Friday, January 26, 2007

Ain't we a wonderful species

So I sign on to Earthlink a few minutes ago, and on the "Welcome" screen I'm greeted with this headline: Gray Wolves To Leave Endangered List. Score! I think. I like wolves, and I took this to mean that enough restoration of the species had been done by committed conservationists we could now all take a breath. Secure in the knowledge that there would be chances to see them for years to come.


Wolves in the northern Rockies will be removed from the endangered species list within the next year, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said Friday, a move that would open the population up to trophy hunting.

Emphasis mine. Get it? The wolves are leaving the endangered list so to make it okay for Dick Cheney-types to kill them again. I had to read it three, four times to make sure I had it. And even then...well, here's another place where my liberal tendency to try to see things from another's POV gets me in trouble, and even shows up my naiveté.

See, I like wolves. But I'm not so moony about them that I can't imagine their being a threat to livestock or even, in extremly rare occasions, human life. So I wondered: Is there some surplus of wolf population, or have they become a threat to anyone's livelyhood or even life?

No, no there is not, and no they have not. This really is just about the fact that some people think it makes them more of a man to hunt animals for sport.

People like (I am not making this nickname up) Idaho Gov. C.L. ‘‘Butch’’ Otter.

["Butch"] told The Associated Press that he wants hunters to kill about 550 gray wolves. That would leave about 100 wolves, or 10 packs, according to a population estimate by state wildlife officials.

I think the nickname says it all.

Otter complained that wolves are rapidly killing elk and other animals essential to Idaho’s multimillion-dollar hunting industry.

Again, Emphasis mine.

Suzanne Stone, a spokeswoman for the advocacy group Defenders of Wildlife in Boise, said Otter’s proposal would return wolves to the verge of eradication.

‘‘Essentially he has confirmed our worst fears for the state of Idaho: That this would be a political rather than a biological management of the wolf population,’’ Stone said. ‘‘There’s no economic or ecological reason for maintaining such low numbers. It’s simple persecution.’’

Don't mess with my Gray Wolves, man...

A very silly joke about something that isn't very silly at all

The Iraqis hate Paul Weller. And/or the Justified Ancients Of MuMu.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

$10, 000 to the first reader who can understand a word of this*

Good afternoon. A few days ago, I suggested you watch a CNN program with Christianne Amanpour investigating British Muslims both extremist and moderate. This attracted the attention of a not-at-all-cowardly mystery poster named "purpleXed" who has no blog but does have a Blogger account. Presumably for the purpose of leaving comments on blogs like this one.

Well, being a liberal, I'm hung up on fairness. I actually try to respect all points of view and be tolerant. So I was looking forward to enaging this guy/gal in a civilized debate, seeing what they had to say, then making my reply.

But I'll be damned if I can understand a ##$@&&%$#$ word of this, enough to get hold of for a reply. Excerpt:
It is the media that retains the rants on the oxygen mask of publicity when it accords them undeserved and unjustifiable attention on prime time without which the rantagogues are more weak than a fish without water.
Any suggestions for what I should say to this apparently deeply involved person on an issue so precious to them that they took time out of their busy day? Speaking out like this should be encouraged and rewarded, it shows they're paying attention.

I just wish I was.

*Payable at the exact instant I have $10, 000 to give away, of course.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Reload 2

Being the reposting of linked videos I've posted that no longer work; just 'cos I like them. This is Eurythmics - Shame: IMO, the best video the two ever made (I believe Dave was the director).

As for the song, it's a beautiful rebuke to the idea of "the glamourous life." Now, normally I get prickly about the notion that it's always multi-billionaire rock stars like Sting and John Lennon who are telling us to "live here and be happy with less" or "Imagine no possessions."

So why do Dave and Annie get away with saying


In the dancehalls and the cinema
On the TV and the media

-for promoting a lifestyle which, they say, "don't exist?" Well, maybe it's because they don't leave the bromides and bands upon which they were raised out of their finger-pointing.

And they said all need is love...
With the Beatles and the Rolling Stones

This probably explains why the job at the video store didn't work out

Your Movie Buff Quotient: 48%

You are well on your way to becoming a movie buff.
You've seen many of the great films, and you have even probably developed an expertise in a few genres.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Well, that oughta do it

The things Friends will do for Friends. Via The Jennifer Aniston Center (what? I read it for the articles):

You already know that when Jennifer Aniston guests on the March 27 season finale of Courteney Cox's FX drama Dirt, she'll be playing her bosom buddy's archenemy, a rival tabloid editor. But what I've learned — muahaha, exclusively! — is that Aniston's character is a lesbian. What's more, she won't just mouth off to Cox's tightly wound counterpart, she's going to share a liplock with her.

On a semi-related, if meaningless note, it occured to me recently that it's at least mildly interesting how many of the ex-Friends cast have chosen "backstage in Hollywood" projects as their follow-ups. Cox with Dirt, Lisa Kudrow with The Comeback, Matthew Perry Studio 60. You could even count Joey.

I guess you don't spend as much time as hot as they were without forming a few opinions about the kitchen staff...

Just the news you want to get before you deliver the State of the Union

"Bush’s overall approval rating has fallen to just 28 percent, a new low, while more than twice as many (64 percent) disapprove of the way he's handling his job."

I'm going to repeat a prediction: It is by no means certain that the Bush administration will make it to 2008 intact.

A few quick words about last night's "24."

Spoilers ahoy.

Okay. I fully expect that this mystery tech wiz that the mercenary who's now driving around L.A. with Beth Huffstodt's would-be lesbian lover needs to find will turn out to be Chloe. Or, given her little "why do people I know keep dying?" whimper, Morris. That's fine.

Jack and his brother's wife having a history, still, a-okay. Jack's brother turning out to be bald-headed mystery man who was pulling all the strings last season, that's okay too.

But if that kid of his turns out to be Jack's previously unknown son...I'm throwing my TV set away.

This seems like a good place to put a terrific David Mamet comment:
"If we watch any television drama long enough... we will see the original dramatic thrust give way to domestic squabbles."

Why I am Pro-Choice

Kirsty MacColl as "Our Beloved Revolutionary Sweetheart."

(Hat tip-or perhaps I mean a jaunty snap of the panties-to Blue Gal.)

Because being Pro-Choice leads to Communism, and Communism is sexy.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Okay, the "Grey's Anatomy fight" thing

I don't know if you guys have been following this, but a few months ago there was a big fight on the set of Grey's Anatomy when one of the cast called another, a gay man, a faggot. After the flames from this had died down, the same actor opened his big, apparently homophobic idiot mouth again at the Golden Globes and repeated the slur. Even more intelligently, he did it while denying he'd ever said that about the other actor, who replied by going on the Ellen DeGeneres show and saying yes, yes he did.

USA Today has a good article about the state of things, with quotes from a couple of other actors and musicans. Including Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip's Sarah Paulson, who is beautiful, talented, and let's face it, my current lesbian crush. Must be the Keitha in me.

Anatomy's Patrick Dempsey, who was involved in the October confrontation, presented the TV comedy award to NBC's The Office but otherwise kept a low profile, confining himself to the backstage green room. But Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip's Sarah Paulson had no problem speaking out: "If someone said that about me and outed me that way, it would be really hard. I appreciate that (Grey's co-star) Katherine Heigl stood up for T.R. because it's our job to protect each other."

Some are calling for the actor, Isaiah Washington's, dismissal. I've been of two minds about it. On the one hand, I dislike bigmouthed homophobic idiots and I like seeing them get a cold hard smack of reality right back in the face.

But on the other, I dislike the idea that a man could be fired from a job that he supposedly does well because he expressed an opinion. Albeit one with which his castmates and producers (and me) disagree. (Granted, the ability to get along with your castmates and producers might be considered just as big a part of his job as good acting.)

My problem is, if I smugly say that this is okay, what do I say if Fox decides to fire Hugh Laurie from House because he won't make a pro-Bush speech in character? Niether of those things would ever happen, I don't think, I'm just looking for an analogy.

Fortunately, I found a solution to this moral dilemma, and in the most unlikely of places. I've rarely thought I'd ever find myself agreeing with John Mayer about anything (he liked the second season of Huff, for crying out loud), but he's got a great idea:
Other celebs have been chiming in, too: Neil Patrick Harris of CBS' How I Met Your Mother told, "I was just sort of stunned that anyone would want to rehash any of that again." And singer John Mayer, on his blog, says Washington's character should have to come out as gay on Grey's. "What better way for an actor to get to the roots of his discrimination than by portraying the very subject of his own ire for the remainder of his contract?"

That's brilliant.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Random Flickr-blogging 3776

What every young man hopes to find under the tree...(well, at least 90% of them)