BARNEY FRANK THINKS HOUSE OF CARDS IS UNREALISTIC.
A reader emails: “Hey, how about a plot line where an obese, snarky congressman who always has to be the smartest guy in the room gets in trouble because his hustler boyfriend is running a gay brothel out of his apartment? Added twist, he convinces the nation that his housing bubble pop was the other party’s fault. Then there’s the time another boyfriend is busted for pot cultivation, and the world’s smartest congressman/pot legalization advocate, present when the cops show up, claims he doesn’t even know what pot looks like … Nah, no one would believe it. Memo to HOC, write in Barney, please.” Heh.
We are in a golden age of television, I am told, where television shows are taking the risks, doing the interesting things that are no longer possible in movies that need so many tens of millions of dollars to cover the cost of production and marketing. I largely agree with this assessment. So what does it say about modern society that it considers shows about meth cookers, crack dealers and gangsters to be the finest mass market entertainment we can produce?
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommend children aged two and older watch no more than two hours of television per day. They also recommend that children under two watch no television at all.
According to a new study, even one hour more a day can diminish a preschooler’s vocabulary and math skills as well as classroom attention.
“Every hourly increase in daily television watching from two and a half years old is also associated with bullying by classmates, and physical prowess at kindergarten,” Professor Linda Pagani of the University of Montreal and the CHU Sainte-Justine children’s hospital said in the study.
At that young age, a child’s brain is wired to play. “These kids are watching too much television at a time when they should be out there in the environment exploring and interacting, especially with other humans,” Pagani added in the study.
Watching television does not teach a child social or motor skills. “If you don’t learn those skills, you get to kindergarten and cry every time someone takes your toy,” Pagani said in the study.
The study involved 991 girls and 1,006 boys in Quebec. Their parents reported their television viewing behavior as part of the Quebec Longitudinal Study of Child Development.
With help from the Justice Department. “Through their requests for documents from local, state and federal authorities, Judicial Watch researchers were able to obtain hundreds of documents and emails pertaining to the case. This information helped Judicial Watch prove that a little-known unit of the Department of Justice (DOJ), the Community Relations Service (CRS), was deployed to Sanford following the Trayvon Martin shooting to help organize and manage rallies and protests against George Zimmerman.”
Frankly, for the government to help organize and manage rallies and protests against an individual charged with a crime looks like a civil rights violation to me. I hope Zimmerman’s lawyers go ahead and sue, as they’ve indicated. The discovery process will be fascinating. – H/T Instapundit
But for the record, the specific instance in which Ms. Deen admitted to using that specific word was in the privacy of her own home, used to describe a robber who had pointed a gun at her head. The mainstream media also doesn’t seem to care that Ms. Deen could easily have lied about that specific incident, yet chose to tell the truth under oath.
Apparently there’s a zero tolerance policy when certain people use the forbidden N-word.
Never mind that the epithet was uttered in privacy, after Ms. Deen had suffered considerable duress of being robbed at gunpoint.
That the usage became public knowledge only when Jackson’s attorney began conducting a smear campaign intended to inflict irreparable harm on Ms. Deen’s businesses also seems to be irrelevant information to the drive-by media.
The motive for the lawsuit has been made abundantly clear. Plaintiff Lisa T. Jackson wanted $1.25 million dollars that didn’t belong to her, so she decided to sue Paula Deen and her brother.
Attorney Wesley Woolf left no doubt about the real motive of the plaintiff in January, when he sent a letter to Deen’s attorneys demanding a $1.25 million dollar settlement. Woolf threatened to conduct the negative publicity campaign currently underway, making clear the consequences if their extortion demand was refused when he wrote (emphasis added):
…[the] economic losses they [Ms. Deen and Mr. Hiers] will experience if we are caused to bring this matter to a public forum. … Exposure of the racist and sexist culture of her corporate and personal life is going to permanently and irreparably damage the value of her brand.
In her deposition, Ms. Jackson was forced to admit that she never heard Paula Deen utter a racial epithet, never knew her to discriminate against an employee based on gender, and never knew Paula Deen to sexually harass anyone.
Both plaintiff and defendant are white, making racial discrimination against Jackson an impossible charge to prove.
That would seem to make the accusations put forth in the lawsuit against Ms. Deen frivolous.
It has not been widely reported outside the local press that Jackson sent Deen and her brother a letter praising and thanking them both, only a few short months before filing suit.
Not just any execs and not just any advisors, either. Watch as Ric Grenell floats a possible explanation for some of the Benghazi coverage, especially vis-a-vis rumors that CBS is unhappy with Sharyl Attkisson’s dogged reporting. Would the media reaction really be different without the sibling/spouse conflicts of interest, though? Half of me thinks the blood ties between the White House and media VIPs deserve lots of publicity and half of me thinks that publicizing it inadvertently lets them off the hook. They’re not in the tank out of family loyalty, they’re in the tank out of ideological loyalty. Replace the leadership at CBS, ABC, and CNN and you’ll get the same results. But Grenell’s not arguing to the contrary: The point here is simply to show that our government leadership and our media leadership are so chummy that, not infrequently, they’ve literally lived in the same house. It’s an especially vivid illustration of a wider problem.
Ever since FOX ruined the lives of Firefly aficionados by canceling the show after only four months back in 2002, fans have been coping the best way they can, including knitting their own orange “Jayne” hats in an homage to one of its characters. In one of the only 14 episodes, Jayne Cobb’s ma sends him the cozy headgear. He loves it, it’s silly looking and thus, it’s awesome. But attracted by the scent of money changing hands for these handmade versions on Etsy and elsewhere, FOX suddenly seems to care about Firefly.
When we say “care” we mean, FOX is seeking to shut down any vendors selling the Jayne hats, as it holds the license for Firefly and as such, those sellers are infringing on its intellectual property. The network started issuing cease-and-desist letters to Jayne hat peddlers, causing many shops to go out of business.
In an update this week to the product page, ThinkGeek says it’s heard the mighty roar of Firefly fans:
Browncoats, we hear your concerns about the cease and desist on Etsy Jayne Hat sellers!
We weren’t involved in that process, but we have reached out to FOX and we’ve definitely heard what you’ve had to say. (We know you guys have Vera to back you up.)
As a result, we’ve decided to donate the profits from all Jayne Hat sales on our site to Can’t Stop the Serenity, a Browncoat charity dear to ThinkGeek’s heart that raises funds and awareness in support of Equality Now. We’ll continue making that donation until we run out of stock of Jayne Hats.
We hope the Hero of Canton himself would approve.
Last year, when I made a big upgrade to my home theater cabinet by installing a new large LCD TV, a Blu-Ray player, anda Roku box, I also installed a four-port gigabit Ethernet hub in the bottom of the cabinet. A decade ago, I had a hardwired LAN outlet installed behind the cabinet in an effort to future-proof my media room and home office. Which worked out well, as the DirecTV receiver that I installed there a few years later needs Ethernet to play YouTube videos, among other things. The Blu-Ray player needs Ethernet so that it can play the MP3 files on my computer through my big home theater speakers (among other things). The Roku box needs Ethernet to pump out everything else.
It occurred to me while I was wiring all this new gear up, that I was basically building a large deconstructed personal computer, designed to be interacted with via remote control while lying back in a comfy chair* as opposed to sitting upright in a swivel chair typing into a keyboard.
Sing it, brotha!