Category Archives: Culture

Culture for the cultured and uncultured alike.

Animal’s Daily New Confederates News

This just in from national treasure Dr. Victor Davis Hanson:  The Confederate Mind.  Excerpt:

Progressives, in fact, seem to like the protocols of the old Confederacy in lots of ways. Southern antebellum chauvinists once claimed that the culture south of the Mason-Dixon line was innately superior to the grubby, industrial wasteland of the north. A two-class system of masters and slaves allowed an elite the leisure and capital to pursue culture without the rat-race competition of a striving middle class. So blinkered was southern arrogance that its pre-war youth insisted that southern manhood, with its innate moral superiority, could defeat a much larger, richer, and more industrial North — a myth dispelled early on at Shiloh.

Now the new cultural divide is not North vs. South, but the blue-state coasts versus the red-state interior. The map has changed, but the new mindset of the chauvinist, mutatis mutandis, is eerily the same. In blue-state doctrine, a sinking middle class in the interior deserves to fail. But an upscale hip and cool professional elite is properly thriving on the East and West Coasts as never before — itself often supported by legions of poorly paid and mostly minority gardeners, housekeepers, and nannies who free up their supposed betters to pursue higher things without tending to the drudgery of diapers, cooking, and mowing.

Pyramidal California has some of the wealthiest people in the world living within the coastal corridor of Hollywood, Malibu, Stanford, Silicon Valley, and San Francisco — even as one-fifth of the population lives below the poverty line, along with a third of the nation’s welfare recipients and half its homeless population.

It’s important to note that Dr. Hanson is part of a multi-generation Central Valley farm family.  He loves California and has written regularly and often about the decline of the once-Golden State at the hands of Left Coast urban progressives.

But his point here is well taken.  The American political Left has become weirdly race-obsessed.  For quite a few years now, many on the leftward side of our political system has held the belief that one should think, speak and vote a certain way solely because of minor, secondary regional characteristics such as melanin content – characteristics that have no real phenotypic significance, and which comprise an utterly insignificant portion of our DNA.

Humans have less genetic variability than chimps.  And folks like those running California seem willing to drag the country into another 1861 over the issue.  Have we learned nothing?

Goodbye, Blue Monday

Goodbye, Blue Monday!

Our usual thanks go out to Pirate’s Cove and The Other McCain for the Rule Five links!

This Monday finds us way up north in Miyagi Prefecture, having spent the weekend in Sendai.  Sendai is an interesting town, known for (among other things) it’s fine dining, which includes whale.

Yes, whale.  And yes, I partook.  This first taste was in a sushi joint in Sendai just a few blocks from the shinkansen station.  Whale was surprisingly tasty, although it was lightly cooked in the Japanese style and therefore undercooked by American standards.

Whale sushi. Delicious, delicious whale sushi.

These are little strips of whale meat, lightly braised and served on little beds of rice.  I don’t know what kind of whale it is but I suspect it would be minke whale, since that makes up most of the Japanese harvest.

Note that the minke whale is listed as an animal of “Least Concern” by the IUCN, which should (but probably won’t) fend off most of the squealing by the “save the whales” crowd.  And I confess, pissing off that subset of greenie nutbars is one of the reasons this has long been on my Japan bucket list – precisely so that when I run across one of the “save the whales” crowd, I can agree enthusiastically, adding, “yes, by all means – they’re delicious!”

Yr. Obdt. enjoying whale and Japanese beer.

So, True Believers, if you’re ever in the Sendai area up here in Miyagi Prefecture, the city is known for its whale sushi and various other whale dishes.  It’s also known for beef tongue dishes, but only the real nutbars object to beef.  In either case – try some!  If you piss off only one radical Sea Shepherd type, wouldn’t it be worth it?

Rule Five Age of Majority Friday

Florida has raised the age for purchasing a long gun to 21.  The drinking age is technically set by the several States, but back in the early Eighties the Imperial government used highway funds to blackmail the states to raising that age to 21.  Imperial law has for years stated the age to buy a handgun at 21, and now croakers in the Imperial City are talking about following Florida in the case of long guns.

I’m wondering if that’s such a bad idea.

Now, before you square away at me, let me explain.

Our society seems to have arrived at the conclusion that kids from 18 to 21 years of age are fundamentally irresponsible.  We don’t allow them to drink, to gamble, to purchase handguns; we don’t allow them to adopt children or (in most states) rent cars.

But at 18, we allow these kids to sign contracts.  We allow them to drive; we allow them to join the military.  We allow them to vote, for crying out loud.

Last month, over at Reason.com, A. Barton Hinkle weighed in on the whole gradual age of majority issue.  Excerpt:

The U.S. already has raised the drinking age to 21. But as is often noted, you need be only 18 to enlist in the armed forces—i.e., to volunteer for missions that could entail not only losing your own life but taking others’.

The age of enlistment offers two rationales for not raising the age at which someone can buy a gun. If you’re mature enough to enlist, goes one, then you’re mature enough to own a gun. (Rebuttal: Enlistees’ lives are regimented to a ridiculous degree. Unlike civilian 18-year-olds, they’re not being given free rein.)

The second rationale holds that if you are old enough to sacrifice your life in America’s defense, then you should have access to all of America’s constitutional rights. Indeed, that was largely the rationale behind lowering the voting age once the age of conscription had been lowered.

Of course, nobody ever died because somebody picked up a ballot in a moment of anger. Nor has an improperly or accidentally used ballot ever killed anyone. People die from gunfire under those conditions all the time. So there might be some sense in leaving the voting age at 18 but raising the age of access to devices that can kill.

Except that most states let teenagers drive without supervision at age 16—and sometimes earlier—even though the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety points out that “teenage drivers have the highest crash risk per mile traveled.” In fact, the Institute says, the fatal crash rate for drivers age 16-19 is “nearly three times as high as the rate for drivers 20 and over.”

So, the answer is obvious.  The age of majority should be regularized.  Teenage drivers are dangerous, it seems; obviously the Tide-Pod Eating Generation can’t handle rifles or shotguns, or a glass of beer.  Good, then; take this to its obvious conclusion.  Congress should immediately act to raise the age of majority overall to 21.  Prior to that age youths will not be allowed to drink, to drive, to sign contracts, to join the military, to purchase firearms and, most important of all, to vote.

At least then our idiotic graduated-age-of-majority system will be gone; at least then we will have some damned consistency.

And, yes, I am being sarcastic.  I actually am in favor of regularizing the age of majority for all things.  At eighteen.  But occasionally it’s useful to take an argument to its ultimate, ridiculous conclusion.

Animal’s Daily Civil War News

Here are two takes on a possible second American civil war:

Why Democrats Would Lose the Second Civil War, Too

And:

Think They’ll Never ‘Come and Take’ Your Guns Without an Armed Revolt? Think Again

Here’s a relevant excerpt from the first:

There are two Civil War II scenarios, and the left is poorly positioned to prevail in either one. The first scenario is that the Democrats take power and violate the Constitution in order to use the apparatus of the federal government to suppress and oppress Normal Americans. In that scenario, red Americans are the insurgents. In the second scenario, which we can even now see the stirrings of in California’s campaign to nullify federal immigration law, it is the blue states that are the insurgents.

The Democrats lose both wars. Big time.

And the second:

So what will you do, dear AR-15 owner, when the ‘Cheka’ comes for your neighbor, and you know the laws are on the books to prosecute? Will a “buyback” and “amnesty” be enough to convince YOU to acquiesce? You’ve got a job, a wife, kids to raise. When they “come and take it,” is your family worth risking? 

No, when they take your guns there will be no civil war. There will be no large-scale revolution, because liberals are experts at pushing that Overton Window enough not to shock the system. Like frogs in water that’s about to boil, people won’t jump until it’s too late.

Of the two scenarios, I am (sadly) inclined to believe the latter.  Why?

Because I honestly don’t believe most American gun owners are quite ready to join an armed insurgency.  I’d like to think I’d be willing.  I know quite a few of my fellow veterans would be, enough to make things pretty hot for the would-be tyrants.  But in the end?

Fifty years ago we were a nation of outdoorsmen, farmers, tradesmen and woodsmen for whom strength was their stock in trade and for whom marksmanship and woodcraft were taken as a given.  Now?  We have a generation grown up on the Internet and game consoles, and while many of them are ardently pro-Second Amendment (yes, really) how many of these mall ninjas would give up their homes and all their possessions, taking the risk of being shot on sight, to go forth and join a cause where the odds are stacked against you?

I sure hope I’m wrong.  I sure hope we never have to find out.

Animal’s Daily Good Old Iowa News

Japan.

Mrs. Animal and yr. obdt. are heading out shortly to catch our flight to the Land of the Rising Sun, so watch for reports from those environs.  Tomorrow’s Rule Five Friday and this week’s Saturday Gingermageddon are already queued up.  Stay tuned!

Meanwhile, here’s something interesting; my childhood home state  of Iowa has claimed the #1 spot on U.S. News & World Report’s ranking of the best states to live in.  Excerpt:

Iowa may be better known for its corn, caucuses and creative writing programs, but the Hawkeye state also leads the nation in efforts to bring ultra-fast internet access to every city block and every rural acre.

Iowa’s No. 1 rankings in the infrastructure category and the broadband access metric within that came as a “pleasant surprise” to David Daack, a broadband consultant for Connected Nation, which does business in the state as Connect Iowa. Previous data reports have shown Iowa more in the middle of the pack.

“When people think of Iowa, they usually think of agricultural places that won’t necessarily need to be connected,” Daack says. “But given the big data needs of agriculture today and in the future, those areas are going to need to be every bit as connected as the urban areas. … You could almost argue that maybe we should go (to the farms) first and work our way back into the cities.”

Combine those No. 1s with Iowa’s Top 10 rankings in health care (No. 3), opportunity (No. 4), education (No. 5) and quality of life (No. 9), and the state becomes “first in the nation” not only in terms of its presidential caucuses, but also when describing Iowa’s overall placement in the U.S. News & World Report’s Best States rankings.

“We’ve been basically working within this model since 2011, and as you can see by the results in so many indexes, it’s working,” says Debi Durham, director of the Iowa Economic Development Authority.

Having grown up in Iowa, I can vouch for its status as a good place to be a kid.  Allamakee County was a great place to be a kid who loved to hunt, fish and bum around in the woods.  My folks had sixty acres of hardwood timber with a great trout stream running through the property, and pretty much all of the surrounding farms were open to free-range kids who spent the summer roaming around; if someone noticed a couple of boys crossing their pasture with .22 rifles, most would just shrug and say “they’re local kids.  Just being kids.”

Like most places, though, Iowa has changed.  Our oldest kid lives there still, along with two of my sisters and my folks.  Iowa always has been home to them, but the Iowa of my youth has moved (somewhat) away from its overwhelmingly agricultural past to being a more well-rounded place.  Cedar Rapids is emerging as something of a high-tech hub, and the state’s universities are attracting more out-of-state students.

Farm Worker.

Not everything has changed, though.  I think it’s the pace of things in Iowa that lots of folks find appealing.  A couple of years ago I had occasion to go to Elkader for a family event; Elkader is a small town in northeast Iowa, about thirty miles from my old Allamakee County stomping grounds.  When we left the town, we stopped at a gas station/convenience store for a drink, and I commented to the older lady behind the counter that I “…hadn’t been through Elkader for at least thirty years, and it doesn’t seem like anything has changed.”

She replied, “come back in another thirty years and nothing will have changed then, either.”

It’s nice to know of places like that.  Stability should count for something.

Rule Five Love Hotel Friday

Note:  Another short stint in Japan beckons, beginning early next month.  Regular readers know how Mrs. Animal and yr. obdt. enjoy our forays in to the Land of the Rising Sun, so look for some photos and travel commentary from those environs very soon.

With that said, and in spite of the tendency of young Japanese to eschew sexual relationships, the love hotel industry in Japan is still robust.  Excerpt:

Japan’s population is shrinking.

Deaths now outpace births, marriage is plummeting, and young people aren’t having sex. The media are calling it sekkusu shinai shokogun, or “celibacy syndrome”—an alarming trend that has the Japanese government funneling tax dollars into speed dating and matchmaking services over fears of an impending economic collapse.

But in a neon-lit pocket of Tokyo’s Shibuya district, BDSM equipment, mirrored ceilings, vibrating beds, and condom vending machines paint a different reality. Welcome to Love Hotel Hill, where Japan’s sex industry is flourishing.

Clandestine Encounters

True to their moniker, pay-by-the-hour love hotels cater to millions of Japanese couples every year, and increasingly, tourists. There are more than 30,000 love hotels in the country, and hundreds in Tokyo alone—a multibillion-dollar business that accounts for a quarter of the sex industry.

With increasing life expectancies, the rising age of marriage, and high population density, multigenerational households are ubiquitous. When married couples live in close quarters with elderly parents and children, love hotels offer a practical alternative to thin-walled Japanese homes where privacy is scarce.

Oddly, this isn’t a sign of any renewed fecundity:

Japan’s love hotel industry may be prospering, but the country is experiencing a paradoxical decline in marriage, childbirth, and sex.

More than 40 percent of men and women aged 18-34 in Japan have never had sex, according to the National Institute of Population and Social Security Research. If the current trend continues, it is projected that by 2060 Japan’s population will have shrunk by 30 percent—an impending economic disaster.

But in the midst of a stagnant economy, staying single has become an attractive choice.

Now, this next stint will have us in the Tokyo region for 2-3 weeks, where a visit to the Shibuya district is not only possible but likely.  Since our first visit to that country in 2009, I have (unsuccessfully) tried to persuade my own dear Mrs. Animal to undertake a visit to a love hotel, of course strictly in the name of research; you see, True Believers, how there are no lengths to which I will not go to bring you the best reporting on other cultures and the wonders to be found in exotic lands.

However, Mrs. Animal has been and remains of a conservative bent in such matters, and prefers to eschew any role in conducting such research.  Oh well.

Anyway:  I do love Japan and the Japanese people’s demographic trends has been a cause for concern.  As scribe Mark Steyn points out, the future belongs to those who show up for it, and the Japanese seem to have opted out.  What’s more, Japan has evidently decided to die Japanese.  While Europe has become a hotbed of Islamic activism thanks to their unchecked immigration policies – in no small part to attract younger workers to prop up their generous social welfare programs – Japan remains a difficult country to establish yourself in on a long-term basis.

But the love hotel industry gives one hope.  Maybe young Japanese people will rediscover the joys of sex.

Rule Five Rockin’ Friday

This Friday I thought I’d do something different.  Enough serious stuff has gone down lately that I thought I’d do a culture post, and by “culture” I mean “shit I’m familiar with.”  So here, interspersed with the usual Friday Rule Five totty, are a list of twenty of my favorite classic rock songs, with a few of my comments.  Note that this isn’t necessarily the top twenty, just twenty that would be on any of my classic rock playlists.  Comments and additions are welcome.

  1. Paradise by the Dashboard Light, Meat Loaf

A concert staple by the big guy, generally featuring Richard Thomas’s (John-Boy Walton) wife (!) in the co-starring role.  Every kid that went to high school in the Seventies knows well the meanings in this song.

2. Stairway to Heaven, Led Zeppelin

Maybe the greatest rock & roll song ever created, at least from the standpoint of the influence it had on the music scene.  Every garage band in the country has covered Stairway at some point.  I say this even though it’s not my favorite Led Zep tune; I like Kashmir, The Immigrant Song and Dazed and Confused more.

3. Hotel California, Eagles

The Eagles were a big deal back in the day, and while they did some songs that I liked better in some ways (See Stairway, above) like the haunting Desperado, this is the song that they are remembered for.

4.  Tangled Up in Blue, Bob Dylan

All I can say about this is that it’s the best song written and performed by America’s Songwriter.

5.  Bohemian Rhapsody, Queen

Seriously, if you’re over 40 you can’t listen to this song and not picture the famous Wayne’s World scene.  Still, the best song by a ground-breaking band – and I would also recommend Weird Al Yankovic’s cover of it, Bohemian Polka, which is priceless.

6.  Carry On Wayward Son, Kansas

A rare one, this; Kansas had a few good tunes but were never on the level of a Led Zeppelin or Aerosmith.  But Carry On is a masterwork, a huge, rocking epic tune.

7.  Dream On, Aerosmith

I was fortunate enough to see this one performed live once, as I remember in 1979.  Aerosmith’s music runs the gamut from fun to thoughtful to hardcore, but Dream On was probably their masterwork.

8.  American Pie, Don McLean

This may well be the greatest ode to American rock music ever written.  As with Stairway, almost every garage band in the Seventies would cover this song, and why not?  It’s got a good tune, shades of meaning that no two people interpret the same way; it’s deep blue Americana.

9.  Frankenstein, Edgar Winter

Edgar Winter, a musical prodigy, played several instruments; on this massive instrumental tune alone the world’s greatest albino rocker played synthesizer, electric piano, saxophone and timbales.  The synthesizer portion of this song was an odd one even for the Seventies; my friends and I referred to it as “electric pigs.”

10.  Dreams I’ll Never See, Molly Hatchet

This is actually a cover of an Allman Brothers tune, but it’s on the list of covers done better than the originals.  Molly Hatchet was one of the best southern rock bands, and Dreams was one of their best releases.

11.  YYZ, Rush

Some of the best percussion work ever done is found in this song, even more so in live cuts than in the studio single.  Neal Peart stands alone.

12.  Edge of Seventeen, Stevie Nicks

Stevie Nicks isn’t know for slam-bam rock & roll, but in her first solo album, she proved she could keep up with anyone in the genre.  Edge was the tune that proved she had some rock & roll chops, after all the fluff and flutter of Fleetwood Mac.

13.  Barracuda, Heart

Ann and Nancy Wilson probably broke a few glass ceilings while Her Imperial Majesty was still taking cattle-futures payoffs in Arkansas.  I had a hard time choosing one of their tunes for the list, but finally settled on the hard-hitting Barracuda as the best showcase for their talents.

14.  Free Bird, Lynyrd Skynyrd

While it’s Skynyrd’s best tune, in the Seventies it was probably the single most-requested song at every wedding reception, anywhere.

15.  Stage Fright, The Band

Probably the best song by one of the best bands ever; Robbie Danko’s great vocals led the way for a tune that was all about finding joy in performing.

16.  We’re an American Band, Grand Funk Railroad

What more could you ask for in an essentially American rock & roll song?

17.  I Love Rock & Roll, Joan Jett

Along with Lita Ford in The Runaways, Joan Jett pioneered the genre of bad-girl rock.  While Lita sort of faded after The Runaways, Joan went on to carry the genre by herself for a while, and I Love Rock & Roll was her paen to an era.

18.  Funk #49, James Gang

Beginning with a signature guitar riff, Funk goes on to lay down some not-too-impressive lyrics supported by some great guitar work by Ronnie Silverman.  It’s a fun song that had us reaching to turn the car stereo’s volume dial up back in the day.

19.  You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet, Bachman-Turner Overdrive

While this song probably did not inspire a famous comment by President Reagan, it did have BTO’s signature sound, and lyrics that were good fun.

20.  Bang a Gong (Get It On), T. Rex

Nothing deep or thoughtful about this one; it’s just good fun.  A good solid rock & roll song with decent guitar work, decent vocals, and a theme that appeals to those very youths upon which youth is wasted – like yr. obdt. at seventeen.

Honorable mentions (I knew I’d never be able to hold it at 20):

1.  Tush, ZZTop.

This song summed up the weekend aspirations of every teenage boy in the Seventies, and got no small amount of play for that reason.  It’s also a great representative piece from an iconic Texas band in their heyday.

2.   Rock and Roll All Nite, Kiss

Honestly I wasn’t a big fan of Kiss when they first came on the music scene.  I thought that rather than being iconic, their signature makeup just detracted from the music, and I’ve always been one to favor good tunes over fancy showmanship.  Still, this is a good solid tune.

3.  Peaches en Regalia, Frank Zappa

Zappa was several kinds of musical genius; he wrote and conducted freakin’ symphonies, for crying out loud.  But he was also one of the greatest guitar players ever, and always seemed most at home on a stage in front of a big, dozen-or-so piece band.  Peaches shows off the unique genius that was Zappa amazingly well; a variable instrumental that combined a big-band sound with Zappa’s own signature style.

4.  Abracadabra, Steve Miller Band

For the most part, despite having plenty of radio play back in the day, Steve Miller was for the most part only so-so.  This song, though, while distinctly Steve Miller’s style, managed to be a good solid tune musically, even if the lyrics were kind of weak.

As always, feedback, comments and suggestions are welcome.

Rule Five Horse Squeeze Friday

A few days back, noted author and our good friend Jillian Becker had this piece over at her blog The Atheist Conservative.  Please do go read the entire article, but there is one specific quote I want to discuss here, that quote being from (formerly) radical leftist professor Bret Weinstein:

I explained in numerous interviews and essays, I was not a Trump supporter; I was never a right-winger, or an alt-right-winger; I was never a conservative of any variety. I wasn’t even a classical John Stuart Mill liberal.

In fact, for several years, I had identified as a left or libertarian communist. My politics were to the left (and considerably critical of the authoritarianism) of Bolshevism!  (Emphasis added by me.)

Now, take a look at that bolded portion.  Digest that for a moment.

Ready?  Now, I’ll tell you what I think of that:  It’s pure, unadulterated horseshit.  You can not say again not be a libertarian communist, any more than you can be a feathered fish.  The two are utterly incompatible.  Communism is a statist system, with government in control of the entire production system; in a pure communist state there is no enterprise, no entrepreneurship, no private property, no liberty.   My response to the original blog post was this:

I keep seeing this, “libertarian socialist” and similar horse squeeze being bandied about by idiots. The two are contradictory; you can not be a “libertarian communist” or a “libertarian socialist” any more than you can turn right and left at the same instant.

Liberty is antithetical to totalitarian systems like communism or socialism. Rectenwald is, in this sentence, talking out of his ass.

As Rand pointed out, contradictions in assertions of fact do not exist. One of the contradicting premises is always false; in this case, it is his claim to be libertarian.

Now, here’s the good news, and it’s news that gives me a little more hope for my fellow man; Dr. Weinstein responded himself to Ms. Becker’s commentary:

I am no longer a communist, nor a leftist of any stripe, believe me. I consider myself a classical John Stuart Mill liberal now, and thus, by contemporary standards, a conservative.

A John Stuart Mill liberal, or “classical liberal,” is closer to a libertarian than a conservative as the term is used today.  But that’s as may be; to Dr. Weinstein all I can say is, sir, welcome!  Welcome to the cause of liberty.  Please do all you can to spread that cause throughout academia, because as I am sure you know, that vocation needs all the exposure to the cause of liberty that we can send it.

What would be interesting to know is the story behind this conversion to the side of freedom.  Any thinking person can look at the history of socialist and communist governments:  The enduring misery that was the Soviet Union, the crash-and-burn economy of Venezuela, the brutal oppression of dissenters in communist/socialist nations from Cuba to Red China.  Did Dr. Weinstein read this history and apply his own capacity for reason to the observations of fact?  Did he stop to contemplate the prosperity enjoyed citizens of nations with free-market economies?

Whatever the reason, his conversion is a good thing.  Let’s hope for more like him.

Rule Five Video Game Friday

Worried about violent video games having an adverse event on American youth?  Worry no longer; a study done by the University of York has found no links between violent video games and violent behavior.  So far, at least; as with most actual science, there are conditions.  Science is, after all, tentative.  Excerpt:

In a series of experiments, with more than 3,000 participants, the team demonstrated that video game concepts do not ‘prime’ players to behave in certain ways and that increasing the realism of violent video games does not necessarily increase aggression in game players.

The dominant model of learning in games is built on the idea that exposing players to concepts, such as violence in a game, makes those concepts easier to use in ‘real life’. This is known as ‘priming’, and is thought to lead to changes in behaviour. Previous experiments on this effect, however, have so far provided mixed conclusions.

Researchers at the University of York expanded the number of participants in experiments, compared to studies that had gone before it, and compared different types of gaming realism to explore whether more conclusive evidence could be found.

The conclusion:

“The findings suggest that there is no link between these kinds of realism in games and the kind of effects that video games are commonly thought to have on their players.

“Further study is now needed into other aspects of realism to see if this has the same result. What happens when we consider the realism of by-standing characters in the game, for example, and the inclusion of extreme content, such as torture?

“We also only tested these theories on adults, so more work is needed to understand whether a different effect is evident in children players.”

I’m not a huge gamer but have played some; back when it was live I loved the old City of Heroes MMORPG, and I’m a fan of Skyrim and the excellent Witcher franchise.   CoH was comic-bookish by design, but the other two games are violent; swordplay figures heavily in both, with decapitations, flying gore, and in the Witcher series, prostitution and sexual acts.

Now I can only speak for myself, but I’ve never felt inclined to go out, take sword in hand, and start hacking away at folk on the street.  Nor have any of my kids, and three of the four are pretty hardcore gamers.

There’s another problem, though, and the same problem exists as when someone blames a crime on anything other than the perp:  It’s bullshit.  The only person, the only thing responsible for a crime is the person that committed that crime.  When we lose sight of that, the criminal justice system becomes… well, something like it is today.

Animal’s Daily Bat-Guano Crazy News

I know I’ve discussed this before, but here’s the latest from crazy town:  Gwyneth Paltrow is waaaaay out on the end of the hot-crazy curve.  Definitely in NO GO territory.  Excerpt:

Down the hatch, coffee can jumpstart a day. But, according to dubious advice from Gwyneth Paltrow’s posh lifestyle and e-commerce site, Goop, the popular brew can also kick off a whole year—when taken up the bum.

Yes, Goop suggests that a coffee enema is a “clutch” way to “supercharge” your “annual goop detox” and start the year in tip-top health. In its latest guide for “deep detoxification,” the Goop team recommends a device called an “Implant O’Rama” for squirting coffee up your keister at home. The product, sold by Implant O’Rama LLC for a bargain $135, is merely a glass bottle with silicone tubing attached.

First things first, as we’ve noted before, there’s no need to “detox”—unless you have kidney or liver failure, and/or have been poisoned recently. When in good working order, your body naturally clears any toxins you might encounter. And there’s no evidence that any DIY detoxing cleanses or diets improve health. That said, there’s plenty of evidence that coffee enemas and colon cleanses in general can cause harm.

Never mind squirting coffee up your ass.  The bullshit gets deeper than that – far, far deeper.  Here’s the best bit of the linked article:  Scroll down to the bottom and go through the photo gallery of “Other ways Goop recommends detoxing.”  This gallery includes such gems as “UMA Pure Calm Wellness Oil,” An $84 dollar water bottle to infuse your water with “positive energy” from a crystal, an $85 “Shaman Medicine Bag” with “magically charged stones,” and a $68 “Detox Body Oil.”

Ring any bells, fans of American frontier history?

While it’s amazing that anyone stupid enough to buy any of this horseshit could possibly have enough brain power to maintain autonomous body functions, it’s even more amazing that Ms. Paltrow has the chutzpah to take advantage of drooling morons – her only possible target market – by charging such prices for absolute crap.

Is she an idiot, or just a con artist?  Thoughts?