links for 2010-10-15

  • "An anonymous man in Grand Junction, Colo., has commissioned a billboard over the interstate there that shows four cartoon versions of President Obama — as a terrorist, a gangster, a bandito and a gay man — gambling with the Bible, the Constitution and Uncle Sam.

    "The artist who designed the billboard, Paul Snover, won't say who paid him $500 to create the image. But he did explain what the unidentified man wanted to say."

  • The more you know….–AP

    "In a private phone conversation that was secretly recorded, Mark Kirk, the Republican U.S. Senate candidate in Illinois, told state Republican leaders last week about his plan to send 'voter integrity' squads to two predominately African-American neighborhoods of Chicago and two other urban areas of Illinois with significant minority populations 'where the other side might be tempted to jigger the numbers somewhat.'"

  • "Perez’s resignation comes in the wake of reporting by veteran South Florida Times reporter Elgin Jones. Jones’ investigative work uncovering racist and offensive E-mails sent by city officials has been causing a stir in Wilton Manors, which abuts Fort Lauderdale, for more than two years. The weekly publication is the region’s most influential African-American community newspaper."
  • "But The Social Network is a movie based on real people. Mr. Narendra is of Indian descent. In an interview, he said he was 'initially surprised to see a white actor play him on screen.'

    "A Google search turns up a picture of Mr. Narendra next to Mr. Minghella. The differences are striking. Mr. Minghella, son of the legendary director Anthony Minghella, is significantly shorter and he appears to weigh a fair bit less. He also looks significantly lighter-skinned than Mr. Narendra.

    "Which brings up another issue. Many photographs not related to The Social Network show Mr. Minghella as a rather pale young man. But in pictures of him as Mr. Narendra, he appears darker. There’s another one that puts all the cast members together with their real-life personae; in this one, Messrs. Narendra and Minghella appear to have about the same complexion.

    "Was make-up used to darken Mr. Minghella for the part? A spokesman for Sony Pictures said in an email it was not."

  • "Although the troubling racial subtext is more deeply buried here than in "The Blind Side" (where it's more like text, period), "Secretariat" actually goes much further, presenting a honey-dipped fantasy vision of the American past as the Tea Party would like to imagine it, loaded with uplift and glory and scrubbed clean of multiculturalism and social discord. In the world of this movie, strong-willed and independent-minded women like Chenery are ladies first (she's like a classed-up version of Sarah Palin feminism), left-wing activism is an endearing cute phase your kids go through (until they learn the hard truth about inheritance taxes), and all right-thinking Americans are united in their adoration of a Nietzschean Überhorse, a hero so superhuman he isn't human at all."
  • "It doesn’t indeed. What about the other side though? Is it okay to play with the sentiments of the Afghan, Iraqi, Palestinian and Pakistani families? Aren’t they burying their children on a daily basis? And we are not talking of just one game. Most American children and adults — and others around the world — have grown up watching such violent and dangerous games that not just induce hatred and bigotry but poison and scar young, impressionable minds forever.

    "Is it any wonder then there is so much hatred, suspicion and plain ignorance about the Arabs and Muslims in the West? Is it any wonder then the yawning chasm between Islam and the West continues to grow by the day to dangerous proportions?"