Saturday, January 26, 2013

Hollywood's Offerings Promise Only to Get More Anti-American

Possibly you have heard of Andrew Klavan's problems with Argo (via Instapundit), along with such fare as Charlie Wilson's War and Zero Dark Thirty not to mention the Chinese flags of the Red Dawn remake being digitally transformed into North Korean banners.

(I agree with Klavan about the dishonest historical notes at the end of Argo, but I would have added that the notes at the beginning of the film, if anything, are worse — what with the Shah being presented as nothing but a despicable American pawn and Khomenei's Islamic takeover being presented — I kid you not — as nothing if not a "people's revolution.")

Over at The Daily Beast, Michael Moynihan suggests that we should calm down and stop politicizing everything, but the truth is that anti-Americanism rears its ugly head in even the most innocent-looking children's (or family) fare.

Thus, even a mainstream media outlet like Le Monde noticed, uncomfortably, that Kung Fu Panda 2 should "be understood as a metaphor for the China-US struggle for world supremacy" (guess who, between the Chinese and the Americans, are the heroes and who are the villains).
 … the heroes of the movie (Po, the Furious Five, the master — all of them wise, honest, and upright — and the whole populace that they are determined to protect — all of them innocent and virtuous) can only be the Chinese, while the bad guys with their evil designs — and with superior firepower — can only be the Americans…

Is this what it's come to? American, and Western, artists and filmmakers giving China's communist dictatorship the image of poor innocent victim fighting for justice, while Western Republicanism and Democracy is to be the destroyer of the peaceful status quo?

The more I think about it, the more there seems to be some truth to it or, certainly, the more it seems that that is how the movie will be perceived among Chinese spectators… As for the Tibetan occupation, saber-rattling over Taiwan, and China's threats to its neighbors, along with the genocide of tens of millions of citizens, those are facts are conveniently left to the side…
Now we learn, indirectly via an in-depth New York Times article, that
When “Kung Fu Panda 3” kicks its way into China’s theaters in 2016, the country’s vigilant film censors will find no nasty surprises. After all, they have already dropped in to monitor the movie at the DreamWorks Animation campus here. And the story line, production art and other creative elements have met their approval. 
According to Michael Cieply and Brooks Barnes, the
lure of access to China’s fast-growing film market — now the world’s second largest, behind that of the United States — is entangling studios and moviemakers with the state censors of a country in which American notions of free expression simply do not apply. 

Whether studios are seeking to distribute a completed film in China or join with a Chinese company for a co-production shot partly in that country, they have discovered that navigating the murky, often shifting terrain of censorship is part of the process. 

Billions of dollars ride on whether they get it right. International box-office revenue is the driving force behind many of Hollywood’s biggest films, and often plays a deciding role in whether a movie is made. Studios rely on consultants and past experience — and increasingly on informal advance nods from foreign officials — to help gauge whether a film will pass censorship; if there are problems they can sometimes be addressed through appeal and subsequent negotiations. 

But Paramount Pictures just learned the hard way that some things won’t pass muster — like American fighter pilots in dogfights with MIGs. The studio months ago submitted a new 3-D version of “Top Gun” to Chinese censors. The ensuing silence was finally recognized as rejection.

 … One production currently facing scrutiny is Disney and Marvel’s “Iron Man 3,” parts of which were filmed in Beijing in the last month. It proceeded under the watchful eye of Chinese bureaucrats, who were invited to the set and asked to advise on creative decisions, according to people briefed on the production who asked for anonymity to avoid conflict with government or company officials. Marvel and Disney had no comment. 
Can you imagine to what extent liberals the nation over — not just in the movie-making business — would be screaming bloody murder should some sort of traditional American group ask for some sort of right to simply take a look at their group's depiction in a motion picture?!

The whole accepted history of Hollywood from the 1960s on has been: Finally, the victory over the early decades of feudalistic censorship along with the triumph of freedom of speech — i.e., the artist's right to self-expression.
Hollywood as a whole is shifting toward China-friendly fantasies that will fit comfortably within a revised quota system, which allows more international films to be distributed in China, where 3-D and large-format Imax pictures are particularly favored.

 … Co-productions like “Kung Fu Panda 3” draw close monitoring by the censors at every step. Scripts are submitted in advance. Representatives of S.A.R.F.T., according to Mr. Cohen and others, may be present on the set to guard against any deviation. And there is an unofficial expectation that the [Chinese] government’s approved version of the film will be seen both in China and elsewhere, though in practice it is not unusual for co-productions to slip through the system with differing versions, one for China, one for elsewhere in the world. 
At this point,  you are allowed to ask yourself, with a dollop of disgust or despair, will most Hollywood producers ever again release a major motion picture not minimizing the danger of America's enemies while treating average Americans (businessmen, capitalists, Bible Belt types, Southerners, etc) as the country's — as the planet's! — main, if not only, peril?
Questions about how Chinese forces are shaping American movies are now playing out in the making of “Iron Man 3,” which is set for release on May 3. 

 … For Americans, the hard part is knowing what might suddenly cause trouble — initial approvals notwithstanding. In 2009, Sony Pictures and its partner, the China Film Group, submitted their script for “The Karate Kid” to China’s censors, and dutifully changed parts of the story to suit them. But the finished film was rejected, according to people who were briefed on the process, essentially because film bureaucrats were unhappy that its villain was Chinese.

 … Steven Soderbergh, whose film “Contagion” was shot partly in Hong Kong, said the participation of China’s censors simply added to the chorus of input that surrounds every big-budget filmmaker.
“I’m not morally offended or outraged,” Mr. Soderbergh said. “It’s fascinating to listen to people’s interpretations of your story.”
"It's fascinating to listen to people’s interpretations of your story" — except when they are conservative Americans!

And especially when they are members of the communist bureaucracy's élite.

Ladies and gents: speaking of liberals screaming bloody murder, what is this if not what the alleged HUAC "witch hunt" from the 1940s was supposed to prevent from happening?!

The main reason the Republicans were defeated in 2012 was because of years of the liberal monopoly in the (public) schools and in Hollywood's movie offerings, leading to an ever-larger number of voters whose main approach to the political process is: compassionate and forward-looking Democrats versus insensitive and treacherous Republicans.

I agree with Andrew Klavan that "This is precisely what Conservatives have to learn to counter … The imagination is the only nation where Democrats get it right. We need to conquer that country."

On the school side, no teenager should be allowed to graduate from junior high without having taken an (in-depth) course on W Cleon Skousen's The 5000 Year Leap (A Miracle That Changed the World). In high school proper, it should be studied at least once a year.

Conservative movies must be made (how to do that? a big question), and conservative movie reviewers in newspapers and on TV shows around the nation must be made to understand that they are not being killjoys for pointing out — repeatedly and unvaryingly — the liberal bias in all sorts of movies, however apparently small — such as Charlie Wilson's War and Argo, which, again, was an outstanding film in all respects, except for the notes at the very beginning and at the very end, which were deeply anti-American in addition to giving a heroic part to Democrat lawmakers and presidents while flat out ignoring any positive contributions — along with the very existence — of Republican lawmakers and commanders-in-chief.

Update: Chinese Film Studios Are the Planet's Largest, Mass-Producing Films Designed to Build a Positive Image of the Country

Update 2: Further Inroads into Hollywood for China's Communist Party and Its Censors

Friday, January 25, 2013

Neither the UN Nor the EU Seem To Be Providing Much Support to the French Forces in Mali

The French are complaining that neither the United Nations nor the European Union
seem to be providing much in the need of support, write Nathalie Guibert and Alexandra Geneste.

Le Monde also has a list of France's main military interventions in Africa since the year 2000.

Incidentally, the troop-transporting airplane in the pictures is American, notes the photo caption.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Brazil Streetwalkers to Take English Lessons for 2014 World Cup; RELATED: The Proud Winner of the Miss Brazilian Prostitute Title Was Beaming

Does this sound like an idea for a Monty Python sketch, or what?

Brazilians prostitutes are taking English lessons for in time for the 2014 World Cup, we learn from Claire Maupas (obrigado para OT), and that in order to better "satisfy" the (non-Portuguese-speaking) tourists and their expectations.

In order to negotiate prices with clients and to clearly understand their stated fantasies, the ladies of the noite will learn, among many other things, how to say condom — although the Portuguese expression is far more romantic (camisa-de-vênus means "Venus shirt").

Whether lessons really need to last 6 to 8 months sounds dubious to this webmaster…

By the way, have your heard of Aprosmig? Yep, kudos for guessing it right away, it's the name of the local hookers association, the one that is going to be teaching English to Minas Gerais streetwalkers (for free), and you can Like their page on Facebook (warning, this may not be recommended, as some of your amigos — and amigas — might misunderstand the sentiment)…
Objectif : pouvoir négocier les prix et comprendre les fantasmes des clients, comme l’explique la présidente de l’Aspromig, Cida Vieira.

In related news, Giovana da Silva (aka Mara) was the proud — and beaming — winner of the Miss Brazilian Prostitute title, also organized by the Associação das Prostitutas de Minas Gerais…

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

In the end, under our Constitution, the Congress has more power than the president

Instead of trying to appease or change President Obama, Congressional Republicans have to come to grips with who they are and what their powers are 
writes Newt Gingrich (related: read the former speaker's reaction to the inaugural address).
The  American Constitution is a simple but very tough document.

It was written by very experienced men who had fought a revolutionary war for eight years.

These Founding Fathers had grown up in a system of legislators fighting royal governors.

They understood fully the power of the purse and they vested it in the Congress.

The Founding Fathers believed respect was earned, not given.

They would have said to the House Republicans, “Examine your role under the Constitution. Look at the enormous power we have given you to confront and control an executive branch that is out of control.”

The House Republicans should then focus on what they believe and decide to fund what they want to fund.

They should split the Continuing Resolution into a series of separate bills and methodically begin eliminating government agencies by simply refusing to fund them after March 31.

They should then attach the easiest to defend entitlement reforms (block-granting Medicaid — where most of  the 30 Republican Governors would support them — and combining various welfare programs into one single program as Peter Ferrara has suggested), and attach them to the least important smaller continuing funding bills (e.g. Department of Labor , Department of Housing and Urban Development).

If the President wants to veto them, fine. Then he runs out of money for those institutions.

The Founding Fathers designed constitutional government around real power.

They expected presidents to be strong, assertive chief executives.

They expected the Congress to use the power of the purse to limit the power of those presidents.

As Madison wrote in Federalist #58:
“The House of Representatives cannot only refuse, but they alone can propose, the supplies requisite for the support of government. They, in a word, hold the purse — that powerful instrument by which we behold, in the history of the British Constitution, an infant and humble representation of the people gradually enlarging the sphere of its activity and importance, and finally reducing, as far as it seems to have wished, all the overgrown prerogatives of the other branches of the government. This power over the purse may, in fact, be regarded as the most complete and effectual weapon with which any constitution can arm the immediate representatives of the people, for obtaining a redress of every grievance, and for carrying into effect every just and salutary measure.”
House Republicans can earn President Obama’ s respect by picking the spending fights they can win and then cheerfully relaxing and accepting as much victory as Obama’s arrogance forces them to insist on.

In the end, under our Constitution the Congress has more power than the president.

That power, however, only exists when we have Congressmen and Congresswomen courageous enough to exercise it and smart enough to pick the right fights and then win the communications fight.

Until House Republicans assert their Constitutional powers they should expect the President to continue to treat them with contempt and disdain.

Real negotiations will begin only after they have defunded parts of his government.
Newt in 2016.

Do Conservatives Not Care About the Kids? Do They Only Worry About Gun Owners?

A Salon story by Alex Halperin, entitled Ann Coulter’s astounding gun control diatribe, states, in an incredulous tone of voice, that barely "weeks after the Newtown rampage, it’s the gun owners they’re worried about" ("they" being Ann Coulter, Fox News, and conservatives in general).
In this video Ann Coulter discusses the Journal News gun map controversy. Also of note is the graphic Fox News chooses. Three weeks after the Newtown rampage, it’s the gun owners they’re worried about. What does Rupert Murdoch think about that?
Uh no, Alex Halperin
It’s not the gun owners that conservatives are worried about.
It’s the gun owners that the Democrats are worried about. Are… obsessed about.
Conservatives are — properly — concerned with the people — the school kids as well as their elders — and with their rights.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Mali Native Tells Incredulous MSM Reporter That He Would Like Nothing Better Than for Mali to Be Colonized by Whites Again

More from the fiendish history of the West's wicked record of racism and colonialism:
ITN's Lindsey Hilsum tells us how residents are receiving French troop presence on the streets of Bamako, Mali 
we learn via CNN (merci à Hervé).

And the fact is that while liberals all over the United States, Europe, and the rest of the Western world (foremost Barack Hussein Obama) wring their hands over the unspeakably vicious treatment blacks received from their despicable forefathers and their ghastly culture, the fact is that speaking with the locals brings out a different story — indeed, it is so far from what the MSM reporter has learned, that she has to challenge the black Malian on what he has just shared…
Enthusiasm, it seems, has no bounds.

I asked how long the French should stay [00:48-01:08].

"In my view the French shouldn't leave, they should stay in Mali" [the local riding in a car] said.

"But they're the old colonialists!" I [protested].
"I'd like to be colonized again" he replied. 
Qu'ils restent ici ! C'est ça que moi je veux !
"May they stay here! That's what I want!"
Related: "Bang! Bang! Bang!" — Mali Army's Military Training May Help Explain Why Its Soldiers May Have Been Doing So Badly

A Typical Conversation on Facebook: "I am just tired of the fear mongering and comparing Obama to Hitler to fire up people's emotions"

"I am just tired of the fear mongering and comparing Obama to Hitler to fire up people's emotions"
But comparing Bush, or Reagan, or Nixon, to Hitler, now that's something that is ENTIRELY permissable!
"Even if Hitler armed only all white people so that they could fight his war, that is a far cry from what Obama is doing. If Obama said only black people could own guns, then an apples to apples comparison could be made. The propaganda is ridiculous, and people that succumb to it are suckers for the gun industry."
Except for one thing, Tami: That is not what Hitler did. Hitler did NOT arm All white people, and he did not arm SOME white people. The only people Adolf (not Adolph) armed was "trustworthy" government employees (police, army, SS, etc) — all benevolent types who would be in charge of protecting the clueless members of the populace…
"You're a law abiding, sane gun owner. Do you honestly believe that felons and the mentally ill should be allowed to own an assault rifle? Do you have a problem with submitting to a background check if you buy a new gun?"
That is precisely — PRECISELY — why we want to get to the ROOT of the problem and identify the mentally ill and lock them up before they do something crazy — something we are NOT allowed to do in the politically correct world that the "compassionate" leftists have made, where it is "insensitive", even "hateful", for "fear-mongering" citizens to pass judgment on the poor crazies and on what can only be termed as their "idiosyncrasies"!

There is NOT one multi-murderer of the past decades who was NOT and who was NOT signaled to any type of authorities for fear of appearing insensitive, politically incorrect, etc… Witness Major Nidal, where the officers feared for their careers should they report his desires to, quote, murder as many American soldiers as he could (!)
 «Seung-Hui Cho, who committed the Virginia Tech massacre in 2007, had been diagnosed with severe anxiety disorder as a child and placed under treatment. But Virginia Tech was prohibited from being told about Cho's mental health problems because of federal privacy laws. …  Taking guns away from single women who live alone and other law-abiding citizens without mental illnesses will do nothing about the Chos, Loughners, Holmeses or Lanzas. Such people have to be separated from civil society, for the public's sake as well as their own. But this is nearly impossible because the ACLU has decided that being psychotic is a civil right.
Consequently, whenever a psychopath with a million gigantic warning signs commits a shocking murder, the knee-jerk reaction is to place yet more controls on guns. By now, guns are the most heavily regulated product in America.
It hasn't worked.»
(Ann Coulter)
"Do you have a problem with submitting to a background check if you buy a new gun?"
Here's another, more pertinent question:
Do YOU have a problem with average American middle-America citizens (you know, the gun-clingers) reporting the mentally ill to the authorities and having them committed against their wishes? (And not taking heat for doing so?)

Bang Bang Bang: Mali Army's Military Training May Help Explain Why Its Soldiers May Have Been Doing So Badly


Armed with imagination and with vocal cords:  The way that the Mali army trains its soldiers may — conceivably — help explain why its troops have been performing subpar (merci à Duncan et Hervé).

Maybe this is how Barack Obama thinks Americans could continue having guns in their lives when (and if) his gun control passes…

Monday, January 21, 2013

Plus Ça Change… Barack Obama Gives Stirring 1913 Speech

In the International Herald Tribune's 100 Years Ago section, we learn the following:
1913 — Wilson Attacks Magnates
NEW YORK — Mr. Woodrow Wilson’s talk to business men in Chicago on Saturday night [Jan.11] has excited just as much stir in the business world as his recent threat that he would “provide a gibbet as high as Hainan’s” for any financier who might take advantage of Wall Street to precipitate a panic. The Chicago speech, almost the last to be made before the inauguration of Mr. Wilson as President, taken in conjunction with other addresses to captains of industry, is construed as evidence that the President-elect has now definitely aligned himself with the “advanced” wing of the Democratic party, which is pledged to make business men honest by the process of special inquiry and special law.