Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Gathering Storm

Thanks to McBlogger for finding this one:

Rep. Mark Kirk (R-IL) Advocates Assassination

If I were to make the remark that this Bozo made, the FBI would be at my door in a minute. His threat was against the governor of Illinois and was not at all veiled. In an article in the Chicago Tribune he is quoted as saying:
“I think that the decision to raise taxes by 50 percent in Illinois is political suicide,” Kirk said of Quinn’s proposal to raise the tax rate to 4.5 percent from 3 percent, coupled with an increase in the personal deduction. “I think the people of Illinois are ready to shoot anyone who is going to raise taxes by that degree.”
The Republicans are playing with fire when they try these kinds of hate based rallying cries. There are enough wackos out there that one or more of them are going to take these statements as permission to go on a shooting spree and then we will all be in a mess of #*@t.

CWA In Financial Hot Water

I am concerned! The CWA, Concerned Women of Ameirca are broke. Their financials this year show them with a deficit of $767,716. Seems the recession has hit them too.

No before you get too concerned, this group is not about women, nor is it much about women's concerns. It is really a front for anti-gay hate mongering spearheaded by Beverly LaHaye and her son. That's the same Lahaye family of the "Left Behind" series, some really bad fiction and even worse theology.

Seems the group has a serious addiction to telemarketing. They spend more than half of all the funds they raise for marketing. Now that's a cause for concern.

Wouldn't it be a pity if they went broke alltogether? (holding my tongue firmly in my cheek)

Pam's House Blend has more.

Glen Beck, Succession & Texans

Last night I saw a clip of Glen Beck, the wingnut to end all wingnuts, talking about Texas succession. Now let's put this in perspective. A demonstration organized and promoted by Fox News and masquerading as a grassroots thing took place yesterday at the Alamo.

Those in attendance, a few hundred mostly white, fringe folks who would be better suited to a Ron Paul rally than the GOP listened to some odd speeches about tyranny and oppression. Funny, not a single one of them looked oppressed and most hadn't a clue what tyranny really meant.

Amidst all this faux-drama were a couple of signs calling for succession. Mr' Beck took this as a great groundswelling of public opinion and postulated on the topic endlessly on his show and others.

Beck is a fool. Succession is not by any means something people are demanding and he and his network are just using this as a launching pad for some kind of panic to drive people to the GOP and away from reality. Those two are mutually exclusive.

Can someone please tell him to shut the hell up and go back to wherever he is from and leave us peace loving Texans alone?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Teabaggaing Protests Were Flacid

Watching Rachael Maddow tonight, I saw the videos of the "teabagging" protests that happened around the country. One word: pitiful!

What Fox News is claiming was the largest grassroots protest in the country looked like a few hundred rain soaked middle aged loonies. The signs were racist and the message was very mixed. Considering nobody check to get permits for the "dumping of the teabags" they had to immediately scoop them up and leave. And then some brain donor tossed a box of tea over the fence at the White House. Throwing powdered substances at the White House will get the Secret Service on you faster than a duck on a June bug, and the protest became a robot inspected terrorist scare.

Teabagging indeed!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Japanese Robot Suit - Real Life Ironman?

File this one under "Gee Wiz". A company in Japan called Cyberdyne® starts selling a new robotic suit. The device called a HAL® (Hybrid Assisted Limb® device) is a wearable robot that senses your body's movements and increases your strength from 2 to 10 times normal.

Designed for people with disabilities and for heavy labor support at factories, rescue support at disaster sites, as well as in the entertainment field. A real live "Ironman" suit minus the bullet proof part!

According to the company it has a 5 hour battery life and is virtually weightless, since the suit supports itself. We are moving into Robocop territory folks and it's getting exciting...and a little weird.

*CYBERDYNE*, *ROBOT SUIT*, *ROBOT SUIT HAL*, *Hybrid Assistive Limb*, and *HAL* are trademarks (TM) or registered trademarks (®) of CYBERDYNE, Inc. protected by Japanese and Foreign trademark Laws.

Governor Perry Invites Rush Limbaugh To Move To Texas

Here in the Great State of Texas, our esteemed governor, Rick Perry has made a proclamation. Seems the Guv has opened his arms to the head of the Republican Party, Rush Limbaugh. Perry has invited the right wing gas bag to move to Texas. Damn I love this crazy state sometimes!

According to the Dallas Morning News
, Perry stated:
"He's not unlike other people who want to go to a place that's got low taxes and fair regulations and a balanced legal system and a skilled work force. Excellence in Broadcasting hires a lot of people. So if he wants to go somewhere where he works hard and keeps more of what he makes, Texas is the place to do that."
Well if that isn't ass-kissing I don't know what is and Gawd knows Rick Perry is good at GOP ass-kissing. Rumor has it he's good at a lot of things but that is a different story.

So, if Rush does move to Texas it will make our state the home of two certified idiots, Bush and Rush. Sort of seems fitting doesn't it?

Monday, April 13, 2009

Spain Will Prosecute Bush Administration Attorneys

According to The Daily Beast, Spanish prosecutors have decided to press forward with a criminal investigation targeting former U.S. attorney general Alberto Gonzales and five top associates over their role in the torture of five Spanish citizens held at Guantánamo.

South Pacific - Restored Roadshow Version on Blu-Ray

I don't review movies here very often, much less ones that are 50 years old, but South Pacific is a different story. I remember loving this musical as a child and was delighted when it became available on Blu-Ray disc in HD.

First of all, if you never saw the film during it's original roadshow engagement, which I did, you haven't seen the full film. It was a 3 hour event that had about 18 minutes trimmed from it for general release. That 18 minutes might not seem like much, but it was far from fluff material.

In the restored Blu-Ray version, the film gets a letterbox treatment even with an HD monitor. Shot in Todd-AO, once billed as the successor to Cinerama, it is spectacular in it's scope. The crystal clear vistas of the South Pacific are stunning. Shot in 65mm, any visible film grain is almost imperceptible except in scenes with a very low light level.

The film's director, Joshua Logan, tried a risky technique of using multiple colored filters on the camera to approximate the theatrical effects of stage lighting. Later he regretted this decision, and since it was an in-camera effect, it was permanent. Personally, I have always liked the color shtick. The rich hues accentuate the emotional tone of the songs and give the musical numbers a surrealistic quality.

I won't go into the plot, since everyone knows it well, however I did find why this film was one of my favorites as a prepubescent yet-to-be-out gay kid. The abundance of bare chests and hunky male physiques are astounding. Today this film might get a PG rating for all the man-skin. Back then people figured it was just hot on the islands and guys never wore shirts.

Add that to the musical numbers where the guys are dancing with each other or even more obviously dressed in drag, and it's a homoerotic treat! I have yet t9o watch the numerous extras included with the two disk set, but I feel pretty sure they will be good.

The only distracting thing was the replaced scenes from the roadshow version. This cut had been lost. No negatives or printing elements were known to exist, and so the restoration relied on an old print found in London and scraps of workprint to replace the missing scenes. Because of this, the quality of these scenes is obviously of poorer quality. Still once I got used to this anomaly, it became invisible.

The sound track is a treat. Multi-channel digital sound reproduces the multi-track analog sound used for Todd-AO to perfection and I found myself singing the songs days after watching the film.

If you have never seen South Pacific, or if you only remember it from Television, you should not pass up this restoration. Mitzi Gaynor, Rossano Brazzi and Ray Walston never looked or sounded so good!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

The Train Station Dance - Sound Of Music!

Sometimes I think there is not enough magic in the world, and the I find this video. It was a publicity stunt for a TV program, and T-Mobile also has used a similar gag in a British train station, but it is still magic. Imagine being just anywhere and suddenly a Hollywood musical starts happening around you complete with hundreds of dancers. Now that's entertainment!