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Representative Tammy Duckworth humiliates witness for claiming Veterans’ Disability Benefit

Rep. Tammy Duckworth is the first Asian-American woman elected to Congress in Illinois, the first disabled woman to be elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, and the first member of Congress born in Thailand. 

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She served as a pilot in the Iraq War and in 2004, the helicopter she was flying was hit by a rocket-propelled grenade. Duckworth lost both her legs and very nearly her arm. She currently holds the position of Assistant Secretary of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

In this video, Duckworth sits on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee whilst hearing the case of IRS contractor Braulio Castillo, whose application for veterans’ benefits allowed him to promote his firm as a small business operated by a disabled veteran. His injuries? Twisting his ankle during a football match at military prep school.

For capitalising on his status as an ‘injured veteran’, which may have won him millions of dollars in contract fees, Castillo faces considerable opprobrium from the august politician.

 

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Life Is Bitter

My most widely-read post by far on this blog was an article on the classic Volkswagen ads. I noted in the article that such ads were reminiscent of the Mad Men era of optimistic, dreamy advertising. At the time, all advertisements were bright and shiny, alluding to a life of wondrous contentment should the consumer buy whatever product was gracing the billboard.

This is a theme which remains a stalwart of advertising to this day however, when a bunch of advertisers sets out to buck a trend, the results can only be good. Especially when the advertisers in question are PR giants Ogilvy & Mathers.

I’ve never heard of Fernet & Branca bitters. In fact I didn’t know what bitters really were until I started learning how to make cocktails. Ogilvy clearly recognised that I wasn’t alone. Therefore, rather than resort to a standard approach to advertising the product itself, they attempt to catch the audience’s attention with a dark pun on the word ‘bitter’. Being a sarcastic person with a cruel sense of humour, I love what they came up with.

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And the bells were ringing out for Christmas Day!

For those of us who can never get enough of Christmas or Mean Girls:

And my favourite Christmas poem:

I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day

I heard the bells on Christmas day
Their old familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet the words repeat
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

And thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along the unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

Till ringing, singing on its way
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime, a chant sublime
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

And in despair I bowed my head
“There is no peace on earth,” I said,
“For hate is strong and mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.”

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail
With peace on earth, good will to men.”

 


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John Lewis adverts, reloaded

No doubt, many of you will by now have seen this year’s John Lewis Christmas advert depicting a little boy waiting impatiently for Christmas, so that he can give his parents their present.

However, this version has been doctored with the music (originally Slow Moving Millie’s cover of Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want) now playing the theme from The Shining. The whole meaning is changed dramatically.

And this parody by Bourgeois & Maurice is fantastic:

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December 11, 2011 · 12:24 am

Understanding the English

I found this particularly amusing. I’ve said nearly every one of these things since I started working in London.

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It’s Friday…

…take me away:

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Moving photographs

Ever since the explosion of tumblr, the gif (Graphic Interchange Format) has become a seemingly endless source of entertainment to me and I’m always looking for the next funny/thought-provoking/entertaining one to catch my eye. It appears I may just have found more than one…

New York City-based photographer Jamie Beck and Web designer Kevin Burg “hand-stitch” together her photos and his Web design to make animated gifs they now call “cinemagraphs.”

They first exhibited their work at New York Fashion Week earlier this year, where it was hugely popular, most notably for an animation capturing Vogue editor Anna Wintour examining a model as she walks down the catwalk.

The aim of the cinemagraphs is to capture perfectly a fleeting moment in time. I think they do exactly that:

Find more on their Tumblr here.

 

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