If you’ve been anywhere on the internet in the last couple of years, there’s probably a good chance that you’ve heard of Bronies —Older, typically male fans of the children’s cartoon My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. There’s also a good chance that you may not have seen them in the best light. Often Bronies are presented as socially awkward, slovenly, and generally pathetic for liking a show for little girls… but is there more to the show and its fans than one would assume based on first glance? I called up a friend of mine, Adam Young, to ask him what led him to become a Brony and just what it is about this seemingly saccharine show that could inspire it’s legions of older fans to have such devotion to it.
Adam is 28 years old and resides in Champaign, Illinois. He attended Illinois State University and graduated in 2007 after obtaining a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Studio Arts. He is a huge fan of several movies and television shows, including Star Trek, Star Wars, The Simpsons, and Back to the Future. He is also an avid gamer, enjoying several Nintendo titles in the RPG genre such as Pokémon, Earthbound, and Paper Mario. Adam currently works for an outdoor specialty retailer.
How did you become a Brony?
Well, um… It was a very gradual process. I go to a lot of various message boards on the internet for artwork and games or whatever. Around probably winter of 2010, maybe spring of 2011, I kept seeing all these strange memes and image macros, and user avatar images of these weird horse-looking things popping up all over my message boards that I go to frequently.
At first I just kinda thought that was weird and didn’t think too much about it, and then the more they kept popping up I thought “What the hell is this? I gotta figure out what the hell this is.” The art style was very reminiscent of either Gennedy Tartakovsky or Craig McCraken, or any of the 1990’s Cartoon Network people. First I iMDB’d Craig McCracken, the Powerpuff Girls guy. He had recently done Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends, and it looked quite similar. I saw that his name was not on the credits list for this show, but coincidentally enough, his wife Lauren Faust was. She was the executive producer of Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends, and she got her start in the industry working on Powerpuff Girls in the later seasons, so I was familiar with her work.
After seeing that she was the one who developed My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, I was like “Well that’s kinda weird, I guess she really needed money or something,” and left it at that because of the preconceived notions a show like that would have attached to it, being based on a line of dolls for little girls and all.
So I really didn’t think too much about it, and then later I subscribed to a lot of Youtube channels, especially ones that review cartoons, video games and anime. One of the channels I subscribed to was because they were doing reviews of the series Madoka Magica, which I was watching at the time. I really liked their Madoka reviews, and one day out of the blue this really, really long video of theirs, almost an hour long, popped up in my subscription feed. It turned out to be about the new My Little Pony show that I had seen all over the internet, and I was like “Okay, if these guys are reviewing it, I guess it’s worth a look?”
So I went to Youtube and did a search for My Little Pony, and by that point most of the first season was already over, but there were still a few episodes left. I immediately tried to catch up as soon as I could, and after giving it a fair chance, I turned out to really, really enjoy the show. After watching all of the first season, I was like “Well, I guess I’m not really allowed to judge a book by its cover ever again.”
The Sun reported today:
Police confirmed one man has died who is believed to be the soldier.
David Cameron vowed Britain would “never buckle” in the face of terrorism and condemned the “absolutely sickening” attack.
In footage, obtained by The Sun, one of the terrorists speaks directly in to the camera bragging about the horrific attack boasting the public and their “children” were targets of extremists.
He says: “We swear by almighty Allah we will never stop fighting you…Your people will never be safe.
“In our land our women have to see the same. You people will never be safe.
“Remove your governments they don’t care about you.
“You think David Cameron is going to get caught in the street when we start busting our guns you think politicians are going to die? No it’s going to be the average guy, like you, and your children.
“So get rid of them. Tell them to bring our troops back so can all live in peace.”
image courtesy shutterstock / Vadim Sadovski
Shepard Fairey, the creator of the famous Obama “Hope” poster, made news recently with another piece of bizarre visual propaganda, this time denouncing America’s habit of clinging to guns and religion.
He produced the poster last month in support of the failing anti-gun legislation, and most recently had it printed on hundreds of protest signs in anticipation of a massive anti-gun rally in Washington. From sympathetic Buzzfeed.com: “Artist Shepard Fairey will paper downtown D.C. Thursday with copies of a new work aimed at reigniting the push for gun control.” Reality check: the advertised Occupy The NRA rally attracted only about 60 participants.
That the anti-NRA poster looks Orwellian is not a coincidence. Fairey probably believes he has a spiritual channel directly to George Orwell: after all, he had designed book covers for Penguin’s Animal Farm and 1984, in addition to a series of nightmarish posters collectively titled Nineteeneightyfouria. His Orwellian connection, however, is very unflattering. Lacking the depth and, apparently, the slightest understanding of Orwell’s actual message, Fairey rather channels some mind-numb Party functionary out of George Orwell’s novel as he manufactures establishment propaganda that facilitates the takeover of the individual by the all-powerful state.
The gallery page gives this blurb about Nineteeneightyfouria, likely written from the artist’s own words:
Shepard’s artwork both scrutinizes and distorts the narrative of the modern American Dream. Commenting on underpinnings of what Shepard terms the ‘capitalist machine’, it aims to critique those who support blind nationalism and war. Fairey addresses monolithic institutional authority, the role of counter culture, and independent individuals who question the cultural paradigm.
So, you want to pitch a TV show — a sitcom no less! Or maybe you’re just an armchair TV enthusiast, a mental writer playing out episodes of the ideal sitcom in your head. Whether your concept is ideal or idyllic, if you want to get it off the ground, you need to get your head out of the clouds and start viewing your human reality in terms of numbers — good numbers. Take a tip from Seth MacFarlane: Be sure to include an African American, a disabled character, and an Asian reporter if you want to stand a chance in TV land.
In other words, start counting your minorities.
It’s all in the spirit of being fair that we view people based on their color, class, gender, or physical ability. Not only is it fair, it is super easy to follow the 4-step program for crafting your perfectly pitch-able TV sitcom.
So, get out your calculators and get ready for a math lesson in how to write a situation comedy for television!
Throughout this series I’ve questioned where the line is drawn between reflecting and affecting when it comes to the media’s relationship with real life. Either way, the determining factor is relatability. You aren’t going to imitate something unless you can relate to it, and if you can’t relate to a show, chances are it isn’t anywhere near a reflection of who you are.
So, in the interest of all things entertainment, let’s take a simple quiz to determine your relatability factor when it comes to the portrayal of “traditional family” on television using two popular prime-time family-themed shows: Family Guy and The Middle.
Family Guy: The show is apathetic, even nihilistic at times, mocks the same politically correct values it thrives on, and typifies men and women in terms taught best in Gender Studies 101. The Middle is one of a handful of shows to make it to the air that depicted exactly what its title intimated: a middle -lass, middle-of-the-road family living in the middle of nowhere, America. As working middle class as the Griffins, the Hecks are a family of five that mirrors the demographics of the Quahog clan: father, mother, two sons with a daughter in the middle.
So, what’s your relatability factor? And how does your relatability compare with the ratings? Take this simple five-question quiz to find out!
Poor Seth MacFarlane. The guy sings one song about boobs and suddenly he’s #1 on the Hates Women List with a Steinem next to his name. (That means if they capture him, she gets to rag on him incessantly. Who wouldn’t want a bullet after that?)
It’d be too easy to join the chorus singing, “MacFarlane hates women.” As a woman, I despise the cop-outs women often take, chiding every man as being both the desired master of her universe and the despised crafter of her fate. If we really believe in Girl Power, what’s our responsibility in all of this? Are we allowing the fate scripted by guys like MacFarlane to come true?
It took about 10 minutes to pull video for the following five most common stereotypes about women portrayed in Family Guy. The sad news is that it took about 15 to pull five examples of the same behavior from the most popular Girl Power reality television show out there: The Kardashians. Praised by some feminists as career women comfortable in their own skin, it has been observed that “50 years ago, the Kardashians could never live the way they do. It’s all thanks to the Feminist movement that they are who they are – and they embrace every benefit from it fully.”
So, culture judges that you are, tell me: Is the evidence compelling? Is MacFarlane a He-Man Woman Hater, or do the Kardashians prove that girls finally busted through the glass ceiling in the tree house and joined the club?
My good friend John Hawkins has decided to take a few weeks off from his weekly PJ Lifestyle article. So now seemed like the appropriate time to finally do what I’d been meaning to for some time: begin compiling together collections of some of his best articles. For almost two years now John has tackled all kinds of issues — from self improvement to popular culture to male-female relationships. He’s established himself as the section’s most popular writer and I’ve enjoyed watching him explore and experiment. When John comes back we’ve decided to brainstorm a new direction for him to focus on developing. I’m not sure yet what it should be — though I don’t doubt that John and I could probably come up with something within 15 minutes of brainstorming. The problem is that there are simply too many ideas where John could succeed! As this collection of his 5 most-heavily trafficked articles of 2012 shows he has developed himself into a versatile, witty writer who can craft engaging pieces across a number of subjects. Please leave your suggestions in the comments for the particular direction you’d most like to see John develop his writing in the future.
This is the first of a series of what will become an ongoing collection of The Best of PJ Lifestyle. I have plans for several more John Hawkins’s Greatest Hits Collections featuring compilations of his commentaries on Self Improvement, Movies, Entrepreneurship, Humor, Internet Culture, and other subjects. I hope that these collections can showcase the work of a talented writer I’m proud to work with who I’m excited to see continue to grow into one of his generation’s most distinct and consequential voices. In the coming months I will release similar compilations celebrating the work of other regular PJ Lifestyle contributors who have made editing this publication such a perpetual joy. It’s time to take a retrospective look back at the fantastic work of such frequent PJ Lifestyle contributors as Kathy Shaidle, Walter Hudson, Paula Bolyard, Charlie Martin, Jeanette Pryor, Theodore Dalrymple, Robert Spencer, P. David Hornik, Andrew Klavan, and Bob Owens. (And that’s just the beginning!) And as I publish these compilations now is the time to express your views on the directions you’d most like to see these writers take in the future. The ship has its crew; it’s time to set sail. Now we just need to chart our destinations.
-David Swindle, PJ Lifestyle Editor
Jump to the article of your choice or read them counting down to John’s biggest smash hit:
5. Originally published January 27, 2012: The 7 Most Penetratingly Brilliant Quotes of All Time
4. Originally published May 18, 2012: The 5 Behaviors That Make You Trash
3. Originally published September 29, 2012: The 5 Unique Ways Intelligent People Screw Up Their Lives
2. Originally published September 10, 2012: 5 Simple Mind Hacks That Changed My Life
1. Originally published March 14, 2012: 7 Mistakes Women Make With Men
Watch out, ladies in the dating world: Family Guy’s prized demographic is totally Petarded.
According to the show’s creator, Family Guy’s target audience is men ages 18-34. This happens to be one of the most desirable demographics for advertisers and women looking to eventually get married and settle down.
Who hasn’t dreamed of a life with Peter Griffin?
Obviously, not all men between the ages of 18 and 34 are going to find the humor of Family Guy appealing. Yet a growing majority of them do. I long ago learned as a woman not to attempt to comment on the male psyche; why these men find Family Guy so appealing is not in my realm of interest. However, the message Family Guy sends about masculinity is so apparent that I can’t help but laugh at this not-so-subtle irony: Most women looking for men, the ladies trolling the clubs and hitting Happy Hours at the bars, are the ones who tend to stereotype men exactly the way they are portrayed on the show.
Part 1 of a 4 Part series Deconstructing Family Guy
When Seth MacFarlane sang about boobs at the Oscars, I’m pretty sure he was referring to his own fans.
Most of the time it is taken for granted that we recognize the latent moronic nature of most television programming today.
Then again, do we?
If we agreed as a culture that television programming like Family Guy is so moronic, why would a collective cheer rise up at the sight of another Emmy win? Would we be told by media commentary royalty to worship Seth MacFarlane, the show’s creator, as fascinating? Not only does the guy have mega street cred in the pop culture universe, the primetime structure he’s so wholeheartedly mocked is singing his praises. In fact, it could be said that Family Guy’s seemingly counterculture humor has been legalized by the mainstream.
What’s more, like a bad addiction, Family Guy is the drug that has turned a generation of Boob-Tube addicts into junkies. So, what are the signs, Doctor? How do you know when a co-worker, a friend, even a loved one has become a total Boob? Let’s play MediaMD as we examine the 5 most common side effects of watching Family Guy.
Doesn’t it feel like we are living this Monty Python sketch? The Sensible Party has lost to the Silly Party. The normally sensible country has “gone completely nuts.” Or, what’s probably more true, the Slightly Silly Party has lost to the Silly Party. What we need is a real Sensible Party.
Freelance writing is a financially precarious career – you’ve always got to be on the lookout for new opportunities, or you’re screwed. So when I found out recently about a relatively new online magazine called Inspire, my first thought was: hmm, what can I come up with that they might want to use?
Now – and hey, here’s a tip for you kids looking to move into the fast lane of the media game – the first thing you do in situations like this is to study the publication in question and try to determine its worldview, its style, its tone, its intended audience, and so on. Inspire, as it happens, is published by an organization called al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. Not al-Qaeda itself, mind you, but a branch of al-Qaeda with a similar but longer and more geographically specific name. It’s published in English and is apparently aimed at jihadist fanatics and aspiring jihadist fanatics.
A Fox News writer helpfully noted in 2010 that the magazine is “designed to encourage would-be terrorists into acts of violence,” and quoted Bruce Riedel of the Brookings Institution as saying that it’s “clearly intended for the aspiring jihadist in the U.S. or U.K. who may be the next Fort Hood murderer or Times Square bomber.” Useful info for an aspiring contributor! A while back Inspire ran an article titled “I Am Proud to be a Traitor to America” by an author who, not long afterward, was taken out by a U.S. drone in Yemen. For a freelancer, this sort of thing is great news: when a publication’s regular contributors are being systematically decimated in anti-terrorist strikes, it’s more likely that there’s always going to be room for fresh blood.
Humor is a personal thing. You never know what is going to hit your funny bone smack on the sweet spot. This is a slideshow of some of the best of a new, hilarious meme called Day X. I included one of my own creation, with a little twist, at the end. Enjoy!
Nightly news show, February 28, 2014.
The anchorman intones: “And now what you’ve all been waiting for. Trish, sum up the evening for us and especially for those who didn’t watch the event.”
The view shifts to a reporter is standing outside in Los Angeles as a host of well-dressed, glamorous people move past getting into big limousines.
“Thanks, Bret. Well many think that this has been the most exciting Academy Awards in history. And a lot of that is due to the whole new category of awards given tonight. The big news, of course, is the Oscar for President Barack Obama as best political leader. The best supporting male politician award went to Joe Biden; and the best supporting female politician Oscar was gleaned by Nancy Pelosi. And the best foreign politician Oscar went to Fidel Castro with a posthumous lifetime achievement award for the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. There wasn’t a dry eye in the place.”
“And what about the controversies?”
“Right. Well as many of you already know there was some controversy over Vice-President Joe Biden’s thank-you speech in which he urged young people to go to college as long as they could on publicly financed loans, then not repay them, live at their parents’ until they were at least 28 to get free health care, and then help the economy by never getting a job.”
“And what was the controversy?”
“That he didn’t go far enough.”
“What else was notable about this star-filled evening?”
“Certainly, the academy’s decision not to give awards for films anymore was widely discussed. But most of those I spoke to in the audience seemed okay with it. Back to you, Bret!”
Are cats really the Honey Boo Boo of the animal world? No, Honey Boo Boo is the Honey Boo Boo of the animal world, while cats are more like the Lindsay Lohan of the animal world — difficult, unpredictable, hard to like, and probably high on catnip. Oh, cats look cute when they’re in the bobblehead kitten stage or swatting away at yarn, but as you get to know the little beasts, you start to realize that they’re merely trying to lull you into complacency so they can steal your breath after you fall asleep. An old wives’ tale? Well, is it just an old wives’ tale that if a cop beats a hippy with his nightstick then he’ll have good luck for seven years? I think not. On the other hand, dogs are superior to cats in every way and if you don’t agree, well then, good luck with your empty life without a soul.
1) Dogs are much smarter than cats.
Can you teach a cat to sit? To roll over? To come when it’s called? No, because cats are stupid. Granted, dogs are stupid, too, but they’re probably on the same level as your two year old. A cat is closer in intelligence to a geranium — if a geranium had claws and a certain feral cunning it could use to track, torment, and kill smaller plants for its own amusement. Is that what you’d want for a plant you loved? To be at the mercy of a hateful geranium? You cat people are just sick! Sick!
For those of you who didn’t watch the SOTU, or for those who did and would like a summary, here’s a very quick re-cap.
More on the State of the Union Address at PJ Media:
Bryan Preston: The State of Our Union Rendered in a Fractured Bizarro Lens
The White House never should have said not to photoshop this picture. They made it too tempting. Here’s the best of the web so far:
Hat tip to James Edward Mcclure for submitting this quote.
Image courtesy shutterstock / travellight
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My latest parody video is up. Don’t worry, no vapid, ignorant celebrities were injured during the filming of this parody — at least not physically. Their fragile egos may have taken a beating, though. Enjoy!
On Tuesday I turned 29. Apparently this is one of those “milestone” birthdays meant to suggest that now I’m really growing old and should start worrying or feeling worse about myself in some abstract way. Apparently when you’re 30 it means that the party decade is over and you should scrape the cheeto dust out of your navel, put some pants on, and finally grow up.
So be it. Growing old has never really bothered me. (Though I wish the hair wasn’t going so fast…) I’ve felt like a cranky old man trapped in a young person’s body since at least junior high. So how about this for an old-fashioned way to really put the last 362 days of the third decade of my life to use: actually writing out a plan for the year. Here’s what I’m going to try to do so that when the 30th birthday hits in 2014 I can look back and not feel too much embarrassment at another wasted year.
In December I declared my “7 New Year’s Resolutions I Invite Others to Steal” and then began the process of integrating these general self-improvement goals into both my daily routine and the weekly schedule of my PJ Lifestyle blogging. I left them somewhat vague so over the course of the month more concrete goals could materialize. And here they are, revised from my original list but generalized so perhaps others might still find them useful to consider as potential additions to their own Lifestyle self-programming.
1. Family Life on Monday: Rediscover and Celebrate Your Family’s Origins.
On Monday this week I blogged an open letter to my wife informing her that the time had come to change directions with our Netflix diet. The number of Dexter/Battlestar Galactica-level cable shows on DVD had dried up and new releases offered little hope of consistent entertainment satisfaction. We had to start mining older regions of film and TV history — but could we agree on a path forward?
Turns out we still can. April selected the first option:
1. Watch the entire Criterion Collection. Maybe in order?
You’re always complaining (rightfully) that the past few years I’ve spent too much time on politics and don’t show you weird, artsy movies anymore. Well here’s the mother lode and now we should start exploring it.
April suggested we call it “The Criterion Challenge.” We’re going to attempt to watch as many as we can this year — and yes, as close to in the order of their release as we can. We started last night with my copy of The Seven Samurai (spine #2) and watched the first hour. I’d forgotten how entertaining a film it was — and was delighted when April got into it too.
In charting this new entertainment course for us, we’re really going back to the origins of our relationship. I never realized what a role my oddball movie tastes had for April. When we began dating seriously for a second time in the fall of 2006 (a few months after I’d graduated and she was starting her sophomore undergraduate year), I would drive up to Muncie from Indianapolis on weekends with different art movie DVDs to share with her.
But in the years since our marriage I’ve neglected this original film guide role. My movie obsession fell by the wayside to make way for political warfare and new media trouble-making. Now’s a good time to correct course as I seek to re-balance my life between the legs of culture, religion, and politics. (Instead of the ideological focus that it’s largely been for the last three years…)
And we’re both on the same page in why we’re watching this series of classic films — to further develop our own understanding of the visual arts. What makes a beautiful, powerful image? How does film tell stories and evoke feelings? April and I are going to explore these questions together and I’ll try and blog a few thoughts on each film. Also, keeping with the return to film, for our year off from Disney Land I’m going to make a point to explore the ideas that brought it into existence.
Monday Bookshelf and Blogging Focus: Research the life, work, and ideas of Walt Disney to separate the wheat from the chaff.
Monty Python saved my life.
I was ten years old in 1974, when the Buffalo PBS station across the lake began airing the iconoclastic BBC comedy series every Friday night.
Being stuck in a cheap, dinky apartment that overlooked a burned-out church, with my bullying alcoholic stepfather and a meek, “see no evil” mother, surrounded at school by more extroverted, rough-and-tumble classmates — and very likely, without knowing it, clinically depressed — that half hour once a week sitting two feet from the TV was one of the only things I felt I had to look forward to.
Maybe ever, I thought at the time.
Ironically, my crappy stepfather was the one who turned me on to the show.
The first night, he “made” me watch it, the same way he was always trying to “make” me get a suntan or take up horseback riding or keep all the closet and cupboard doors in the house either open or closed depending on his inscrutable whim of the week.
My pouty resentment faded fast. For whatever reason — the cool accents, the breathless pace, the tame “naughtiness,” the “question authority” iconoclasm, the ineffable cuteness of Michael Palin — I got hooked on Monty Python’s Flying Circus.
In high school, I finally met a couple of girls who shared my passion, and we became those insufferable sorts who communicate almost entirely in Python (and SCTV) catchphrases.
I bought all the Python’s albums and books by and about them, and repeatedly signed out hard to find titles from the library, like the one detailing their lawsuits and censorship battles.
Do you ever look at another human being and just want to say, “Stop it!” — except, before the words leave your mouth, you realize that what you really want the person to do is to stop being himself? Asking a complete ass to stop annoying you is like asking a bird not to chirp or a fish not to swim. No matter how much you try to wish it away, it’s just what he’s chosen to be.
1) The Male Feminist
Maybe no one has informed you of this, but you are a dude. A man is not supposed to be a neutered, pansy-ass, emasculated weenie who trashes his own sex and spouts off lines Gloria Steinem didn’t even really believe when she first said them. Are guys like this trying to impress chicks? Were they brainwashed in a women’s studies class in college? Are they just uncomfortable with the fact that they have a penis? Whatever the case may be, these losers are so irritating that you get the feeling that even most liberal feminists have to choke back the intrinsic revulsion that they feel for these Nancy Boys.
Author James Wasserman posted this image on Facebook last week and noted:
Laura Wiggers sent me this photo of Robert Anton Wilson in Gurney’s apartment (1986) for the post-lecture evening described on page 216 of In the Center of the Fire when a certain Nancy Wasserman drove me half crazy, probably in collusion with Laura if memory serves. Not that anyone was drinking in those days!
In trying to figure out a regular angle for my third resolution, it dawned on me the other day how many Robert Anton Wilson (RAW) books — particularly his novels — I still had not read. Maybe for my excerpts for funny PJ Lifestyle Bookshelf recommendations I should highlight his jokes? Hence today’s excerpt from Schrodinger’s Cat: The Universe Next Door.
As with many countercultural and spiritual wanderers of the past 40 years, one of my most cherished guides and influence was RAW, a comedic philosopher-intellectual and novelist most well known for his mind-bending memoir Cosmic Trigger I: Final Secret of the Illuminati and The Illuminatus! Trilogy (co-authored with Robert Shea.)
The idea uniting Wilson’s books is one that I still sympathize with but no longer embrace: radical agnosticism. Wilson sought to provoke his readers to learn to always question their perceptions and assumptions, to strive to look through other people’s “reality tunnels.” As a general principle this is still a sound cause to triumph. But I understand now, having imbibed a few more glasses of painful life experience, that this as an overarching ideology cannot sustain itself.
Recognizing a multiplicity of potentially valuable, useful reality tunnels is one thing. But figuring out how to value one as more effective than another is something else entirely. And looking back now across Wilson’s work I see how he failed to do that. His list of influences runs across the gamut from the genuinely brilliant to the malevolent charlatans. And his storyteller and raconteur’s gifts then apply to help popularize both. Perpetually doubting and always striving to see from another’s perspective means that when the time comes to really stand strong on an important principle it can be very hard to do. Insist long enough that we live in a world of endless shades of gray and someday you’ll stumble into a darkness far bleaker than anything imaginable. And doubt can stand against it?
No, but laughter can. And just because Wilson couldn’t realize that some of the ideas and authors he trumpeted were better than others it doesn’t me that we cannot.
For Wednesday’s humorous blogging I’m going to start going through my old RAW books and highlighting what I discover now through my more seasoned, less naive eyes. I want to try and figure out what Wilson got right and where he went off the rails. Which of his 11 novels and 18 nonfiction books merit inclusion on the Counterculture Conservative book list?
But I’ll still try and stick to the New Year’s Resolution and offer up some humor too and not just dwell on the darkness that he and so many of his generation and many since chose to escape confronting.
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Related at PJ Lifestyle:
Is there any satirical website that has managed to stay relevant longer than The Onion? While most humor sites tend to flaunt their progressive bona fides, The Onion has largely remained an equal-opportunity offender. Consider this recent zing against The Atlantic for running a paid article for the cult of Scientology.
KABUL—2012 proved to be just another in a succession of landmark years for the Taliban, as the influential Islamic fundamentalist organization continued its awe-inspiring push toward unprecedented expansion.
Even following a decade marked with some difficulties, the devoted members of the Afghani cultural and political movement have proven consistently successful in their trailblazing efforts to continue the Taliban’s constant recruiting of talented and diverse young insurgents and building its thriving base of support from politicians and citizens alike to over 30 times that of a decade ago.
“It was our goal in the beginning of 2012 to make sure we never stayed too complacent and continued working to spread our message internationally,” said Taliban leader Mohammed Omar, who has worked tirelessly to ensure that the movement would not just attain the same level of progress from years past, but also move far beyond it. “We want our program to have its message heard in local communities in countries across the world. Whether it’s Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, or Iran, our group firmly believes there are future Taliban leaders everywhere.”
More at PJ Lifestyle today: