Powered by Blogger

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Movie thoughts: Who deserves to be famous?

My husband watches a lot of Law and Order (which is easy to do because it seems to run on one channel or another nearly round the clock). Last night, as I was heading to bed, he turned on USA and there was David Keith appearing as a guest on a recent episode of Criminal Intent. I was really sad to see him (though there were two consolations -- he looked great, and CI is at least a decent show). My friend Mary and I fell madly in love with David when we saw him in Brubaker, a 1980 Robert Redford vehicle based on the true story of a prison reformer in the 1960s south. Then, in 1982, David broke everyone's heart as Richard Gere's sidekick in An Officer and a Gentleman. He had a respectable career for awhile (and still works regularly), but never reached the stratosphere that his talents and charisma warranted. My friend Sue recently commented that Aidan Quinn never became the superstar he deserved either. What determines this progression? Why do some performers break out and others fade into obscurity (or second tier status)? I'm not a fan of Tom Cruise (apologies to my friend Suzanne), and when I saw him in Eyes Wide Shut, it confirmed my suspicions that his talents are limited. He's even made a few bombs, but his career trajectory seems failure-proof. Why is that? Aidan Quinn has made some offbeat choices, so a performer's own preferences play a part. Certainly looks are a factor and that whole Q score thing. Also how much they seek the limelight. Maybe some just have crappy agents. And maybe some don't care about being famous -- some actors are quite happy to live in Montana or South Carolina and actually have some balance in their lives. But even taking that into consideration, with some notable exceptions (Robert DeNiro, for example), the level of success does seem to be curiously unconnected to the level of talent.


Saturday, October 29, 2005

Fitzmas in October

My friend Mary is upset that Karl Rove dodged the bullet of Fitzgerald indictments, and Friday night on The (PBS) News Hour, David Brooks was presenting the Talking Points, namely that the major story is that only one man was indicted. But I'm totally thrilled. This story is reverberating, as evidence: our local news on Friday night used the story as a teaser during primetime (I guess there were no murders or arsons to lead with). This indictment is news, and the news is bad. My uncle scolded me for enjoying the "abuse of a fool," but these people have been so arrogant and so craven, it takes a better person than I not to enjoy watching them choke down this big serving of humble pie

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Goodbye Harriet

It's not "Fitzmas" yet (bloggerism for indictments from Fitzgerald), but at least Harriet Miers has removed herself from consideration. Fun. My right wing friend Todd (he won't appreciate that characterization, but it's my blog), predicted it perfectly (maybe being correct makes up for my insult). It's odd, I keep hearing this spun as the Bush administration capitulated to the extreme right or the religious right, but objections to Meirs nomination had also come from very mainstream conservatives like George Will and William Kristol. I'm sort of puzzled about what to make of all this (the objections of these different kinds of conservatives and the spin from liberals), but the bottom line is, Bush looks bad, so I'm happy about that.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

I love Rob Morrow's crow's feet

I'm finding myself increasingly distracted, while watching movies and television shows, by the frozen, shiny faces of actors and actresses. How has the standard of beauty evolved into this?? With apologies to Geena Davis, my latest favorite show is the Tony and Ridley Scott crime drama, Numb3rs (Fridays, 10 p.m. on CBS). Though I'm not at all interested in the endless police procedurals that populate the TV schedule these days, I think this show is something special. But the best part, besides David Krumholtz's hair, is Rob Morrow's crow's feet. Rob Morrow rose to cult status in the early 1990's dramedy Northern Exposure. He also ably anchored Robert Redford's great movie, Quiz Show (1994). It's wonderful to see him back on TV, as the dedicated FBI agent, Don Eppes. But the best part of the show, and of him, is his natural, lived-in face. During every episode I find myself watching his face -- he looks like a real human being, someone who has lived life and who is actually aging. It's completely riveting, utterly refreshing and totally hot.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Abortion -- the final taboo on TV

I have thought this many times and commented on it occasionally -- it was great to read it, all spelled out like this by Philadelphia Inquirer Columnist Alfred Lubrano:


Saturday, October 22, 2005
"Unconventional Wisdom"

Abortion remains the final taboo of prime-time TV

I love how President Bush says the subject of abortion just never came up in his talks with Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers.

Of course not.

Apparently, abortion makes everyone shy. It seems to be off-limits even on prime-time broadcast TV, where it's been exceedingly rare to see a major character get an abortion.

If a recurring character who is single becomes accidentally pregnant, she will more often than not keep the baby, like Rachel on Friends, Murphy Brown on the program of the same name, and even randy Miranda on cable's Sex and the City.

Sometimes, a mighty deus ex machina will obviate the pregnancy, as on Grey's Anatomy, when Sandra Oh's character, who had decided to get an abortion, recently developed complications that made the procedure conveniently moot.

Painted by the right as godless liberals, network and Hollywood honchos are actually gutless bottom-liners.

They are plagued by two worries: alienating viewers from their lovable TV characters, and upsetting highly organized antiabortion groups.

In reality, 54 percent of Americans favor abortion rights, according to an August CNN/Gallup poll. And 1.2 million women had abortions in 2002, says the Alan Guttmacher Institute, a reproductive-health think tank.

With so many people supporting the right to have the procedure, and so many women undergoing it, you'd think it would have shown up on the tube at least occasionally.

But no. It's like death and situation comedies. An astonishing number of characters on sitcoms have been widows and widowers through the years (call it The Brady Bunch Syndrome). That's so characters didn't have to be divorced, which shows flaws, which makes someone less likable.

Back in the 1970s, Norman Lear made news when the title character of his hit sitcom Maude had an abortion.

Although language has coarsened and sex has become more explicit on network TV since then, it still would be highly unlikely for the lead character in a comedy - or even a drama, for that matter - to get an abortion today.

The Parents Television Council, a watchdog group that advocates "family-oriented" programs and strict enforcement of indecency laws, tracks any TV plot lines that include abortion. Council researcher Melissa Caldwell could find no recent examples of a prime-time broadcast show in which a regular character underwent such a procedure.

Ultimately, it's just too risky for the people who make TV.

"Abortion is so dicey, it's become one of the last real taboos on television," says TV expert Robert Thompson, professor of popular culture at Syracuse University. "Most networks and cable channels realize it isn't worth the trouble they know they will inevitably get.

"There are powers afoot that can really make noise. It's too bad that an industry has been so cowed by fear."

Without endorsing or condemning abortion, scriptwriters could present the kind of honest discussion that's all too rare these days.

But ever since Janet Jackson fell out of her costume last year, it seems the moralist rhetoric has ratcheted up. Her wardrobe malfunction inadvertently showed the networks how powerful the right can be. And how serious the culture wars really are.

Contact columnist Alfred Lubrano at 215-854-4969 or alubrano@phillynews.com.

Monday, October 24, 2005

How can those Republicans keep a straight face?

I watched Kay Bailey Hutchinson (Republican Senator from Texas) present the Talking Points to Tim Russert (Meet the Press) on Sunday morning -- since Fitzgerald can't find a real crime to accuse Rove and company of, he's fallling back on perjury, how lame is that? It was positively surreal. The Republicans had a somewhat different attitude about perjury when Bill Clinton lied about his sex life. They were damn near apoplectic about it. How can these people keep a straight face when they deliver these absurb comments, which they surely recognize for the pablum it is.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

The Masursky Memorial Entry

This blog is essentially named after my father, Harold Masursky, z''l, since it's his name that I proudly carry. This past August marked the 15th anniversary of his death, at age 67. He would have turned 83 this coming December, if he had lived. At the time of his death, I thought he was a ripe old age, but now that I am older myself, I can see how his life was tragically cut short. He was diagnosed with Type I diabetes at the age of 20 and lived with that cruel disease his entire adult life. Though he took care to eat right and exercise, and took insulin every day, his life expectancy was never more than mid-60s. He was a difficult man, brilliant and charismatic, but not really warm. He was married 5 times and had children with all but his last wife -- a complicated legacy to leave his children. But he was an inspiration to me and many others. He grew up poor in Ft Wayne, Indiana, first generation American, his parents were immigrants from Russia, orthodox Jews. He excelled in school and, improbably for his circumstances, went to Yale on a scholarship. My cousin says he was always referred to as "Uncle Harold Who Went to Yale," almost as if that was his name. He joined the army during WWII and served in the engineer corp in India, building bridges. After his service, he returned to Yale on the G.I. Bill to complete his Ph.D. in geology. He never received his degree, however. At his dissertation defense he was told to do a major rewrite. He walked away, as he already had a job with the U.S. Geological Survey. Years later, when I asked him, he claimed he did not regret his decision -- he said the lack of the degree never hurt his career, and would only have had an impact if he had wanted to pursue teaching. His first job was as a field geologist in Colorado, where he met my mother, and where my sister, Lisa, was born. He was invited to join the astro branch of the U.S.G.S., and they moved to Menlo Park, California, where I was born in 1962. While there, he worked at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory with Carl Sagan, among others. Shortly after my brother, Leo, was born (in 1966), we moved to Flagstaff, Arizona, where a new office had been built, partly to take advantage of the moon-like terrain in Northern Arizona (like Meteor and Sunset Craters -- http://www.meteorcrater.com/). He worked there until he retired, shortly before his death. He helped decide on the landing sites for the Moon mission in 1969 and analysed the data afterwards. He also helped to select landing sites on Mars for the Viking probes in 1975. He was involved in training astronauts during the Apollo program and was also a regular contributor to science exchanges with Russia (this during the Cold War!) He was also involved for many years in nomenclature -- on committees deciding names for the moons that orbit planets, and other heavenly bodies and features. When he died, a crater on Mars was named for him. He had believed strongly in the evidence for water on Mars; the crater chosen looks distinctly like water has run through it (http://www.marstoday.com/news/viewsr.html?pid=9431). The American Astronomical Society also created the Masursky Meritorius Service Award in his honor (http://www.aas.org/dps/prizes_masursky.html). If you Google "Masursky," you get a lot of hits on the award, because the first recipient was Carl Sagan and the award was mentioned in many of Sagan's obituaries. You also gets lots of hits for the many scientific papers he co-authored. My father also has an asteroid named for him (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2685_Masursky). As you can tell, these honors are very meaningful for me. My father was a scientist, not a celebrity like Sagan, but his contributions to space exploration and study were important and I am proud and gratified that his work has been honored in these ways.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

A baker's dozen of great movies you've never heard of

*Latter Days (2003) -- wonderful heart-breaking and heart-warming story of a closeted Mormon from Idaho sent on a church mission to Los Angeles where he meets an out gay man; they shatter each other's carefully constructed lives
*The Believer (2001) -- Ryan Gosling is brilliant as a Jewish skinhead, based on a real person (though the story has been substantially fictionalized); with Summer Phoenix as his erstwhile girlfriend
*The Broken Hearts Club (2001) -- probably my favorite romantic comedy ever, with Dean Cain, Zack Graff and Timothy Olyphant, among many others, as gay friends in Los Angeles
*The Third Miracle (1999) -- wonderful performance (as always) by Ed Harris as a priest who investigates saints for the Catholic Church and who is suffering through his own spiritual crisis; Anne Heche as the angry daughter of a potential saint who both provokes him and sets him back on the path to clarity
*The Siege (1998) -- the title is completely unconnected with the movie's content, which may be one reason this terrific political thriller has been overlooked; excellent performances by Denzel Washington, Annette Benning, and Tony Shalhoub, among others; it's scary how prescient this movie was, about efforts by the American government to manipulate the situation in the Middle East in order to declare martial law in the U.S.; "You're standing on my infrastructure." is one of many great lines.
*Priest (1994) -- totally absorbing tale of a gay priest (played by the always riveting Linus Roache) who faces a dual spiritual crisis ministering in a small blue collar town in England
*Call Me (1988) -- a weird romantic thriller with great performances by Patricia Charbonne (yum), Steve Buscemi and David Strathairn (who I'll watch in anything)
*Matewan (1987) -- hard to pick a favorite Sayles flick (Lone Star is a very close second), but this one really shines; about a coal miners strike in West Virginia; amazing cast (David Strathairn is superb, James Earl Jones is riveting), amazing writing, amazing film; I recommend this all the time and everyone who watches it becomes a fan
*Apology (1986) -- actually made for TV, though I saw it (unbeknownst) on video; basically a B movie, but a cut above most; Lesley Anne Warren is a performance artist whose exhibit provokes a serial killer; Peter Weller is the cop assigned to the case; the two have terrific chemistry and there's some great dialogue
*Choose Me (1984) -- my favorite of Alan Rudolf's films (though The Moderns is a very close second); twisty tale of romances gone right and wrong (mostly the latter); with fabulous performances by Keith Carradine, Lesley Anne Warren and Genevieve Bujold, among others
*The Adventures of Buckeroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension (1984) -- classic sci-fi satire with (among others) Peter Weller, Jeff Goldblum, Ellen Barkin, and the incomparable John Lithgow (who all became favs of mine after this)
*The Man From Snowy River (1982) -- only the most romantic story ever, based on a poem no less; with Australian unknowns Tom Burlinson (sigh) and Sigrid Thornton (in a wonderful, strong, intelligent performance -- "If I'd wanted your help, mate, I would have asked for it.") Kirk Douglas appears in two parts, the overprotective father of Sigrid and crotchety friend of Tom. So fun.
*Who Am I This Time? (1982) -- Another made-for-TV movie (just 60 minutes long) that I saw on video; the cutest movie ever; based on a Kurt Vonnegut short story (though you'd never guess) with Christopher Walken (in a rare sweet performance) and Susan Sarandon; they fall in love during a community theater performance of A Streetcar Named Desire; trust me, this description doesn't do it justice -- just see it.


Friday, October 21, 2005

My Top 10 movies of all time (well, O.K., 11)

Movies I've watched many times and will watch again. In chronological order, and with apologies to the many great films that didn't make the list.

*Ordinary People (1980) -- simply a perfect movie; the book by Judith Guest is even better; Timothy Hutton endeared himself to me forever (despite many questionable choices since)
*The Big Chill (1983) -- defined a generation; Kasdan at his very best, with a stellar cast of people who went on to appear in some of the finest films of the following decades
*The Cotton Club (1984) -- a fabulous movie, by Francis Ford Coppola, inexplicably dismissed by critics and ignored by audiences; I'm not a huge fan of Richard Gere and have no particular fascination with gangsters, but this movie has it all -- romance, shattered dreams, race relations, great music and performances by some of the finest actors in America, including Gregory Hines, Diane Lane and Nicolas Cage; a tour de force
*Tequila Sunrise (1988) -- with apologies to my sister (Mel's #1 fan), I've never really understood the appeal of Mr. Gibson, except in this moody crime thriller/romance with Michelle Pfeiffer, Kurt Russell and the inimitable Raul Julia; sexiest love scene ever ("Just looking at you hurts more." Sigh.)
*The English Patient (1996) -- not everyone was impressed by this subtle love story, but I was completely swept up in the tragedy and sheer beauty of this multi-layered story of loyalty, identity, and fate
*Gattaca (1997) -- best tag line ever "There is no gene for the human spirit"; though I'm not a fan of Ethan Hawk in general, I loved this atmospheric exploration of a future world where advances in genetics has led to discrimination against "naturals" -- people born without genetic engineering; bonuses: features a cameo by Gore Vidal and an early (and excellent) performance by the too-beautiful Jude Law
*Inventing the Abbotts (1997) -- as far as I can tell, no one saw this family melodrama with Joaquin Phoenix, Liv Tyler and Billy Crudup, as well as Will Patton and the incomparable Kathy Baker, but I've watched it over and over and adore it every time
*American Beauty (1999) -- deserved all the awards it got; amazing performances, gorgeous cinematography, incredible writing
*Traffic (2000) -- one of the few mainstream movies with explicit political themes; thought-provoking and full of excellent performances, especially Benicio Del Toro
*Gosford Park (2001) -- you can watch this gem over and over and catch something new each time; funnier and more touching than you're led to expect; Clive Owen is riviting (as always) and no one compares to Helen Mirren; I cry at the end every time I watch it ("He'll never know me now.")
*Igby Goes Down (2002) -- some of the best dialogue ever, Kieran Culkin will break your heart as a anchorless young man trying to find a place in the world; also featuring Jeff Goldblum, Susan Sarandon, Ryan Phillippe, Claire Danes and Amanda Peet


Thursday, October 20, 2005

Random movies

Here are some movies that aren't my absolute favorites, but I enjoyed them a lot and I recommend them to people, because they are tragically overlooked.


Coupe de Ville (1990) - terrific road movie and family dramedy with Patrick Dempsey, Daniel Stern and Arye Gross as feuding brothers taking their father's treasured car across country, bickering all the way; written by Mike Binder who (many years later) made The Upside of Anger

Funny Bones (1995) - dramedy about family relations and the roots of comedy's soul, with Jerry Lewis, Lee Evans and Oliver Platt in one of his best roles ever

Cold Comfort Farm (1995) - based on a popular British novel, I've watched this quirky, tongue-in-cheek comedy many times; full of great performances and sly humor; Kate Beckinsale's first major film role

Safe Men (1998) - another quirky comedy that can be watched repeatedly about a group of bungling burglers; great cast includes Sam Rockwell and Steve Zahn

Liberty Heights (1999) - yet another wonderful family dramedy with Ben Foster and Adrien Brody as Jewish brothers in Baltimore circa 1954; Barry Levinson's best movie ever, and that's saying something

Tin Men (1987) - my other favorite Barry Levinson movie, also set in Baltimore (of course), with Barbara Hershey and Richard Dreyfus in an unlikely romance and Danny Devito in top comic form

The Favour, the Watch, and the Very Big Fish (1991) - hilarious weird comedy with an amazing cast including Jeff Goldblum, Bob Hoskins and Natasha Richardson


Playing God (1997) - a guilty pleasure, with David Duchovy at his most appealing as a disgraced surgeon working for a moody mobster played by Timothy Hutton; also features Angelina Jolie burning up the screen long before she was superstar

Into the Night (1985) - another guilty pleasure; Jeff Goldblum plays an ordinary man caught up in a crime spree, so fun; an early delicious performance by Michelle Pfeiffer


Wild Reeds (1994) - the only French movie I ever completely loved; coming of age story about 3 misfit teens in 1962

When Night is Falling (1995) - Canadian film about an uptight professor who falls for a circus acrobat; quirky, sexy and romantic; by far my favorite Patricia Rozema film

Mostly Martha (2001) - one of my favorite foreign films of all time (from Germany); remade as No Reservations, but the original is better; about an uptight chef whose life is transformed when her niece comes to live with her and her boss hires an lively chef from Italy


Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Schizophrenics in the Movies

Last week I went to two movies, and both happen to feature a key character (not a main character, but an important character) who suffers from schizophrenia. Though I wasn't watching for this, I don't think the word "schizophrenia" was actually mentioned in either movie. Neither movie romanticizes mental illness in the way that Benny and Joon or Mr Jones did (aren't mentally ill people sexy and lovable???), but instead show how very painful it is for the people who love these characters. The movies were very different and both very worth seeing. Proof, with Gwenyth Paltrow as the very pained daughter of a brilliant but ill math genius. In Her Shoes, which is a great movie that's about a lot of stuff, including the impact of the mentally ill character (the deceased mother of the two main characters, played by Toni Collette and Cameron Diaz). Very thought-provoking stuff.


Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Have you heard, liberals are ruining America.

Am I imagining things or are conservatives taking the offensive now that they are so clearly suffering from their own foolishness? Case in point, the very liberal newspaper of my own town, the Philadelphia Inquirer, printed a blatantly liberal-bashing rant from a Weekly Standard editor in the widely-read Sunday "Currents" section (on October 9th). In it, Jonathan Last suggests that American liberals will be responsible for no less than the decline of the American empire, just as British liberals caused the demise of the British empire 70 years ago. Of course it is easy to object to the premises of this argument, not to mention the conclusion. But what I find especially interesting is that Mr. Last has picked this exact moment for his credulous screed. I was still recovering from reading this nonsense when I came across Michael Barone's column in the latest issue of U.S. News and World Report (Oct. 24), wherein he argues (as he frequently does) that liberals are out of touch with real Americans, and just plain bad and wrong to boot. This time the charge is liberals' lack of patriotism and nationalism, despite the hearty embrace of these "isms" by regular (read, good) American folks. Barone is full of crap 99% of the time, but I regularly read him just to get the other view (the same reason I subject myself to the malefic David Brooks). Of course, Ann Coulter and her ilk have been accusing liberals of ruining America for a long time, and Rick Santorum recently published a whole book dedicated to this topic. But it does seem that the accusation is getting more common, more creative and more determined. It can only be a good sign -- we're really getting under their skin.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Movie thoughts -- The Next Bad Guys

I'm going out on a limb and making a prediction. I predict that we will see a rash of movies wherein the "bad guys" will be the big oil companies. For years, the bad guys were Russians -- Russian agents, Russian terrorists, Russian henchmen of various kinds. Easy and a politically correct option. Then the Cold War ended, and writers had to get more creative. We had some maniacal communications magnates (such as Jonathan Pryce in the 1997 Bond movie, Tomorrow Never Dies). Narco-terrorists were good for awhile and they served as all purpose bad guys. So did Arab terrorists. Recently we've had movies about shady figures in the pharmaceutical industry (1993 Harrison Ford movie, The Fugitive and 2005's The Constant Gardener are good examples). But I think as gas prices increase and the war in Iraq continues, it will become acceptable, even necessary, to villify the energy industry. We'll see if I'm right.


Thursday, October 13, 2005

What's the deal with Harriet Miers?

My friend Mary has a theory, that Karl Rove is distracted by the Plame case and let Bush make his own decision regarding the SCOTUS nom. Obviously the result is poor. Say what you want about Karl (and I encourage you to), but you have to admit he runs a tight ship. I just don't get Bush's thought process on this one, for several reasons. After the scathing criticism he got for appointing an unqualified crony to FEMA, why would he choose another unqualified crony for this position? Also, I've heard a lot of talk these days about Bush's legacy -- in that context, this appears an especially odd choice. Most baffling, with his approval rating dropping and the Republicans embroiled in all kinds of high profile scandal (DeLay and Frist, as well as the growing Plame fallout), why on earth would he choose to annoy his base at this time? They were really counting on sticking it to the Dems and Harriet just doesn't accomplish that. I'm stumped. Conservatives are screeching about this nomination. As Bill Maher said, when you've lost the support of Peggy Noonan and Ann Coulter, you've really blown it. It will be interesting to see how the confirmation hearing plays out.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Movie thoughts -- Elizabethtown and Jerry Maguire

Lots of press and great buzz for Elizabethtown lately, Cameron Crowe's new film. The ads aren't all that appealing to me, though, maybe because they seem overly cutesy and seem to be trying too hard. I must admit I have problems with what is arguably his most famous film, Jerry Maguire, though it was a huge hit and is considered a classic romantic comedy. I thought the adorable kid was the best thing about the movie (along with the line, "You had me at hello.") The movie pretends to be about relationships and connecting with people, but it seemed to me that the central message is about money and how money makes you happy (and not having money makes you miserable). Pretty subversive to dress up materialism as a love story, though appropriate in the U.S. I suppose. It also makes unnecessarily hostile digs at feminism -- the lovely Renee takes refuge with her bitter (read feminist) sister and the final major scene takes place at a gathering of bitter (read feminist) women, who sit around complaining about men, but when Our Hero comes to rescue Renee from this terrible fate ("You complete me."), they are dumbstuck and chagrined. Of course many feminists would like to have a committed relationship with a man (I'm one of them), but the film goes out of its way to make these women seem ridiculous and petty and phony. Most of the women I know cherish their female friends, whether or not they have a man in their life. And while they may sit around bitching about men, they are not simply biding their time until a man comes to rescue them -- these friendships sustain them, sustain us, throughout our lives. Boo hiss to Cameron for belittling this, especially in a film that purports to be about love and human connections. So anyway, that's why I'm suspect about his new venture, though I'm trying to keep an open mind.


Monday, October 10, 2005

Movie thoughts -- A History of Violence

Saw this movie over the weekend. Very good, wonderful acting. Not sure I liked it, though. I think I was expecting something more specifically critical of violence, like Peter Weir's Witness. This seemed to be more an exploration of one man's hidden past and the impact of that on the people around him. Interesting, but not as interesting to me as I expected. William Hurt, onscreen for just a few minutes, makes the whole enterprise worth watching.


Sunday, October 09, 2005

Why does Christopher Hitchens have a stick up his ass?

Watched Bill Maher's Real Time last night (from two weeks ago, thank you TiVo), with guest Christopher Hitchens. What's his problem? He was visably fuming the whole time. He was particularly disdainful of one of the other panelists, George Galloway, UK Member of Parliment. They clearly have some history. CH said he's "old fashioned" and he doesn't like to see Americans knock their country. It just doesn't make sense to me -- the whole purpose of freedom of speech is to allow citizens to criticize their government. He's such a fan of the invasion of Iraq, but at least part of the justification of this is to give Iraqis the freedoms of democracy, like, well, freedom of speech. And anyway, we're not saying America is bad, we're saying George Bush's policies are bad for America. How can someone that smart and that educated be unable or unwilling to make this distinction???

Bill also talked to Congressman David Drier (R-Ca). When asked about Bush paying for everything by borrowing money, Drier said the Republican party is all about growth, and Bush's tax cuts have resulted in almost 5% growth. Apparently that's the final word on that. As for the long term impact on our economy from our deficit and trade imbalance, I guess we'll let future generations cope with that.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Welcome to MasurskyLand

Yes, it's true, I've finally taken the plunge. I just have so much to say (ha ha). But seriously, it was time to join the wonderful world of blogging. I need a place to rant about the current political situation and to extol my views about what movies to see and which ones to skip. This will be my new home. All thanks to my friend Suzanne, who took the plunge first and directed me to blogspot.com, which makes it almost too simple to set up a blog. Welcome to my world.