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Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

Warning! This piece might contain language that may offend people who are still living in the 1950s and forgot to move with the times in America as the rest of country moved forward without them.

Just to say one thing about George Carlin: Goddammit George Carlin fuckin cussed a lot! What the fuck was his fuckin problem? What kind of asshole fuckin cusses that much? God dammit he must have been fuckin pissed off. Not that I would ever tell him to watch his fuckin language, because someone like that who is generally that angry not just at people, but basically an entire country, probably wouldn’t like that humor and perhaps not have even understood it. But he might have grasped the hypocrisy from a statement like that.

As far as stupid people in America, not saying we have a monopoly on that compared with the rest of the world. Especially with countries that don’t allow women to even drive cars or show themselves in public, who murder people simply for being gay through government force. As well as terrorists who murder people simply for not being Muslim, as well as gay. But we might have more than our share of stupid people especially with a region of the country that values their religion over education and knowledge. That alone can create a lot of problems there when people who simply don’t respect knowledge and think Jesus or whoever they pray to is all they need. That alone would qualify as stupid thinking, or lack of thinking.

See, people who don’t have knowledge tend to be stupid. Knowledgable people tend to be intelligent. The actual definition of intelligent is someone who is having or showing intelligence, especially at a high level. The actually definition of stupid, is having or showing a great lack of intelligence or common sense. Someone who takes America to war over bogus ( to be overly generous ) evidence that never existed in the first place, is the classic definition of s stupid decision. Making a decision on no real evidence and information.

Buying stuff ( or in many cases junk ) that you simply don’t need and are buying it perhaps only because it’s a status symbol for you like buying that latest smartphone simply because it’s the latest smartphone, even though you bought the latest smartphone last week, would qualify as a stupid decision. Even if it did allow you to be one of the first five people to share that latest purchase on Facebook, Twitter, or perhaps my favorite Google+. Sure! That decision made you look like totally awesome ( or whatever ) for an entire five minutes. But now you have two smartphones that you’re not using and still paying for both of them.

When you have a country that is as vast and diverse from all sorts of vantage points and not just racially and ethnically, a country that is also as free and individualistic as we are ( at least outside of pop culture,where most people look like a clone of the latest hot celebrity ) and then you have an entire population that values their religious and cultural beliefs over knowledge, reason, and science, you’re going to have a lot of stupid people. Because you’re going to have a lot of people who are literally free to do whatever they want short of hurting innocent people, including deciding to not be educated and not believe evidence and facts. This is why America at times at least can look like a national morons convention where everyone is late, because everyone went to the wrong place for the convention.

George Carlin: ‘Life is Worth Losing’- Dumb Americans

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Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

Groundhog is one of my favorite comedies from the 1990s as well as all time. Because the movie which obviously is not believable that a basically normal even narcissistic man like Phil Connors ( played by Bill Murray ) could literally live the same exact day over and over with only Phil making any changes for how his day goes, unless he’s literally dreaming and just having the Hollywood dream of a lifetime. The movie is only about 1:45 minutes give or take, so why couldn’t a man be sleeping have this dream going on his head while he’s asleep.

The movie starts off with Phil who is a selfish unhappy narcissistic weatherman for a local TV station in Pittsburgh, which is a midsize city in a small market, with hopes of landing a job for a big station in a big market like New York, Washington, Chicago, Los Angeles, wherever it might be. But instead of getting a job like that he gets another assignment from his Pittsburgh station to cover another small-town event in rural Pennsylvania small-town Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. Doing exactly what he doesn’t want to do which is to cover small-town events with small-town people with Pittsburgh perhaps being the biggest city they’ve ever seen in their lives.

And narcissistic Phil sees himself as much bigger than that is unhappy and cynical the whole time he’s there, until he realizes he’s living the same day over and over again. Groundhog Day which is a one day event for everyone else in this town becomes a daily event for him. With no one else realizing what’s going on with him. Because everything else is normal for them. But in Phil’s case the same day starts over and over again every time he goes to sleep and wakes up in his hotel room.

Groundhog Day for me is the opportunity for one guy to live the same day over and over and learn from those experience and try not to make the same mistakes. Phil becomes a less sarcastic, cynical, narcissistic, selfish man as the movie moves along. Once he realizes he’s in the same day over and over with no tomorrows. He also becomes adventurous knowing that there’s basically no consequences for anything that he does. He can literally do whatever the hell he wants because he knows he’ll start the same day over and over once midnight comes.

There’s a scene in the diner where he drinks an entire pot of coffee and eats all of the pastries in the diner while he’s smoking. He robs an armor truck. He jumps off a building. He drives a truck over a cliff intentionally. He drives a car on the train tracks and gets into a police chase and spends a night in jail. Of course, only one night because the same day just starts over for him once midnight comes. He also starts to get involved with his producer Rita ( played by the adorable Andie McDowell ) who doesn’t like him and sees him as an egocentric selfish jerk. And spends each Groundhog Day learning about her and what she likes and is interested in and changes his behavior and interests just to get her to like him.

I prefer movies that are realistic, with great actors, great plot, cover original great writing, with clever wit with a cast that is also witty but can act as well. Groundhog Day has all of that except for the realism. Unless again we’re talking about one man with a really strange dream while he’s asleep that no one else could possibly know about. Groundhog Day is that 100 minute escape from reality when people simply just need an entertaining break and time to escape and is a very entertaining and very funny movie.

Classic Movies Trailer Vault: Groundhog Day 1993- Trailer

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Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

If there is one thing that you can give Donald Trump credit for as far as the strength of the American economy, its all the jobs that have been created in the comedy industry simply because of The Donald and his crazy narcissistic irresponsible behavior. George W. Bush, was great for comedy. Bill Clinton, was great for comedy,. Ronald Reagan was great for comedy. Jimmy Carter was great for comedy. But they are all minor players as far as their affects on the comedy industry, in comparison to Donald Trump. They would be like the Toledo Mud Hens in comparison to the Detroit Tigers. One is a AAA minor league club, the Tigers are obviously a major league club.

Alec Baldwin is one of the top and most popular comedians in America now. I’ve always seen him as a very funny man and someone who was great with wisecracks before. Very similar to Tom Hanks, but now Baldwin is one of the most popular and visible comedians in America simply because he plays President Donald Trump on Saturday Night Live. Which is probably still the most popular comedy show on TV. Donald Trump is obviously not the most popular man in America. I mean to be the most popular man in America with a 32% approval rating, means most of the country is either in a coma or you have a hell of a lot haters in the country who hates practically everybody. Perhaps the average American suffers from depression and hates everything that they see.

But Donald Trump is probably the most visible American in America, if not the world and when he makes an ass out of himself and generally he doesn’t go a day without doing that, the comedy industry both right and left and generally left, pick up on that and run with it. And Alec Baldwin has made a new career at literally making fun of and impersonating President Donald Trump. The man should be sending President Trump a Christmas card everyday of the year. Because Trump has been horrible for the country, at least according to his approval ratings and how he’s seen around the world, but he’s been great for Alec Baldwin and the broader comedy industry.

Politics and Prose: Alec Baldwin and Kurt Anderson- Alec Baldwin as Donald Trump

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Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

I haven’t read Denis Leary’s book so I can’t get you any real analysis of it whatsoever. But I was alive, conscience, and in America, for the entire time in 2016. Except when I wasn’t sleeping, which is any longer than the average American sleeps. And I can tell you about Suck Bowl 2016 (which is what I call the Donald Trump-Hillary Clinton presidential election) and why it was the worst presidential election we’ve ever seen.

I voted for Hillary Clinton for president and would do again million straight times, if her opponent is Donald Trump or anyone else who is as unqualified to even be a back benching member of the House of Representatives, let alone President of the United States. Ot is as immature, thin skinned, unread, lacking in intelligence, knowledge, and curiosity about how the U.S. Government works, narcissistic, dishonest, as a Donald Trump or anyone else with those same characteristics. That are the only reasons why I voted for her.

Not because I’m a fan of Hillary Clinton. I basically see her as a well-meaning intelligent person, who wants to do a good job. And if it wasn’t for this Thanksgiving grocery shopping list of reasons why I don’t like her, I could vote for her because I believe in her and believe she would do a great job. We’re talking about a major presidential nominee who has been thinking about being President of the United States, at least since she was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2001, and yet didn’t seem to have any vision of why she should be President and what her campaign was about. Other than that she’s a well-educated, rich yuppie New Yorker, who is also a feminist and a Democrat. Which is why the rich cool people should vote for her. And that she’s also a woman and would be the worst female President of the United States. Well, most of the rich cool people did vote for Hillary and she still lost states that no Democrat has lost since 1988. Pennsylvania and Michigan.

So you have the baggage of Hillary Clinton. Well some of the baggage. How about her lack of candor and genuineness and ability to make a statement that doesn’t sound like it was poll tested or that some who works for her told her to say. Which killed her in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Ohio, probably Florida as well, states where she was heavily favored going in. What those voters saw in Donald Trump was at least someone who seems to say what he thinks, at least at the time. Even if he changes his position five minutes later after hearing what Breitbart or some other Far-Right publication or organization thinks about it. But Trump came off as real and says what’s on his mind. Instead of someone who seems to say whatever the polls are telling him are popular at the time.

This is why I call the 2016 presidential election Suck Bowl 2016. Perhaps the the two worst presidential candidates you could imagine running against each other. One, who might be a good public servant, but who is a horrible politician at least in the sense that she lacks any ability to communicate a vision for the country and what her presidency would be like and why people should vote for her. Against a natural politician at least in the sense of someone who can bring voters behind him and be able to speak to them. But who is a horrible public servant simply because he doesn’t believe in public service. His idea of service is serving himself. And some people are still wondering why Americans at least say they hate American politics and don’t like American politicians.

Politics and Prose: Jonathan Martin Interviewing Denis Leary- “Why We Don’t Suck”

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Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

What Socialists don’t like about Libertarians and libertarianism, is that Libertarians have this inane idea (according to Socialists) that people should be allowed to make a good living and then be able to live off of those rewards. The fruits of their labor, to sound like a cheeseball.

What the Christian-Right and now Christian-Nationalists (who voted for Donald Trump) don’t like about Libertarians and libertarianism is that Libertarians have this crazy idea (according to the Christian-Right) that people have property rights and that extends to their homes and their bodies. And that people should be able to live their own lives as they see fit, short of hurting innocent people. Even if that offends the religious and moral values of the Christian-Right.

What I don’t like about the Libertarian-Right, well their a few things and I guess I could name them all. But they claim to be against big government and government interference and yet they tend to sound more like they’re anti-government all together. That they see America as some deserted island where there’s almost no evidence of life and all of these people show up all the sudden and over the years and create a new society short of having any government.

The so-called Anarcho-Libertarians, seem to believe that arresting suspects as part of a criminal investigation, is somehow a form of kidnapping. That if someone wrongs you its up to that person to get justice for themselves. Instead of relying on a law enforcement department to handle that for you. Because if we have public law enforcement and government, that would require taxes to fund those agencies. That putting convicted murderers, to use as an example who are actually guilty of murdering the people they were convicted for, that putting them in prison for their crimes, somehow violated the murderer’s rights. Someone who believes that comes from another planet and perhaps is just on Earth for a visit. Perhaps to see what the real world looks like.

Conservative-Libertarians like the Barry Goldwater’s from back in the day, Senator Rand Paul and a few others in Congress today, P.J. O’Rourke, those Libertarians I can respect, because they’re not Anarchists, but Libertarians. They want a government limited to only doing for the people what we can’t do for ourselves. And not messing around in other countries affairs. And also they sound like sane intelligent people who base their politics from this crazy word called reason. And not sounding like escaped mental patients, who’ve been on nothing but marijuana and alcohol, since they fled from the institution.

And I could also talk about how conspiratorial Libertarians tend to be and how they resemble the Socialist-Left in America and how dovish they are and blaming Lyndon Johnson for the JFK assassination. Libertarians are supposed to hate Socialists and socialism, and yet they sleep in the same bed at the same time with Socialists when arguing about all of these conspiracy theories. Like the JFK assassination, but arguing that 9/11 was an inside job and I could go on. Just look at Alex Jones website if you want more.

Or the antisemitism and even racism that Libertarians have expressed against non-Europeans in America and how now a faction of the Libertarian-Right is now part of the Alt-Right. The Stefan Molyneaux’s and others who claim to be Libertarians, but have argued that immigration is somehow a threat to the European-American culture. As well as some Libertarians arguing at least in the past and again something they have in common with the Socialist-Left in America and people like socialist author and writer Noam Chomsky, that America is largest terrorist state in the world and perhaps the only international terrorist organization in the world.

As a Liberal I’m all about (to use a cliche from the 2000s) getting and keeping big government out of my wallets and bedroom. The whole notion of being an adult (who is not currently incarcerated) is that you get to make your own personal and economic decisions, but then have to deal with the consequences of our actions. We don’t need a national, or even state, or local, religious leader or nanny statist, babysitting free adults.

So again, I respect the Rand Paul’s Jeff Flake’s, Ron Johnson’s, Justin Amash’s, and others in Congress. These are all Republicans by the way in the Senate and House. But the Alt-Right that is part of the Libertarian-Right and the anarcho wing of the Libertarian-Right, they can sound just as crazy as the Socialist-Left. Perhaps as if they did time with them in an institution. And when the crazies become the faces of your movement, your movement loses credibility and the ability to be taken seriously in American politics.

The Independent Institute: P.J. O’Rourke- The Outlook: How Things Look From Here

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Sunset Boulevard

Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

I don’t like using the word-perfect that often, because perfect is almost never seen and heard of, but Sunset Boulevard along with North by Northwest, is about as close to a perfect movie as anyone could ever see.

Great plot about a young almost wannabe screenwriter who at this point is desperate for work, so he can make his car payment. Whose on the run from repossessors and stops off at what he believes is an abandoned house only to discover that one of the top actress’s ever in Hollywood lives there. Which is how Joe Gillis (played by William Holden) meets Norma Desmond, (played by Gloria Swanson) otherwise they probably never meet each other. Joe Gillis, is considering giving up Hollywood and going back to Ohio and getting a blue-collar job. Norma Desmond, hasn’t worked in a while and the Hollywood studios no longer want her.

Norma Desmond, finds out that Joe Gillis is a Hollywood writer, struggling at that and owes three months back rent on his apartment, as well as a car he can’t afford. She knows he needs money, which is what she has plenty of and needs a job, which she has one for him. She’s not working now as an actress and doesn’t have any roles coming her way and decides to write her own script and get back into movies that way. And hires Joe to be his proofreader and to fix up her script so someone would take it and make a movie from it. Joe, is not impressed with the script so far, but believes he can work with it. Still has friends in Hollywood and has one his friends Betty Schaefer (played by Nancy Olson) help him rewrite the script and they work on it together.

Norma Desmond, is lonely and desperate to get back into movies and doesn’t want to live off her royalties and investments. She wants Joe to perhaps help her get back into the movies, but what I at least believe she’s looking for is male companionship and believes her script will get her back into movies. I don’t think it is ever clear that she thinks Joe Gillis, someone who she’s never heard of who can’t afford either his apartment or car and hasn’t worked in a while, is a talented writer and someone who has a future in Hollywood. Joe, needs a job obviously as well as money and I see them as basically using each other to meet their short-term interests. I don’t see them as a writing team that is going to write their own movie together.

Gloria Swanson, has just turned 50 at this point and so has her character in Sunset Boulevard. But Hollywood already sees her has washed up and way past her prime. Gives you an idea of how Hollywood sees the world different at least in the 1940s and 1950s than the rest of us. And in many ways this movie is pretty sad, because it shows how Hollywood treats its stars once they believe they no longer have any use for them and almost treat them like strangers and as people they don’t want to be seen with anymore. Gloria Swanson, is her beautiful and brilliant self now playing someone who s past her prime, but as an actress she still has everything going for her and is still the star of the movie. Bill Holden, is his usual charming and even funny self who mixes in clever humor in a very serious if not dark and depressing, but a great movie.
Paramount Movies: Sunset Blvd. 1950 Trailer

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Black Friday

Source: The Richest: The Worst Black Friday Disasters

Black Friday, the official start of the Christmas shopping season in America and as someone who has some experience working in retail I know how crazy it can be. It is that one day of the year where Americans can go crazy and not look crazy, because they must have whatever the current OMG product is out there. Generally having something to do with new technology. And if they don’t get that product, they’ll look like so old school, or 2014 or whatever the year is compared with people who already have that new smart phone, iPad, or whatever the hell it is. It is that one day of the year that people find great deals on stuff that they don’t need and buy it. To wake up the next day to figure out they don’t want or need whatever the thing is that they just found a great deal on. And besides, what they just bought is already old school compared with whatever the latest thing is.

It is that day of the year where people can camp out the night before so they’re in at Best Buy, Macy’s, or whatever the store is, the second it opens and be able to buy whatever they think they’re looking for at that second, to find out they don’t want it, or need it when they get home. Or perhaps its a present and they think to them self, “why would this person want this.” Black Friday, is 21st Century pop and valley culture gone wild, where everyone has that one day to be more like whatever their favorite current celebrity is until they find a new one the next day. Despite all the stupidity that comes from Black Friday with all the faddism that comes from it, as someone smart once said and I’m paraphrasing, but that idiots are useful. Black Friday, puts money in people’s wallets, saves people money if they spend their money wisely on stuff they can actually use and need and it also creates a lot of jobs. Things that we still need a lot of as a country.

For Social Justice Warriors, (speaking of useful idiots) Black Friday is not a racist holiday. It is not some racial slur at African-Americans and anyone else of African descent. It is also not some day that promotes economic greed and the weakness’ of private enterprise, capitalism and corporate greed. It is a great use to the American economy, because it creates jobs and keeps business’s successful. It puts money in average Americans wallets and saves money for a lot of Americans who spend the day wisely. Yes, private business’s end up doing very well on this day, but that’s called private enterprise and capitalism. And workers and consumers don’t do well when business’s don’t do well. These things go together. And someone not a fan of this system should explain what they would do differently. Perhaps try to find some state-run business that has real competition that does well on Black Friday. Or Rainbow Friday, or whatever the politically correct term would be for it.

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