Monday, July 31, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Mel Gibson Delivers Anti-Semitic Acceptance Speech While Getting Arrested

Mel Gibson's recent behavior was bad enough to make even "The Lord Humungus" blush (Hmm... I wonder if he was Jewish). I mean, calling a female police officer "sugar t*ts" is just about as disrespectful as it gets... next to blaming the Jews for ALL the wars in the world, of course. Wow! How ignorant can one man get? EVERYONE knows that "Jews" didn't start all the wars... it was the Israelis ;)

Seriously though; blaming a whole religion based on the actions of a government is like blaming all Christians for the actions of George W. Bush. It is this kind of foolish generalization that TRULY starts all wars, including the huge mess the world finds itself in right now. This is also why there must always be a separation between church and state.

So anyway, in his apology, Mel Gibson announced that he was taking the necessary steps to ensure his "return to health", and while I truly hope he is able to clean himself up (for his family's sake), Detox and Kabbalah classes may not be enough to repair his shattered public image (unless the "public" hates the Jews as much as he does); however, another "Mad Max" movie would definitely be a step in the right direction towards making things right with me ;)

That is of course, if he hasn't lost his driver's license; because "Mad Max" should not be forced to hitchhike or ride the bus because "Mel Gibson" decided to drink and drive.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Tour De France Winner Floyd Landis Fails Drug Test

It seems to me that the only way society can clean up professional sports once and for all, is by removing ALL of the incentives to "win". That way the only people who are willing to train and compete are the true athletes, who simply love to play sports. After all, it's really just a "game" anyway.

With all the controversy that surrounded this year's "World Cup" and now the "Tour de France", maybe it's about time they took the "professional" out of professional sports and left it to those who want to compete, instead of just "win".

The way I see it, all championships and world records should be abolished; and all contracts and endorsement deals should be torn up. If fans truly love the sport then they will want to watch it, regardless of who's playing; as well, if athletes truly love the sport then they will want to play it, regardless of the reward$. There is really no point in arguing that the quality of sports in general would suffer due to the loss of its "superstars", because the "world's best" athletes are determined solely by those who are actually willing to compete.

So, I guess what I' m REALLY trying to say here is... Isn't it about time "Special Olympians" started getting endorsement deals?

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Former "N Sync" Singer Lance Bass Announces He Is Gay

Lance who?... Oh yeah, the member of "NSync" Will Sasso used to impersonate on "MadTV" back in the late 90's. To be honest, I've never really listened to "NSync" (on purpose), but my guess is that Lance Bass wasn't the "baritone" of the group; that is if they even had a baritone. Or was THAT the reason they were called a "boy band"? ;)

I don't know why this is being treated as such a big deal by the media. After all, everyone knows that the original "boy band" wasn't the "New Kids on the Block"... it was the "Village People". In fact, if you go back and check the footage; pay close attention to an audience during an "NSync" concert and you'll be shocked to discover that the screaming you hear is not from the 13 year old girls, but 40 year old men in attendance. :)

Perhaps it is just my bigoted naivety, but I always just assumed that "boy bands" were gay ("not that there's anything wrong with that") mainly because their fan base consisted primarily of little girls and older gay men. So for me, the news that Lance Bass is a homosexual is about as shocking as George W. Bush announcing the Iraq had no WMDs.

You know, I'd be more surprised if the other members of "NSync" were to go to "People Magazine" to announce that they were straight. Yes, that includes Justin Timberlake; who I know only because he is currently porkin' the lovely Cameron Diaz.

...He's only fooling himself :)

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Kofi Annan Accuses Israel of Deliberately Targeting United Nations

I wonder, at what point does a military bombardment cease being an "accident" and actually become "deliberate"?

Is it during a reported 14 incidents of shelling near a "long established and clearly marked" United Nations post (and civilian shelter); or perhaps it's when a guided-bomb is dropped "directly"on it? Maybe it's only considered to be "deliberate" when it occurs AFTER the initial series of "accidents", like when rescue workers are fired upon while trying to search the rubble for survivors.

Of course you can't just accuse someone of deliberately targeting you without running the risk of offending them, and Israel is no exception. For Kofi Annan to use the term "deliberate" to describe the Israeli attack on a UN observation post either means that there is irrefutable evidence to support his statement, or he just REALLY wants Israel to get the heck out of Lebanon.

For his part, Israel's UN Ambassador Dan Gillerman does his best to defend his country's reputation by arguing that the attacks were not "deliberate" and that it may in fact have been Hezbollah that was responsible. Now, this doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me because I always thought it was Iran that was supplying them with their weapons, not the United States ;) I guess his argument would make more sense if you consider that those hi-tech smart bombs that Israel gets from the States seem to be about as "intelligent" as Hezbollah's Katyusha rockets ... or maybe it all just depends on who's at the controls.

You know the old saying... "A poor musician always blames their instrument"... of warfare ;)

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Condoleezza Rice's Diplomatic Mission to Lebanon

According to psychologists, it is a proven FACT that "misery loves company". This may explain why the United States is so opposed to an immediate ceasefire between Israel and Lebanon; however, in this case it may not be "misery" that loves company as much as it is "misery" that's trying to make all of its allies just as miserable as they are ;)

Oh sure, there are plenty of valid reasons to call for an immediate ceasefire in Lebanon, but why would the United States want to do that when they're still stuck in Iraq and Afghanistan?

Maybe by enabling a wider conflict in the Middle East to erupt, the United States believes that they could develop a more meaningful relationship with Israel, because they would suddenly find themselves with MUCH more in common... Or, perhaps this is just payback for Israel not trying to talk the United States out of invading Iraq.

Jeez... with friends like these, who needs "Al Qaeda"? ;)

Monday, July 24, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Former Israel PM Ariel Sharon's Condition Worsens

Even back in January, the chances of Ariel Sharon recovering from his massive stroke were very slim; and the longer that he remains in a coma, the less likely he is to ever come out of it.

While I am certainly hopeful that the former Israeli Prime Minister is somehow able to recover; 6 months on a respirator, in a seemingly irreversible coma is a very long time, especially for a 78 year old.

So... at what point do the doctors finally decide to just let nature take its course?

I guess you could call it a sign of the times, but the "conspiracy theorist" in me tends to wonder if Ariel Sharon may have already "passed away" and the Israeli government is just waiting for the right time to take him off the respirator... Say, ahead of a massive land invasion of a neighbouring country (for example).

I know this may sound insensitive to some, but Ariel Sharon is more than just a man; he was the head of state, the leader of his political party and the figure head of a whole political movement in Israel. If the Israeli government (now led by Sharon's former Deputy Prime Minister) could find a way to strategize his passing in a way that would work to "Israel's" fullest advantage, not only do I think that they would take advantage of this (as probably would any country that's at "war"), but I also think that Ariel Sharon would have probably approved of it as well.

Even if his passing only means distracting the world for a few days to allow the Israeli government more time to continue its controversial "war" against Hezbollah/Lebanon.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Kofi Annan Calls for End to Hostilities in Lebanon

As world events continue to spiral out of control, it is becoming painfully apparent that the United Nations can ONLY work when ALL 5 permanent members of the Security Council WANT it to work. Otherwise, it's about as useless as a tin of beans without a can opener (mmmm... beans).

Personally, I agree with Kofi Annan's demand for the immediate end to hostilities between Lebanon and Israel. Not just because it would (hopefully) reduce the number of civilian casualties on both sides of the border, but because it would also put an end to Israel's recruitment drive for Hezbollah.

Let's face it, the last 9 days have hardly been a hindrance to the organization; in fact, I would say that Israel's heavy handed response to the abduction of two of its soldiers has played right into the hands of their enemy, by rallying the population of Lebanon (and much of the middle east) behind Hezbollah. As a result of its relentless "reaction" and its refusal to recognize the Lebanese Prime Minister's calls for a "truce" (or the UN's calls for cease-fire), much of the world no longer views Israel as the "victim", but rather as the "instigator" of a much larger conflict.

Perhaps it is part of Israel's strategy to "build up" its enemy, so that it can be brought down easier. By getting the country to support Hezbollah, Israel could intensify its operation against Lebanon while at the same time reduce the number of "civilian casualties" by basically turning the entire population into "enemy combatants".

Look, there is no band-aid solution to the crisis in Middle East (any of them), mainly because in order the treat the wound, you first need to stop the hemorrhaging; and the only way to do that is by getting the UN to apply pressure to it. However, the UN cannot do this when its hands are tied behind its back.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Today's Cartoon: George W. Bush Vetoes Embryonic Stem Cell Research Funding

"What came first, the chicken or the egg?"... Well, I guess if you were to ask George W. Bush he'd probably tell you that the "egg" came first, which is why he used his presidential veto power for the first time to block federal funding for embryonic stem cell research.

I try to understand the fears and concerns of those who may be opposed to this kind of medical research; but hearing President Bush describe how his decision protected boys and girls from becoming "spare parts", for me was kinda like hearing Colonel Sanders say that changing the name of "Kentucky Fried Chicken" to "KFC", somehow benefited the chickens.

First of all, I think there are plenty of people nowadays who would question President Bush's sincerity (especially during an election year), when he says that does not support the taking of "innocent human life" for the benefit of others; and secondly, these "boys and girls" that he speaks of do not exist, nor will they ever because the embryos that were to be used for research were going to be disposed of anyway. So in reality, his decision doesn't actually "save" anybody; except perhaps the Republican held Congress, in November.

So, "Why did the chicken cross the road?"... Probably to see if it could find a cure for its Alzheimer's or Parkinson's disease somewhere else.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Today's Cartoon: George W. Bush Gives Angela Merkel Massage at G8 Summit

Okay, so what's the deal with the U.S. President? Did he confuse the vodka for water at the G8, or was he purposefully making a spectacle of himself in an effort to distract everyone from the situation in Lebanon?

Seriously, how can George W. Bush expect to ease the tension in the Middle East, if he can't even ease the tension in Angela Merkel? At least Bill Clinton would have dimmed the lights and played some music to set the mood first. I mean, how else do you think he was able to get Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat together, to sign the "Oslo Accords" ;)

It seems that practically everything that President Bush touches ends up going bad (except for the elections). From invading sovereign nations to eating a bag of pretzels; heck, he can't even grope the German Chancellor without messing it up.

Hey, I'm no hit with the ladies either, but at least I'm able to get a little further than that before they start to panic ;)

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Bush and Blair Chat Secretly Recorded at G8 Summit

I wonder if this was staged. I mean, what a perfect way to make yourself heard without having to go through the "official" process of rehearsing a script and delivering a speech. Just pretend that you left the microphone on, open your mouth and let your guts rumble! And if anyone takes offense, then you could just blame it on the vodka ;)

Personally, I wish all of President Bush's speeches were delivered this way. They would be short, simple and to the point; in other words, he'd be writing his own material for a change.

Well, at least we know that he is AWARE of the issues, even if he's become too powerless to do anything about it; and regardless of what you may think of his "uncensored" remarks, I think we can ALL agree on one thing... It was certainly nice of Tony Blair to visit George over at the "Kiddie's Table", wasn't it? ;)

Monday, July 17, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Israel Bombs Canadian Tourists in Lebanon

So, I guess by the Israeli government's standards, this would mean that Canada is now at war with Israel, eh? You know, it's a good thing Canada is NOT "Israel" otherwise Israel would be "Lebanon" over this.

Let me get this straight... In an effort to secure the release of two captured soldiers from Hezbollah, the Israeli government decides to throw the mother of all hissy fits against a sovereign nation, which "tourism" is one of its main industries. Not only has this endangered the lives of tens of thousands of tourists and millions of Lebanese civilians, but you'd have to think that it also makes the situation for those two captured Israeli soldiers (remember them?) even worse than it already is.

Meanwhile, world leaders seem to be too timid to ask Israel to stop blowing up their citizens long enough for them to go in and get them out of Lebanon; leaving many of them forced to hitchhike their way to safety, within the "Axis of Evil" instead.

I've got it! Why not just re-enact "Operation Dynamo" and launch around 700 fishing vessels from Cyprus across the Mediterranean, to rescue the trapped tourists from the shores of Lebanon. It worked so well before, why not try it again? You could have Cyprus play the part of England and the tourists could play the role of the trapped British soldiers.

Now... who do we get to play the Germans?

Friday, July 14, 2006

Today's Cartoon: United States Vetoes UN Resolution Condemning Israel in Gaza

I guess when John Bolton mentioned that "There is no such thing as the United Nations" this was the kind of scenario that he had in mind. By exercising their veto power against any (and all) course of action that they perceive to not be in the sole interest of their country, the United States has rendered the efforts of the U.N. to be about as meaningless as England playing in the World Cup.

Needless to say, there should be an immediate de-escalation in this current crisis in the Middle East, before any more countries get sucked into it. So, one would think that a proposal which called for an immediate cease fire and release of prisoners (on both sides) would have been universally approved... But then, what do I know about diplomacy, eh?

By vetoing a UN resolution which would have called for Israel to halt its military offensive against the Palestinians, what the United States has basically done is give Israel full permission to continue its "shopping spree" of violence in the Gaza Strip; and in its effort to "rescue" one captured Israeli soldier, claim the lives of dozens of Palestinian civilians in the process. This serves to make the release of that soldier even more difficult, if not completely impossible by now. Smooth.

...And then of course, there's the situation in Lebanon as well.

Let’s just hope that this does not end up turning into a third world war, because this is an unbelievably stupid way to spark a global conflict. Seriously, history is going to end up thinking that we were ALL retarded. :(

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Israel Invades Lebanon

Forget the "dinar", it would appear that Israeli soldiers are quickly becoming the new "currency" of choice in the Middle East.

You know, it's kind of hard to understand Hezbollah's rationale for abducting two (more) Israeli soldiers. It's not as though the Palestinians are any better off... and they only captured ONE soldier.

And of course, what would a bad situation be without the Bush administration coming along to make things worse by blaming everything on two countries that are not even part of the conflict... yet. Then again, neither is the United States... yet.

My guess is that field for this year's Noble Peace Prize is still WIDE open.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Today's Cartoon: The 7/11 Train bombings in Mumbai India

Talk about a sick sense of humour...

Whoever planned the Mumbai attacks for "7-eleven" were not just
evil but were evil biggots, by choosing a date which is also the name of a popular convenience store franchise, which stores are frequently owned and operated by Indians. Of course, this is the kind of observation that can get you into a lot of trouble, so I'll just leave it at that.

Well, if the speculation is true then it would appear that "Al Qaeda" has maintained a firm grip on its monopoly of attacks which take place on the 11th day of the month. Unfortunately, this also means that there are still 9 more months to go :(

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Chechen Warlord Shamil Basayev Dies in Truck Explosion

While there is always two sides to every conflict, it's kind of difficult to mourn the passing of a warlord who even described himself as a "terrorist" and whose tactics involved the targeting of civilians, including little children. On top of that... he also looked like Robert Caryle's character from the movie "Ravenous".

Shamil Basayev was to Russia what Osama Bin Laden is to the United States; and while there have been numerous times in which Basayev's demise has been reported in the media, it appears that this time there is no disputing what happened... just how it happened.

Russian officials view this as a huge victory in their own "War on Terror" (especially on the eve of the G8 Summit in Moscow), while Separatists see it as the result of an accident; and not the action of Russian Special Forces as claimed. However, to most of the world, the loss of Shamil Basayev is viewed with the cautious optimism that one the planet's most brutal conflicts may now be (slowly) coming to an end.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Italy Wins the World Cup

Soccer (aka. Football) is a sport that seems to involve more choreography than even figure skating, which is why I am glad to see that the team with the best "performers" won the 2006 world cup.

What makes Italy's accomplishment SO amazing is the fact that the team was playing with a severe disadvantage. No, I am not talking about the "match fixing scandal". Rather I am referring to the fact that the Italian team was so injury prone that their players seemed to have the uncanny ability to get hurt, even without being touched.

Now, some of you may call this "diving", but I don't. Instead, I see this as an extremely rare form of group based psychosomatic illness. I believe that whenever an Italian player suffers a psychotic episode during a game, for that moment, he honestly believes that he has been mortally wounded and the only reason that he does not feel any pain is because he is still in shock. I think it's important to note that this is not a problem that has only plagued the Italian team; the scourge of "psychosomatic trauma" has long been an occupational hazard for the professional soccer player, regardless of their country of origin.

So how do you cure this illness? By helping the players come to the conclusion that they are not actually injured, as quickly as possible. My suggestion would be to have a fleet of ambulances on stand-by at every soccer match and then whenever a player has an episode on the field, IMMEDIATELY rush them to the hospital and keep them there over night for observations.

By inconveniencing the players, they will quickly come to the realization that they would much rather be playing soccer than be fitted with a catheter ;)

Friday, July 07, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Internet Star Amanda Congdon Leaves "Rocketboom"

I've only watched "Rocketboom" a handful... er, I mean a couple of times ;) and while the show itself is alright, it's the success of the vblog that has really impressed me the most (yes, even more than the host and her tight t-shirts).

Even though I am not a regular viewer of "Rocketboom" I am aware of the impact that the series has had in shaping popular (internet) culture. I was amazed to discover that recently they had auctioned off 5 days worth of advertising on their site for $40 000 and have even charged companies upwards of $85 000, for similar privileges. For aspiring "bloggers", this was a very encouraging sign of the times and an indication of the kind of "real" success that is still attainable on the internet. It really did seem as though "Rocketboom" was blazing a path to success for others to follow, which is what makes it's apparent implosion all the more disappointing. It could almost be regarded as a beacon going out.

Amanda Congdon is an attractive and seemingly smart young woman, who's obviously the main reason for the show's success; but crikey, did she ever get ugly really fast. By taking her private squabble with the show's creator and making it public she has basically turned herself into the internet's version of Star Jones. Ms. Congdon may refer to her response to getting "fired" as being "transparent"; but the way I see is it, it seems more like she's sabotaging the show's future by getting its fans involved in the dispute. You know, it's reactions like this which is why companies have security escort ex-employees out of the building after they've been let go.

It's also reason's like this why I prefer to work with toons instead of actors ;)

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Convicted Enron CEO, Ken Lay Passes Away

Well, here's some fresh meat for the tabloids to chew on...

I guess we can just go ahead and add "Kenneth Lay" to the likes of "Jimmy Hoffa", "Andy Kaufman" and "Elvis Presley" as public figures, whose strange and/or unexplained demise has enabled them to achieve a sort of mythical immortality, which allows them to live on (if they're not already) indefinitely.

That being said, I believe that there are real legitimate reasons to think that Ken Lay MAY have faked his own demise, just as I believe that there are plenty of OTHER reasons to believe that he didn't. The problem is that the mainstream media will not even attempt to mention anything outside of the "official story" without any "evidence"; evidence that unfortunately they are going to have to actually go out and find for themselves, instead of just waiting for it to be fed to them by "officials", like they usually do.

All may not be as it appears, but we will NEVER know for certain, unless the press decides that this is a story that is worth investigating. It's amazing how quickly some stories are able to fall into the realm of "conspiracy theory" simply through the (deliberate?) neglect of the mainstream media.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Today's Cartoon: North Korea Uses "Independence Day" To Test Long-Range Missile

Well... after weeks of speculation, it appears that North Korea has decided to use America’s "Fourth of July" holiday as an opportunity to declare its own "independence" from the international community, by test firing its long range missile.

I think more than the actual missile test itself, the Bush Administration is probably most upset over the fact that North Korea chose "Independence Day" (or as Kim Jong-il calls it, "Wednesday") to defy them. After a day loaded with patriotic symbolism, including the launch of the space shuttle "Discovery" and the President Bush celebrating his birthday (two days early) with the troops to coincide with the day's festivities; all of a sudden, North Korea comes out nowhere (well, actually Asia) and steals the show, by using America's "Independence Day" for their own propaganda purposes.

The way I see it, this was intended to be more of a "psychological" test than a "technological" one. Sure, their long-range missile may have "failed"; but the damage was still done. Had the test actually succeeded, it would have just been shot down by the United States anyway. So by misfiring or even purposefully crashing the missile immediately after launch, North Korea was able to defy the U.S. while at the same time denying them the opportunity to claim any sort of "moral victory" by bringing down the missile.

From a "propaganda" standpoint, North Korea's missile test was successful because through it they were able to use "Forth of July" against the Bush Administration by turning the holiday into a day of protest against the United States; arguably making this "Independence Day" the most memorable one since the "Bicentennial"... but for all the wrong reasons.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Conservatives Claim Narrow Victory in Mexico's Presidential Elections

I think if I were to ever run for political office, I'd choose to run for the "Too close to call" party, because they seem to be winning all the elections lately.

The way I see it, the larger a country's population is, the more certain the elections should be (in theory). In a country with a population in excess of 100 million people, the odds of a 50/50 split at the polls should seem almost as impossible as someone getting ALL the votes, which is why I find it hard to believe that the results of recent elections in the United States, Italy and now Mexico could be as "razor thin" as they were.

To me, "Too close to call" is like a diagnosis for a failed state. It represents a country that fails to recognize its problems and/or the course to take in order to solve them; which is ridiculous, because if you were to put 100 million people in a (very large) room and ask them ANYTHING, you would get a definite answer. Whether that answer is "right" or "wrong" is uncertain; but what is certain is the fact that the larger the population is, the more likely they are to reach some sort of a consensus.

People simply are not as divided as these crooked politicians and their broken voting machines would lead us to believe. We don't live in isolation from our neighbours. The majority of ANY population shares the same standard (or sub-standard) of living and has to endure same kinds of hardship as everyone else; regardless of any political affiliation.

It's not that I don't believe that a "too close to call" election result is mathematically possible. It's just that the consistency of these results that makes me wonder if the controversy surrounding Mexico’s presidential elections may be foreshadow of the upcoming U.S. Congressional Elections, in November.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Today's Cartoon: Israel Launches Offensive In Gaza Strip

Another day, another "retaliatory strike" in the ongoing quagmire in the Middle East. No... Not THAT one; the other one. This time, it's Israel's turn to "react", and establish the "justification" for the Palestinian's violent response.

To the outside observer, watching these two nations take turns serving
"payback" to one another is kinda like watching a match at Wimbledon; except instead of tennis balls, they're using missiles and instead of scoring points, they're deliberately targeting the "ball boy". It also seems that regardless of how long they've been playing, the match remains stuck in the first set, with the score 0-0 because of this relentless "rally" of rage.

Hmmm... Now I know why I don't like tennis. Not only is it repetitive and pointless... but it also reminds me WAY too much of the conflict between the Israelis and the Palestinians. Ah, if only they could somehow get the women to stop wearing those short little skirts, I’d be able to stop watching the sport altogether ;)