Friday, December 19, 2014

Paramount Bans Showing ‘Team America’ - The Daily Beast

OK, how can a company ban a movie theater showing its film? If I buy the print why can't I show it? Can they ban me watching it at home? Just a legal question. I am sure there is an answer. 

But what is really interesting is that the article mentions how the Czechs dealt with threats from the North Koreans over that same film over a decade ago: 

“Obviously, it’s absurd to demand that in a democratic country,” a spokesman for the Czech foreign ministry said at the time.

The new Europe is ahead of Old Europe and the New World. 

North Korea deep into cyber warfare, defector says -

I think that two things are being missed in this controversy. First, the role of China. Some of the attacks are executed through China and the North Korean regime is only able to stay afloat because the Chinese Communists bank role them.

The other culprits that are getting away unscathed are lawyers and our legal liability system. It is probably correct that the theaters had no choice given our liability laws but to cancel the showings of the movie, but that is the problem. We have a system that does not allow free born citizens to make their own decisions. Our own legal system is a threat to our freedoms as is terrorism.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Lefty Hate | Simple Justice

Hypocrisy on the Left in Academia:

"That Mahmood was met with the whine of the tenderhearted, his satire created a hostile environment at his other paper, was par for the silliness course.

And until recently, he enjoyed writing for both of the campus’s newspapers: the institutional, liberal paper, The Michigan Daily, and the conservative alternative paper, The Michigan Review.
After penning a satirical op-ed for The Review that mocked political correctness and trigger warnings, The Daily ordered him to apologize to an anonymous staffer who was offended and felt “threatened” by him. He refused and was fired."
The saddest thing about all this is that the one place where you should be freest to speak your mind is the one place where that is the most dangerous. The anonymous denunciation is a particularly nice touch. No confronting your accusers here, comrade.

Killing The Interview Opens Studios to Terrorist Manipulation | The Informer | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly

Killing The Interview Opens Studios to Terrorist Manipulation | The Informer | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly:

"Emily Carman, assistant professor of film and media arts at Chapman University, says Hollywood received pressure from the Chinese government in 1932 and 1933 with the releases of Shanghai Express and The Bitter Tea of General Yen, respectively.

The films featured white actors in yellowface as well as interracial relationships.

"It was a racist, Eurocentric view of China," Carman said.

Leaders threatened to block film distribution in China, but Hollywood did not back down, she said.

The Interview also hits a familiar note of insensitivity toward an Asian nation. Before that, in 2001, the Ben Stiller comedy Zoolander featured a plot about a fashion model recruited to assassinate the prime minister of Malaysia. That nation and neighboring Singapore banned its exhibition.

 "Can you imagine the outcry if North Korean released, Get Obama, about the assassination of a sitting president," asks Douglas Thomas, associate professor of communication at the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism.

"It's amazing that this even got green-lit," Carman adds. "Wow, nothing's really changed. This is still a white male, Western-centric view of a small Asian nation."

Let me say that I think these points are wrong in every particular.

The movies from the 1930's were not racist, the characters were fully developed human beings on both sides of the racial divide. That is what made them compelling movies.

And no, I can't imagine the outcry if North Korea released a movie about the assassination of a sitting president because Hollywood itself has released precisely such a movie--not a comedy--where the assassination of a sitting president is envisaged and actually viewed approvingly. Of course, in that case the sitting president was a Republican, so it was ok.

The movie treats the assassination of the leader of a "small Asian nation" as something to laugh about not because of the color of the leader's skin but because of the monstrous nature of his regime. It is a measure of the absurd fetishization of race by our intellectuals that the salient feature of the controversy is not the totalitarian regime the monster runs but the color of the monster's skin.

The battle for freedom of thought and speech must be won in the hearts of the people if it is to survive in government. Sadly, it has already been lost among our tenured intellectual class.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

JustOneMinute: Raaaacism!

Michelle Obama tells of how she was mistaken for a Target employee and interprets it as racist. But a year or two before she told the same story on Letterman as just being asked for help because she was tall and related it as a happy memory.

There is no reason to think she is lying, though, given what we know about memory. People reinterpret when they remember and she may very well now remember it as being tinged with racism.

Australia vows to unearth why 'sick' extremist was at large - Yahoo News

Everyone seems to be outraged that he was 'on the street'. Maybe they should be outraged that he was in the country. You can let fanatics in your country and then try to follow them around 24 hours a day to make sure they don't do anything crazy or you can just not let them in in the first place. You end up transforming your country in either case.

It is not that he was allowed on the street, it is that he was allowed to vote. You let him transform your laws by voting and transform your law enforcement by creating a new class of citizens that are to be 'free but followed'? Why not just keep them out in the first place?

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Eric Garner, criminalized to death - The Washington Post

I disagree with Will (and apparently just about everyone else on the planet). I think the Grand Jury in the Garner case was right. His death was a crime, but the crime was not committed by the police but by the state. He was not the victim of rogue cops but of a rogue law.