Patterico's Pontifications

12/18/2014

Bill Clinton: The Man Just Can’t Help Himself

Filed under: General — Dana @ 8:26 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Untitled-1

Photo caption time!

*Original photo here.

–Dana

Al Sharpton And Amy Pascal: The Obligatory Come-To-Jesus Meeting

Filed under: General — Dana @ 7:38 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Last week, I posted about Sony Picture’s co-chairman Amy Pascal and producer Scott Rudin’s email exchange involving racial comments about the president and the movies he might like. Pascal and Rudin both profusely apologized for their comments. Seeing an opportunity, Al Sharpton inserted himself into the situation by taking Pascal – not Rudin – to task, claiming that her apology was not good enough and that she needed to meet immediately with black leaders. And what did I say?

Pascal should tell Sharpton to bugger off, however, she will meekly acquiesce and meet with whomever the reverend deems necessary for her rehabilitation. All the while, she will be denouncing her white privilege and cough up thousands of dollars more to donate to some diversity project somewhere to atone for her sin. Ironically, Rudin, meanwhile, will be just fine basking in his continued white male privilege. And money.

On Dec. 11, Pascal called Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson to request a meeting with them to discuss her racial remarks. Today, Sharpton tweeted about the meeting he had with Pascal:

Very pointed and blunt exchange w/ Amy Pascal in our 90 min meeting. Hollywood needs to change. Her leaked e mails show a cultural blindness.

At today’s mtg w/ Sony we agreed to work towards establishing a basis to address the issues, Ms. Pascal committed to this.

Further, and with unbelievable arrogance, Sharpton added:

The jury is still out with where we go with Amy.

He also added that Pascal has agreed to work with various civil rights groups to improve racial diversity in Hollywood.

So, while Pascal’s rolling over in submission to Sharpton to beg forgiveness has set women back 20 years, Scott Rudin continues basking in his white male privilege. And money.

–Dana

Colbert Moves On [Updated with correction]

Filed under: General — JVW @ 3:19 pm

[guest post by JVW]

For those of you brave folks who pay attention to the smarmy comedians who are apparently the new intellectual backbone of progressivism, you have undoubtedly heard that Stephen Colbert is wrapping up his supposedly successful show, “The Colbert Report,” and moving on to replace David Letterman as host of “The Late Show.” To mark the occasion, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has created an online thank-you that the poor souls on their mailing list can access and sign. Powerline points out that even if Colbert (and his fellow pontificators Jon Stewart and John Oliver) want to pretend to be independent and non-partisan figures, this is a pretty good indication of the help that Democrats feel their party derives from hipper-than-thou progressive comedians.

On the other hand, look at it this way: When “The Colbert Report” debuted the Democrats had just recaptured both houses of Congress and the era of Hope and Change was only a year away. Today, as the set is struck for the last time, the GOP has run up two huge midterm election victories, Obama has been mostly exposed as an incompetent and a cipher, and the ideology of trickle-down bureaucracy created by academics, marketed by the media, and run by public employee union members is at its lowest ebb.

Hey, maybe the guy was working for our side all along.

[Update: Look at it this way: When “The Colbert Report” debuted the Democrats had just recaptured both houses of Congress and the era of Hope and Change was only a year away. Today, as the set is struck for the last time, the GOP has run up two huge midterm election victories, Obama has been mostly exposed as an incompetent and a cipher, and the ideology of trickle-down bureaucracy created by academics, marketed by the media, and run by public employee union members is at its lowest ebb.

Hey, maybe the guy was working for our side all along.

[Update: Art Deco reminds me that my math is wrong regarding the start of “The Colbert Report.” My bad. I think my point still mostly stands: Colbert started with the Dems ascending and ended with them in disarray. Thank you Stephen Colbert.]

– JVW

Tort Law: One Major Reason North Korea Can Dictate What Movies We Watch in the United States

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:36 am

Why is “The Interview” being pulled? Why was Steve Carell’s “Pyongyang” cancelled? In the first instance, you can blame the lawyers.

Once all the major movie chains decided not to show the film, that was the end. Why did they make this decision? I’m sure part of the reason is that they worried moviegoers would stay away from the theaters showing the movie, whether the patrons were there to see this film or not.

But I’d say one major reason the chains decided not to show the movie is that they worry about lawsuits if something happens. Lawyer Kurt Schlichter agrees:

Ridiculous hyperbole? Nah. For example, the victims of the Aurora shooting are suing Cinemark over an act perpetrated by a lone gunman. The suit has survived summary judgment, meaning it will cost the chain millions whether there is a settlement or a jury trial. You think chains weren’t thinking about that case and similar litigation when they refused to show “The Interview”?

The apparent decision to forego streaming and DVD sales is also the work of lawyers, from what I have read. Apparently, to collect on insurance, Sony needs a total loss. I would think an insurance company would want them to mitigate their losses, but I don’t write the contracts.

Plus, once the company decides to pull the movie from theaters — a decision that will cost them as much as $200 million, some executive’s head is going to be on a platter. Probably the heads of a bunch of executives. They will be told they should have seen this coming. Now imagine being the guy who decides whether to do a DVD release. You can face the fate of those other executives, or play it safe and kill everything, pointing the finger at the people who are getting sacrificed anyway.

A similar thought process is going on with respect to any movie in development or being considered now: is there some madman or group of madmen who might make violent threats over this? If so, then the project is dead. Simple incentives at work.

Yes, there is a healthy dose of plain cowardice involved here too. (I understand many of you see this as a business decision, but I think you — and the chains — are taking the short-term view over the long-term.) But don’t discount the power of tort law to scare companies into doing ridiculous things. That, in large part, is what started the ball rolling.

Unlawful Harassment To Express The Catholic Church’s Position On SSM At a Jesuit University

Filed under: General — JD @ 6:43 am

[guest post by JD]

From the “I told you so” files …

These precious little snowflakes get the vapors from the mere existence of disagreement. In a university environment.

There is so much irony and hypocrisy in this, it is hard to pick a place to start.

You will be forced to care.

—-JD


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