30 September 2006

Succinct Film Reviews

Saw The Last King of Scotland today.

My review (imagine it being recited by Billy Connolly)

It's a strange way to be entertained, but entertaining it bloody well is.

That's the short version. But, sometimes that's not enough to get folks to consider seeking out a smart semi-independent film like this, so here's a bit more.

Forest Whitaker is fantastic as Idi Amin, but this isn't his picture alone.

Not-Noah Wyle 'aka' James McAvoy is the star of the film (I call him not-noah wyle because, first he looks like him, second he plays a doctor, 'nuff said). His role is a meaty one. The swirl of events the film depicts, the tale of temptation it weaves moves along well. It doesn't fall into the trap of sappiness and sentimentality that most films that use a white protagonist to tell a non-white story fall into. There's some scenes of tremendous brutality, played to maximize their impact. This is no easy little popcorn munching bit of entertainment.

That's what I mean by this being a strange way to be entertained. But film can also inform, inspire and instruct. This film doesn't try to do all of that, and that's a good thing. An excess of earnestness would have weighed this thing down and ruined it. Serious stuff happens, but it's presented artfully and with flashes of humor.

I recommend this film, but be warned that it's not an entirely easy experience.

And when I posted earlier that Carina Chocano was pulling her anti-colonial nonsense straight out of her ass, I wasn't far wrong. The lessons she grabbed from this film, are far simpler than what the film really conveys. There are some hints as to British complicity in the problems suffered by Uganda, but this film doesn't diminish the domestic causes for their suffering.

It's still a great mystery why there are no Singapores in Africa. The local tribalism or the legacy of colonialism or the spread of Islam can't explain the suffering. So many of these countries seem to have created an awful amalgamation of the worst characteristics of these three main cultural sources.

It's sad to see all this unfold as it does in this film, yet strangely entertaining.

29 September 2006

Woohoo! We're Number One, Again

(via Drudge)

According to this AFP report, Southern California has retaken its rightful place as having the smoggiest skies in America.

Of course, the article doesn't mention a few factors that might influence these numbers. Firstly, we had one of the hottest Julys on record. Weeks of record and near record temperatures meant power plants working overtime.

Also, the Day Fire (a great flickr photoset here, by Doc Searls) continues to blaze and it started on Labor Day. It's nearly under control, but so far it has burned 250 square miles (for comparison, the land area of New York City is 303 square miles and the country of Singapore is 265 square miles). That has had to have generated a great deal of particulate matter and decreased the air quality for the entire month of September.

The air around here is vastly better than it was when I grew up in the 70s.

I just don't understand how the air could get worse considering all that fellow Santa Monican Laurie David does. She's going to have to redouble, retriple or even requadruple her efforts to get everyone to drive a Prius and fly around the country and lecture folks on how to reduce their carbon footprint.

If we really want clean air, we'd demand that a nuclear power plant be built right here in Santa Monica.

Sure, She Can Use That Line . . .

And yes, to answer one of those lost Zawahiri lines, that grey beard does make you look gay

Tammy Bruce writing about Ayman al-Zawahiri latest release (at least latest video release, his latest release most likely is still inside some poor abused she-goat's vagina (those caves are lonely places, and she-goats are easier to come by than human females))

I couldn't get away with that line. If I said that I might be accused of being a homophobe by the likes of Andrew Sullivan.

Some folks aren't disturbed by the shockingly similar rhetoric spewing from the mouths of Al Qaeda spokesgoats and Democratic Party stalwarts.

But, many folks are (follow the Tammy link for many other voices joining the chorus). Callimachus also gets stirred up by the disgustingly symbiotic relationship between our declinist and defeatist media and those that wish for our decline and our defeat.

al-Zawahiri is the real Jackass#2. That movie, currently in theatres, don't got nothing on him.

They Really, Really, Really Hate Michelle Malkin

Michelle Malkin is being attacked as usual. Here's the photo in question. It's clearly a photoshop job.

Dissertations may one day be written about how those on the left feel the need to spread rumors and sexualize attractive, young, overtly Christian, non-white conservative women.

Even if this photo was real, which it clearly isn't, who would really care? Maybe they chose a fairly inoffensive pose to lend their piss poor photoshop job some credibility. Every reasonably attractive woman who places herself in the political sphere will most likely face images like this of their supposed wild days in college. Some of those photos will be real moments of college hijinks, others will be made up ones. But, it's all white noise and pure stupidity. There will be no political value in these sort of attacks in the future given that everyone will have the same kind of photos in their past (or not). I think this attack stems from an abiding belief amongst 'progressives' that all women must be feminist, and all feminist must be socially permissive and liberal (see the whole recent Ann Althouse mess)

It feels like a 'put her in her place' campaign. That's awfully progressive of those folks. And we aren't talking about small fringe types. This is the mighty Nick Denton empire spreading this bile.

I'll still blogroll Defamer, Gizmodo, Kotaku anyway. I don't read Wonkette, and Gawker is too NYC for me (other than the Blue States Lose weekly feature, that's a must read every Friday).

I don't think legal action would be wise, either. Just point out the obvious nature of the fraud, attack it, ridicule it, and move on.

And in that spirit here is my "I am Spartacus" moment (inspired, in part by Capt. Ed). If they attack Michelle Malkin in that manner, they'll attack everyone they disagree with, we all are the poorly photoshopped head on top of that bikini clad body.

Are you sufficiently disturbed/amused/puzzled/confused by the above image?

Best Quote Ever (At Least This Week)

(via Drudge)

No link provided, just a quote from Tony Snow about the latest Bob Woodward book

Snow: 'The average Washington memoir ought to be subtitled, 'If only they'd listened to me'...

Tony Snow is fantastic. He should be White House Press Secretary for Life.

I'd bet he'd do just as good of a job for a Democrat (assuming a Democrat will be elected in his lifetime).

The Personal Usually Becomes Political

Rep. Mark Foley, Republican from Florida resigned today.

His emails are creepy, and if not criminal, clearly abuse his position as a mentor. Regardless of the gender mix of the two folks involved this would be troubling. There's a way to be friendly to someone much younger than you without being creepy. He's a creep, and most likely has done more than just exchange emails with other willing teenagers.

That he didn't choose to quietly fade away and not seek another term speaks to his narcissism and belief that he wouldn't get caught. These exchanges were more than a year old, and judging from statements earlier in the week he was ready to deny, deny, deny.

Incumbency acts like a mental illness on politicians. It corrodes their judgement and inculcates a belief in an immunity from their own bad judgement.

Nevertheless, I question the timing. Ideally they would have put this off even later so that the Republicans would have no hope of replace him on the ballot. But, maybe this revelation has to do with national as well as Florida politics. It fits within the 'culture of corruption' charge the Democrats have been trying to push but hasn't gained much traction in the polling for individual contests.

It may be dirty politics, but this particular mud being slinged was obviously handed to the Democrats by an arrogant, flawed, conflicted, predatory creep.

We don't need to be represented by saints. But, I'd settle for folks who aren't narcissistic creeps. Safe districts make it easier for creeps, both the sexually predatory kind and the feathering their own nests kind, to escape public scrutiny.

The Post Where I Held an Envelope to My Head

I'm old enough to remember Carnac the Magnificent.

Silly bit, but played to perfection.

I was reminded of that bit after reading this post at Throwing Things.

(XWL holds an envelope to his beturbaned head, and does his best Johnny Carson voice)

"Lindsay Lohan"

(XWL then switches chairs and puts on a plaid sports jacket and does his best Ed McMahon voice)

"Lindsay Lohan?"

(XWL switches chairs again, tears off the ugly jacket, throws the turban back on his head, and once again does his best Johnny Carson voice)

"Who is the youngest current celebrity who has an obit already prepared"

(I swear I had all these thoughts before noticing in the comments that she was the second name that popped up)

28 September 2006

Let's See, I Could Either Title This Post, "It Takes One to Know One" or "I Know You Are, But What Am I?"

(via Drudge)

Reuters headline

Mark Cuban is usually an idiot. His HDNet will be a big failure and he lucked into his broadcast.com fortune. With that said he's partially correct. YouTube isn't like other previous popular internet properties. It does have a huge cloud hanging over it, and a deep pockets owner would be exposed to an endless round of lawsuits.

That's why I think a possible way out of this would be if a consortium of media concerns agreed to operate YouTube collectively. Use directed advertising like the little google links that pop up in gmail, but make them 10-15 second commercials that are attached to the beginning of videos. Make them content sensitive, and charge based on where the content came from. If the content being shown is from your own company, you get to advertise free. If another one of the conglomerates wants to attach an ad for one of their products then charge a tiny fee. Leave the way YouTube works alone.

YouTube only enhances the value of the content owned by the media conglomerates. It's proved over and over again, just look at the success Fox News Sunday enjoyed by not fighting their clip spreading by YouTube. FoxNews.com had a different idea about this, but the big boss came down on the side of letting YouTube provide free advertising rather than forcing those that want the content to have to visit Foxnews.com.

By making YouTube a neutral playing field, and recognizing it as such, it would be a valuable commodity to all the big media players as a signal to which content is valued and which isn't. If people love what they see on YouTube, advertise there, point to a higher quality download or DVD they can purchase, and watch the profits increase.

Kill this, and watch more folks become turned off by media companies in general and seek spending their free time engaged elsewhere.

Mark Cuban is correct that the current approach to copyright would kill this site if one of the big media players try to buy YouTube and the others then decide to jealously guard their content. But if they want to act in their collective self interest, they'll let this site flourish as is. They should think of it as free market research rather than a copyright infringer's paradise.

Weekly NFL Related Humiliation (Week FOUR)

If I have a few more weeks like last week, I'll rename these recurring posts to Weekly NFL Related Brilliant Prognostications. Vegas.com odds quoting of MGM/Mirage odds as of 17:08:51 09/28/2006.

On to the four games worth paying attention to.

Indianapolis at NYJets (+9)
These lines on the Colts are getting ridiculous. 9 point favorites on the road against a 2-1 team. They'll cover this spread easily, anyway. The Jets are worse than their record, and the Colts will find their way into the end zone with much more ease this week than they did against the Jaguars. Again, I expect Indy to roll all over the Jets, but then I expect Indy to roll all over every team in the league this year barring injuries to key players on offense or defense.

San Diego at Baltimore (+2.5)
Ought to be a good one. San Diego is coming off of a bye week. Will the extra week make the Chargers better prepared or rusty? I vote rusty. I'm guessing that Baltimore will continue to be devastatingly effective on defense and do just enough on offense to win this contest. I'm shocked that San Diego are favored on the road, they've looked good, but not that good.

New England at Cincinatti (-6)
I think the Bengals are the second best team in the league right now, and I'd put Jacksonville third with Chicago fourth. Beyond that top four it's a big drop off, and barring a lucky run in the playoffs, I don't think any other teams matter this season. With that said, the Patriots are one of those teams coached by one of those coaches who could work miracles and get deeper into the playoffs then their talent would justify. There's a very real possibility that the Bengals will have a let down this week after beating their division rivals, but I wouldn't bet on it. I'd take the Bengals and the points and I'm just glad I'm not actually betting on these games, cause this is one of those games that would drive me crazy.

Seattle at Chicago (-3)
The Bears are an elite team in this league, even with Rex Grossman as QB. I can't believe I just typed that sentence. Losing Shaun Alexander (curse you Madden Curse!) is a blow that the Seahawks won't recover from this week. Chicago will win, and by more than a field goal. This actually could end up being a rather boring Sunday night broadcast.

Different Takes on the Same Tale

Michelle Malkin comments on Deustche Oper's cancelled production of Mozart's Idomeneo.

Victoria comments as well (and comments very well indeed).

Searching about using tools like Tailrank, Technorati and Google Blogsearch it would seem that the political response to this has been almost exclusively from the right of center blogs.

The consensus from opera and culture blogs (as exemplified by New Criterion editor Roger Kimball) would seem to be that the director of this opera, Hans Neuenfels, is an idiot. He has been hacking away at classic operas for years, and if he were to be figuratively beheaded as to never be allowed to commit his churlish and asinine productions ever again, that wouldn't be a bad thing (please note that I said figurative)

It should be noted that this production premiered in 2003 and presumably went off without leading to actual beheadings.

I think Prof. Althouse's take on the matter is worth noting, too
This is a complex problem. Neuenfels's production takes the easy faux-daring route of "Piss Christ" and the Madonna crucifixion, but at least he had the nerve to hit all religions equality, and not to single out one religion. Perhaps he did that because it wouldn't have made any sense to go after the conventional target of Christianity when it's an opera about the Trojan War. It doesn't make all that much sense to drag Buddha, Jesus, and Muhammad into that setting either, but bringing them all in to join their super best friend Poseidon made some kind of crazy sense.

Now that some Muslims have made it painfully obvious that religion-taunting is not an easy game anymore, abandoning it expresses fear, not respect for religion. And continuing to disrespect the religions that don't lash back only highlights that cowardice. Poor transgressive rebel artists! How are they to shock the middle class anymore?

I searched long and hard for an actual liberal site that mentioned this and found this bit of wisdom from Mahablog
Today there’s some grumbling on the blogosphere about “political correctness” and how “artistic freedom” is being sacrificed to placate Muslims. To which I say, try performing this critter in the Bible Belt. As soon as the Holy Rollers hear about Jesus’s severed head the opera house is as good as vandalized, if not torched. And every Mozart CD in Alabama — all six of ‘em — would be tossed on a bonfire, along with video cassettes and DVDs of “Amadeus.”

Yeah, sure, whatever you say, nothing offensive to Christians has ever been staged in a college town deep in the bible belt.

Crazed Islamo-Fascists intent on killing or converting all unlike themselves aren't the problem, it's those Christians who are ruining the world.

27 September 2006

Root Causes: An Obsession

Why the obsessive need to find 'root causes' for every non-western maniac who darkens this earthly realm?

From Carina Chocano's review of The Last King of Scotland
Whitaker plunges deep into the psychology of the role, portraying Amin as an erratic personality whose charisma and sociability — first-rate survival mechanisms — mask a deep-seated insecurity, searing resentment of foreigners and a galloping paranoia. Amin's bizarre personality was in many ways the product of an impoverished childhood in an occupied nation. Abandoned by his father, he eventually went to work for the British army, where he cleaned, cooked and joined the rugby team. It was there his fondness for Scotland bloomed, though the Scots he so admired allegedly got him riled up for matches by hitting him on the head with a hammer.

Idi Amin was an insane megalomaniac (yet still considered a good enough Muslim to be offered residence and protection by the Saudis while in his lengthy exile). Looking for 'root causes' for his madness is absurd. Finding 'root causes' that manage to blame the United Kingdom's colonial presence in Uganda is even more absurd.

I'm not going to hold the reviewer's idiocy against this film. Forest Whitaker is one of the best actors working, and this seems like a role that he can inhabit with abandon. This looks like a must see film. That interlude from the review that I highlight seems to be completely pulled from Ms. Chocano's ass, and her obsessive need to find a way to blame eeeevil western hegemony for the ills of a place like Uganda.

Jangly Pop

I'm a sucker for Jangly Pop.

That's all, just figured I'd post whatever random thought came to my head.

(OK, this thought isn't all that random, I'm listening to the linked below Rhino Records CD Boxed Set)

(I could go on and on how great all this stuff was, and how fun all those Paisley Underground bands were (if I were choosing the songs, it would have had more LA bands in it, but it's still 4 solid CDs), but I won't, just pretend that I did)

Screw You Fug Girls!

Normally I point to their brilliance in ripping to shreds some awful fashion choice from some celebrity who must likely shouldn't be a celebrity (like this post).

But this time they went after Parker Posey.

That ain't right.

Yes, she looks crazy. Yes, the afro-perm looks bizarre, but it's bizarre in a crazy, surely it must be for some kooky film role, sort of way.

Yes, the outfit isn't particularly flattering, but she's Parker Posey, so lay off her.

All she ever really needs to wear is that beautiful smile of hers (and something simple with a classic cut, like your basic LBD)

Man Crush

ESPN's Sam Alipour has a serious man crush on Kobe Bryant.

All the evidence you need is right here.

(warning, a very positive article regarding #24 (and get used to it, he ain't #8 anymore) at link, for some that might be stomach turning)

26 September 2006

An Admission of Bias?

The English language can be a tricky thing. The multiplicity of available words that have almost the same meaning yet contain a constellation of differing inferrences makes our tongue both clearer and more obfuscatory than most tongues depending on who is using it.

I noticed Drudge's bit of self-promotion through pointing to the book The Way to Win: Taking the White House in 2008 written by ABCNews' political director and Washington Post's national politics director John F. Harris.

The first thing I noticed, besides Drudge's gleeful puffing up of himself (which I admire, not condemn), is that the language of the book's title isn't neutral.

Editors inject themselves into the process of titling books, I've watched enough CSPAN Books TV to know that authors often complain that the title a book is published under isn't the one they themselves would have chosen.

Just the same, the choice of verbs tells me something. The book is "taking" the White House. That suggests that the White House is currently possessed by the "wrong" hands. If they were selling this book to Republicans primarily, the editors would have gone with "keeping" as the verb there instead of "taking". Also, in the blurbs on Amazon they speak of demystifying and praising Karl Rove. Again, a book being sold to non-Liberals would not have to justify showing Karl Rove as a non-demonic figure.

Another interesting contrast in the Amazon summary for this book is that for the Bush years they highlight Karl Rove, afterall everyone "knows" that the President is too stupid to be that smart so all the political gamesmanship must have been accomplished by his "Brain". Meanwhile, the Clinton years they highlight Pres. Clinton himself as the political mastermind. Everyone knows that he was always the smartest guy in the room, and that evil little troll Dick Morris had nothing to do with Clinton's political successes.

I'll be interested if media outlets pick this up as an advice book for Democrats specifically, or as a general book on political advice. It seems crystal clear that it is being marketed more heavily towards Democrats/Liberals than it is towards Republicans/Conservatives.

The book itself may be fair, but Random House is clearly assuming they are going to get the majority of their market share from the left.

If the book just happens to be tremendously biased, though, I don't think anyone would be too shocked.

I'll Give You One Guess

Larry Kudlow compares Pres. Clinton to Pres. Reagan.

You only get one guess as to who suffers in comparison.

(no fair, you peeked at the answer)

Meanwhile, Moxie is in possession of a Pres. William Jefferson Clinton blow-up doll, and I find that news very disturbing (but the post and pictures generated from this detail are quite humorous).

25 September 2006

Why Roger Ailes is a Better Executive Than Doug Morris

Roger Ailes, one of the best executives in the entertainment/news industry, has some of his intellectual property go viral on YouTube, and celebrates the fact.

Doug Morris, in contrast, is still an idiot.

YouTube doesn't function as a replacement source of entertainment, essentially it is fan directed free advertising. Fox's rating for Fox News Sunday were through the roof, thanks in no small part to YouTube.

Also, poor Tim Russert, he gave his best Monica Lewinsky impression on Meet the Press and kept his knees on the floor, buried his head in the former President's lap, and planted his lips firmly around Pres. Clinton's 'charisma'.

He must be feeling like a fool now. If Clinton ever goes on Meet the Press again, I suspect a different Tim Russert will greet him.

Idle Speculation

Of all the charges against Pres. Clinton after his performance with Chris Wallase on Fox News Sunday, there's one that sticks in my mind.

Did Pres. Clinton suffer a stroke on air?

My father thought that when he first saw the interview on Sunday, and he should know, he suffered a stroke himself six years ago.

Charles Johnson possibly insinuates the same thing here.

He could be insinuating a chemical, rather than purely physical cause for the symptoms, but there was a slurring, a mouth with a droopy corner, and an overall slackness of muscle on one side of the face.

Given all the pathologizing regarding Pres. Bush's appearances that folks on the other side of the political spectrum enjoy engaging in, I wouldn't take this too far.

But it's worth a mention.

Plus, I hope his health is good, he's too valuable for partisan Republicans like myself to die before the '08 election.

For more substantial takedowns of the diatribe go to Patterico and Powerline, while Prof. Althouse goes after Pres. Clinton on more stylistic grounds.

24 September 2006

Results (Week Three) Weekly NFL Humiliation

The results won't be completed till tomorrow night since I picked a Monday night game, but I might as well recap my first three picks (my pick post text in a lovely shade of purple). So far 2-0-1, no matter what happens in New Orleans, this would have been a profitable week, had I been crazy enough to put money on these picks (which I most definitely am not, once again, these picks are for entertainment purposes only, please, no wagering). UPDATE: Woohoo! 3-0-1 for the week, I am teh smart, I am teh smart!
Cincinatti at Pittsburgh (-1.5)
Will Pittsburgh bounce back from the Monday night shutout? Will the Bengals avenge Carson Palmer's getting knocked out of the playoffs last year? Tough call, the Steelers do awfully well at home, but Palmer is one of the few QBs who has the Steeler's blitzes and schemes figured out, plus he'll be real motivated (or he'll have a case of happy feet because of bad memories). I'm going to go out on a limb and say that the Bengals will pull of the mild upset, and possibly win big.
Cincinatti 28 Pittsburgh 20
Woohoo! got it right, sort of. Cincinatti has to worry about the number of turnovers they gave up, and they can't expect to get five takeaways every game. Still, they looked impressive occaisonally, while the Steelers never really clicked. The fumbled punt was a huge turning point, the Bengals looked beaten (despite only trailing by 3) at that point, it wasn't the same game after that.
Jacksonville at Indianapolis (-7)
Game of the week, maybe one of the biggest games of the season, even though it's only week 3. Jacksonville's defense can be pretty scary, but Indy's offense is even scarier. Both these are elite teams, possibly the two best teams in the league right now. That Indianapolis is a 7 point favorite anyway is a testament to just how good they look. The Colts will do it. Peyton Manning is a machine right now, and their defense is still very solid. Even though they all look great still, the window is closing on this team and I think they are playing with urgency. Anything less than a Superbowl ring will be considered a failure given their talent. They'll make this a statement game and probably beat up Jacksonville and win by 3 touchdowns, not just one.
Jacksonville 14 Indianapolis 21
A lousy push, I hate pushes. Indianapolis never achieved their usual effectiveness on offense. Manning was just 14-31, but they won, and they beat a very tough Jacksonville defense. Right now, Indianapolis and Cincinatti look a cut above every other team in the league. Plus the AFC looks far better than the NFC in general.
NYGiants at Seattle (-4)
Another good game, hopefully. Seattle still looks kind of shakey, and NYGiants are very lucky to be 1-1 instead of 0-2. I just don't see the Giants travelling well, and Seattle will put on a better show for the home fans than they did last week (even though they did beat the Cardinals). Their opportunistic defense will frustrate Manning the younger and manage to generate at least 3 takeaways. The turnovers will be the difference, as their offense has been unimpressive so far. Seattle will win, and cover the spread. No late game heroics/total collapse by the home team this week.
NYGiants 30 Seattle 42
Woohoo! Got this one right, as well. Seattle has problems. They had the Giants humiliated and they almost let them back in the game. That ain't the way to establish your team as a dominating team in this league. Hard to tell if it was a more a terrible performance early from Manning and Burress, or a very tough secondary. I'm leaning towards a crappy Manning, Seattle really hasn't impressed me yet this season. I don't care if it's garbage time or not, giving up 27 points in the 4th quarter is unacceptable.
Atlanta at New Orleans (+3.5)
Show of hands of folks who thought these two teams would be 2-0 going into this game. OK, show of hands of folks who expected this game to be played in the Superdome this time last year. That's what I thought, I didn't see too many hands shoot up on either, and the folks who did raise their hand, I suspect they are liars. Atlanta looks good, or at least that's what I've been told as Fox hasn't shown either of their games in Los Angeles. Did get to see the Saints play, though, and I was impressed with them. Also, the emotion on the team and the desire to win for the city will be strong. Plus Reggie Bush as a receiver has had an impact already, Drew Breese is for real, and Duece McAllister looks like one of the best running backs in the league. Plus their defense is decent. And I know I've been told otherwise, but I'm still not buying what Michael Vick is selling. Defensive coordinators will figure him out, and bottle him and Warrick Dunn up, eventually. QBs have to be able to complete passes to be effective. You won't be able to convince me otherwise, at least not until he's hoisting that Vince Lombardi trophy in Miami in February 2007. SO in summary, I'm taking New Orleans and the points, just cause I can't pick favorites for every game, that's not my style.
Atlanta 3 New Orleans 23
Woohoo! Got it right, again. Michael Vick can't throw the 10-15 yard pass, and his +30 yard bombs tend to be inaccurate as well. His receivers dropped plenty of passes on him, too. The Saints played a great contain game on Vick, kept bodies around him rather than overpursuing. Rather than going for sacks, the best strategy on Vick is to keep him in front of you and force him to pass. Also, Tony Kornheiser must go! Lousy in the booth, although he's fun on PTI, go figure.

Niall Ferguson Explains It All For You

Writing in the Telegraph, Niall Ferguson breaks out his cluebat (in his case the cricket type, no doubt) and gives the players at the recent UN centered nonsense quite a few good whacks while also explaining how economics are trumping politics in the current geopolitical framework.

Read it in its entirety, excerpts wouldn't do the piece justice.

I Call For a Jihad Against Those That Call For a Jihad Against the Frivilous Use of the Term "Jihad"

(via Drudge)

This post is regarding this incident in Ohio.

I've got nothing else to say.

Just wanted an excuse to create this post's title.

(in Ohio, radio stations weren't reacting to a response to the ad, more the fear that the ad might generate a response, which seems kind of silly)

We should as a culture poke fun mercilessly at those ridiculous, unmanly, misogynistic, medieval, violent, sexually frustrated, sexually attracted to goats and sheep, homophobic, superstitious, easily offended jihadis.

Yes, the term "jihad" has a primary meaning of the personal struggle each Muslim deals with in their attempt to celebrate Allah's glory and live up to his standard.

But, Muslims have allowed the crazies to own that term. I bet you don't find too many German speaking folks when describing any kind of struggle they may be having as "Mein Kampf".

The definition of the term jihad that has escaped from Arabic and captured the imaginations of non-Arabic speakers is a decidedly negative one. Rightly so, I should add.

So, jihadis should be the object of frequent and vicious ridicule, even in something as mundane as an auto sales radio ad.

(even Ahmed Angerpuss agrees with me, he's saying "Durka Durka Mohammed Jihad!", loosely translated, "I agree with all that XWL said, and see that my display of anger does appear utterly ridiculous")

23 September 2006

Corruption : History : Malignant Narcissism : Politics : September 11

Tammy Bruce, posts regarding the latest finger wagging, neck vein popping, red faced hissy fit from former President William Jefferson Clinton (YouTubed above).

The title for this post comes from the tags Tammy applied to her post.

I think those tags almost say everything that needs to be said.

But of course, click on the link, cause what more needs to be said, Ms. Bruce says quite well.

And watch the whole interview on Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace, it's bound to be informative, at the very least.

22 September 2006

First the Pain, Then the Pleasure

***(NSFW warning)***

Some of what follows is NSFW, some of what follows is not safe for any kind of human consumption at all.

(hat tip Drudge)

First to the, not safe for any kind of human consumption at all portion of the links, obviously you've been warned, yet if you insist on clicking on the link, that's your sorry fate and I have warned you sufficiently where I expect to be absolved of any legal responsibility should you suffer any permanent psychological damage from what you just chose to submit yourself to. James Brolin, you are more man than I am, facing those on a regular basis. Larry Kudlow adds some thoughts of his own regarding this subject, as does Tammy Bruce.

(hat tip Moxie)

Now on to the more pleasureable aspect of this post. The tits for hits campaign continues apace. It's an effort I wholeheartedly support. In this second installment of tits for hits (mildly NSFW, but quite enjoyable anyway), there is discussion of Pope Benedict XVI, Sears Catalogs, and images of waving American flags. Also, did I mention that a thin bra and ice cubes are involved? If that doesn't heal your damaged psyche (assuming you submitted yourself to the onslaught that was the first link), then I don't know what will. Obviously, some wives are better to have than others (I bet his wife wouldn't force him to do away with Hummers the way Gov. Schwarzenegger's did).

Nobody Expects The Spanish Inquisitor . . .

. . . to have a sense of humor.

At least that's the contention of Charles Krauthammer.

When making moral equivalence arguments, the defenders of Islamist violence should think twice about which Christian examples they dredge up. Being on par with Torquemada isn't a good thing, no matter how you slice it.

Whether or not a Monty Python reference was intended by Mr. Krauthammer, who knows?

And while we are on the subject of the Spanish Inquisition (this time you were expecting it, weren't you? The Mel Brooks version, below)

Bohemian Rhapsody

Writing in Slate, Michael Weiss laments that Pretty in Pink wasn't Pretty and Pinko.

No, really, he's complaining about the films of John Hughes and their implicit conservatism.

Yes, he's an idiot.

Don't believe me, read the whole thing, but just to give you a taste of its gobsmacking stupidity, the concluding paragraph will serve well

Gen X nostalgia is as interesting for what it remembers as for what it chooses to ignore. Every so often, you'll turn on TBS and be forced to take inventory of the popular culture of your youth. Trading Places delivered its comeuppance with a switcheroo act of stock fraud; the true nemesis of Ghost Busters wasn't Gozer but the EPA; Stripes is all about making a kind of screwball peace with the military-industrial complex … Sure enough, there's Harold Ramis—another Lampoon alum, who directed Hughes' screenplay for Vacation—reflecting on the Chicago Seven hearings in a recent interview with the Believer: "They ran up and down the street, smashing car windows and stuff. My first reaction was, 'Yeah, right on!' But then I thought, 'Wait, I'm parked out there.' " The polite term for this gentle rightward shift when it happens to artists and intellectuals is embourgeoisement. What a shame the philosopher of puberty never warned kids about that.

Yes, Harold Ramis, and by some alchemical process that I don't quite comprehend, John Hughes as well, should be considered FASCIST BROWNSHIRT RETHUGLICANS!!! for not being sufficiently sympathetic towards wanton property destruction.

OK, then.

Remember kiddies, no artist or intellectual can be anything but Marxist and Bohemian.

And speaking of lamenting the lack of bohemian credentials for 80s teen flicks, what would Mr. Weiss make of Penelope Spheeris' early 90s classic of Suburban dimwittedness (which really seems like it's set in the 70s, but is decidedly apolitical and pro-consumerism)?

Quote of the Day, Seriously, No Other Quote Could Possibly Come Close

"I just see it as different sort of Supreme Court... with tanks"

Do you imagine Justice Scalia's eyes lighting up when reading that line?

Alternately, imagining Justice Ginsburg peering out from a tank turret all Dukakis like would be pretty humorous, too.

So, if given the task to order the current Supreme Court justices by their desire to enforce their decisions with a tank, how would you rank all nine of them?

Checking Out My Fellow Insects

Recently, my status on the TTLB Ecosystem has bounced between Lowly Insect and Crusty Crustacean.

I'm on the low end of insect life. That's fine by me. Sure other bloggers can brag about their 6 millionth hit. Meanwhile after more than a year I've barely surpassed 13,000. That's cool with me.

I'm sure it's all about quality, and not quantity.

So just because I can, I thought I'd pick out some posts from the two bloggers above me at this moment, and the two bloggers below me on that TTLB Ecosystem.

I'm currently 14,664 out of 40,000+ ranked sites.

Coming up in 14,666th place on the ecosystem is the rather lengthily titled, I love this crazy tragic, sometimes almost magic, awful beautiful life (phew, say that ten times fast!). It's a blog from Hillary in Vancouver. She's Canadian, she's a teacher, and she's excited. If you want to know more, click around for yourself.

Coming in at 14,665 on your countdown is The Texas Songbird. He's my kind of man. He's a proud husband, father, a Republican, and black. Blogging has been light due to illness in the family. Going back to July, here's a rather interesting defense of the use of scotch tape as a disciplinary tool in public schools (don't let Andrew Sullivan read this, he'll accuse him of supporting torture).

Those were my inferiors (in ecosystem terms only), now onto my immediate superiors, currently at number 14,663 is the Forest Conservation Blog. It's exactly as you might expect, given the title. Enough said, really.

Moving on to number 14,662, at that ranking we have Random & Incoherent. Two things that go together like peanut butter and chocolate, apparently. The top post right now has a disturbing or hilarious photo, you make the call! Also, anyone who links to the Weird Al White and Nerdy video, can't be all bad. Also, it really is random, this PSA about recognizing stroke victims really does come across as being very random when compared to the other posts around it.

So there you have it, a tour around my immediate peers on the TTLB ecosystem.

To Be Fair, Most Likely, This Was Maria Shriver's Decision

(via Drudge)

The always tabloid-ish Contactmusic.com website has this blaring headline

Soooo, many dirty jokes, soooo little time.

I leave it up to you, the audience, to come up with your own.

(you filthy, filthy minded individuals)

21 September 2006

I Don't Care if She's a Bit of a Dope . . .

Given the choice between a woman who's 5'11 and 120lbs, and a woman who has curves and height similar to Ms. Johansson's. I'll take the curvy woman every time.

(though curvy and 5'11, now that's a combination)

Two reasons for this post, one, to post the above picture (a promo still from her current film, Black Dahlia) and link to egotastic, for even more pictures. And two, linking to this post from Moxie displaying her usual trademarked brand of moxie to get to the heart of the matter and illustrating the consequence of the Scarlett Johansson quote being alluded to here (not the liking being curvy part, the wanting to take over President Bush's job part).

(also, thank you Moxie for adding me to your blogroll, with an added thanks to this fella for helping her get that done)

(and clearly, the dope I'm talking about is the lovely Scarlett Johansson, not the lovely Moxie)

Spitzer Envy

Politically motivated anti-business nuisance lawsuits aren't just the provenance of NY AG Eliot Spitzer (though he has raised this crap to an artform, plus given his jurisdiction over Wall Street, his political grandstanding ends up having national and international repurcussions).

California AG Bill Lockyer also has a need for the spotlight and a desire for bigger and better political offices.

That's the argument being put forth by the auto industry regarding his latest 'global warming' suit against them, and its an argument that makes a lot of sense (even if it is self serving).

UPDATE: Prof. Bainbridge is even less kind to Bill Lockyer than I am. Read the takedown, read it with relish. It's a good one.

Disingenuous Outrage

(hat tip Drudge)

Rep. Rangel and Rep. Pelosi are SHOCKED! SHOCKED! I say that a foreign leader would come to the United States and denounce our President.

Of course, what Chavez said was milder than most of the comments that either of these folks have uttered over the past 6 years.

Their snap polls must have shown that this speech polled poorly with US voters, and that voters were making their own connection between rabid anti-Bush statements by Democrats and foreign leaders echoing similar remarks.They must have thought to themselves, we better get out in front on this.

Maybe that explains why the Chavez and Ahmadinejad jets from Havana (though being such good buddies, they flew separately, maybe they read my post and got a little worried) didn't have the hoped for 'accidents' I was predicting.

They both served a useful function in domestic politics.

The Democrats can denounce all they want, but any smart political ad director can splice together a 30 second spot that has Rep. Pelosi and Rep. Rangel saying much the same crap as Ahmadinejad and Chavez. The spot practically writes and edits itself.

The planes of those two 'loose cannon' world leaders landing safely in NYC was all part of an eeeevil Karl Rove-ian plot.

20 September 2006

It Smells of Sulphur Here

The translation of the ending of Fidel Wannabe Hugo Chavez rant/speech before the UN, "It Smells of Sulphur Here".

He received a warm response in house, naturally. And he clutched a Chomsky tome as if it were a bible, big surprise there.

But, some things said on the schoolyard remain true, even in the halls of diplomacy.

He Who Smelt It, Dealt It.

(it was so said, now it is so written, amen)

Links will follow, this news is still, "breaking".

UPDATE: Here's a link to Allahpundit's post at Hot Air of the video, and also there are plenty of other links.

Also, those bastards at Conan O'Brien's show stole my joke!

(what do you mean that this was an obvious joke that was probably spontaneously generated in the minds of millions?)

Also, I'm sticking with the old school British spelling, I don't care if the international standard spelling is Sulfur, now. I prefer the 'ph' spelling.

Those Bastards! And, Congratulations!

First the Those Bastards! part of the post.

The MacArthur "Genius" Grants were announced and they passed me up, once again. I'm beginning to think they don't know what they're doing.

Now, the Congratulations! portion.

The list of the 25 "geniuses" can be found at the foundations own website.

There's always one or two WTF?!? fellows included in the bunch. I think Anne Schuleit has earned the XWL WTF?!? Grant of $0 (to add to her $500,000 MacArthur Grant) for being the most inexplicable genius within the 2006 bunch. From her overview
Anna Schuleit is a young artist who brings back to life historic sites and structures through her original interpretations. In much of her work to date, she has honored the lives lived within mental health institutions by transforming abandoned facilities into moving, site-specific memorials. Employing such ephemeral elements as choral pieces and seas of flowers, her powerful public works are designed to endure not as objects, but as vivid memories for those who experience the multisensory events she orchestrates. For Habeas Corpus (2000), Schuleit filled Massachusetts’ historic Northampton State Hospital with music; from speakers installed throughout the dilapidated building, a recording of J. S. Bach’s Magnificat poured through windows and doors, stirring a rapt audience of former patients, caregivers, and hundreds of others assembled below.

Yep, that definitely earns the XWL WTF?!? Grant. Spend it wisely Ms. Schuleit.

Weekly NFL Related Humiliation (Week THREE)

Time to make the picks. This week I'm going 4-0.

I'm using the usual Vegas.com MGM/Mirage odds (current as of 12:21am 09/20/2006)

Closer match-ups this week according to the oddsmakers, only one double digit spread (TEN at MIA). A couple of games that look like fun on paper. Rather than wimping out and picking four obvious blowouts, I'm going to make picks in four games that matter.

Cincinatti at Pittsburgh (-1.5)
Will Pittsburgh bounce back from the Monday night shutout? Will the Bengals avenge Carson Palmer's getting knocked out of the playoffs last year? Tough call, the Steelers do awfully well at home, but Palmer is one of the few QBs who has the Steeler's blitzes and schemes figured out, plus he'll be real motivated (or he'll have a case of happy feet because of bad memories). I'm going to go out on a limb and say that the Bengals will pull of the mild upset, and possibly win big.

Jacksonville at Indianapolis (-7)
Game of the week, maybe one of the biggest games of the season, even though it's only week 3. Jacksonville's defense can be pretty scary, but Indy's offense is even scarier. Both these are elite teams, possibly the two best teams in the league right now. That Indianapolis is a 7 point favorite anyway is a testament to just how good they look. The Colts will do it. Peyton Manning is a machine right now, and their defense is still very solid. Even though they all look great still, the window is closing on this team and I think they are playing with urgency. Anything less than a Superbowl ring will be considered a failure given their talent. They'll make this a statement game and probably beat up Jacksonville and win by 3 touchdowns, not just one.

NYGiants at Seattle (-4)
Another good game, hopefully. Seattle still looks kind of shakey, and NYGiants are very lucky to be 1-1 instead of 0-2. I just don't see the Giants travelling well, and Seattle will put on a better show for the home fans than they did last week (even though they did beat the Cardinals). Their opportunistic defense will frustrate Manning the younger and manage to generate at least 3 takeaways. The turnovers will be the difference, as their offense has been unimpressive so far. Seattle will win, and cover the spread. No late game heroics/total collapse by the home team this week.

Atlanta at New Orleans (+3.5)
Show of hands of folks who thought these two teams would be 2-0 going into this game. OK, show of hands of folks who expected this game to be played in the Superdome this time last year. That's what I thought, I didn't see too many hands shoot up on either, and the folks who did raise their hand, I suspect they are liars. Atlanta looks good, or at least that's what I've been told as Fox hasn't shown either of their games in Los Angeles. Did get to see the Saints play, though, and I was impressed with them. Also, the emotion on the team and the desire to win for the city will be strong. Plus Reggie Bush as a receiver has had an impact already, Drew Breese is for real, and Duece McAllister looks like one of the best running backs in the league. Plus their defense is decent. And I know I've been told otherwise, but I'm still not buying what Michael Vick is selling. Defensive coordinators will figure him out, and bottle him and Warrick Dunn up, eventually. QBs have to be able to complete passes to be effective. You won't be able to convince me otherwise, at least not until he's hoisting that Vince Lombardi trophy in Miami in February 2007. SO in summary, I'm taking New Orleans and the points, just cause I can't pick favorites for every game, that's not my style.

And as a point of comparison, here's the link to Jimmy Kimmel's cousin Sal's picks for week three (the fact that we mostly disagree fills me with confidence).

19 September 2006

Post Fashion Week Fugness

Go Fug Yourself was gone for a week due to the Fug Girls attending Fashion Week in NYC.

Great posts since they began posting again. This one especially.

But they missed a great joke regarding the picture they included of Whitney Houston's hideous wig.

The joke they went with was fine, but I think mine is better. Read their's, then read mine below (I even did it in inviso-text (highlight below the photo to reveal), just in case your eyes accidentally bounce down to the picture's caption before following the link).

You make the call!

(Whitney! Rod Stewart called, . . . he wants his hair back.)


Two quotes to consider
and then there's this
Both about the recent Pope Benedict XVI madness, both extremely different takes on the issue. Both are quotes from Andrew Sullivan. Call me insufficiently transcendental if you like, and I know that "a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds", but this is getting ridiculous.

Just as I praised Mr. Sullivan for his thoughtful words on 9/11 only to see him back to hateful words on 9/12, this current about face with regards to the Pope's speech defies rationality.

Luckily I'm too small of a small-fry to be added to his list of persecutors with which he must take exception (I'm talking to you Mr. Kaus and Prof. Reynolds).

Nobody would care if he didn't write well. He's a good man to have on your side, unfortunately don't expect him to stay on your side for very long.

I felt duped after linking his earlier praise of Benedict XVI just to see him 'evolve' once again to a contradictory position in post after post.

I think ignoring Mr. Sullivan will by my strategy from now on (but I'll still read him, just not use his words to illustrate any matters of debate).


Time magazine while reviewing Ken Jennings' recently unleashed tome, Brainiac, coined the term celebrinerd.

Ken is trying to get this coinage to catch fire the way truthiness did for Stephen Colbert.

I'm willing to act as a Kenminion and spread the word.

Here are six celebrinerds from the past and the present, and some explanation as to their qualifications.

James Woods is a celebrinerd. The acting persona he's so carefully crafted (the latest iteration being the head lawyer in Shark), would seem to argue against that. But, don't let that fool you. Mr. Woods is a nerd. How do I know? First, he plays poker, and pretty much all folks who do really well at competitive poker are hardcore nerds at heart. Reading people alone isn't enough. To maintain some edge against the inevitable turn of fortunes in games of chance, having the ability to calculate those odds is important. As so happens according to his Wiki he scored a 1579 on the SAT, attended a Linear Algebra course at UCLA while still in high school, and attended (but dropped out of just before graduation) MIT. Enough said. Not all celebrinerds need to wear big thick rimmed black glasses taped in the middle to qualify.

Kat Dennings is a celebrinerd. The Queen of YouTube, a nerd? How is this possible? I'll tell you how it's possible, any woman who lists Douglas Adams as one of her favorite authors is a nerd. Plus, being totally into anime and manga outside of East Asia also marks you as a big time nerd. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Marcel Duchamp was a celebrinerd. He loved puns (see LHOOQ). He loved chess, achieved the level of grandmaster when he played competitively (and famously played against a naked model inside the Pasadena Art Museum in 1963). A love for puns and chess = nerd, nerd, nerd.

Jennifer Beals is a celebrinerd. She took time off from Hollywood to attend Yale. That in of itself isn't enough to make one a celebrinerd, although going Ivy League is a good start. OK, to be honest I've got nothing else, I just have had a crush on Jennifer Beals since Flashdance. Sue me. Did I mention that I find nerdy girls, seriously, seriously hot?

Franz Liszt was a celebrinerd. If you believe this Ken Russell film (it's a crime that this isn't on DVD), Liszt was the world's first Rock Star. I can't argue with that. He also was a child prodigy (nerdy), a piano virtuoso (nerdy), and changed the way people played piano (technical innovation=nerdy). He was obsessive about piano, single minded in his pursuit towards perfecting himself as a pianist. Again, pretty damn nerdy, plus he was one of the world's first international superstars, so the celeb- portion of the word still fits.

Weird Al Yankovic is an ultra-celebrinerd. He plays the accordion! Do I really have to say more? Just watch his new video, White and Nerdy, above. Also, visit his myspace, and check out his latest collection of nerdy parody songs, Straight Outta Lynwood, in stores Sept 26th!!!

UPDATE: This post was in reference to Ken's 9/18 post, I hadn't finished reading his 9/19 post which just so happens to mention the Weird Al video I posted (and I should give a belated hat tip to Gizmodo, which is where I first saw it, as well). All nerds have similar tastes (celebrinerd, or just plain old anonynerd), I guess.

Laffering All the Way to the Bank

The Laffer Curve at work, once again.

As usual, it's a non-story as far as many outlets are concerned.

Surely, we'll see a story stating unequivocally that if the tax rate were doubled, revenues would also double.

Of course, past performance suggests that's a fantasy. But instead every time tax cuts lead to increased revenue, the fantasy as far as many are concerned, is that Laffer was right.

A good explanation of the Laffer Curve can be found at Heritage.org, written by the man himself.

Interestingly, he traces the curve back quite far (and see, Muslims have contributed something good, take that Byzantine Emperor Manuel II Palaiologos!)
The Laffer Curve, by the way, was not invented by me. For example, Ibn Khaldun, a 14th century Muslim philosopher, wrote in his work The Muqaddimah: "It should be known that at the beginning of the dynasty, taxation yields a large revenue from small assessments. At the end of the dynasty, taxation yields a small revenue from large assessments."

Also, a pun should be measured by how much it mangles the original word, this pun doesn't measure up, yet I couldn't resist. I'm a nerd, oh well, one day though, I'll be a CELEBRINERD!.

18 September 2006

RESULTS (Week TWO) Weekly NFL Related Humiliation

The original post can be found here.

Now on to the results

Oakland 6 Baltimore 28 (my pick BAL -12.5)
Yes! Predictable game, predictable results. Oakland will win a few games this season, but not more than 4. Baltimore looks scarily good after two weeks, but it turns out, Tampa, really really sucks, so maybe their shutout of Tampa Bay wasn't as surprising as first seemed. The less said about the Raiders, the better.

Tampa Bay 3 Atlanta 14 (my pick TB +6)
Oops! In my defense, the Bucs defense did shut down Vick's passing game as predicted, in all but one stat area (and on the scoreboard) TB looked pretty good. Of course, giving up 306 yards rushing will sink any team. If you told me that all the Falcons would score is 14 points before the game started, I would have felt real confident about picking the Bucs, oh well. Still, if TB can actually score a touchdown at some point this season, they still have a defense that can cause problems for their opponents. Despite going 2-0, I'm not sold on Atlanta, call me old fashion, but quarterbacks who frequently rush for more yards than they pass, don't augur for long term success and deep playoff runs, even when they are as talented as Ron Mexico.

Arizona 10 Seattle 21
(my pick ARI +7)
Oops! Again, in my defense, the Cardinals played well, Warner looked sharp mostly, James had a decent game, and they gained a lot of yards on offense while doing a decent job on Seattle on defense. Only problem, they forgot to score more touchdowns. Racking up yards, but not getting TDs, sucks. Seattle doesn't look sharp, and will struggle against quality opponents this season. Arizona still looks like a team on the rise.

Washington 10 Dallas 27 (my pick DAL -6)
Yes! Neither team looked good. Dallas may have managed a home victory against a bad team, but at least they won't have to worry about TO being a distraction for a few weeks. TO expects to be ready for the game against the Eagles on Oct 8th. I wouldn't count on it. Washington will get better I expect, but it's hard to imagine them going far with Brunell at QB.

After selecting only four games which to pick, going 2-2 is pretty crappy. It's still early, and I really expected both Chris Simms to be playing better by now, and the Cardinals impressive offense to get in the endzone more often. One more touchdown by each of the losing teams in those two games would have made me a perfect 4-0. That's why I only do these picks for internet humiliation and not gambling purposes. Stuff like that will drive you crazy when the rent check is riding on that late 4th quarter meaningless field goal or touchdown to cover the spread.

Reacting to Boobs on the Internet, Leads to Thoughts of Things Other Than Boobs (Shockingly)

Reader I Am, reacts to the boobs on the internet in her own way.

Her reaction made me think of the album Pure by Golden Palominos. Fantastic album, from the occaisonally great band/musician's collective (each album a different line-up, not really a band per se), I think Pure remains the best album released under the Golden Palominos brand.

This album was their danceable, trip-hoppy, groovealicious masterpiece.

No Skin, Little Suicides, and Gun are fantastic songs (along with the rest of the tracks).

Plus, the cover photo . . . . ., well, just look at it.

Lori Carson's whispy, vulnerable voice suits these songs perfectly. Her own album released a few years later is a great listen, too. The Best Todd Rundgren Cover EVAH! is on that album. That should be recommendation enough to get you to run out and buy it.

Buy both albums today, unless you already own them, in which case, listen to them, already.

PS: I'd do a little more pissing off of Doug Morris, but unfortunately, no tracks from either album have been satisfactorily YouTubed.

17 September 2006

Ahhhhhh, Tenure

Sometimes tenure is a bad thing (Ward Churchhill, Sally Jacobsen, Steven Jones just to cite a few)

and sometimes it's a good thing, as exemplified by this comment by the securely tenured Prof. Ann Althouse regarding some comments inspired by this post
Ann Althouse said...

Charles Giacometti said..."Actually, Professor Althouse, my musing was designed to make you think twice about how unprofessional your behavior is..."

I am a blogger here. Your desire to confine me to your professor image is repressive and offensive. You are either trying to intimidate me or you are pathetically narrow-minded or you don't understand what blogging is or don't care about free speech. The attitude you're taking is a longstanding joke on this blog. Figure it out or expect to be criticized harshly here. This is not the law school classroom or a law journal. This is a blog. If you don't like my writing, read something else. But that's not what you are doing. You are despicably attempting to intimidate me about my job. If I were a person with insecure employment, it actually would be intimidating. But as it is, I'm in a position to call you on your repressive loutishness, which I'm happy to do for the sake of all the good bloggers who actually do have to worry about their livelihood. And shame on you.

8:03 PM, September 17, 2006

Non-tenured blogging professors have run into problems (see Daniel Drezner, but he landed on his feet, and is probably in a better position than the one he lost), but the exposure and intellectual stimulation provided by blogging will make for better, more engaged, and more engaging professors.

So despite the pitfalls, even the non-tenured should blog away and know that if fuddy duddy hiring boards don't like your Project Runway blogging, they are the ones missing out.





Or you could stay anonymous like me (and no, I'm not an untenured, or tenured professor).

The Bloodletting Has Been Horrific

Muslims throughout Western countries have had to hide their identity, fear death by roving bands of Christians, and have seen their mosques attacked with firebombings in cities as widespread as Malmo Sweden, Dearborn Michigan, Melbourne Australia, and London England.

Wait, none of that happened? Not even a single reported incidence of violence (and only one incidence of vandalism), so far?

Even after Anglican Churches were attacked in Gaza? Even after an elderly nun was murdered in Somalia? Even in reaction to threats against the Pope in London (rather comically, these protests are across from Westminster Cathedral. These idiots don't know that Anglicans have been pretty anti-papist throughout their history, and were in the habit of calling the Pope the Antichrist update: My bad, THIS idiot didn't realize there was both an Anglican Westminster Abbey and a Catholic Westminster Cathedral. Doh! Here's a first hand account of the protests from a Catholic parishoner at Westminster's Cathedral)? (Michelle Malkin rounds up many more examples, just scroll down)

Why then, do Muslim groups like CAIR insist on painting themselves as victims and painting folks like Ahmed Angerpuss below as being misunderstood and understandably outraged at such vile attacks on their faith as what Pope Benedict XVI said in Germany last weekend?

Enough is enough.

At some point all this pushing will result in a push back.

If they are going to cry anyway, maybe they should be given something to really cry about.

It's Grotesque Sexual Practices Day!!!

Prof. Althouse on Necrophilia, and Victoria on Bestiality.

Is this all in anticipation of International Talk Like a Pirate Day on Tuesday, September 19th???

(Pirate's weren't known for their discriminating tastes in which holes to plug, if you catch my drift, and I think you do, . . . . . you pervert)

(Also, I might actually watch the second Wife Swap on Monday, featuring the Wench (her term, not mine, and her telling of the experience, here) married to one of the co-founders of that day)

Reality Based Reporting

(via Instapundit)

Tom Bevan posting at Realclearpolitics chronicles how the same AP story can start out having the (unacceptable by 'reality-based' standards) headline, "GOP Gains Ground in Battle for Congress" but through the magic of the internet, transform into the more 'reality-based' headline of "Poll Shows GOP Not Making Its Case"

And why exactly is Democratic Virginia Senate hopeful Sec. Webb being pictured along with the article right now, anyway?

Interestingly enough, after googling the phrase, Poll shows GOP not making its case, the original wording for the piece shows up on the Yahoo News link, though if you click on it, what's pictured above is what appears (at least as of 3pm PDT)

Also, for all those folks using Firefox, the Snapper Add-on is fantastic. Makes doing these sort of screencaps a breeze.

Just goes to show you, if an article looks like it might be 'too positive' for the GOP, better screencap that sucker, cause you can bet it's going to get sprinkled with some 'reality-based' fairy dust and transform into something more acceptable.

Much in the same manner, if you see a headline that is nakedly and unequivocally BDS filled (to an embarrassing degree), expect that headline to suddenly, and surreptitiously, change over time.

16 September 2006

An Overflowing Sitemeter is the Best Revenge

An update to Dr. Helen's post regarding some recent folderol includes this perfect parting shot
Again, children, this is not about breasts--it is about the politics of "feminists" who balk at the idea that they cannot break the fingers of men who approach them in a bar and then have the gall to actually defend a group of "feminists" who hang out with Mr. Happy Hands himself. Just my observation. Now I have to get going--thanks for all the links from your angry blogs--it really helps boost my traffic!

Couldn't have said it better myself, unfortunately, I apparently lack the knack for enraging certain folks, I'll just have to try harder in the future.

Or not, all blog traffic isn't created equal.

The Only Reason That Doesn't Happen Here is Football

LGF accurately points out how Islamic Rage! is often delayed from the release of the offending statements or pictures.

From the mosques to the streets would seem to be a pretty standard trajectory for these events, plus it takes time to print up all the materials and manufacture the effigies.

Just as Islamic Rage! is predictable, so is an utter lack of Roman Catholic rage in churches across the United States after services on Sunday.

You could argue that the reason there is no Christian Rage! similar to Islamic Rage! after being whipped into a frenzy by their respective clerics is that as Pope Benedict XVI pointed out in the offending speech, from the very beginnings of the church there has been an intellectual tradition of trying to balance reason and faith with its roots in pre-Christian Greek philosophy. The process of reconciling these to seeming opposing forces helps define Christianity to this day, and I believe as the Pope has claimed, that this process of applying reason to faith has strengthened both reason and faith.

Islam has had similar attempts at reconciling faith and reason in their past, and even in their present, but right now the voices that marry fury with faith are far louder and seemingly numerous in Islam than those that attempt to marry reason with faith. That's nobody's fault but Muslims. Rather than an occaison to engender Islamic Rage!, the Pope's statements could have been a chance for dialogue as he stated initially, but the reflex towards Islamic Rage! is too strong and too unopposed to deny. The Pope is a punk for apologizing, though. Unless he said something to the effect of, "I'm sorry you are a bunch of thin-skinned, small-minded bullies who can't accept simple historical facts and engage in a reasoned dialogue about our shared desire to glorify the spiritual side of humanity", then no apology was necessary.

UPDATE: Seems like the Pope's statement expressing 'regret' isn't being considered an apology, maybe he's not a punk afterall. Basically he is saying, 'I regret that you are a bunch of reactionary fools', that's a statement I can stand behind.

Alternately, you could explain away the lack of effigies burning, and street protests here as a result of our love of football. Our potential Christian Rage! angry mobs are too busy rushing from their pews to their TV sets to catch their favorite football team on TV to engage in street mobs and violent protests.

I'll leave it up to you to decide which explanation is most likely, that Christians thirst for a balance between reason and faith, . . . . . or Christians thirst for watching the NFL.

15 September 2006

"It's Sooo Stupid! I Loooooved It"

More from the Queen of YouTube.

This time a tale of girl meets gumby.

She's just so freakin' compelling and talented, it's not even funny.

Kat Dennings, Rocks!

(but she should work on those sound levels)

Well, We Are Talking About China

(via Drudge)

According to the Daily Mail, officials in Beijing plan on 'hospitalising' the mentally ill during the Olympics in '08, among other efforts to sanitize Beijing for foreign consumption.

This is China, not exactly a human rights paradise, so any shock over this should be only the Captain Renault from Casablanca variety.

(he's shocked, shocked that Chinese officials might contemplate violating their citizen's civil rights)

I'm a little shocked that they won't be going around and just euthanizing their 'problem', that sounds more like what the leaders of China are still capable of, despite all their great 'reforms'.

A Giant Has Fallen, and A Pope is Attacked

Oriana Fallaci has died after battling illness for some time. Michael Ledeen remembers her here, and Michelle Malkin adds her thoughts here.

I tie this in with the Pope being burned in effigy throughout the easily aggrieved sections of the globe because she too faced recriminations and death threats for speaking the simple truth about Islam.

It's amazing that they can be burning effigies in the streets this very day, and a book that imagines in mastubatory detail the death of the current pope (obviously created well before the current 'inflammatory' statement from Benedict XVI), can bring up Urban II and the First Crusade in 1095 as being morally equivalent to gunpoint conversions in 2006 (I just heard this today on KCRW, realplayer stream here)

The difference between the faiths right now would seem to be that Christians aren't the same Christians that they were in 1095 and are glad of it, while Muslims aren't the same Muslims they were in 1095 and are angry about it.

They wish to return the world to those days when Islam was at its political, intellectual and technological height and a true adversary, and often surpassing the west in each of those dimensions.

But, that was almost 1000 years ago, and alot has changed. Beyond inventing new tactics to kill civillians and new ways to depict themselves as victims even while doing the victimizing, Islam has produced very little.

If they truly mean to reject all that the West represents, then put down those cel phones, shut down those TV and Radio networks and get off the internet. The modern world is no place for folks whose fervent desire is to plunge the world back 1000 years.

Maybe they believe the Mahdi will only reveal himself if the world he returns to resembles the world he left (though to be fair, the current crazies burning effigies aren't just the Shia crazies who believe the Mahdi will soon reveal himself).