URLs du Jour

2008-06-02

  • The Wall Street Journal calls it "easily the largest income redistribution scheme since the income tax." George F. Will calls it "an unprecedentedly radical government grab for control of the American economy." Ben Lieberman, a Heritage policy analyst says it "promises substantial hardship for the economy overall, for jobs, and for energy costs."

    It's the Lieberman/Warner bill to implement "cap-and-trade" for carbon emissions. It's a massive shift of economic decision-making out of the private sphere and into the willing hands of the state. And it's going to be a huge hidden tax on just about everything.

    You might think that's a good idea, but check out the links in any case. It's definitely something to write your state's Senators about. I've written mine.

  • P. J. O'Rourke visits the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, and its new exhibit, "The Ancient Americas."
    A very wordy inscription details the theories of when and how humans arrived in the New World. Translated from the academese: "We dunno." An encomium to the Ice Age hunter-gatherers follows. "People like us," it concludes, "prospered in ancient times." We did indeed--if your idea of prosperity is fastening a "Clovis people" spearpoint to a stick and stabbing long-horned bison, giant grand sloths, wooly mammoths, mastodons, and New World horses until they were all extinct. The economic boom didn't extend to casual wear and sports clothes. Ice Age or no, everyone in the talentlessly painted murals is naked. Nipples seem to have been vague and smudgy in ancient times, and a mastodon or giant ground sloth was always getting in between mural viewers and your genitals.

  • A breathtaking Mars picture, via BBspot. Make sure you "click to enlarge." Whoa.

  • Things I know today that I didn't know yesterday: there are a surprising number of YouTube videos with cockatiels whistling the theme from the Andy Griffith Show. [Via Protein Wisdom, which notes the passing of the theme's composer.]

There Will Be Blood

[Amazon Link] [3.0
stars] [IMDb Link]

As I type, There Will Be Blood is number 63 on IMDB's top 250 movies of all time. Please. I wish I liked it that much, but … eh. Sometimes I watch a movie with a big why should I care about this? attitude, and sometimes that question just never gets answered to my satisfaction.

But that puts me in a distinct minority, and on the other side are a bunch of movie lovers and critics. There's no denying the talent of the filmmakers and actors, and there's no question that they made pretty much exactly the film they wanted to make. So don't let my so-what response to the movie stop you from seeing it. (As if it would.)

Daniel Day-Lewis plays Daniel Plainview. At the start of the movie, he's a hard working silver prospector. But he accidentally strikes oil in one of his mines, and that sets him on the path to riches, but also psychological and personal destruction. Along the way there's quite a bit about religion (of the old fashioned bible-thumping fire-n-brimstone variety). And also of Daniel's (apparent) yearning for family, in which he is disappointed.

But now I know what that whole "I drink your milkshake" thing is about.


Last Modified 2012-10-12 6:15 AM EDT