Some thoughts on the Sony hack and canceling “The Interview”

It’s been a while since I posted! Even this one I will keep brief. (Ha! Believe it or not, I do mean that when I say it. “Brief” is just hard for me. Even harder when I’m pressed for time. Ask Blaise Pascal about that.)

I find all of this buzz about the hack of e-mails and assets from Sony Pictures, the threats to movie theaters that might show their movie, The Interview, and the subsequent cancellation of the movie’s premier to be a little fascinating. here are some thoughts, lazily listed in bulleted format…

(By the way: If you have no idea what I am talking about, the BBC summarizes the matter pretty well here: “The Interview: A guide to the cyber attack on Hollywood”)

  • I’ve seen more attention paid to this cyber attack than all the other attacks that are surely made against other targets, including non-Hollywood businesses and the U.S. government. I suspect the fact that the target is Hollywood makes a big difference.
  • Total cave on the part of Sony Pictures and various theaters. I wonder if this is because of the terrorist-style threats concerning showing the movie (surely part of it) or if it is because of the potential that more embarrassing information may be released from the information hack.
  • North Korea is strongly believed to be behind the attack (actually, the U.S. has recently declared that Pyongyang order the attack. Makes you wonder (if you haven’t wondered already) how easy it would be for the sorts of groups some (like perhaps the president) may want to call “JV league” to make a damaging impact on the nation through cyber warfare. If you don’t think we’re terribly vulnerable, you haven’t been paying attention.
  • So, a movie about Muhammed is too intimidating a possibility for any Hollywood studio to touch, knowing how violent elements in the world will react. A movie that paints Kim Jong-un in an unflattering light gets canned at cost in response to a digital attack with promise for more. Yet, movies that make Noah a psychotic weirdo and turn Moses into a fictional tool that serves only to satisfy a director’s personal vision get an easy pass. Not suggesting that anyone attack theaters over Noah or Exodus, mind you! Indeed: turn the other cheek (Matt. 5:39). Just pointing out the interesting difference.(In other, related news: I have written a commentary about the new Exodus: Gods and Kings movie and have submitted it to editorial. If it is usable, it will hopefully be published on the and websites within a few days.)
  • Given the involvement of Seth Rogen and James Franco, The Interview is probably a vulgar piece of trash. Just saying.
  • Seeing how the media has responded and continues to respond to the leak of private info from Sony is interesting, too. IMHO, it begs to be compared and contrasted with other leaks and violations of privacy, such as WikiLeaks’ publication of confidential government information and the publication of the names and addresses of gun owners in an effort by activists to shame and stigmatize such individuals, whether or not it endangers them.
  • Related to the above, the availability to the media of salacious information about the very individuals the media tends to revere has produced some interesting soul-searching (and naval-gazing) on the part of journalists. Would that such introspection on the media’s part occur in other areas, as well.

And, that’s all for now. Not the deepest topic, I know, but nice for a blogging hit-and-run. 🙂

7 thoughts on “Some thoughts on the Sony hack and canceling “The Interview”

  1. Dave Machanick

    Making a “comedy” about assassinating a current nation’s leader is unchristian and could be considered an act of war. So a warlike response is not surprising.
    The Sony film company does not appear to be an organization filled with wisdom or love. Maybe after this they will have a bit more wisdom.

  2. Steve

    Brian Krebs is a journalist who runs a cyber security website. Apparently, hackers from China have already made exploratory attacks on our power grid. They gained access through businesses and contractors who tend to be lax about security. You’d think that Homeland Security would treat it as a national security issue, and not simply as a problem for business community.

  3. Stan Stonick

    LCG members should hack into reality and read all the old Plain Truth articles in which Rodrick Megadeath made many false prophesies – all are still available on the internet.

    Here is one RCM quote from the February 1965 Plain Truth:
    “Dozens of prophesied events indicate that this final revival of the Roman Empire in Europe -and its bestial persecution of multitudes of Bible-believing Christians – will take place within the next seven to ten years of YOUR LIFE!”

    Why does the LCG not attempt to address the past writings of RCM instead of trying to whitewash his history?

    The answer is that LCG is operated more like North Korea than God’s true church – members are not allowed to access the entire internet, even past Plain Truth articles.

  4. Greetings, Mr. Stonic. And, wow, are you ever way off. You seem to have no familiarity with us, at all. For instance, who in the world believes that “members are not allowed to access the entire internet”? That makes absolutely no sense to me and matches, literally, zero percent of the members I know. I know a lot of members who access old Plain Truth magazines. I even referred people to one recently in a sermon and plan on doing so again in a future one. And I just wrote someone last night about a question from another old Plain Truth article. I don’t know where you are getting your weird ideas, but it isn’t reality, sir. And as for early zeal in expecting Christ to return earlier than He would (not unlike some first century Bible authors’ expectations at the time), Mr. Meredith has been remarkably plain spoken about that and has commented on it numerous times. Really, I have no idea where you are coming from.

    Your comments are, to put it mildly, weird and not connected to reality, and I see no reason to allow any further in the future. Surely there is something more healthy you can be doing than commenting on websites you do not like. Regardless of what that might be, I wish you well in your hunt for it.

  5. Greetings, again, Mr. Stonic. As I mentioned, I won’t post any more of your weird, not-based-In-reality rants. However, I will take the bait one more time and respond. It may be the answers will demonstrate to you how little you know of what you’re talking about, and maybe you’ll learn something. As the old Magic 8-ball used to say, “Outlook not so good,” but I’m willing to give it one more try. After this, you and your delusions are on your own.

    * Really? “Enforce”? I’m sorry, but your weird accusation is simply not based in reality, at all. You seem to be startlingly ignorant of the Church and of me personally, which only makes your accusations weirder. Among other scriptures, I recommend a heathy dose of the spirit of John 7:24.

    * Ditto for the “forbidden” topics you mention. Again, I have actually talked about such things as you list in my own sermons, including that very booklet. I’m sorry, but your descriptions and accusations–again–do not match reality. Just because you repeat something false, Mr. Stonic, doesn’t make it true. Reality stays reality. You actually don’t get to replace it with your own version.

    * You say, “you would never…” And yet, I have actually done the very things you say I would never do. I don’t expect you to believe that, as you seem too overcome by your own weird bitterness, but that doesn’t change the fact that it is true. Again, reality is reality.

    * It is you who are clouding the issue when you speak of the “Apostles’ hope” when the passages to which I refer are more than mere “hope” or mere “longing” but are specific expectations expressed by the Bible writers, written down and preserved forever. You can’t expect to learn from the Bible, Mr. Stonic, if you won’t be honest with it.

    * You say, “can’t grow.” Again, what are you talking about? All of my congregations have grown (note: with lots of brand new people) since I’ve been here to where several are bursting at the seams and we need bigger buildings. We have actually grown consistently for years. Math and I are on good terms, and the numbers don’t lie. But, I understand: When a person is determined to rant and accuse, facts often do get in the way.

    As I said last time: I do hope you find something more healthy to do than to froth at the mouth and make stuff up to post on websites you don’t like. It isn’t a law that we have to live in reality, sir, but it is good advice. I hope that you find your way back to it soon and that you find a more pleasant pastime than wallowing in bitterness and imagining reasons to hate other people. There is a far better way of life out there than the one you seem trapped in.

    I don’t see a need to reply to any further weird posts, since it’s clear you’re simply dangling bait and hoping for a bite. I get it. Consider this my last attempt at Proverbs 26:5. It’s pretty clear that to continue further with someone so given to bitter rants and fantasy-based accusations would be more along the lines of Proverbs 26:4.

  6. Thomas

    I am a long time member of the Living Church of God. I am not a minister. In the early days of conversion when researching the Church I came across various websites that were hostile to the Churches of God. I looked at what they had to say and I compared it to what I saw with my own eyes and experienced through personal interaction. In the end I found the accusations made against both LCG and the old WCG and the weird practices that we were supposed to labor under did not match reality. (In fact, I found that they had remarkably little dirt to dish on LCG compared to some of the other CoG’s.)

    In LCG we are free to think for ourselves. In fact, it is encouraged since each one of us has to work out his or her own salvation. The ministers are there for advice and in general they have been through the mill just like us so they have the experience. Their advice should not be set aside lightly. But, at the end of the day it comes down to you standing before Jesus Christ and giving an account of your actions and your decisions. The minister will be held accountable for how well he has taught the Truth to you through word, speech and most importantly actions. But you are accountable for verifying it is the Truth of the Bible and then what you have done with that knowledge of the Truth. How well you have made it a part of your being. The whole point of the Christian life is to reach the maturity of Jesus Christ and that means applying the Truth for ourselves in our own lives. But, we can’t do it alone. We need God in us and we also need contact with God in our brothers and sisters which includes Elders – Ministers who have superior knowledge and, most of the time, wisdom (they are still human, after all). To encourage us and learn from the experiences of one another.

    Any minister who tries to forbid the free flow of information by banning certain websites (and we are not talking about the obvious commandment-breakers like porn etc., but, for example, those that are critical of the Church) does not have a grip on reality. In fact, all he would have done is provide free advertising. On the other hand, all ministers would advise caution when looking into these things. Now, those of us who have been around for a while have no real need to check these things out because a/ we know the minister and find him trustworthy; b/ concur with his judgment; c/ we have already looked at these things and reached our own conclusions. Those who are newer are going to check into these things regardless as it is part of the process of gathering all the relevant information you can before making a decision as to whether to stay or go. Anyone with even a modicum of computer know-how can type “Church of God” into a search engine and will sooner or later stumble over this stuff. You can’t stop them. Anyone who thinks otherwise, whether inside or outside the Church, is not living in the real world.

    No minister I know has tried to act as “thought-police”. In fact, they are remarkably honest and grounded in discussing mistakes of the past and what we can learn from them going forward as well as debunking the more outlandish accusations and just outright character-assassinations.

    Oh yes, and I have used the internet to access past Plain Truth articles, old WCG booklets and the old Bible Correspondence Course (both the original 58 lesson and newer 32 lesson versions). Highly recommended!

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