Friday, August 27, 2010

Scott Pilgrim

Last Friday night found me in the local cineplex, taking in "Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World."

And it was fun. I can't explain the poor box office showing, as I loved it. Yes, it's quirky, with a lot of video game references and the fact that it is based on an as-yet unfinished comic book series. Don't let that stop you. The story is fantastically transcribed onto the big screen. And it is very funny.

I don't know; maybe someone finally made a movie with me as the target audience.

Music is a huge part of the movie, and if you're not a big rap fan you will probably run out afterwards and grab the soundtrack, like I did. Song #2 is the namesake of the comic and the movie, "Scott Pilgrim," by Plumtree.

The video isn't anything to get too excited about, but the song is. Crank it up:

Told you you'd like it. Now go see the movie. You'll like it too.

Bonus video: "Black Sheep," by Metric

Scott Pilgrim vs. The World - 'Black Sheep' Music Video from Louis S on Vimeo.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Mysterious X-37B

For an orbiting object, the X-37B - a remotely-piloted spacecraft capable of reentry like the space shuttle - recently performed a neat trick - for two weeks, it disappeared.

A NASA reject now in the hands of the Air Force, it is currently in orbit on a long-term shakedown mission. From the description in the article, its new owners are trying to find out just what it can do, which apparently includes the ability to radically alter its orbit.

While its mere existence seems to be prompting worries about the weaponization of space - worries that ignore the fact that China is already well on its way to to developing at a minimum space denial and satellite shootdown technology - the fact that this craft exists at all should be providing a faint ray of hope, that the United States hasn't turned its back on its space infrastructure completely.

The reconnaissance possibilities of the X-37B alone are fantastic. The chief drawback to recon satellites is their predictability. With the growth of the Internet and the satellite-tracking information it makes, it is now possible for anyone to know when a satellite is due overhead, and hide or camouflage their activities. The X-37B can potentially provide the United States the same ability the retired SR-71 or the soon to be retired U-2 did/does - the ability to look in on the baddies when they're not expecting it.

And there is (supposedly) far more to the X-37B than that, including an impressive cargo-carrying capability.

I'll be watching with interest.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Monday, August 16, 2010

"Those Voices Don't Speak For The Rest Of Us"

This needs to be shown everywhere it can be, not just in the next two-and-a-half months but over the next two-and-a-half years.

Friday, August 13, 2010

They Already Know Who They Want To Win

"If this surprises you, you are not paying attention."
Amy Miller, Red State

In California 36th Congressional District, the local press decides to sit the election out. Apparently they only need to cover one candidate.

From The Other McCain:
A reporter for the Torrance (Calif.) Daily Breeze sent an e-mail to a political consultant saying the newspaper is “not interested” in covering Republican candidate Mattie Fein, who is challenging Democratic Rep. Jane Harman in California’s 36th District.

In the e-mail sent Wednesday (see text below), Daily Breeze reporter Nick Green told consultant John S. Thomas of Thomas Partners Strategies, “Don’t call or e-mail us – we’ll call you if we’re interested. And if you haven’t got it yet, we’re not interested.”

Green also told Thomas not to send Fein campaign communications to his Daily Breeze colleague, Art Marroquin.

Sent: Aug 11, 2010 12:58 PM
Don’t call or e-mail us – we’ll call you if we’re interested. And if you haven’t got it yet, we’re not interested. And stop sending the same messages to my co-worker Art as well
Thank you.

According to sources with the Fein campaign, Thomas had contacted the Daily Breeze staffers seeking coverage of the Republican challenger’s response to a recently passed bill that the newspaper reported would “save 215 jobs in Rep. Jane Harman’s district.” A subsequent Daily Breeze story Thursday featured Harman’s statement that a jobs program was the ”best thing out there to keep and create jobs in Los Angeles County,” included no reponse from Fein or any other Republican.
That would be the same Representative Harman whose husband just bought Newsweak Newsweek, although he was only able to do so because he had sufficiently liberal credentials.

Isn't it interesting how the press is only interested in holding certain people to account? It's almost as though they've chosen sides...

Cue Epic Guitar Solo

I probably shouldn't write these posts after playing Rock Band.

I apologize for nothing.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Solutions Looking For Problems, and Finding Them

Finding them after making them up.

As referred to by the DC Trawler (at The Daily Caller), the Department of Justice is going after the state of South Carolina because of its HIV/AIDS prevention policies in the state's prison system. From J. Christian Adams in the Washington Examiner:
Two unpleasant topics of conversation most of us avoid are the epidemic of HIV/AIDS among prison inmates and a variety of sometimes violent events resulting in transmission of the disease. Some states long ago implemented policies to protect the uninfected part of the prison population while providing exceptional medical treatment and counseling to the infected population.

In South Carolina, it has worked so well since 1998 that there has only been a single transmission of HIV/AIDS to a noninfected prisoner. All that may change, however, thanks to a threat from Eric Holder's Justice Department.

South Carolina received a letter from the now-infamous Civil Rights Division that the policy of keeping infected inmates at a designated facility, instead of scattered across the state in the general prison population, may unfairly stigmatize infected prisoners. To the Obama political appointees in the Civil Rights Division, this constitutes discrimination under the Americans With Disabilities Act.

The Justice Department objects to separate living facilities and specialized medical treatment for the HIV/AIDS prison population. Naturally, DOJ has threatened a lawsuit.

Friday, August 06, 2010

Ain't Much Left of Lovin' You

Heard this a couple of weeks ago, and still playing it in near-constant rotation on my iPod. Randy Montana, "Ain't Much Left of Lovin' You."

The Ant Farm Analogy

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

A Time For Choosing, On Reflection

Getting cerebral again, analyzing Ronald Reagan's 1964 speech with Peter Robinson and his guests Mark Steyn and Rob Long.

Choosing to Keep Quiet

Andrew Klavan had an interesting piece in City Journal recently.

In it, he describes how the French publisher of his most recent novel has decided to forego publishing, despite having already purchased the rights.
Last Tuesday, I received word that the French release of my thriller novel Empire of Lies had been canceled by publisher Seuil Policiers. The editor who originally bought the book had left the French company, and the new editor, my agent says, feels that “she can not publish . . . because of the political and religious aspects of the story.” This, even though it’s in breach of a contract for which I’ve been paid in full.
What is so objectionable? Sex, violence?
Empire of Lies features a politically conservative Christian protagonist, Jason Harrow, who believes he has uncovered an Islamist terrorist plot being obscured by the leftist mainstream media.

Sometimes, the problem is what we don't say.

Mr. Klavan expands on this theme, applying it to the media at large; well worth the read. Especially in a time where what the media reports and what the news is seem to be very different sets of facts.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Western Coal Connection

The Burlington Northern moves coal in the late 1970s.

A big thanks goes to "mwmnp25" on Youtube, for making these available.

Part 1:

Part 2: