Sunday, January 24, 2010

Snowy Evenings in Dresden

Some shots I've got with my new "toy", a Nikon D300s
...and of course a big tripod and this fun little guy.

This is the intersection just north of where I live, looking East on Böhmischestr.
Haberland, Hebeda's, and Catapult all quality establishments that I'm fortunate to be so close to... (click to enlarge)

If you walk straight down the little alley in the photo above you come to this:
Martin-Luther-Kirche. My favorite platz in Dresden. It's just so.....European.

If I just walk a few blocks north towards the river from the institute where I work, you come upon this. I actually took this photo during an incubation time..... Schloss Albrechtsberg.

There's actually three castles right in a row there, lit up at night:

Monday, January 18, 2010

Little Green Footballs

This is an interesting blog. It's become the blog I probably currently read the most often, and for completely different reasons than I started reading it. I first came across Little Green Footballs (LGF) a few years ago. When I started reading it, it was to more or less to keep up with the thinking of the crazy right, politically. But it wasn't really the CRAZY right, as this blog was rated as one the most popular political blogs in the country sometime around 2007. Seemed like a good place to keep in touch with the thinking, and see where these folks were coming from. A single fellow is basically responsible for all of its content. Around this time (2007ish) the majority of posts on LGF seemed to be concerning the conflicts between Israel and Palestine and Lebanon/Hezbollah, and with an obvious and hard bias towards the Israel side. So much so that it would not be pushing it to say that Israel was characterized as being a horrible victim that could do no wrong and Palestine as only terrorists and heathens who were only trying to cheat and dupe the rest of the world, while too stupid to realize how they could solve the whole problem. If you had the time to read LGF through 2007 you would see this is only somewhat exaggerated. Much of the other posts dealt with a concern about the Muslims and Islam in the United States, concerned that they were somehow abusing political-correctness that had occurred post-9/11 and were up to some devious plots.

So it made for an interesting read at the time. I linked to it in a couple of posts about people taking things a little too far.
The comments in this blog were also always interesting. They generally reflected the views of the blog poster. Although often with less style, harsher and poorly chosen words, and more slant to the right. But it was clear this blog had a big following.

As the presidential election heated up I continued reading as the country became polarized. And something happened at LGF, near the end of the election and Obama's inauguration. The substance of the posts changed. Then and afterwards, many of the postings turned to science, with a particular emphasis on evolution vs. creationism at first, and then global warming and climate change deniers. There are a number of good posts on this topic, including the most recent. And then after the election when the right wing and right-leaning bloggers and commentators began going completely nuts, the creator, Charles Johnson, began to seem to be having a change of heart. It was as if the ridiculousness, including the racism and anti-science sentiments, that was abound was just too much. This eventually culminated with a post "Why I Parted Ways with the Right". I believe he is still somewhat of a war-hawk, and still clearly very pro-Israel, but the posts rarely reflect this anymore. I now enjoy many of the science posts, there's some really good stuff. And now many posts concern pointing out the crazies on the right, like Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh, but also conservative bloggers and politicians. Now he has become a target of the far right as he has changed his views, being a high-profile blogger. It was almost as if the guy had a plan, to form the most popular blog on the right, get thousands of loyal followers, many of which seemed to idolize they guy and kiss his ass like bunch of yes-men, and then to slowly, slowly, turn this mass of people with his powers gradually away from the right. No doubt he has lost some followers, but I bet he has taken many with him.