Comics are just kids’stuff, right?

April 19, 2011

Wow, I’m tired. But I’m really wired too. You know, how you feel when you’ve been up for three days on a speed binge and have ground your teeth down to stumps (not that I know how it feels to be up for three days on a speed binge, I feel a bit too old for such antics nowadays).

No, my drug of choice has been comics. Back in the mid-to-late nineties I was well keen on comics, and I’ve been reliving that enthusiasm by reading comics on my computer. I don’t mean internet comics like Beaver and Steve – I’m talking about the real thing, like what I used to go to the comics store to buy, only now they’ve been digitized and are available for download in .cbr format files. You can read .cbr files in any .pdf reader, but my chosen weapon is Comix, whose creators describe it as

a user-friendly, customizable image viewer. It is specifically designed to handle comic books, but also serves as a generic viewer. It reads images in ZIP, RAR or tar archives (also gzip or bzip2 compressed) as well as plain image files. It is written in Python and uses GTK+ through the PyGTK bindings.

If you use Ubuntu, it’s in the repositories. I’m sure you can find it for other OSes too; just go looky at that link (here it is again, if you missed it).

I used to read Transmetropolitan by Warren Ellis and Darick Robertson (and Rodney Ramos on inks) but sadly stopped buying comics before the title’s 5 year run was over. So, I downloaded the entire run of the comic and have been reading it straight through.

I’m also a big fan of Hellblazer, on which that Keanu Reeves movie Constantine was based (incidentally, that film did not do the comic any justice at all). So, I downloaded a huge bunch of Hellblazer .cbr files and binged on them too. I also downloaded V For Vendetta, the Watchmen mini-series (on which the film of the same name was based), and I’ve started a new (to me) title, the first volume of The Invisibles by Grant Morrison and Steve Yeowell.

So, where did I find this veritable trove of comic book treasures? All I’ll say is Filestube.com. Brilliant site. Check it out.

Now, how many more issues of The Invisibles can I read before I lapse into a coma and die?

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Call Obama – let him know what you think of Bradley Manning!

April 1, 2011

A very quickie blog entry today, to let you know about what Courage To Resist have planned for today and how you can join in!

Courage To Resist is an organization that supports “GI resisters” in their attempts to oppose the war in Afghanistan and to reveal the truth about the illegal war in Iraq. Here’s an excerpt from the email they sent me:

We need your help to support Bradley and all GI resisters!
You might already have been a regular supporter of Courage to Resist. Or, you may have first heard of us in regards to our support of accused Wikileaks whistle-blower Bradley Manning. Thank you for your interest, and hopefully financial support as well.

White House call-in today, March 28
We invite all supporters to join the Progressive Democrats of America for a call-in campaign today, Monday, March 28th in support of Bradley Manning. Please call the switch board between 9 am-5 pm Eastern (6am-2pm Pacific) at 202-456-1111.

According to my calculations, 9am-5pm Eastern is 2pm-10pm GMT. So, if you want to show support for Bradley Manning, or for the many veterans who were arrested on the 19 and 20 March for their acts of civil disobedience, leading marches to the White House demanding Manning’s release and an end to the war, give the White House a call today. I do hope this action won’t cause the White House switchboard to become jammed and melt down, but if that does happen… oh dear, what a shame.

While I’m on the subject of Bradley Manning, I’d just like to say that Manning is a dickhead of colossal dimensions. Why on earth did Manning feel the need to tell Adrian Lame-o about what he’d done? Wikileaks’ anonymizing techniques are pretty robust – there’s a very good chance that Manning would have never been unmasked as the leak if he’d been able to keep his ridiculous ego under control. But no, he just had to tell someone – and of all the people in the world to spill his guts to, he chose Adrian Lmao: a known snitch and a member of the generation of “hackers” that denounced each other to the Secret Service/Feds on a regular basis

Unfortunately, Manning did mouth off about it to Lamo, and as a result he’s now rotting in the brig and facing a possible death sentence. This is completely out of proportion with what he did (exactly how many US personnel or assets were placed in danger by the leaks? Exactly none, of course – all such sensitive info was redacted before publication, meaning the only effect was a huge amount of egg on the US military and government’s face). So show your support for Manning – call the White House and make sure Obama’s people realise just how over-the-top his henchmen’s actions have been.

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