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Monday, February 28, 2005

Stop complaining and change the channel..

I'm really getting sick and tired of all these parent groups and watchdog groups complaining about everything on tv. Here's a damn clue, you don't like what's on, find it offensive, or don't want your kids to view it.. CHANGE THE CHANNEL!

Not that hard is it? Why should someone else be responsible for what your kids view? If all you do is let your kids sit in front of the tv until dinner, then have dinner in front of the tv while Saving Private Ryan is on.. Deal with it. Last I checked no one is forcing you or your kids to view anything on tv. Stop patrolling the airwaves and start controlling your kids. This is the state of our society.. "I'm not responsible for my kid visiting that porn site or seeing that ultra violent movie on tv, someone else is."

Want another example of people not taking responsibility? I work for an apartment complex. There is one cable connection per apartment (just one.. not one per room). Our cable company can't come run wires in the apartments because if the resident trips the cable company can be sued.... Somewhere, someone is laughing their asses off at how stupid we've let things get over here.

At least the FCC ruled Saving Private Ryan wasn't a violation this time these great "parent" groups complained.

An Interesting Point for Debate

In his New York Times Op-Ed column today, Robert Reich makes the case for having a public debate about the impact of consumerism and the downward pressures it places on our economy. That this isn't already an issue being seriously debated is rather troubling to me. One core idea behind capitalism is that the economy grows in order to produce more consumers to buy the goods and services that they create; our economy isn't heading in that direction though--eventually there has to be a tipping point at which the economy declines because there aren't enough consumers willing or able to pay the price to purchase those goods and services. What happens then? Would we suddenly develop a conscience or would our country spiral completely out of control?

There seems to be a bit too much of the "me-first" attitude running rampant in this country, and it has me worried.

Fight the good fight.

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Movie night at my place.

Well, we rented three movies this weekend and I'll give you the low down on them in this post. Our first selection was The Forgotten.

The Forgotten is about abduction and tampering with memories. Julianne Moore was ok, nothing too special here. She starts out playing the mom who loses her child decently enough, but things quickly fall apart from there. It becomes more of a long episode of X-Files than a full feature length movie. It comes in at just around 91 minutes and goes about 20 to 30 minutes too long. There are some loose ends that just kinda don't get addressed, like where do the people go when they get sucked into the horizon. Over all the film was just barely interesting enough to hold my attention until my cats decided to fight over which of them got to sleep on my paintball gear bag. It's a middle of the road movie with nothing to really stand out through the whole 90+ minutes, and it gets a rating of 2.5 on a scale of 5.

Second movie was Ray. I have wanted to see this movie since it was released in theaters, but I'm lazy and hate going to the movies (thanks everyone who can't mute their cell phones, chews pop corn loudly, kicks my chair, or just in general is a pain in the ass in an otherwise quiet place). This movie was very enjoyable. Jamie Fox was great in his role as Ray Charles. I've watched quite a few movies with Fox in them and this was his best performance. His walk, manner of speech, and overall study of Ray Charles garnered him an Oscar as best male actor, and he earned it. This movie does an excellent job of drawing you in and keeping you in, watching his triumphs and downfalls. I highly recommend this movie and give it a 4.5 out of 5 (mainly cause I don't know if any movie can get a 5 since that's perfect.. but this one is damn close!)

Third movie of the weekend was Vanity Fair. This was one of those "do something nice for the woman who puts up with your crap 24/7 and doesn't kill you." The scenes in this movie were very rich and beautiful. Reese Witherspoon is a good actress and puts her talents to good use in this movie, but it just can't quite save what turns out to be over 150 minutes of a movie about her character's attempt at rising from her lowly status to that of a noble. It just doesn't quite draw you in and get you to care about the characters as well as it needs to and leaves you feeling a little indifferent when the ending credits begin to role. It overall was an ok movie, visually it was very nice, but acting and story left me a little bored. This movie gets a 3 out of 5.

Hey, Tom, how bout a review of Million Dollar Baby?

And the award goes to...

Well, certainly not us here at tweedler, but there was some justice tonight at the Oscars (yup, the light of my life had the remote and decided Oscars over Independence Day.. so I didn't argue.. just read the post). Jamie Fox won thanks to a brilliant performance from Ray, and Million Dollar Baby took home 4 awards including Best Picture. All political statements aside (yea, stop whining about the ending or Rock's GWB jokes ya prudes), I have yet to meet someone who has not spoken highly of Million Dollar Baby (or as our host Tom likes to call it M$B.. you're getting ghetto on me here Tommy Boy). I must admit, I do like Eastwood and his work. He's becoming one of my fav directors (which really doesn't say much I suppose since I don't really think on the directors when I watch the movies).

The only issue I had was that Don Cheadle couldn't take home an award for his work in Hotel Rowanda. But if anyone else should win, Jamie Fox was definitely a good candidate. We watched Ray just the other night and I must say it was very good (review to follow.. i think).

I could, however, done without Beyonce being nearly the only performer. We have how many great singers out there and we are given her for almost all of the songs. Blah.. Per usual, Rock was funny, and it wasn't too bad of a show.

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Survey and the cell phone generation

We all know that there were issues with the polling from this past election. Those of us who use cell phones exclusively were ignored (whether by choice or by lack of a method to contact us). Like many of these people I don't want to have my cell number out "there." I don't want people to have access to it unless I've given it to them. This puts a serious cramp on how reliable the polls are, and this population is only growing as we increase the use of cable internet.

The main problem I see with this is the polls are inaccurate (whether for Dem or Rep.), but I don't see any viable solution without letting these pollsters call our cell phones. Do I want them calling me? No. Unless they are willing to pay for my minutes they've used just to ask me who I support and whatever else they want to know. You add in that the person being called could be driving or some other activity that could lead to an accident and it just doesn't seem worth it. There's an article on cnn.com about it.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Robertson: God "will remove judges from the Supreme Court..." [Media Matters for America]

People like this guy scare the hell out of me. I do not want to live in a theocracy, dammit. The worst thing that could possibly happen is for the courts to be filled with neo-cons hell-bent on telling people what they can't do with their own friggin' lives. Whatever happened to the conservative ideal of leaving people alone? I am growing weary of being preached to by my government.

Fight the good fight.


BEST BLOG THERE IS Well, I don't know about that, but if you're even somewhat of a fan of Marvel Comics' The Hulk, you should get a kick out of this. Thanks to Sam for the link.

Think Progress: How to Talk to a Conservative About Social Security (If You Must)

This is a great source of line-by-line refutations of BushCo's claims that Social Security is in crisis. Oh, wait, that's not the new reason for why we must fundamentally change one of the most successful programs of the New Deal. God forbid people who have worked their entire lives to provide for themselves and their families get a little supplemental income that is guaranteed.

Fight the good fight.

Father Knows Best

This is the kind of crap that pisses me off the most about the Bush administration and social conservatives in general.

Fight the good fight.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

A cold hard reality...

Another year of taxes to be filed.. And I'm royally screwed. My first year to file with an accountant and I've got to pay. My poor wage slave arse has to pay in right around $700. Is it not demeaning enough that I don't make more than 19k a year in wages? Or would you like to add in my bonus to push me up to a whooping 20k a year? They you add insult to injury and tell me while you're wage sucks and you're scraping bottom to survive.. We're gonna need you to shell out seven hundred more bucks, thanks for playing, you lose again. Damn.

If ever you wonder why there are crazy people in Montana who revolt against the government... I've got one glaring reason.. TAXES!!!

It's like getting beamed in the head by Randy Johnson.. Watching on that computer screen as the accountant goes over it and realizing somewhere you're gonna have to find 700 dollars to pay Uncle Sam just so he can lose it investing in some third world nation or a useless missile defense system that will never work.

Bah... I would like to now flip the collective bird to the US Government.. And inform them, the check will be in the mail shortly, you money grubbing, twisted, sycophants...

This rant has been brought to you by the IRS, the spend happy governments of our world, and the letter Y.

Monday, February 07, 2005

I need to rant!

I'm worn out and pissed off, and damnit I'm gonna post about it!

Today was a great day until I came home from lunch to find our beautiful 52 inch HDTV not wanting to work. I admit it.. I panicked a bit. The thing's not paid off yet! After I eat and calmed down I examined the problem.. Not the TV. The cold sweat left me and my urge to shoot myself before my fiance returned home abated (somewhat...). So the cable was the problem.. Lovely. Comcast strikes again. The great invention known as HDTV/DVR our as I seem to always call it "our cable box," was out. Broken, dead, without life. This meant a call to the evil and twisted idiots at Comcast. So I call and they actually tell me they will come out today. The sound of angels singing filled the air. After 40+ minutes of work, the techs determine the box itself is broken and there isn't anything I can do. They apologize and tell me to hold on while they find the closest service station with a replacement box. They find one within 10 minutes that has them in stock. I thank them, they leave, I go back to work slightly ruffled by not without hope. Work ends, I rush home, I unplug box, I haul arse to Comcast. Enter the building and I have a choice of two customer service reps, the cute and bubbly 20-something girl, or the bitter looking, grouchy old lady. Easy choice, right? Well, as I plead my case to the young lady, the evil lunch lady's twin leans over and informs me they are out of HDTV/DVRs and won't have any for 3 days. Long story short, they had them, gave them out, and basically said screw you when I came in. How did I come up with that last part?

As I'm walking out, evil Doris (I don't know her real name, she was scary looking so I didn't ask!) lets fly with the "You should have called before you came here."

........ I'm sorry, I was unaware we were in a shortage of HDTV/DVRs. Someone call the President! Now, I was pissed. A little at myself, too. So I called Comcast's main office to plead my case and inform them of my location. I received this answer at 5:50. "You can come get one at our downtown office. We stay open till six." I'm nearly 30 minutes away, without the traffic from rush hour and I get more taunting. You ever wonder why people switch to freakin satelite?! Well, here's your damn answer!

Damn, I hate when Tom's right...

Postgame thoughts...

Super Bowl's done.. Put it in the history books. Pats are a dynasty, good for them. Browns' fans should be (if they aren't) kicking themselves for letting Belichick leave. But we'll let Tom stew on that later.. Let me give my pointless thoughts on this game..

First, I missed the whole first half so I could get my hair cut (i found that to be a more useful waste of my time.. i was right in my assumption seeing that the score was 7 to 7 at half). I was not in the least impressed with the "highlights" from the first half. Good defense, but that's about all. Slightly to be expected that one team would have a better defense than the other, but it was nice to see two teams with good defenses playing in the big game.

I did, however, make the mistake of turning the tv on during the halftime show. What the hell inspired them to get an out of date and lame performer as Paul Macratny is beyond me. I decided the time he was belting out his horribly boring dribble and while everyone in the stands decided to go to the bathroom or get some food, I would go shower and get the loose hair off me. I feel this was time well spent considering the utter lack of excitement the halftime show was bringing. Yes, I know they didn't want another "wardrobe malfunction." But could we have at least gotten someone who doesn't suck? Yea, I said it. One of the Beetles sucks. He's old, his music is old, and he's not all that popular. Bah! Who the hell watches the Super Bowl for the halftime shows anyway?!

The second half was much better, even though McNabb couldn't find a receiver wearing green very often. All in all this game was just kind of average to me. After the last punt that pinned the Eagles behind the 5 yard line, you could feel it was completely over. For the most part the Eagles just didn't seem to want to win or hustle to the line when they had the ball. Their defense should be pissed at their offense for the lack of effort when attempting to run a two minute drill.

Not as good as New England vs. Carolina last year... But what can ya do when the NFC is a conference full of only half talented teams and the AFC is just getting better and better. Eh, anyway.. Just my .02 about the game. Oh, and the commercials, they were rather lame. Sorry, but our military is being over hyped as heroes.. Yes, they're sacrificing for us, but we're beginning to over look our other heroes. Police officers, who everyday make OUR streets safer, not the streets of a country half way around the globe where we have no business, our firefighters who run into burning buildings to save lives, and our nations teachers (all of these professions are highly underpaid, over worked, and under funded). So when I see a commercial with some actors dressed like military personnel being applauded in an airport it makes me wonder why we don't celebrate our other heroes like that. Also, the new mustang commercials are not funny.

The game gets a flat B.
Commercials get a C-.
Halftime show an F.

Overall Super Bowl watching experience.. C-.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Teens Having Sex in Texas

It is just sad that the people who support abstinence-only "sex" education programs will totally ignore empirical evidence about the failures of such programs. At what point will scientific evidence ever make a dent in their reality?

Fight the good fight.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Damn, some people are dumb..

Why is this idiot even in any kind of position of power?

Followed by.. Why is it always the repubs and Texans?

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Another Case of 'That Guy'

How is it that there are some people in life who for no particular reason end up being 'that guy'? You know, the guy who is just some average schmo who stumbles across something that makes him instantly famous or wealthy or just plain ass lucky? Well, here's the latest in a seemingly endless line of 'those guys'.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

More Fun With Picasa 2

Let me be the first to say that Comcast's personal web servers are slower than frozen molasses, but this was something I threw together with Picasa 2, my newly found, fun, *free*, time-wasting software. Here are several pictures of miniatures that I have painted. Be patient with the thumbnails; once they load, the individual pics don't take long to load up at all (which is odd, considering that the thumbnails are not the original images resized by HTML--they are truly thumbnails). Hmmm. If I keep this up long enough I'll have to buy some webspace somewhere.