Implied Dissent

Tuesday, September 30, 2003

This happened in 1974. Sure Big Brother's your friend, sure it is.

Monday, September 29, 2003

There may be a big increase in private outer space activity in the next few years. That'd be cool.
I'm not ready yet to say this story belongs in the impeachment case against Bush, but it might turn out that way.

Friday, September 26, 2003

Bush never claimed Iraq was involved in the September 11th attacks? Yes, he did.
This is a quite long interview with Ray McGovern. It is well worth your time.
Short on cash?

Interesting debate about hate speech and W.

Thursday, September 25, 2003

Bush's interview with Brit Hume. I have no response to this excerpt.
Sobran would be an excellent choice for our next president.
More on the WTO.

Wednesday, September 24, 2003

Some quotes on Iraq:
"He (Saddam Hussein) has not developed any significant capability with respect to weapons of mass destruction. He is unable to project conventional power against his neighbours."

Saddam Hussein had not been able to "build his military back up or to develop weapons of mass destruction" for "the last 10 years". America...had been successful in keeping him "in a box".

"Saddam does not control the northern part of the country....We are able to keep his arms from him. His military forces have not been rebuilt."

Who said these things? Was it Congressional Democrats? Draft-dodging hippies? Cowardly Europeans? No, the first two are from semi-hawk Secretary of State Colin Powell in February and May 2001, respectively. The third comes from (no qualifier needed) hawk National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice in July 2001.

I was disturbed this morning to wake up to this story on NPR. Romney, and his band of "experts," are missing the entire point, in my opinion. There is no such thing as a perfect death penalty statute -- even if you can "certify" guilt. It disgusts me that my tax money is being spent on this project. I am most disturbed by this comment, "Romney said the commission will not study whether Massachusetts, one of 12 states that do not have a death penalty statute, should reinstate executions." All his talk about certainty doesn't answer my biggest question - what benefit is there in having a death penalty at all?

I encourage anyone reading this who agrees with me to drop Gov. Romney a line with your opinion.
Governor Mitt Romney
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Executive Department
State House Boston, MA 02133
(617) 725-4000

In other less disturbing news, this is Banned Book Week. According to the American Library Association, among the 100 most challenged books are I know Why the Caged Bird Sings, the entire Harry Potter series, Brave New World, and (my favorite) Where's Waldo.

Also - today June Carter Cash posthumously released Wildwood Flower. The album features collaborations with her children, cousins, friends and beloved (now late) husband Johnny Cash.

Tuesday, September 23, 2003

Interesting car stuff.
This is pretty funny, even if you don't agree with him (which I do).
This is also pretty funny even though I don't agree with it, and it totally confuses supply-side and Keynesian economics a few times.
Pitchfork Pat on guns. Send me anti-gun/pro-gun control/pro-gun/anti-gun control articles if you find good ones. This is an issue I want to know more about.

Monday, September 22, 2003

So the president of the NYSE was forced to resign last week because he was paid too much money. I don't really understand this. Clearly, his pay was excessive, I'm not disputing that. But if my employer offers me way more money than I'm worth, why am I in the wrong? Unless Grasso somehow cheated the exchange, I think the blame lies squarely with the board, not Grasso. They should be the ones to lose their jobs.
On the topic of governance issues and scandals, here's more. This organization has caused more problems, broken more laws, and ruined more lives than any other in this country.
On a totally different topic, here's a good piece on evolution. I still believe in the theory, but Murphy raises some good points to consider.
Warning: This is what will happen if you keep listening to Justin Timberlake.

Friday, September 19, 2003

In honor of Bob's ARR


So - I haven't seen any movies lately, and I barely even watch TV since I work so many hours (except for the season premiere of Everwood I know it's corny, but I like it anyhow) but I wanted to add something. So - I highly recommend the following link for your viewing enjoyment. Sheer brilliance. (turn on your sound)

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

The Vice-President was on Meet the Press on Sunday. Wanniski rips Dick a new one.
In case you might think of supporting Wesley Clark because of his anti-war credentials, don't. He talks out of both sides of his mouth on this topic.
Michael Kinsley does a nice job pulling together Microsoft and K Street, that new show on HBO about lobbyists.
Did you know today is Constitution Day? Me neither.
Some people might say that no one has come closer than Peter Jackson to realizing JRR Tolkien's vision with The Lord of the Rings trilogy, but they obviously haven't seen this.

Monday, September 15, 2003

Crap that passes for news

Does anyone care about this? In my opinion this doesn't even rise to the level of entertainment. Really, who gives a rat's ass?

Thursday, September 11, 2003

I've been thinking about what to blog for today. I could write about the evil of the terrorists who plan and executed those awful acts. Or how the American people really showed what we're made of at Ground Zero and on the downed flight. Or about the cynical way in which the administration has used the attacks to advance their own petty power grabs. Or that it takes a lot more to conquer a nation this great. But I'm just going to go back to basics. This is about a good a declaration of American values, hopes and dreams as anyone will be able to find. If we return to the principles embodied here, we will always be fine.

Pop Culture and September 11th

It seems appropriate to spend a few minutes discussing 9/11. Since my job in this blog is to discuss entertainment, I will look at this from that perspective.

Over the last two years I have been, at many times, disturbed by the way the events of 9/11 have been turned into profit-making pop culture products: T-shirts, posters, picture books, and American Flag decals, pins, bumper stickers, etc. Of course, many of these products purport to donate proceeds to the victims' funds, but many are just opportunistic. A large part of me is disgusted by capitalization on our national post-traumatic stress disorder and the morbid curiosity that causes us to watch the tapes of the towers collapsing over and over again on CNN, but a small part of me rejoices in it. Why? The attacks of 9/11 were aimed not only at the government and people of the United States, but at our culture. The terrorists hate the American way of life. Our culture is perceived as materialistic and superficial (which it is, let's face it) but it is also liberating, resilient and flexible.

I've never been much of a flag waver - my style has been to criticize our government as unwieldy, unresponsive and imperialistic. These events, however, force me to realize that I love this country and the fact that we are allowed to be as tacky and insensitive as we want to be.

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

Going with yesterday's themes: The True Meaning of Ground Zero.
PJ O'Rourke on Hong Kong and their wildly successful integration into the global marketplace. O'Rourke mixes being serious and being funny as well as anyone I've ever read.
A fairly long piece on how Iraq relates to World War IV (The Cold War being WWIII).

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

Here's an interesting look at The True Meaning of 9/11.
I'm not sure exactly where Pat is going with this piece, as I know he is very anti-war, but it's good nonetheless.
The Cato Institute has a debate forum going on globalization. Some pretty big names are there, should be good.

Thursday, September 04, 2003

It's time for my predictions for the NFL season. Keep in mind that there are 32 teams, and I would consider predicting 20 teams either exactly right or being off by one win to be very good. 16 would be acceptable.
AFC East:
Buffalo: If they stop being so predictable on offense, the improved defense will take them far. 10-6
New England: Still questions about the running game, and cutting Milloy hurts, but a very solid team. 9-7
Miami: It's the same thing every year, so they will fold in December, January if they're lucky. 9-7
New York Jets: I'm probably being too nice given that Pennington is out most of the season and Vinny is looking at old-age assistance homes, but they have some good players. 7-9
AFC North:
Cleveland: Some questions at QB, but a solid team. 9-7
Pittsburgh: The awful pass defense will keep them doing much. 9-7
Baltimore: Defense still good, offense still questionable, so it balances out. 8-8
Cincinnati: Marvin Lewis doubles last year's win total. Unfortunately it takes another double to break-even. 4-12
AFC South:
Tennessee: Steve McNair looks like he's making The Leap. If Eddie George isn't done like I think he is, a great team. 10-6
Indianapolis: It's time for Peyton to start winning big games, but he is great in the regular season. They need James close to full strength to go far. 10-6
Jacksonville: Honestly, I don't know much about this team. 7-9
Houston: Look for an improved o-line and QB play, but no more sneaking up on people. 5-11
AFC West:
Denver: Maybe Jake Plummer just needed a change of scenery. Or maybe he's awful. I don't feel comfortable with this pick. 10-6
San Diego: Look for some improvement from Brees and the pass defense, but losing Seau will hold them back, at least this year. 9-7
Oakland: While still good, they're getting older. Gannon comes back down to Earth this season. 9-7
Kansas City: An improved defense will give them hope, but I doubt Holmes will come close to last year's production. 8-8
NFC East:
Philadelphia: Still my pick as the best team. Though why they won't spend a little money to 'guarantee' going all the way is beyond me though. 10-6
New York Giants: Some good players, nothing exciting really. 9-7
Washington: No good reason to expect improvement, and Spurrier doesn't impress me. 6-10
Dallas: Parcells will help, but they still suck at QB, so for this year they only improve a bit. 6-10
NFC North
Green Bay: As long as Favre is looking good they have a shot, but I think their last two games last year showed something, and it wasn't good. 9-7
Minnesota: They run the ball extremely well, but Randy Moss' maturity and the defense could hold them back again. 7-9
Chicago: Expect some improvement now that they will have an actual home-field, but Kordell at QB? ouch. 6-10
Detroit: Mariucci helps, but you can only do so much in one year. 6-10
NFC South:
Tampa Bay: They will have a typical post Super Bowl season letdown, but should be good enough to make the playoffs. 9-7
New Orleans: As usual, they'll start strong and fade at the end. 9-7
Carolina: The defense stays strong, and the offense picks up enough to break even, no more. 8-8
Atlanta: Vick's out for the first 4 games, and will probably take a few games to get back to playing like he did last year, but otherwise they seem stronger than last year, and that will keep them respectable. 7-9
NFC West:
San Francisco: Great offense, poor defense. 9-7
Saint Louis: The offense will come back, but in spurts, as I think Faulk will miss a few games here and there. 9-7
Seattle: Holmgren seems to stay right around .500 or below without Favre. 7-9
Arizona: I think Emmitt's got about 1000 yards left in him, and the D should be somewhat better. 6-10
AFC: Buffalo, New England, Pittsburgh, Indiana, Tennessee, and Denver
NFC: Philadelphia, Green Bay, Tampa Bay, New Orleans, San Francisco, and Saint Louis
Superbowl: Philadelphia over Buffalo

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

First, cool innovation from Toyota.
Next up, two pieces on drugs/addiction. The first is about how the term addiction is often misused for political ends. The second is on a former drug warrior who's seen the light, so to speak.
There's been a lot of talk lately about how China is hurting the US with it undervalued currency. The New York Times does a pretty good job of questioning this line of thinking. Ol' Jude does it better though.