Tag Archives: me Evan

My new favorite court case, and it involves Jurassic Park

For those who can’t tell, I love Jurassic Park. Of course, who doesn’t? Its fun, interesting, has dinosaurs and Unix. Now you’re probably saying, “I know this!” But you probably didn’t know that the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals knows this, too, and has officially recognized, in law, forever, the awesomeness of Jurassic Park. Thus, behold the case of Williams v. Crichton. (PDF: Williams v. Crichton)

For those who don’t want to read the whole thing, I’ll cut to the meaty center: About 20% of this case is just summarizing the plot to Jurassic Park. I can’t imagine which clerk got the cushy job of reading and summarizing Jurassic Park for the court. Really, what were his conversations like?

Clerk 1: I have to research the legislative history of tariffs on beets to determine what sort of regulatory structure Congress intended for various rooted vegetables. What about you?

Clerk 2: I have to read Jurassic Park and then watch the movie Jurassic Park, and then summarize the plot.

[Judge walks in]

Judge: Hey Clerk 2, how’s the progress on the research for the Williams v. Crichton case?

Clerk 2: Its going well, but I think I need to watch the film again to really get a sense of its copyrightable attributes as distinct from mere scenes a faire.

Judge: Very well, keep working.

Clerk 1: I really hope we have a copyright infringement case about Congo, because I’m sure there was a previous story about supermonkeys using diamond-powered lasers.

Anyways, the point of the summary was to compare Jurassic Park to some guy claiming Michael Crichton ripped him off, violating the copyright of his “Dinosaur World” books, which were short children’s books with titles like “Saber Tooth: A Dinosaur World Adventure.”  Basically, the books are like what Jurassic Park would have been like if it had actually opened.  Booooring. Plus, this joke had already been made in the future by the Simpsons:

For those who do not want to watch a video, or if the Hulu video isn’t working, which is wasn’t when I wrote this, you can read the words said by the characters in that wonderful 5th season episode, “Sweet Seymour Skinner’s Baadasssss Song”:

At the Kwik-E-Mart, Apu chides Bart for abusing the self-serve ice cream dispenser and making a foot-high cone.  Milhouse spies a familiar face in one of the aisles.

Milhouse: Bart, look!  It’s Principal Skinner.  And I think he’s gone crazy — he’s not wearing a suit or tie or anything!

Bart: [approaches him] Principal Skinner?  Um, I’m real sorry about my dog getting you fired, and biting you, and then getting it on with your leg.

Skinner: Well…maybe it was for the best.  Now I…I finally have time to do what I’ve always wanted: write the great American novel. Mine is about a futuristic amusement park where dinosaurs are brought to life through advanced cloning techniques.  I call it “Billy and the Cloneasaurus.”

Apu: Oh, you have _got_ to be kidding sir.  First you think of an idea that has already been done.  Then you give it a title that nobody could possibly like.  Didn’t you think this through…[later]…was on the bestseller list for eighteen months! Every magazine cover had…[later]…most popular movies of all time, sir!  What were you thinking?!  [realizing] I mean, thank you, come again.

However, the best part of this case isn’t just the retelling of the epic Jurassic Park story, even the part where “Velociraptors hunting in packs attack many people, killing some and narrowly missing others.  The children are attacked by a pack while hiding in the headquarter’s cafeteria, but they manage to trick the velociraptors into entering a giant freezer.” 84 F.3d 581, 586. The best part is not even footnote 2:
“Malcolm, near death, argues with Hammond that the park was doomed to failure from the beginning.  Hammond stalks off, and is soon killed and eaten by procompsognathids.  Malcolm also dies, succumbing to his injuries.2
2.   What seems to use a clear case of death is made more ambiguous by the sequel to Jurassic Park, a novel entitled The Lost World, where Malcolm is again a central character.

Not only must some clerk have read Jurassic Park, but The Lost World as well. Best clerk job ever (except maybe when the pre-Miller Supreme Court got to watch pornos all day long to decide if they were obscene or not). However, this leads to the Best part of this case. Now, due to this footnote, the plothole between Jurassic Park and The Lost World is now part of the official legal record. It can be cited in future cases and be held as binding. Sure, one could argue that this line, and indeed most of the summary of Jurassic Park, was just dicta. I say shut up.

Sure, maybe none of the other cases that cite this case deal directly with dinosaurs, but that doesn’t mean they can’t make references to dinosaurs when discussing applicability of this case:

“characters escape deadly, pack-hunting dinosaurs … when another dinosaur intervenes.” Robinson v. New Line Cinema, 42 F.Supp.2d 578, 593.

“electrical fences, automated tours, dinosaur nurseries, and uniformed workers were all ‘classic scenes a faire that flow from the uncopyrightable concept of a dinosaur zoo.'” Randolph v. Dimension Films, 634 F.Supp.2d 779, 790.

“Both stories centered a small group of individuals, including a knowledgeable adult guide and young dinosaur enthusiasts. Both depicted harrowing encounters with carnivorous dinosaurs from which the human characters escaped, via helicopter, ‘through the combined wit of the children and adults.'” Hudson v. Universal Studios, 2008 WL 4701488

Thanks to this case, contemporary and future jurists dealing with copyright cases can talk about dinosaurs. All judges who have a chance to use this case should use this case, simply as an excuse to deluge our judicial system with references to dinosaurs. (Also, any case citing this one should refer to its dissenting opinion as “inflicting dino-damage”)

Justice Scalia is a Battle-Ravaged Allosaurus

In conclusion, Jurassic Park is now legal canon, and it should remain that way, forever. Or, as Ryan Q. North put it referencing another wonderful pastime:

Question: Does the USS Enterprise not exist on the new Star Trek timeline?

Burn Down Dan Patrick

I like my new glasses more than my old glasses

Hey, it looks like everyone’s old friend State Senator Dan Patrick is being made a silly in the national media Wonkette for making a conservative spinoff of the Texas Republican Party.

Some Republican legislators in the sovereign nation of Texas have formed a new supergroup called the Independent Conservative Republicans of Texas, yee-haw, to help teabagger activists ruin things and also distance themselves from the radical feminist welfare moms who have taken over the regular Texas GOP. The ICRT just launched its new website, which is very brown (!) and has Founding Father pictures and Ronald Reagan junk all over it, what did you expect. There’s also stuff like “core principals” (hate homos/love fetuses/amen).

This all differs from the Texas GOP *how*? The founder of this exciting new organization, State Senator Dan Patrick of Houston, told the Star Telegram that Real Patriotic Conservatives need a place to go that doesn’t have what’s his name, the strip-club what-up guy, Michael Steele.

“I don’t want those folks to represent who we are,” Patrick said.

A fun-fact about Dan Patrick is that he once asked a doctor to neuter him live on the radio. For better teabagging, he did this.

Read more at Wonkette: http://wonkette.com/414811/texas-republicans-make-up-new-more-republican-group#ixzz0l5WH692y

Pfsh, this is old news! I was making fun of Dan Patrick in the national media Rice Thresher before it was cool!

Patrick goes beyond the talk radio stereotype of the millionaire egocentric self-promoter who repeats the xenophobic talking points that allow white, middle-age males to think they are an oppressed minority.

http://the.ricethresher.org/opinion/2007/01/12/dan_patrick_texas_senator

I did it before it was cool

That column even got posted on FreeRepublic.com by someone with a Right_at_RiceU handle, and I learned some very important things about me, Evan:

Montrose = gay

I’ve actually run into this Mintz loser at local political events where both sides are represented. He is everything you would expect from a Rice Undergrad who hangs out on Montrose regularly. Dan is on the opposite side of everything this loser sees as Utopia, thus this pathetic column that he probably wrote in November and had to wait for the Legislative Session to begin before he could publish it.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/1766709/posts

Wow, BUSHdude2000 was like a psychic or something. I did hang out on Montrose regularly. Admittedly, its really more of Lower Westheimer, but that doesn’t shout BUTTSEKS like Montrose does.

However, the real story is further in the comments:

“Craddick’s strong-arm tactics of forcing votes and shutting out any minority opinion have finally caught up with him. Now Republicans and Democrats alike are uniting to elect a Speaker who will give every member a full and equal voice.”

So, “Evan Mintz” thinks someone other than Tom Craddick is Speaker??

In his parallel-but-confused universe, perhaps…

This is funny, because I was right. Or basically, anyone who observed Texas Politics and then said what was probably going to happen was right. Craddick lost the speaker election, pushed out by Democrats and various Republicans, giving us Moderate-for-Texas Republican Speaker Joe Straus, whose name sounds Jewish.

And this is where the story loops around to the actual point at the beginning. The purpose of Patrick’s party isn’t to reject black people like RNC Chair Michael Steele, its to reject Jewish-sounding people like Speaker Straus.

Specifically, the points of the group are vague to the point of a nonsensical political dogwhistle:

-Stand for conservative principals and to put people before Party.

-Fiscally accountable, limit the size of government, and fight for free market principles.

-Protect our borders and to support a strong military.

-Protect life, support strong family values, and uphold the Judeo-Christian beliefs our nation was founded upon.

-Honor the Constitution and protect the sovereign rights of Texas.

http://www.texastribune.org/blogs/post/2010/apr/12/trib-blog-republicans-respond-tea-party/

The real story is in the membership. You see, the group is by invitation only, and they haven’t invited every Republican member of the Texas House and Senate. As Jason Embry, with the Austin American-Statesman points out:

With a handful of exceptions, the House members who joined Patrick’s group are not heavy-lifters under GOP Speaker Joe Straus. And most of the key lawmakers who helped elect Straus — Reps. Jim Pitts, Dan Branch, Burt Solomons, Charlie Geren, Jim Keffer, among others — aren’t on the list. Neither is Straus.

http://www.burntorangereport.com/diary/10240/speakers-race-44-texas-house-republicans-basically-pledge-against-joe-strauss

This isn’t an anti-Steele thing. This isn’t even a super-conservative thing. This is an anti-Straus thing. Its the He-Conservatives No Strauses club (we can have one). Membership only available by superawesome invitation, with conservative levels to be measured by Patrick’s own Conservameter.

It even seems like its going to go beyond Strauss. Patrick wants to cull his own party of signs of moderation. He isn’t going to limit this plan to merely Speakers elections, but to general elections as well:

“If you’re a Republican and you can’t stand for those five core principles and you’re not proud to stand for those core principles, then we’ve got a problem,” Patrick said

Patrick seems to want to run out moderate Republicans, or at least moderate for Texas, and replace them with the crazies he knows and loves. In his own words, he wants to “get that message out, to connect with Tea Party”. But Tea Party isn’t exactly going to go over well in the long run. As I wrapped up in that column a few years ago:

In the end, Patrick will probably end up learning a lesson in political enemy-making not from Republicans or Democrats, but from his own constituents. In only a few years, the rising Hispanic middle class may start to call Patrick’s suburban district their home. And I am sure they would rather tune their political radios to someone who did not make his career blaming Hispanic immigrants for the collapse of civilization.

And the Tea Party’s (semi?)-racist pushing and shoving will only make the unelection line go faster.

Burn Down Logizomai?

I just learned that my (probably) best column ever (Lakewood: All the fire without the brimstone) is going to be used in an upcoming book titled “Logizomai: A Reasonable Faith in an Unreasonable World.

I was superexcited.

Was

Until I realized that the so called book was a basically a collection of blog entries by some online ranter so unoriginal and cliche as to rebuff arguments for gay rights with bestiality comparisons.

Really? Bestiality? I think thats a Blue-3 to a Blue-2 on a Derozier Political Argument Grid. If you’re arguing that, its a sign that you’re not even trying to listen to the other side. (Key word: Consent).

I’d link to his blog where he comments on my column, but I’m not sure about sending the millions and millions of hits a link from this blog would certainly provide. But that’s a risk I’ll have to take. LINK

He also writes about politics and religion and such. I don’t want to ruin it all so SPOILER ALERT: Evolution is bad.

Anyways, here is a direct clip of my article

I successfully used this column as a pickup line at Rice. That's how good it was.

Anyways, the book is being published by Wipf and Stock Publishers, so look for it in at your local Church gift shop.

And yeah, rereading what he wrote about my column makes me realize that he didn’t really get it. But whatever, I loves the attention. Professional punditry, here I come!

Burn Down the Ed Sullivan Theater

David Letterman.

Hey everybody! Look at me, I’m on TV! go to the 2:15 mark in the link. He never answered my question about if there had ever been a fire in the Ed Sullivan Theater. But he did put me on TV for asking a question. Yay me!

Stupid Evan Tricks!

Burn Down the Texas Technosphere

For those who may not know, dear friend Dan was featured in the Houston Press blog, Hairballs, as one of the top 10 most bangable men in the Texas Technosphere. I was not on the list. As anyone could expect, I wrote an angry letter to the editor about it:

Dear Houston Press,

I would like to disagree with your assessment that Daniel Derozier was one of the most bangable men in the Texas Technosphere. As a close personal friend I can tell you that his bangability levels are extremely suspect and severely below that of me, Evan. He may be a shiny little button, but his little shins leave much to be desired. Furthermore, the author’s response of “Yowza” to Dan’s picture hints that she let her personal preferences interfere with an objective bangability analysis. Perhaps her personal fetish for Otters skewed an attempted process, but there is no way to know until the author admits to her own failings, attractive as she may be herself. Now you may say that Dan is not an otter, but a human being. However, I’ve heard that excuse before — from talking otters, and that hasn’t stopped me from stealing their clams and not making rape jokes, even when its talking otters.

In conclusion, the Houston Press has left me less than impressed with its notions of bangability, Texas, and Technosphere. In the future, less technosphere, more race, gender, and technoscience. Let me recommend a book by Donna Haraway, titled “Primate Vision.” You will find it to be a confusing.

Signed,
Anonymous

PS: I am writing this while watching a show called System Update on my friend Andrew’s Playstation 3, which we’re playing at my house. Have you ever seen it? You should do a review of it.