Old Time Radio at OTRCat!

Sunday, December 31, 2006

A happy and blessed New Year to you all!

Also...I hate Blogger Comment spam.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

I just got called a JERK!

By someone who DOESN'T EVEN KNOW ME!

Well, we agree on Jerry Lewis. Utterly.

The point of my little exercise is to point out that... the stereotype in an animated cartoon is generally NOT offensive to the stereotypee. The Speedy Gonzales cartoons are a case in point. They are LOVED in Mexico and South America. I have yet to meet a single living soul who was offended by a cartoon lampooning their ethnic persuasion. Even the most egregious large-lipped, watermelon-eating Negro in, say, "Coal Black and de Sebben Dwarfs" STILL outsmarts the bad guys! He is a "comical" hero, but still the hero of the piece.

All...literally ALL of the noise I hear is from Liberal Arts College educated white guys and gals who think that the Japanese should be offended by the AIP studios Dick Tracy cartoon character Joe Jitsu, f'rinstance, or that the guys at the local taqueria should be offended at Speedy Gonzales. No-one thinks I should be offended by Elmer Fudd.

I am hurt.

I will say that I see a HUGE difference between "telling a joke" and an animated cartoon. I find racial jokes offensive. There is a PERSONAL aspect to telling a racial joke that separates it in my mind from, say, a cartoon from another era, with different sensibilities. Therein lies the key. Today, that sort of thing cannot fly. Warner Brothers won't be putting out wildly stereotyped propaganda cartoons for "The War on Terror", because the market will not bear it. Sensitivities have changed. What I militate against is redacting history by hiding Things We Don't Like Anymore. To trot out Santayana one more time: those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

You cannot learn from what is hidden.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Happy Hanukramakwanzzmas

I like Glenn Beck. He has brought fun back into the talk radio.
Enough about him.

When has the church been called to be militant on inconsequential things?
It disturbs me that Christians have lost the virtue of, well, shutting up.

I ask this as a Christian man.

And now a word from Our Founder:

Matthew 5:38-39, "Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also."

And this from His pal, Paul:

1 Corinthians 13:4-7, "Agape love endures long, and is kind; Agape love envies not; Agape love vaunts not itself, is not puffed up, Does not behave itself unseemly, seeks not her own, is not easily provoked, thinks no evil; Rejoices not in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; Bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things."

It appears at first blush that this "culture war" jazz is erroneous.
Having a Blue Vest wish you a "Merry Christmas" is of little value.
Sharing the Gospel is of inestimable value. I am worried that winning a cultural battle over holiday good feelings will lose us the war of bringing the world to Christ, if the church is made to appear pugnacious and thus odious by the secularists who picked the fight.

Sometimes it's best to pick up your toys, leave the playground, and go home.

Monday, December 18, 2006

The Angry Little Aardvark

No, I am not writing Little Golden Books, now. I am sufficiently exercised that I am dropping the third-person pose, even.

If I IMDB (yes, I used that as a verb) a cartoon from my childhood, and read one more review by some harbinger of White Guilt like this:

The Brothers Matzoriley

This third segment was unrelated to the Super Six, and featured a three-headed "Siamese Triplet". Each head had its own distinct personality, with one head being that of an Irish ruffian, another being a Jewish-American coward, and the third being a wisened Chinese. All three personalities were of a stereotypical nature that would be considered extremely politically incorrect by current standards, and quite probably offensive to the ethnic cultures which they misrepresented. (Wikipedia)

...well, the results won't be pretty! "...Quite probably offensive to the ethnic cultures which they misrepresented" indeed. These are CARTOONS. They naturally draw (ha, draw!) from the features most easy to exaggerate and caricature. If they were to be authentic, actual factual representations of ethnae, they would have been National Geographic specials on CBS, narrated by Alexander Scourby. But no, they are cartoons, done on the cheap to populate the Vast Wasteland, and voiced by actors who drew from vaudeville, and its electronic heir, Old Time Radio.
Shucks, "ethnic" actors like Eddie "Rochester" Anderson played to the stereotypes. Better a shuck-and-jive actor who eats, than a proto-"civil rights" activist who starves.
I am livid over what has been done to our cultural heritage. I am a collector of, errmmmm, impolitic cartoons, from WWII buck-toothed Japanese, to lederhosen wearing Nazis, to watermelon-eating saucer-eyed ne...no, Blac.....shoot, denizens from a minstrel show. Not because I am a bigot, (I find the "N" word as offensive as G** D***...and trust me, I find THAT offensive.), and as a target of cartoon bigotry myself (short, bald, kinda goofy...you figger it out) I sympathise with my fellow stereotypees, but c'mon... THEY'RE FUNNY!

Reminds me of the Turner execs who banned Speedy Gonzales to the Barrio of Offensive Toons.
"OH!"said they. "The Hispanics might be Offended by the broad May-hee-can stereotype."
They finally got talked back into showing them- especially by the Hispanic fans who lionize the rapid rodent for always triumphing over his foes. Of course, maybe this might have tilted it a bit:

Speedy boosters shouldn't expect to see their furry hero anytime soon, at least in the United States, Goldberg said. But there is a place where Speedy can still be found zipping across TV screens and, presumably, where the crude stereotypes he embodies don't touch a cultural nerve.

That place: The Cartoon Network Latin America, where, ironically enough, Speedy Gonzales is "hugely popular," Goldberg said. --FoxNews

Thursday, December 14, 2006

The Aardvark is one of those created with his hinder too close to the ground. Consequently, his pants legs are always too long. Seriously...he needs a 28 inch inseam. If he lived in New York, he would shop at "Shlomo's Short and Squat". (PL. call me!).

As a result, his jeans have that fashionable "denim-shredded-by-being-trodden-on-boy-EE" look which he so despises. If he were anorexic and looking for modeling work it would be one thing, but looking more like The Critic than a Gap ad puts a different spin on it all.

Couple that with being hagridden. (No he and the Dread Dormomoo are not at outs. He speaks of his Mistress: his business.) He is Just Too Busy to go out and find a decent haberdasher or seamstress (both of which being in short supply anyway in the Wilds of Alabamastan). The DD is accomplished with needle and thread, and has an aged Pfaff that does great machine work, but, well, SHE is hagridden, too.

Therefore, to avoid the terminally frayed look, your Aardvark has resorted to...
Resorted to...
Rolling up his pants legs.
Yeah, the Tom Sawyer look. Give him a fence to whitewash, and he'll be fine. Maybe he'll play at rolling a barrel hoop along with a stick.

Guess he needs to buy jeans online, too.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Big Fine for Underage 'Girls Gone Wild'

The AP has a triumphant writeup about the two 17-year-old heroines who have successfully litigated against Exploitation Most Vile. A most interesting part of the story:

U.S. District Judge Richard Smoak ordered Mantra's multimillionaire founder, Joe Francis, to read aloud in court a victim impact statement from one of the women, who said she was emotionally tormented by her appearance on a "Girls Gone Wild" video and that the video damaged her relationship with her family.

To borrow from myself: I weep.

According to Francis, the girls lied about their age. Of course, this is a stretch, as women never lie about anything. Hmmmmm. Let's think about this. They were underage high-schoolers in a party town, on an uber-party weekend. They had been drinking.

Of COURSE they lied. They almost certainly had phony IDs to facilitate their sozzlement.

The li'l darlins made CHOICES.
They chose to drink.
They chose therefore to become impaired.
They agreed to appear in the video "Look, LOOK! We have BREASTS. No really. HERE they are, SEE!". They apparently lied for the privilege.

They chose.
Now at least one of them is reaping "emotional torment" and damaged family relationships (read: Mom and Dad were mad as blazes, and she is grounded 'til she's forty.).

This is not a popular attitude, but they set themselves up for it all.

Let the Aardvark make it clear: I do not find Joe Francis' choice of work to by laudatory.
It is an evil source of gain, getting stupid girls to waggle their endowments for Your Late-Night Pleasure (this is what the Aardvark terms "loser porn". Wait. The Aardvark repeated himself!). But the way this whole pathetic hoedown is framed, I find him to be almost as much a victim as the chicks claim to be.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Some years back, Orson Scott Card made the rounds of Sci Fi conventions doing his "Secular Humanist Revival". Done in the style of a brimstone-laden Baptist preacher, the Revival got rollin' with Card yelling "Do you be-LEEVE?!" With no antiphonal response, he would repeat "Do you BE-LEEEEEVE?!". Caught up in the fervor, members of the congreg...er...audience would respond
"YES!" or "We believe!", whereupon Card would zing 'em with his "gotcha" line:

"In WHAT?"

OSC is a practicing Mormon, and has some passing knowledge of Religious Fervor.

I just saw "The Polar Express" on telly- a movie that I had assiduously avoided ever since it came out. The commercials invariably showed the Twaddly Bits, and the CG images looked fuzzy and poorly done. Great. A New Christmas Classic.

I repent in dust and ashes. "Express" is nowhere near as bad as I expected. Now that I have Praised It With Faint Damns, I shall elucidate. The movie has heart. The score is memorable, and orchestrated. Hail Silvestri. The motion capture as remarkable, the imaging is well-done for the most part. Alas, there is more diversity in Deep Roy's Oompa Loompas than in the elves at the North Pole- tho' the Jewish Elf Manager is a slice of genius. The rest of the workforce has the gaunt look of inmates at Auschwitz. There ARE shelves, though. She-elves. They dance well.

My underlying grump with "Express" is its generic message to "Believe!". The implied object is Santa, but it is not overtly stated. Merely "Believe". Now, I do not expect an evangelistic religious tract out of Tom Hanks...oh, wait...da Vinci Code....; I am merely pointing at the general
philosophical mood of the day, that of Both,And.

Both salmon and tilapia.
Both serge and seersucker.
Both A and B.
Both Buddhism and Scientology.

EVERYTHING is true. A and Not-A. All you have to do is believe.

Invariably, the protagonist of a film comes to a Point of Faith, which invariably resembles a bout of terminal constipation, judging from the facial expressions exhibited. The Leap of Faith in "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" is a case in point. He must screw his courage to the sticking -place, empty his mind of the last faint gibbers of rational thought, and just Let Go.

This of course in no way resembles the biblical concept of Faith, where "faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God". Faith is the response of a rational mind informed by the word of God, illuminated by the holy spirit. Faith is not a feeling that you can gin up by concentration coupled with the proper facial expressions.

Therefore, "A" and "not-A" are mutually exclusive.
You cannot worship God and Mammon.
Neither God and Molech.
Neither God and Yourself.

Let me say it again. Biblical faith is not "Both, and".
Contrariwise, it is Either, or.
Either God or not.
Either truth or error.
Rational decisions or feelings-soaked busy work.

The religion of feelgoodism says "just believe".
The Biblical balance is believe, then behave like you believe. That may also be thought of as obedience.

As Naruto would say:
"Believe it!"

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Notes from our little ball of mud.

The mother / son combo who faked the son's mental retardation blows me away. The AP says:

"Court documents indicate prosecutors believe his mother pulled the same trick with a daughter, whom officials have been unable to locate. All told, she raked in $222,000 on their behalf, according to the documents."

So, they have scammed the taxpayers out of almost a quarter-of-a-million-dollars.
If they are convicted, they go to prison, where they will cost the taxpayers ANOTHER wad of cash.

This appears to be an argument for indentured servitude.


To be UTTERLY shallow, I cannot take Barack Obama seriously. Despite his well-spokenness, his erudition, his obvious accomplishment, I just cannot.

He reminds me of Barney Fife. I expect to see him begin fumbling in his shirt pocket for his bullet.

More to come...