Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Walking Dead on AMC

Tonight, I watched the first few episodes of The Walking Dead on AMC. They are running again right now from the first episode. They are showing all of season 1 in two nights and since there were only 3 episodes tonight, I guess there were about 6 episodes in all (what a short first season). I have already seen the next 3 episodes but missed the ones I saw tonight the first time they aired so I am a happy camper. I am eagerly awaiting the second season although I have no idea when it will commence. Eagerly awaiting it because I am a fan of zombie movies and such, and this series is pretty good regardless of the screw-up they continue to make. The most incongruous things I have seen so far is that the zombies are definitely attracted to humans by sound - yet in some scenes the sound would be enough to - well - to wake the dead - yet the scene stays zombie free. Another major foul up was when they left the sociopath handcuffed up on the roof. he was able to get a saw to saw himself free. So what does he do - he saws off his hand. Hell - it was a hack saw and hack saws are used to saw through metal like handcuff chains or the much weaker metal to which the handcuffs were attached in that scene. besides that, the guy was an ex-con - any guy who has done time in jail and has learned anything, has learned how to jimmy open a pair of regular handcuffs. he had more stuff around him than he needed to do so. They were striving to be dramatic and gory and thrilling but there was a more believable way to go about it than was that. That was just a rank amateur mistake. Then again so too was the scene at the very beginning when the sheriff tells the deputy to make sure he has the safety off. There is no external user controllable safety on a Glock and while I was momentarily distracted at that scene, I am fairly certain it was a Glock. There is also another scene where a survivor, a blond woman, is holding a gun on the sheriff and wanting to shot him. I have to wonder, in her state of excitement, anger, helplessness, confusion, why is her finger straight along the side of the frame of the pistol and not on the trigger. Someone in the movie making industry listened too literally to a gun guy about not placing your finger on the trigger until ready to shoot. It just ruined the scene for me - she was ready to shoot - she was bitching mad at the sheriff and at the end of her wits. She should have had the trigger pulled about halfway back already. The finger where it was just did not go with the outrage, anger and other emotions of the scene.

Still, its okay. My wife always says I am unobservant but she hates it if we watch a movie together because I always notice things like that and let her know it. Now I watch TV down in the basement and she up in the living room. Oh well...she does not like zombie movies anyhow, so I will enjoy this series by myself. I really am eagerly awaiting season 2, other than my minor nit-pics it is pretty good zombie gore.


Of course, if it winds up that the sheriff wakes up out of a coma in the final episode, the same coma he was in at the beginning, and it was all a dream, I may never again watch another zombie series.

One last thing - all those scenes of good organ meat and ribs have gotten me hungry, I think I'll go grab a bite.

Later 4 U,
GB

Respecting The Flag of the United States of America

Today, I added a link list, over on the right side of my blog in the red zone, dedicated to the Flag of the United States of America. The flag is more than just a symbol of our great nation, it is a living entity as per U.S. law and it should be treated with all due respect. I was brought up to Pledge Allegiance To he Flag. Yes, it was with the words 'under God' included and even though I don't believe in God the way I used to believe, not in the conventional way of organized religions, I still say the Pledge with those words - and mean them too. I show great respect for the flag though will admit I do not usually fly it at my home, though I think that needs to be remedied. I am not perfect and certainly can improve in that regard (among many others).

Yet, despite not being one who normally displays our flag I try not to show it anything but respect, I was raised to do so. So, it sometimes simply amazes me how disrespectful some United States Citizens and others within our borders can be when it comes to our flag. sometimes the disrespect is due to wanton vileness on the part of the person who is being disrespectful such as when someone carries the flag upside down at a rally or in a parade, or when someone drags it on the ground in protest, or when someone burns it while cursing our nation. Other times, the disrespect just may be overlooked because the person committing it has an honestly well intentioned purpose to bend the rules just a bit. Examples of this would be someone wearing a flag T-shirt to express patriotism (I am guilty of this one), or when a politician autographs a flag for a person at a patriotic event. While there are other reasons people may show disrespect to our flag, I suppose the number one reason is probably due to ignorance. Many people apparently do not realize that there is a certain set of rules or protocol to be used, by all of us, when displaying or even sometimes observing the Flag of the United States of America.

I guess that a lot of the ignorance about our flag and the respect tat should be shown for it, is due to the society that we have become. Vandals, malcontents, illegal immigrants, racists of any race, ultra leftists with an agenda, extremist on the right with an agenda, often show disrespect for the flag as a way of showing disrespect for their political opponents or for those who have an agenda that differs from their own. What they fail to realize is that the American flag is not the symbol of those on the right, those in the middle or those on the left or those with other ideals - it is the symbol of our great nation the banner of our citizenry across all political, racial, ethnic, ideological lines for we the People of the United States of America. It is our flag, your flag, my flag, if you are a citizen or legal resident of the United States of America and is also often soon to become the flag of those masses who strive to legally immigrate to the USA and become U.S. Citizens.

I learned that early in life, that it is our flag. I also learned to respect the flag and to pledge allegiance to it. I learned that in grammar school, those nuns sank it in man did they ever, and I learned it at cub scouts, and I learned it at summer camp. One respected our flag. It was awhile later on, probably just before I turned into a teen or maybe in my early teen years, that I truly learned to exactly what I was pledging allegiance. It was not only to our flag but to our nation, to each and every state united under that flag, to the U.S. possessions, and to the people of this great land - all united despite our differences and all living united under our Constitution. Whether or not you liked me, or whether or not liked you, did not give me or you cause to disrespect our flag because in doing so you disrespect not only the other guy but all of the people of the United States of America who ever were, are or will be and everything for which this country stands. Those whom you disrespect when you disrespect the flag include: the Founding Fathers, the pioneers, native Americans, they who carried the flag into battle unarmed, those who dropped their arms to pick it up and continue the charge armed only with it (this was common among Union soldiers during the war between the states), they who sacrificed their lives in wartime and peacetime to keep our nation safe, they who work hard to make America a good place to live (such as farmers, factory workers, teachers, policemen, firemen, nurses, doctors, judges, nuns, ministers, butchers, clerks, auto mechanics, philosophers, professors, dentists, laborers, scientists, blacksmiths, explorers, bankers, even lawyers and politicians). It also includes non-citizens such as they who clamor to come here from abroad and are willing to do so legally because they believe this the greatest nation on the earth and is worth getting to under its laws. Then too, it includes: they who respectfully disagree with your point of view, they who do so disrespectfully or illegally, those who are our political allies or are our opponents. Disrespect for the flag also shows disrespect for our children, our grandparents and other family members, our ancestors, our descendants, and most of all - ourselves.

We have become a nation of folks who show disrespect to one another on a daily basis. It happens while flipping the bird to someone driving on the highway who may have just cut you off, it happens when we don't hold the door for the person behind us, it happens when we try to enter a room or an elevator or a bus or a subway car before letting others exit first, it happens when we fail to say please or thank you or excuse me when appropriate, it happens when we walk down a hallway staying to the left instead of to the right, it happens during political rallies or when we talk politics, it happens every moment of every day and almost every American is guilty of it to one extent or another. The thing is though, it has been happening so much and with such force that we have forgotten the most important thing about being citizens or legal residents of the United States of America - that is that:

UNITED WE STAND - DIVIDED WE FALL

Our flag is a symbol of the unity that we need to survive and to thrive as a nation. Disrespect for our flag is not only a symbol of division, it is actual divisiveness - a destruction of our unity and therefore a destruction of our nation when it is performed purposefully as described above. It is also a plaque on our nation when done for commercial purposes such as selling underwear or other clothing items that represent or look like the flag and additionally is a pox on our system of government when politicians exploit it and that for which it stands or otherwise disrespect it to gain political favor from one side or another. Finally, even inadvertent disrespect for our flag is akin to a social disease from which most of us suffer to one degree or another. So what can be done to remedy it all.

First of all, we can begin again to make sure that respect for the flag is taught in elementary school. It would be a lot better to teach our children that, in the 1st grade on up through graduation from high school, than it would be to teach them about how to use a condom to prevent getting HIV/AIDS in elementary school. That could wait at least until 7th or 8th grade. Anyone who says otherwise has a screw loose if they truly think sexual behavior should be taught to kids younger than that in school, after all they do have parents. On the other hand, teaching them about the flag, and respect for the flag and their country, will teach them about respecting other Americans. Having them all learn that respect for the flag as a unifying symbol of Americans will help create a tolerance that so many seem to demand today but that they not really try to foster. It will show them, that even though they think differently, look different, act different, speak with different accents, come from different places - they are all united under the flag if they are citizens or legal residents (they who immigrated here legally). Let's face it - I am not including illegal aliens here because for the most part they disrespect our flag by there first act on our soil being a criminal act - they just don't care about the sovereignty of our nation at all as I see it.

If we could get back to doing such a simple thing once again, it would do more to create a spirit of unity in this country than any president, any movie star, any catastrophe, any court order or interpretation of the Constitution, or any other thing of which you could think. Each and every parent and each and every school in this country should be obligated to teach our children about our flag and about how we should all respect it if for no other reason because respecting it means respecting one another as one Nation under God (take those two words or not), indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

If you think you may not be upon flag protocol as much as you should be, then maybe you want to click on the links in the red zone over to the right of my blog page under the header 'U.S. Flag". Then again, even if you think you know it all about Old Glory, you might find out a few things that you would be surprised to learn. Once you know the basics, you can start teaching your kids. I am certainly going to use them to educate myself.

All the best,
Glenn B

Have President Obama & The Democrats Stopped Blaming Bush...

...or are they about to stop? Seems to me with rhetoric like that spewing forth from the mouth of Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) this may be the case but they are still seemingly not ready to accept responsibility and still want to blame the other guys. President Obama has been president for 2 years now and as you are aware, if you read or watch or listen to the news, President George W. Bush was the favorite whipping boy of the Obama administration. The democrats blamed him for everything while he was in office and then the Obama administration took the lead and kept blaming him for everything even as it was all obviously being made worse and worse by the current administration. The thing is, after about a year and a half, the people, including many democrats (and even many ultra leftists) began to realize that the Obama administration was nothing like what it promised it would be and was causing many new problems for us (especially regarding our economy and our foreign policies) and that it was exacerbating old problems. All the time the Obama administration was doing so, President Obama and his mouthpieces in Congress had been telling us it was someone else to blame and they themselves were blameless for the most part.

Things have just kept getting worse and new problems keep arising, and our deficit has soared beyond the scope of sanity, and all they could do was blame George W. Bush. Then in November the makeup of the Congress shifted markedly due to the elections. The Republicans took control of the House. Now suddenly it is January and the Republicans are poised to start taking some actions in Congress with the hopes of correcting the foul-ups created or made worse by President Obama and the democrats. So what do the democrats do? Do they say okay we will work with you? No, that would be to much to hope. What they do instead is to start to blame someone else for our economic problems. They are now blaming China and becoming very outspoken about it. Remember how critical of Greece was this administration when the Greeks tried to blame the US for its economic failure! Yet the dems blame another country now for our failure because they can no longer get away with blaming Bush. Senator Charles Schumer (D - NY) has said the following, in essence challenging China with a serious threat, though one has to wonder with what he would back it up. (see: http://politics.blogs.foxnews.com/2011/01/17/ahead-hu-visit-senators-push-china-trade-legislation)

"China's currency manipulation is like a boot on the throat of our economic recovery," Schumer said in a statement. "We are sending a clear message to the Chinese government: if you refuse to play by the same rules as everyone else, we will force you to."

Hmm, what happened to blaming George W. Bush? I guess, it is no longer his fault, it is now the fault of the Chinese that our economy is failing. Makes one wonder, if they are ruining our economy, why is it that we keep borrowing money from them? Wouldn't it be counterproductive to borrow from someone who is trying to destroy your economic status. The Chinese have admitted as much. Their president, Hu Jintao, recently said that the Chinese yuan should become the prominent currency in the world - replacing the U.S. dollar. Soon, I think, we will owe them so much money we may have to use their currency here in the U.S.A.; it would not be much of a surprise to me!

The thing of greatest concern about all this is not even that we owe the Chinese over 1 trillion dollars (get that - we owe them just about 1/14th of our national debt) but that we are now challenging them about their own prosperity. Do mouthpieces like Schumer not even consider that China is set to become the leading world power, that the balance of power has been and continues to shift markedly in their favor, that they have been building up their navy and air force for several years now, that they are allied with other countries who are our avowed enemies such as North Korea and Iran. Does Schumer forget that our President is seen as weak because of his incessant apologies for everything American after he took office and for his blame the other guy tactics. Does he forget that we are indeed weak when it comes to our economy? (If so, one would have to wonder how he could forget considering just how much he blamed on GWB!) Does he not realize that we borrow more money from China than any other nation? Does he forget that 'Made In The USA' is a lost concept and that many if not most of our manufactured imports are made in China? Does he forget we are currently involved in 2 wars on foreign soil? Does he want to involve us in a war with China - even just a trade war? If I believed that the Democrats under the leadershipmanagement of President Obama could lead us through this crisis while facing off against China - I would applaud him. The thing is, in the long run, we are doomed if we keep borrowing from, then blame our failing economy, on a nation that is set to become the dominant world power of this decade. We really don't need any help from China to destroy our economy; the current administration seemingly has been doing a great job of that - the same administration that just cannot seem to stop blaming the other guys.


I just wish that guys like Schumer would shut up or at least give a good amount of thought to what they say before they say it - and I wish that guys like him would start to accept the blame themselves for things they screwed up - like our economy. Something tells me I will just keep on wishing for at least another 2 years.

The opinions expressed above were my personal opinions.

All the best,
Glenn B