Stuck-up Left Coaster

S.C. teachers accused of sex with boys [via Drudge]

Not to be insensitive, but I was quite a bit less dismayed in the story’s subject than I was by this passage:

Signs of racial tension, old and new, are not hard to find in Laurens County. The school where one of the teachers worked used to be blacks-only. In the town of Laurens, where one of the teachers taught, an old movie theater has been converted into a Ku Klux Klan museum and paraphernalia store called The Redneck Shop. There, visitors can buy Confederate flags and bumper stickers, such as one that depicts three Klansmen and reads “The Original Boys in the Hood.”

Good Christ, can we take them up on that secession demand?

An Inconvenient Truth

I caught most of An Inconvenient Truth tonight. A guy I know gave it a hearty recommendation so I sort of paid attention as it was on.

There’s been a lot on Drudge Report about stuff like “CONVENTION ON GLOBAL WARMING CANCELLED DUE TO MASS FROSTBITE” this year, and I’ve seen the Al Gore backlash start its way around the Internet. Apparently Gore powers his way through energy like he does doughnuts, though latest I’ve seen Gore claims he buys enough clean energy to even things out, so maybe its not a big deal. Though if he’s buying 20x what is needed to power the average house from the power company and buying enough clean power to even that up on the emissions ledger he’s drawing 1.21 jigawatts easy.

Anyway, if this makes me a bleeding heart treehugger, so be it, but I buy most of the agenda of this movie. I thought Gore did a good job presenting most of the information he chose to present in the movie, and the visuals were well-constructed and effective, if a little corny at times.

But I was keeping pretty close track, and for the 17% of the movie in which Gore is a powerful, common-sense, populist preacher for the environment I’m saying to myself “man, how did this guy lose to George W Bush again?” Unfortunately that leaves 83% of the movie for Gore to freelance, and he’s given an inept assist by an overly permissive director to get way too much face time. Gore constantly undercuts the power of his message by jerking the camera back so it’s got him at three-quarter angle.

Al Gore is authoritative but uncharismatic, assured but self-important, folksy but imperious, and plainspoken but pompous. When Gore’s the story, his act quickly runs ragged and he exposed, at the core of his gentleman farmer and politician being, as a bloviator.

Too much exploration of Gore in movies these days.

The National Debt

Haven’t had a lot of time to post lately, but we’re darned near 30 days between posts. So I’ll point out this article on MSNBC about who holds the US national debt. In other words, we all know we owe a 9 trillion billion jillion dollars, but to whom do we owe it? This part, especially, caught my attention:

So just who are these lenders? As of last June, the biggest holder of Treasury debt was the U.S. government itself, with about 52 percent of the total $8.5 trillion in paper that’s out there. Most of the government’s holdings are massive savings accounts for programs like Social Security and Medicare. Just as you may prefer to keep your Individual Retirement Account in the safe Treasury bonds, the folks who manage the Social Security Trust Fund are looking for a secure investment, too.

This makes me feel a little better, because I’m sure if we really get into trouble, the social security administration isn’t really going to make us pay that back. I mean, we’re family, right?