Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Brett Favre said he has “no intention” of playing professional football again after being released last night by the New York Jets.Then why has there been talk of the Vikings or the Browns? He'll lose everything in the way of respect from fans if he does that. Everything.
“Nothing has changed,” Favre said. “At this time, I am retired and have no intention of returning to football.”
“I have traveled the state, talked to Republican leaders and officeholders and my supporters, and I have carefully examined public opinion,” he said. “It has become clear to me that the stimulus vote caused a schism, which makes our differences irreconcilable. On this state of the record, I am unwilling to have my 29-year Senate record judged by the Pennsylvania Republican primary electorate. I have not represented the Republican Party. I have represented the people of Pennsylvania.”It's clear he's doing this bceause of the polls, to save his seat, as the only way he believes he'll be re-elected.
To uphold the ideals of the Republican party or more conservative voters and then switch parties to join the most left-leaning party of the 21st century led by a borderline-socialist president is absolutely appalling. It speaks to Specter's spinelessness and selfishness. He is in no way representing the people of Pennsylvania with his flip-flop, nor is he a man we should desire in the Senate to make and form our laws.
And a beaming Obama?
"Arlen Specter is one tough hombre," Obama said during a morning news conference Wednesday inside the White House.Save it.
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Ryan's leading role in the budget debate puts him at the center of two huge challenges facing his party in the Age of Obama.Seriously, if you've ever seen Paul Ryan speak - and with a baby in his arms at the same time - he's worth your attention span. The man is sharp. Beloved in blue-collar Janesville, he's a difficult force to stop...and possibly our future as Republicans. Strike that, hopefully the future.
One is the effort to craft a persuasive economic message around lower taxes and less spending after the GOP squandered its claim in recent years to fiscal conservatism.
To that task, Ryan brings an admittedly geeky head for numbers and detail. He also brings a deep philosophical attachment to market capitalism and "supply-side" economics - a world view shaped by such icons of individualism and free enterprise as Ayn Rand, Milton Friedman and Friedrich Hayek.
"The reason I got involved in public service, by and large, if I had to credit one thinker, one person, it would be Ayn Rand," Ryan said at a D.C. gathering four years ago honoring the author of "Atlas Shrugged" and "The Fountainhead."
The combination of the two - policy wonk and true believer - has helped make Ryan a favorite of influential conservative insiders and a go-to guest for friendly cable hosts such as Fox's Sean Hannity, MSNBC's Joe Scarborough and CNBC's Larry Kudlow.
"Don't you think that Paul Ryan should run the Republican Party?" Scarborough asked after interviewing Ryan last month on his show, "Morning Joe."
"He's young . . . he's intelligent. He's Irish," Scarborough said. "I'm serious, though. There have been no inspiring leaders. . . . He's got a plan. He doesn't just say no."
This also makes her seem like she's taken a step back to 1950's housemom rather than forward into the national role of First Lady. She's doing both, folks, and it's cool. But let's not pretend she's the greatest thing since sliced bread. We can all love the first lady and feel however we want to about the President, but can we wait to roast her after a few more months?
Mrs. Obama organized her own kind of G-20 summit at the White House last month, with an all-female cast ranging from singer Alicia Keys to actress Fran Drescher to astronaut Mae Jemison.OH please. Even I'm sure her head isn't that big.
The assignment was to go out and inspire young people. Girls, especially.
Getting them to see their potential wasn't something Mrs. Obama talked about on the campaign trail. The pep talks came after she realized the role model and source of inspiration she had become for so many.
And another thing: she's not a model or a couture fashion designer. J.Crew should just take a chill pill.
Mrs. Obama is doing just fine. I think she should be recognized, but this borderlines on blind praise. Just another example of our liberal media's love affair with the Obamas.
Monday, April 27, 2009
Despite selling 26 million albums, earning 18 Country Music Association Awards and 19 Grammys and being inducted in 2007 into the CMA's Country Music Hall of Fame, he is truly grateful to have a collection of songs people know.
"I never thought that might happen for me," said the 52-year old singer, songwriter and guitarist. "I spent a lot of years struggling and making records that didn't do very well. So it was really gratifying over the years to see songs do well, have songs be familiar to people and have them know the words."
Fans will be singing along to such songs as "Never Knew Lonely," "I Still Believe in You" and "Don't Let Our Love Start Slippin' Away" when Gill takes the stage at the Weidner Center at 7:30 p.m. Thursday in Green Bay.
Gill takes performing in concert seriously.
"It's as much about showing the people that pay their hard-earned money for a ticket a good time as it is to be self-indulgent and only sing what you want to sing," he said. "So it's always trying to strike that right chord, the right combination of familiar stuff and something that's new that they might like. It's hard to always choose right, but I've been lucky."
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Saturday, April 25, 2009
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
It is truly a pleasure. And President Bush is a true HERO.
By KARL ROVE
President Barack Obama has finished the second leg of his international confession tour. In less than 100 days, he has apologized on three continents for what he views as the sins of America and his predecessors.
Mr. Obama told the French (the French!) that America "has shown arrogance and been dismissive, even derisive" toward Europe. In Prague, he said America has "a moral responsibility to act" on arms control because only the U.S. had "used a nuclear weapon." In London, he said that decisions about the world financial system were no longer made by "just Roosevelt and Churchill sitting in a room with a brandy" -- as if that were a bad thing. And in Latin America, he said the U.S. had not "pursued and sustained engagement with our neighbors" because we "failed to see that our own progress is tied directly to progress throughout the Americas."
By confessing our nation's sins, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said that Mr. Obama has "changed the image of America around the world" and made the U.S. "safer and stronger." As evidence, Mr. Gibbs pointed to the absence of protesters during the Summit of the Americas this past weekend.
That's now the test of success? Anti-American protesters are a remarkably unreliable indicator of a president's wisdom. Ronald Reagan drew hundreds of thousands of protesters by deploying Pershing and cruise missiles in Europe. Those missiles helped win the Cold War.
There is something ungracious in Mr. Obama criticizing his predecessors, including most recently John F. Kennedy. ("I'm grateful that President [Daniel] Ortega did not blame me for things that happened when I was three months old," Mr. Obama said after the Nicaraguan delivered a 52-minute anti-American tirade that touched on the Bay of Pigs.) Mr. Obama acts as if no past president -- except maybe Abraham Lincoln -- possesses his wisdom.
Mr. Obama was asked in Europe if he believes in American exceptionalism. He said he did -- in the same way that "the Brits believe in British exceptionalism and the Greeks in Greek exceptionalism." That's another way of saying, "No."
Mr. Obama makes it seem as though there is moral equivalence between America and its adversaries and assumes that if he confesses America's sins, other nations will confess theirs and change. But he won no confessions (let alone change) from the leaders of Venezuela, Nicaragua or Russia. He apologized for America and our adversaries rejoiced. Fidel Castro isn't easing up on Cuban repression, but he is preparing to take advantage of Mr. Obama's policy shifts.
When a president desires personal popularity, he can lose focus on vital American interests. It's early, but with little to show for the confessions, David Axelrod of Team Obama was compelled to say this week that the president planted, cultivated and will harvest "very, very valuable" returns later. Like what?
Meanwhile, the desire for popularity has led Mr. Obama to embrace bad policies. Blaming America for the world financial crisis led him to give into European demands for crackdowns on tax havens and hedge funds. Neither had much to do with the credit crisis. Saying that America's relationship with Russia "has been allowed to drift" led the president to push for arms negotiations. But that draws attention away from America's real problems with Russia: its invasion of Georgia last summer, its bullying of Ukraine, its refusal to join in pressuring Iran to give up its nuclear ambitions, and its threats of retaliation against the Poles, Balts and Czechs for standing with the U.S. on missile defense.
Mr. Obama is downplaying the threats we face. He takes comfort in thinking that Venezuela has a defense budget that "is probably 1/600th" of America's -- it's actually 1/215th -- but that hasn't kept Mr. Chávez from supporting narcoterrorists waging war on Colombia (a key U.S. ally) or giving petrodollars to anti-American regimes. Venezuela isn't likely to attack the U.S., but it is capable of harming American interests.
Henry Kissinger wrote in his memoir "Years of Renewal": "The great statesmen of the past saw themselves as heroes who took on the burden of their societies' painful journey from the familiar to the as yet unknown. The modern politician is less interested in being a hero than a superstar. Heroes walk alone; stars derive their status from approbation. Heroes are defined by inner values; stars by consensus. When a candidate's views are forged in focus groups and ratified by television anchorpersons, insecurity and superficiality become congenital."
A superstar, not a statesman, today leads our country. That may win short-term applause from foreign audiences, but do little for what should be the chief foreign policy preoccupation of any U.S. president: advancing America's long-term interests.
Mr. Rove is the former senior adviser and deputy chief of staff to President George W. Bush.
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
The Central Intelligence Agency told CNSNews.com today that it stands by the assertion made in a May 30, 2005 Justice Department memo that the use of “enhanced techniques” of interrogation on al Qaeda leader Khalid Sheik Mohammed (KSM) -- including the use of waterboarding -- caused KSM to reveal information that allowed the U.S. government to thwart a planned attack on Los Angeles.And here I'm sure I've opened Pandora's box on torture comments, however, when it comes to terrorists, my motto is "Whatever it takes."
Before he was waterboarded, when KSM was asked about planned attacks on the United States, he ominously told his CIA interrogators, “Soon, you will know.”
According to the previously classified May 30, 2005 Justice Department memo that was released by President Barack Obama last week, the thwarted attack -- which KSM called the “Second Wave”-- planned “ ‘to use East Asian operatives to crash a hijacked airliner into’ a building in Los Angeles.”
KSM was the mastermind of the first “hijacked-airliner” attacks on the United States, which struck the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Northern Virginia on Sept. 11, 2001.
After KSM was captured by the United States, he was not initially cooperative with CIA interrogators. Nor was another top al Qaeda leader named Zubaydah. KSM, Zubaydah, and a third terrorist named Nashiri were the only three persons ever subjected to waterboarding by the CIA. (Additional terrorist detainees were subjected to other “enhanced techniques” that included slapping, sleep deprivation, dietary limitations, and temporary confinement to small spaces -- but not to water-boarding.)
You're the God of this City
You're the King of these people
You're the Lord of this nation
You're the Light in this darkness
You're the Hope to the hopeless
You're the Peace to the restless
There is no one like our God
There is no one like our God
For greater things have yet to come
And greater things are still to be done in this City
Greater thing have yet to come
And greater things are still to be done in this City
There is no one like our God
There is no one like our God
For greater things have yet to come
And greater things are still to be done in this City
Greater things have yet to come
And greater things are still to be done here
Perez Hilton has completeley undermined his own argument about equal rights and respect for those of different beliefs.
Where are the feminist groups? Where are the equal rights groups and those who uphold the right to have varying opinions in the USA?
First runner-up Carrie Prejean (Miss California) was asked about legalizing same-sex marriage from judge Perez Hilton, the Internet blogger behind perezhilton.com.Miss California, I applaud you for speaking up for what you believe and how you were raised.
"I believe that a marriage should be between a man and a woman. No offense to anybody there. But that's how I was raised and that's how I think it should be," Prejean said during Sunday night's live telecast.
But I guess it's not enough to be beautiful, talented, poised, articulate, and intelligent to win a beauty pagent. I guess you have to be a "politically correct" liberal wingnut.
And finally, I feel sorry for the other girls.
In an exclusive interview with Pop Tarts on Monday night, Miss USA contestant Brooke Werner said that she was shocked by Miss California's controversial response on Sunday evening.In hindsight, I'm sure you were "shocked" at her answer and would disagree. You'd disagree to win.
"Everyone has the right to their own actions," Werner said. "But I totally disagree with Carrie. I have a very different perspective on gay marriage and I would never have said what she said."
The remaining 45 pageant princesses watched the competition from backstage and after Prejean's anti gay marriage answer, apparently the room fell pretty silent.
"A lot of people were shocked," the Vermont beauty queen said. "We were all kind of giving each other those eyes, we couldn't believe it."
And that's what makes Carrie the real winner.
Monday, April 20, 2009
State Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen said openly carrying firearms is legal in a memo he sent to district attorneys Monday afternoon.And I appreciate this.
"The Department (of Justice) believes that mere open carry of a firearm, absent additional facts and circumstances, should not result in a disorderly conduct charge," the Republican attorney general wrote in the memo.
Wisconsin and Illinois are the only states that have an outright ban on carrying concealed weapons. But Wisconsin's statute is silent on carrying weapons openly, such as in a clearly visible belt holster.
But people who openly carry guns often have been charged with disorderly conduct. That police practice has come under scrutiny recently.
"A hunter openly carrying a rifle or shotgun on his property during hunting season while quietly tracking game should not face a disorderly conduct charge," Van Hollen wrote. "But if the same hunter carries the same rifle or shotgun through a crowded street while barking at a passerby, the conduct may lose its constitutional protection."
"The same concepts should apply to handguns," he added, citing the West Allis case. He noted that brandishing a gun in public is not legal, however.
Van Hollen said police retain the right to stop someone who is openly carrying a weapon to investigate possible crimes, including disorderly conduct.
"Even though open carry enjoys constitutional protection, it may still give rise to reasonable suspicion when considered in totality," he wrote. "It is not a shield against police investigation or subsequent prosecution."
Same with checking out suspected terrorists' phone records. It's the bad guys we want. Not Joe with from the gun show.
In a news conference capping a three-day meeting of leaders from the Western Hemisphere, Obama also said the U.S. must engage other countries through humanitarian gestures, not only military intervention.What is beyond irritating about these reports are the emphasis on Obama's "humanitarian" focus. We're not going to go bombing everyone we disagree with - that wasn't what Bush did. Bush took action against those who were a direct threat to our safety and way of life.
Obama said it would be a mistake to measure the Summit of the Americas by the specific agreements reached. By listening to his counterparts and eschewing heavy-handed diplomacy, he said, he was creating an atmosphere in which, "at the margins," foreign leaders are "more likely to want to cooperate than not cooperate."
A running theme of the summit was Obama's cordial dealings with Chavez, who once called former President George W. Bush the "devil" and who last month dismissed Obama as an "ignoramus." The two were photographed smiling and clasping hands.
Let's talk instead about his buddying up to Chavez, even after Chavez has verbally attacked America for no reason at all. To say that we brought 9/11 on ourselves is to side with the enemy. No, I'm not saying let's go bomb 'em, but honestly American Media- get a clue.
Between an ignoramus and the devil, I can't even conjur up a leader Chavez would approve of. Let's not worry about being friends. The U.S. has enough friends.
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Breaking news — “Michelle Obama steps off plane wearing J.Crew.” “Next on NBC, first lady expected to wear yellow at gala.” “Stay tuned to find out who looks better, Mrs. Obama or France’s Carla Bruni-Sarkozy at the economic summit.” “These stories and more, when we return from this commercial break.”And J.Crew isn't even that cute! It's expensive and often the quality is cheap. The look is preppy, so she can set that stereotype if she wants.
Give me a break. Who cares?
Apparently, I am in the minority when it comes to wondering about the intricacies behind how the first lady dresses and why she wears what she does. I care as much about the name on the tag in the back of Michelle Obama’s dress as I do about the tag in the boxer shorts of the guy sitting in the booth across from me at the diner.
Yes, she is a lovely lady but knowing the ins and outs of her wardrobe has gotten out of control. News wire services which papers across the nation, including The Dickinson Press, pay big bucks for are posting what she’s wearing as breaking news, and not just what she wears to colossal events. Everything, everywhere.
Google “Michelle Obama” and you’ll get just a few non-clothing related sites.
And way to go J.Crew for cashing in after the first lady let the world know that she was wearing its brand in an appearance on the “Tonight Show with Jay Leno.”
Oh, and she also sported J.Crew in London recently, to a charity event and on and on. After the first lady’s designer choice was revealed on Leno, J.Crew stock soared and hits to the company’s Web site reportedly increased 3,000 percent! It’s almost as if J.Crew has some sort of sponsorship deal going.
The lead lady reportedly dresses for comfort and affordability. While she is the country’s top lady, her take on affordable may be a bit different than the average American’s. I, for one, would not find it affordable to spend $400 on a cardigan. I could pay off a month’s utilities, gas, groceries and so much more. Not to mention I could buy a year’s worth of clothes with half that much if I were to spend it at Dickinson’s own Arc Aid Thrift Store.
You want affordability and selection? The shop takes donations, sells them and the money helps support programs for those with disabilities including job preparation, education and health care.
You can doll yourself up — shoes, slacks, shirt and accessories — for less than $10. Often there are clothes with the tags still on them. (In case you are wondering, I don’t have some sort of sponsorship deal going with Arc.)
Let’s get Mrs. Obama to wear an ensemble from Arc and get the name out there next time she appears on late night TV. I’ll dig through the racks and pick an outfit for her if getting here from D.C. is too much trouble.
Imagine the money that would come in for these great programs once the world knows where the first lady purchased her clothes.
— Dickinson Press Managing Editor Jennifer McBride never claimed to know a thing about fashion and has never set foot in a J.Crew store.
I like the reference to cost too, after all we heard about Sarah Palin's wardrobe.
Monday, April 13, 2009
After snipers took down the three pirates who held him captive, the Somalis want revenge.
"From now on, if we capture foreign ships and their respective countries try to attack us, we will kill them (the hostages)," Jamac Habeb, a 30-year-old pirate, told the Associated Press from one of Somalia's piracy hubs, Eyl. "(U.S. forces have) become our No. 1 enemy." "Every country will be treated the way it treats us. In the future, America will be the one mourning and crying," Abdullahi Lami, one of the pirates holding a Greek ship anchored in the Somali town of Gaan, told The AP today. "We will retaliate (for) the killings of our men."I'd vote to kill all these greedy Somalis. Wouldn't we be justified in hunting the pirates to take our revenge for holding our Naval ships hostage? I'm sure that's an offense in some law book.
If they had killed Captain Phillips, there would be no question.
Instead we let the pirates fire threats to kill Americans. Nevermind their nation whose struggle for power against Islamic insurgents keeps it in a state of instability, or the fact that citizens are starving to death while they demand $80,000,000 from whomever will pay up.
Nevermind that "The Maersk Alabama was in Somali waters because it was carrying food aid to hungry people in Africa, including Somalia." People like that don't care about anything but themselves.
Greedy thieves. I could go on and on.
"I AM your Guide. Strength and Help will come to you; just trust ME wholly.I hope everyone had a Blessed Easter!
Fear not. I am ever more ready to hear than you to ask. Walk in My ways, and know that help will come.
Man's need is God's chance to help. I love to help and save. Man's need is God's golden opportunity for him of letting his faith find expression. That expression of faith is all God needs to manifest His Power. Faith is the Key that unlocks the store-house of God's resources.
My faithful servants, you long for perfection and see your bitter failures. I see faithfulness, and as a mother takes the soiled, imperfect work of her child and invests it with perfection because of the sweet love, so I take your poor faithfulness and crown it with perfection."
Saturday, April 11, 2009
A woman stunned onlookers by jumping into a polar bear enclosure at a zoo Friday, suffering serious injuries after one of the four bears inside attacked her.Well, I'll tell you one thing, she's a dumbo.
Zookeepers at the Berlin Zoo fought off the attacking bear from outside the enclosure as they pulled the German woman, 32, to safety, Britain’s Daily Telegraph reported.
The woman, who jumped into a moat in the enclosure, suffered serious bites to her arms and legs. In December, a man who jumped into the same enclosure also survived after zookeepers baited the polar bears away with beef. It was not clear why the woman jumped into the area.
If she'd been lunch, I'd still have no sympathy!
Friday, April 10, 2009
The White House Press Office accidentally e-mailed a draft version of President Obama's Thursday schedule on Wednesday night that included the back-and-forth between White House staffers.Yikes!
The e-mail, sent on a daily basis to inform the media of the next day's events, at first appeared to be like any other press schedule. But at the bottom of the e-mail, there was a series of exchanges from the press team, as well as a draft of the schedule.
Regarding a Seder dinner Obama is hosting, one staffer notes that "Jewish here and in neighboring states are now calling wondering why they have not been invited."
We all make mistakes, but come-on people, PROOFREAD!
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Thank you for parking completely in front of the driveway where I park. No, it is not technically mine, but I pay for it's use in my monthly rent and therefore call it my own space for the time being. All through the night you sat there (luckily I was able to pull in before you found that "open space"). I gave you the benefit of the doubt that you would be gone in the morning, and alas, I was disappointed.
I appreciate that your long front end and drivers side door was blatantly blocking any exit, not to mention sidewalk access and the trashcans from being collected by pick-up, at 6:15 this morning when I attempted to leave for a meeting.
Thankfully, my work obligation would fall at a later hour, so I could call in late with my friends and our Bible study. But I sure do appreciate your consideration of my morning and activities, so that calling the police and waiting for them and the tow truck that would finally arrive and get it all settled one whole hour later, I could leave my house without stress or falling short of my obligations.
How thoughtful of you.
Thanks so much,
p.s. If you are drinking at night, park your car where you a)won't be blocking someone's driveway and b)won't get towed. Take a cab. Whatever you do, I hope you learn this lesson and think before you hit Parking Break.
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
That said, much of my blog consists of social commentary on a world fraught with sin and fallen beings. Myself included.
Humans are messy. We live in a world that's been polarized over issues as big as religion and politics, to things as simple as how to raise your kids. I find a more conservative approach - politically speaking - speaks to me as a positive way to survive in this world. Leave it up to personal responsibility to be held accountable for your own actions. Work hard to earn a living. Love God. Love your neighbor. Love your spouse. Make the most of what you have, etc. Don't expect a handout. That's what works for me. And not once, EVER, have a chalked it up to "that's what Jesus taught me."
Perhaps because they say I don't care for a liberal attitude, "Anonymous" is up in arms. But do I love the Liberal? Yes, I do.
I will not apologize for my blog postings or anyone's assumption that they reflect poorly on my relationship with Jesus. You don't know my relationship with Jesus.
I can have an opinion and still be a follower of Jesus. I'm not here to rub anyone's nose in my religion or faith beliefs. I'm here to comment on the social and political aspects of the society I live in and share things I find interesting, humorous, or downright stupid.
And as a follower of Jesus, I am still a sinner. I am still living in a broken world with the Devil whispering in my ear. I do my best to follow the moral guidelines I set for myself, but I do not live solely by a book of rules or a checkbook of checks written to the church in belief they will save my soul. Instead, I trust that in my longing for God and the time I spent with Jesus- also repenting of my sins - I may have a more fulfilled life.
Anon, feel free to reply. I appreciate insight from all angles, reminding me to be a stronger follower of Christ. Not a "Christian," as many have so lovingly dubbed us, but a follower of Christ.
Monday, April 6, 2009
Larry says if you aren't paying your bills, you lack integrity. You signed a contract for a service and your payment in return, and not upholding your end shows you lack integrity. Simple as that.
And in simplifying it, he says:
I really don't emphasize easy as much as simple, and I do think there is a difference. Everything in life comes down to simple things. If you want to lose weight, all you have to do is eat less and exercise more. If you want to have money, earn more and spend less. That's all it takes. I do sum up the book by saying what's easy to do is just as easy not to do. It's easy not to take action. I think people are attracted to hard solutions for one reason: If they don't make it, they have an excuse for failure. When you hit them over the head with the simple approach, you don't leave them a way out.
I was raised to be a good steward of my funds. I pay off my credit card every month. Think I'm bragging or on my high horse? I AM! I'm proud of my credit record.
No, I don't always save as much as I could each month and I have my own vices...but I don't live outside my means. If it means renting a smaller apartment, less closet space isn't going to kill you. If it means not going out on a Saturday night, your wallet - and your body- will probably thank you. If it means re-watching a movie you already own, you spent $10 on it in the first place so you must like it!
And the credit card companies that charge a $10 late fee, bravo. They play a part too in teaching us to Pay on time. Or don't charge it.
Depression or no depression, we have to learn as individuals to live within our means. NOT to rely on the government to "bail us out" when we spend too much. Might as well just quit life and get on welfare then! I don't care what it is, but don't come running to me saying you deserve a bailout.
Scores of people were killed and tens of thousands left homeless in central Italy today after a powerful earthquake shook a mountain region, severely damaging a historic city and leaving hundreds feared trapped in rubble.
At least 92 people were known to have died, the Italian news agency Ansa reported, quoting local rescue workers, while the Red Cross said it faced a "race" to rescue those still trapped.
More than 1,500 people had been injured, the Italian prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, told a press conference in L'Aquila, the badly damaged capital of the Abruzzo region, close to the quake's epicentre.
Thursday, April 2, 2009
Internet pirates late Tuesday night got their claws into an early print of "X-Men Origins: Wolverine," the upcoming Twentieth Century Fox movie adapted from the popular Marvel Comics character. Overnight, thanks to file-sharing technology such as Bit Torrent, the stolen print -- essentially a 90% finished version of the final movie -- had spread around the globe.Yes, IF it's a good movie...In the meantime, Fox seeks to find and destroy the leakers.
But the peril "Wolverine" now faces, according to Marvel Studio's recently departed worldwide head of marketing and distribution, Geoff Ammer, is not piracy -- it's marketing.
"If it's a good movie, it won't fucking matter. People will go see it," Mr. Ammer said. "But if it's a bad movie, it could have consequences. There's such a small universe of people that would go and download the movie. So if one fan boy hates the movie and then goes on every fan site, saying 'This is unreleasable, blah blah blah.' one person's opinion doesn't make a difference. But if a lot of fanboys download it and all concur, en masse, that's your downside."
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
We will first consider President Barack Obama's plan. To be clear, this is no ordinary budget. In a nutshell, the president and Democratic leaders in Congress are attempting to bring about the third and final great wave of progressivism, building on top of the New Deal and the Great Society. So America is placed in a special moment in our history -- brought about by the deep recession, Mr. Obama's ambitious agenda, and the pending fiscal tidal-wave of red ink brought forward by the looming insolvency of our entitlement programs. If this agenda comes to pass, it will mark this period in history as the moment America turned European.Read all of Congressman Ryan's POV.
House Republicans will offer an alternative plan. This too is no ordinary budget. As the opposition party, we believe this moment must be met by offering the American people a different way forward -- one based on our belief that America is an exceptional nation, and we want to keep it that way. Our budget applies our country's enduring first principles to the problems of our day. Rather than attempting to equalize the results of peoples' lives and micromanaging their affairs, we seek to preserve our system of protecting our natural rights and equalizing opportunity for all. The plan works to accomplish four main goals: 1) fulfill the mission of health and retirement security; 2) control our nation's debts; 3) put the economy on a path of growth and leadership in the global economy; and 4) preserve the American legacy of leaving the next generation better off.
Just a personal observation...as I watched the news coverage of the massive flooding in the Midwest with the levee's about to break in Fargo, ND, what amazed me is not what we saw, but what we didn't see...1. We don't see looting.Instead of excuses there is plenty of Praise for the fortude and hard work on the part of flood surviors and the neighbors and their friends.
2. We don't see street violence.
3. We don't see people sitting on their rooftops waiting for the government to come and save them.
4. We don't see people waiting on the government to do anything.
5. We don't see Hollywood organizing benefits to raise money for people to rebuild.
6. We don't see people blaming President Obama.
7. We don't see people ignoring evacuation orders.
8. We don't see people blaming a government conspiracy to blow up the levees as the reason some have not held.
9. We don't see the US Senators or the Governor of North Dakota crying on TV.
10. We don't see the Mayors of any of these cities complaining about the lack of state or federal response, if anything they are giveing praise to the state and Feds for their support.
11. We don't see or hear reports of the police going around confiscating personal firearms so only the criminal will be armed.
12. We don't see gangs of people going around and randomly shooting at the rescue workers. The gangs of youths are going from one center to another to make sand bags.
13. You don't see some leaders in this country blaming the bad behavior of the North Dakota flood victims on "society" (of course there is no wide spread reports of lawlessness to require excuses).