The Good Young Man

Attempting to distract myself from how I’m feeling, I was reading a bit of Ambrose Bierce, when I came across this very short essay. It resonated for me with the talk recently in some quarters about “good people”, so I thought I’d share.

Why is he? Why defaces he the fair page of creation, and why is he to be continued? This has never been explained; it is one of those dispensations of Providence the design whereof is wrapped in profoundest obscurity. The good young man is perhaps not without excuse for his existence, but society is without excuse for permitting it. At his time of life to be “good” is to insult humanity. Goodness is proper to the aged; it is their sole glory; why should this milky stripling bring it into disrepute? Why should he be permitted to defile with the fat of his sleek locks a crown intended to adorn the grizzled pow of his elders?

A young man may be manly, gentle, honourable, noble, tender and true, and nobody will ever think of calling him a good young man. Your good young man is commonly a sneak, and is very nearly allied to that other social pest, the “nice young lady.” As applied to the immature male of our kind, the adjective “good” seems to have been perverted from its original and ordinary signification, and to have acquired a dyslogistic one. It is a term of reproach, and means, as nearly as may be, “characterless.” That any one should submit to have it applied to him is proof of the essential cowardice of Virtue.

We believe the direst ill afflicting civilization is the good young man. The next direst is his natural and appointed mate, the nice young lady. If the two might be tied neck and heels together and flung into the sea, the land would be the fatter for it.

I’m not as cynical as Bierce, nor do I find a lot of use in distinguishing between genders this way, but there’s a certain truth to that middle paragraph.

Mock the Movie: Hostile Takeover Edition

All right, now that we’re fully rested from shark week, it’s time we prove that we’re all masochists. That’s right. This Wednesday, August 28, we’re watching Atlas Shrugged II: The Strike. Taste the paranoia.

This is available on Netflix.

What? You don’t think we’d pay extra to mock this movie, do you? After this, though, we’ll be mocking a couple of movies that no one has to pay for, just to piss off John Galt. [Read more…]

Mock the Movie: Delay

As we get closer to the mocking scheduled for this week, we realize there’s no way we can run this. Our admins (Jason and I) and one of our regulars (PZ) are going to be getting ready for CONvergence/SkepchickCon. There is party room gear to be moved, people coming into town to be greeted, and any last-minute emergencies to be handled.

So we’ll postpone the event for a week. That will mean two mockings in two weeks! Be nice to your livers and your fingers in the meantime, because we’re coming back with…this:

If you must have some movie mocking in the meantime, and you’re at CONvergence, you can join Kevin Murphy, Rebecca Watson, PZ Myers, and Bill Corbett as they mock Prometheus at 11:30 in Atrium 6. The rest of us may not seem so funny after the pros, but at least we’ll have each other.

Republican Legislator Demonstrates “Men’s Brains” Bad at Science and Math

Yesterday, Maine’s house of representatives voted on whether to accept money from the federal government for the Medicaid expansion provisions of the Affordable Care Act. Before they did so, House Minority Leader Ken Fredette, representing a chunk of Penobscot County, had this justification to give for not wanting the money (transcript follows).

[Read more…]