Monday, November 30, 2009

1950s Holmes on Hulu

While browsing Hulu this weekend, I found that they had all 39 episodes of the Sherlock Holmes series starring Ronald Howard and H. Marion Crawford. This is the one I discussed earlier. I recommend it as a fun series and an unusually young portrayal of Holmes. There are also related links from that Hulu page, featuring Basil Rathbone movies, Christopher Lee movies, and a version of "The Speckled Band" starring Douglas Wilmer.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Native Americans on PBS

I don't know if it's intentional or coincidental, but for the past month or so, PBS World has been airing documentaries and other TV specials about Native Americans. This seems significant in light of Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Bill Moyers leaving

I've heard that Bill Moyers is leaving PBS after his show ends in April. It'll be the end of an era when he retires. If only there were more people to carry on for him when he goes. We get so much crap infotainment and faux controversy lately that it's depressing. Just this weekend I stumbled across an episode of Moyers's show where he drew a parallel between Obama's decision making process on Afghanistan with the similar process by Johnson about the Vietnam war. Moyers introduced historical audio clips of LBJ on the phone with various Congressmen and advisers over several months.

Some said he should get out of Vietnam because the South Vietnamese government was so unstable and corrupt; also, it would be easy getting into a war, but probably impossible to get out. So LBJ tried to stall several times and keep the US involvement limited, even hoping that the South Vietnamese government would ask them to leave, so they could have a face-saving out. Johnson had inherited this complicated mess from Kennedy, and he did not wish to seem like the US was running scared from spreading Communism (or the threat that the Chinese would get involved). At the same time, there was the impending 1964 election to think of, and Republicans like Barry Goldwater were criticizing him for not openly admitting that there was a war going on, and they wanted LBJ to not seem so wishy-washy about it.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Illinois is welcoming

Since it's getting close to Thanksgiving, I feel thankful that the residents of Thomson, Illinois, aren't afraid of accepting the Guantanamo detainees in their prison. They sound quite sane, unlike all the politicians and pundits saying, "not in my state" and how it's oh so dangerous to keep the prisoners here. Bush didn't put them in Guantanamo because our domestic prisons are unsafe; he put them there so he could have them tortured in a place where laws are a big fucking grey area! We already have convicted terrorists in our U.S. prisons!

So I'm proud of Thomson for stepping up, especially since they're in Obama's home state. I'm sad that we're not going to make the deadline for closing Gitmo this year, but what else can I expect after all this refusal to cooperate from Congress and other stupid fearmongerers?