Supporting Local artists of film through empowerment, inc. 

By: Lucas Cuny, MFA - 01/26/2017

On Saturday January 21st,  I joined thousands in the Inland Empire and millions across the world in a defiant stand for women’s rights and a stand against a ego maniacal president. Yeah, I went there. It was actually a beautiful day all said, March against tyranny, followed by some Mexican food, a local brewery, then a film, all together a great Saturday. Only in America...

"America, Flags, Beer, Movies, and McDonalds."

The OA: The first Binge Experience that I was like, “Ehh” 

by: Lucas Cuny, Slate Inc. Founder - 01/19/2017

At the start of the new year, I completed watching two new Netflix programs: “Cinco”, Jim Gaffigan’s 5th comedy special and their series, “The OA.”

In Gaffigan’s special he comments on the phenomenon of binge watching. The act of getting through hours of television in a day or a week, depending on your pace, and your desire to a have a life outside of your living room. The pitfall, of course, is the amount of time you invest on something that may lack in quality. You’ve spent 8 hours on something you kind of feel like you have to finish it. That’s how I felt with “The OA."...

Past Blogs...

Super Bowl a Metaphor for an Election

By: Lucas Cuny, MFA

So the 51st Super Bowl has come and gone. To paraphrase “Mad Max Beyond the Thunderdome,” two teams entered, but one team left. The Super Bowl is a media event and as I sit here on my train into LA for work, I think the Monday after should also be a national holiday. Because no one is going to do anything today, from either being hung over, tired, or as a big fan of football myself, look up my favorite team and see just how, maybe they could finally win again...

As a blog about media it seems impossible not too discuss politics especially when TV has given us two presidents within the last 40 years, Reagan and GE and Trump. Like I say in this article if you don't like the channel please free to change it.
"Bill, Milo, the extreme left, the 1st Amendment, and what the hell happened to my damn remote?!" February 19. 2017

By: Lucas Cuny, MFA

“This instrument can teach, it can illuminate; yes, and even it can inspire. But it can do so only to the extent that humans are determined to use it to those ends. Otherwise, it's nothing but wires and lights in a box. There is a great and perhaps decisive battle to be fought against ignorance, intolerance and indifference. This weapon of television could be useful,” Edward R. Murrow.

            If this latest entry into this blog seems as though I’m summoning my inner P.J. O’Rourke, you are correct! It is mostly due to the fact that I find myself missing P.J. right now. One of my favorite reads from him, “Don’t Vote: It Only Encourages the Bastards,” seems to be a reality with the ‘cheeto in chief ‘ and now his regime is really encouraged. Look at what those Dixie-crats are up to now, oops, I mean republicans.  Here we stand with these two political parties so driven by their extremes, that the great middle that moves this country forward is shut out and now we are even getting testy with one another. Fights with your right of center friend on Facebook, getting blocked by a sibling, to annoying all your other friends, because it seems the rational voices that make this country strong are punch drunk. I’m going to do my best to explain this here and now.

            How did we get to this point? Well I, for one, blame Richard Millhouse Nixon, part 1 of the descent from conservatives of Teddy Roosevelt and Eisenhower (Ike) into pandering party of white European angst, which got their prominence from Nixon’s southern strategy. See, tricky Dick was the first republican who realized that if I go after disenfranchised southern whites, I might have a chance at being elected. He was also the first to say, “I’m the law and order candidate.” What he figured out is that there is a segment of the nation that really hate the events after 1861, because that meant the nation was really going to try to live by the idea of all being equal, and that does not sit will with European marauders who like it when it is just the men who are in charge and the rest of the country is in bondage. But I ask you, does that rationale work at home? If not for our more nurturing tendencies, our homes would be a disaster, men in general are well, impulsive, and get injured easily. As we see with the current regime beyond physical injury, so to do ego’s feel pain. But those damn progressives in the Republican Party from 1861 to 1960 sought to instill federal authority to fight for the union first then for equal protection under the law. That pesky progressive Ike sent troops to Arkansas so kids could dare to go to school. The north prevailed, but equality does not prevail. So some powers that be, Nixon mainly felt enough angry white people would vote against social equality. These poor and disenfranchised, were mad about- the civil rights movement, the women’s movement, and any movement in general that seems to keep them living in some sort of squallier. Nixon creates the politics of ‘us verse them’ and he won. So a feeling remains among that portion of the electorate they bought into the politics of  old Tricky Dick, who let them know, sure you might be poor white trash, but at least your white.

            As it does, time marches onward, inflation increases, we are in a national crisis, "I’m still mad as hell and no one seems to speak my language." Like a cowboy he played in movies, here comes ol’ Ronnie riding his white horse into the national scene, but this time he’s not promoting General Electric, but a city on the hill. He seems to be a compassionate conservative. Look, it is grandpa and he just wants to show you how to fish so you can eventually fish for yourself.  The best way to do that, he tells us, to cut taxes to an extreme amount on the rich because they will make more money and so will all of you. Gee that sounds really good. What no one wants to realize is what Ike knew, to keep the corporate big wigs at bay, they had to pay their fair share at about 90%. So the party of Ike is now the party of Nixon in the person of Reagan, and we’re going to give you law and order and more money. We are also going to give you back some states rights. So you don’t really have to maintain certain percentages of the schools that are more equitable, you can segregate again, just don’t tell anyone that’s what we’re doing. Blame the bad inner city schools on the crumbling cities and the crack cocaine epic. So let’s double down on this drug problem through harsher criminal penalties and keep folks separate as much as possible. While we continue in our new prohibition, never mind that history shows us that prohibition doesn’t work, but like an insane person, we will keep doing the same thing over and over and expect a different result. While the rest of the civilized world looks at drugs as a health issue, we will keep it criminal and save our country and lock up all those bad people who use and sell it. Well, I don’t want to get too far into this rabbit hole, go watch the film “The 13th.”

            So all of this brings us to part three, the current regime that sits in the White House now. You know what they said, “to heck with the niceties of part two, we’re going to be dirtier and trickier than part one”. So it seems fitting to quote a comic book villain at the inauguration. And what did they tap into, the southern strategy that is now all the way up to Idaho. That’s right, the place where we get our potatoes has become an enclave for white nationalists and are we surprised, we all saw that electoral map in November. So we have two nations it seems, one that knows the economy has changed and will never go back to 1850-1861, and the other that wishes it could. So part three figured out that they would sell a post civil war economy to their base and hoped enough people would be districted by emails that they wouldn’t notice their basic rights coming under siege. (Freedom of the press, social security and medicaid privatized, and your new health care, etc.)

            God I got really long winded in this one, you saw Milo and Bill in the title and were like “When the heck does he get to those two?” Okay, maybe about here. Somewhere as progressives marched for everyone’s rights and got big sweeping justice laden pieces of legislation written something happened and the that's where we might have lost the message battle, the left attached free speech they got persnickety about language. I’m not going to try to be George Carlin here, cause only George can be George. But progressives deemed that we are really offensive to one another, and our language needs to change. We need to be sensitive to everyone ‘s feelings. So instead of talking about our diversity we devised a way to disguise it so it makes those of us that like everyone feel good, and those that don’t like everyone feel insecure. The insecurity leads to anger, and finally shows up as hate. So now, the poor whites feel like this, “while you’re fighting for Kaitlin to pee in the ladies room, I still don’t have a darn job, so to heck with the whole thing I’m voting for part three, ‘the cheeto regime’.” So now here’s where we get to Bill and Milo, sounds like a cute Disney movie I suppose.

            Because of our new “safe language”, a comedian so subversive as Jerry Seinfeld does not feel comfortable playing at a college campus. Bill Maher, for all is failings as a human being, along with Howard Stern and other satirists, have sat on the progressive side saying “stop attacking language, we love to use it to make points about the ridiculousness of hate, if you keep up the attack on language and freedom of speech, you’re going to lose an election.” So, what happened? People said, “Yeah I’m going to vote for the guy that says whatever he wants, he expresses himself honestly.” So Milo, a provocateur, goes on Bill’s show, they find common ground on what needs to be a progressive issue always the 1st Amendment. But some of us are outraged cause this guy Milo’s speech can cross lines. But did we get this mad when Jerry Springer had David Duke on all those years ago; no, I don’t think we did. Duke actually went out to physically hurt people as the leader of the KKK. Milo just uses words and we take the bait every time from folks like Milo then we create “safe zones”.

            We also get mad at Bill because he criticizes Islam, albeit not the most eloquently at times, but remember his first job, comedian-satirist. But the point I feel he tries to make is that we criticize our fringe western religious folks when they show up at soldiers’ funerals with banners that they say “God Hates Fags”, or we criticize radical Christians when they murder abortion doctors, so why are we not allowed to criticize the extremes of Islam? This, I think, is Bill’s point about Islam. So we claim a social evolution behind clever language that doesn’t hurt feelings, but in that we fail to move our society forward and we just offend people either way because we point fingers like a left wing church lady. We cannot be safe out in public, go home to be safe. When you’re at home or in your car, I implore you to use discretion when listening or watching certain programs. If you don’t like what’s on the radio, turn the station, because you may not agree with it. But if the speech isn’t dangerous, just offensive or annoying, it is allowed. When Milo gets booked somewhere, don’t show up, or show up, as our last POTUS suggested, listen to what they have to say and then when appropriate, question and challenge it. If you don’t like Bill, grab your remote and switch it to something maybe on CBS, their shows tend not be offensive, unless Charlie Sheen is on.