Those Who Can't, Write

Those Who Can't, Write

Those Who Can't, Write

Recent posts from our readers forum.
May 16 2001 11:30 PM

Those Who Can't, Write

Subject: Priorities
Re: "Frame Game: The Energy Crisis"
From:
Munguza
Date: Thu May 10  7:33 a.m. PT

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Now that Bush has insisted Star Wars should be fast-tracked, environmentalists can challenge him to explain why we can supposedly build a missile shield in 8 years that will reliably "hit a bullet with another bullet," but can't build cars that get 3 more than miles per gallon [or] develop renewable energy and alternative fuels in the same amount of time.

[Find this post in full here.]

Subject: More Priorities 

Re: "Explainer: Is the Drug Czar Head of the DEA?"

From: Fred Waltman

Date: Fri May 11  7:33 a.m. PT

Not making any comment about whether we should even have a DEA (and assuming Explainer's figures are correct) but did you notice: There are roughly 10,000 people who do the work for a $1.4 billion budget. But the 150 people who only talk about the work take $500 million. Something is wrong there.

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[Find this post here.]

Subject: Cloud in the Silver Lining

Re: "Dialogue: The Writers Strike That Wasn't"

From:
Steve Young

Date: Tue May 8  4:32 a.m. PT

There's a lot of us writers out here who did not stand up on their stack of unsold scripts and cheer [when the strike was averted]. We are the writers who aren't concerned about residuals, vanity credits, or Internet sales. I'm talking about us writers who just aren't very good. Or is it very well? A strike would have given most of us a wonderful rationale for unemployment. It gives me a cool explanation for why I never get any work. Do you know how valuable that is to a writer?

[Find this post in full here.]

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Subject: Heroes and Villains

Re: "Culturebox: Summer Internment—How To Market Pearl Harbor in Japan"

From:
Thrasymachus

Date: Fri May 11  12:55 p.m. PT

There are two Japanese trailers for the film Pearl Harbor, one of which includes the full "Date which will live in infamy" speech, as well as some language which didn't even make it into the American trailer about America "never falling victim to such treachery again" or something to that effect. Why? Because the overall effect of FDR waxing indignant about the treachery of the attack will mostly just underscore the fact that Pearl Harbor was, in fact, one of the most effective surprise assaults in military history; and to the Japanese moviegoing audience (which I'm guessing is the same teen-age male demographic as its American counterpart) the thrill of seeing a Japanese military victory will far outweigh the purported embarrassment of being cast as national villains.

[Find this post here.]

Fray Notes

We liked "The Breakfast Table" last week: David Gardner, writing about the Fray, said that "interactivity is at the heart of … what we love about the Internet," and his brother Tom replied that it "enables the sort of open, inclusive conversation that allows Arthur Stock to challenge you, you to respond, thousands to read, others to respond." Well exactly, although Zeitguy believes the Gardners thought the name Stock was made up to attract their attention. Fray regulars know better and know that he is not just "some guy," as Tom Gardner also referred to him. Read Arthur's post here. There was also a great discussion on what the Fray has to offer, and who the real experts are, here.

Meanwhile, Will Jacobs in the "Today's Papers" Fray has concluded that posting makes people nicer. Read here about "open and honest interaction"—just the term we were looking for.

As "Chatterbox" continues to wonder about Disrespecting the Bing, Roger McGuinn (not the Byrds singer, we assume) offered a splendid post on mob slang here, combining scholarly discussion with colloquial language to stunning effect: "[This phrase] is used in the context of emphasizing the immediate dispatch of an issue or problem by the employment of effective ameliorative means. For example, 'E woodent give me da money so I took im by iz …hair and smashed iz face into the grill of iz … car and bada bing bada [boom] ez pullin' 10 large outta iz ... tool box.' " And that's the censored version.

In fact the Chatterbox Fray was full of good lines this week. We liked the final sentence of this post; you can argue with the politics but not, surely, with the splendid structure. But this was our favorite on energy and conservation: "Unfortunately, almost all women think the way [Tim] Noah does, which means I have trouble finding a date, even in Berkeley." Straight to the heart of the matter.