Tuesday, September 13, 2005

A Hodgepodge Tuesday

I’d had a lot of ideas today, but none of them really jumped out at me as “the one,” so I thought I would just write about all of them without too much discussion. We’ll see how it goes.

Jill left a link in the comments section of yesterday’s post, and I have to admit it made a good cross reference to what I was talking about. In case anyone missed it, Jill is my better 4/5. She is in all of my thoughts and my posts. Much of what I write about is a direct result of our lives together; our conversations.

I’m really tired of hearing the words: “I’m a libertarian,” spoken with a tone of smugness and conceited condescension. Libertarianism sounds good on the surface, and is very attractive to people who don’t want to pay taxes but think they should be allowed to smoke marijuana. Lots and lots of people who claim to be libertarian are not outraged at the Bush administration. In addition to having an aversion to taxes, libertarians believe in preserving the rights of individuals. The true libertarian would like the tax-cuts of the Bush administration, but would have to be appalled at their disregard of the protections granted to us by the Bill of Rights. I don’t hear any of these people complaining about that, and I don’t expect to, because all they really care about is a justification of their self-serving behavior fueled by personal greed.

One of my co-workers often puts some sort of article/picture/quote/puzzle etc. on the front of his cube. Today I noticed a new article titled, “Who Was Mary Jo Kopecne?” I can’t find the article online, but basically it summarizes the circumstances of her death, and then goes on to ask, “Why should we believe anything Ted Kennedy says?” Listen, I’m no fan of Ted Kennedy. I think he was the loser brother in that family, and a liability to the progressive movement. I think at best he panicked in the above incident, and I don’t rule out foul play. Still, I wonder why this gentlemen isn’t outraged at the president who started a war under false pretenses that has resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands of people, including almost 1900 Americans?

Anyone who honestly believes that the radio and television News Media is "liberal" is easily proven wrong. The television and radio news outlets are owned by huge corporations who have a stated agenda: To earn money for themselves and their stockholders. This means 3 things. 1) They report stories that will increase their advertising revenue. 2) They will not report stories that will hurt their advertising revenue. 3) Any slant that a story might have is there because the news producers believe that it will increase their revenue. Most people agree that "conservatives" prefer smaller government, and the less government regulation of corporations, the better. Most people would also agree that "liberals" view the increased power and influence of corporations on America and the world as a bad thing, and prefer government controls to keep corporations in check. Therefore a "liberal media" would be counter to the corporate media's primary agenda.

As a "liberal," (I use quotes here because people insist on labeling me as such, although most people who use that term have no clear idea of what it means) it is a constant source of irritation that people continually repeat the words "liberal media."

XTC is a great band that has been making records for about 25 years. Their appeal is not always immediately apparent, but “Skylarking,” “English Settlement” and “Nonsuch” are all good places to start.

We disconnected the cable in February of ’05, and upped our Netflix membership aggreement to 4. I’d always heard that “Upstairs Downstairs” was one of the best television shows ever, and after watching the first season and part of the second one, I’d have to agree.

The British version of “The Office” is brilliant. Easily as good as "Seinfeld" and "Fawlty Towers." The reason they made an American version is that the accents are sometimes hard to understand by American ears. Fortunately, the DVD includes English subtitles. Not to be missed.

We saw "The Wedding Crashers” this weekend. A little long, but outrageously funny and a good way to forget your troubles for a couple hours.

And last but not least, "Mr. Cranky" trashes every single movie he reviews, except when he reviews them as "Mr. Smiley." I find it oddly amusing, even when he trashes movies that I love. Also great fun when he abuses movies that I think are overrated. In addition, he also does some provocative political commentary. Very good stuff.


Blogger cali said...

I agree with your insights about the current trend for some to label themsleves 'libertarian.'

9:24 AM  
Blogger cali said...

This may explain the 'liberal' tilt to major corporate media:

"Tim Berry, chief of staff to House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, is leaving the Texas Republican’s office to become a top lobbyist for media giant Time Warner." - From Rollcall

10:55 AM  
Blogger The Viscount LaCarte said...



11:01 AM  
Blogger Kevin Wolf said...

I too agree with your comments on Libertarians. They're fiscally conservative and socially liberal, which is not in itself a bad thing - but I've yet to talk to one who can define a middle ground between those two poles that makes any sense.

The only thing worse would be speaking with a hardcore adherent of Objectivism.

2:00 PM  
Blogger The Viscount LaCarte said...

>The only thing worse would be speaking with a hardcore adherent of Objectivism.<

You mean the Ayn Rand crowd? I got two words for them. Not what you think, although those would be apt.

The two words I have for them is "The Beatles."

4:38 PM  
Blogger Jill said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

4:39 PM  
Blogger Nobody said...

Speaking of Ayn Rand, (if we really have to), this made me laugh.


1:40 AM  
Anonymous Lies said...

The Office is indeed brilliant - I'm European so haven't seen the US version, but I'm willing to bet the original is better.
If you're into British humour, I can recommend the following: Little Britain, The Fast Show, and, last but not least, Smack the Pony. I'm not sure if you get these shows in America, but they're all hilarious!

10:01 AM  
Blogger XTCfan said...

>One of my co-workers often puts some sort of article/picture/quote/puzzle etc. on the front of his cube. Today I noticed a new article titled, "Who Was Mary Jo Kopecne?"<

Al, have you considered going to HR at your company about this? My company, flawed as it is, does not allow this type of thing to be posted, basically because it violates the "don't talk politics and religion at the dinner table" rule.

If they don't require him to stop, then they can't stop you from posting similar items -- say, "Do you know how many civilians have died in Iraq?" or "Do you know how fast the federal deficit has risen while George W. Bush has been in office?" Etc...

2:22 PM  
Blogger The Viscount LaCarte said...

XF - >Al, have you considered going to HR at your company about this?<

I'd really get no satisfaction from it. I can't "un-know" that is he one of "them" - you know? Not seeing the article won't help - I want what I can't have, which is, I want *those people* to add 2+2 and not come up with Thursday...

2:31 PM  
Blogger XTCfan said...

I understand, and that ain't obviously going to happen, but it seems to me that this person -- and your company -- needs to acknowledge that this type of proselytizing is not appropriate at work (unless they're going to let both sides do it). Ya know?

3:08 PM  

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