Thursday, February 22, 2007

Begging For Relevance

One has to wonder what Jesse Jackson thinks of Barack Obama. On the one hand, assuming he really believes in the advancement of black people, Jackson must be ecstatic that Obama has a real chance at a major party's presidential nomination. On the other hand, Jackson must hate that it's Obama and not the good reverend himself in that position. Even more, Obama has gotten where he is without repeatedely playing the race card, much unlike Jackson and Al Sharpton.

Today's Variety online edition (I cannot believe that I am citing the entertainment trade journal for the second day in a row) is reporting that Jackson is planning a conference in April to discuss the supposed dearth of blacks in the movie industry. Jackson's announcement, coming just days before this Sunday's Oscar awards ceremony, is pretty pathetic. For example, Jackson doesn't think it's enough that five of the twenty, or 25%, of actors nominated this year are black and that three of the four winners could very well be black despite the 2000 United States census showing that 12.3% of Americans are black. Jackson also thinks that whites, who constituted 75.1% of the 2000 United States population, are overrepresented in the 69% of roles that he alleges are reserved for white actors. As an aside, I have no idea where Jackson gets that 69% figure or whether there is any such quota for any race in Hollywood.

My question for Jackson is how much will be enough? I am in no way suggesting that any one group should have a maximum quota, or a minimum quota for that matter, whether it's for jobs, education or whatnot. At the same time, this is just one more example of Jackson playing the race card because that's the all he has in his arsenal.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

The Threat Of Israel

While I don't take what Variety reports as the gospel on politics, this statement by John Edwards, which he reportedly made at a recent Hollywood gathering, is pretty alarming:

"Perhaps the greatest short-term threat to world peace, Edwards remarked, was the possibility that Israel would bomb Iran's nuclear facilities."

As Jim Geraghty writes over at the Hillary Spot, "Really? Israel is the biggest threat? Not Ahmedinijad? Not al-Qaeda? Not a coup attempt in Pakistan? Not a complete breakdown in Iraq drawing in the Saudis, Turks, and Iranians?"

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Yet One More Reason MNFBBQ Is For Men Only

Sorry for the light posting lately but I have the Florida bar exam in two weeks. Studying, along with trying to keep the business running smoothly, really eats into the important things in life. Anyway, I had to post this article that shows that barbecuing is a man's game.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

24 Reflecting Reality

I once heard someone joke that not all Jews are dentists but all dentists are Jews. That joke always comes to my mind when I hear Muslim groups complain about their religion's depiction as violent and terroristic. It is therefore refreshing to see this morning's Wall Street Journal carry an opinion piece by Emilio Karim Dabul on the great television show "24."

For those not sadly not familiar, each season of "24" takes place, in 24 one hour episodes, in real time over the course of a single day. The focus of the show is Jack Bauer and the government agency for which he works, the Counter Terrorism Unit. As his agency's name indicates, Bauer fights terrorism. Rather than skirt around the hard reality of who is committing nearly all of the world's terrorist actions, the show's villains have often been Muslim.

Dabul's article takes a stand against Muslims who complain about these depictions:

I am an Arab-American as well as a fan of "24." The two things are not mutually exclusive, despite what the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and other such groups have to say about this season's opening episodes possibly increasing anti-Muslim and anti-Arab prejudice in American society.
Most of the terrorists represented in "24" through the years have been Arab Muslims. Why? Well, probably because most terrorists today are, in fact, Arab Muslims. As a descendant of Syrian Muslims, I am very well aware that the majority of Muslims world-wide are peaceful, hard working, and law abiding. That still does not change the fact that the greatest terrorist threat to the U.S. today comes not from the ETA, the IRA, etc., but from one group: Islamic terrorists.

And this is what makes "24" a compelling drama every week. Instead of pretending Islamic terrorists don't exist, the show presents frighteningly real worst-case scenarios perpetrated by Osama bin Laden's followers. So CAIR thinks it's over the top for the terrorists in "24" to blow up Los Angeles with a nuke? Please, if bin Laden and his crew had nukes, most of us would be way too dead to argue over such points.

Read the whole thing here.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Kos Readers Down On Hillary

The Daily Kos, one of the most popular liberal blogs, is running a poll asking its readers who is their favorite to be the Democratic Party's 2008 candidate. Here are the current results:

662 votes - 4 %
3842 votes - 25 %
73 votes - 0 %
985 votes - 6 %
599 votes - 3 %
2239 votes - 14 %
89 votes - 0 %
72 votes - 0 %
201 votes - 1 %
4070 votes - 26 %
1300 votes - 8 %
No Freakin' Clue
1011 votes - 6 %

These results are obviously static, as of this writing. The link to the ever-changing results is here.

It is not so surprising that John Edwards and Barack Obama lead the field. Neither is it surprising that Wesley Clark, he of the recent "New York money people" comment, is running third. The amazing thing here is that Hillary Clinton is in sixth place, trailing Bill Richardson and even Dennis Kucinich.

Having Edwards, Obama, Clark and Richardson lead her in such a poll is one thing. All four are viable, at least in the short term. No matter how unscientific this poll is, this poll's participants choice of Kucinich, the latter of whom has not made any major strides since being a marginal candidate for the 2004 nomination, over Hillary raises a question. Do Hillary's constituents dislike her that much or is the poll just an exercise in wishful thinking?

Spiders On Drugs

Educational to the very end.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Classic Ad

With last night's Super Bowl bereft of any really memorable commercials, let's revisit this classic.