Chuck Palahniuk (reddit AMA)
Wow, oh wow that’s so good
The decisions that I made in 2010 were made out of a concern for my country and the world that we live in. Since the tragic events of 9/11, our country has been at war. We’ve been at war with an enemy that chooses not to meet us on any traditional battlefield, and due to this fact we’ve had to alter our methods of combating the risks posed to us and our way of life.
I initially agreed with these methods and chose to volunteer to help defend my country. It was not until I was in Iraq and reading secret military reports on a daily basis that I started to question the morality of what we were doing. It was at this time I realized in our efforts to meet this risk posed to us by the enemy, we have forgotten our humanity. We consciously elected to devalue human life both in Iraq and Afghanistan. When we engaged those that we perceived were the enemy, we sometimes killed innocent civilians. Whenever we killed innocent civilians, instead of accepting responsibility for our conduct, we elected to hide behind the veil of national security and classified information in order to avoid any public accountability.
In our zeal to kill the enemy, we internally debated the definition of torture. We held individuals at Guantanamo for years without due process. We inexplicably turned a blind eye to torture and executions by the Iraqi government. And we stomached countless other acts in the name of our war on terror.
Patriotism is often the cry extolled when morally questionable acts are advocated by those in power. When these cries of patriotism drown our any logically based intentions [unclear], it is usually an American soldier that is ordered to carry out some ill-conceived mission.
Our nation has had similar dark moments for the virtues of democracy—the Trail of Tears, the Dred Scott decision, McCarthyism, the Japanese-American internment camps—to name a few. I am confident that many of our actions since 9/11 will one day be viewed in a similar light.
As the late Howard Zinn once said, “There is not a flag large enough to cover the shame of killing innocent people.”
I understand that my actions violated the law, and I regret if my actions hurt anyone or harmed the United States. It was never my intention to hurt anyone. I only wanted to help people. When I chose to disclose classified information, I did so out of a love for my country and a sense of duty to others.
If you deny my request for a pardon, I will serve my time knowing that sometimes you have to pay a heavy price to live in a free society. I will gladly pay that price if it means we could have country that is truly conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all women and men are created equal."
Statement by Bradley Manning read after his sentancing, by his lawyer David Coombs (via mollycrabapple)
The next time someone starts up with hero-worship bullshit about how the military has such high ideals of honor and integrity and service to country, I’m going to stare them dead in the eyes and say two words: “Bradley Manning.”
and I’m going to let the “… look what you fuckers did to him” just hang there in the air like the cloud that is about to rain all over their jingoistic parade.
It took me a little while to put my finger on why this doesn’t sit right with me, and it’s nothing to do with the idea of selling out, which I agree is mostly BS. Absolutely, make a living, sell your music and make no apologies. But at a certain point, when you’ve got enough money, enough to put food on the table and a roof over your head, enough to be free from worry and want, then do whatever the hell you want to do. You shouldn’t feel stupid or guilty for turning down a paycheck you don’t need any more than you should feel guilty for accepting one you do.
(Source: , via gtfothinspo)
If you see a woman upset that men are trying to take away basic rights, and your first response is to think “But not all men!” then you’re not angry enough that someone is trying to take away women’s basic fucking rights.
So what happened to social justice?
This, unfortunately, is how the “truly liberated” woman of the 21st century is increasingly being construed. What is particularly troubling about this feminist moment - especially since both women espouse liberal ideals - is exactly how little emphasis either Slaughter or Sandberg ultimately places on equal rights, justice or emancipation as the end goals for feminism.
Why do we have an abortion rate 20% higher than France’s (and more than twice as high as Germany’s), especially considering most doctors here won’t perform them? The answer is any country that has universal health care, where contraception is free, where child care is free or inexpensive, where there is less poverty because people don’t become bankrupt over medical bills — those societies are simply going to have fewer unplanned and unwanted pregnancies.
And there the mask gets pulled off the Bart Stupaks and the “Christians.” If the statistics show that countries with government-provided universal health care and nearly-free abortions are, in fact, the countries with the fewest abortions, then why on earth wouldn’t the Right be the first in line to support universal health care?
Because it isn’t about “universal health care.” It’s about controlling women, period. It’s about sticking your nose in other people’s business. It’s about pushing your religious beliefs on everyone else because voices in your head tell you your Jesus is The One — even though your Jesus never said one single solitary word in any of the four gospels of the Bible about abortion or fertilized eggs being human. You’ve just gone and made it up about “life beginning at conception.” Jesus never said that. The little voice in your head said that, the same little voice that wants your grubby paws on women’s uteruses. You need help. Please get some help and leave the rest of us alone, Mr. Stupak and friends."
I wish I could reblog this 1,000 times.
A giant 50ft rubber duck has swapped bath time for a trip up the Thames after setting sail from Canary Wharf.
The bright yellow water bird shocked City workers in the capital during rush hour this morning, looming large over London’s main financial district.
(view source for more pictures)
Choose the form of the Destructor!
Here’s the truth: People, even regular people, are never just any one person with one set of attributes. It’s not that simple. We’re all at the mercy of the limbic system, clouds of electricity drifting through the brain. Every man is broken into twenty-four-hour fractions, and then again within those twenty-four hours. It’s a daily pantomime, one man yielding control to the next: a backstage crowded with old hacks clamoring for their turn in the spotlight. Every week, every day. The angry man hands the baton over to the sulking man, and in turn to the sex addict, the introvert, the conversationalist. Every man is a mob, a chain gang of idiots.
This is the tragedy of life. Because for a few minutes of every day, every man becomes a genius. Moments of clarity, insight, whatever you want to call them. The clouds part, the planets get in a neat little line, and everything becomes obvious. I should quit smoking, maybe, or here’s how I could make a fast million, or such and such is the key to eternal happiness. That’s the miserable truth. For a few moments, the secrets of the universe are opened to us. Life is a cheap parlor trick.
But then the genius, the savant, has to hand over the controls to the next guy down the pike, most likely the guy who just wants to eat potato chips, and insight and brilliance and salvation are all entrusted to a moron or a hedonist or a narcoleptic.
The only way out of this mess, of course, is to take steps to ensure that you control the idiots that you become. To take your chain gang, hand in hand, and lead them."
“Memento Mori,” Jonathan Nolan (via dotcomslashpost)