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WorldMapper: Take A Look At The World…

By on Jan 31, 2007 in Graphics, Media, Politics | 0 comments

In case you haven’t run into it, WorldMapper is an absolutely wonderful resource. It is, to quote the blurb, “a collection of world maps, where territories are re-sized on each map according to the subject of interest. 366 maps and PDF posters will be finished by February 2007.” – It’s a huge, and I mean huge eye opener. Wander around. Look. See. A good introductory article to the whole thing can be found here.

Get Carter…

By on Jan 21, 2007 in Media, Politics | 0 comments

I’m no big fan of Jimmy, and I’ve always had trouble with some of the formulations reached under his Camp David negotiations with the late Egyptian President Anwar El Sadat – who I’m also not a big fan of… “Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid” certainly didn’t get a second glance from me when I first heard of its release – after all – he is a former president and an old man with questionable political influence and, it seemed to me, a title featuring a word that has been etched into my head over years of viewing the Zionist offensive on Palestine and the Palestinians and thus comes as no surprise. For years, anybody who’s paid the slightest bit of attention knows about the Palestinian crops destroyed, the Palestinian exports left to rot, the Palestinian homes pulverized by bulldozers provided by Caterpillar, the Palestinian...

From Ali G. To Borat – It’s STILL Not Funny…

By on Nov 14, 2006 in Media, Politics | 13 comments

I first saw an Ali G. show years ago. I laughed. I didn’t laugh much, but I did laugh once, as I ‘got’ the joke, and then something spectacularly simple happened; I no longer found it funny. Sacha Baron Cohen was, and continues to be, a one trick pony; 1 ) lie to people, 2) subject them to a false premise conducted by somebody pretending to be even more stupid than he really is, and 3) watch them get initially frustrated by the sheer idiocy put on display, before 4) they finally grow annoyed as they realize that this is nothing but a cheap offensive waste of their time. That was Ali G then, and that, today, is Borat. Needless to say, since Sacha is such a one trick pony, he can never quite play the same place twice, such is notoriety. Thus, having pretty much beaten a dead horse to shreds across the ocean, he now comes to Amerika – where the audience has not yet...

What’s Wrong With Alan Shore?

By on Nov 2, 2006 in Media, Politics | 2 comments

Well, initially, nothing. Season 3 of Boston Legal, however, has put the character in grave danger. There are two reasons, not one, for why Alan Shore had been such a fascinating character in The Practice, and in the first episodes of Boston Legal. He had been (as he yet continues to be) quirky – and more importantly he had been (and by Season 3 he has lost this) – scary. This has been lost. We are no longer terrified at the extents to which Alan Shore might go in order to set things right. Alan Shore was the ultimate ‘egg breaker’ – when it came to omelette’s. In an episode of The Practice – he illegally obtains a document with which to effectively blackmail a pharmaceutical company into paying a settlement for a widow whose husband had apparently been driven suicidal by their drug. Her husband is dead, she has three children – Alan...

Wargames

By on Oct 9, 2006 in Media, Politics | 3 comments

[after playing out all possible outcomes for Global Thermonuclear War] Joshua: Greetings, Professor Falken.Stephen Falken: Hello, Joshua.Joshua: A strange game. The only winning move is not to play. How about a nice game of chess? Strangely powerful movie, having just re-watched it. It’s lost none of the power it had when I was a teenager and saw it for the first time. Granted, it was cheesier in retrospect, but the main idea is both powerful and on the dot, and the main sequence at the very end – when Joshua is going through all the possible scenarios is heart wrenching when considered in context. I wonder if this is what Gardner might have meant by moral fiction?...

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