Archive for September, 2019

bush and biden

Monday, September 16th, 2019

The comment “I think I prefer President Trump to President Bush” is a good way to annoy anyone and everyone, for reasons not quite able to put one’s finger on.  Part of the reaction may be presentism — an affect both rational and irrational in equal measure — as, well… yesterday is over, and why relitigite the Hoover Administration?  Part of the reaction is it implies something — anything at all — positive, even by comparison’s sake.

(We’ll see if the limited isolationalist military posturing blows up in smokes, as with Trump and his Fox News habit and his base voters, it always feels like it has the potential to any minute.   I see liberal blogosphereland giddy about a Rand Paul / Mitt Romney split, or Hannity / Carlson … but I’m thinking I miss the damnable chantings of the handful of Friday protesters marching as they did during Obama years “US Out of Afghanistan.  Can We Do It?  Yes We Can” — these days mostly seemingly focused on the Mexican border (with the standby of the guy with the Israel / Palestine sign), because…

I ponder whether or not if one to wear a “Biden for President” button, you’d get a similar effect.  It’s notable that as I sit here, I see no uprising of support for any candidate — save a couple of people coming out of a “Yang” event, and I doubt Yang’s getting even Kucinich level traction hereabouts.  (Though maybe he is?)  No one’s plopping down on anyone… though my guess is no one hereabouts would be plopping down on Biden.  Not a MAGA hat, sure, but just kind of irritating nonetheless.

as opposed to…

Saturday, September 14th, 2019

Robby Soave’s Panic Attack includes the provocative (?) suggestion…

Whatever legitimate grievances the GamerGaters had were more than cancelled out by their obnoxious and abusive behavior, but they found a powerful 

And, then, as you see here, we go into a history of Milo Y’s swerving from mocking and belittling gamers on twitter to his role “uncovering the pc group conspiracy” …

A hedging — the initial issues at stake for “gamergate” blurred as irrelevant to discussing Milo Y as opportunistic, and the second act as trolling and cyber-bullying / stalking.  Michael Malice slides away from denouncements completely, and goes on all in…

The story of Gamergate has been told ad infinitum.  As briefly as possible, it started with allegations from her boyfriend that

As a whole, Michael Malice’s book — The New Right: A Journey to the Fringe of American Politics — is pleasingly contradictory on assessing the left and right movements of American politics at large.  (The top marginal tax rate of the Eisenhower administration would be balked at by a President Bernie Sanders; a swift government take over of the steel industry by Truman as well; the oh-so-middle-of the-road Eisenhower immigration policy known then as “Operation Wetback” was suggested by Candidate Trump and bristled at; don’t make me laugh on LGBT rights…)  In this section,it’s maddening.  On one hand, the “Progressives” win utterly — on the other hand, they don’t know what they’re up against in choosing to fight these trolls…

Can both sides end up getting what they want from the issue and denouement?  One, some representation and variety and critical space, the other… grievances and trolling action?

We get to a good job with explaining it in terms of “entry-ism” — you’re a dude who likes pretending to blow things up in “first person shoot” mode — and if there has to be a female hero doing the action, make the boobs big and wearing a chain mail bikini.  Naturally, as women enter, they might be interested in something… else.  (And spurring into the mainstream of the subculture attacks on the Princess of Super Mario or the gender dynamics of Zelda.)  It all upsets the small subculture they have created for themselves.

Oddly, the retrograde gamers who p end up wanting Roger Ebert to be right when he once insisted, to seas of scorn, that video games are defacto can’t be art.  Not that they want that… though Malice does end up suggesting that in following with how a fat drag queen became the model for the the sea villain in Disney’s Little Mermaid or madames and prostitutes of the nineteenth century popularized the fashion color red… these the despised outcasts form the cutting edge of the next mainstream bourgois culture…

Anyway, it’s all as against any commentary I’ll generally get… oh, you know… the second toxic behavior not really undermining so much as affirming the gist of the story.

the primary challengers throw their hats in…

Sunday, September 8th, 2019

Mark Sanford, William Weld, and Joe Walsh.

Why three?  Did Mark Sanford look over at Joe Walsh and groan a “not him”?

I see in the New York Times coverage that there is “no room on the right”, and I suppose we’re living in a world where Rush Limbaugh responds to a caller complaining about the deficit with a “no one cares about the deficit”, so right is as right does,

— and in a sense no Republican President cared about the deficit since Eisenhower, who we all consider a moderate — even though Trump took a page from him in proposing immigration policies…

Sanford and Walsh in particular running, I suppose, to stand athwart history and define the terms of “right”.  Weld runs against boorishness.  (Or, all three run against boorishness, though Walsh’s past tweets expose a problem in that arena, and Sanford — well, his extra-marital affair was pretty sober, really.)

I suppose if Weld’s continuing at all with his Libertarian Party foreign policy, he’d be running to expose Trump’s isolationist as fraudulent, while your Walsh wants to do damage on Trump basic Bush era neo-connism.

With the rules from the RNC not allowing much room, it’ll be interesting to see who comes in fourth.  Like, here’s who came in fourth in the Democratic Primary race of 1996.  Will they do better than Fred Hudson?

Anyone going to do as well as Harold Stassen in 1984?


humane and vampiric

Friday, September 6th, 2019

An explanation for a piece of agit prop somewhere else in the world, directed at US President Trump.

“Like all populists, the statue has two faces,” Mr. Schlegl added.  “One is humane and nice, the other is that of a vampire.”

This strikes me as rote, an instant gnabbing of stock commentary whether or not it fits the situation.  Say what you will about Trump, and parse out his two (or more faces) — not one of them is a forged smile at you.

Reading Brett Easton Ellis’s not terribly deep but interesting enough “Declaration of Indifference” regarding the election of President Trump, White.  Giving him some ugly company — I noted the book when I saw Milo Yiannopolis’s (sp?) book (one of those things an extension of his brand such that you can’t imagine being published without his mug on the cover) — and the “If You Like” Recommended to “White by Brett Easton Ellis”.  Two gay jackasses, I suppose, is the theory.

It’s actually there that Brett Easton Ellis has the most to say — a tad tired of the “magical gay elf” trope in movies like Moonlight.  Here he’s kind of playing the identity politics game as much as anyone:  he wants to see more gay jackasses represented in Hollywood productions and arts and entertainments.  The book is at its best when moving over his various twitter controversies.

So we get a whiff of neo-conservatism as he fends against the “Resistance” of his upper class Los Angeles Hollywood environment, wondering why the heck his community gave the key to the city to a (heterosexual) porn star who broke a nda.  I understand much of the fatigue of the moment.  But he’s disingenuous — shocked by the New Yorker asking him about political commentary as though he wouldn’t expect it, and so complaining it to the Los Angeles Times.

He is correct on some scores — just what the hell was anyone supposed to think of the constant claim of Hillary Clinton as “the most qualified presidential candidate” ever? — and off in other ways:  no difference between Obama and Trump on immigration — really?  (Even granting the insanity of the “Resistance” in envisioning a more open borders than will be feasible.)

I see, spotlighted perhaps the work of the same Powells worker cross referencing Milo with Ellis, that the David Shields anti-Trump book Nobody Hates Trump More than Trump has a cover blurb from Ellis calling it the only anti-Trump book that speaks to him.  Maybe this serves as a mea culpa, or a back-tracking.    And this gets to his current problems with the culture.

In Vimi Bajaj’s essay on V.S. Naipaul in the “Writer’s Chronicle,” she argues that he was a great writer only early on, when he was compassionate, and is now no longer of interest, because he hates most of humanity; such a formulation would eliminate everything from Petronius’s “The Satyricon” (1st Century A.D.) to Michel Houellebecq’s “Submission” (2015).

Reminds me of seeing in the wake of Trump’s election a Literature professor declaring that she was now going to emphasize empathy in her syllabus selections.

The three principal NYT theater critics — Alexis Soloski, Jesse Green, and Ben Brantley — conduct a symposium on the state of American theater in the age of Trump. All are sublimely oblivious of the extent to which they each embody everything that drove five million Obama voters to Trump.

I take a gander at the NYT a and e section, particularly on the theater, here and there by happenstance, and have commented on it on this here damned blog.  Completely separate from anyone’s analysis anywhere, I note it is self-parodic…  (See here.)

Along with battling against this type of hyperbole.

I’m sorry that Bret is bored with discussions of how our country is teetering on the brink of fascism, but our duty as citizens matters now. His aesthetic preferences seem deeply selfish—one might even say moronic.

Well.  We’re all fighting the Spanish Civil War on our own terms, I suppose.

Ellis is also off basis in claiming that his early 1990s battle on behalf of American Psycho with the publisher was a “scary sign” for the arts.  The publisher had no more duty to publish, following the edicts of its capitalist principles (and maintaining reputation for further publishing ventures), than if I submitted something and was rejected.  Granted, they’d have more reason to publish his work, and a contract to buy out, but nonetheless… Also, it’s disingenuous to claim Gloria Steinem and various feminists just didn’t understand that the character in his novel was fantasizing about his wanton violence, and that should be clear in reading it — as though that would ameliorate the concerns and perspective of Steinem and company.

the three meanings

Tuesday, September 3rd, 2019

Alleister Crowley said of the swastika that “Before Hitler was, I AM”, a statement misinterpreted about — by a man who was defensive of Weimar Germany’s government

whether or not the swastika is ever going to re-established to its pre-appropriated meaning …

… as Emmett Grogan later deployed it in anonymous signatures as “primitive man“…

or maybe mutated into something else entirely?…

will have to wait that magical thousand years, I suppose.

But it’s a query which pops into my mind with relation to the mutations of Pepe the Frog — which Hong Kong protesters are using as symbol in fighting against the Chinese government… and which was originally a man-child of a frog cartoon character.