Posts tagged ‘Politics’

June 20, 2011

Hackers hit dating site with the ugly stick

by Me

Here’s a case where hackers did something positive.

Website hacks have become ever more prevalent these days. Lulzsec, for example, is credited with cracking the CIA’s site (and no, not the Culinary Institute of America) as well as PBS’ website.

If you look like this, don't bother dating at all. Unless you can find an enchanted princess chained to a rock by a dragon and who, therefore, can't run away.

You could make a case that throwing a thorn into the side of national security and public broadcasting is not that nice. But, according to media like The Guardian, among others, a group of hackers infiltrated and let 30,000 ugly faces in the front door.

In case you don’t know, is a dating site that relies on no fewer than three mortal sins — lust, pride and greed. In order to be accepted, a potential dater must be rated as beautiful, and the site itself boasts thousands of people rejected for not being pretty enough.

And it doesn’t end there — last year, 5,000 people were kicked off the site after Christmas when they appeared to have gained some weight.


Then the hackers opened the door.

“We got suspicious when tens of thousands of new members were accepted over a six-week period, many of whom were no oil painting,” managing director Greg Hodge told The Guardian.

Upwards of 30,000 “ugly” people were let in the door, many of whom were then kicked out, costing the site tons of cashola.

This is Monica Hansen, Miss Norway. Apparently all Norwegian women look like this.

Oh, by the way, the virus was called “Shrek,” after the animated ogre who proves that looks don’t matter.

Interestingly, it matters where you’re from. Swedes are the most represented nationality on the site, as are Norwegians. Brits, Irish and Americans, apparently, need not apply.

God bless those hackers. Score one for the homely.

June 4, 2011

The evils of marijuana

by Me

We’re sort of apolitical here at Dumb Things of the Week. We don’t take stances on anything but idiocy, an issue about which we feel passionately.

So while the Connecticut State Senate is debating a bill that would decriminalize small amounts of marijuana, we’re not going to say ye or nay — nobody cares what we think, anyway.


And Sen. Toni Boucher has a right to her opin- no, wait, no she doesn’t. She should have no right to voice an opinion based on stupidity and misinformation.

During her drearily long speech on the floor of the Senate, using as much hyperbole and misinformation as there are characters in the Chinese alphabet, she spoke about the evils of marijuana, the terrible havoc it wreaks on unsuspecting children, how it leads to terrible things and how horrible the state will be should the bill pass.

She really did.

In her closing remarks, Boucher said she gets “physically sick when I think about this issue”  and read from an essay by a 7th grade student in New Haven who had been adopted.

This can kill you ... in 80 years or so.

“When I was born my mom had a drug addiction problem,” the kid, who remained nameless, supposedly wrote. He was apparently in and out of foster homes and was lucky enough to find a permanent residence with a loving family only four years ago.

“I don’t ever want to use drugs because drugs took my parents away from me,” he wrote.

Um, Ms. Boucher, can we ask a question? Which drugs? Weed? His parents were unable to take care of him because they smoked too much pot?

Yeah, right.

And, um, Ms. Boucher, can we ask another question? WHYARE YOU READING A 7th GRADER’s ESSAY ON THE FLOOR OF THE SENATE??


Sorry. Just had to vent there. Let’s all calm down with a bit of music.

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May 30, 2011

New York’s Weiner: ‘That’s not my crotch’ – oh, wait, yes it is

by Me

UPDATE: Our crack investigative team has uncovered (well, bad choice of words there) the famous picture Rep. Weiner now admits he sent. For all of you just dying to see it, here it is. But, remember, once seen, it can’t be unseen. You have been warned



You grow up with the surname “Weiner” and you know you’re going to hear it all. But, one would think, that by the time you’re a married man, a father and a rather well-known congressmen, the weiner jokes would, well, get kind of soft.

In this photo, Rep. Anthony Weiner is not, in any way, showing everybody the size of his penis.

Rep. Anthony Weiner, a New York congressman known for being a bit, shall we say outspoken, says his Twitter profile was hacked when a 21-year-old woman from Seattle received a picture of what purported to be Rep. Weiner’s namesake, according to the New York Daily News.

Now, we here at DTOTW would LOVE to provide that photo to our readers but the post and the photo were taken down immediately after getting posted. Weiner, far from being amused (he should have been flattered — we hear the photo “left little to the imagination” and displayed a quite well-endowed member of congress) seemed initially bored.

Police, take note. This, according to Rep. Weiner, is an artist's rendering of the man who hacked the congressman's Twitter account.

“Touche Prof Moriarity. More Weiner Jokes for all my guests!” he tweeted later.

The Daily News quoted a spokesperson who suggested that the whole incident was a scheme to distract the Weiner-loving populace and that a future lawsuit was not impossible.

The unwitting foil, Gennette Nicole Cordova, said she’s never been to New York or D.C., and has never met the honorable Mr. Weiner.

“All of this is so outlandish that I don’t know whether to be pissed off or amused, quite frankly.” That’s what she said.

What’s the problem? That’s what she said. Really.

On a side note, what’s with Weiner’s allusion to Prof. James Moriarty? Does Weiner stylize himself as a modern-day Sherlock Holmes? does it take a “Napoleon of crime” to hack a Twitter account?

No, Weiner’s ego is probably just a bit larger than the photo phallus he says he did not tweet to the world.

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May 25, 2011

Legislature OKs cow poop raffles

by Me

Importance, we now know, is relative. For some, the most important this is freedom. For some, that freedom means the freedom to bet on where a cow will poop without the government getting all involved.


What happens when the cow poops over several sqaures?

The Connecticut legislature this week, while weighing things like subsidized education for immigrants and, you know, boring stuff like that, took the time out to approve a change in how it regulates cow chip raffles.

As the Connecticut Mirror reported, a cow stands on a chalked grid and participants each buy a square. The cow does what cows do best and, depending on where nature calls, you might be a winner.

The best part of this story is how seriously legislators took the debate.

“If you are the person who bought a ticket in a cow chip raffle, you want to know how it’s being played,” Rep. Patricia Widlitz told the Mirror.

Your tax dollars hard at work.

The state statute that will be changed goes as follows: “Each organization intending to sponsor or conduct a cow-chip raffle shall furnish with its application, required pursuant to section 7-173, a cow-chip raffle plot plan displaying the land area to be utilized for such raffle and the numbered plots, each corresponding to a numbered cow-chip raffle ticket.

Which, translated from legalese, means that the state wanted a map of the plot of land on which the cows would poop. The legislature no longer seems to feel that such information is necessary for good governance.

The world’s going to Hell in a hand-basket. What’s next? Rules on duck races? Oh, wait — the same regulation applies there, too:

For the purpose of this subsection, “duck-race raffle” means a raffle in which artificial ducks, numbered consecutively to correspond with the number of tickets sold for such raffle, are placed in a naturally moving stream of water at a designated starting point and in which the ticket corresponding to the number of the first duck to pass a designated finishing point is the winning ticket.”

May 24, 2011

‘Hey let’s all get together and breastfeed for mom’s rights’

by Me

It sounds like some sort of weird sexual deviant’s idea of a good time, but it’s not.

No, it’s a matter of freedom of expression, and the right to breastfeed any damn place we choose.

As the Valley Independent reported, a mom from Shelton, Conn. was asked to “cover up” while breastfeeding her child at the Trumbull Mall. A security guard, apparently offended by the sight of a naked breast, asked her to keep her private parts, well, private because as we all know, mall cops are the bastions of decency and morality.

If not them, who?

Of course, mall cops are not real cops, so the poor guy didn’t know that the mom was legally allowed to breastfeed, in public.

What else are malls for?

We grant you, there’s a fine line between a bunch of women taking off their tops and running around yelling hoogah hoogah hoogah and a mother breastfeeding her child. It’s a very fine line indeed, but clearly defined by law.

Don’t take our word for it — CLICK HERE for the real skinny on the subject.

The solution? A “nurse-in.” Here’s a quote from the story: “We’re going to go there, we’ll sit down in the food court and we’ll do what’s meant to be done in a food court — feed our kids.”

That’s right, a bunch of nursing mothers are planning a 1960s-style sit-in with added breastfeeding in protest, perhaps, of the antiquated and holier-than-thou outlooks of mall security guards everywhere.

Eight mothers have already signed up to take part in the milk-based protest.

So, what you’ll have is a bunch of young women taking (parts of) their tops off while their infant children make sucking noises in unison.

In the immortal words of Yakov Smirnoff, what a country!

May 12, 2011

Lawmaker, Sen. Prague, gives us a chance to say ‘penis’

by Me

It’s safe to say that state Sen. Edith Prague believes in the death penalty. Emphatically. So much so, in fact, that the tried and arguably true methods of electrocution and lethal injection are far too modest for her standards. Tarring and feathering? For wimps. Having the convict drawn and quartered? Getting closer, but not quite there yet.

See that look in her eye? She's thinking about hanging someone by the penis.

No, as reports, when it comes to people like Joshua Komisarjevsky, who allegedly took part in the rape and murder of a family in Cheshire, “they should bypass the trial and take that second animal and hang him by his penis from a tree out in the middle of Main Street.”

Which is an actual quote from an actual state senator in Connecticut.

While we at Dumb Things of the Week condemn Prague’s flagrant lack of respect for the judicial process and her apparent emphatic approval of cruel and unusual treatment — you can’t call being hung by the penis (heh) anything else — we applaud Prague’s complete lack of verbal filters, because  without people like her we’d have nothing to say.

Prague’s comments came in opposition to a bill that would abolish the death penalty, though perhaps it’s necessary to make it totally clear that hanging yet-to-be convicted criminals by their genitals in public is something we, well, frown upon.

Just saying.

UPDATE: Lawyers for Joshua Komisarjevsky have come out against Prague’s, um, suggestion, saying, “She could have simply announced her reversal in a more responsible manner without need for an anatomical reference.”

Read the full story in the New Haven Register by clicking HERE.

May 9, 2011

And now, using only this photoediting software, I will make Hillary Clinton disappear!

by Me

You know that iconic photo of the Situation Room in which the leaders of the free world watched as Osama bin Laden was ushered out of this world?

Oh, you know it — it’s been everywhere. Here it is again.

Is there anything overtly sexual about that picture? If there is, we sure can’t see it, but to some ultra religious zealot newspapers, even the presence of women is too sexual for the front page. Even if it’s Hillary Clinton wearing a suit. Really.

As Yahoo News’ Joe Pompeo reports, one paper in particular, Der Tzitung, thought Hil’s sexual magnetism was so strong, so irresistible, that she had to be Photoshopped out of the picture.

Der Tzitung is an Orthodox Jewish paper, and we want to make a few things very clear. There is nothing wrong with Jewish belief — there’s nothing wrong with belief in general, but specifically, in this case, we want to say loudly and clearly that Orthodox Jewish belief is not a shanda in any way.

But this paper’s use of photoediting to remove the very presence of a woman (actually women — Audrey Tomason, the national director of counterterrorism, was also edited out) is not only scandalous, not only dumb enough to deserve a berth on Dumb Things of the Week, but is predicated on the (probably accurate) idea that its readers live in some sort of woman-free bubble, in which females are relegated to kitchens and bedrooms.

Der Tzitung’s editors assumed, rightly, in all probability, that their regular readers would never see any other reproduction of one of the most iconic pictures of the year. They also assumed, quite wrongly, that nobody outside their insular community would ever catch on.

That, dear readers is dumb as it gets.

UPDATE: The Associated Press reports that the editors of Der Tzitung have apologized for the gaffe.

But here’s the best part of the whole affair: Ignoring the White House’s ban on doctoring photos, various folks around the web have turned it into a meme, editing in other people. Here are some of the best scoured from the web:

May 7, 2011

What not to post on Facebook

by Me

Michael P. Adams is probably kicking himself right now, and he deserves every regret-filled smack he gets.

He's smiling because he's been elected governor. Which means he doesn't have to take your crap anymore.

As The Hartford Courant reported, Adams was arrested this week for allegedly posting a threat on his Facebook profile. And he didn’t threaten just anyone, police say. They say he threatened the governor.

According to the Courant, which used a statement from the Connecticut State Police, Adams decided it was a good idea to say on his Facebook page that “he hoped that Governor Malloy [would] be shot by an angry New Yorker during his visit to New York.”

Is that technically a threat? Well, maybe not, but there are some universal although unwritten rules regarding social media, and rule No. 1 is “Don’t say a politician should die.” It’s right up there with “Don’t sell drugs on Twitter” and “Don’t spread child pornography on LinkedIn.” Well, don’t spread child pornography anywhere — but you get the point.

You see, Mr. Adams, as you might have learned in the preceding 36 years, people with virtual (or real) armies at their control, like mayors, governors, presidents and Justin Bieber, don’t take kindly to even vague threats. And social media is, well, social. The two don’t mix.

If you feel like throwing threats out there, try threatening some fictional characters, like “Gee, I wish Holden Caulfield would get stabbed,” or “Somebody should shoot Count Rugen from ‘The Princess Bride.'” Much safer.

But when he puts Pink Floyd's "Welcome to the Machine" on the stereo, run.

May 1, 2011

Dodd picks a Peck

by Me

So, you’re finished with a long career in politics, having reached the high and mighty office of senator. But now you’re done. It’s all over. Off to the golf course and, if you’re Chris Dodd, to Hollywood.

Why was Chris Dodd in LA launching a stamp of all things?

That’s right — The Hollywood Reporter this week reported that Mr. Dodd was in La-la Land this week alongside, of all the people in the world, Sharon Stone and Morgan Freeman to usher in a new Gregory Peck commemorative stamp for the U.S. Postal Service.

This is so dumb in so many ways. Let’s list the idiocy, in the hope it makes some sort of rational sense after the exercise:

1. Why the heck is Dodd chief of the MPAA?

2. Does the post office really think a Peck stamp is going to revive its flagging business? (Maybe, considering the age of people who actually send letters these days.)

3. Why in tarnation is Sharon Stone there? (The LA Times reported that Stone met Peck once, so that makes sense.)

4. Doesn’t Dodd have anything better to do?

Nope. Didn’t help a bit.

Oh, yeah, that's why.

April 30, 2011

What’s worth $1,000 an inch?

by Me

A portion of the funds needed to build a planned $600 million busway between Hartford and New Britain was approved by the state bonding commission, reports, though it did meet some opposition.

According to The Connecticut Mirror, Sen. Andrew Roraback voiced some concerns over the project, the cost for which the state will foot $113 million.

Though he professed to be “not very good at math,” Roraback, the Mirror reports, said the project would cost $952 per inch of busway.

That, dear readers, is as dumb as it gets. Is the busway to be made out of gold? Will there be wait service and champagne cocktails?

Roraback’s point is well taken, and he wins the award for least dumb legislator (should such an award be created). Just for fun, let’s do the math on some other projects, and see how much they cost on an incremental basis.

Empire State of Inches

– At 1,454 feet, or 17,448 inches from base to lightening rod tip, The Empire State Building cost $40,948,900 to build in 1931. That’s $2,347 per inch in 1931 dollars, or $31,480 per inch by today’s standards.

Big Heads

– Mount Rushmore (the monument, not the 1960s band) features the heads of four U.S. presidents, each head a whopping 60 feet in height. The project cost $989,992 to build, or $4,125 per foot, per head, by 1941 standards, when the monument was completed. Today, each head would have cost $63,176.57 per foot.

Cost per bullet

– According to one blog, the United States fires about 100 million bullets in Iraq in each year, at least as of 2004. The (reverse) Roraback Math Method: A 50-round box of 9mm bullets costs about $9 at Wal-Mart. That’s 18 cents per bullet, or $18,000,000 worth of bullets fired each year in Iraq.

Conclusion? A bit less than $1,000 per inch for a busway seems a steal.

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