April 29, 2013

April 11, 2013

April 8, 2013

March 28, 2013
Somebody please explain to me everything wrong with the HRC.


There is nothing really wrong with the HRC. It’s a lobbying group with a very large mandate and base so no one is ever particularly satisfied with it.

HRC’s money though typically comes from gay white males, so they are typically seen as most responsive to their needs, especially at the national level.

For instance, through the 1990’s, the HRC, being not powerful or flush with cash tried desperately to avoid discussion of same sex marriage- because it was something it couldn’t win. Instead they focused on ENDA, employment non-discrimination, something that even in the 90’s most gay whites didn’t fret much over- but today is something minority trans people do. in the 2000’s the fight shifted as more white money went to the HRC, which took up the marriage fight (really started though by Republicans banning SS marriage in the states).

So one grievance against the HRC is they dropped a worthwhile social good, ENDA, in favor of Marriage, something to put bluntly, a thing that poor, minority, disabled, trans, orphaned people look at quizzically (you are fighting so two wealthy gay dudes with jobs can file jointly?)

From another angle, the HRC is seen as conformist. they want to make LGBT people fit into the straight circle of society’s venn diagram. Marriage, military service, employment etc., instead of removing circles. a sort of queer dislike for the group.

Another, because it’s a lobbying group, it raises money for supporting politicians, even those who aren’t perfect. this means lots of money to Democrats- so groups like the Log Cabin Republicans (who truthfully have a dismal job lobbying closed doors) hate the HRC for making gays appear to be partisan Democrats. Jack asses like Andrew Sullivan basically hate it for this reason (though he wouldn’t admit it).

Generally though Lobbyists are easy people to hate. they require a lot of money and not till very recently have had little progress to show for it. Very few people at HRC actually make any money of note and they work like dogs.

useful and comprehensive

(Source: redrunningfox, via jasencomstock-deactivated201306)

March 22, 2013

March 7, 2013

February 24, 2013

I keep reading things about the Oscar movies that I think are dumb and wrong so instead of just composing and deleting Tweets about those things I am just going to write this here on Tumblr where everyone can safely ignore it.

"Zero Dark Thirty" is pretty evil but lots of great art is pretty evil. It’s probably not great art but it’s a better film that most of the other nominees. The torture thing would’ve been a total non-issue if the film had more clearly carried the message that torture was useless and only good-old-fashioned detective work and "Homicide"-style non-torture interrogations (with misdirection and trickery!) produced workable leads — but making that message more explicit would be anathema to a director like Bigelow who likes ambiguity, even when ambiguity produces a dishonest and arguably immoral message. So the film fucks itself by having Dan the Torturer repeatedly tell detainees that he’ll "break" them, and then later when they divulge the necessary intel, we are totally allowed to believe it’s because Dan the Torturer Broke Them With Torture.

The film’s only actual political message is that a detainee program is strategically preferable to an assassination program, but obviously it doesn’t grapple with the moral or legal questions surrounding a detainee program at all.

Jessica Chastian shouldn’t win because her character did not exist. She was a cipher. Every single male character in the movie (plus the one other female character) had a great little moment that succinctly and efficiently established exactly who they were, Chastain was just an unrealistically beautiful avatar of single-minded obsession. She’s good but there’s nothing to reward. Dan the Torturer was a way better character, and the scene toward the last act where he’s a clean-cut Washington hack was a great moment. Dan the Torturer and his monkeys should get all Oscars.

Everyone has sort of missed that the film has a really downer ending, where killing bin Laden doesn’t actually lead to any sort of catharsis at all. Chastain is by herself in an airplane weeping because she has no personality or life outside of killing this guy who just got killed, the end, go America?

"Argo" should probably win because it’s the sort of thing we all wish Hollywood would do again, which is make very professional pieces of entertainment product. It’s dishonest as hell obviously but it’s suspenseful and the performances are good and the script sounds smart and it looks nice. The end is atrocious though, when the fun little ’70s-influenced suspense flick receives a swelling-music all-the-characters-hugging-and-celebrating montage straight out of a horrible ’90s end-of-the-world action movie. "We did it!! let’s hug and cry and turn up the strings" is how Michael Bay movies end. Then the music gets even more treacly as Affleck — THE FORGOTTEN HERO WHOSE COURAGE CANNOT BE PUBLICLY ACKNOWLEDGED POOR CIA AGENT — returns to his wife and child, whom we do not care about. Plus the end credits photo-comparison "LOOK HOW GOOD I DID AT RECREATING THIS STUFF" thing is very silly. This should’ve had ZDT’s ending, woulda been way more ’70s. The best part of this movie was that I don’t think it was longer than two hours.

I wish David O. Russell would go back to making insane movies that no one sees but if Hollywood is going to keep rewarding him for making heartstrings-tugging blue-collar dramas I guess he will keep doing that. “Silver Linings Playbook” is good and sweet, and sorta oddly reminiscent of “I Heart Huckabees” in a lotta ways even if it’s not remotely as ambitious or brilliant. I keep getting annoyed when I see people — lots of people! smart people! — claim that it has an insulting and stupid “love will solve mental illness” message, because all of these people missed the very important plot point in which Bradley Cooper starts taking his meds. Once he does he a) stops being delusional and b) starts behaving less selfishly. It’s actually a very marked change in his behavior and it’s not “true love,” it’s listening to his doctor.

DeNiro is actually good in this, and he’s helped by the fact that he can be kindly and avuncular but his film history allows the plot point that he’s got a violent and scary past to resonate without him doing anything.

Thank god Anne Hathaway was not in this.

February 11, 2013

9:46am  |   URL: http://tmblr.co/Z56IbydveQKa
Filed under: POPE SONGS 
January 26, 2013

Now Richard Gere is proving he’s cool by playing blues guitar with the mayor

January 26, 2013
OK I am now watching the film “Runaway Bride” on TBS and it’s amazing

In the universe of the film “Runaway Bride” everyone in New York reads the male sex columnist for USA Today (??), a newspaper that appears to have its headquarters in New York, and he is apparently not edited as the film’s inciting incident is literally him libeling a non-public figure he’s never met. Also people appear to videotape weddings —even weddings where the bride runs away — by shooting scenes from several angles, like films.

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