April 19, 2006

80's Crush Tournament Semi-Finals Wrap-Up

Looks like Lisa Shue ran away with this one. Now the seeds are set for the Final Four round:

Elisabeth Shue versus Lynda Carter
and
Morgan Fairchild versus Lea Thompson

First up, is the Fairchild/Thompson match-up. Voting will remain open through 12 noon on Friday and the Shue/Carter match-up will then run through the weekend until Monday.

Once set, the winners of each will square off against each other for the Championship, which will run through next Friday. That afternoon, the overall winner will be declared and on Saturday April 29th I'll post a "tribute" to that lucky lady complete with new images. Let the voting begin!

View updated Tournament brackett HERE.

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Blue Crab Boulevard

New to the 'roll: You gotta love a guy with six posts up today and it's not even noon yet. Ran across his site as a trackback to the website that has the "emotional contagion" post.

Not to mention that he quotes one of my favorite Billy Joel songs and his assertive Comment Policy makes him a kindred spirit. Welcome aboard!

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The Science Behind The Angry Left

Whenever I dip a toe into the fever swamp of the bitter, angry, unhinged Left side of the blogosphere (which I will do once in a great while when I need a good laugh), I'm always amazed at how these deranged folks are so powerfully drawn to each other. It's always either a mouth-frothing scream-fest or a big cyber-pity party.

Well, here's a fascinating post that explains the neuroscience behind this phenomenon known as "emotional contagion".

The next time you see a poll that shows Republicans or Conservatives being "happier" than Democrats and Liberals, remember that physiology plays a big part. Bottom line: Angry and negative people are bad for your health. Stay away from them. You'd think this would be common sense, no?

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April 18, 2006

Irony

This is the movie poster for Al Gore's "global warming" scare flick:

inconvenient.jpg

Does anyone else see the pack of penquins blindly following each other into a desert as a metaphor for the radical environmentalist movement?

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Finally!

My cable company has finally signed a carriage agreement for SportsNet New York (SNY), which means that I won't have to miss some 120 Mets games this season (not that I have time to watch them all).

And as an added bonus, get a load of one of the new announcers for SNY that I also get to look at all summer:

julie donaldson.jpg
SNY's Julie Donaldson

Cue Glen Quagmire: "Heh, Heh...Ooooooooooh yeah!"

The Team. The Time. The Hot Sports Babe!

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Six Generals Oppose Rumsfeld

Compared to, oh, 4,700 who don't. BrainShavings has a great graphic that puts this into a nice visual perspective.

Go check it out.

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The Early Buzz On "United 93"

Is very good.

Opens in theaters April 28th. Dennis Prager declares that "All Americans Must See 'United 93'".

Jason Apuzzo at Libertas asks if Americans are "ready" to see the film. His answer: most definitely yes.

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RINO Sightings

This week's Carnival of the Raging RINOs hosted by Countertop Chronicles!

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April 17, 2006

Just Couldn't Resist

Ever wonder what Bill Clinton would look like with a moustache? more...

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Richard Hatch Needs To Count His Blessings

No, not the guy from "Survivor". I mean Richard Hatch the actor who played Captain Apollo on the original "Battlestar Galactica".

Most of us over the age of 30...okay, 35...remember watching the show as a kid and over the years we've had nothing but good memories from it. When the network killed it after only one year, we were crushed. But we moved on.

Today, Ronald D. Moore has brought "Galactica" back to life as an updated "reimagined" series. While still retaining much of the plot and most of the characters, Moore has taken the concept to a new level and, in my opinion, it's one of the best shows on television today (behind only "24" and "Lost", in my book). The new series has been both a critical and ratings success and will be heading into its third season this fall. It has broken new ground, tackled controversial issues and attracted a wider audience than the first show ever did.

Now, Richard Hatch spent twenty years trying to revive the old "Galactica" - the "Galactica" that he was part of. He even went so far as to pitch a concept for a continuation of the series titled "Battlestar Galactica: The Second Coming", complete with a four and half minute trailer. It was all his baby and he was hoping to write, direct, produce and star in the series (I expect he also planned to be director of photography, production designer, best boy, etc.). But the idea fell on deaf ears. In a Hollywood that thrives on remakes, even this concept couldn't sell.

Then here comes Ron Moore with his fresh look at the series and it takes off, buiding a loyal audience. Poor Richard Hatch, right? Oh No. Moore goes and hires Hatch to play a recurring role on his show out of respect for star of the original series. He plays Tom Zarek, a former political prisoner that has since managed to insinuate himself into a position of influence with the newly elected President. It's barely a supporting role but it's a significant one that could have a lot of potential down the road. So you'd think after all of this Hatch would be grateful to Moore for allowing him to be a part of this venture, right?

Maybe to his face. But get a load of this quote from an interview that Richard Hatch recently did with Dreamwatch Magazine (as quoted on TrekWeb.com):

Hatch talked about how he continues to feel that a continuation of the original series would have been just as successful as the Ronald D. Moore's re-imagining.

"I don't think a continuation would have been any less successful than a re-imagining," he stated firmly. "A continuation would have evolved the original show: it would have updated the Cylons, brought new characters in and gone into equally provocative areas. We could have had Eddie Olmos as the Commander, Mary as President, Jamie [Bamber] as Apollo's son, and Katee [Sackhoff] as Starbuck's Daughter. And we would have loved to have brought Ron Moore onboard too."

"A continuation would have had the best of both worlds – it would have had the values and positives of the old show but would have updated them for today. It also wouldn’t have had the problems the new show had in the beginning, when fans of the original felt upset and disappointed."

Nice, huh? Oh, and I love that "we would have loved to have brought Ron Moore onboard too" crap. If it wasn't for Ron Moore, this guy would still be appearing at sci-fi conventions. Doesn't he understand that he's been seen on TV by more people in the last two years as Tom Zarek than he has during the entire time since the original show went off the air?

What balls! Here is a guy attached to the underbelly of a highly-successful project because the creative force behind it thought he'd be nice and throw him a bone. Talk about biting the hand!

Jeez. If I were Ronald D. Moore, I would make the character of Tom Zarek go the way of the red-shirted Star Trek guys.

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80's Crush Tournament Update

We have our first "upset" of the Tournament with Lea Thompson beating out higher-ranked seed Jaclyn Smith to advance to the Final Four.

There is one spot remaining for the finals and that match-up is Erin Gray against Elisabeth Shue (a personal favorite of Llama Steve-O). Voting remains open through 12 noon on Wednesday, at which time we will move to the Finals round. Hey, something has to tide me over until NFL Draft weekend.

View updated Tournament brackett HERE.

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Gunning For Rummy

The Left (especially those in the Antique Media) hate Bush and Cheney. But pulling up a strong number three is SecDef Donald Rumsfeld. Now a bunch of retired Generals suffering from a wicked case of "hindsight-itis" - and many with an axe to grind - are running around criticizing Rumsfeld's decisions and leadership style. M'kay.

Hey, it's a free country and these guys are literally "arm-chair Generals" now. But, notwithstanding the Media's attempt to use this meme to somehow force Rumsfeld's "retirement" (which they would see as a major victory on their part against the Administration), the Editors at National Review Online are skeptical about the effectiveness of the nit-picks of these monday-morning quarterbacks.

"...the criticisms of Rumsfeld don’t have much force. Some say he is too imperious. This charge isn’t hard to believe of the strong-willed Rumsfeld, but it is disappointing that generals are apparently so easily cowed that their only recourse when dealing with a muscular Defense secretary is to whine about it after the fact. Others complain about his “micro-management” of the war. It is true that Rumsfeld has exercised a remarkably strong hand in dealing with the military. In planning for the initial Iraq invasion in particular, he was relentless in challenging the work of CENTCOM commander Tommy Franks, driving him to come up with a plan that wasn’t just an unimaginative repeat of Desert Storm. The plan didn’t suffer from Rumsfeld’s intense attention; in fact, the opposite was the case. Even such Rumsfeld critics as Cobra II authors Michael Gordon and Gen. Bernard Trainor credit the innovation and effectiveness of the invasion.

As a matter of principle, micromanagement from a Defense secretary is not a bad thing, even if Robert McNamara gave it a bad name during the Vietnam War. Our system is based on the U.S. military’s taking direction from civilian leadership. There is no reason to think that the assumption behind the micromanagement criticism of Rumsfeld — that if only the generals had been left to their own devices, things would have turned out fine — is true. Rumsfeld should actually be faulted for not micromanaging Tommy Franks enough when it came to planning for postwar operations, in which the general had little or no interest."

The credence that the Media lends to these ex-Generals is fascinating when you consider how they would react if this was a Democrat Administration. You can just bet that they'd be appalled at the idea of any military official thinking they had any right to lecture our civilian-controlled government on foreign policy. When a Democrat is in the White House, the Left sees the military as a bunch of trigger-happy warmongers who think nothing of sending young men and women off to die for their wars of aggression. But when it's a Republican President, they find any General - from Wesley Clarke to John Batiste - willing to criticize him or his Administration and all of a sudden they portray the elected civilians as the ones undermining the military. What a crock!

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Where's Gary?

Hmm. Not like me to go a whole weekend without a single post, I know.

No, I've not been cloistered away pouring through my tax return. It's been more like a perfect storm of real life events hitting at once. First, I had a funeral to attend - my second in two months - only this time in my family. My aunt died last week after a long bout with emphysema.

Then you've got the whole load-up-the-entire-clan-in-the-van thing for Easter, heading down to grandma's house for the holiday. Throw in some minor plumbing problems and an inability to pull myself away from the one Mets game that actually gets televised on my $%&#^! cable system and you've got a PC that sits idle for two days.

On that last item, I'm obviously giddy with anticipation tonight as the Braves come limping into Shea. I've been waiting for this one for a long time.

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April 14, 2006

80's Crush Tournament Update

It looked very much like Lynda Carter was going to run away with this one but by last night the Kim Basinger fans showed up in droves, putting her ahead. However, at the last minute, Lynda squeaked back into the lead. Having garnered 54.6% of the total vote, she will now advances to the Final Four.

The next match-up is Jaclyn Smith versus Lea Thompson. Voting remains open through the Easter weekend until 12 noon on Monday.

View updated Tournament brackett HERE.

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"South Park" Ridicules Comedy Central

And deservedly so. I just got around to watching my tape of the episode that's the big meme this morning.

The fact that Comedy Central portrays itself as so cutting edge and then pusses out because they won't show a cartoon of Mohammed is the ultimate in hypocrisy. Congrats to Matt Stone and Trey Parker for coming with a brilliant way to show how badly the First Amendment has been beaten down by political correctness.

This quote from Robbie at The Malcontent sums it up best:

"To think, a silly little cartoon on basic cable about a redneck mountain town does more to defend the constitution than such self-vaunted press institutions like the New York Times and CNN. What an extraordinary world we find ourselves in."
Here, here.

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April 13, 2006

Best.Commercial.Ever!

Too bad it isn't real. Go view "Die, Hippies, Die!"

h/t: Mad Mikey

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Quiz Question Insults Condi

A test given for a course at Bellevue Community College reads like this:

"Condoleezza holds a watermelon just over the edge of the roof of the 300-foot Federal Building, and tosses it up with a velocity of 20 feet per second."

Nice. Needless to say, it garnered some complaints. Who's the teacher who wrote the question? The college ain't sayin'.

"The college declined to release the name of the teacher who wrote the question. [Bellevue Community College President Jean] Floten said the teacher has apologized and requested cultural-sensitivity training.

The test question was originally written with the name of a comedian, Gallagher, whose signature shtick was to smash a variety of objects, often watermelons. Later, the question was rewritten, and the name was changed to Condoleezza, Floten said."

In 2004, John Kerry carried King County, WA by 66%. You probably don't have to think too hard to figure out the political inclinations of the teacher in question, though.

It's probably one of those "racially-sensitive" Liberals.

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The Mets Are Having A Very Good Day

Smacking the Nats down at RFK 13-3 in the seventh inning. Well on there way to being 7-1.

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Short Term For President Geena Davis

Well, it's all over but the whining. ABC is expected to cancel "Commander-In-Chief" after only one season.

ABC suits will not renew COMMANDER unless audience levels can hold a 15 share, a source claims. The show crashed from a high of nearly 17 million viewers for its second episode to 10.4 million for its last, Jan. 24.
A 15 share? With five weeks left in the season? Well, that ain't happening. At least Davis will be freed up to negotiate a deal for "Earth Girls Are Easy 2".

Kudos to Jonah Goldberg who predicted the failure of this turkey back on July 28 of last year:

"It will be dull because who cares how much more difficult picking a Supreme Court nominee, raising/lowering taxes, bombing terrorist camps, whatever is for a female president? Indeed, it will grow increasingly implausible for the audience to believe that there would be any significant difference for a chick president to do anything of these things, particularly after she proved herself capable of doing the job. And the more the producers try to hammer feminist issues into every situation, the duller or more tedious it will get. From the commercials, we're supposed to believe the government is drenched with crotchety white guys who just don't believe a woman can do the job. That's not only implausible, but to the extent they make it plausible they will still be repeating themselves week after week after week. Very quickly, viewers will say 'We get it, she's a woman. Next.'"
Now the flailing and gnashing of the teeth will come from the Hollywood Left who will no doubt bitch that America just isn't ready for a woman President, which is a lot of hooey. They're just not ready for a woman President that they find too unlikable (ahem, Hillary) or too Liberal.

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Modern Democrats And War

Liberal Columnist David Corn has a piece posted at TomPaine.com in which he looks at what he sees as political similarities between 2008 and 1968. Essentially, he says that the potential leading candidates for the Democratic Nomination in two years - Hillary Clinton, Russ Feingold & John Edwards resemble those of '68 - Hubert Humphrey, Eugene McCarthy and Robert Kennedy.

While I think the comparison is more than a bit of a stretch, the overall comparison may be apt in that modern Democrat Presidential candidates tend to splinter their party in wartime. Unlike Democrats in the early part of the 20th century - FDR against the Nazi's and Japanese and Truman against the Soviets - who united their party against a common enemy, the modern Democrats are fighting with themselves to decide exactly who the enemy is. In both 1968 and today, the leading faction decided that the enemy is not foreign, but rather domestic. For the today's anti-war Democrats, the enemy is actually Republicans (the Bush Administration) and Democrats with strong positions on National Security (Sen. Joe Lieberman).

While normally Corn and I agree on...well, almost nothing, he has one observation that I can buy into:

"There are, obviously, distinctions between 1968 and now. Hillary Clinton is not a commander-in-chief in charge of a tragic war (or the No. 2). There is yet no sizeable antiwar movement, as there was in 1968, for Feingold to use as a base. Edwards is not the vacillator that Kennedy was—although like Kennedy, he does raise poverty as an issue. But it sure seems possible that the Iraq war—if Bush does not achieve his complete victory there in the next two years—has the potential to dominate the Democratic contest and to split the party, as the Vietnam war did in 1968.

For now, the party is repressing those potential differences. Look at the Democrats’ recently released "Real Security" platform. Iraq is covered on page three of the three-page statement. And the plan offers little: "ensure" 2006 is a year of "significant transition" to full Iraqi sovereignty and of "responsible redeployment of U.S. forces"; "insist" that Iraqis make political compromises to unite their country and defeat the insurgency; "strongly encourage" allies and other nations to play a "constructive role." That's not much. The plan says nothing about what should be done if the problem in Iraq is not a self-contained insurgency but a civil war—or something close to it. Should the United States keep 130,000 troops in the middle of a sectarian conflict? Should it pick a side?

Clinton is straddling, not leading, and much of the leadership of her party is essentially doing the same. That might help Democrats in the coming congressional elections by providing on-the-ropes Republicans with little to attack. Then again, it might not. But the conflicts and dilemmas posed by the Iraq war will probably persist. If so, Democrats could find that their biggest challenge is not the Republicans but themselves."

In 1968, Vietnam was tearing apart the Democrat party but it was also tearing the country apart as well. That isn't the case today. In their fervor, the anti-war Democrats are misjudging their reading of the electorate. There's a huge difference between being pessimistic about the current operations in Iraq and a popular uprising to end them at any cost. If the netroots are counting on the later, then they're in for a huge disappointment.

While the anti-war Democrats will not be taking to the streets during their 2008 convention the way they did in Chicago in 1968, their influence will probably be just as significant. Only instead of nominating a Hillary Clinton as their Hubert Humphrey they may very well nominate a Russ Feingold or an Al Gore as their version of the Democrats' 1972 nominee, George McGovern. If this turns out to be the case, don't be surprised if history repeats itself - with a Republican ending up in the White House.

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