Thursday, April 27, 2006

Atlas, Pitt, and Jolie

It's being report all over that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie are interested in playing Galt and Dagny in the adaption of Atlas Shrugged. (link, link) Also, in an important step making it more likely that the movie will actually be made, Lions Gate has acquired worldwide distrubtion rights for the movie. This is a fairly big deal given that Lions Gate is coming off the Crash Academy Award win and is about to hit it big again with Akeelah and the Bee. They have also had big successes with their horror films Saw and Saw II and of course Fahreneit 9/11 because Michael Moore is a scary).

I am not sure what I think about Pitt playing Galt. But that's also an impossibly hard role to cast I've always liked Densel Washington). I see Pitt more as Rearden if they want to make Rearden younger (though one blog commentator has that role going to Billy Bob if Pitt gets Galt. I guess that means Johnny Lee Miller has to play Francisco).

Jolie as Dagny could definitely work. She's sexy, beautiful, tough, and intelligent.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Firefly Season Two??!?!!

An independent group of producers is trying to buy the rights to Firefly to produce a second season. I have no idea if they'd be able to keep the same cast (essential, I think, to the project). I am hopeful!

To help the project, take the survey.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Speaking of Iran...

The Jerusalem Post today quotes Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as saying "Open the doors (of Europe) and let the Jews go back to their own countries"

One wonders if Ahmadinejad is willing to allow the Jews that fled Iran after 1948 to return to Iran? Is he saying that the Arab countries, such as Algeria, Iraq, Egypt, Morocco, etc., should open their collective doors to the half a million Jews that where forced to flee those countries after 1948?

A Deal for Iran?

I am, more or less, in agreement with libertarianism as a political viewpoint. The less part more often than not arises in regards to foreign policy and international relations. Libertarians tend towards some form of non-interventionism or isolationism. I tend to have a wider view of acceptable and appropriate foreign interventions on the part of the US military. This is why I was a bit surprised by my agreement with a recent Cato Institute commentary on Iran.

Ted Galen Carpenter, vice president for defense and foreign policy studies at the Cato Institute, and Justin Logan, a foreign policy analyst at Cato, penned a commentary calling for the US to offer a diplomatic deal to Iran. The deal essential is:
The United States should offer Iran full normalization of relations, including a public promise not to attack it, restored diplomatic relations, and normalized economic relations. In return, Iran would need to give up any prospect of building a nuclear arsenal. Iran would be required to immediately open its existing nuclear program to unfettered international inspections.

If Iran would accept such a deal and abide by it, this would be a phenomenal break through. It would peacefully resolve an extremely dangerous situation, and would show that the Iran is more reasonable than it appears.

There are problems, as noted by Carpenter and Logan, with the deal. It smacks of appeasement. Also, one has to wonder how well inspections can prevent the nuclear program from continuing. But in the end, if the deal was accepted and implemented, it would make it much more difficult for Iran to develop nuclear weapons. As for the appeasement, it certainly may lead other countries to pursue a nuclear weapons program to get such deals with the US--but is that such a bad thing? Regimes agreeing to forgo nuclear weapons for normal diplomatic and economic relations with the US seems like a good idea.

Unfortunately, I have no doubt that Iran would soundly and quickly reject such a deal--or would accept but then renege on it. Carpenter and Logan write "If they refused the deal, there would be only one conclusion to draw: Tehran is irreversibly determined to develop nuclear weapons." Since I believe this is the actual goal of Tehran, I would fully expect them to reject such a deal.