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October movie reviews

I wasn’t supposed to see this movie. My anti-social, hypochondriatic ass doesn’t need a *scientific* rationale for my solitude. Alas, I went, I have one, and now I’m sealed in a hyperbaric chamber with a shotgun with two shells. It was a good movie. Gritty, fast paced, they don’t stay on any one group of characters long enough for you to want them dead, so when they die, you’re sad. Might just be the BEST Gwyneth Paltrow movie EVAH!

30 Minutes or Less
It’s probably not fair to include this movie, as I only saw it because I arrived at the theater 79 minutes too early for Colombiana and I walked out before the end… Um it’s about some guys who try to rob a bank. The facebook guy and the brown Parks and Recreation guy are in it. Super dumb… Unless the end is sooo brilliant that it saves the film. Doubt it.

Fright Night
I saw the original in the theaters with my mom when I was a mere lad. It scared the beejezus out of me. Though I have no beejezuses left, the remake was plenty scary. First, McLovin was GREAT in this! I love that kid. Also, David Tennant was perfection. Love him. And they were just *supporting cast*! The special effects were boss (I don’t think it *needed* to be in 3D, but whatevs.) the main characters were good, except for the girl love interest, she was kinda terrible. But all around fun horror!

Zoe Saldana and her ubiquitousness is starting to strain my last nerve. That said, this movie about an assasin out to avenge her parents’ murder was a fun action flick.

The Debt
I didn’t know what this movie was about when I went to see it, but when I left, I went straight home and googled the hell out of “mossad assasinations.” It’s a great movie, though it’s a stretch to say Helen Mirren “stars,” since she plays the old lady version of the young woman who is at the center of this political thriller.

What Dreams May Come
Oh man, was this movie bad. I mean, no, it’s not the worst movie I’ve ever seen, but it was truly terrible, especially considering it stars two Academy Award winners. It’s about a family who all die in various ways in a 24 month span and how they find each other again in the afterlife. Barf.

The Forgotten
I forget what this movie was about. I’m not even kidding…oh… Wait… that lady is in it… Julianne Moore, I think? Redhead? Oh, she plays a mom whose son died, but then everyone tries to tell her that she never had a son. Aliens end up being involved. Double barf.

I watched this movie because Stephen King wrote that it was the best horror movie he’s seen in seven years. Either Stephen King doesn’t know shit about horror movies or he is secretly an investor in this movie. It was not good. Your typical a-virus-is-loose-and-killing-anyone-who-catches-it apocalyptic tale. There are six main characters who you don’t care about. They don’t all make it and you don’t care about that either. Snooze.

Down to the Bone
Um…the woman from Up in the Air stars as a drug addict mother of two trying to get clean. Super boring.

The people under the stairs
This movie is about a kid who goes with his uncle to break into this huge mansion on their otherwise poor street. Turns out there are mysterious people under the stairs. O_o I watched this cause there were black people on the cover. Does that EVER work out for me? Okay. Moving on.

This was the original Japanese version of a Sarah Michelle Gellar movie I forgot I saw until I was halfway through the movie and feeling like I’d seen it already. It’s basically exactly the same with English subtitles. It’s good.

The Lost Boys
This movie was AWFUL! Why are people always “oh my God, you haven’t seen Lost Boys? You just have to!” I spit on Lost Boys. The vampire creation process makes zero sense. The ultimate bad guy is implausible AND the effects suck. No pun intended. Blech.

Your Highness
This movie about a lazy prince trying to prove himself to his father and keep up with his superstar older brother is pretty funny. There are quests and sword fights and possibly gay pedophilia.

Something  Borrowed
This. Movie. Is. WRETCHED! It’s about supposedly best friends, but when one sleeps with the other’s fiance, it becomes quite clear that they hate each other. Ugh. This is, how hollywood always views female friendships.  And this one….ugh…awful awful awful. Not funny, not touching, not romantic. Big heaping waste of time. On my deathbed, I’ll still be regretting this.

Holy shit! So, I’m watching and it’s so slow and I figure everything out and roll my eyes forty minutes later when they explain it to the main character cause…DUDE, SO OBVIOUS! Heck, in my head I’m already writing up the bad review I’m going to give it and THEN the last ten minutes happen and I’m screaming and turning all the lights on in my apartment.

I didn’t hate this movie. The Thor dude is hot and spends an appropriate amount of time in a state of half dress. I liked the fighting and the twist…it’s no Ironman 1, but it’s better than Ironman 2.

Vomit. I love Simon Pegg. This movie made me want to find him and thump him in the stomach. This movie is about an alien trying to escape Area 51 and he enlists the help of these British tourists. Jason Bateman and Sigourney Weaver are hot on their tails. I fell asleep at least three times. Dumb, dumb, dumb.

Crappy Susan Sarandon movie where she lives in Australia and is a stay at home mom afraid her husband is cheating on her, but he’s not, so he thinks she’s crazy and takes the children… Or something.

Barney’s Version
Um…this movie was pretty good. Paul Giamiatti is in his wheelhouse here as an insecure middle aged man looking for love. There’s an uninteresting murder subplot that is unnecessary and a bit distracting. Minnie Driver is hilariously annoying.

The Secret in Their Eyes
This is a great Spanish film. Equal parts love story and mystery. Very good from start to finish.

Red Riding Hood
Um. This movie wasn’t terrible, but there’s really no need to see it unless you’re bored on a plane. The big “who’s the wolf?” mystery ain’t that great.

I liked this movie starring the Hangover guy as a failure who starts taking experimental genius pills and becomes an overnight success. He predictably gets caught up in the wrong element and there’s a lot of running.

Wow, so Ryan Gosling’s career appears to be back, huh? Here he plays a loner who works at a garage and is a stunt driver for movies. Then he falls for his next door neighbor. Dun dun dun. The casting is excellent, including that comedic jewish guy from “The In- laws” as a badass gangster (you sorta laugh about that for a while, but by the end, he sells it.) Carey Mulligan is good. I liked it.

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A September to Remember

Just Go with it
Adam Sandler movies used to be good. Sigh. Now, I shall insert some glib pun like “just go see something else” because this movie about a plastic surgeon who realizes his homely assistant is really JENNIFER ANISTON will make you roll your eyes so hard you will need corrective surgery.

HOLY SHIT this movie kicked ass! I mean, if Jerry O’connell screaming “It took my penis,” doesn’t make for a top notch, grade A movie, how about giant ass piranhas eating people in mid air?! AWESOMESAUCE! Was there a Piranha 2?? I actually have honest to goodness follow up questions.

Horrible Bosses
I liked this movie. I laughed A LOT. That little guy from It’s Always Sunny is always funny! And Jason Bateman is a terrific straight man. The bosses were also geniusly cast! Brava.

Glee 3D
Speaking of AWESOMESAUCE…this movie had extra heaping ladles of the stuff! I don’t even think you need to watch the TV show to love this movie…though, if you’re not watching the TV show… WHY NOT? WHAT’S WRONG WITH YOU? And please leave your name in the comment section so I have the correct spelling to give to Homeland.

The Help
This movie is about a spunky young white girl who comes home from college and wants to be a reporter. She gets a job writing the cleaning column for local newspaper. But she realizes “I’m white! I don’t know anything about cleaning!” And gets her friend’s maid to answer all the questions while she transcibes the answers. As she spends time with this woman who is cleaning and raising her friend’s kid *IN ADDITION* to answering the questions for HER columnist job, she realizes that the help sure aren’t treated very nice. She then asks the maid to tell her what it’s like to be a maid, so that she can submit the stories to a publisher in New York. I saw this movie in a theater full of about 75% old white women. Eff yo nostalgia! My little hands were balled into fists for two and a half hours. It’s a right good fine movie. Reminded me of Avatar. O_O. Seriously, when are we getting the sarcasm font? But no, really, if you liked Avatar you will LOVE THE HELP! Also, if you liked Avatar please leave your name in the comment section along with which high school signed over a diploma to you.

Planet of the Apes
This movie was terrific! This is EXACTLY what happens when we start letting animals live in our homes, eat our food and get human names. They blow shit up, murder people and destroy property! Finally, Hollywood stops pandering to the bleeding heart liberals and shows us the truth!

A foreign movie about Benito Mussolini and his first wife that he apparently dumped and then disavowed. It’s weird at the beginning. There are all kinds of “greek chorus” interludes and random spinning newspaper wipes in between scenes, but the movie settles into a nice pace about an hour in. It then becomes a movie about a woman trying to prove she is who she says she and her son are from the inside of a mental hospital. Not to spoil anything, but, um, it does not go well.

The Cove
This is a documentary about the brave soldiers standing on the frontlines protecting humanity from the impending dolphin threat AND THE SPECIES TRAITORS trying to stop them! O_O I can never run for office now, huh? So yeah, apparently, they brutally stab schools of dolphins to death until the water in the cove runs crimson with blood. Most people are appalled. Others think to themselves, hmm… I like that color, I think I’m buying a red coat for winter. *whistles*

The Lincoln Lawyer
This isn’t the worst Matthew Mcconaughey movie I have ever seen. Still, it *IS* a Matthew Mcconaughey, so it’s bad. He plays a shady lawyer who suddenly grows a conscience when he realized he talked an innocent client into taking a plea. OH NOES! Dumb.

The Eclipse
I really liked this movie and I think it’s because I didn’t know anything about it at all because when I googled it later and read descriptions like “horror” “thriller” I was like “What movie did they watch?” This was a short, simple story about a dude volunteering at a literary festival. Some stuff happens, he meets a pretty lady, gets in a fight, maybe sees a couple of ghosts. But that’s it. Also, there was no eclipse…so the title’s a bit weird.

16 Years of Alcohol
I rented this movie because I loved the series Rome and the lead actor in this was the lead actor in that. (He plays a shitty character on Grey’s Anatomy now.) This movie is wretched. And not JUST because it relies heavily on stupid voice over narration…not that it helps. It tells the tale of an Irish boy whose mother leaves home and whose father is an alcoholic, so he becomes an alchoholic…oh wait, I already said “Irish,” so the rest was redundant. Oh snap #RACES But yeah, skip it. There are way better Irish tragedy movies.

This is an Israeli flick about too many damn things. Like, seriously, they could have broken this movie up into five movies and we’d all be better off for it. There’s the Romeo and Juliet story, the Godfather story, the Oliver story, some comic book story… I dunno. I guess it was good…but it was all very superficial, too fast and you ultimately don’t connect with any of the characters… plus, all middle eastern people look alike and it’s confusing. #DOUBLERACES

When am I going to learn that until I find inappropriate breast jokes hilariously funny, I need to stop renting Hollywood “comedies”? Oy. This movie is implausibly dumb even for the genre.

Fish Tank
This movie is awesomely sad, yet not sad, yet totally sad. Four thumbs up! Rent this instead of that 16 years of alcohol crap…they’re not Irish, but they are British, so that’s practically the same thing. It’s a coming of age story of a girl from some poor English neighborhood. I don’t quite understand how it got the title… but if you figure it out, let me know.

The Baby’s Room
Dumb horror movie about a guy who crosses into a parallel universe and ends up coming face to face with the him that he might have been under different circumstances. Blah.

Paranormal Activity
I totally wrote off this flick about a couple dealing with sounds and objects moving in their new house, as a dumb horror movie. But then, the next day, I was in the shower, jamming to my itunes morning playlist and my computer screen suddenly went to sleep, plunging my bathed in pale blue light bathroom to total darkness. You have never heard such loud, panicked, incessant screaming in your life. So…um…yeah…this movie might have made an impression. Also, I’m getting a shower radio.

The Death of Mr. Lazarescu
Here’s the thing: the makers of this movie about one man’s journey through the European healthcare system, totally ruined it with the title. I’m sayin. But it’s a good movie and it’s nice that someone isn’t picking on the US healthcare system for once.

The Machinist
This movie SUCKS IT! Ugh. I guess I don’t want to ruin it for anyone who still wants to see this so-called “thriller” starring the dude from Batman Forever…er…Batman…but SERIOUSLY IT’S SOOOOO DUUUMMMBBB. For instance, and listen, close your eyes if you plan to see it… but the main character comes home to find someone has started a hangman game with him and theyve posted the puzzle on his refrigerator. First of all, THAT’S NOT HOW YOU START A GAME OF HANGMAN! How will you know if the letters you guess are right or wrong?! Someone’s gotta be there to DRAW THE HANGED MAN! OK, but that’s not even the worse part…the word that the puzzle is has TWO ELS, but he only writes in ONE of them and then forty minutes later, puts in the second one! THE HELL?? If you get a letter right, they’ve got to PUT THEM ALL IN THE WORD AT ONCE! *Head desk*

Then She Found Me
I thought I hated this movie, then I liked it, then they tacked on the Hollywood ending and I hated it again. Boo. It stars Helen Hunt and Bette Midler as a mom who gave up her baby for adoption then tracks her down as an adult after her adoptive parents die. If it had ended like 15 minutes earlier, it would have been a strong movie. As is, meh.

I’m Through with White Girls
I got this because it had a black guy on the cover. And I thought “Ha! A movie that’s going to not skewer black women!” Uh huh. This movie sucked and I was punished for my racism. It’s what I deserve. And also, he ends up with a half black, half white canadian girl in the end. AS IF there are even half black people in Canada!

Eight Men Out
I’m obsessed with baseball cheating scandals…mostly I keep hoping there is some effective way that the Mets can cheat their way to winning another World Series. This movie provided NO helpful suggestions. It was also not a very good movie. There was no nuance to any of the characters…I was surprised to find a John Cusack movie I hadn’t seen though.

Let the Right One In (original)
Story of a boy and the vampire who falls in love with him. I preferred the American version. These kids were too “kid actorish.” Also, the American version improves on the supporting characters and makes their stories more plausible.

Hall Pass
Meh. I didn’t hate this movie. I also didn’t laugh at anything in this movie until the 60 seconds following the credits where the funniest shit ever happens and I couldn’t stop laughing for like 20 minutes. I could almost recommend this movie on the strength of those seconds alone…almost.

Yes, I cried during this movie. SO WHAT? I WILL FIGHT YOU! It’s not a comedy per se (and as such, I don’t consider it a remake of the Dudley Moore classic) but there is a grown man wearing tights and a cape, so it’s not exactly a drama. But if you are not made of stone you WILL WEEP!

Battle: Los Angeles
GOT DAMB EFFING ALIENS ALWAYS TRYING TO COME FOR MY GOT DAMB PLANET! Earth is so lucky Americans are bad ass alien fighters! This movie falls just shy of awesome, but only barely. You get sucked into the story and the way it’s shot makes you feel like you’re totally in the movie. It’s pretty good!

Um. So…um…yeah…I find myself at a loss for words because I can’t say terrible things about a Johnny Depp movie, right? I mean, he’s Johnny Depp…wait…never mind…Depp was in The Tourist…I can do this. This movie WAS WRETCHED HORRIBLENESS WRAPPED IN A CRAP BURRITO. I don’t know how it got made or why it was then released or why every copy wasn’t then rounded up and burned, but I’m writing a letter to my congressman. Ugh. Woman. Hate her sooo much.

Here’s a tip everybody: if you get in a taxi cab in Berlin and your driver is a smoking hot blond woman, SOME STUFF IS ABOUT TO GO DOWN! This was a pretty standard action flick. There’s a twist, but it’s not really that twisty. Stuff blows up and there are impressive car wrecks. I can’t complain.

Last train home
I can’t tell for sure if this was a documentary or not…I’m 79 percent sure it is. In which case, this movie about a family of parents who work in the big city and the two kids they left behind to be raised by the grandma, is pretty good. If it’s fiction, it’s just okay. My favorite part was this scene where thousands of Chinese people (oh, it’s set in China about the workers who take a train home for Chinese New Year because that’s the only time they see their families) are waiting for ten days for the train because there’s been a power outage. There was no food or facilities and the conditions are wretched. But there’s this one dude who tells the reporter he’s excited about China hosting the Olympics and he “hopes the Chinese win all the gold medals. There are billions of us! Why should we not beat America, there are only millions of them!” I laughed so hard! Nationalism is nationalism even when you live in a facist psuedo communist country. Which that dude does.

Blue Valentine

I want to say this was the perfect movie, but I fear that may reveal exactly how twisted I am, so…er…this movie was so sad and these characters are damaged and flawed…nah, can’t do it. Movie was perfect…that’s exactly how life and relationships are. *B-boy stance*

The Adjustment Bureau
Why does Matt Damon keep making bad movies? Does he want me to Ben Affleck him? OH MAN THIS MOVIE WAS BAD. However, I did start paying attention to my every minor decision making for the next week wondering if I was really choosing or if the Adjustment Bureau was choosing… but then I lost interest and stopped. Or did I? Maybe they wanted me to stop because I was getting too close!

Source Code
Jake Gyllenhaal is officially Ben Afflecked.

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The middle of the road is for yellow lines

“…ain’t no such things as halfway crooks” – Mobb Deep

I’ve long lived in a world of extremes. The only kid of an absentee father, who couldn’t spell my name correctly if you spotted him seven letters, and an uber present mother who, to this day, grabs my hand if we’re crossing a street together. The only girl in the GI Joe/handball world of boys. The only black student in advanced college prep courses.

Right/wrong. Good/Bad. True/False. Black/White. All/Nothing. Winners/Losers. Mets/Yankees.

I’m comfortable here.

My first year of law school, I was exposed to a concept of “contributory negligence.” To wit: given a set of facts, you can portion out blame among parties. For example, a pedestrian may be paralyzed after being hit by a speeding car, but she was drunk and jay walking, so she’s 40% responsible for her plight; the speeding driver bears 60% of the blame for breaking the traffic law.

I hate contributory negligence.

Drunken jay walkers get what they get. Keep your drunk self on a sidewalk. Or reckless speeding car drivers are a menace and need to be punished. Get a couple of lawyers, collect some evidence, duke it out and get a judge or jury to decide who’s right…est.

Occasionally, I’ll wonder if this is a childishly simplistic worldview, a hold over of some lesson overlearned in kindergarten. But making firm decisions is hard. It takes patience and education and, most importantly, a conviction that can only come with age and experience.

Not everyone wins. There is evil in the world and bad people who should not be appeased.

There is a controversial black and white photo of me from my halcyon Yale days. I don’t remember who or when it was taken, but I am wearing a placard with a pro union slogan and my arm is raised in the black power fist, I’m smiling and staring straight into the camera. The “controversial” part is, at the time, I was editorials editor for the campus daily newspaper and the editor-in-chief had forbade me from attending any protests with the striking maintenance and dining hall workers. Something about neutrality of the press, he said. But I grew up in a union household, I was working as a dining hall worker AND I was EDITORIALS editor for a, God’s sake. I have opinions and a moral compass that pointed straight to the front of the picket lines.

“Fire me if you want, I’m going.”

He didn’t, but for years afterwards he blamed me for two of his ulcers.

Right. Wrong. Eff your neutrality. (True story: My high school mentor tried explaining an “independent” to me. I was in twelfth grade and working on the Bill Clinton campaign and I could not wrap my mind around this push for “the independents.” After he explained about the “independents,” I sat in his office and laughed for twenty minutes straight. “Why should we care what they think? They don’t even know what they think!” And don’t get me started on agnostics and vegetarians who eat chicken and fish.)

Alas, I’m fully aware that not everyone sees the world in such stark contrast. I always think about two of the best pieces of advice I’ve ever gotten…well, that’s probably not accurate, I’m sure I’ve gotten better advice…but these, well, they made me laugh AND they’ve stuck with me because they resonate with who I am on a fundamental level.

Years ago, I had just resumed talking to a friend of mine after a giant falling out. Concerned, another friend, Kearns cautioned me about the path I was on. “I don’t think this is a good idea,” he said.

“Don’t worry,” I replied, “My eyes are open and I’m keeping an arm’s length.”

Without missing a beat, Kearns replies “you have very short arms.”

I laughed and laughed and laughed.

But he was right.

I couldn’t sustain a “fake friendship.” I’m either in or out. If caution was really necessary, then I needed to be out.

Similarly, earlier this year, I had been stewing for a few days, when my friend Dave happened to text me. I decided to ask his opinion.

So, if someone, who has known me for a long time, promises me something and then renegs, without valid explanation, they clearly no longer wish to be friends with me, right?

There is a loooooonnggg pause after which, he finally replies:

To me, that seems to be an extreme interpretation.

HAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAH The pause is probably my favorite part of the exchange. Followed by the “to me.” Why is Dave always trying to avoid getting stabbed to death by Stephane Clare?

It was a well timed reminder that, while I am compelled to make sense of things with my neat compartments, the world outside can be a messy place, no harm in giving it a week before I make any super final judgments.

But in the end, extreme or not, I will choose.



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Happy Birthday, President Obama

Half the promises people say were never kept, were never made.  – Edgar Watson Howe

It is useless to hold a person to anything he says while he is in love, drunk, or running for office.  ~Shirley MacLaine

This post has been stewing in my brain since the President announced, in April, that he was running for reelection. The announcement basically triggered an early Liberal Festivus!

All the sad sacks with “Hope” and “Change” bumper stickers fractured limbs and strained muscles to take the proverbial stand to show America where, on the doll, Obama had touched them. In an essay popularly circulated in some twitter circles, one author estimates that President Obama promised him almost more than two thousand dollars in undelivered funds!


To think I was pissed when President-elect Obama didn’t send me my “O” t-shirt in the promised 6-8 weeks! I should have held out for cash!

The litany of angry charges pouring in from the left are diverse, layered and lofty. Much like the left itself.

The President started a war without congressional approval!

The President didn’t close Gitmo!

Where are all the gay marriages we were promised?!

And here’s an actual quote: So I deem him not just a failure, but a menace, a stain on our nation, a disgrace, a big fat black mark in the history books.


(I don’t want to know what that guy says about Jefferson, whose own children were bought and sold; or Jackson who slaughtered American Indians; or Roosevelt who authorized internment camps; or Lincoln who burned half the country to the ground; or Hoover…)

Yet, here I sit (actually, lounge, cause that’s how I roll) prepared to make the case for President Obama’s reelection. And I promise to do so without even pointing at his possible opposition. Much. (DUDE. Have you ever listened to Herman Cain speak? Say…about the constitution?

Let’s just say I’m all in on the Bachmann/Palin challenge to the Obama/Anybody but Biden…ugh okay, fine Biden 2012 ticket.

By way of background, there is something about me that you may already know, if you’ve been reading the brilliant prose I’ve been publishing on the interwebs for the last (gulp) eight years, or that you may not know, having only recently discovered my brilliant prose.

The first President I voted for was Jimmy Carter. Not because I’m that old, though I am pretty old, but because my mom thought it would be fun to let her four-year-old pull the levers. And I pulled them but good! She picked me up and and I slid my tiny little hand all the way down the Democratic line DESTROYING those levers along the way! And then with two hands (and an assist from mom) I pushed the metal bar to record the votes and free us from the booth. It was AWESOME. And, without divulging too much, this is how I’ve voted in every election since then. Although, now New York has some weird faux electronic system and there are the five years I spent voting in Connecticut. So, there you have it, I am a Democrat through and through.

Unapologetically so.

While I have great affinity for socially conservative principles, the Republican party embodies none of those. I can’t even “argue” with Republicans anymore because the only consistent party identity that I’ve discerned is “we’re for whatever the Democrats are not for.” Unedr President Bush the federal government MORE THAN DOUBLED, yet now they’re all about small government? Under president Bush, the United States government essentially nationalized more than 30 banks, yet President Obama is the communist boogie man? President Reagan presided over one of the largest tax increases in our history, but President Obama is robbing the ruch blind? Um…er…okkaayyy. Good talk, good talk.

So, *I* will be voting for President Obama in 2012 *knock wood* *spit spit* that I am still alive AND that he’s still alive (oh man, why do I freak myself out with thoughts like those??!) because he’s the Democratic nominee. And that’s how *I* do. But I can hear you now, “but Stephane, I am not you, why should I vote for President Obama in 2012?”

Well, the reasons are various and many.

President Obama has only been in office a little over three years and he’s already accomplished sooo much.

He negotiated the historic healthcare reform bill and now 32 million additional Americans will receive healthcare coverage. I personally, am now saddled with enormous premium bills because the insurance companies have pretty much just passed the added costs on to consumers, but should I have a layabout child one day, it’ll be good to know that said slacker will be covered well into his or her twenties.

He authorized a number of stimulus packages that saved the American auto industry and stabilized the financial sector. This is something that both Democrats AND Republicans should like since it continued the bailout policies started under President Bush/Paulson AND rescued the union heavy auto industry in the same way the Republican administration protected their friends in corporate America.

President Obama’s justice department has deported more illegal aliens than any other administration in the history of the United States. How can anyone who seriously thumps their chest about undocumented immigrants NOT support the administration that is so vigorously enforcing our nation’s laws?

President Obama initiated military action against Libya to defend America’s interests.

Oh man, this is sounding real Republicany and is making me uncomfortable. So how about this, President Obama also, made improving America’s infrastructure a priority, reversing President Bush’s policy of doing nothing – the first President since Coolidge to so neglect the nations highways, grids and buildings. President Obama’s cash for clunkers program got inefficient vehicles off the road, spurred auto sales and subsidized my Beamer. His goal to get fuel efficiency above 50mpg is next up.

The President also lifted bans on stem cell research, retired the clunky and expensive shuttle program. He reversed many of the Bush administration closed door policies and now allows photographs of our war dead, requires all federal agencies to comply with the Freedom of Information Act and refuses to let corporations in arrears on taxes, bid for federal contracts.

President Obama is also seen as a leader on the international stage, winning the Nobel Peace Prize just months after taking office!

The President is a constitutional law scholar and given that the new Republican house spent their first days in power reading aloud from it, such a scholar should be exactly the man to work with this Congress. Indeed, even as Speaker Boehner threatened to slit our nation’s econimic throat, President Obama was able to forge a compromise to maintain our AAA rating.

The President appointed twice as many women to the US Supreme Court than any President before him. He provided incentives to employers to hire chronically unemployed Americans.

The list of his accomplishments go on and on, click the link I provided above.

But what of the things the President *promised* to accomplish? Well, Gitmo is still open, but I don’t think anyone seriously believes that the President could shutdown the Bush administration’s terrorist holding pen without thorough vetting of the occupants and adequate relocation facilities. No one wants to answer to the parents or children of victims murdered by prematurely or inadvisably released terrorists. 

DOMA and Dont Ask Dont Tell are still the law of the land. This reality is disappointing, but I will use my “one time” chip and punt this away with “there is no Republican candidate that will overturn either of these laws. We have a two-party system, so either you’ll have a Democrat discriminating against gay Americans or a Republican. I choose Democrat and hope this shameful chapter in my country’s history soon comes to a close.”

The President promised immigration reforms and seems to have gone the other way. Indeed, as you know he’s the deportation champ. However, for now, these are our immigration laws. He took an oath to uphold them. The same as I did when I became an attorney. I don’t like all the laws… I certainly don’t understand why Americans over the age of majority aren’t given one freebee murder or why BMW drivers can’t drive as fast as they want, but there it is. When the laws change, the Justice Department will move on.

President Obama made good on his promise to wrap up the war in Iraq — sans obnoxious banner flying — and he has ramped up efforts in Afghanistan. Not to mention he gave the kill order that ended the 10-year-long hunt for Osama bin Laden. Oh, did I mention it? Whoops. My bad.

The President did not end the ill-advised Bush tax cuts, but given that the Republican opposition was willing to send the United States into default over the debt ceiling fight, my guess is compromising with the lame duck Congress on these tax cuts saved yet another melodramatic stand off with the Republican leadership. The President’s current plan to begin taxing the trappings of luxury and the mega rich may well go a long way to close the gap between the national debt and disproportionate taxation.

But what of the lamentations of the Matt Damon types who believe the President has let them down? Comedian Elon James White has hilariously dubbed these (mostly) white liberals “Emo Progs.” They believed that the magical negro, dubbed by EJW, Jesus H. Dumbeldore would deliver free love and legal drugs and Priuses in every driveway, maaannn! Except, candidate Barack Obama ran a distinctly centrist campaign… he didn’t even come out in favor of gay marriage on the campaign trail. I don’t know why they thought he was some kind of secret hippie… I blame Donald Trump and his “sources.”  And Oprah.

I’m kidding.

I would never blame Oprah for anything. That woman is a saint whose visage should be printed on our money.

President Obama has the tricky task of being the President of *America.* That means he’s the President of men like Vice President Dick Cheney, who would never in a bazillion years vote for him and he’s the President of awesome bloggers like Stephane Clare who would never vote against him unless he signed some “Stephane Clare will be imprisoned for life if she votes for me” bill. My interests as someone who loves the United States and wants to see my country thrive, prosper and win all the gold medals in every sport ever, are most closely aligned with President Obama’s steady cool, cerebral leadership. I may not understand why Larry Summers has a job in the Obama administration, as opposed to say, a job breaking rocks in a prison yard; but not for one second do I believe the President doesn’t understand the economic, social, or geo-political forces at play. I don’t know that he’s making every decision I would make, but I trust his decision-making.

He’s not a God, he is a man. Probably the second best man I’ve seen in that job in my lifetime. Plus, I could stand another four years of listening to the President’s melifluous addresses and staring dreamily into his pretty pretty face. (Though, Mr. President, please quit smoking! I want to see you around for a long long time and I do not want your face destroyed by smoke or your awesome voice snatched by a cancer tumor. Please and thank you. What? You don’t think the President reads my blog? He totally does! I would read his blog if he had one! Oh, does he have one…um…*whistles*)

So, go forth and prod some sense into a Republican — President Obama has represented their interests (he’s even explicitly signed laws saying that abortions would not be funded at all under the new healthcare bill) far better than half the current field of Republican candidates. Then, go hug an Emo Prog, I guess they’re not used to not getting their way (man, imagine being a poor black teenage girl who campaigned her little heart out for Bill Clinton only to have him throw all her interests under the bus in, oh, 16 months flat. I COULDN’T EVEN DRINK MY SORROWS AWAY, YET!).

My advice? Curl up in your twin bed with a pint of Ben & Jerry’s and play this song till you feel better:

Happy Birthday, Mr. President. I wish you five more years in the White House and decades more of life! 

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