June 11, 2009 1 Comment
When you can’t sleep, rant…
- To be clear about something, re: this graph: the problem is not that the Obama administration predicted future unemployment wrongly. If they had predicted it correctly, it would have been shocking. But I don’t expect, or even want really, the government to predict how many “Jobs” will exist over some future time period. Actually I wish they wouldn’t even try, because it perpetuates the myth that we should ever look to the government as an authority on that sort of thing. My problem is not that I wanted their bogus-ass Jobs Prediction Chart that they pulled out of their butts to be “accurate”. (Any “accuracy” it would have had would have been misleadingly accidental anyway, like a stopped clock.) My problem is when policymakers use charts and numbers that they pull out of their butts as arguments for some policy (i.e., phony-baloney pseudo-evidence they cook up for some policy that they want to do anyway, for ideological reasons, regardless of evidence). The take-away lesson is not that policymakers in government need to do a better job of being “accurate” in their bogus-ass prediction charts (which would be impossible, frankly). The take-away lesson is that no one should place any stock in predictions that come from the government.
- Being on Netflix leads to strange coincidences in the movies I watch. For example I watched Waitress (which had Keri Russell), and I watched Match Point (which had Jonathan Rhys-Meyers), which must have caused Netflix to calculate that I’d like August Rush (which had both), because I ended up adding that to my queue as well. This phenomenon is always kind of creepy (“did I suddenly, subconsciously become a huge Keri Russell fan?”, I think..) until I realize that’s what’s going on.
- Speaking of Woody Allen’s (?) Match Point (which was great), I somehow got suggested to go back and re-watch Manhattan. (See? Another connection.) Which I did. That’s when I realized why I never became a Woody Allen fan. Don’t get me wrong, pleasant enough to watch, interesting/diverting, but I always feel like I’m missing something in a Woody Allen movie. Just not that funny, for one thing. Oh, one chuckles under one’s breath from time to time. Or at least forms a half-grin in a grudging recognition of moments/one-liners intended as humor. But I remain convinced that people who claim to find Woody Allen hilarious are lying. Seems to me a single Seinfeld episode has more laughs than Allen’s entire filmography. The other thing though is that I found it depressing. Manhattan, it seems, does have a serious undercurrent theme that has to do with integrity, which the characters lack (and are mostly in denial about), which is where the humor would come from (if it were truly humorous). There’s an effective scene where Woody gets at some truths, wondering how future generations would judge them. But that scene has probably lost its power, because at the time I imagine the characters were more extreme outliers than they would be today – I think people have become more, not less, like them, and now would have no negative judgment of them at all. Which is what is depressing.
- Have you noticed that people are still talking about Sarah Palin? What the heck is wrong with people? For crying out loud, I’m tempted to become a diehard Palin Voter For Life merely out of spite. And I can’t be the only one. It’s as if the Palin-deranged crowd are trying to increase her popularity in the most efficient way they can think of. I can’t help but look at some of the Palin-haters and think that anyone they hate this much must be doing something right.
- So my boss name-drops that his kid is in the same chi-chi preschool with the kid of a well-thought-of movie actress and her even more well-thought-of movie director husband. I’d probably be more fascinated by all that if he paid me enough this year that my income, less taxes, over the year exceeded my cost of living over the year while he’s sending his kid to chi-chi preschool with moviestars.
- The notion of President Obama’s “brilliance” has been on my mind recently. Why/how did people become convinced of this? In what way has Barack Obama ever demonstrated this supposed “brilliance”? As far as I can tell, it boils down to: he’s a black man who looks good in a suit, and when he talks he doesn’t sound like a blithering idiot or an uncouth lowlife. “Why, a black man who can wear a suit, and speak proper English? He must be a genius!”, all the progressives exclaim in unison, like some 18th century British slave-trader aristocrat amazed to learn that an African who he thought could only sing and clap can be taught his letters and recite the alphabet as well. Well? Is there any more to it than that? Because if there is, I’m not seeing it.