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May 18, 2007

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Chertoff is a liar.

I imagine that none of the candidates see much of their pets, given their rate of travel.

That is, I've seen no reports on McCain carrying that menagerie around with him. Alas: I'd like to see an investigative report on whether or not any of the McCain pets are "straight talking."

(It seems as if an awful lot of people, of a variety of political beliefs, come together to agree that McCain has become rather sadly pathetic in a variety of ways, many of which have to do with his ever-more-practiced skills of pandering; naturally, this is by no means a universal view.)

I really wish I wasn't now from the same state Tom Tamcredo is, but, then, I feel the same way about Marilyn Musgrave and (soon retiring! yay!) Wayne Allard.

They're all pretty icky creatures, in my view. At least the latter two don't have the chutzpah to run for President.

I think McCain has regained a little bit of his maverick sheen by being the only major Republican candidate not to cheer for torture at the last debate. You might think it would be an easy call, but well, you know the times we live in...

Any particular reason, by the way, that you left out the following?:

Delaware Sen. Joe Biden: A cat.

New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton: "Seamus, our Lab."

What sort of cat does Biden have? A copycat? :)

Oh, and "[f]ormer North Carolina Sen. John Edwards: Golden retriever and chocolate Lab."

Gary: I left out lots. I was just going for a somewhat hard to figure list. I suppose listing (a) None; (b) None; (c) None would have had a certain subversive appeal, but I didn't think of it.

Well, at least you found something I can like about McCain, at last. Anyone who uses his pets for a "Rocky" homage is at least doing one thing right.

The fate of Cuff and Link.

(Along with a combination of smart and dumb statements from a much younger Stallone; the unfair ones to pick out: "But there'll never be a Rocky IV. You gotta call a halt"; and "'It's like this,' he said. 'I could go on playin' Rocky forever, but it's like even the Bowery Boys got a little embarrassing when they were 50 or 60. They shoulda been the Bowery Seniors.'")

Is Kucinich the only one with a mutt? Good for him.

"Is Kucinich the only one with a mutt?"

Aside from John McCain's "Coco the mutt."

And, mentioned in the article, but not by anyone here, further interrogation of Sen. Sam Brownback would be needed as regards his "[t]wo dogs," to answer that question.

I couldn't get that link to work, Gary.

As to the Rocky series, the first movie was excellent. The second was OK. Everything after that was poor to awful. (Well, I haven't actually seen any since IV, but I'm assuming they didn't go up in quality from there.) But the later craptacularness doesn't detract from the greatness of the first film for me.

McCain needs to bring his ferret to the next debate and introduce it to Giuliani.

Fish are not pets. They're decorations, like a high-maintenance lava lamp or a particularly active plant.

"I couldn't get that link to work, Gary."

Works fine for me, is all I can say.

But it's a July 1, 1979 interview of Stallone by Roger Ebert at the time of the release of Rocky II. There's a bunch of other stuff, including Stallone being annoyed at being asked if he was having a "comeback" after having been "washed up" (his other film was the unforgetable "Paradise Alley," which most people have mercifully been able to forget), but here's the Cuff and Link part -- Stallone was donating them:

[...] Downstairs, in front of the Barclay Hotel, the crowd had been waiting for hours. They were still chanting "Rocky!" A police captain supervised his men on the barricades. The limousines waited with their motors idling.

Stallone emerged from the hotel to tumultuous cheers, raised his hands over his head in victory, ducked into the limo and was gone with an escort of police cars and kids on bicycles.

At the Academy of Natural Sciences, all was ready. Stallone was sneaked in a back door. The head of the Academy, Dr. Thomas Peter Bennett, gave a backstage briefing: "First, my remarks. Then Mr. Stallone enters to the Rocky Theme. Then the presentation."

Out in front, the auditorium was jammed with Rocky fans, most of them female teenagers. A table next to the podium held a glass bowl covered with a brown cloth.

Dr. Bennett appeared, cleared his throat, smiled at the ovation, and reminded the audience of "Mr. Stallone's tender scene with his pet turtles and other animals.’

Stallone was on the stage, and the audience went wild.

Stallone grinned, signaled for silence, spoke: "Uh . . . these turtles, they're named Cuff and Link, they may not speak dialogue too good but they crawl real nice. They're two amphibians I picked up on a roadside in New Jersey, and now they're immortalized."

He pulled the cloth off the bowl, and there they were, Cuff and Link.

More cheers. "Hear that, Cuff and Link?" he said. "Sounds good, huh? Even a turtle should have his place in the sun."

He also talked about other stuff, like some dumb things he had said, and how Rocky III would conclude with a big fight in the Roman Colosseum, which he described the glories of at short length.

I'm entirely sure this never happened, incidentally, because he didn't realize that until very recently, no one has ever been granted the right film for days inside the Colosseum, and they wouldn't let him.

How do I know this? Because I remember this piece.

KCinDC: "McCain needs to bring his ferret to the next debate and introduce it to Giuliani."

That's a fantastic pick-up of an opportunity I kick myself for not having noticed.

This is a must. I think the entire blogosphere should make an immediate top priority of making this happen.

The whole country should see Rudy-the-hero in his normal mode, telling McCain:

"There is something deranged about you. ... The excessive concern you have for ferrets is something you should examine with a therapist. ... There is something really, really very sad about you. ... This excessive concern with little weasels is a sickness. ... You should go consult a psychologist. ... Your compulsion about—your excessive concern with it is a sign that there is something wrong in your personality. ... You have a sickness, and I know it's hard for you to accept that. ... You need help."
Really, all any Republican who wants to beat Rudy has to do is make a bunch of commercials of excerpts of some of Rudy's press conferences and radio interviews and various bizarre pronouncments and hysterical attacks, and other questionable appearances.

His press conference on how he was divorcing his second wife, which was how she heard about it, is a must.

That's a really charming menagerie of McCain's. It makes me dislike him a tiny bit less. And, a salt water tank with 12 fish? That's commitment: saltwater tanks are hard to maintain, and the fish are hard to keep alive. (Esp. if you find out too late that one of them is a predator, oops.)

And, I have to say, my first thought when I saw "ferret" was the same as KCinDC's. Bring the little guy out in one of those cute ferret harnesses, and walk him over to Rudy to say hi.

I bring you John McCain, Zen Master, and I link back to this thread.

Fucking Rockets. Basketball is such a stupid sport. Every time I think I'm interested again (I'm a tried and true baseball guy), they screw something up. Jeff Van Gundy is the rarest of coaching animals. The man never, ever utters cliches. It's so refreshing. It was painful to watch him doing analysis in the Spurs Suns fight tonight.

The Weimaraner was dead, to begin with.

Followed your link, Gary, tried to post a comment and got rejected. No (obvious) way to register, despite (?) instructions. Sayang.

What I was going to say was that the McCain quote would presumably have been -
I feel like Zsa Zsa Gabor's fifth husband where on the wedding night he said 'I know what I'm supposed to do, I just don't know how to make it interesting.'

That's McCain's version as of this February, but the joke is MUCH MUCH older. Probably back when Zsa Zsa was the Britany Spears of her day . . .

Saltwater tanks aren't actually that hard once you get them in balance. Though I suppose that is an issue. :)

McCain having a mutt...that may be the first thing I've liked about him in years. My mutt, Joey, is such a good dog. And he is so smart. I feel sorry for most of the people who trade intelligence for a pure breed.

There's a bunch of other stuff, including Stallone being annoyed at being asked if he was having a "comeback" after having been "washed up" (his other film was the unforgetable "Paradise Alley," which most people have mercifully been able to forget)

"Unforgettable" is misspelled here, and Stallone also starred in Norman Jewison's thinly-veiled Jimmy Hoffa story, F.I.S.T., between the first two Rocky films.

I believe Tancredo did have Mexican Dog but had to give it up when he learned it's terrible secret.

Dear Lord, its not it's. I don't want my knuckles rapped.

Alternatively, McCain could poodle walk Ron Paul in a ferret harness over to Rudy, so Hizzoner could kick the crap out of Paul.

Watching Rudy, and then Hannity the grotesque
accuse Paul of being a liberal terrorist symp during that debate was one of the most peculiar pieces of agitprop I've ever seen.

What's next? Is Rudy going to accuse McCain of being soft on man-eating tigers because the latter used up cage space during the immoral Sixties.

Tancredo's eyeballs were rolling all over the place that night, as if he was thinking, "What's a guy gotta do to be the craziest nutball Italian in the Republican primaries?"

Word is that Rudy plans on winning back the Redstate vote by proposing to bomb everything in Muslim countries EXCEPT for Planned Parenthood clinics.

Meanwhile, glowering off in the wings, Fred Thompson studies the ten killer-panders in suits, hoping to internalize each of their worst right-wing tics, so that he can stride on to the stage like Hoss Cartwright crashing into Hop Sing's kitchen at the Ponderosa wondering what the heck is holding up dinner. "Gimme that cleaver!"

Say I had an 18-year old daughter. Say the doorbell rang and Mitt Romney stood there, handshake proffered with a "Good evening, Mr Cleaver" and that smileful of shiny dental tributes to fluoridated water, asking for the aforementioned daughter for prom night. Say, at that moment, I looked to the heavens and beseeched them to open and bring 40 days and 40 nights of a spermicide deluge to save my bloodline from becoming a Mendelian experiment in breeding sincerity out of the human species.

Furthermore, Andrew Sullivan, whom I can barely tolerate, has a post up about Christopher Hitchens, whom I can barely manage not to tolerate, turning the whirling knives of his wit on Hannity and Ralph Reed.

There is something delicious about a rhetorical wolverine like Hitchens ripping out Reed's lungs and devouring them that puts reality TV to shame.

I've always wanted to put Flannery O'Conner and Ralph Reed in a room together to see if Reed could handle the resulting novella.

Three things come to mind when I gaze into Reed's baby blues: signing my soul, my mortgage, and my kid's life insurance policy over to him; a brutal carjacking on a desolate, Southern country road while the cicadas drone in the confederate humidity; and somehow simultaneously receiving communion and being forcibly raped from behind.

McCain needs to bring the ferret to a debate, in order to reenact the scene at the end of Kindergarten Cop when the baddy is holding a gun to the head of a kid, and the kid's ferret squirms out of the kid's jacket, runs up to the baddy's head and bites him on the neck, giving Arnie the chance to shoot the bad guy.

Except with Rudy it would be sufficient to see McCain's ferret at his throat. No shooting necessary.


If McCain's list included an Octopus, he might even win the support of PZ Myers.

John Thullen--
"If they'd given him an enema, they could have buried him in a matchbox."

Really, you and Hitchens must be somewise related--that's just the kind of thing I can imagine you saying.

Ewww. (This is the SD legislator arrested for sexually abusing his foster daughters by convincing them they should become egg donors, and that he had to give them a long series of "tests" and "exams" in order to do this.)

I have never understood what anyone saw in the first Rocky film. It was as transparently manipulative as E.T. It was predictable. It was boring, and a completely superficial formula film.

The choreography and the cinematography were first rate, but these are technical skills that have more in common with book editing and cover art. At the time that "Rocky" won best picture there were much better films that should have won "Best Picture," but the appeal they had was on a much deeper level.

"Rocky" will always be symbolic to me of the victory of the superficial and quaint over the meaningful and well-written. For me, it was a wrong turn for film art in America, but for others, it seems, that it was proof that a top film did not have to be the product of genius, but simply catering to the tastes of those who "know what they like."

Sylvester Stallone, as a director, had much more in common with a con man, then he did with a film director.

But Rocky II, on the other hand...now that was ground-breaking!

On another note, Lt Broccoli knows the truth about liberals in the entertainment industry.

What is the "truth" that Lt Broccoli knows?
Could it be that conservative actors ended up working in every bad film and television series in the nineties, and now they are "mad as hell" about it, and bad mouthing liberals on neo-con talk radio?

Meanwhile, in Somalia, the tree renting industry is booming.

To each his own, elephty. I disagree with you completely, natch. And for the record, Stallone didn't direct Rocky.

But don't let the facts stand in the way of your preconceptions.

John G. Avildsen was the director. Stallone had the attention. The criticism remains true of the manipulative commercial film. I like facts, but my memory doesn't always serve-up the trivia to go with it. Thank you for the trivia.

Yes, there are more important situations occurring in our world that lead to people rent trees. The results of instability are horrendous in some African nations. Maybe someone will make a good film about it and title it "Renting Trees."

Yes, there are more important situations occurring in our world that lead to people rent trees. The results of instability are horrendous in some African nations. Maybe someone will make a good film about it and title it "Renting Trees."

oops! "people to rent trees" As you can see from the lapse in time, and a second post that I have been interupted at least a half dozen times in the time it takes to write one paragraph. sorry, and another interruption. I have a wife with a bad back, and a twenty-five year old son who is a lazy slob. He bought a house today. He'll be moving out in one week - Hurray!!!

oops! "people to rent trees" As you can see from the lapse in time, and a second post that I have been interupted at least a half dozen times in the time it takes to write one paragraph. sorry, and another interruption. I have a wife with a bad back, and a twenty-five year old son who is a lazy slob. He bought a house today. He'll be moving out in one week - Hurray!!!

I have never understood what anyone saw in the first Rocky film. It was as transparently manipulative as E.T. It was predictable. It was boring, and a completely superficial formula film.

There's nothing particularly wrong with formula -- it's how the formula is worked out on screen that matters. Lots of Kurosawa films were formula, too, to take but one example. As Roger Ebert is fond of saying, it's not what a movie is about that's important; it's how it is about it. Notably, of course, Rocky deviates from formula in that Rocky loses his fight against Apollo Creed.

At the time that "Rocky" won best picture there were much better films that should have won "Best Picture," but the appeal they had was on a much deeper level.

This complaint has been being made about Best Picture winners since, um, forever. Not that Network should not have been Best Picture that year, but still.

For me, it was a wrong turn for film art in America,

See above.

but for others, it seems, that it was proof that a top film did not have to be the product of genius, but simply catering to the tastes of those who "know what they like."

Much better to give people movies they hate. It's really good for the art of cinema. I mean, sure, Rocky is no "product of genius" like, um . . . The Sting)? Or The Greatest Show on Earth? Around the World in 80 Days? Oliver!? Deep, meaningful filmmaking, all of them, but Rocky certainly has its pleasures nonetheless.

As to E.T., it was a Best Picture nominee, the year that Gandhi won. How many people still watch each, I wonder?

Except with Rudy it would be sufficient to see McCain's ferret at his throat.

Make sure its shots are up-to-date before trying this. Wouldn't want the poor ferret to catch anything.

Does anyone else wonder what happened to Tancredo's pets? In the middle of the night? In the basement? And how long they lasted?

Just me then. That's good!

They're not pets, but since this is an open thread; don't you think that it is soooo cute that one of the gay flamingo couples in the UK finally managed to become foster parents, after years of trying?

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