Sunday Open Thread

I've obviously been glued to the Zimmerman discovery rather than following other news, and it's now time to break away from the computer and enjoy the beautiful Colorado weather.

Here's an open thread, all topics welcome.

< Zimmerman: The Discovery and the Witnesses | Memorial Day Open Thread >
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    Josh and I started the Hunger Games this (5.00 / 2) (#7)
    by Militarytracy on Sun May 27, 2012 at 05:50:54 PM EST
    morning too.  At first he wanted to have some kind of daily commitment to a page number, I told him that I thought we should play it by ear.  It's summer, quit reading when we want to.  We were reading back and forth to each other and he forgot that he and his dad were supposed to be in a video game tournament this afternoon.  His dad comes in and says he needs to get ready for the tournament and he says, "Awww, Man!"

    For the record, I really really loved that.

    How far did you get? (none / 0) (#31)
    by sj on Mon May 28, 2012 at 12:07:10 AM EST
    We were 70 pages in (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by Militarytracy on Mon May 28, 2012 at 07:56:22 AM EST
    He's canned the daily page limit.

    Hectic (5.00 / 13) (#10)
    by Ga6thDem on Sun May 27, 2012 at 06:11:51 PM EST
    here because my son graduated!!! Oh, I cried when I saw him walking down the aisle to pomp and circumstance but was elated the rest of the time!!

    What a great time (5.00 / 2) (#11)
    by Militarytracy on Sun May 27, 2012 at 06:15:33 PM EST
    Thanks (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by Ga6thDem on Sun May 27, 2012 at 06:24:10 PM EST

    congrats! great news. (5.00 / 2) (#20)
    by Dr Molly on Sun May 27, 2012 at 07:30:03 PM EST
    Thanks (none / 0) (#34)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon May 28, 2012 at 07:22:37 AM EST
    so much!

    Congratulations to you and your son (5.00 / 2) (#22)
    by Mr Tuxedo on Sun May 27, 2012 at 08:08:59 PM EST
    I hope all the little kids I'm teaching today will grow up to be community-minded, informed citizens. (And high school graduates, at least.)

    Thank you (5.00 / 2) (#35)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon May 28, 2012 at 07:23:16 AM EST
    and thank you for being a teacher! Without the help of teachers I don't think we would have made it this far!

    Congratulations to the graduate and (5.00 / 4) (#27)
    by Anne on Sun May 27, 2012 at 10:01:06 PM EST
    his family!  Amazing, isn't it, how fast they go from pre-school to walking across a stage; soak it all in, because from here, it's like lightning.  My girls are almost 29 and almost 26, and in the span of one year, both are buying homes, one's having a baby with her husband and the other is getting married.  Craziness, for sure - but the best kind!

    As for the tears, sometimes the happiness is so great it simply cannot be contained; I expect to be shedding a lot of happy tears, and wish the same for you!


    Thanks (none / 0) (#36)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon May 28, 2012 at 07:23:48 AM EST
    Anne! It's always great to hear from people who have been there!

    So very happy for you both! (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by Angel on Mon May 28, 2012 at 06:58:02 AM EST
    Thank (none / 0) (#37)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon May 28, 2012 at 07:24:10 AM EST
    you for the kind words!

    So very happy for you..... (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by samsguy18 on Mon May 28, 2012 at 07:42:39 AM EST
    Congratulations to you both !

    Thanks (none / 0) (#79)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon May 28, 2012 at 05:27:49 PM EST
    How cool is that (none / 0) (#75)
    by sj on Mon May 28, 2012 at 12:16:41 PM EST
    I don't know who is happier and prouder, the graduate or the parents.  Congratulations to your son.

    Very cool (none / 0) (#80)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon May 28, 2012 at 05:28:07 PM EST
    Thanks so much.

    Granny gets life w/o parole for 1st time offense (5.00 / 2) (#44)
    by Dadler on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:20:09 AM EST
    The article still holds her accountable (5.00 / 3) (#48)
    by Militarytracy on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:39:02 AM EST
    for a "strange business deal", really ticks me off.  Wanna see a strange business deal, try the formula for a derivative?!  What an a$$hole country I live in sometimes.

    Two thoughts: (5.00 / 2) (#51)
    by lentinel on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:45:40 AM EST
    Legalize drugs.

    Not much hope for an executive pardon considering the track record of the current occupant of the WH.

    A third thought: Legalize drugs.


    Ailes claims Fox News has ONE conservative ... (5.00 / 2) (#66)
    by Yman on Mon May 28, 2012 at 10:54:40 AM EST
    ... and 24 liberals on their payroll.

    I assumed this was an article on The Onion, but it was real.

    Ha! Did you read where George Will called (5.00 / 3) (#70)
    by Angel on Mon May 28, 2012 at 11:27:46 AM EST
    Donald Trump a bloviating ignoramus?  Those Republicans!!

    I guess (5.00 / 3) (#76)
    by Zorba on Mon May 28, 2012 at 02:31:27 PM EST
    that anyone the least tiny bit to the left of Attila the Hun is a "liberal" to him.  That certainly says a whole heck of a lot about Roger Ailes, doesn't it?

    Just a Thanks for this.... (none / 0) (#1)
    by Cashmere on Sun May 27, 2012 at 03:28:14 PM EST
    great site and all of your research re: the Zimmeman case.

    Time to see one of those movies (none / 0) (#2)
    by oculus on Sun May 27, 2012 at 03:53:44 PM EST
    "for the Masterpiece Theatre" set!  Marigold.  

    Fellow Masterpiece set members..... (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by ruffian on Sun May 27, 2012 at 06:24:32 PM EST
    Anyone have any theories about the end of Sherlock last week? I'm stumped.

    Watson sees Sherlock ... (none / 0) (#30)
    by Robot Porter on Sun May 27, 2012 at 11:16:34 PM EST
    jump but never sees him hit the ground. A bus is in the way, and then a truck, and then he's delayed by a cyclist. The latter no doubt part of Sherlock's "homeless network".

    You'll also notice that before he falls there's a chalked out area on the ground next to the bus. This is Holmes' target. As some type of catching device will be placed there as he jumps.

    The people immediately surrounding Holmes body also include Holmes accomplices. They remove the catching device then further obscure and slow Watson's approach. Then some fake blood and a trick to slow or stop his pulse and the illusion is complete. Because Sherlock is whisked off before Watson can make a close examination.

    The rest (death certificates, burial, etc.) is handled with the help of Mycroft.


    ah, thank you! I saved the recording (none / 0) (#81)
    by ruffian on Tue May 29, 2012 at 06:40:43 AM EST
    so I could watch it again. Now I know what to look for.

    I kept waiting for Sherlock to dress Moriarty up in his clothes and throw him over.  To obvious I guess!


    I saw it last weekend (none / 0) (#12)
    by ruffian on Sun May 27, 2012 at 06:20:18 PM EST
    Yes, I am a proud member of the Marigold demographic! I enjoyed it overall. of course if I wanted I could quibble with the far fetched-ness of most of it.....

    Nah--no quibbling (none / 0) (#17)
    by christinep on Sun May 27, 2012 at 06:30:27 PM EST
    It was refreshing to be so transported.  Uplifting, light but meaningful.  

    Hard to find a better acting ensemble.  'Especially moved by Tom Wilkinson.  But, the developments for all the characters seemed to stay true (tho, I wonder about the soliloquy from the one/wife who left...assumed she would go without introspection?)  The color, the sounds all expanded the story.  A great way to start the almost-summer.


    Yes, it really was refreshing (none / 0) (#21)
    by ruffian on Sun May 27, 2012 at 08:07:26 PM EST
    Lots of good writing, and I loved Judi Dench and Bill Nighy especially.

    Watched Small Town Murder Songs (none / 0) (#3)
    by Militarytracy on Sun May 27, 2012 at 05:21:21 PM EST
    Dark, but interesting...intriguing movie.  Odd soundtrack but it fit in its own strange way.

    I'm thinking perhaps you could (none / 0) (#4)
    by oculus on Sun May 27, 2012 at 05:23:25 PM EST
    cover military issues on the DK Radio show..

    Ha! My husband makes his (5.00 / 4) (#5)
    by Militarytracy on Sun May 27, 2012 at 05:34:17 PM EST
    final promotion June 8th :)  I was arguing with that guy who claims that I cheated on him in high school via leaving one homecoming dance early, he loves Ron Paul and he kept insisting that my "politics" were going to ultimately destroy my spouses career.  Too late now :)

    I was thinking yesterday about what some of the most meaningful things for me these past 10 years were and two things really stood out.  The first one was watching what many peace activists considered the Iraq War protest failures.  I went and watched, I was so scared and unsure.  They shut down Academy Blvd in Colorado Springs, and that's a main artery.  Pepper spray and some police violence followed, and the passion of the people took my breath away.  And I never forgot those people, I will always be grateful to them, they changed me that day but the change wouldn't show for awhile.

    The other thing that meant so much to me was how many people showed up in Crawford TX the weekend after Bush threatened to arrest Sheehan.  Cars were lined up for miles and miles.

    Those two things caused me to not completely forever lose faith that the darkness must eventually give way to the light.  But that could possibly make me a military voice failure too :)


    Congratulations on the promotion (5.00 / 2) (#8)
    by scribe on Sun May 27, 2012 at 05:57:55 PM EST
    and do make a point of reminding the folks who said otherwise.

    Keep up the good work, MT.


    It's been a long haul (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by Militarytracy on Sun May 27, 2012 at 06:09:17 PM EST
    I'm happy for my husband and the family too, when we married he told me that making W4 was his goal.  When that became a reality he sheepishly looked at the floor wanting to talk about W5, and I've come this far and what jobs and job market?

    Just start getting ready (5.00 / 2) (#19)
    by scribe on Sun May 27, 2012 at 06:37:42 PM EST
    for the day after the retirement ceremony, when it will all hit home.

    There's an expression I used to describe it:  "out of baseball".  For years, the pro baseball player lives, breathes, eats and sleeps not only the game, but the teammates, the locker room environment, the road, and all the rest.  And then one day, he's done - retired, released or not signed to a new deal.  All that routine and all that went with being a pro ballplayer is now gone.

    And, worse, the guys he was alongside on the team, in the locker room, on the buses and planes, will want nothing to do with the player who is out of baseball.  This, because they're still in the game and want to stay there and guys who are out of baseball are, effectively, dead as far as the game is concerned.  Guys who were his best friends yesterday will not return his calls.

    I'm sure that, when retirement arrives, there will be guys who your husband knew who retired before him and will welcome him to their side of the river.  But he needs to have something productive and consuming - mentally perhaps more than physically - to do when the day to day amped-up routine that is the military is gone.  And if this is his last promotion, the time to start preparing for that is now.


    Basically, you make a good point (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun May 27, 2012 at 08:40:58 PM EST
    but your friends will keep on being your friends and will return your calls.

    Acquaintances will to some degree but as your time away from the business/industry/military/whatever increases you will have less in common so they will drift away.

    I'm not sure what a retired military person can do to keep "current" but non military can attend conventions, get some consulting work, be a "money finder" and business plan writer for start ups, etc.

    But whatever, do have plan to do "something." Like of planning leads to inactivity and depression.


    Fort Rucker offers a lot of roots too (none / 0) (#42)
    by Militarytracy on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:02:23 AM EST
    He will probably teach here as a civilian when he retires and he will be a little spoiled with all of the old friends and connections.  There are actually guys working here on the flight lines as civilians that he went to flight school with.  And one of the shotdown POWs in Iraq he went to flight school with  is here, they put him in charge of retooling the SERE training.  All of the pilots must go through SERE training now, not just the Night Stalkers.  And I guess Fort Rucker SERE training is one of the top SERE trainings now.

    Ah.... the old (5.00 / 2) (#62)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 28, 2012 at 10:15:23 AM EST
    military industrial good ole boys network...

    Just kidding. When I left I initially accepted a job with a defense contractor as a tech rep but while on vacation I found a job with a civilian company close to where my wife wanted to live.

    So I took it and then notified the first company of what I had done.

    Unknown to me both were part of the same corporation and I almost didn't have a job period because the first company claimed the second had stolen their employee...

    Ah, those were the days... Jobs were so plentiful they actually placed value on people they hired.


    Congratulations for him (5.00 / 2) (#23)
    by jeffinalabama on Sun May 27, 2012 at 08:11:28 PM EST
    from me, MT... I wish I had stayed in until mandatory retirement!

    Congratulations to you both (5.00 / 2) (#26)
    by ruffian on Sun May 27, 2012 at 08:51:30 PM EST
    Seems like he was able to thrive in his career while you kept your personality and politics intact. And raised a family too. I admire you both and I hope you get to take a few minutes to savor your achievements before getting back to work!

    And I'm fairly insanely pisssed off (5.00 / 4) (#6)
    by Militarytracy on Sun May 27, 2012 at 05:37:02 PM EST
    That it takes 80 days for a no longer serving Iraq or Afghanistan veteran to even get a mental health intake.

    And this surprises you, why, exactly? (5.00 / 4) (#13)
    by scribe on Sun May 27, 2012 at 06:20:19 PM EST
    I'm old enough to remember the debates over replacing the draft with the all volunteer force.  That the military would get the dregs of society who couldn't make it flipping burgers. That it would lead to the death of any sort of competency, let alone professionalism. That it would lead to a Praetorian Guard arising, which would ultimately control things.  

    The former did obtain in the late 70s, though I doubt there are too many people in service today who remember those days.  Duty oficers in my unit had to be armed with a .45 and live rounds - against their own troops - and even then there were no-go areas in the barracks.  (One 2LT got boxed into a wall locker and tossed out a 5th floor window onto a spiked iron fence for walking into the wrong room in his barracks.)  OTOH, I think the latter has come to pass.

    I really caught this today, listening to a ballgame while on the road.  Everything is about "honoring their service" and not about the original meaning of this holiday (I'm old enough to remember when it was celebrated on May 31, not some random Monday, too.).  For those who may have forgotten, it's to remember and honor the dead.  Unfortunately, the all-volunteer military has divorced the average person from any comprehension of the cost of war, hand-in-hand with the overwhelming advantages we have in both protecting soldiers and getting them evacced when they are wounded.  Were it not for the latter, we probably would have had 3 or 4 times the dead in the past decade-plus of war.

    But the family with a dead son, a framed flag, and some pictures and letters is now both the oddity and an isolated rarity, and the cost never hits home.  Not in the way it did in Vietnam when we were losing 250 or 350 a week every week and several times that in wounded.  And we are then susceptible as a society to the jingoism and pro-war propaganda that will give us another one just as soon as we finish this one.

    I remember, as a kid, watching the honor guard from the local VFW making the rounds of cemeteries on Memorial Day wearing their WWII and Korean (and a few WWI) garrison caps and their ceremonial Springfields and blanks and flags, to volley the dead buried in them.  What I didn't realize until many years later was that the set of those men's faces came not (only) from soldierly pride, but more because the guys they were saluting were their brothers, cousins, and childhood friends. And they were clamping down their emotions.

    Those veterans went along with Vietnam for lots of reasons, probably the biggest being that they felt - from their own wartime experience - that their government had played straight with them before and was therefore playing straight with them now.  When the reality of the deceit behind that war and its cost became apparent, the loss of faith was profound.  And the shenanigans we're involved in today had to wait until 90 percent or more of the WWII generation is dead, and the Vietnam generation is rolling into retirement age with mostly good memories of their service.

    I'm not saying anything new, I'm sure.  But it's no less true.


    To complete my thought - (5.00 / 3) (#16)
    by scribe on Sun May 27, 2012 at 06:24:55 PM EST
    the lack of mental health services for vets, such that they have to wait effectively 3 months to see someone, is a function of this divorce between the people and the military.  The individual soldier is today, perhaps like never before, treated as an expendable part who can be readily replaced.  There's a long line of other folks on the outside waiting to get in, because this is one of the better jobs available.

    That, in and of itself, says a lot about our society.  That soldiering - traditionally a last resort - is now one of the "better" jobs out there.

    But, because of this dynamic, our politicians can (and therefore will) let themselves get away with treating their soldiers like crap.  So they do.


    We knew this was going to happen though (5.00 / 6) (#18)
    by Militarytracy on Sun May 27, 2012 at 06:37:07 PM EST
    All the data from Vietnam made it clear we were going to have a mass of soldiers suffering from PTSD, and still nothing is done.  

    I think the thing that is worse, is that they thought all these new SSRI antidepressants that the whole country takes would be some kind of magic for PTSD.  For most of them suffering they do very little.  So they are attempting to sweep them under rugs AGAIN, in spite of all the suffering via Vietnam that occurred after that war.  I remember when I was a teenager, nobody...not one person remained in this country who could say with a straight face that Vietnam didn't just ruin some, destroyed them from the inside out.  But for some reason they want to have the whole debate all over again as if we have no hard data on what combat tends to do to many people.


    The "original meaning" of Decoration Day (5.00 / 2) (#24)
    by Peter G on Sun May 27, 2012 at 08:20:23 PM EST
    later renamed "Memorial Day," was to remember and honor the Union dead of the Civil War, by decorating their graves with flowers.  Currently, however, perhaps surprisingly, it is not officially denominated as a day to remember those who died in war, much less to honor those who served in the Armed Forces (that's the function of Veterans Day).  It is actually declared, by law, to be a day for Americans to unite in "prayer" (according to their individual faiths, it says) for "permanent peace."  Nothing in there about fatalities among soldiers at all.

    I have felt (5.00 / 1) (#49)
    by lentinel on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:40:41 AM EST
    for some time that Memorial Day, or Decoration Day, should be on a specific date. I remember it as being the 30th.

    Making it a random Monday, as you say, is yet another debasement in favor of having sales at Department stores imo.


    I think it is really to give people a holiday (none / 0) (#65)
    by DFLer on Mon May 28, 2012 at 10:40:16 AM EST
    on a Monday, thus insuring a long week-end off.

    That was how they pitched it at the time (5.00 / 2) (#67)
    by scribe on Mon May 28, 2012 at 11:11:51 AM EST
    The idea came from looking at how tourism and such made lots of money on Labor Day weekend, which was always the first Monday in September, and then looking at the "disruption" to business caused by having Memorial Day, Independence Day, Veterans' Day (then, the late 60s, still called Armistice Day in a lot of places and contexts b/c the WWI generation was still around and vital), Washington's Birthday, Lincoln's Birthday and Columbus Day floating around during the week, rather than on the Fridays and Mondays.  The money people got together and realized they could make more money (and have things like the kickoff to summer Memorial Day has become) by having the Monday holiday.  (And, by consolidating Lincoln's and Washington's into one birthday celebration, they could get more commerce out of that, particularly b/c previously there were three holidays - the 2 birthdays and Valentine's - in 10 days.  It also helped plump Valentine's Day into something bigger, commercially.)

    And, voila!  We recalibrated the calendar to more correctly worship America's true god - money and making it.  Within 4 or 5 years - by the mid-70s - no one seemed to miss having the holidays on their proper dates.  And all the stores had figured out how to have more and better sales.


    You left out Thanksgiving... (none / 0) (#73)
    by desertswine on Mon May 28, 2012 at 12:00:44 PM EST
    FDR wanted a longer shopping season. For a while, the US had 2 T'days, the old one and Roosevelt's Thanksgiving.

    However, for several years some states continued to observe the last-Thursday date in years with five November Thursdays, with Texas doing so as late as 1956.

    With the country still in the midst of The Great Depression, Roosevelt thought an earlier Thanksgiving would give merchants a longer period to sell goods before Christmas. Increasing profits and spending during this period, Roosevelt hoped, would help bring the country out of the Depression. At the time, advertising goods for Christmas before Thanksgiving was considered inappropriate. Fred Lazarus, Jr., founder of the Federated Department Stores (later Macy's), is credited with convincing Roosevelt to push Thanksgiving back a week to expand the shopping season

    No (none / 0) (#72)
    by lentinel on Mon May 28, 2012 at 11:56:25 AM EST
    matter how you slice it, the holiday becomes less about honoring the people who served, willingly or unwillingly, and died doing so.

    Mad Men-ouch! Brutal. (none / 0) (#28)
    by ruffian on Sun May 27, 2012 at 10:09:44 PM EST

    Also - Jon Hamm's Emmy reel (none / 0) (#29)
    by ruffian on Sun May 27, 2012 at 10:31:27 PM EST
    Speaking of ... (none / 0) (#32)
    by lentinel on Mon May 28, 2012 at 05:42:54 AM EST
    The season finale of "The Mentalist" was a real stinker.

    And the season finale of "Grey's Anatomy" was a real stinker.

    And the final finale of "House" was beyond bizarre and also a real stinker.

    These writers are a species unlike any other.
    They would do better selling toothpaste.

    Haven't seen Mad Men yet, but thanks for the warning.
    Will watch it tonight.


    Episodic Drama... (none / 0) (#39)
    by Dadler on Mon May 28, 2012 at 07:39:11 AM EST
    ...requires so much recycling of emotional material that to genuinely end something in a refreshing fashion is almost impossible.  IOW, characters go through so much all the time that it can often become almost a comic situation attempting to keep the "drama" going or conclude it satisfactorily.

    Finales, in a way, are like crappy greeting cards.    


    M.A.S.H. finale was an exception, IMO... (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by Dadler on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:23:30 AM EST
    ...since its subject matter, a war, actually came to an end, which made ending the show a much more organic process.  Barney Miller, the same year as MASH I believe, had a similar advantage because the precinct shut down if I remember correctly.  Whatever, I'm doing nothing but dating myself.  And I'm quite a cheap date, I might add.

    I think (5.00 / 2) (#47)
    by lentinel on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:36:46 AM EST
    that the "Mary Tyler Moore Show" finale also holds up as a classic.

    Refresh my memory (none / 0) (#50)
    by Dadler on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:44:01 AM EST
    Did the MTM show end with the end of the fictional show, or with her leaving the station?  I am somehow drawing a blank on it.

    Everyone (5.00 / 0) (#54)
    by lentinel on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:49:18 AM EST
    got fired except Ted.

    In a memorable scene, they all were huddled together in the middle of the room sobbing. Then, when someone needed a kleenex, they all shuffled together towards the tissue box.

    At the very end, after everyone has left, Mary comes back in the door briefly, and turns out the lights.

    (To the best of my recollection...)


    The sobbing I remember now (none / 0) (#55)
    by Dadler on Mon May 28, 2012 at 09:17:04 AM EST
    I think my previous point remains.  Unless you have a built in ending -- war concludes, company closes, fictional show cancelled, etc. -- just end it already.  Stop trying to do everything, in which case you end up doing nothing.  Kind of like when you go for the universal you end up with the general, but when you go for the specific you end up with the universal.

    Correct! (none / 0) (#56)
    by ruffian on Mon May 28, 2012 at 09:36:02 AM EST
    Oh Yeah, Isn't that the one (none / 0) (#58)
    by NYShooter on Mon May 28, 2012 at 09:43:00 AM EST
    Where Suzanne Pleshette wakes up,

    It was all a dream..

    Oh, Crap!

    That was The Bob Newhart Show

    Oh well, I liked them all



    The Newhart Show (5.00 / 1) (#68)
    by jbindc on Mon May 28, 2012 at 11:13:34 AM EST
    (As opposed to The Bob Newhart Show) Bob wakes up next to Suzanne Pleshette and he tells her about a dream he had - running an inn in Vermont - with a different wife and wacky characters (Larry, Darryl and Darryl)

    Oh yeah (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by sj on Mon May 28, 2012 at 12:09:47 PM EST
    That was awesome.  Didn't he also say something like "You should wear more sweaters"?

    M.A.S.H. was one of my all-time favorite shows. (none / 0) (#59)
    by Angel on Mon May 28, 2012 at 09:48:19 AM EST
    I remember the shocking ending, but it seemed appropriate in a strange way.  

    Didn't that end (none / 0) (#69)
    by NYShooter on Mon May 28, 2012 at 11:20:42 AM EST
    kind of like Henry Fonda's ending in the movie, Mr. Roberts?

    Yes, main characters die at the end. (none / 0) (#71)
    by Angel on Mon May 28, 2012 at 11:30:23 AM EST
    It (none / 0) (#46)
    by lentinel on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:35:45 AM EST
    seems to me that writing for tv should flow in a manner similar to the flow of a great writer of fiction. I like Rex Stout, for example.
    His plots unfold in an organic way.

    In these finales, and in many of the episodes, you sense that the writers are trying to cover all the bases. Not take a stand. Nothing is real. Everything is a dream.

    They are also very conscious, it seems to me, of current agendas - and accommodate them whenever possible. Lately, for example, everyone swoons over babies. Or swoons over people getting married.
    It just feels like right wing schlock to me.

    In "House", the intermittent and ongoing casual and acceptable racism of House's asides to Foreman was truly cringe material for me.

    Or, they are about setting up a cliffhanger that they hope will get us to tune in next fall.

    If we even remember the show by the time they come back - if they are coming back.


    Great point about fiction (5.00 / 1) (#52)
    by Dadler on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:47:48 AM EST
    I conclude, was even gonna make a similar point. TV finales could indeed take lessons from great fiction.  The story simply ends.  Sometimes poetically, sometimes mundanely, sometimes humorously, but an honest and simple end nothing to scoff at.

    I conclude? (none / 0) (#53)
    by Dadler on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:48:21 AM EST
    I concur is more like it.  Talk about morning gunk.

    That is what sets shows like Mad Men (5.00 / 1) (#57)
    by ruffian on Mon May 28, 2012 at 09:38:07 AM EST
    apart. They do unfold like excellent novels over the season. This was not the season finale yet - two more episodes.

    I don't put shows like Grey's Anatomy, thought I do enjoy it, in the same league as far as the writing is concerned.


    I feel like a moron for not liking Mad Men (5.00 / 1) (#77)
    by Dadler on Mon May 28, 2012 at 02:42:00 PM EST
    Just haven't been able to get into it.  Looks nice though, very spot-on production design.  For me, give me Curb Your Enthusiasm any day.  Episodic drama, IMO, you gotta go maybe two or three seasons at most and then kill it, or you just drag out the same old same old forever.  Just my tarnished two cents.  Not that I don't love good drama, it's just the older I get, I can't get into serial drama. Gotta come to an end someday. Comedy, on the other hand, is always new -- has to be or else, sans laughter, it ain't comedy. ;-)  

    The best part of the two hour House finale was (none / 0) (#43)
    by Angel on Mon May 28, 2012 at 08:14:00 AM EST
    the first hour when they showed how some of the special effects were done and the cast and crew interviews.  The actual ending was a huge disappointment to me.  

    I don't watch... (none / 0) (#78)
    by desertswine on Mon May 28, 2012 at 03:18:28 PM EST
    The Mentalist or Gray's Anatomy, but I agree with you 100% about House.

    Can you believe this? (none / 0) (#38)
    by NYShooter on Mon May 28, 2012 at 07:35:54 AM EST
    "Business Insiders" is reporting that the Judge in the John Edwards trial has called a special meeting to discuss a "juror problem."


    Here's another castle doctrine case (none / 0) (#60)
    by ruffian on Mon May 28, 2012 at 09:52:53 AM EST
    http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/2012-05-27/news/os-homeowner-shoots-intruder-dead-20120527_1_hom e-intruder-home-invader-deputies This one happened yesterday] in central Florida.

    Basics - drunk guy bangs on a door at 4 am and won't go away. Armed homeowner opens the front door and yells at him through the screen door, and drunk guy barges in and is shot dead after the homeowner first bumbles the gun and shoots at the floor, and drunk guy gets even more belligerent.

    Now there is no question that the homeowner had the right to defend his family. But minus the gun, would he have ever opened the door?

    sorry I messed up the link Jeralyn (none / 0) (#61)
    by ruffian on Mon May 28, 2012 at 09:53:22 AM EST
    One of my favorite shows, (none / 0) (#63)
    by KeysDan on Mon May 28, 2012 at 10:15:32 AM EST
    "The Borgias" was in re-runs last night, probably due to the holiday weekend.  But, the reporting on the arrest of the Pope's butler was an interesting update on life at the Vatican.  The Butler Did It, but what he did, apparently, was to be a whistleblower, allegedly leaking documents to the Italian journalist, Gianluigi Nuzzi, who wrote a book "Sua Santita. Le Carte Segrete Di Benedetto XVI," released last week.  (His Holiness, The Secret Files of Benedict XVI).

    The book is still available only in Italian, but it describes Vatican finances, including the Vatican Bank's troubles with money laundering and other corruption as well as internal power struggles.  The Pope is determined to stop this papal tattle-tale affair  and has formed a committee, including input from Opus Dei, to deal with this.  Meanwhile, the butler, Paolo Gabriele, is in a Vatican cell awaiting the criminal proceeding in force at Vatican City. The Pope is shocked, shocked, I tell you.

    I know - I missed my Borgias last night (5.00 / 2) (#64)
    by ruffian on Mon May 28, 2012 at 10:24:50 AM EST
    The memories of Jeremy Irons learning to smoke a cigar and Gina McKee showing the Borgia army where babies come from last week will have to tide me over.

    Back to modern day, there was a good story in Vanity Fair last month about the Vatican connection to the mob and corrupt bankers, to the point of allegedly sanctioning the kidnapping of a banking whistleblower's daughter, who was never found.

    Yes, ideal people from which to get spiritual guidance. Wake up, sheeple.


    And (none / 0) (#82)
    by jbindc on Tue May 29, 2012 at 12:47:49 PM EST
    Antoher shout out to the GZ "Most likely scenario" post - from Volokh.