It's a Bumpy Road, Y'all
There are a lot of interesting and/or disturbing bits of news and entertainment that I want to cover today, so get ready for a bumpy ride. But first, I’ve been a busy little bee, getting out reviews that I should have written a while back. First, check out my review of “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Pt. 2”
– this may not be my last word on the Harry Potter films as I’m considering a moratorium of sorts for the whole series, but that is neither here nor there, and is likely a long ways off at best. Secondly, here is my review of “Captain America: The First Avenger”
– those of you who know me at all might guess how this one goes.
So, let’s get this ride started *revs engines*
Appropriately enough, I thought I’d point out this wonderfully hilarious country-songification of that NASCAR prayer you probably heard about.
It’s just so ‘Murican don’t you agree?
Now NASCAR on a road like this? That might be fun to watch.
Staying in the same light-hearted vein, there is something magical about this couple who grow trees in guided shapes and patterns
. I’ve always sort of had this dream that, one day in Heaven, I’d have an eternity to grow an entire garden into a sort of living castle of trees, or something similar. As such, this just makes me practically giddy. I want to do this. I want to know their secrets. I’ll keep you updated in this regard.
Is that not a badass Tree-chair?
Now we get a little more serious, though it is good stuff. You see, there was this couple who, when they saw the kids jumping into the lake to avoid being shot during the Norway tragedy, got in their boat and risked their lives to save these people, many of whom would likely have died without assistance. They are rightly called heroes, or in this case
, heroines. Yes, they are a lesbian couple.
Now, to me this is no big surprise, and to many people I know this would merely be applaudable heroism, but as the article I linked to goes on to say, this is important to note because it flies in the face of many homophobic arguments that say these people are immoral degenerates or generally bad people. Now, I’m not saying you can’t disagree with their lifestyle choices because of this; that’s not what I’m saying at all. But some people go beyond mere disagreement to say that this means there is something “evil” about these people, and I find that patently wrong. That sort of perspective isn’t uncommon either, which is why I felt the need to emphasize it here.
Sticking with the Norway theme, it’s inspiring to me that their leaders can see how this act could lead to the same sort of rash and paranoid behavior that we Americans inflicted on ourselves after our own tragedy. Their Prime Minister recently called for cooler heads before making any rash decisions about changing the laws of their otherwise peaceful nation.
Doing otherwise would let this mad-man win his twisted little game. I feel this is a lesson we didn’t fully grasp. We lost that game, and in many ways we’re still losing. Go us? Maybe we should take Mr. Stoltenberg as an inspiration. That’s a period there, not a question mark.
Brief geeky squee note, I love dice, ja? You love dice too, double ja? Are not these the coolest dice??
That reminds me, I need to prepare the next D&D game for my party. Yeah we still be playing. Right now we’re actually painting some terrain miniatures and props that I’ve recently purchased. When we’re done you can look forward to seeing the images up on the site.
Let’s talk pirates real quick. No, not the “AAARRRR!!!” type, but the illegally downloading type. Now, I’m going to assume that you’ve not red any studies on the subject recently (or rather news article on the studies, like me) and ask you this question: “Who do you think spends more legitimate money on media entertainment: Pirates or non-pirates?
Not these pirates either.
Given the tone of my writing you’ve probably already guessed, but here’s one such study
to further cement this: It’s the Pirates. You see, the theory goes that Pirates are lovers of media and entertainment. Given no legal method to test whether they like certain bands, movies, television shows, etc. they download the media first online to see if they like it. Then they purchase said media. The average jo-shmo likes media alright, but it’s just too much work to be a pirate to find what he wants, so he doesn’t know what he wants so he abstains from buying anything. This isn’t even taking into account media that can’t be readily purchased or obtained through ANY legal channels.
"Yar! We're only boarding yer ship ta see if we wants ta pay ya fer it."
Now, if you were a buisness, and you had some very loyal customers who poured loads of money into your wallets, but maybe they did things differently than you would like them to, even though they are your BEST customers, would you punish them?
Hint: It’s bad buisness to punish your best customers. They become former-customers, and then there goes all that money you thought you’d be saving.
Now, because we really can’t avoid it any longer, let’s talk about the debt ceiling one last time before the bill is put up to a vote – (and to cover my backside, if you’ve heard the results of the vote, but haven’t yet seen my commentary on it, keep an eye here for an update). -NEWS FLASH, WE HAVE AN UPDATE, SCROLL BELOW FOR MORE –
First, my take on the bill, which is to state, with a blank face, well, it’s a compromise, I guess. But really only in the sense that this one might – MIGHT- pass both the House and Senate, and not in the general idea that both parties gave as good as they got.
What we have is a Democratic party that has more or less capitulated to the Republicans. Republicans got a lot here, no raised revenues, more cuts than ceiling raising, a vote on the constitutional amendment (and let’s not kid ourselves, this is a bone tossed to the Tea Partiers than anybody with brains sees as a hollow gesture destined to die in the Senate), etc. What have the Democrats gotten in return? The promise that some of the cuts might -might, I tell you- come from defense spending and… nothing. Wow. Good job Dems. I mean, I can see that you had to do something. There is no such thing as a clear head amongst the Republican extremist wing (which is more like the entire body by now), and you forced yourself to be the saner ones and be political martyrs for the sake of the country. But still, this is just stupid.
These Tea Baggers just want to win at any cost while looking good to their political base.
Everybody does this. President Obama admitted it for himself, when it was pointed out that he at one time decried raising the debt ceiling.
Here, take a look at these poll numbers and tell me that Americans don’t want taxes on the rich. The fact that current tax breaks weren’t rolled back, at the very least, tells me that while we might get out of this with our credit rating in tact, the people have lost this round.
UPDATE: So the bill passed. Yay?
I mean, we didn’t default but otherwise isn’t this the worst case scenario for democrats and the American people? You know what, I’ll just let John Stewart sum this up for me.
If that doesn’t make you mad, take a look at this article about another recent bill the House passed that makes our Internet Service Providers (ISPs) spy on us and keep records of it. THIS is big brother folks.
The same people in the House decrying “big government” because we might want to tax people who have more money than they can possibly use, are the same people who passed a law forcing corporations (and in turn the government) to watch every click of the keyboard or mouse we make, and then keep that information for at least 12 months.
Yeah, Mr. CIA, I know you’re reading this right now. Did you read that sentence I just deleted a second ago? Yeah, that’s exactly what I think of you and what you’re doing.
Is it sad that I consider this next story a palette cleanser about how one Wal-Mart Security guards temper tantrum ruined the lives of two innocent people?
Yeah. That’s pretty sad. You know what, I’m not going to waste commentary on it. Tell me what you think of it, and anything else I’ve written here, in the comments.
Now for a real Pallette cleanser. Oh you nutty Japanese people! Is this not the craziest thing you’ve ever seen? Well… aside from the current behavior of a certain governmental body anyway…
Till next time, folks,
– Edward L. Cheever II