December 31, 2016

Overnight Open Thread (New Year's Eve Edition)

Well, here's hoping 2017 is a good year. We'll get an idea of where it's gonna go by the end of January I imagine when we get a new President. more...

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35 Dead In Terror Attack at Istanbul Nightclub
— Open Blogger

Apparently the killer was dressed as Santa Claus.

Thirty five people have been killed in an armed attack in an Istanbul nightclub, the city's governor has revealed.
The gunman, believed to have been dressed in a Santa costume, opened fire inside the Reina nightclub in Istanbul's Ortaköy district, where hundreds were celebrating the New Year.
A further 40 people are thought to have been wounded in the attack, which has been captured in CCTV footage. It happened at 1.30am local time.
Special forces officers have stormed the building, but the location of the gunman is unknown. A media blackout has been imposed by the Turkish government.
Many party-goers threw themselves into the Bosphorus in panic after the attack, and had to be rescued. One report said the gunman had later been killed.
The Foreign Office said it is liaising with authorities to establish whether any Britons were caught up in the massacre.

Prayers for the victims. I hope the rest of you morons stay safe out there. See you next year, and open thread until the ONT

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Saturday Afternoon Chess/Open Thread 12-31-2016
— Open Blogger

Portrait of Mr and Mrs Paul Cass in Vermeers Interior.jpg

Portrait of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Cass in Vermeer's Interior
Michael Cheval

Good afternoon morons and moronettes, and welcome to the Saturday Afternoon Chess/Open Thread, the only AoSHQ thread with content specifically for all of us chess nerds who pay homage in the temple of Caïssa, goddess of the chessboard. And, for those of you who aren't nerdly enough for chess, you can use this thread to talk about checkers, or other games, or politics, or whatever you wish, only please try to keep it civil. Nobody wants to get into a tomato fight on a Saturday afternoon. Unless you're hungry.

Problem 1 - White To Play (361)

Hint: White Wins Material

20161231 - Problem 1.jpg
1r1r4/3n1qkp/5pp1/1BR5/1P6/6QP/6P1/4R2K w - - 0 1


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Pet Thread End of The Year Edition
— Open Blogger

sat petcover.jpg

Saturday afternoon. Time to spend some time with Morons and Petmorons. What could be better on this last afternoon of 2016? Enjoy! more...

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College Bowl Thread [KT]
— Open Blogger

By request. Thread below the Gardening Thread is still open for politics, New Years Eve commentary, etc.

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Saturday Gardening Thread: Going Low [KT]
— Open Blogger

colonel hovey.jpg

Camellia 'C.M. Hovey', AKA Colonel Fiery

Happy New Years Eve Day, Horde! Remember:

A garden is never so good as it will be next year.
Thomas Cooper

I'm currently in that dreamy winter stage when I imagine great things in next year's garden. How about You? It's kind of a quiet day here. I'm skipping New Years Eve at Times Square this year. Actually, I have skipped it every year of my life. Nine hours without the possibility of a bathroom break makes it an improbability for me in the future, too. Too many people in one place.


But if you are heading to The City, remember that away from Times Square, there are actually some live plants if you know where to look. Have you ever been to The Highline? I was fascinated by the history of the railroad that preceded it. Trains on elevated tracks ran under buildings like Nabisco and Bell Laboratories. Rail cars could be loaded from indoors. The current park, still being expanded, features many plants tha colonized the old rail line when it was abandoned. Weeds, in other words. Some of them quite attractive weeds.

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Thread below the Gardening Thread: California Dreamin' [KT]
— Open Blogger


Serving your mid-day open thread needs

Remember CBD's post about Israel below, too.

New Years Eve greetings! Hope you have some fun or fulfilling or interesting plans. I would love to hear about them. We will be staying indoors, out of the path of a possible stray bullet falling back down out of the sky during midnight celebrations. We will probably be preoccupied with distraught dogs for a little while. I will be checking the upcoming Pet Thread for tips on celebrating with pets that don't understand explosions.

I have cautious hope that we will see some improvements in how government is run during the coming year. But government madness is spreading here in California. more...

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Obama's Petulance And Ignorance Of Geopolitics HAs Forced Israel To Be More Aggressive
— Open Blogger

UN resolutions.jpg

Obama's ham-handed but partly successful attempt at isolating his least favorite country (filled with yucky Jooos!) may very well push Israel to be more proactive militarily and more belligerent diplomatically. It didn't take long for Obama to demonstrate his lack of geopolitical chops, but as Brett Stephens in The Wall Street Journal says, this may be the worst yet.

Here are Netanyahu's comments regarding Israel's response to the UN resolution.

I read in several newspapers this morning that they are complaining about my vigorous stand against the countries that voted against us at the UN. Israel is a country with national pride and we do not turn the other cheek. This is a responsible, measured and vigorous response, the natural response of a healthy people that is making it clear to the nations of the world that what was done at the UN is unacceptable to us.

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Saturday Morning Weird News Dump
— Open Blogger

sat morning.jpg

Good morning Horde. Wow, it's Saturday already and the last day of 2016. The Weird News Dump Staff wishes you a great weekend and even a better New Year.

Posted by: Open Blogger at 03:10 AM | Comments (254)
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EMT 12/31/16
— Open Blogger

This one is almost in the books, and it's been brutal. Who's left in your dead pool for 2016?

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December 30, 2016

Overnight Open Thread (30 Dec 2016)

Heh. Obama's sanctions on Russia are a metaphor for his entire administration.

These sanctions are just like everything else Obama has done. They are puny, they are ineffectual, they are self-serving, and they are designed to demonize domestic opponents.

Posted by: CDR M at 04:56 PM | Comments (723)
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Year's Worst Liberal Bias/Open Thread
— Ace

Free Beacon notes some of MSNBC's worst moments, in a post which is sixty three thousand pages long.

Jon Gabriel writes of incredible #FakeNews I've been complaining of incessantly -- the media refuses to write "hacked DNC emails," preferring exclusively to write "hacked the election" or even "hacked the vote," as AFP wrote yesterday.

Gee, I wonder why people become convinced of unevidenced conspiracy theories.

Business Insider bothered itself to write about the media's addiction to its own #FakeNews. Don't get high on your own supply, fellas.

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So Dumb: Nanny Bloomberg Spends Millions on Compulsory Nevada Gun-Check Initiative, But the Initiative is Unenforceable Due to Poor Draftsmanship
— Ace

If they're so superior, why the fuck are they so stupid?

The problem was that the initiative directed the FBI to conduct gun background checks -- and a state initiative cannot boss a federal agency into how it spends its money or how it performs its duties.

Like good little liberals everywhere, Nevada’s anti-gun Democrats expected someone else (in this case, the federal government in the form of the FBI) to foot the bill for their edict.

The feds have rejected it outright.

Nevada Attorney General Adam Paul Laxalt has noted it is entirely unenforceable (PDF).

Mike Bloomberg is out the $20 million or so he spent pushing this faulty referendum into being.


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The Top 30 Fake Hate Crimes of 2016
— Ace

#FakeNews. It's what's for dinner.

Posted by: Ace at 10:40 AM | Comments (273)
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Why Do Progressive Movies Like "Miss Sloane" Keep Cratering?
— Ace

First, let's get the factual predicate out of the way: the anti-gun, NRA-Are-Big-Meanies film Miss Sloane is an enormous failure.

[T]wo weeks after its national release, it has made only $3.2 million. During its second weekend, it averaged just $102 per movie theater per day. With a ticket price of $10.30 per adult, that comes to an average of only 9.9 people a day seeing the movie in any given theater. At least people had no problem finding a good seat.

And it wasn't for lack of trying to get people to show up. Out of the 200 highest-grossing movies of 2016, only ten exceeded the $15.9 million television advertising budget of Miss Sloane, and seven of those did so by very small amounts. Miss Sloane spent more than the Star Wars spinoff Rogue One, Star Trek, Pete’s Dragon, Arrival, Doctor Strange, and Hacksaw Ridge. It had twice the advertising budget of such hits as Sully, The Girl on the Train, and The Secret Life of Pets. For every dollar spent on advertising, Miss Sloane brought in just 21 cents in ticket sales.

By this measure, it came in dead last out of the 200 top-grossing movies in 2016. No one else was even close. Coming in second-to-last was Collateral Beauty, which made 53 cents per advertising dollar. The average movie made almost $2 for each dollar spent on advertising.

Let me propose a theory, which I think is original, as to why progressive movies keep bombing.

The key to any exploitation movie the novel depiction some trend or fad. It has to be novel. Surfing movies were gonzo box office in 1967 but not so much now.

These exploitation films -- progsploitation movies -- seek to exploit a faddish interest in progressive political "discourse."

And it's not that there's no audience for this. There is. Even if you say "Progressive movies alienate half the country" -- so what? You don't need but 1% of the country to see your movie and you've got a hit.

Action movies alienate more than half the country-- the half that just doesn't like action movies or violence in films. Yet they frequently make a lot of money.

That's not the problem, I don't think.

It's not that there is no interest in progsploitation.

It's that the market is already saturated with progsploitation material -- on television.

In the 1950s, Hollywood faced an existential threat. And I don't mean from Joe McCarthy or Richard Nixon or even Robert F. Kennedy.

I mean they faced the existential threat of a new entrant into the market, and one with huge advantages over movies -- TV shows were free (or free-ish, once you got past the big initial investment and once you accepted that the "charge" for TV was permitting your mind to be rented for advertising).

And TV was remarkably convenient -- you didn't even have to leave your couch.

Hollywood responded to this threat by offering up technical spectacles that TV just couldn't. They offered color. They offered even Technicolor, whatever that is. They offered widescreen and Cinemascope.

They began focusing on fare that TV wasn't offering -- fewer movies were set in homes and offices, more were set in great open deserts, whether those of the old American west or the Biblical near east.

Knowing they could not compete on any grounds that TV could compete on, Hollywood did its level best to offer stuff TV couldn't.

Compare that to today.

Are movies like Miss Sloane offering the public things they can't see on easy, comfy-couch TV?

Well, Law & Order notoriously offered progsploitation political themes for 14 or 15 years straight. It was never about the murder -- no, it was about the gun manufacturer who made the gun that wound up in the murderer's hands.

Shows like The Good Wife and Madame Secretary and all the rest of the programming-for-progressive-women offer up progressive political themes every single week.

I'm sure Miss Sloane offers up some rapid-fire (and very dubious) #GunFacts as some progsploitation to make its would-be audience moist in the pants.

But golly gee willickers-- John Oliver offers up rapid-fire progsploitation factutainment every Sunday night.

Besides, John Oliver is "real" and offering "#Science," not some cooked-up pretend drama. And anyone who really #LovesScience will prefer, obviously, the English twit's rapid-fire "facts" over some pretend Hollywood drama.

Ah, but Miss Sloane can give the audience profanity and Some Adult Material and Themes that TV can't, right?

Well. Except for every premium cable TV show, which gives you all the f-bombs and robot-rape you could imagine.

It's not that there aren't progressives who don't want progsploitation factutainment -- it's that this market is so damn well served by tv (is there anything else even on TV?) that no one's going to buy a ticket to see the cow when TV will show them all the milk they could ever want to see.

This type of movie is doomed. It can't give you anything you haven't seen already. Law & Order was, it claimed, "ripped from the headlines." Movies like Miss Sloane are ripped from Law & Order, season 8.

I'm sure Hollywood will keep pumping these movies out, though, because progsploitation is only tangentially about appeasing the public's demand for progressive propaganda.

It's much more about appeasing Hollywood's desire to make progsploitation films, whether they make a dime or not.

Posted by: Ace at 08:42 AM | Comments (464)
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Drudge Report Gets Blacked Out For 90 Minutes by DDOS Attack; Drudge Suggests Attack Mounted by US Government
— Ace

Here's the thing -- he has as much evidence for that as the politicized US intelligence agencies have for saying Russia is definitely behind the DNC hack.

Basically he has an event and and an enemy with a motive. Which is what politicized intelligence agencies have.

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Mid-Morning Open Thread
— Open Blogger


Breezing Up
Winslow Homer

Homer is the quintessential American painter, and this is a great example of his work. It hangs in the National Gallery of Art.

Henry James hated it. Which is okay, because Homer was a better artist than James was a writer.....

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The Morning Report 12/30/16
— Open Blogger

"What Might Have Been. Thank G-d It Won't . . . And Never Will!"

Good morning, kids. The penultimate day of 2016 is kind of slow. Sheesh, that photo of Nurse Nasty alone at the table speaks volumes, doesn't it? Interesting analysis as always from the great Caroline Glick of what Israel's future moves might be now that Obama has legitimized the destruction of the State of Israel and declared open season on Jews. Other than that, what kind of a sick bastard cops a feel from a bedridden 103-year-old woman? A Democrat, of course. But if you can stomach the lengthy article, you'll discover that that word is oddly missing. Anyway, just want to wish you all a safe and happy new year. Have a better one and remain blessed.

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December 29, 2016

Thursday Overnight Open Thread (12/29/16)
— Open Blogger

Quotes of The Day

Quote I

I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes. Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You're doing things you've never done before, and more importantly, you're doing something. Neil Gaiman

Obviously Mr. Gaiman has never seen me while composing The ONT.

Quote II

Be at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let every new year find you a better man. Benjamin Franklin

Quote III

To be an ideal guest, stay at home. E. W. Howe

Do you relate to this quote?

Quote IV

Most of the shadows of this life are caused by standing in one's own sunshine 
Ralph Waldo Emerson


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Kurt Schlicter: Tell Them I'm Comin' and Hell's Comin' With Me
— Ace


Civil society is dead and we know who killed it. There is no sense pretending a dead man is a living one.

I wish I could tell you that, having dodged the naggy bullet that was Felonia Milhous von Pantsuit, we can now spend the next four years being left alone. But that's not in the cards. Liberals won't -- because they can't -- pause to reflect on how they should stop being such insufferable jerks and live with us normals in peace and mutual respect. Instead, they are doubling down on their gambit for unrestrained power over every aspect of our lives, fueled by a hatred for Donald Trump that is, in reality, a hatred for us.

Remember, they really do hate us. Just ask them.

Just watch what they do. They will always side against us -- even when a professional scammer stages a fake "hate crime" on an airplane. They will side with the hoaxer even though every single "Trump-inspired hate crime" -- and almost all others -- turns out to be a hoax. Every. Single. One.

When it comes down to it, they are more worried that some buffoon will sneer at a woman trapped in burka than that the psychotic creep who stuck in it will butcher a bunch of normal Americans while shouting "Allah akbar!" We have to say "No" -- normal lives matter.

Understand that they will not stop. They will not change. We must therefore defeat them, because otherwise there will be no peace.

Read the whole thing. The GOP is filled with Golden Age Nostalgists, as any conservative party will be.

But nostalgia for the age of basic civility and humanity in public behavior should not blind anyone to the fact that that age is as dead as Calvin Coolidge.

And people need to begin asking themselves: What is more likely to produce the Peace State of civic affairs the nostalgists pine for -- treating the enemy with the same level of discourtesy and contempt as he treats us (therefore inflicting a penalty on him for continuing his course of behavior), or allowing him all the pleasure of inflicting cruelty (and don't kid yourselves -- cruelty is pleasurable, that's why so many are so happy to indulge in it) without ever having the same cruelty inflicted back on him?

There is no point trying to make them merely empathize with their victims -- they don't believe their victims are truly human. There is no juice in the empathy tactic.

The only possible tactic is to make them hurt until they sue for peace.

An eye for an eye makes the world blind, they say.

But, on the other hand: If you've blinded your enemy, at least he will have a great deal of trouble hitting you with any further rocks. You'll be blind too, alas, but -- you don't have to worry too much about the blind man continuing to pelt you.

Posted by: Ace at 03:18 PM | Comments (316)
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