Archives for November, 2012
Got a favorite musical movie moment?
Something a little different to end the day with, and it's my birthday, so please indulge me a little. In case you aren't familiar with the story: Set against the backdrop of 19th-century France, Les Misérables tells an enthralling story of broken dreams and unrequited love, passion, sacrifice and redemption—a timeless testament to the survival of the human spirit. the film opens with Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman), a peasant in 19th-century France who has served 19 years in a prison-work camp for stealing a loaf of bread, and a few escape attempts. He’s done so under the supervision of the rigid Inspector Javert (Russell Crowe), who possesses a borderline phrenological view toward criminality. When his parole comes up, Valjean—or “prisoner 24601,” as he’s known—becomes a pariah. The Bishop of Digne (Colm Wilkinson, who originally played Valjean on Broadway) provides him food and shelter but in return, Valjean steals the bishop’s silver. When the police catch Valjean, the bishop lies to the authorities, telling them he gave Valjean the silver, and to release him. He then tells Valjean he bought his soul for God, and to use the gifted silver to make a better life for himself.
Eight years later, Valjean has assumed a new identity as Monsieur Madeleine, a wealthy and benevolent factory owner. One of his workers is Fantine (Anne Hathaway), a beautiful woman who sends every last franc she makes to the swindling Thénardiers (played by Helena Bonham Carter and Sacha Baron Cohen) to pay for the care of her young daughter, Cosette(Amanda Seyfried). When Fantine is fired from the factory because of her co-workers’ petty jealousies, she is forced to sell her hair, her teeth, and ultimately prostitute herself to provide for her daughter.
Here is where Hathaway, after giving herself to her first client, rises and sings “I Dreamed A Dream.” She really makes this song her own, and it's a breathtaking performance! I can hardly wait for the Christmas season opening to watch the entire film, and hoping this will be Hathaway's first Oscar.
Hope you enjoy the clip. Your late night open thread begins below.
After a couple of her well known on-air brain farts, I wonder Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer is the one that we should be worried about being on the road, not the deferred-action immigrants who are just trying to get to work in her state. Arizona Governor Compares Undocumented Immigrants To Drunks And Children:
Since President Obama issued an administrative directive allowing some undocumented young immigrants to temporarily remain in the country, states have adopted policies to ensure they have equal work opportunity. But on Thursday, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer (R) reiterated her opposition to granting driver licenses to the eligible immigrants and compared them to children or people with a record of driving under the influence.
Speaking on Fox News, Brewer suggested that she would never issue licenses to undocumented immigrants because that’s what state law says, despite the fact that it was her executive order that interpreted state law to mean that:
BILL HEMMER (HOST): In June the White House announced a new plan if you were here in the U.S. before the age of 16, and you are younger than the age of 31, and you’ve been here at least five years, you can stay. That is the broad outline of his proposal passed over the summer. What you’re arguing is that the law of the land in Arizona if you’re illegal you don’t get the same rights as those who are legal, correct?
BREWER: The state is the one who licenses the people to be able to drive, it’s not the federal government. And we don’t license kids under 16. We don’t license DUI drivers. And our laws are very clear and I took an oath to uphold that.
[...] These laws have been passed for reasons of public safety; lawmakers believe that unlicensed adult immigrants are likely to drive anyway because they need to get to work, risking increased accidents and higher insurance costs. Public safety concerns, of course, run the opposite direction with children and serial drunk drivers, who cannot ever be trusted to drive safely and hence must be kept off the road.
This is your moment of clarity #189: There are many incredibly powerful psychopaths in our society. They're respected and loved and honored. You can spot them simply by looking at their bank accounts.
TPM caught this exchange earlier in the audio podcast but it's since gone up at YouTube (full version here). I've excerpted the bit on Politico.
via David Taintor at Talking Points Memo
New York Times polling guru Nate Silver took aim at Politico’s brand of reporting on Friday, saying the Washington-based news outlet covers politics like sports but “not in an intelligent way at all.”
Reflecting on Politico’s pre-election criticism of his FiveThirtyEight model, Silver told Grantland’s Bill Simmons on his “B.S. Report” podcast:
What was remarkable to me is that you had some, like, journalist for, um, Politico, or something … who, like, tweeted … ‘All Nate’s doing is averaging polls and counting electoral votes?’ … ‘That’s the secret sauce?’ It’s like, well, yeah, and the fact that you can’t comprehend that very basic thing … that says more about you than, than about me, right?”
The tweet Silver is referring to came from Politico’s Jonathan Martin, and actually reads: “Avert your gaze, liberals: Nate Silver admits he’s simply averaging public polls and there is no secret sauce.” Martin linked to a piece by his Politico colleague Dylan Byers, who wrote the definitive piece of Silver skepticism during the 2012 cycle. In the piece — headlined “Nate Silver: One-term celebrity?” — Byers considered the possibility of Silver’s star power dimming if Mitt Romney became president.
Avert your gaze, liberals: Nate Silver admits he's simply averaging public polls and there is no secret saucepolitico.com/blogs/media/20…
— jmartpolitico (@jmartpolitico) October 29, 2012
Rachel Maddow tore into Mississippi Republicans and their Gov. Phil Bryant, who claim to be "small government" conservatives, for using government regulations to shut down the state's last abortion clinic, regardless of the fact that it's supposed to still be legal in the United States. They all claim to hate those pesky regulations, unless it means using them to target women's reproductive health for ideological reasons.
As she noted, unless something changes, come January, they will have succeeded in essentially making abortion illegal in their state: Mississippi’s Only Abortion Clinic Could Be Forced To Close In January:
Jackson Women’s Health Organization — the only abortion clinic in the entire state of Mississippi — has been fighting to remain open after Republican legislators, aiming to force the clinic to close, passed a restrictive regulation requiring its doctors to secure hospital admitting privileges. A Bush-appointed federal judge temporarily blocked the measure in July to give the clinic’s doctors more time to apply for privileges at area hospitals, but that order expires in early January. And so far, all seven hospitals in the area have denied privileges to the doctors.
The Center for Reproductive Rights filed a motion Wednesday asking a judge to stop the law from being implemented — and forcing the clinic to stop providing abortion care — before January 6, 2013. If it closes, women in Mississippi will no longer have access to abortion in the state: [...]
Hospitals reportedly denied privileges to clinic doctors because the fact that they provide abortion services “is inconsistent with this Hospital’s policies and practices as concerns abortion and, in particular, elective abortions.” Mississippi has the highest teen pregnancy rate in the nation, as well as the lowest abortion rate.
There were five of them, not even men yet, accused of a violent rape. They were prosecuted aggressively by district attorneys and vilified by a tabloid press, then sent to prison for as many as 13 years.
In 1989, the case of the Central Park Five, as the attack on a 28-year-old white investment banker in uptown Manhattan has come to be known, roiled the country, touching on race and class and fears about crime.
But the defendants -- all black or Latino, none older than 16 -- didn't commit the attack on the Central Park jogger. They were the victims of coerced confessions and authorities eager for scapegoats.
Then in 2002, after the five had all spent years in jail, a previously unknown man admitted to beating and sexually assaulting the woman. All five of the convictions were vacated.
An explosive new documentary looks at a case once referred to as "the crime of the century": the Central Park Five. Many people have heard about the case, but far too few know that innocent teenagers were imprisoned as a result. The film tells the story of how five black and Latino teenagers were arrested in 1989 for beating and raping a white woman in New York City’s Central Park. Media coverage at the time portrayed the teens as guilty and used racially coded terms like "wolf pack" to refer to the group of boys accused in the attack.
Donald Trump took out full-page ads in four city newspapers calling for the reinstatement of the death penalty so they could be executed. However, the convictions of the five were vacated in 2002 when the real rapist came forward and confessed to the crime, after the five defendants had already served sentences of almost seven to 13 years.
New York City is refusing to settle a decade-long civil lawsuit brought by the men. And now lawyers for the city are seeking access to footage gathered for the new film.
Amy Goodman of Democracy Now! speaks to one of the Central Park Five, Raymond Santana; filmmaker Sarah Burns; and journalist Natalie Byfield.
Full transcript after the jump.
If you missed Wednesday night's guerilla premiere of academy-award nominated director Josh Fox's new film "Occupy Sandy: A Human Response to the New Realities of Climate Change," you can watch it in its entirety above.
What Action can you take RIGHT NOW?
Join the Occupy Sandy efforts by visiting the website to plug in!
Together we can recover from Hurricane Exxon Mobil
Call Cuomo and tell him to BAN Drilling and Fracking for Natural Gas in NY State! NO MORE FOSSIL FUEL DEVELOPMENT!
(518) 474-8390 or mail:
The Honorable Andrew M. Cuomo
Governor of New York State
NYS State Capitol Building
Albany, NY 12224
tweet at him here: @NYGovCuomo
Call Bloomberg and urge him to protect public health by halting construction of the Spectra Pipeline! Tell him the not to allow the Rockaway Pipeline to be built! The People want to RebuildGreen. Call NYCHA, show up to pressure board meeting at NYCHA HQ on Dec 5th, 10am, 250 broadway (interoccupy.net/blog/november-27th-first-post-sandy-housing-action-citywide-call-from-nycha-residents/)
Got a favorite musical movie moment?