Saturday, May 17, 2008

Note to KRLA

The Hewitt/Medved/Prager/Dennis Miller lineup is so good and classy that it makes Laura Ingraham and Kevin James (on either end of that grouping) look even worse than they really are (which is mildly annoying and awful, respectively).

Please use Kevin James' latest faux pas on Hardball as the excuse to set him free.

In Politics, There's no Freude Like Schadenfreude

I think one of the least appealing aspects of modern politics is its unrelentingly negative starting point. Good news can only be simplistic or stupid; the only real good news is bad news about your enemy. The press takes the lead in this by avoiding almost all positive news, whether it be in Iraq, climate change, AIDS statistics or the economy. And any positive statement or acknowledgment of progress given by the governing party about the current state of things is immediately inverted by the opposing party. Unvarnished truths can never escape the gravitational pull of the press and political spin, and public apathy and skepticism is the result.

Prince Caspian

One of my favorite sites to read about movies is Steven D. Greydanus' decentfilms
, though his posting of late has been very sporadic. I think he nails prince Caspian in his review. The second movie in Disney's Narnia series is a better movie (based on a much weaker book, at least filmically) than the first in every way. Every way, that is, except its spiritual and intellectual core. Like the film of Eco's Name of the Rose, the ideological underpinnings of the book have been jettisoned and the result is a fairly standard adventure film. Lewis is a great theologian who is also a storyteller; his dramatic choices are perhaps debatable, but the religious foundations are rock solid. In making an admittedly fine film, a creative team woefully inadequate to the task have sliced and diced the theological landscape, substituting carefully crafted points about the nature of God with bland New Age platitudes.

Here's hoping for a third film that fires on all cylinders.

The story thus far

Obama marches toward what? Will Hillary be able to fight back her impulse to say "if I can't win, nobody can" and keep her finger off whatever Doomsday Bomb she has in her possession? Will American voters be able to untangle Obama's record (at once both ultra-liberal and scant) and their feelings about race and political idealism? Will McCain be able to conquer his own demons as a hothead and underwhelming speaker and rise to the occasion?

Tune in next month for another chilling installment.