Implied Dissent

Sunday, February 29, 2004

Maybe Bush is another Churchill. Very interesting stuff.
This is some cool shit right here. Maybe I should've been a pilot.
I'm pretty sure this is satire.
Life and art inch closer. (Kind of like the episode where they're negotiating salaries, if you recall. See

Saturday, February 28, 2004

Looks like Wal-Mart is starting to understand how the protection racket works.

This is what I want for graduation (bottom right).

Thursday, February 26, 2004

I generally try to avoid having multiple posts in a day on the site (don't ask me why, it just seems better to me for some reason), but I need a procratination tool. Actually, reading that, it seems really silly, so no more of that neurosis:
Some people have way too much time on their hands. I'll think of this site whenever I feel like a loser.
Alternate Lord of the Rings actors. Not bad.
An interesting take on gay marriage. Not that I read the whole thing, it's interminably long. But what I read was interesting. Not that I agree with it, but the author of Ender's Game is a much more articulate opponent of gay marriage than most of what I've read or heard on any side of the issue. I've briefly touched on this issue before, but I think I'll go into a little bit of depth on it sometime soon. Of course, I reserve the right to flake out too.
Um...probably not work-safe, but definitely funny.

As your movie correspondent I feel it is my duty to talk about The Passion. I haven't seen it and I'm not sure that I intend to. I haven't decided yet if I think I am ready to withstand what is, by all accounts, an overwhelming depiction of torture. Today I want to talk about the reactions. Specifically about the reactions to how difficult the movie is to watch. I heard a woman on the radio this morning say "You, know, I wanted to take my daughter to a movie about Jesus but this was too much for her. She was really upset." Turns out the daughter is 8 years old. Lady, don't take your 8 year old to any R rated movie and expect her to (a) understand it, and (b) not be overwhelmed by the adult issues presented. If you want your 8 year old to see a movie about Jesus I'm sure there is something appropriate available at your local video store. The whole thing reminded me of when I went to see American Psycho with some friends in 2000/2001. I thought it was a brilliant movie about the contrast between the internal and external worlds. Their comment "it was too violent, why'd they have to make it so violent?" Now, I can totally understand "It was too violent FOR ME" as a comment, or "I think the violence was gratuitous and obscured the story." Or how about, "I think the movie glamorized violence." But complaining about a movie, called American Psycho, that is Rated R for violence and is about a serial killer is ludicrous and annoying.
So back to The Passion. Like I said, I haven't seen it. I have no idea if it's offensive or antisemitic. I have no idea if it's too violent for me, or if the violence is glorified (I did hear Mel Gibson say that his goal was to find the beauty and lyricism in the violence, which I get as an artist, but think can be horrible from a political/sociological perspective), but I'm pretty sure, having listened to even a smidge of popular press coverage on the movie, that I would never take a child to see and if I even thought I might, I wouldn't take a child to see it without having seen it myself first to judge if I thought she could handle it. AND, if I did take my 8 year old daughter to see it, I sure as hell wouldn't go on the radio and complain about it - take some responsibility people.

Tuesday, February 24, 2004

The major cause of Africa's problems.
Marginal Revolution makes an excellent point about outsourcing.
I, love, 24. Goddamn it's good. But why are they making us wait five weeks for the next episode? 5!

Monday, February 23, 2004

Oh no! Not unhappy, childless, gay Mormons!

Saturday, February 21, 2004

Here's an interesting post on the Bush as a deserter situation. Definitively learned a bit from reading it. The blogger's argument does seem a bit weak though. Maybe I'm misreading it a bit, but he seems to be arguing that Bush couldn't have been a deserter because proving it can be tough, as specific cases he dealt with did not result in a conviction, or even a charge, of desertion. I of course have no idea what happened with the Prez way back then. It sounds to me like he probably got away with some stuff but nothing nearly as major as desertion or being AWOL. It probably won't be a significant issue come November, it's probably another case of a media-driven controversy, imho. We'll see.
On a related topic, read John Kerry's testimony from 1971. Assuming he was honest, I'm not sure why people are making it out as a nearly traitorous act (other than more political games). I don't know much about military protocol, so there may be an issue here I'm missing. It's my (poor) understanding that criticizing military actions while they are still going on is a major no-no for veterans, but it seems to me if you believe that the war is immoral and that your testimony will help prevent many thousands of deaths, you testify.
Don Henley must die!
Ron Neff looks at how restraining government with a constitution is similar to controlling guns with laws. Interesting stuff.
They're making Ender's Game into a movie. Based on some of the things I've read I would be surprised if it's in the theaters before 2006, but this is very cool.

Thursday, February 19, 2004

What is the world coming to? I saw this on TV the other day and I thought I had stumbled into SNL reruns. Nope. It's real.

Wednesday, February 18, 2004

This is possibly my next vacation.

Tuesday, February 17, 2004

Sometimes a picture is worth way more than a thousand words.

Monday, February 16, 2004

This is not as big a deal as it seems, at least in terms of affecting the Red Sox' chances this year. It certainly is a big story when the best player in baseball is traded to the largest market, but I'm not sure if it makes the Yankees that much better overall. Let's see what they do with that hole at second base.
Gregg Easterbrook (aka Tuesday Morning Quarterback) on what's wrong with the NBA. A lot of what he says and quotes Oscar Robertson on is dead-on, such as "today's 19-year-old guaranteed-contract players seem to view hard work on defense as the price they pay to do whatever they damn please on offense." There's a lot of truth in that. Though I definitely disagree with him that "defense is ascendant because, unlike offense, it requires little cooperation." Defense requires a great deal of teamwork/cooperation. It's ascendant for a few reasons, one of which is that a coach who wins with offense isn't well regarded, while a coach who wins with defense is, so that's where they put almost all of their efforts.
Enjoy, and maybe learn. Pure genius.

Saturday, February 14, 2004

Here's a pretty cool idea about leaves and mine detection.
It looks like more and more Americans are outsourcing medical care to Thailand. Key quote: [You should] hope they learned more medicine than English grammar. Nonetheless the doctors are promoted: "Asians often seem to do well in high tech academics... not that well in football, but often very well in the class room / laboratory... pretty good in baseball & gymnastics.."
I sometimes tease Canada/Canadians in a good-natured way, but maybe they are that dumb. If Triumph thinks so, it's gotta be true.
I just finished reading The Vision of the Anointed, by Thomas Sowell. While definitely oriented more towards the conservative viewpoint, you don't have to agree with the man to learn a lot from reading him. He often goes to lengths to not take a strong position, sometimes not even a position at all, on issues but rather he points out the way certain people argue their side. Basically he shows how often times people will take on an air of moral superiority regarding intentions and a priori beliefs and refuse to consider other possibilities such as that the other side doesn't have bad intentions or a lack of brainpower, but has legitimate disagreements as to what are the best methods of achieving goals. Yes, there are racists, but opposing affirmative action isn't proof that you are one. Yes, we want to make flying safer, but not all ways of doing so are advisable. To put the book into a nutshell (which is too small a place for it), always remember there are no solutions, only tradeoffs. We can probably fix this one area, but it will have an effect on other situations too. Maybe the costs are worth it, but remember that they do exist, and no one can see everything. Ok, that was kind of a large nutshell, but it still doesn't come close to not making this a good book for you to read.

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

They say good fences make good neighbors, so I guess this story shows what makes good spouses.
On a related topic, you may a card as Valentine's Day is coming up.
Can you identify real smiles vs. fake ones? Take the test. I got 17 out of 20 right, leading to one inescapable conclusion.
I thought that Lord of the Rings was great, but apparently I was mistaken. Here are five things that sucked about Lord of the Rings. I can't really argue with the guy, he does have The Best Page in the Universe.
Radley Balko examines freer trade and job loss. Hardly conclusive, but good stuff.

Friday, February 06, 2004

Um... defamation???

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

I haven't been writing on the Iraq situation much recently, basically because I think it mostly speaks for itself at this point. But I thought this was a good column on the situation.
We have huge problems with the deadbeat dad system, and it desperately needs to be fixed.

Monday, February 02, 2004

So I finished at 5-6 picking winners in the playoffs, 2-8-1 against the spread. I'm extremely happy. Not with my picks of course, but that my Pats have won 2 out of 3 Super Bowls. I wouldn't call them a dynasty at this point, because they just missed the playoffs last year, but they aren't far off. Of course, as has been pointed out by someone else whom I don't recall, this is pretty cruel fate. We in Boston live and die with the Red Sox, and like the Patriots. People in Miami live and die with the Dolphins, and only get into following the Marlins when things are going well. The Red Sox haven't won a World Series in 86 years, the Dolphins choke every year, the Patriots win twice in three years, and the Marlins win twice in 7. wtf?
A few quick thoughts on the game: If Vinatieri had hit those first two field goals, it would have been a blowout, I'm convinced of it. If Carolina doesn't go for two points those two times, it's 50-50 as to who wins. Delhomme looked absolutely atrocious for 27 minutes, but after going through that and still being in the game, he settled down and played great; he completed less than 50% of his passes, but was around 10 yards per attempt, which is really good. Sure his receivers and the Pats' secondary helped him out at times, but he's a legitimate QB. And the parallels between the end of this game and the end of Super Bowl XXXVI are really eerie.
Here's a few sites I found via Marginal Revolution, a cool economics-oriented website. A teacher gives his kids the first half of some proverbs to complete, here are the results. A contest was held for the wackiest warning labels. If you thought that economics didn't tackle the big issues, you were wrong.