ampdead

12/24/07

The Christmas Truce, 1914

I wonder if at some point on Christmas Day 1914 the question wasn't asked:  Why don't you Germans go home?  Stop trying to invade these countries, leave the countries you've already invaded, go back to your homes and your families and celebrate this holiday as it should be celebrated - stop being a threat.

The Christmas Truce does say something about humanity, but it isn't that we'll choose peace at the cost of defeat.  As the quick end of the truce and the next five years of terrible fighting point to:  Not wanting to fight doesn't mean we won't.

Posted by: Jason at 07:04 PM in Misc | No Comments | Add Comment
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12/21/07

A bigger picture

There's something to note about the Romney marching with MLK flap regarding the larger political picture.  As Jonah Goldberg wrote here:  "...your Republican dad led a march in racially polarized Detroit timed to coincide with MLK's Selma march..."  It's high time the Republicans took this issue back - phrasing it, as it was phrased then, in terms of human dignity.  Afterall, what's the more dignified stance:  Dependence or independence?  Romney, if he could speak on his feet, could capitalize on this history.  Any candidate could, but it's something that resides in the very heart of Conservatism, and Conservatism is ostensibly the core of the Republican Party.

That is, a campaign platform based on human dignity - as opposed to this sort of hodgepodge of talking point issues.  That would, of course, require someone, in the vein of Reagan, who could explain and communicate the ideas with a bona fide belief in those ideas - faking it wouldn't, and shouldn't work.

Posted by: Jason at 08:06 PM in Misc | No Comments | Add Comment
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12/19/07

Just say no

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Posted by: Jason at 02:55 PM in Misc | No Comments | Add Comment
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12/18/07

Just leave it alone...

New Line and Peter Jackson have kissed and made up.  The Hobbit will, unfortunately, become a film.  Maybe I'll be the only person to say this, but please just leave it alone.  Don't make it into a film because stuff will inevitably have to be cut out - as it was in the Lord of the Rings films.  It will look great, I'm sure - also like the Lord of the Rings films - and it will follow the basic storyline. 

Even so, essential elements of the story went missing - entire scenes that pushed the characters along and changed them forever, and the characters themselves were fiddled with (sometimes making them unrecognizable).  Aragorn was not a reluctant leader.  Gimli, Meriadoc, and Peregrin were not merely comic relief.  The Hobbits did not come home to a Shire that had magically remained untouched by the wider world - killing any notion about no trouble finding you if you don't go looking for it.  Nevermind the encounter with Tom Bombadil or the Dead Men of Dunharrow (i.e. the "radioactive scrubbing bubbles"").

Books generally don't translate well into films.  The best that can be hoped for is an attempt to stay true to the underlying themes of the story.  While LoTR looked magnificent, it strayed pretty far from that hope.  Just leave The Hobbit alone.

And, uh, The Lord of the Rings was the sequel to The Hobbit.

Posted by: Jason at 08:43 PM in Book Notes | No Comments | Add Comment
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12/17/07

Apparently, there is no crime...period

Little girl brings steak knife to school so she can eat her leftover steak for lunch.

And then, of course, THE WORLD ENDEDED!!11!11  Assessments were needed so the little girl was escorted to the "assessment center" (yes, that's a direct quote - say it again, "assessment center").

Marion County School Spokesman Kevin Christian:  "Anytime there's a weapon on campus, yes, we have to report it..." because little girls eating steak are wicked threatening.  Also, our programming doesn't allow for deviations. 

IF sharp THEN freak out ELSE freak out.

Oh, right.  The story - linked at Drudge.

Posted by: Jason at 10:19 PM in Misc | No Comments | Add Comment
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12/12/07

Headlines

I took a class on journalistic style and grammar a couple years ago - I survived, it was interesting, and I learned to lose my fear of hyphens.  Also, I had the opportunity to visit the Detroit News/Free Press for some reason.  I really don't remember any of it, but Ace at AoSHQ constantly reminds me of one topic that was brought up:  Headlines. 

It was a big question - how to write a headline?  Wording, length, and everything else.  It even got into the minutia of font size.  The common sense rule:  If it doesn't grab a reader's attention, it's worthless.  It doesn't have to be over the top and it should actually reflect the story beneath it, but if it doesn't get someone to read the story (that is, buy the paper) then it's just a waste of space.

In that vein of thought, Ace should be hired to write newspaper headlines.  Latest evidence:  50 Taliban Die Due To Complications Arising From Having The Shit Kicked Out Of Them.  In comparison, the headline of the AP story Ace linked to:  Over 50 Taliban killed in 2-day battle.

Posted by: Jason at 01:15 PM in Misc | No Comments | Add Comment
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12/07/07

Reverted

Whatever the title says.

Posted by: Jason at 07:49 PM in Misc | No Comments | Add Comment
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