Bookslut)

David Blaine is a demon!

Australian fishermen catch giant squid

FOXNews.com - Australian Fishermen Catch 20-Foot, 500-Pound Giant Squid - Science News | Science & Technology | Technology News

MELBOURNE, Australia — Australian fishermen have hauled up a 20-foot-long giant squid off the country's southeastern coast.

Skipper Rangi Pene said Monday that the 500-pound squid was already dead when it was caught in a trawler's nets Sunday night in waters more than 1,640 feet deep.

Paul McCoy, a fisheries research biologist, said it took 10 men to lift the squid onto a stretcher and place it in a storage freezer in the city of Portland. A museum will collect it this week.

May 27, 2008

How to: Make your own echolocation goggles and look totally sweet

Ultrasonic Batgoggles - Instructables - DIY, How To, tech, science

Yes, I did overcome my initial dislike of instructables. Why do you ask?

How to: Make Skittles Vodka

Shoot the Rainbow: Skittles Vodka - Instructables - DIY, How To, food, offbeat

How to: Surgical alter your ears into elf ears

Body-Mod: Elf Ears - Instructables - DIY, How To, offbeat, life

Eek!

Round-Up: Misogyny in the media

Feministing

A lot of these make my skin crawl. Also, I want to punch Tucker Carlson and Chris Matthews in the throat.

border guards caught taking many, many bribes

TPMMuckraker | Talking Points Memo | Today's Must Read

Looks like the 'crackdown' against illegal immigrants crossing over the Mexican border has been a boon for corrupt border guards.

Federal officials say their decision to dissolve the Internal Affairs unit at Customs and Border Protection unit a few years ago was a bad idea (go figure), and now the Department of Homeland Security is reconstituting it. Reborn with a whopping five investigators last year, the unit is projected to grow to 200 by the end of this year.

The New York Times reports this morning that a growing number of border patrol guards are under investigation for taking bribes from smugglers and letting vehicles packed with drugs and people pass into the U.S. unchecked.

McCain repeatedly heckled at non-proliferation sppech

Think Progress -- McCain heckled during non-proliferation speech.

Usher's new single found to be completely made from Apple Gargageband samples

Ladies of the PQ: PWN3D: Usher's "Love In This Club" Completely Ripped Off from Stock GarageBand Samples

Reminder: You cannot inflate your children

IOL: Father learns kids don't inflate

Phnom Penh - A Cambodian father and mechanic learned the hard way not to inflate children when he inserted an air hose designed to fill car tires into his 5-year-old son's anus and blew him up, local media reported on Thursday.

The Khmer-language Rasmei Kampuchea daily reported Try Sienghym was "playing" with his son Sok Sambo when the incident took place.

The paper said the child's stomach became distended and his concerned mother rushed him to hospital, where he remains in a stable condition and is expected to make a full recovery.

"The father very much regrets playing like this now," the paper quoted a family member as saying.

Police were not expected to take action against the father, blaming the incident on pure stupidity, against which there is currently no law.

First Look: The Minutemen

THE BEAT -- New WATCHMEN still: THE MINUTEMEN

In the Watchmen comics, these are the previous generation of superheroes. They gathered together to change the world, and ended in disgrace.

The News as seen through the eyes of a PCP addict

The News as seen through the eyes of a PCP addict

This is insane, insanely awesome.

Overdrift: Stage 2!

Overdrift: Stage 2

A sequel to Overdrift, the story of men who drift race so hard they turn into dinosaurs.