Spyers, Liars, Pants on Fire


• Below: Replaying earlier Fizzdom post about Director of National Intelligence James Clapper's classic whopper.


• "By and large, language is a tool for concealing the truth." — George Carlin

• Below: Jon Stewart looks at CIA's checkered history including torture and the recent breach of Senate Intelligence Committee files, plus Senator Dianne Feinstein's outrage and her ironic inconsistencies about privacy. (video is longish but worth the time)

• Below: Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) calls for CIA Director John Brennan's firing for the agency's accessing Senate Intelligence Committee computers.

• Below: Representative Thomas Massie (R-KY) blasts Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and former NSA Director Keith Alexander for lying to Congress (in Jon Oliver animation above). 

• "Let us begin by committing ourselves to the truth — to see it like it is, and tell it like it is — to find the truth, to speak the truth, and to live the truth." — Richard Nixon, accepting the presidential nomination in 1968 


"Best" Summer Movies of All Time

2013 list

“Best Summer Movies of All Time” selected by RottenTomatoes.com 2013:

“In defense of the blockbuster, Rotten Tomatoes offers you Best Summer Movies, a countdown of the highest-rated wide releases since ... 1975 ... using a weighted formula that takes the Tomatometer, the number of reviews, and the year of release into account ... released wide ... between May and August.”

• “Oscar-worthy films appear at the box-office between Thanksgiving and Valentine’s Day followed by a lull on either side of summer’s blockbusters. Quality TV airs across the calendar year.” — Prof. Victoria Johnson, UC Irvine

Below: Click full-screen view and watch the magnificence of adult filmmaking (pre-CG) with a dazzling array of actors.

• “Television has taken possession of grown-ups and fans of things like narrative and character."

• "Hollywood studios construct their core businesses — cartoons, superhero films, young-adult franchises and sequels — for a less demanding clientele that doesn’t mind leaving the house even if the joy of the moviegoing experience is now marred by all the lapses of comfort and etiquette that keep many adults at home …”

• "Today, it’s the over-30 audience that’s written off as not worth the effort. Reaching them probably means rethinking distribution, even if that means surrendering the idea of movies as a primarily theatrical experience ... (and) treating the production of nonfranchise films as a viable business rather than as a favor or an act of atonement.” — Mark Harris, NY Times (3 quotes above)

gratuitous gif by fizzdom.com

gratuitous gif by fizzdom.com

• “Disney's 'Frozen' recently became the highest grossing animated feature of all time. The sci-fi thriller 'Gravity,' starring Sandra Bullock (above), has raked in over $700 million, and 'Hunger Games: Catching Fire' has banked about $864 million in box office sales. These movies all starred women, and yet the opportunities for women in film both in front of and behind the camera remains an uphill battle. According to a 2013 report, women made up 52 percent of the moviegoing population, yet only about 15 percent of current movies feature female protagonists.” — ReBecca Theodore-Vachon, film/tv critic

• Below: Enjoy a taste of 'Sharknado,' the "superstorm that sucked toothy killers out of the Pacific and hurled them at Los Angeles and landed in the waters of social media like a bucket of delicious chum ... (its title) a portmanteau of American excess to match the cronut and the turducken." — James Poniewozik, Time 

• “All the sincerity in Hollywood you could stuff in a flea's navel and still have room left to conceal eight caraway seeds and an agent's heart.” ― humorist Fred Allen

Louis C.K. Goes Native

Louis C.K. goes native fizzdom.com comedy funny native americans god advantages white man

• Veteran comedy writer, stand-up, actor, producer Louis C.K. was born in Washington DC on September 12,1967 to an Irish-Catholic-American mother and Jewish Hungarian-Mexican father.

• He lived in Mexico until he was seven, then moved to Boston with his family and learned English. 

 • His father is an economics graduate from Harvard, his mother was a Phi Beta Kappa, his grandfather a surgeon, and his uncle served as Mexico's Deputy Minister of Environment. (bio info: Wikipedia)

• Below: Hilarious bit about Americans' checkered past and a chat with God.

• Below: Fascinating 90-second time-lapse of American seizure of indigenous land, 1776-1887, when the U.S. seized over 1.5 billion acres, an eighth of the world, from America’s indigenous people by treaty and executive order. A classic unfriendly takeover. 

• “The fact that his mother had only ’bad’ TV shows to view upon returning home from work inspired him to work on television. ‘I remember thinking in fifth grade, I have to get inside that box and make this shit better. Because she deserves this. It made me mad that the shows were so bad.’"


Freedom: What's It Mean To You?

• Which of the quotes above appeal to you?

• Which of the quotes above appeal to you?

• Original edits

• Original edits

• "The contradiction between the claim that 'all men are created equal' and the existence of American slavery attracted comment when the Declaration was first published. Although Jefferson had included a paragraph in his initial draft that strongly indicted Britain's role in the slave trade, this was deleted from the final version. Jefferson himself was a prominent Virginia slave holder having owned hundreds of slaves."

• "From the outset, Americans celebrated independence on July 4, the date shown on the much-publicized Declaration of Independence, rather than on July 2, the date the resolution of independence was approved in a closed session of Congress."

• "Historians have long disputed whether Congress actually signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4, even though Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, and Benjamin Franklin and all later wrote that they had signed it on that day. Most historians have concluded that the Declaration was signed nearly a month after its adoption, on August 2, 1776, and not on July 4 as is commonly believed."

• "In a remarkable coincidence, both John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, the only signers of the Declaration of Independence later to serve as President of the United States, died on the same day: July 4, 1826, which was the 50th anniversary of the Declaration. Although not a signer of the Declaration of Independence, but another Founding Father who became a President, James Monroe, died on July 4, 1831, thus becoming the third President in a row who died on this memorable day." (quotes above: wikipedia)

• Above: A must-see for fireworks fans: New Year’s Eve 2013. Watch the city of Dubai break the Guiness world record for largest fireworks display, with 479,651 shells fired in just six minutes at a rate of almost 80,000 shells per minute and 1,332 fireworks per second.

Just Ducky in Tiananmen Square

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• Animated duck tribute above by Fizzdom.com

• "The Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, commonly known as the June Fourth Incident (六四事件) or more accurately '89 Democracy Movement (八九民运) in Chinese were student-led popular demonstrations in Beijing which took place in the spring of 1989 and received broad support from city residents, exposing deep splits within China's political leadership." 

• "The protests were forcibly suppressed by hardline leaders who ordered the military to enforce martial law in the country's capital. The crackdown that initiated on June 3–4 became known as the Tiananmen Square Massacre or the June 4 Massacre as troops with assault rifles and tanks inflicted casualties on unarmed civilians trying to block the military's advance towards Tiananmen Square in the heart of Beijing, which student demonstrators had occupied for seven weeks. The scale of military mobilization and the resulting bloodshed were unprecedented in the history of Beijing." 

• "The Chinese government condemned the protests as a "counter-revolutionary riot" ... Estimates of the death toll range from a few hundred to the thousands." (wikipedia)

• Watch the May 2014 Washington Post summary below of the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests.

Chinese censorship bans all references (no matter how slight or obscure) to the spring 1989 protests at Tiananmen Square — such as the obtuse use of May 35 to mean June 4.

• Below is CNN's raw video of tank man's brave resistance. Shortly after this footage he was led away and presumably executed.  

• "The crackdown left 500 to 2,600 dead, according to Tiananmen Square, 1989: The Declassified History, published by the George Washington University's National Security Archive. China's official death toll is 246." (USA Today)

• Additional resources:
New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/28/world/asia/tiananmen-square-anniversary-prompts-campaign-of-silence.html
Washington Post: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/china-tried-to-erase-memories-of-tiananmen-but-it-lives-on-in-the-work-of-dissident-artists/2014/05/31/4fd55a8e-e720-11e3-a86b-362fd5443d19_story.html
The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/jun/04/tiananmen-square-online-search-censored
Frontline:  http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/tankman/
The Atlantic: http://www.theatlantic.com/china/archive/2013/06/tiananmen-square-how-chinese-bloggers-play-cat-and-mouse-with-censors/276523/
Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tiananmen_Square_protests_of_1989

Maya Angelou's Wisps of Glory

fizzdom.com maya angelou's wisps of glory quotes animation gif poet writer performer

• Before her many accomplishments as a poet, writer and activist, Maya Angelou sang and danced in her 1950s night club act (of course, the quotes above came later).

• “Calypso music is rooted in resistance, and served as voice of the people. Here's Maya Angelou as Miss Calypso, talking police brutality, more than 50 years ago.” (Reader comment by Denise Sullivan on YouTube.) Listen to audio above.

Maya Angelou congratulated by President Bill Clinton at his 1993 inauguration

• Above: Angelou after reciting her poem, “On the Pulse of the Morning," written for and performed at President Clinton’s 1993 Inauguration.

Maya Angelou congratulated by President Obama upon receipt of the 2010 Medal of Freedom

• Above: Angelou congratulated by President Obama upon receipt of the 2010 Medal of Freedom.

• "In order to survive as a black woman I am obliged to search inside myself for my stuff. Because nobody hands it out for free on the corner." — Maya Angelou, as recounted by Leah Garchik, SF Chronicle, 5.29.14

Memorial Day Memories

fizzdom.com memorial day george w. bush iraq afghanistan war debt veterans va      


• "True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else." — Clarence Darrow

• Graphics and data above from The Young Turks Feb.2014 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AeYSC5ijAEs

• Cartoon above from Signe WilkinsonWashingtonPost.com

• Watch above: In February 2014 Republicans blocked passage of supplemental funding for veterans. Bernie Sanders: “If you think it’s too expensive to take care of veterans, don’t send them to war.”

• "... to warn against the mischiefs of foreign intrigue, to guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism ..." — George Washington

World War II Memorial, Washington, DC • photo: http://image-processing-is-fun.blogspot.com

World War II Memorial, Washington, DC • photo: http://image-processing-is-fun.blogspot.com

• The U.S. is "still making payments to relatives of Civil War veterans ... more than $40 billion annually is being spent on veterans and survivors of wars dating from the Spanish-American War of 1898 up through the Afghanistan and Iraq wars."

• "There are only two recipients of Civil War benefits, both children of veterans and receiving $876 per year." (Yahoo News, 3.19.13)

Spielberg Pins It on Social Media

fizzdom.com steven spielberg social media history tech brain mark zuckerberg Facebook twitter pinterest linked google+

• "On Twitter we get excited if someone follows us. In real life we get really scared and run away." —unknown via @mozusa

• “The best way to engage honestly with the marketplace via Twitter is to never use the words "engage," "honestly," or "marketplace.” ― Jeffrey Zeldman

• “If social media made us smarter, wouldn’t we be smarter?”
— Magnificant Ruin

• "When you've got 5 minutes to fill, Twitter is a great way to fill 35 minutes.” - @mattcutts

• Watch Jimmy Fallon's funny, rapid-fire Twitter conversation with Justin Timberlake above.

Best #momquote submitted to Jimmy Fallon

Best #momquote submitted to Jimmy Fallon

Stephen Colbert Captures Condoleezza Rice

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     fizzdom.com condoleezza rice condi rice sexy praying mantis george w. bush war criminal stephen colbert insect

• Video above: On Saturday, May 3, 2014 Condoleezza Rice withdrew as a paid ($35,000) commencement speaker at Rutgers University due to faculty and student protests because of her advocacy for the Iraq War and the use of waterboarding. (wikipedia)

• In past years she's faced protesters at Boston College and Princeton University commencements, and at many speaking engagements worldwide. 

Condi Rice instills fear about a "mushroom cloud" to drive the U.S. to war in Iraq in the Rachel Maddow video above.

Jon Stewart on The Daily Show recounts Condoleezza Rice selling the Iraq War with the "nuclear weapons" threat in the video above.

• In April 2014 digital storage company DropBox appointed Rice to their Board of Directors despite her pro-domestic spying position. Protesters argue that "Given everything we now know about the U.S.’s warrantless surveillance program, and Rice’s role in it, why on earth would we want someone like her involved with Dropbox, an organization we are trusting with our most important business and personal data?”

•  "When Libyans raided (Muammar) Qaddafi’s palace, they discovered a homemade scrapbook filled with photos of (Rice). 'Yes, Leezza, Leezza, Leezza ... I love her very much,' (Qaddafi) told Al Jazeera in 2007." (vanityfair.com)

Oscar Wilde's Breakthroughs in B.S.

fizzdom.com oscar wild's breakthrough in b.s. bullshit protector author writer

More Wildeness:

• “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”

• "I prefer women with a past. They're always so damned amusing to talk to."
— from Lady Windermere's Fan

• "To love oneself is the beginning of a life-long romance."
— from An Ideal Husband

• Watch the short bio above of Wilde's ascendence from 1879 when he moved to London, through his year-long speaking tour of America in 1881, to his triumphant return to England as an international celebrity in 1882.

source: http://deskrat.blogspot.com/2005/08/vets-wear-bullshit-protectors-bush-vfw.html

source: http://deskrat.blogspot.com/2005/08/vets-wear-bullshit-protectors-bush-vfw.html

Photo above: "Aug 24, 2005: George W. Bush should realize (he's in) trouble when veterans wear bullshit protectors to avoid hearing his attempts to justify his war in Iraq."