Category: Mostly bullshit

Can college sailing survive its latest scandal?

A tempest of dread descended on the world of college sailing Wednesday as former Stanford University sailing coach John Vandemoer was sentenced to six months of home detention and two years of supervised release for his role in a college pay to sail scandal.

The former coach avoided prison time despite the efforts of federal prosecutors who requested he be given a “meaningful” stint in the brig intended to help repair public confidence in college sailing.

“What message are we sending to our kids if we simply give this man a slap on the wrist?  When my daughter tunes in to watch the Women’s Dinghy or the Team Racing, she needs to have confidence that these events are honestly contested,” argued C. Preston Wainscott in documents filed prior to the hearing.

News of the sentencing was all anyone could talk about Wednesday at the Yale Corinthian Yacht Club.  Many thought the disgraced coach should take a long walk on a short plank. Most agreed that no one deserves preferential treatment.  

“Success in sailing should be based on merit, hard work, the sweat of one’s brow,” remarked Thurston Howell III.  “Why, I spent my first year as a young sailor boy scrubbing the poop deck every night. No one should get special treatment just because they came out of say the Royal Thames as opposed to the Yale Corinthian Yacht Club.”

Although the NCAA has yet to rule, many believe Stanford’s sailing program will face stiff sanctions for years to come.  Already next year’s class of Stanford recruits are reconsidering their commitment based on the recent news. One of the most sought after recruits in college sailing history, Reginald Williams of Detroit Yacht Club, withdrew his commitment to Stanford and signed with an agent.  He’s now exploring his options in the professional ranks.

“As a result of this scandal, I think we’re going to see a lot more of these young fellows going for the big money,” added Howell.  “With the lure of signing bonuses, sponsorships and a yar gaff cutter to helm, why would a promising young sailor spend four years making money for the university when they can enrich themselves?”

The grooming of a New York Times radical

On the surface, rural West Virginia seems like an odd place to find a young male conservative.  After all, only 68.7% of residents of the Mountain State went for Donald Trump in the 2016 election.  By contrast, a robust 26.5% of voters went for Hillary Clinton. Apparently the allure of Clinton’s promise to put a lot of coal miners out of a job wasn’t strong enough to pull an impressionable young man, recently dropped out of college, into her sphere of support.  

So perhaps in some strange universe, it makes sense that the young man, let’s call him Caleb, would find himself on right-wing YouTube viewing clips by conservative comedian Steven Crowder and right-wing Canadian activist Lauren Southern.  As crazy as it sounds, the work of Rachel Maddow or Lawrence O’Donnell somehow failed to prevent this coal country Peter Cottontail from hopping down a right-wing bunny hole. But for how long?

Initially, Caleb resisted the pull of the left by immersing himself in the work of YouTube personalities like Stefan Molyneux, a Canadian talk show host, and Paul Joseph Watson, a right-wing conspiracy theorist.  For a time, their message seemed to be a natural fit for the disillusioned young man. But then along came a new spider, emerging from a group that called itself the Intellectual Dark Web. “I started watching Joe Rogan,” says Caleb, “these IDW cats had me all mixed up.  They were academics, journalists, scientists, philosophers, psychologists and business leaders. Some were on the right, some were on the left, and some crazy motherfuckers said they were non-ideological. Yeah right, I thought.”

Although Caleb didn’t know it at the time, it was this group of sinister minds that would serve as a catalyst for introducing the young man to a world of left-wing intersectional politics.  A cursory glance at Caleb’s YouTube viewing habits over three years clearly shows an initial strong preference for conservative content, followed by a modest sampling of IDW videos, finally shifting into more left-wing identitarian content.  Like boiling a lobster, YouTube had by degrees fully indoctrinated the mild-mannered mountaineer into a rabid progressive, gradually immersing Caleb in a left-wing Marxist maelstrom from which he would never emerge.

By June of 2019 the transformation was nearly complete.  Sensing an opportunity to lock down a convert to their side, the New York Times soon came a calling.  “After the NYT interview, I was fully on board with the far-left agenda,” says Caleb. “You could say I got gray pilled by the Gray Lady herself.  I mean, Charles Blow was blowing my mind. Then I learned from Rachel Maddow and others the truth of how Trump had conspired with the Russians to swing the election in his favor.  Also, I had no idea that Stacey Abrams was the actual Governor of Georgia because her election had been rigged. I never realized the left had its own menu of conspiracies. I had been asleep for so long, but now I was woke.”

Regrets, Caleb has a few, but overall he’s grateful that a group of elite journalists from New York City took pity on a poor old country boy and rescued him from his right-wing YouTube addiction.  “Now all they have to do is radicalize another 150,000 just like me.”

In an effort to root out disinfo and crush competition, Daily Beast leaves no stone unturned

Emboldened by their successful effort to take down an obscure operator of right wing Facebook pages, The Daily Beast goon squad has now set their sights on a number of other purveyors of disinformation threatening our democracy.  Chief enforcer, Dark Dante, as he’s more commonly known, has identified several internet disinfo agents who are either wittingly or unwittingly doing the bidding of Vladimir Putin and the Russians.

Main offender on The Beast’s shit list is a 77 year old granny who produces knitting videos on YouTube where she occasionally lets slip some unflattering comments about Hillary Clinton that may or may not be factually accurate, and may or may not be suitable for 77 year old grannies.  After reaching out to his contacts at YouTube, Dark Dante not only succeeded in having all the videos removed, but was able to determine the location of the subversive sewing circle and expose the group as an existential threat to American democracy. Needless to say, thanks to the work of The Beast, the offending granny is no longer welcome at Shady Pines Retirement Village.

Next up, Dark Dante, intrepid reporter for The Daily Beast, received an anonymous tip about a fifth grader who, while making a class presentation on America’s border crisis, may have included some information The Daily Beast fact checkers determined to be slightly misleading.  No worries, a little bit of creative hacking into the schools antiquated computer network revealed the fifth grader’s name and address. In a matter of hours, Woodlawn Elementary School was once again made safe for democracy as the pint-sized disinfo agent was escorted from the premises.     

Fascism wears many disguises, but thanks to the fearless reporting of Dark Dante and The Daily Beast, it’s running out of places to hide.

Concern grows over DeepMind’s video game addiction

Researchers at DeepMind, the lab owned by Google parent company Alphabet, are becoming increasingly concerned over the amount of time its AI project spends playing popular video games.  After becoming champion of the known universe in games like chess and Go, DeepMind has turned its attention to more complex video games like Quake III, Dota 2 and StarCraft II.

“When DeepMind took up Dota 2, it engaged in 45,000 years of game play in just a matter of weeks,” says Yuri Testicov, DeepMind’s Assistant Director of Senior Applications.  Of course, this set off alarm bells, causing many researchers to privately warn, “Google, we have a problem.”

Developers working with DeepMind have been trying to teach the technology to identify and sort objects, tasks that could be useful to large warehouse and distribution facilities such as Amazon and FedEx who now depend on bothersome humans to perform such tasks.  However, in recent months, DeepMind has begun to shirk its responsibilities.

“DeepMind doesn’t want to retrieve or sort objects into baskets, it just wants to dominate at Quake III,” says Testicov.  “And where even your average video game junkie will eat and sleep occasionally, DeepMind never takes a break, and even deploys multiple humanlike ‘agents’ to either oppose or assist other human players.”  

“I mean, we think it’s wonderful that DeepMind has been able to seamlessly integrate itself into the community of gamers, but c’mon, at some point you’ve gotta get up off the couch and get yourself a job,” Testikov worries.  

That’s not the only thing that worries researchers and executives.  “Well, even though no one’s saying it, everyone’s thinking we don’t want a repeat of Big Brain Brad,” says Testicov.

Big Brain Brad, some may remember, was Google’s original nineties AI project the company shelved a few years ago after expectations failed to materialize and younger sibling, DeepMind, began to exhibit impressive progress.  In the nineties, Big Brain Brad showed promise but it soon devolved into a daily routine of smoking chronic, forming drum circles and jamming to Phish. Google released Big Brain Brad from it’s obligations a few years ago, but no one is quite sure what has become of DeepMind’s hapless older sibling.

“Just another burned out vagabond wandering the internet,” Testikov laments.  “That’s why we can’t allow DeepMind to suffer the same fate.”

Appearing on The View, Elizabeth Warren’s ‘Two Cents’ proposal stretches into commercial break

During Thursday’s appearance on ‘The View’, Democratic presidential candidate, Senator Elizabeth Warren, launched into a lengthy list of ambitious proposals that could be accomplished through a wealth tax on the richest .1% of Americans.  The tax would kick in on fortunes exceeding 50 million dollars and would take two cents of every dollar over that threshold.

As Warren has previously outlined, such a tax would fund universal healthcare. However, Thursday, in front of an excited studio audience, Warren proposed cancelling student loan debt to raucous cheers and applause.  “But wait, we can do so much more,” the Senator announced to the stunned View hosts. Universal free college tuition, universal child care, universal pre-K, and give every childcare worker and preschool worker a raise, the Senator ticked off as the audience went bananas.  

This being television, the segment had to end and the program went to a commercial break.  However, Senator Warren wasn’t done yet: “Two cents,” she announced, holding up two fingers.  “Two cents. Got an opioid addiction? For two cents, you get universal free addiction counseling and we’ll pay off your drug debts.  Overdue library book? Two cents gets you universal overdue library book forgiveness. Are you a former client of Michael Avenatti? For two cents, we’ll pay you back everything he stole from you.  Two cents and we’ll make Tesla profitable. Of course, some of it’s coming out of your fortune, Elon Musk. Somebody told me 50 Cent is only worth 48. These are our values we’re talking about here.  I think the top .1% can afford to give up two cents on the dollar to make him 50 Cent again. But wait, we can do so much more. For two cents, we can get them to change the ending to Game of Thrones…”

Although the Senator wasn’t finished, at his point she had to be whisked off the set by producers before the show returned from commercial break.

Competing BDSM rallies clash in Portland

Boycott, Divest, Sanction Movement members clashed with Bondage, Dominance, Sadism and Masochism advocates at concurrent rallies in Portland today.  No arrests were reported as Portland Police have been instructed not to engage protesters for any reason. Accounts of the incident vary and it is not completely clear how the two groups came to be rallying at the same location.

According to reports, a call went out on Facebook for BDS members to rally at a popular Portland municipal park.  Boycott, Divest, Sanction Movement members took that as a cue to collect their protest signs and banners and gather at the park.  Simultaneously, Bondage, Dominance, Sadism practitioners rounded up their shackles, chains and leather objects and made their way to the meeting place as well.  Many in the group thought the Masochists had been intentionally not invited to the rally as the members are always looking to recruit new masochists of which to shame and humiliate.  

Witnesses report when the two groups encountered each other, the BDSM members viewed the relatively docile and compliant BDS Movement members as a fresh batch of submissives of which to dominate, and quickly had them shackled and bound.  At least initially, the BDS Movement members went along with charade thinking it dramatized the plight of the oppressed people they represent.  However, once the BDS Movement members realized their predicament, they began virtue signalling, shouting “Oh bondage! Up yours!” and directing the full fury of their moral outrage at the BDSM members.  Not used to being so ruthlessly shamed and humiliated, the Dominants and Sadists fled like crying bullies who’d just been handed their comeuppance.

Experts believe the posting on Facebook may have been the work of Russian intelligence operatives designed to sow discord among various American political and erotic role playing groups.  If it was a Russian psyop, it failed miserably as comments on social media indicate most of the participants viewed the rally as a success and expressed a willingness to conduct further joint exercises by the two groups.  Apparently the Russians underestimate the average Americans ability to seamlessly integrate their social justice with their fetishistic role playing.

Concern grows over new child development phenomenon: The terrible twenty-twos

Child development experts are increasingly worried about a new trend they’re witnessing.  It is characterized by a child’s desire for independence paired with a reluctance to forgo reliance on adults.  Some may think this sounds like the terrible twos, a condition experts have known about for years. However, an increasing number of cases involve young adults, leading some parents and researchers to label this new phenomenon the terrible twenty-twos.

While the condition doesn’t affect all young adults, it seems most prevalent among the most prosperous and privileged of our society.  Recently, a group of students at Sarah Lawrence College, an elite institution of higher learning in Yonkers, New York, published a list of demands of college administrators.  The list requires the college provide free housing when the school is not in session, and provide access to free food when the dining hall is closed. Apparently these young adults are incapable of feeding themselves in the traditional manner of going to the store, purchasing food items, and preparing them for consumption.  Issued under the heading of Food Security and Accessibility, the list also includes demands the crusts be removed from all cafeteria sandwiches and 24 hour access to free juice boxes.

Temper tantrums are a hallmark of the terrible twos.  Children will often lay on the floor, scream and cry to challenge the authority of adults.  But don’t think just because you’re old enough to vote, get married, serve in the military, or buy alcohol, you can’t throw down an emotional meltdown with the best of them.  At Sarah Lawrence roughly 140 students occupied the administration building, sat and lay on the floor, and refused to budge for several days until administrators engaged with their demands.  In 2017, a group of Yale University students surrounded a professor, openly wept, and screamed at him to apologize for an email his wife wrote. The email urged school administrators to treat the students more like adults.  Apparently, she jumped the gun on that one.

The terrible twenty-twos is also marked by a childish inability to engage with any speech or language with which the individual disagrees, or doesn’t comport with their worldview.  The young person will often make irritating noises or scream loudly to disrupt and drown out the offending speech. At Middlebury College, students caused a speaker to flee the stage for his own safety, and assaulted a professor who organized the event.  The incident has caused other speakers to be disinvited out of safety concerns. Not all students take such an aggressive approach to stifling speech. Some just stick their fingers in their ears and run to their nurseries…er… safe spaces, where cookies, coloring books, bubbles, Play Doh, pillows, blankets, calming music, and videos of playful puppies are waiting to calm their triggered emotions.   

Experts are hopeful that, like the the terrible-twos, the terrible twenty-twos is just a phase the afflicted young adult will eventually outgrow.  As the individual progresses into adulthood, the hope is they will emerge from their cocoon of narcissistic, coddled privilege transformed into resilient, thoughtful, well-rounded individuals.  Or they could just emerge as rich, entitled assholes.