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Everything posted by mormont

  1. 1. Nobody here is against a ceasefire. 2. If you're against throwing untrained conscripts into a fight, I have news about the Russian army. 3. You can't have 'defence lines' in a country you invaded. Those are invasion lines.
  2. The problem in this discussion is the opposite: blarney about the West's failings deployed as a smokescreen over invasion, war crimes, and the clear full culpability of Russia for this war.
  3. I think you're missing the point, though. The point is,
  4. Western countries and Russia have both been playing the influence game in Ukraine for a long time. Countries have a legitimate interest in what happens in other countries and they'll try to affect that with money, diplomacy, and offers of help. Russia, as is well documented, added corruption and blackmail to that pot. Some would have it that the West did the same. But I'm absolutely sure of this: only one side marched an army up to the Ukraine border, promised that they would not invade, and then marched over the border and started shooting people, looting, and attempting to annex territory. Twice in a decade. And if your country's survival depends on doing those things to another sovereign country, then your country's survival can go to hell in a handbasket for all I care. The evidence is that Russia's armed forces would not last five days if they had to 'fight back'. There are two things saving Russia from having to 'fight back': 1. Nuclear weapons 2. A complete lack of interest from the West in actually invading Russia.
  5. Regardless of the relevant laws, an older, publicly known person with the sort of income where you have 35 grand spare for anything soliciting images of this type from a teenager is exploitative and gross. There's an element of the scale of the furore that's political: the Tories love this stuff because it distracts from the sleaze in their own party. But it's right that this should be condemned and the BBC should consider the issue seriously.
  6. But St Petersburg is Putin's home turf. It's where he allegedly fled to during the Wagner advance. It's a place he used to run and where he should still have his most loyal allies. For Prigozhin to go there voluntarily would suggest a level of trust in Putin that seems fantastical under the circumstances, or that St Petersburg is no longer safe for Putin, which is also hard to credit.
  7. I may have heard dumber things than someone pissing off Vladimir Putin and then nipping off to St Petersburg to collect personal belongings. But I can't think of them right now. If Prigozhin is in St Petersburg, I have to imagine it's in an unlit room with good soundproofing.
  8. Right now, the person most likely to replace Starmer is Wes Streeting. If that doesn't make you have warmer feelings towards Starmer, nothing will.
  9. It's not that the Tories oppose the right to strike, or indeed protest. It's just that they would prefer if all such activity was done in your lunch hour, quietly, in a curtained alcove, for about five minutes, on your own.
  10. I missed that! Although as they say, that just raises further questions. Anyway, apart from the troubled romance between Talos and Fury, the series so far feels quite dull. It's a spy thriller without any thrills. Great acting, don't get me wrong, but no tension.
  11. I have to admit if you'd asked me before the Musk takeover, I'd have said Facebook would die before Twitter. It was actively worse to use. Now, Facebook's no better than it was, but Twitter is significantly worse than it was. I'd still pick Twitter as a user experience, but the gap has really narrowed.
  12. Honestly, the episode was fine, but kind of dull. It felt like treading water, rather than actually telling us a compelling story. It doesn't help that the writers helpfully make sure the viewers always know who the Skrulls are. Sure, there could yet be a reveal on one of the characters we believe to be human, but there's no tension in any of these episodes because we're always kept up to date with which disguises the Skrulls are using. Also,
  13. 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.
  14. 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.
  15. 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.
  16. 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.
  17. 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.
  18. 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.
  19. 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?
  20. 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.
  21. Rich people will save us from ourselves, if only we give them more money.
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