Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Biscuits and Gravy - Nov. 24, 2004

"Someone sounds desperate"
A new statement by the leading terrorist in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, sounds a desperate tone as he lashes out at Muslim intelligentsia for not supporting his gang of butchers. According to the AP, Zarqawi also sounds pretty pessimistic these days
Zarqawi obviously doesn't read the New York Times or watch CBS News.
I was excited to see my Congresswoman Barbara Lee had issued a dramatic new press release 'Barbara Lee Blasts Administration Plans to Delay Grants for Global AIDS Funding'. HOWEVER - when I clicked the link, I went to an old press release called 'Barbara Lee Rails at HUD Secretary's Statement that Being Poor Is State of Mind'.

I like Barbara's press releases because clearly she attended a workshop where they stressed the importance of ACTION VERBS...
BUTT- and mind-numbing, Oliver Stone's three-hour "Alexander," like the equally silly "Troy," underscores just what an accomplishment "Gladiator" was four years ago.

It's tough to get contemporary audiences involved in a sand-and-sandals epic even if they have great battle scenes - especially if your leading man looks foolish and he spouts howlers in almost every other scene.
The chief offender is Angelina Jolie, over the top even by her extravagant standards, as Alexander's mother, Olympias, who welcomes him as a youngster (Connor Paolo) into her bed - along with a bevy of snakes.

The frequently risible script by Stone, Christopher Kyle and Laeta Kalogridis suggests Alexander conquered the world primarily to get away from his Mommie Dearest.

"What have I done to make you hate me so?" Olympia asks a teenage Alexander (Farrell looking even more ridiculous with Jolie, who is only one year older than him) in the film's funniest speech - delivered in a Bela Lugosi accent.
'Alexander': A Crying Shame
He's much less interesting, except as a basket case, than Richard Burton's Alexander of far less enlightened times -- 1956 -- in Robert Rossen's "Alexander the Great." Burton got Alexander's dissipation, but also his martial spirit; this was, after all, one of the great light-cavalry commanders of all time and a general who fought by leading his troops, sword in hand, not directing them from some safe hill. But in this one you think: Teri Hatcher could kick this twerp's butt.
A filmmaker is murdered, and Hollywood loudmouths say nothing.
One would think that in the name of artistic freedom, the creative community would take a stand against filmmakers being sent into hiding à la Salman Rushdie, or left bleeding in the street. Yet we've heard nary a peep from Hollywood about the van Gogh slaying. Indeed Hollywood has long walked on eggshells regarding the topic of Islamic fundamentalism. The film version of Tom Clancy's "The Sum of All Fears" changed Palestinian terrorists to neo-Nazis out a desire to avoid offending Arabs or Muslims. The war on terror is a Tinsel Town taboo, even though a Hollywood Reporter poll showed that roughly two-thirds of filmgoers surveyed would pay to see a film on the topic.
Looking back on the Empress with Susan Estrich
Some people, outside the campaign anyway, actually thought she might prove to be a hidden asset to the campaign, someone who would connect with women voters in a way that stereotypical political wives don't necessarily do.

It was not to be.

There were two problems with her speech at the Democratic convention in Boston. The first and most obvious one was that it was all about her, literally not mentioning her husband at all, which prompted my colleague Chris Wallace of Fox News to dub her "Evita Peron."

The second and more serious problem was that no one from the campaign would ever have approved a speech that didn't talk about John Kerry, and what a great husband and father he was.
That's the way it's supposed to work, Brainiac
WINSTON-SALEM -- Greensboro lawyer Manlin Chee pleaded guilty Tuesday to federal charges of conspiring to defraud the United States by submitting false paperwork on behalf of immigrant clients.
One approached Chee in the spring of 2003 wanting lawful immigration status any way possible. She helped arrange a sham marriage between him and Cassandra Poteat of Greensboro, who got $7,000 in the deal. Chee filed various immigration documents containing false information about the couple's shared residence and relationship. An alien who marries a citizen can obtain citizenship.

For the second informant, Chee invented a reason why he needed political asylum from his homeland: that he was homosexual and would be killed or persecuted if he returned to Egypt. To prove it, she enlisted the help of Henry Center Jr. of Greensboro, who signed a false affidavit in exchange for $1,500. The affidavit indicated that Center had a homosexual relationship with the man.

Meetings relating to both schemes were recorded by authorities, some with both audio and video.
Chee's supporters said Tuesday that they believe the government's persistence in going after Chee is having a chilling effect on other immigration lawyers and the entire local immigrant community.
As always, read "illegal alien" wherever it says "immigrant."

But we shouldn't strain anything patting ourselves on the back
Immigration enforcement efforts actually have become more lax since the September 11 attacks and have had "no meaningful impact" on the growing number of immigrants now in the United States — which has reached a record high of 34 million, according to a report released yesterday.
As always, read "illegal alien" wherever it says "immigrant."

Stranger Than Fact: The PESTy Election
One might be forgiven for thinking that the first suit against the Republican Party for Post Election Selection Trauma (PEST) would have been filed in Palm Beach County, but a 38-year-old from Manhattan’s West Side has beaten her Floridian fellow victims to the punch.

Barbi Weiner, a third grade teacher currently on disability, is suing the Republican party for having taken an active role in returning George Bush to the White House, a circumstance that resulted in Ms. Weiner suffering a nervous collapse last Nov.8th as she crossed West 72nd Street.

"I looked up and saw the WestSideWaffle! sign with its big red 'W’s,'" she says. "And I realized it was true – he won. Then I started thinking about my life and I realized that I couldn’t go on living in a country where a war-mongering baby-killer holds the highest office in the land. I guess I lost it."
The day after the election Ms. Weiner was unable to go to work, believing that any minute the election would be called for Mr. Kerry. But once he conceded she went into a deep depression. "He just gave up. Just like that. No fight, no lawsuits, no dimpled chads, no recounts, nothing. It was the lowest moment of my life."
This one isn't satire
But, as the Shirelles reminded us, the darkest hour is just before dawn. So it’s time to review the stages of post-Kerry-defeat grief so we can heal ourselves and, indeed, move on.
FRENCH RESISTANCE: Teens hunt U.S. troops in Iraq. Now the dead enders are real dead.