Tag Archives: politics

What Can the Original Death Wish (1974) Movie Tell Us About the Gun Debate?

Hey 3.5 readers.

Your old pal BQB here.

So, here’s the deal.  Every new generation, for some reason, truly and sincerely believes they are the very first to discover an issue, as though prior generations had never considered it before.

For obvious and tragic reasons, the gun debate is raging all over TV and over the Internet these days.  Funny though, are you aware that a 44 year old movie pretty much sums up the arguments for and against gun control in one fell swoop?

No, I’m not talking about the recently released reboot starring Bruce Willis, although I do want to see it.

I’m talking about the original Death Wish, which by now, is roughly the same age as a middle aged man.  Hard to believe, isn’t it?  I rented it last night and dated as the film is, it still hashes out all the talking points about guns that are being bandied about today.

You see, 3.5 readers, in the early 1970s, there was a crime wave in the inner cities.  Nixon actually won the presidency due to promises to get tough on crime.  People were fed up by the fact that they couldn’t walk down the street without getting hassled by hoodlums and Hollywood cashed on in this development, producing all manner of films where tough guys, fed up with the system’s inability to protect them, take law into their own hands and blow bad guys away with big ass hand cannons.  “Death Wish” was the most notable of these films, though it runs neck and neck with Clint Eastwood’s “Dirty Harry” series.

The plot?  New York City architect Paul Kersey is a mild mannered liberal professional and family man.  He loves his wife, his daughter, and abhors violence, having even been given a medical corps position during the Korean War to avoid having to kill anyone.

All this changes when his wife is killed and daughter brutally raped by a pack of hooligans led by none other than a young Jeff Goldblum.  “Life uh..finds a way.”

While some hero tales provide an instant transformation i.e. the main character instantly gains powerful skills overnight, Kersey’s progression from frumpy dad to badass killing machine is a slow one.

Kersey’s informed there’s not much the police can do.  His son-in-law, Jack, laments that to the government, his wife and Paul’s wife are little more than statistics, a certain number of crime victims that the powers that be deem acceptable, even normal, and that they’ll just have to suck it up and get used to it.

Pissed, Kersey starts carrying a sock full of quarters to protect himself.  When a mugger attacks him, he gives the mugger a sock knock and sends the ne’er-do-well running.   He learns an interesting lesson – if criminals are made to fear for their lives, they’ll run.

Our hero then takes a sojourn to Arizona for work, we he meets Aimes, a business associate who can only be described as a walking, talking caricature of a died in the wool NRA member on steroids.  Frontier justice, Aimes says, is the name of the game in the West.  Everyone’s packing heat and criminals know they’ll be instantly bagged and tagged, so crime rates are low according to the cowboy.

Aimes takes Kersey to a range and we can see Kersey feel like he’s regaining control of his life as he takes aim at targets and fires.  He reveals that he did some hunting in his youth and had to qualify as a marksman in the Army, so he has some skill.  The cowboy gives the city slicker a present, a rather menacing looking revolver.

When Kersey returns to NYC, he starts carrying the pistol.  Oddly, he’s accosted by another mugger.  Kersey keeps his cash and puts a bullet in the bad guy instead.  He runs home and is so horrified by what he’s done that he throws up.

But soon…Kersey becomes addicted to murdering criminals…or does he?  It’s sort of an up for interpretation part of the film.

Fun fact – although he’s portrayed as an out of control vigilante, Kersey technically never does anything illegal.  He just takes a lot of walks in the middle of the night in dangerous neighborhoods, on subways, in parks, and is sure to flash a wallet full of money in seedy establishments and/or look like a bumbling old man by carrying groceries.  He never attacks anyone who doesn’t attack first.

Maybe he really is just an old bumbler with a lot of bad luck…but most likely, he’s out trolling, just waiting, nay wishing that some mugger would attack him so he can shoot them in self-defense.

And that’s the rub.  Kersey never shoots anyone who didn’t draw a pistol or a knife on him first.

The overall theme of the movie?  If people arm up, bad guys will pussy out.  Not really a popular message today.

The alternative argument, that society will descend into chaos if everyone is carrying a gun, is briefly explored, but ultimately, it’s suggested that bumbling politicians are to blame.  During one such meeting of incompetent NYC bureaucrats, it’s noted that “the vigilante’s” hijinx have cut muggings down by half, but they’ll never tell the public for fear that the city will become a war zone.

But what’s the alternative?  Better governance?  More police?  A better economy?  More social welfare programs?  A better world where the poor have no need to rob and steal?  Nah, the politicians aren’t going to do any of that.  They’d really just prefer it if families of crime victims like Kersey would shut up, accept their statistic status and go along as if nothing happened.

Is it an awesome film?  In many ways, yes.  The gradual progression from pacified weakling to macho asskicker is fun to watch.

Is it open to criticism?  Yes.  In the past, criminals were portrayed as cartoon characters, bums who made a conscious decision to avoid the honest pay that a hard day’s work could provide and to seek a quick buck by hassling the law abiding instead.  Ergo, they deserved the new holes that Kersey gave to them.  And sure, that often happens but in today’s cinema, criminals are usually given a heartwarming backstory that makes you feel as though the person could not have helped becoming a criminal (often the case, though not always.)

Is the film racist?  Well, I mean, yeah, Kersey does shoot an awful lot of black dudes.  But he shoots white dudes too.  And there are many law abiding African-American characters, from a police officer that assists Kersey in the investigation into his wife’s death, to a working class couple who see a duo of white crooks enter a subway train and decide to get off at the next stop rather than deal with them, to an old black lady who, inspired by tales of the vigilante on the news, whips out a hat pin and stabs the shit out of two reprobates who try to run off with her purse.

I mean yeah, to borrow an SJW term, a white character gunning down so many black characters is “problematic.”  You could argue that perhaps there is a universal code of right and wrong, that no matter what color you are, if you point a gun or a knife at anyone of any color, then you’re getting what’s coming to you if the threatened person takes you out.  It’s a daily war against crime, with law abiding people of all different colors and backgrounds vs.  crooks of all different races and backgrounds.  White Paul Kersey and black old lady with the hat pin are on the same side – two good people who just want to walk home without getting accosted for the money they worked for.

But still, yeah, an awful lot of black dudes buy the farm in this movie so…how to rectify that?  I don’t know.  Maybe if there’s ever another reboot of this film, a black actor could play the Paul Kersey role, gunning down a rainbow of hoodlums from all different backgrounds, or just white guys, or really, does it matter what color the shooter or the person shot is as long as the shooter was being attacked and the attacker was, in fact, a threat to life?  Bruce Willis is one of very few conservative actors willing to touch this franchise, though I think Hollywood missed a real opportunity to hold a coup if they would have cast, say, Denzel Washington or Jamie Foxx as Paul Kersey.

Oh well.  Don’t picket my blog.  I liked the movie though I realize in many ways it’s un-PC, hokey, tacky and well, probably doesn’t hold up today.  I mean, sure if you stand out in NYC in the middle of the night for long enough, you might get robbed once, but no one is as unlucky as Kersey, getting robbed over and over, even if you are out walking around, wishing that someone would rob you so you could kick their ass.  (Note:  just give them the money.)

All in all, what does this old movie tell us?  Does it have any relevance to today’s gun debate?  Basically, the politicians of this movie, just as the politicians in real life today, are as clueless and inept as ever.  Gun control is a sensitive issue and no matter what side you’re on, government officials appear clueless and inept when they fail to make us all safe…and citizens must keep pressure on politicians to make the world a safer place because at the end of the day, they’re lazy and happy to just let victims become more statistics, more faceless victims, more deaths to be expected as just a matter of fact of life.

Overall, depending what side of the fence you’re on, you’ll hate or love this film.  And honestly, I can see why you’d hate or love it.


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This Blog is Meaningless So I Must Start a New One

3.5 readers, are you aware that in March, it will be the fourth anniversary of this exceptional blog?

That’s more years than I have readers.

Although you are all wonderful, I must admit that four years to gain such a paltry sum of readers wasn’t worth it.

I could continue this blog but lately, the issues of the day really weigh heavily on my mind and soul.  So much fighting.  So much disharmony and discord.  So many problems in the world, so much unrest.  So many people struggling, looking for hope and finding none.

I can no longer waste my time on writing fart jokes.  Fart jokes are crass and they help no one.  I must, instead, make a difference, so I have decided to start a new blog, one in which I will discuss the many important issues of the day.  Further, I will reach out to experts from a variety of backgrounds to get their take on how the world might improve.

I’d love it if you all follow me to this new blog and hopefully it will have more than 3.5 readers.  If you would check it out and give me your feedback, I’d appreciate it.

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Top Ten Machiavelli Quotes

#10 – “Politics have no relation to morals.”

#9 – “Where the willingness is great, the difficulties cannot be great.”

#8 – “One who deceives will always find those who are willing to be deceived.”

#7 – “The first method for estimating the intelligence of a ruler is to look at the men he has around him.”

#6 – “It is better to be feared than loved, if you cannot be both.”

#5 – “If an injury has to be done to a man it should be so severe that his vengeance need not be feared.”

#4 – “He who wishes to be obeyed must know how to command.”

#3- “Never was anything great achieved without danger.”

#2 – “The wise man does at once what the fool does finally.”

#1 – “When you disarm the people, you commence to offend them and show that you distrust them either through cowardice or lack of confidence and these opinions generate hatred.”

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Schools Need Security Guards

Hey 3.5 readers.

I know.  I always say I don’t get political on this fine blog.  And for the most part, I don’t.  When I do, it’s in the name of humor, and I think if you look at my track record, you’ll find that I harangue both sides equally.  If you can’t find humor everywhere, then there’s a glitch in your soul and you need to troubleshoot that immediately.  Try clicking your inner “CTRL + ALT + DELETE” and then remove your faulty program from your task manager.

I’m happy to hear a debate about how there are too many guns, that guns should be restricted more, harder to get, etc. etc.

However, and get mad at me if you want, but I think schools need security guards.  Schools vary in size, but every small town school should have at least one and bigger schools with bigger problems should have several.

I wish it weren’t the case.  Take away the school shooting issue for a moment.

When I was a kid in the 1990s when Bill Clinton was chasing interns around his desk with his pants around his ankles instead of chasing down Osama Bin Laden, I recall many a time when I’d be walking down the hall only to see a fight break out.  Teachers would run to break it up.  They’d get involved, pull the kids off each other, etc.

Teachers really shouldn’t have to do that.  If your goal in life is to master a subject and educate students on that subject, then teaching should be your job and you shouldn’t have to risk bodily injury to yourself by having to break up an altercation.

Talk to teachers from all over and I’ll bet there are many with stories about how they were injured while breaking up a fist fight.  I would imagine some teachers even get sued.

Keep in mind too that teachers aren’t security professionals.  Security guards who are properly trained learn various tactics to use to grab an out of control person safely without, say, accidentally injuring the person by applying too much pressure to a part of the body and damaging a vital organ or something.

I’m not saying that cops and/or guards are 100 percent safe and that they don’t make mistakes, but me personally, if I had a kid and that kid got into a fight, I think I would honestly rather have a security guard who has at least taken a class on how to break up a fight restrain my kid rather than Mr. Smith, the guy who really liked math and became a math teacher.

Not knocking teachers.  Teachers teach.  And teachers should be in charge of general discipline.  Guards shouldn’t be passing out detentions for not doing homework or arresting kids for talking in class.  However, when two students get in a fight, the teacher should have a little button he can beep to call in a trained person with an official looking uniform to break it up.

I’m sorry, but Mrs. Jones, art teacher, shouldn’t have to risk getting cold cocked in the face because you think guards in schools might make kids feel bad.

OK.  Bring back the school shooting issue.  Would tougher gun laws have stopped this shooting?  I don’t know.  Honestly, the only law that would maybe put a dent in school shootings would be a repeal of the second amendment and that isn’t happening.

This is how the post-school shooting debate usually goes:

DEMOCRATS:  Republicans are monsters who care more about guns than kids!

REPUBLICANS: Everyone needs more guns so when shooters start shooting they can shoot the shooter.

DEMOCRATS:  We need more gun control!

REPUBLICANS:  Name the law you want to pass.

DEMOCRATS:  Umm..ungh…

REPUBLICANS:  Just vocalize a proposal.  What do you want to happen that you think will make school shootings stop?

DEMOCRATS:  Umm…ungh…you’re monsters!  Monsters who care more about guns than kids!

REPUBLICANS:  Y’all want to repeal the second amendment don’t you?

DEMOCRATS:  :::look around to make sure no one’s watching, then they whisper::: Holy shit, no!  Are you trying to get me thrown out of office?!  Jesus, just let me bang my fist on the podium and call you a monster for the next five days and then I can go back to not proposing anything.

Anyway.  Confiscate all guns…and maybe there would be less school shootings.  I say less because surely one industrious kid would get his hands on an illegal gun.

But, and what people don’t want to talk about, is that the issue runs deeper than guns.  High school is a hard time for the young.  Kids fight.  They argue.  They feel wronged by other kids and they feel this wrong is the only thing that matters in the entire world.  Some kids let these slights roll off their backs.  Some turn to negative activities like drugs or alcohol.

And then, sadly, there’s that one kid who says, “I’m going to get even!”

Take away guns and that kid will probably build a bomb, or use a knife, or a car or something.  You’ll probably say the kid who does that might at least kill less if he doesn’t have a gun to use as a primary weapon.  You probably have a point there.

The second amendment is a bigger issue than I don’t have time to talk about in detail today.  Rightly or wrongly, it isn’t going anywhere.  Politicians can throw barbs at each other all day, but a gunless Utopia where everyone solves problems with hugs isn’t coming tomorrow.

Increased security at schools can start tomorrow.

Take away the school shooting issue again.  Let’s return once more to the 1990s, when Hillary was really the de facto president and Bill was leaving stains on Monica Lewinsky’s dress.

I was a big kid.  But I was a nerd.  I was an easy target.  Kids who felt they had something to prove would hassle me, hit me, punch me and then they’d brag that they’d got one over on a big kid.  They wouldn’t go after, say, a big kid who would actually fight back.

I never fought back.  I’d just accept all manner of abuse because I figured if I socked a kid who was harassing me, I’d end up in trouble myself.  I figured that black mark on my school record would keep me from my big plans of becoming rich and famous.

Hell, had I known that the best I’d ever do is blog proprietor for a website for 3.5 readers, I might have socked a kid back.

Teachers I turned to for help were utterly useless.  Sometimes they’d give me a speech like, “Well, that kid’s home life really sucks and your life is better so could you maybe try to understand that kid has problems.”

I’d usually just nod politely but in my mind I’d just say, “Oh OK.  I deserve to be a human punching bag because my parents are gainfully employed and free of substance abuse addictions.  Got it.  I’ll go tell my Dad to pick up a bottle and then maybe you’ll help me.”

One time a teacher told me to just sock them back.  I admire that teacher’s gusto, but again, I’d nod politely and then in my mind, think, “Um, sir, I’m here to be educated.  I shouldn’t have to train myself in the ways of kung fu and fight my way out of here every day like it’s ‘Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome’ just so I can learn algebra.”

As an adult, do I realize that kids can be little assholes?  Yes.  Should troubled kids who slap other kids around be carted off to Rikers Island and have their lives ruined?  Sigh.  Maybe not if the kid can be sat down by the principal and reasoned with.  Maybe yes if the kid is making an environment where all the other kids feel like they need to train in the ways of kung fu and fight their way out of school like ‘Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome’ just to learn algebra.  Even then, probably not to Rikers Island but maybe to some school for difficult children where teachers have training in dealing with problem kids.

The point is, at some point in a young person’s life, they have to learn that there comes a time when rough housing and horseplay and fights aren’t fun anymore and if you lay your hands on someone else, there are consequences.  That should start in high school.

When I was a kid, I thought those teachers who wouldn’t help me were lazy assholes.  As an adult, I feel like those teachers were probably just people who signed up to teach a subject and didn’t get paid enough to, you know…be security guards.

That’s why schools need security guards.  I know that as a 1990s kid, I would have enjoyed school more if there’d been a person in a uniform and a badge nearby to pull douchebag kids off me.

So, to wrap this up.  Big picture, security guards might help stop school shootings if they are being utilized to set up check points, make sure every kid has an ID and everyone entering has a legit reason for being there, to search bags and run metal detectors.

Smaller picture, they should also be there to break up fights and to intimidate bullies into leaving nerds alone.  Nerds should neither have to suck it up and accept being pummeled is just a part of growing up, nor should they have to train in the ways of kung fu for self defense purposes just to learn Algebra.

Thank you.  Commence haranguing me in the comments.



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Daily Discussion with BQB – Should Oprah Run for President? (Howard Stern Says No)

Hey 3.5 readers.

BQB here.

I was listening to Howard Stern today (he actually came into work) and he had an interesting take on all the talk about President Oprah.

He said (and I remember this) years ago, he ran for Governor of New York as a goof.  He didn’t want the job and just did it as a promotion, to get his name out there and get some free press.  He didn’t think anyone would take him seriously so got scared when he actually ranked high in the polls.  Political consultants began getting in touch with him, sure he had a good shot at winning.

He backed out of it because he felt he would not do a good job.  He’s a funny radio guy and while he enjoys that and he has been successful as an entertainer, he did not believe he could handle the job of being governor – the tough decisions, the turmoil, the scrutiny, the studying, the non-stop nature of the job, 24/7 and weekends.  Ultimately, people rely on the Governor and he didn’t think he could deliver.

He thought maybe he might have won and who knows, perhaps from there he might have had a shot at the presidency but he didn’t want it.  He did not believe he would do a good job and so bowed out so an actual politician could win.

He likened his situation to Oprah and said that as a celebrity, especially one that came from humble beginnings without much money (as he and Oprah did) it is tempting to want everything, to take every offered opportunity, to do every TV show, movie, book, business venture, everything because no matter how big you get, you fear it might all go away and so it’s easy to see the presidency as the ultimate plaything, to increase your fame and status…but ultimately, you have to think not of yourself but of the country.

I think he has a good point and I’m wondering if we aren’t going down a path where perhaps there should be a mandate that to win the presidency you must hold some kind of prior office first?  Reagan was an actor, but he did go on to run a union and serve as governor of California.  He did his homework and got his government training.

I mean…when we hear of President the Rock….come on.  I don’t care how loved of a celebrity you are, the second you run for office, half the country will hate you.  Why not stay a celebrity and be loved by all?

On the other hand, TV has really screwed politics up, for years now.  Gone are the days when character, knowledge and experience matter.  How photogenic are you?  What’s your social media following like?

Howard said we need a modern day Winston Churchill but I have news for him – Winston could not win office today.  “Who’s that chubby little bald man with froggy voice?  Get him off the stage and put a squared jawed, perfect haired dummy in his place!”

In other words, politics and entertainment are hand in hand now, such that you can’t be an actor if you aren’t a hottie and let’s face it, you can’t be a politician unless you’ve got that super star quality either.



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Daily Discussion with BQB – Roy Moore and Al Franken

I don’t like to get into politics on this blog.  I really don’t.  But it just seems like, Republicans have an alleged pervert (always have to say alleged for legal reasons) and Democrats have an alleged pervert.

Each side doesn’t want to throw their alleged pervert overboard and lose a vote in the Senate, but it feels like this is a rare opportunity for both sides to come together and say that they don’t tolerate alleged perversions in their ranks and kick both alleged perverts overboard.

Republicans throw out Moore, Democrats throw out Franken and neither side is worse off, both sides lost exactly one alleged pervert.  Seems like a rare opportunity here for the parties to show they don’t approve of alleged chicanery and end up no worse off than they were before if both sides kick out one person.


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Daily Discussion with BQB – Congress Has Paid $15 Million in Sexual Harassment Claims Over the Years

Hey 3.5 readers.

BQB here.  I heard something on the radio yesterday and I think it went virtually unnoticed because there was so much else going on in the news.

It was reported that over the past, how many years exactly escapes me, Congress has paid out $15 million in sexual harassment claims.  This appears to be bipartisan.  Republicans and Democrats alike have a hard time not being gropey gropey.

Sigh.  Look dudes.  You got out there, you made some fancy speeches, you convinced people in your district you were worth something, you’ve been selected for a powerful club few ever know…I don’t care how old are ugly or disgusting you may look, if you are not able to be like the rest of us and just find a woman who you share a mutually attraction with and politely chat her up, get her number and go out on some dates and slowly and surely convince her your worth doing the hibbitty dibbitty with, then you are not worthy of being a Congressman.

“I’d better grab that ass and hope she doesn’t say something because an unwanted ass grab is the best I can do,” does not speak well of you, your self-confidence and all around means you should step down.

Seriously.  I don’t care how disgusting you are.  Most of the non-Congressional world is able to obtain consensual sex, so if you can’t obtain consensual sex with the added bonus of being able to say, “Hey baby I’m a Congressman” then you suck.  You just really suck and should go stand in the corner and think about what you’ve done.

Oh and also there’s the obvious – women should be able to work for Congress without unwanted hands on their lady parts and 15 million – those are our tax dollars.  It seems obvious many of these dudes do this shit because they know Congress will bail them out. Perhaps there needs to be a law that if you pull out your junk in front of a staff member you have to pay the settlement out of your own money.  That will cause many zippers to zip up quickly, no doubt.


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A Brief History of the Second American Civil War


It began in 2017 and lasted until 2030.  By the end of the gruesome conflict, over a hundred thousand protestors on various sides of the political spectrum and with little more to do than go out and hold signs about their individual causes while their poor oppressed parents footed the bill, would be dead.

Millions more Americans who just wanted to turn on the TV and not see outbreaks of tomfoolery would be severely annoyed.

What, you might ask, was the Second American Civil War over, you might ask?

It was over what to do with the monuments dedicated to the First American Civil War that ended approximately 160 years ago.  Yeah.  We know.  Stop shaking your head.

It all began with General Toke-It-All Jackson, the unemployed and unemployable pot fan/purple haired fifth level otherkin hipster leader of the Social Justice Brigade.  “As nothing as my witness, because the idea of a God is oppressive to atheists everywhere, I will never allow a statue of some old racist fuck sit in a park while no one gives a shit while his head gets pooped on by pigeons ever again!”

And so the Social Justice Brigade marched through the South, using their limited upper body strength to pull down one statue of a traitorous rebel racist fucker after another, rather than, you know, maybe just submit a proposal to the local city governments to ask that the statues be removed through the democratic process and be put into museums where nerdy Civil War re-enactors can continue to delay losing their virginity by master bating all over these monuments to a failed effort to double-cross the United States of America.

Meanwhile, the Modern Southerners would not stand for this.  Their leader, General Hushpuppy Beauregard, who sounded very similar to Foghorn Leghorn, publicly said, “We Modern Southerners do not see these statues as a tribute to racism, but rather, as a tribute to our ancestors.  Why, my Great Great Great Great Great Great Grandpappy Rufus Beauregard was General Lee’s personal horn blower.  Why, old Grandpappy blew General Lee’s horn long and hard, sometimes slowly, sometimes fast, always being sure to use plenty of tongue and not any teeth and sometimes for hours on necessary if need be.  He looked clean and crisp and respectable in his uniform and we are all proud of Grandpappy’s service.”

When pressed on the fact that the Confederacy was set up to continue the wretched institution of slavery, General Hushpuppy said, “I do declare sir, we Modern Southerners are not racist at all.  We love black folk just fine and want to see them do well and get good jobs and be successful and have good lives and I suppose if our daughters bring one of them home we will begrudgingly acknowledge them and then yell at our dumb wives for telling our dumb daughters for this is somehow ok but regardless, we bear black folk no ill will.  In our minds, the Civil War has been homogenized in pop culture and the hundreds of Civil War films we have seen just display the conflict as a disagreement between two sides of gentlemen gone awry.  Those movies rarely mention the slavery aspect or if they do, they don’t focus too hard on it.  I add that I am no racist sir for I have all of Jay-Z’s songs on my iPhone and I masterbate to the sight of Beyoncé’s luxurious rear end at all times.”

When pressed again, General Hushpuppy added, “Look, we love black folk, but we like to brandish our Confederate memorabilia from time to time to remind those uppity Northern folk that if they keep trying to switch our barbecue ribs for kale and our pick-up trucks for Priuses and our shootin’ irons for therapy, we’ll split off from the country and by God, we’ll do it right this time.”

But it wasn’t that easy.  There were two more sides.  Next, there were the Racist Manboys.  These dudes were all kind of chubby.  Some were Nazis who, like their hero, Hitler, were trying to compensate for small penises.  Some were Ku Klux Klansmen who stole their mothers’ bedsheets and cut eyeholes in them, leaving their mothers to cry, “This is why we can’t have nice things!”

Their leader, General Honkey von Cracker, said, “The white man is better and more smarter and interesting-er than all the other mongrel races and I do be the one who should be knowing this as I took ten years to grad-u-a-mate from night school GED class.  I would have done it sooner but one time a black man cut me in line at the Burger Hut and I seethed with rage over it for years.  I’m not still quite over it but with therapy I have faith I will be.”

The Racist Manboys really, really, really loved the statues of Confederates because they often fantasized about traveling back in time just so they could join the confederacy and fight in a war to oppress black people.  The Racist Manboys divide their time between efforts to build a time machine that will allow them to travel back to the 1860s so they might join the Confederacy and to lobby for laws that will make slavery legal again because the only way they will ever be laid is if it becomes legal to kidnap hot black chicks and hold them against their will.

Finally, there was one last group of non-combatants, the People Who Had Shit to Do.  Ironically, their leader was an African American by the name of Fred Wilbur, who said, “How in the Hell do all you people have so much time on your damn hands that you can go out in the middle of a weekday and beat the shit out of each other over a bunch of statues of some racist white folk from the 1800s?  I mean, holy shit, as a taxpayer, I don’t like to see my taxes go toward the upkeep of a statue of some ass face who wanted to keep me in chains, but shit, I have a wife and kids.  I have bills to pay and mouths to feed.  I work a day job, a night job, and a weekend job.  I got three Goddamn jobs and you weirdoes don’t have any.  Get a job, get Jesus in your life.  I mean, shit, I don’t like the statues but if all you dumbass white people are just going to beat the shit out of each other then fuck it, just let the pigeons shit all over those dumb old statues of those racist pricks until the end of time.”

And so the battle raged on for 13 years as the three sides fought one another while people with jobs like Fred would just come home after work, pop open a beer, curse at all the idiots without jobs then rent a movie on pay per view, preferably one with a lot of action and chicks with big ass titties.

Finally, the war ended when a peaceful solution was offered.  The Confederate statues would remain, but statues of freed black slaves rogering statues of the white wives of the Confederate soldiers would be erected next to the Confederate statues.  All were happy by this compromise which, ironically, was proposed by President Bookshelf Q. Battler, the greatest president America has ever had ever and will also ever have.

Everything was good for awhile until the Third World War broke out in 2034.  That one was over whether or not to get rid of statues of George Washington, not because of the fact that he was a slave owner, but because George, as was the custom in his day, wore a gray haired wig to make him look older and wiser as elders were respected for their wisdom at the time.  Alas, by 2034, youth took over the world and anyone over 35 was required to sit down on an iceberg and be floated off to sea.  No one with gray hair was ever seen again and anyone who used to have gray hair in the past was considered a piece of shit who had to be erased from history.

Finally, in the year 2200, the Fourth American Civil War broke out over the proposed removal of statues of JFK, FDR, Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, President Flava Flav and President Bookshelf Q. Battler.

You see, by the year 2200, a pill was invented that made it so people don’t have to shit anymore.  Yes, by taking this pill, humans were able to absorb all necessary nutrients from their foods without producing poop.  Anyone pre-2200 who never took this pill was considered a dirty pooping Neanderthal.

Thus, a great debate began.  Yes, JFK, FDR, Lincoln, Roosevelt, President Flava Flav and President Battler had all done great things.  In fact, President BQB provided all men with free sex robots, which made them happy because they were never without sex again and their wives happy because they didn’t have to suffer their smelly husbands flopping on top of them ever again.

However, all these men pooped, and so, the Anti-Poop front declared that any traces of anyone who ever took a shit had to be erased from history as they were dirty pooping savages.

That was the last American Civil War.  After that, America, like the rest of Earth, was conquered by an alien race.  The population of the entire world was wiped out and the aliens used the planet to store their excess tennis shoes.

Later, a war would break out amongst the aliens over a statue of an alien wearing tennis shoes when it was decided that dock siders were much more stylish.

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Daily Discussion with BQB – Marco Rubio’s Epic Ivanka Trump Hug Fail

Hey 3.5 readers.

BQB here.  As you know, I avoid discussing politics on this fine blog, because whether you are a Republican or a Democrat, I think the most important thing everyone can do is to come together and buy my book and give my blog extra clicks so I can finally buy my long awaited beach house in Malibu and fill it full of women of ill repute and questionable moral character.

Anyway.  Regardless of your thoughts on POTUS 45, you’ve got to admit, the First Daughter is so hot that should could give a bad case of priapism to a eunuch.  (That’s when your little soldier stands at attention  for more than four hours.  Daytime TV commercials advise you to see a doctor at that point.)

Thus, I personally feel for Florida Senator Marco Rubio when he delivered this awkward hug to Ivanka:

Sure, your first instinct might be to think that Senator Rubio is a dope for not just going all in like a man on that hug (Lord knows Bookshelf Q. Battler has never been one to leave a lady unsatisfied in the hug department) but then consider:

  1. He’s a married man.  He probably didn’t want to linger too long and piss off his wife.  “What, dear?  No, I got zero enjoyment out of hugging one of the most beautiful women in the world.  Didn’t you see the photo?  I barely touched her.
  2. She’s a married woman.  You don’t want to get on the Kush’s bad side.
  3. He’s a politician.  Had he lingered too long the media would say he must be warm for Ivanka’s form.
  4. She’s hot so like every second of contact adds another second to the bad case of priapism I assume anyone gets when they come into contact with her – which is fine, under normal circumstances, but in the Senator’s case, he probably had important Senatorial shit to do after that meeting so it’s not like he can walk around all day with a bout of Ivanka inspired priapism.
  5. Ivanka kind of seems so hot that like, the average hug just bounces off her.  Like, you need to be more than just a Senator in order to land your hug because an invisible force field will just bounce your hug right off.  You have to be like the Emperor of Jupiter or an equally sized planet for your hug to go through.  Only hugs from ridiculously impressive men will land.

Later, Rubio lampooned the coverage, joking in a series of tweets that he was “investigating” the awkward hug allegations and Ivanka tweeted “Fake news! Marco Rubio is an excellent hugger.

Anyway, I don’t intend to start a whole political back and forth with this post.  I just thought the photo was funny and I could picture myself in Rubio’s situation, having no idea what to do and feeling like any move is going to get me lambasted so, oh well, here goes the awkward hug.

What say you, 3.5 readers?

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Movie Review – War Machine (2017)

War!  Bureaucracy!  Red tape!

BQB here with a review of Netflix’s new film, War Machine.

Based on the book, “The Operators” by Michael Hastings, this film is a dark comedy, satirizing the sheer absurdity modern warfare, not to mention the unenviable positions of those whose efforts to win are backseat driven every step of the way.

Brad Pitt plays General Glenn McMahon, a fictionalized version of General Stanley McChrystal, whose own efforts to cut through a sea of red tape eventually culminated in a Rolling Stone article that proved to be his undoing.

In 2009, McMahon is put in charge of Afghanistan.  The dirty secret no one speaks about or is even willing to admit is that he is expected to maintain the status quo and lose gracefully.  In fact, at the start of the film, McMahon is brought into a room of DC bigwigs who urge him to do a tour of the country and provide them with an assessment of what is needed but then within the same breath, they tell him he’d better not find that he needs more troops.

In other words, the days when great warriors like Eisenhower and Patton could write a check that DC would cash are over.  The warriors aren’t really in charge now.  The whole operation is second and third guessed by bureaucratic bean counting civilians who’ve never seen a battlefield in their entire lives.

With an almost Colombo-esque style of disarming charm, McMahon attempts to cut through the red tape that is slowing him and his team down.  Along the way, he steps on many a toe, but comes across as so humble and down to earth that the bigwigs whose toes were stepped on aren’t sure it was unintentional.  McMahon tapping aimlessly on his keyboard, feigning incompetence with technology in order to avoid listening to a DC bureaucrat’s orders via Skype come to mind.

This is a big role for Brad Pitt.  Hollywood’s quintessential leading man, an actor that has spent his life maintaining a top of the line physical appearance, playing parts that make the ladies swoon, gets a douse of McMahon style humility himself.

This is the first time I’ve seen him play someone with gray hair, someone who is admittedly older and too busy to hide the fact with an army of stylists.  Pitt plays McMahon as a gruff and grizzled old soldier, a man with a hand that has been mangled, who walks as though his body is in pain from years of being pushed to the limit.

Even more surprisingly, Pitt’s character has an age appropriate wife, Jeannie (Meg Tilly). Seeing Pitt snuggle up to a gray haired woman who is light years from looking like Angelina Jolie is nothing I thought I’d ever see on film.  Yet, in doing so, Pitt pulls off some of the best acting of his career, namely, convincing us that he could love a woman his age.

This is also a big film for Netflix.  The Internet streaming service spent $60 million on this film and it shows.  The result is a movie that could have been screened in movie theaters across the country had they chosen to go that route.  Brad Pitt is, by my best estimate, the biggest star Netflix has ever recruited for one of its original productions, thus proving that this company is in the movie game to win it, and the future of film is streaming.

For me, that’s a dubious prospect as I love the experience of going to see a film in a theater, though lately I wonder if saving cinema is not a cause as lost as Afghanistan.

Overall, the film asks a lot of questions and paints modern warfare in a not so rose colored light.  Bottomline – these days it sucks to be a man in uniform.  You’re expected to win, but you’re also told by bureaucrats to lose, except they don’t use the “l” word.  They won’t come right out and tell you they want you to lose, just that you should not ask for all the things you need to win.  You should essentially rubber stamp their losing plans and act like you can’t tell their plans are going to lose.

Meanwhile on the battlefield, soldiers are torn between their inner need to, you know, shoot at people who are shooting at them in order to live another day.  Yet, DC has made it clear that screw-ups (i.e. accidentally shooting a civilian) will not be tolerated and punished severely.

Ultimately, the film lampoons the idea of counter-insurgency, or the idea that men from a foreign land with guns can somehow talk the locals into siding with them against the bad man with guns that are already there.  In one heartbreaking scene, McMahon addresses residents of a territory that US forces have taken control of that he’s there to help build roads, build jobs, to protect them and so on.  A villager informs the General that all sounds great, but he has no doubt the US will eventually cut and run and when they do, the bad guys will destroy all the infrastructure that was built and punish the villagers for cooperating with the US troops.

Between desk jockeys trying to manage something they can’t comprehend, the media turning real stories of war into trashy tabloid TV and a clash of cultures (is it really wise for America to assume that they can turn third world wastelands into smaller versions of America?), the film leaves the viewer with the sad feeling that modern wars may, in fact, may never be winnable again.

STATUS:  Shelf-worthy.  Stream it on Netflix.

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