Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Disney and media weirdness

A few links for this evening.

1. I've commented before that the science that Disney uses for crowd control was both impressive and terrifying. Now read this article from the New York Times. If you can tell the difference between Disneyland and a James Bond villain's secret lair you're doing better than me. I was fascinated right up until I got to the part where they were talking about creating an arm band that would contain personal information, including your credit card number as a way of speeding up transactions in the park. That's when Disney reminded me that the Happiest Place on Earth can also be a Pretty Fucking Terrifying Place when it wants to be.

2. Much to Cathy's dismay, I'm a fan of the NFL. However, I am not normally a fan of the Philadelphia Eagles at the best of time. But with Michael Vick leading the team this year I've had my ability to even tolerate them tested. On the one hand, the man was convicted of killing dogs. On the other hand, he served a pretty harsh penalty, he's crawling out of bankruptcy and I do believe that people deserve a second chance.

So I'm not cheering for the Eagles and wouldn't want them to win the Super Bowl. But hey, I'd love to see the Eagles and Falcons play for the NFC championship. Vick going back to the home of his old team...that would make for a great game.

However, at no point have I wanted Vick dead...unlike this useless tool. I know I shouldn't rise to the bait of this. Ever since Jon Stewart destroyed any shred of credibility Carlson ever possessed years ago Carlson has flailed about, trying to find some hint of respectability. He's on Fox now, so that should tell your something. There's only two reasons why Carlson would say this: He either genuinely believes Vick should die and is an idiot or that he's saying it just for the attention, which makes him an idiot and and a media whore.

Normally I would ignore this because I think you give power to some thing when you pay attention to it. However, this is so stupid you should feel free to go, "Jesus, how big of a media whore tool is this man?" The answer being, he is quite a sizable one. It's probably been too long since people pointed and laughed at Carlson, so feel free to go and do so today.

3. Meanwhile, on the other end of the respectability and power spectrum, Jon Stewart is receiving so much praise for his action in helping get a bill through the U.S. senate to help first responders to the collapse of the World Trade Centre that the New York Times is comparing him to Edward R. Murrow and Walter Cronkite. Which is, um, a little over the top. I imagine Stewart probably went "are you guys high or what?" when he read that.

There's going to be a lot of talk about Stewart and his role in getting this bill passed. I suspect he would probably just roll his eyes and note that the media needs something to fill all that air time and blowing up his importance is one way to kill time during the slow Christmas season.

Stewart hasn't change with this. He's a gifted satirist, possibly the best of this generation and at the exact right moment, with the exact right cause, he was able to effect change. He could try it again in a month's time and get absolutely nowhere. He probably wouldn't. But it takes a special kind of group of idiots to try and block a bill to help people made sick while trying to save lives during 9/11 right before Christmas. The Republicans were those special kind of idiots. If you weren't outraged by that, then you're not human.

So good on Stewart, but let's not make him a god quite yet.

Last Five
1. Warning sign - Coldplay
2. The laws have changed - The New Pornographers*
3. Tell it to me - Tom Waits
4. Spiders - Editors
5. Ghost of a chance - Ron Sexsmith

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