Archive for February, 2011

Charlie Sheen
February 28, 2011

I don’t actually have anything to say about him. I just wanna see how many hits putting his name in a post title will get me.

Not hit-whoring, promise. Just curious how many people have so little going on in their lives that they’ll take the time to search for random bloggers’ thoughts on a forgettable shitcom star’s self-destructive behavior.

“Yes, I have a question”
February 25, 2011

“Can’t we just shoot the damn nigger already?”

At a town hall meeting hosted by a Republican congressman from Georgia on Tuesday an audience member asked, innocently enough, “Who’s going to shoot the president?”

This was met with gasps of disbelief from the audience and the congressman immediately ripped the guy a new one, telling him what’s what and that no matter what anyone thinks of the President talk about shooting him is infuckingsanely inappropriate.

Oh, wait. That’s not what happened at all.

What actually happened is that the rest of the audience laughed heartily and the congressman explained that he understood the man’s frustration and hopefully we’ll vote that coon out in the next election.

Seems there’s a pattern to be found here, and that pattern is 1) retarded reliable Republican voter makes asinine/racist comment about Obama and 2) slightly less retarded Republican politicians who know better give them a wink and a tacit nod of encouragement as they “refute” their claims for the cameras. Examples:

1) “Obama’s a Muslim!”
2) “Well… I take the President at his word that he is a Christian.” *wink wink nod nod*

1) “Obama wasn’t born in America!”
2) “Well… the state of Hawaii says he was born there.” *wink wink nod nod*

1) “Barrack Hussein Obama is a nigger coon ape spear-chucking vine-swinging jungle monkey rughead!”
2) “Well… fuck yeah!”

I may have exaggerated one of the first two.

Question
February 18, 2011

If an American citizen is picked up by American authorities, held without charges or access to a lawyer for years, physically tortured and mentally abused to the point where when he finally stands trial in a kangaroo court his brain has turned to mush and he exhibits facial ticks, has his lawsuit against those who authorized his detention and torture thrown out because such a trial would “cause a spectacle,” and no one cares… does any of it matter?

It should. Not least because if it can happen to anyone it can happen to anyone else.

“(the court has ruled) that Donald Rumsfeld is above the law and Jose Padilla is beneath it.”

At the risk of overexposing my favorite smiley, there’s just no better cipher for my reaction to yet another instance of the American government trampling over someone’s human rights while the American public remains oblivious so as to not even realize their’s are underfoot as well:

The Death of Uncle Leo
February 17, 2011



“Death is finished,” he said to himself. “It is no more!”


He drew in a breath, stopped in the midst of a sigh, stretched out, and died.

(But not before one last fitful, “Hello!”)

Is this the worst column ever written?
February 16, 2011

No, because a) it’s not a column and b) it wasn’t written by Bill Kristol. But still, this is one awful, awful piece of writing.

To surmise: some schmuck from the LA Times encapsulates in only a few hundred words the most fucked up malignancy in journalism today: the unwillingness to call bullshit on government. Be it out of ignorance, laziness or fear of accusations of bias, journalists routinely display a shameful reticence to scrutinize government dispatches, preferring instead to feed them directly, verbatim or paraphrased, to their audience.

Said douche castigates CNN’s Anderson Cooper for having the gall to repeatedly call the repeated lies of the Egyptian government in recent weeks exactly what they are: lies. Demonstrably untrue statements. Said hack rips Cooper as looking to cash-in on the bloviating punditry of his more successful competitors at Fox News and MSNBC, because apparently a “real journalist’s” job is to act as little more than a stenographer (or, I suppose in Cooper’s case, a parrot) for the proclamations of the Ministry of Information.

Notice in the article that not once does said toolbag take issue with the factual accuracy in Cooper’s designation of what is a mistruth and what is not. No, the issue is that Cooper had the audacity to actually parse the statements of others and make assertions as to their factual validity or lack thereof.

And how fucking dare he? I mean, journalists have a good thing going nowadays: swallow up whatever’s fed to you and just vomit it back up all over your audience. By challenging what he’d been told, Anderson Cooper was jeopardizing the sweet gig all his peers have going on – you get enough people doing that and it won’t be too long before journalists are being held accountable for totally missing the boat on things like Saddam’s “yellowcake” and how Reagan “knew nothing” and all sorts of complicated stuff that it’d just be easier to take the people in charge’s word on.

No, preserve the status quo. There are no “lies” when it comes to hard news. Don’t rock the boat. Work makes freedom.

EDIT: As usual, Glenn Greenwald gets it even righter than I do. Whatever, Glenn. You may be smarter than me, and more well-spoken, and actually get paid, but I-

…nothin’. Dammit.

Reason #4095843058830 why the Internet is fantastic
February 14, 2011

New meme of Bill O’Reilly’s latest and greatest, where he attempted to prove the existence of god by submitting for our approval that the “tide goes in, tide goes out, never a miscommunication” and that we “can’t explain that.”

Flawless victory as usual, Papa Bear.

:( fml… FNL signs off
February 11, 2011

The sun finally set on Friday Night Lights Wednesday night, and already the television landscape is looking more than a bit dimmer.

I’ve mentioned the show before here, a long time ago, issuing a rhetorical challenge open for any to accept. That challenge still stands, as does every superlative I excitedly doled out upon first discovering FNL when it had already run for three seasons.

Wednesday’s episode was really the third finale this show has ever had. Amidst atrocious ratings, the writers penned the last episodes of seasons one and three to act as both cliffhanger and catharsis; should the show have gotten canceled, either of those episodes would have served as worthy ends. They didn’t have to, thankfully, and NBC deserves all the credit in the world for keeping it running for five seasons even as no one watched. In the eternal struggle between art and commerce where the latter almost invariably wins out, score one for the good guys.

Indeed, there is probably no better example than FNL of the divide between popular taste and artistic quality: even as critics sang its praises year after year after year, no one watched. ABC Family recently acquired the rerun rights; they pulled it after six weeks. No one watched.

And therein lies the most immediate and practical reason for the continued existence of the professional critic, even in a world where a resentful public would rather scorn their opinions than engage them: “the discovery and defense of the new,” as Anton Ego so elegantly put it in Ratatouille. “The world is often unkind to new talents, new creations. The new needs friends.”

Yes it does. Were it not for the informed and heartfelt lauding of FNL by television critics I’ve come to trust, particularly the invaluable and always illuminating work of Alan Sepinwall, formerly of the Star Ledger and now over at HitFix, I never would have given a second thought to watching this show ostensibly about small town simpletons’ obsession with football that is in actuality more complex and less about football than I would have otherwise ever known.

I’m glad I know it now. I’m glad I got to spend 76 episodes with Coach and Mrs. Coach and QB One and the Riggins boys and Lance and Smash and Street and Buddy, and if those names mean nothing to you, as I strongly suspect they do, then you’d be wise to seek out the show and find out why they mean so much to me. Then you’ll know, too.

There’s something about going on a journey from beginning to end with a show like this that just feels different when it’s all over. It’s an indefatigable sense of completion, reverence and joy that you can’t get even from the giants of television drama, like The Sopranos or The Shield, even as your brain tells you, “Those shows were better.” They were, but it takes a show that engages your heart as much as your head to elicit the feeling I described above. And when it happens, when you find that rare show that inspires you and crushes you and surprises you and delights you, over and over and over again, well, there’s just nothing else like it.

I had that feeling at the end of The West Wing. I had it at the end of Freaks and Geeks. And I had it Wednesday night, at the end of Friday Night Lights, The Little Show That Could, whose central character that I can without hesitation or embarrassment call a genuine role model continually espoused a mantra of, “Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose.”

Amen to that, Coach – your show proved it.

I haven’t said anything about Egypt
February 10, 2011

because the whole thing just doesn’t catch my fancy. Maybe because it lacks a compelling villian; by dictator standards, Mubarak’s rather bland and rote. I’m not saying every little third world thug has to have the panache of a Hitler, but you’ve gotta distinguish yourself, even if it’s just something like the proto-eccentric-fascist-midget-thing Kim Jong Il’s got going on.

Another reason I haven’t gotten into it is because I know I’d end up fruitlessly expending a ton of energy ripping the Limbaugh’s and Beck’s and all the other sad leaders of conservatism today for insisting that the US continue to back a corrupt autocrat against the overwhelming ill will of his nation’s people because said autocrat plays nicely with us (because this strategy worked so well with Iran and the shah and Ayatollah Asshola a few decades ago.)

So yeah, I wasn’t really going to bother with this story, since here at Stupid, Ridiculous Things we’ve already spread our meager resources thin in order to cover stories like Hitler’s Avatar and cartoon crossbreeding and who I think should be dead. But this, this was just too good not to share:

I know it’s beating a dead horse
February 8, 2011

But you know what? Sometimes it’s fun to beat a dead horse.

And sometimes it’s fun to watch functionally retarded Iowan inbreds call Barack Obama a Muslim.