Goodbye Gandolfini

As I’m sure you’ve probably all heard by now, James Gandolfini has died.  The presumption right now is heart attack after becoming ill on vacation in Italy.  Gandolfini is most famous for playing Tony Soprano on the HBO drama, The Sopranos.  I know him more, however, as Colonel Winters, the villain from one of my favorite movies: The Last Castle.

He called himself a 260 lb Woody Allen.

He called himself a 260 lb Woody Allen.

He was a good actor and judging from the anecdotes and stories from Larry King about him last night on CNN, he seemed like a pretty cool guy.

So in honor of a great actor, here is some interesting trivia, thanks to the awesome website IMDB:

-Gandolfini could play both the Trumpet and the Saxophone.

-Gandolfini helped a woman who was being mugged on the streets of New York City in 2001.

-Used to work as a bartender in Manhattan before making it as an actor; also worked as a bouncer.

 

Condolences to his family, especially since he’s got a teenager and a 1-year-old.  He was a good actor in the prime of his career.

~RCS

Shorty Shorts #6

I was skimming the news the other day and saw this from Jimmy Kimmel’s late night show. If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time you know that I’m a fan of the Silver Fox, Anderson Cooper; so you know that I enjoyed his bit for this segment.  I’ve never been a big fan of Jimmy Kimmel, personally finding the man-show more grotesque than funny and finding very little of his stand-up stuff funny on top of that, but I have to say that some of his little pranks and segments are good.  Not good enough to watch the whole show when there’s more talented late nighters out there like Jay Leno and Conan O’Brien, but I’d rather watch Kimmel than that Fallon doof (I did like Kimmel on Ben Stein’s old game show, though, I’ll admit that).

Anywho, here’s the segment from Kimmel’s show:

~RCS

Put These Idiots In ‘Death Fences’

Some of you may have heard of the Southern Baptist (what is it with these people?  They’re like the Taliban of Christianity!) preacher from North Carolina (I’ll bet he voted in favor of the recent amendment in NC) who spoke of putting all the homosexuals in the country into death camps created by building hundreds of miles of electrified fencing.  Admittely he was godfully compassionate, talking about dropping food into the area so they didn’t starve.  And we could just let homosexuality die out ‘naturally’.  His name is Charles Worley and here’s his rant, err, I mean…Sermon:

Well here’s some physics for you first…150 miles of fencing would create 1,406 square miles for each respective gay gender.  So that’s 1400 sq miles for lesbians and 1400 sq miles for, as Pastor Worly puts it, queers.  There are roughly 9 million Americans who consider themself homosexual or bisexual.  If we assume it’s a 50/50 split between men and women, then that gives us 4.5 million people per fenced-in area.  That’s a population density of 3,200 people per square mile.  That’s not too bad…a small city, at least.

But if you account for the 19 million Americans who have engaged in same-sex sexual acts, that brings it up to 9.5 million per fence or a density of 6,759 people per square mile.  And if you figure for the fact that he only said that length of fence one, and could therefore imply that he meant it would contain the entire 19 million queery people in there.  That brings us up to 13,513 people per square mile.

To put that in context…that would be the equivalent of Boston, which has a population density of 13,321 people per square mile.  It would also be more dense than Chicago, Philadelphia, or Miami.  It would be about 60% more dense than Staten Island, New York.

Given that I highly doubt he intends to convince congress to give up Staten Island for the new Queersville, I imagine he’d like to do this out in some prairie; and since he said we’d have to air-drop food in, I’m guessing there’ll be no agricultural capabilities of the land.  No medical care or police services, either, by the sounds of it.  So I think that disease and panic will kill them off long before ‘natural causes’ come into play.

Well, you know what’s even worse than all his idiocy?  The fact that people support that kind of idea.  Look at this Rhodes Scholar from his church:

At what point do you not just begin to feel ashamed?

~RCS

Bitchido’s Videos: The Rant, Hilary Rosen’s Comments On Ann Romney

Recently Democratic strategist and CNN contributor, Hilary Rosen, made a few choice comments about Mitt Romney’s wife, Ann.

Hilary Rosen with her best 'are you kidding me?' face.

“What you have is Mitt Romney running around the country saying, ‘Well, you know my wife tells me that what women really care about are economic issues and when I listen to my wife that’s what I’m hearing.’ Guess what? His wife has actually never worked a day in her life. She’s never really dealt with the kinds of economic issues that a majority of the women in this country are facing in terms of how do we feed our kids, how do we send them to school and why do we worry about their future.”

Needless to say the Republicans jumped on the attack claiming that Rosen was attacking stay-at-home mothers and fathers.  Something that Rosen was, herself, which makes it totally ridiculous.  Then you add in the way she was forced to begrudgingly apologize to Ann Romney by Wolf Blitzer, just for stating a fact.

So today we’ve got a new episode of The Rant.  I hogged the mic a bit on this one, I guess, ’cause its mostly me talking.  Speaking of mic, though, I tried a new trick with this video to make it easier to hear the dialogue.  I recorded the video with the camera and the audio with my old mic.  It’s still a little hard to hear, so next time I’ll set up the mic a little closer.

Now before you watch the video keep something in mind…I usually disagree with Hilary Rosen.  She’s a lobbyist and she’s part of the reason that politics are so screwed up.  She lobbies for the entertainment industry, so she’s probably helping to get things like SOPA, PIPA, and that new version CISPA passed.  But that doesn’t mean that her words should be twisted when she’s totally correct.

~RCS

Erin Burnett: Millionaire Surcharge(s)?

Here’s a little bit of a quickie to make up for all those missing updates a week ago.

Watching Erin Burnett on CNN yesterday, she was talking about a congressional plan to fund the payroll tax deductions with a millionaire surcharge.  I.e. anyone who makes over 1 million dollars will pay a flat-rate tax on every dollar they make after they hit the 1 million mark.

Generally each plan who suggests this is a 1 or 2 cent surcharge, per dollar.  So that means that if you make 4 million dollars a year you pay the regular tax rates on your first million, then you pay an additional 1 cent per dollar on everything else.  So of the remaining three million, you’d end up paying an extra $30,000 with this surcharge.

I don’t know about you, but if I’m making 4 million a year, I’d be willing to pay an extra 30 grand, myself; if it meant that social services in the country I live in will cease to function if I don’t.

What brings this all up is Ms. Burnett’s comment on the plan.  She said (not verbatim, but as close as I can recall), “I hear this millionaire surcharge plan come up a lot.  Now if everyone who suggested it got their way, there’d be like…20 surcharges on millionaires.”
She’s right; but you know what?  I’m okay with that.  If we assume that each surcharge is for the greater amount of 2 cents per dollar that means that each dollar a multi-millionaire income maker brings in would get a 40 cent surcharge.  So using our example, they’d end up paying $1,200,000 in surcharges.  It’s basically a 40% tax, admittedly on top of the 15% tax they’re already paying for a total of 55% effective tax rate.

And quite frankly, if you have a personal income of 4 million dollars…I don’t really mind you paying that much in taxes, to be totally honest.

Connecticut Christmas Fire

I’m rarely very topical (because I’m slow to post things, so I usually avoid severely topical issues), so by now you’ve probably already heard about the fire in Connecticut.  That’s a tragedy with lots of heroism from within the house.  Sometimes, though, heroism just isn’t enough.

Somebody placed fireplace embers in a trash can which caught fire and the house went up with it.  The mother escaped by leaping through a window onto scaffolding and when the fire department arrived she directed firefighters to where the sleeping children were located, on the third floor.

A man inside, a family friend, gathered up two of the children and headed downstairs to the second floor where the heat was too great to go further.  The three of them got separated and one of the children rushed back up stairs where she collapsed and perished in the fire, while the other child her elderly grandmother found her.  The grandmother and the other child also failed to make it out.  The man wasn’t able to find either child before being forced to make it out of the house, sadly alone.

The third child was found by her grandfather and they rushed to a window in the back.  The grandfather placed the child on a set of books and crawled out a window onto a back porch.  He then reached through the window to pull the girl out, but alas he was too weak at that point to save the girl.  The grandfather perished before he could get the child out and both of them perished in the window.

The fire was so great the firefighters were unable to remain in the house for long.  With all their equipment, they made it through two rooms on the third floor, and then were forced back by the flames.

Here’s CNN’s official report on it.

Certainly makes me want to put a battery in the smoke detector, I must admit.  I wonder if any lives could have been saved in that house by a fire alarm or a smoke detector, which the house lacked as it was under remodeling.

~RCS

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