Tuesday, April 28, 2009

First blows

Scalia, in the 5-4 decision that the FCC was not being arbitrary in fining tv stations for fleeting profanity (a lower court detected arbitrariness because the FCC had changed its policy without warning, subjecting broadcasters to fines for shit they’d gotten away with in the past): “There are some propositions for which scant empirical evidence can be marshaled, and the harmful effect of broadcast profanity on children is one of them.” He then went on about the difficulty of performing this experiment on children, exposing some to a non-stop diet of profanity, but only from tv, to determine its effects. Yes, that would be difficult, although it might explain how Glenn Beck came to be Glenn Beck. Scalia continued, “The FCC did not need empirical evidence proving that fleeting expletives constitute harmful ‘first blows’ to children; it suffices to know that children mimic behavior they observe.” The first blows are always the best, aren’t they?

Mitch McConnell, pathetically explaining the insignificance of Arlen Specter’s switch in party affiliation: “This is not a national story. This is a Pennsylvania story.” Katharine Hepburn was especially good in that one.

Fun fact about The Philadelphia Story: screenwriter Donald Ogden Stewart, who won an Academy Award for the movie, was later blacklisted.

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