Reading Digest – 21 November 2012   Leave a comment

“It’s times like this I wish I were a religious man.” – Homer Simpson
“It’s all over, people!  We don’t have a prayer!” – Reverend Lovejoy

[Programming Note: The Ann Arbor Review of Books will be undergoing some changes over the long Thanksgiving weekend.  Posting will be light to non-existent until Monday.]

FNLogo A few weeks ago, I said that a lack of apocalyptic furor was the biggest single factor in Mitt Romney’s inability to make anything more than a superficial connection with his supporters.  This morning, FOX News adds some credence to my theory:

Doomsday! (Tonight on FOX)

It’s a five part series, and yes, they are as serious as decorum will allow:

While most of these are associated with the second coming of Christ, the focus is now on the Maya civilization of Southern Mexico and the end of their calendar on December 21, 2012 — the coming Winter Solstice. Over 3,000 books and countless websites claim that the Maya predicted the Earth will be destroyed on this date.

The scenarios are truly frightening: The Earth will be destroyed by colliding with an asteroid or being pulled into the black hole at the center of the Milky Way Galaxy. Others claim a galactic planetary alignment that will tear the Earth apart or the Earth’s magnetic poles will shift and our planet will turn upside down.

Adam Housley reports from Palenque, the so-called "jewel of the Maya Classic Period," to find out what the Maya believed. Lauren Green travels to the battlefield of Armageddon where the Book of Revelation describes the final battles of good vs. evil. Amy Kellogg is at the prehistoric megalith Stonehenge to see the sun rise and ask the druids if they are there to celebrate or countdown to Doomsday.

Mayans and Druids and tigers, oh my!  But wait, there’s more!:

Understanding the New Testament’s vision of the second coming of Christ is led by Fr. Mark Arey, whose recent translation of the Book of Revelation from Greek is now illustrated as a graphic novel. Archaeologist Eric Cline describes the doomsday battlefield of Armageddon. Evangelical preacher Marcus Lamb describes his belief that the end is truly near and he’s even put up a live Internet camera in Jerusalem to capture Jesus’ return.

It is a fact that the Maya calendar will end on December 21, 2012. But, don’t believe the hype: The world is not about to end. Debunking the doomsday scenarios are astronomer Anthony Aveni, physicist Michio Kaku, archaeologist Christopher Powell and author Graham Hancock. Plus, psychiatrist Dr. Keith Ablow tells why the idea of a doomsday is appealing to some people.

That final paragraph is easily the best part.  It’s the standard FOX News twist applied to the end of the world.  FOX will spend the bulk of its time and attention on the most dire and lurid speculations they can concoct, then every once and a while they’ll remind people of reality.  So we get statements like “pulled into the black hole”, “galactic planetary alignment that will tear the Earth apart”, “the doomsday battlefield of Armageddon”, and “Earth will be destroyed” (twice!).  Then at the end is the quick debunking, which is described as flatly and dryly as possible.  Balance!

FoxNationLogo If the world is going to end, the nationalists are going to watch it happen with their hands wrapped firmly around their dicks:


The movie she’s in, by the way, doesn’t come out until next spring.  This story is strictly about the fact that she did a photo spread for Maxim.  And there’s:



That last one is especially pointless. 

DailyCallerLogo But not as pointless as this:

Skinny Cornucopia

Tucker, if you want to run a skin site, just run a damn skin site already.

ABC Logo In addition to their usual tabloid fare, which today includes “Celebrity Cold Remedies” under the heading “ABC Health” and “Russian Beauty Queen Slams Russian Corruption” (both of which naturally come with pictures), ABC’s also got some excellent synergy:

Objective Reporting

Tell me, fellow Disney employee, why is this spectacle of sight and sound so awesome and worthy of the attention of the ABC News audience?  That’s amazing, and tickets are still available, correct?  Thanks, see you at the office party. 

CBSLogo Tiffany is still very interested in what very rich wingers think about screwing poor people:

Honeywell to Medicare - Drop Dead

Still waiting for word from someone for whom Social Security benefits aren’t a rounding error on their annual income.  Gonna be a while, methinks.

Posted November 21, 2012 by Charlie Sweatpants in Reading Digest, The Simpsons

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