I'm lifting my personal embargo on news and have been able to stomach passing by the Democratic Party primary articles on my way to things that really matter. I'm cooking up a response to the whole Hillary vs. Obama charade but I'm waiting still, waiting for that whole ridiculous super-delegate thing to sort itself out. Their call will factor heavily into my premise about what this never-ending dry run is really all about and I want to give them a chance to make their fateful decision before going off on a rant. Oh yes! Rant I shall! Rant like the randy rants of lower Rantington while wearing my freshly pressed ranty-pants! In the meanwhile, seeing as I'm not going to be reviewing games for a while what with Grand Theft Auto IV owning my soul, I though it best to return to world events. After all they do deserve our attention... Not necessarily all of the stuff I focus on but every so often I try to rise of the level of 'Actual Relevance' like this first piece...
Myanmar – slash – Burma Hit By Cyclone. Tens of Thousand Dead.
Those poor Burmese can’t catch a break these days. The cyclone and the twelve foot high wave that followed caused an incredible amount of damage, as the picture above clearly attests. Many of the missing may wind up dead yet and the number of displaced must run in the hundreds of thousands.
Getting aid to Myanmar is problematic. The ruling generals are not well liked around the world, especially with the violent suppression of protesters and monks back in September. The world at large wants to give aid but the generals say it has to go through them, which naturally no government is willing to accept. What this probably means is that the assistance New Orleans was given after Katrina is going to look timely and efficient compared to what the Burmese are going to get.
You ever wonder why Myanmar is still called Burma by all kinds of people in the media and politics? It was those pesky generals who renamed Burma after their successful coup and since their government isn't officially recognized by a great many nations neither is their name-changing decree. Kind of neat, huh? It's the same with Canada; I insist on calling my place of birth Atomic Cockistan but it's just not catching on, not even with the collector's stamps and freshly minted coins.
Donald Rumsfeld… More of a douche than previously thought… Impossible, I know but...
Rumsfeld has often been characterized as a bully and a schemer (by me) but here we see he wasn’t above a spot of bribery as well! Lt. General Sanchez was the first star-spangled commander to rule over Iraq. It didn’t work out though, mostly because he wasn’t given the troops and staff needed to pacify a country that had its government and army disbanded. So of course he came off as a failure and as a result his military career was over. I can't imagine how frustrating it would be to rise as high as a three star general (the highest a Latin American has achieved) and not be allowed to hit the final two stops on the military mountain.
Our man Donald wasn’t through with Sanchez yet though. If the retiring Lt. General were to sign off on a paper that would basically shift the blame of moving troops out prematurely away from Rumsfeld then he would have a plum Department of Defence position waiting for him as he entered civilian life. You have to stand in awe of the gall of this toxic warlock. He fucks the man’s career through his own disastrous military planning and then is shameless enough to dangle a carrot in front of him in some vain hope to avoid his due culpability. I feel bad for these lifetime military men who had the misfortune of serving while he was Secretary. So many good careers have been trashed on account of this criminally incompetent destroyer of civilian infrastructure.
P.S.: I wanted, badly wanted, hotly desired you might say, to make a Dirty Sanchez joke but the good Lt. General (retired) deserves better than that.
Orson Scott Card vs. J. K. Rowling! Fight! BAM! What? One punch and it’s over?
Steven Vander Ark is/was a big Harry Potter fan and created a comprehensive website containing all things Potter; a web encyclopedia if you will. J. K. Rowling seemed not only flattered by the fan’s devotion but actually used it herself when writing for the sake of convenience and continuity. She even presented him with an award! I'm not sure what kind of award Rowling would give to Vander Ark, maybe something along the line of: "You're a penniless nerd and I'm richer than the Queen so here's a medallion of tin shellacked in gold paint. Thanks for the free publicity, sucker!" Anyway Vander Ark believed his project was at a place where he could make some money for his labour and began the plans to put it into book form. That’s when Rowling litigators went to work and J. K. herself claimed to be 'violated' which - let me tell you - if that clip surfaces on the internet you'll find it here first, gentle reader.
Fictional Commentary is allowable by law provided sources are sited, something legendary author Orson Scott Card points out and many other shocking things besides. I loved all the Enders books as a teenager but I'll ashamedly admit that I never caught onto the many suspicious similarities between his work and Harry Potter. 'Tis the doom of men that they forget,' eh J. K.? I love it when writers get pissed with each other, the verbiage that gets bandied around is of professional calibre. Rowling gets totally called out in the link above, violated, if you will. I wonder if she will take the time to respond between her appointments with the plastic surgeon?