The Grace of God

We’re supposed to laugh at Joe Biden because he’s Comically Awkward — as opposed to, oh, we dunno, Fundamentally Evil — but what is it we’re laughing at here?

Are we laughing at Biden demeaning the Office of Vice President — which is famously the most demeaning office in American politics, including Dog Catcher? Are we laughing at the Biker Chick, and shame on us for hating America if we do? Or are we laughing in abject fear of our own untrustworthy instincts?

Looking at this picture puts Biden’s excruciatingly earnest convention speech in context: It wasn’t that he was doing a bad imitation of Bill Clinton; it was that he couldn’t help but do a bad imitation of Bill Clinton. He couldn’t help but try, because Bill Clinton will always be the Cool Kid, and Joe Biden will always be The Rest of Us. 

We laugh at Biden from nervousness, because in our hearts we know that we’re always this close to doing something equally stupid. And, truth be told, we probably already have.

[via @buzzfeedandrew]

Looks like someone’s going to get his head pounded in after the club closes.

I like Biden. I don’t understand the mockery.

I like him too. I suspect that it’s more the fact he’s probably a salt of the earth kind of guy who can take a joke or 1000. Unlike Cheney, Potatoe Boy or Mitten’s ball washer Paul Paul.

Even Al Gore’s done Futurama and mocked himself (his daughter is one of the writers.)

My first reaction was: “She is not sitting in his lap” A gotcha photo that amounts to seconds in time and optical perspective. And sure enough just barely scratch the surface and the story is revealed:

The woman had no place to sit, so Biden pulled a chair in front of himself and pulled her nearly into his lap. He put his hands on her shoulders and leaned in for a conversation as photographers snapped away.

Even this explanation makes assertions that make the contact seem unseemly. The author wants to put her in his lap. She’s in a chair with a back and not in his lap. Photogs take dozens and dozens of photos in just moments. There was one Ap photographer there and I am betting it was the photog who suggested pulling the chair in closer to get the all the bikers in the shot. This is a bullshit setup.
/add alternate crop via ABC
/add Images from the photo set trickle out

Meanwhile, Team Mitt emails his pollster memo — all 1,200 words of it — to calm down everybody freaking out over Obama’s convention bounce.

To see a campaign email that long — in a season when most amount to extended tweets — is stunning. Must be a lot of pants-shitting at Romney HQ.

@karen marie still has her eyes tight shut: If I might take a guess…

Seems like Anonymous attacked GoDaddy today, taking down its services. We don’t host with GoDaddy, but they manage all our DNS services (the hamsters that translate “” to Internet numbers), so if you’re having trouble reaching the site, that would be the problem.

Site’s been working fine for me all day, as it happens. But that might explain why my email (also routed through GoDaddy DNS) has been strangely quiet.

ADD: Test email sent & received. Just strangely quiet.

@Mistress Cynica: Well, this one’s odd, because from here, we were never away.

But both the Remote Office and World Domination HQ are served by Cox Cable, so there’s that. Whatever wires got crossed, that particular wire didn’t.

I’m going to guess that there’s an upstream/downstream thing at work here. the key to the Internet is “inter” — it’s not a single network, but an interconnected collection. (The better to survive nukes.)

Some networks are more equal than others, and have multiple interconnections; other networks are “downstream” from a primary service. If you’re downstream from the wrong network, you got pissed on today.

Meanwhile, in Bounces:

Mitt’s still cruising below 200 electoral votes. Seven states are in play today, with 88 votes at stake. Obama is winning the statistical tie in all of them.

This will likely settle back down — it’s an extreme version of the pattern that’s been running all year. But Mitt is stuck at 200, and has been since April, while Obama’s enjoyed a solid 250. (It varies up and down, but 250’s the line you draw through it.)

If Florida turns blue, Mitt’s toast. But Obama has umpteen ways to win without it.


There’s also a lot of caching in the DNS servers – typically, sites run with a 24-hour lifetime on their entries, so if you hit within the preceding 24 hours (and didn’t go to a blajillion sites since then, pushing the entry out of the cache) then you won’t notice anything’s changed.

That’s why it’s also a PITA to move a site from one IP to another, as inevitably *somebody* has a bad entry cached for the first day or so – usually the CLIENT, who’s been hitting “Refresh” every five seconds.

In related “bad connection” news, apparently a GOP PAC operator has decided to cut out the middleman and just straight-out steal money from GOP donors with phishing sites. Something about fools and their money comes to mind…

@al2o3cr: The caching crossed my mind earlier, so I made a point of visiting some GoDaddy DNS domains of mine that I haven’t touched in a long time. Still worked.

Far as I can remember — haven’t looked recently — most of my domains are on a 1-hour TTL, and a 1-week email TTL. (Most of the email accounts I manage are routed through Google Apps.)

YMMV aside, here’s what I’m wondering: GoDaddy DNS is supposedly spread over a number of servers, which should mitigate this kind of problem. What the fuck happened?

(Regarding TTL, I should add that a couple of the dormant sites I double-checked aren’t visited by anybody, and would unlikely be cached in a DNS server.)

(I should also add that the server’s in Houston, so I don’t have privileged access.)

@al2o3cr: Ars Technica:

Anecdotal evidence suggests the outages aren’t universal. GoDaddy’s homepage, as well as GoDaddy-hosted sites such as were inaccessible on Monday afternoon for two users in the UK and on the United States East Coast using a custom domain name system lookup server and one provided by ISP RCN respectively. Both of those sites worked fine for a separate user located in California who was using OpenDNS, a free service that translates human-readable domain names into the IP addresses relied on by computers that route Internet traffic. There were widespread reports on Twitter and elsewhere from other users who also reported trouble reaching GoDaddy-hosted sites.

We’re GoDaddy DNS, not GoDaddy-hosted — and I’m on Cox Cable with no custom DNS settings — so the anecdotal evidence agrees with what I’m seeing. Depends on who you’re using, and where you’re at.

1. She’s no Donna Rice. Good for her.

2. Love Biden, but maybe it’s the Scranton/DE thing.

3. If Florida goes blue, SCOTUS will turn it red.

As though he weren’t already endearing enough, now this.

@JNOV: I’ve been biased for him since 1972. I have met him more than a few times over the years and he has always come across as a warm and friendly guy.

I was working in the kitchen as a dishwasher in 1972 at one of his fundraisers. He and his first wife came through to thank all of the help in person. They both came across as genuine and likeable. I have never witnessed anything over the years to change my mind.

I may disagree with him on some things, especially on usury laws, but overall I trust him to do more right than wrong.

@DElurker: especially on usury laws

Oh. Right. Delaware.

Cue Pixies.

@mellbell: God love him. I ordered my Biden beer koozie the other night from the Obama campaign. Threw an extra 50 clams in to help pay for attack ads in Ohio.

@DElurker: Your account really rings home for me, as I spent more years than I care to remember waiting tables and working in kitchens. Somebody who would come in to the kitchen and sincerely speak to the dishwashers is someone who is good people, as my grandpa the line-cook for 40 years would say.

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