Ellison’s Must Read of the Day

Ellison must read

My must read of the day is “Republican Tillis is lone NC Senate candidate on live program initially billed as debate,” in the Associated Press

Read More

Marvel’s Civil War Is Not a Crazy Right Wing Story—But Maybe It Should Be!

Marvel Civil War

Marvel Studios recently announced that Captain America 3 will revolve around the “Civil War” storyline from the comics that ran between 2006 and 2007. The storyline, crafted by Mark Millar—a self-professed liberal who has described Sarah Palin as “terrifying”—was a thinly veiled allegory for the war on terror and a critique of the Patriot Act. The short version of the storyline goes something like this:

A group of untrained and out-of-control superheroes takes on a team of super villains and their battle results in the deaths of some eight or nine hundred people. As a result of this tragedy, the Marvel Universe’s version of the CIA/DHS*, SHIELD, pushes for the power to control and train superheroes. They get their way and a law is passed requiring those with superhuman powers to reveal their secret identities and register with, and work for, the government. Those who don’t work with the government are imprisoned indefinitely and without trial in the Negative Zone**. Tony Stark (Iron Man) supports the law; Captain America opposes it. After a bunch of fighting, Captain America, realizing he has lost the support of the American people, surrenders. While standing trial for violating the Patriot Act Superhero Registration Act, Captain America is killed by a sniper, a martyr in the war on terror Civil War.

Remember, this story was conceived and published in the darkest days of the Bush presidency. It’s not hard to see the parallels to the arguments against Gitmo and government overreach in the name of keeping people safe. Here’s how the New York Times described the series:

Read More

Democratic Senator Appears to Want Kids to Smoke

Senator Richard Blumenthol (AP)

Like Paul Krugman, Senator Richard Blumenthal (D., Conn.) knows a nefarious conspiracy when he sees one. Blumenthal has called on the National School Board Association to end its recently announced partnership with Right Decision Right Now, a program designed to prevent youth tobacco use.

That sounds like a good thing, right? Why would Blumenthal oppose the partnership? Well, because Right Decision Right Now was founded by R.J. Reynolds, a tobacco company that obviously wants children to smoke (or something). He called the partnership a “deadly deal” that must be stopped.

Read More

The Media Bubble, Redskins Edition

The spear makes it less offensive, right?

Matthew McConaughey, American Icon, believes that the Redskins should not change their name or logo. Writing at Uproxx Sports, Andy Isaac argued, “McConaughey will likely get killed for this, as his opinion is far from mainstream.” This is, quite simply, wrong. In September, the Washington Post reported on a poll showing that 71 percent of respondents believe the name should not be changed. Earlier this week, the Post reported on another poll that showd 83 percent of respondents believed the Redskins “should not” change their name. In other words, Matthew McConaughey is firmly in the mainstream.

So, as I said, Isaac was wrong. He quickly realized his mistake and corrected his post; I’m not interested in rubbing his nose in it. It is worth briefly highlighting, though, because he was wrong in an interesting way. I am not surprised that Isaac believed that McConaughey is out of step with the mainstream. That’s because within Isaac’s area of interest—the universe of sports writers and writing—McConaughey undoubtedly is out of the mainstream. He is out of step with the nation’s major columnists and websites. He wouldn’t fit in with the Deadspin bros. At some point in the last 18 months or so, a critical mass of sports journalists have decided that it’s totes terrible to use a name that’s been used for decades without a peep. And the rest of the sports journalists have been made to realize that they need to keep their mouths shut if they disagree.

As Bryan Curtis noted at Grantland, this is the golden age of the liberal sports writer:

Read More

You Won’t Believe These Shocking Findings About Liberals That Are Hard to Believe

AP

Pew has released a wide-ranging survey on “political polarization and media habits,” and some of the findings about liberals are pretty interesting. They aren’t actually that hard to believe, though. They are entirely predictable. For example:

Read More

The Jaguars Pool Deck Has Changed My Life Forever

@jagspoolbooty

The Jacksonville Jaguars are one of the worst teams in the National Football League. But, unlike the miserable Oakland Raiders, the Jags have found a unique way to boost stadium attendance: A swimming pool. With girls.

Read More

DC Expected to Legalize Pot for the Unemployed and Elected Officials

AP

In two weeks voters in the nation’s capital will vote on a ballot initiative to legalize marijuana for recreational use. The latest polls show over 70 percent of likely voters favor the initiative.

However, the new law will provide no job protection for those tokers whose workplace prohibits pot use amongst their employees. Making pot legal will not negate employers the right to fire any of their employees who test positive for the devil weed in random drug testing.

Read More

Buy This Book! ‘The Seven Deadly Virtues’

Seven Deadly Virtues

Andrew Stiles and I, your loyal Editor’s Bloggers, have contributed chapters to the forthcoming book The Seven Deadly Virtues. Amazon suggests you should be able to purchase it now (in both hardcover and Kindle formats!) so get on that. Imagine an irreverent version of Bill Bennett’s The Book of Virtues: serious topics handled with a bit of fun.

You shouldn’t buy it because Stiles and I contributed; we’re a couple of pikers.

Read More

Ellison’s Must Read of the Day

Ellison must read

My must read of the day is “Obama on Dems Running Away from Him: ‘These Are All Folks Who Vote With Me,” in the Weekly Standard.

Read More

Paul Krugman Conspiracy Theory: Koch Brothers May Be Colluding with Amazon to Suppress Anti-Koch Book Sales

AP

Paul Krugman thinks Amazon.com is too powerful and that the federal government should do something about it. In his latest column, Krugman criticizes Amazon over its dispute with publishing company Hatchette, and even compares the online retailer to Standard Oil, the Gilded Age conglomerate that was declared an illegal monopoly by the Supreme Court:

Read More

Ebola v. Obesity: The Politicized NIH

NIH Director Francis S. Collins, with President Obama

For over a year, the Washington Free Beacon’s Elizabeth Harrington has been documenting research grants provided by the National Institutes of Health to recipients like an obvious conman who said he wanted to bring origami condoms to the world ($2.5 million) and teams studying if obese people could be persuaded to lose weight by having the government text message them ($2.7 million). Last week, with the NIH’s budget in the spotlight—courtesy of the director of the NIH himself, Dr. Francis Collins, who claimed that an Ebola vaccine would likely exist today were it not for a “10-year-slide in research support” for his organization—Harrington wrote a round-up of her work on this issue, observing that the total amount of absurd NIH funding she had chronicled amounted to nearly $40 million, all of which would obviously have been better spent on an Ebola vaccine—or on cancer, or on HIV/AIDS, or on any number of worthy medical causes.

Read More

#GamerGate Makes the Left Uncomfortable Because Gamer Gaters Have Adopted the Left’s Tactics

Via Flickr user joo0ey

Since last we checked in on #GamerGate, there have been a couple of rather silly arguments leveled against the grassroots hashtagtivist campaign.

Let’s deal with the dumber of these first. This argument goes something like: “#GamerGate has been totally discredited because some small number of people have threatened violence against some other small number of people while using the hashtag in their attacks.” This has led luminaries such as Joss Whedon to explicitly compare GamerGaters to the Ku Klux Klan:

Read More

Ellison’s Must Read of the Day

Ellison must read

My must read of the day is “A Tiny Alaskan Island Halfway To Russia Could Decide Control of The Senate,” in Talking Points Memo.

Read More

Poll: Obama Worse Than Bush

AP

Voters in battleground states think President Obama is worse at “managing the basic functions of the federal government” than his predecessor George W. Bush, according to a POLITICO poll released Monday. In other words, voters think Obama is a less effective manager than the man he stills blames for his failures.

Read More

Frank Gehry: Right for Ike?

Dwight Eisenhower

Good news from Paris. Frank Gehry’s newest completed design, an art museum made for the owner of the luxury brand LVMH and built in the Jardin d’Acclimatation, was opened to the press today, and is soon to be dedicated by the president of France, Françoise Hollande.

Read More