Patterico's Pontifications


Patrick Goldstein: Hollywood Doesn’t Support Polanski, Silly! What? They Gave Him a Standing Ovation?? HEY, LOOK OVER THERE!!!

Filed under: Dog Trainer — Patterico @ 11:23 pm

Polanski supporter Patrick “Sentencing Child Rapists Costs Too Much $$$” Goldstein, in his latest silly piece at the L.A. Times web site:

There’s no petition going around with the names of the real Hollywood elite — A-list filmmakers and studio chiefs like Steven Spielberg, Alan Horn, James Cameron, Amy Pascal, Jerry Bruckheimer, Brian Grazer, Tom Rothman, J.J. Abrams, John Lasseter or Michael Bay — because the real Hollywood elite isn’t supporting Polanski. In fact, they haven’t offered the slightest hint of backing for Polanski.

Bill Zwecker, Chicago Sun Times columnist:

Sources at the White House tell me President Obama — and all of his key advisers — want ”nothing to do with the [Roman] Polanski case.” Key aides (as well as the president) ”see no upside to getting involved in any way,” despite strong pressure from some of Obama’s financial supporters in Hollywood. Harvey Weinstein, actress Debra Winger and Steven Spielberg are among those trying to help the director avoid extradition to the United States to face a possible jail sentence in his rape conviction from 1979.

Spielberg is so non-supportive of Polanski that he offered Polanski the chance to direct “Schindler’s List.”

But Spielberg is only one person. Does anyone else in Hollywood support Roman Polanski? While I mull that over, let’s all kill some time by watching this completely unrelated video:

Wow. Was that members of the Hollywood elite giving Roman Polanski a standing ovation?

I must have imagined that. Because Patrick Goldstein says that “to say that Hollywood is in [Polanski’s] corner, as part of a political argument that Hollywood is a liberal elite woefully ignorant of mainstream values, is just hogwash.” And if Patrick Goldstein says it’s hogwash, well, it just has to be hogwash!

Doesn’t it?

Who are you going to believe? Patrick Goldstein? Or your lying eyes??


UPDATE: A couple of commenters suggest that the clapping is merely for Polanski as an artist. Well, of course it is; that’s why Hollywood cares about him: because he makes movies. If commenters are suggesting that Hollywood doesn’t know how to express disapproval at the Oscars, they should recall how actors like Ed Harris and Nick Nolte stayed in their seats and glowered when Elia Kazan was honored with an Oscar. And how Polanski pal Steven Spielberg applauded . . . but remained seated. (Watch it here.)

Nolte Scowls
Nick Nolte scowls as Elia Kazan receives Oscar. Image via Big Hollywood.

Ain’t nobody glowering like that in the video of Polanski’s award.

But then, Kazan did something really bad: he testified about people he thought were communists. It wasn’t like he did something trivial like drugging and anally raping a 13-year-old.

PJTV Salutes … Sen. Arlen Specter

Filed under: Government,Humor,Politics — DRJ @ 9:46 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The second edition of PJTV’s “Real Members of Congress”:

Here is the first video featuring Rep. Charles Rangel.


Media Bias on Campus

Filed under: Media Bias — DRJ @ 8:55 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

USA Today has this story from a campus radio station in Jonesboro, Arkansas:

“The news director of a university-owned radio station referred to one of Sen. Blanche Lincoln’s opponents as a “nimrod” in a note sent from his state e-mail account.

Greg Chance of KASU-FM thought he was sending the e-mail to Lincoln’s office. Instead, he sent it to the Republican candidate he was criticizing.”

KASU is a “100,000 watt public radio station broadcasting to Northeast Arkansas, Southeast Missouri and West Tennessee from the campus of Arkansas State University-Jonesboro.”


Cindy Sheehan Protests Obama’s War

Filed under: Sheehan,War — DRJ @ 7:43 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Cindy Sheehan has moved to Washington and is protesting Barack Obama’s war:

“Cindy Sheehan says she is moving to Washington. The anti-war activist was outside the White House for the second day in a row, with a bullhorn and a handful of protestors, shouting against the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, Guantanamo and calling for “health care not warfare.”
Park Police arrested Sheehan and 60 other protestors yesterday, after Sheehan chained herself to the fence on the North Lawn. Sheehan says she refuses to pay the fine and that she and other anti-war activists plan to “step up” their protests until the administration shows a willingness to withdraw U.S. forces from Afghanistan.

“We’re going to create a movement that’s going to demand a change of policy,” she said, explaining that her plan is to create large, coordinated acts of civil resistance, “It’s going to be massive.”

Sheehan has a right to protest in a lawful manner but I wish she wouldn’t do this now, just as I wish she hadn’t done it during President Bush’s term. I support letting people speak out for what they believe in, but my choice is that civil disobedience is the exception rather than the rule.


ObamaCare: The Senate’s 201 Billion Dollar Question

Filed under: General — Karl @ 7:38 pm

[Posted by Karl]

Everyone in Washington and the wonkosphere seemed to be waiting for the CBO’s preliminary analysis of the Senate Finance Committee version of ObamaCare — and were relieved (on the Left) or freaked out (on the Right) that it suggested it may reduce the deficit by $81 billion. However, no one ever convinced me that any of the amendments were going to significantly increase the costs of the original Baucus proposal. Had the final product generated red ink, the number would have been small enough to be fixed by Baucus with a minor tweak or two.

If people want to focus on the fact that the Finance Committee does not have legislative language for the CBO to score, I guess that’s okay. If Peter Suderman wants to remind us that the Medicare cuts designed to pay for much of the bill’s tab are not going to happen, I guess that’s okay, too — though he admits that criticism will have a hard time getting any political traction in the Senate.

It might be more useful to look at the fact that the CBO’s preliminary estimate, with its cost-bending deficit numbers, relies on $201 billion in revenues from an excise tax on high-premium insurance plans. However, today, more than 150 House Democrats sent a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi opposing a new tax on expensive insurance plans. While the letter is supposedly concerned with any such tax eventually hitting middle-income Americans, the reality is that these House Dems are acting at the behest of their Big labor masters, which means they are (ahem) unlikely to change their minds on the issue. Indeed, a White House that was willing to take over much of the US auto industry to save the UAW is probably not keen on tax, either.

Moreover, the other Senate bill (Kennedy-Dodd, HELP) does not specify what spending will be cut or what taxes will be raised to pay for the increased spending. That was the job of the Finance Committee. And the House bills rely on larger cuts to Medicare and Medicare Advantage, which are (as noted above) imaginary, but will nevertheless tend to scare the Hell out of Seniors who already oppose ObamaCare and are more likely to vote in midterm elections. The GOP has already signaled that it plans to hit the Dems hard on these points if and when a bill reaches the Senate floor.

So the 201 billion dollar question is when the Democrats are going to decide whether to soak seniors or their union base to pay for their government takeover of the US healthcare system.


ObamaCare: A FAIL from sea to shining sea

Filed under: General — Karl @ 7:36 pm

[Posted by Karl]

The story of large-scale government takeovers of healthcare in America is the story of consistent failure.

Don’t take my word for it. Take the word of ObamaCare cheerleader Ezra Klein, who wrote in 2007 about how state attempts at government-controlled health care failed time and again — in Washington state, Hawaii, Tennessee and Oregon (I have added links for more detailed looks at some of these failures). While differing in the details, the stories shared common elements — skyrocketing premiums, driving out private insurers, “unexpected” floods of people into the public system, and ultimately rationing and benefit cuts.


ObamaCare Kabuki

Filed under: General — Karl @ 7:35 pm

[Posted by Karl]

In recent days, we have been subjected to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid claiming there will be a “public option” in whatever healthcare takeover bill comes out of Congress, and reports that the Obama administration is working behind the scenes for the “public option.”

But The Hill’s report on the Democratic negotiations adds this:


Obama Has a Lot on His Plate

Filed under: Obama — DRJ @ 5:16 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
The Gay After Tomorrow
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political Humor Ron Paul Interview

“You’re the President of America. When your plate gets too full, you get up and get a bigger plate, mister.”


Bonus VideoJon Stewart on Chicago 2016:

“That’s the pitch?” Stewart said after a clip of President Barack Obama’s speech Friday to the IOC. “‘Let’s have the Olympics in Chicago — that way I don’t have to drive’?”

It’s funny, including some over-the-top media response and “one of the best uses of a lake of any city we’ve seen.”

Somali Pirates Attack French Warship

Filed under: Crime,International — DRJ @ 4:29 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Somali pirates mistakenly attacked a French warship for the second time in 6 months. This time it was the French command vessel La Somme:

“The crew of La Somme, a 160-metre (525-foot) command vessel and fuel tanker, easily saw off the brazen night-time assault by lightly armed fighters on two lightweight skiffs and captured five pirates, a spokesman said.

“The pirates, who because of the darkness took the French ship for a commercial vessel, were on board two vessels and opened fire with Kalashnikovs,” Admiral Christophe Prazuck said in Paris.
The pirates tried to flee when they realised their mistake but were pursued by French forces who, after an hour-long chase, caught one of the skiffs, Prazuck said.”

The report indicates pirate attacks are expected to increase now that the monsoon season has ended.


UPDATE: Here’s a report on the May 2009 pirate attack on a French warship.

Obama Receives McChrystal’s Troop Request

Filed under: Obama,Terrorism,War — DRJ @ 4:13 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The AP reports that President Obama asked last week for General McChrystal’s report containing his request for more troops in Afghanistan. The report has been delivered to Obama and he may discuss it with his advisers on Friday:

“The formal request by the nation’s top Afghanistan commander for more troops is now in President Barack Obama’s hands, administration officials said Wednesday as the war launched after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks reached its eight-year mark with no end in sight.

Obama was not expected to discuss the troop request at a meeting with war advisers Wednesday but was likely to do so on Friday.”

McChrystal reportedly wants 40,000 more troops for Afghanistan, but Obama is still considering his strategy:

“I think everybody is waiting for people to walk out of a room and give everyone a number,” [Press Secretary Robert] Gibbs told reporters, referring to a troop increase. “If you look at some of the coverage of what’s going on, there’s no discussion about the complexity of the problem, the multilayered aspects of it. That’s what we’re digging into.”

No discussion of the complexity? Tell that to Michael Yon and the folks at LongWarJournal, Stratfor, Strategy Page, and others.

Obama’s hesitation is compounded by reports that, for political reasons, he delayed the release of McChrystal’s report for over a month. (And for those who doubt this report is true: Explain to me how and why the Pentagan would refuse — for over a month — to forward the commanding general’s completed report if requested by the White House.) As a result, some assert Obama is moving too slow:

“The president has not shown his hand on troop increases. Obama has already added 21,000 troops this year, raising the total to 68,000.

Obama also gave no timetable for a decision during his meeting with lawmakers , which prompted at least one pointed exchange.

Inside the State Dining Room, where the meeting was held, Obama’s Republican opponent in last year’s presidential race, Sen. John McCain, told him he should not move at a “leisurely pace,” according to people in the room.

That comment later drew a sharp response from Obama, they said. Obama said no one felt more urgency than he did about the war, and there would be nothing leisurely about it.
“Half-measures is what I worry about,” McCain, R-Ariz., told reporters. He said Obama should follow recommendations from those in uniform and dispatch thousands of more troops to the country – similar to what President George W. Bush did during the 2008 troop “surge” in Iraq.”

I think President Obama wants to disengage from Afghanistan, and he may do that by redefining success to mean containing al Qaeda and acquiescing to Taliban rule.


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