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Posted by on Aug 13, 2012 in Blog, Las Vegas, Politics | 5 comments

Moguls of Hypocricy: Casino Magnates Adelson, Wynn, and Trump Whine While Fortunes Skyrocket

 

 

Leave it to three casino industry tycoons to display the most brazen acts of hypocrisy in recent memory.

What would you call someone who repeatedly blasts our president for his “socialist-style economy,” while raking in billions in profits during the time frame the president has been in office?

What would you call someone who refers to our leader “the greatest wet blanket to business,” yet managed to double the size of his casino empire and increase his net personal worth by $200 million during the president’s first term?

What would you call someone who declared bankruptcy four years ago (at the end of the previous administration), and then preposterously claimed his net worth is several billion today?

If you’re having trouble coming up with the right words, let me help you.

Liars.

Hypocrites.

It’s impossible to imagine three more hypocritical blowhards than casino moguls Sheldon Adelson, Steve Wynn, and Donald Trump.  Their political posturing would be side-splitting if it were not so downright shameful.

The three current and former casino owner-executives have repeatedly blasted President Obama since he took office in early 2009.  They are certainly entitled to their opinions — outlandish as they may be.  But the facts clearly reveal, like the rest of the top one-percent of wealthiest Americans, they have enriched themselves handsomely under the current administration.

But that doesn’t stop the posturing nor the hyperbole.  Never let the facts get in the way of creative sound bites.  President Obama is anti-business, they say.  President Obama is bad for the economy, they say.  President Obama is a Socialist, they say.  Yada.  Yada.  Yada.

One would think the three musketeers of malaise have suffered while President Obama’s been residing at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.  One would be led to believe their businesses have lost money or that they suffered personal financial setbacks.  But a look at the facts reveals quite the opposite.  In fact, these three hypocrites have – by any measure – made astronomical profits since President Obama took office.

Let’s look at the record, shall we?

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Posted by on Aug 12, 2012 in Blog, Movie Reviews | 1 comment

Movie Review: “The Intouchables”

intouchables-movie

 

MOVIE REVIEW:  THE INTOUCHABLES

 

A French movie with English subtitles enters the finicky American movie market with two strikes against it.

It’s French — strike one.

It has subtitles — strike two.

Which is a crying shame, because one of the year’s most enjoyable and uplifting films has pretty much come and vanished from theaters, unable to garner much attention during another summer filled with mindless action adventure “thrillers” and sleep-inducing “comedies.”

The Intouchables is a marvelous film.  Carried by two outstanding lead performances by Francois Cluzet (who bears an uncanny resemblance to Dustin Hoffman) and Omar Cy (who deserves an Oscar nomination for a movie-stealing performance), this film has wit, candor, humor, sadness, and ultimately great inspiration.  The film’s credibility is boosted by it being based on a true story.

Cluzet plays a quadriplegic, which means he is confined to a wheelchair unable to feel any sensation below his neck.  If there’s any upside, it’s that he’s also very wealthy, giving him considerable options that would not otherwise be available to a person of lesser means.

Cluzet is utterly bored with his life, not the least of which has anything to do with his physical impairment.  One senses that even if he were not parked in a wheelchair, he would still need something more.  A great deal more, in fact.  What Cluzet needs is stimulation, excitement, and most of all – someone he can call a friend.

He finds all of this in the unlikeliest of places.

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Posted by on Aug 11, 2012 in Blog, Movie Reviews | 0 comments

Movie Review: “To Rome With Love”

 

 

MOVIE REVIEW:  TO ROME WITH LOVE

 

Woody Allen’s seventh postcard from Europe lacks enough postage.  It should be rubber-stamped “Return to Sender.”  This is undoubtedly the most disappointing of all his films set in Europe.

Following a lifetime spent channeling New York’s neurotic side, creating some of the most memorable roles in modern film history (Annie Hall, Leonard Zelig, Danny Rose, and of course – Allen himself), the 76-year-old film legend abruptly departed his familiar Manhattan backdrop in 2004, taking his introspective wit across the Atlantic, initially to London, then Barcelona, followed by Paris, and now Rome.

His latest release To Rome with Love has all the ingredients of yet another tasty Allen stew.  But in the end, all we sample is watered-down broth, poorly seasoned, with stale recollections of the spicy flavors that made Match Point, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, and Midnight in Paris so thoroughly original and enjoyable.

To be fair to Allen, he’s coming off his biggest commercial success ever, which is a hard act to follow.  Since his heyday as a writer-director-star during the 1970s, Allen’s films haven’t performed particularly well at the box office.  But like summer stock theater, they tend to make just enough money to keep Allen atop the list of directors most actors long to work with.  For that reason, Allen pretty much gets his pick of the litter as to who he casts in his films, and often writes characters perfectly suited to the typecasting.

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Posted by on Aug 10, 2012 in Blog, Rants and Raves, Restaurant Reviews | 15 comments

Nolan Dalla Rant: A Guide to Restaurant Tipping

 

nolan-dalla-photo

Bon Appetiti!

 

NOLAN’S GUIDE TO RESTAURANT TIPPING

1.     Food Service

Start with 20 percent of full bill (tax included) and work way either up or down, based on the following events.

If server approaches my table within the first two minutes, maintain 20 percent tip.  Then, deduct one percent for every minute the server is tardy.  If server shows up 2 to 3 minutes late and then profusely apologizes, reset meter to 20 percent.  Moreover, if server stops by and asks for more time, allow one reset.  But no more than one reset permitted.

If no waiter shows up within five minutes, bolt for the door.  No questions asked.

If I am alone or dining with Marieta, we ALWAYS order everything IMMEDIATELY.  I do not want to fuck around and have multiple visits from some college kid asking what I want on each course — drinks, appetizers, and main course.  Let’s get to the point, I am here to E-A-T.  Not listen to someone’s life story.

Furthermore, I DO NOT WANT TO KNOW THE WAITER’S NAME!  I am ordering a meal from you, not buying a fucking house.

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Posted by on Aug 9, 2012 in Blog, Personal, Politics | 3 comments

Meeting Richard Nixon — A Shakespearean Tragedy

 

RIchard Nion in San Clemente

 

IF WATERGATE DIDN’T HAPPEN, WOULD WE NOW HAVE UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE?

 

Thirty-eight years ago tonight, President Richard Nixon resigned from the most powerful job in the world.

August 9, 1974 was a particularly muggy night in Washington, fitting for the national tragedy that was the final tortured two years of Richard Nixon’s doomed presidency.

Everyone in America knew what Nixon was going to say on television that incredible night — announcing to the world that he would become the first and only president in American history to resign from office.  But until we actually watched it for ourselves, until we witnessed it, until we heard the President tearfully utter the fateful words, “I shall resign the presidency,” no one really contemplated the full force of gravity that was the tragedy and sorrow of that memorable night.

I was 12 years old when I watched Nixon’s resignation.  During the spring leading up to that night, in school classrooms we watched the Senate committee hearings on Watergate, which were carried live on all three major networks.  This was long before cable television, so everyone knew what was going on politically in this country, since that was all that was shown.  And what grand theater it was — the nation’s first real reality show, with an astounding cast of characters, entwined in the gravest of controversies.

By the summer of 1974, just about everyone in America loathed Nixon — even Republicans.  His job approval ratings hit an all-time low of 12 percent.  Resignation was inevitable.

Richard Nixon was a divisive figure, to be sure, and very much remains so.  He’s arguably the most vilified American political leader of the 20th Century by those on the left, and in the judgment of many.  Perhaps, even deservedly so.

Yet behind his utter disregard for the U.S. Constitution during the crisis, and the crimes which eventually became known as the Watergate scandal, was a highly-accomplished man of tremendous intellect and great potential.  Indeed, he very well might have gone down as the greatest LIBERAL since FDR, had his executive agenda not been diverted by the massive cover up and all-consuming series of events that led to his downfall.

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