Posts Tagged ‘Transformers’
* More details on a very sad story: UCLA Student Shot Professor Over Grades Before Killing Himself, Say Police. UPDATE: The shooter was a PhD student.
* And for those who need it: some back-of-the-envelope calculations about your chances of being shot on campus.
* I have a number of other reasons for believing Trump’s alleged wealth is basically a fraud – not my own reporting but piecing together various details from the reporting of others and things that have happened during this campaign. But one point Cuban references is key. Trump hasn’t built a high-rise building in decades. He moved into licensing as his main business about fifteen or twenty years ago. If you’re worth $10 billion do you waste time on Trump Steaks? Trump University? Of course not. That speaks to someone who’s fairly strapped and needs every new revenue stream he can get. Still fabulously rich by mortal standards. But not running a thriving company worth $10 billion.
* Huge, if true: Race, Gender Biggest Differentiators in Views of Clinton, Trump.
* At least five times in the past year, the candidate who is now the Republican nominee for president has implied that certain public officials are suspect, or are acting against the national interest, because they or their family members are Latino.
* The results, the IMF researchers concede, have been terrible. Neoliberalism hasn’t delivered economic growth – it has only made a few people a lot better off. It causes epic crashes that leave behind human wreckage and cost billions to clean up, a finding with which most residents of food bank Britain would agree. And while George Osborne might justify austerity as “fixing the roof while the sun is shining”, the fund team defines it as “curbing the size of the state … another aspect of the neoliberal agenda”. And, they say, its costs “could be large – much larger than the benefit”.
* Would It Be That Bad If the New Star Trek TV Series Was Set in the Reboot Universe? No true fan would even ask that.
* For the completist, the cast of Hello from the Magic Tavern was on Improv Nerd recently and even did a little bit from Foon-30 (the dimension where Chunt is a wolverine).
* My new Plan B: Duo used stolen cash to buy winning $1M lottery ticket.
After a Death
Once there was a shock
that left behind a long, shimmering comet tail.
It keeps us inside. It makes the TV pictures snowy.
It settles in cold drops on the telephone wires.
One can still go slowly on skis in the winter sun
through brush where a few leaves hang on.
They resemble pages torn from old telephone directories.
Names swallowed by the cold.
It is still beautiful to hear the heart beat
but often the shadow seems more real than the body.
The samurai looks insignificant
beside his armor of black dragon scales.
The 2011 Nobel Prize in Literature has been awarded to Takara-Tomy, creator of the Transformers. I think I have that right.
The Army’s cross-promotional deal with X-Men: First Class lays bare the military’s increasing reliance on the science fiction genre as the prime narrative medium through which to sell itself. The new recruitment films are not the critically acclaimed Restrepo or even The Hurt Locker(whose DoD support was revoked at the last minute), but rather Battle: Los Angeles (a conventional combat film—with aliens!) andTransformers 2, promoted as the “largest joint-military movie ever made.” Unlike recent films about Iraq and Afghanistan, contemporary science fiction films show our armed forces heroically fighting the good fight against intergalactic enemies, killer cars, or nuclear-toting mutants. More importantly, perhaps, science fiction reintroduces wonder and spectacle to typical recruitment strategies that media-savvy young audiences distrust, tune out, or scoff at.
Via Twitter: How X-Men markets the military.
* Dollhouse tease: Joss will write and direct the premiere.
* Transformers FAQ. Spoiler alert:
I am already incredibly sick of this movie, and I’m just typing questions about it. Sam resurrects Optimus, Optimus kills the Fallen, end of story, right?
Pretty close. Sam dies, though.
Yeah, for a little while. But then the Transformers in heaven send him back because he still has work to do.
Fuck you. There’s no way.
It’s true. The 6-7 Primes are there in the clouds like Mufasa’s head in The Lion King, and tell Sam he’s awesome and he needs to live again so he can bring Optimus back to life.
* MMORGS and sociology: “City of Heroes character ‘Twixt’ becomes game’s most hated outcast courtesy of Loyola professor.” Via MeFi.
* “Judgment Day,” famous anti-racist EC comic from 1953, controversial in its day, at Comics Should Be Good:
Monday procrastination sensations.
* The Burnt-out Adjunct has some advice at Inside Higher Ed about the difference between adjuncts, add-junks, and instructors.
* 3 Quarks Daily has some thoughts from Timothy Fongon on building a viable American left:
Only about 25 percent of US citizens hold a passport. (See 2007 population data here and number of Americans with passports here.) A majority of Americans have never travelled overseas. Thus, any movement which makes appeals primarily on the basis of universalist/internationalist rhetoric is likely to have an audience significantly smaller than the majority of the US population.
The whole essay strongly echoes a proclamation from the C.L.R. James I was reading just last night: “To Bolshevize America it is necessary to Americanize Bolshevism.”
* A Feministe guestblogger describes the difficulties in filling out forms when one is transgender. The thread also introduces me to a term I’ve missed up to now, cisgender, denoting someone whose gender identity is aligned with their biological sex—which means I can now describe the forms Queen Emily discusses as cisnormative (which they are—no need for little boxes with prescribed answers when you could just have a blank line).
* Nate Silver gets a little more pragmatic with a close look at how a climate bill can get 60 votes in the Senate. He’s also got a post on Sarah Palin’s appeal that, for my money, misses what’s so terrifying about Palin: (1) the clear sense that the right is building itself a second George W. Bush out of identitarian resestment, sloganeering, faux folksy charm, and hero worship, and (2) that it already worked once.
* Steve Benen has your bogus Obama scandal roundup.
Walpin was all the rage in conservative circles, right up until the “controversy” appeared baseless, and White House detractors were forced to move on.
But notice how this has happened quite a bit in the very young Obama administration. Remember when conservatives were convinced that the White House was closing car dealerships based on owners’ political contributions? Or how about the not-so-scandalous Department of Homeland Security report about potentially violent extremists, which prompted some conservatives to call for Napolitano’s resignation? Or about the EPA economist whose bizarre memo on global cooling was “suppressed”?
All of these caused widespread apoplexy among rabid anti-Obama activists. And all of these quickly fell apart after minimal scrutiny.
* And Michael Chabon has a nice essay in The New York Review of Books about the wilderness of childhood set against both adult nostalgia for the freedom of youth and contemporary overparenting and child endangerment hysteria. But the headline (“Manhood for Amateurs”) is wrong under the article’s own terms:
This is a mistaken notion, in my view. People read stories of adventure—and write them—because they have themselves been adventurers. Childhood is, or has been, or ought to be, the great original adventure, a tale of privation, courage, constant vigilance, danger, and sometimes calamity. For the most part the young adventurer sets forth equipped only with the fragmentary map—marked here there be tygers and mean kid with air rifle—that he or she has been able to construct out of a patchwork of personal misfortune, bedtime reading, and the accumulated local lore of the neighborhood children.
Sloppy work from the editor there.