Kill Rebels for Palpatine

So in this forge thread Clinton R. Nixon (designer of a neat Jedi-biting game called Paladin) advances following thesis:

Any good RPG can, with a minimum of effort, be used to play Jedi.

Clinton then challenged people to give him RPGs and he’d outline a minimal Jedi conversion. The first funny one was Kill Puppies for Satan: “Kill Rebels for Palpatine.” The prospect of an Ewok massacre made many posters happy.

And let’s not forget My Life With Master Yoda.

Mike Holmes drops in and almost kills the thread by being what he later describes as “an anal retentive fuckhead,” but he manages to resurrect it with an apology (in which he thus describes himself) and everyone including himself being friendly and decent.

It eventually became a challenge to find a decent game that couldn’t be used for a great jedi game, and nobody succeeded. Even some apparent failures (Breaking The Ice, a game about first dates) became successes with a little creativity (BTI turns out to work for playing out chunks of Star Wars as Luke and Leia’s “first date.”)

This is why I love the Forge. :)

Lone Gunmen, Plane crash, WTC, Foreign Terrorists

This still amazes me. Six months before 9/11, the Lone Gunmen show (X-Files spinoff)’s pilot episode was about a secret faction within the government taking control of an airliner by remote control and crashing it into the world trade center, and blaming foreign terrorists.

The tinfoil hat warriors at propaganda matrix put the relevant clips online (windows media format) for all to see.

Freaky to watch with hindsight.

It’s not as terrifyingly deja vu as it might be because it happens at night instead of during the day, so the look of the whole thing is different. (And of course there’s only ONE plane. And it doesn’t actually hit the WTC cause the Lone Gunmen save the day.)

But it’s still hella freaky to watch.

up way too late composing Latin

cause some guy on ISCA bbs asked how to render into Latin the sentence “to truly live is to stare defiantly into the face of death.”

I started working on it and noticed that my sentence was about half hexameter, so I labored and obsessed until I put the whole thing into dactylic hexameter, or something close enough for government work. I had to ditch the “defiance” but I thought the epic meter made up for it:

intueri in vultum mortis, id vivere vere est.

Then I realized I had totally jumbled around the sense of his words to get that. It should be more like:

Vere vivere, id est fortiter intueri in vultum mortis.

No epic meter there, nor any easy way to cast it that way.

But “fortiter intueri in vultum…” — that’s a lovely little chunk of hexameter in the middle of it. Makes me sad not to be able to render it all that way.

Ah, Latin. What fun.

Here’s an awesome page giving English verses composed in Classical meters.

Pretend There Is No Duck

The following quote and response are from a mailing list I’m on with a few friends, published with no permission whatsoever.

I suppose Ed does not always want to be the
uber-liberal on the list. Perhaps this is why he
hasn’t posted here about voting irregularites
vis-a-vis exit polls.

Do you think the Democrats perpetrated a wide-spread
conspiracy to rig the exit polls? I do.


This has been preying on my mind lately. We have the scenario that you would expect in the case of massive fraud by vote machine manufacturers:

  • Major manufacturers of voting machines and vote-counting machines tight with right wing politicians

  • Strange Republican upsets follow everywhere their machines go

  • Paper trails difficult or impossible to get

  • The huge Republican upsets were not successfully predicted by pollsters and tend to accompany discrepancies in exit polls

  • Democrats and other liberals blame themselves and vow to do better next time and learn to be nicer to the people who don’t like them, because that’s what liberals do. Cigarette smoking man snickers quietly to himself cause the liberals are so predictable.

It’s quite possible that America is no longer a democracy except in the sense that Iraq was a “democracy” because you were allowed to vote for Saddam Hussein.

OK, this isn’t a Cigarette Smoking Man style plot, because he would have found a way to rig the polls too….

I’m not saying this happened, I’m saying that it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, and if it ain’t a duck I’d like to see some evidence for the non-duckitude.

The story is that this election was swung by “evangelical voters” voting on “moral issues,” but why would those people not show up in polls? If anything, it appears polls have tended to over-represent Republicans, not under-represent them (Gallup tended to “normalize” the data to show a huge Republican spike disproportionate to actual Republicans in the population — perhaps in response to past Diebold chicanery?).

I mean, yeah, maybe that’s what happened, I’m just wondering why it looks so much like a rigged election if it’s not.

Lessig Asks for a Retranslation

Lawrence Lessig notes that the Al-Jazeera translation of the Osama bin Laden text seems at least to allow the reading that ObL is saying that Bush was given 20 minutes’ warning before the attacks occurred at all.

I don’t know a lick of Arabic, but I know at least one person who does reads my blog from time to time. Wanna take a crack at it, Jonathan?

I mean, even if that was what ObL was saying, that doesn’t mean he’s telling the truth…

Anyway, food for thought.

Here’s Dr. Lessig:

As Aljazeera has translated it, near the end bin Laden says this:

And for the record, we had agreed with the Commander-General Muhammad Ataa, Allah have mercy on him, that all the operations should be carried out within 20 minutes before Bush and his administration notice.

It never occurred to us that the Commander in Chief of the armed forces would abandon 50,000 of his citizens in the twin towers to face those great horrors alone at a time when they most needed him.

He goes on to refer to the Pet Goat incident, so we know he’s referring to the morning of September 11. But what does “carried out within 20 minutes before Bush and his administration notice” mean? Is bin Laden saying he gave the US warning (“notice”) before the attack — which would explain the weird look on Bush’s face before he was told the attack had actually occured?