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RT @sturdyAlex: There's a White House payroll employee right now battling with a "termination date value cannot be smaller than start date…


There's a White House payroll employee right now battling with a "termination date value cannot be smaller than start date value" message.

Posted by sturdyAlex on Tuesday, August 1st, 2017 1:02pm
Retweeted by SwiftOnSecurity on Tuesday, August 1st, 2017 1:33pm

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Throne of Everblight

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Behold, the Throne of Everblight!

Behold his fearsome maw!

And the absurd amount of silver filigree I had to paint!

Riding on top is Bombshell Miniature’s “Glacia the Winter Witch”

Aww, Goremaw and the Throne had a baby Hellmouth!

Filed under: fantasy, finished, metal, miniatures, resin Tagged: battle engine, Bombshell Miniatures, female, Hordes, Legion of Everblight, Privateer Press, wizard

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I haven’t been slacking off in the painting department, I promise! I have a few more [units] that need to be posted, once I bother to take pictures.

But in the meantime, here is Goremaw, from Reaper Bones 3. I painted her up in my Legion of Everblight colors – I like to think this is the adult form of the Hellmouth. Lots of dry brushing and wet blending since I didn’t want to take forever. The detail isn’t so great on the mini, but it doesn’t really matter since this is a “shock and awe” piece, not an “intricate detail” one.

The last thing you’ll ever see…

Momma and baby…

Filed under: fantasy, finished, miniatures, plastic Tagged: Bones, Legion of Everblight, monster, Reaper Miniatures

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TSA May Want To Flip Through Your Summer Reading Next Time You Fly

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At this point, most travelers know that your electronics, your shoes, your food, and your liquids are going to have to come out of your bag (or off your person) and get extra screening just so you can get on a flight. But now, it seems books — good, old-fashioned paper books — may be joining that list.

The plan to check out your books and reading materials isn’t wholly new; rather, it’s the expansion of a test policy we’ve mentioned before. The TSA tried a pilot experiment back in May where travelers through the airport in Kansas City, MO were asked to remove paper items and notebooks from their bags. That test was halted after only a few days, but a similar program seems primed to expand.

The Week first reported on the book searches at the beginning of June. At that point passengers traveling through security checkpoints in Missouri and Sacramento were being required to take “all reading material and food” out of their carry-on bags and have it travel through separate bins.

Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly recently confirmed that the policy is likely to expand nationwide, leading the ACLU to object to the privacy concerns raised by having government agents scan your choice of reading material.

Theoretically, TSA agents aren’t looking at what your book is, or at any of the content inside it, but are instead simply flipping through in order to make sure that the pages are actually pages and not something like weapons.

ACLU senior policy analyst Jay Stanley wrote in a blog post that it was unclear whether books were being singled out as some kind of special threat, or whether they were being targeted because their size and composition makes them hard to distinguish from other physically-similar items (i.e. explosives) on an x-ray machine.

“That said,” Stanley notes, “books raise very special privacy issues.” Case law and several state statutes protect Americans’ reading habits from some scrutiny, in part by protecting public libraries or requiring search warrants to obtain book sale, lending, or rental records.

Stanley suggests that if the TSA wants to expand the policy, that it take two particular recommendations.

First, he says, the agency needs to realize that there are major privacy concerns. “That means training screeners to be aware of the privacy issues around books and papers, along with orders curbing any agents’ temptations to snoop through, draw attention to, comment on, or discriminate upon” anything they find, as well as considering protocols for private screenings if requested.

Second, Stanley suggests, the TSA should allow books and papers “to be contained by themselves within another package.” In other words, you should be able to put your file full of papers in an opaque folder inside some kind of clear plastic sleeve or even a large Ziploc bag, and run that through a bin by itself in the same way you already do with your three-ounce bottles or laptop.

The ACLU isn’t the only group that’s concerned: College faculty nationwide have worries about the searches too, Inside Higher Ed reports.

“Academics are unsurprisingly big readers, and since we don’t simply read for pleasure, we often read materials with which we disagree or which may be seen by others as offensive,” one academic expert told Inside Higher Ed. “For instance, a scholar studying terrorism and its roots may well be reading — and potentially carrying on a plane — books that others might see as endorsing terrorism. In addition, because scholarship is international, I suspect academics are more likely than others to be reading and carrying material in foreign languages, which might arouse some suspicion … Finally, academics (as well as editors and journalists) may well be carrying pre-publication materials — drafts for peer review or comment, etc. — and these could raise special concerns.”

And on top of privacy concerns, there are of course logistical challenges. Having everyone unpack their entire bag item by item, place its contents into a half-dozen bins, and then have to repack their bags after getting through the machines isn’t exactly going to speed up the screening process. More the exact opposite, really.

And the more densely packed your bag is, the more likely you are to have to unpack it, which just makes the situation even worse, since those are the bags that have the most stuff and take the longest to deal with.

The TSA is testing a new type of carry-on bag scanner in Phoenix (and soon, in Boston) that would give agents a better insight into what you’re packing without you first having to unpack it all publicly. Those could significantly speed up the security process, but they’re big and expansive so it’ll take a long time for them to roll out.

So for now, leave a lot of extra time before your flight — and maybe be prepared to explain that the copy of George R.R. Martin’s latest book, that you brought for beach reading, really is just that long.

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54 days ago
TSA has pulled my bag aside 3 of my last 4 flights to look at my Bible

Southern Baptists Are Apparently Cool With White Supremacy

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At its national conference Tuesday, the Southern Baptist Convention wholly rejected a proposal to condemn the growing racism of the “alt-right” movement.

According to the Arizona Republic, William D. McKissic Sr., a black pastor from Arlington, Texas, submitted a proposal to the SBC’s Committee on Resolutions. McKissic needed a two-thirds vote by the committee to bring the resolution to the full body of the 5,000-member convention for a vote. Even if the resolution didn’t pass, the full body could vote to hear McKissic’s resolution at a later date.

This didn’t seem like too high a hurdle. After all, McKissic knows how to write resolutions—the convention passed his 2014 resolution condemning the Confederate battle flag. Not to mention that all nine other resolutions before the committee passed with nearly unanimous votes.

Plus, these are religious people. This was the religion of Martin Luther King Jr.! Of course they’d vote to condemn the people trying to rebrand white supremacy as “alt-right.” McKissic was confident that this was a slam dunk.

After viewing McKissic’s proposal, the committee voted—and I’m paraphrasing here—“Nah, bruh.”

Make that a double “Nah, bruh.”

Not only did McKissic’s resolution not receive a two-thirds vote, but the committee voted that they didn’t even want to listen to that bullshit again. (Again, I’m paraphrasing here, because I know quite a few Baptists, and they’d never refer to anything as “that bullshit.” The ones I know would say “that motherfucking bullshit.”) McKissic’s resolution didn’t even get enough votes to be tabled for a later date. McKissic was sorely disappointed and said that criticism of his resolution by committee Chairman Barrett Duke was “unfair” and “inappropriate.”

“He’s allowed to attack this resolution from the floor of the Southern Baptist Convention, and I’m not allowed to respond?” McKissic said. “I’m shocked that this would be permitted.”

To be fair, Duke said, “The resolution just contained some significantly inflammatory language that we felt was over the bar.”

I guess we will never find out, because the resolution didn’t get to the floor where everyone could hear it, vote on it and at least have it as part of the permanent record. There’s no way of knowing what was so offensive about McKissic’s proposal, right?


Here is the full text of McKissic’s proposal:

WHEREAS, Scripture teaches that from one man God made every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation (Acts 17:26); and

WHEREAS, the prophet Isaiah foresaw the day when the Lord would judge between the nations and render decisions for many people (Isaiah 2:4); and

WHEREAS, the Psalmist proclaims the Kingdom is the Lord’s, and He rules over the nations; and

WHEREAS, the promise of heaven includes the eternal blessings of the Tree of Life for God’s people, which includes the healing of the nations that comes from the leaves of that tree; and

WHEREAS, the supreme need of the world is the acceptance of God’s teachings in all the affairs of men and nations, and the practical application of His law of love; and

WHEREAS, all Christians are under obligation to seek to make the will of Christ supreme in our own lives and in human society, opposing all forms of racism, selfishness, and vice, and bringing government and society as a whole under the sway of the principles of righteousness, truth, and brotherly love; and

WHEREAS, just societies will order themselves as free men and women and organize at various times and for various purposes to establish political order and give consent to legitimate government; and

WHEREAS, the liberty of all nations to authorize such governments will, at times, allow for the rise of political parties and factions whose principles and ends are in irreconcilable conflict with the principles of liberty and justice for all; and

WHEREAS, there has arisen in the United States a growing menace to political order and justice that seeks to reignite social animosities, reverse improvements in race relations, divide our people, and foment hatred, classism, and ethnic cleansing; and

WHEREAS, this toxic menace, self-identified among some of its chief proponents as “White Nationalism” and the “Alt-Right,” must be opposed for the totalitarian impulses, xenophobic biases, and bigoted ideologies that infect the minds and actions of its violent disciples; and

WHEREAS, the roots of White Supremacy within a “Christian context” is based on the so-called “curse of Ham” theory once prominently taught by the SBC in the early years—echoing the belief that God through Noah ordained descendants of Africa to be subservient to Anglos—which provided the theological justification for slavery and segregation. The SBC officially renounces the “curse of Ham” theory in this Resolution; now be it therefore

RESOLVED, that the Southern Baptist Convention, meeting in Phoenix, AZ, June 13-14, 2017, denounces every form of “nationalism” that violates the biblical teachings with respect to race, justice, and ordered liberty; and be it further

RESOLVED, that we reject the retrograde ideologies, xenophobic biases, and racial bigotries of the so-called “Alt-Right” that seek to subvert our government, destabilize society, and infect our political system; and be finally

RESOLVED, that we earnestly pray, both for those who lead and advocate this movement and those who are thereby deceived, that they may see their error through the light of the Gospel, repent of their perverse nationalism, and come to know the peace and love of Christ through redeemed fellowship in the Kingdom of God, which is established from every nation, tribe, people and tongue.

Let’s be honest—we all know what the problem is: The Southern Baptist Convention has over 15 million members in 47,000 churches and made $10 billion last year. A lot of those people support white supremacy, and the SBC doesn’t want to lose those tithes and offerings.

Duke even confirmed this when he said, “Some of the ideology associated with certain people with the alt-right are certainly offensive to us. If we had received a resolution that we believe could speak to those problematic ideologies in a way that would enable us to only speak to those who are associated with the alt-right, we would have been happy to take that up.”

Wait ... what? Some of the ideology associated with some people with the alt-right?

When newspapers and magazines started spreading the story, somehow the convention reversed course and decided to hear another draft of the resolution, angering some white people on social media (it’s hard to tell if they are Baptist or not, because I consider all Caucasians to be Presbyterian).

Yes, some people are threatening that they’d rather switch Gods than condemn racism. But perhaps this tweet said it best:

I guess when it comes to the hateful rhetoric and views expressed by white supremacists, maybe the Southern Baptist Convention believes what the Bible says:

Only three things will last forever—faith, hope and love ...

But the greatest of these is hate and money.

Again, I’m paraphrasing.

Read more at the Arizona Republic.

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63 days ago
follow-up in case it wasn't seen: the convention fixed this issue and nearly-unanimously approved a stronger and better-worded resolution. http://www.cnn.com/2017/06/14/politics/southern-baptist-convention-alt-right/index.html

Brun and Lug

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Finally finished Brun and Lug!  I’m very happy with how they turned out.  The green backdrop always seems to ruin my pictures, so I might try taking pictures against the purple backdrop.

I’m thinking about making one or both a ReaperCon entry, so I might make some more updates (any suggestions would be welcome!).

Filed under: fantasy, finished, metal, miniatures Tagged: axe, dwarf, Hordes, Minions, Privateer Press, Warbeast, warlock

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