Monday, September 24, 2012

They're at it again...

Sometimes it is best to not read the news, and to not drift along in the web. This morning, as I was checking my email, I clicked a link to a Facebook post with a picture of my nephew that I wanted to see. I noticed that Facebook's ads, which are targeted based on what one reads and which pages one visits, are getting a little more interesting. One of today's was for Greg Palast's new comic book! Wait - a Greg Palast comic book? Yeah, I clicked on it.
Palast is one of the few reporters who investigated the theft of the 2000 U.S. election by illegally removing people from the voting rolls, a subject he revisited after the election of  2004. In his advertising for the comic, he quotes right wing win-at-all-costs operative Karl Rove's June 2011 Wall Street Journal article (“Why Obama Is Likely to Lose in 2012”) dictum that “If their [black voters’] share of the turnout drops just one point in North Carolina, Mr. Obama’s 2008 winning margin there is wiped out two and a half times over.” You can see where this is going. I moved on, only to find a Reuters News Service story which states that new laws in 23 of our 50 states could prevent up to 10 million Hispanic voters from registering or voting via picture ID checks, phony illegal immigrant claims and etcetera. (Latinos comprise more than 10% of US voters.) Experiencing a sudden chill I blamed on the cool morning, I moved on.

Oh, look, here's another Reuters article investigating how many Americans are not counted as unemployed because they have given up looking for work. Evidently, if they were counted the August unemployment figure would change from 8.1% of the country to 10.5%. Hey, what's another four million unemployed?

Speaking of which, Yahoo is reporting on a 19 year old unemployed male who stole a rare coin collection and then spent the coins at their face value for pizza and a movie for his pregnant girlfriend. He used a quarter that could be worth up to $18,000.00!

And then there's the story of a double amputee in a wheelchair who was shot to death in close quarters by a cop who thought that the pen the guy held was a gun.

And it turns out that the lining of soup cans contains so much of a harmful chemical known as BPA that a direct correlation has been shown in people with brain cancer. It has also been linked to breast cancer, prostate cancer, and diabetes. The Food and Drug administration refuses to ban it, though, so it must be okay - right?

Awww, here's some good news for the day - a baby goat is saved from drowning by a hero pig!

But the best news of all is that "Heaven's Gate" has been restored and is being shown at the Venice Film Festival where it is now garnering praise. When it was made back in 1979 and 1980, its cost overruns nearly  destroyed United Artists, which was soon gobbled up by MGM - itself about to be taken over by an evil financier eager to get his hands on that studio's prime L.A. real estate. The original negative was destroyed in a studio attempt at a recut. And it has been reported that an executive from the office of the new President, Ronald Reagan, told Hollywood executives that there were to be no more movies critical of United States history, thank you very much.

"Heaven's Gate", finally earning respect.

The film did pretty much end the careers of its director Michael Chimino ("The Deer Hunter"), and leading man Kris Kristofferson. It was long, close to four hours long. I was in the film business then, and saw the complete uncut version. It had its problems, including telling its story in a somewhat elliptical non-linear fashion, but I liked it. I was in a distinct minority. Many felt its theme was unappealing - it concerned the Johnson County War (Wyoming, 1892) in which wealthy cattle barons - with state approval - used hired guns to kill poor European immigrant farmers in order to keep grazing land from being settled. Eventually, the President of the United States had to send in the Cavalry - literally. The Cavalry,  by the way, were there to save the mercenaries who had been trapped by the poor farmers.

Killing the poor? Could never happen, right? Now we just find ways to stop them from voting. And working. And make them eat canned soup. Cue the hero pig!


Anonymous said...

I think I may have picked up on why that 19 year old is unemployed...just sayin' you know? The little piggie was way cute doing his life guard routine. He'll be way cute on someone's plate in the near future too. There's no justice.

Geo. said...

Oh, all right, I'm joining your site, but only because the timestamp says you're 20 days in the future. Have visited several times and always been impressed.

sdt (a.k.a. stevil) said...

Welcome Geo! The time stamp has me 20 days in the future? I love it. Becoming unstuck in time has been a theme running through the past year or so, thank You, Kurt Vonnegut. And Douglas Adams.