« December 2015 »


In many ways, this is Ronald Reagan's ultimate victory. After nearly 40 years of trickle-down, welfare-shaming disguised as "reform", and Republican "I Got Mine, Fuck You" philosophy has led to this. A cable channel run by the son of a televangelist thinking it's uplifting to perform cruel psychological experiments on poor children because, well, they're poor!

The network is UpTV, and it hasn't been in the news since it had to pull all its Seventh Heaven reruns off the air when it turned out Stephen Collins was a child molester. It used to be known as the Gospel Music Channel, but decided to change its name after it started airing nothing but Dr. Quinn reruns and shitty wholesome TV movies.

The channel's mission is allegedly "uplifting" (I.e. Vaguely Christian), "feel-good" programming. I don't know what they normally air, because, well, it's December, and their entire schedule is filled to overflowing with movies like "A Baby For Christmas". And as I write that, I realize I could have saved myself like two full paragraphs by just saying UpTV thinks "A Baby For Christmas" is a perfectly acceptable thing to show on television, and you could have extrapolated everything else about it yourself.

Anyway, they're awful, and no amount of bonded, sans serif fonts on their website can disguise the fact that every single member of their audience, has, at one point, sent a "Christmas Shoes" e-card to their lesbian niece, along with a note saying that they're praying the niece finds a nice man to settle down with someday.

But just being the equivalent of the Salvation Army for second-hand Hallmark Channel pablum isn't enough to get you into You Are Dumb Dot Net, not even during a lazy-ass holiday week. No, they're here because of some original content they created just in time for Christmas.

UpTV went down to the Atlanta Boys and Girls Club, and met with a bunch of poor kids between 6 and 11. They asked them what their biggest wish was for Christmas, what their parents' biggest gift was, gave them their biggest gift, then told them their parents' could have their biggest gift only if the kids gave up theirs.

All the kids gave up their presents, proving that humans are basically good or object permanence develops later than we thought or poor children can be decent human beings unlike their parents or some shit. And UpTV did, in the end, let the families keep both gifts. But that's not the point.

The point is, you shouldn't get to make poor people your playthings because you have things they want or need. That's not a particularly prevalent viewpoint in America these days, where seeing how many hoops you can get them to jump through for a few scraps of food is the new competitive pastime amongst America's governors. But it's still a shitty thing to do. And it's even worse when you think you're demonstrating some kind of moral point. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!

"I saw pride there for them to be able to make that sacrifice, It’s really driving home the true meaning of Christmas that it’s better to give than receive.” - Wendy McCoy, senior Vice President for being a fucking monster at UpTV.

Without the word "pride", this would be a shitty thing to say. It's not better to give than receive when the "giving" means having to decide who gets to receive a fake, arbitrarily scarce bit of faux "charity". With the word "pride" in there, though, the whole thing makes me want Anonymous to hijack their feed and replace it with nothing but hardcore porn. I know that's a very 80's kind of hacker thing, but I'm old, and my ideas for Christmas revenge on self-righteous pigfuckers is old too.