Wednesday, December 12, 2007

4 5 6 o'clock, 11 o'clock rock

11 o'clock news! The CBS 2 News on December 11th started with a large Nor easter coming towards area's north of New York City. This was followed by what they called their "other top story" which was on a rapist on the run. It then switched too a fire which killed four people, which then changed into a robbery story. Still no news on Politics and we are 10 minutes into the show. Fifteen Minutes in and all I am hearing about is illegal cab drivers. This is, of course, followed by the whether and another story on the snow storm and cold front coming. Twenty five minutes in and I have just heard about Jessica Alba's Pregnancy, but nothing at this point on politics. The show ends after sports without even mentioning politics.
This is the news! How can you possibly not even mention the thing that drives the news in the first place! It is not even really news to me and many other people unless you at least know what is going on outside of your very small community. Also, to be completely honest, I am not at all entertained watching the 11 o'clock news, and I am actually a bit afraid to go outside alone. For the first ten minutes of this program, all I can hear is how one awful person after another is on the run from the law and planning to rape or rob people. After then ten minute mark all I hear about is the weather and fluff about celebrities and whether or not they are pregnant. We finished with sports where they show highlights of the Knicks. Nobody cares about the Knicks! The players on the Knicks don't even care about the Knicks! This is not news!f
I am not surprised anymore that people turn to watch The Daily Show to get their news instead of watching their local station's news programs. When your choices are between a show which is uplifting and very funny or a show that makes you afraid of leaving your house, very few people actually choose the latter. I know I sure would rather watch the one that leaves me informed on my news on a national level instead of the one that leaves me depressed. This wasn't entertaining and I didn't learn anything from watching it. I feel like I just wasted thirty minutes of my life.

Gay Witches and Wizards and Warlocks OH MY!

Sure....I am about 4 months behind on this. Also it is true that I am not a very religious person. But this article by Pastor Joshua on Dumbledore from Harry Potter and his homosexuality has got to be one of the most awkward pieces I have ever read. I am not entirely sure whether to be completely shocked by this persons ignorance or to laugh hysterically at it. Ok, I did both.
The article begins with calling Harry Potter's author J.K. Rowling a "bint" (british slang which resembles bitch) then goes into a rant about Dumbledore's gayness and how horrible of a person Rowling is for allowing this to be said. Ill show you this piece of the article just so you understand how crazy this "Pastor" is.

Rubbish! Twaddle! Are we now going to see old Dumby snuggle up to some other warlock and have a passionate snog? Do you want to see that? How about you gay boys? Does that do it for you? I think even you “light in the loafers” lot would be grossed out by that scene.

What parent now wants to explain the fact that this very attentive old man is now perhaps attracted to Harry or perhaps one of the other young boys who attend the school of witchcraft? It was bad enough that the young male star, Daniel Radcliffe recently decided to shed all his clothes in a play he was in, no doubt sending legions of boy appreciating sodomites into tizzes of lustful interest.

Now we have Dumbledore as the ultimate NAMBLA candidate…charming…. Is he going to be paying close attention to young Mr Potter’s magic stick?

I can honestly say that I do not know where to begin with a response to that post. Joshua seems to be angry not only at J.K. Rowling but also at the fact that a gay character might be resembled in a decent light in the media for a change. Not Dharma and Greg style, with a very flamboyant person running around discussing sexual conquests, but as a smart and quiet, heroic person. That being said, this is no way excuses the Pastor for this crap that he has posted on this Christian site. He starts out with a decent argument on why it should even matter, but then goes into a grossly offensive anti-homosexual rant.
The idea of a homosexual in the Harry Potter books was to open people's eye's that it does not matter if Dumbledore is gay or not because he was a great person in these books. He had a troubled personal life and there was no mention of him ever even having a relationship. Is it really that surprising to you? Joshua then goes on to compare Dumbledore to a sodomite and describes a scene he seems to have conjured up in his sick head. Dumbledore might be gay, but that does NOT make him a pedophile. It is grossly offense to homosexuals to push gay people into that stereotype, especially when the same amount of straight people are pedophiles as much as gay people. The pastor did not go on a rant about how Professor Trelawny (a female teacher in the books) might end up hitting on Harry Potter just because she is straight and not married.
The second that you compare a gay person to someone in a sick group such as NAMBLA simply based on their sexual orientation, it is easy to tell that you are a bigot. This Pastor Joshua is a bigot. Dumbledore may be gay, but that does not make him any less of a hero to the billions of adoring fans across the globe.
The article ends with Bigot Joshua saying A witch is a witch but a queer warlock is sickening. Why is it sickening? Just because their orientation does not live up to the fantasy world portrayed in your little mind, where every man is with a woman and marriage is truly an everlasting bond that goes on for eternity in the heaven which only the true believers of Christ are in. I think it is sickening that people like Joshua actually voice their misguided and offensive opinions with this much certainty in their stance.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Stewart v Carlson

Well the Daily Show has been on a writer's strike for over a month now. We are left to watch clips of past interviews and other video's from the daily show vault. Searching around a bit I found this clip from over 3 years back of John Stewart on Crossfire arguing against the debate style show he was on. I cannot type my full admiration of John Stewart in the first place, but this clip somehow brought this admiration up even more. Stewart attacks the media we currently have in this country through a style of media he believes is destroying America telling them that he is there to confront them. He then tells host Tucker Carlson that " We need help from the media, and they are hurting us". Stewart then says how much we need a public debate and not a theater show which he says that shows such as Crossfire are. He puts this amazingly well stating that CNN has "a responsibility to the public discourse and they fail miserably" Stewart defends his show vigorously saying that it is a comedy show on before "puppets making crank phone calls" and he does not owe the public hard hitting news that stations such as CNN owe.
Stewart is quick witted and very well thought. Tucker Carlson is quick witted and well thought out as well. This makes for a very well put debate between the two of them. Stewart fights many arguments heard around the right saying that he does not ask hard hitting questions when he has big names on his program. I don't believe that for a second, as he has asked many hard hitting questions and has, at times, gotten into rough arguments with his guests on the shows. That being said however, it is not his job to ask questions that push the envelope because he is not a hard hitting news show, nor is he pretending to be. His show is on COMEDY CENTRAL, which as we all know is known solely for it's hard hitting news coverage and top notch journalists. Its the Daily Show, it is supposed to be funny and semi informative at the same time, it is not supposed to be a place you go to hear all the sides of the argument in the hopes of making a fair and unbiased decision. Thats for the Colbert Report.

The Truman Show Media

Many of us have asked the simple question "where will we be in twenty years". Now take out yourself from that equation. Replace it with "where will reality tv be in twenty years". We have been following around everyone with a video camera for the past 10 years. We broke up Jessica Simpson and Nich Lachey by putting them on camera through the first three years of their marriage and we put out reality shows every half hour on MTV. It seems almost as if people are going through their own versions of the Truman Show but know that it's happening so they are willing to do crazy things for their 15 minutes of fame.
With all of this being said however, reality shows seem to be hitting a crossroads. Shows such as Survivor and the Bachelor are barely remaining on air whereas shows such as the Age of Love (where a 30 year old is forced to choose between a group of 20 year olds and a group of 40 year olds.....tough choice) have been completely taken off the air after a few short episodes. I guarantee that tv producers are scrambling to find out the next new reality hit. All they need to do is ask me and then they will know what their next top rated tv show will be : Reality Congressman.
One of the most scandalous places in the past few years has been congress. Yes the democrats have had a few scandals in the past few years, but as many of us know listening to the nightly news, the Republican side of this congress have been shooting themselves in the feet with the amount of scandals that have been occuring as of recently. Whether its due to tapping your foot under a stall in a Minnesota airport looking for a male escort or laundering millions of dollars on your campaign finances, the ratings would come flying in. We could even do in depth interviews with government paiges in case we run out of footage for a specific episode. They all probably have some interesting things to say.
Just give it a chance ABC....MTV.....I'll even settle for the CW but trust me, we are very close to a large sum of money either through television ratings or laundered money. Either way we could very well be rich!

The 8 I'd Really Rather You Didn't

In response to the last post, I found this while reading The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. While it is a bit risque', it brings up some good points about the way we as humans perceive god and his thoughts on how we act. True this is playing off of the 10 commandments, but it is very well done and almost is the definition of satire. As said in my last post, this is part of the Pastafarian religion which was in response to Kansas deciding to teach creationism in their biology curriculum's. Bobby Henderson named these rules the 8 I'd Really Rather You Didn'ts.

  1. I'd really rather you didn't act like a sanctimonious holier-than-thou ass when describing my noodly goodness. If some people don't believe in me, that's okay. Really, I'm not that vain. Besides, this isn't about them so don't change the subject.
  2. I'd really rather you didn't use my existence as a means to oppress, subjugate, punish, eviscerate, and/or, you know, be mean to others. I don't require sacrifices, and purity is for drinking water, not people.
  3. I'd really rather you didn't judge people for the way they look, or how they dress, or the way they talk, or, well, just play nice, Okay? Oh, and get this into your thick heads: woman = person. man = person. Samey = Samey. One is not better than the other, unless we're talking about fashion and I'm sorry, but I gave that to women and some guys who know the difference between teal and fuschia.
  4. I'd really rather you didn't indulge in conduct that offends yourself, or your willing, consenting partner of legal age AND mental maturity. As for anyone who might object, I think the expression is go **** yourself, unless they find that offensive in which case they can turn off the TV for once and go for a walk for a change.
  5. I'd really rather you didn't challenge the bigoted, misogynistic, hateful ideas of others on an empty stomach. Eat, then go after the girls.
  6. I'd really rather you didn't build multi million-dollar churches/temples/mosques/shrines to my noodly goodness when the money could be better spent (take your pick):
    1. Ending poverty
    2. Curing diseases
    3. Living in peace, loving with passion, and lowering the cost of cable
      I might be a complex-carbohydrate omniscient being, but I enjoy the simple things in life. I ought to know. I AM the creator.
  7. I'd really rather you didn't go around telling people I talk to you. You're not that interesting. Get over yourself. And I told you to love your fellow man, can't you take a hint?
  8. I'd really rather you didn't do unto others as you would have them do unto you if you are into, um, stuff that uses a lot of leather/lubricant/Las Vegas. If the other person is into it, however (pursuant to #4), then have at it, take pictures, and for the love of Mike, wear a CONDOM! Honestly, it's a piece of rubber. If I didn't want it to feel good when you did it I would have added spikes, or something.

Creationism? No....Pastafarianism!

In a recent op-ed piece in the NY Times, the Texas Education Industry became the next state to take a step towards the teaching of creationism (God created everything, scientists are wrong) in schools. Christine Corner, the state's top science education expert, was fired from her job after forwarding an email to her colleagues about a pro-evolution group having a forum on the matter. Now in difficult times like these, it is time that we see the light. The light being shown from his noodly appendage. No...I'm not talking about god, but I am speaking about the Flying Spaghetti Monster (FSM for short).
Many of you may be asking yourselves what the Flying Spaghetti Monster is. Well it's quite simple really, the FSM is the god for the up and coming religion of Pastafarianism. This FSM planted evidence for evolution all throughout the world just to simply test the faiths of his followers soon after he created the world. As for the other sciences, there is no such thing as gravity, but just his noodly appendages pushing down on all of us to keep us placed on his planet. Also, when you go to heaven, you will see that it strictly contains beer volcanoes and a stripper factory.
Now in truth, the Flying Spaghetti Monster is not real, and to be completely blunt, neither is creationism. Both are made up, the only difference is that while creationism was made up as a response to evolution, Pastafarianism was made up as a response to the Kansas school board deciding to teach creationism in its science curriculum. The book's author, Bobby Henderson, wrote it as a satire to the absurdity of creationism saying to the school board in a Colbert-esque fashion, that I think we can all look forward to the time when these three theories are given equal time in our science classrooms across the country, and eventually the world; One third time for Intelligent Design, one third time for Flying Spaghetti Monsterism, and one third time for logical conjecture based on overwhelming observable evidence. Just because one is believe by more people in higher positions, does that really make it any more true?

Flying on the front page?

On the December 10th issue of the New York Times, a story can be found on the front page about man being able to fly. The title says "Humans, Flying Like Squirrels, Hoping to Land With No Chute" and the story discusses Jeb Corliss who shares a dream with people around the world : the dream of being able to fly. The article compares the pursuit like that of climbing Everest, as many nations are setting up their own "squirrel fliers". Jeb plans on wearing winged suit and hopes to land safely on a runway which he designed.
Crazy enough for you yet? Well Jeb has spent over 2 million dollars on his squirrel suit. This is beyond following your dream. This is putting your life in danger to do something that is virtually pointless. Man has always dreamed of flying but these dreams are in the hopes that we can actually lift ourselves off the ground and fly to seperate areas, not in the hopes that we are kicked out of a plane with a suit of wings on and pray that we land in one piece. What blows my mind is that this is obviously a very well educated man. Hell, he built a runway and a flying suit and has done a great deal of work on the aerodynamics of the obstacle he is about to pursue. Why do Americans waste great minds for senseless acts such as this one.
Lastly, why is the New York Times out of all the Newspapers out there, printing this on the FRONT PAGE. This is not front page material, no matter how much you try to compare it to the race to climb Mt. Everest. It is pure fluff. People question why American's seem to be dumber and the answer from my perspective is simple...we no longer read. Everything is spoon fed to us through television and movies. People who want hard hitting news these days read the NY Times for the most part, and when you want real information, do you really want Squirrel Man taking up a quarter of your front page?