Archive for June, 2017

the apoliticized late night “wars”

Thursday, June 29th, 2017

A new hybrid approach for Stephen Colbert in running re-runs on Friday.  Later Letterman phoned Fridays in by taping two shows earlier in the week.  But Colbert, while apparently wanting to phone something in, wants to retain the topicality that is the show.

Ratings wise, this does what?

Stephen Colbert has been beating Jimmy Fallon in late-night show ratings for the past five months — until last week.
“The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” finally managed to surpass “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” by 34,000 viewers last week, according to The Hollywood Reporter. These are Fallon’s highest ratings since he filmed a series of episodes in Orlando that aired in April to celebrate the opening of his new ride at the Universal Orlando Resort. 

Stephen Colbert jumped ahead of Jimmy Fallon based on that one factor: President Donald Trump.  I suppose the “Resistance” ™ is, in the broad swarth of the audience that must make up some kind of late night network television audience, fading a tad.  Passions fade.  Trump will be mockable on a political basis for the forseeable future, so the need to catch Colbert on that basis slides — and Trump will continue as well to be mockable on that the personal celebrity basis but there you will find Fallon and Colbert doing that.  And what was mockable yesterday for Colbert to dig at will be mockable today and tomorrow, or something new will hit, so we might as well check out … Jimmy Fallon riding a Jimmy Fallon ride in an Orlando theme park.

the separate wings of the party

Tuesday, June 27th, 2017

I’m reading an article about Ru Paul, where she is on her television show in her newly energized post – Trump “Opposition” “Resistance” role, and mocking the Rust Beltians who swung to Trump.  It’s some interesting hectoring on his part.

“If you were a factory worker and your job was to put this to this from 9 to 5, we don’t do that anymore,” he said, his soft voice carrying the imperious, jokey edge familiar to viewers of RuPaul’s Drag Race, his reality-TV show. Then he referenced a viral video from Ts Madison, a transgender activist and former porn star: “You better step your pussy up. Get on a business, bitch!” He delivered this spiel with the clipped, decisive tone of a therapist on the clock. “Nature will not allow you to just sail on through doing some factory job,” he said. “We don’t do factories anymore.”

It’s a not unfamiliar point.  Not without its points of value — I too found some irritation as I read down the story of Hillary Clinton on the hustlings confronting old-timer people saying “I don’t want to work with computers!  I want to work with machines!”  And maybe Trump is over-promising on trade agreements.  And maybe the time the trade agreements mattered on this issue passed sometime in the last decade.

But all this runs counter to the elected Democratic officials of that region (should Hillary Clinton have picked out Sherrod Brown for the vice presidential slot after all?), and the campaign rhetoric of Bernie Sanders.

Actually, I have the distinct sensation here of people talking to themselves, in a feedback loop of sorts.  What the hell does a factory worker in Akron care about “get on a business, bitch” — which, I guess is a reworking of Republican rhetoric — Reagan’s and Romney’s conception of Freedom as the freedom to open your business — and while these entertainers have their niches working and skill-sets to hit hard in this target demographics, good luck to random Akron guy in finding the niche for this economy.

Amusingly, the previous decade or two I recall seeing an article somewhere about how “the gays” have turned out Drag, now a vestige of an earlier time.  While surely Ru Paul is big enough to weather the ups and downs of the Drag Economy, maybe something about Trump makes it big again?

a year early, a year late

Wednesday, June 21st, 2017

I wonder if maybe last years’ flop movie, Ghost Busters, the one of the female cast — which was touted as a harbinger or a rallying cry for the Woman to get into the White House…

(see Ellen Degeneres’s show promotion on “Get Out Your Woman Card?)

… maybe wasn’t a year late?  Or, you know, would work better as counter-programming to “That Man in the White House”, a part of the “Resistance” that was lackadisical due to having to face …

Then again, Wonder Woman — the hit movie and reason I wonder — is probably a better movie, which hits at the core themes all the better.  (Finally, a female superhero movie, to better the busts that was Supergirl and Cat Woman.)

How much it fits into William Moulton Marston’s vision — I don’t know.  Not enough bondage scenes, apparently, to match what he had in mind.  As for a sort of “non violence” that Marston was thinking of, I‘m fascinated by a letter in the New York Times by a detractor railing about this.

First, in her minimalist outfit, she promotes an understanding of women as sex objects. There should be no surprise that men are as interested in the movie as women. Second, she is constantly engaged in violent fighting. This is not protest; it is violence.

“Minimalist Outfit” is an odd choice of words.  Like, it’s an art creation?  [Actually when you used that term, I think more along the lines of khakis and your supposed “Normcore” wear — ie: generic.  I don’t know what a generic superhero cape and cowl would be.)  (Seriously–  whatever happened to skimpy or scant?) Beyond that, I as an accidental subscriber to Wizard Magazine in the mid 90s  (A comic reader was I, but not a superhero reader — so my sister gave me a gift subscription not knowing differences… though, to be fair, I did largely enjoy the magazine — stupid as it was — and felt I got a decent immediate background on an area that as a comic book reader I should have)– recall the supersexualized costumes worn by the huge boobed anti-heroes of the day, the better to stick out to the 14 and 15 year old reader. (And I sas a funny comment from a comics blogger and comic store owner looking at old copies of “Lady Death” lamenting that “if Chaos Comics had just gone ahead and published porn, they might still be in business.”)  It was such that there was a cringe-worthy article about this controversy, replete with comments from Sara Dyer offering the very sensible position that you male superheroes in full costume and females in something less — and there’s no real comparison here… next to a picture of Lady Death with a blurb touting her as a strong female character countering the trend of mindless “Bad Girls” in comics… because — er?

On Wonder Woman — we are being treated to such items as… a group of Kindergartener girls  agreed to be Amazons and not fight but work together to defeat evil.  What of it is marketing blitz, I can’t say.

the mainstreaming process

Thursday, June 15th, 2017

The National Review on the Alex Jones interview with Megyn Kelly — a staple interview  over the past decade or two on any talk radio show that wants to delve for a minute or two into conspiranoia (moving past your George Noorys and including, say, the “always wanting a kook on the air” Alan Colmes — though probably he lost the invite as the shared enemy “neo-con” Bush” moved to the not shared enemy Democratic Obama), and who is chummy with a gratuitous thank you to everyone for helping bring out the truth.

Did Mike Malloy ever usher him in for a spell?

As per recent events, as we get new attempts to redo the Sandy Hook conspiratorial train-ride, The Way it works in Alex Jonesland:  Mass Violence that can be traced to “The Right” is a false flag; historically mass violence that can be traced to Islamic militants has been false flag (9/11, obviously) but that may have changed, mass violence that is apolitical is a false flag, mass violence that can be traced to “The Left” is political terrorism.   (Curiously enough, this one appears to be an alternative to that theme, arguing the sides are being lined up for the war).

And at all stages it’ll be an excuse for the Powers to take your guns away.  (Oh, we need to deport Piers Morgan.)


interchangable laundry

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017

I see a flash on the teevee.  “Kevin Durant’s rode to a Championship.”  I’m vaguely bemused.  Here is Kevin Durant’s rode to a Championship.

He is drafted number two over-all to a team called the Seattle Sonics, which is a franchise that was recently purchased by an owner who all but announced he was moving it to Oklahoma City.
After playing one year for the Seattle Sonics, he plays a bunch of years for the Oklahoma City Thunder.  He makes and loses the Finals one year, has an MVP year, is injured here and there.
The Golden State Warriors narrowly lose the Finals after winning a record number of games in the general season.  Kevin Durant, not winning the Finals with the Oklahoma City Thunder, signs with the Warriors.  This puts them over the hump the next year.

The good news for fans of the Portland Trail blazers is that in that whole “picking Greg Oden over Kevin Durant” thing, the team has been exonerated, as Kevin Durant never won the thing with either the Seattle Sonics or the Oklahoma City Thunder.

I note a silly question from a sports radio show being telecast on one of those Sports tv cable networks.  “Should the Cleveland Cavaliers sign”  — and I didn’t catch the name, but the upshot is that it would be roughly the same logic as the Warriors’ signing Durant last season.  Which gets me thinking:  I think the Cavaliers oughta sign Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh — wouldn’t that make for an un-stoppable trio?

figuring out British elections

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017

I.  Scotland holds a vote on whether to secede from the United Kingdom.  With the whole of the British political establishment working overtime to defeat the measure, Scotland rejects the measure narrowly, arguing for a rocky future where dreams of nationhood are not likely to be appeased.

II.  After two years of holding steady leads in the poll, the Labour Party loses to the Incumbent Conservative Party, and David Cameron commences his second glorious term with an out-right majority.  His victory margin comes thanks to a pledge to a voting bloc of Euro-skeptic Isolationists to hold a referendum on leaving the EU, something he personally opposes but — that oughta appease them.

III.  With three credible candidates up for the leadership role,  the grassroots brings to power the fourth not credible candidate, Jeremy Corbyn — a back-bencher remnant of a long since discredited Far Left faction of the party, a crusty old figure who immediately becomes a laughing-stock on the national stage and appears headed to taking the party off the cliff.  Senior Party members try to step out of the way to be in position to pick up the pieces after the looming disaster.

IV.  The Brexit vote is held.  Cameron tries to rally a constituency that is not his own to come to the polls and stop the madness.  The Euro-skeptic isolationists narrowly win.

V.  Theresa May replaces the now disgraced Cameron, converting full force to a Brexit true believer.  Promising stability, she vows not to hold a new snap election to consolidate power.  After looking at the polls and with a few historic drubbings of Labour in local elections, she cynically reverses course.  Because what could go wrong when make a cynical political move in an anti-politician environment, and also throw up a proxy vote for a measure that passed by a slim majority?

VI.  Theresa May loses the Conservative Majority, and now has to turn to Northern Irish Nationalists to form a majority.  (Because what can possibly go wrong with that alliance?) After losing less badly than everyone else, Jeremey Corbyn is heralded as a genius — someone who during the course of a national campaign found his footing and who has galvanized a dormant section of the electorate — a man of steadfast conviction who has never wavered in the political winds.  Meantime, the Scottish Nationalist Party (proxy for independence) loses serious ground and Labour regains its footing there.

The one question I’m stuck on for that Youth Vote that rallied for Corbyn — and it’s fair to call it Socialism, which means — oh — metaphorically “splitting the pie up more evenly” — was under-represented in that Brexit vote, whose effect was to — if you will — decrease the size of that pie.  So — hm?

brits vote

Friday, June 9th, 2017

After all the gnashing of teeth I’m reading on the sheer ineptness of Jeremy Corbyn in the New Statesman and other periodicals of the left parliament …

Winner.  Sort of.

Actually I have to wonder about Theresa May.  We’ve had one election after another of great disappointment for the status quo.  Why would this one not be another?