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Everything posted by mormont

  1. Yeah, Brude passed a decade ago, in his sleep. Like EHK, much too young. JGP: I issued EHK with more than one warning in his time so I know very well he could be an asshole. He was no Manwoody, who could dissect idiots with finesse. EHK went for fire and blood, not rapier wit, with all that entails. Those four above were very different people. But EHK was like that because he had a big heart, which in his case means passion, not necessarily kindness. And he couldn't have had the late bloom without having an open mind.
  2. I have indeed poured one out for EHK. And for Manwoody (single malt in his honour) and Lilith, and Brudewollen, and the others who left us too soon. Time sometimes colours memory so if you're reading this and wonder if we're all just being nostalgic when we wax lyrical about these folks, let me assure you, we're not. They were big characters with big hearts, sharp wits, and open minds. I miss them all.
  3. so far, it does feel somewhat like a retread of The Falcon And The Winter Soldier's plot, which had similar issues. Group of people with a marginalised identity that could only exist in a superhero universe, so are handily metaphorical. They have legitimate grievances that the audience can sympathise with but fall under the spell of a driven leader and embark on a campaign of terrorism that is somewhat clumsily handled at times. Lead character has real life marginalised identity that can draw out parallels but winds up having to fight the terrorists because the ends don't justify the means (unless your name is in the title of course). It's aiming for complexity but just comes out as muddled because in the end, Disney (like most big media firms) are willing to play with the idea that people can be oppressed by the system. But in the end they default to this being down to bad people within the system rather than a bad system, and the idea that what the marginalised really need is to find the good people within the system and get them on side.
  4. Jeez, twenty years? I never met MW in person and I'm sad about that, but I remember fondly how funny, kind and intelligent he was in all our interactions. For those of us who were around in the old days he'll always be a part of the community, and I'm glad he is still being remembered. Thank you for the reminder, Cam.
  5. What's interesting to me, though, is the bit Putin doesn't want to talk about: the fact that there was not a lot of resistance, and some support, among the general population for the Wagner column. Putin's not a tactical genius or a magnetic personality. His strength as a dictator has always lain in providing stability. Yet this episode suggests that's going or gone. If he can't provide that any more, he's toast.
  6. Nope. Objectively they're awful. You're free to like them, but please don't tell me I only think shit stinks because I'm prejudiced against it. Those credits are terrible art, and would be terrible art even if Picasso had created them. Anyway, the second episode isn't restoring my faith. Some good scenes, some bad scenes. Have the writers ever watched a news broadcast? And yet the scene between Rhodey and Fury is pretty good. The torture scene was kind of predictable and dull, which is not a thing a torture scene should ever be, but the train scene was good. I guess Sauel L Jackson is the common denominator. I'm going to pick on the torture scene a bit, actually. Why is there always a torture scene? And why does it work? Torture doesn't work very well IRL but in productions like this it's 100%. And why does it work for Falsworth but not the Russians? Did the Skrull somehow not believe the Russians were going to kill him? Is Falsworth more serious a threat? Oh, it's because his blood was boiling from the (extremis?) injection? And yet the pain wasn't bad enough to render him unconscious or incapable of speaking? It's magic juice that creates irresistible pain that still leaves you capable of speaking but incapable of lying? Can we please just skip the torture scenes instead of writing this nonsense? Have them get the information some other way. They're spies. There are dozens of more interesting ways for them to get information. It's just a cliche at this point. I love Olivia Coleman as an actor, but I'm not seeing where the love for her character here is coming from. It's a very broad performance and I have trouble taking her seriously as on the same level as Fury. Not here for it. I think this series can still pull it out, but it needs to be a little more interesting and a little less paint-by-numbers spy thriller.
  7. In this particular case, it's instructive to consider that RFK Jr's wild and false claims about the COVID vaccine stem from his long history of wild and false claims about childhood vaccines in general. In particular, he has a long history of making and continuing to make claims about the link to autism, on the basis of the Wakefield study, and the fact that this study has been disproved, retracted, and exposed as a fraud has not stopped him. You could debate RFK Jr about the Wakefield study today and he would assert that it demonstrates a link, but that the facts have shown that it does not. You can't keep debating the Wakefield nonsense every time someone brings it up. At some point, you have to let the facts speak for themselves. That's true of his COVID nonsense as well, and in fact most of his policies. The whole idea of debate, discussion, the scientific method, scholarship, research and all of our cultural tools around education and information are that they allow knowledge to advance. If you find yourself stuck debating the same things over and over with people who've made it clear they won't change their minds, you are not advancing knowledge and so you're not using those tools properly. You're just wasting time. It's like fighting the same challenger over and over again because he insists he didn't lose, though you knocked him down repeatedly. What's the point? What does it prove?
  8. The thing that gets overlooked in the rush to notallmen things, but which I will constantly bring up, is that toxic masculinity also hurts men. It did me some damage, for sure. It's a serious structural problem in our society that hurts everyone, not a cheap and easy bogeyman used to unfairly attack men as a class.
  9. Rich people will save us from ourselves, if only we give them more money.
  10. You've said so before, and the lack of any evidence to support this view has been pointed out. There's no evidence that the problem with the current candidates is that they're unqualified, no evidence that there are more suitable people out there, no evidence that if there are more suitable people that money is a big obstacle to attracting them, and most crucially of all, absolutely no evidence that high earners or people motivated by money are higher quality politicians than people who are content with a salary that is nearly triple the median wage. It's also not a specifically UK issue, so I don't know why this would be the thread for it.
  11. This is some wild, wild stuff. The Nazis did a little more to the Jews and other than saying they were 'despicable' or complaining that they had unacceptable or unfounded beliefs. The comparison here is, in itself, pretty unacceptable. It's a reverse Godwin's Law. You don't get to compare people to Jews under the Nazis unless they are actually being subjected to comparable treatment.
  12. Watched Boots Riley's Im A Virgo over the weekend and man, that was good stuff. What can you say about a series where the climactic scene is a superhero being defeated by having it explained to them that unharnessed capitalism essentially creates crime by requiring an untenable level of poverty to exist and that therefore superheroes are fundamentally reactionary tools of the establishment? And where also it is clear that Boots Riley has really thought about how a 13 foot tall guy and his normal size girlfriend could have sex. It's not going to be for everyone, but if you like it, you'll really love it.
  13. The phrase 'that escalated quickly' gets somewhat overused these days. But...
  14. Well, at least if Prigozhin gets arrested he can sign up to fight in Ukraine?
  15. I was actually going to remark earlier, before this report, that it seems Putin had a cunning plan after all, which was to have the Russian civil war in someone else's country. Seems to be working.
  16. That won't happen. The demand is still going to be there, since a huge percentage of the population will be unable to afford a mortgage and there is no social housing supply to speak of. What will happen is that the ownership pattern of private rented accommodation will change and rents will go up. You'll see a lot more offshore companies as landlords. Again, we've made a policy choice here, decades ago, which we're seeing the consequences of now: effectively eviscerating council housing has led to handing profits to private companies.
  17. The world is full of straight white people complaining that these days you can't use the n-word, the p-word, the f-word*, etc. and how unfair that is (they use it about themselves!), while also complaining about how they get labelled. *not that one, the one about gay people.
  18. ps if you want to talk about a surprise twist Skrull character, it's almost certainly
  19. I just had to renew my deal, on a fixed rate for three years. That was before this rise, but my mortgage went up 25%. Now, as it happens, I can manage that, but a lot of people will not be able to and repossessions will happen. Be very clear: when we talk about getting inflation down by increasing interest rates, that's what we mean. A big part of that is making people poorer, through mortgage increases, reduced spending, and reduced investment. That's a policy choice. ETA - I want to clarify, though, that I'm absolutely not in favour of mortgage relief. We're acquiring a valuable asset. We shouldn't be given public money to help. If public cash is available, spend it on supporting people on fixed incomes.
  20. Somewhat disappointing start. The AI-generated credits... I can see people involved patting themselves on the back about how timely and apt that was, but the problem is, they're ugly and boring. Please just pay someone to do a good job. You have the money. I'll keep watching this but I hope it gets better. It feels like a wasted opportunity so far.
  21. It's just Musk being foolish again. It's not an enforceable policy, just public posturing, and will be quietly ignored. Also, if someone has not responded to you, please do not bring that up later. It's not good board etiquette. Nobody owes you a response to anything you post here.
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