Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Old Video Shows Stupid Idea: Big Cleveland Balloonfest Of 1986

Zillions of balloons rain down on
Cleveland during a 1986 ill-fated
attempt at a Guiness Book of World
Record attempt
The Atlantic recently featured a short film about a long forgotten, failed attempt at a Guinness Book of World Record balloon launch.

The city of Cleveland launched 1.5 million helium filled balloons. It looked spectacular, but the end result was kind of like that famous Thanksgiving turkey scene from the 1970s show "WKRP In Cincinnati." (In that episode, the radio station inadvertently bombarded Cincinnati with turkeys, with hilariously messy results.

Cleveland should have known that kind of fiction would come to life with their balloon launch. And unlike the sitcom, the result was not hilarious at all.

Hundreds of thousands of balloons littered the city and nearby Lake Erie.  The balloons weren't biodegradable, so they made a mess and an environmental hazard.

Worse, all the balloons interfered with a search and rescue mission on Lake Erie for two missing fishermen. There's no way they could be found amid all those balloons floating in the water.

Here's the short film on the doomed Cleveland balloon fest:

Friday, June 15, 2018

Country Time Lemonade To Pay Fines For Kids Who Set Up "Illegal" Lemonade Stands

Country Time Lemonade has started Lemon-Ade - a team that pays fines
and permit fees imposed by overzealous bureaucrats who shut down
kids' lemonade stands. 
It's an annual summertime outrage:

A kid sets up a lemonade stand, and some overzealous bureaucrat in some hoity-toity town shuts it down, saying the kid needs a business permit, a health permit, all kinds of permits to sell a couple 25 cent cups of lemonade.

You gotta enforce those rules!

Country Time, Lemonade has used this state of affairs for what I think is a pretty ingenious marketing plan. The company will help pay fines and permits for kids nationwide who run afoul of lemonade stand regulators. The whole idea is called, of course, Legal-Ade. 

Says the Country Time website: "Life doesn't always give you lemons, but when it does, you should be able to make and share lemonade with the neighborhood with legal implications..... That's why wer're here to take a stand for lemonade stands across the nation."

Of course, bureaucrats shutting down lemonade stands isn't the biggest crisis to hit the nation recently. And it's not even very common, Adweek reports. The publications says there have only been about 30 reported examples of municipalities trying to shut down kid-operated concession stands since 1983.

The fact checking site said most of the controversies involved demands that kids get permits for their lemonade stands, and not fines for operating them.

Still, the Country Time Legal-Ade campaign plays well with the outrage we feel when some bullying adults try to mess with kids' lemonade stands. So it's a good piece of promotion from Country Time. Give that marketing exec a raise!

Here's Country Time's video on the matter:

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Bonkers Adminstration: People Had To Follow Trump To Tape Together Shredded Documents

Donald Trump apparently rips up every document
he touches, so somebody has to tape them all
together for National Archive records. I should
have invested in 3M, makers of Scotch Tape
As is obvious to (almost) everyone, we live in bonkers Trump world now. One in which he basically wants to start a way with Canada of all places, yet thinks Putin and North Korea's Kim Jong Un  are pretty much A-OK.

These mega issues are overwhelming, so I sometimes seek out the smaller, but even weirder absurdities in Trump World.

Politico recently had a doozy on this score.

When Trump finishes with a paper document (remember, he tends not to read them) he tears them into tiny shreds. The problem is, he's not supposed to.

As Politico points out, under the Presidential Records Act, the White House is required to preserve all memos, letters, emails and papers that the president touches. All the paperwork goes to the National Archives for safekeeping and to eventually become historical records.

So what they do with the shredded papers? For a period of time, it was the following, says Politico:

"Armed with rolls of clear Scotch tape (Solomon) Lartey and his colleagues would sift through large piles of shredded paper and put them back together, he said, 'like a jigsaw puzzle.' Sometimes the papers would just be split down the middle, but other times they would be torn into pieces so small they looked like confetti."

Presumably, somebody is still taping the ripped documents together, or at least I think so. But Lartey, 54 and his colleague Reginald Young Jr., 48, were abruptly shitcanned from their job. They were stripped of their badges and hauled off the White House grounds by the Secret Service, Politico reports. 

Nobody, as far as we can tell, knows why they were fired. This includes Lartey and Young, who were not told why they were fired.

Politico tried to get ahold of the woman who fired them, but she didn't respond to their emails. Neither did a White House spokesman.

My theory, of course, is Lartey and Young were preserving documents that Trump doesn't want preserved. That just seems to be his M.O.

The insanity goes on........

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Creepiest Political Candidate Ever Favors Incest, Pedophilia

Nathan Larson is a longshot candidate for Congress but a frontrunner
for title of creepiest politician ever
In this weird age of Trump, people seem more and more encouraged to come out of the closet as racist, mysogynist, scary or worse.

So, unfortunately, I'm not entirely surprised by what I'm sure is the worst political candidate ever.

According to the Huffington Post, Nathan Larson, a 37 year old accountant from Charlottesville, Virginia, is running for Congress as an independent candidate.

Sounds safe enough, right? An accountant, so pretty low key. Probably a fiscal conservative, who would keep an eye on excess government spending. What's not to love?

A HUGE amount, it turns out. He is admitted pedophile who has almost gleefully bragged about raping his late ex-wife. (Who later committed suicide. I wonder why).

As reported in the Huffington Post:

"When asked whether he's a pedophile or just writes about pedophilia, he said, 'It's a mix of both. When people go over the top there's a grain of truth to what they say.'

Asked whether there was a 'grain of truth' in his essay about father-daughter incest, and another about raping his ex-wife repeatedly, he said yes, offering that plenty of women have rape fantasies."

Larson things this attitude is a plus that will endear voters to him. "A lot of people are tired of political correctness and being constrained by it..... People prefer when there's an outsider who doesn't have anything to lose and is willing to say what's on a lot of people's minds."

OK, I suppose can see the rebellion against so-called political correctness. But I really don't believe people think about incest and rape and think, "What a great idea! Too bad those politically correct laws ban it."

At least I hope that's the case.

He also says he'll garner votes because "People are open minded."


Yep, Larson's a real charmer. He would legalize child pornography and legalize incestuous marriage and favors "benevolent white supremacy."

Um, I don't think it's possible to be a "benevolent" white supremist.

Going on, Larson also thinks "we need to switch to a system that classifies women as property, initially of their fathers and later of their husbands."

Cripes, by comparison, he makes the world of "The Handmaids Tale" sound like something Gloria Steinem would embrace.

As if you needed more proof this guy is truly scary, he had a wiki page called, which has since been pulled down in which he wrote articles with the following titles:

"A Man Should Be Allowed To Choke His Wife To Death As Punishment for Cutting Her Hair Short Without Permission or Other Acts of Gross Insubordination."

"The Justifiability of an Incel's Kidnapping A Girl And Keeping Her As His Rape-Slave For Sex and Babymaking."

(The word Incel refers to mostly men who are virgins or not having sex because women aren't attracted to them, and the Incel blames the women and is angry at them for not submitting to them. Ugh.)

I'm frankly a little surprised Larson has not been arrested, since he seems to be admitting to crimes.

On the bright side, he is certainly considered a very long shot for that Congressional seat.  Which of course is a good thing.

Of course, there are other creeps out there running for office, too.  In Illinois, Arthur Jones, regarded as a Nazi, recently won the Republican primary in the state's Third Congressional District. Luckily, the district is heavily Democratic, so somebody more sane than Jones will end up in Congress from that district.

There are other wackos out there as well, but so far, they've been kept at bay. Let's hope that continues.