John Oliver on the Wealth Gap

It’s obvious that the American wealth gap cannot keep increasing forever.

The poor may rise up. The rich could flee to secure compounds. … Or something else will happen to start closing that insane, unsustainable disparity.

I’ve followed the issue. But this comedian has some factoids new to me.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Game of Thrones – season 4

Game of Thrones season 4 … is adapted primarily from the second half of A Storm of Swords, along with elements of A Feast for Crows and A Dance with Dragons, all novels from the A Song of Ice and Fire series by George R. R. Martin. …

The review aggregator website Metacritic gave season 4 a score of 94 out of 100 based on 29 reviews, signifying “universal acclaim”. According to the other aggregator website, Rotten Tomatoes, all episodes aired thus far obtained 91% or more positive reviews. …

I’d agree.

Season 4 was easily the best season so far. And the TV series is better than the books.

Arya Stark, Sandor “The Hound” Clegane, Diana Rigg as Olenna Tyrell, Peter Dinklage as “the Imp”, Tyrion Lannister …

Actually everyone in the cast is good.


I’m looking forward to seasons 5 and 6.

Tea Party explained

Like the Occupy Wall Street shouters, many of the Tea Party protesters provide valuable feedback on  American political and economic systems that are deeply flawed.

But you can’t seriously want either Occupy Wall Street or Tea Party extremists to hold Office. Those are “protest movements”, not political parties.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

House of Cards – season 2

Weak compared with season 1, I thought. :-(

Who’s responsible for this convoluted, near incomprehensible plot?

House of Cards (season 2):

… the drama soon shifts to tensions involving Frank, President Walker, the Chinese government, and the wealthy Raymond Tusk, eventually culminating in a bitter political war between Frank and Tusk.

Frank’s wife Claire publicly reveals that she was raped in college by a prominent general and pursues anti-rape legislation.

The most significant new character is Jackie Sharp, Frank’s successor as House Whip, who soon finds herself embroiled in Frank’s plans. As the war between Frank and Tusk consumes the Presidency, things fall apart in a scandal and people rise and fall. …

house_of_cards_season_2_stillOn the other hand, I’m looking forward to Underwood as President in season 3. It will be filmed in June & July, 2014.

“A great man once said everything is about sex. Except sex. Sex is about power”

Frank quoting Oscar Wilde

World Cup – Game Before The Game

I couldn’t care less about the World Cup … unlike most of the rest of the World.

But I love inspiring video. The TV ads are fantastic.

Here’s an epic by Beats by Dre, the recent $3 billion Apple acquire.

The five-minute spot opens with Brazilian superstar Neymar having a heart-to-heart conversation with his father before a soccer match, set over footage of favelas, coastlines and the team bus. …

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

(via Mashable)

right wing “echo chamber”

People ask me why I’m so agitated by the Tea Party and other right wing gasbags. And not nearly as much irked by soft-headed, left wing muddled thinkers.

What makes me mad is disinformation.

Disinformation is intentionally false or inaccurate information that is spread deliberately. It is an act of deception and false statements to convince someone of untruth. Disinformation should not be confused with misinformation, information that is unintentionally false.

The left wing often spreads misinformation. Poorly.

In the USA (but not in Canada) people make money in the right wing media echo chamber.

In media, an echo chamber is a situation in which information, ideas, or beliefs are amplified or reinforced by transmission and repetition inside an “enclosed” system, often drowning out different or competing views. …

One purveyor of information will make a claim, which many like-minded people then repeat, overhear, and repeat again (often in an exaggerated or otherwise distorted form) until most people assume that some extreme variation of the story is true. …

I love seeing Jon Stewart and Colbert call out the disinformers.

One of the worst is Glenn Beck, “with his violent rhetoric, his frequent and absurd fear-mongering, his nasty vitriol, his “jokes” about assassinating government officials, his baseless conspiracy theories, his race-baiting, his flat-out, bald-faced lies, his many hypocrisies … “

Well said.


Beck left FOX in 2011. But is worth about $90 million today. The more he lies, the more money he makes.

Rush Limbaugh makes around $66 million / year.

The main motivation for those two, Bill O’Reilly and others, is money. I don’t trust a word they say.

FOX and the echo chamber endless repeat daily “talking points“. It’s incredibly boring to count the repetitions of the talking points of the day.

talking points

related – NY Times opinion piece 2013 – Suffocating Echo Chamber

finished book 5 – Game of Thrones

A Song of Ice and Fire is a series of epic fantasy novels written by American novelist and screenwriter George R. R. Martin.

A_Game_of_Thrones_Novel_CoversMartin began the first volume of the series, A Game of Thrones, in 1991. He published it in 1996.

It’s a massive, sprawling, confusing tale. If you are still deciding whether or not to read the series, I’d advise against.

Watch the TV series instead.

If you insist on the book, I’d say book 1 Game of Thrones is the best. Book 4 the worst.

If gratuitous sex and violence turn you off, avoid both the book and TV show.

Like many others, I’m waiting on book 6 — The Winds of Winter — and have no idea when it will finally be released.

Everlast – Saving Grace

Erik Francis Schrody (born August 18, 1969 in Valley Stream, New York) – stage name Everlast – is an American rapper, singer, and songwriter …

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Everlast’s music ranges from blues to hip hop and rock. His influences include N.W.A., Beastie Boys, Cypress Hill, Ice-T, Gang Starr, Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, The Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen, Neil Young and Run-D.M.C.

Barbecue ribs, Shiraz, Friday Night Lights

A perfect way to end the NCAA Gymnastics Championships weekend in Birmingham, Alabama.

Sipping the red, savoring a Baby Rack of Jim ‘n Nick‘s ribs. And — tragically — watching the very last episode of Friday Night Lights.

Baked beans and cole slaw.



related – ‘Friday Night Lights,’ the final farewell (a review)