Found My Days of Mercy on demand and the two leads go back to playing lesbians. One might not think (Ellen Page's dad is on death row; friend of the family of Kate Mara ["Mercy"] was murdered) being on the opposite side of death penalty protests would be where you fall in love. Still ... overall good movie with much of the focus on Page and her siblings with the upcoming execution of their dad (convicted of murdering their mom). No happy ending execution-wise but the relationship is given a shot at the end. The Children's Hour was on TCM and only saw part of it, including much of the rather melodramatic final reel (Shirley MacLaine's -- darn she looked good and acted well -- suicide was like "you knew this would happen" given how over the top things were). It is implied (and her character eventually tearfully admits she fears it) that she at least was really a lesbian. The play/film was as much as about the problems of gossip ruining lives and the characters as much as lesbianism. It was too much at the end but overall it was good.
Saturday, July 27, 2019
SCOTUS isn't only dropping mostly ignored (even by SCOTUSBlog, which still annoys me) summer orders. The big news was Justice Stevens dying. Justices also put themselves out there (more than one wasn't around for the funeral given commitments), including another RBG interview. As I noted over there, I'm not as annoyed as this piece, but it has some bite. Calling a partisan ass credibly accused of multiple acts of sexual assault "very decent" in particular is ... crossed the line. Breyer actually supported term limits. RBG sounds like an elite benefiting that doesn't want change. I'm tired of it. Yesterday, barely ("among the reasons," citing one) explaining themselves, five justices allowed funding and plans of construction of part of a border wall to go on in the face of two lower courts. Breyer would have allowed negotiations but not building. The other libs just opposed the stay without opinion. With justices out of the country and all, wonder how they did this. By conference call? Conservatives selectively don't care about agency overreaching (with property rights implications). The "no standing" approach might not be a full win on the merits, but the results get you the same basic place. More words for Stevens. In these times, they do help some. He particlarly respected Souter, whose brief words of honor was quite Souter-esque. I hope to hear a bit more from him too. RBG references talking to him about Stevens in her own remarks (formatted for an elderly person with vision problems?). O'Connor is ill but lingering. But, her death won't surprise.
Friday, July 26, 2019
I sometimes discuss "after hours" programming on this channel and she popped up in some of the fare a few years ago, part of a familiar collection of faces. The Internet being made for that sort of thing, here is a (recently lapsed) registration of her name. She was amusing -- JB was a walking sexbot of a performer but acted with enough of a light touch to be fun. Like she knew she was ridiculous and ran with it. Porntube allows you to see more of her than shown on regular cable. I also see her Twitter is still active.
Thursday, July 25, 2019
I started a thing this year where I look at each person executed and turns out will have a few more with a new federal policy. Given the last person executed by the federal government is in the early Bush43 years, the usual long on death row problem will repeatedly arise (there were newer additions). One notes this wasn't done under Sessions though it is not exactly surprising or the worst you expect under Trump. Know one criminal justice policy guy who thinks too much attention is given to the death penalty (and supports it especially if done by the feds in certain cases), but net, this (as Chris Geidner noted) is a bad move there too. ETA: OTOH, maybe they won't happen.
Wednesday, July 24, 2019
Months after the Mueller Report was released, we finally had hearings with him personally (Judiciary and Intelligence), and we got a sense of what he thought about Trump. Other than little nuggets like that (such as references to ongoing investigations about the effects of what was found in the Report that seemed to surprise one or more members), the core was Dems reading snippets and getting him to agree or "generally" (whatever that means though many probably didn't take it to mean much of a qualification) about them. So, hundreds of pages were summarized and blessed by Mueller. Meanwhile, as a whole, Republicans were trolls who tried to badmouth Mueller. Various spin belittled this in some fashion and/or told us how the Dems (who mostly were carefully scripted) screwed up, but net, it seemed productive to me. Rep. Nadler seemed to me publicly to have the strongest position (underlining if Trump wasn't in his current position, he would have been indicted) so this doesn't surprise me. More foot dragging. "Got to wait for the Report." "Got to wait for him to testify." "Got to wait for the judges to decide." Big sigh. Anyway, I didn't expect magic and though Mueller did come off as someone who didn't want to be there and at times ill at ease, as a whole, I think it was productive. Anyway, it had to be done really, and provided a lot to work with especially if it is used with the care and force it warrants. Big qualifier, but useful even if imperfectly done.
Tuesday, July 23, 2019
I read the autobiography of Justice Stevens, well timed so to speak given his death, but couldn't get into some other books. Did re-read this book, which I read years back (Fall 2000). The next one is even more ancient history. Anyway, a young lesbian comes back "home" to deal with her first love's mother's sudden illness and faces her past etc. It already is a short book (200 or so pages) and think it could have been shorter (like a novella though last fifty or so pages went quickly). First book. Seems like it could have been edited down, like it rambled or such. But, it was a good read overall. She's still around. ETA: How Could You Do It, Diane is a young adult fiction regarding a teenage girl and her family dealing with the suicide of her stepsister. I first read it as a teenager (if older than her) but re-reading it now, it was still good. This review says ages 10-14, but the character (by the end) is 15 or so. So, why so young?
Monday, July 22, 2019
Earlier in my blog history, Kleiman was someone I regularly read and commented upon as seen by doing a search of this name (e.g., regarding Kerry's presidential run). I disagreed with him at times, including what I took as a too strict path against drug legalization. Did respect him. But, for whatever reason, I stopped reading his blog. He was particularly known for drug/criminal justice policy. A broad group respected him. RIP.
Sunday, July 21, 2019
As Christmas in July on Hallmark Channel continues, a few that I like the most have been replayed. This is a little gem, helped a lot by Jaime King, who is a bit of different look for these movies. A song involving "figgy pudding" has a special place. This is another case (see also, The Nine Lives of Christmas) where the movie is better than the book.
Saturday, July 20, 2019
Some things should be done at least once and watching this famously bad film might be among them. And, it is bad in various ways, especially some of the dead people ["Plan Nine" involves raising the recently dead] and over the top narration. But, it has some good points: the overall plot is okay and credibly handled more or less (any number of 1950s sci fi flicks aren't really much better). So, yeah, I think the film's reputation might be a bit overrated.
Wednesday, July 17, 2019
In 2005, a year before his death, Ford wrote, in a tribute to Stevens, “For I am prepared to allow history’s judgment of my term in office to rest (if necessary, exclusively) on my nomination thirty years ago of John Paul Stevens to the U.S. Supreme Court.” Fair.
I took a break from reading his autobiography (he just got on the Court) and saw he died. ETA: The book is pretty good though the court years was too much about cases; needed more snapshots of being a justice, behind the scenes stuff. Also, he talks about his childhood and pre-court years but little about his married life. Nearly nothing about his first wife (over thirty years married) though more references of his second. Few comments about his kids.
Tuesday, July 16, 2019
The importance of changing public sentiment, which is not just a matter of votes (it helps but not being strongly anti-gay matters even for a Republican who helps support bad GLBTQ policies), is the focus here. This arose in debates over the strength of AOC and her allies. Public sentiment matters even without the votes. A majority, especially in our bottleneck fulled system, operates factoring in many pressures. The discussion, from a progressive p.o.v., is right to warn that our society is greatly divided. I think it does exaggerate the 2016 election results though understand forgetting about Jill Stein. Clinton/Stein is not "right wing" and received 49.25% of the popular vote. A few fractions also came from the left. We also don't have run-off voting. Even factoring in Gary Johnson (who represented libertarians, who are not "far right" on various issues), all the "right" candidates received about one percent more (write-ins seem to provide the balance). I think the protest conservative candidate led to a few more people voting and again gay rights/open borders etc. can be "libertarian." But, yes, the "majority" here is unclear. This also doesn't erase the problem with gerrymandering and other methods that artificially make things more conservative than truly is the case. We have work to do.
Monday, July 15, 2019
I also like this Christmas movie with a male lead who popped up in another one repeated recently and the female lead (Taylor Cole, who looks like a young Sela Ward) who pops up in many Hallmark movies. It's sweet and Cole repeatedly is fun in these films. Everyone is generally natural feeling and there is chemistry. Sometimes, this is a bit lacking. As usual, a key issue is pacing and things go well until an obligatory problem fairly late.
It's Christmas in July on Hallmark with a marathon of Christmas movie with some favorites mixed in. This one is charming, helped by leads that fit their parts well. The daughter really has that "sorta European" accent that works well for these stamp sized kingdom type films. The two women are cute and widower suitably ill at ease but pining for the heroine. The daughter (who has a limited IMDB) also plays her scenes very well. Generally well paced.
Sunday, July 14, 2019
After the tragic early death of the author, blunt words of the raw pain of her husband and a video of the funeral is available, I'm reading her books and checked out some video. After her latest on the bible, I'm reading this. Her progressive, humane, snarky and questioning style is appealing. She comes at this as a believer, which particularly matters for lots of women. (A reference to the woman who cooked the recipes in the Julia Child cookbook led me to see ... well, she became a bit of a slut.) This book was written before she had kids and so on; knowing what happened is a bit creepy at times. The whole thing is not TOO profound really or THAT deep of a dive but good for the soul. This time with pictures. ETA: She noted during her "year" that she got around a barrier to speaking in church by considering it "prophecy" and she has been called a prophet. The power of her work might be somewhat lessened by those looking from the outside.
Saturday, July 13, 2019
The author's second book covers a lot of the same ground but is more about feminist activism [building off the last chapter] in China so this book (written a few years before) was helpful as well. "Leftover women" is a term used in China to label women who don't marry (by around 27) and it reflects and advances gender inequality there. Of special note: home ownership.
Thursday, July 11, 2019
I'm amused this trailer found enough non-explicit content to fill over a minute of playing time. Other than what to me is an annoyingly artificial "facing the viewer" toss-in (a sort of breaking the fourth wall), the first ten or so minutes of the film is pretty good. Putting aside the use of color in "found footage" from c. 1940 or so (first it sounds like the 1930s, then he is sent on some military mission), the opening is good. A touch of humor too. A lot of boring big breast sex action soon kicks in. Two of the "students" (a bit long in tooth) are familiar faces.
Saturday, July 06, 2019
Smart Twitter person says non-smart things: "The people insisting that impeachment would magically get Trump to go away sound just like the people who say “you should report that!!” every time I talk about my experiences with discrimination." No one actually says that. Meanwhile, Pelosi being reported badmouthing AOC as some outlier with no support. At some point, might we say she has a problem with a sizable group [note vote] in the caucus? She's starting to be tiring. Is she upset the kids are stealing the thunder from her left?
Thursday, July 04, 2019
The Creature From The Black Lagoon series has been on Svengoolie. This book is about the life and career of the woman who worked on the monster, Milicent Patrick. Mixed in with the at times somewhat rambling account (mostly fun; various footnote asides) is the story of the author's efforts in researching the book. She is in the industry herself (portrays herself as a big nerd though she looks kickass in the author photo) and it is a work of love.
Tuesday, July 02, 2019
Monday, July 01, 2019
For your planning purposes, summer order lists are scheduled to be issued on July 15, August 5, and August 23, 2019. Summer order lists usually consist of actions taken by the Court on motions in pending cases, petitions for rehearing, and other miscellaneous matters. Emergency orders, such as in applications for stays, will continue to be released as required.
SCOTUSBlog et. al. might ignore them, but hey, I'm for completeness. There are multiple executions scheduled in August, to give an "emergency order" example. Meanwhile, always had a citizen question? Not really. Justices on vacation and speaking/teaching jaunts. ETA: Meanwhile, we get a first taste of the new term with October Sitting.