Daily Archives: December 26, 2009

Settled: Scott sucked as Scrooge

1984-xmas-humbug-scrooge.jpg image by mattcale3

Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who is the Scroogiest of them all? To George C. Scott’s Scrooge (top), anyway, I say: Bah humbug!

I’ve seen at least two posts that assert that the late George C. Scott’s 1984 television-movie portrayal as Ebenezer Scrooge is The. Best. Portrayal. Of. Scrooge. Ever. (There is Salon.com’s assertion and this Open Salon blogger’s assertion.)

Based upon this assertion, yesterday, on Christmas Day, I watched Scott’s portrayal of Scrooge on DVD.

I was unimpressed.

Sorry (OK, not really sorry), but I want my Scrooge to act like Scrooge. To be grumpy. To be mean. To be bitter.

Oh, George C. Scott underplayed the role, his fans say. Oh, really? To me he just seemed to just read his lines.

Scott’s Scrooge seems to be only mildly irritable, and is that enough to warrant the visits of four ghosts warning him that he’d better change his ways before it’s too late?

And I like the idea of a skinny Scrooge, a skinflint. I like the idea that Scrooge is so miserly that he is even miserly with himself, that he is so cheap that he eats only enough food to keep himself alive and bitter.

The portly Scrooge that the portly Scott portrays: I say bah humbug to that.

And the George C. Scott TV version of “A Christmas Carol” — well, it comes off as what it is: a made-for-TV movie.

I can deal with low-tech special effects, but I especially don’t like the way that the made-for-TV Scott “A Christmas Carol” portrays the Ghost of Christmas Past. I’m fine that a woman played that role in the Scott version, as the original Dickens character isn’t defined as a male or a female and apparently was meant to be androgynous — but give me Robert Zemeckis’ novel version of the Ghost of Christmas Past, hands down.

Speaking of the Zemeckis version, people seem to hate it because it’s modern and it’s high-tech. But Zemeckis nails the Dickens story, with the exception of the addition of the shrunken little Scrooge. That deviation from the Dickens tale wasn’t necessary, but it doesn’t destroy the overall film, either. And Zemeckis, for the most part, uses the technology at his disposal to support the spirit of Dickens’ tale rather than to just dazzle us with technology.

And I still don’t understand why Jim Carrey has taken shit for supposedly having done a poor job as Ebenezer Scrooge in the Zemeckis version. Carrey’s portrayal is the Scroogiest that I’ve ever seen — and Zemeckis’ Scrooge is the skinniest that I’ve ever seen, as Scrooge should be.

Admittedly, I haven’t seen the other versions of “A Christmas Carol” — that is, I haven’t seen them lately or I haven’t seen them at all — but I’ve seen the Zemeckis version and the Scott version lately, and between those two versions it’s no fucking contest: Zemeckis wins, hands down.

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Debate on pregnant U.S. soldiers misses the point, as usual

I just read a column by yet another apparent self-loathing woman — you know, the kind of woman who thinks that Sarah Palin is just great, you betcha! — on the topic of pregnant U.S. soldiers. The piece (of shit) is titled “National Organization for Irresponsible Women,” and it’s penned by she-wingnut Mona Charen.

The crux of Charen’s column is this paragraph:

Feminists, above all, should recognize that when a woman takes an oath as a soldier, she has freely undertaken extraordinary responsibilities. If she becomes undeployable and has to be sent home (the unavoidable consequence of becoming pregnant), someone else must serve in her place. The Army loses a valuable investment, and the unit is left vulnerable.

Wow, has Charen imbibed the Kool-Aid or what?

First of all, a human being is a human being. Not an “investment.” Not a thing.

It is sick and twisted that the capitalist United States of America has turned even human beings into commodities — yet claims at the same time to be “Christian.”

And it’s interesting that the pro-military wingnuts are so fucking “pro-life” — except when the woman is an “investment” of the stupid white man’s military. Then, she is chattel.

Memo to U.S. women: You are allowed to get pregnant only when the stupid white men give you their permission to do so. (But you knew that already, didn’t you? You have the pope, the Repugnican Party, Faux “News,” the Mormon cult, et. al., et. al. telling you your place every fucking day, don’t you?)

And, women, you have the likes of Mona Charen, head of the National Organization for Sellout Women, working for the stupid white men to help keep you in line, as though you were living under the rule of the Taliban.

You betcha.

But even all of this misses the main point, which is that the U.S. military is not worth joining in the first fucking place.

The U.S. military stopped being about defense a long, long time ago. Now, the U.S. military is only the avenue through which the stupid white men pillage and plunder the U.S. treasury. This wholesale looting of the treasury by the military-industrial complex is called “defense,” which, of course, is “in the national interest,” because that, you see, justifies the looting of public billions by private interests.

Again, the question isn’t whether or not it’s OK for women to get pregnant while they’re in the U.S. military.

The question is why in the fuck any woman would want to join the U.S. military in the first place, when by doing so she is not serving her country, but is serving only the war profiteers.

Nor do I understand why gay men and lesbians want to join the military, when anyone with half a brain cell could see that the U.S. military stopped being about defense years and years ago.

But so brainwashed are most Americans that they actually view the U.S. military as the protector and the expander of freedom and liberty and democracy, even when the illegal, immoral and unjust Vietraq War, which thus far has benefitted only corporations like Dick Cheney’s Halliburton, and the Abu Ghraib House of Horrors remain recent history.

I have cringed lately when I have seen Christmas sentiments extended to those “serving” overseas for our “freedoms.”

They’re not serving us or our freedoms. They’re serving the profiteering of the military-industrial complex, to whom they are only “investments.”

If we perpetuate this sick and twisted thinking, that the U.S. military actually is about expanding freedom and liberty and democracy, instead of recognizing what it’s really all about — war profiteering and expanding the power and the profits of the corporations for whom the U.S. military acts as thugs (thugs paid for by us taxpayers, not by the corporations, of course) — then we will go the way of ancient Rome. Assuming, of course, that we haven’t reached that point of no return already.

P.S. Charen also writes with her poisoned pen that “it would be nice if [feminist U.S. senators, including my senator, Barbara Boxer] thought of themselves as representing the interests of the nation from time to time, and not just as compliant mouthpieces for interest groups. Do any of these liberal senators ever lift their sights enough to recognize that an army is not a social welfare agency?”

There’s that “interests of the nation” bullshit again. Does Charen really believe that the military-industrial complex is about our “national interests”? Is she truly that fucking deluded? Or does she want to continue to personally profit from the exploitative stupid-white-male system that she so dutifully supports?

Speaking of which, how can Charen blast feminist U.S. senators for being “compliant mouthpieces for interest groups” when Charen herself is a compliant mouthpiece for the military-industrial complex? (Do hypocrites recognize their own hypocrisy or is the nature of hypocrisy such that hypocrites are utterly unable to recongnize their own hypocrisy?)

And are there more women in the United States of America or are there more members of the military-industrial complex in the United States of America? So who is representing the interests of more Americans, then: these “femi-Nazi” U.S. senators whom Charen blasts — or Charen and the other defenders of the corrupt military-industrial complex?

Memo No. 2 to U.S. women: You aren’t more than half of the American population now. You are now just another “interest group.” Your bud Mona says so! And she can’t be wrong because she actually gets paid to write a column!

Finally, yes, I agree with bitching and moaning bitch Mona on one point:  the U.S. military should not be “a social welfare agency.”

The trillions of dollars — mine and yours — that go to the bloated U.S. military-industrial complex instead should go to Americans’ needs (food, health care, shelter, the creation of meaningful jobs, education, environmental protection, etc.) instead of to the stupid white men’s military-industrial complex’s greed.

Would Jesus Christ spend billions and billions of the American taxpayers’ dollars on the military-industrial complex’s greed or on human beings’ needs? Um, yeah.

The anti-Christian Mona Charen supports the sick system that makes people so financially desperate that they see no other alternative than to join the U.S. military because all other jobs have disappeared (and because a college education has become woefully unaffordable for most Americans), and then she blasts these poor people for their desperation.

We should ship Mona off to Afghanistan, since she cares so fucking much about our “national interests.”

And we don’t have to worry about her getting pregnant, because what man would touch a cold bitch like she?

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