Friday, August 29, 2008

McCain Picks Palin, I Wonder...

I wonder if Obama wishes he had picked Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius for his Vice President running mate. Apparently Sebelius was in the short list of four. She would have countered any strengths that Palin brings for a lot of moderately left people. Not that that would change my vote. I want someone who realizes that terrorists will not sit down and talk about it. "Some people should die, that's just unconscious knowledge"-Jane's Addiction. This is not Utopia, this is the Real World.

I've read several blogs today and it's amazing to me how worked up people can get about someone they know next-to-nothing about. Pro and con. And how much they read their beliefs into the general populace. The conservatives are all "She's perfect! This clinches the election for us!" The liberals are all "HA! She's lousy! We have it in the bag now!" Get real people. There are an awful lot of people (like in the millions) that are not partisan one issue voters. The election is not clinched for either party, it's a long way to November.

If it's the Economy, then you're Stupid

Kyle Smith has a good short post for those who like to complain about the Economy. It’s the Stupidity About the Economy, Stupid. The U.S. is growing at a better rate than most other Western countries.
China and India are outgrowing the US. Hands up, all those who would rather live there.
Now I've known some Chinese students here in the U.S. and they are very interesting and nice people. The Communist government is what I don't like about China. That and the crowds. I like my small-town America. Smith's post links to a spreadsheet in the Economist magazine. Take a look at the unemployment numbers and tell me the U.S. is doing poorly compared to the world. And the Economist is not conservative and not American. It's British.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Big Willie Says Buy American!

I always buy American when I can, if not, I buy North American, then South American, then European, then non-Communist, then as a last resort, I buy Commie-made crap. All the big-box stores have Commie-made crap all over the place. When I was buying a circular saw, I didn't expect to find anything but Commie-made in my price range, but as I was standing there looking at a Commie saw, I glanced over and on a box it said "Made in USA." It was only $10 more, so I jumped at the chance to buy an American-made tool. It is a great saw. I'm glad I found it (saw it? ha ha). Yes, it cost a little more, but most Americans have too much junk anyway. Better to buy less and higher quality than to have more junk. Now if you are Canadian or whatever, you should buy Canadian- or whatever-made. I fully support everyone buying local-made products wherever you live. I just happen to live in the middle of the United States so I buy American. My thought for the day.

Friday, August 01, 2008

More From Dawn to Decadence by Barzun

As I mentioned in an earlier post on criticism, I'm reading Jacques Barzun's From Dawn to Decadence. Here he is talking about Utopias, or as he spells them, Eutopias. Utopia is from Greek meaning "no place," while Eutopia means "good place." See if this describes the liberal worldview (or if you think it describes the conservative worldview, please comment and explain). From pages 124-125.
It is a paradox that in most Eutopias (Rabelais' is an exception) the common good is achieved by enforcing a uniformity of behavior that seem tighter than any that is felt in the bad societies. The better state aims at reliving the body of hunger and the mind of anxiety; it does not provide freedom for society...but only... from the privileges of the upper orders. ... But they also recognize that the magistrates must occasionally step in to prevent abuses, and at times one senses the presence of a dictator at the top to run all things right, an anticipation of the 18C Enlightened Despot.

The great argument used to sustain right conduct is" "Live according to Nature. Nature is never wrong..." life is in the hands of a ruling group. ...but these purely political rights do not cover civil whim or eccentricity, the violence of the bloody-minded, the vagaries of genius or of adolescence. Significantly, in none of our three Eutopians is there any mention of laughter.

Another blog I read has a lot of comments about how serious lefties are and they have no sense of humor. Everything is a crisis, in dire need of fixing. Lighten up people!

No Reservations DVD Movie Review

Director: Scott Hicks, Writers: Carol Fuchs & Sandra Nettelbeck, Stars: Catherine Zeta-Jones, Aaron Eckhart, & Abigail Breslin.

Wow, the most romantic movie I’ve seen in a long time. No Reservations is not a romantic comedy, it’s too heavy for that, though there is humor. Catherine Zeta-Jones is Kate, head chef in a small fancy restaurant in New York City. Her single-mother sister dies leaving Kate a ten-year old girl to raise. When she returns to her restaurant after some time off to adjust, Nick (Aaron Eckhart also in The Dark Knight) has been hired on. She is an obsessive, uptight, perfectionist. He is, of course, a more relaxed personality, but not a slob.

Though you pretty much know how the movie is going to end, you wonder how they are going to get there. That’s the fun of romance movies, right? Fireworks don't necessarily fly between the leads, but that makes it seem even more real-to-life. He is interested in her, she is satisfied with the life she has, but two adults grow fond of each other and make it work.

Wonderful acting all around, especially by Abigail Breslin as Zoe, the ten-year old. Thankfully, she isn’t precocious and annoying showing the adults how it’s done.

The camera work was interesting. Lots of medium- to long-shots instead of the constant medium-shots to close-ups we seem to get currently. I guess if you were shooting Catherine Zeta-Jones, showing the whole body would be a desirable thing to do. Some of the shots still felt claustrophobic though (perhaps because of the long shot), especially inside her apartment. The make-up was good too. A few scenes where Kate is worn to a frizz, she looks it. She's not still glowing but just walking head-hanging and slope-shouldered as stars frequently appear.

For those of you concerned about morals in your movies, there were only a few minor cuss words and other than implied pre-marital sex, there really isn’t anything to offend.

I fully recommend this movie, though be aware there is a strain of sadness running through it with the death of the sister and the effect that has on her daughter. Dare I say, that is more realistic than to just ignore the pain and loss.

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