I saw this movie a couple of weeks ago, and really enjoyed it:
It was truly a celebration of rich people behaving badly, and Leonardo DiCaprio was excellent in it.
Technically, it’s not supposed to be an inspirational movie. You know, bad people doing bad things and all that. Apparently, some stock brokers don’t see it that way (from the London Evening Standard):
Cinemas across London are preparing to welcome thousands of bankers, brokers and traders to bespoke private screenings, the Standard has learned, and a cinema booking company says there is more corporate demand for this film than any they can remember.
With one company planning to dress up Nineties Wall Street-style for the occasion, the City’s buzz about [Jordan] Belfort has the ring of an enthronement. It is tempting to think that DiCaprio’s character might be a new cult hero for a new generation of bankers, as Gordon Gekko (protagonist of 1987’s Wall Street) was to their bosses. You can imagine the Square Mile’s new generation quoting Belfort’s corny phrases about money, drugs and women like their pre-crash predecessors did Gekko’s.
A comedy email flying around between bankers in London and New York this week makes the link, plotting a market index since the Eighties with arrows showing major price falls on the release dates of Wall Street and its 2010 sequel Money Never Sleeps, and a Wolf of Wall Street arrow pointing at today’s high price. Will the Wolf consign so many bankers and traders to therapy and rehab that the markets will plummet on its release, the jokes goes. At least I think it’s a joke.
For those of you not familiar with international financial markets, “the City” referred to here isn’t London. The City is what the Brits call their version of Wall Street. They’re treating this movie like it’s a blueprint for success. Maybe they’re thinking all they have to avoid will be the drugs, the prostitutes and the money laundering. That way, they can steal people’s money legally, I guess.
Oh, by the way. The Wolf lives. Jordan Belfort is now a motivational speaker in California. Here’s an interview with him:
Got to admit. The guy is smooth.
At first this was interesting:
Then it became annoying:
Then I wondered, are blacks smoking more pot?
And now I see it’s just pure racism:
The only way to stop these unjust arrests, and they are unjust, is to legalize pot everywhere. When one group is so overwhelmingly treated unjustly by a law, the law has to change.
From the Denver Post:
I’m happy to announce that Ricardo Baca has been appointed the editor of the marijuana website we are building. In this new role, Ricardo will be responsible for building the community and engagement around the site much like he did with Reverb in its early days. Ricardo will be working with editors and reporters in every department to ensure the site is lively, authoritative, in-depth, educational and packed with content spanning regulations to reviews.
For nearly 12 years, Ricardo has been the authority on our music scene, as a critic, the co-founder of the Underground Music Showcase and the founder of Reverb. For the past two years, he has excelled at leading our Entertainment section.
As we’ve said, the legalization of marijuana in Colorado is our biggest story in the coming year. Ricardo is the perfect person to lead this charge — and he will need all of our resources.
OK. It’s kind of a cliché to say “Who knows the most about pot use? Maybe someone who listens to music a lot?”
And the Post earlier announced that it’s coverage of pot isn’t going to be simply on the legal and medical issues surrounding the newly legalized drug:
We’re going to have some fun – with a mix of news, entertainment and culture stories. Say what you want about the newspaper industry, but The Post is the most powerful news organization in the region. We know how to cover big stories. And with pot, you ain’t seen nothing yet.
We’ll know about how serious the Denver Post is on the marijuana beat when it puts up the money to send its pot editor on a fact finding trip to Amsterdam.
I ask the question because of this:
Rep. Trey Radel, R-Fla., pleaded guilty Wednesday to possession of cocaine and was sentenced to one year of supervised probation.
“I’ve hit a bottom where I realize I need help. And I have aggressively pursued that help,” Radel said, as he admitted in District of Columbia Superior Court that he purchased 3.5 grams of cocaine.
The freshman congressman, who represents a solidly Republican district in southwest Florida, said he’ll enter a rehab program. He will also pay a $250 fine on the misdemeanor charge.
The House over the summer approved an amendment by Rep. Richard Hudson (R-N.C.) that would let states drug test people on food stamps. The amendment passed by voice vote, meaning members’ individual yeas and nays were not recorded. Radel later voted in favor of a broader food stamps bill that included Hudson’s measure.
How these guys can stand to see themselves in the mirror amazes me.
- Rep. Trey Radel BUSTED For Cocaine After Voting To Drug Test Welfare Recipients!! (itsmyurbantainment.com)
- Rep. Radel charged in DC with cocaine possession (nbc-2.com)
- Fla. Congressman Charged With Cocaine Possession (abcnews.go.com)
Expecting fireworks from the ACA hearings? Rep. Bill Pascrell provides them.
- Rep. Bill Pascrell goes after GOP colleague: ‘Are you serious?’ (washingtonpost.com)
- Dem Rep. Jumps Out of Chair, Explodes at GOP’ers During Obamacare Hearing (mediaite.com)
- Dem congressman to GOPer at Obamacare hearing: “Are you really serious!?” (salon.com)
I’m having some trouble with this story:
“Perhaps I should have assumed there was drinking going on, and I got that wrong,” Gansler said.
He said he stopped only briefly at the party in Delaware last June to see his son and left without asking the teenagers — including shirtless boys and a girl dancing on a tabletop — about the red plastic cups scattered around the party.
… The party came at the end of a weeklong trip Gansler and other parents helped organize and finance for a dozen boys who had just graduated from the Landon School, a private school for boys in Bethesda.
Written rules given to the teens who were staying at the house for the week forbade drinking “hard liquor,” but included no such instructions about beer.
The press is going overboard with righteous indignation. It’s shocked … SHOCKED … that drinking is going on at a graduation party of high school seniors.
What’s the big deal? From what I read, the parents were actually being responsible. They rented a place for kids to have a good time. They set down rules that made sure none of the kids would drive away after the party. They specified no hard liquor and no drugs.
Besides, the kids are high school seniors. That puts them at 18 years old, just the right age to go off to Afghanistan to get their asses shot off.
The drinking age in the United States is ridiculous. Look at this (MLDA means minimum legal drinking age):
The legal age is 21 in the U.S. Of 138 countries in the world, we’re with the bottom 11, and the only Western nation in that group. As strict as we are with our alcohol laws, we still have higher instances of alcohol abuse and alcohol related accidents than most other countries.
Americans Are Drinking Less Than Europeans, But Dying More Often From It: Americans aged 15 and up drink only three-quarters as much alcohol as Europeans, but are far more likely to be involved in fatal alcohol-related accidents or die from other alcohol-related causes. There’s no single reason Americans are less responsible with alcohol, but some speculate that a higher legal drinking age in the U.S. leads to more destructive underage drinking habits. Another explanation: Far more Europeans take public transportation home from the bar.
Our Kids Are Drinking a Lot More: The major change in drinking rates that occurred since the 1990s wasn’t for the better. A 2008 WHO survey found that 71 percent of the countries measured had seen an increase in drinking among teenagers aged 13 to 15, and 80 percent had seen an increase among young adults aged 18 to 25. Binge drinking is also on the rise worldwide, which the WHO attributed in part to the rise of “alcopops”—sugary, caffeinated alcoholic drinks like Four Loko.
Other places have lower drinking ages, but we’re more irresponsible. In Belgium, the legal drinking age is 16 for beer and wine. My son was in high school there and could drink at bars. There were clubs geared to his age group. We attended pub quizzes together and often had a pint of Guinness with our meals.
When he came back to the States, the law said he couldn’t drink. And when he turned 21 in his senior year, he posted the message “second time for a legal first drink.”
There is something to be said for not making certain things taboo. Kids are so riled up about not drinking that when they finally hit the age, they go nuts. Kids in the rest of the world seem to have more control than in the U.S., probably because they aren’t under siege all the time, badgered over the things they aren’t allowed to do.
Gansler’s actions don’t bother me, other than he’s apologizing for something that merits no apology. Bring the drinking age in line with the rest of the world, and be an active parent and teach your kids to act responsibly.
- Doug Gansler party attendees say attorney general couldn’t have missed drinking (wjla.com)
- Gansler Says He Made Mistake Not Breaking Up Teen Party (ivoter.net)
- Doug Gansler Responds to Claims He Turned Blind Eye to Underage Drinking (foxbaltimore.com)
- The best/worst quotes from Doug Gansler’s press conference (washingtonpost.com)
- Gansler Questions Parental Responsibility Amid Underage Drinking Photo Probe (baltimore.cbslocal.com)
- AG Doug Gansler caught in teen party photo (baltimorenewsjournal.com)
Remember when a certain computer expert lost his mind and did weird things in Central America? This is what Fox News reported at the time:
John McAfee, the estranged founder of the antivirus firm that bears his name, is wanted by the Belize police in connection with a murder, FoxNews.com has confirmed.
McAfee, whose very name is synonymous with security, is a prime suspect in the murder of American expatriate Gregory Faull, a well-liked builder from Florida who was shot Saturday night at his home in San Pedro Town on the island of Ambergris Caye, according to a series of exposes on tech blog Gizmodo. Vienne Robinson, assistant superintendent of the San Pedro police department in Belize, told FoxNews.com that police are actively searching for McAfee. …
McAfee’s life has turned in recent years from cybersecurity to drugs, guns, prostitution and violence, explained Jeff Wise, a freelance reporter who broke the story for Gizmodo. “He will tell you he moved to Belize for the good life, for the country, to rescue the Belizean people from poverty,” Wise told FoxNews.com. In reality, McAfee became embroiled in bath salts and the quest for the ultimate high, he said.
Wise visited McAfee in the Western Caribbean nation twice, once in 2010 and again this past April.
“It really scared the hell out of me,” Wise said. He wasn’t alone. A woman who went to visit McAfee to co-develop an herbal medicine ended up running from the country in terror, “fleeing for her life,” Wise said.
Although a one-time drug user, the computer expert had cleaned up his act. …
“Mcafee had been a hard-core drug addict in his 30s and 40s. He had a heart attack right around the time he sold his company for $100 million,” Wise told FoxNews.com. He moved to Belize and apparently pursued several lines of business, from creating a new form of herbal medicine to helping save the country from poverty.
He also became deeply involved with bath salts, Wise said, a dangerous drug notorious for its psychotic effects.
“Around the time his herbal drug plan collapsed, he started to get really heavily into this kind of synthetic, hallucinogenic hyper-aphrodisiac,” Wise told FoxNews.com. “Everyone was scared of McAfee. He was walking around the beach carrying a gun.”
I wonder what McAfee is up to today?
The House committee responsible for Obamacare oversight asked for expert guidance last week about the troubled launch of the federal Healthcare.gov site from John McAfee, the tech legend once suspected in the murder of his neighbor in Central America, CNBC has learned.
That Republican-controlled committee wanted the McAfee Associates founder to “guide our oversight and review of” the implementation of the federal marketplace selling Obamacare insurance, according to an email obtained by CNBC.com.
The committee suggested that McAfee might discuss the technologically botched rollout with members of Congress.
Now, there are major problems with the online insurance website. And it’s inexcusable that it was rolled out with so many bugs. It’s a major screw up by the Obama administration, and somebody should be fired for such shoddy work.
But, for God’s sake, why is the GOP seeking the advice of a crazy person on how to fix the problem …
Oh, right. Republicans don’t want the problem fixed. They’ll take the advice of a nutcase to make sure it never works.
And yes, I quoted Fox News (which I go out of my way not to do) at the start of this item. Because I want to see how Fox puts the lipstick on this pig and says what a smart move it is now that the Republicans have added McAfee to the mix of their recent bizarre behavior.
- House GOP asked murder suspect John McAfee for advice on Obamacare website (rawstory.com)
- House GOP asked ex-fugitive for Obamacare advice (cnbc.com)
- Report: GOP asked John McAfee to testify on ObamaCare website (thehill.com)
- GOP asked tech founder, ex-fugitive McAfee to diagnose Obamacare (nbcnews.com)
- The Hill: GOP asked ex-fugitive McAfee to testify on ObamaCare website (shortformblog.com)
- The strange life of John McAfee (bbc.co.uk)
The blame for any government shutdown should factually be laid at the feet of the Republicans. Factually.
It is a fact that Republicans spent their money and effort during the break stirring up support to hold the budget and even the debt ceiling hostage to stop the implementation of the Affordable care Act.
It is a fact that the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, led by Senators Ted Cruz and Mike Lee, passed a short-term continuing resolution to fund government at current levels while stripping funding away from the Affordable Care Act.
It is a fact that Republicans, and Republicans alone have said over and over again that they are committed to destroying the Affordable Care Act and are willing to not only shut down the government, but hold the debt ceiling hostage in order to do such a thing.
These are not theoretical. They are hard, cold, provable facts. How can it possibly be that over 50 percent of those polled would hold both sides responsible?