Saturday, December 17, 2011

Seasons Greetings With A Christmas Carol

As a holiday offering to all our readers we offer old radio broadcasts and a 1935 British movie of "A Christmas Carol" by Charles Dickens.

Here are the 1938 and 1939 Campbell Playhouse radio broadcast productions of "A Christmas Carol" featuring Orson Welles and Lionel Barrymore. [Mercury Theatre Info]

1938 version featuring Orson Welles as Scrooge. Play starts at 5:30 minutes [MP3]

1939 version featuring Lionel Barrymore as Scrooge (My favorite) Play starts at 3:00 minutes [MP3]

Seymour Hicks plays the title role in the first sound version of the Dickens classic about the miser who's visited by three ghosts on Christmas Eve. This British import is notable for being the only adaptation of this story with an invisible Marley's Ghost and its Expressionistic cinematography. This is the uncut 78 minute version from the Internet Archive.

Bill Maher:

New Rule: Someone needs to explain to the Republicans that Ebenezer Scrooge is supposed to be the bad guy. And before conservatives start whining about another "War on Christmas", they must admit they hate everything about Christmas. Because brotherhood, good will toward men, and especially charity make their skin crawl.

Now this week, Michele Bachmann proposed cutting huge holes in the federal safety net, demonstrating a total misunderstanding of the concept of a net. Here's what she said.

MICHELE BACHMANN (11/7/2011): Self-reliance means if anyone will not work, neither should he eat.
Merry Christmas to you too, crazy lady. Yeah, that's the first thing I think whenever self-reliance comes up: punishment by starvation.

Honestly, who could hear that statement, and not think of Scrooge, who in A Christmas Carol, suggests that if the poor don't want to go to the workhouse, they should get on with dying as a service to population control. Now if Herman Cain said that at a Republican debate, he would get a standing ovation. And say what you want about Ebenezer Scrooge, he never shoved Bob Cratchit's head into his groin and said, "Look, you want Christmas off or not?"

Newt Gingrich refers to Obama as the "Food Stamp President", because Obama doesn't want children to starve to death, fuckin' commie.

Mitt Romney says we should let all the people about to lose their homes, lose them. And they can just become renters. Ownership society? Meet "No pets, no waterbeds". Mitt said the same thing a few years ago when the automobile industry was tottering: "Let it die".

I find it ironic that Republicans have such disdain for the lazy, and yet their solution to every problem is "do nothing".

Their answer to wealth inequality? Do nothing.

Health care? Do nothing.

Climate change? Nothing.

Racism? Doesn't exist.

For a group of people so head over heels in love with self-reliance, they sure do recommend a lot of sitting on their ass.

If A Christmas Carol was performed by the Tea Party Dramatic Society, it would be a cautionary tale about how the hero, Scrooge, a blameless job creator, is turned into a socialist through the corrupting influence of Tiny Tim. And the play would end with a simple plaintive question from Mr. Scrooge: "Just how much of my wealth does Mr. Tim think he's entitled to?"

And that is the great Republican fallacy of this election, that our economic problems are due not to Wall Street's gambling, but because too many Americans are lazy. But there are 16 million unemployed, and we only created 80,000 jobs last month. The problem isn't laziness, it's math.

But this is where the Republican Party is now.

In favor of people dying, because they don't have health insurance.

In favor of letting people go unfed if they won't work.

And if they want to work, but are Mexicans, in favor of putting up a fence that electrocutes them.

Even Scrooge is thinking, "Look, I hate the poor, but I'm not a fucking psychopath."

But that's where this party is. It simply has no bottom...
Bill Maher Video:

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