Note: I just saw Rogue One last night, and this post will not contain any spoilers.  Go see the movie in theaters, it is awesome!

When I heard a remake of Ghostbusters was coming out, I was intrigued.  I hadn’t loved the original Ghostbusters, but it had been a good enough movie that a reboot could be awesome.  So I watched the trailer with my wife.

And we both were like…seriously?  It was terrible.  I had a few friends see the movie, and they hated it too.  Rotten Tomatoes wasn’t kind, and if you click the Top Critics vs. All Critics, it gets worse.  IMDB was even less kind.

But the criticism of what is obviously a terrible movie suddenly exploded into charges of sexism.  Obviously male audiences rated the movie poorly because it had female leadsObviously, males are inherently sexist and can’t stand to have a strong woman in a film.  The same critics conveniently tied in Donald Trump as the continued their rage on the internet.

If you need a perfect counter example, see the recent Star Wars films.  Both Episode 7 and Rogue One have female lead characters, and have done outstanding.  Episode 7 had Rey, General Leia and Captain Phasma, and while you could argue that the movie splits attention between Rey and two male characters, Rogue One’s Felicity Jones is definitely the star and main focus of the film.

So why the difference?  Why did Star Wars, which has a cult following like Ghostbusters, do much better?  Sexism can’t explain it, but I think I can, contrasting Ghostbusters with Rogue One.

Rogue One stayed true to what made previous movies great.  People like Star Wars because it has space battles, blasters, aliens and the occasional Jedi with a lightsaber.  Rogue One never broke from this.  They then created characters (bad and good) and pitted them in a good vs. evil environment, adding a few twists to keep you on your toes (did I mention you need to see the movie yet?).

Ghostbusters was a hit because it was a comedy.  Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, and the rest of the cast are funny people, and their dry sense of humor appealed to audiences in the 1980s.  The new Ghostbusters, while they tried to make it funny, focused too much about the fact they had a female cast.  They added social justice to a movie where people wanted to watch a team of four people fight ghosts and save New York City.  When people blatantly saw this in the trailers, they immediately turned hostile (the YouTube trailer has over 1 million down thumbs so far).

Rogue One had a diverse cast.  Besides the aliens, it featured lots of non-white actors and actresses.  But it doesn’t shove that in your face.  It lets you draw the conclusion that the Rebellion embraces diversity while the Empire looks more uniform.  Letting people develop their own answers makes them more powerful in the end than providing the “obviously” right answer.  In contrast, Ghostbusters gives you the answer, and treats you like an idiot if you don’t like it.

The last point is that Ghostbusters did a terrible job using stereotypes.  In Ghostbusters, the stereotypes are connected to the actresses gender and color.  Patty Tolan, played by Leslie Jones, is a loud mouth black female because apparently that is how black females are, or at least that’s the stereotype we use to judge her behavior in the movie.  Contrast that with Ernie Hudson’s character, who played a pretty upstanding guy in the original movie.  Rogue One ties stereotypes to the character, not the actor.  Jyn plays a hardened rebel.  She’s tough, hates the Empire and has no problem shooting Stormtroopers.  There isn’t any mention of her being a woman.  Again, letting the audience come to the conclusion that a female lead is awesome makes the message more powerful.

My advice to aspiring social justice warriors trying to champion a cause is to stop shoving things down people’s throats.  If you want to champion diversity and women’s issues, look to the example set by Rogue One before you make another terrible movie.

The views expressed in this blog post are those of the author and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Navy, Department of Defense, U.S. Government, Galactic Empire or the Emperor.

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There are a lot of things today that need to be laughed at.

Today too many people are so disconnected from reality, so fearful of the wrath of the left or ignorant that they allow things that should produce mocking laughter automatically actually threat these things seriously.

So this is the first in a semi regular series called “Are you kidding me” where we will point at a story and laugh at it.

Today: Hillary Clinton Cries “Sexism

Hillary Clinton has found a new wedge issue against Sen. Bernie Sanders. The topic is gun control, but the angle is gender. Clinton is framing Sanders as a sexist who accuses women of shouting when they try to speak up.

It didn’t take long for this sexism charge to produce stories with even Jake Tapper asking Senator Sanders about to answer her over it.

Are you kidding me?

Seriously, Hillary Clinton, the wife of Bill “you’d better put some ice on that” Clinton is crying “Sexism” because Bernie Sanders says shouting on Guns won’t get it done.

I noted this to a Hillary supporter pointing out that Bill Clinton opened for her and Katy Perry at her big rally and wondering what would happen if say, Josh Dugger opened for Mike Huckabee at an event?. Her reaction.

No I’m not insulting I’m just informed enough to know that if Hillary Clinton is opining on sexism the proper response for any person with any actual knowledge of the Clinton and perspective on what sexism is: is to point at Hillary and laugh.

Professor Litefoot: It’s been jolly interesting, wouldn’t you say? Most of the corpses around here are jolly dull. Now I’ve got a couple of inscrutable Chinks and a poor perisher who was chewed by a giant rat, having been stabbed by a midget.
4th Doctor: A midget?
Professor Litefoot: Angle of the wound. Oh, upon my soul. I’m sure we shouldn’t be discussing such things in front of the fair sex. Forgive us, ma’am.
Leela: What for?
Professor Litefoot: For being so indelicate in the presence of a lady of refinement.
strong>Leela:Does he mean me?
4th Doctor: I don’t think so.
strong>Leela: It’s very interesting. You say you can tell the height of the attacker by the way the blade was thrust? But when aiming for the heart, we were always taught to strike under the breastbone.
Professor Litefoot: Upon my soul!
4th Doctor: Savage. Found floating down the Amazon in a hat box.

Doctor Who: The Talons of Weng Chiang 1977

There are two reasons why the media’s sudden willingness to critique Valerie Jarrett are completely unsurprising.

It’s axiomatic that when a person is the power behind the throne once the power of said throne begins to totter such a person begins to get critiques that they had hitherto not received because people were too afraid to make them.

With the Obama presidency achieving early lame duck status and it’s power soon to end, members of the press who had hitherto avoided any critique of Ms. Jarrett now no longer feel restrained as the days of her ability to use the power of the Government as a retaliatory club against them are numbered.

As a more pragmatic matter the media finally “discovering” aspects of Valerie Jarrett that are less that complementary is a vital step in supporting potential Democrat candidate in the next election cycle.

By putting the black hat on Jarrett the press gives potential Democrat candidates an avenue to critique an unpopular administration (necessary to win election in 2016) without attacking Barack Obama directly (thereby risking the wrath of African Americans who even now can’t abide public critique of the first Black President). In effect doing what they have always done, fulfilling their position as Democrats with bylines.

Thus the sudden post election hits on Ms. Jarrett are a normal part of the cycle of power in Washington in effect the DC circle of life.

And that’s why the pieces from Jonathan “Sir Robin of Twitter” Capehart & Mika Brzezinski should disturb anyone who waves the flag of “equality”. Let’s start with brave bold Sir Robin:

The one difference between Jarrett and others who have wielded the same kind of power in the West Wing is that she is a woman. Were she a man, her job would not be subject to endless “What does he really do?” questions. Were she a man, she wouldn’t be called “the night stalker” for walking with her longtime friend back to the private residence. Were she a man, her willingness to use her elbows to do what she thinks is right for the president would be applauded. Nancy Reagan, Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Clinton are just some of the women whose proximity to power and their willingness to use it has had critics reduce them to shrews (or other sexist descriptors) who should know their place.

Seriously?  For six years the press have been hands off on Jarrett, lionizing her at every turn and now at the first whiff of critique the “sexism” card is played? Tell me how many critiques of Ms. Jarrett has the Washington Post hitherto written?

While Brave Sir Robin’s decision to pay this card is the sign of a hack I really expected better from Mika who wrote this:

Would these criticisms be leveled at men like John Podesta or Dan Pfeiffer? They work closely with the President. In fact, Ms. Jarrett was out of commission for the most important stretch of the campaign because of a serious medical procedure on her spine. So why is Valerie the focus of these ridiculous attacks?

Perhaps it is because she is a woman. In the case of the Politico piece, which was written by a woman, I can draw from the conclusions in my book – women are often the toughest on their own. But whether the attacks come from women or men in the media, it does seem that strong female advisors who are close to the president become the focus of the most hostile and catty criticism. Whether it was the horrific caricatures of Condi Rice, or the snide sneers aimed at Karen Hughes, or today’s unfair focus on Valerie, at this point the whole “blame-the-woman” routine is just getting old.

Am I actually reading one of the foremost defenders of the equality of Woman on Television suggesting that hitting the closest advisor to the president is a case of “blame-the-woman”? Way to go on the equality front!

I’m sorry you can’t have it both ways. You can’t complain that a woman can do any job a man can and then when said woman belatedly gets critiqued in a position where a man would be subject to regular blows, suddenly claim victim status. It’s the same thing we saw with President Obama & the race card. If she is so delicate a flower that a piece on Politico is too much for her then she has no business in higher office. If instead she is a strong confident woman exercising power then her defenders should stop treating her like the Victorian Litefoot trying to protect Leela.

If she can’t take a punch she doesn’t belong in the arena, and if her defenders can’t abide her being hit without playing the sexism card then I suspect their own belief in “equality” is a facade for the sake of power.


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Olimometer 2.52

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Kristin Powers one of of the resident liberals on Fox has managed to noticed the missing Senator in the president’s attacks on Benghazi.

It’s absurd and chauvinistic for Obama to talk about the woman he thinks should be Secretary of State of the United States as if she needs the big strong man to come to her defense because a couple of Senators are criticizing her.

Believe it or not, Rice isn’t the first potential Cabinet nominee to be opposed by members of Congress up on the Hill. Obama also left out the inconvenient detail that there is another senator who has Rice in the crosshairs: Sen. Kelly Ayotte. But perhaps a female Senator holding Rice accountable didn’t sound menacing enough in the era of the “War on Women.”

But Powers also noticed something else the president said:

Feast on those words for a second: The U.N. Ambassador had “nothing to do with Benghazi.” At this point, the White House press corps should have flown into a frenzy, demanding to know why a person who had nothing to do with Benghazi was put on five Sunday talk shows as…the face of Benghazi!

A frenzy? You expect a White House press corps that spent two days after a successful attack on US soil killing an ambassador hitting Mitt Romney to go into a frenzy over the president’s Butterfly McQueen admission on Susan Rice?

I’m sorry Kristin, you may have noticed the Sen Ayotte business but if you haven’t figured out yet that the media has absolutely no interest in any story that shows this administration in a bad light you are in denial. Stacy McCain put it best:

Extreme naïveté is necessary to believe anything the Obama administration says and extreme cynicism is necessary to pretend that the Obama administration is telling the truth. So, are the pro-Obama media naive fools or cynical hacks? We report. You decide.

That’s closer to reality.