Sep 28, 2009

Fugitive: The Sequel [LINK]

Tommy Lee Jones should be in talks right now about the film treatment of the Polanski bust.

"But I'm a genius film director..."

"I don't care!"

"But the girl's alright with it now and doesn't want me prosecuted..."

"I don't care!"

"But there may have been irregularities in the original prosecution..."

"I don't care!"

"But most Europeans think this is silly..."

"I don't care!"

"But lots of important people wanted to see me receive this award..."

"I don't care!"

"But wasn't it considerate of me to give her a bu-fu to avoid a pregnancy?"

"I don't care!"

Sep 23, 2009

Terrorist's Apprentice [LINK]

The news that Moammar Qaddafi planned to pitch a tent at the estate of fellow obnoxious attention fiend Donald Trump got me to think of what a perfect scenario it would be for a reality television show:

So, Ahmed, I really like your idea of the targeted assassinations of rival clan leaders, and especially making it look like the Mossad is behind the violence. That was definitely a nice, creative touch. The New York Times would definitely go for that, I'm sure. And it totally nails some basic requirements: before you can be effective in projecting terror outwards, you gotta, gotta always consolidate your power. Can't tell you how many guys come in here with all sorts of gee-whiz ideas, but forgetting to terrorize their own people first. I'm not saying baby steps, don't be bold, but a lot of this is just basic due diligence that should be obvious to anyone who's been in the business.

So I like all that, and it's good stuff we can definitely work with. But I have to say it lost a lot in the presentation. You gotta always pay attention to the details. First of all, totally inappropriate to come in here with all those PowerPoint slides. Doesn't work in the tent anyway. The lighting's all off. I can barely see them, and you should have known that running the power supply all the way from the guard room would be such a distraction. So that was a problem.

But mostly it's just a basic matter of time. I'm a busy man, and if you're going to make me a pitch, it's gotta be BOOM-BOOM-BOOM. Understand? And Moammar here, he's got a speech to deliver to the General Assembly in an hour and a half. Means he's got to be on the Hutchinson Parkway in thirty minutes, tops. And that's with a police escort. So don't waste our time with all the boring analysis of the comparative casualty counts, and being on the defensive because you're not going to target a whole city for destruction. Casualty counts mean nothing these days, anyway, when what you're going for is media impact. Doesn't take a lot of casualties to get a big payoff. And I gotta level with you. Dirty bombs and biological agents? I've seen that, I see it all the time as a matter of fact, and it's a whole different animal. You don't always have to compete on that level. Don't even waste time talking about it, is my advice to you.

And frankly, there's not as much of a market for all that stuff right now, anyway, so there's no point in letting it muddy up your pitch. Know your audience. Moammar here's definitely not interested in doing any of that right now. I mean, the time is not right. Market conditions. Nothing but trouble all around. You can see the sort of image he's trying to project, giving up his WMD program and all that. He's definitely not going to be blowing up any planes or discos this time around, so you gotta realize you have a leg up on your competitors. You're already on the same page, and you've got something appealing already in the bag, so why not then recognize that and maximize your advantage as part of your pitch? The guys you're initially competing against are not the Jews or the Americans, they're standing right next to you. They're the ones you gotta be watching out for.

By getting all defensive and trying to measure up to what these other guys are doing, what you're telling me is that deep down, you're not willing to differentiate yourself, and you don't really believe your idea is a good one. And when the rubber hits the road, what I want most is terrorists I know I can rely on. Who'll go that extra distance, and who believe in what they're doing. And yes, who'll blow themselves up if that's what's called for. But sometimes a good strategist with a good overview is worth a whole lot more than a delivery man, and I've seen some definite potential for you on that front. But bottom line, you gotta show up for the game, and to be perfectly honest, you don't strike me as smart enough to realize you might be bringing something more valuable to the table. I don't know, maybe you need to be a delivery man. If you're just gonna be some insecure kid off the street and aren't willing to say, hey, this is me, I've got a lot to offer, I'm going to be a valuable asset to you and your organization, maybe that's what's in the cards for you. That's your decision. I can't make it for you. Maybe you can go work for one of Ahmadinejad's operations and see where that gets you. [laughter]

So, after after some time to consider the matter, and after consulting with my colleagues, I have to ask you to pack up your suitcase bomb. You're fired. You can leave via the front gate, or if you choose to go the other route, you'll be escorted out by a number of virgins. I don't know, are they really? Maybe. Whatever. Thank you. Goodbye.

Sep 15, 2009

If you had to read on piece on health care reform... [LINK]

More than just "required reading," I think this piece should undercut and crowd out all other articles on health care reform, leaving it the only one remaining alternative available.

Sep 10, 2009

Rep. Wilson Shows Poor Taste [LINK]

Shame on Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC) for shouting an accusation at the president last night. Follow tradition of British parliament. When being lied to, an inarticulate murmur of disapproval will do.

Sep 9, 2009

Czar Crazy [LINK]

My letter to The New Republic:

John McWhortle is on the right track when he suggests the "trutherism" espoused by Van Jones may represent "a tantrum from people out of power," a "gestural, performative ... animus" on par with the right's recent overreaction to the botched publicity leading up to Obama's address to American students. But it's unfathomable why McWhortle would then consider not only Jones's resignation, but his very repudiation of trutherist ideas inappropriate.

McWhortle says the idea the Bush administration orchestrated the Sept. 11 attacks is "hardly unknown among people of the left," which should give us all pause. Leftists may not actually believe that idea, McWhortle suggests, but are willing to give voice to it because being out of power renders them half mad with hysteria. In either case, placing anyone, left or right, who exhibits such behavior in a position of responsibility (even a lowly "czar") is simply a bad idea. You want people who can think clearly and whose perspectives are consistently grounded in reality. Is that too much to ask?

Of course, why should the paranoia of Van Jones be so casually accommodated, but not Glenn Beck's or President Obama's ed-speech protestors?

Sep 8, 2009

Wow, and in The New Republic, no less. Van Jones shouldn't have disavowed his earlier endorsement of Sept. 11 trutherism, because many leftists agree with it...? And those who engage in the "gestural, performative ... animus" of conspiracy-mongering should be marginalized when they are Glenn Beck, but retained as high-level policymakers when they are Van Jones...? Nice.