BRANDOLAND: Talking to God...For You!

Saturday, December 24, 2005

December 2004

Yo.

Good take a trip in the time machine today: Setting the dials to "December, 2004."

Here's where we were --

Hey now.

Great NPR piece on the creation of "Rudolph" this morning...and a brief reference to a "GE Executive's" demand for "content change" after the original (1964) broadcast.

"Say what?"

NPR did not "elaborate" on that point, so me looked into the story a bit further. Here are the details:

Y'all know the classic "Misfit" song, sung by our very dear friends Rudolph and "Herm." The acceptable lyrics from the acceptable scene go like this:

Why am I such a misfit?
I am not just a nit wit!
You can fire me
I quit!
Seems I don't fit in.

Why am I such a misfit?
I am not just a nit wit!
Just because my nose glows
Why don't I fit in?

Fine. No problems there. Simple message. Helps set up the story. Herm is bummed out, Rudolph is bummed out, they're both "misfits," blah blah blah.

Well...there was another scene. A cute, little reprise of the "Misfit" song. In the original show. Went like this:

Cut To:

EXT. WOODS - DAY
(Rudolph, Hermey)

Rudy and Hermey are strolling through the forest...and singing the following tune:

We're a couple of misfits
We're a couple of misfits
What's the matter with misfits
That's where we fit in!

We're not daffy and dilly
Don't go 'round willy nilly
Seems to us kinda silly
That we don't fit in.

We may be different from the rest
Who decides the test
Of what is really best?

We're a couple of misfits
We're a couple of misfits
What's the matter with misfits
That's where we fit in!

Okay. No problems, right?

Wrong.

Apparently, the GE dude (ie, the show's SPONSOR) had some trouble with this song. Maybe some trouble with the music. Maybe some trouble with the lyrics. Maybe some trouble with the message. Dunno. Regardless, dude made a phone call or three. And demanded a change. And a new song. In place of this one.

And it was done.

The replacement (a part of every broadcast since 1965)? The now classic tune..."Fame & Fortune."

The "F&F" lyrics:

Fame and fortune, fame and fortune
We're off to seek them now
Anyone can have them both
It just takes the right know-how
We put on our traveling shoes today
We won't stop until we find the way to
Fame and fortune, fame and fortune
They will be ours some day

Fame and fortune, fame and fortune
They will be ours some day!

"Amen!"

God, where to start with this one?

Let's see. Think, think, think.

What's the matter with misfits VS anyone can have (fame and fortune).

Hmm.

Big, big difference between the two songs, don't ya think?

"Oh, you have no idea. There were a lot of 'misfits' floating around in the 60's. Thinkin' they had rights and stuff. They didn't need to be reminded of that."

Right.

"Plus, the 'Fame & Fortune' message is so much more...positive."

Right.

"Anyone can have them both. It just takes the right know-how."

Of course.

"Anyone can have them both. It just takes the right know-how."

"Anyone can have them both. It just takes the right know-how."

"Anyone, daddy?"

"Anyone, son."

"Even me, daddy?"

"Even you, son. It just takes the right know-how. And some decent connections. Heh heh."

"Even...you, daddy?"

"I do run a Fortune 500 company, son."

"Even...gays and black people, daddy?"

"Well, let's be reasonable, son."

*

Great bit from mediamatters.org re: the Rev Jerry Falwell.

For those of you who missed it...Jer was the "guest-host" of Crossfire on Thursday. Along with James Carville.

As soon as the program started, Carville and Falwell launched into a quick discussion re: W's "decision" to add 12,000 more troops to the, uh, situationin Iraq. And what this "meant."

Here's the exchange:
CARVILLE: Why are we already there for so long and we need more and more troops if it's going so well?

FALWELL: Well, it's going -- it's going -- I think it is going well. You know, CNN does not always get it right, but it goes pretty well if you watch it on Fox.
Yes, Reverend, the war goes "pretty well" if you watch it on Fox.

IF YOU WATCH IT ON FOX.

*

MANDATORY Bill Moyers...and a recent speech on the Religious Right, the environment and the Middle East.

The Cliffs Notes version? Our friends on the Uber-Right do not care about the above mentioned thingees. In fact, they're psyched; planet decay and political unrest in the Middle East suggest...The Rapture.

You can read the whole speech here.

A few excerpts:
These true believers subscribe to a fantastical theology concocted in the 19th century by a couple of immigrant preachers who took disparate passages from the Bible and wove them into a narrative that has captivated the imagination of millions of Americans.

Its outline is rather simple, if bizarre (the British writer George Monbiot recently did a brilliant dissection of it and I am indebted to him for adding to my own understanding): once Israel has occupied the rest of its "biblical lands," legions of the anti-Christ will attack it, triggering a final showdown in the valley of Armageddon.

As the Jews who have not been converted are burned, the Messiah will return for the rapture.

True believers will be lifted out of their clothes and transported to heaven, where, seated next to the right hand of God, they will watch their political and religious opponents suffer plagues of boils, sores, locusts, and frogs during the several years of tribulation that follow.

I'm not making this up. Like Monbiot, I've read the literature. I've reported on these people, following some of them from Texas to the West Bank. They are sincere, serious and polite as they tell you they feel called to help bring the rapture on as fulfillment of biblical prophecy.

That's why they have declared solidarity with Israel and the Jewish settlements and backed up their support with money and volunteers. It's why the invasion of Iraq for them was a warm-up act, predicted in the Book of Revelations where four angels "which are bound in the great river Euphrates will be released to slay the third part of man."

A war with Islam in the Middle East is not something to be feared but welcomed – an essential conflagration on the road to redemption.
Wait. Who are the angels gonna slay?! The third part of who?

Wasn't aware that angels were in the business of slaying. What the f*ck?

Onward Christian soldiers:
A 2002 TIME/CNN poll found that 59 percent of Americans believe that the prophecies found in the book of Revelations are going to come true. Nearly one-quarter think the Bible predicted the 9/11 attacks.
And two-thirds of those polled think that "American Idol" is "the best freaking show ever."

*
The "Big Story" of the week?

"Ukrainian candidate was poisoned"

Not just a candidate. The real president.

If you haven't read this story...you can do so here.

Some great excerpts:
Ukrainian presidential candidate Viktor Yushchenko was poisoned with dioxin, doctors said Saturday, adding that the highly toxic chemical could have been put in the opposition leader's soup, producing the severe disfigurement and partial paralysis of his face.

The massive quantities of dioxin in Yushchenko's system caused chloracne, a type of adult acne produced by exposure to toxic chemicals, said hospital dermatologist Hubert Pehmberger.
Not the Clearasil kind of acne, either. The dude's face looks like it was carved up with a light saber.
Dioxins are chemical by-products from factories that use chlorine, or from incinerators. Low doses accumulate in the body, mostly through food. High doses can be fatal.

Yushchenko, who faces Viktor Yanukovych on Dec. 26 in a rerun of a disputed presidential runoff, has claimed that he was poisoned by Ukrainian authorities, who deny the charges.
You're kidding me. Really?

Yushchenko's people claim that their man was poisoned...via a bowl of soup.

*

Big Daddy Don Rumsfeld is in Kuwait. Had a scheduled "pep rally" with some troops this morn. Said pep rally became interesting...when some of the troops started to ASK QUESTIONS.

"Say what?!"

It's true. Read the full AP article here.

Some excerpts:
Some of soldiers, however, had criticisms of their own - not of the war itself but of how it is being fought.

Army Spc. Thomas Wilson of the 278th Regimental Combat Team, which is made up mainly of citizen soldiers of the Tennessee Army National Guard, asked Rumsfeld in a question-and-answer session why vehicle armor is still in short supply, nearly two years after the war started.

"Why do we soldiers have to dig through local landfills for pieces of scrap metal and compromised ballistic glass to uparmor our vehicles?" Wilson asked. A BIG CHEER arose from the approximately 2,300 soldiers in the cavernous hangar who assembled to see and hear the secretary of defense.

Rumsfeld hesitated and asked Wilson to repeat his question.

"We do not have proper armored vehicles to carry with us north," Wilson said after asking again.
Rumsfeld then flew across the room and bit the soldier's face off.

Sorry. Back to the article.
Rumsfeld replied that, "You go to war with the Army you have," not the one you might want, and that the Army was pushing manufacturers of vehicle armor to produce it as fast as humanly possible.
You go to war with the army that you have. Wow.

Subtext: Fuck you , soldier.

*
Man of the Year.

Who's it gonna be? Lots of great candidates out there.

Bush. Kerry. Scott Peterson. Boston Rob, the guy who married Amber Brkich from "Survivor."

I could go on and on and on.

But in the end, there can be only one man. And that man is...

BILL O'REILLY.

Because he's looking out for you...and his former producer, Andrea Mackris.

From the Smoking Gun:
"Well, if I took you (down to the Carribean) then I'd want to take a shower with you, that would be the first think (sic) I’d do… yeah, we’d check you into the room, and we could order up some room service and uh and you’d definitely get two wines into you as quickly as I could get into you I would get ‘em into you… maybe intravenously, get those glasses of wine into you…

You would basically be in the shower and the I would come in and I’d join you and you would have your back to me and I would take that little loofa thing and kinda’ soap up your back… rub it all over you, get you to relax, hot water… and um… you know, you’d feel the tension drain out of you and uh you still would be with your back to me then I would kinda’ put my arm - it’s one of those mitts, those loofa mitts you know, so i got my hands in it… and I would put it around front, kinda’ rub your tummy a little bit with it, and then with my other hand I would start to massage your boobs, get your nipples really hard… ‘cuz I like that and you really have spectacular boobs…

So anyway, I’d be rubbing your bog boobs and getting your nipples really hard, kinda’ kissing your neck from behind… and then I would take the other hand with the falafel (sic) thing and I’d put it on your pussy, but you’d have to do it really light, just kind of a tease business."
Indeed!

Congratulations, Bill.

I'll send you a signed copy of your own book, and a Premium Membership to billoreilly.com!

*

More later...

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