April 4th, 2006


(no subject)

Not only has UCLA let me down, but I've also lost one of the three radio stations I regularly listen to. I'd heard rumors that a format change was in the works at Oldies 100, and indeed, this afternoon at 5 PM WBIG "evolved" (their word) from an oldies station into a classic rock station. The format change doesn't make much sense to me; DC already has a classic rock station, WARW, and from what I've heard so far the new WBIG is playing exactly the same stuff as the other station. Perhaps some subtleties will emerge over time that will set WBIG apart from WARW, but the classic rock format is not one that lends itself easily to innovation or originality.

Ten random things: April 4

Ten of the 100 Greatest Performances of All Time, as selected by Premiere magazine:

  1. Jamie Foxx as Ray Charles in Ray (2004)
  2. Samuel L. Jackson as Jules Winnfield in Pulp Fiction (1994)
  3. Catherine Deneuve as Séverine Sérizy in Belle de jour (1967)
  4. Angela Bassett as Tina Turner in What's Love Got to Do With It (1994)
  5. Robert Duvall as Mac Sledge in Tender Mercies (1983)
  6. Katherine Hepburn as Eleanor of Aquitaine in The Lion in Winter (1968)
  7. Henry Fonda as Tom Joad in The Grapes of Wrath (1940)
  8. Gene Wilder as Dr. Frederick Frankenstein in Young Frankenstein (1974)
  9. Laurence Olivier as Richard III in Richard III (1955)
  10. Reese Witherspoon as Tracy Flick in Election (1999)

I'm not sure how Premiere drew up its list, but I'm sure the methodology was sound and the results peer reviewed prior to publication. Number 1 was Peter O'Toole as T. E. Lawrence in Lawrence of Arabia, by the way. And just for the record, I didn't rig my selection process to get Reese on the list. Call it fate.

  • Current Music
    NPR news

Bye Bye Tom

I just heard an NPR reporter state that, now that U.S. Representative Tom DeLay has announced he will resign his seat, Texas Governor Rick Perry can either appoint someone to fill the seat or leave it vacant until the fall election. Which is interesting, but wrong. Governors can appoint someone to fill a vacant seat in the U.S. Senate, but House seats must be filled by an election. The Governor can call for a special election, or leave it vacant until the next regular election. DeLay hasn't actually announced when he'll step down, but assuming it's in the next couple of weeks, that means the seat would be vacant for more than six months. I can't imagine that Perry won't call for a special election, but stranger things have happened.

By the way, I don't believe for a minute that we've heard the whole story as to why DeLay decided to resign. I believe him (first time that's ever happened) when he says he was worried that he would lose, but the idea that he was concerned that the campaign would be "nasty and personal" is laughable. "Nasty and personal campaigning" is Tom DeLay's middle name. There's another shoe up there somewhere, probably one related to him being identified as "Representative #2" in the Michael Scanlon Tony Rudy indictment. I think we're going to see a Federal indictment against DeLay in the near future.

  • Current Music
    Talk of the Nation on NPR

(no subject)

Fareed Zakaria on why guest worker programs are a bad idea:

Seven years ago, when I was visiting Germany, I met with an official who explained to me that the country had a foolproof solution to its economic woes. Watching the U.S. economy soar during the 1990s, the Germans had decided that they, too, needed to go the high-technology route. But how? In the late '90s, the answer seemed obvious: Indians. After all, Indian entrepreneurs accounted for one of every three Silicon Valley start-ups. So the German government decided that it would lure Indians to Germany just as America does: by offering green cards. Officials created something called the German Green Card and announced that they would issue 20,000 in the first year. Naturally, they expected that tens of thousands more Indians would soon be begging to come, and perhaps the quotas would have to be increased. But the program was a flop. A year later barely half of the 20,000 cards had been issued. After a few extensions, the program was abolished.

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Copyright © 2006 The Washintgon Post Company
  • Current Music
    Alicia Keyes - "I Keep Falling"

(no subject)

Let's turn away from national politics for a moment to focus on a political story of real importance. Today, my sister, Jenni, was elected to a seat on the McFarland, Wisconsin, Village Board. She received more votes than all but one of the five candidates in the race, and was the only of the three incumbents in the race to retain her seat. Hooray for her! If you're so inclined, leave can post a congratulatory comment here; she reads this journal, so she'll see it.
  • Current Music
    Beyonce Knowles - "Crazy in Love"