If you think these are biased, you’re probably a homophobe

At the end of the entirely unremarkable Synod on the family (no, really, what was the point of that?), here’s some article titles around the web about the conclusion:

But of course the media had no dog in this fight.

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Justifed Season 4: “Decoy”

Possibly my new favorite episode of the show. It had EVERYTHING. Constable Bob, played absolutely perfectly by Patton Oswalt, is now officially my favorite new “Justified” character. Once again, “Justified” was all about build-ups and payoffs, and they’ve been teasing the awesomeness of Constable Bob all season long. Well, Bob got his moment in the sun, and it wasn’t as good as I thought it would be. It was BETTER. The torture and badassness of Constable Bob made for my favorite scene in the history of “Justified”.

But all of it was perfect. The battle of the minds between Raylan and Boyd was played out to perfection. The other duel, between Officer Tim and Boyd’s own sharpshooter, Colt, was superb in itself. Drew Thomson and Raylan having their own little back and forth was entertaining in that “Let’s just have Timothy Olyphant come up with fun ways to dismiss people” way that “Justified” loves. Even the ending, where Bob saves the day once again, was exceedingly clever. All of it was executed to perfection.

Season 4 doesn’t have villains as memorable as those in seasons 2 or 3 (I mean, you know, Mags), and it took a bit longer to get going. But now that it’s picked up, it has PICKED UP. “Slaughterhouse” and “Bloody Harlan” were great episodes because the wonderfully complex plot of the former and careful character development of the latter  lead to startling, disturbing, and clever conclusions. “Decoy” was great because it was a blast. Everything that I love about “Justified” occurred in this episode, and in true “Justified” fashion it did what “Justified” does best: Deliver on its promises. This season wasn’t going quite as well as the previous two (still great), but “Justified” rewards patience in spades. If the final episode is anywhere NEAR as good as this one, well, that’s “Justified”. When you think it’s reached its pinnacle, it tops itself.

One of the most underappreciated shows ever made.

 

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Don’t Let Them Control the Narrative

One of the reasons I have so much respect for Vox despite substantital disagreement on several issues is that Vox refuses to let the left control the narrative. Come Hell or highwater, Vox WILL let people know his side of things, and he’s done a great of reminding the conservatives that if we grow a pair and stand up for ourselves we actually scare them.

And with that intro I link you to this blog, Gamer Gate Harassment, which Vox first published on his site. It is superb, and anytime somebody tries to tell you what horrible horrible evil meanies the gamergaters are, link them to this. Kudos to the site’s creator.

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LOL, Zoe Quinn

Ready for a misogynistic post? I frequent a writing forum (not saying where, don’t bother asking). Writers are notoriously liberal, with rare exceptions. And these exceptions are, many times, skewered by the rest of the industry. See: Vox Day, Larry Correia, and to a lesser extent John C. Wright (who was on a list of “Writers you didn’t know were bigots” because he defended marriage between a man and a woman).

Anyway, on a writing forum, you learn to just avoid political or social discussions if you’re a conservative. If you want to post there, you just learn to discuss writing, period. But sometimes you see some gems. Like this article.

I’m not even going to do a full fisking, because it would take ages and frankly I have better things to do. Also, it pisses me off. It’s titled “Gaming Misogyny Gets Infinite Lives: Zoe Quinn, Virtual Rape, and Sexism”.

Wait, I feel better. I just learned that it was written by Amanda Marcotte. When a chimp flings shit, are you really going to feel bad? Wait, damn, misogyny again.

I’ll  give you some choice quotes.

First: “Virtual Rape?” Did somebody manage to program her webcam to probe Quinn anally or something?

Wow, we’re not even in the article yet. Okay, the article. Here’s one:

Quinn herself described the abuse as “the proliferation of nude pictures of me, death threats, vandalization, doxxing of my trans friends for having the audacity to converse with me publicly, harassment of friends and family and my friends’ family in addition to TOTALLY UNRELATED PEOPLE, sending my home address around, rape threats, memes about me being a whore, pressures to kill myself, slurs of every variety, fucking debates over what my genitals smell like,” all pushed by her ex and his use of “4chan as his own personal army.”

And why should I believe proliferate, outed liar Zoe Quinn, who lied over and over and over again and CONTINUED LYING after being caught? Because sexism?

It doesn’t even matter how much of her ex’s accusations are true or not, because it’s nothing but pure misogyny to use online harassment troops to punish a woman because she didn’t meet your standards for a girlfriend.

It doesn’t even matter if I comment on this line or not, because it’s nothing but phenomenal stupidity to claim that getting revenge on an ex is somehow misogyny and not just, you know, being pissed at your ex. Also, look at us taking the words of a known liar at face value as the only evidence to slam her ex-boyfriend! No vendetta there!

Skipping ahead:

The fact that the review she was accused of “buying” doesn’t exist hasn’t slowed the self-righteous haranguing, of course. That’s because the “ethics” question is a paper-thin excuse for what’s really going on, which is that the video game world is thick with misogynists who are aching to swarm on any random woman held up for them to hate, no matter what the pretext.

Yes, friends, let’s listen to Amanda here. She has read the minds of all of us misogynists, and has made two important conclusions. One is that because the reviewer Zoe fucked didn’t actually write the review of her game (though he did favorably mention it) it means that Zoe committed no wrongs that have to do directly…like, say, fucking the man who would then hire her as a developer! But hey, no bigs, her ex-boyfriend is totally sure that he hired her because she deserved it!

The other conclusion the amazing brain of Amanda Marcotte managed to glean is that evilly-evil men don’t need a pretext to hate women, they just hate. How does she know this? Well, she thinks their pretext is bad! Therefore, profit!

So Marcotte goes through a few other feminists who claimed men were being horrible to them. There’s Sarkeesian, who managed to leverage men on online forums (and one idiot defacing her wikipedia page…I know Vox Day has had to edit his a few times) insulting her into 120,000 dollars.  The supposed horrible misogynist internet managed to raise twice what she asked for because she cried foul.

There’s Janelle Assellin, who first claims that when men disagree with her it’s because of misogyny. She gets rape threats sent to her through some online questionnaire, which is the apparent equivalent of barraging her with abuse and rape threats. Given that they all occurred in a very specific place at a very specific time, it seems more likely that a group of people got together and decided to mess with her but hey, barraged by abuse and rape threats sounds better. A feminist artist named Dina Karam had people…learn stuff about her and ask questions? Say negative things that also had to do with her sex (GASP!!!)?

There’s some blather about video game characters raping each other, which is nothing new and anybody who has ever heard of teabagging knows a little bit about it (you really don’t think the people behind teabagging wouldn’t find it funny to actually “Go all the way” with a female character?).

So blah blah blah last sentence:

And that is why, no matter how much they might convince themselves that they’re in the right, their bile is only convincing outsiders that they are nothing more than a bunch of haters who are scared of sharing their toys with the girls

…And then, we learn about the corrupt journalists in bed with each other deciding specifically what stories to release on what days about which games and which people. Totally because they’re just haterzzzz.

Ahhhhhh, Amanda Marcotte. Well, she gave me something to do for awhile, anyway.

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How to Deal with the New “Yes Means Yes” Law

Don’t fornicate.

The end!

It amazes me how quickly Christians, and some people who I am genuinely convinced are good Christians (meaning sincere and more or less orthodox), refuse or forget to consider the obvious Christian solution to the problem. And in the manosphere especially this is a general theme I see. Why are we bemoaning the difficulty of fornicating successfully on college campuses when the solution is not only right under our noses but scripturally mandated? It boggles the mind.

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“Justified” Hatchet Tour

I know I’ve been talking about this show too much, but I’m binge-watching through Amazon Prime right now, so you’ll all have to deal with it since it’s my blog. Also, spoilers, though I’ll try to hide the big one in case anyone s intrigued enough to actually look into this show (which they should be)

“Justified” has a thing for episode nines…first “My Brother’s Keeper”, now this, because “Hatchet Tour” was awesome. I realized that each show tends to have a specific thing it does really well that makes it stand out, or at least the great shows – not just high quality material, but something “different” about it. “Breaking Bad” (from what I’ve seen and heard) excelled at putting its main characters in how-will-they-get-out-of-this-one scenarios and solving them in exceedingly clever ways. “The Walking Dead” (I’m on season two of that) goes mostly for slow burn character development punctuated with mind-blowing, game-changer type twists (Shane SHOT him to save Rick’s son!!!). “Game of Thrones” works mostly through element of surprise; more than any other show, NOBODY is safe. And “Sherlock” is all about manipulating viewer expectations, most obviously by sticking to the canon then pulling the rug out but also by putting Sherlock in situations where he ISN’T one step ahead of the villain, something done rarely enough that when it happens (as it did in the series’ two best episodes) it’s seriously frightening.

“Justified” is best at setting up and delivering payoffs. The show makes a LOT of implicit promises to the viewer with its complex tangle of subplots and secrets. If it didn’t deliver, then the viewer would feel cheated. At the same time, if the payoff is exactly what the viewer expected they’ll be disappointed. It’s a difficult balance – they not only need to deliver on their promises, they need to do it in ways most people won’t expect.

And this is something “Justified” is really, REALLY good at, and “Hatchet Tour” is an excellent example of this. We have been waiting for a very long time for shit to blow up with Colt and Ellen May, and I figured Marshal Tim would be involved. What I did NOT expect was for Boyd to go into the police station to confront Shelby about his involvement in the Ellen May conspiracy and get arrested by Raylan and pretty much the entire police force of Harlan County. I also figured Colt was cooked, and I was surprised that Tim let Boyd, in all of his Walton Goggins glory, just take him. The logic might not have been stretched a bit thin (I know he was on drugs at the time and Boyd promised to take care of him, but you’re really just letting Colt go, Tim?), but Boyd was so compelling, as always, that who cares?

It was also fantastic to see Boyd give the middle finger to the suits trying to control him. Boyd is most fun to watch when set against an opponent even more corrupt than he is, and it was a ton of fun watching them sweat.  do think Ava’s days may be numbered though…otherwise Boyd has incentive for leaving Harlan, and the show isn’t letting him leave. We’ll see.

And we finally get the big reveal: Who really is Drew Thomson? Well, I’m not telling, but I WILL say that my mind was blown. On the other hand, a lot of reviewers seemed to have had it figured out already, so maybe I was just slow. I don’t care. It was awesome.

Four episodes in season four to go, then onto five.

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Justified: Season Three Review

Spoilers for seasons two and three, so if anything I’ve written has intrigued you forget the review and watch it right now. TL;DR: It was awesome, the acting is fantastic, the writing is consistently excellent, and you should watch it if you haven’t. Now:

It was probably not QUITE as good as season two (I miss Mags), but damn, the fact that it can measure up at all to its stunning previous season is a testament to how good “Justified” is. I am at an utter loss how this show hasn’t gotten more recognition. I think it gets lost in the shuffle as “just another cop show”, but it’s so much more than that. It’s tremendously well acted (Walton Goggins in particular was dynamite all season), features fascinating characters both old and new, and every time you think you know how something is going to play out it always finds a way to subvert expectations.

Despite ending with a suicide, the finale to season 2 was oddly more positive. Mags is dead, but then she’s the villain. Loretta hasn’t shot anyone, the Bennett family has been taken down, and all of our favorite characters are alive.

Season 3 goes down a darker path. The finale, “Slaughterhouse”, was notable for its big twist ending: Arlo shot an officer in a hat, thinking it might be Raylan, in order to save Boyd. And then he takes the fall for Boyd’s murder of Devil. WOW. Sorry, Raylan.

As is “Justified”‘s general wont, season three had some absolutely awesome scenes. My personal favorite scene in season three happened after Quarles learned that Boyd had pulled a fast one on him and gotten his sheriff kicked out of office. There’s this awesome scene after Quarles walks out of the police station and Boyd is sitting there, explaining to him what happens to carpetbaggers. Boyd is a horrible human being but Goggins makes him so likeable, and Quarles is so much WORSE, that that scene was everything you could possibly have hoped for. Quarles deserved that comeuppance.

(Honorable mention: Raylan playing Russian roulette with Winn Duffy. When we’re introduced in season two Duffy is such a cool customer, but by the season three finale the walls have crumbled down around him and he’s revealed to be just as human as everybody else.)

And really, let’s talk about Neal McDonough’s portrayal of Quarles. What a performance. Quarles came onto the scene as a slick-talking Detroit mobster who always knew the right thing to say; he ended the season as an insane (soon to be) one-armed man holding a U.S. Marshal and a small child at gunpoint (By the way, “Disarmed”. Heh). His slow descent into addiction and madness was truly frightening and eminently believable. He was no Mags Bennett, but man was he entertaining.

Season three was all about moral codes. In “Justified”, everybody has a code. Boyd has friends and makes deals he intends to honor. The Bennetts had their own twisted honor system (see Mags in the season two finale shaking hands with Raylan to officially end the feud). Even Arlo has lines he won’t cross. But Quarles is different; he has no code. He will do literally anything it takes to get what he wants. And this is what makes him so horrifying. He’ll go places even Boyd won’t go.

Or at least, hasn’t gone, because season three was not just about observing moral codes, but testing them. Ava has flourished in her new role as second-in-command of Boyd’s criminal empire, and her beating of Ellen Mae in the finale was chilling. The Ava from season two wouldn’t have gone there, or even early season three. But now Ava has shown she’ll do whatever it takes to survive.

And we leave poor Raylan off with the knowledge that his father would kill him in order to save convicted murderer Boyd Crowder. Harsh.

Season 4 is going to be awesome.

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