Archive - Jul 13, 2005

No Sympathy For The Devils

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Memo To The Potentially Sympathetic: FUCK OFF.

It's tough holding certain principles. It really is. Because if you believe strongly enough in a certain principle, an individual who's caught on the wrong side of it should garner some sympathy, even if they're otherwise wholly unsympathetic. To do otherwise would be hypocrisy. It's like the saying goes: I may not like what you say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it. That's a stone bitch to pull off in practice. Similarly, I've found myself failing to feel sympathy for a number of individuals whose situation warrants it, because, well, I don't fucking like them very much.

Like Judith Miller. Judith Miller is in jail right now because she's refusing to reveal a confidential source. This is a big thing for journalism. A vital and important principle to uphold, even if you're upholding it to defend scumbags. Not that journalists are doing much these days with their confidential sources, and when they do, nobody listens anyway. The principle still stands, and Judith Miller was brave to choose jail time to uphold it. That said, fuck her.

More than anyone at the New York Times, Judith Miller was the one responsible for the shoddiest, flimsiest stories that supported the case for Saddam Hussein's nonexistent weapons of mass destruction. Relying on Ahmed Chalabi and the Iraqi National Congress, she put a ton of misinformation out there. Mobile weapons labs? Aluminum tubes for nuclear centrifuges? Nerve gas antidotes? Miller believed it all, and pushed this bullshit on her readers, directly aiding the trumped-up case for a fucked-up war. So you'll have to forgive me if I take a certain attitude of revelry toward her current discomfort.

I also believe that "sin taxes" are, as a general rule, regressive taxes demonizing bad habits and unfairly punishing the poor. So I'm not thrilled that Minnesota seems to be balancing its budget on the backs of cigarette smokers. Other than giving smokers something fresh and new to bitch about now that you can't smoke in restaurants anymore, I really don't see an upside.

But when they announced a huge tax increase on other tobacco products - cigars, pipe tobacco, and chaw - well, welcome to Toughshittia, population YOU. If there are three groups of people I have a nigh-impossible time scraping up sympathy for, it's pipe-smokers (high demographic correlation with wankery), cigar smokers (high demographic correlation with dickheadery, plus they make the world smell more like vaporized wet dog ass), and smokeless tobacco connoisseurs (high demographic correlation with pigfuckery). Sorry. I feel bad your hard-earned dollars are going to pay for poor people's health care, but not bad enough to actually give a damn.

I don't think it's right when underlings are put into awkward, uncomfortable positions because their boss is an incompetent, lying criminal who consorts with even worse criminals. That said, Scott McClellan can twist in the fucking wind until he's press-secretary jerky for all I care, and I will weep not one iota of tearwater for his sorry, sorry, Rove-ass-covering-ass. It's not like Scotty didn't know the job description when he came on board. Not like he hadn't had to watch Ari Fleischer spin as if his life depended on it during the first part of the Bush presidency. And now the press corps, sensing the possibility of making something stick that the public will be able to understand, are after him in a manner analagous to real journalists after real crooked politicians, albeit on a lesser scale. Enjoy the rest of your week, McClellan. I know I will.

And finally, I believe that when Big Media releases stuff on DVD, they should do their damndest to completely release that stuff on DVD. That means paying for music rights, negotiating for footage, restoring syndication cuts, and generally doing the fucking job right and getting it all in there. If they don't, someone else is gonna do it right down the line, and we'll all end up buying it over again.

That said, no matter how hard I try, no matter how many muscles I strain, I simply cannot empathize at all with a message board poster complaining about this week's He-Man and the Masters of the Universe DVD's. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!

"'Diamond Ray of Disappearance' is missing a huge chunk of footage (Orko-related, notes this fan of the little Trollan) around the act break." - One "Garrett".

Garrett does not live in a world I can sympathize with. Maybe that makes me a bad person, but I can live with that. Garrett lives in a world where the excising of Orko footage is not the act of a benevolent god or gods. In which Orko, along with his spiritual brethren Snarf, Blip, Gleek, Cringer, and Scrappy, is not a blemish upon an otherwise fond childhood memory, but is rather an object of nerdworship, to the extent of actually knowing the little fucker's SPECIES. I can't do it. Unlike Orko (apparently), I am only human.