Friday, September 25, 2015

Yes, this is really happening

One of the six, steel-jacketed bullets that killed her slammed through a theater seat, entered her left eye and left a five-inch hole in her face as it blew her brains out on to the theater floor. The other five specially designed bullets tumbled when they tore through her flesh and did devastating damage to both legs, arms and intestines.

Lonnie and Sandy Phillips lost their daughter in the mass shooting at a Colorado Theater. They sued the asshats who sold the insane killer his ammo. Now this poor grieving couple has to pay the gun nut dickwads  $200k .

I feel ill

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Glenn Beck

Holy hell is Glenn Beck stupid. Evil too, but mostly just stupid. He has another very stupid idea.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Sunday, September 20, 2015

The linkage went out, so we replaced it

Some tasty links for your enjoyment:

Bernie Sanders and Eugene V. Debs

Trump and Carson (and no, neither will be hurt by this. Bigots don't drop a candidate for being a bigot)

The media and justice

Lies and Liars (and iCarly isn't even the worst of them - the GOP field is built on lies)

Is Biden running? Who the fuck knows?

The only "poll" Rand Paul is likely to win. Seriously, when is this emptiest of suits going to drop out?

Republicans are worried about Trump.   
 (note: http://www.electoral-vote.com/ is back up and running. This is a must read site during elections).

The Birthday problem (just because)

Chess in the movies


That is all!

Semen flavors up the coffee, and makes you think you’re having a good time

Somehow I missed this when it the news first broke. I don't know how, but it slipped right under my radar...

“The thing that I was not aware of is that… what Starbucks was doing, is they were taking specimens of male semen…”“… and they were putting it in the blends of their lattes. It’s the absolute truth. They’re using male semen, and putting it into the blends of coffees that they sell. My suspicion is that they’re getting their semen from sodomites. Semen flavors up the coffee, and makes you think you’re having a good time.”

Yup. Starbucks has been putting jizz in your coffee. At least, that's what one crazy man claims.  Wow.

We all know that if you blow your load on the ground, god will kill you. I'm not sure what the punishment for coming in coffee is, though.  I better ask a Xtian.

Salon on Bernie

Salon has a great article about Bernie Sanders. Here's a taste:


He has a few favorite stats he likes to deploy to illustrate the scope of the problem, starting with the fact that in America, the top one-tenth of 1 percent owns almost as much wealth as the bottom 90 percent. He hammers this message home as his rabid crowds rage along: One family, the Waltons, owns more wealth than the bottom 40 percent; the 14 wealthiest individuals have added $156 billion to their fortunes in the past two years, which is more than the combined assets of the bottom 130 million Americans; 56 percent of all new income goes to the top 1 percent; the Koch brothers, as a result of the Citizens United decision, will spend more money on the 2016 election than either Republicans or Democrats.

Later the article details an "Aaron Sorkin moment":

What unfolded next, in a classic Sanders monologue, might have been the closest thing I’ve seen to an Aaron Sorkin script playing out in real life. He pointedly faced the camera, as if choosing to speak directly to the people rather than the corrupt media standing between them, and rattled off an improvised defense.
“I’ve been in office for 25 years,” he began. “As a candidate for mayor of Burlington, I became the first independent ever elected in the city’s history by taking on the entire ruling class of the city of Burlington? Does that sound like a career politician? When I began my political career, I got 2 percent of the vote, and then 1 percent of the vote. Last election, I got 71 percent of the vote. Running for office, representing working people, taking on Wall Street, taking on the military-industrial complex, taking on private insurance companies, taking on pharmaceutical industry. I don’t think that makes me a career politician—I think that makes me a candidate who is standing up for working people and prepared to take on the big-money interests in this country.”

The entire article is a must read for Sanders acolytes, Hillary Followers, zombies who plan to vote for one of the GOP scumballs and anyone else. 

iCarly for president?

Sadly, no. People (brain damaged people, I assume) see Carly Fiorina as a credible candidate for president. It's hard to imagine why. She has never held elective office.  She ran once, but Barbara Boxer kicked her ass all the way to Arizona.  Sure, she can point to her time in the private sector, where she failed at everything she tried.


This the woman who almost destroyed HP (and got paid millions of dollars for putting tens of thousands of workers out of a job). Useless parasite is the term that comes to mind.


Carly Fiorina is an idiot, and unserious person without the skills or talent needed to survive in the real world where one must have an actual job. She is trying to climb aboard the grift train of the GOP.

More on this lying asshat  grifter scum can be found here, here, here, here, here and, well, everywhere. Just look at the internet. Everyone knows that she is a useless, lying, grifter.





The Good thing about Trump



It may be hard to believe that we here at magazine of the Dead see an upside to Donald Trump, but we do. We really do. This isn’t snark or satire. There is one (and only one) good thing about Donald Trump. What is it, you ask? It is this:

Donald Trump already has all the money and he is totally insane. These two things combine to make him not for sale. He does not take contributions. He does not raise money. He doesn’t need more money, and if he does he has more income streams than he can likely remember. The Koch cabal cannot purchase Mr Trump. His insane policies are the ones brewed up in the rotten meat of his mind, not those pushed by the other plutocrats.

He scares the crap out of us, but at least we can see that one upside.

That is likely the last quasi good thing we will say about the TRUMP

Saturday, September 19, 2015

The Green Inferno

This clip brings back the gut wrenching feel of Cannibal Holocaust and so many others. Eli Roth, you sir, will get my dollars soon.


Rooster: Spurs of Death - A Review

Just so you’ll know what sort of mad man you’re dealing with, let me explain that I spent quite some time trying to find a copy of this movie. I have longed to see Rooster: Spurs of Death for quite some time. Finally, after months of fruitless searching, a friend came through with a pirated copy. Now, so that you don’t think I’m completely insane, let me explain my reasons for wanting to see this film.
Rooster was filmed in my neck of the woods, south-east Kansas (I was being literal when I said woods). That fact alone makes it worth my time.



Rooster has been described as “the touching story of the bond that forms between father and son, over the sport of cock fighting”. I’m not kidding here. This is really what the film makers had in mind. Where I live, cock fighting is an unfortunate reality. It’s been illegal for years, but it still goes on. I can drive up the highway from my house, and see the fighting roosters chained to their barrel houses. Everybody knows what these birds are being raised for. Nobody does anything about it.
The film opens with a bit of narration telling us about the “long and proud history of cock fighting”. Then we meet Stoke (Gene Bicknell). Stoke is an old “cocker”, about to head out to a big cock fighting derby. His son, Wyatt (Vince Van Patten, who you may have seen in Rock N Roll High school, as well as other real movies) is going with him. Wyatt is going to be involved for the first time.

The film turns into a road movie for a bit, being made up largely of protracted shots of a pick up truck cruising down dirt roads, inter cut with Stoke telling Wyatt outrageous stories of his youth. We are given a sub plot about Stoke’s wife, who may be having an affair with a big city “cocker” named Clure. We are also given a subplot about Chicken, a midget in love with Kink’s daughter. Kink (Jeff Corey, another real actor who has appeared in a variety of films including Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid) is the man in charge of the cock fighting. He spews forth ridiculous dialogue, mostly meant to justify the brutality that makes his living.

Then we arrive. Well, first there’s an interlude at a house of ill-repute (I), then we arrive. Much deception and cheating lead to Stoke attempting to rob everyone at the cock fight and (watch out now, I’m going to give away the store here, so if you don’t want to know how it ends, stop reading here) then Stoke ends up dead. Shot by Chicken. Wyatt wants to finish the robbery, Clure tries to stop him. I lose track of how it came out. I can’t decide if the ending was supposed to have a point or not.
The film uses real footage of cock fighting (they must have filmed those scenes in Oklahoma, where it’s still legal). These sequences are a bit rough to watch. Cock fighting is a barbaric, cruel, and inane pastime. In a real cock fighting arena you would not see the sort of attractive, well heeled men the film portrays. Real cockers tend to be toothless, ignorant, inbred, middle aged men who are sexually excited by cruelty. A large number of them are likely to have spent some time in prison for violent crimes. Often sexually sadistic acts. This only makes sense. Sadism, is sadism. Anyone who enjoys torturing animals will eventually get around to torturing people.

This movie is filled with scenery chewing. The overacting is nearly as difficult to watch as the cock fighting. Between the actors there is enough false melodrama to fill the grand canyon. The direction is bland. This film was shot largely like a cheap made for TV movie. It has no style, and no substance.



The script is preposterous. I’ve heard better dialogue in porn.

The film also suffers from incredible padding. It runs ninety-two minutes. Minus the long shots of the same truck going down the same dirst road, and the endless sequences of a plane landing, taxiing, taking off, landing again, this movie would run about sixty-eight minutes. This film is padded like a Jr High school girl’s bra.

So, even if we ignore the ethical problems this film suffers from (and those problems are legion), it is simply bad. This is one of the worst movies I have ever seen. And I saw Cut Throat Island! So I’ve seen really bad movies. The film does contain some unintentional humor. It is ripe for MST3K style lampooning. However, even that could not make it an enjoyable experience.

I cannot recommend this film to anyone. It should be avoided at all cost. But then, you weren’t likely to see it in the first place.

The Hot Links

Here they are, careful though, they are hot!

Race Baiting Asshole

Gay Doritos and the Best Troll Ever!

Trump's Sense of Decency

MSNBC has a sad

Media and the Economy

Birtherism isn't going away

Bernie Sanders on Late Show with Stephen Colbert

Thems the links, son.


The economy Sucks

They keep saying that the economy is great, but most of us don't feel it.


If your entire understanding of the economy comes from headlines about the latest economic data, you would be forgiven for thinking these are the best of times. The unemployment rate is down to 5.1 percent, after all!
If your entire understanding of the economy comes from what is going on in financial markets, you would be forgiven for thinking the same. The stock market, its recent dip notwithstanding, is still not far from all-time highs!
That’s what makes the latest annual data on incomes, released by the Census Bureau on Wednesday morning, an important corrective.
The median American household in 2014 had a lower income, in inflation-adjusted terms, than it did in 2013. The $53,657 the household in the middle of the income distribution earned last year was down 1.5 percent from the year before, though the census said that shift was not statistically significant.
But even if that drop is a statistical blip and you assume that middle-class incomes were really flat, flat isn’t anything to celebrate in the current environment. The 2014 real median income number is 6.5 percent below its 2007, pre-crisis level. It is 7.2 percent below the number in 1999.
A middle-income American family, in other words, makes substantially less money in inflation-adjusted terms than it did 15 years ago. And there is no evidence that is reversing. Those families lost ground in 2014. And as we’ve reported previously, the data on wages in 2015 so far does not suggest there is a meaningful acceleration on the way.

Why Americans think the economy sucks

Real dollar incomes have shrunk. Inflation is much higher than the official number. Saving money is actually just throwing it away (near zero interest in a world with effective inflation). The economy is a disaster.

180 Seconds

You must see this video of Bernie Sanders!

The Surge

The Bernie Sanderssurge continues apace.  He leads by 22 ponts in New Hampshire and 10 points in Iowa. He is making some inroads in the national numbers as well. The Sanders campaign is focusing on great events all over the country.

Could these be the contenders for President?





I know which one I would choose.

And it aint the reality TV star. That's for damn sure.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Open letter to a creationist kid

At The Friendly Atheist there is an amazing open letter to a creationist. Here is a taste:

If you do lose your faith one day, know this: eventually, you stop being afraid of the demons. You stop being afraid of the fires of Hell. At some point, you will go home to an empty house and not worry that all of your loved ones have been raptured. Someday, you’ll just live, and love, with no restrictions, no fears, no rules from above. I’m making up the rules as I go, and that’s scary at times. But it’s okay.

You can read the rest of this touching letter here

Batman and Black Lives Matter

A while back we pointed out that Superman is a big old liberal and predicted that Batman would be next. Turns out we were right!

Batman confronts police racism! BAM!





The latest issue of DC Comics’ flagship Batman series throws itself headfirst into the agonizing conversations roiling America more than a year after Ferguson officer Darren Wilson killed 18-year old Michael Brown. The globally iconic superhero confronts racialized police brutality and its intersection with urban poverty and gentrification – problems Batman comes to realize he exacerbates in his secret identity as billionaire industrialist Bruce Wayne.

That's right, kids. Batman is taking on real world problems. Big liberal.

More on the story can be found at Daily Kos

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Stephenson - A Vampire Movie

Okay, this is something I want to see:



The Gospel According to Stephenson is a vampire movie with a secular message. I learned about it from The Friendly Atheist.

 The basic story concerns the appearance of what appears to be a supernatural being in our modern society — Stephenson — and how the worldview of the people he comes in contact with colors their perception of him.

    Those with a supernatural worldview — “The Believers” — see him as an evil being needing to be stopped in the name of God and morality. Those with a naturalistic world view — “The Skeptics” — see vampirism as a disease that needs to be understood, and if necessary, cured. The Believers call in armies of Christians armed with crosses, wooden stakes and holy water. The Skeptics call in reason and science in the form of the CDC.


Stephenson is possibly the first movie to deal with the vampire myth from a skeptical POV. It is going to be partially crowd funded, so you should chip in! Help make this happen!


Links? We don't need your dumb links!

These are the links

Scott Walker hates workers

Driftglass on Kathleen Parker

Cheney / Cotton 2016 !?!?!!??

Bernie over Hillary

Interest Rate Hikes

Yes, Republicans are this dumb: Romney 2016

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Hucka-Fucka-Shucka-Bee

Mike Huckabee sucks. He's full of the Jesus Jizz, which apparently means that you don't need empathy or humanity. He's a horror of a human being.

He seriously should go the fuck to hell. 



This "man" is the poster child for lousy religious people.  He cares not one wit for actual human beings who are starving, or being murdered but gets very worked up over zygotes. He jokes about being a pedophile, but hates gays. Nothing about him is good or of value to society.



Terrence Howard is all the way out of his entire mind

I am not joking.

After high school, he attended Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, studying chemical engineering, until he got into an argument with a professor about what one times one equals. “How can it equal one?” he said. “If one times one equals one that means that two is of no value because one times itself has no effect. One times one equals two because the square root of four is two, so what’s the square root of two? Should be one, but we’re told it’s two, and that cannot be.” This did not go over well, he says, and he soon left school. “I mean, you can’t conform when you know innately that something is wrong.”

Rolling Stone

Reading this interview, I kept wondering why the interviewer didn't excuse himself and slip off somewhere to make an emergency call? Seriously, Howard is disturbed and should be in a secure facility somewhere.

Seriously

Scott Walker is a Douche

I've probably mentioned it before, but it bears repeating: Scott Walker is a massive douche. This thick headed fuck thinks that putting people out of work, lowering wages, creating dangerous and hostile work environments and otherwise fucking the poor and working poor is just a good time. He is poorly skilled pimp in a cheap suit.




Now fuckbrain Walker wants to make people go without food, for their own good:

"For us, it's not a punitive thing, it's a progressive thing," Walker told The Huffington Post on Friday, following the first of several campaign stops in Iowa over the weekend.
"We're trying to help people who are in need of our assistance to get jobs," Walker said, "because the best thing we can do with them is to make sure they get the skills and education they need, and make sure they are drug free if they have an addiction, to get back in the workforce."

Take away the food stamps! An empty belly will incentivize hard work and the protestant ethic and blah!

Fuck this fucking fuck.

Scott Walker soon to be president of his own drug induced fever dream.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Everything that is wrong with America in one image

Offered without comment:



The rule of three



Populism has a dark side.  George Wallace was a populist. So was Benito Mussolini. Populism can run red with blood and dark with hatred. That is something that isn't always noticed.



Some have started to notice.

Others have known all along



Radical Owls!

Wonkette knows

I won't comment other than to say that right wing christians live in a very strange universe indeed.

Colbert and Black Lives Matter

Stephen Colbert is a reasonable man. As such, he supports humane causes. Recently he has taken to wearing a Black Lives Matter bracelet. Apparently, the slimebeasts that work at FOX NEWS do not approve. From Crooks and Liars:

In case you were unaware, the movement that was formed in support of all the Black lives that have been taken by law enforcement is too controversial and no one in the MSM should pledge their support. I figured that showing solidarity with a particular demographic, who has been clearly marginalized and targeted, is something anyone with human feelings could get behind. Apparently, the folks at Fox 'News' do not see any reason to support a cause if it is associated with equality, civil rights and ethnic groups other than Caucasian, and damn it, Stephen Colbert should know better.

the story

They quote Tucker Carlson (Neandertalis Moronis):

 So it's possible [Colbert] is so rich, famous, a celebrity guy, so totally out of touch he doesn't fully understand what that represents. But here is my concern, obviously Stephen Colbert is a talented character, but there is also a strain of self-righteousness in his comedy. I don't think it -- I mean, do you really want to get into this your first week on air, diving face first into the most divisive social movement in America?

Daily Kos has some reaction

It is so weird that these people think that somehow Colbert has injured his reputation by having empathy and humanity. Seriously, fuck these fucking fucks. 

Driving while black

Wonkette has a story about how a lady doctor got arrested because her husband used profanity in front of a cop. Wanna play let's guess her race? I'll give you three guesses and the first two don't count. Go.

Bernie Sanders Talks to the Xtians

Bernie Spoke at Liberty University.

"In my view there is no justice, and morality suffers, when in our country millions of children go to bed hungry," Sanders added. "That is not morality, and that, in my view, is not what America should be about." [...]"In my view there is no justice when thousand of Americans die every single year because they don't have any health insurance, and don't go to a doctor when they should," he said. "That is not justice. That is not morality. People should not be dying in the United States of America when they are sick."

His words should resonate with people who claim  to follow the fellow who was thought to say:

 "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
 “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
 “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
 “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
 “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.
 “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
 “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons[a] of God.
 “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
 “Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. 12 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you."

Source

But, then they rarely seem to remember those parts of their book.

I am glad to see Senator Sanders appearing at places like this. We must carry the message to those who will not seek it out. If he moved one person in that room, then it was time well spent. Not to mention the fact that Bernie Sanders will be talked about in the media for this for days.

Go Bernie!

Putrid Dumbhole

Putrid Dumbhole of a waste of space Kim Davis has backed down. Instead of going back to jail for her religious principles, she will get out of the way of other people doing their jobs. She wont do her job, mind you, just let others do theirs.

balloon Juice has more

Man Bites Dog

Without formatting or pauses for some reason, man bites dog

When I watch a movie I often look for connections. I ask myself: “What other movies (or books) does this remind me of?” When I find these connections, I attempt to discern if they are intentional, or incidental. I also consider if the movie I’m watching was inspired by those that it shares something with, or if it goes the other way around. Man Bites Dog, It Happened in Your Neighborhood is replete with connections. More on those in a bit. Man Bites Dog is a fake documentary. By now we’re mostly sick of the form, at least I’m mostly sick of the form. Fellini invented it. We’ve seen a lot of it. This is Spinal Tap,, The Blair Witch Project, Cannibal Holocaust, and The Ruttles, are just a few of the many films to follow this style. Some are good, some are dreadful, all suffer on repeated viewings. Man Bites Dog manages to keep it fresh, by not taking itself seriously. This, my friends, is satire. Remember that; it’ll come in handy later. So, you ask: what’s the story? Well, the plot is simple. A small film crew with no money, follow serial killer and film his exploits while he murders, rapes, steals, sings, recites bad poetry, and drinks a lot. The Killer, Benoit (Benoit Poelvoorde) serves as a sort of quasi producer to the documentary. He uses his ill gotten gains to buy film for Remy (Remy Belveaux), and Andre (Andre Bonzel). By this point you’ve noticed that the characters share the real names of the actors portraying them. These three are also the real film crew that shot the movie. So, three young film makers are portraying two young film makers and a vicious killer in their film about a documentary. Talk about postmodern structure. As the documentary progresses, the crew is drawn more deeply into Benoit’s crimes. First they begin helping him dispose of bodies. Then they restrain a child so that he can more easily kill the kid. Next the three of them are gang raping a woman, and murdering her husband. You get the idea. It all sounds pretty gruesome. And it is. But (and this is a big but) it’s funny too. We don’t laugh at the victim’s so much, but we do laugh at Benoit. He’s funny. He recites his own terrible poetry ad naseum, he stumbles, he kills post men, and wears their uniforms, he gets beaten up by a post man, he says moronic things, and thinks they are full of deep meaning. He drinks something he likes to call “a dead baby boy” (gin, tonic, and an olive tied to a sugar cube). The film manages to segue directly from abhorrent violence to unexpected humor. Are we being tempted to laugh at serial killers? No. We’re being tempted to laugh at the media. At newscasters, camera men, and photographers who watch terrible events, and film them instead of helping the victims. We’re being tempted to laugh at people who maintain inflated views of themselves. And, we’re being forced to laugh by the tension, and the catharsis that follows. After Benoit unexpectedly shoots a man in the head during Benoit’s birthday party, the camera lingers for just an instance on the blood splattered faces of the other guests, then whip pans to find our hero seated at the table and enjoying a slice of cake. You can’t help laughing at this. It’s just all so impolite. Aside: Writing the above I have realized that the humor in this film doesn’t really come across when described. I suppose you just have to see it to understand. I laughed at the things described above, but rereading that paragraph, I didn’t crack a smile. Oh well. But trust me on this. It is funny. Satire is what we’re discussing here. Man Bites Dog is poking fun at a lot of things simultaneously. Among them: Serial Killer movies, Independent cinema, the media, serial killers, big egos, society, families (dysfunctional and other), and itself. This film could be viewed as self satire. That is, It is a film making fun of a film that makes fun of a film about a serial killer (confusing: I know. Let me try again: Man Bites Dog is making fun of itself by making fun of itself about what it’s making fun of. Still no good. One more try: Man Bites Dog is a satire only of itself (that’s a good start), its satire is aimed at itself, while it portrays a documentary, which could be viewed as satirical (perhaps of itself). Better, but still not perfect, and by the way, is this the longest parenthetical musing you’ve ever seen, or what?) Enough about satire. Earlier I mentioned connections between this movie and others. What, pray tell, was I talking about? Okay, we’ll try to do this quickly. Moments in this film will remind you of The Blair Witch Project. By that, I don’t refer only to the shaky hand held camera work, but also to the structure. A film about a fake film, starring the fake film makers. See. Plus, it’s all presented as a documentary. This film came before Blair Witch, just so you’ll know. Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, like Man Bites Dog follows a serial killer (natch), and shows us his gruesome exploits coldly. Without judgment. Both films share something, although Henry’s attitude is much darker. Next up, Brett Easton Ellis’ book American Psycho (the book, remember, not the film, I have no truck with the film). This movie will remind you of A.P. in a lot of places. In fact, Benoit seems like a low rent Patrick Bateman. Benoit, like Bateman, expounds at length on his favorite subjects. Bateman talks about music and business cards. Benoit about the mating habits of pigeons, and poetry. Both have inflated images of their own importance. Natural Born Killers. This one’s obvious. Camera crew follows killer. Camera crew helps by committing acts of violence. So, how does the film play? Beautifully. It works. It is entertaining, and shocking. It does go on a bit long, but with this structure it must be difficult to find the right pace. I can’t blame the film maker’s for that. The photography is nicely done in black and white. The acting is surprisingly good. I suppose the film makers have largely type cast themselves, which helps them to keep a sense of realism. I like this movie. I think you should like it also. A few words about the criterion Collection DVD: A few extras are worth mentioning. An interview with the film makers is well worth watching. It discusses the process of making the movie, and the furor that the film caused. The disc also includes a short student film made by these same fellows. A trailer is also included. The big deal about this disc: it is the complete, unedited European cut of the film. The U.S. version (which I believe is all that is available on VHS) cuts several minutes of footage. The major cuts involve a gang rape and the murder of a child. These scenes are important within the context of the film. Without them, Benoit would seem more likable, less evil. Cutting these scenes would make this quite the insidious, subversive little film. The MPAA is stupid. I’ve said it before, and it can’t hurt to say it again: The MPAA, in their simple minded meddling, can take a patently adult film that caries a theme we can all understand; then mangle it, change it into something that glorifies violence, then make it available to underage viewers. The MPAA is controlled by morons. Final word: I recommend Man Bites Dog. I suggest the Criterion DVD. Always seek out the director’s cut, as it were. That is all.
– Nathan Tyree

Street Fighter - A Review

So: you like martial arts films, eh? You’ve seen all of Bruce Lee’s movies, even Game of Death (which barely has Bruce in it). You’ve never missed a Jackie Chan flick. You think you’ve seen it all. Well, have you seen Street Fighter? If not, then you haven’t even come close to seeing it all. You’ve barely scratched the surface!

What is there to be said about Street Fighter?

The first thing we must clear up, is that we are talking here about the Japanese Martial arts movie starring Sonny Chiba, and not the dreadful Jean-Claude Van Dam movie of the same title. We are also not talking about the cartoons, video games, and pinball machines that carry the same name. All of the above are silly children’s entertainment. The Street Fighter we are interested in is patently adult.
Bruce Lee brought martial arts into the American Mainstream. He became a huge international star, and then suddenly died. After his untimely death, there was a mad rush to find other stars who could fill his shoes. The Bruce Lee clones began pumping out movies at a rapid pace. However, no Asian martial arts actor would attain the same level of success until Jackie Chan. And even Chan would work for years in Hong Kong before he made a real mark in the U.S.

Out of that fervor to find the next big thing in the world of Martial arts movies came something very interesting. Among the garbage, and un-entertaining movies spewed forth, was one very good movie. Street Fighter.

Sonny Chiba plays Terry Sugury. Terry isn’t so much a hero, as simply a super bad a**. He kicks many many butts, and doesn’t seem to care whose butt it is. Terry seems to feel that everyone deserves to get their skull cracked from time to time.

The film opens with Terry pulling off a daring prison break. He was hired to do this job. Who does he break out of prison? It doesn’t matter. This is just the opening scene. The real plot comes later. Terry is hired by a consortium of Yakuza and Mafia to kidnap a rich girl. He does. They wont pay. He goes after them, and protects the princess in the process. Not that he really cares for her. She’s an investment of sorts.

They end up on an oil tanker, where a wounded Terry continues to kick butt, demolishing person after person. Oh yeah, it rains a lot.

Terry is helped by his sidekick, Rat nose. I wont say much about this fellow, except this: Rat nose may be the strangest sidekick in movie history. And that’s even if you disregard his awful name.
I know, that’s not much of a synopsis. But really, there isn’t much of a plot. The plot is like a wire hanger, meant merely to have the action sequences draped over it. It exists merely to provide connection from fight scene to fight scene.

We will notice that Terry’s tough guy: quiet, deadly, seemingly uninterested in how others feel or what they want, driven only by money harkens back to Toshiro Mifune’s character in Yojimbo, and Sanjuro. This character will also remind us of numerous roles played by Lee Marvin and others. Terry is driven by greed. He is one dimensional.

This movie exists for the fight scenes. So, are they any good? Yes. They are amazing. The fight scenes in Street Fighter are unlike anything you have seen before. They are brutal, fast, and wonderfully choreographed. Terry pauses often during fighting, preparing himself for further battle, I suppose. These pauses act as Caesurae, artful pauses that increase tension, create suspense, and keep you interested.

These fight scenes are unlike those we find in Bruce Lee’s films, they are also of a different variety than the ones we have come to know from The Matrices, these scenes are in a category of their own. No other film has really recreated this style.

An interesting thing about these scenes is the way in which we are forced to focus on the outcome of all this fighting. In most Kung Fu movies we see people hit, but we rarely see much blood. We never see the true outcome of such combat. Street Fighter gives us the logical end of the fight. It is dripping with gore. There are times when it is hard to look at all the carnage. This gore fest is what led to the film’s X rating in the United States. Of course, X ratings were handed out like candy in those days. Back then, theaters would actually show films with the dreaded X.

Today the NC-17 (the successor of the X rating) is certain death for a film. This is a sad state of affairs. In the old days patently adult films (not pornography) could be made and marketed to adults. Those days are over. But I digress.

Today’s action films seem watered down, cleaned up, and Disney-fied in comparison to this movie. Even today’s horror films are tame in comparison to the unrelenting gore and violence of Street Fighter. This is a movie to turn weak stomachs. In other words: I love it. There is nothing better than good action, done well.

This movie was followed by several sequels. Among them:
Return of Street Fighter
Sister Street Fighter

and others.

I have only seen Return of Street Fighter, so cannot comment on the other films in the series. About Return I will just say that it is not as impressive as the first film. Like many sequels, it seems to lose something.

I recommend this film highly. I would also suggest that anyone interested in martial arts movies check out Bruce Lee’s great films. Also, the early films of Jackie Chan, John Woo’s great crime movies (like Hard Boiled, and The Killer), and of course some of the movies from my favorite genre: samurai films. For those interested in Samurai movies I suggest Yojimbo, and Seven Samurai.
Final thoughts on Street Fighter:

This film is from an era that has passed us by. It is a fine film, and I suggest finding a copy, making some pop corn, grabbing a cold beer, and enjoying it with friends. The DVD (from Platinum Disc Corp) is acceptable. The picture quality is fine, and the sound is okay. There are no special features, which is sad. There is a great Laser disc available, that has much better picture and great sound. If you can find the Laser, I suggest it. If not, the DVD will do. Enjoy the movie!

A note:

Quentin Tarrantino deserves some credit for returning this film to the American consciousness after being forgotten for many years. He wrote direct references to it into his script for True Romance, and then allowed a praiseful quote from him to be printed on the Laser Disc cover for a re-release of the film. I have to thank him for reminding the public that this interesting film exists. So, thanks Quentin!

Bloodsucking Freaks - a Review

First, a little background. In 1975 Joel M. Reed wanted to ,make a low budget S&M flick. He filmed The great Torture Show in SoHo. The film was a flop. Later it was purchased by Troma (of Toxic Avenger fame). Troma trimmed the film, and submitted it to the MPAA. It received an R rating. Troma then shipped the unedited version (that was deserving of an X rating) to theaters with the R attached. the MPAA sued, and won. Then Troma managed to get anti pornography groups to protest theaters showing the film. Troma made a fortune from a film that would have otherwise have vanished into obscurity.

So, what is this inflammatory movie about? Simple, Sardu (Seamus O’Brien) runs a grand Guignol show in SoHo. Along with his partner Ralphus (Louie DeJesus) he tortures and kills women on stage. This is what Sardu does for fun. For money he trades in white slavery, selling women to Arab countries. But, what Sardu longs for is artistic respect and good reviews. Toward that end he kidnaps and tortures a drama critic. He also kidnaps the famed dancer Natasha Denatalie, and forces her to perform in his show. Her boyfriend (a football player, modeled after that guy who did the pantyhose commercials) comes searching for her, and everyone dies a horrible death. Along the way we see dreadful acts of violence (mostly perpetrated against women). A “dentist” played by Ernie Pysher pulls all of a girl’s teeth, so that she wont bite. He then shaves her head, drills a hole in her skull, and sucks out her brains through a straw. Herschel Gordon Lewis would be proud. So would Mel Gibson. The plot is, of course, just a thin string to hang the scenes of gore from. It makes little sense.
This film is photographed like a cheap porn, and has all the finesse of a snuff film. The sets are as cheap as possible. Even Plan 9 From Outer Space had better production design than this turkey.
The acting is preposterous (despite the appearance of real actors like Seamus O’Brien who appeared in real movies like Marathon Man, and had a long career on Broadway). Not a single real emotion is ever shown. Ralphus hamms it up, and the rest of the cast groans through their scenes.
On a side note, Louie DeJesus went on to have a career in porn. Most notably in films like Let My Puppets Come, which may be the most bizarre thing ever put on celluloid.

This film is disgusting in every possible way. It is misogynistic, anti-humanity, and badly made. It does manage some humor, although one cannot be sure if the laughs were meant by the film makers or not. I suppose it could function as lop sided satire, but I can’t tell what it is meant to be satire of.
Really though, Blood Sucking Freaks is misogynistic on a scale that is difficult to comprehend. There is barely a moment in the film that isn’t difficult to watch.

This film is meaningless gore. Actually, it ranks just above The Passion of the Christ. I cannot recommend it. But, I must say that it just possibly doesn’t matter what I think. This movie seems to stand outside criticism. In that way it is a bit like -Pink Flamingos. See it if you must.

Nathan Tyree

Bernie Invades the South

Dr. Cornel West ( a giant among intellectuals in this nation) has been campaigning with Bernie Sanders and fighting for his cause. This news has been noticed for awhile now.  Just today I have started hearing that Sanders is planning campaign events in the south. Georgia! He may be starting to think of a longer game, maybe something like a 50 state strategy. I'm worried about those dreadful numbers in South Carolina, which we saw at the same time the great Iowa and New Hampshire numbers emerged.

I'm starting to see something really strong here. And I'm liking it.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

careful, you'll catch the links

Here are the links, enjoy them:

An oldie by Sam Pink

Debt and Tax Cuts

Lawyers, Guns and Money talks Labour

Crooked Timber on Income Distrubution

Fucking Brooks, again

Jeb! Bush's Tax Plan is Pretty Weird

Being a cop is pretty safe

More Carrier on the Jesus Myth

Thems the links!

Sam Harris and Capitalism

I stumbled across Sam Harris' interesting article about the wealth gap in which he suggests a one time tax on truly massive fortunes to fund infrastructure and energy independence. Reading it I kept thinking "weak sauce, Sam". His heart is in the right place, but truly this suggestion is a bit like using chewing gum to repair a massive hole in a large dam. It's just too little by far to make any serious difference.  That being said, I was shocked to see the sort of response his suggestion brought.

This nation is fully brainwashed. We as a people are so heavily invested in supporting the the wealthy and powerful against our own self interest that we will rise up in anger at the mere suggestion that the plutocrats be asked to give lend even a hand to the betterment of society.

I should not be surprised. Capital has used its tools (Religion, the media, public policy) and it has warped our national ideals to the point that we as a people cannot see clear to act in our own self interest anymore.

We need a new media dedicated to telling the truth and to actually educating the people about economic principles. We need something to fight back against the Koch Cabal, and FOX News and the rest. We need it before it is too late.

and also

The Bernie Surge Continues

Sanders continues to surge. The latest poll has him over 50% and leading by double digits in New Hampshire (I expected this, the Granite state should be friendly territory) and now taking the lead in Iowa.

The new poll finds Sen. Sanders with 52% support among Democratic primary voters in New Hampshire, while former Secretary of State Clinton, long considered the front-runner for the 2016 Democratic nomination, receives 30%. Recent polls have shown Sanders’ lead growing in the Granite State, but this would be the first to show the Vermont Senator over 50%.
Possibly more worrying for the Clinton campaign is her performance in Iowa, where Sanders now leads by 10 points, with 43% to Clinton’s 33%.

YouGov

I know that it is still early, but this is very bad news for Clinton. Sanders should win N.H. by a tiny margin and finish in a respectable second in Iowa if the Clinton narrative is true. These recent polls make it seem that the Secretary is a much weaker candidate than anyone expected. 

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Perry is Out!

The bleeding is over now. Rick Perry's un-serious bid for the White House is over. Old "Oops" Perry made it official, he now knows what every other person on the planet already knew: he will never be president of anything. Now Rick can focus on what sort of book he wants to have ghost written while he is in prison.

It's called the 14th Ammendment

Mike Huckabee is unaware of the 14th ammendment.. This asshat thinks he should be president of our country, but doesn't really understand how our country works.

When Morons Pretend To Be Smart

Offered without comment.


Friday, September 11, 2015

It smells like fear

Driftglass has noticed. Others as well. The insiders have not yet found a suitable way to tarnish Bernie Sanders. Screaming "commie!" every time he enters the room hasn't worked. Dark whispers of Cultural Marxism aren't hitting the right dog-whistle notes. Weird attempts to paint him as a dirty old man (I'm pointing directly at the baby rapers at Red State when I say that) are having no effect. The new strategy?

Claim that Sanders is just like The Trump! That makes perfect sense! A United States Senator who has served in the House and been a Mayor is just like a political neophyte whose claim to fame is that his slum-lord father left him millions of dollars and a real estate empire! The same! Just alike! If David Brooks says it loud enough, it will be true.

Why all the freak out? Because Sanders scares the fuck out of them in ways that Hillary cannot.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Fucking Kim Davis Again

I have written before about Kim Davis before. I wish that I didn't have to. But now this hateful bigot is free. But, that may not last. Ed has more on this:


Judge Bunning decided today to release Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis from jail on the condition that she not interfere with the deputy clerks in her office issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, but her attorneys say that she’s going to violate that condition


Also see Raw Story

If she violates the conditions of her release, she should be immediately jailed again.
Judge Bunning decided today to release Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis from jail on the condition that she not interfere with the deputy clerks in her office issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, but her attorneys say that she’s going to violate that condition. - See more at: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/dispatches/2015/09/08/kim-davis-released-but-probably-going-back/#sthash.QQkvSWQj.dpuf