Posts Tagged ‘Archie’
* The headline reads, “Student Loan Debt Delinquency Is Much Worse Than We Thought.”
We find that 27 percent of the borrowers have past due balances, while the adjusted proportion of outstanding student loan balances that is delinquent is 21 percent-much higher than the unadjusted rates of 14.4 percent and 10 percent, respectively
Meanwhile, college costs have sextupled since 1985.
* The Supreme Court looks prepared to rule that international law doesn’t apply internationally. Well done, sirs.
* Attorney General Eric Holder concludes no due process is a kind of due process. This whole “rule of law” thing is going great.
* Paul Pillar: We can live with a nuclear Iran. Of course we can.
The simple argument is that Iranian leaders supposedly don’t think like the rest of us: they are religious fanatics who value martyrdom more than life, cannot be counted on to act rationally, and therefore cannot be deterred. On the campaign trail Rick Santorum has been among the most vocal in propounding this notion, asserting that Iran is ruled by the “equivalent of al-Qaeda,” that its “theology teaches” that its objective is to “create a calamity,” that it believes “the afterlife is better than this life,” and that its “principal virtue” is martyrdom. Newt Gingrich speaks in a similar vein about how Iranian leaders are suicidal jihadists, and says “it’s impossible to deter them.”
The trouble with this image of Iran is that it does not reflect actual Iranian behavior. More than three decades of history demonstrate that the Islamic Republic’s rulers, like most rulers elsewhere, are overwhelmingly concerned with preserving their regime and their power—in this life, not some future one. They are no more likely to let theological imperatives lead them into self-destructive behavior than other leaders whose religious faiths envision an afterlife. Iranian rulers may have a history of valorizing martyrdom—as they did when sending young militiamen to their deaths in near-hopeless attacks during the Iran-Iraq War in the 1980s—but they have never given any indication of wanting to become martyrs themselves. In fact, the Islamic Republic’s conduct beyond its borders has been characterized by caution. Even the most seemingly ruthless Iranian behavior has been motivated by specific, immediate concerns of regime survival. The government assassinated exiled Iranian dissidents in Europe in the 1980s and ’90s, for example, because it saw them as a counterrevolutionary threat. The assassinations ended when they started inflicting too much damage on Iran’s relations with European governments. Iran’s rulers are constantly balancing a very worldly set of strategic interests. The principles of deterrence are not invalid just because the party to be deterred wears a turban and a beard.
On the other side, of course, we have the not-at-all-fascistic-sounding slogan “peace through strength.” Occupy Everywhere? What could possibly go wrong?
* Matt Zoller Seitz on what makes Mad Men great.
Marquez: Thank you very much. All things considered, I think that if I were Japanese I would be as unyielding as you on [the subject of the bomb]. And at any rate I understand you. No war is good for anybody.
Kurosawa: That is so. The trouble is that when the shooting starts, even Christ and the angels turn into military chiefs of staff.
* How Goldman Sachs does it: they’re on every side of every deal.
* Archie Comics continues to insist on its own relevance: now they’re giving Cheryl Blossom breast cancer.
* And exactly how long ago was a long time ago in a galaxy far away? io9 is there.
Great Unknown, Han and Chewbacca are forced to make a jump to hyperspace to flee Imperial attackers. (OK yes, we know it’s non-canonical, but this is a thought experiment so just bear with us.) The Millennium Falcon crash lands on Earth, where Han and Chewbacca are attacked by Native Americans. Han receives several arrow wounds in the process, and Chewbacca holds his partner as the last bit of life flees from him. The second half of the story leaps 126 years into the future, with Indiana Jones and Short Round searching for Sasquatch in the forests of the Pacific Northwest, only to find Chewbacca and the bones of Han Solo.
* Surprising no one, Pew has found that atheists and agnostics know more about religion than religious people.
* And Jim DeMint has triggered the Senate’s doomsday device. The greatest democracy in the history of the world! The system works!
* “The worldwide triumph of capitalism … secures the priority of Marxism as the ultimate horizon of thought in our time”: Benjamin Kunkel reviews Fredric Jameson in LRB.
* Archie Comics will soon be introducing its first openly gay character, “strapping, blond Kevin.”
* If you were trying to persuade me to support the climate bill, you picked the absolute worst possible approach.
* The ACLU explains everything that’s wrong with Arizona’s brazenly unconstitutional documentation legislation.
* Julian Sanchez has been doing an influential series of posts about epistemic closure on the right.
* And some breaking news: Jay Leno sucks.
* This ruling of Sotomayor’s, it must be said, was a little douchebaggy.
* Republicans who happily sat through three-and-a-half years of Bush vacations are outraged! that Obama took a night off.
* Non-Whedon directors for the Buffy reboot. Wes Anderson snubbed again, though I bet Tarantino could do a good job with it.
Umberto Eco writes in “The Myth of Superman” of the way superhero comics need to suspend time in order to function as consumer goods, perpetually staving off any movement towards the end of the narrative (and, thus, death) by refusing to allow the hero to progress, change, or even begin one story where the last left off. Among the things superheroes cannot do, he says, is marry or have children—and Eco’s not the only one who feels this way.
After sixty years of playing the field, Archie is about to defy this logic.
How could it be anyone but Betty?
Sorry about No-Post Monday; my summer course starts tomorrow and I’m scrambling to get everything ready. I have a few links before I declare this No Post Tuesday.
* Eliza Dushku is twittering that Dollhouse renewal talks are going on as we speak. A better indication than if they weren’t.
* Miscellaneous Star Trek links:
* A fairly well-known story about TOS and MLK.
* Ultimately, then, “Star Trek” was prescient not for its futurism, with the Enterprise crew using communicators that look like flip-phones, but for exploring a universe absorbed with pop-culture history. David Hadju on Star Trek and popular culture.
* Continuity errors as honeypot.
* “Star Trek sucked so bad I can’t even think of a title for my rant.”
* Larry David is Woody Allen as Larry David in Whatever Works.
* And some sad news: Craig Arnold is now believed to have died while traveling in Japan.
Archie Comics misguided tokenism update: Mina Lee.
A frail albino Korean girl who was the only one to see Reggie’s soft side. Reggie showed a more compasionate and humble self to her and bought her a pet caiman for her. She named it Reji in honour of Reggie. Mina is very into reptiles and dreams of owning a humane menagerie when she is older. Archie once met her and he was confused as to what she saw in Reggie. Mina is very shy but quirky and interesting. Her family speaks Korean at home and she often says a few Korean pet names to Reggie (usually strange names, like “Sweet Lizard” and “Iguana Love”). She was expelled after she brought Reji to school with her and it is unknown if she will reappear.
Also via MeFi.
Out-Raj-ous. I’m offended less by the transparently cynical attempt to “diversify” Riverdale High by adding token characters like Raj Patel, Chuck Clayton, and “Veronica’s friend Ginger Lopez” and more by the idea that there’s anyone anywhere buying Archie Comics in 2007.
According to Ruiz, Raj has just moved into Riverdale High and likes sci-fi movies, building models and making films. And, he’s just as impulsive as Archie.
Coming up with Raj’s look was one of the biggest challenges of creating the whole character. I wanted a character that reflected his background without looking like a caricature and still fit in seamlessly with the other characters.
Ruiz has given Raj a perky appearance. He’s a bit smaller than most of Riverdale’s males. His lively, optimistic personality is portrayed as much through his wardrobe, bedroom and expressive face, as it is through his words.
As for the rest of the family, there aren’t much background details but they do look good. Raj’s father Ravi Patel is a doctor and his character is along the lines of Mr Lodge, only younger and Indian.
Thank God they aren’t caricatures. Via MeFi.