Friday, October 31, 2008

Gratuitous Political Gratuitousness

Finally a measure I can get behind!

Oh wait a minute. I just read the rest of the sign. Maybe it's not what I thought. Dang. For a minute there I thought election day was going to be a blast.

Goose Liver Pate and Baby Seal Sushi

I keep trying to explain the fundamental differences between conservatives and liberals lefties to my lefty friends and it's been tricky, but thankfully here's the Big O to sum it all for me. We conservatives are just selfish. Yep, that's it. That's the difference. We just don't want to pay taxes on income over $250,000, $150,000, $120,000 because we'd rather keep that money so we can spend our evenings slathering ourselves with Siberian Mink Oil and rolling around naked in piles of cash before sitting down to a nice dinner of Goose Liver Pate and Baby Seal Sushi.

Oh wait - there's one small problem - at least for me. I don't make over $250,000, $150,000, $120,000 - at least at the moment. Sure I'd like to and heck, one script sale - BANG, I'm in. Of course in that case maybe I'll do what I'm already doing and donate more of it to a good charity or two. Shoot - but I forgot all about how selfish I am.

Pinkie to O: Blow me.

Via Hot Air:

“The point is, though, that — and it’s not just charity, it’s not just that I want to help the middle class and working people who are trying to get in the middle class — it’s that when we actually make sure that everybody’s got a shot – when young people can all go to college, when everybody’s got decent health care, when everybody’s got a little more money at the end of the month – then guess what? Everybody starts spending that money, they decide maybe I can afford a new car, maybe I can afford a computer for my child. They can buy the products and services that businesses are selling and everybody is better off. All boats rise. That’s what happened in the 1990s, that’s what we need to restore. And that’s what I’m gonna do as president of the United States of America.
“John McCain and Sarah Palin they call this socialistic,” Obama continued. “You know I don’t know when, when they decided they wanted to make a virtue out of selfishness.”

This reveals the basic underlying philosophy of the Left - that one cannot possibly be charitable unless they use the government to redirect their funds - ED MORRISSEY.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Tax System in Explained in Beer

My brother forwarded me this (he works in finance so I trust him on tax issues.). I have no idea who wrote it but heck it's online so it's fair game. (He works in finance so I trust him on tax issues).

Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100.

If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this:

- The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.

- The fifth would pay $1.

- The sixth would pay $3.

- The seventh would pay $7.

- The eighth would pay $12.

- The ninth would pay $18.

- The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.

So, that's what they decided to do. The ten men drank in the bar every day and seemed quite happy with the arrangement, until one day, the owner threw them a curve. 'Since you are all such good customers,' he said, 'I'm going to reduce the cost of your daily beer by $20. 'Drinks for the ten now cost just $80.

The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes so the first four men were unaffected. They would still drink for free.

But what about the other six men - the paying customers?

How could they divide the $20 windfall so that everyone would get his 'fair share?' They realized that $20 divided by six is $3.33.

But if they subtracted that from everybody's share, then the fifth man and the sixth man would each end up being paid to drink his beer.

So, the bar owner suggested that it would be fair to reduce each man's bill by roughly the same amount, and he proceeded to work out the amounts each should pay.

And so the fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing (100% savings).

The sixth now paid $2 instead of $3 (33%savings).

The seventh now pay $5 instead of $7 (28%savings).

The eighth now paid $9 instead of $12 (25% savings).

The ninth now paid $14 instead of $18 ( 22% savings).

The tenth now paid $49 instead of $59 (16% savings).

Each of the six was better off than before. And the first four continued to drink for free. But once outside the restaurant, the men began to compare their savings. 'I only got one dollar out of the $20,' declared the sixth man. He pointed to the tenth man,' but he got $10'

'Yeah, that's right,' exclaimed the fifth man. 'I only saved one stinking dollar, too..

'It's unfair that he got ten times what I got!' 'That's true!!' shouted the seventh man. 'Why should he get $10 back when I only got two? The wealthy get all the breaks!' 'Wait a minute,' yelled the first four men in unison. 'We didn't get anything at all. The system exploits the poor!'

The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up. The next night the tenth man didn't show up for drinks, so the nine sat down and had beers without him. But when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered something important. They didn't have enough money between all of them for even half the bill!

And that, boys and girls,is how our tax system works. The people who pay the highest taxes get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy, and they just may not show up anymore. In fact, they might start drinking overseas where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.

4 minutes too long.

Anyone who's ever directed or written a film or TV show and has bitten through their tongue while watching some name-brand actor take credit for it because he's got - well - a name (and a fawning "media" reporter sitting opposite him) - will appreciate this video. My guess is that it's supposed to be an attempt by a bunch of Hollywood lefties to appear "American". But it shows brilliantly what happens when actors go off-script (or work without one). To me it says:


Via HotAir

Photoshop skills... weak

As evidenced by the jagged edges on my "Hollywood" flag image up there on the top left, my photoshop skills are weak at best. Still working on it.

Obama's Red Guard Civilian Security Force

Given the way things are going with people who happen to ask inconvenient questions of "the One" this whole Civilian Security Force thing is getting me a little nervous. I wouldn't be at all surprised if it came down to "Madam Obama" picking a "group" of four to set it all up.

Uh... you guys realize this has been done before, right? Via Wikipedia:

Red Guards (simplified Chinese: 红卫兵; traditional Chinese: 紅衛兵; pinyin: Hóng Wèi Bīng) were a mass movement of civilians, mostly students and other young people in the People's Republic of China, who were mobilized by Mao Zedong between 1966 and 1968, during the Cultural Revolution.

I'm here for the party...

Many of us on the right side of Hollywood Boulevard have spent years wondering what people like Susan Sarandon, Sean Penn and George Clooney are thinking when they support their wacky left-wing causes (although, to be fair, George may just be a sincere lefty, rather than a wacky one.) And sure, George W. is an unpopular president, but why do they hate him beyond all sanity?

Could it be that 8 years of Lincoln bedroom hopping with the Clintons have left them jonesing for a Democrat President in the way that a saxophone player might jones for a little horse? What gives? Why are all those Hollywood types so hungry for the D side?

Thankfully, Daily Variety (our resident trade rag) takes the time to lay it all out for us.
The Bush administration has been short on most things socially. White House screening invites are far and few between.

"He’s dull," Feld said of the current president. "He doesn’t drink, he goes to bed by 9 p.m., and he and his wife are not partygoers."

They aren’t big party-throwers, either.

"They’ve had maybe a half-dozen state dinners in eight years," Feld said. "No big entertainment events, no A-list guest lists."

Apparently, it's not as much about Power to the People as it is Power Party Time.

As if the entertainment industry needed to look a little more shallow.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The LA Times - Stranger than Fiction - or is it?

There's been a lot of chatter around and about the blogosphere concerning the LA Times and it's suppression this Obama video. It's even gone (having now received a link to the story from my mother) viral and people are, rightly so, suspicious as all hell. There are quite a few excuses and theories being postulated as to the Tinsel Town Fishwrap's motivations and it does seem strange. Protecting their source? From what? Has the man/woman committed a crime? Are they likely to suffer harm through release of this video? When you're dealing with a mob witness or government whistle blower - sure - I get it. Woodwar, Bernstein - I'm right there with you. But how does this rise to that level? Someone with a home camcorder in the audience - maybe they won't get invited to any other parties. A corporate or event video company hired to film it? Maybe in danger of losing a gig? Seems like small change to me.

But what about something that's so obvious it's being entirely overlooked. (And I'm not talking about the Obamaniac one-upsmanship that's likely to happen at the next newshawk convention.)

What if they (or the writer) made the whole thing up? Could this be another Jayson Blair?

OK, you say, in that case why cover for him? The paper's actions and lack of convincing reasons are making them seem wholly biased. Their credibility, already weak in many corners, is taking a hit of major proportions. Why not just throw him to the wolves and attempt to salvage whatever reputation they may have left?

It may be an easy answer. The LA Times, like most newspapers is losing readers like crazy. They just endured another round of layoffs and as one who subscribes (one of the few), I can tell you it's approaching the thickness of a well round pamphlet. Maybe the conversation wasn't something like, "how can we protect our sources," but maybe it was something like, "we can still run a paper if only 50% the population (the half we don't really care about) doesn't believe what we write, but if 100% of the population doesn't believe it..."

NOTE: I've noticed that among all the Obama signs in my neighborhood very few actually have print editions of the LA Times sitting under them in the morning.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

We do so love the phone

Here in Hollyweird, the phone is king. Agents, managers, producers, publicists, everyone is on the phone all day, every day. Maybe this is just one more way to get a big O.

Via Jammie

A flier sent by Michigan Democrats featuring a photo of Barack Obama that urged voters to submit an absentee ballot application includes a telephone number connecting callers to a phone sex line.

Big Brother is Watching.

People in Hollywood complain all the time that they're scared of George W. Bush. How he's snooping around into everyone's lives, playing Bog Brother and suppressing free speech.

Then there's this: "Ohio official OK’d records search on Joe the Plumber"

Yeesh. I mean, come on people!

Working on the Hollywood sign

Since I'd like to gear the substance of this blog toward entertainment I've decided to experiment with the blogger template. I removed the stock photo in the upper left and added a stylized Hollywood sign. So far, I'm not overwhelmed with how it looks.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Nobody knows anything, except for me

William Goldman once said, "nobody knows anything" (or words to that effect, it's been a longtime since I read the book) and people in Hollywood love to quoth the Goldman, "Nobody knows anything! Nobody knows anything! Nobody knows anything!!!!!" The trouble is that while most people LOVE the sound of their gums beating out that particular rhythm to highlight how really awesomely cool they are for working and making it in such a fickle business, what they're actually saying to you is "nobody knows anything, except for me."

Anyone who's had a pitch meeting or discussed a script with a manager/agent/producer will understand exactly what I'm talking about. Anyone who's read a copy of a script that got "passed around" for years before someone picked it up and made it on a shoestring only to spawn a giant hit and a run of progressively deteriorating sequels will understand what I'm talking about. The irony is that this example proves the theorem but of course the reason all those scripts get passed on while other "read, Pear Harbor" films get made is because people, read Hollywood types, really believe they know something.

Case in point: "W" currently tanking at fewer and fewer box offices near you.

Now I'm not a big fan of Oliver Stone but this isn't a critique of one of America's favorite cinematic revisionists, it's really an explanation of why relatively intelligent people would sink $30 million into a film that by definition won't have an ending about a president with approval ratings only slightly higher than Ted Bundy. "Hey, I know, let's make a movie about a president that no one likes, hire a guy who no one trusts to make it and cast a bunch of actors who hate - I mean really HATE the people they're portraying. Now that's GOT to be a winner."


See what I mean? Nobody knows anything. The film tanked. It is not a winner. The problem is that cell phones were ringing all over Beverly Hills because while the prospect on it's face wasn't that great - there were probably a lot of people who just "knew" it was going to be big. How can it NOT be? a particular digitized conversation might go, "We're ALL talking about it."

Saturday, October 25, 2008

"Spread the Wealth Around" TM - in theory and in practice

A friend of mine emailed me this anecdote today. I think it's worth repeating. I also think it's worth sending to all the "actors" you know. It might give them quite a shock.

"Here's an simple example of Obama's "redistribution of wealth" plan . . .

Today, on my way to lunch, I passed a homeless guy with a sign that read "Vote for Obama, I need the money." I laughed.

Once in the restaurant, my server had on an "Obama 08" pin. Again, I laughed as he made clear his political preference...imagine the coincidence.

When the bill came, I decided not to tip the server and explained to him my reason for this was that I was embracing the Obama "redistribution of wealth" plan, and since he was an Obama follower, he would understand.

He stood there speechless and in disbelief when I told him that I was going to redistribute his tip to someone who I deemed more in need...that being the homeless guy outside the restaurant.

Needless to say, the server was pissed and abruptly walked away.

I then went outside and gave the homeless guy the $5 tip, and told him to thank the waiter inside since I decided he needed the money more than the waiter.

Needless to say, the homeless guy was grateful.

As I drove off, In thinking about my "redistribution of wealth" experiment, I realized the homeless guy was very grateful for the money he did not earn, but the waiter was very angry that I gave away the money he had earned, even though I had decided, based on Obama's "redistribution of wealth" plan, that the homeless guy deserved the money more.

What I further realized was that "redistribution of wealth" is an easier thing to accept in concept rather than in a practical, everyday life application.
What's your thought, America? Is this Obama "redistribution of wealth" plan something we as a democracy really wants??"

A few tough questions and a big F.U.

wow. This is just incredible. I guess this Joe isn't used to having tough questions asked. Boy he does try to keep that smile plastered on though.

and double wow: here.

My Dog is depressed

Apparently a couple of guys from ACORN registered him to vote and he was all excited. I feel bad breaking his heart.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Cool Hand Barack

While this article in the NY Post is not part of the hagiographic meme circulating through the rest of the media, it does make reference to Barack's so-called, "cool" in the face of economic crisis. Am I dreaming? Of course Barack is cool. The worse the crisis gets the better it is for him and it's not like anyone's exactly pressing him (pun intended) on the details of how he's going to fix it once he's in office.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Columnist Asserts that "Black" is a Code Word for "Black"

Following things to the logical extreme, Joe Schlobotnik, a columnist for the San Francisco People's Daily Dog Trainer and Coupon Circular has determined that right-wing fascists of any and all stripes who refer to Obama as Black are actually engaging in double-speak.

"What they're trying to do," Schlobotnik writes, "is to infer that Obama is actually black. It's a scare tactic that harkens back to the days of Jim Crow, Amos and Andy and Daffy Duck when black was not only black but also not white. It's subtle, yet right in your face at the same time. When a Democrat calls Obama black there's a warm, glowing feeling of Martin Luther King and sitting around in a circle singing "Kum Bay Ya" because Democrats are sensitive people, with good hearts and high IQs who know instictively that black is not actually black but something more subtle, something spiritual that says, yes - we can! But there's no question that when a Republican calls someone black, what they're really saying is, hey, I'm a neo-nazi-racist thug."

Thursday, October 16, 2008

LA Times flexes its psychic powers

The Los Angeles Times runs a front page, above the fold ANALYSIS (read: opinion piece) on last night's debate and in a blast of psychic superpower declares that it "appears to do little to shift the dynamics."

Now this could be true today, but remember that paper was lying in my driveway at 6am this morning which meant that it went to the presses overnight which meant that the "analysis" of how the debate shifted or did not shift any dynamics was written LAST NIGHT well before anyone had any IDEA of what dynamics might have shifted.

Of course it might not be psychic powers, it might just be wishful thinking.

Nary a word about free speach

Wow - to borrow a phrase from the Master, they told me if George Bush were re-elected whole communities would rise up to squash the free speech rights of individuals.

But this is ridiculous. Yeesh.

I mean, do I need to actually point out the hypocrisy?

Because, you know, I will.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Photo Editing Shopping at the LA Times

As a director/filmmaker I'm keenly attuned to how images appear onscreen and how the framing, lighting and other aspects of an image can inform a viewer's perception of the subject.

There are two images on the front page of the LA Times this morning:

I've posted them in the order they appear on the paper with Obama on top and McCain below (in fact below the fold)- itself a choice that expresses a point of view. Now the article that accompanies them is about how even Republicans are abandoning McCain in this time of economic crisis. There's also a graph that makes Obama's victory look inevitable. But my concern is the pictures. Remember - the LA Times probably has thousands of images to choose from in illustrating a story, so the choice of any two images expresses the opinions of the editors in an incredibly subtle way that even they may not be able to fully understand. Let's take a look.

The top one of Obama makes him look strong - glancing off firmly into the future - the American Flag is bright, strong and crisply in focus behind him. He is lit from above so his chin is solid - ready to take one on the jaw for America (his eyes are in shadow - which if I were lighting it myself I would have fixed, but it doesn't detract from the image). His expression is confident, serene. Slap a cowboy hat on him and a cigarette (not a stretch) and you've got the Marlboro man. There is no ambiguity in this picture. It's the photo of a hero.

Let's take a look at McCain. It's a profile and is lit from below so that he looks old - this is never a flattering point of view and if you were photographing a middle-aged woman (say Barbara Streisand this way, you might have your head lopped off). We can see the sagging skin under his chin and the shadows that play across the rest of his face make him look dramatic and accent his wrinkles. His expression looks slightly - uncertain. We're not sure at all where he's looking or what he's thinking. The America flag behind him is dark and out of focus. This is an ominous picture. But there's something else about this picture that concerns me greatly. What the hell happened to the star field? Aren't the stars on the American flag supposed to be white? In this case they're dark - in fact they appear darker than the blue. Trick of the light, you say? Just the way it's been lit. Then why do the stripes only inches away appear white? It looks to me as if someone has inverted the contrast on the star field. I have photoshop on my other computer so I haven't had time to take a crack at how this might work, but at first glance it looks a little fishy.

Why? Why indeed would someone want to portray the symbol of our country as altered right behind the face of a man running for president - on the front page of a major newspaper no less. Why place him photographically in a situation that appears ominous?

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


The reviews are in for Oliver Stone's "W". Both Variety and The Hollywood Reporter have seen it and the reviews are luke warm which means it must be dreadful. Variety's review generally refrains from lobbing any grenades into the "Bush" legacy but HR offers us this choice tidbit: ""W." is not really a political movie per se; rather, it's a movie about a man who went into politics but probably shouldn't have."

Monday, October 6, 2008


I went to another screening last night with my peeps and wound up invigorated, inflamed and actually kind of scared. The film was The Third Jihad and it's definitely recommended viewing for those of you who are not cowed by the MSM and still actually a little concerned that there's this beast out there that's still very much gunning for us. Give it a look.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Maybe they're referring to the Monty Python "Holy Grail" version of the little fluffy bunny

Drudge linked to this but it's a great example of something that I've been annoyed with for years; that is an editorial masquerading as news. There's absolutely no question that this story is OPINION and not fact. Also, it's hard to imagine someone referring to Sarah Palin as a "fluffy bunny" as anything but sexist. Then again, they could be referring to that fluffy bunny in Monty Python and the Holy Grail.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Sarah needs to learn some sleight of hand

I have to admit I'm a little disappointed with Sarah Palin's interview with Couric. I'm not down on Sarah entirely and still think she's a great choice, but my take on the interview (and I haven't seen all of it yet) is that she's a little green. Doing interviews like that takes experience.

No one ever actually answers questions in situations like that. I'm almost sure that Barack Obama has never answered a question straight in his life, but there are tricks and techniques you learn after a while. Redirection is the key - sleight of hand. Some people call it dodging but people like Hillary are masters at it. You get asked one question and you answer another. The trick is the link. You have to link it. You have to make the audience watch one hand while your other is hiding the coin.

It's like this.
"What other Supreme Court cases are you concerned about?"
"It isn't a specific case, it's all cases. You can't look back, you have to look forward and you have to select justices not based on specific cases, but on principals because that's what the American people want and right now the American people, our people are hurting and they're hurting because the elitists in Washington are more worried about what pet project they get into this rescue bill than in helping out main street. "

You have to answer with a non-answer, but it takes a few years in the saddle to get that. The real pros can finish with a hot button issue that the interviewer will be compelled to follow up - thus getting them entirely off topic and the trick is complete.