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Comment: Re:Such a Waste (Score 2) 65

by Artifakt (#47563707) Attached to: The Hobbit: the Battle of Five Armies Trailer Released

Some of the Hobbit film bits are supposedly from letters JRRT wrote Christopher about 20 years after LOTR came out, describing how he would like to rewrite the book to make it tie in better with LotR and the limited Silmarillion notes he had at the time. Tolkien was supposedly torn between finishing up the Silmarillion or going back and working on a 'better' hobbit first. I suspect there's some truth to this claim - LotR draws from a great many sources that are fundamental in studying early English literature, from Spencer's Faerie Queen to the "Jack the Giant Killer" stories, to the Song of Roland to Beowulf itself, and the Hobbit's literary roots are mostly in one story - the same one Wagner drew on for Das Rheingold. Some of the dwarf naming and such in the Hobbit seems to connect to Finnish mythological tales and maybe some other Scandinavian sources, but the references are mostly truncated there or limited to a few very short phrases to fit in a children's book.
          I can certainly see JRRT deciding to work in some other bits from classics he couldn't really use in LotR. LotR took so long because Tolkien wanted it to have a certain gravitas as fantasy and so aimed for being really encyclopedic in referring to the roots of Fantasy literature, and at least touching broadly on English literature of the mundane and modern kinds. Tolkien even read some Lovecraft (and liked it), probably before writing the scene of the Watcher at the gate to Moria, possibly afterwards to see how it compared, and read or re-read some of the more esoteric works of T. S. Elliot, R L Stevenson and such, maybe just to have a better idea of where he wanted to steer modern English lit. or maybe to see if he needed to actually address these modern works in what he aimed to make his Magnum Opus. What he did afterwards, planning a next stage after becoming such a success, was doubtless quite technically ambitious.
        I respect people saying they don't like this or that, but some of those people might want to do a little research before they label everything they don't like as not true to Tolkien. In particular, the scenes where the dwarves try to use all the gold to kill the dragon seems to have some real connection to Tolkien's plans for the story, and possibly the way there is more about human 'politics' in Laketown is too. Once people get some idea of what might have been the Hobbit, rewritten for an audience the same age as LotR's, they can rag on the Hobbit equivalents of Elven Shield Surfing twice as hard. (Please! I could have done without half the falls in the Goblin caverns and had the height of the other half quartered, and the extended commercial for the Elven Rafting Riveride at Universal Orlando). Still, not everything here needs to be line for line either.

Comment: Re:Lies and statistics... (Score 1) 276

by Opportunist (#47563617) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

Phew. So they found a way to explain away a number that could make people ponder whether the "all is fine and the state is in control" message we keep hearing over and over could be wrong and their own observations could be right.

Fuck, even people in communist countries knew that their government is lying to them and that they should more rely on what they see in their reality than the crap they get told...

Comment: Re:The American Dream (Score 3, Interesting) 276

by Opportunist (#47563595) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

People just finally saw through the lie that the "American Dream" is: Yes, anyone can win. But not everyone. It's like the lottery.

Plus, the "rules" of the game have changed. It used to be "have an idea, work for it, follow it and in the end, with some luck and hard work, you will be successful!". That was the dream. And that even worked. Yes, for some. Not all. Of course, for every single one that succeeded, there were hundreds that failed. But that one success story kept the dream alive.

Today, it's over. The internet managed to keep it rolling for a bit longer than it would have originally and you have a few more of those "rags-to-riches" stories... only that the successful ones were not in rags by any stretch of the word to begin with. But outside those few stories, there is no chance for anyone to succeed. Corporations have the field divided, and there is NO chance for you to become more than a bit player. Ever. The absolute best you may possibly hope for is that you found an area where it's cheaper to simply buy you away than to entangle you in enough red tape that you willingly hand over your stuff.

The new american dream is simply playing the lottery. Same chance of success with less effort. And it's the same game: Anyone can win. Just not everyone.

There's got to be more to life than compile-and-go.