Greatest Cartoons Of All-Time

Since when did Saturday mornings become a good time to do laundry or pay bills?  I remember the simpler days when weekends were for sleeping in but you didn’t even think about hiding under the covers because those magical animations and talking animals offered up only one performance a week.  Saturday mornings were made for cartoon watching.

Nowadays (if I may sound like a grumpy old man) the toons are ubiquitous.  With so many options, kids are doing more channeling than Miss Cleo at a Psychic Friend’s Halloween party.  If that isn’t enough, my boys even learned how to DVR the best shows for when they havshirttales.jpg shirt tales image by rebejspoone to be going.

Well, they’ll never understand the power of exclusivity.  We could all argue over when the golden age of cartoons took place, but everyone will just pick the year they turned 9.  So I’m throwing it all out there.  Whether you rocked with the Fraggles or bopped with Betty Boop, I want your picks for best all-time toons.  This survey may predate the 1990s (Cartoon Network launched in 1992), but we’ll still bring political correctness into the mix and not discriminate against puppets and muppets and Puff n Stuff.  After all, they’re not people too. 

So in the spirit of VH1, here’s some of my favs (in no particular order).  I’m leaving a lot out.  Let’s have yours too.

He-Man–“By the power of Grayskull” must have been the backyard battlecry for millions of kids.  I only went nuts for one set of action figures, those Masters Of The Universe.  He-man might have been the most unoriginal name ever but as long as he and Battle Cat took care of Skeletor and goons all was well with the world.

Scooby-DooScooby is a legend, maybe the Babe Ruth of cartoons for lasting impact.  Hard to believe that at one time a couple of guys thought this cast up.  They never imagined their creation would still be netting tens of millions of dollars decades later.  We always want to buy our childhood back, but generations continue to gobble up tickets and merchandise to this massive franchise.  Even the YouTube link is to a channel devoted entirely to Scooby-Doobie-Doo.  And I do mean Doobie. Continue reading Greatest Cartoons Of All-Time

Beauties, Beasts, and Tramp Stamps

Crazy week for EduClaytion as the semester winds down, research papers are flying in, finals are on the way, and my dog pulled a Tom Brady by tearing his CCL (the canine equivalent of an ACL/knee ligament).  So here’s your 60 second recap of the week’s keen stories.

Barbie turned 50 and is getting tatoos.  Hard to believe that Ken’s girl signed up for a tramp stamp.

Speaking of beauty queens, Miss California Carrie Prejean went up against internet celeb Perez Hilton during the Miss America pageant.  Prejean says she lost the crown because she had the nerve to hold a personal belief on gay marriage.  Hilton aired a scathing video reply.  Miss California won’t be wearing a shiny tiara but loves the massive exposure the controversy is giving her.  Saturday Night Live should be interesting.

Did you catch President Obama’s, ahem, press conference the other night?  I haven’t seen coverage that weak since the San Francisco 49ers slaughtered the San Diego Chargers in Super Bowl XXIX.  As Dennis Miller said, it’s a scary world when Miss California gets tougher questions that the president.

Speaking of beautiful people, how many of them work for Barrack Obama?  According to People magazine, at least one.  Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner was picked for one of the magazine’s most beautiful humans in thNext thing they'll tell us is that this isn't even his body.e world.  That’s not a mistake.  The tax-evading former member of the Federal Reserve that helped create this whole economic mess in the first place also happens to have a brother who works for the magazine, but I ain’t one to gossip so you didn’t hear it from me.  I think I speak for a lot of people when I say that I want on next year’s list.

Geithner continues to work through a tough economy.  Many corporations continue to change their ways.  Even American Idol eliminated their powerful Idol Give Back this season.  The producers felt that now is not the best time to ask people for money.  Continue reading Beauties, Beasts, and Tramp Stamps

Comcast and NFL Network Delay Divorce

With only a few hours to go on an expiring contract, the NFL Network and Comcast have agreed to not allow the football network to go off the air tonight at midnight. The two sides have been battling for the past couple years. The Philadelphia Inquirer just printed this statement online:

“Comcast and the NFL are engaged in productive discussions toward a new agreement for NFL Network carriage on Comcast. NFL Network will continue to be carried on Comcast systems past tonight’s scheduled expiration of the current contract while both sides continue these productive discussions. We are both working to find a solution that works for NFL fans and Comcast’s customers.”

The NFL had been contesting Comcast’s extra monthly charge for a “sports package” that includes NHL, NBA, and more channels.  The League, and this subscriber, felt that the cable giant should include the programming in it’s already excessive (my opinion) rates. Continue reading Comcast and NFL Network Delay Divorce

Swine Flu Debate: Would YOU Travel?

The World Health Organization (WHO) officially declared the swine flu a pandemic.  That’s technical speak for not good.  More American states are reporting cases daily. 

Not surprisingly, Vice President Joe Biden, who never wore a shoe he didn’t like to eat, went on television and explained that the policy for his family is quite different than the ones put in place by the White House.  While politicians regularly fail to live according to the rules they create, it’s not everyday one of these knuckleheads openly admits their double standards. 

Biden says his family shouldn’t put themselves into confined spaces including airplanes and subways.  Not that the VP would want to scare people or anything.  I have a question for Mr. Biden.  Are you dumb in any other areas?  There’s also the irony that Biden spent half the campaign railing about how he would always take the subway home to be with his kids at night. 

My family has been planning a trip this month.  On a plane.  According to the VP, traveling to work just became dangerous for millions of urban commuters.  Should I fly?  Should you? 

Let’s hear what you have to say on this topic.  Will you travel on planes and subway trains during the scare?  What about sporting events, movie theaters, or churches?  Still eating bacon? Where do you draw the line?

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The Arlen Specter Blah Blah

Arlen Specter is now a democrat.  Big deal. 

The only surprising aspect of this move is that the Pennsylvania senator is pretending his decision has something to do with personal values.  Now my mama always said not to judge other people, so you might think I’m being rough on the nouveau democrat.  The problem is that mama also said “don’t be an idiot.”

At least one Nittany Lion has had enough

Specter says the republican party left him as he waxed nostalgic over the good old Reagan days.  Anybody who hasn’t had their head up Al Gore’s derriere for the past six years can tell you the republicans have moved closer to the democratic party.  Reagan’s republican party saw their leader win 49 states.  Specter’s republican party managed to throw up all over itself through two election cycles. 

Everyone knows that Arlen Specter is getting spanked in the polls these days.  The recent figure splashed across headlines gave contender Pat Toomey a 21 point lead.  That kind of blackjack hand beats a joker like Specter any day.

The only significance of Arlen Specter is that he was one of 100 senators.  That and he sounds just like McGruff the Crime Dog.  Like so many endless incumbents, he just hasn’t been relevant for years.  These entrenched politicians spend a majority of time securing the next election victory. 

Specter knows that his slipping popularity is not likely in an era when Americans consistently disapprove of congressional leaders over 70% of the time yet still vote the fools back into office nearly 3 out of 4 times.  Even bitter, old John Murtha managed to win reelection after insulting his voting base TWICE!  Then again, Murtha is a democrat.  Now Specter wants to join him. Continue reading The Arlen Specter Blah Blah

New York Not Amused At Obama’s Photo Op

Somebody should remind the White House that a plane flying low over New York is a touchy subject.  One of President Obama’s planes and an Air Force fighter jet flew low over the Statue of Liberty on Monday for a photo opportunity approved by someone, somwhere; although White House press secretary Robert Gibbs didn’t know anything about the maneuver.Panic ... A US presidential 747 flies low over New York Harbour followed by an F-16 chase plane.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg fumed as many city residents panicked.  Hundreds of calls poured into the 911 emergency response line.  Multiple companies evacuated employees during the tense confusion.  Thousands of scared New Yorkers filled the streets.  Oh by the way, stocks lost a little extra while our tax money paid for this public relations bucket of waste.

What a bunch of clowns.  Great Reagan’s ghost.  How in the name of Sidney Crosby could anybody, let alone high ranking government officials, be so stupid as to fly a jumbo jet and fighter plane so low next to the World Trade Center site?  Oh yeah, they’re high ranking government officials.  Job qualifications consist of having parent’s who pay for SAT prep guides. 

Mayor Bloomberg did not mince words in a heated statement during which he described himself as “furious.”  According to Reuters, the uninformed mayor told reporters that “Had I known, I would have called them right away and asked them not to. …. They should know how sensitive people would be if they had low-flying planes down around the World Trade Center site.” Continue reading New York Not Amused At Obama’s Photo Op

Draft Debate: ESPN vs. NFL Network

If you follow the NFL, this weekend feels like Christmas.  The spring entry draft features loads of analysis, college stars, and Mel Kiper’s hair.  Or does it?

You tell me.  Do you prefer the NFL Network or ESPN for football coverage these days?

I’ve been pretty hard on the four-letter network recently, but I also know they have me at hello when a football broadcast is starting.  So after the Penguins crushed the Flyers to win round #1 of the NHL playoffs, I flipped over to ESPN to play their draft day coverage in the background.  Chris Berman and Steve Young were there as always.  Keyshawn Johnson and Mel Kiper flanked them. 

After five minutes of the same old coverage, I realized that another option exists these days.  I flipped over to the glorious NFL Network in fabulous HD.  Rich Eisen, Marshall Faulk, Jon Gruden, Steve Mariucci, Mike Mayock, and more broke it down.  The coverage was like a fix for a crack addict.  Now I’m good until August. 

So let’s have it.  ESPN or NFL Network?

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Playing Hookey With Facebook In Switzerland

Imagine you’ve just sat down at your computer, steaming cup of Swiss cocoa at your side.  You punch a few keys for some Facebook fun during a nice relaxing day off work.  Then you get fired from your job.

An insurance worker for Nationale Suissehad that experience this week after calling off work with a migraine headache she said made computer work impossible.  The 30-year-old employee left work sick and later used her iPhone to access the popular social networkinhillaryfright.jpg image by mshanecroweg site.  Now she’s out of a job.

Last week blogger Blake Sunshineexplained how Facebook is the #1 social network site in 11 of Europe’s 17 countries including Switzerland.  Sunshine finished up the post about Facebook’s success by explaining (accurately) that “It is now safe to make Facebook a large part of your social media marketing strategy.” 

The sick Swiss worker may hold a different view.  Facebook:  Great for marketing, terrible when skipping work.

How Hillary Might React To Being Fired

I won’t pretend to know enough specifics of this incident to make any judgments.  As an employer, I wouldn’t be happy if an employee left work sick and was later seen gallivanting around town.  Many people have found much worse ways to get fired.  If I found out they went home and read a book or newspaper, I wouldn’t care.  Facebook wouldn’t be a big deal either except for the claim that the employee could not work in front of a computer. Continue reading Playing Hookey With Facebook In Switzerland

The Romans Hated Taxes Too

Pundits like to kick around the discussion comparingAmerica to the Roman Republic.  That’s a hard sell for me, but the life and times of Emperor Diocletian bear some eerie resemblances the 2009 White House.

Unpopular border wars, economic recession, and inflation all plagued Rome into the 2nd century.  The Roman Peace had ended and the mighty empire seemed doomed.

Onto the scene rushed Diocletian, a strong willed autocratic promoting drastic change.  He was the first emperor in decades to assume the title of “lord” and publicly be called “god.”  The guy had some kind of messiah complex, but the people obliged since he was in charge. Continue reading The Romans Hated Taxes Too

Would George Washington Try Coke?

April 23 marks the anniversary of one of the biggest business blunders in history.  On this day in 1985 Coca-Cola decided to ditch its billion dollar formula that had pleased people around the world for a century.  The nation’s response to that tinkering holds lessons today for an experimental government playing mad scientist over our national cauldron.

In the 1980s, Coca-Cola owned a goldmine product and a household name when the smooth operation was ground to a sharp halt.  Increasing competition and sagging sales led to a drastic change.  The top-secret Classic formula was scrapped and New Coke filled store shelves.  Consumers responded like hornets in a hive being beaten with sticks.  Company executives were called four letter words like dumb and jerk.  Three months later the original formula was back on the shelves. 

Don’t get cocky over there Pepsi.  Most of us still remember Crystal Pepsi which looked like carbonated water and tasted like regurgitated mouthwash.

Why must we tinker so?  I hate cliches, but the one about “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” might have spawned from some nuggets of wisdom.  The Founding Fathers would probably agree. Continue reading Would George Washington Try Coke?

Pop Culture & The Meaning of Life