December 31, 2004

Some People Never Learn

I was scanning the Post-Gazette for editorials/letters to make fun of, and I happened to come across a column by E.J. Dionne Jr. that was pretty good fisk material. It's not on the PG site, but I tracked it down in its original location here. Check it out, and join me in wondering how some people find the doorknob in the morning:

Lessons for Democrats By E. J. Dionne Jr.

MIDDLETOWN, R.I. -- Except for the glorious victories of the Red Sox and the Patriots, 2004 was a disappointing year.

Hey, speak for yourself. I think it was a great year. The best of my life, in fact. Heh.

But bad years offer useful lessons. Here are a few:

• Relentlessness pays off. President Bush won reelection by ignoring the conventional wisdom that vicious attacks on your opponent don't work and turn off voters.

See, this is one of those instances where reality isn't as important as maintaining a leftist perspective. Those of us who inhabit the real world know that Bush had the more positive of the two campaigns, despite some of the most vicious attacks of recent years coming from the Democrats.

However, liberals believe that any criticism at all is an attack, since their world view defines anything they agree with as a fact, and anything they disagree with as a lie. Therefore, they all "know" that Bush ran a negative campaign of unprecedented meanness, etc. A bit of that "conventional wisdom" could've helped Kerry, though.

As soon as John Kerry won the Democratic nomination, Bush's campaign went on the attack and never stopped. It worked.

Notice, again, the assumption that people know all about this, eliminating the need to provide concrete examples of viciousness from Bush. Some ambiguous hints are included in the next part, but'd think that if Bush ran such a hateful campaign, Dionne would be able to explain exactly what he did.

Kerry was painted as arrogant and privileged, compared with an arrogant president who was far more privileged.

This one sentence could be fisked from so many angles that I hardly even know where to start, but let's give it a try. First, we have the claim that "Kerry was painted as arrogant and privileged." That's a load of crap. There was no need to "paint" him as such, because he did all that himself. He was the richest presidential candidate in history, he wrapped himself rather arrogantly in his Vietnam service, he basically called the audience at the second debate a bunch of peasants...the Bush campaign hardly needed to do anything.

Second, Let's look at the claim that he was running against an "arrogant president who was far more privileged." We've already established that Kerry had more money than Bush, and if you look at his background, he certainly had a lot of privilege throughout his life, so...what exactly is causing the discrepancy here? As far as the "arrogance" meme, I believe that Bush has something known in most circles as "confidence."

Kerry was made out to be a flip-flopping liberal...

Once again, there was no need to portray him this way, as he pretty much did it all by himself.

...and never mind asking how someone can be a flip-flopper and an ideologue.

He ran a flip-flopping campaign in order to hide his liberal record. Again, that shouldn't require a lot of mental gymnastics to figure out.

Kerry, who shot people in battle and was wounded himself...

Wait, Kerry was in a war? Why didn't he mention this during the campaign? He could've won if he'd drawn more attention to it!

...was painted as weaker than Bush...

Due to his inability to take a solid position on any campaign issues, yes.

...the guy who said he supported the Vietnam War but was not willing to fight in it.

You know, it's really hard to believe that two months after the election, people are still clinging to this desperate fantasy that Kerry's Vietnam service would've made him a better president. Honestly, what difference does it make? The president doesn't do the killing during a war, does he?

The sheer negative genius of the Bush campaign is worthy of close study.

"But since I'm just pretending it exists, I'll have to make up a few ways we can study it."

Face it: Liberals and Democrats are way too sensitive to elite editorial page opinion that asks more responsibility from the side it supposedly supports than from the side it supposedly opposes.

WHAT? I'd read that again to make sure it says what I think it does, but my head would probably explode from contemplating that much cognitive dissonance. When did editorial opinions start demanding more from the left than the right? I must have completely missed that.

Liberals worry themselves sick that if they fight Bush's cockamamie idea of borrowing billions for a shaky Social Security privatization scheme, those editorial writers will savage them.

...Despite the fact that those editorial writers oppose Bush's idea, and one of them just called it "cockamamie." Is anyone else confused?

A lead opinion is likely to demand that they enter into negotiations with the president, even if the very act of doing so is certain to give Bush the upper hand.

I can't recall any editorials being that supportive of the president. Most of them are calling for Democrats to oppose everything Bush does, since he's apparently destroying the country with his crazy Social Security scheme.

Memo to Democrats: Forget the editorial writers and ask yourselves: What Would Bush Do?

You shouldn't tell them that. They probably think Bush would throw them in a gulag for daring to question him, so they'd do the same. I've actually seen this logic used to justify vandalism against Republicans.

If you are not as tough as he is, he will crush you -- again.

It's not about toughness; It's about Democrats having unrealistic ideas. Did you ever stop to consider the possibility that Bush won because people agreed with him, not because they had been conditioned to foam at the mouth at any mention of Kerry's name?

Memo to liberal commentators: Why bend over backward to demand of your own side what you don't demand of the right, or of Bush?

I believe they already asked themselves that question a looooooooooooong time ago, which is why they rarely criticize Democrats. What editorials have you been reading, E.J.?

• Cultural hypocrisy should be exposed. I cannot understand why liberals who regularly criticize the excesses of the economic market let conservatives get away with being the advocates of "traditional values."

Maybe because the left is composed of a good number of people who think that morals are outdated, being pro-life is evil, gay marriage is a civil right, freedom from religion is more important than freedom of religion, and kids should start learning about sex at the same time they learn the alphabet. Maybe.

When television networks and Hollywood exploit sex to make money, why aren't liberals asking why the free market so revered by the right wing promotes values the very same right wing claims to despise?

I wasn't aware that conservatives were supposed to support censorship of any views they disagree with. That's more of a liberal thing. You see, we believe that it's possible to tolerate something while still believing that it's bad for people.

The coarsening of the culture that traditionalist conservatives denounce is abetted by the very media concentration that economic conservatives defend.

O...kay. I believe that it's actually public consumption of the stuff that causes it to appear in the media. That's the whole "supply and demand" principle in action. Some conservatives, like me, want to infiltrate the entertainment industry and bring some cleaner content to the masses, but unfortunately, our culture is making today's crappy media content profitable. In fact, a lot of people complain that our entertainment isn't explicit enough, and that we're still too sensitive. Remember the Janet Jackson fiasco?

Why are liberals so tongue-tied in exposing this contradiction?

Probably because they'll lose their control of the media if they upset the current system. But hey, I'm just a communications major, so what do I know?

• Class matters. Bush and the Republicans condemn "class warfare" -- and then play the class card with a vengeance.

Wait for it...wait for it...let's see what Dionne considers the "class card."

Bush has pushed through policies that, by any impartial reckoning, have transferred massive amounts of money to the wealthiest people in our country.

AHA! I see what's going on here! Bush supports policies that cause liberals to play the class card ("tax cuts for the rich"), but despite the fact that he does this for the benefit of all Americans who pay taxes, it's considered class warfare by our brilliant columnist friend here. That's not the class card, E.J. It's just misrepresentation on your part.

Yet it is conservatives, Bush supporters, who trash the "elites," especially when it comes to culture.

Well, when wealthy celebrities condemn "tax cuts for the rich," it is kinda funny.

Class warfare is evil -- unless a conservative is playing the class card.

Class warfare is an ugly thing. That's why conservatives believe that being rich does not automatically make one evil, and being poor does not automatically make one noble. Individualism is a staple of our philosophy.

Somebody has to call this bluff.

As soon as this so-called "bluff" actually happens, I'll be the first to join you. How's that?

Why is it taboo to talk about a Wall Street "elite" that has benefited from Bush's tax cuts and would win big-time from Social Security privatization?

It could have something to do with the fact that those "elites" worked hard to get where they are, and some actually think they deserve to benefit from their hard work.

Why is it just terrible to point out that pharmaceutical industry and HMO "elites" were paid off handsomely in the Medicare drug bill?

I'm sure they'd keep making as much of an effort if they weren't making as much money for it. You really need to put some cynicism into your life. It helps you to deal with human nature.

Why is it so dreadfully radical to denounce corporate "elites" when conservatives can denounce "the Hollywood elite" with impunity?

I think you're confused about the definition of "elite." You seem to think that "elite" refers to anyone successful. However, when conservatives refer to the "Hollywood elite," we're talking about people who pretend to represent the underdog or the "little guy" while making more money than most of the people on this planet. We're criticizing celebrities who act like they're being brave and putting themselves at risk for speaking out against Bush, when in reality, they actually gain publicity every time they pull one of their uninformed political stunts. We're denouncing people like Michael Moore who pretend to be part of the working class while riding around in a limousine. Do you see the difference? DO YOU?!

Why does the right wing get away, year after year, with this double standard on elitism and class warfare?

More importantly, why is the Washington Post letting you get away with fabricating a double standard in the first place? I've said it before, and I'll say it again: Liberals need to start criticizing conservatives for things that conservatives have actually done at some point. Political discourse would be so much more logical.

• Stand for something. Bush won this year because of those attacks on Kerry.

Right. It couldn't have been because of the war, or the economy, or anything else even vaguely related to his record. It was that vicious "anyone but Kerry" crowd that put him over the edge. Does anyone take this guy seriously?

But he also won because swing voters who didn't like him very much were nonetheless quite certain that he knew what he wanted to do and would try to get it done.

So, near the end of the column, Dionne finally admits that people did, in fact, vote on the issues at some point. I'm shocked, I tell you.

One line of attack against Bush is to say that his certainties are mistaken and that he never, ever questions them. That's true.

How do you know he never questions them? He probably doubts himself a lot, since he's human and everything. The problem is that you liberals want him to admit to making numerous mistakes only because you've convinced yourselves that your opinions are truisms. Therefore, it's "true" that Bush's certainties are mistaken, and he should admit as much, even though he's come to the conclusion that he's right.

...That could've been a lot clearer than it was. Holy crap. Anyway...

It's also inadequate. Those who oppose the direction in which Bush is leading us need to propose an alternative.

It's about time you said something I agree with.

They need to demonstrate that we could be much safer -- and fight a more effective war on terrorism -- if so much of the world did not mistrust us.

Well, you lost me already. If the world mistrusts us for...GASP...acting in our own interests (not to mention those of a few million people halfway around the world), then I say "screw 'em." We're not the United States of Europe.

They must create a realistic narrative about a more just and prosperous society.

Once again, a statement on which we agree, although we probably differ on how to accomplish that goal.

Policies on jobs, health insurance, child care, education and taxes should be more than a list. They ought to form a coherent picture of how things could be better, for everyone.

Let's see here...could it be that Bush won because he's managed to do that already?

The long-term need for alternatives should not stop the loyal opposition from being tough.

It's sure stopped them from being rational.

But the short-term need to be tough should not stop the opposition's search for alternatives. For Bush's adversaries, 2005 will be a difficult year. It also could be exhilarating.

If Bush's adversaries really knew what they were doing, they'd admit that a lot of their ideas have been tried and abandoned because they don't freakin' work. As long as liberals continue to believe that they only lose elections because they "can't get their message out," they will continue to be in the minority of the U.S. government.

And that's the way it is.

Posted by CD at 08:10 PM | Comments (5)

December 30, 2004

Yeah... about that...uh...stuff?

Posted by CD at 09:26 PM | Comments (5)

December 27, 2004

You Learn Something New Every Day (Fourth Edition)

This is freakin' awesome.

And speaking of H*R, this cartoon may be of interest to certain readers. You'll get it if you watch the whole thing...or just the middle, I guess.

That's all for now. Blogging = less time for reading.

Posted by CD at 09:52 PM | Comments (3)

December 25, 2004

Merry Christmas!

Yep, it's Christmas. I hope you're all enjoying the holiday with your loved ones, etc.

As for me, I'm having a good day so far. It was basically a book bonanza in the present department. I now own The Vision of the Anointed, The Quest for Cosmic Justice (Thomas Sowell rocks), The Language Police, and How to Talk to a Liberal (which I didn't ask for, but my parents figured I'd like. Eh.).

These should all help me in formulating my Grand Theory of Leftism, but I'll leave politics for another day. It's Christmas. Enjoy it.

Bye now.

Posted by CD at 12:45 PM | Comments (3)

December 24, 2004

You People Just...Don't Get It, Do You?

As long as I'm severely warping my sleep schedule, I might as well blog. You see, a few of the New York Times letters for today are very, very fiskable. They're responding to a couple columns about the war. Let's check 'em out.

Letter Number One:

Thomas L. Friedman ("Worth a Thousand Words," column, Dec. 23) forcefully expresses his anger at the brutality of the insurgents in Iraq. He is right to do so, and we should be on the side of those supporting democracy in Iraq.

Someone should let Michael Moore know that.

That still does not mean that the United States will in the long run be able to create a democracy in Iraq.

Does the phrase "elections in January" mean nothing to you?

We are only delaying the inevitable struggle that will have to go on among the Iraqis themselves that will determine how Iraq is structured and governed in the future.

Better to leave them to get to this struggle now and stop the slaughter of America's brave young soldiers.

Uh...yeah...I think it would be better to kill the people who would add violence to that struggle, rather than leaving them there for the Iraqis to deal with. That's kind of the point of doing this by force instead of asking them nicely to stop.

Don't worry; It gets better. Check out Letter Number Two:

Thomas L. Friedman can say what he wants about the "insurgents." He must still defend his defense of the invasion of Iraq.

The point, however, is that it was our invasion that released the enmity that Mr. Friedman excoriates.

Yep. It's always the fault of the U.S. It couldn't be that whole culture that makes people believe blowing yourself up is the only way to please God. No, it's America's fault.

Until we admit that the initial decision to invade was wrong, no exit from this terrible and engulfing mess is even remotely possible.

I love the self-righteousness here. Apparently, it's more important for leftists to have their moral victory ("The war was wrong! They admitted it!") than for the troops to finish the job they started. And I bet they were thinking of Vietnam when they wrote that "terrible and engulfing mess" line. Speaking of which, pulling out and leaving people to fend for themselves sure worked well in 'Nam, right? RIGHT?

Letter Number Three:

Thomas L. Friedman writes that this is what the war in Iraq is about: "People who want to hold a free and fair election to determine their own future, opposed by a virulent nihilistic minority that wants to prevent that. That is all that the insurgents stand for."

This strikes me as a narrow view of what the violence in Iraq is about.

Based on that statement, I'm guessing it makes a rather hollow sound as it strikes you.

Let's say Iraq has its free and fair election on Jan. 30. Once the first insurgent attack takes place on Jan. 31, what will the war be about then?

Obviously, it will be about people who want to live in a free and democratic country, opposed by a virulent nihilistic minority that wants to prevent that. It's not like an election is a magical event that makes the opposition disappear. After all, you're still here.

Letter Number Four:

In "Worth a Thousand Words," Thomas L. Friedman does not make a crucial distinction between the Iraqi "right of self-determination," which he believes is at the heart of the titanic pre-election struggle racking the country, and the Palestinian "right of self-determination."

This should be good. Relativism ahoy!

The Iraqis have not chosen to exercise their right of self-determination; the choice was made for them by the United States when it invaded and occupied Iraq.

And I'm sure they would've preferred being raped, tortured, starved, etc. Plenty of them would've asked for this if it hadn't been for that whole "speaking out against Saddam = death" policy.

The Palestinians, on the other hand, want to exercise their right of self-determination and have been struggling for it alone for decades.

NOTE: "Struggling for it alone" is a nice way of saying "murdering Israelis."

Should we ask why the United States is willing to help one but not the other achieve this basic goal?

I really shouldn't have to answer that question. Really. But again, I don't remember the Iraqis blowing up busloads of innocent people. That might have something to do with it.

Letter Number Five:

William Safire concludes that the Iraq war is just and "freedom is the wave of the future."

But what kind of example is the United States setting by holding enemy combatants secretly and indefinitely at Guantánamo in defiance and disregard of the Geneva Conventions?

Excuse me for a second...

*Bashes head against wall*

...Okay. Now, let me get this think that we would set a good giving terrorists...TERRORISTS...the same rights we give uniformed combatants? You know, the people who don't purposely kill civilians?


Holy crap, what is wrong with these people? Honestly. You'd think they'd be sucked into a black hole of stupidity or something.

Posted by CD at 03:40 AM | Comments (3)

December 23, 2004

Hooray for Boredom Christmas Vacation!

I would just like to announce that it is currently 7:20 AM (E.S.T.), and I am just now getting ready to go to sleep.

Thank you for your time.

Man, these throwaway posts get a lot of comments. I should start a freakin' LiveJournal.

Apparently, this has turned into an open thread, so...discuss.

Posted by CD at 07:20 AM | Comments (28)

December 22, 2004


college is to hard

Yes, college probably is too hard if you can't spell.

Posted by CD at 12:28 AM | Comments (0)

December 21, 2004

Setting the Agenda

I mentioned in a post a couple months ago that I would take liberals more seriously if they would stick to criticizing conservatives for things they've actually done. I think I need to clarify that, because there have been a lot of examples lately. This is probably going to fit into the "Grand Theory of Leftism" that I'll have posted before I go back to school, but I felt like it deserved its own post as well.

You see, leftists have a tendency to attack their opponents for things that have never happened. Look at the pre-election draft rumors, for example:

LIBERAL: Don't vote for Bush! He wants to draft you and your children!
CONSERVATIVE: Um...didn't Bush say he opposes the draft?
LIBERAL: ... ... ... ... ... Don't vote for Bush! He wants to draft you and your children!

It's weird how they're able to do this. They make up a reason to criticize the right, and then they attack them relentlessly for doing something they haven't done. It's like the Salem witch trials. People were accused of being witches because they had supposedly danced with the devil in the pale moonlight... or something like that...then they were tortured until they confessed to doing it, even though they had never actually done it. Weird.

What's more, these accusations always seem to fit the liberal stereotype of the right. For example, a lot of lefties call President Bush a racist. He may have appointed a Hispanic attorney general and not one, but two African-American secretaries of state, but...he's still a racist!!!11!!1! And when you try to call them on it, they can't seem to deviate from the talking points:

LIBERAL: Bush is a racist!
CONSERVATIVE: How do you explain Condi Rice and Colin Powell?
LIBERAL: They're not really black. Bush wouldn't appoint black people to positions of power, because he's a racist!

It goes deeper than that, however. It seems like there's always a new reason for them to attack the right, and they stick to it as much as possible. How do they do it? Sometimes, it really seems like they plan ahead. Let's look at the draft again. It was proposed by Charles Rangel, a Democrat. However, as soon as it became an issue, liberals began accusing Bush of wanting to bring back the draft. I even saw one blog claim that the entire thing was done to prove to Bush how unpopular a draft would be, despite the fact that its supporters claimed it was a way to make the armed forces more representative of the population. Of course, the unpopularity angle seemed just as good after Rangel voted against his own bill, but on the other hand, the only two Congressmen who voted for the draft were Democrats. You wouldn't know that from listening to the left, but it's true.

For an even better example, look at how often liberals try to prove their patriotism. Why do they do this? Apparently, it's because us conservatives are fond of questioning liberals' dedication to this country. During the election, Kerry and his ilk constantly accused Bush of questioning his patriotism, and then all the good little lefty sycophants set out to prove that it is, in fact, more patriotic to oppose Bush than to support him.

There's only one problem: BUSH NEVER QUESTIONED ANYONE'S PATRIOTISM. Liberals questioned their own patriotism, then tried to prove that they were patriotic. However, this created the impression in a lot of people's minds that Bush and conservatives had, in fact, called the left unpatriotic. Bizarre.

And who always seems to be there advancing the latest leftist lies? You guessed it: THE MEDIA. A lot of times, they're the ones who set the agenda. For example, a lof of liberals have taken it upon themselves to prove that "red states" are full of hicks who only care about "moral values." Well, who ever said that they voted on values in the first place? I seem to remember that it was the media, almost immediately after the election, trying to prove that Bush only won because of anachronistic religious folk.

It's also interesting how quickly liberal arguments change based on this. As soon as the election was over, the left set out on a quest to prove that conservatives are dumb rednecks, and they changed the talking points accordingly. For example, during a discussion of the election, my extremely liberal TRF professor, in an attempt to sound fair and balanced, said something like, "liberals have always had an intellectual superiority, while conservatives have always had a moral superiority."

WHAT? If I'm remembering correctly, it's always been the other way around. Conservatives think liberals are stupid, and liberals think conservatives are evil, right? When did they switch around? Why, when the media said they did, of course!

I could write a lot more, but I think I'll end with one more example, which is one of the newest and most effective demonstrations of this principle. I'm talking about the attacks on Rumsfeld. It really does seem like the whole thing was orchestrated. Think about it. It started out with a reporter giving a question to a soldier. A question that was based on false information. Then, the soldier asked Rumsfeld the question, and although he gave a very detailed answer, the media only focused on that "you go to war with the army you have" quote, making it seem like he doesn't care about the troops. The liberal side of the political spectrum is now calling for Rumsfeld's resignation once again. All because of something he never did.

I don't think we'll ever figure out why the left does this, but knowing it's happening is the first step in preventing it. Thank you.

Oh, and Rathergate. That was another example.

Posted by CD at 06:41 PM | Comments (13)

Oh Yeah, I Have A Blog

I'm actually planning to post something political in the next 24 hours.

...Just in case you were wondering.

Posted by CD at 12:30 AM | Comments (1)

December 18, 2004

Hooray for Semantics

Good thing:

Woman Charged in Stolen Fetus Case

An infant believed to be the fetus cut from a murdered woman's womb was reunited with her father late Friday after a frantic search, and authorities arrested the woman they say strangled the mother and stole the child.

Well, at least one victim survived. Of course, she has to grow up without a mother now thanks to the murderous freak who took her,'s better than being dead, I guess.

Now, I have one question: WHY ARE THEY STILL CALLING THE BABY A FETUS? Would they say this if it had been born the normal way?

"Congratulations, it's a fetus!"

It's out of its mother's body, it breathes on its own, it's been alive for quite a while now...why call it a fetus?

Even the "conservative" Fox News site doesn't seem to get it. Look here:

fe·tus ( P ) Pronunciation Key (fts) n. pl. fe·tus·es

2. In humans, the unborn young from the end of the eighth week after conception to the moment of birth, as distinguished from the earlier embryo.

I don't think I have to say anything else.

(NOTE: If it seems like I'm angrier about the terminology being used by the media than I am about the act in question, please see yesterday's post. Thank you.)

Posted by CD at 02:39 PM | Comments (3)

December 17, 2004

I Don't Even Know What to Say About This

Amber Alert issued after fetus removed from mother's body

Missouri authorities issued an Amber Alert for an infant who may have survived after a woman was slain and a fetus removed from her body.

Bobbi Jo Stinnett, who was eight months' pregnant, was killed Thursday afternoon in her home in Skidmore in northwestern Missouri, the Nodaway County Sheriff's Department said.


I'm trying to decide whether I should violate my self-censorship rule, because I'm basically thinking this:

*** *********** ************! * **** *** **** ** *********** **** ** ******* ********! ****** *** *** ** *** ** **** ******* ****** ******* *** ********* *********! **** ***!!!


Posted by CD at 02:00 PM | Comments (8)

December 16, 2004

No Chimps for a Month!

Well, here I am in Pittsburgh again. Yep.

... ...

That's about it. Why did nobody comment on the movie post yet? Don't you like student films?


Posted by CD at 10:09 PM | Comments (2)

Movie Time!

It's once again time to share the fruits of my academic labor with you, my loyal readers. As you probably know, the final TRF 255 project was fiction, and I worked on a film called "Pinochle." It's about a convenience store robbery, but the title does have a lot of significance. You'll have to watch if you want to find out what it means.

Now, as usual, here are some notes:

As I've mentioned, I was the director of photography for the project. This means that I was behind the camera for almost every shot (including all the hand-held ones, other than the close-ups during the dialogue in the middle), so when you see a nicely framed shot or a cool angle, just remember: That was probably my work (except the very last scene, because I wasn't there that day). I think that's enough bragging.

...Or is it? I also have a brief on-camera appearance as "Customer 2," the scared guy holding an upside-down box of Lucky Charms. Again, you'll understand when you see it.

Want to have some fun while you watch? Then you can play an exciting game called "Spot the Continuity Errors." When four college sophomores make a film, and three of them are playing lead roles in that film, they tend to miss a few details, like making sure that certain objects remain in the same location between shots. If you're feeling adventurous, you can try to spot all the mistakes and inconsistencies. There's also one (and only one) shot where the microphone strays into the frame.

If you do spot the continuity errors, just remember: I had nothing to do with the editing of this film. I asked to help, but the director said I had done enough, so I didn't get involved in post-production at all. I personally think I could've done a better job than the editors, but you can see for yourself.

On a final note, I think that my documentary, "Against the Wind," was better than "Pinochle." That could be because I spent 16 hours editing the documentary, and only about 8 hours shooting this film, but...yeah.

Anyway, that's more than enough introduction. Download (for bandwidth's sake) the link below, and you can watch "Pinochle" on your computer. Isn't technology great? It's about nine minutes long, and almost all of them rock.

Oh, and reviews/criticism are more than welcome. At least let me know if you watched it. If nobody's seeing these things, I'm not going to keep posting them. That is all.

Click here to download "Pinochle"

Posted by CD at 12:25 AM | Comments (2)

December 15, 2004

One of Us! One of Us! One of Us!

This is a good day. Regular SIT readers may be familiar with a commenter who goes by the name of "Army NCO Guy." You may also know that I've been bugging him to start a blog for months now.

...Do I even have to say it? I must:

Army NCO Guy (a.k.a. Brad) has his own blog! It's called Stuff I Think You Should Know. You should all go check it out immediately.

Also, this officially makes me a blogfather. Ah, the miracle of life. It's so beautiful... *sniff* Sorry, I've *sniff* got something in my eye...excuse me...

Posted by CD at 07:57 PM | Comments (4)

Hooray for Filmmaking: Part 4

Guess what? I'm done with all my final exams! Allow me to celebrate...


There. Anyway, I've got big news. I now possess a copy of "Pinochle," the fiction film I've been talking about for a while, and I am going to upload it to the blog. But...

...You don't get to see it yet. BWAHAHAHA!!!! I'm heading back home for Christmas sometime tomorrow, and I'll post the film before I leave. That way, there will still be content while I travel. Hooray.

And elsewhere in the "big news" department, there may be a great new blog hitting the 'sphere in the near future...but I can't reveal any more information yet. Heh.

Apparently, I won't be leaving until 2:30 PM or later tomorrow, so I'll just go ahead and post the film around midnight tonight. Be ready.

Posted by CD at 03:56 PM | Comments (6)

December 14, 2004

Urge to Punch Someone In the Face Rising...

Hey, did you ever wonder what happens when the RAs don't bother to enforce quiet hours during finals week? I'll tell you what happens: THE FREAKIN' CHIMPS GO AHEAD AND MAKE NOISE ANYWAY!!!!!!!

Holy crap, I need to get out of here before I do something I'm going to regret.

Two more days...two more days...two more days...

Posted by CD at 10:10 PM | Comments (0)

Even More Entertainment

There's a new episode of Null & Void (that I had virtually nothing to do with) available here, if anyone's interested.


Posted by CD at 01:57 AM | Comments (0)

Deploying the Minions Again

I'm going to be studying...uh...let's just say "a lot" over the next 36 hours in preparation for my political science final, so expect more links like this.

Anyway, Trying to Grok is being overtaken by Atrios sycophants, and I think they need a little dose of logic.

In any case, the comments prove the point of the post, so it's entertaining even if you don't join in.

...I still can't believe the human race hasn't wiped itself out yet, even when it's full of @sshats like that. It makes no sense at all.

Posted by CD at 12:02 AM | Comments (0)

December 13, 2004

Don't Trust the Media, Part 38,487,216

Even if you've heard about the reporter who fed a misleading question to a soldier at Donald Rumsfeld's press conference, you may still be concerned about the substance of his question. Do our troops have adequate armor, and are they being put in danger by the administration? CavalierX, as usual, has all the facts. Here's a little something to get you started:

Fortunately (for our military; unfortunately for our media), HMMWVs that haven't yet been up-armored are not driven, but carted on flatbed trucks to a safe area. Any concerns the soldiers might have had came not from their own experience -- since they hadn't been in Iraq yet -- but from the media misrepresentation. The fearmongering media created the worries they then reported as "legitimate concerns." Reporters like Pitts (and there are far too many like him) have long ago forgotten anything they knew about journalistic integrity. Instead of reporting facts fairly and accurately, they create the news to further their agenda, engaging in a "gotcha" game designed to attack those with whom they disagree.

There's a lot more, so go over and check it out.

Posted by CD at 12:14 PM | Comments (0)

Calling All SIT Minions

If you want some good debate, and you don't feel like leaving this blog, go to the comments here. In my exam-induced stressed out state, I probaby missed a few key points.


Now with italics for easier reading!

Posted by CD at 02:14 AM | Comments (1)

December 11, 2004

Hooray for Filmmaking: Part 3; A.K.A. Your Daily Dose of Incoherent Ramblings

NOTE: This post is extremely long, but you should read the whole thing for 3 reasons:

1. I have to study for finals, so I probably won't be posting much for the next few days.
2. I'm trying to develop my comedy writing skills for next semester, which will manifest itself in my blogging, starting now.
3. My writing is just that freakin' good. No explanations needed.

On to the post. Seriously, read it. It's all the free ice cream you're going to get for a while.

Wow. I just sat through 2 hours of student films, followed by 2.5 hours of HillTV productions. I'm a little exhausted. But since this blog seems to be slowly transforming into a LiveJournal (minus the unreadable fonts, omnipresent emoticons, and quasi-suicidal poetry..."OMG, I D3V0UR T3H D@RKN355 @ND 5H1T 0UT T3H 5H@D0WZ! LOL!"), allow me to tell the fascinating story of my Friday night.

I began my evening with a rain-soaked journey down to the Carrier Dome so I could return my marching band uniform. Yeah, the band is going to Orlando in a couple weeks to play at the Champs Sports Bowl, but...f**k that. It's Christmas vacation, not a friggin' field trip. Marching band ends after final exams in my world. Besides, I almost died of dehydration last time I was in Orlando (literally; I thought I was going to drop dead in the middle of the Magic Kingdom), thanks to that friggin' cartoon Communist Mickey Mouse and his ridiculously overpriced bottled water. I'd rather not bring back those memories.

Anyway, there was nobody in the Dome other than the basketball team, so I dropped off my uniform in the equipment room and got the crap out of there. After that, it was time for another fun-filled walk through the pouring December rain as I ventured down to Newhouse for the big event: The final screening of fiction projects made by students in Tula Goenka's TRF 255 class. Good times.

The premiere started out with pizza and cake. Yay. Everyone ate pizza and cake and was very happy and full and ready for movies. And then bunnies danced on rainbows while butterflies sang lullabies into magical marigold microphones. Or some stupid hippy crap like that.

...I don't know where that came from, but I assure you that I have not ingested any illicit substances...although the oregano on that pizza did look a little suspicious... ... ... Dude! I can totally, like, hear the voice of the Milky Way, dude! It's saying..."I'm a galaxy, not a candy bar. Don't try to wrap me in foil, because I'll just set it on fire with my billions of stars!" D00D!!!

...I mentioned that I was exhausted, right? I think I'll go to the extended entry to protect The Children™ from any negative thoughts. Because I care about the youth of this great country.

At 6 PM, it was time for the show to start. There were about 100 people there, half of them being actual students from this class. The rest of the audience was made up of friends, actors, other film students, and probably a couple homeless guys who came for the free pizza.

There were ten films in all (and although they were on digital video, I call them "films" rather than "videos" because "film" is both cooler and shorter), and I had only worked on one of them, so I knew that at least 1/10 of the show would rock, but I was curious about the others. I actually have a program from the event, so I'll summarize each film and give a brief review...which basically means that I'm about to make fun of my peers and their artistic abilities. Which is always entertaining.

1. The Houseguest: This was about a guy who goes on a date, lets the girl come into his house, and then proceeds to watch her take over the place and mess up his stuff. It was decent, and the acting was good, but the screenwriter needed to take out some redundancy. For example:

WUSSY GUY: The room looks so different.
PSYCHOTIC GIRLFRIEND: Oh, I didn't hear you come in.
WUSSY GUY: The room looks...
PSYCHOTIC GIRLFRIEND: You don't have to say it. It looks great!

Actually, he already did say that it looked different. Moron. Other than that, great film.

2. Two Strikes: The log line of this one is "Two college students discover the joy in teamwork when they plan to oust their unusual Resident Advisor." The actual plot was more like "Three film students hatch a plot to show simulated masturbation to an auditorium full of people." Because that's what made the RA in the film "unusual." He was downloading objectionable materials from the Internets, as we could tell by the actor's...facial expressions. And the fact that he was running down the hall with no pants on. Yeah, just be glad you weren't there. It was hilarious, though.

3. The Chokin' Kind: This film was about an extremely effeminate guy (quote: "But you know Friday night is our night!") who still manages to exercise complete control over his girlfriend via a necklace he gave her. But one night, she gets drunk, confesses her hatred of his dominating ways while intoxicated, and throws the necklace away when she sobers up and remembers what happened. Moral of the story: Alcohol will make your life better. Yay, college!

4. The Wedding Date: Plot summary: A girl needs to find a date for a wedding she's been invited to, but her friend keeps setting her up with crazy guys who enjoy eating fake leaves, smelling their own shoes, and...biology. Yeah. She rejects one of the guys because he dares to enjoy dissections. The. Horror.

This film was part funny and part "holy crap, make it stop before I poke my own eyes out with a dull spork," but it was kind of entertaining because the lead actress was one of those stereotypical ghetto girls. Example:

GIRL: Hell naw, I ain't goin' out wit' yo crazy-ass friends!

Oh no you di-in't! Testify, sistah friend!

(/white boy from PA trying to sound remotely cool)

5. Physical Challenge: This thing was great. It's a mockumentary about a guy who lost on Double Dare in 1989, and his quest to find Marc Summers and beg him for another chance. He trains by going out in the rain and trying to fill a plastic cup to the red line. There were a lot of great moments, but my favorite line was: "I can't go in that room 'cuz the guys in there will shoot me with paintball guns." It's funnier if you've seen the film, haven't. Ya b@stards.

6. The Gatekeeper: Interesting film. It took elements of It's A Wonderful Life and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind to create a story about a guy who dies in a car accident, but doesn't realize it until a guy who looks like Silent Bob tells him what's going on. Good acting, very emotional plot, nice use of music...and they did a transparency effect that I didn't think was possible on our editing equipment. But this is Syracuse, so I guess we get all the good A/V stuff. Heh heh. The only problem was the lapse into bad acting/writing in the big flashback scene:

GIRL: I want you to promise me you'll never forget this moment.
GUY: Okay. I'll never forget.
GIRL: Good!

That's it?! That's what created the eternal bond that couldn't even be broken by death itself? What a douche.

7. Pinochle: This film rocked! It's about a guy who goes into a convenience store to use the bathroom and ends up having a life-changing experience after a robber comes in and starts stealing money and Cow Tales. Also, there was a brief cameo by this awesome guy with a box of Lucky Charms. Man, I wish I could be as cool and handsome as that guy...oh, wait, I am, because that guy was me, and Pinochle was my group's project. I can't tell you any more, because I'm planning on uploading it to the blog. Be ready.

8. Motiveless Crime: Basic story: A jealous guy thinks his girlfriend is having an affair with his ambiguously homosexual best friend, so he steals the guy's inhaler, causing him to die of an acute asthma attack. Then the girlfriend dies when she gets distracted while driving and collides with the ambulance that was coming to get the asthmatic guy. You'll notice that I just told the whole story in a couple sentences, but this group apparently felt it necessary to show the emotions of the "murderer" through a montage of about six quadrillion extreme close-ups and shots of him pacing around his room. Wow, how exciting. Also, this contained more sloppy writing:

REPORTER: Two Windham Hall residents were involved in fatal incidences that may be related.

"Incidences?" "INCIDENCES?" Who the f**k says that? Sometimes, I really think our children isn't learning.

9. The Unconscious Reconsidered: Odd story by some students who apparently set out to give the audience a seizure. It's about a guy who falls asleep while studying for a philosophy exam about premonitions (wow, no foreshadowing there). He then has a weird dream where his friend is about to get hit by a car, and the editors show that they know how to use the video effects in Final Cut Pro. Remember that seizure thing?

The next morning, the guy is walking to class when he suddenly realizes that everything around him is the same as in the dream. He tells his friend that something bad is going to happen, but the friend mocks him by running out into the middle of the street. The guy then tries to stop his friend and is almost hit by a car in the process. The screenwriter used the "Pound It Into Their Heads" technique to emphasize his main point:

DREAM GUY: I told you something was going to happen.
FRIEND: Did you really know it was going to happen, or did you make it happen?

Remember, kids: Unrealistic dialogue gives kittens cancer. I don't think you want that. And if you do...then you're a sick, sick person.

Oh, and the shirtless guy was in this one. He played the dream guy's roommate, and once again, he appeared without a shirt. I worry about people sometimes.

10. The Sweater: A college student receives a crappy sweater as a gift from her grandma, so she throws it out the window, and a blatant ripoff of the crackhead from "Chappelle's Show" catches it. However, trouble arises when the girl finds out that her grandma is coming to visit and wants to know if she likes her gift. The girl is then forced to track down the crackhead and convince him to give the sweater back, which she does by buying him a $400 leather jacket. Unfortunately, her grandma calls again to tell her that she sent the wrong box (it was supposed to contain cookies), and she should just "throw that old rag out the window." When she does this (again), the crackhead catches it (again). OH, SNAP!

After this, there was a big round of applause, assorted congratulations, and other revelry. Also, Professor Goenka forced me to give her a hug before I left. I was actually surprised by this, considering she's a kool-aid liberal, and I wore a Bush/Cheney sticker to her class on Election Day. Hmm. Maybe I should check to make sure she didn't plant some kind of neocon tracker on me. On the other hand, she is the professor who said "not all Republicans are evil." I guess I'm one of the good ones or something.

Following the TRF event of the semester, I headed over to the student center for the HillTV Entertainment Department screening. That's right: Another couple hours of watching student-produced material. I freakin' love this school. And I'm not being sarcastic. SU is proof that dreams can come true.

Anyway, I walked down to the Jabberwocky Café for the screening, where Suzy, our entertainment director, was making people take raffle tickets. We had an interesting exchange:

CD: Hey, Suzy.
SUZY: You grew a beard.
CD: Yes I did.

I haven't mentioned that I'm growing a beard again, have I? Well, see for yourself! Syracuse = cold, and facial hair = warmth. Do the math...wait, I just did the math. Never mind.

I took my raffle tickets (more on that later), found a seat, and waited around looking cool for a few minutes while other people showed up. The screening started with Over the Hill, the SU version of the Daily Show. They screened the episode where they made fun of Chancellor Cantor ("Chancy Nancy"), so it was fun to watch.

After this, Suzy held the first raffle, and lo and behold, I friggin' won an authentic script from Charmed (Season 4 - Episode 16: "The Fifth Halliwheel"). Woo. Hoo.

Next up was Null and Void, the insanely funny sketch comedy show that I technically work for, but don't get credit for because I never go to the meetings. This was an awesome show centered around "Country Cat," a cat who sells corn and locks people in a dungeon/kills them outright if they refuse to buy it. I don't know where they come up with these things, but I do know that marijuana is often involved (believe me, I've seen it). Again, let's hear it for college.

The third show on the agenda was Syracuse Live. If you don't know what this show is by now, please start paying more attention to my posts. Anyway, as I was watching, I realized something: Syracuse Live is the black sheep of HillTV. This friggin' show is so unprofessional and lame, it's embarrassing. But I'm staying with it, because I feel that it's my responsibility to somehow help improve the show. I don't know why I feel that way, but I do. Fixer-uppers can become successful with a little hard work...and possibly new hosts who can deliver a decent monologue and conduct an interview without saying "like" ten times per sentence.

Finally, we watched Syracuse After Hours. This is a talk/sketch comedy show that uses a lot of pseudo-improvisation and cruel humor. Also, this particular episode featured the writer/director of "Pinochle" as a wine-peddling Jesus Christ. Yeah, that's hilarious. I have to work with these people. On the other hand, they made fun of other religions as well (and Kwanzaa), particularly by referring to a dreidel as a "Jew spinner." And the host of the show is Jewish. I don't even know what to think anymore...

After this, I walked back to my dorm and got to watch drunk Chimps violating quiet hours. One guy was falling-down drunk. He literally fell down because he was so drunk. I love my floor. Really.

Anyway, you know what happened after that. I typed this entry, and then you read it and marveled at my command of the English language. Fear me, for I shall destroy you with literary genius.

And with that, I will descend into the depths of the hell known as "studying for final exams." Later, loyal VRWC minions.

Posted by CD at 02:33 AM | Comments (1)

December 10, 2004

Finding the Positive Aspects of Finals

Tonight at 9, school enforced 24-hour quiet hours begin in the dorms. The Chimps can actually be disciplined by the university for making noise after this starts. It's going to be awesome.

Incidentally, I decided to start a Facebook group dedicated to letting the world know that my floor is full of idiots. It's called "Shaw 4 Sucks," because it's dedicated to the 4th floor of Shaw, which sucks. Kinda makes sense, you know. Right now, the group consists of me and my roommate, but maybe we can get more people on board. The Chimps will be stopped!

Yeah...I'll write a good post tonight after the screening of my new "film" (it's actually a video, but you get the point). Until then...maybe you should go do something else.

Posted by CD at 01:19 AM | Comments (2)

December 09, 2004

More Entertainment

You know what? I've decided that my brother's blog is too disturbingly hilarious to ignore, so check it out here if you really want to. Fair warning: Unlike SIT, the profanity on his page is completely uncensored.

I still can't believe I'm related to that guy. Seriously.

Posted by CD at 01:40 PM | Comments (0)

December 08, 2004

You Learn Something New Every Day (Third Edition)

I just found out, via his Facebook profile, that my brother has a blog. I was not aware of this. It's not like this one, however. Here's an excerpt from a random post:

I figured the professer would be pissed and give me no credit for it because it was such bullshit, but she left the comment "Great imagination!!" and i got full credit. Moral of the story: Bullshitting always works.

Or how about this one:

Thats right, fuck you in the ass motherfuckers. This is our holiday greeting on our door that says "Happy Fuckin' Holidays from your boys in 305". God, we're so cool.

I'm related to this guy. That's scary.

(I'd link to the blog itself, you really want that?)

Speaking of Facebook profiles, my friends list is pretty barren right now, so if any fellow college students have profiles on, feel free to add me. Just do a "global search" on Syracuse using my real name. And if you don't know my real name...check the post below this. I don't type it directly into the blog because I don't want people Googling me (as if that would ever happen), but it's not like I keep my identity a secret.

If you don't have a Facebook're missing a key part of the college experience.

Posted by CD at 10:06 PM | Comments (1)

New Entertainment

There's a new episode of Syracuse Live online. You can check it out here. If nothing else, you have to watch the MC Goldie Wilson segment (including the interview). Funniest thing EVER.

Like I mentioned last month, I was the floor director for this episode ( I'm in the credits! ),
so I was responsible for letting the hosts know how much time they had, etc. That's kind of important. As you can see, there were no major problems except for the fact that the hosts are...well, not entertaining. We're working on it.

(Don't worry; the show won't suck as much next semester. I'll figure something out.)

Posted by CD at 04:47 PM | Comments (6)

Just A Reminder...

I still have 6 Gmail invites, if anyone's interested.

Posted by CD at 12:32 AM | Comments (1)

December 07, 2004

Hooray for Filmmaking: Part 2

I got to see the rough cut of the fiction project today. It's freakin' awesome! It's got comedy, drama, suspense, a twist ending, and some really nice camera work by yours truly. Heh heh. I'm excited.

The final screening is on Friday night, so I'll have access to the tape after that. I'd like to put it online like I did with the documentary. However...

For that project, everyone in it signed a release giving us permission to use footage of them for any purpose. This project didn't work that way, and a couple of the actors are really self-conscious, sometimes to the point where they can't even watch the scenes they're in. This is what happens when film students get in front of the camera.

Anyway, I'm not sure if they'd be too happy about the film being on the Internet, but since we're screening it in front of 50-100 people this weekend, I doubt they'd mind a dozen more seeing it. And that's a generous estimate. Besides, what they don't know can't hurt them...right?

I'll have to think about this one.

Posted by CD at 05:46 PM | Comments (0)


Huge manipulated boobs

Why do I keep getting searches like this? This one isn't even from the English version of Google.

Posted by CD at 05:30 PM | Comments (10)

Random Status Report

I didn't mention this before, but November brought the highest traffic this blog has ever had, with over 3,000 visits throughout the month. It's not even close to what the big blogs get, but my average is now around 100 visits a day. Compare that to the 60 visits a day that I was hovering at for several months. A lot of them are from Google, but still...that's not bad.

Now, if I could only find a way to get more comments...

Posted by CD at 01:23 AM | Comments (5)

December 06, 2004

Speaking of Illogical...

I just saw the following signature on Daily Kos:

It is no accident that Liberty and Liberal are the same word.

Uh...actually...I hate to burst your bubble, but...they're not the same word. On the other hand, the fact that you don't realize the difference may explain why you're commenting on one of the most hate-tastic blogs the left has to offer.

(No, I'm not giving that b@stard a link. Go find it yourself if you must.)

Posted by CD at 02:29 AM | Comments (8)

Seriously, How Do You Even Form Complete Sentences?

The NYT letters are just as asinine as usual, particularly this one. Let's take a look:

That the Republican-controlled Congress may overturn abortion rights...

First of all, until you can explain how abortion is a "right," keep this ridiculous regurgitated talking point to yourself.

...under the label of being "pro-life" (Political Memo, Dec. 2) is offensive.

How dare they express their opposition to murder by calling themselves pro-life! What is this horrible world coming to?

These conservatives stop being "pro-life" as soon as the baby takes its first breath.

So you admit that it is a baby? Interesting...

Then their support shifts to those who pollute our air and water...

And I'm sure they do it for the specific purpose of destroying the environment. After all, if they had good intentions, they wouldn't be Republicans, right?

...start ill-conceived wars...

As opposed to staying isolated and hoping the terrorists can't find us, yes. assault rifles to criminals...

All right, this is, without a doubt, the stupidest thing I have read in the last week. Can anyone explain how it's possible to believe that Republicans want to "supply assault rifles to criminals?"

No, really. Someone tell me how this can happen. I've heard the "lifting the assault weapons ban would make criminals more dangerous" meme, but this is the first time I've heard that Republicans believe in actually giving assault weapons to criminals. And I thought conservatives took criticism for being too tough on crime. Was I ever wrong about that...

...and limit lifesaving stem-cell research.

When? There's no limit on researching the kinds of stem cells that have actually saved lives.

I long for the day when "pro-life" is defined as what happens after that first breath.

And I long for the day when "logic" is a requirement for getting a letter to the editor published.

How can these people exist? I don't think it'll ever make sense...

Posted by CD at 02:17 AM | Comments (27)

December 05, 2004

Observation Post

Things happened today and I thought about them.

What? I said I was going to do this, didn't I?

Posted by CD at 02:15 AM | Comments (3)

December 02, 2004

What the Crap?!

So...apparently, SIT is the #1 Google search result for beyonce's vagina.

I really worry about people sometimes.

(I'm still #12 for Swiss Cake Rolls. I don't get it.)

Once again, a tiny post leads to more comments than a long, detailed post. I think my next post will just say "Things happened today and I thought about them." I should get dozens of comments then.

Posted by CD at 11:53 PM | Comments (7)

Deploying the Minions

I have to write a paper for political science, but if you want to get in on a good abortion debate, go here. I started taking down the "a fetus isn't a human being" logic, but I'm going to have to start working soon, so if anyone wants to help out, feel free to add something.

By the way, now that the election's been over for a month, expect a lot more abortion posts. Other than the War on Terror, it's more or less the most important issue to me. I'm even thinking of making a "bumper sticker" or something. You'll see.

Posted by CD at 08:53 PM | Comments (0)

Hooray for Filmmaking!

I'm going to be shooting scenes for the new TRF project for about seven hours today. Yes, you read that right. Seven. Hours. This is why Newhouse only accepts 300 people a year. You have to be frickin' serious. And totally insane.

Anyway, if you want new content before Friday, you'll probably have to provide it, preferably by commenting on the post below about legislating morality that took me an hour to write.


Five. Hours. That's how long it took. From 12 PM to about 5, we shot non-stop. No lunch break or anything. Just shooting. And this was for a scene that's only four minutes long.

I understand now why feature length films take over a year to produce. Holy crap.

I was behind the camera most of the time, but I do have a brief appearance where I drop a box of Lucky Charms in a terrified manner. Maybe I can upload this thing when it's done next weekend.

Posted by CD at 01:46 AM | Comments (7)