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Obama: Best Republican President Since Lincoln?
09.08.2011
11:23 am

Topics:
History
Politics

Tags:
Barack Obama
Tina Dupuy


Obama as Lincoln portrait by Ron English

Political commentator and humorist, Tina Dupuy has written one of the best summaries of the Obama presidency so far. This woman deserves her own TV show on Current or MSNBC, she really does…

There was a 90 percent top marginal tax rate under President Dwight Eisenhower. Ronald Reagan raised taxes nearly every year he was in office and still managed to quadruple the national debt. Teddy Roosevelt was an anti-business trust-buster who snatched Yosemite away from private profits. Gerald Ford ended a long pointless war in Vietnam even though pontificators like Pat Buchanan claim we could have won…eventually. George W. Bush bailed out the banks and the auto industry. I won’t even utter the names Herbert Hoover or Richard Nixon (Republicans sure won’t).

Historians agree the best Republican President was also the first: Abraham Lincoln. Who’s second runner up? Which President has represented Republican values best? Easy. President Barack Obama.

First off – his signature legislative accomplishment was to implement a Republican/Heritage Foundation idea from 1989. Assuring Affordable Health Care for All Americans reads, “[N]either the federal government nor any state requires all households to protect themselves from the potentially catastrophic costs of a serious accident or illness. Under the Heritage plan, there would be such a requirement…A mandate on households certainly would force those with adequate means to obtain insurance protection.”

The Heritage Foundation has since recanted and even filed friend-of-the-court briefs against the mandate. This is only after an alleged Democrat was for it. There’s been a pattern of this partisanship before policy since Obama was sworn in.

But if you ignore the misplaced (and often misspelled) vehemence against the first African-American president as a communist/socialist/Marxist/bad “ist” du jour and instead just look at the policy – we have a stellar Republican in the Oval Office.

Obama renewed the Bush Tax Cuts. Republicans love those tax cuts even more than they love being against something once Obama has signed it. In fact the President hasn’t raised taxes at all – just like Republicans say they won’t (see: “Read my lips – no new taxes.”). The only tax he’s raised is on smokers. Obama increased the tax on cigarettes even though he’s an admitted (reformed) smoker. But even that is ideal in a Republican hypocrite kind of way (see: too many anti-gay Republicans in gay sex scandals to list).

And on top of the Bush Tax Cuts – Obama cut even more taxes for 95 percent of Americans.

Plus, he’s cut the size of government! Yes. Regardless of all those email forwards your kooky great-aunt sends you from her decades-old AOL account – the public work force has been reduced under an Obama presidency – therefore “shrinking the size of government.” The reason we had no net jobs in August is because the public sector (i.e., the government) lost jobs due to cuts. The private sector gained the exact amount resulting in a push.

President Obama has managed to quell all anti-war protests and even start a new conflict. That is surely to be the envy of any Republican president who’s ever served.

Guantanamo Bay? Still open. Osama bin Laden? Shot in the head.

Talk about getting 98 percent of what they wanted. If the GOP didn’t have to change their goal post so Obama could never score in their view – Republicans could be dumping Gatorade on Rush Limbaugh by now.

Read the rest of “Obama is the Best Republican President Since Lincoln” (Tina Dupuy.com)

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Don’t get lippy with GOP Rep Paul Ryan or he’ll have you taken to the gulag


 
Attention (formerly) middle-class jobless people in Wisconsin, don’t you go gettin’ sassy with Republican corporate stooge enemy of the people Representative Paul Ryan because… he’ll have your ass arrested... Via Politics USA:

Paul Ryan held his PPV town hall event at Klemmer’s Banquet Hall in Milwaukee. When some protesters who had paid their $15 stood up and asked him questions about jobs and the Bush tax cuts, Ryan not only had them kicked out. He also had three of them arrested.

The protesters got involved when Rep. Ryan tried to claim that our job crisis is directly related to our debt crisis. One person stood up and asked, “Our debt is out of control because of the tax cuts you’re giving…Our unemployment in 2003 was 6.2% before the tax cuts went through. Now our unemployment rate is 9.1%. What are you doing to create jobs, Congressman?”

This lady was shown the door. She was soon followed by another gentleman. Another woman stood up while Ryan was speaking and said, “You won’t talk to us. How can we give our opinions when you refuse to talk to us?” I think you can probably guess what happened to her. When someone stood up in the back and asked, “Where are the jobs, Ryan?” He mentioned corporations, and was escorted out.

How very Republican of him, eh? What a vicious, arrogant fuck Paul Ryan is. Don’t forget these voters also paid $15 for the privilege.

As I have written here in the past about Paul Ryan: “For the record, I’m not a big fan of violence, but it does have its place, historically, in the class war that’s raged since human society began. Admittedly, the image of, say, Rep. Paul Ryan, being forced to fellate a Colt .45 in front of news cameras and having to beg for his life by a once-proud middle-class father reduced to moving his family into a car is something I’d really enjoy seeing. (I think whoever did that would go down in history as a folk hero and at least THEY FEED YOU IN JAIL)”

Ryan might have thought he was being “clever” with this exercise, but there is little doubt that this video will hurt him politically every single time someone watches it. It already has.

How is this asshole a “public servant”? This man is a vicious Republican Ayn Rand-loving shit. He should NOT be in a position of power after displaying such cold-blooded, repulsive, arrogance like this to his constituents. Like they’re “the little people.” You can only imagine what he’d really like to do to them. Yuck. What an ugly human being. Please FB share this and Tweet far and wide.

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
The GOP’s ‘useless eaters’ solution: No more food for you, poor people!
 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
‘Dr. Jesus Chemical Shop’
09.08.2011
10:27 am

Topics:
Amusing
Drugs

Tags:
Dr. Jesus Chemical Shop


 
It sounds so intriguing!

Click here to see larger image.

(via Arbroath)

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
George C. Scott watches Star Wars on Blu-ray
09.08.2011
09:16 am

Topics:
Amusing
Movies

Tags:
Star Wars
George C. Scott


 
George C. Scott emotionally weighs-in on the Star Wars: The Complete Saga (Episodes I-VI) Blu-ray box set.

 
Previously on Dangerous Minds:
Darth Vader’s ‘United States of Noooooooooooooo!’

(via Cynical-C)

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
The Beaver Trilogy: Young Sean Penn & Crispin Glover in drag in weirdo 80s cult film(s)


 
Maverick Salt Lake City-based indie filmmaker Trent Harris (who made the quirky cult favorite Reuben & Ed with Crispin Glover and Howard Hesseman) was working as a cameraman at a local TV station in 1979 when he met Richard LaVon Griffiths, AKA “Groovin’ Gary” (Griffiths’ CB radio handle). Harris was in the parking lot testing out a new video camera that the station had just bought and “Groovin’ Gary” was taking pictures of the station’s news helicopter. Their meeting, caught on videotape, would prove to be a fateful encounter for both men.

As he is initially revealed in the film, “Groovin’ Gary” seems to be a Jeff Spicoli-esque, late 70s stoner-type. He’s even got blond “feathered” hair. Gary is a bit of a ham-bone and describes himself as Beaver, Utah’s answer to Rich Little. He (somewhat inexplicably) seems to see his impromptu time on camera as an unexpected showbiz “break.” After doing some terrible impressions of John Wayne and other celebrities, he takes Harris over to his car and shows him his AM/FM stereo 8-track tape player—of which he’s very proud—and the engravings of Farrah Fawcett and Olivia Newton-John he’s had put on the windows. It’s banal, yet weirdly compelling.

“Groovin’ Gary” then invites Harris (via letter) to a talent show he’s producing at a high school in Beaver. A pageant that Gary himself will perform in. In drag. As his alter-ego “Olivia Newton-Dong.” He suggests in a letter that Harris might want to get to the local mortuary (?) at 8A.M. to shoot his hair and make-uo session.

During the make-up application (done by the mortician), he discusses his profound love of Olivia Newton-John. Even in full drag, he somehow does not come across as gay, more like someone who thought that they were about to do something just totally hilarious.

We see the talent show itself, with some truly soggy “talents” on display. Then “Olivia” is onstage and it’s weird, ending with a strange-looking masked man picking up Gary and carrying him offstage. To say that it’s a riveting performance is an understatement. Keep in mind as you watch this, that he orchestrated the entire talent show just so he could do this!

Afterwards “Groovin’ Gary’ happily recaps the event with Harris in his car. Harris drives off. Then the film cuts back to Gary, out of drag, doing a shitty Barry Manilow impression from earlier in the talent show. That’s how it ends.

The video below is out of sync, but it didn’t bother me that much.
 

 
Two years later, in 1981, Trent Harris directed a “dramatic” remake of the first video with a young Sean Penn playing the goofy kid from Beaver, Utah. There is an ending now, in the scripted version—based on what really happened or not, I have no idea—of “Groovin Gary” coming to the suicidal realization that perhaps his drag performance getting on TV would not be the best thing for his life in a small Mormon town and he tries to talk the Harris character out of showing it. The second film was made, apparently, for $100, and often recreated the scenes from the original video (Harris does not play himself here).

It’s not like this is the greatest thing you’ll ever see, but it is fascinating to see a pre-fame Sean Penn performing in drag (the short was made the same year Penn appeared in Taps). It seems clear that Penn picked up some tricks for his actor’s repertoire here that went right into his infamous character from Fast Times at Ridgemont High the following year. In many ways, this short was just a dry run for “Jeff Spicoli” and the next film in The Beaver Trilogy starring Crispin Glover.
 

 
After the jump, the final installment of The Beaver Trilogy starring Crispin Glover…

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Multiple David Bowies advertise water, from 2003

image
 
“Chaque jour une vie nouvelle” or “A New Life Everyday” claimed David Bowie’s advert for Vittel Water back in 2003. The ad was tied-in to the release of Bowie’s Reality album, and had the rock god sharing a house with his stage alter egos - including Ziggy Stardust, Aladdin Sane, the Thin White Duke, the Scary Monsters Clown and the Diamond Dog.
 

 

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Underground film pioneer George Kuchar dead at 69
09.07.2011
02:03 pm

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Tags:
George Kuchar


 
Sad to hear that pioneering underground filmmaker George Kuchar has died at the age of 69 in San Francisco. Kuchar’s high camp films, sometimes made with his twin brother, Mike, included Corruption Of The Damned, Hold Me While I’m Naked and nearly 200 other shapeless, formless weirdo films. Kuchar taught at the San Francisco Art Institute since 1971. The Kuchar Brothers were the subject of Jennifer M. Kroot’s delightful documentary, It Came From Kuchar (which you can watch on Netflix VOD).

Bradford Nordeen, curator of the Dirty Looks queer film series, wrote about George Kuchar for indieWIRE:

George Kuchar was a man of many careers. He began making 8mm films at the age of twelve, collaborations with his twin brother, Mike, on a camera gifted from their parents. These early works are sensational remakes of the movies that played in their local Bronx theaters. Even in their adolescence, the twins showed an alarming understanding of cinematic conventions, with special respect paid to woman’s pictures (George’s fave) and swords and sandals epics (Mike’s). Fusing toilet humor with wrenching pathos, these early films were profoundly camp and made a huge impact on a young John Waters. “The Kuchar borthers,” Waters would later explain in the introduction to George and Mike’s illustrated memoirs, “Reflections in a Cinematic Cesspool,” “gave me the self confidence to believe in my own tawdry vision.” Throughout his early career, George worked by day in commercial arts, an industry he described as “that Midtown Manhattan world of angst and ulcers.”

By the mid-sixties, however, the Kuchars were discovered by the burgeoning Underground Film movement and heralded by Jonas Mekas in his Village Voice column and in the magazine Film Culture. In the latter publication, George’s writings appeared alongside prominent figures like Andrew Sarris, Jack Smith and Gregory Markopoulos. After accepting an invitation to teach a summer course at San Francisco Art Institute in the early 1970s, George met Curt McDowell, a student-then-lover, who campaigned to secure a permanent faculty position for George, where he would teach for the remainder of his life. The duo collaborated on many films, including George’s “The Devil’s Cleavage” and McDowell’s experimental/horror/porno, “Thundercrack!,” where George also stars - opposite his character’s love interest, a gorilla.

George changed with the times, influencing a whole new generation when he embraced consumer grade video. He humorously described himself as “a traitor to his medium [film],” but George galvanized the video form with his signature gusto, yielding dozens of video diaries (most renowned were “The Weather Diaries,” in which George documented seasonal – as well as emotional – storms in Oklahoma). Also a skilled visual artist, George worked alongside leading graphic artists like Art Spiegelman and Bill Griffith, exhibiting internationally. Recent venues included [ 2 nd floor projects ] in San Francisco, Mulherin + Pollard in New York and ADA Gallery in Virginia.

George inspired four decades of SFAI graduates, who played cast and crew to a yearly creature feature course, making movies like “The Fury of Frau Frankenstein” and “Jewel of Jeopardy.” George was cherished, by his SFAI students and international audiences alike, for his wild humor, exuberant spirit and intuitive production ethic; if something didn’t work in a “picture” (as George referred to all his works), he merely changed the story to suit the circumstance. This approach led to his magnum opus, “Hold Me While I’m Naked,” 1966 an early solo venture which became a film about isolation and filmmaking when regular actress Donna Kerness abandoned the project. The result was named one of the 100 best films of the 20th Century by the Village Voice. Truly one of the most visionary artists of his time, George’s impact on six decades of film, visual art and popular culture is immeasurable.

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
Nothing is rare: George Kuchar’s 1966 underground masterpiece, ‘Hold Me While I’m Naked’
 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Hilarious Westboro Baptist Church counter-protest sign


 
(via reddit)

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Why are pot smokers skinnier than everyone else?
09.07.2011
12:38 pm

Topics:
Drugs
Science/Tech

Tags:
marijuana
Cannabis


 
Marijuana is usually comically associated with “the munchies” and junk food binging, but a new study from France indicates something researchers weren’t expecting to find: Potheads tend to be skinnier than non-stoners. Via The Week:

What did the study find?
Dr. Yann Le Strat, a psychiatrist at France’s Louis-Mourier Hospital, looked at data from two studies of U.S. adults from the early 2000s and noted the weight differences between those who used cannabis and those who didn’t. In both studies, cannabis users had relatively low rates of obesity: 14.3 and 17.2 percent. American adults who didn’t use cannabis had obesity rates of 22 and 25.3 percent.

Is this what researchers expected?
Nope. “Cannabis is supposed to increase appetite,” says Le Strat. “So we hypothesized that cannabis users would be more likely to have higher weight than non-users and be more likely to be obese.” Marijuana activist Michelle Aldrich isn’t all that surprised. “It’s true,” she says. “I don’t know too many fat marijuana smokers.”

What’s causing this phenomenon?
“There could be many other reasons why pot smokers have less obesity,” says dietitian Andrea Giancoli. “Maybe they’re inclined to exercise more, be outdoors more, eat more fruits and vegetables.” Aldrich thinks it could be related to the body’s endocannabinoid system — a group of receptors, primarily in the brain, that respond to compounds in marijuana. But the bottom line is that the exact mechanism responsible for this correlation remains a mystery — for now.

One obvious thing I’m not seeing here is that many potheads don’t drink alcohol or don’t drink that much of it.

But if this isn’t reason enough to toke up, one of the oldest people who ever lived credited the chronic for her longevity.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
PJ Harvey wins the 2011 Mercury Prize
09.07.2011
12:12 pm

Topics:
Music

Tags:
PJ Harvey
Let England Shake
Mercury Prize


 
PJ Harvey has won Britain’s 2011 Mercury Prize for her album Let England Shake, which also happens be one of my favorite favorite albums of the year.

Here’s a clip of PJ performing “The Words That Maketh Murder” at the awards ceremony
 

 
Harvey accepts her award after the jump…

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
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