Tuesday, November 30, 2010
The 21st Century has removed many barriers, resulting in dumps of information like this that has good and bad aspects. Blaming any one source is as misguided as claiming there is nothing to see here. The value of maturity and media to process this stuff is both evident.
Monday, November 29, 2010
And Also: God of liberty: A Religious History of the American Revolution by Thomas S. Kidd is interesting but incomplete. Much on evangelistic faiths while deism and such is covered less. The essential unifying function of religion is not quite shown. Still worthwhile.
Sunday, November 28, 2010
Justice Stevens provides a quite interesting [his final stance on the Court] review of Peculiar Institution: America’s Death Penalty in an Age of Abolition by David Garland. The no "activism" point is dubious. Two recent speeches on other subjects can be found here.
Brandin Rackley sighting last night. She's fun. The Giants finished off a Second Half comeback this time, the defense doing their job when it counted. Buffalo again played like the best two win team. The fact they still are playing here? Again, two win team.
The stories behind both this film (see, e.g., commentary track) and the original book (which goes in some other, somewhat melodramatic, directions) are interesting. The film itself is small/indie at its best, telling a good story (rough along the edges) with great performances.
Friday, November 26, 2010
Saw Ms. Applegate on Conan, heavily pregnant and doing well as to her recent health issue (also a subplot of sorts on In Treatment). Tangled seriously addresses mommy/independence issues and is overall good stuff, so some bland aspects still make it a fair bargain.
Thursday, November 25, 2010
Tangled is an enjoyable take-off of the Rapunzel fairy tale, if more tame than the original. Pretty tough backstory all the same, if a somewhat boring love interest. Nice songs and scenery with the cute animal stuff also well restrained. Oh, it's "PG" but not too harsh.
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Re-listening. Some sloppiness, including some simplistic analysis and mislabeling justices. Still, worthwhile effort, especially in the 1990s. And, you want activist? Try this attempt to overturn Roe by twisting a minor regulation after interpreting the others narrowly!
Monday, November 22, 2010
Given the number Buffalo (sic) did on the Bengals, the Jets can toy with mediocre teams (who have talent but not enough) again on Thursday. How else to explain that defense fail in the 4Q? The Giants had chances (again) but (again) choked. Helps some Jags are next.
Sunday, November 21, 2010
Saturday, November 20, 2010
Guess who was on cable last night, this time playing an American? Actually, seriously, she is pretty talented. She is quite good in a stand-up routine under her married name. She provides an amusing story about filming the movie here. Comes off as a fun girl. Not fake.
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Dolphins not showing much tonight. Meanwhile, after named favorites by some to go all the way, now the Giants aren't even favored to win their next game. And, reportedly (via Maddow) Murkowski will vote for DADT recall. That answers one question!
Rachel Maddow fans care about this development because it allowed the executive producer to shave off his beard. But, when Chris Hayes (filling in for LD) after her show asked Murkowski's position on two matters coming up, she hedged. You just won ma'am. Why not?
Amy Davidson had a good account, including a few hopeful signs regarding our jury system. But, other media sources will speak of "major setback for Obama administration plans" front and center. Meanwhile, we hear Ghailani thought the trial was "fair." Fail?
I dreamed of having a book of my own, of writing one that I could put on a shelf,” she said. “Please, no matter how we advance technologically, please don’t abandon the book. There is nothing in our material world more beautiful than the book.”
NYT online has a great feature at the moment -- a type of Civil War blogging. Mixed in is a pretty interesting look at the Boston Tea Party and its place in history. Yes, it's by a National Review contributor. Still worthwhile. A tad light on coverage of the modern version.
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Somewhat tedious, but the Fried father/son team does get a nod for not compromising on torture, though the dad doesn't want to punish anyone. As to "simply" breaking the law, unlike Lincoln et. al., Bush wasn't open nor did he ask Congress almost immediately. Fail.
A gay teen is getting some nice support (I responded) for speaking out for his suspended teacher. As the ACLU lawyer notes, however, a "teachable moment" includes not kicking out a student voicing a personal opinion that many share. I fear this can worsen things.
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
And Also: David E. Kyvig's book about impeachment was discussed here. His book, Repealing National Prohibition was very interesting, particularly since many of the same arguments against pop up regarding Drug Prohibition.
If the life expectancy numbers (same as healthy working years?) are variable, this should be taken into consideration. But, again, extended education etc. should as well. Do janitors start working the same age too? (Years put should factor in.) What will 2050 be like?
Monday, November 15, 2010
This is basically an enjoyable piece of undemanding fluff for fans of the Hallmark movie series, but it does have a subplot (if without too much bite) about a recently released bank robber. Some aren't big fans of redemption/forgiveness in such cases. See, Michael Vick.
The Establishment Clause case I discussed here was broadcast on C-SPAN over the weekend (audio with pictures). The taxpayers might lose, but I think their lawyer argued well. And, why is the federal government against them? It's a complicated/nuanced state case.
Today it is was Dallas -- a shot to make it 10-9 turned into 16-3 and Giants never recovered. Buffalo did finally win (Detroit failed the 2 point shot to force an OT) and the Jets (no thanks to their kicker) won about as OT expired. Giants fans are Redskins fans tonight.
Saturday, November 13, 2010
I got this book for someone else but a charm is that the boy/girl body switch plot faces up to the embarrassing intimate aspects too. Like when a "boy" first wakes up. Or, a "girl" looks at her body. Many versions of this idea wimp out some addressing such details.
“God, she’s going to make a fortune in this business, because there aren’t a lot of girls out there with that much sex appeal and beauty who can also be comic.”True enough -- Rachel McAdams is great, including in Morning Glory, a mostly enjoyable (if you want real depth, see Broadcast News) bit of fluff made worthwhile by the leads like her and Harrison Ford.
Friday, November 12, 2010
I respond here to the First Circuit upholding a Pledge of Allegiance law. Trying to explain why de minimis violations (if it is; it's really the only way to uphold it) are not violations at all generally fall apart upon scrutiny. The ruling received a somewhat critical response there.
I still don't take the "repeal the 17A" movement seriously. It's required: in the last minute, each team had one more shot last night. BTW, cat food is too expensive for the "Catfood Commission" to work. What about pasta, potatoes or ramen? Talking about cats ...
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Still, it would be nice to focus on and celebrate peace. Would that we had a reason.I agree. Great interview of Jon Stewart on Rachel Maddow. Serious with some disagreement and push-back. Why can't we have more of that? It's b.s., Jon, btw, that's the problem. It's not evenly sprinkled.
As noted here (h/t Rachel Maddow), on the whole, Democrats will help more people with tax cuts and cost less money. But, who breaks "tax cuts" down? Without context, the Republican plan sounds better. And, high end, the benefit is actually relatively small. More here.
Keeping it the same expands benefits -- people live longer, have better health care and so forth than the 1930s. People as a whole also started working later. My grandfather had an eighth grade education. Not atypical. So, a NO WAY to me is a tad curious. Better: for what?
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Tuesday, November 09, 2010
A federal prosecutor will not bring criminal charges against any of the Central Intelligence Agency officers involved in destroying videotapes depicting the brutal interrogation of Al Qaeda detainees, the Justice Department said on Tuesday.But, DADT being overturned has to be appealed. It's the law and all.
Monday, November 08, 2010
A full statement here. Overall, okay, including recognition he (mistakenly) broke a rule (more than fans some admitted) and noting the lack of due process. Dirty pool MSNBC! But, known to the public? Not quite. And, inconsistently applied? [Update: See reply at link.]
Saletan is often a tool, but recent columns on how only the Dems are supposed to change and how the Dems lost the battle, won the war, are sort of right. The Dems do need to change / he's right about the hypocrisy. And, I'm not as gung ho, but yes, there is a bright side.
The same team that barely got nine points (with help) last week, did a Giants on Dallas, 45-7. A low point: down 21-0, Dallas, after wasting a dumb goal line "what's the point" challenge, had no time outs to overturn a dubious TD. The last time out did help make it 28-7.
Sunday, November 07, 2010
Today's win helped by one of those d'oh moments: third team to tie late and win OT, helped by KC not getting anything on an easy score at the end of the First Half. Colts lose: too little time after spending too long to get it within two. Another last chance drive though.
And what magical despair do the Bills hold for us this week?Another close loss. Meanwhile, the Jets were sloppy again, but one roughing penalty led to a missed Detroit extra point, which turned out to allow a win in OT. Team showed something there and Pats lost.
-- Fan Comment
The Bush and Obama administrations have helped to promote cheese, including pushing fast food to use it more, partially with government funds. Sounds unhealthy in more than one way, but will the selective libertarians in Congress care? Their focus is to inhibit health.
It's a great resource, but most Supreme Court orals are boring. Still, as with hateful protests, the video game orals should have a wide audience. Meanwhile, we have an update on Troy Davis. SC or nothing. Hey, just commute his sentence already, Georgia!
And Also: The 9th Circuit also heard the now infamous Arizona Senate 1070 "papers please" law. The oral argument suggests the criminal provisions struck down below are toast, the civil provisions partially so. Meanwhile, a British court overturned an election because a candidate distorted his opponent's views too much!
Saturday, November 06, 2010
A couple good interviews: David Letterman having one of the Chilean miners on (did he ever need a translator for a guest? she was charming herself) and Craig Ferguson having Dick Van Dyke. That miner is a character. Van Dyke was a joy and the interview was fun.
Rachel Maddow had it right -- FOX underlines true mixing of media and campaigning, but KO broke the rules. The point made, he should come back on Monday. I'd add KO should know more than FOX that special care is a good idea. Also, repeatedly people miss key details.
Friday, November 05, 2010
She died fairly young but did not let chronic leukemia keep her down. Clayburgh continued acting after her heyday, early films including An Unmarried Woman, First Monday In October (just on t.v.) and Silver Streak, to name three I saw. Time marches on, I guess.
I checked various blogs regarding his suspension and few comments noted that he interviewed or covered the people to whom he donated. I want to know that sort of thing and if he didn't inform his bosses, it's a no no. Even if the "indefinite" suspension business is stupid.
The Iowa judicial retention election process might be an acceptable idea in theory but kicking out three justices for a unanimous SSM ruling? Not cool. Really? I think even kicking out justices for a Bush v. Gore ruling, still one ruling, is dubious at best. This is disgusting.
Thursday, November 04, 2010
There are a few movies that looked interesting but this seemed the best bet as a lark, which was my mood at the time. It did the job, if imperfectly (e.g., a bit too many killings), the leads all fun in their own way. The pleasant trifle takes skill so kudos.
Wednesday, November 03, 2010
The state that passed a measure against use of Sharia law in the courts seems to be asking for a 1A lawsuit. All "international law" is targeted though it must not include that which falls under federal law now. But, selective targeting of a religion still is a no no. [Accord.]
And Also: I like the first two new patients on In Treatment and War Bride was a good rental about a Londoner marrying a Canadian during WWII; the lead was particularly good; London scenes also very well done. Surprising bit of full frontal nudity in a bath.
Tuesday, November 02, 2010
And Also: No major voting decisions for me today except for a term limit provision I rejected. [It won.] Had to fill in ovals three times, since the first two sheets were rejected by the scanner because the paper was torn on the bottom. Also, wrote in a protest candidate for a local judicial race, since I never heard of these people.
Meghan McCain actually is quite likable and down to earth in Dirty Sexy Politics, though she does come off as a bit childish and shallow at times. She sounds like a typical twenty-something who loves her dad. But, you still sort of want a bit more from a Columbia grad.
Keith Olbermann for the moment has suspended his "Worst Person" segment in honor of Jon Stewart's sanity rally/remarks. Good gesture and KO is right that the two sides don't really deserve equal criticism, particularly at top. One side at least tries to work with the other.
Rachel Maddow suggested yesterday that the Dems were focused more on legislating than simply winning the next election. Also, the average registered voter thinks Dems are better. But, the actual ones are due to pay back the Dems by kicking them out. This will encourage more Republican-like behavior. The base will then complain more. Ha ha!
Monday, November 01, 2010
The starting pitching for the Rangers wasn't that bad, except for Lee's first effort, but the Giants were better: including tonight. No score until the 7th, but a three run homer against Lee (goat #2?!) vs. a solo did the job there. Feliz came in early -- finally. Too late.
Justice Scalia said various things that might be disputed when talking to the St. Thomas More Society, but I surely disagree in respect to one's religion (though "Catholic" can mean a lot of things) having no effect on judging. Even if they don't want to face up to it. More here.