Sunday, September 30, 2012

Liberty Pen: Christopher Hitchens: In Defense Of Unpopular Speech

Democratic Socialist Defending Free Speech
Liberty Pen: Christopher Hitchens: In Defense Of Unpopular Speech

I don't agree with the late great writer Christopher Hitchens all the time. I'm a Liberal, he's more of a Progressive/Socialist. A bit left to me on economic policy, to put it mildly, but we do tend to agree on some of these key social issues, like civil liberties, War on Drugs and yes free speech. But Freedom of Speech is exactly that, the freedom to speak, to go along with our property rights, are the most important freedoms and constitutional rights that we have in America. The freedom to speak is exactly that, the right to speak whether its popular or not.

That since we are a liberal democracy, we've decided long ago, that we are good enough and intelligent enough as a nation, that we can have good intelligent tolerant thinkers. But that we can also have haters and ignorant people as well, because we are a good and intelligent enough as a people to figure out what's hate and what's not and what should be taken seriously and what shouldn't be. That we don't need big government to make these decisions for us. What we should and be able to listen to and what we shouldn't listen to. This is something that Liberals, Conservatives and Libertarians figured out a long time ago, but that today's Progressives and Neoconservatives have never grasped. Who believe government needs to be strong enough to be able to protect its people, even at times from themselves.

The Islamic film, that was perceived very negatively a few weeks ago by Muslims and Progressives, but of course Neoconservatives view the film as free speech, because they like and agree with the film, but thats a different story, is a perfect example of what free speech is designed to protect. The right for people to be able to speak their mind, even as small as their minds and intelligence level may be. As long as they are not labeling people, threatening people, or inciting violence. What this movie essentially does, is layout what the creators of this movie feel. "Islam is bad and so-forth, that Muhammad was a bad person and so-forth." But it wasn't calling for Muslims to be killed and beat up and so-forth, it was a negative if not bigoted view of Islam, but not calling for violence on Muslims. And thats the difference between free speech and threatening speech. Something we don't put up with as a nation.


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

HLN: Showbiz Tonight Countdown- Best Burnett Ever!

HLN: Showbiz Tonight Countdown- Best Burnett Ever!

One of the best variety comedy shows of all-time, sort of like a half-hour Saturday Night Live. Speaking of SNL, SNL gets a lot of credit for being such an original variety skit-comedy show that other shows have tried to follow and make their own versions of it. And all of that is true, but Carol Burnett, was essentially the same thing, but came out 6-7 years earlier in the late 1960s, instead of 1975 with SNL and was on CBS instead of NBC. And you could make a case that Carol Burnett herself and her show with his her great cast and writers, inspired shows like Saturday Night Live and later In Living Color, MADD-TV and other skit comedy shows. Because of how good it was, how original it was, the topics it covered. That it wasn't about sending a political, or cultural message, but about making fun of everyday American life.

The Carol Burnett Show, covered and had everything and they weren't about politics at least in the sense they were trying to push some political message. It was simply about entertainment and what was going on in America at the time especially as it related to pop culture. And always looking for the funny side of everything they covered. They mad fun of politicians, movies, TV shows, actors, musicians, weren't worried about political correctness and pleasing everybody. But great comedians who all had similar sense of humors, great chemistry, who liked each other loved working with each other. And in that sense at least it reminds me of Seinfeld and was better than Saturday Night Live, that generally looks at politics from a political slant. Carol Burnett, was simply about making people laugh and doing it in a classy way and having a great time at it.


Monday, September 24, 2012

AlterNet: Opinion: Lynn Stuart Parramore- 'Are You Ready For a Post Masculine World?'

This piece was originally posted at FRS Daily Journal: AlterNet: Opinion: Lynn Stuart Parramore- 'Are You Ready For a Post Masculine World?'

Men who needs them? A Far-Left pipe dream where men are not even welcome, or where masculinity disappears, or where all men are essentially gay. I find it ironic that people on the Far-Left who are so anti-male man-haters, tend to be somewhat dykish even and have masculine characteristics themselves. Even though they claim to be anti-masculinity. They see football, boxing, interest in cars, tools, gambling, checking out attractive women and I could go on, but I have other things I would like to accomplish in my life, but they see all of these activities as somehow sexist. Even though a lot of American women, straight even, like football, boxing, cars, tools, gambling, etc and are some of the most feminine, beautiful and sexy women you’ll ever see.

It is not so much masculinity that the man-hating sexist Far-Left doesn’t like. Well they don’t like masculinity, but it’s male masculinity and male heterosexuality that they don’t like. But if women are a Dyke, no problem, because she’s just being who she was born as. According to Socialists on the Far-Left who don’t like masculinity when it comes from straight men. You’ll never see straight men, or women who are to the right of Socialists, democratic or otherwise, which is only most of the world, try to put down female femininity. Because we love women, especially straight women. At least coming from a straight man. We love who they are and how versatile that they are. That they’re cute, beautiful, well-built, funny, but they’ll also stand up for themselves and watch sports with the guys.

There straight women who like sports and there are straight men such as myself, who like soap operas. If they’re funny, well-written, well-done and seem to have some broader point other than, ‘who is Jake going to stab in the back now.’ Or whoever the character is. Without straight men and yes we tend to be masculine which is a common characteristic about straight men and something that straight women tend to like about us, we would have a country of gay men and overly adorable and feminine straight women who never grow up. We would be a national day care center and kindergarten class. With no one to fix the cars when they break down, police the streets, defend the country and so-forth. Because all the men would be makeup artists, or clothing designers. Well I guess the dykes could handle the male responsibilities. It would be a strange universe where everyone who enters who use to live on Planet Earth would think they drank too much, or got too high the night before.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

ESPN: Behind The Fights Documentary- Buster Douglas vs Mike Tyson- February, 1990

Iron Mike vs Buster Douglas
ESPN: Behind The Fights Documentary- Buster Douglas vs Mike Tyson- February, 1990

I saw the James Douglas-Mike Tyson World Heavyweight Championship fight as a fourteen year old in junior high on HBO in February, 1990. Actually I saw the replay of it, after I heard the shocking news that James Buster Douglas defeated Iron Mike Tyson for the World Heavyweight Championship. It was shocking, because Mike Tyson look unbeatable for about five years from 1985 until 1990. Holding the WHC for about four years. He just didn't look unbeatable, but he was destroying his opponents.

Beating former world champions, but not just beating them, but destroying them. Like Frank Bruno, Mike Spinks, Larry Holmes, Tony Tucker, James Smith and others. All guys who were world champions before and in Larry Holmes case one of the top 2-3 heavyweights and world champions of all- time. He's right there with Muhammad Ali and you could argue either way, but with Buster Douglas, you had a very talented fighter. Tall, big, strong, accurate, with excellent boxing skills, but wasn't very disciplined. He was the perfect fighter to beat someone like Mike Tyson, because of his awesome size. And the ability to use it, he was able to keep Tyson off of him, by hitting him hard enough to keep him off and go to work on him.

Going into this fight, of course James Douglas beating Mike Tyson is not only one of the biggest upsets of the 1990s, but of all-time. But looking back at it now, James Douglas was simply good enough to beat Tyson. He had the skills and size to do it, as well as the training. Most of Iron Mike's opponents went at Tyson by trying to tie him up, to prevent Mike from throwing Mike's bombs at you. But what Buster did was a different strategy. He figured out the best way to keep Iron Mike off of you was by hitting him hard with a big jab, going on offense forcing Mike to take punishment as well, which set up Buster's other punches.


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Brave New Foundation: Law & Disorder: How the System Really Works

RIP Dennis Farina
Brave New Foundation: Law & Disorder: How the System Really Works

A lot of these law enforcement shows about the justice system, all though most of them are entertaining, only focus on a small percentage of the crimes. But again we are talking about entertainment here. Who would want to watch a show that’s about shoplifting, or traffic stops, drunk driving an so-forth. People need to be able to differentiate between reality and entertainment and many times they are not the same thing. But even if the law enforcement shows showed the criminal justice system for what it is that it a lot about drug crimes and drug offenders and that a lot of these supposed crimes happen in African-American communities in urban areas, these shows would be accused of racism. For always highlighting young African-American men as suspects and criminals.

If these law enforcement shows showed the criminal justice system for what it really is, that it is basically about low-level felonies like shoplifting and misdemeanors, who would watch? Again I get back to the entertainment factor here. A lot of these shows as far as the crimes and how the detectives and prosecutors do their jobs even though they aren’t completely accurate, are at least realistic. As professionals in the criminal justice system will tell you. And even though they do tend to concentrate on a low percentage of crimes that are committed in America, they tend to do a good and accurate job. And they are realistic in the sense that crimes in America are committed by all Americans as far as ethnicity and race. And they don’t focus on one racial, or ethnic group in America.

Again to go back to Hollywood and reality it’s not the job of Hollywood to show exactly what life if like and the subjects that they cover. There job is to be entertaining and hopefully realistic. Smart viewers want both, but unfortunately for lot of Americans they simply want to be entertained when they are watching TV. And even if these shows don’t show the criminal justice system for exactly what it is, again its Hollywood and if you’re a smart person you’re going to anyway how realistic the show is anyway by how informed you are about how the country works. And how much you know about current affairs in America including criminal justice, or whatever the issue is.


Thursday, September 13, 2012

David Von Pein: Jack Paar Show- Robert F. Kennedy- March 13th, 1964

Jack Paar & Bobby Kennedy-
This piece was originally posted at The Daily Journal

Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, a few months after his brother President John Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas. Goes on NBC's the Jack Parr Show. I guess he wanted to get back to living a normal life, or as normal of a life that a public official can have in America and get out of the funk he was in from losing his brother and did it in a big way by going on Jack Parr. And trying to communicate to the world that he and his family were doing okay, or as well as they could be doing after seeing one of their family members assassinated. And Bobby Kennedy came back in a big way in 1964. RFK wanted to make his life worth serving again the only way he knew how outside of his family. By serving the public and being involved in public affairs. He was already Attorney General of the United States, but had other interests as well.

As Attorney General, RFK was influential in getting the 1964 Civil Rights Act through Congress. His speech at the 1964 Democratic National Convention, resigning from office right after that and running for U.S. Senate in New York. Where he wins there, partially thanks to President Johnson's landslide victory over Barry Goldwater with New York being one of those States. So Bobby Kennedy not only came back in 1964, but came back in a big public way that few other people would've been able to come back from after a tragedy. Like losing a sibling in the manner that he did. The Jack Paar Show, was perfect for RFK. Because Jack was a very funny man, but also up to date on current affairs and interested in them. And was Bobby Kennedy being a Kennedy with their famous wit and intelligence.

1964, was a very depressing and yet liberating year for Bob Kennedy. First, he was Attorney General, the Chief Law Enforcement Officer of the United States, but for a man he hated. President Lyndon Johnson, who was President Kennedy's Vice President. LBJ, not exactly best friends with RFK, but at least he let the Attorney General do his job. Unlike RFK who was always undermining any authority and responsibility that LBJ had as Vice President. But that is really a different discussion and perhaps debate, especially for RFK loyalists. RFK, didn't want to work for President Johnson and that is one reason why he decided to run for the Senate in 1964. And restore some freedom over his own personal life and career. And going on Jack Paar in early 1964, was the start of RFK returning to public life again.


Monday, September 3, 2012

Reason: Nanny of The Month For August, 2012 Secretary of HHS Kathleen Sebelius: Now The Real Nanny of The Month

Nanny State
Reason: Nanny of The Month For August, 2012 Secretary of HHS Kathleen Sebelius: Now The Real Nanny of The Month

Actually, I don't agree with this Nanny of The Month show from Reason. I did agree with the Nanny of The Month's for June and July. Mayor Mike Bloomberg essentially trying to outlaw soft drinks in New York and the people in Massachusetts trying to outlaw cursing in public. Thats exactly what political nannies are, people who try to protect others from themselves. But all Secretary of Health Kathleen Sebelius was trying to do with her wellness campaign is preventive health care. Something we have to do as a country in order to bring down our health care costs.

What they are doing here is passing out funds from the Federal Government to encourage wellness campaigns. Not outlawing junk food, or junk drinks, but encouraging healthy dieting and exercise. Which is in our national interest, because it would bring down the health care costs for the country. Its not saying, "you have to eat and drink healthy and you have to exercise and if you don't, we'll lock you up in jail." Where you'll get less exercise and eat worse food, which is what we do in the War on Drugs, the definition of making problems worse. By finding a problem, not only not fixing it, but making it worse.

The lady who got fined for handing out free water during one of the hottest summers we've ever had, which we are still having in most of the country, is a much better example of a nanny than the preventive health care campaign. And I would bet the fine that lady is going to have to pay is as much as we would be paying in sales taxes had she bought that water in a store and thats what this fine is about. This big government here thinking they were cheated in losing sales tax revenue. Because the people who got the bottle water got it for free and didn't pay sales taxes on it.


Saturday, September 1, 2012

HBO Sports: 1993 World Heavyweight Championship: Evander Holyfield vs Riddick Bowe-The Rematch

HBO Sports: 1993 World Heavyweight Championship: Evander Holyfield vs Riddick Bowe-The Rematch

I remember the Bowe-Holyfield Trilogy of the early and mid 1990s very well, because I got to see all three fights. I was a Junior in High School during the first fight in 1992, saw it on pay per view after I begged my dad to order the fight and we ended up watching at least part of it together. I've always had a lot of respect for Evander Holyfield, he's the ultimate of professionalism when it comes to not only Pro Boxing but Pro Sports as well, no other boxer has ever worked harder or. Had more dedication to his craft which generally speaking helped him a lot but it also hurt him.

Evander, ended up fighting too long and losing to guys and getting beat up by guys, that 5-10 years earlier he would've beaten fairly easily. And hopefully he hasn't paid a long term price for that when it comes to his health, we'll see later. But one problem I had with Evander, is that he seemed to have it a little too easy, he hadn't gotten much of a big challenge in the Heavyweight Division to this point. George Foreman gave him a pretty good fight in 1991 but Evander won most of those rounds and I wanted to see someone who not only gave Evander a big test but could actually beat him and thats where Riddick Bowe came in.

Evander Holyfield wins the World Heavyweight Championship in 1990 by beating an overweight and overconfident James Douglas. Who probably thought way too much of himself after whipping and knocking out Mike Tyson for the Heavyweight Championship in January, 1990 in Japan. And before Evander fought Riddick Bowe, he defended his title successfully twice against two boxers who were once. Great but at this point of their careers were in the early forties, in George Forman and Larry Holmes. The super fight in the Heavyweight Division of the 1990s, was suppose to be Evander vs Mike Tyson.

But of course with Iron Mike's rape case, that wasn't going to happen. Again this is where Riddick Bowe comes in, after coming off the 1988 Olympics where he didn't do as well as perhaps he should've, he was looking for a big challenge. And a chance to prove himself and why not fight for the World Heavyweight Championship and win it to accomplish it. The Bowe-Holyfield Trilogy was great because you have two great heavyweights at the prime of their careers. Probably the best two heavyweights of the 1990s, who both had a lot of respect for each other, who both knew that they had to be their best to beat the best, who was their opponent. Thats how they both saw these fights and why these fights worked out the way they did, two great fighters both bringing their A Games to these fights.