Better Days for Zha Zhas

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In Bel-Air, 88-year-old Zsa Zsa Gabor is back home after suffering a stroke. Husband number nine Frederic von Anhalt says Zsa Zsa is now walking and feeling "better than ever."

In Lebanon, one-time Maronite warlord Samir Geagea is getting ready to leave his prison cell, after Parliament votes him an amnesty. Hizbollah abstains from the vote, and street-fighting marks the announcement of his imminent release.

Samir Geagea is a bad man who deserves to be serving several life sentences, but with his release justice, of a sort, is being done. The circumstances of his imprisonment were utterly shady. (Here is a basically pro-Geagea account.) Like many bad actors, he was covered by a general amnesty for war crimes committed in the period from 1975 to 1990. In 1994, a bogus charge was brought against him in the bombing of a church in the town of Zouk Mikael, and through some legal shenanigans this indictment was used as an excuse to lift his immunity from prosecution for earlier crimes. Despite strenuous efforts, the government was unable to convict him in the bombing, but did bring him down for his wartime crimes—of which he was clearly guilty, but no more guilty than many people as bad as and worse than himself who are now serving in the government. I don't understand how French-style legal systems work, but I think it would have been better if an appeals court had thrown out these convictions rather than having the politicians break new rules to get him out of the clink. However, his release is a sign of progress, and the Daily Star notes that Lebanon's Christians "can no longer claim the luxury of alienation." (In related news, Iraq's Christians now can claim that luxury.)

And Jar-Jar Binks actor Ahmed Best, reduced to a single line of dialogue in Revenge of the Sith, says of the largely negative audience reactions to his character, "Seeing a completely innocent, docile cartoon character as something to be hated and despised [points to a bigger] problem within the American quote-unquote psyche."

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  1. I don’t get the relationship between these three news tidbits.

  2. Did you mean Zsa-Zsas?

  3. Oh, never mind. I didn’t know you were a Loglanist.

  4. The wrong Gabor sister died first. Once again, no justice on this planet.

  5. “Seeing a completely innocent, docile cartoon character as something to be hated and despised [points to a bigger] problem within the American quote-unquote psyche.”

    I’m reminded of the old SNL skit where they kidnap the members of Hanson (of “Mmm, Bop” infamy), who can’t understand why anyone would dislike their song…

  6. People who use the phrase “quote unquote”, as well as people who use their fingers to mime quote marks, are very annoying.

  7. Zsa-Zsa Binks. Bad visual.

  8. stubby: I don’t know about that, I used to know a discount motivational speaker who used finger-quotes. He was very motivational.

  9. Seeing a completely innocent, docile cartoon character as something to be hated and despised [points to a bigger] problem within the American quote-unquote psyche

    In this case, actually, it said more about George Lucas’ psyche than anything else. Even if Darth Senile’s ego has expanded to the point where he’s comfortable projecting the failings of the latter onto the former.

    Oh well, at least he kept the screen time of his most noxious brain-fart to a minimum in the last movie. Now if only he didn’t make James Earl Jones sound like Seymour Skinner in the moments before Lisa’s science-project tomato collided with his posterior.

  10. “Did you save your receipt, quote-unquote sir?” – nasty retailer to Comic Book Guy in the Simpsons.

    The dislike of Jar-Jar isn’t based on the fact that he’s an innocent cartoon character – it’s based on the fact that Lucas never allows his character to progress beyond a simpering idiot. Sure, the fool is a longstanding literary archetype, but the fool’s journey leaves the fool changed, and Jar-Jar’s journey did nothing but serve as lowbrow comic relief.

  11. Good point, rich. Jar Jar is actually the one who allows Senator Palpatine to gain his emergency powers that lets him take over. He’s the one who puts forward the motion, because nobody else was going to…

  12. What, no mention of Zazu Pitts?

  13. I remember when Star Wars first came out. Having Jar Jar hopping past like Bugs Bunny just didn’t fit.

  14. “In Bel-Air, 88-year-old Zsa Zsa Gabor is back home after suffering a stroke.”

    Que muera esa vieja babada ya.

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