Comments or suggestions: Gerard Van der Leun
Something Wonderful (and Spooky): Why We Still Rule the 21st Century

Halloween Light Show 2010 HD - Thriller ( Michael Jackson )

2010 Halloween Light Show in HD - Thriller by Michael Jackson

4 singing pumpkin faces, tombstones, hand carved and blow mold pumpkins, strobes, floods and thousands of lights. Light-O-Rama 140 channels.

And that, my friends, is an up-to-the-minute example of why THEY hate us and why THEY can't wait to get here.

Or, as my co-editor at RightNetwork says, "Every single useless product I see at the supermarket makes me happy."

Posted by Vanderleun Oct 31, 2010 11:11 PM | Comments (1)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Arnold Schwarzenegger: In Retrospect


Apropos of nothing in particular, isn't it surprising -- when looking back on the governorship of Arnold Schwarzenegger -- just how much of a weakling he turned out to be?

Posted by Vanderleun Oct 29, 2010 10:26 PM | Comments (14)  | QuickLink: Permalink



Posted by Vanderleun Oct 29, 2010 4:02 PM | Comments (4)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Something Wonderful: Richard Fernandez in Prose Plus Video

Any intelligent person who absorbed even a smidgen of the near-decade's worth of essays by Richard Fernandez of the Belmont Club would conclude the man's talent verges on genius. He's a Swiss-Army Knife essayist with no subject seemingly beyond his ken. To list the number of essays he's written that engage and enlighten and entertain all at the same time would be beyond most readers' capacity to scroll.

In the last year or so, Fernandez has also added the ability to include embedded videos not just as illustrations of his points, or keynotes from which he writes, but as integrated portions of the essay without which the essay itself would be incomplete. The latest of many examples is found in today's Belmont Club » Revolt on the Left. Here's the end of the essay where the video keys directly off the last sentence and takes the essay and the possibilities it suggests into whole new realms. Read it through and then play the video and you'll see what I mean.

Fernandez is one of those rare talents who can take an ossified form (in this case the essay which has been around since well before Montaigne) and suddenly make it new. Worth learning from.... if you ask me.

"The trend and worldview Obama represents is deeply embedded by now in America. If Bill Clinton thinks he can blast it out of the Democratic Party, remove the growth that has been yearly increasing since 1968, then good luck to him. But Clinton represents demographic forces too, dating back from before the sixties and born of normal expectations every year. They are the kind of Democrats of whom Limbaugh said: they "may have problems with this country, but don't want to see it destroyed."
"It is far from clear who will emerge victorious in the Clinton vs Obama wars. What is certain is that the low-income Democrats will not, not while the struggle for the party remains between the elites. In Trotsky vs Stalin, to use an historical parallel, Ivan is never a candidate. Whoever wins, it won't be Ivan. How can they put him on the ballot? Answer: with great difficulty.
"Whereas tea-party type movements can easily spring up among politically inactive conservatives working mostly at day jobs, spontaneous movements are harder to organize within the left because the grassroots channel is already pre-emptively filled and watched jealously by professional militants, from labor union operatives to community organizers to advocacy groups. Tea Parties in conservative populations arise at need among a yeomanry in a relative vacuum. Tea Party groups arising on the left must struggle to survive in a Darwinian ecosystem of activism.
"Still the seeds of discontent are there. If the Clinton challenge to Obama emerges openly it will momentarily legitimize all kinds of insurrectionary initiatives. In that hiatus the ordinary guy in the Democratic Party will have his chance; start to rethink his party, examine alternatives, independent of factions. It will be clear when that instant comes. While it is not here yet, the struggle of the Democratic grassroots to chart a future independently of their main factions isn't hopeless. Once it gets started all kinds of unanticipated, almost emergent events are possible. Suppose there were more than two possible outcomes in a political alignment. More than Brand Clinton and Brand Obama? Suppose, for example, there were 216? Now suppose there were millions of possibilities."

Posted by Vanderleun Oct 29, 2010 10:47 AM | Comments (3)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Something Wonderful: The Final Scene of Being There

I found this scene from the film on YouTube after reading Sippican's " I Made It Past That One. I'll Make It Past This One" where he remarks, "Fantastic piece of work. Wholly misunderstood." The script excerpt, which does not track the film as released, comes from HERE.


Posted by Vanderleun Oct 28, 2010 11:56 AM | Comments (5)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Something Wonderful: The Stars My Destination, Chapter 1

Created by Tom O'Bedlam at "Spoken Verse" which is far and away the finest poetry source on You Tube if not the entire Internet. Subscribe @ YouTube - SpokenVerse's Channel

Tom notes, accurately, that The Stars My Destination is "the Best SF novel ever written - according to some experts. There's not much doubt it's the Best Space Opera of all time. Yet many SF enthusiasts have never heard of it. It made a great impression on me when I first read it - more than any other novel. It starts by quoting Tom O'Bedlam's Song - not a coincidence.

It's a tour-de-force, a work of creative genius, daring to take liberties that no novel had ever taken before. It was also printed with the title, "Tiger!, Tiger!". Nothing like it had ever been written before. The story has been compared with The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas.

A movie of the same name is scheduled for release in 2012.

"Bester used to write comics (now called Graphic Novels) as well as TV shows such as The Green Lantern. It has enough plot for five novels - Bester never seems to run out if outrageous ideas. The science is dubious and often plain wrong - for instance he says that food cannot be kept in tin cans because tin crumbles to dust in the absolute zero of space - but of course tin cans are steel, not tin. Somebody called it "A work of art made out of junk" One quirk is that he took the names of many characters from British Towns.

"It was written in about 1953 before Star Trek, before any Space Exporation, before SF became respectable. At that time SF was considered "far-fetched" and restricted to pulp magazines - traditionally adorned with pictures of girls in bra and panties being attacked by bug-eyed monsters."

Posted by Vanderleun Oct 24, 2010 8:50 PM | Comments (11)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Make this into a billboard and you'll kill the California Marijuana Initiative in its cradle

Found via Rodger at Curmudgeonly & Skeptical presents Boned Jello who should know better.

I am putting the image in the extended entry so you don't have to see it.

No, really, you don't have to see it and you don't want to see it.

Don't do it you fool. Just don't do it.


Posted by Vanderleun Oct 24, 2010 12:36 PM | Comments (22)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Something Wonderful: A Trip Down Market Street in SF in 1905

A trip down Market Street before the fire / [production company unknown].

"This film, shot from the front window of a moving Market Street cable car, is a rare record of San Francisco's principal thoroughfare and downtown area before their destruction in the 1906 earthquake and fire. The filmed ride covers 1.55 miles at an average speed of nearly 10 miles per hour. While there is no production or copyright information on the film, the state of completion of the Flood Building and the Monadnock Building indicate that the year is 1905.

"Also, the apparent position of the sun in relation to the time visible on the Ferry Building clock point to early September as the month.

"Market Street, graded through sand dunes in the 1850's, is 120 feet wide, and nearly 3.5 miles long. The street runs northeast from the foot of Twin Peaks to the Ferry Building. Different street grids, diagonal on the northwest side and parallel on the southeast side, create several awkward diagonal intersections along Market Street, contributing to the chaotic traffic situation that is evident in the film.

San Francisco's cable cars, which first began operations in 1873, have no power of their own, and operate by "gripping" a moving cable beneath a slot in the street. This is the origin of the name "south of the slot" for the South-of-Market Street district. The Market Street lines, dating from 1883, merged in 1902 to form the United Railroads of San Francisco.

"Dark cars served westerly neighborhood lines extending along McAllister, Hayes and Haight streets, light cars served southwesterly neighborhoods, with the lines extending along Valencia and Castro streets. The Market Street section of the lines ended at the Ferry Building, where passengers boarded ferries for Oakland, Alameda, or Berkeley, across San Francisco Bay. East of Sutter Street, horse cars ran along Market Street. Independently owned, they ran on side tracks to the Ferry Building.

"A few electric streetcars, dating from 1892, are seen in the film crossing Market Street. Market Street itself reverted to electric streetcars in 1906, following the earthquake and fire. In all, the film shows some thirty cable cars, four horse cars and four streetcars.

"An interesting feature of the film is the apparent abundance of automobiles. However, a careful tracking of automobile traffic shows that almost all of the autos seen circle around the camera/cable car many times (one ten times). This traffic was apparently staged by the producer to give Market Street the appearance of a prosperous modern boulevard with many automobiles. In fact, in 1905 the automobile was still something of a novelty in San Francisco, with horse-drawn buggies, carts, vans, and wagons being the common private and business vehicles.

"The near total lack of traffic control along Market Street emphasizes the newness of the automobile. Granite paving stripes in the street marking ignored pedestrian crosswalks, making the crossing of Market Street on foot a risky venture. The pedestrian "islands" for homeward-bound downtown cable car commuters are among the few signs of order visible in the film."

Posted by Vanderleun Oct 18, 2010 1:27 PM | Comments (13)  | QuickLink: Permalink
The Center Cannot Hold

Illustration from Serr8d's Cutting Edge

Things fall apart; the center cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

-- Yeats

Of all people Time’s Mark Halperin, tool and fool and formerly full-time Obama pegboy, writes, "The White House is in over its head, isolated, insular, arrogant and clueless about how to get along with or persuade members of Congress, the media, the business community or working-class voters."

The phrase "White House" is used here as a beard for "Obama" since it is clear that there is nothing to the White House that is not Obamaesque. Indeed, the use of code is becoming all the more prevalent now that this one man disaster is about to break over "his" party like a sewage tsunami of epic proportions.

In the backwash there will be expectations of Obama "triangulating" and scuttling crabwise and widdershins towards "the center." Even now various contractual pundits are filling their online and on-air blatherfests with this foolishness simply because they have nothing else to say. Only the shabby history of the Clinton debacle informs them.

The chances of a "move to the center" on the part of this preening narcissist are exactly zero. It's not about governing. It's not about the "Democrats." It's not about what is "good for America." It's about none of those things and precisely about.... the Seinfeldian nothing. It's about the big zero, President O, who will do what he set out to do, fulfill his own internal vision of his "destiny."

And in that vision what is good for O is what is bad for America. It's not really that the current desk jockey in the Oval office is incompetent. He's not. He's always gotten exactly what he wanted through a clever triangulation of his own interests, the personal interests of others, and dullness of others so besotted with leftist pap that if they don't hate the country that gave them everything, have little use for it.

Riding on a wave of peri-geriatic guilt from the baby-boomers of a paler persuasion, the mountebank and bounder has bounded straight into a job that lets him, at long last, indulge his passions for self-aggrandizement and misrule. This man is a hater, a wrecker, and a racist.

To think he will "move to the center" like the fawning lapdog that was Bill Clinton is to misread him utterly. The center does not hold him. He's a creature of edge cities, off-brand cultures, and twisted ideas. What he loves is the abyss. He is the man that is an island. He has no part of the main nor is there any heart for the heartland within him. There is no American soil between his toes, only the ever shifting sands of some Hawaiian beach.

The persistence of the birth certificate controversy has its roots not in some existence or non-existence of some document, but in the very real sense of most sensible people that this American has no America in him at all. He is not of this continent, nor is he from the American grain. Like Peer Gynt's onion you could peel him to the innermost level and find only nothing where the core should be. The only thing contained in that sphere, if it could be measured, is the spite and contempt for the country that one can smell oozing from every pore and informing the tone of every word.

This man hates the culture that produced him and with reason. Far from reining him in, the coming destruction of the Democrats only frees him to get his hate on in a more direct and unrestrained manner.

Elected under the cloak of being a "uniter," this is a man whose one central wish is to disassemble the Constitution and the United States at the same time. When the oath was given, his heart said, "destroy, dissolve, and leave defenseless the Constitution of the United States, so help me Me."

He doesn't need the congress to go on. He's the commander in chief without an anchor or a center. He can do quite enough all by himself.

Depend upon it.

Posted by Vanderleun Oct 13, 2010 7:20 PM | Comments (30)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Notable & Quotable

It would be rude to email this picture to your liberal friends with the words "Neener, neener, neener" in the subject line.

Belmont Club » The Sealed Frontier

The Taliban's belief that they "have all the time" is paradoxically an assertion that they, unlike us, believe in a future. They are convinced that someday the flag of Islam will fly over the White House. Modern PC culture by contrast, constantly hints by its actions that it has very little desire to even survive. For all its self-congratulation it can hardly muster the enthusiasm to continue. Children and grandchildren, which are the links into posterity are seen as an irksome encumbrance. Our bridges to tomorrow are not just untrodden, they are unwanted.

House of Eratosthenes

You know what I notice about this, is that if you were to make a list of what America does need & doesn’t need right now, you’d find it’s a mostly non-partisan list and very few people are going to disagree with anything on it. We need to make it easier to get a job in this country, which means we need to make it easier to hire people. We need to make it easier to buy, sell, start a business, transport goods, stock them, move them, provide services, acquire permits to do a variety of business-related things.

We don’t need more debt. We don’t need more wars. We really don’t need any more racial animosity or class animosity. We need friends. We don’t need enemies. We need respect. We don’t need a surge of illegal aliens streaming across our borders. None of this is right-wing or left-wing, it’s simply true.

How GM "Lied" About The Electric Car

The Chevy Volt has been hailed as General Motors' electric savior. Now, as GM officially rolls out the Volt this week for public consumption, we're told the much-touted fuel economy was misstated and GM "lied" about the car being all-electric.

Michelle Malkin サ Smearing Ken Buck

When radical progressives attempt to paint conservative candidates with proven prosecutorial records as soft on crime, the laughable Left will always lose. Always.

So true: If The Group Has "Progress" In Its Name It's Filled With Scum

Seven Reasons Barack Obama Should Apologize to America

Mr. Post Racial Healer is happy to see anyone who disagrees with him smeared as a racist as long as he gets to keep his hands clean. If you don't believe that, ask yourself, "What has Barack Obama done to stop the tidal wave of false accusations of racism that have been made in his defense?" Absolutely nothing of significance.

Past time to lock, load, and send him a bullet FedEx: Ahmadinejad: America Can’t Do a Damn Thing

“May the undertaker bury you, your table and your body, which has soiled the world.”

Hottest Product in Cube? Crazy Glue

Surrounded by my list of broken things, I start to wander if there will be statistics on how much crazy glue is used each year on this Island. It is not a basic product, but I sense that there is a relationship between the need to repair our belongings and the seriousness of the country's economic crisis. If not, why is the whole world running after an adhesive that is advertised as able to reassemble everything. -- Generation Y サ Crazy Glue

If you liked what they did to health care, you'll love what they want to do with your 401K: RETIREMENT SECURITY - Nealz Nuze on

"Guaranteed Retirement Accounts." Sound familiar? It should. I've been telling you about this plan for at least two years. It is a plan created by Theresa Guilarducci and it would seize private retirement accounts, set up an additional 5% mandatory payroll tax, and then use the money from the tax and seizure to distribute it "fairly" to Americans.

Meanwhile, over in France, important movies are being discussed:

Posted by Vanderleun Oct 13, 2010 4:15 PM | Comments (2)  | QuickLink: Permalink
That Was the Weekend That Was

“Have just left my car running facing the plants. They are crying.”

Read Any Good Books Lately? The Progressive Bible

No tears for Guevara, shot dead too late 43 years ago: Che Guevara; Guerrilla Doofus and Murdering Coward - Humberto Fontova

As commander of the La Cabana execution yard, Che often shattered the skull of the condemned man (or boy) by firing the coup de grace himself. When other duties tore him away from his beloved execution yard, he consoled himself by viewing the slaughter. Che's second-story office in Havana’s La Cabana prison had a section of wall torn out so he could watch his darling firing-squads at work....
His last words? "Don't shoot!" I'm Che!" I'm worth more to you alive than dead!"

And now a public service announcement… by S. Weasel

Then more on the death-trip whack jobs that comprise the aptly named "Environmental Movement" from Diversity Lane:


In 1993 Senator Reid said:

"Our federal wallet is stretched to the limit by illegal aliens getting welfare, food stamps, medical care and other benefits, often without paying taxes." He said, "Safeguards like welfare and free medical care are in place to boost Americans in need of short-term assistance," and added: "These programs were not meant to entice freeloaders and scam artists from around the world."

Today, of course, Senator Reid is singing an entirely different tune. He has what Thorstein Veblen once called a "versatility of convictions." So do a lot of "experienced" politicians. -- Victor Hanson in RealClearPolitics - Red Herring Politics: Part II

Cody Posey Is a Free Man Welcome back into society, you crazy bastard! 2 years per victim. Great deal.

That Big Juicy Slut Called Meghan:

Meghan McCain's Delusional Persecution Complex The "Look at ME"€ attitude was clear right from the start. You know, instead of constantly focusing on the size of her "juicy ass"€ as she calls it, she should pay a little more attention to her ballooning juicy ego.

Meanwhile, here's what I call "giving back to the community:"

Get mad! Anger and Virtue

Being angry about the right things and in the right way is virtuous. But avoiding anger at all times may be a sign of weakness. St. Thomas Aquinas notes how it is a vice not get angry over things one should. He calls it "unreasonable patience." A failure to correct the wicked encourages them to persist in their evil deeds, since there are no reprimands for their wrong actions. It also causes confusion in the community over what is truly right and wrong, and thus may lead even good people to do evil.

Maximum Democrat FAIL aka Reality Jackass TV

Posted by Vanderleun Oct 10, 2010 4:58 PM | Comments (4)  | QuickLink: Permalink
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