1 of the great things about youtube is being able to find interviews that otherwise wouldn't be available. this is mike wallace interviewing rod serling.
that's an interesting interview.
rod serling? from 'wikipedia:'
Rodman Edward Serling (Rod Serling) (December 25, 1924 – June 28, 1975) was an American screenwriter, playwright, television producer, and narrator known for his live television dramas of the 1950s and his anthology television series, The Twilight Zone. Serling was active in politics, both on and off the screen, and helped form television industry standards. He was known as the "angry young man" of Hollywood, clashing with television executives and sponsors over a wide range of issues including censorship, racism, and war.
In 1955, the nationwide Kraft Television Theatre televised a program based on Serling's seventy-second script. To Serling, it was just another script, and he missed the first live broadcast. He and his wife hired a babysitter for the night and told her, "no one would call because we had just moved to town. And the phone just started ringing and didn't stop for years!" The title of this episode was "Patterns", and it soon changed his life.
"Patterns" dramatized the power struggle between a veteran corporate boss running out of ideas and energy and the bright, young executive being groomed to take his place. Instead of firing the loyal employee and risk tarnishing his own reputation, the boss enlists him into a campaign to push aside his competition. Serling modeled the main[clarification needed] character on his former commander, Colonel Orin Haugen.:37
The New York Times critic Jack Gould called the show "one of the high points in the TV medium's evolution" and said, "[f]or sheer power of narrative, forcefulness of characterization and brilliant climax, Mr. Serling's work is a creative triumph." Robert Lewis Shayon stated in Saturday Review, "in the years I have been watching television I do not recall being so engaged by a drama, nor so stimulated to challenge the haunting conclusions of an hour's entertainment." The episode was a hit with the audience as well, and a second live show was staged by popular demand one month later. During the time between the two shows, Kraft executives negotiated with people from Hollywood over the rights to "Patterns". Kraft said they were considering rebroadcasting "Patterns", unless the play or motion picture rights were sold first.
Immediately following the original broadcast of "Patterns", Serling was inundated with offers of permanent jobs, congratulations, and requests for novels, plays, and television or radio scripts. He quickly sold many of his earlier, lower-quality works and watched in dismay as they were published. Critics expressed concern that he was not living up to his promise and began to doubt he was able to recreate the quality of writing that "Patterns" had shown.
In the autumn of 1957, the Serling family moved to California. When television was new, shows aired live, but as studios began to tape their shows, the business moved from the East Coast to the West Coast. The Serlings would live in California for much of his life, but they kept property in Binghamton and Cayuga Lake as retreats for when he needed time alone.
The early years of television often saw sponsors working as editors and censors. Serling was often forced to change his scripts after corporate sponsors read them and found something they felt was too controversial. They were wary of anything they thought might make them look bad to consumers, so references to many contemporary social issues were omitted, as were references to anything that might compete commercially with a sponsor. For instance, the line "Got a match?" was deleted because one of the sponsors of "Requiem for a Heavyweight" was Ronson lighters.
The initial story-line of his teleplay Noon on Doomsday (aired April 25, 1956) was set in the southern USA about the lynching of a Jewish pawnbroker. However, when Serling mentioned in a radio interview that it was inspired by the events and racism that led to the murder of Emmett Till, censorship by advertisers and the TV network resulted in significant changes. The program as shown was set in New England and concerned the killing of an unknown foreigner. He subsequently returned to the Till events when writing A Town Has Turned to Dust for 'Playhouse 90' but had to set it a century in the past and remove any inter-racial dynamics before it would be produced by CBS TV.
Gould, The New York Times reviewer, added this editorial note at the end of a glowing review for A Town Has Turned to Dust, a show about racism and bigotry in a small Southwestern town: "'Playhouse 90' and Mr. Serling had to fight executive interference ... before getting their play on the air last night. The theater people of Hollywood have reason to be proud of their stand in the viewers' behalf."
Frustrated by seeing his scripts divested of political statements and ethnic identities (and having a reference to the Chrysler Building removed from a script sponsored by Ford), Serling decided the only way to avoid such artistic interference was to create his own show. In an interview with Mike Wallace, he said, "I don't want to fight anymore. I don't want to have to battle sponsors and agencies. I don't want to have to push for something that I want and have to settle for second best. I don't want to have to compromise all the time, which in essence is what a television writer does if he wants to put on controversial themes."
Serling submitted "The Time Element" to CBS, intending it to be a pilot for his new weekly show, The Twilight Zone. Instead, CBS used the science fiction script for a new show produced by Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball, Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse, in 1958. The story concerns a man who has vivid nightmares of the attack on Pearl Harbor. The man goes to a psychiatrist and, after the session, the twist ending (a device which Serling became known for) reveals the "patient" had died at Pearl Harbor, and the psychiatrist was the one actually having the vivid dreams. The episode received so much positive fan response that CBS agreed to let Serling go ahead with his pilot for The Twilight Zone.
Before The Twilight Zone, Serling created a local television show in Cincinnati on WKRC-TV, The Storm, in the early 1950s. Several of these scripts were rewritten for later use on national network TV. A copy of an episode is located in the Cincinnati Museum Center Historical Cincinnati Library on videotape.
The Twilight Zone
For this series, Serling fought hard to get and maintain creative control. He hired scriptwriters he respected, such as Richard Matheson and Charles Beaumont. In an interview, Serling said the show's science fiction format would not be controversial with sponsors, network executives, or the general public and would escape censorship, unlike the earlier script for Playhouse 90.
Serling drew on his own experience for many episodes, frequently about boxing, military life, and airplane pilots. The Twilight Zone incorporated his social views on racial relations, somewhat veiled in the science fiction and fantasy elements of the shows. Occasionally, the point was quite blunt, such as in the episode "I Am the Night—Color Me Black", in which racism and hatred causes a dark cloud to form in the American South and spread across the world. Many Twilight Zone stories reflected his views on gender roles, featuring quick-thinking, resilient women as well as shrewish, nagging wives.
The Twilight Zone aired for five seasons (the first three presented half-hour episodes, the fourth had hour-long episodes, and the fifth returned to the half-hour format). It won many television and drama awards and drew critical acclaim for Serling and his co-workers. Although it had loyal fans, The Twilight Zone had only moderate ratings and was twice canceled and revived. After five years and 156 episodes (92 written by Serling), he grew weary of the series. In 1964, he decided not to oppose its third and final cancellation.
Serling sold the rights to The Twilight Zone to CBS. His wife later claimed he did this partly because he believed that his own production company, Cayuga Productions, would never recoup the production costs of the programs, which frequently went over budget.
The Twilight Zone eventually resurfaced in the form of a 1983 film by Warner Bros. Former Twilight Zone actor Burgess Meredith was cast as the film's narrator, but does not appear on screen. There have been three attempts to revive the television series with mostly new scripts. In 1985, CBS used Charles Aidman (and later Robin Ward) as the narrator. In 2002, UPN featured Forest Whitaker in the role of narrator. In 2019, CBS made a third attempt at a successful revival, with Jordan Peele taking on producing duties as well as being host and narrator.
A Carol for Another Christmas
A Carol for Another Christmas was a 1964 American television movie, scripted by Rod Serling as a modernization of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol and a plea for global cooperation between nations. It was telecast only once, on December 28, 1964. The only television movie directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz, this was the film in which Peter Sellers gave his first performance after a series of near-fatal heart attacks in the wake of his marriage to Britt Ekland. Sellers portrayed a demagogue in an apocalyptic Christmas. Sterling Hayden, who costarred with Sellers in Dr. Strangelove earlier that year, also was featured. The cast included Percy Rodriguez, Eva Marie Saint, Ben Gazzara, Barbara Ann Teer, James Shigeta, and Britt Ekland. Henry Mancini wrote the theme music, which was recorded for his 1966 holiday LP, A Merry Mancini Christmas. The film is not commercially available, but it can be seen at the Paley Center for Media in New York and Los Angeles and the Film and Television Archive at the University of California, Los Angeles.
In 1969, NBC aired a television film pilot for a new series, Night Gallery, written by Serling. Set in a dimly lit museum after hours, the pilot film featured Serling (as on-camera host) playing the curator, who introduced three tales of the macabre, unveiling canvases that would appear in the subsequent story segments. Its brief first season (consisting of only six episodes) was rotated with three other shows airing in the same time slot; this wheel show was entitled Four in One. The series generally focused more on horror and suspense than The Twilight Zone did. On the insistence of the producer Jack Laird, Night Gallery also began including brief comedic "blackout" sketches during its second season, which Serling greatly disdained. He stated "I thought they [the blackout sketches] distorted the thread of what we were trying to do on Night Gallery. I don't think one can show Edgar Allan Poe and then come back with Flip Wilson for 34 seconds. I just don't think they fit."
No longer wanting the burden of an executive position, Serling sidestepped an offer to retain creative control of content, a decision he would come to regret. Although discontented with some of the scripts and creative choices of Jack Laird, Serling continued to submit his work and ultimately wrote over a third of the series' scripts. By season three, however, many of his contributions were being rejected or heavily altered. Night Gallery was cancelled in 1973. NBC later combined episodes of the short-lived paranormal series The Sixth Sense with Night Gallery, in order to increase the number of episodes available in syndication. Serling was reportedly paid $100,000 to film introductions for these repackaged episodes.
i was a big fan of 2 of his programs. 'the twilight zone' is a classic and every 1 pretty much agrees on that. i liked the reboot that steven spielberg did but liked the original far better.
'night gallery'? i loved that show even more. and i still watch it on 'comet tv,' by the way. it's not been aped or copied or parodied into the ground and is still fresh.
here's another interview with rod serling.
i've had some friends compare serling to ryan murphy because ryan also does anthology television. i don't agree with the comparison. among other things? serline reflected a better world. murphy continues to want to immerse himself in the depravity of seriel killing and other disgusting things. i'm not talking about fiction, i'm talking about his faux-reality based programming like his upcoming jeffrey dahmer series. i don't need that. i never need that.
maybe when he does something like 'hollywood,' ryan connects with rod serling's better nature but otherwise i'm just not seeing it.
let's close with c.i.'s 'Iraq snapshot:'
Friday, October 9, 2020. Our personal Evita wants to tell us how to vote.
Michelle Obama -- great activist and voice for the people -- wants you to know that you can only vote for Joe Biden. Jimmy Dore explains what a worthless voice Michelle's is.
"Ignorance and hatred keep me from doing my duty as a citizen"?
What duty? What have you ever done?
You've never led a march . . .except a march to the bank.
It's really time we said no to Presidential Welfare. Once upon a time, people didn't dishonor the presidency, turn it into a lotto sweepstakes win. Now that they do? No more healthcare coverage. No more Secret Service detail. Let these whores pay for it themselves.
Jimmy Carter didn't use his former president status to rake in millions or billions. A president like that? Sure, pay for their Secret Service protection.
But I'm damn tired of paying for security at Simon & Schuster book events for Hillary, Bill, Barack or Michelle. They get millions in advances for books that frequently do not sell all that well -- certainly not enough to justify the advances -- and we're then supposed to pick up the bill for security so that they can make millions?
End Presidential Welfare, end it now.
Read Ann's "Ugly Michelle Obama" which is on the mark. Ann is a Green Party member. Her parents are, she was raised to be a Green.
Screw Michelle, that hag should keep her mouth shut. Every time she opens it lately, she lies. Pretending Barack didn't put children into cages at the DNC, for example. She's a hag. She shows no respect for others -- Green Party members are Americans so stop treating them like your lackeys that you can boss around or shame. She's a hag. Barack's hag.
Was she trying to distract from last night's debate? Probably so. Last night The Free and Equal Elections Foundation held their own presidential debate where all candidates were invited. It streamed on FACEBOOK. I don't see it on YOUTUBE but you can stream at the FACEBOOK link. Five candidates participated.
Gloria La Riva (Party for Socialism and Liberation) attended. To the first question, her response included:
My party and my campaign believe that all US troops must be withdrawn from every base around the world. Shut down the more than 800 military bases without any hesitation. Take the troops out of South Korea so that the people of Korea can be reunited again. When a country is occupied by the United States, it cannot be truly free. And that goes for Afghanistan, that goes for Iraq, that goes for part of what used to be Yugoslavia. I have seen the effects of US war and sanctions. I traveled three times to Iraq between 1997 and 2001 to see more than one million people who had died from a total US blockade on Iraq. Why? For the US to take control of the oil. That is strategic geo-political domination of the Middle East. Now they've overthrown Libya and created a hellhole for the people. I believe that the people of the world must be able to decide their own destiny. And part of that foreign policy [I propose] is also stopping all US military aid to Israel. Stop oppressing the Palestinian people. The people in Palestine must have the right to self-determination. And I made a video about Iraq, by the way, it's called GENOCIDE BY SANCTIONS: THE CASE OF IRAQ. It won an award for the exposition
And in just that portion of her first response, you find more weight and depth than anything you saw in the Democrat and Republican presidential debates or in this weeks Democrat and Republican vice presidential debate
Let's not be hags for the Democratic Party. We'll start with the Green Party. Howie Hawkins is the presidential candidate. Howie has long called for Medicare For All (Joe Biden and Donald Trump are against it) and a Green New Deal (ditto). Yesterday, Howie called for other items.
On YOUTUBE, you can find about six minutes of the debate currently.
If you read the comments, you will see that the YOUTUBE stream had issues. If they post it to YOUTUBE, we will include it in a snapshot.
Green Party presidential candidate Howie Hawkins also participated. He's long called for a Green New Deal and for Medicare For All. At his TWITTER feed last night, he called for an end to the electoral college and much more including:
Demilitarize the police. Invest in social services. Legalize marijuana. End the war on drugs. We need community control of the police!
We must give back stolen lands and honor indigenous treaty rights. We need to guarantee representation of native people in Washington, and bring about proportional representation to our entire electoral system.
We have violated treaties where our government recognizes defined indigenous lands. The least we can do is honor the treaties and respect sovereignty.
No Space Force. No militarization of space.
We need to dismantle the privatization of space. We need to invest in NASA and work towards global cooperation.
End the surveillance state!
The Commission on Presidential Debates is a private entity controlled by the Dems and GOP. It is NOT a public government agency.
We need Full Public Campaign Financing
Jo Jorgensen is the Libertarian Party's presidential candidate.
Despite residents in all fifty states being able to vote for Jo, she is not allowed into the mainstream debates. How scared are Donald Trump and Joe Biden of Jo Jorgensen? Little, cowardly boys is all they are.
Jo's been campaigning around the country. Below is her speaking at a campaign rally in Philadelphia.
Michelle Obama wants to limit your choice. She wants to make it a two-man race. Of course, she does. She was a sexist pig at the DNC in 2008 -- and we called that crap out (and her decision to wear granny panties that were visible through her dress -- see Ava and my "TV: The endless non-news"). She's now yet again working overtime to erase women. Gloria La Riva is a solid choice and she's a woman. Jo Jorgensen is a solid choice and she's a woman. Angela Walker -- Howie's running mate -- is a solid choice and she's a woman.
Michelle doesn't support women. And she never has. "Our girls" is about the height of activism from Michelle. She works overtime to betray women and to keep the patriarchy going. She doesn't instill pride, she just offers scolding and nagging and bullying.
You have choices. You need to listen to yourself and decide who represents you. If it's Joe Biden, great. If it's Gloria La Riva, great. Whomever it is -- even Donald Trump -- if that's the person who best represents your views and opinions, that's who you need to vote for. And if no one represents you, you have every right to not vote (either just on the presidential or on the whole ballot). That's what a democracy is supposed to be about.
At THE GUARDIAN, Ghaith Abdul-Ahad reports on the militia:
According to Abu Hashem and other commanders, Iranian flights soon started delivering weapons to the newly opened airport in Najaf.
“One of the ministers in the government at that time used to be head of logistics in the [Shia political party and military group] Badr Corps. He sat on the floor in a white dishdasha, picked up phones and arranged for shipments of pickup trucks, munitions and weapons, then distributed them among the different factions.”
With weapons, cars and men came Iranian advisers. They dispersed across the country in a wide geographic arch from Diyala in the east to the western border with Syria. Their voices could be heard on the military radio directing mortar fire in Falluja, installing thermal cameras in a small besieged village in the west of Mosul and accompanying the advance of an Iraqi special forces brigade in Tikrit.
“The reality is, without the Iranians we wouldn’t be able to do anything,” Abu Hashem said. “If the Iranian advisers weren’t there, the battalions wouldn’t attack. Their presence gave the men confidence in the early days.
We last noted the militia's in Monday's snapshot: We were noting how they were attacking the protesters:
This result was completely expected by any of us paying attention in real time. That would leave out the likes of THE NEW YORK TIMES which, in 2019, offered that the "militia's independence" would be "chip[ped] away" by this move. They were wrong. The move to bring the militia forces under the umbrella of the Iraqi forces was first proposed by thug Nouri al-Maliki in his second term. But it would be the laughable Hayder al-Abadi who would actually do it. One of the few to call the militia nonsense out in real time was Ranj Alaaldin (Brookings) who observed:
But such beliefs were met with a new reality on Monday, as were (unrealistic) hopes that al-Abadi could rebuild Iraq and bring the country together: His coalition announced that he will join forces with Iran-aligned militias that spear the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), the umbrella Shiite militia organization established in 2014 to fill the vacuum that was left by the collapse of Iraq’s armed forces when ISIS seized Mosul.
Just a day later, the Iran-aligned militias—contesting the elections as the al-Fatih (Conquest) bloc—withdrew from the electoral alliance, not out of principle but because of differences over participation and electoral strategy (there were not enough seats to go around). Indeed, Hadi al-Ameri, the head of the Badr Brigade—Iraq’s most powerful militia, which Iran established in the 1980s and which controls the Interior Ministry—has even hinted they could join forces after the elections to form a government.
Folding the militias into the Iraqi government did not put any controls on the militias. They terrorize the Iraqi people as they did before they were part of the government. They refuse to take orders and they issue threats against the Iraqi government.
At The Atlantic Council (a pro-war body), Andrew Peek makes an argument which includes:
The issue is that Sunni extremists are no longer a determinative geopolitical priority. For the moment, the fire has gone out of the radicals. ISIS is not gone but has gone underground like its sister organizations. Though it can still bite, it is utterly discredited in the heartland of Iraq and Syria. ISIS pulled the Sunni world to the brink and it drew back. Outside of a catastrophic black swan event—a mass release from the al-Hol prison in Syria, a Houthi breakthrough in Yemen, some implosion in Pakistan or Afghanistan—it is not clear what would resurrect the mass political appeal of Sunni extremism.
Adding to this challenge is that the Shia community’s radicals are radical in a very different way than the Sunnis. They form the political bodies from which structured, directed militant groups emerge, but there are virtually no lone wolves. Terror, such as it exists, is carefully controlled for state ends. Lebanese Hezbollah will still conduct bombings in Israel, Syria, and Europe—like the Bulgarian attack for which it was blamed in 2012—and Iran will kill dissidents, but this is structurally a far different phenomenon than the explosion of hydra-headed Sunni radicalism that the US faced at the end of the twentieth century.
The great bureaucratic success of the Trump administration has been to make Iran the US’s top priority in the Middle East, allowing for America’s great big counter-Sunni extremist machine to shift focus to Shia groups. Iranian-backed Shia militant groups have begun to be sanctioned more regularly—even those that had fought against ISIS. President Donald Trump’s targeting of Iranian and Iran-backed targets and his administration’s increased risk tolerance of operating against such actors in battlespaces where they dominate is a signature bureaucratic achievement. Neither the State Department nor the Defense Department readily changed course.
Nevertheless, the public engagement work has not caught up with the new focus on Iran. In other words, the US lacks virtually any engagement with the Shia body politic. We normally do not host Shia religious leaders at official events, Iftar dinners, and the like, particularly not members of the Marjayiya. The Bush administration was actually forward-leaning with this: for example, sending a plane in 2007 to fly a senior Iraqi cleric to Houston for medical treatment. But, other than that (and some very quiet meetings held by myself with one or two others), there has not been much engagement with them, besides the occasional over-the-top communiqué to Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani in Iraq—usually when the walls in Iraq are about to come crumbling down.
The following sites updated: