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Whedonesque - a community weblog about Joss Whedon
"I'm not cheap, I'm just old."
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October 28 2012

Whedon on Romney. Joss creates a video about Mitt Romney's vision for America.

That's a good point about spam.
This is wonderful.
i didn't know spam had its own key. that's good to know. it will be very useful. in the future. to know that. when Romney's president. And I'll be eating spam. cuz it has its own key.
Nice re-use of the Much Ado set :)
Way to go Joss! Speak! And never ever stop.

And thank you for getting this out there before us east coasters enter the dark ages courtesy of Sandy Frankenstormmegaapocolypse.

[ edited by hann23 on 2012-10-28 22:17 ]
Why don't all canned goods have their own key? This will limit my options in the Zomney apocalypse...
This made me laugh. A lot.

(And then I was slightly scared of the future and went to sharpen my sword.)
As if I needed a reason to love Joss any more.

#ZOMNEYAPOCALYPSE <- let's get this trending, people!
I'm just shocked that Joss doesn't know how to pronounce "Ayn" (easy, rhymes with "mine").
Joss I love you
Entertaining and righteous. This man is the best.
Ah, Joss, always a novel approach.
First words out of husband's mouth on seeing this video: "Joss, look at your kitchen!" (We have a smallish kitchen. Maybe we should hire Kai to redesign it.)

Also, YES.
Sounds like Joss has been stocking Spam for a long time.
(Spam spam spam spam, lovely spam, wonderful spam...)

The modern cans have a pull tab top.
It is old school cans that use a key to unwrap the side of the container.
This is hilarious!
I already knew who I was voting for, and this is just further proof. Love this!!
QingTing: "I'm just shocked that Joss doesn't know how to pronounce "Ayn" (easy, rhymes with "mine")."

Oh, I bet he knows he just doesn't care. I mean, how many ppl have looked right at his name and called him "Josh" anyway? This is probably his little rebellion against that.
I'm REALLY glad he made this. I really don't want the Zomney Apocalypse (I really don't care for zombies), and with Joss making this video, EVERYONE will know what to do!

Vote for Obama!
Brilliantly brilliant. I hope Joss keeps these random YouTube videos coming every now and again!
Ha ha! I love this and have posted it onto my FB page for my non-Whedonite friends to know the love.
I am sure he said ANN because pronouncing Ayn like "Ina" makes you sound like a pretentious tea bagger that knows the history of her made up name. Arguing about a pen name is silly anyway. Let's just call her by her given name, Alisa Rosenbaum.
I really dig zombies and hope to one day be eaten by one. I wasn't planning on voting at all, but Joss Whedon just convinced me that Mitt Zomney is really the only irrational absurdist choice. bRAINS! I'm also a supporter of humor. Jon Stewart just hasn't been as funny as he was during The Shrub Years. Obama's not funny. We need to get an idiot back in the White House, if nothing more than to save Comedy Central. And for brains.

VOTE FOR ZOMNEY! BRAINS!!! 2012!!!
Can we just elect Joss as President? Of, like, everything ever? Please?
It's fairly common to Americanize the pronunciation of "Ayn." It's certainly nothing worth nitpicking.
Take Joss to bring together the zombie apocalypse and US politics together so seamlessly. :)
"Öbecause that's how he sees poor people already."

Hats off to you sir, for that well-crafted joke truth.
Kiba, his kitchen looks like the 50s ones I saw when house hunting! Except those weren't anywhere as nice as his. And certainly didn't have the kind of necessary storage space to contain the proper amount of canned goods.
I can't wait to vote for the Zomney Appocalypse! It's gonna be super fun. Until I die. But I'll have no regrets! ZOMNEY 2012, ALL THE WAY!!
Stay classy Joss! What the country needs is more of this kind of rational debate instead of the usual demonizing of others who may have different political opinions....
Hehe. http://www.facebook.com/ZomneyApocalypse

[ edited by almost cookies on 2012-10-28 23:52 ]
It is Joss' world, and he really needs to rule it (and I thought Joss' kitchen would be bigger!? Maybe the bomb shelter under the house contains the room for serious storage, and the Apocalypse Central Laboratory he needs to call his minions to do his bidding).

Seriously, I LOVE that Joss did this video. It made my day.
This almost had me in tears. ZOMNEEEEEEEEEY!
Joss is very famous now, and is using it in all the right ways. <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 WHEDON
Who was doing the filming?
This is just excellent. Hilarious obviously, but with a clear and well argued thesis. :)
Simon: "Who was doing the filming?"

If they showed us that, then we'd be wondering who was filming the person who was filming Joss. It's a maddening cycle. Ends in crazy carnival clown death. Let's not go there.
Matter of fact, to the point, brilliance. Plus Spam. I don't think one could ask for more.
"Romney is ready to make the deep roll backs in health care, education, social services, reproductive rights, that will guarantee poverty, unemployment, overpopulation, disease, rioting -- All crucial elements in creating a zombie wasteland." - Joss Whedon

I can't wait until November 6th! I wanna vote for Mitt Zomney now!!!1! Sadly it's too late for early voting in Texas, which is kinda ironic when you think about it. Or is that just coincidence? I always get those two mixed up.
Tonya: "..I don't think one could ask for more."

Cheese slices. I wish he'd left room for the cheese slices. *sniff*
I wish this would actually air as a campaign ad during tonight's episode of The Walking Dead!
I want Joss to write an episode or two for The Walking Dead!
The hallmark of great political (or really any type of) comedy is that you don't have to share the author's point of view in order to find it funny. Well done, joss.

[ edited by brinderwalt on 2012-10-29 01:01 ]
As political commentary goes, Joss makes very fine movies and television shows. +10 points for zombie humor, -10 points for ignoring the actual Zombie President campaigns.
In close-quarters combat with the ravenous dead, a Spam key, a/k/a "the pantry bayonet," can be quite handy.
I wish Joss would make a low budget zombie movie.
mbeauparland: Stay classy Joss! What the country needs is more of this kind of rational debate instead of the usual demonizing of others who may have different political opinions....


I think the best way to see this video, is as an editorial cartoon in video form. He's using comedy while making his own political point. Plus in this fashion, people will pass it around, rather than just another celebrity endorsement that is ignored.
Great! I knew Romney was a zombie. How else could he sound like he just stepped out of the 1950s?
So, explain how a video can have 300ish views, but almost 10,000 likes and 300 dislikes? You can't tell me people make rash decisions before hearing the full message, right?
YouTube is slow on updating view counts.
Really palehorse? Because in the 1950s men never helped clean up the kitchen.

Frankly I don't know who would think that Joss was demonizing anyone: the Religious Right has been longing for the apocalypse, and you know the libertarians have been preparing for a zombie attack (or any kind break down of society) for decades, so I would think that Joss' video would just be a message of hope to all of them.
YouTube has a thing where after 300 views they lock the counter for 24 hours, after which they remove repeat views and then publish. It stops people uploading videos and then refreshing it a million times to appear in the top viewed charts.
Joss for president.

Of the planet.
LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this!!!! ♥
Gossi I think that hundreds (thousands?) of Romney supporters have commented without watching the video at all ... but of course that wouldn't explain the tens of thousands of people hitting 'like' LOL.
I can't wait until the media starts reporting on this. And comedians. I hope Jon Stewart mentions it.

As a daily t-shirt site junkie, I'd also love too see a shirt of Romney as a zombie over the words zomneyapocalypse.

Btw, para-what? What did he mean by mentioning Rand?

[ edited by Skytteflickan88 on 2012-10-29 01:46 ]
If you donít have any fresh ideas, then you use stale tactics to scare voters. If you donít have a record to run on, then you paint your opponent as someone people should run from. You make a big election about small things.


Or a Zombie apocalypse. Boil it down and Joss isn't laughing about the issues at stake and I'm not either, so why play these games? It's not entertainment - it's using humor to coach malignant propaganda.
So well done! And I don't believe that is his kitchen, for those wondering. Based on what we saw in Much Ado, his kitchen is much bigger.

What did Joss do 4 years ago? I remember the big fund raiser he did against Bush some years ago but am drawing a blank on 4 years ago.
And for those who, like me, didn't know what he was talking about:
parkour.

[ edited by Lioness on 2012-10-29 01:52 ]

[ edited by Lioness on 2012-10-29 01:52 ]
Skytteflickan88: Parkour is a form of high speed obstacle course racing, ideal for escaping even the fastest zombies (of course I'm 62, and I'm afraid I won't be able to learn...). And a true Ayn Rand follower wouldn't be interested in having a bunch of useless/slow citizens expecting him to save them from the zombies.
Possibly also, from cracked.com, "Ayn Rand was a writer whose philosophical novels made famous her distaste for government and the poor."
BringItOn5x5: Joss isn't laughing about the issues at stake and I'm not either, so why play these games? It's not entertainment - it's using humor to coach malignant propaganda.

I think you guys misunderstand Joss Whedon's message entirely.

He's obviously given up being merely an absurdist, and has completely embraced the nihilist within. He's looked into the abyss and it has looked back into him, and I for one applaud him for giving up entirely. GO JOSS GO! VOTE FOR MITT! ZOMNEY APOCALYPSE 2012!!!

PARKOUR!!! *runs headlong into a conveniently placed nearby horde of zombies*
Well, at least Joss' video is a little more subtle than the video/song Richard Lewis just linked to at twitter.

OMG that was fast, Huffington Post has already set up a link to Joss' video!

[ edited by embers on 2012-10-29 02:55 ]
I love you Joss. SOOO much.

Now I'm just crossing my fingers that Colbert will play this on his next episode. It's a match made in heaven.
Whedon for President, 2016.
For people interested in views while the counter is stuck at 300, I decided to make some estimates. I'm looking at a variety of videos, taking their like-to-view ratio, and then making an estimate based upon these ratios. I cannot stress enough that these are rough values. I'll list the values after the video their estimate is based on.

George Takei's Barack Obama endorsement: 1,097,000
Felicia Day's 5th Flog: 386,000
Firefly's 10th Anniversary Panel: 674,000
Joss's boycott of Sleepwalk with Me: 1,585,000
Gangnam Style: 1,809,000

Again, treat these as very rough figures. The most I'd be willing to say is that I'd be very surprised if the video hasn't gotten at least 100,000 views, based on its current number of likes. And also, if you run it again later, you'll probably get different numbers because the number of likes will have changed.
Okay, I'm impressed that two people had posted this to my Facebook "timeline" before I'd even had a chance to watch it here. I'm starting to get the feeling that people have caught on to my Jossession.
Thank you, Mr. Whedon.
Disbanding FEMA would definitely be zombie-enabling.
I thought political discussion was not advised on this site?
Someone with more time and skills need to take the original Avengers promo, use the sounds, pics of Obama, Biden, other democrats and end with the pic of zombie Romney. It would be wonderful.
This is very wonderful. Also, parkour - I would love to be able to run up and down walls.
Oh I forgot only one sided discussion.
When you search the video, it says over 348k views.
Ran across this on twitter and tweeted it myself and also shared it on Facebook. LOVED it. YAY Joss!
Re: "who did the filming?"

On FB, in a post linking this video, the DP of Lust For Love just said:

"Woot Woot! Thanks to Daniel Kaminsky & Patrick Strapazon. Good work by Molly Cranna, Armando Macias and Charlie Panian."

Charlie was the 1st AC on Lust For Love, and also worked a couple days on Much Ado About Nothing (just coincidence). I don't know the others.
I forgot; thanks to the people that explained the references for me.
Judging by the breakfast nook and the shape of the door opening into it, this was filmed in a Craftsman bungalow built in the 1920s or thenabouts. Lots of those still standing in Southern California, but finding one that hasn't had its kitchen remodeled is fairly unusual.
"Woot Woot! Thanks to Daniel Kaminsky & Patrick Strapazon. Good work by Molly Cranna, Armando Macias and Charlie Panian."

Charlie was the 1st AC on Lust For Love, and also worked a couple days on Much Ado About Nothing (just coincidence). I don't know the others.


Cheers for that, bobw10.

Joss seems to be getting a lot of flack over the 28 Days Later zombie remark.
I was a little baffled by this, but I guess It wouldn't be as much fun making fun of "Zomney" after he looses this election.
I still don't get Spam keys. So modern pull tabs do away with the need for keys apparently, but how does a key help you open a can? Especially one that "unrolls the side-- so does that mean you have a little metal sandwich? For some reason I assumed spam came suspended in a liquid like tuna, and it seems like opening it from the sides would be messy.
I've never opened a spam tin like that, but some old-style corned beef tins here in the UK still have keys too (or they did when I was a kid, which was the last time I had corned beef). It unrolls just a small ribbon of metal around the side, which wraps around the key as you go, leaving you with a top half of tin and a bottom half of tin separated by a few mm of space where the bit of metal you rolled up with the key used to be. No, it wouldn't work for anything suspended in liquid, but I don't think spam is.

I am so pleased that I have seen this video shared multiple times on fb today by people who are Joss fans but wouldn't normally hang out here and share his every pronouncement.
#Buckner2012. #voteMatthew.
i don't want Mitt to bring the zombies ahh! scared! oh! and joss corned beef has its own key too!
Ah, the Key! This is what Dawn is all about- she is the magic opener for Spam so that we no longer need to roll the metal to open the can! (I am laughing at people tool young to remember what a key was for- they used to have them for Spam, for things like sardines, canned meat, etc.). I, being old, do remember them.
Love. Pure, unadulterated love. And kudos to Dana for making the link between Dawn, Spam and the Key!
Over 10,000 notes on our Tumblr page

http://blog.whedonesque.com/post/34512402181/joss-whedon-on-mitt-romney

I think that's a record for us (especially in such a short time)
Loved it. Shared it on Facebook. Too bad I can't vote in this election :).
Aha, classic YouTube comment fights breaking out on the vid, and in amongst them all I see "This guy sounds like a white Morgan Freeman". Bwahahahaha.
Even my seriously Joss-skeptic-Boyfriend enjoyed this.

For sure watching the US-election from the outside so far has been rather scary, but this adds a whole new level!
Just when I think I couldn't love Joss any more than I do,he comes up with another gem!

I'm now imagining Joss doing a 'Shaun of the Dead' sequel set during the presidential election.
Things like this is why i adore Joss, well, that and the good writing/entertainment in the hollywood wasteland. He is intelligent, not very filtered, and twisted. Perfect combo.
Love this, Joss, and the exquisite kitchen, wherever it is.

I kept thinking those people to be seen through the window might turn out to be zombies. Urgh!

If having knowledge of the can-key is an "old" indicator, then I have passed that line. Creak, creak, creak...

IMHO, the best thing about the newfangled pull-tops is that if you could save up enough of them you might be able to shingle a house. But that is a discussion for another time.
This made me love the Joss even more.
As fiction (political satire), this piece was pure Joss: brilliant, amusing, witty entertainment.

As a politcal statement, it is fiction.
I'm opposed to character assasination (what my Jewish grandmother taught me was "lashon hara", the evil tongue) toward anyone--except, perhaps, against certain Fox television executives.

I wish there was more effort given by those who support President Obama, especially by the Presidnt himself, in justifying why the President deserves my vote rather than bashing Govenor Romney.

Whoever wins the Presidency, it is clear that half the country will feel the wrong man won. There will be no popular "mandate" for a new President to claim as justifying major policy initiatives. More than ever, the new President will need be bipartisan.

Looking at the responses to the YouTube video, they indicate a similar polarization among Joss' fans (some applaud him, and others curse him). I would have preferred that Joss had refrained from creating such a division in his fan base (despite how much I enjoyed the wit of the piece); or that this video came out after a Romney win (if it occurs) as a piece of SNL-type political satire.
Dan Drezner, one of my favorite international relations & politics professor/bloggers, just posted his $0.02 on Joss' video. (He's an unabashed Browncoat and appeared at Comicon last summer to speak about his book, Theories of International Politics and Zombies.)

Whedon is onto something different and altogether more interesting in his video. Are there domestic policies that would increase the likelihood of a true zombie apocalypse? He lists serious cuts in health care and social services, as well as Romney's commitment to "ungoverned corporate privilege" that would foment the undead apocalypse.

Now I give Whedon points for acknowledging that we don't know which kind of undead are coming -- "no one knows for sure if they'll be the superfast 28 Days Later zombies or the old school shambling kind." But is Whedon's hypothesis actually true? One could posit that he's got it backwards. After all, the key to preventing the spread of the zombie apocalypse is to slow down the infection rate and spread of the undead contagoion. Cuts to public services might actually discourage the 47% from congregating in public places, thereby making it that much harder for the initial cluster of the undead to be able to spread their pestilence and hunger for human flesh to others. Similarly, it is likely true that giving corporations a freer hand might incentivize one of them to take the Umbrella path to global domination, Romney's tough stands on immigration will likely restrict the H1-B visas necessary to hire the Eurotrash that always seems to be a the top of the corporate ladder when Things Go Wrong.

History, most of us here could answer your question about why President Obama deserves your vote, one extremely compelling reason having to do with women's rights, including healthcare in all its many facets. But as someone pointed out, this is not a political website. I'm sure you could find information at Equality Now's website or their Facebook page.
1) It'd be fairly absurd not to at least refer to the political issues involved when the entire thrust of Joss' video is about the upcoming political election - and thus the whole point of this thread.

2) The discussion that's allowed here isn't only "one sided", but it's clear that Joss' humanitarian and liberal stances tend to attract many with similar beliefs. I've never seen people stopped from having contrary positions on here, though - I have seen people of many different political positions advised to keep it respectful and, you know, factual, insofar as that's possible.

3) I thought Joss' video was hysterical in a painfully rueful way.

4) Ayn Rand was mentioned because her philosophies have been touted by Paul Ryan and many in the current incarnation of the Republican Party. (Let's not forget that her ideological positions against collectivism or government aid did not extend, gods forbid, to herself; by no means poverty-stricken, she nonetheless accepted both Social Security and Medicare benefits towards the end of her life.) She might even have accepted governmental protection if she were attacked by a zombie.

5) Joss is, as always, The Man.

6) My opinion on the controversial kitchen speculation: it's too small and too vintage to be Joss' brand-spankin'-new Kai-designed kitchen. I'd imagine it was the kitchen in his separate little office-y house located somewhere that's else.

7) I am old enough to remember - and have cut myself - on spam keys. I welcomed the flip top. My Dad was in the Navy during WW2, though, so we actually had to sneak spam when he wasn't around because the sight of it could render him speechless with ennui and disgust.

8) I like spam. I'll have yours.
Proof that humor is bipartisan: my non-Joss fan, mostly Republican wife watched this and laughed just as much as I (huge Joss fan, mostly Democrat) did. If folks spent more time laughing at the funny & less time being offended, everybody would be much better off.
Well said, Brutus!
Why is Joss getting flack for citing "28 Days Later"? Is it because the people are still technically alive and just infected? If so, he could have cited the "Dawn of the Dead" remake (written by James Gunn), which has actual zombies just as fast as the infected in "28 Days Later." But we know what he meant.
I think Joss just likes saying the word "parkour".
We don't have a "no politics" rule here. People are just expected to treat other posters with respect, stay on topic, and not stray of into the weeds of shouting talking points at each other.
Hey, the Wall Street Journal apparently could not completely figure out that Joss was kidding, just a bit (though not in the sentiment he expresses). What a bunch of tools! http://blogs.wsj.com/speakeasy/2012/10/29/joss-whedon-warns-that-mitt-romney-could-spur-zombie-apocalypse/
"(satirical?)"
Is Christopher John Farley insane (the writer of the Wall Street Journal piece)? People do realize zombies aren't a real thing, right?
It could happen. Marines and police prep for the walking dead in an exercise called Zombie Apocalypse.

http://www.federalnewsradio.com/?nid=31&sid=3096034

[ edited by jettamesis on 2012-10-29 21:01 ]

[ edited by jettamesis on 2012-10-29 21:01 ]
Dana, the Wall Street Journal is nowadays just another Murdoch propaganda outlet. Even if they had figured out that Joss was kidding, they wouldn't be allowed to take it that way.
It's the GREAT ZOMBIE KERFUFFLE, Charlie Brown!!

[ edited by Tonya J on 2012-10-29 22:30 ]
Rowan- this I know!
So our liberal commentators here at Whedonesque assume the conservative journalist is simply insane/stupid/irrational when he was only assuming a liberal Hollywood director may simply be insane/stupid/irrational.

Pot meet kettle. And if we needed any further proof that the country is polarized...
ďIt is the prime function of a really first-rate newspaper to serve as a sort of permanent opposition in politics.Ē - H. L. Mencken

We've been lacking that for some years, and I don't know why. I'd hoped better from Joss's entry into the fray. "Shouting talking points at each other?" What are we talking about but a brilliant trojan-video wrapping talking points in ham on wry?

It is *a* prime function of art, I think, to question the power and assumptions in our world. Joss has the talent to go past slimeing the designated bad guys. Who's really the bad guys here? What choices are well made, and which work out well? To be bought-off is to be owned. The complement to hero-worship is daemonization. Do we want to be sold into choosing that way? In stead he's throwing rocks.

Maybe it's unfair of me to want more out of Joss. He's a genius. Everybody he's worked with says he's a mensch. I'd pay many times what he charged for the joy he's given me. He's widened the range of "acceptable" portrayals of women in pop culture. Now, he's bringing Shakespeare into movie theaters. By any measure he's done the impossible. Yet, I wasn't ready to find that video as cheap as it seemed to me.
I didn't think of him as a conservative journalist, I thought of him as someone who can't tell the video is meant to be humorous. Disagreeing with the video's point and not being able to see that it has jokes in it are two different things. One requires an apposing political view, the other requires spam being seen as a political argument.
Perhaps Joss will make the Rachel Maddow show tonight. http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2012/10/29/14775465-morning-maddow-october-29?lite
Dana5140, I think you're seeing a "tool" where none exists. The WSJ article starts out by saying that "Serious voters, one would hope, want campaign 2012 to be about serious things." Obviously this was written as the set up to an article about something that the writer doesn't consider to be serious. The article also states that Joss is an Obama supporter, even though he pretends to support Romney in the video. I know liberals think that all conservatives are moronically stupid, but the writer obviously realizes that Joss is kidding.
I thought it was a great video personally speaking, as it deals with a few of my favourite things:

a) zombies
b) apocalypses
c) washing up while political canvassing for absolutely no reason
d) absurdity in political ads
e) keys on spam (the company I work for puts keys on corned beef)

It did lack robots though. I'm burning my browncoat right now as a result.

Truthfully, it did what joss does best - being silly to sneak in the serious. If America votes in Romney, it won't start the apocalypse. It will mean, for example, "The actions Iíll take immediately is to remove funding for Planned Parenthood... It won't be in my budget." - Mitt Romney, October 10th 2012. Agree with things like that? Disagree? Think about it before voting. And then vote accordingly. Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan are offering a very different vision for America, one where women absolutely should have less rights over their bodies, where the government will have massive cuts (which worked not so well in Spain, where youth unemployment sits at 52%) (Greece 53%) (Portugal.. Italy... I can go on)...

There's some pretty fundamental changes (or as they're often referred to, "roll backs") being tabled here. I look at the vision Mitt is offering and think 'Wow'. And not a good wow. More the kind of wow before Ripley kicks me out the airlock.

I also like Alien.
Jason Alexander tweeted the HollywoodReporter's link to Joss' Zomney video. So Joss' video continues to go viral.
The WSJ article starts out by saying that "Serious voters, one would hope, want campaign 2012 to be about serious things."


Really? Serious things like, what, exactly? The fact that the President of the United States has not seen fit to personally hand-deliver his birth certificate and grade transcripts and Social Security Card and Selective Service Card and baptismal record and whatever-the-hell-else they can think of to every - single - person the RNC can manipulate into demanding them, and allow each and every one of them to run whatever bogus "examination" they can come up with?

No. Sorry. The WSJ jettisoned any claim they ever had to being a serious news source when they decided to become one of Murdoch's official RNC mouthpieces.

I know liberals think that all conservatives are moronically stupid


No, what I think is that way, WAY too many self-proclaimed "conservatives" - especially, but not exclusively, the ones with a well-funded public presence - are deliberately stupid, and playing to a target audience that does not, or will not, make much of an effort to weed out the trash.
Rowan Hawthorn, My point was that the WSJ writer knew that Joss was kidding. You seem to be responding to completely different points that I never made.
Gossi said:
If America votes in Romney, it won't start the apocalypse. It will mean, for example, "The actions Iíll take immediately is to remove funding for Planned Parenthood... It won't be in my budget." - Mitt Romney, October 10th 2012. Agree with things like that? Disagree? Think about it before voting. And then vote accordingly. Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan are offering a very different vision for America, one where women absolutely should have less rights over their bodies, where the government will have massive cuts (which worked not so well in Spain, where youth unemployment sits at 52%) (Greece 53%) (Portugal.. Italy... I can go on)...


Last year, Planned Parenthood reported one adoption for every 340 abortions. Although they will claim that no federal tax dollars are being used directly for abortions, it is subsidizing their business and does subsidize "family planning" programs that advocate abortion. If you believe that government should not be involved in reproductive rights (and whatever my personal reservations, I am ultimately pro-choice), government should also not be involved in forcing tax payers who do not support abortion to pay into such a company. I have no problem whatsoever in cutting funding to Planned Parenthood - it's simply not government's role.

Why did President Obama oppose a ban on selective sex abortion? Having a life snuffed out simply because it's female... how exactly is that consistent with "Women's Rights"?

And by all means, let's talk about Spain, Greece, etc. Those are economies that were already buried with out of control, unsustainable entitlement programs. In four years, what has President Obama done to address Social Security and Medicare's impending insolvency? What's his plan today? He has none. All he's done is raided Medicare to create a brand new mega-entitlement with Obamacare. We are over 16 trillion in debt. Fundamental changes are coming whether we want them or no. It's simply a question of whether we steer it now with some tough decisions or fall off a cliff when it's beyond all control.

Rowan Hawthorn said:
Really? Serious things like, what, exactly? The fact that the President of the United States has not seen fit to personally hand-deliver his birth certificate and grade transcripts and Social Security Card and Selective Service Card and baptismal record and whatever-the-hell-else they can think of to every - single - person the RNC can manipulate into demanding them, and allow each and every one of them to run whatever bogus "examination" they can come up with?


And the same could be said for the witch hunt for Mitt Romney's tax records going back to the beginning of time. Acting as a "mouthpiece" and dumbing down their message to play against uninformed voters is hardly the exclusive domain of the right / WSJ / Fox News. There is no objective media anymore - none. If you're not sampling sources from both sides, you're living in a carefully manipulated bubble.

[ edited by BringItOn5x5 on 2012-10-30 03:57 ]
BringItOn5x5 -

I think the adoption to abortion ratio is very misleading in the context you present it. Even assuming there were foster parents available for every one of those pregnancies had they been brought to term, one would also need to assume that those mothers would not have chosen abortion without Planned Parenthood's influence in order for that statistic to carry the weight you seem to put on it. I am not convinced that Planned Parenthood actively advocates abortion in the guise of family planning, and would require far more evidence than you've presented here. For starters, a source would help.

Furthermore, what about the 97% of non-abortion services Planned Parenthood provides, like cancer screening, often to people who would otherwise have no access?

How would one enforce a ban on selective sex abortion? By barring the abortion of any fetus whose sex had been identified?

I'm glad you brought up Social Security and Medicare in the same post, because they make Planned Parenthood's budget (not to mention public broadcasting) look like a drop in the bucket by comparison, especially in proportion to the amount of political ire that gets raised over its funding or defunding. I'm no expert on the subject, but it seems to me that the plans of both candidates fall far short of solving the problem. My problem with the actions of the Republican party is that they've used the debt ceiling as a political tool to actively threaten our immediate ability to pay our obligations, thus harming our credit rating and the economy. It's as though they want the economy to grow worse so that they can blame the administration. By contrast, it seems to me that Obama has had his hands full keeping the economy aloft and unemployment down. Yes, it's unfortunate that his strongest argument is "things could have been worse," but I believe it. We were on the verge of another great depression, and we may not be out of the woods yet. But the actions of the Republican party, whose primary strategy seems to be to cut programs that benefit the poor while keeping taxes low for the rich, make it difficult for me to see the insistence on the primacy of the debt above all other concerns as anything but an excuse to further that strategy, which I credit as having contributed to the recession in the first place. I imagine you see it differently, but are you here to convince views like mine to change?

And I just don't see the equivalence between the birthers and those who want Romney to disclose his tax records. The birther insinuations against Obama have been ludicrous, racist, and based on outright falsehood.

[ edited by zoinkers on 2012-10-30 05:36 ]
BringItOn5x5: We are over 16 trillion in debt. Fundamental changes are coming whether we want them or no. It's simply a question of whether we steer it now with some tough decisions or fall off a cliff when it's beyond all control.


Unfortunately, it doesn't seem Mitt Romney has a plan either. It would be one thing if Romney really wanted to tackled the debt/deficit problem, keep tax revenue stable as funding for programs were cut across the board. However, he's suggesting trillions of dollars of tax cuts, which apparently will be made by closing tax loopholes, but cutting all possible tax deductions won't pay for the 20% across the board tax cut that he wants.

The details all of which Mitt Romney & Paul Ryan don't seem to want to get into, for fear of scaring off independent voters, or possibly free of being held to these details if they win the election.

Also since taxes is one of the issues in this election, Mitt Romney's tax records are a bit relevant to the election. Also it was originally the other Republican candidates that made the big push for Romney to release his tax records. (That said, I do agree that in the US, news media bias has gotten a bit ridiculous these days, both on the left & right.)
And by all means, let's talk about Spain, Greece, etc. Those are economies that were already buried with out of control, unsustainable entitlement programs.

I hate to get into a political fracas, but this does misconception has driven me to speak out: the problems of Spain, Greece, Italy, are NOT related to their outsize entitlement programs. Germany, France, the UK and Northern European countries (like Sweden, Switzerland) have even more generous entitlement programs, and they are not the countries that are foundering. The euro debt crisis is tied to a chain reaction set off by the global economic crisis of 2008. The economies of these euro countries collapsed (Spain's economic boom was tied to an incredibly inflated housing bubble... sound familiar?). The problem was that, unlike, say the U.S., their currency is the euro and it's pretty much controlled politically by, well, the Germans (and to a lesser extent) the French. They couldn't devalue their currency and apparently (according to all these economists, of which I am NOT one), this set their economies up for unending economic crises.

The conundrum is far more complicated than: oh, those entitlement programs that led those silly Europeans to economic downfall. Each country is obviously different -- Greece has a double whammy problem in that it does have a generous pension program but also high rate of tax dodging, and Spain actually pre-2008, had pretty low rates of government debt, but just got utterly slammed by their housing crisis collapse and could not get back on its feet because its currency is not under its control.

The real problem is the euro. It's an unwieldy thing because it's a currency without a political union. Germans don't feel responsible for Spanish debt. Which is fine, but unfortunately, the Spanish share a currency with the Germans, the terms of which are pretty much set by the German government and banks (yes, also the French, kinda).

In other words, it's complicated.
I think we gone slightly off our flight path. So if we could get back to discussing the video then that would be lovely.
I wonder whether Joss was also satirizing both parties' penchant for demonizing their opponents with over the top accusations. "Romney will bring on the zombie apocalypse" strikes me as making fun of the Democrats.
Here is the quote that led me to call the WSJ "tools." And believe me, that is not the term I would normally use; I would be far more harsh and profane. "In a new (satirical?) YouTube video, he warns that a vote for Mitt Romney could bring on a supernatural disaster for mankind." See, the parenthetical insertion of (satirical?) changes the meaning of the quote.

PS. I love all the false equivalencies noted above.

What I find most interesting now is how this is being reported. Many news leads about this start by stating that Joss is supporting Romney, and you need to read on to see that he really is not.

And I am guessing that is not really Joss' kitchen. I say this because you can see people walking by, cars driving by, and I would guess Joss might need a bit of privacy these days. It is clear that his cache is so large now that this vidoe clip is getting virally spread to millions. We have gone global!
Something which does trouble me slightly: Will this video change anyone's mind? I think its primary intent is to be funny, and secondly it aims to get people talking ... success on both counts. But how many undecideds (or people on the right, for that matter) are going to see this and decide not to vote for Romney? I suppose it stands the chance of swaying the opinion of someone who was previously apathetic - perhaps that's who it's aimed at? In particular, people who turned out to vote for Obama back in '08, but who are less enthusiastic now?

[ edited by zoinkers on 2012-10-30 13:14 ]
I was not intending to spark a debate about Repubs vs Dems vs Aliens vs Predators, so apologies if I did. I really dislike tribal politics.

To be specific with an example above - I do believe the US government should allocate a small amount of funding to birth control, abortions and related issues as they currently do. If you don't agree with me, that's fine: vote for Romney/Ryan. I cited Spain for a reason; their economy was built on mortgage debt and property building, and severe government austerity imposed by their government (not the EU) has crippled the country. 53% youth unemployment. The point I was trying to make is there's some really radical proposals on the table here and people need to think about where they stand.
Okay... the video. It calls into question what Romney stands for and where it will lead, which has naturally spawned a deeper debate on some of those issues. I'm happy to have that discussion and dive as deep as anyone cares to go - some fair points here and some I'd really like to discuss further. I'm equally happy to not have that discussion at all, but talking around the thing you're actually talking about... I don't know how to do that. That would probably be my cue to exit on this one.

I'd be happier still if Joss followed the same policy and wasn't lobbing political hand grenades from 30,000 ft. This is certainly not Joss having "playful fun" with Romney and the GOP. My opinion, do the discussion justice or don't go there in the first place.
Funny. He is, of course, wrong. The Zombie virus will be developed by a large, unaccountable government. The one being built by Obama.

The closed door health care reform negotiations, the ones that Obama promised to be open, that lead to such windfall profits for big pharmaceutical companies and insurance companies, most likely also included discussions on the zombie virus. How to release it and it's antidote, to maximize profits by pharmaceutical corporations and to create a totalitarian, alliance-like government. But for a small, tenth of a percent of the population, the antidote will have opposite effect. Their aggressor response will increase beyond madness. Then a rag-tag group of rebels and smugglers will learn the secret...
BringItOn5x5: I agree. The current political climate and what I had hoped for America has become such that I don't know - and no longer care to bother with if I did - any other way to say what I think besides saying what I think. Too much water under the bridge for walking on eggs. So it's better for me to just leave the discussion where it is.
In video news, YouTube tell me it's the most popular video online now, with 3.3 million views and counting (the stats lag).

[ edited by gossi on 2012-10-30 14:14 ]
No-longer-relevant comment deleted by poster.

[ edited by zoinkers on 2012-10-31 05:02 ]
Get back to discussing the video and don't call each other out. If I have to warn for the third time, I will not be so pleasant.
I don't know about y'all, but I'm going to stock up on Spam. And Twinkies. Can't do parkour with my bad neck, so I'm planning to hole up in the basement and hope no one notices me. :-)
It just seems to me - and my guess is we'll find out for sure the next time anybody interviews Joss Whedon and asks about it - that where you or I might simply say, "Grr, arrgh" in frustration at the build-up to the elections, Joss being Joss, he made a video that is much funnier than just saying "Grr, arrgh." Also, "grr, arrgh" does not mention parkour.
Am I right in thinking that more people have seen this video than certain episodes of Dollhouse that aired on Fox?
Yes. And Dr.Horrible.
More people have seen the video than almost all network shows get in 18-49. I'd imagine most of the people who would watch this are 18-49. If you looked at it in standard network TV mode (which you shouldn't, but just for fun) they sell ads (and so make money) for views within 3 days of initial airing, so by tomorrow it will likely out rate most network TV shows in total viewers too. Of course, that's just noise - it's just a sign of the changing face of.. the world, really. There's always a place for zombie talk.

Re Dr Horrible - in fairness, if you search for 'dr horrible' on YouTube the first ten videos (there's thousands) have 10 million views.
Wait - Spam cans still have keys, right?
Click on the graph icon underneath the video and you can get a break down of the audience demographics.

Here's where it currently is at:

Top demographics
Male, 35-44 years
Male, 45-54 years
Female, 45-54 years

Which to me is a surprisingly older audience. I wonder if this comes from so many news sites picking up on it, which might have an older audience. YouTube only shows a small number of sites that first picked it up, so you can't see how say the Wall Street Journal brought in.
Side note, YouTube have stopped counting views across the board due to their database being knocked out due to Sandy.
There are a *number* of valid responses to political concerns, including but not limited to: a controlled debate situation, an ad hoc debate, investigative reporting, a scheduled roundtable discussion, a jolly impromptu roundhouse with water pistols, pamphleteering, editorial cartoons, plays, newspaper opinion pieces, bumper stickers, posters, skits, buttons, tweets, posts, blogs, and most relevantly to this thread: satire, in the form of written and/or theatrical pieces. Joss chose the latter.

Political satire has a long and reputable history, from Juvenal and Swift, to Kubrick, Fey & Poehler, and of course Stewart and Colbert.

It may not be your cup of tea, but satire can't simply be dismissed as "demonization" (in the modern parlance) or failing to do the discussion justice, or, you know, not being serious enough to be valid. (And I think we probably should know Joss well enough by now to know that he takes the importance of questions of voting, individual rights, power - and power abuse - and the importance of democracy very seriously.)

Satire is a different kind of approach from reasoned discourse - it tries to reach someone through its absurdity, and by exaggerating certain situations or trends or tendencies to a ridiculous degree (like Swift's "A Modest Proposal") in order to expose what the writer feels is stupidity or error or folly.

You don't have to like it, of course, but it is a perfectly valid type of political criticism.
QuoterGal, can you ghost write my posts please? I'll pay you in jelly beans.
I'll pay her in beer.
I believe a jelly bean-and-beer diet is exactly what my doctor has prescribed for me. #NutritiousAndDelicious

(Thought I actually can be bought more easily with chocolate and perry. #JustFYI)

And thankee for sayin'.
Do I want a Zomney Apocalypse or a Zobama Apocalypse? Choices, choices. This is so hard for libertarians like me! Gosh. I'm only a highly educated computer geek, not a really smart and politically saavy person like Joss.

Maybe I just need more brains. That's it! Wait, I don't remember that bite mark on my arm. Where'd that come from? Where was I? Oh, right, um, er, brrraaaaaaaaiiinnnnssss...

[ edited by quantumac on 2012-10-31 04:23 ]
I was going to try add one more comment about political satire but QuoterGal said it way, way better than I ever could.
Is there a quota on QuoterGal quoters? :)
I don't know if anyone is still reading this topic but..

WOOOT! Yet..otoh :( No zombie apocalypse now.
My thoughts exactly. We're saved! ;-)
I'm still keeping up on my parkour, just in case.

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