Saturday, July 30, 2005


We have more on the inexplicably frenzied reaction of conservative bloggers to the very idea, the very notion, of the upcoming television series Commander-In-Chief, starring Geena Davis as a female president. Tennessee Guerilla Women and a blog called The Carpetbagger Report found the following gems from the conservative "blogsphere".

James Dobson's Focus on the Family, in its daily alert to supporters, said yesterday that Geena Davis's character name, Mackenzie Allen, "sounds remarkably, poetically like" Hillary Clinton

Um...okay, you know, speaking as a writer who has something of an ear for the swing of No, it doesn't.

"[T]his show is a nefarious plot to advance the notion of a Hillary Clinton presidency. The thought is that if we, the submoronic television viewers, get used to seeing a woman president on TV, we'll be more inclined to vote for one in 2008. This is what the TV industry thinks. They don't view us as being rational actors, able to vote for a President based on our own reasoning, but instead as sheep to be herded and trained."

Ah, see, now I start to see what this is. I ran into this once or twice when I was writing my essays about the West Wing books. There is a school of thought that cannot conceive of a writer for whom politics is not the primary motivating factor. And so, CIC creator Rod Lurie must be thinking not, "I want to tell some stories about a female president," but rather, "I want to make people vote the way I do!"

But if the people are not as easily led as all that, what's the problem?

Speaking of The West October 2001, Playboy ran a group interview with the staff and cast of that show. When asked, "Why are Republicans less fun?" writer/creator Aaron Sorkin replied:

All I can tell you is that they are...I met with people in the Bush administration. I have never met a less funny group of people in my life. By God, they're not funny.

That's hard to believe when you read some of the suggestions the aforementioned macho boys of the Corner have come up with as alternate titles for a series about a female president.

Get ready to hold your sides.


THE OVULAR OFFICE [Jonah Goldberg]

Can't beat it with a stick, can you?

Why is it I just know these guys don't watch Two And A Half Men because they object to the implication?

This is the funniest thing I've seen in weeks

Amanda Marcotte found a so-creepy it's funny article on another one of those "ex-gay" ministries. Herewith we have a few of the tips offered on how gay man can stay straight and true.

Responses are by a blogger named Anne Zooks (in italics), Amanda (in bold), and one or two other guest commentators (in regular text).

men need to become “hard and masculine” in order to be able to enjoy the soft, mushy feel of a woman. In order to become firmer it is all right for a man to work out a little bit, he said, just don’t work out too much.
Mushy? On behalf of non-oatmeal women everywhere, hey!

A man should also have three years of celibacy,” he said, “and have been free of pornography and masturbation for some time.
The theory being, I guess, that after three years of celibacy, the gay man in question will be so horny that any human touch will do. And maybe that does work the first night of marriage, but good luck after that.

“What should be done if a man begins to have same-sex fantasies while making love to his wife?”
An eager participant in the audience said he and his wife pray whenever they make love.

Because if a woman doesn't arouse him, then I'm sure the thought of god watching him try to have awkward, un-satisfying sex with a woman will

physical intimacy should proceed slowly, and it is best to wait until marriage to experiment with deep kissing.

Annabel: How come we never experiment with deep kissing?
Keitha: Shut up.

Friday, July 29, 2005

Every time he thinks he's hit bottom, a hole opens

Poor Bush. Via Political Wire:

Bush Approval Drops Further
A new Gallup Poll finds a decline in President Bush's job approval rating to just 44%.

"The poll also shows a drop in Bush's favorable rating to 48%, which is the first time it has dropped below 50% since Gallup began tracking this opinion in 1999."

This is an administration in flames.

You know, if we actually had a...whadayacallit...opposition party, I'll bet they could take advantage of this.

Pity, really.

My man John Edwards is coming back

Damnit, I miss this guy. I mean yeah, he had the same albatross around his neck as John Kerry did when in comes to having voted for the war. But as a speaker, he made Kerry look sick...well, at least he helped.

I think I'd be happy to see him again on either end of a 2008 ticket--with Clark or Obama as VP, or running as Veep with Hillary.

And, of course, I still have the major hots for his daughter, Cate, the future first babe of the United States of America. Seen here (in the green), with John Kerry's daughters. Both of whom, I assure you, are looking at her and hating their parents.

I just wish I knew what Edwards' father had done for a living. You'd think that might have come up in the campaign.

Dick & George's Excellent Adventure

In Pandagon, Amanda Marcotte has one of her typically-excellent posts, this one responding to an article in Harper's on just how much people in our so-called "Christian" nation actually know about their professed religion.

From the article:

Only 40 percent of Americans can name more than four of the Ten Commandments, and a scant half can cite any of the four authors of the Gospels. Twelve percent believe Joan of Arc was Noah’s wife. This failure to recall the specifics of our Christian heritage may be further evidence of our nation’s educational decline, but it probably doesn’t matter all that much in spiritual or political terms. Here is a statistic that does matter: Three quarters of Americans believe the Bible teaches that “God helps those who help themselves.” That is, three out of four Americans believe that this uber-American idea, a notion at the core of our current individualist politics and culture, which was in fact uttered by Ben Franklin, actually appears in Holy Scripture. The thing is, not only is Franklin’s wisdom not biblical; it’s counter-biblical. Few ideas could be further from the gospel message, with its radical summons to love of neighbor.

And now, here's Amanda, proving once again why I think she's the hottest blogger on two legs.

we have an epidemic of false piety in this nation. It's real easy to go to church every weekend and sing loudly so everyone sees you and avoid actually thinking about what Jesus said and dealing with it. And into that vaccuum of actual knowledge of belief, it's easy to pour a bunch of angry bullshit about how god is sitting in heaven wringing his hands all the time and saying, "My god, why won't they stop fucking?"

Strong like an Amazon, baby

If you look over to the right there and click the View my complete profile link you'll find, among other things, a link to my Wish List. If you're amazed at the quality of posts on this site (I know I am), please consider making a small donation to the Buy Ben Those CDs He Can't Score Through The Ink 19 Gig Fund. I thank you.


Okay, so there's a new TV series coming this fall called Commander In Chief, in which Geena Davis will play the first female president. Now, I don't know how you feel about this, but I think it's got potential; Davis is certainly an attractive and talented actress with a pretty solid record. Series creator Rod Lurie has had a more mixed but still interesting career in films.

Certainly, it would seem to me, the most the prospect of such a series should arouse in anyone is either "that sounds cool, I look forward to giving it a try," or "nah, doesn't seem like something I would be interested in."

Sound good to everybody? Rational? Fine. Meanwhile, over in conservativeland, the macho men of The Corner are absolutely throwing a wingnutty. Armchair warrior Jonah Goldberg goes to great lengths to prove that:

The idea that a female liberal president would be more "feminine" than Bill Clinton is absurd, laughable, factually untrue. Bill Clinton was weepy, huggy and at all times pain-feeling. He'd wax eloquent on the glories of talk and empathy. At the end of one marathon meeting which accomplished nothing, he stretched out in his chair and said "That was great" as if he was about to light a cigarette. Feminists declared him the first female president. He talked of security not in the sense of blowing up terrorists but of leaving no children behind...And, sad to say, it was so successful that George W. Bush and Karl Rove copied it with their treacly "compassionate conservatism." It took 9/11 to remind George W. Bush why Republicans are called the Daddy Party.

Um...okay, can anybody...anybody at all...possibly find a flaw in his logic?

Like the fellow once said, ain't that a kick in the head?

Via Digby at Hullabaloo:

It must be very strange to be President Bush. A man of extraordinary vision and brilliance approaching to genius, he can't get anyone to notice. He is like a great painter or musician who is ahead of his time, and who unveils one masterpiece after another to a reception that, when not bored, is hostile.

The joke is that they're not kidding.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Kissing Jessica Stein

So here we are with Kissing Jessica Stein, the third in a trifecta of films that one person or another has suggested that my script, My Girlfriend's Boyfriend, reminds them of. So far this has left me feeling either embittered (my characters reminded them of that?) or arrogantly superior (fuck, my screenplay's better than that).

Kissing Jessica Stein is again, somewhat predictable, though not as much as Object Of my Affection. And more earnest than funny (though it is that in fits and starts). The truth is that there's really not much wrong with it. One or two of the triter scenes could have been replaced with more belivable dialogue, but how many films is that not true about?

(The answer? New Waterford Girl, which you have all called your video stores and put on hold, haven't you?)

It's just that it didn't sing to me the way great drama does. The way, picking something totally at random, Aaron Sorkin's best episodes of The West Wing do....the way I want my work to sing to people.

I'm also thinking about the fact that some feedback I got on my script recently said that "the dramatic shock value of the gays has decreased in the last decade."

Well, I'll tell you something. Not to make myself out to be "the noble heterosexual" or anything, but...I never made Keitha and Annabel gay for dramatic shock value. And if that's the only way I can "sell" them to even a quasi-mainsteam audience...maybe I don't want to do that.

Oh, Evelyn

Pierce Brosnan stars in this movie that he also co-produced, using some of the money and clout he has from being James Bond (I imagine mostly the clout). He plays an Irishman who almost loses his kids after his wife takes off.

It's all very Lifetime, with the twist being that it's a man saying "I want my babies back." And almost as sentimental as The Object of My Affection...but it works, and it's at least a diverting way to spend an hour and a half.

Memorable Presidential Quotes

"I cannot tell a lie."-George Washington

"We hold these truths to be self-evident; that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness..."-Thomas Jefferson

"You can fool all of the people some of the time, and some of the people all of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time."

"I wish some of you would tell me the brand of whiskey that Grant drinks. I would like to send a barrel of it to my other generals."--Abraham Lincoln

"The only thing we have to fear is fear itself..."

"Yesterday, December 7, 1941 - a date which will live in infamy - the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan."--FDR

"The buck stops here."--Harry Truman

"Ich bin ein Berliner."--JFK

"Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall."--Ronald Reagan

"The only time I ever hit two good balls is when I step on a rake."-- George W. Bush

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Misguided optimism

Tennessee Guerilla Women found a couple of polls that say that

  1. Not only has support for George W. Bush hit an all-time low, but
  2. A majority of Americans support Roe v Wade and
  3. They want Supreme Court nominee John Roberts to publicly state his position on abortion.

So you know what I'm thinking tonight? Go ahead, Mr. Bush. Keep fighting your manical "war on terror." Overturn Roe v Wade. Jam your far-right partisan hack onto the Supreme Court. All you're doing is just ensuring the fact that the backlash, when it comes, will last longer and longer and longer.

As I said, misguided optimism.

In a Good acting Company

Now, that's a lot more like it. I'd been meaning to see this film for a while--the ads made it seem promising and reviews praised the script. But somehow, with one thing and another, I only got around to it today.

"Charming" is a good word for it--not particuarly groundbreaking but a well-made film with a strong script. Excellent performances right down the line--besides the main three parts the roles are filled out by well cast character actors nearly top to bottom. Including a couple of unbilled cameos.

Dennis Quaid maybe hasn't always gotten the vehicles he should have as a young man, but he's aged into a wonderfully likable actor. And Topher Grace? Well, first of all, he still looks like Dave Foley's little brother to me. And I admit I resent him getting paid to make out with Laura Prepon on "That '70s Show." But I gotta give the boy props--he seems to have a good sense of humor about himself. And he can play comedy but also be real.

And I continue to be impressed with Scarlett Johanssen, after this and "Lost In Translation." She's got a really great face--not just beautiful, which she is, but interesting-given good material, she can be lumionious.

Oh, and no, no gay people--although there is a line about rumors that Johanssen's character is a lesbian. I just can't get away from them.

That's right.

Shut up, Keitha.

The Object Of My Aversion

Well, I'm 0 for two when it comes to seeing movies people tell me that my screenplay reminds them of. Some of you might remember my embittering experience with a film called Love And Human Remains.

The Object Of My Affection is a better movie, but not by a lot. Those of you who know me probably know that I can be a sentimental fool. I refer you to my recent list of favorite films. But this movie is almost overpoweringly sweet, like a too-strong perfume.

I felt at least three steps ahead of the screenplay at all times. This doesn't have to be a stake through the heart--if a movie is sufficiently funny, which this one is not. And the visual symbolism is about as subtle as the keyboard hook on Europe's "The Final Countdown."

For example, in the scene where Jennifer Aniston asks her gay male roommate to help raise her child, she does it when they're on a roller coaster. See, because they're about to embark a journey that has a lot of ups and downs. Everybody got that?

Aniston is actually fine when she's given enough to do, which she isn't often enough. So is most of the cast. However, given the pat nature of the script, it's unfortunate that so many of the actors are recognizable from sitcoms. Many of them good sitcoms, but sitcoms nevertheless.

(Meaningless, trivial observation: Both of the actors who played the brothers on the TV show Wings have now played gay men in movies--Tim Daly in this one, and Stephen Weber in Jeffrey, a film I adore.)

I hate to say it, but the finger of blame must point at the screenplay. I'm a fan of Wendy Wasserstein's The Heidi Chronicles, but fuck, my screenplay is better than this. I figure, in a movie, you can either show something or you can have people talk about it. Most of the books say it's better to show, but I'll stand up in defense of a good talking-about-it movie, Again, I refer you to my recent list of faves.

But to show something and then have people talk about it...that's just belaboring a point.

Ah, but there's good news tonight. One thing I salvaged from my viewing of Love And Human Remains was:

a good warning sign, or reminder, not to lumber my characters with unneccesary "plot points," like this movie which tosses a serial killer into the mix because...I dunno, somebody must have thought it was a good idea.

I've been getting some advice lately to "up the stakes" in my screenplay(s). My problem is, every time I try to think of ways to make the stakes "higher" it feels forced. And I write by basically deciding who is "on stage" and then listening to my characters. And Keitha & Annabel would tell you the stakes are quite high from where they're sitting! :-)

Anyway, to get back to The Object Of My Affection, I will say that the ending was another reinforcement of something I don't want to muck up my movies with. It makes sure you know that every single character's arc has a "feel-good" resolution. I like to leave a few things unresolved.

So, now on to Kissing Jessica Stein...well, probably not right now, I rented a couple of other films too that (as far as I know) don't even have any gay people in 'em...


Remember just over a week ago, when I said that Judge Roberts was a far-right, partisan hack? Well, to further back that up, here's a little info on his role in the 2000 recount.

strung out on heaven's high, hitting an all time low

Oh, this is good. Once again, luxuriate in Bush's incredible plummeting poll numbers. I suppose Democrats could take advantage of this, if only they weren't all made out of jelly. Remember to get those abortions in now, girls...but the good news is, we'll probably all be killed by a terrorist attack Bush spectacuarly failed to prevent anyway.

They've got to be kidding me

Apparently, a recent issue of Oprah's magazine has some advice for women on the ways of men (according to Pandagon). Now, my vast reading audience: Ladies, please tell me if the men to whom this advice seems to apply seems like anyone you would want to spend a hot night with. Gentlemen, same question in reverse--if the woman in your life thought so little of you...

(Gays and lesbians, redistribute as necessary)

PS: For bonus points, try to tell me which sex you think is being more insulted here. Being a guy, I'm gonna go with the men. See what you think.

Now, on to the valuable pieces of advice.

Don’t try to talk to him during football season.

Ok, so maybe my disbelief about this one is based on my almost total ignorance of sports, which is well-nigh legendary amongst my friends. But still: Really? In 2005 we still have that hang-up?

If he tries to cook, get out of the kitchen until it’s time to clean up.

Oh those darn men, puttering around with their pots and pans. Gosh, I love the little goofball.

Don’t be argumentative. Admire him for being tough. Shut up.

Yeah, that's a good idea. For god's sake, don't have opinions of your own but if you must, don't actually, you know, express them. And in the name of all that is holy, don't have anything to back up those opinions.

Somehow, I just know a Buffy fan came up with that rule.

Acquaint yourself with the career of Peyton Manning.

Yeah, I had to look it up, what's your point?

Meet every protest and argument he makes, no matter how ridiculously false, with the observation that he is absolutely boxing this is called rope-a-dope.

"Correct as usual, King Friday."

Rent a Steven Seagal movie.

Oh yes, do indeed, please. I heartily recommend "Hard To Kill," in which his unfortunate then wife, Kelly LeBrock, testifies to the massively overpowering size of his penis.

If the guy these pieces of advice are describing is the kind of guy I think he is, he'll love that part.

Accept that the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue is one of his favorite things.

I suppose I should be making a separate list about "things men are supposed to love that I just don't get." Okay, the swimsuit issue. I understand the premise. But...but you know, Playboy magazine has been on the stands for over 50 years.

And anyone with a computer has access to pictures of some of the most beautiful women in the world. Some of them, the same women who appear in the swimsuit issue. Only stark naked. And some video stores actually have entire shelves of the likes of Ginger Lynn performing certain acts that would make steam come out of John Ashcroft's ears.

I mean, so I've been told.

...anyway, to get back to my point, is the swimsuit issue really that big a deal for men over 17 anymore?

If you want him to fix the shower drip, whatever you do don’t nag; instead, remove the shower head, bring it to him and say “uh-oh, stupid me, I tried to fix it myself but now the drip is worse!” Then offer to bring him his power drill

Actually, this would probably work on me. Except, you'd have to replace the words "power drill" with "phone book" so I could call a plumber to fix the damn thing. Any woman who's ever dated me is gonna know that I don't have a power drill.

Wait a minute...

If you want to comfort your man, don’t try to soothe him with a home-baked pie; for the lovagod, tell him how powerful he is.

Actually, something in a lemon or key lime pie might be nice. Or you could just give us some kind of sex, that works too. Because, you know, we don't have...what are they called...feelings. No, we just want to get laid and fed and NEVER, EVER TO BE QUESTIONED YOU STUPID BITCH CUNT!

Sorry...but if magazine articles like these are to be believed, I have every right to act this way and no woman in my life should ever expect anything less.

Or better.

A small shame

I can't say that Danny Simon, the comedy writer who just passed away, was a big hero or influence of mine. But he turns up in a lot of books about television in the '50s and '60s, and those by or about his brother, Neil.

And so I have a real sense of his presence, if not his loss, if that makes any sense. Anyway, Mark Evanier has more, as well as a couple of the classic "Danny Simon stories."

It's the birthday of an American hero

Over on Cartoon Brew, Jerry Beck reminds us that:

65 years ago on this day, Warner Bros. released a Merrie Melodies short called A Wild Hare.

Happy birthday to one of the all-time greats.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

A rant about...

Mark Evanier has one of his political rants--much shorter than usual--about a new poll saying that 51% of all Americans believe the Bush administration deliberately misled the public about whether Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.

The new motto of the Republican party

"When we obstruct justice, we really obstruct justice."

Smoke, smoke, smoke that cigarette

Ok, now, I don't smoke. Never have. On a bad day, cigarette smoke gives me a headache. I have, and have had, one or two friends who do, and of course I wish they'd stop. But I have to admit, almost to a person as best I remember, they've all been very considerate about sitting near windows or going outside, or not smoking at all when they know it would bother me.

Banning smoking completely from restaurants, as opposed to clearly differentiated smoking and non-smoking sections, seemed to me a tad extreme. And even I have to admit...this is insane, on at least a couple of levels.

Bill Pushed to Stop Drivers From Smoking
Ashtrays have been disappearing in cars like fins on Cadillacs, and so could smoking while driving in New Jersey, under a measure introduced in the Legislature.

You don't have to be George Carlin or even Jon Stewart to see the joke potential in trying to stop drivers from smoking while driving...IN NEW JERSEY. The garden state...if you're growing smokestacks, or so I've heard.

Some lawmakers may fear the bill is frivolous compared with more pressing issues like taxes, said political analyst David Rebovich.


Mitchell Sklar, of the New Jersey State Association of Chiefs of Police, said police departments may balk at enforcing such a law. "In general, we'd rather not try to incrementally look at every single behavior and make those a violation," he said.

A tip of the hat to James "the" Mann for the pointer.

Intelligent Design

In Pandagon, Jesse Taylor comments on some responses to an article that appeared on so-called "intelligent design," which is the latest attempt by the religious right to retard the teaching of evolution to schoolchildren. One no doubt world-class scientist wrote:

How is it that scientists can examine a rock specimen from Mars and "affirm" that there was once water on Mars (which has no water), and look at our planet, which is 70 percent water, and declare that there is no evidence of a worldwide flood?
Scientists and religious authorities are, indeed, fallible.

To which Mr. Taylor replies:

It's called "science". You see, massive flooding leaves evidence. You do know what evidence is, don't you? It's that stuff that convicts the B-list celebrities on Law & Order. Think about that...but on a big, global scale.
You see, one thing has nothing to do with the other - whether or not there was ever water on Mars has no bearing on if the entire planet flooded several thousand years ago. It's not like Noah built an intergalactic starship and bumped his ass to Mars to dump off the extra water, all the while bringing the pure power of funk to benighted Martians.

I'm linking to this for two reasons. One is because I know, I just know, that somewhere, right now, some sci-fi novelist or b-movie producer is preparing a story with precisely that premise. The other is that it gives me a chance to use one of my all-time favorite quotes:

The effort to reconcile science and religion is almost always made, not by theologians, but by scientists unable to shake off altogether the piety absorbed with their mothers' milk. The theologians, with no such dualism addling their wits, are smart enough to see that the two things are implacably and eternally antagonistic, and that any attempt to thrust them into one bag is bound to result in one swallowing the other.

The scientists who undertake this miscegenation always end by succumbing to religion; after a Millikan has been discoursing five minutes it becomes apparent that he is speaking in the character of a Christian Sunday-school scholar, not of a scientist. The essence of science is that it is always willing to abandon a given idea, however fundamental it may seem to be, for a better one; the essence of theology is that it holds its truths to be eternal and immutable. To be sure, theology is always yielding a little to the progress of knowledge, and only a Holy Roller in the mountains of Tennessee would dare to preach today what the popes preached in the Thirteenth Century, but this yielding is always done grudgingly, and thus lingers a good while behind the event. So far as I am aware even the most liberal theologian of today still gags at scientific concepts that were already commonplaces in my schooldays.--H. L. Mencken

Hey, now, wait a minute

Hoffmania observes:

When wingnut cartoonist Scott Stantis uses his comic strip real estate on the DNC chairman like this, you know Dean's getting under their skin...Stantis has Tinsley's Disorder. He forgot to tell a joke.

Now, leaving aside the joke, which no, isn't so great, the poster in the first panel...that's supposed to be an image of Howard Dean?

Looks more like Spiro Agnew, W.C. Fields, Boris Yeltsin, Karl Rove...even Bill Clinton is a closer like-a-look match for what Stantis drew as "Howard Dean."

I mean it's not like I was expecting Mort Drucker caliber caricature, but...

The Bad Dudes? Where?

The ever small-minded Rick "man on dog" Santorum was on The Daily Show last night, publicizing his timely response to Hillary Clinton's book.

ETA: I hope myself will forgive me for interupting like this, but I just found a quote from old woman-in-the-home, man-on-dog that's just too delightful not to post here:

When I asked him if he viewed gay marriage as a threat to his own marriage, he answered quickly. ''Yes, absolutely,'' he said. ''It threatens my marriage.

Oh, reeeally?

And now back to our earlier scheduled post.

A couple of the liberal blogs are feeling let-down that Stewart did not "go after" Santorum more wholeheartedly.

I know what they mean. There were certainly times when I wished Stewart would have rebutted one of Santorum's talking points with shall we say, harder logic. But at the same time, one of the things I think Stewart does best is something 98% of the other talk show hosts don't do: Try to engage his guests in conversation; making clear where he disagrees, which I think he did, but not hitting them with pepper spray a la Hardball.

Anyway, a blog called towleroad has a partial transcript of the appearance. I also recommend reading the comments, which mostly seem uncommonly well-informed and reasoned for blog readers (no offense, my vast reading audience).

Except, of course, for the guy (I'm guessing) who wrote in "You are all a bunch of AIDS Monkeys."

Sunday, July 24, 2005

It's Fan-tastic

In his answerman column, Roger Ebert responds to comics fans who have queried his review of "Fantastic Four." Not because they disagree with it, but because Ebert revealed an insufficient (to them) knowledge of the characters' mythos and history.

He writes:

What I learned while reading dozens of messages is that comics fans have made enormous psychic investments in their favorite characters, and follow their origins, adventures, opponents and character changes with an attention bordering on obsession. I saw a bad movie. Many of them saw a movie whose goodness or badness was secondary, since whatever happened on the screen was linked in their imaginations with an extensive pre-history.

Welcome to my world, Roger. Visions of debating with "Buffy" and/or "Star Wars" fans (often one and the same, and comics fans to boot) dance in my head. I don't know what it is that makes fandom, for some people, about a combination of loss of objectivity and a willingness to be exploited.

The will of the people and the voice of the problem

1. The friendly Tennessee Guerilla Women found a poll that says more than three-quarters of Americans want more info on Supreme Court nominee Roberts, to decide for themselves if his views represent the "mainstream."

And also an article saying that republicans, for some reason, don't want the American people to have said information. Pro-lynching senator Orrin Hatch plays the "partisan" card in explaining why Democrats have no right to ask for it.

Egalia sez:

Yeah, it’s pretty friggin' outrageous for Democrats to inquire about the record of a man who seeks a lifetime appointment on the Highest Court in the land. So friggin' outrageous that some Republicans believe “the demands may be early signs of a stealth campaign by Democrats to kill the Supreme Court nomination by demanding documents they know they won't get.”

“Some Republicans” have more faith in Democrats than I have.

I don't know what's she's talking about--the heat wave in Tennessee must be getting to her. Lack of faith in Democrats, come on, what is that? Oh. Unless, of course, it's stuff like this:

"You're gonna miss a great speech there. Same one I've given for 40 years. It's going to be breathtaking."

-- Sen. Ted Kennedy

--Political Wire's Quote of the Day.

Okay, the nanny and Jude Law thing

I've only been keeping one eye, if that, on this story, because...well, if I spent too much time obsessing about Jude Law, it might cut into the time I spend worshipping the twin goddesses, Virginia Madsen and Anne Hathaway.

But Amanda Marcotte, as might be expected, has a good take on it.

the story of Jude Law fucking his nanny to get revenge on his fiancee for daring to continue in her career when he apparently expected her to throw it out the window now that she's got him in her life. This is truly an odious story and I wish I had never heard it, because that is such a lowdown, asshole move that it immediately destroyed my crush on Law, a crush formed strictly on the basis of his hotness alone, since I can't, off the top of my head, think of a single movie he's in that I like. But it's hard to have deviant fantasies about a man you know is so damn selfish and arrogant, because it becomes impossible to imagine he'd be an ounce of fun. But I digress.


Things I don't understand:

there was a female security guard more-or-less watching the cubicle next to where we were, and I got into a conversation with her. The patient within was a semi-coherent woman who'd been brought in by the police, complaining of "brain injuries." Her boy friend, she mumbled, had inflicted them. He had been beating her and hitting her for years now, and this was not the first time she'd been in this emergency ward due to his handiwork.

So why did they need to have a security guard watching her in there? Was someone afraid "the boy friend" would get in and resume smacking her around in a hospital emergency room? No, the guard explained. It was to keep her from sneaking out of the ward and hurrying back to Mr. Wonderful. This, the guard said, is not uncommon: "They suddenly realize someone is talking about going and arresting the S.O.B. and they either get worried about losing him or afraid that he's going to get mad at them and make their lives even more miserable." The lady in question had done that every time she'd been in before. There was also the worry that she would do something suicidal there...which wouldn't have been all that different from going back to her beau.

Mark Evanier notes this and another "slice of life" anecdote.

John McCain: The "good" republican

Via AmericaBlog,

On ABC's This Week, Stephanopoulos just read the text of the Classified Information NonDisclosure Agreenent that White House employees are required to sign:

"I have been advised that any breach of this Agreement may result in the termination of any security clearance I hold; removal from any position of special confidence and trust requiring such clearances; or the termination of my employment..."

Stephanopoulos: Do you believe that this agreement should be abided by?

McCain: I do, but that also implies that someone knowingly revealed...

Stephanopoulos: This covers negligent disclosures

McCain: Again I don't know what the definition of "negligent" is.

"Guilty of a lack of due care or concern." As in, Rove was negligent in his ethics when he leaked classified information about a CIA agent to reporters and lied to the FBI about it. As we've seen, even Ronald Reagan knew that.

Or to put it another way: John McCain is negligent both as a man, and as a father. Because he is bending over backwards to protect men who not only smeared him but tried to use his own child against him in the 2000 election. And did it in a racist, cynical way.

But apparently, this matters less to John McCain than the prospect of occupying the oval office one day. I wonder how you explain that to your kid.

John McCain, ladies and gentlemen....there are no good ones.