Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Newsday Tuesday

Judge Invalidates Admission by Va. Slaying Suspect

Officer: "Do you know why we're here?"
Suspect: "Yeah, because I stabbed my mom in the neck."

A Virginia judge invalidated a killer's confession because he blurted it out before the officers were able to read him his Miranda rights. Apparently the judge expected the officers to treat their opening statement as a legitimate part of the interrogation, when anyone with a bit of common sense knows that a cop always starts with that phrase. It's as common as opening a chess game with a pawn or asking the hefty guy at the All-You-Can-Eat Shrimp Night if he wants extra pie. "Do you know why we're here?" isn't a question that invites a confession so much as a polite way of saying "You're sketchy and we're about to ask you some questions." And obviously the suspect wanted to confess, so the judge tossing out this bit of evidence is a lose-lose situation for everyone involved.

TV Writers Must Sell, Sell, Sell

Product placement in TV shows increased 84 percent last year. I don't mind product placement at all if it's not the focus of a scene -- for example, driving past a billboard for Snuckey's or drinking a can of Pepsi without commenting on it is fine. Making every car in a show a Ford and having a character yell out "Get in the F-150!" is stupid. Alias is especially silly in this regard since every vehicle in the 3rd season was some kind of Ford. I also think that an increase in product placement should result in a decrease in normal commercials but apparently networks do not believe in a life of balance.

My, Christopher Robin, you've changed

I have no sentimental attachment to the Pooh-verse, so the decision to turn Christopher Robin into a more-marketable little girl doesn't really bother me at all, but I'm sure Pooh-bahs all over the world will be outraged at the change. All I remember of watching the animated cartoon as a kid was that Pooh and Piglet were fun to watch but Eyeore and Tigger were obnoxious, and I probably only read the books a couple times. The article ends with four other changes to cartoons for mass-media's sake, including this one: The narrative of Enid Blyton's The Little Black Doll, a black doll that wanted to be pink, was reversed to avoid possible racist interpretations. Black tabby, indeed.

Video shows police handcuffing 5-year-old

After pouting in an empty classroom for thirty minutes, a kindergarten girl is escorted to the principal's office where she tears things off the walls and breaks stuff on the desk. School administration, rightfully fearful of frivolous lawsuits, call the cops who handcuff the girl (who has calmed down by then) and chuck her in the paddy wagon.

The school teachers obviously did all the "right" things here, although it's a shame when the right things pander so much to bratty kids these days. After about ten minutes of putting up with the little princess, the teacher should have gotten mom back on the phone and mom should have given her blessing to launch the kid out of a cannon or something equally as creative. All kids have tantrums, but when your kid does stuff like this at school and refuses to listen for thirty minutes, you're probably not doing something right as a parent. Also, the police response was stupid -- frightening the kid after she's already calm and sitting does nothing to fix the original behaviour. It's like collecting puppy pee in a cup everytime your puppy pees on the floor and then pouring it on his food eight years later -- the puppy, by then a snarling mastiff, will have no recollection of his bad behaviour, and will then eviscerate you and use your head as a squeaky toy.

Nude ear-squat video clip inquiry starts

This article reads like a junior high book report. They never directly tell you what an ear-squat is, so I'm presuming it's common knowledge in Malaysia. Personally, if I were to invent a procedure which forces criminals to expel foreign objects from local borders like that, I would pick a much saucier name than "ear-squat". That just sounds like a fetish gone bad.

German diner fined for biting waitress' toe

A German court fined a man for biting a waitress on the toe and drawing blood after he spilled beer on her foot and she told him to lick it clean.

What the heck. You told some random stranger in a restaurant to lick your foot. It's your own fault that your foot is now a vampire. There is a reason that the napkin industry makes billions of dollars every year -- to prevent tragic situations such as this one.

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