Saturday, May 31, 2008

Jennifer Lee Wiggins in the first part of the two-part season finale of House

(after that is a new version of the demo reel I posted a little over a week ago)

Bill Clinton's latest attempt to destroy his legacy (updated with additional link)

And, y'know, it's not like he didn't do his best to do that when he was president, is it (I suppose it depends on what the meaning of "is it" is...)?

With Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign on the verge of defeat, Bill Clinton has been placing blame on enemies including a brazenly biased media that tried to suppress blue-collar votes, a powerful anti-war group that endorsed rival Barack Obama and weak-willed party leaders unable to stand up to either of these nefarious forces.

Pieced together from the former president's public remarks at his wife's campaign events and a private conversation last week with top donors to her campaign, the theory goes something like this: After Hillary recovered from a string of losses to rival Barack Obama with March 4 wins in Texas and Ohio, powerful forces conspired to pressure the superdelegates who will decide the nomination to back Obama by discouraging her supporters from voting and trying to hide evidence proving she would fare better than Obama against presumptive GOP nominee John McCain

Mr. President, Senator Clinton. May I respectfully add two two more personages to blame for the fact that Mrs. Clinton has lost? Yourselves. That's why you lost.

(UPDATE: Or, what hilzoy said:
Note what's missing here: any sense that Clinton herself is a responsible moral agent. People are writing about her as though she were a bomb that needed to be expertly defused, as opposed to a person who can govern her own life, and is responsible for her own choices.

Obama is a better candidate than Hillary (and Bill, as I've said before, should have been boarded at the Playboy mansion so he couldn't embarass his wife's campaign so much). Everything else is just smoke.

I fear this long primary has allowed both Bill and Hillary to show their true colors. I, and I don't think I'm alone here, don't like what I see.

Bill Clinton was the first US president for whom I ever voted, and I remember feeling hope at the time. Now I just feel like I'm carsick ("Clintsick?").

For god's sake, the two of you, if you love your country at all, Just. Go. Away!

Ah, the democratic process

We have here a photo from outside the Democratic party meeting in Washington, DC to try to reach a compromise on Florida & Michigan, where Hillary supporters are staging a demonstration.

I find the picture of the woman with tape over her mouth to be really offensive. First, because it's so obviously designed to push women's buttons, and second, because it rationally and objectively makes no sense.

No one has been shut up here, not literally, not figuratively. Certainly not Clinton. She's got some of the world's biggest microphones broadcasting to the world's biggest audience. It's just that, as the primaries have conclusively shown, she has no idea what to do with them.

And if the voters of Michigan and Florida feel "disempowered," their quarrel is with their state leaders who knew the rules, knew what the consequences were for breaking those rules, and chose to break them anyway (unlike, ahem, my state, where we did play by the rules).

Clinton and/or her supporters can talk about "civil rights" and "morals" all they want, but I know with absolute cast-iron certainty they wouldn't be saying a goddamn thing about them if she hadn't lost. I'm sorry, but all this is...all this a temper tantrum by a sore loser.

And, I offer this next without approval, disapproval, or judgement of any kind. Simply as an observation of the strange things that can happen with photos. Look at the picture again, specifically at the pink sign which says "Count all the Votes"...

...or would, if not for the fact that the American flag is obscuring the "o" in "Count."

Friday, May 30, 2008

Godfrey loves me! He put me in the shower!

Here's an essay by Roger Ebert on one of the coolest movies of the 20th century, My Man Godfrey.

One paragraph, just to set the table:

The movie also benefits from the range of sharply defined characters, and the actors to play them. Even the biggest stars in those days were surrounded by other actors in substantial roles that provided them with counterpoint, with context, with emotional tennis partners. Notice here the work of Eugene Pallette, who bluntly speaks truth even though his family is deaf to him. By God, he's had enough: "What this family needs is discipline. I've been a patient man, but when people start riding horses up the front steps and parking them in the library, that's going a little too far. This family's got to settle down!"

Good one, John

John McCain’s decision to use a photo of Gen. David Petraeus, in uniform, without his permission, in a fundraising appeal is starting to generate some attention.

Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, reminded those in uniform this week to steer clear of the political arena during the election season. “The U.S. military must remain apolitical at all times and in all ways,” Mullen said.

Way to respect the GI.

Oh, I want life, Life wants me To breathe in its love...Take me, I'm yours, Now I'm comin' up for air I'm gonna live my time For the rest of my life

Erasure is one of the best dance-synth-pop duos there's ever been. The music is in the mold that Vince Clarke helped perfect with this and his other bands (Depeche Mode, Yaz, The Assembly), and Andy Bell is one of the great voices.

This is "Breath Of Life" (the video for which, incidentally, goes along with that electro-Alice piece I posted a little over a week ago). If it doesn't make you smile, I don't know what will.

The following images have nothing to do with the song, technically...I just found them, liked them, and thought they made a good fit.

They're of a curio shop somewhere in Cape Cod and some of their wares, apparently.

It's about time...for me to employ...a little stragedy

According to my iGoogle, this is one of the most emailed news items of the day:

Obama used party rules to foil Clinton

You mean...he won by playing by the rules?

That's sick.

BTW, note these two paragraphs:
"Black districts always have a large number of delegates because they are the highest performers for the Democratic Party," said Elaine Kamarck, a Harvard University professor who is writing a book about the Democratic nominating process.

"Once you had a black candidate you knew that he would be winning large numbers of delegates because of this phenomenon," said Kamarck, who is also a superdelegate supporting Clinton.

Sigh. I so want to believe it's just coincidental happenstance that the one citing the "Obama only won delegates because he's black" version of reality is a female Clinton supporter...

Funny you should ask...

OK. At this point, you know how I feel and what I think about Hillary. She's generating a lot of smoke to hide the fact that the roast is burnt to a crisp, she's disappointed me personally, and I think she's reached the stage where she's actually hurting a lot of causes in which she claims to believe.

But, I know what you're saying. You're saying: But how does Jack Bauer's father feel about this?

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Tis' to snort over

I'm sorry, sometimes you've just gotta laugh. OK. You may have heard that, a day or so ago, Barack Obama mistakenly referred to Auschwitz instead of Buchenwald, in telling of the WWII experiences of a relative of his.

That's right, he made a mistake about something which took place over 15 years before he was born. What an idiot. This mistake was quickly corrected, and the basic facts checked out, for Obama's great-uncle did help liberate the Buchenwald camp, as part of the 89th Infantry.

So: You would think no reasonable person, of good will, could honestly be offended by such a harmless, obvious and simple mistake. But of course, this is the good Christian Republican party we're talking about...who saw an opportunity.

Like this pro-war shlomo (via John Cole by way of Steve Benen)...
who argued:
Buchenwald, on the other hand, while atrocious beyond normal human understanding, was merely a slave labor camp, and not historically abnormal in a time of war. The people who died there did so under the stress of work and disease, rather than as a deliberate attempt to wipe them off the planet. [emphasis added]


I'm sorry, sometimes you've just gotta laugh...

McClellan by two Matthews

Ok, the McClellan thing.

I haven't said anything about this yet because I didn't think I had anything to say that anybody else wasn't saying: If you believe Bush (there still are such people), you're mad because you think McClellan is, at least, just trying to sell books; successfully, it seems. At worst, you think he's a traitor.

If you never believed Bush, or even if you just stopped believing him a couple of years ago, you're mad at McClellan for not speaking out when it might have made a difference.

But I do think it's worth reading a couple of posts about it. First, from Matt Cooper. If anybody has a right to an opinion on this, it's Cooper, and he gives it in this post (excerpts below).

As you may recall, Cooper was one of the reporters to whom Karl Rove leaked the name and work of Valerie Plame. But, unlike the other journalists, he did his job, as Hullabaloo reminded us a few years ago. He wrote a piece about the leak as what it was, an attempt to punish Joseph Wilson.

The piece led to my being subpoenaed as a witness in the leak case—something both me and Time Inc., which was the owner of my notes and emails, fought mightily in the courts to avoid. Eventually Libby and Rove gave me permission to talk and I, like every reporter touched by this case from Tim Russert to Robert Novak to Bob Woodward to Judith Miller, wound up speaking under oath.

I rehash all of this because McClellan famously defended Rove and Libby, saying they had no role in the leak case. He had gone to them and they had, to put it charitably, misled him. McClellan, not exactly a silver-tongued orator, assured the press that they played no role. A defter press secretary would have made a small but crucial distinction by saying: "They tell me they played no role." McClellan, in his book titled What Happened: Inside the Bush White House and Washington's Culture of Deception, now laments that he watched his credibility disappear after it emerged in 2005 that Rove had been my primary source.

What's the larger thing we should take away from What Happened? In a way, both McClellan and his critics are right. Certainly everything McClellan says about the rush to war and the incompetence of the administration has held up over time. He now finds himself with the nearly three-quarters of Americans who disapprove of the president's job performance. But the Bushies do have a point when they note that McClellan did not raise these objections while he was in the White House. There is something unsettling when a George Stephanopoulos or Scott McClellan rides a presidential candidate and then a White House to fame, and then dumps a critical memoir out there.

And here, The Independent (UK) commentator (and Kirsty MacColl fan!) Matthew Norman opines that McClellan's book is "a potential nightmare" for McCain.
After Bush, Obama will ask, do you honestly want a bellicose Beach Boy humming "Bomb Bomb Bomb, Bomb Bomb Iran" as he arranges the family snaps on the Oval Office desk? The Senator paints me as babyishly hopeful that everything will come up roses, he'll say, so tell me who's the guy who bought the promise that US troops would have rose petals showered over them as they marched into Baghdad? Aren't you just sick of all the scarifying mendacity laid bare in that former press secretary's book?

It was fearmongering that persuaded the American people to support the war, and fearmongering that conned them into re-electing George Bush. Fool me once, shame on you, as Dubya once so hilariously struggled to articulate. Fool me twice, shame on me. But fool me thrice? Are you kidding?

Word on two returning shows...

(This post contains what some might consider a spoiler for the next season of 24, though it doesn't seem to be a twist that Fox is working to conceal. But just in case anybody out there is nutty about trying to remain spoiler-free on this series, the way I am on, say, Doctor Who.)

It's official: 24 doesn't want me back. You may remember that I stopped loving--and eventually stopped watching--the series during its last season.

This was partly because I thought it had stopped working as a suspense series...not to put too fine a point on it, it had turned to snot.

But also because I came to the conclusion that the producers were less interested in having it work as a suspense series than as rationalization for the idea that torture works (it doesn't).

Or at least having it work as "torture-porn." More so, arguably, than Saw and its sequels, especially for Republicans.

But I've also said that, in retrospect, killing off Tony Almeida was a "jump the shark" moment for me--though far from the only one, see previous paragraphs.

So when I heard last year he was returning, I thought, that might get me to try again.

Unless, of course, he's returning as the instigator of terrorist attacks.


"Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles" is not exactly hurting for lovely women.
Lena Headey, Summer Glau.

But, I know what you're saying. You're saying, if only there was some way in which the irrepressibly hot Shirley Manson (you remember, she was only happy when it rains) could join the show.

Well, guess what.

My answer: Not so long as there are stars in the sky

Celebrity Examiner asks:
Mariah Carey: Will the '80s ever go away?

If this blog is known for any two things, it's...

A. Seemingly random photos of Anne Hathaway.

B. Women in green.

Well, I think you see where this is going. Here's miss Anne--who must be beatific that her boyfriend (and future candidate for Hot Chicks with Douchebags) has escaped charges of writing a bad check--on the set of her forthcoming movie, "Bride Wars."

Pictured with her is her co-star in the film, Kate Hudson, who between you and me has never been on my personal "hot" list...

Have I mentioned that I think Michelle Obama is what I think they used to call, fondly, a "fine-ass chick?"

And it's not just because she's cute--although she is, and as a button. It's because she says things like this (when asked by a gutsy questioner about fears for her husband's safety, after comments of the last two weeks):

"...Pray for us. Think positive thoughts. But most of all, be vigilant. Be vigilant about stopping this kind of talk.
It's not funny. You don't have to like Barack to dislike that kind of talk. Be vigilant about stopping that kind of talk."

Then she reminded the crowd what we are fighting for, and why it is important to forge ahead without fear. "Fear is the reason this country is where it is today. Fear is a useless emotion. Don't ever make decisions based on fear. Make decisions based on hope and possibility. Make decisions based on what should happen, not what shouldn't. Don't ever make decisions based on fear."


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Oh, dear god

Y' a political speaker...Sharon Stone makes an attractive sexually uninhibited movie star.

US actress Sharon Stone has sparked a storm of criticism in China after suggesting the earthquake that killed at least 67,000 was bad "karma" after Beijing's policy in Tibet, state media said Wednesday.

"I'm not happy about the way the Chinese are treating the Tibetans because I don't think anyone should be unkind to anyone else," Stone said in Cannes, according to footage widely available on YouTube.

"I've been concerned about how should we deal with the Olympics, because they are not being nice to the Dalai Lama, who is a good friend of mine," she said.

"And then all this earthquake and all this stuff happened, and I thought, is that karma -- when you're not nice that the bad things happen to you?"

The May 12 earthquake, which struck in southwest China's Sichuan province, is the nation's worst natural disaster in a generation.

Hey, Trey Parker, Matt Stone! Front and center! If that's not worth a South Park story I don't know what is...

Psst! NBC, FX!

"Grindhouse" was a box office failure. I repeat, a box office failure. There are many theories as to why--mine is that, oddly, the kids of today just don't care about homages to 1970s and '80s exploitation fare, "funny" or not.

So why...

Last time we saw Rose McGowan, she was rocking a prosthetic leg/machine gun in Robert Rodriguez's "Planet Terror," half of Quentin Tarantino's "Grindhouse" package. Apparently they're a couple, and now comes word that they're pitching a TV show called "Women in Chains!" to networks including NBC and FX. Reportedly the show would also have a "1970s exploitation sensibility," which in this case means, among other things, mud wrestling.

Monday, May 26, 2008


Originally uploaded by tunick
"'re really not going to let this go, are you Hillary?"

Spider-Girl's reign as a superheroine did not last long, as she confused her powers with those of Supergirl

Originally uploaded by Sean*

"More powerful than a loco-"SPLAT.


Originally uploaded by *Actarus*
As it suddenly dawns on you that you've made a hideous vocational error.


Sleepy Aurora
Originally uploaded by Flint-Hill

RFB 6564

I'm sure it'll come as no surprise to anyone that I want to die by being chased off a cliff by these women....

Original post

Ha ha, ha ha, hah.

FOX News political pundit Liz Trotta jokingly suggested this weekend that someone should assassinate...American presidential candidate Barack Obama.

You can see video here.

"Jokingly." Thank you, Hillary, for putting this on the table. Trotta has since "apologized" but, as noted here, her reaction to Hillary's attempts at clarification and apology was,
"Well, that's beside the point, whether she meant it or not."

Seriously. I want to underline something. FOX following in the footsteps of HILLARY CLINTON. Does that tell us anything about how little we need either one of 'em?

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Bitchin! (Yes, I'm trying to bring that word back.)


Caption this photo

No wonder Buddha has his eyes closed...

Is this not the hottest thing ever?

Feminism, sexism, and feminists (a library of links)

I feel like being thematic today.

1. Item from the LA Times about sexism in Hollywood, specifically as it relates to the director's chair: Film directing is still a man's world

After having a youth-oriented indie hit with "Bend It Like Beckham," Gurinder Chadha spent several years working on studio remakes of "I Dream of Jeannie" and "Dallas." Neither got made. But she says her gender was never an issue. "I'm not sure it's so horrible that women aren't dying to make popcorn movies," she says. "Maybe women prefer to make films that matter."

2. UK columnist, Barbara Ellen, sez: Hillary and [Madonna], leave the whining to the men

There were a couple of occasions last week when reading newspapers was like opening one of those blaring sound-effect cards where tinny music bursts forth or a celebrity screams their tatty catchphrase. Only this time, and may the goddess of feminism strike me down, the sound was even more dreadful - that of extremely rich and powerful women whining about their lot.

Just this once, ladies, try to get over yourselves. It has to be seen as depressing that in the space of a week, two strong, interesting, amazing women simultaneously thought it was a good plan to start acting like the worst kind of posturing, untouchable, powerful men, rotting from the inside out with their sense of entitlement and grievance.

3. Oh, good. Sophie B. Hawkins has weighed in. Ms. Hawkins: Your songs have never done much for me one way or the other, but people I respect respect you, and I think you're a hottie.

However, the only way this makes any sense-
Sophie B. Hawkins was one of the protesters outside the NBC studios in Burbank, Calif.

"We're here to say we're not asleep," Hawkins said. "We hear this; we don't like it. And by the way — [Clinton]'s not losing."

--is if you mean "She's not losing--she's lost."

As for
Many of Clinton's supporters say they may switch their allegiance to Sen. John McCain if Obama gets the nomination.

I'm assuming feminists aren't really that suicidal...

Ah, English groups of the '80s.

A 2001 documentary showed ex-Thompson Twins knocking themselves and being down on their hits. Which is a shame. They only made one of the one of the three greatest albums of the '80s techno-pop era (ABC & Human League made the other two).

But I'm not going to post videos from that great album (Into The Gap) because you already know and like them (or don't) anyway. I wanna go for a couple more underrated singles.

This is "Watching." A very weird song.

I've always loved it, but I haven't the foggiest idea what it means.

This is the 12" remix of "Sugar Daddy," arguably their last song that really worked as a song (at least that got any airplay). I see it as being about artificial “macho swagger” stupidity...

There's something in these about all women, #16/17

"If you want to see the girl next door, go next door"
Originally uploaded by miss cleopatra.

Originally uploaded by sandersonimages

At the risk of sounding like Jay Leno...'s some fun with headlines.

The New Zealand Herald: Hillary lacks Bill's way with words

New Zealand, masters of understatement.

Yahoo! News: Clintonites try to put RFK behind them

Let's see here, RFK, RFK...inspirational figure in the democratic party...generally held to have been a man of strength and character...yes, I can certainly see why Clintonites would want to put that behind them...

Ahem. Lindsay got back!

Y'know...Lindsay Lohan may have all the brains of a piece of felt. She may be doomed to a career of only ever playing characters named "Ashley" in Disney movies in which her breasts have to be digitally reduced. She may have the voice of a creepy, throaty little girl.

But damn, the girls got some body...

That is all.

John Hajduk thinks it's cordial to call something idiotic

Wait, I thought we had established that hyperbolic rhetoric was humorous-- wasn't that the gist of your previous response? Oh, I see, that only applies to YOUR hyperbole. Ok, fair enough-- your blog, your rules. I'll just retire to the silence from which I came...
John Hajduk