Archive for the ‘The Usual Stuff’ Category

Thoughts on Free Speech

Tuesday, April 22, 2014 10:00 pm

[High Praise! to XKCD]

XKCD makes a good point about free speech in a recent cartoon – which has a couple uncensored swears, so you’ll have to go over there to look at it.

But I *can* quote you the alt text from that cartoon:

“I can’t remember where I heard this, but someone once said that defending a position by citing free speech is sort of the ultimate concession; you’re saying that the most compelling thing you can say for your position is that it’s not literally illegal to express.”

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How to celebrate Earth Day

Tuesday, April 22, 2014 11:00 am

EarthApollo8It was 24 years ago, on the 100th birthday of Vladimir Lenin, that the U.S. first celebrated “Earth Day.”

We approached Gaia for comment, but she ignored our requests. So, we don’t really know how The Great Mother Earth feels about it.

Quite honestly, Earth don’t give a rat’s ass about Earth Day. It’s actually for us. Well, not me and you, but the hippies that do things like come up with Earth Day.

So, let’s do something for the hippies in honor of Earth Day. But what? Here’s what I’ve come up with, but if you have other ideas, I’m up for that:

  • Give a hippie a bath. A fire hose would be good for this. That way you don’t have to actually touch the hippie.
  • Burn a forest. It’s Earth Day. That’s like its birthday or something, right? And what are the Earth’s equivalent of candles? That’s right. Trees. So light one up for Dear Old Mother Earth.
  • If you want a less public spectacle, particularly one that doesn’t involve making Bambi and Woodsy Owl homeless, you could offer a private sacrifice to Mother Earth. Return to her that which came from her. Like a pile of old tires. Plus, that’d make a pretty sweet fire.
  • Punch a hippie. I haven’t figured a way to tie that specifically to Earth Day, but isn’t punching a hippie a great way to celebrate anything?

That’s all I got. What about you? What are some better ways to celebrate Earth Day?

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How to Offend Facebook

Monday, April 21, 2014 7:00 pm

Todd Starnes points out that offending Facebook is WAY easy. Just post a not-unfamiliar joke:

“Rancher Bundy should’ve told the feds that those were Mexican cows – who came across the border illegally to seek better grazing opportunities. It was an act of love.”

And watch Facebook tell you that you’ve offended the community, so they’ve removed the post for you.

I… *really*… hate Facebook.

Todd, however, is more forgiving:

For the record, Facebook has the right to censor — it’s their company. And while they may censor conservative and Christian postings, Facebook is quite welcoming and affirming to leftwing diatribes against Republicans, religion and the Tea Party. I just wish the folks at Facebook were a bit more tolerant — and diverse.

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Classic Doctor Who Season 17

Sunday, April 20, 2014 10:00 am

DoctorWhoSeason17I’m watching all the classic Doctor Who episodes. I began with the first season, from 1963. I’m not up to Season 17, which aired in late 1979 into 1980. The season is a milestone of sorts. With this season, Tom Baker began his sixth season as The Doctor, exceeding the number of seasons Jon Pertwee played the character.

The season also saw a new Romana. She’s a Time Lord (Time Lady?), remember. And, she began the season by regenerating. They never explained why. The previous incarnation (Mary Tamm) looked perfectly good to me. But, Miss Tamm wasn’t happy with the direction of her character. She was initially reluctant to assume the role in Season 16, expressing concerns that she’d be the typical damsel in distress. She was told that her character was also a Time Lord (Time Lady?), and would be an equal to The Doctor. Of course, she ended up being a damsel in distress. And, she left the show.

IMG_0086

Rejected Romana 1

Mary Tamm later said that she’d have gladly filmed a regeneration scene, if they liked. They didn’t, and in a departure from The Doctor’s regenerations, Romana actually tried on various appearances. Initially, she took the appearance of Princess Astra, from Season 16′s The Armageddon Factor, but The Doctor insisted she couldn’t just go around copying people. She then took the appearance of a short purple woman, then a mature belly dancer, then a very tall woman. The Doctor finally agreed on the Astra appearance, and Lella Ward joined the cast as Romana.

The season had production problems late in the year. The final serial planned, Shada (6 episodes) was never finished due to a strike. The strike actually delayed the completion of the serial, but, by the time it was resolved, BBC decided to not complete the serial so that resources could be directed toward completing Christmas programming for the network.

Douglas Adams’s influence as Script Editor was evident in the first serial of the season, Destiny of the Daleks (4 episodes). Early on, The Doctor is trapped beneath some rubble, and Romana goes for help. To pass the time, he pulls out a paperback copy of Oolon Caluphid’s Origins of the Universe. In case you forgot, or never knew, Oolon Caluphid is a character from Douglas Adams’s Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. In the Hitchhiker’s Guide, though, that particular book isn’t mentioned.

IMG_0087

Rejected Romana 2

This does bring three fictional universes together. Doctor Who brought in references to the Nigel Kneale’s Quatermass series of films, radio plays, and books as far back as Season Seven. That was never official, mostly because Kneale disliked Doctor Who, but still evident in conversation. The integration with the Hitchhiker’s Guide universe is with that franchise creator’s blessing, of course.

There is a continuity problem with the second serial, City of Death (4 episoded). At the end of Season 16, it was established that The Doctor had installed a randomizer in the TARDIS, so he didn’t know where he’d end up, and so the Black Guardian couldn’t know. Only, in City of Death, he sets the coordinates for Florence in 1505, to meet Leonardo da Vinci.

Another is Romana’s age. She gave one age (140) to The Doctor at the start of Season 16, and another age (125) to a character in the show. Just goes to show you how women always lie about their age. I hope The Doctor doesn’t get arrested by Gallifrey police on morals charges and have to tell them “But, she told me she was 140.”

Then there’s the origins of life on Earth. The Doctor visits Earth 400 million years ago, and mentions that life is about to form. He was off by a factor of nearly 10, since there is evidence of life on Earth as long as 3.8 billion years ago.

IMG_0088

Rejected Romana 3

I did enjoy a couple of cameos in that serial. John Cleese played a man who thinks the TARDIS is a work of art in a museum. His companion is played by Eleanor Bron, who, despite her long resume, will, to me, always be Princess Ahme from Help!

Stars Wars fans would recognize Julian Glover, who played the serial’s main villain, Scaroth, as General Veers from The Empire Strikes Back. Of course, he’s had a long, successful career and you really should know him as Julian Glover, not as General Veers or the bad guy from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, or the dude from Game of Thrones, or the bad guy from that James Bond movie with the Sheena Easton song, or any other particular role. He’s a good villain, but that’s because he’s a good actor.

Oh, yeah, Catherine Schell was in that serial, too. She’s hot in anything. Well, not as that hairy woman from Space 1999, but anything else.

The strike-shortened season ended with a serial based on the Greek story of Theseus, who slew the Minotaur. The Horns of Nimon (4 episodes) features a critter that looked like a space minotaur. It also had youths to be sacrificed, and a maze.

The serial that was supposed to be the season finale was Shada (6 episodes), but, as mentioned, it never aired. In 1992, the BBC filmed a narrative around the story, with Tom Baker. This was 11 years after he left the role of The Doctor, and nearly three years after the BBC stopped broadcasting the show.

IMG_0094

Tom Baker filling in missing scenes on Shada

The episodes, with Baker’s narration was released on VHS, and later on DVD (it is still available on DVD), but that’s it. The DVD is still available for purchase.

The story, written by Douglas Adams, is so-so. A little convoluted — but what by Douglas Adams wasn’t — with typical non-realistic “Doctor Who science,” such as a carbon dating of a book determining an age of 20,000 years. Since carbon dating is based on the decay of carbon-14 and its relationship to carbon-12, you can’t have an increase in carbon-14 by taking an item back in time. It would measure the length of the items’s relative time in existence, not its age from any known point. Now, I’m not opposed to there being a way to determine that an item is from the future, but carbon dating isn’t it. Douglas Adams knew better. And, as both script author and series story editor, this never should have happened.

Oh, well. Maybe I was just expecting more, based on how much I enjoyed Douglas Adams’ The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Then, I didn’t care a whole lot for Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency, so perhaps I shouldn’t be surprised. Or disappointed.

Although I did see some Doctor Who episodes with Tom Baker on PBS many years ago, so far, I can’t say with certainty that I remember any of them. And, I’ve now completed the sixth of Tom Baker’s seven seasons as The Doctor. I do recall knowing about Daleks, and since the Daleks only made two appearances during the Tom Baker years, I had to have seen at least part of one of the serials. But, I just don’t remember it.

Strange, that the years for which the classic show is known, the Tom Baker years, are years where I don’t remember them well, and aren’t particularly enjoying now. William Hartnell’s years were great. Patrick Troughton’s were enjoyable. Jon Pertwee’s were, too, although I didn’t like the idea that he was Earth-bound most of the time.

Well, there’s one more Tom Baker season to perhaps bring him up from his current standing of my 4th favorite Doctor. On to Season 18.

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Easter Sunday 2013

Sunday, April 20, 2014 7:00 am

EmptyTombLuke 24: 1-9

  1. Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them.
  2. And they found the stone rolled away from the sepulchre.
  3. And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus.
  4. And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments:
  5. And as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead?
  6. He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee,
  7. Saying, The Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.
  8. And they remembered his words,
  9. And returned from the sepulchre, and told all these things unto the eleven, and to all the rest.
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Soft Casualty

Friday, April 18, 2014 3:30 pm

Friend of IMAO, Mike Z. Williamson, has a free short story out set in his Freehold universe, so check it out.

So what good fiction have you guys been reading lately?

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7 Questions with Frank J.

Thursday, April 17, 2014 2:30 pm

I have a profile up over at PJ Media about my influences as a fiction writer. Yes, I only have the one short story so far (and go read it if for some crazy reason you haven’t yet), but more is coming, I assure you.

So what do you all think of Liberty Island? I’m not always big on grouping by political persuasion where it’s not needed (such as in fiction writing), but it’s nice to have stories from authors you know don’t hate your guts because of your views on taxes, liberty, and small government.

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The Gospel According to Bloomberg

Thursday, April 17, 2014 12:19 pm

I have an article up at The Federalist: “The Gospel According to Bloomberg.” And I have to say, it’s a very Frank J. piece.

“We’ll just be frank with you,” said the Pharisees. “Maybe in one small coastal area of Israel you were actually the best possible prophet they could get — which is such a sad commentary that you’d think people should flee that place and not look back lest they turn into pillars of salt — but in middle Israel — you know, caravan-over country — everyone hates your guts. They think you’re an annoying, out-of-touch, arrogant little jerk. Do you understand?”

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The Day After

Wednesday, April 16, 2014 9:30 am

You made it under the deadline, right? Got your tax return off? Included payment, if required?

I did. Included the check for $1,230. And included a little message with my stamp.

IRSPayment2014

I wanter if that stamp will earn my an audit. Probably.

Oh, and I meant to post this yesterday, but didn’t. Still fresh in my mind, so I’ll post it today.


[YouTube]

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There’s No Such Thing as “Scientists”

Tuesday, April 15, 2014 11:30 am

In my new PJ Media column, I argue there are no such thing as scientists, and we should stop using the word.

It’s like if you wanted music for your wedding, and someone came up to you and said, “I know a guy. He’s a musician.”

“What instrument does he play?”

“He’s a musician.”

“Is he any good?”

“He’s a musician.”

You see, when other occupations are vaguely described, we know to ask questions, but because we have blind faith in science, such reason is lost when we hear the term “scientist.” Which is why I’m arguing that for the sake of better scientific understanding, we should get rid of the word and simply replace it with “some guy.”

Rand Simberg also has out recently a column on a similar subject, “We Are All Scientist”.

So, what do you think? Are scientist made up, or have you seen one before? Am I a scientist? How can I be sure? Is there a test I can take to prove it one way or another?

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Now whatever will I do with my time?

Monday, April 14, 2014 11:00 am

Here’s a little peek behind the scenes at both IMAO and at me.

You may nor realize this, but most of the posts here are written ahead of time and scheduled to appear at a certain time. None of us log in, write up a little gem of wisdom (or whatever) and sit, watching the second hand on the clock approach the 12, waiting to press Publish. And, there’s no limit to how far ahead we can write and schedule a post. That can sometimes cause little oddities or necessitate edits. Such as…

Well, here’s where we get to the peek at me. I binge-watch TV. Or, to sound like I’m not addicted, I hold TV marathons, sometimes lasting days. Or weeks.

Okay, maybe that’s an exaggeration. Maybe. You see, I’ve been posting my watching of the classic Doctor Who episodes on Sundays. One week per season. And, here’s the thing: I’m done. Finished. Watched ‘em all. All 26 seasons. That means the last season’s wrap up is written and scheduled for 22 June. It also means I had to edit an entry after one of the recurring characters died recently, since she was also known outside the Doctor Who universe. Kate O’Mara played The Rani, as well as many other roles over the years.

Now, with that behind us, that brings me up to my question.

Whatever will I do with my time?

I sat down last night, turned on the TV, and had nothing to watch. An empty Hulu queue. Nothing unwatched in iTunes. Nothing in my Amazon library. No unwatched DVDs.

I’m not saying I need to watch TV. I’d read a book, but Amazon says Frank’s new book (which I’ve pre-ordered) won’t deliver until November. I don’t know what to do. For the first time in months, there’s not a bunch of Doctor Who episodes awaiting me watching them

What should I do with all this free time?

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Classic Doctor Who Season 16

Sunday, April 13, 2014 10:00 am

DoctorWhoCast16The 16th season of the classic Doctor Who show was a bit harder to watch than the previous seasons. One of the hardest in a while. And that kind of surprised me.

I first saw Doctor Who episodes on PBS back in the late 1970s and 1980s. In late 1982 or early 1983, I first saw The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy on PBS. I discovered it because I occasionally watched some of the shows the network carried, on GPTV (in Georgia, now GPB) and FPB (in Florida). And, though I can’t be sure, I think I saw some Doctor Who episodes before I saw The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Certainly, though, around the time Hitchhiker’s Guide aired, I was watching more on PBS, particularly GPTV.

What’s Hitchhiker’s Guide got to do with Doctor Who you ask. Really, go ahead and ask.

I’ll wait.

Oh, well, since you asked, it turns out that the new Script Editor for Doctor Who beginning with Season 16 was Douglas Adams, creator of the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy franchise. When I discovered that, I just knew I’d love Season 16 of Doctor Who. I didn’t.

Oh, I didn’t hate it. But I didn’t love it. It was, at best, Mostly Harmless.

Maybe the problem I had with the season was K-9. I never did like that character. Or, maybe it’s Tom Baker’s habit of occasionally looking at the camera and laughing. I don’t care for that kind of stuff.

The season introduced a new character, Romana (Mary Tamm), as well as the new version of K-9, which looks to me like the same character. Romana was a Time Lord (Time Lady) from Gallifrey who was sent on a quest with The Doctor by the White Guardian. The White Guardian is … heck, I don’t know. I never could figure it out. Maybe it’s supposed to be the Gallifrey version of God.

Anyway, the White Guardian sends The Doctor and Romana on a quest to secure the parts of the Key To Time, which is … a MacGuffin, as far as I can tell. The Doctor and Romana spent the entire Season 16 searching for the thing because it was so important, and then, in order to keep it out of the hands of the Black Guardian, The Doctor scattered it back across space and time. Which is where it was to begin with.

Tom Taker sported an injury for much of the season. He was bitten on the lip by a dog belonging to one of the guest actors in the first serial, The Ribos Operation (4 episodes). They covered it with makeup for the remaining day’s shots, and wrote a rough landing into the next serial, The Pirate Planet (4 episodes), so that The Doctor would injure his mouth, creating a reason in the storyline for the wound.

The series’ 100th serial aired during the season. The Stones of Blood (4 episodes) was the milestone serial, and it aired during the shows’s 15th anniversary.

The Androids of Tara (4 episodes) appears to have been based on The Prisoner of Zenda. There’s a scene where, after he is told of the plan to have a look-alike, an android in this story, act as a decoy, The Doctor says, “It’s been done before.”

The final serial of the season, The Armageddon Factor (6 episodes) introduced yet another renegade Time Lord. Drax knew The Doctor at the Academy, and knew his as Theta Sigma. The Doctor insisted on Drax not calling him by that name, but by “Doctor” instead.

The serial concluded the season-long arc of The Doctor and Romana searching for the Key To Time, finding it, then dispersing the parts. Except for the last part, which was actually a person, the Princess Astra. Actress Lalla Ward, who later married Tom Baker, played Astra. She’d play another character in later seasons. With the dispersal, Princess Astra was restored. The Doctor installed a randomizing unit in the TARDIS, meaning he’d never know where he was heading, in order to avoid the Black Guardian, who was now after The Doctor, after the dispersal of the Key.

And that pretty much wrapped up the first season with Douglas Adams as Script Editor. I expected more. Silly me.

Maybe things will improve in Season 17.

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Can You Write a Better Bedtime Story than the USDA?

Saturday, April 12, 2014 1:12 pm

Liberty Island has a new story contest. Their previous one was “Can You Write Better Than Maureen Dowd?” (the answer is “Yes,” BTW). This one is in reaction to the USDA releasing a kids book to promote approved dietary standards, so now Liberty Island is accepting 400-1000 word stories in the form of federally approved children’s books. Sounds like fun; I might write one if I get some time.

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Life Without Archie

Wednesday, April 9, 2014 11:00 am

LifeWithArchie36CoverRemember Archie? From the comic books?

Yeah, he’s gonna die.

Really.

They’re killing off Archie Andrews in issue 36 of “Life With Archie,” a comic book about Archie and the gang after they graduated Riverdale High.

Now, I gotta admit that I was never a fan of the comic books. Superman. Batman. Spiderman. Archie. Richie Rich. None of ‘em.

I don’t know why. Sure, if I saw one on the wood slat benches at the redneck barber shop I got took to as a kid, I’d pick it up and read one. It was either read that or the Thunderbolt. I made the right decision.

But still, I never read a lot of comic books. Don’t know if I ever bought any. Might have got someone to buy some for me, but I’m not sure. Comic books weren’t that big a deal to me. And, neither were the characters in the comic books.

But, they sure were — and are — to many people. And, now they’re killing off Archie.

Is that a good thing? Should they be killing off comic book characters? Archie always kinda struck me as a non-serious comic character. Sure, they’ve tried to make social commentary over the years, particularly recently. But, should comics — non-serious comics, that is — try to be serious? It’s like one of those A Very Special Blossom shows.

And, perhaps a better question would be, who would be a better comic book character to kill off? And don’t say Caspar the Friendly Ghost. That’s cheating.

Let’s go with that question instead. What comic book character would you like to see killed off?

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Snopes Still Kinda Hates Us

Tuesday, April 8, 2014 10:00 pm

It took a lot of prodding to get Snopes to acknowledge IMAO as the source of the “Obama’s 3am Phone Call” photoshop. And they never did use the original version (you know, the one with the watermark so that IMAO would get credit).

And now they’re doing a flashback on Obama-related photoshops, and they’re just being rudely dismissive (screen capture 4-7-14):

I noticed they didn’t get this upset when Bush was being mocked.

Seriously Snopes, try not to sound so offended. Your loyalties are showing.

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Quote of the Day

Tuesday, April 8, 2014 7:00 pm

[High Praise! to Chris Muir's Day by Day Cartoon]

“I’ve seen how the other half live – they live off people like me.”

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Random Thoughts: Bush, Mickey, and Vox

Tuesday, April 8, 2014 9:00 am

Know how some movies were never that great in the first place but get endless straight to DVD sequels anyway? That’s the Bush dynasty.

Since I can coherently defend my viewpoints, I’m not scared of people expressing an opinion that’s the opposite of what I believe.

Kids, you do whatever you set your heart to, but considering what it is, you might first need to defeat Batman before he can foil your plans.

I always got the names Mickey Rooney and Mickey Rourke confused. Don’t know why. I guess… I’m just not that bright.

Anyway, very confused by the news thinking Mickey Rourke died at age 86. As bad as Rourke looks, he looks good for an 86 year old.

Can’t we put Harry Reid in a nursing home? One with fun activities to keep him busy?

So did the Koch brothers make the Democrats’ policies from the last 6 years complete failures, or did the Democrats do that themselves?

The Republicans should all wear “Sponsored by Kochs.” And everyone who voted for Obamacare should wear dunce caps.

So Harry Reid’s 2014 strategy is relying on hatred of deceased NYC mayor Ed Koch?

“Hello. I like freedom, guns, and keeping my money; which political party should I vote for? No, I meant one that has a chance of winning.”

In my perfect world, we’d have no social programs and open borders. And thunderdomes.

I’m constantly boycotting products for having such poor advertising that I’ve never heard of them.

Maybe HBO should make the Game of Thrones seasons come out every five to six years to give George R.R. Martin time to catch up.

I wish there was a website that would explain Vox to me.

Where’s the Vox article explaining Pharrell’s hat?

Doesn’t making birth control an entitlement work against us in the future being able to pay for all the other entitlements?

I have a great solution to the gender pay gap: Men, stop telling women your salaries.

Want to ban the word “equal” from politics. Often it’s about making an apple and an orange “equal” and acting like there’s a simple answer.

Never once in my life have I encountered a videogame so good I would pay $60 for it and then another $15 a month to actually play it.

America has been in a decade long slump and we’re talking Bush and Clinton? We’re just completely out of new ideas, huh?

How politicians can solve employment problem:
1. All politicians go into big, closed-room session.
2. They never come out.

An annoying thing about living in Westeros is that seems like half the available career paths require you to be unmarried and celibate.

I got thrown out of the farmer’s market because I kept dropping fat beets.

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Witchfinder

Monday, April 7, 2014 9:41 pm

Just so you know, friend of IMAO Sarah Hoyt has a new book out, and this time she’s going indie.

I haven’t had a chance to check it out yet, but going by her Darkship series, it’s probably good.

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Classic Doctor Who Season 15

Sunday, April 6, 2014 10:00 am

DoctorWhoCast15I’ve been watching the classic Doctor Who series, beginning with the start of the show in 1963. I’m up to Season 15, which aired from late 1977 to Spring 1978. That’s half-way through the adventures of the Fourth Doctor (Tom Baker).

Behind the scenes, the show was experiencing some major problems. A change in the leadership of the staff running the show, as well as late delivery of scripts, plus the BBC canceling a vampire-related script because it would have aired close to major Dracula production of the the network. Add to this, Tom Baker hated the character of Leela, and the actress, Louise Jameson, took the brunt of his dislike. They finally had it out in the second serial taped (but the first serial aired), and the actors’ relationship improved somewhat. Still, Jameson left the show at the end of the season.

All the while, the British economy, under the leadership of the Labour Party, was in shambles. The show had its budget cut because of other expenses the network experienced due to the economy. In the winter following the airing of this season, the country was hit by several strikes, the “Winter of Discontent,” leading to the Conservative Party’s victory early the next year. And, in case you forgot, that’s when Margaret Thatcher became Prime Minister. Remember the Brigadier speaking with “Madame” Prime Minsiter in Season 13? Now you know who he was talking to.

The season began with a story at a creepy old lighthouse, and people dropping like flies. No, it wasn’t Tom Stewart but an alien knocking folks off. We finally met the Rutans, who have been in a war against the Sontarans, in Horror of Fang Rock (4 episodes). At the end of the episode, Leela’s eyes changed color from the effects of an explosion. That allowed Louise Jameson to not have to wear the brown contacts she had been wearing ever since her character was introduced. And, it’s the episode where Jameson and Tom Baker finally had their confrontation.

The second serial (though the first one produced in Season 15) also introduced K-9. I know a lot of people liked K-9, but I wasn’t one of those. I remember the character from when I saw Doctor Who episodes 30-something years ago. I thought it was silly then. They did a good job of explaining why it looked like a dog: the scientist who built it always wanted a dog, so he made his robot look like one.

Fans of Sherlock, or of Benedict Cumberbatch, might find it interesting that his mom appeared in the serial Image of the Fendahl (4 episodes) as a major character. Wanda Ventham had appeared in Season Four’s The Faceless Ones. Yeah, she was hot. Oh, and she’s still acting. She and her husband recently appeared in Sherlock as the title character’s parents.

By the way, the serial Image of the Fendahl was airing during the week of Hallowe’en 1977. As such, it had a theme appropriate to that time of year. The story involved a skull with a pentagram, a seer, a coven of aliens, and a big slimy worm that looked like it was dressed for Mardi Gras.

I found The Sun Makers (4 episodes) very interesting. The script writer was having a row with Inland Revenue (the British agency that functions as the IRS does in the U.S.) and wrote the serial. In the story, those running the show and imposing the heavy taxes were overthrown. Of course, being British, they had a race of aliens running a “Company” that was responsible for high taxes. Unlike reality where it’s a government that imposes taxes. So, even though it was the British government that was imposing the taxes that inspired the script writer, the left-leaning of those involved with the show turned the villain into a capitalist venture.

The Doctor battled the Sontarans (and won) in the final serial of the season, The Invasion of Time (6 episodes). The Doctor lost two companions in the process. No, Leela and K-9 didn’t die. They stayed behind when The Doctor left, after saving Gallifrey. He also took office as President of Gallifrey. It seems that nobody thought to hold the election that was to pit The Doctor against Chancellor Goth in Season 14′s The Deadly Assassin. Since Goth died at the end of that serial, and The Doctor hopped in his TARDIS and went on other adventures, nobody assumed office. Well, The Doctor came back to Gallifrey to claim the office, since he was still officially a candidate, and, with Goth’s demise, the only candiate, he took office.

After defeating the Sontarans and saving the known universe, he left again. They kinda left it up in the air about his being president. I suppose we’ll see what happens with that — or not — as well as meet the new K-9 that was still in the box at the end of the series, when the next season starts.

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How Democrats Can Win Running on Obamacare

Friday, April 4, 2014 11:30 am

Hey, it’s been a while, but I have a new column at PJ Media explaining how Obamacare can be a winning issue for Democrats in the midterms.

You may point out that Obamacare is hugely unpopular, to which I say, “Exactly!” And you may also note how it’s so flawed that it’s constantly being delayed, which is precisely my point.

Read. Enjoy. Discuss.

So, do you think Obama can effectively rule America through fear?

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