Writer and director Michael Merino seems to have followed the path of most people who dream of making a living in the creative arts. As it states on his IMDB bio, “Mr. Merino held many jobs which included jobs as a contractor, bartender, waiter, short order cook, ladies shoe salesmen, door to door sales and jewelry rep, a landscaper, art dealer, carpenter, brickmason, house painter, truck driver, dock worker, and his most interesting jobs as a pornographic pizza-maker in Sydney’s ‘red-light’ district.” And yes, we will get to that pornographic pizza job in the interview. In all seriousness, Merino has grit. Persevering through those jobs and with the support of his father, Michael was able to pursue his passion which is writing and directing witty, intelligent, independent, horror films. I have seen 502 and The Haunting of Pearson Place and I can say that a Merino film involves more than a high-priced special effects team and crafty CG.… Read the rest
Tag Archives | Washington D.C.
The proper way to ring in Barack Obama’s second term. Via Politico:
About 60 anarchists smashed windows and damaged an ATM machine overnight just blocks from the National Mall, police [said] Monday.
At about midnight Sunday night, a group moving through the Gallery Place/Chinatown/Mt. Vernon Square area of Washington, D.C., broke a window and splashed yellow paint on a TD Bank branch, smashed a window at a Hooters restaurant and broke the screen of an ATM machine belonging to the Department of Veterans’ Affairs Credit Union.
The damage took place at sites about 7 to 9 blocks from the mall, where hundreds of thousands of people gathered later Monday for the re-inauguration of President Barack Obama. The group dropped flyers saying, “Against Every Cop. Against Every Boss. Against Every President,” the report said.
The new series of PSAs breaks ground as the first such effort by an American city. DCist writes:
Mayor Vince Gray and the D.C. Office of Human Rights yesterday launched an ad campaign promoting respect for the city’s transgender and gender-non-conforming residents. The five ads, which will appear this fall, use images of members of the transgender and gender-non-conforming and convey the message that they are no different than any other D.C. resident.
City officials say that the government-funded ad campaign is the first of its kind in the nation to focus on transgender and gender-non-conforming residents.
At the launch of the ad campaign yesterday, Gray admitted that while the ads themselves would not be enough to stop discrimination and acts of violence, they would serve to raise awareness and highlight legal rights and protections that members of the community enjoy under the expansive D.C. Human Rights Act.
Sure, widespread electronic voting would make the process of tallying and processing ballots exponentially easier, but can it ever really be secure? Maybe someday, but certainly not right now, as evidenced by a little experiment in Washington D.C. that ended with everyone’s favorite robo-sociopath Bender Bending Rodriguez being elected as the head of the Washington D.C. school board. Needless to say, there was a little bit of hacking involved. Before we go any further, its worth noting that there was hacking involved partially because the Washington D.C. election board was asking for it. Literally. During the election in question, the election board actually invited all comers to try and break into the system as a test of its security. Among others, a team from University of Michigan took a crack at it, and cracked the system wide open ...
Marking President’s day today, February 20th, hundreds, perhaps thousands, of active duty troops and veterans will descend on Washington DC and the White House to show support for Ron Paul’s 2012 presidential campaign. Organized by the group, Veterans for Ron Paul 2012, the march will see military personnel march from the Washington Monument to the White House in an effort to generate media coverage of Paul’s ongoing campaign, and highlight the fact that Paul has received more donations from active duty military than all other GOP candidates combined, as well as Obama.Video via RT America:
Reports the AP via NPR:
… Read the rest
Flanked by police scooters, about two dozen Occupy Wall Street protesters started a two-week walk from New York to Washington on Wednesday.
The activists left Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park, marched past the World Trade Center site and boarded a ferry to New Jersey. They plan to walk through Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland and arrive in Washington by Nov. 23 — the deadline for a congressional committee to decide whether to keep President Obama’s extension of Bush-era tax cuts. Protesters say the cuts benefit only rich Americans.
Michael Glazer, 26, an actor from Chicago, smiled as he boarded the ferry across the Hudson River, cheered by supporters shouting, “Thank you!” Walking in well-worn boots, he said: “I’ve had these for years and years, and they’ve served me well for many miles of marches.”
They hope to pick up other participants along their 240-mile march and have likened the effort to long-distance walks during the civil rights era.
The earthquake didn’t cause widespread damages or injuries, but it did put a crack in the Washington Monument. After unconfirmed reports suggested the monument was tilting, park officials said Tuesday night that the 550-foot obelisk suffered a crack in the 5.8-magnitude rumble centered in Mineral, Va., near Charlottesville. Inspections conducted by helicopter found a crack “at the very, very top” of the monument, park service spokesman Bill Line told The Washington Post, and the monument and plaza surrounding the structure will be closed indefinitely as it is examined. Though it suffered damage, the monument isn’t leaning, the Park Service said. The Park Service has also temporarily closed the Lincoln Memorial and the Jefferson Memorial pending further inspection, while other landmarks — including the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial set to be officially unveiled this weekend — remain open.
The dancers were protesting an appeals court ruling handed down last week that the national monuments are places for reflection and contemplation — and that dancing distracted from such an experience. In 2008, Mary Brooke Oberwetter and a group of friends went to the Jefferson to commemorate the president's 265th birthday by dancing silently, while listening to music on headphones. Park Police ordered the revelers to disperse and arrested them when they did not. Oberwetter sued on free speech grounds, but the appeals court ruled last week that her conduct was indeed prohibited "because it stands out as a type of performance, creating its own center of attention and distracting from the atmosphere of solemn commemoration" that Park Service regulations are designed to preserve. Saturday's protest was staged during the day, on Memorial Day weekend, in order to draw maximum attention:
This should be more troubling, but it feels like business as usual in Washington. Dan Foomkin writes on the Huffington Post:
Members of the House of Representatives considerably outperform the stock market in their personal investments, according to a new academic study.
Four university researchers examined 16,000 common stock transactions made by approximately 300 House representatives from 1985 to 2001, and found what they call “significant positive abnormal returns,” with portfolios based on congressional trades beating the market by about 6 percent annually.
What’s their secret? The report speculates, but does not conclude, it could have something to do with the ability members of Congress have to trade on non-public information or to vote their own pocketbooks — or both.
A study of senators by the same team of researchers five years ago found members of the higher chamber even better at beating the market — outperforming it by about 10 percent, an amount the academics said was “both economically large and statistically significant.”
Read More: Huffington Post