Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Naked Ploy

Bush to come out in favor of federal marriage amendment

I know Bush has to do this to rally his conservative base, but is it really worth pissing off the only member of his administration who remains popular?
Although Bush spoke out in support of the amendment in 2004 during his reelection campaign, he now faces opposition from within his own White House. First lady Laura Bush said earlier this month that the issue should not be used as an election tool, and Mary Cheney, the lesbian daughter of Vice President Dick Cheney, also said she opposes the ban.
By the way, I'm reading the Mary Cheney book right now. Can you say self-serving? It's part Dick Cheney hagiography, part anti-Democrat screed. Mary disagrees with the amendment that most members of her father's party will support next week. She also disagrees, unfortunately, with just about any effort to stop it, or to expose the hypocrisy at its core. How she resolves that conflict within herself is her business--but to bring it up in her book and pretend the conflict doesn't exist? Take her off the milk cartons and put her on a Wanted poster!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Dream Denied

Life in the Fast-Food Lane - New York Times

I've been beaten to the punch.

And the buns, and the shakes, and the fries. Frank Bruni's article, above, details a weeks-long quest to discover the best and worst that America's fast-food chains have to offer. Driving around the country, he discovered the virtues of the Blizzard and the Butterburger, the tots at Sonic and the chili at Wendy's.

The article made me salivate, but not for the food, per se; I just had breakfast! No, what I want is to go back in time and write this article (using a Times expense account to pay for the weeks of travel, of course) before Bruni.

You see, while my coworkers view each trip to a new city for work as an opportunity to experience the finest restaurants on the company dime, I secretly crave discovering a different region's commonplace fare. In San Francisco, rather than haute cuisine, I went for Jack-in-the-Box! And my only regret about not going to San Diego later this summer isn't that I'll miss the zoo--though I hope to see it someday. No, I just really want to try an In-N-Out burger!

Alas, another dream is dead. My pants are grateful. But I'm a little sad.

Outside the Margin

If you want to know who will win American Idol tonight, click above. According to the site, it wasn't even close...not that last night really left things in doubt.

I still wish Chris or Elliott had won, but if they had to lose, better they go down without having to sing a dreadful "Idol single." That dreck nearly ruined the night for both singers.

And if you're too lazy to click above, here's one more clue: the winner won't be Katharine!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Big Questions

Would immortality be ethical?

That's an excellent question, isn't it? Feel free to ponder it.

Me, I'll be pondering why Bill Paxton seems insistent on showing the HBO audience every square inch of his skin that isn't part of his genitals. In the penultimate episode of the first season of Big Love, we see him showering while discussing something with second wife Nicki, and thanks to multiple camera angles we see pretty much all of him. We get the point, Bill: You're in pretty good shape for a man your age. I'm as big a fan of televised male nudity as anyone, but can you stop showing us your ass now?

Fortunately, the scene was redeemed when Nicki, leaving the bathroom in a huff, flushed the toilet on her way out.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Bringing the Passion

Al Gore: The Come-Back Kid -- New York Magazine

Got 20 minutes? Wish Al Gore had become president in 2001? You're gonna love this article.

You may also jump on the Gore 2008 bandwagon, which will put you just a bit ahead of Gore himself. Here's hoping he jumps on soon; if anyone can save us from the consequences of eight years without Al Gore, maybe it's the man himself!

Waste of Time

This review has also been posted to

If you're a trusting sort, read the title of this review and stop--don't spend another moment thinking about this film. But if you must know why you should not waste 95 minutes of your life on it, as I did, read on.

Garcon Stupide has delusions of grandeur, as does its main character, a young gay lad who seeks his thrills in anonymous sexual encounters and believes he's a good photographer because he takes pictures with the built-in camera of his cellular phone.

Said lad (Loic, played by first-timer Philippe Chatagny) is pretty enough to warrant the numerous extended closeups of his face that comprise half the film--the picture on the box does not do his enchanting smile justice--but the pablum he speaks is by turns silly, nonsensical, and stupid. The plot, such as it is, takes its cue from the dialogue, and in the end it feels like a series of utterly random events have carried us to an implausible conclusion.

What ought to make the film at least a little bit palatable for a gay audience--the gritty sex in which Loic engages quite freely during the film's first half--is filmed inelegantly and, in one uninspired split-screen scene, juxtaposed with the workings of factory machinery. This is an odd place for the director to make a play at realism in a tale otherwise so unconstrained by it!

If you're looking for a good gay coming-of-age story, try Dorian Blues. You may not get to see the main character naked, but at least you'll respect yourself in the morning.

Stomach Troubles

‘Sopranos’: Two made guys get whacked - Sopranos

I said last week that I didn't think Tony would off Vito. I also said I didn't think he would die--and boy was I wrong about that! But last night's episode did confirm the theme I've suspected for this season: Tony just doesn't have the stomach to do what needs to be done, and as a result his families are both spiralling out of control.

Tony's life has turned into one big Whack-a-Mole game (sometimes literally, as with Adriana last season), and his hesitation to really use the mallet and whack those who need it has opened up the field to lesser thugs. Last night we saw this clearly: Tony couldn't bring himself to take care of Vito in a timely manner, so Phil took him out in brutal fashion, with a pool cue rammed up his rear to ensure--well, what, really? That Vito's children would have to cope with even more than the death of their father? Later, Silvio and Carlo struck back, sort of, killing one of Phil's guys after his riffs on Vito's secret life touched one too many nerves. (What did he expect when he said that Vito was "found with Carlo's lipstick around his cock?" Perhaps not to be stabbed repeatedly with a cooking knife, but he can take consolation in the fact that his body won't be ground up at the pork store.)

All this mayhem went on while Tony was busy enjoying Carmela's absence, getting a blow job from one of the Bing dancers in a scene that started out looking more like he was having a heart attack. His eye has been off the ball all season! Look at last night: a full-scale mob war is breaking out, and the only effective action Tony took (in an episode that covered a week) was to force A.J. to start working construction. As if that will last!

Meanwhile, Carmela, too, appears to be losing her stomach for this whole enterprise. Yet another dream about Adriana haunted her trip to Paris, and while Ro was able to make merry, Carmela's mood seemed to mirror the chill in the air, as she contemplated what her life is about and how she's gotten what she has. It appears to be dawning on her that, contrary to what she told Melfi while Tony was in a coma, there may not be many men worse than her husband. She can go one of two ways now: Confront him about this revelation, or suppress it and try to imitate the business success of Angie. But it seems clear that she's going to have to choose: Sinner or saint?

What will happen now? Will Tony get his stomach back? He was prepared to make peace with Phil despite his anger--but can he do that now? Will he convince John, in prison, to sanction removing Phil? And will Melfi's real-life sister ever stop wailing that Vito Spatafore was a good man? There are no good men on this show, honey--just a bunch of petty crooks headed to a doom that appears to be gathering force with each episode. Vito may be lucky to have gotten out while the getting was good.

Friday, May 19, 2006


Who Isn't A 'Values Voter'?

If you've been here since the beginning you know that I enjoy George Will's columns in spite of his politics and love to note the times when we agree. Yesterday's column was a doozy, a meditation on the words "values voters":
This phrase diminishes our understanding of politics. It also is arrogant on the part of social conservatives and insulting to everyone else because it implies that only social conservatives vote to advance their values and everyone else votes to . . . well, it is unclear what they supposedly think they are doing with their ballots.
I have often had this thought. When the polls came back in 2004 indicating that voters whose primary concern was "moral values" had turned out in large numbers, I despaired. But then I slowly realized that I would also fit into that group of people--and we all know it didn't make me a Republican voter.

The implication of the phrase, of course, is that religious fundamentalists bring their "superior virtue" to the ballot box with them, while the rest of us base our votes on more pragmatic concerns. That's why Democrats were frustrated at the high number of voters who said moral values drove their vote. But my moral values drove my vote, too: I think it's immoral to discriminate against a group of people based on something over which they have no control, and I think the role of government is not to tell two people who love one another that it heartily disapproves of their union. Are these not fundamental beliefs that guide my life, at least as much (and likely more than) the religious beliefs of the so-called "values voters" guide theirs?

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Sad Day

Elliott Yamin Gets Boot on 'Idol'; 2 Left

Well, that's not a big surprise, is it? Still, it makes me sad--and that's just the beginning.

There is, of course, the requisite bad news from Washington:
A Senate panel advanced a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage on Thursday as the committee chairman shouted "good riddance" to a Democrat who walked out of the tense session.
And tonight is all set for sadness, with the end of Will & Grace looming alongside the death of Marissa on The O.C. as dueling farewells.

Seriously, what will become of TV in our house next year? We're down to one sitcom, How I Met Your Mother. A recent addition to the DVR, Everwood, got the ax today. House and Boston Legal are coming back, as is Desperate Housewives. But what will fill the void left by The West Wing? And, after January's eight-episode mini-season, how will anything replace The Sopranos?

I know I've waxed poetic about the death of TV shows before (see Six Feet Under, Friends, Sex and the City, Queer as Folk, et al.), but it really does feel like a death-blow is being administered to our TV schedule. As of tonight, Meet the Press and Sunday night football may be the only reasons we have to turn on NBC. (I know I should get into The Office, but the British version is stuck in my brain.) ABC gets two hours, Fox gets two if The O.C. can hold my interest (and fend off ABC's Grey's Anatomy in the ratings), CBS gets 30 minutes, and the new CW gets nothing. Yes, new seasons of Rome and Big Love will come eventually. But the cupboard is looking decidedly bare: 4.5 hours of prime-time television in a normal week this fall? We were watching nearly that just on Sunday nights most of this spring.

I realize this is a good problem--we don't need to watch so much TV--and also that when Idol and The Sopranos come back at the same time next winter we'll suddenly have an avalanche of shows and no time to watch them. In the meantime, though, tonight's Will & Grace finale will be a just a little bit sadder because it seems so irreplaceable.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006


A Code That Takes Longer to Watch Than Read

Speaking of The DaVinci Code and Ian McKellen, A. O. Scott of the New York Times says he's the best thing about the otherwise tepid film:
Sir Ian, rattling on about Italian paintings and medieval statues, seems to be having the time of his life, and his high spirits serve as something of a rebuke to the filmmakers, who should be having and providing a lot more fun.
Gandalf, Magneto, James Whale, and now Leigh Teabing--is it possible that McKellen is the defining actor of the last decade of popular cinema?

Finally, My Vote Counts

Congressional Catfight: Dewey Defeats Truman - Wonkette

Wonkette is doing this bizarre Congressional Catfight thing where people vote on which of two members of Congress would win in a "no-holds barred catfight." I should be pissed about this--the bracket included six women, one openly gay man, and one closeted one--but how can I be angry when democracy works?

You see, I voted yesterday, and today the results are in: Barney Frank, the openly-gay Democrat from Massachusetts, beat Katherine Harris, the openly-bitch Republican from Florida, by ONE VOTE. My vote, in other words.

Here's hoping he can bearhug Nancy Pelosi into submission in the finals...

Glitter Lining

The Da Vinci Code secret is out: critics hate it

Have I ever mentioned how much I love Ian McKellen? His presence in a movie, or even on the panel of Real Time with Bill Maher, always makes it better. Now it turns out he can do the same thing for an article:
Ian McKellen, an openly gay actor who plays Leigh Teabing in The Da Vinci Code, sought to make light of the controversy.

"I'm very happy to believe that Jesus was married," he said. "I know the Catholic Church has problems with gay people and I thought this would be absolute proof that Jesus was not gay."

In the midst of all the carping from Opus Dei and others, isn't that just the perfect response?

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Odd Man Out

Cowell Picks Hicks to Be Next 'Idol'

The article above presents an interesting situation: I agree with both Simon and Paula at the same time. Cowell predicts, as the headline says, that Taylor Hicks will win this season's crown next week, and that he'll do so by beating out co-finalist Katherine McPhee, meaning that Elliott Yamin will go home tomorrow night.

In the same article, Paula says, "I am going to be honest with you — I want Elliot to win." And that's how I feel, too! I fully expect to see Elliott sent back to Virginia tomorrow night, but he's my favorite of the remaining contestants, and has been for a while now. Look past the teeth and the trembling, America--the man can sing, which is more than you can say for Taylor, and he not only knows the words to his songs--you can tell he feels them. For once, Paula is right--he deserves to win.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Final Fantasy

Well, that was certainly underwhelming. I went into the final episode of The West Wing excited and a little sad, and I left it just sad. Sad because with the exception of a few intriguing moments, the series finale failed to offer genuine payoff to the emotional drama that has kept the show on life support the last three (Sorkin-less) seasons.

Yes, it's nice to know that CJ will be meeting Danny at LAX, and to see Josh and Donna wake up together on Inauguration Day. But this was a quiet episode, overall, when it should have been packed with dialogue. So much to know--and so little revealed.

And with that statement, I think I've hit upon the real problem: No series will ever conclude in a way that satisfies me again. Six Feet Under's finale last year, which seemed remarkable at the time, turns out to have spoiled me for the usual conclusion. It turns out you can have it all--an open-ended vision of the future and the finality of knowing how things work out. All we know at the end of The West Wing is that Donna has a really nice office.

Leaving the past behind, last night also pointed toward the end of another powerhouse. There are now only ten new episodes of The Sopranos left, and it's hard to see how everything will end. Johnny Sack copped a plea last night, while Vito came back to Jersey in his banged-up car (after getting banged in a scene that came complete with the train-into-a-dark-tunnel shot in place of an actual sex scene). But what will these developments mean in the long run? A major character dies every season, right? Will Vito get it in the end? Will Johnny's disheartened New York crew, led by Phil, take him out before he spills more dirt to cut his jail time? Or will it be someone more tragic?

I suspect that no one is going to die. This season has seen Tony go soft; last night's gift of a house to Janice is yet another sign that even if he keeps getting socks, he's trying to view every day as a gift. That's not the attitude of a ruthless mob boss who will turn over a captain. Carmela is more of a hard-ass than Tony lately, which is why, while Phil got Blundetto as a sacrifice last year, I don't see him getting Vito.

What did you think of the conclusion of The West Wing? And where do you think The Sopranos is heading?

Friday, May 12, 2006

The End

TV's "West Wing" offered Utopian presidency

I don't know about "Utopian." Sam slept with a hooker, Josh got shot, Bartlet was stricken with M.S. and lied about it, Zoe was kidnapped, Hoynes had an affair, Leo had a heart attack during a peace conference and died on election day, and Donna was nearly blown to smithereens. But it was quite a ride, and I will be sad to see it end on Sunday. My only satisfaction comes in knowing that our parallel universe is in good hands. Unlike the real one...

Thursday, May 11, 2006

That Was Quick

Bush job approval at 29 percent

Remember when I said Bush's approval rating would start with a 2 before the mid-term election? I really meant before the end of the week...

Totally '80s

Rediscovering He-Man. By Sam Anderson

Sam Anderson and I are almost the same age, to judge from his piece today on Slate. Like Sam, I was a HUGE He-Man fan in my early childhood; I can still remember the terrible Christmas morning when, having received two new action figures complete with swords, I watched as my brother had his new toy, the creature that Luke battles in Jabba's palace in Return of the Jedi, eat the sword of He-Man, thereby making it impossible to unite it with the sword of Skeletor and save Eternia. I shook that toy intermittently for the next year, hoping the sword would somehow pop back out. It never did.

Sam's piece today reveals that there was another reason I should have loved He-Man, though:
The best part about rewatching He-Man, after the initial nostalgia-burst, was tracking the show's hilarious accidental homo-eroticism—an aspect I missed completely as a first-grader. In the ever-growing lineup of "outed" classic superheroes, He-Man might be the easiest target of all. It's almost too easy: Prince Adam, He-Man's alter ego, is a ripped Nordic pageboy with blinding teeth and sharply waxed eyebrows who spends lazy afternoons pampering his timid pet cat; he wears lavender stretch pants, furry purple Ugg boots, and a sleeveless pink blouse that clings like saran wrap to his pecs. To become He-Man, Adam harnesses what he calls "fabulous secret powers": His clothes fall off, his voice drops a full octave, his skin turns from vanilla to nut brown, his giant sword starts gushing energy, and he adopts a name so absurdly masculine it's redundant. Next, he typically runs around seizing space-wands with glowing knobs and fabulously straddling giant rockets. He hangs out with people called Fisto and Ram Man, and they all exchange wink-wink nudge-nudge dialogue: "I'd like to hear more about this hooded seed-man of yours!" "I feel the bony finger of Skeletor!" "Your assistance is required on Snake Mountain!" Once you start thinking along these lines, it's impossible to stop.
If someone finds a way to work homoeroticism into Transformers--and I have no doubt someone can, or already has--I may have to rethink the whole born-that-way/made-that-way debate!

DialIdol Nails It

When I checked DialIdol yesterday to find out what I should expect to see on Idol, I sort of laughed at the prediction--Katherine and Chris in the bottom two, with Chris going home.

But it turns out that DI works, and has been working better and better as the weeks have gone by. Since the week Mandisa went home just as DI predicted she would, the predictions have been uncannily accurate, with the person going home always corresponding to one of the people DI marks as endangered based on its survey of busy signal data.

According to DI, Taylor Hicks has been getting the most calls almost every week. And as anyone who watches the show religiously has realized by now, he's never been on stage during the elimination segment as a member of a bottom three or bottom two.

Does this mean Taylor will win? Frankly, it's hard to see another outcome at this point, though the resulting record, sans all the on-stage histrionics, would probably leave a lot of listeners cold. (When I close my eyes during one of his performances, I find my attention drifting away until the song is over.) I would love to see Elliott win, and I think that he would make an interesting album; he certainly has the best voice of the remaining trio. I'm sure Simon is lusting after a Katherine win, knowing he can turn her into a Kelly Clarkson type. She may not have the same vocal chops or the grit that Kelly revealed on Breakaway, but she's exponentially hotter, which we all know counts for something in the music business.

As for Chris, don't worry about him. He should have been on the show that replaced the lead singer for INXS to begin with, and I'm sure some other rock band will be happy to take him on. If not, I'm sure Tommy Mottola or Clive Davis or even Simon Cowell will be happy to assemble a band for him and find some songwriters to craft an album. You'll be hearing him on the radio alongside Creed and Live and Fuel and Filter before you know it.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Pere et Fils

Poll Gives Bush His Worst Marks Yet - New York Times

Well, this confirms it: a second poll has Bush's approval rating at 31 percent. And guess what? Now he's tied with daddy:
Mr. Bush's overall job approval rating hit another new low, 31 percent, tying the low point of his father in July 1992, four months before the elder Mr. Bush lost his bid for a second term to Bill Clinton. That is the third lowest approval rating of any president in 50 years; only Richard M. Nixon and Jimmy Carter were viewed less favorably.
Hmm. Crookedness and malaise are now the only benchmarks against which Bush fares favorably. And how long can that last when Bush's administration is clearly crooked and the national mood regarding Iraq looks a lot like malaise? I think these numbers can go lower. We're going to see a number that starts with a 2 before the mid-term elections!

First Line

NBC Cancels 'The West Wing' Retrospective

Well, this is sad news. Rather than hearing cast members talk about their seven years with the show, West Wing fans will have the chance to re-watch the show's first episode again before the series finale airs this Sunday.

Why? Apparently, because the cast couldn't agree with NBC about how much they should be paid to chat about their experiences. Um, hello? As C.J. put it earlier this season, you're living the first line of your obituary. Would it kill you to chat on camera about it for fifteen minutes free of charge?

Anyhow, here's hoping that despite this last-minute turmoil, the series finale is a satisfying one, letting us know that the characters we care about will be fine as we leave them to carry on without us.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Hitting Home

Daily Herald | News: "Gay marriage question could shake up fall elections in the suburbs"

It was bound to happen eventually. Yesterday Protect Marriage Illinois, after a desperate last-minute call for every last signature it could find, turned in 345,000 to place a nonbinding referendum on the ballot this November. Unless Equality Illinois challenges enough signatures successfully to drop the total below the threshold of 283,000, Illinoisans will vote--albeit without any actual impact other than to express their opinions--on whether the following cutely-worded amendment should be added to the state constitution:
To secure and preserve the benefits of marriage for our society and for future generations of children, a marriage between a man and a woman is the only legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this state.
Nothing like making the "Think of the children!" argument right in the constitution, is there?

I would like to believe that Illinois will set an example for the rest of the country and vote against this nonsense. But I suspect that the next several months will be very ugly ones, and I'm not at all confident that the outcome will be the one I desire. We were cleaning out the garage this weekend and I found my old "Freedom means freedom for everyone" sign. I may be carrying it again this fall...

Monday, May 08, 2006


Bush approval rating falls to new low in poll

The headline writers must be getting bored. Maybe they should just start putting the new number in the headline and spare readers the suspense of clicking to find out...

that Bush's approval rating has now fallen to 31 percent, the lowest ever recorded for him. The details are scary for his party, according to USA Today:
Bush's fall is being fueled by erosion among support from conservatives and Republicans. In the poll, 52% of conservatives and 68% of Republicans approved of the job he is doing. Both are record lows among those groups.

Moderates gave him an approval rating of 28%, liberals of 7%.

What's more, it appears that numbers this low tend to fall into the category of "beyond recovery":

Only four presidents have scored lower approval ratings since the Gallup Poll began regularly measuring it in the mid-1940s: Harry Truman, Richard Nixon, Jimmy Carter and the first George Bush. When Nixon, Carter and the elder Bush sank below 35%, they never again registered above 40%.
Something tells me Bush is no Harry Truman...

Friday, May 05, 2006

Now We're Talking

Conservatives Drive Bush's Approval Down

Finally, an article on the polls to match the dismal results for Republicans. This article begins thus:
Angry conservatives are driving the approval ratings of President Bush and the GOP-led Congress to dismal new lows, according to an AP-Ipsos poll that underscores why Republicans fear an Election Day massacre.
Massacre! That's the kind of language we need more of at the start of articles. And get a load of this stat:
The souring of the nation's mood has accelerated the past three months, with the percentage of people describing the nation on the wrong track rising 12 points to a new high of 73 percent. Six of 10 conservatives say America is headed in the wrong direction.
Haha! And what would make it better?
"I think he's the dumbest president we've ever had," said Mark Rauzi, a conservative voter from Gillespie, Ill. "I disapprove of a lot of the stuff he's doing. This war was a big boo boo and he won't admit he did wrong."
Good luck with that, Mark. And how does the article continue?
It gets worse. Only 23 percent of the public approve of the way the president is handling gasoline prices, the lowest in AP-Ipsos polling. Those who strongly disapprove outnumber those who strongly approve by an extraordinary 55 percent to 8 percent.
That's right--8. When Ron Fournier breaks out the word "extraordinary," look out. And best of all:
Nearly half of the public strongly disapproves of Bush, a huge jump from his 5 percent strong disapproval rating in 2002.
If the Democrats can't find a way to translate these numbers into a working majority in November, the party should be disbanded and the left should start over from scratch!

Thursday, May 04, 2006

All Over Now

Randy Quaid Drops 'Brokeback' Lawsuit

Well, I guess this is good news. At least according to his publicist, though, Quaid still has an inflated sense of his place in the movie:
His publicist, Susan Madore, said Thursday that Quaid decided to drop the lawsuit after his lawyers told him Focus agreed to pay him a bonus, which he wants to split with other principal cast members.
"Principal?" As I've said previously, that hardly describes Quaid's minor role in the film. Still, it's nice to hear that Focus is giving a bonus to the actors. When you work for practically nothing and things turn out well, it's always nice when the company is willing to split the pot with you. It's just too bad Quaid felt the need to demand it from them...kindness should be graciously given, not bludgeoned out of someone.

Proud Day

Moussaoui defiant at sentencing

Statements like this one in the wake of Moussaoui receiving a life sentence make me proud of my country:
Rosemary Dillard, whose husband, Eddie, died in the attacks, said of Moussaoui: “He’s a bad man, but we have a fair society.”
Precisely. Would there be a certain degree of satisfaction in killing Moussaoui? Undoubtedly. Has he made it clear during his trial that, whatever he did or did not do on 9/11 and in the days leading up to it, he hates America enough to perpetrate the same sort of evil? Absolutely. But the answer is to lock him up, let him pray to his God from the silence of a tiny room, and deny him the opportunity to ever act on his rage toward us. It is not, as even those who lost looved ones on 9/11 seem to realize, to kill him.

With that said, if someone in prison finds a way to stick him with a shiv, so be it.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Overthought, Overwrought

The politics of Morrissey. By Armond White

It has recently been suggested that I have a tendency to overthink things. While that may be true, I submit the above example, a 1,200 word article about Morrissey's new album, as evidence that I'm not the only one.

White may be overthinking, but the results are fascinating; if I didn't already own and love the album, I'd be running out to buy it after reading this. I hope you'll feel the same way.

Well, Duh


Hmm...perhaps now we can start to talk about healthcare:
The researchers are careful to say that their study doesn't prove that Britain's healthcare system is better than America's — something that would be nearly impossible to demonstrate conclusively with a study like this in any case. But that's not the point. The point is that it's obviously not worse even though the British spend about half as much as we do per capita.

So here's the deal: under the British system, you don't have to worry about which doctors your HMO allows you to see. You don't have to worry about losing coverage if you get laid off. You don't have to worry about being unable to get a new job because you have a pre-existing condition. You don't have to worry about being bankrupted if you contract a serious chronic illness. And large corporations don't have to worry about going out of business because of spiraling healthcare obligations.

And the result of all this? Healthcare that's as good as ours and delivered for about half the cost. Under a national healthcare system, when you get sick, all you have to worry about is getting well. Explain to me again why we're afraid of this?
Why indeed?

Monday, May 01, 2006

Future Shock

HBO: Big Love - Episode 08: 'Easter'

Still not watching Big Love? Oh, you should be...if for no other reason than this wonderful response to second wife Nicki's cry for help to her mother regarding the $60,000 in credit card debt she's secretly racked up:
"[I owe $90,000.] We all spend like there's no tomorrow," Adaleen tells her daughter, "which we were told there wouldn't be on three occasions. But your father's revelations have been a little... off the mark lately, and we're still here. So, see, under the circumstances, it's excusable."
Forgive me, but that's comedy gold...