The non-Council winner was Sultan Knish with War Is The Answer.
Full results are here.
Via WDEL: Carper, Coons weigh in on "fiscal cliff."
Speaking on WDEL's Rick Jensen Show Thursday, Coons said President Obama will stand firm in calling for tax hikes in exchange for spending cuts.
"What he's publicly announced is that he's expecting no less than one-point-six trillion over the next decade in new revenue, and if that's put on the table, he will put a comparable amount of spending cuts on the table."
Is that right, Mr. Coons? Let's see:
President Barack Obama made an opening bid in budget talks with Republicans that calls for a $1.6 trillion tax increase, a $50 billion economic-stimulus program and new power to raise the federal debt limit without congressional approval, a broad set of demands Republicans viewed as a step back in talks to avoid looming tax increases and spending cuts.
The proposal, offered by Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner as he made a round of meetings with congressional leaders in the Capitol Thursday, calls for increasing tax rates on incomes over $250,000, a one-year postponement of looming spending cuts in defense and domestic programs, and some $400 billion in savings over 10 years from Medicare and other entitlement programs.
Exactly how, Mr. Coons, is $1.6 trillion in tax increases "comparable" to $400 billion in spending cuts??
Carper told Delaware's Afternoon News Republicans have to find a way to support some tax increases.
No, Mr. "You've Been In Public Office Way Too Long" Carper. You pass-the-buck idiots have to find a way to do precisely what Coons said Boss Obama would do -- "put a comparable amount of spending cuts on the table."
Get real, be real ... or please STFU. Both of you.
According to [physicist Leonard] Reiffel's report, "The motivation for such a detonation is clearly threefold: scientific, military and political."
The military considerations were frightening. The report said a nuclear detonation on the moon could yield information "...concerning the capability of nuclear weapons for space warfare." Reiffel said that in military circles at the time, there was "discussion of the moon as military high ground."
That included talk of having nuclear launch sites on the moon, he said. The thinking, according to Reiffel, was that if the Soviets hit the United States with nuclear weapons first and wiped out the U.S. ability to strike back, the U.S. could launch warheads from the moon.
Though not mentioned, I am guessing that the advent of SLBM (submarine launched ballistic missile) submarines nixed that idea, since they were in development around the same time. Also not mentioned was the possibility setting off a nuke on our satellite could "act as a giant engine," thereby turning the moon into a gigantic spaceship!
I personally don't make much of the whole "War on Christmas" stuff that irritates so many others. Maybe it's simply because I don't encounter a lot of it. I mean, yeah -- I can understand the outrage at the silly political correctness that arises this time of the year (calling a Christmas tree and "Holiday" tree, people being "offended" when someone says to them "Merry Christmas," etc.), but then again just how prevalent is such nonsense? I dunno.
At any rate, on Bill O'Reilly's show last evening the host had on David Silverman, president of American Atheists. Silverman was surprisingly combative (a good thing when dealing with O'Reilly), and definitely gained the upper hand when O'Reilly head-scratchingly told him that "Christianity is not a religion, it's a philosophy." He said its specific denominations -- Catholicism, Methodism, etc. -- were the "religions." Now, while Bill does have a point, he's clearly parsing words and definitions. It's not unlike our former "progressive" commenter friend Perry who often claimed anti-Semitism can't mean anti-Jewish because Jews are Semites as well. C'mon. We all know what it means. This applies to O'Reilly, too.
However, I discovered right here at Colossus that Mr. Silverman is not without a silly comment history himself. Back in June of 2011 he had a problem with the proposed name of a street dedicated to 9/11 victims:
“People died in 9/11, but they were all people who died, not just Christians. Heaven is a specifically Christian place. For the city to come up and say all those heroes are in heaven now, it’s not appropriate.”
“All memorials for fallen heroes should celebrate the diversity of our country and should be secular in nature. These heroes might have been Jews, they might have been atheists, I don’t know, but either way it’s wrong for the city to say they’re in heaven. It’s preachy.”
Except that ... Heaven isn't a specifically Christian place. Of course, if Silverman wants to quibble and say that "Well, it is Christians who specifically call it 'Heaven,'" then he's acting exactly as his nemesis Bill O'Reilly did last night!
UPDATE: Here's the vid of O'Reilly vs. Silverman from last night:
Earlier Hube had a post about the same leftist trope that "fairness" of increased taxes on rich people will help balance the budget. Even President Obama doesn't believe that. Here he is from his debate with Hillary Clinton on that very issue:
GIBSON: All right. You have, however, said you would favor an increase in the capital gains tax. As a matter of fact, you said on CNBC, and I quote, "I certainly would not go above what existed under Bill Clinton," which was 28 percent. It's now 15 percent. That's almost a doubling, if you went to 28 percent.
But actually, Bill Clinton, in 1997, signed legislation that dropped the capital gains tax to 20 percent.
GIBSON: And George Bush has taken it down to 15 percent.
GIBSON: And in each instance, when the rate dropped, revenues from the tax increased; the government took in more money. And in the 1980s, when the tax was increased to 28 percent, the revenues went down.
So why raise it at all, especially given the fact that 100 million people in this country own stock and would be affected?
OBAMA: Well, Charlie, what I've said is that I would look at raising the capital gains tax for purposes of fairness.
This is not about raising revenue. He flatly admits that it will cause treasury revenue to GO DOWN. But that is beside the point. The point is that rich people are paying an unfair rate because they get their money from investments, not income. Next time you hear this crap about "fairness" closing the budget deficit, point them to the transcript and stand back as they spin like the Tasmanian Devil trying to explain to you how this makes sense.
FormerSpook has a very interesting and I think, plausible explanation:
This makes perfect sense. Iran wants a means test of Iron Dome to see what they're up against should they decide to attack Israel or want to retaliate after an airstrike against their nuclear program. They cannot afford to let Iron Dome thwart either effort. Now they have some data with which to revisit their war plans.
One more reason In From The Cold should be a regular read.
Peter Schott of Rehoboth has drunk the Kool Aid:
It [the rally for fair taxes] was a gathering of working people, parents, teachers and retirees who believe the budget deal that emerges from the current “fiscal cliff” negotiations must include revenue increases as well as spending cuts. Wealthy corporations and multimillionaires can afford to contribute a fairer share of taxes, allowing us to pay down debt while strengthening middle-class programs like Medicare and public education.
Look, once and for all, this so-called desire among "progressives" like Schott (he notes the rally he was in was a "progressive" one in his letter) for spending cuts is utter nonsense. Medicare is but one program that needs serious reform (i.e. this includes cuts along with other bloated entitlements), and the federal government shouldn't even be involved in education. Just ask anyone involved in education how "well-spent" Race to the Top monies are, eh! But the kicker is that raising taxes on "wealthy" Americans won't even begin to put a dent in the country's debt! In fact, as Andy Dean said on his radio show last evening, taxing every American who makes over $66K per year at a 100% rate wouldn't even raise enough to cover the current US budget!!
Do you understand NOW what a pipe dream this yammering for higher taxes on the wealthy is? Unless these revenue increases are SERIOUSLY accompanied by SERIOUS spending cuts, nothing will get better. NADA. And since actual spending cuts in the federal government are virtually non-existent (if anything -- and rarely, at that -- any "cuts" are reductions in the rate of growth), the tax increases will be for naught. Literally. All they will do, as Warren Buffett recently admitted, is "raise the morale" of the middle class. In other words, it's all about feeling good ... and that is it. But nothing gets solved.
Definitely a sign that the liberal left (media) has seriously gone off the deep end, Time magazine notes that "Give Me Free Birth Control" Sandra Fluke has been nominated as a possible Person of the Year.
Let me repeat that:
Ugh, no ... I can't. I think I'm going to spew.
This week's winner is Hockessin's Patricia Cavender who says that in order to "rise from the ashes," the GOP must change its platform:
The women of the 21st century are not meekly going to go back to the 1950s. And women vote.
If the Republican Party wants to rise from the ashes, they need to drop the anti-abortion and restricted birth control planks of the party platform. While it is perfectly Constitutional to adhere to one’s own religious beliefs concerning abortion and birth control, it is not Constitutional to force those beliefs on other people who do not share those beliefs.
No one is forced to have an abortion or use birth control if their religious beliefs are against it. However, trying to force those beliefs on others by law is no different than the Taliban trying to institute Islamic law in the Middle Eastern countries. Our founding fathers were all too familiar with having a state religion and voted to guarantee freedom from that kind of spiritual, intellectual, financial and physical mandate.
OK, enough with the bullsh** hyperbole already. First, anyone who believes the GOP would "take women back to the 1950s" is either an MSNBC 24-hour viewer or suffers from some serious delusions. Second, why isn't being anti-abortion a legitimate point-of-view, be it personal and political? These so-called "pro-choice" cretins throw that moniker around at will, except that the "pro" part comes apart when the topic turns to education, taxes and even speech. It astonishes me that so many "progressives" fail to realize that abortion frequently involves another living human being -- y'know, like a convicted heinous multiple murderer on death row. The difference is, these same "progressives" scream to high heaven about capital punishment!
Third and lastly, stop already with mindless comparisons of the GOP to the Taliban. For all the talk about "overturning" abortion rights, the best the GOP could ever hope for would be Roe v. Wade being overturned. And guess what? That in NO WAY means that abortion becomes outlawed. It means the decision goes back to being that of the individual states.
Hey, look -- I was right there saying that the GOP needs to modify its views, especially its social ones. But this mostly means they don't have to emphasize them, not drop them altogether. Again, being against Roe doesn't mean you want to outlaw abortion. It is an entirely valid viewpoint to believe in the limited government aspect that the states should handle that matter.
Via Four Color Media Monitor there is a pretty cool article in the Jerusalem Post which compares Iron Man to Israel's "Iron Dome" missile defense system. And article author Abe Novick reminds us all of something very cool:
Of course Iron Man like practically every other super hero, was also created by Jews, with credit going to Stan Lee (born Stanley Martin Lieber) and his brother Larry Lieber along with illustrations by Jack Kirby (born Jacob Kurtzberg.)
Most involved comics fans are already aware of this, but casual fans may not. Just yet another worldwide contribution to humanity from the Jewish people!
But I had to send a message to Mr. Novick on one of his points: He writes that Tony Stark's parents were killed in a plane crash. That made me go "Huh??" because I always remembered them having perished in an auto accident. Novick must have consulted Wikipedia which references the plane; however, Marvel's own wiki page (and others) note the car crash.
And the non-Council nominations are here!
Over in Britain, they have been trying to soak the rich for ever increasing taxes. How did that work out?
Two-thirds of millionaires left Britain to avoid 50p tax rate: "In the 2009-10 tax year, more than 16,000 people declared an annual income of more than £1 million to HM Revenue and Customs.
This number fell to just 6,000 after Gordon Brown introduced the new 50p top rate of income tax shortly before the last general election.
The figures have been seized upon by the Conservatives to claim that increasing the highest rate of tax actually led to a loss in revenues for the Government.
It is believed that rich Britons moved abroad or took steps to avoid paying the new levy by reducing their taxable incomes.
George Osborne, the Chancellor, announced in the Budget earlier this year that the 50p top rate will be reduced to 45p from next April.
Since the announcement, the number of people declaring annual incomes of more than £1 million has risen to 10,000."
So to recap for those of you who actually believe that raising taxes on rich people leads to more revenue:
1. Britain raises the top tax rate to 50%
2. Ten thousand rich people fled Britain to avoid said tax increase
3. Lowering the rate to 45% either magically created four thousand rich people or the ones who fled ran the numbers and it made sense to come home again
4. The net loss of tax revenue was on the order of 7 billion pounds.
This is the same idiocy Chairman Zero has decided will work here somehow. If I were a younger man I'd be heading out for all those offshore tax havens that are about to see billions of dollars pouring in.
The Wall St. Journal pans the new Red Dawn flick as "manipulative," full of "horse-pill jingoism," and "plays readily into classical stereotypes."
Those that depict Asia as a Mordor-like alien netherland where every hand wields a weapon and every weapon points at the throat of the civilized West — and those that treat Asians as an interchangeable, all-same mass. Can’t offend these Asians? Well, let’s just say they’re those Asians instead. A little cosmetic adjustment to flags and uniforms, and we’re off to the races....
Writer Tao Jones' solution? Make Red Dawn about invading aliens. Uh, hello?? Independence Day?? War of the Worlds?? Yeesh.
Look, I'm as incredulous as the next guy when I think of North Korea invading the US (instead of China -- remember, the movie had to change the bad guys away from the Chi-Coms because 1) they were pissed off, and 2) you don't want to piss off a movie market audience of that size!); however, if the premise from what I've read is correct, the Norks use a "new type of weapon" preceding their actual invasion. It's probably something like an EMP device which would shut down any and all electronics over a vast area, depending on the size of the device.
Of course, the United States would retaliate completely, effectively turning North Korea into a smoldering glob of radioactive glass. But that would only be slightly worse than what the Norks live in today! Their regime is irrational and paranoid, and if you read One Second After -- about a hypothetical EMP attack on the US mainland -- you'd know that such an attack could result in over 100 million deaths. Think that'd be worth the Norks' existence -- especially if the honcho "intelligentsia" of that country jaunted off to another locale before they zapped us?
Who knows. But it's a freakin' movie, after all. One can only imagine what Jones would whine about had the movie been about radical Islamists using a similar device, invading a portion of America, and instituting strict Islamic law across the region. Not that the filmmakers would have done that, of course ... they wouldn't want a fatwa issued against them!
I cannot believe I neglected to catch the Fox series "Fringe" when it first came out. Thankfully, the Science Channel ran a two-day marathon Friday through Saturday of the series' entire first season ... and is beginning season two regularly on Tuesday evenings. The show is very much like the "X-Files, but concentrates its emphasis on alternate realities -- specifically a particular parallel reality that is causing our own some havoc.
I've always been a huge fan of the "multiverse theory." One of my favorite Marvel Comics titles was What If? which had several volumes beginning in the 1970s which explored, well, what if something happened at a pivotal moment in Marvel history? The inaugural issue detailed what would have happened had Spider-man joined the Fantastic Four (because in Amazing Spider-Man #1 he tried to do just that; see below).
Once an alternate reality has been established by Marvel, it is given a numerical designation. The "main" or "prime" Marvel reality is that of Earth 616 (see here as to why it's this number), whereas that created by Spider-Man joining the Fantastic Four is Earth-772. Some realities have obviously become incredibly popular, such as the Age of Apocalypse reality (Earth-295) via the X-Men, and the Days of Future Past reality (Earth-811) via same, but some of my faves are a bit more ... obscure. Let's take a look, shall we?
EARTH-712. This is the home reality of one of my favorite superhero teams, the Squadron Supreme. I first became enamored with this group because they fought the Avengers during the time I first began to take an interest in [Marvel] comics. The SS is basically Marvel's knock-off version of the Justice League, and they've had a very difficult time of it. I detailed why at my old comics blog over three years ago.
EARTH-1610. Better known as the "Ultimate Universe," this is the reality where classic Marvel characters were "updated" to contemporary times. The Avengers are The Ultimates on this Earth, and much of The Avengers film is based on this team's first volume of issues.
EARTH-9997. The frequently misunderstood "Earth X" universe designed by comics painter supreme Alex Ross, if you want to experience a funnybook cerebral explosion beyond measure, seek out all the "X" trade paperbacks and allot yourself about a week. Then, if you can figure it all out, report back to me.
EARTH-689. This is the reality from the classic Avengers Annual #2 from 1968. In this reality, the Avengers as we know them ended up being diverted here, where they encountered the earliest incarnation of the team. Unbeknownst to our team, the evil Scarlet Centurion had convinced this Earth's Avengers to trounce every other superhero on the globe so as to make the planet ripe for conquest. Check it: The Centurion is yet another manifestation of the classic Avengers villain Kang, and was the main protagonist of Earth-712's super-team, the aforementioned Squadron Supreme.
EARTH-??? The reality that recent commenter (and supposed comics fan) "Questionman" comes from since he obviously has some major difficulties in the realm of reading comprehension and making assumptions.
ITEM! Chris Matthews compares the GOP to -- wait for it! -- Hitler! Because of the 1936 Berlin Olympics and Jesse Owens. Or something.
ITEM! Slate writer Ron Rosenbaum says that if you prefer the white meat of the turkey, that could mean -- wait for it! -- you're racist!! (I swear, you can't make this sh** up!)
ITEM! Award winning actor Jamie Foxx at the Soul Train Awards last evening said to "give an honor to God and our lord and savior Barack Obama. Barack Obama.” Wow, and there was an old "progressive" commenter at this site who used to berate me for using the moniker "Messiah" for our president!
Via Steve Newton at DE Libertarian: "Go two weeks without power and the LIPA will still send you a bill for estimated use, as if Hurricane Sandy never happened."
If George W. Bush was president, we'd hear endlessly about his "being in the pocket" of Big Energy as being responsible for such outrages.
Documentary maven Ken Burns claims that the current "secession" movement going in the wake of Boss Obama's election victory is -- WAIT FOR IT!!! ...
“Every time I think the Democratic race card players could not get more vile, more deranged, more patronizingly demeaning to blacks, someone manages to defy even my vivid imagination. This time, it is the Editorial Board of The Washington Post.”
"Genocide And Crimes Against Humanity Ongoing In North Korea. World doesn’t care. Too busy attacking Israel."
The non-Council winner was Via Meadia with America, Israel, Gaza, the World.
Full results are here.
Erik at ¡No Pasarán! (love that moniker!) writes about how American conservatives/Republicans should deal with the liberal/Democrat-loving mainstream media:
• Let me tell you something!
• Oh God! I am going to throw up!
• Will you stop this bourgeois priggishness?!
• That is what you are waxing so sanctimonious about!
• You're a fool! You're just a gullible fool! You're a priggish, gullible, British, fool!
• If I were you, I'd be careful of being a gullible rubber stamp to that crooked […] system
• I am proud of […] actually being able to endure a discussion like this without getting up and smashing your face in — which is what most people would do!
My year would be made if an Yank GOP pol would speak to someone like Chris Matthews like this ...
... and remember that "Black Friday" is probably a racist term.
Among many other reasons, natch: The New York Times Co. wants a monopoly on the Constitution.
Following the recent Newsarama slide show about Spiderman's ten biggest said changes. And what bigger expert on Iron Man is there other than yours truly, after all? (Well, I do know a few, but I won't say who they are ...!)
#10: TONY STARK MANIPULATED BY IMMORTUS; SACRIFICES SELF.
In the late 1990s the big brains at Marvel had the "brilliant" idea of making Tony Stark a teenager. You read that right -- an adolescent. Beginning in the volume one title's early #300s, Stark supposedly was "manipulated" by long time Avengers nemesis Kang into becoming a bad guy. The Avengers then decided the only way to beat Stark was to go back in time and retrieve his younger counterpart ... to essentially go "intellect-to-intellect" with him. Young Stark nearly perished in the climatic battle, and then adult Stark managed to break through "Kang's" influence long enough to thwart the time-villain's assault on Earth's Mightiest -- perishing in the process.
I put quotes around Kang's name above because continuity expert Kurt Busiek a few years later masterfully explained in his classic Avengers Forever magnum opus that it wasn't Kang who influenced Stark, but his other-self Immortus. Young Tony Stark recovered from his battle with his older self and eeked out the last few issues of the title's first volume. This whole ridiculous scenario is now almost universally loathed by Iron Fans (sans the Busiek retcon, of course).
#9: ADVANCED ARMOR-UP METHOD.
In volume one's issue #85, writers Len Wein and Roger Slifer jumped WAY ahead of the technology curve by giving Stark an incredibly advanced method of "armoring up." Stark would wear what was basically a "cloth" version of his armor under his clothes, and when he activated his wrist bracelet and watch, they sent a signal to a "polarization" unit in his chest uni-beam (see above). This hardened the armor, with his sleeves and leggings then sliding up to cover his appendages.
This armor wasn't used for very long, probably because it was too advanced to take seriously at the time. (It was the mid-70s after all.) It was explained away as "not being as durable" (i.e. "safe") as the regular IM armor, so Stark went back to the 'ol attaché case.
#8: TONY STARK GETS HEART TRANSPLANT.
The bane of Tony Stark's very existence since that fateful trip to Vietnam, Stark eventually got his damaged heart transplanted with a "synthetic" ticker in the crossover between Avengers (vol. 1) #69 and Iron Man (vol. 1) #19. Now gone was the need to constantly recharge his chestplate; however, for many issues after, Stark had to be wary of undue stress on the new pumper, lest it fail.
#7: DRASTIC ARMOR/COLOR-SCHEME CHANGE.
Volume one issue #200 witnessed possibly the biggest change to the Iron Man armor ever (at least at the time, for sure). Everyone associates the armor with a red and gold color scheme; Marvel then went for a red and silver design which didn't sit well with a lot of fans (I wasn't one, however). But what the color failed to do with fans, the armor's capabilities made up for. Nicknamed the "Silver Centurion," this armor that Stark designed to go after longtime nemesis Obadiah Stane was light-years ahead of his old suits. It was much more durable, had a force field, devastating "pulse bolts," and a "chameleon effect" aka invisibility cloak.
Alas, like #9's method of "armoring up," the Silver Centurion was eventually considered too powerful (advanced), and its capabilities scaled back (in particular the "chameleon effect"). Creators David Michelinie and Bob Layton were primarily responsible for this, but their introduction of a new red and gold suit in vol. 1 #231 made use of the best of the Centurion's capabilities (especially enhanced strength), and satisfied Iron Fans everywhere.
#6: STARK SHOT AND CRIPPLED.
Beginning in volume 1 #233, Tony Stark began dating a pampered rich b**ch named Kathy Dare. She wasn't used to not getting her way, and when Tony had had enough of her, she didn't take it very well. In fact, she took it very badly. In #242, she broke into Tony's house and waited for him to come home ... whereupon she shot him dead in the chest.
Although he didn't die, Stark is paralyzed from the waist down. This incident leads to an incredible chain of events: First, Tony modifies his existing armor to accomodate his useless legs. Next, Stark unergoes a controversial operation where an experimental micro-chip is implanted in his spine, giving him the ability to walk again. However, the chip was designed by some devious business rivals, and results in a program rewriting Stark's entire nervous system! This gives these rivals total control of Stark's body, which they plan to use for dastardly purposes, natch! Stark manages to overcome the manipulations, but his new nervous system is shot -- he's dying. He manages to devise a "neuro-web" to assist his decaying nervous system for a time, but eventually he "dies." (He actually goes into cryo-stasis while his loyal techs develop a new nervous system for him.)
#5: JIM RHODES BECOMES STARK CONFIDANTE.
Another creation of the aforementioned Michelinie/Layton creative duo, James "Rhodey" Rhodes debuted in volume 1 #118 and has since become entrenched in Iron Man lore. He started as Stark's mechanic and pilot, and eventually became his best friend. How the two met is detailed in vol. 1 #144 (Rhodes encountered the recently escaped Iron Man in Vietnam), and as any Iron Fan knows, Rhodey would go on to replace Stark as Iron Man for a time, become the head of Stark Enterprises, and then go off on his own as War Machine. Immortalized in film first by Terrance Howard and later by Don Cheadle.
#4: THE ARMOR WARS.
It's pretty much a moot point these days, but back in the mid-1980s Tony Stark was very concerned that his unpatented secret technology remain just that -- secret. Unfortunately, Spymaster had stolen many of those secrets and sold 'em to the highest bidders. Beginning in volume 1 #225 and continuing through #231, Iron Man goes off in search of his stolen tech, and zaps any and all armored foes -- and heroes -- who may have benefited from it. It's the highlight of the "Silver Centurion" armor era, and culminates with the return to the classic look red and gold suit. Trivia tidbit: then editor-in-chief Jim Shooter came up with the Armor Wars idea while having lunch with Iron Creators Michelinie and Layton.
#3: TONY STARK BATTLES ALCOHOLISM.
The highlight of the first Michelinie/Layton era, the "Demon in a Bottle" storyline has Stark battling his alcoholism (with an assist from GF Bethany Cabe) in essentially one climatic issue (vol. 1 #128). However, roughly fifty issues later, writer Denny O'Neil took Stark's inner demons to a whole other level, having him succumb to to the bottle. Stark loses his company to Obadiah Stane, his fortune, and ends up living on the street. In the heart-wrenching issue #182, Stark fights to keep friend Gretl Anders' baby alive in a blizzard ... and himself from alcohol. The next eighteen issues detail Stark's struggle back, culminating in the final confrontation with Stane in #200.
#2: IRON MAN ARMOR BECOMES PART OF STARK.
The most recent occurrence on our list, it's very relevant due to next year's Iron Man 3 making use of its premise, not to mention the original film making use of the story's updated origin tale. In this brief volume four set, writer Warren Ellis and artist Adi Granov have the Iron Man technology become a part of Tony Stark so that he really is an Iron Man. If you can get past Ellis's leftist prattle in these issues, the tale is pretty cool. I haven't followed new issues of Iron Man in years, but it's my understanding that Stark has since lost the Extremis "virus" in his system.
#1: IRON MAN HELPS FOUND THE AVENGERS.
Has to be in the top spot if not because the film The Avengers absolutely crushed box office records and expectations ... and it had the potential to be an absolute flop. Almost half a century ago in The Avengers #1, Tony Stark was one of the heroes who had picked up a radio call for help from Rick Jones. The evil Loki had planned for the call to only be heard by his half-brother Thor, but Stark, Hank Pym (Ant Man) and Janet Van Dyne (Wasp) also got it. All four appeared to do battle with the Hulk (the reason for Jones' distress call), and after defeating Loki all five decided to stay together. The Hulk boogied in the very next issue, but Captain America was resurrected two issues after that. And that, as they say, is history.
Only lazy thinkers make the moral equation between the Palestinians and Israel. It's like equating the Nazis and the West.
Remember yesterday when the Local Gaggle of Moonbat Bloggers' Jason "Trust Fund" Scott immediately concluded that Florida Senator Marco Rubio "rejects science" because he refused to be baited by a reporter's question about the age of the Earth? Well, it seems our current president has a similar issue ...
Q: Senator [Obama], if one of your daughters asked you—and maybe they already have—“Daddy, did god really create the world in 6 days?,” what would you say?
A: What I've said to them is that I believe that God created the universe and that the six days in the Bible may not be six days as we understand it … it may not be 24-hour days, and that's what I believe. I know there's always a debate between those who read the Bible literally and those who don't, and I think it's a legitimate debate within the Christian community of which I'm a part. My belief is that the story that the Bible tells about God creating this magnificent Earth on which we live—that is essentially true, that is fundamentally true. Now, whether it happened exactly as we might understand it reading the text of the Bible: That, I don't presume to know.
Come again?? Boss Obama "doesn't presume to know" whether the literal reading of the Bible's story of Earth's creation is true?? WHAT KIND OF ANTI-SCIENCE NUTJOB DO WE HAVE IN THE WHITE HOUSE???
Well, if you're "Trust Fund" Scott, it certainly takes a nutjob to know a nutjob.
And the non-Council nominations are here!
Wonder why nothing gets done in government -- in fact, it gets worse? Just check out what the Local Gaggle of Moonbat Bloggers' Jason "Trust Fund" Scott decides to harp on the other day:
Sorry Dude. You flubbed it. If you happen to think that the Earth is 10,000 years old it has a hell of a lot to do with our economic growth. It has to do with what kind of brain you have. It reveals whether you are qualified for leadership. It demonstrates whether you will make decisions rationally, after weighting evidence and data, or shrug allow Skydad to work his will. Republicans need to be pilloried for this kind for bullshit.
If you can deny that the Earth is older than the bible says it is, then you can deny virtually anything.
He's referring to what GOP Florida Senator Marco Rubio said in response to the magazine GQ's question "How old do you think the Earth is?"
I’m not a scientist, man. I can tell you what recorded history says, I can tell you what the Bible says, but I think that’s a dispute amongst theologians and I think it has nothing to do with the gross domestic product or economic growth of the United States. I think the age of the universe has zero to do with how our economy is going to grow.
There's absolutely nothing in Rubio's answer which indicates he thinks the Earth is 10,000 years old. He said he is not a scientist and doesn't know. As one commenter pointed out
So how old is the Earth and how did Rubio flub anything? He said he didn’t know, which is probably an accurate answer. Is it 1 billion years old? 500 million? 3 billion? What he didn’t say, but in your zeal to attack all Republicans you imply, is that he thinks the Earth in 10,000 years old or that he denies the Earth is older than the Bible says (and, while we’re at, can you point me to where in the Bible it says the Earth is only 10,000 years old?).
I think he’s right when he says the age of the Earth has nothing to do with how our economy is going to grow.
Exactly. And that's why "Trust Fund" Scott wants to make up stuff that Rubio supposedly believes -- because it diverts from the utter disaster that is the Boss Obama economy. Not to mention, it's not like Rubio thinks there are 57 states. Or that the island of Guam will tip over if too many people inhabit it. Or that half a billion Americans lose their jobs every month there's no recovery bill in Congress. Or that FDR got on television to address the American people. Or wonders if Cuba has a government-run healthcare system. Or ...
62% say stopping illegal immigration is “extremely/very important.” That handily beats “taking major steps to address global warming” as well as “[increasing] taxes on those with household incomes above $250,000.” … Providing a “path to citizenship for illegal immigrants” got only 37%.
Remember that the economy weighs more heavily on Latino voters' minds than immigration. It is silly (and insulting) to think that all Latinos favor illegal immigration and/or amnesty and/or instant citizenship for immigrants.
And this sort of nonsense is the stuff by which the GOP can make a strong case. We continually hear from "progressives" about "fairness;" however, it always seems to work one way with them. How is it "fair" that illegal immigrants get in-state tuition, yet citizens and legal immigrants -- who may happen to live out of state -- have to pay much more? Or, how is it that Arizona (to name one) gets hassled beyond belief by the feds for attempting to tighten immigration enforcement, yet so-called "sanctuary cities" which thumb their noses at federal law get away without even a slap on the wrist??
It makes total sense to support a common sense comprehensive immigration policy, and also support common sense laws. Or, to put it another way, what part of "illegal" don't "progressives" understand? Ah, but it seems their solution (like so many other non-solution solutions) is to just drop the term "illegal"!!
Israel's Iron Dome appears to be working very well. Far better, in fact, than I thought it would. The system appears more robust than I expected.
The Obama administration has been largely silent on the issue. To which I say, good. In my view, their silence gives Israel room to maneuver. I rather expected the left wingers to try and reign them in but I don't see that they have any leverage to use anyway. Their only misstep as far as I'm concerned is not being more publicly supportive in the face of Turkey calling them terrorist.
This problem is a neighborhood problem. We should support Israel in their efforts to beat back those who would wipe them out. We should not, however, do much beyond that. Israel is more than capable of handling things.
guns can help deter crime!
Even British Journalists Are Beginning to Acknowledge that Guns Deter Crime: " The shipping industry used to oppose this, fearing that armed guards would escalate violence. But not a single vessel with guards has been boarded. Usually a warning shot is enough to deter the pirates. Lieut-Commander Sherrif says: “The pirates go to sea to make money, not die in a firefight.” "
One wonders if this same logic might be applied in say, Kilmington or Killadelphia.
Via Entertainment Weekly:
Yours truly has a sizeable entry.
Idiot MSNBC talking head on Hamas firing rockets into Israel: "Rockets are essentially very ineffective, they rarely do damage."
Jeez, if someone had [much more accurately] said to this dope "Requiring an ID to vote is essentially ineffective in 'suppressing' the vote, it rarely affects turnout," she'd have had a royal meltdown.
To the lefties citing Obama's approval rating as proof Benghazi is somehow meaningless: Nixon's approval rating in January 1973 was 67%.
Via Yahoo! UK we're treated to the rumor mill surrounding "Episode IV's" possible sequel ideas from the late 70s:
1) Han Solo battles Vader.
The most intriguing rumour nugget on the pile was that Harrison Ford's iconic scoundrel was to wield a lightsaber in the anticipated sequel. It wasn't that simple however; in a battle with Vader towards the end of the film, it was reported that both Solo and Vader's lightsaber's would fuse together, combining the life forces of both.
When Luke came to the rescue, he would be faced with a conundrum: If he kills Vader, would he not also kill his friend?
Hube says: Lame. Han is a rambunctious adventurer who was shown to be very skepitcal of the Force. Nevertheless, if Luke was a full-fledged Jedi in the sequel, I'm sure he could've figured out how to extricate Solo from his predicament, and then lay Vader low.
2) Vampires and Princess Leia falls for the Dark Side.
At one point Luke and C-3PO were apparently going to be captured by a "horrendous" alien and dropped off in a prison full of breathable liquid.
Weirder still, the only way to kill their alien captor was to drive a metal stake through its heart, like Dracula. With no option, Luke was going to melt down his friend Threepio and use him as the stake to kill their oppressor and escape.
In another dark twist, Princess Leia was said to be captured once more by Vader and seduced by the dark side of the force to betray her friends and the rebel cause.
Hube says: The first idea blows, but the second has merit. Imagine seeing how a Dark Side-seduced Leia would be dressed as opposed to the outfit Jabba made her wear in Return of the Jedi!
3) The cast uses time travel.
Black holes and time-warps were both rumoured to be space crevices the Millennium Falcon would tumble through in the 'Star Wars' sequel.
Luke, Han and Chewbacca were allegedly going to travel back to the time of the Clone Wars and fight alongside a younger Obi Wan Kenobi and his padawan Anakin Skywalker.
In another scenario Han and Chewie land on a desert planet to find 13th Century time-travellers fighting Stormtroopers off with crossbows and catapults. As ridiculous as it sounds, the kernel of the idea may have found its way onto the screen in 'Return of the Jedi' with the Ewoks and their Empire-confounding shenanigans.
Hube says: Count me in. I'm a big time travel fan and that first scenario sounds delightful. And, as the article states, it does sound better than what we got in "Episode II."
4) Who was Luke and Leia's pop really?
There was talk of both Obi Wan being Luke's father and the much more interesting idea that Obi Wan is revealed to have murdered Anakin Skywalker, with Anakin not eventually becoming Vader. Obi Wan is a character who barely develops over the course of the original films; remaining a mentor figure and a beacon of the light side. This would have lent a nice darker shade to the character.
Leia's adopted father, the ruler of Alderaan, was also once reported to have a bigger role in the overall story. He was rumoured to be in the pocket of the Emperor, and to have had a part in the destruction of his own planet before escaping to be Palpatine's right hand man.
Hube says: Color me interested. I like the idea of flshing out Obi Wan's character, and how many of you really wondered about 'ol Ben having offed Darth back in the day? Would'a been nice, and certainly would have added a cool maudlin aspect to the story.
5) Who to play the emperor (and more)?
Speaking of Vader's evil mentor, his involvement was correctly predicted early on in reports on the film, but who would play him was subject of some debate. Two names popped up: Christopher Lee and Orson Welles.
Christopher Lee of course got his chance to play a Sith in Episode's II and III, but Orson Welles would have undoubtedly been fantastic as the series' big bad, purely because he's Orson Welles!
There were many other rumours, such as our heroes meeting an evil space queen, Rebels enlisting winged aliens called Quarrels to their cause and Luke convincing Vader to join turn good earlier than he eventually does.
Hube says: Either actor would have made a great emperor; however, who really cares about the other stuff other than seeing Luke convincing Vader to join the good side? That could have been cool, especially a climax with a battle against him and the emperor.
Yeah, sure -- so our Defense Dept. can spend $100K on studying Star Trek's Klingons.
If West was a Democrat, the MSM, the NAACP, Sharpton, Jackson, et. al. would all be down in Florida raising all sorts of hell.
Here's how to deal with Boss "Honest Icabod Slipp" Obama:
Wilmington News Journal headline today: Lack of aid angers victims of Sandy.
Two and a half weeks after Hurricane Sandy pushed floodwaters into homes along Delaware’s bays and rivers, Gov. Jack Markell has asked for federal disaster assistance, but his office says there wasn’t enough damage to qualify for aid for individual homeowners and businesses.
That means owners of homes damaged by Sandy won’t be eligible for federal grants or low-interest loans. Instead, they must rely on their flood insurance or homeowner insurance to recover those costs, said Markell spokeswoman Cathy Rossi.
If Boss Obama and DE Governor Jack Markell were Republicans, this would be a major scandal. And on Hurricane Sandy telethons and benefits, celebrities would be decrying the "racism" of these public officials.
The non-Council winner was Victor Davis Hanson with Anatomies of Electoral Madness.
Full results are here.
Boss Barack Obama has won a second term by a wide electoral margin, but the Left is still crying "racism" every chance they can get. And why not, really? As utterly ludicrous as many -- most -- of the charges are, apparently enough bozos buy 'em ... and then vote on 'em. Whether they're black or white.
The most recent case in point is a former far-left Delaware blogger who wrote on Facebook last evening (no link provided as I am not certain he would appreciate and/or authorize such, especially as I am FB friends with him) that the GOP was showing its "true" racist colors because they apparently only go after the African-Americans in the Boss Obama administration. (He writes that Republicans have "hated" Obama, Eric Holder and Susan Rice "the most.") The most recent of these is the last listed, our UN Ambassador Susan Rice. Rice has gotten heat for going on numerous Sunday talk shows right after the Benghazi attacks in Libya, and parroting the now-debunked line that a silly anti-Islam YouTube video. Boss Obama acted all tough yesterday in defending Rice stating, "Come after me." (Of course, he made little sense in that defense for, if Rice "knew nothing" of Benghazi, then WTF was she doing out there on all those talk shows??)
Then there's Eric Holder. Indeed, I suppose "Fast and Furious" has absolutely nothing to do with how the opposition views him, not to mention his department's views on enforcing civil rights laws.
Heck, I'll even add Van Jones in there for good measure. Indeed, why in the world did he get so much crap? I mean, it's not like he was a well known 9/11 Truther or anything!!
But this is all beside the point. This far-left former DE blogger only has his [very] skewed opinion that the blacks in the administration are "hated" more than others. He has absolutely no proof of this other than some GOP legislators criticizing them. Obama appointed numerous African-Americans to various positions, and if they suck at the job, what are people -- especially the opposition -- supposed to say? "Oh, sorry, you're black. You're doing just wonderfully!!"?? This, I believe, is known as the bigotry of low expectations. Does anyone seriously believe that if this was a GOP administration that the attorney general would not get any heat from a Democratic House about "Fast and Furious"? Does anyone seriously believe that members of a Democratic House would not excoriate a GOP-appointed UN ambassador for going on myriad Sunday talk shows to forward a lie about an attack on a US consulate that resulted in the deaths of four Americans, including an ambassador?? If you do not believe these things wouldn't happen, you're a nut. Period.
Our former far-left DE blogger conveniently forgets administration members like Tim Geithner. The GOP was all over him for not paying his taxes, and most recently about the Libor rate-rigging scandal. Then there's the favorite target of Delaware edu-blogger Kilroy, Education Secretary Arne Duncan. Duncan's tenure as head of Chicago schools has been panned by many, not to mention the whole federal Race to the Top initiative (frequently -- and rightly -- dubbed "No Child Left Behind on steroids") is one huge wasteful boondoggle. Ask any teacher that is signed on to it (like here in DE), conservative or liberal. They'll confirm such.
It's pretty damn unbecoming that a person such as this former blogger who prides himself on being such an intellectual (and he is) so easily falls prey to the specious "racism" canard whenever it's convenient, or when there's some heat being put on a few officials who just happen to be black. On the one hand, it's not surprising that so-called "progressives" feel that African-Americans, whether gov. officials or not, should be held to a different -- i.e. lower standard. They feel this way in other realms of life, after all (employment, education). On the other, if this is the excuse that will continually be utilized, then why not just give their positions to some Caucasians so at least critics can question them and complain about them without the PC police constantly harassing them?
In today's News Journal's Wilmington Watch section, Andrew Staub writes about the efforts to have Wilmington (the "most dangerous city in America") sideline its breed specific laws surrounding pit bulls:
Mayor James M. Baker’s proposed legislation eliminating most of the breed-specific dog laws in Wilmington didn’t land on Thursday’s council agenda after making it out of committee last week. John Rago, Baker’s deputy chief of staff, had the legislation held after sensing he didn’t have the votes to get it passed, he said.
Baker’s proposal eliminates the majority of extra requirements pit bull owners face. That includes a registration process beyond normal dog licensing, a requirement pit bulls be muzzled in public places and another provision that, in most cases, bars anyone under 21 years old from walking a pit bull without the registered owner present.
It also increased licensing fees and penalties for dog owners who violated the city’s animal control laws. The intention was to create more responsible dog owners citywide, Rago said.
OK, look -- I am THE biggest animal lover on the planet. Ask anyone -- my relatives, girlfriend, students. People who know me best call me "Dr. Doolittle," for heaven's sake. However, because as Councilman Kevin F. Kelley Sr. says in the article -- "Some people in the city still keep the dogs for the wrong reasons or as a status symbol" -- and given pit bulls inherent nature, I fail to see how most of these rules are out of line.
I have met and known pit bulls who are extremely friendly and playful. Their owners were responsible and were just plain, good people. Unfortunately, a lot of PB owners are idiots. Take my current next-door neighbors. They used to have two PBs. About a year ago, one of them got loose and went after a young teen. The teen managed to get into a car, but the dog managed to get halfway inside as well. I'm not certain if the kid was injured; however, I do know the cops and animal control came, and the dog was taken away and euthanized. It seems the next-door neighbors didn't learn anything from that experience. The parents (or whatever status the adults in the house have) constantly have one of the two kids walk their remaining PB. With the [older] boy, it isn't too much of a problem because he doesn't seem to have much difficulty handling the dog. But sometimes the younger sister comes out with the dog in tow, and then it always seems the dog is one step away from breaking loose from her. And if this happens, it won't be pretty. This PB is one nasty MFer. The other night, my girlfriend and I walked out the front door with her dog (a cockapoo) to head to the veteranarian. Simultaneously, out comes the young girl with the pit bull -- who immediately began growling and barking and snapping his jaws at us. We hustled into the car, and the girl appeared to be on the verge of losing control of the damn dog ant any moment.
Now, we don't live in the city so Wilmington's laws wouldn't affect us. But as close as we to our idiot neighbors, neighborhoods in town are even closer together. Requiring a muzzle when being out and about and requiring at least a 21 year old to handle the animal are more-than quite reasonable regulations. I'd ask PB owners: Would you rather be sued out of existence if your dog attacks someone, or use a muzzle and make sure an adult handles the dog? Because my neighbors don't do the latter ... and as a result they're in definite danger of facing the former.
If you're still wondering why Obama won reelection, the media questions so far should help you figure that out.
If the rumors are true, ugh:
According to a new rumor, Disney has been asking the same question. While original stars Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford are expected to reprise their roles, what about the most iconic figure in the Star Wars universe? A new report claims the Mouse House is trying to figure out a way to resurrect Darth Vader and have him be a part of the sequels.
“He’s an integral part of the franchise. Replacing him is virtually impossible,” a “film mole” tells British tabloid Express. “The plan is for him to return and play a significant role in the new films.”
The source adds, “This is science fiction, remember. Darth Vader will rise from the ashes.”
Puh-lease. Like many commenters at the link above, I agree that a "ghostly" or "spectral" Darth (like that seen at the end of Return of the Jedi) and/or some flashbacks sequences would be appropriate. But it seems Disney is listening way too much to its other property, Marvel, for advice. Comics fans have had it up to here with gratuitous character deaths and resurrections; if this is the plan for Vader, you can count me out. I'll wait until the damn thing comes on Encore.
A video posted Tuesday by CNN suggests that racism may play a role in the numerous petitions seeking permission from the White House to secede from the United States.
The video is part of a report done by Dustin Barnes of KLRT, a Fox affiliate in Little Rock, Arkansas. Barnes spoke with Dr. Art English, a political science professor at the University of Arkansas in Little Rock.
"It is unique. It's unusual. It is rather strange but strange in the sense that we don't think of secession after an election," Dr. English said.
Although Dr. English never implied racism in the video, Barnes did. "English said it's hard to tell if it's strictly Obama's policies or his race that led to this bold petition," he said.
RELATED: Paul Ryan is "racially insensitive" for saying that, in the election, "the surprise was some of the turnout, some of the turnout especially in urban areas."
And the non-Council nominations are here!
Numerous petitions from red states have been sent to the White House website declaring a desire to secede from the Union now that Boss Obama has won re-election. The Left, of course (and correctly), is having fun with the idea. But, of course, a mere eight years ago many of these same voices ... wanted to secede after that evil incarnate, George W. Bush, was re-elected:
In 2004 Salon ran an article about how liberals were embracing secession movements as a reaction to Bush’s re-election:
In the days after the election, fantasies of blue-state secession ricocheted around the Internet. Liberals indulged themselves in maps showing Canada gathering the blue states into its social democratic embrace, leaving the red states to form their own “Jesusland“…
The present movement for secession has been gathering steam for a decade and a half. In preparation for Vermont’s bicentennial in 1991, public debates — moderated by then-Lt. Gov. Howard Dean — were held in seven towns before crowds that averaged 230 citizens. At the end of each, Dean asked all those in favor of Vermont’s seceding from the Union to stand and be counted. In town after town, solid majorities stood. The final count: 999 (62 percent) for secession and 608 opposed.
I thought that the Civil War pretty much settled the issue of whether states can legally secede from the Union. Honest Abe's view was that the states were legally bound to the Union:
“No State, upon its own mere motion, can lawfully get out of the Union, that resolves and ordinances to that effect are legally void, and that acts of violence, within any State or States, against the authority of the United States, are insurrectionary or revolutionary, according to circumstances.”
Basically, it'll take another civil war to allow a state (or states) to secede, but c'man everyone -- we ain't even close to that now.
Because, y'know, no one demanded it.
First off, Skyfall does not -- NOT! -- top Daniel Craig's debut in Casino Royale. In fact, it really isn't even close. But it certainly is [much] better than Quantum of Solace if that's any consolation.
SPOILERS BELOW THE FOLD!
The title comes from the name of Bond's childhood home, which plays a pivotal role in the film towards the end. More on that in a bit. The film opens in Turkey where Bond and a female operative (who'll be revealed later) are after a stolen hard drive that contains the names of MI6 agents the world-over. As 007 is battling the remaining bad guy atop a train, M (Judi Dench) orders the female operative to "take the shot" -- despite the fact that Bond will likely get hit and perish as well. The operative nails Bond, but the bad guy escapes -- with the valuable hard drive. Oops.
Of course we know that Bond survives the shot and subsequent fall (into a river). However, the hard drive leads to the infiltration of MI6 by cyber-genius (and former MI6 agent) Raoul Silva. Javier Bardem is absolutely masterful as the villain -- deliciously devious and incredibly slyly insane. His machinations lead to a massive explosion at MI6 headquarters, resulting in half a dozen deaths and the agency moving to low-tech digs in old WWII era (and earlier) underground bunkers and tunnels.
007, who has been taking it easy, so to speak, somewhere, sees the news about the MI6 on the tube at a bar and decides he has to go back. This is where the film takes a wrong turn, in my view. Taking a page from the not-officially sanctioned Never Say Never Again, Bond hence has to prove himself ready, physically and mentally, to rejoin the British Secret Service. He actually fails to do so, but M green lights him anyway. If you're a big fan of Craig's first two outings as Bond (as I am), this whole "Bond is getting old" schtick doesn't seem to fit as Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace demonstrated that this was a new era for Bond -- a tougher, grittier and more fit 007. Indeed, Ralph Fiennes plays Mallory, the chairman of the government's Intelligence and Security Committee, who continually hassles Bond about his age and fitness (physical and mental). C'man. But then again ... maybe ...
At any rate, the newly reactivated Bond journeys to Shanghai on a lead based on shrapnel taken from a wound from his initial scuffle with the bad guy in Turkey. After dispatching of said bad guy, he then encounters the beautiful Sévérine (played by Bérénice Lim Marlohe) who agrees to take him to Silva. It is here, at a secluded and deserted island, that Bardem really shines as Silva. This sort of role has been played before -- the vengeful secret operative out to get his former employers -- but Bardem takes it to whole other level. He attempts to convince 007 of his "righteousness," even trying to get Bond to join him. It is more than hinted at that Silva is a homosexual, and Bond even hints that he's had a gay tryst (or two) in the course of his many past missions! Whoa! Nevertheless, Bond has been carrying a radio transmitter given to him by the new Q (Ben Whishaw, at right), and the MI6 suddenly appears via several helicopters to take Silva into custody.
Back at the "new" MI6 HQ, as Silva wallows in detention, Q attempts to access Silva's computer. He unwittingly allows the computer to infiltrate MI6's systems (again) thus enabling the villain to escape. Bond pursues Silva through the London subway ("Tube") system, but he escapes (after an incredible Silva-induced subway crash scene). Silva and a few henchmen head for the hearing room where M is testifying before a panel who're miffed at her (and MI6's) intel failures (i.e. allowing that hard drive to be captured). Silva and his cohorts arrive and begin shooting up the place, but M is unharmed. Mallory (Fiennes) surprisingly(?) demonstrates bravery, preventing a few deaths and taking a bullet in the shoulder.
Shortly thereafter, Bond whisks M away from the mess and tells her that they've "been going about this all wrong." Silva has managed to stay one step ahead of the MI6 the whole time because they've "been playing his game." Bond suggests changing the rules, so to speak, and takes M out to the desolate countryside of Scotland ... to Bond's childhood home. To get "away" from technology and go "old school." There we meet the house's keeper, Kincaid, and along with Bond and M he gets the house ready for Silva's inevitable assault.
Silva and a gang eventually arrive and blow Bond's house to shreds in their attempt to kill M (and Bond), but Kincaid has escaped with M through a hidden tunnel while Bond remains in the [shredded] house to continue to do battle. After 007 sets off two huge propane tanks that destroys the rest of the house, the wreckage that goes flying destroys Silva's helicopter, preventing his departure. Only Silva and two bad guys remain now, and they give chase to M and Kincaid. Bond sets off in pursuit, but he's stopped by Silva and co. A last ditch effort by Bond kills the henchmen, but Silva corners M and Kincaid in a nearby chapel. Alas, 007 arrives in the proverbial nick, lancing a knife into Silva's back. But -- M was injured in the attack on the house, and soon after dies in Bond's arms! Thus ends the Judi Dench era as M, begun in 1995 in Pierce Brosnan's Bond debut in Goldeneye.
In the epilogue, it is revealed that the "female operative" (Naomie Harris, at left) who had assisted Bond in the prologue and again in Shanghai is none other than [the new] Eve Moneypenny. She's given up field work and will now work directly with M and the double-Os in the main office. Did I just mention M? Indeed, who takes Judi Dench's place? It's none other than Mallory (Ralph Fiennes), who now welcomes James Bond into his office with a new vigor, perspective, and ... respect. He informs 007 that "there's a lot of work to do" and asks "are you ready?" To which Bond enthusiastically responds, "Yes sir, M -- with pleasure."
Skyfall is a terrific entry to the James Bond mythos. However, as noted at the top, it still doesn't eclipse Casino Royale for sheer awesomeness despite all its critical acclaim and hype. In my view, this is due to Casino's better combination of action sequences to "down time," not to mention its much more diverse locales. In Casino we began in eastern Europe, then to Madagascar, to the Bahamas, Miami, and then to Montenegro. The vast majority of Skyfall occurs in dreary London and Scotland. Skyfall shines, though, with its [re]introduction of classic characters Moneypenny and Q, its homage to what has gone before (the classic Bond theme and music, and the Aston Martin from Goldfinger), and its consistency with keeping Craig's Bond realistic and gritty. I mean, who'da thought that with Q coming back all we'd see him provide 007 with was a palm gun and cheesy radio distress transmitter? Speaking of which, Whishaw's Q is delightfully arrogant and childlike, a perfect specimen for the current generation of cocky technophiles.
Skyfall can easily be placed in the top ten of all-time Bond films, and Bardem's Silva is a top five villain.
Hube's rating: Four out of five stars.
The first two epsiodes are online and available now; the full movie will be on SyFy early next year.
I'd be a lot more enthusiastic about the film if I didn't already know what the outcome was. Nevertheless, it's pretty cool seeing the flashbacks to the Cylon uprising and use of "classic" imagery like the original series Vipers and Cylon Raiders, the original Cylon base-stars, and original Cylon centurions.
Via Fox News:
The CEO of popular pizza chain Papa John's says his employees may face reduced hours and he expects his business costs to rise because President Obama's re-election most likely insures the president's health care reform law will be implemented in full.
NaplesNews.com reports John Schnatter made the remarks to a small group at Edison State College's Collier County campus the day after the election.
Schnatter, who supported Mitt Romney in the election, said all Americans having health insurance under ObamaCare is a good, but estimates the change will cost Papa John's $5 million to $8 million annually.
Schnatter estimated that these rising costs could adversely affect his workers. Since only full-time employees working 30 hours or more must be covered under the new law, he said he expects franchise owners will be forced to cut employees' hours because they can't afford the costs of health insurance plans.
n addition, the Applebee’s family restaurant chain is under public attack, including the threat of boycotts after New York-area franchisee Zane Tankel told Fox Business Network that cost increases related to implementing ObamaCare might result in no expansion or additional hiring. Critics appear to have interpreted Tankel’s comments to mean he will layoff customers as a result of ObamaCare.
Need I add the 'ol adage "elections have consequences"?
The NY Times: A Megaphone for Liberal Politicians...Has Never Existed Before on Television.'
Do these complete idiots really live in such an insulated bubble?? There is no greater political/cultural delusion than claiming the mainstream media doesn't have a liberal bias. None. Period. End of story.
"If you think the government of Israel is comparable to the governments of North Korea and Iran, you are either utterly ignorant or a total idiot. Those are the only options."
The non-Council winner was Michelle Malkin with Obama gets his “revenge,” but conservatives must stand tall.
Full results are here.
Biographer Jean Edward Smith in today's NY Times: "Mr. Obama must cope with a “snarky” news media ... which glare at a president, magnifying anything that looks like success, or, especially, failure."
Uh huh. Just like they did with Benghazi and the response to Hurricane Sandy, just to name two, eh?
He was only off by a few years.
Looks pretty good but nothing like the story I read. I don't think the book in it's original form was something that could be made into a film unless they wanted to do it documentary style.
Michelle Obama Wants to Create 'Let’s Move! Towns and Cities' | CNSNews.com: "First Lady Michelle Obama is encouraging local governments across America to become 'Let’s Move!' cities and towns because local leaders are 'uniquely positioned to champion healthy communities.'”
I've been hearing quite a few people say "Let's move" since election night but not quite in the same way.
From his column today at The Corner, Nice Guys Finish Second:
First, the Republicans should never again agree to any debate moderated by any member of the MSM, most especially including former Democratic apparatchiks like Stephanopoulos. What used to be the American journalistic establishment — and I spent 25 years in it — is now out and proud and fully committed to the Obama Way. For them, this was the moment they’d been waiting for since the 1960s, their chance to (as they see it) change the course of American history, to be participants instead of just observers and stenographers, and if they had to first compromise, and then abandon, their stated principles of objectivity and neutrality, so what? The game was worth the candle. They will go to their graves feeling good about themselves.
I've said this all along. Do you honestly think Democrat/liberal candidates would agree to a debate moderated by FNC's Brett Baier or Carl Cameron? Or if they did that they wouldn't complain about it all the way? Nothing good ever comes out of this for Republicans; just witness Candy Crowley giving Boss Obama the assist when Romney cornered the president on the Benghazi-terrorism question. As we now know, CBS News actively withheld video of Obama refusing to call the Benghazi attacks "terrorism" right on "60 Minutes."
Second, lay off the social issues. Let me be blunt: Conservatives have lost that war, and last night’s defeats are just the beginning. As with Griswold and Roe, the times they are a’changing when it comes to sex. Furthermore: It doesn’t matter. True, the eternal verities remain, well, eternal verities, but quoting random passages from the Old Testament to justify contemporary American mores is just nuts; better for the dwindling Christian majority to embrace the message of the New Testament and let God’s love wash over all His children. Salvation is neither a board game nor a checklist. So do what the Democrats do: accept changing circumstances and then co-opt them.
As I wrote yesterday, the GOP adopting this libertarian attitude will only serve to benefit them in the long run. And you don't have to make it a "moral" issue at all -- merely state that you believe abortion, gay "marriage," etc. are none of the federal government's business. IOW, you don't care about them. They're individual matters left to, well, individuals, localities and the individual states. As your own person, there's little harm in saying you personally are against abortion, but that Roe is the law of the land, it's settled, and it's really none of the federal government's business anyway.
Walsh also says, "Far too many Americans today don’t want a job, they want — again, to use Obama’s term — revenge." To which I repeat what I've heard here and there since the election results: You can't compete with Santa Claus. It's hard to argue for small government and self reliance when the other party likes to give people things in return for [political] loyalty. That is, until the real bill comes due. And it will. Sooner than we all think, I fear.
Wow, there's a lot here that agrees with what I just posted about the election. Titled "Conservative Self-Deception In 2012 Hid Need For Policy Changes," here's an excerpt with a notable mention about Delaware's own Christine O'Donnell (emphases mine):
Making these erroneous predictions about the election was profitable for those who made them. Claims that the polls were biased against Republicans were like “political porn” that misguided Republicans ate up, because they wanted to believe it. Of the hundreds of political blogs at Examiner.com, the one with the most readers in the last month was a blog called “Arlington Conservative Examiner,” which constantly peddled the notion that Romney would outperform the polls on election day, and that the polls were biased against Republicans. Before the election approached, few people read that obscure blog, but its readership mushroomed after it started claiming that the polls were biased, putting hundreds or thousands of dollars in its author’s pocket. (Examiner.com bloggers are paid for each hit or page view.)
Right-wing commentators do not seem to suffer any penalty in lost credibility with their viewers when they make false rosy predictions about the GOP winning elections. Right-wing author Mark Levin is a case in point. He ludicrously supported the neophyte right-wing candidate Christine O’Donnell for Delaware’s Senate seat (her “I am not a witch” ad was a case study in political malpractice), claiming that Delaware — which Obama carried by a 5-to-3 margin — was a relatively conservative state she could carry if nominated.
Thanks to people like Levin, and the Tea Party Express, O’Donnell won Delaware’s 2010 GOP senate primary, defeating the state’s veteran Congressman Mike Castle, a moderate who was popular with independent and even some Democratic voters. She went on to easily lose the general election to a weak liberal candidate (Chris Coons -- Hube) with a history of imposing huge tax increases as a County Executive. The moderate Castle, although not beloved by conservatives, would have crushed the liberal Democrat in the general election if he had won the primary. He was much more conservative than the Democrat on issues like Obamacare and the stimulus package). Levin has never paid any price for his faulty election predictions, in this and other races where right-wingers lost races that mainstream candidates would have won, and, instead, has been invited by the conservative Heritage Foundation to speak this month about the election results.
Note, too, what Hans writes about his wife and her political philosophy .. and for whom she voted.
And the non-Council nominations are here!
Well, if you are (were) a Mitt Romney fan it is going to be a long next four years. The election was very very close (popular vote-wise); however, Mitt just couldn't snag enough swing states even though, again, the results were close in those as well.
So, what now?
With immigration, the GOP has to willing to offer more than just clamping down on illegal immigration, building a huge fence, and deporting all who are here without permission. Keep in mind, it isn't just the Democrats' fault we have the number of illegals here now that we do. With an estimated 10-15 million illegals already in the country something realistic has to be considered. A guest worker program (a favorite of Bill O'Reilly) and expedited paths to citizenship are just two suggestions. However, it is an insult to assume that all, or even most, Hispanics are of like mind and believe that the borders should be completely open, and that anyone who comes across the border should automatically become a citizen. Indeed, "a March 2011 poll by Moore Information found that Republican economic policies were a stronger turn-off for Hispanic voters in California than Republican positions on illegal immigration." John Echeveste, founder of the oldest Latino marketing firm in southern California, said,
"What Republicans mean by ‘family values’ and what Hispanics mean are two completely different things,” he said. “We are a very compassionate people, we care about other people and understand that government has a role to play in helping people."
This shouldn't be a conundrum for the GOP; conservatives can address this by emphasizing that government does have a role, but that local governments, not the feds, are best equipped to deal with the helping of people. And, this doesn't just apply to Hispanics, of course; the same message applies equally to African-Americans.
I may be wrong, however, particularly on the third bullet point. Maybe we've changed so much demographically and philosophically the last 20+ years that, no matter what, the people want the federal government to "solve" their problems -- despite the fact that we've run out of money ... and despite the fact that the feds waste our tax monies with wanton abandon ... and despite the fact that it relies on a "one size fits all" strategem to resolve pressing issues. Maybe we do want to be like Europe. If accurate, the Grand Old Party faces an even greater reassessment of its goals and focus. The greatest danger, though, is for the GOP to dig its heels in deep ... and deny what's going on around them.
That being said, for Barack Obama, there is no more blaming George W. Bush. What we see -- what we face -- is yours now, Mr. President. I personally do not see how your proposals will seriously deal with the billion dollar deficit, the $16 trillion (and growing) national debt, and growing energy costs. Raising taxes on the wealthy will only make an insignificant dent on the former two. Do not delude yourself otherwise. You'll have to make some serious decisions and some tough calls these next four years, else the growing populace that is friendly to the federal government will soon be in for a very rude awakening.
UPDATE: I neglected to mention a BIG item pertaining to the results: "Progressives" can STFU about "racism" now. Obama was not only elected but re-elected. So, again -- STFU about it already.
I am stunned. I cannot imagine how anyone looks at the economy alone and re-elects the most unqualified disaster of a president. I can assure you that at no time in the next four years will he take any responsibility for anything.
To be updated constantly throughout the day with assorted news and happenings. All times are Eastern Standard:
17:54: Then again, Kerry won in the 2004 Ohio exit polls ...
17:52: Drudge reports exit polls show Obama has Ohio, Romney Florida.
16:27: UN poll watchers "amazed" that voters don't need photo ID in order to vote. Gee, now why is that?
16:00: Houston NAACP "has announced their intention to continue showing up to Houston-area polling stations and 'helping' people vote."
12:14: Howard Dean sets the stage for lawsuits: "Only Way Obama Can Lose Ohio Is If Voters Are Prevented From Casting Their Ballot."
11:17: Boss Obama mural inside a Philly polling place. Typical.
11:15: Regarding exit polls: "You've all heard exit poll warnings, but just to underscore the point: WI recall exit showed Walker losing by 1 pt. He won by 7."
11:09: Gee, really? WDEL's Allan Loudell says DE turnout is "better than two years ago but not better than four years ago." Profound.
10:18: Video of Black Panther at Philly polling place.
10:16: Rumors on Twitter that Black Panthers are at polling places in Dayton, Cincinnati and Cleveland.
10:08: Judge orders booted GOP election watchers to be allowed back in Philly polling places.
9:17: Hey! Why don't we get some of the UN election observers over to that Philly polling place where the Panthers are??
8:58: Gotta love Philly -- reports now of GOP polling inspectors being tossed from polling places.
8:54: Romney needs either Ohio or Pennsylvania to win. Period. Both would be better, natch.
8:43: "Plugs" Biden votes here in Delaware. Almost better than watching paint dry.
8:35: Hey, look everyone -- Christine O'Donnell was up before sun-up today! Gag me with a spatula.
8:32: Staten Island residents use makeshift voting stations due to Hurricane Sandy issues. But it's New York -- does it really matter? No.
8:26: Photo of Black Panther at polling station.
8:21: Reports via Twitter that the Black Panthers are back at the same polls they were at (in Philly) in 2008.
How is the turnout at your polling place? I went to my local and the line was very very long (this is not unusual). I'll be going back later to try again.
Here's a taste:
Former Education Department lawyer Curt Levey discusses the implications of Obama replacing two Supreme Court justices who will reach the age of 80 in a few years. Here is his “Top Ten” list of potential Supreme Court rulings that might result from Justice Scalia or Justice Kennedy being replaced as they reach an advanced age and retire:
#10 – A ban on voter ID laws, making it impossible to stop voter fraud.
#9 – Carte blanche for hate-speech laws that ban videos and other expression deemed offensive to Muslims and other minorities.
#8 – Abolition of the death penalty.
#7 – A prohibition on tuition vouchers being used for religious schools, crippling the school choice movement.
#6 – Elimination of all legal limits on racial preferences for minorities.
#5 – A requirement for taxpayer-funding of abortions through the third trimester of pregnancy.
#4 – Invention of a constitutional right to gay marriage that would trump all state laws and religious objections.
#3 – Striking down, as unconstitutional discrimination, any serious attempt to curtail the flow of illegal immigrants into the country or to deny them government benefits.
#2 – Elimination of an individual right to possess firearms.
#1 – Enshrinement of welfare and government-provided healthcare as constitutional rights, thus fulfilling Barack Obama’s dream of a Supreme Court willing to bring about “redistribution of wealth” by “break[ing] free from the essential constraints that were placed by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution.” (quoting 2001 PBS interview with Obama).
And then consider what happened in that second debate ...
Words of wisdom, conservatives, from Michael Ledeen:
Some years ago, back in 1984, Ronald Reagan won reelection over Walter Mondale, carrying 49 states. Afterwards, the most prestigious columnist at the most prestigious newspaper–James Reston of the New York Times–permitted himself a confession:
Among the losers in this Presidential election campaign you will have to include the nosy scribblers of the press. Not since the days of H. L. Mencken have so many reporters written so much or so well about the shortcomings of the President and influenced so few voters. Mr. Reagan beat the newspapers by ignoring them. From his nomination in Dallas to election weekend he has not held a single national news conference. He gave one or two interviews to sympathetic writers and allowed a few small-time high school and college audiences to toss him some questions, but he dismissed the White House press corps with a wave and a smile.
In other words, the MSM went all-in to defeat Reagan, and were decimated by the voters. You can almost hear Reston gnashing his teeth when you read the headline: “Reagan Beats the Press.”
1984 was my first-ever vote in an election, and will probably remain the biggest blowout in American presidential election history in my lifetime (it's the #2 landslide noted at this site). Challenger Mondale only won his home state of Minnesota and Washington DC. (Al Gore couldn't even nab his home state in 2000; had he, he'd have been president.) And the mainstream media then did its level best to trounce the Gipper and shore up Mondale. Ledeen notes that even in the 1980 election, the MSM declared the election "too close to call" right down to the wire. The Gip ended up slamming Jimmy Carter, 489 electoral votes to 49.
Keep this is mind when you're watching/listening to all the pundits saying how close this race is through today and through tomorrow. The MSM is invested in claiming this race will be close (to bolster their preferred candidate); just look at this CNN poll from today which shows the race "tied." Yeah -- tied -- with a +11 Democrat sample.
More and more I am believing the brilliant Michael Barone's election forecast: Romney wins with 315 electoral votes. Maybe we'll be lucky and it'll be even more ... just to shove it right back into the MSM's collective faces.
This is pretty funny:
(Via Geeks are Sexy)
If Biden was a Republican, well, forget it ...
Via the Newsbusters e-mail tipline:
I have voted both Republican and Democrat in past elections. I find your site is an insult to all intelligent Americans. This right winged site skewed [sic] to pander to the millions of (tea party, racist, biggoted [sic] and ever [sic] other dispiscable [sic] word used to discribe [sic] the worst in people). How sad for America that our politcal landscape features, [sic] lies, cheating and pandering to the religious right.
Bill Maher warns white people if Mitt Romney wins on Tuesday: "Black people know who you are and they will come after you."
Need I post the following from Noel Sheppard?
Imagine for a moment the outrage if a conservative commentator said even jokingly to Obama supporters, "White people know who you are and they will come after you."
That would be the end of that person's career. Period. No questions asked. Done!
Via Doug Ross@Journal:
1) Virtually every retailer, restaurant and grocery store south of 38th street is CLOSED. This is in an area covering 8 square miles. I only observed a handful of bodegas in Soho and the East Village, along with Ben’s Pizza on W3rd and MacDougal serving customers. Whole Foods Union Square had a sign reading “because there is no electricity, we cannot open.” There is no food, other than what you have in your refrigerator.
2) To that point, there are close to 400,000 people living below 38th street without power. The mayor earlier said it could be 3 days without power; some Con Ed guys I spoke with in the East Village think it could be longer. Nobody knows.
3) No working traffic lights in this region (drivers are generally being cautious and appropriately yielding to pedestrians). Apartment stairwells are pitch black. High rises have no elevator access...
5) There is no running water or flushing toilets for people living in the Jacob Riis Houses and surrounding NYCHA buildings on the Lower East Side. In my estimate, this is roughly 20,000 people. One family I spoke with is packing their bags and moving to Brooklyn until services are restored. But it did not appear that all residents were evacuating, even as their toilets did not flush.
6) I did not witness a single Red Cross Truck or FEMA Vehicle or in lower Manhattan. Recall the assistance these agencies provided after 9/11 - this is NOT HAPPENING. There are bound to be hundreds of elderly people, rich and poor, who live on the upper floors of buildings with elevators that are now disabled. IF POWER IS NOT RESTORED, THIS WILL MOVE FROM BEING AN ECONOMIC DISASTER TO A HUMANITARIAN DISASTER.
"There’s Never Been A Day In The Last Four Years I’ve Been Proud To Be His Vice President." -- "Plugs" Biden.
Despite a 0.1% rise in the national unemployment figures today, here's how the Boston Herald reports the news:
The U.S. unemployment rate rose to 7.9 percent in October as the nation added 171,000 jobs.
The federal Bureau of Labor Statistics report also revised the number of jobs created in September to add another 34,000, increasing the number to 148,000. The August jobs number was revised upward to show 192,000 jobs created.
The October employment report solidified the picture of the U.S. job market that’s emerged this year: Companies are hiring steadily, but cautiously. And unemployment remains high.
“It seems to me if the folks who are working for Gov. Romney were hoping the story this weekend would be the deteriorating U.S. economy and the declining jobs situation, then they’ve got to be disappointed this morning about that,” said Michael Goodman, public policy professor at the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth. “I don’t think anybody looks at the employment situation in the United States and says, ‘we’re out of the woods,’ but certainly this data and the data over the last couple of years suggests we’ve been slowly and steadily moving in the right direction. ... We’re adding jobs; people are returning to the work force. This is a stronger report than I expected. It’s very encouraging.”
Yeah, Mitt Romney is gonna be "disappointed" by today's report because after last month's unemployment figures dropped to under 8.0% for the first time in Boss Obama's term ... now have gone up again?? YEESH. And the number rising again is "stronger than expected" and "very encouraging"??
And then there's this, as noted earlier by our own Duffy: NYC Mayor Mikey Bloomberg is going ahead with his city's marathon -- despite the fact that Staten Island residents are still without power OR water. Or, as Boston radio host Michael Graham notes,
Sunday, America is going to watch a bunch of skinny, self-righteous, left-leaning joggers snatching bottles of water from the hands of Bloomberg’s NYC marathon crew—while families in Staten Island who have no power OR water sit amid the wreckage of their homes, still waiting for help.
Ah yes ... just imagine if this was, say, Dallas, Texas, and Boss Obama's predecessor was in in office. Thousands of residents without power or water, and the Dallas mayor insists that his city's marathon go on. The MSM would be screaming bloody murder about "WHERE'S FEMA, MR. PRESIDENT??!!" Y'know, like they did in these cases. Oh wait, that's right -- they didn't, then. Oh, and don't forget this little nugget.
UPDATE: As of around 5:15pm local time, it was announced that the NYC marathon is canceled.
The non-Council winner was Andrew McCarthy with The Real Foreign Policy Failure.
Full results are here.
Most of my family lives on Staten Island. Both my parents were born there and so was I. So far, everyone in my family is accounted for and is safe but the damage has been tremendous. At the end of the video they talk about how everyone on SI is either a cop or fireman he's dead right. Most of those same family members are first responders. Cops, firefighters and nurses. The fact that Mayor
Nagin Bloomberg is having the marathon is despicable.
Oh and by the way, let's turn away non-union work crews because being union is more important than actually helping people. (Yes this is in NJ and not SI but this is nearly as bad as the neglect for SI going on right now)
UPDATE: As of around 5:15pm local time, it was announced that the NYC marathon is canceled.
Jesse Jackson Sr. explains the difference between the original Tea Party, and the Tea Party of today:
In a speech Friday at University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, billed as a get-out-the-vote rally, Jackson drew a difference between the original Boston Tea Party, which he said aimed to “end occupation and wipe out the tea tax,” and the contemporary Tea Party, which he characterized as a group that wants to “overthrow our government, engage in secession, sedition, segregation and slavery.”
No explain was available from the rev on just how the Tea Party -- even if they magically held all three branches of government -- would manage to repeal the 13th Amendment.
Elsewhere from fellow Watcher's Council member Gay Patriot: Gay Left-Wing Radio Host Advises Gay Romney Supporter to Commit Suicide, Says He Should Not Be Allowed to Vote.