Memorial Day Forum

FILED UNDER: Open Forum
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Teve says:
  2. Teve says:

    Just picked this up. Lamb, by Christopher Moore

    2
  3. Kurtz says:

    @Teve:

    Nice! That’s on my list of books to read!

  4. OzarkHillbilly says:

    An aerial search in the Peruvian desert has revealed intriguing figures of humans and animals that predate the nearby Unesco world heritage site

    A faded decades-old black-and-white photograph was the only lead Johny Isla had when he set out on the trail of a sea monster. The Peruvian archaeologist spotted the image at a 2014 exhibition in Germany about the Nazca Lines, the vast and intricate desert images which attract tens of thousands of tourists every year. The photograph taken in the early 1970s showed a mysterious killer whale deity carved in an arid hillside. The figure bore some resemblance to others he knew but he had never seen this one before.

    Isla, now Peru’s chief archaeologist for the lines, spent hours poring through archives, before returning to Peru – armed with a drone and a lifetime of local field experience – to find it. After several false starts, it took just two weeks to find the 25-by-65-metre image which had been hiding in plain sight in the hills of Palpa, about 30 miles north of Nazca, in a huge expanse of desert in southern Peru.

    The design carved into the hillside depicts a terrifying mythological beast, part orca but with a human arm holding a trophy head and several more heads inside its body.

    3
  5. Teve says:

    The love of money as a possession — as distinguished from the love of money as a means to the enjoyments and realities of life — will be recognized for what it is, a somewhat disgusting morbidity, one of those semi-criminal, semi-pathological propensities which one hands over with a shudder to the specialists in mental disease.”

    John Maynard Keynes

    10
  6. Bill says:
  7. Bill says:
  8. DrDaveT says:

    No Man’s Land, by Eric Bogle

    Well how d’you do, Private William MacBride,
    Do you mind if I sit here down by your graveside?
    I’ll rest for a while in the warm summer sun
    I’ve been walking all day and I’m nearly done
    I can see by your gravestone you were only nineteen
    When you joined the brave fallen in nineteen-sixteen
    And I hope you died quick, and I hope you died clean,
    Or Willie MacBride was it slow and obscene?

    Chorus:
    Did they beat the drums slowly?
    Did they sound the fife lowly?
    Did the rifles fire o’er ye
    As they lowered you down?
    Did the bugles sing the Last Post and Chorus?
    Did the pipes play The Floo’ers of the Forest?

    Did you leave a wife or a sweetheart behind?
    In some loyal heart is your memory enshrined?
    And though you died back in nineteen-sixteen
    To that loyal heart are you always nineteen?
    Or are you a stranger without even a name,
    Forever enshrined behind some glass pane
    In an old photograph, torn and tattered and stained,
    And fading to yellow in a brown leather frame?

    [Chorus]

    The sun’s shining now on these green fields of France
    The warm wind blows gently and the red poppies dance
    The trenches have vanished long under the plough
    No gas and no barbed wire, no guns firing now.
    But here in this graveyard it’s still no man’s land:
    The countless white crosses in mute witness stand
    To man’s blind indifference to his fellow man
    And a whole generation that were butchered and damned

    [Chorus]

    And I can’t help but wonder now, Willie MacBride,
    Do all those who lie here know why they died?
    Did you really believe them when they told you the cause?
    Did you really believe that this war would end wars?
    Well the suffering, the sorrow, the glory, the shame
    The killing, the dying, it was all done in vain
    For, Willie MacBride, it all happened again,
    And again and again and again and again

    [Chorus]

    14
  9. OzarkHillbilly says:

    (NYT) C.D.C. Warns of ‘Aggressive’ Rats Searching for Food During Shutdowns

    Humans are not the only ones who miss dining out.

    As restaurants and other businesses have closed during the coronavirus pandemic, rats may become more aggressive as they hunt for new sources of food, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned.

    Environmental health and rodent control programs may see an increase in service requests related to “unusual or aggressive” rodent behavior, the agency said on its website on Thursday.

    “The rats are not becoming aggressive toward people, but toward each other,” Bobby Corrigan, an urban rodentologist who has both a master’s degree and Ph.D. in rodent pest management, said on Sunday. “They’re simply turning on each other.”

    Dr. Corrigan said there are certain colonies of rats in New York that have depended on restaurants’ nightly trash for hundreds of generations, coming out of the sewers and alleys to ravage the bags left on the streets. With the shutdown, all of that went away, leaving rats hungry and desperate.

  10. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Bill: Damn it, Bill… Beat me to it again.

    1
  11. Teve says:

    Seen on Twitter this a.m.:

    “I’m not participating in the panDEMic!”

    1
  12. Kurtz says:

    @Teve:

    As much as I’d love a Warren pick, I’m not sure it’s worth losing the Senate seat. Looking at Sabato, if the two toss-ups go Dem, it’s 50-50

    5
  13. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Teve: Oh goody. I guess that means he won’t want the ICU bed when he needs it?

    1
  14. Moosebreath says:

    Lockdown protesters have a moral duty to forgo medical care in favor of those who followed the rules. The conclusion:

    “If the protesters can’t be persuaded that they are wrong and their behavior is dangerous, they should own up to their political commitment and sign and carry a pledge stating they decline all medical care to treat COVID-19, should they fall ill if resources are being rationed. Patrick Henry’s famous proclamation, carried by many protestors, is “give me liberty or give me death” not “give me liberty and if that doesn’t work out so well give me a scarce ventilator.””

    10
  15. CSK says:

    This is excellent: “Donald Trump, the Most Unmanly President,” by Tom Nichols, in The Atlantic.
    Sorry no link, but if I provide one I’ll go into moderation.

    5
  16. Teve says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: if she resigns the Senate seat, Massachusetts has to have a special election in just a few months.

    1
  17. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Teve: I think you meant that for @Kurtz:

  18. sam says:

    The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner
    Randall Jarrell

    From my mother’s sleep I fell into the State,
    And I hunched in its belly till my wet fur froze.
    Six miles from earth, loosed from its dream of life,
    I woke to black flak and the nightmare fighters.
    When I died they washed me out of the turret with a hose.

    6
  19. Teve says:

    Something I learned recently: Eisenhower was a hardcore Christian who is bigly responsible for promoting conmen like Billy Graham. See Kevin Kruse’s book In God We Trust for the deets.

    2
  20. Teve says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: indeed. 😀

  21. Moosebreath says:

    @Kurtz:

    “As much as I’d love a Warren pick, I’m not sure it’s worth losing the Senate seat.”

    I’d agree with that, plus the idea of running a ticket of 2 Northeasterners in their 70’s doesn’t appeal to me.

    @Teve:

    “if she resigns the Senate seat, Massachusetts has to have a special election in just a few months.”

    Unless Warren resigns this summer, so the special election is in November, that is still fraught with risk. It’s only been about a decade since Scott Brown won a Massachusetts Senate seat in a special election.

    4
  22. Jay L Gischer says:

    @Teve: I hope you like it. It’s one of my favorites, which I don’t think is incompatible with faith.

  23. Kathy says:

    @CSK:

    This is excellent: “Donald Trump, the Most Unmanly President,” by Tom Nichols, in The Atlantic.
    Sorry no link, but if I provide one I’ll go into moderation.

    Ask and ye shall retrieve: “Donald Trump, the Most Unmanly President,”

    2
  24. Teve says:

    @CSK: that is really good.

    I should point out here that I am not criticizing Trump’s manifest lack of masculinity solely because he offends my personal sense of maleness. He does, of course. But then again, a lot about the president offends me, as a man, as a Christian, and as an American. Nor do I make these observations as a role model of male virtue. I was, in every way, an immature cad as a younger man. In late middle age, I still struggle with the eternal issues of manhood, including what it means to be a good father and husband—especially the second time around after failing at marriage once already.

    And truth be told, I am not particularly “manly.” I wear Italian shoes with little buckles. I schedule my haircuts on Boston’s Newbury Street weeks in advance. My shower is full of soaps and shampoos claiming scents like “tobacco and caramel,” and my shaving cream has bergamot in it, whatever that is. And I talk too much.

    I freely accept that I do not pass muster by the standards of most Trump supporters. Again, what intrigues me is that neither should Trump. As the writer Windsor Mann has noted, Trump behaves in ways that many working-class men would ridicule: “He wears bronzer, loves gold and gossip, is obsessed with his physical appearance, whines constantly, can’t control his emotions, watches daytime television, enjoys parades and interior decorating, and used to sell perfume.”
    I am not a psychologist, and I cannot adjudicate the theories of male behavior that might explain some of this. Others have tried. Two researchers who looked back at the 2016 presidential election suggested that support for Trump was higher in areas where there were more internet searches for topics such as “erectile dysfunction,” “how to get girls,” and “penis enlargement” than in pro-Hillary areas of the country. (One can only hope that correlation is not causation.) The idea that insecure men support bullies and authoritarians is hardly new; recall that one of George Orwell’s characters in 1984 dismissed all the “marching up and down and cheering and waving flags” as “simply sex gone sour.” To reduce all of this to sexual inadequacy, however, is too facile. It cannot explain why millions of men look the other way when Trump acts in ways they would typically find shameful. Nor is arguing that Trump is a bad person and therefore that the people who support him are either brainwashed or also bad people helpful. He is, and some of them are. But that doesn’t explain why men who would normally ostracize someone like Trump continue to embrace him.

    7
  25. Sleeping Dog says:

    @Kurtz:

    The way to finesse having Warren be the VP nominee and minimizing the damage to Dems senate prospects is for her to resign the senate seat upon being nominated. Mass law requires a special election w/in 90 to a120 days of the vacany, her resignation could be timed so that the window for the special was in conjunction w/Nov 3. Yes, it would cost a Dem seat in the current senate, but they are in the minority already and the winner of the special would assume the seat on 11/4.

    The danger is that Biden loses and Warren would be out of the Senate.

    Of course, the Mass legislature could always change the law again.

    1
  26. CSK says:

    @Moosebreath:
    Brown was running against Martha Coakley, a truly appalling candidate. When he ran against Warren, a newby, he lost, even with an incumbent’s advantage.

    1
  27. CSK says:

    @Kathy:
    Thanks very much.

    @Teve:
    Yes, the article is full of good stuff like that.

    2
  28. Mikey says:

    Anthem for Doomed Youth
    By Wilfred Owen

    What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?
    — Only the monstrous anger of the guns.
    Only the stuttering rifles’ rapid rattle
    Can patter out their hasty orisons.
    No mockeries now for them; no prayers nor bells;
    Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs,—
    The shrill, demented choirs of wailing shells;
    And bugles calling for them from sad shires.

    What candles may be held to speed them all?
    Not in the hands of boys, but in their eyes
    Shall shine the holy glimmers of goodbyes.
    The pallor of girls’ brows shall be their pall;
    Their flowers the tenderness of patient minds,
    And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds.

    3
  29. wr says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: ” I guess that means he won’t want the ICU bed when he needs it?”

    Why would he want a bed in the InDEMsive Care Unit?

    4
  30. Moosebreath says:

    @CSK:

    “Brown was running against Martha Coakley, a truly appalling candidate.”

    And yet Coakley somehow managed to win a contested Democratic primary to fill the seat (not to mention multiple terms as Attorney General).

  31. Kathy says:

    When the Tokyo 2020 Olympics were postponed until 2021, I thought at the time ti was a prudent but premature move.

    Now I wonder if they won’t have to be moved to 2022, if they can be held at all.

    1
  32. CSK says:

    @Moosebreath:
    Yeah, I know. I’ve never really figured that out. She ran for governor in 2014, but lost to Charlie Baker, a Republican. She’s a lobbyist for an e-cigarette company now, a company that her successor as a.g., Maura Healy, is suing.

    Go know.

    2
  33. Kurtz says:

    @Teve:

    145-160 days after resignation. Do, that’s what… March? Also, don’t want to get Scott Browned.

  34. CSK says:

    A puzzle: Ben Domenech is editor of The Federalist, a wildly pro-Trump publication. Domenech is married to Megan McCain, who hates Trump’s guts. How do Ben and Megan share the same bed, let alone zip code?

    1
  35. Sleeping Dog says:

    @CSK:

    They use George and Kellyanne as inspiration.

    5
  36. Kurtz says:

    @CSK:

    They got marriage counseling from the Conways.

  37. CSK says:

    @Sleeping Dog:
    They must. I’m trying to imagine their conversation over pre-dinner drinks and dinner itself. I can’t.

  38. Teve says:

    @Kurtz: 160 days from today is November 1. If she resigned on Wednesday they could have the special election on election day. 😀

    2
  39. Teve says:
  40. DrDaveT says:

    @CSK:

    How do Ben and Megan share the same bed, let alone zip code?

    They (and the Conways) always make me think of Shirley Jackson’s classic story One Ordinary Day, with Peanuts. Except they never swap.

    1
  41. gVOR08 says:

    @Sleeping Dog: Or James Carville and Mary Matalin. I’ve always assumed it’s a function of being professionals, i.e. hired guns. They don’t necessarily have beliefs. Over dinner they presumably discuss the events of the day and how they can be used. If they discuss work, it’s at the tactical level. The Conways probably appreciate the extra publicity they each get from the relationship and the money may go into a joint account. It’s just business.

    8
  42. senyordave says:

    @CSK: I think it is a little different than KellyAnne and George Conway. KellyAnne Conway became a huge success because of Trump, and she will defend anything he says or does. Trump is her meal ticket. George Conway seems to a visceral hatred of Trump. I actually think he is a Reagan Republican who is morally offended by Trump, and thinks that if Trump went away the GOP would somehow revert back to “normal”.
    MeghanMcCain hates Trump because of her father. She doesn’t sound that offended by the current Republican policies, and if she is, she has fooled herself into thinking that Trump is the cause and not more of a symptom. As for Ben Domenech, it sounds like he is a true believer, but given his background (multiple cases of plagiarism, payments from a foreign agent to write pieces favorable to Malaysia, and several other ethical issues as noted in his Wikipedia bio), he could just another guy who will do or say anything for money.

    3
  43. grumpy realist says:

    @DrDaveT: Thanks for posting that! Pretty funny.

  44. Michael Reynolds says:

    I understand the reasons for so many men questioning what it means to be a man, but Jesus H. Christ, it’s so tiresome. How about this idea: Stop trying to be a ______. Just be (insert name here) and try not to be too much of an asshole. You don’t have to conform yourself to some category of human.

    This would, of course, eliminate the motivation for about 80% of Hollywood male roles because apparently a whole lot of writers desperately need Daddy’s approval, but it’s a price we should be willing to pay. Maybe someone could write a male character’s backstory that’s not ‘recovering alcoholic,’ or, ‘man seeks revenge’ or, ‘man-boy needs his man card stamped.’

    8
  45. CSK says:

    @Michael Reynolds:
    The question Nichols is asking is: “Why do so many men who should know better think that Donald Trump is the avatar of masculinity?”

    Maybe it just comes down to “owning the libtards” and being perverse. I hope so. If being a coward, a sadist, and a bully is the new masculine ideal, we’re in big trouble.

    6
  46. Jim Brown 32 says:

    @gVOR08: This. To the people that control which direction the pot gets stirred..its ONLY business. What they’ve figured out it…if you hit the right emotional buttons…most people wont care about your motives. And you get to use their energy to further your business goals

    3
  47. Teve says:

    @Michael Reynolds: aren’t there only like 6 plots?

    ETA some people say seven:

    Overcoming the Monster
    Rags to Riches
    The Quest
    Voyage and Return
    Rebirth
    Comedy
    Tragedy

    3
  48. sam says:

    Donald J. Trump
    @realDonaldTrump
    · 4h
    HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY!

    Jesus Christ.

    4
  49. DrDaveT says:

    @sam: Thanks for the reminder. I’d also recommend his poems “Eighth Air Force” and “Bombers”. The former is better, but the latter has the memorable line “We died on the wrong page of the almanac.”

    1
  50. CSK says:

    @sam:
    And his subsequent Tweets and reTweets, in order, were:
    TRANSITION TO GREATNESS!
    OBAMAGATE!
    MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!

    Somebody get the hook, please. Or a very large net.

    4
  51. Gustopher says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Real men don’t need ventilators or oxygen support.

    1
  52. sam says:

    @Gustopher:

    “Real men don’t need ventilators or oxygen support.”

    Reminds me of story Mohammed Ali told on himself one time.

    He had boarded a plane to go somewhere, and prior to take off, the stewardess came down the aisle and saw he hadn’t buckled up his seatbelt. When she asked to do so, he smiled and said, “Superman don’t need no seatbelt.” She said, “Superman don’t need no airplane, either.” He buckled up.

    12
  53. CSK says:

    @sam:
    That is a great story. Thanks.

    3
  54. dazedandconfused says:
  55. CSK says:

    I’ve been trying to figure out what Trump hopes to gain by accusing Joe Scarborough of murder, and the best I can say is that, in his desperation to distract people from his failure to construct even an adequate response to Covid-19, he’s decided that sliming a tv host will have the desired effect.

    2
  56. Sleeping Dog says:

    @CSK:

    A straitjacket is what’s needed.

    1
  57. Sleeping Dog says:

    @CSK:

    It goes back to what David Frum was talking about a couple of weeks ago. Tiny’s so desperate to change the subject that he is throwing everything against the wall.

    I’m wondering if his campaign’s internal polling is actually showing him doing worse than the public polls,

    2
  58. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Teve: So far, I’m not seeing this idea in real life much.

  59. CSK says:

    @Sleeping Dog:
    I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the internal polling of the Trump campaign shows him losing big time, would you? Clearly he has a cadre of jackasses–like the gang over at Lucianne.com, and at the Gateway Pundit, American Thinker, and the Conservative Treehouse–who will never abandon him. But, sweet Jesus, any semi-rational person who voted for him in 2016 must see, now, what a gibbering fool the man is.

    4
  60. Kylopod says:

    There once was an orange man-baby
    Who claimed he topped President Abey
    While dishonoring the dead
    He showed off his big head
    And he promised great things next year maybe

    8
  61. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @CSK: They both realize that in a few years max, a decent Republican like Ted Cruz will be advocating locking up children in cages without all the hateful language and dog whistling will return. All will be well again. Trump is simply a passing anomaly in the party. Everyone knows that.

    3
  62. Bill says:

    @Sleeping Dog:

    A straitjacket is what’s needed.

    You’re forgetting the men in the clean white coats.

    1
  63. Kathy says:

    @Sleeping Dog:
    @Bill:

    Have you learned nothing about Trump?

    They have to be the best straitjackets, and great, beautiful white coats. Anything less is unacceptable.

    On a serious note, what do you make of El PITO’s ban on travel from Brazil?

    On the one hand, it’s sensible not to allow people from a growing SARS-CoV2 hot spot from coming in. On the other, it excludes US citizens.

    I understand letting people return home, but a citizen is as liable to be infected as a foreigner.

    3
  64. EddieInCA says:

    @CSK:

    Clearly he has a cadre of jackasses–like the gang over at Lucianne.com, and at the Gateway Pundit, American Thinker, and the Conservative Treehouse–who will never abandon him. But, sweet Jesus, any semi-rational person who voted for him in 2016 must see, now, what a gibbering fool the man is.

    Over at Dreher’s place at TAC, he’s wavering on Trump, finally. If you read the comments, it’s obvious alot of Conservatives have had it with Trump. I don’t think that translate into Biden votes, but it does mean alot will stay home.

    Also, the Never Trumpers at The Dispatch, The Lincoln. Project, The Bulwark, and those few at National Review, are certainly going after Trump hard. It’s like having a few extra, very effective, Joe Biden SuperPacs.

    4
  65. EddieInCA says:

    Biden was brilliant today.

    His first foray out of his house in 8 weeks, and he goes to lay a wreath on the grave of a service member at the local Veteran’s Memorial near his home.

    Easy for the media to contrast to Trump’s lack of empathy.

    3
  66. CSK says:

    @EddieInCA:
    I saw Dreher’s piece. I think this business with Scarborough–plus the torment Trump is forcing the deceased young woman’s family to relive–has finally proven a bit too much for some people.

    In my round-up of jackasses, I forgot to mention the commenters at HotAir, who are an unusually vulgar bunch. By and large, they still love them some Trump. I do, however, see a few more signs of dissent there than I did previously. But my Lord, the regulars really hate Allahpundit, don’t they?

    1
  67. Sleeping Dog says:

    @Bill:

    Listening to that again, I realized that Napoleon XIV may have been the Ur Rapper and There coming to take me away, the seminal hip hop performance.

    @Kathy:

    The problem isn’t that he lets citizens back into the country, he probably can’t stop that, but they simply let them go about their lives suggesting only that they quarantine themselves.

    3
  68. Bill says:

    @CSK:

    But my Lord, the regulars really hate Allahpundit, don’t they?

    The last time I read Hot Air has to be around 2009 or 2010. I used to read Ed Morrissey there and at Captain’s Quarters. I don’t remember why I stopped except that 2010 was one of my worst years in my cancer struggle.

    I used to read Michelle Malkin* too. When she told William Buckley to shut up, I pretty much gave her up. The days of reading Poliblog, CQ, OTB, Malkin, Balloon Juice, Marmot’s Hole, Below the Beltway, Volokh Conspiracy, Althouse, ROK Drop**, Wizbang**, Betsy, and many others. Now I’m down to OTB, Volokh, Althouse, and ROK Drop. Lots of those bloggers are gone or close to it pretty much.

    *- I’m pretty sure I first discovered OTB thanks to Malkin.
    **- Places I’ve written at too. Plus OTB Sports, The Florida Masochist, Bullwinkle Blog, and two contributions here to OTB.

    1
  69. Pete S says:

    @CSK:

    Given Trump’s mastery of projection I can guess what this series of tweets means but I certainly would never say it out loud. That type of speculation would probably be illegal.

  70. CSK says:

    @Bill:
    If you haven’t read HotAir for 10 years, you haven’t missed much. Both Jazz Shaw and Allahpundit get trashed on a regular basis by the Trumpkins for insufficient fealty to The Donald. As for Michelle Malkin, she’s become terrifying: a den mother to young male incel white supremacists.

    You need to keep up your health, so my advice to you is: Stay away from that crap.

    @Pete S:
    Oh, go on. Say it.

    3
  71. Bill says:

    @CSK:

    If you haven’t read HotAir for 10 years, you haven’t missed much. Both Jazz Shaw and Allahpundit get trashed on a regular basis by the Trumpkins for insufficient fealty to The Donald. As for Michelle Malkin, she’s become terrifying: a den mother to young male incel white supremacists.

    You need to keep up your health, so my advice to you is: Stay away from that crap.

    Malkin referred to me as a moonbat once. I think of it as an honor and felt the same when someone at Daily Kos called me a right wing nut.

    There were a few Florida bloggers I failed to mention. Rick at Stuck on the Palmetto, Donnah at Florida Cracker, and Jim Johnson at State of Sunshine. Jim called me middle of the road, which is probably most accurate description of my politics.

  72. Kylopod says:

    @Bill:

    someone at Daily Kos called me a right wing nut.

    I think I am much more to the left than you, and someone at DKos once referred to me as “center-right.”

    1
  73. CSK says:

    @Kylopod:
    Everything’s relative. And judgments/appraisals are always subjective. Ask five people to define “upper middle class” and give an example to illustrate the concept, and you’ll get five different definitions and five different examples.

    1
  74. EddieInCA says:

    @CSK:

    But my Lord, the regulars really hate Allahpundit, don’t they?

    They despise him more than anyone except, possibly, Hillary Clinton. I still read Hot Air regularly, but, lately, it’s just a cesspool in the comments. AllahPundit and Jazz Shaw get in trouble for the temerity of calling out Trump’s BS when it’s BS, which is most of the time. I’m still amazed, but I shouldn’t be by now, that most Trump supporters have turned their backs on 80% of the policies they used to support. Deficit? Ignore. Free Trade? Ignore. Strong American leadership? Ignored. Reliance on Science and facts? Ignored. US consistency in foreign policy? Ignored. Being nice to Allies and punishing adversaries? Ignored.

    @Bill:

    I used to read Ed Morrissey there and at Captain’s Quarters. I don’t remember why I stopped except that 2010 was one of my worst years in my cancer struggle.

    Ed Morrissey is now, and has always been, a fvcking hack. Full stop. Same with Althouse, any of the guys at Powerline, and, sadly, most of the current crop at National Review.

    2
  75. CSK says:

    @EddieInCA:
    Jonah Goldberg and David French, who are resolutely anti-Trump, left NR. Kevin Williamson, who in the past wrote some enjoyably vitriolic anti-Trump pieces, has pretty much shut up about Trump, as far as I can tell. As for the remaining crew…Victor Davis Hanson’s attitude toward Trump reminds me of a line from A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum: “I live to grovel.” Andrew McCarthy is unreadable.

    2
  76. Kurtz says:

    @Sleeping Dog:

    Listening to that again, I realized that Napoleon XIV may have been the Ur Rapper and There coming to take me away, the seminal hip hop performance.

    Bob Dylan would like a word.

    1
  77. Teve says:

    Christopher Moore was signing books in his garage and in the background is a Mercedes-Benz GLA, and it just reminded me that while those look nice, if I were to buy any luxury vehicle it would almost certainly be a Lexus.

  78. Gustopher says:

    @Kurtz: I don’t think you can tell Bob Dylan’s speaking voice from his singing voice enough to be sure.

    But rap goes back further than that. Here’s Joe Hill Lewis, with “Gotta Let You Go”, which Wikipedia claims is a notable early example from 1950. https://youtu.be/5rTMPGOoAfY

    Other than recording quality, it’s great.

    Talking blues have gone way back before that though, and I would assume it comes from that, but I can’t think of any examples that have that strong, forceful voice pushing the rhythm.

  79. Gustopher says:

    @sam: Superman vs. Muhammad Ali is actually very good, by the way. Written by Dennis O’Neil with art by Neal Adams… both very good creators.

    It should be terrible, based on the gimmicky premise, but it’s not. It’s definitely a bit dated now, as it was released in 1978, but worth reading.

  80. Kylopod says:

    @Gustopher: When Run DMC did “Walk this Way,” one thing unusual about it was that they didn’t rap over the original song. They just sang it–except their singing was rapping. And I think that had to do with the fact that the original was influenced by blues, which contains some of the precursors to rap, even though it’s doubtful Steve Tyler had any knowledge of the burgeoning rap genre in 1975 (though he was from the Bronx).

    In the early ’70s the Italian singer Adriano Celentano did a song where the lyrics were almost entirely gibberish, but designed to sound like American English (at least to Italian ears). Listening to it today, the song has an eerily rap-like quality to it. I guess Celentano was imitating funk, one of the precursors to hip-hop. But several decades later he did a version of the song with actual words, and the title (translated) was “The Origin of Rap” (which you gotta admit is pretty, um, audacious for a white guy from Italy).

    Here’s the original:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F1qKv-kaYEk

  81. An Interested Party says:

    C.D.C. Warns of ‘Aggressive’ Rats Searching for Food During Shutdowns

    What an absolutely appropriate headline for the Trump Era…

    But then again, a lot about the president offends me, as a man, as a Christian, and as an American.

    Not to mention, no doubt, as a human being…

    Two researchers who looked back at the 2016 presidential election suggested that support for Trump was higher in areas where there were more internet searches for topics such as “erectile dysfunction,” “how to get girls,” and “penis enlargement” than in pro-Hillary areas of the country.

    In other words, Trump is the perfect Incel candidate…

    As for the remaining crew…Victor Davis Hanson’s attitude toward Trump reminds me of a line from A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum: “I live to grovel.”

    That has to be a Republican/conservative thing…of course Obama had a lot of folks who loved him and maybe even hero-worshipped him, but I don’t recall any grovelers…

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  82. Monala says:

    I recall some earlier posts on this sites (about that a**hole that would yell at and threaten people he thought were immigrants) that criticized “social media justice,” but honestly, I can’t fault anyone in this case:

    A black man was bird watching in Central Park today, and saw a white woman whose dog was off-leash in an area where that isn’t allowed. He asks her to leash her dog; she doesn’t, so he starts filming. She yells at him to stop filming, and gets in his face, threatening that she will call the cops and tell them, “That an African-American man is threatening my life!”

    He backs up and tells her to stay away from him. She calls 911, and tells them a black man is threatening her. She lifts up her dog by the collar so the dog starts choking and yelping, and she cries out in a voice that sounds anguished and terrified, “Please come immediately! He’s threatening me and my dog!”

    The man leaves, and his sister posts the video on Twitter. Twitter users then went to work. Her dog walker recognized her, and then people found her social media and identified her employer and the dog rescue organization from which she had adopted the dog. Messages were sent to both. The dog rescue organization has responded and said that they are investigating. Searching the dog rescue org’s social media, people find out that she’s been featured by the rescue group even though she has only had the dog since February, for saving the dog with doggy CPR when he ate a rock. Her social media has posts about her saving him when he almost drowned in a pond; saving him when he was attacked by pitbulls; saving him when he stepped on sharp objects, etc. (And she allows him to be off-leash!) This leads people to conclude that she is abusing the dog in a “Munchausen by proxy” situation. (All these posts have since been deleted, and the woman has shut down her social media pages, but people took screen shots).

    So we have a woman who was trying to get a black man killed (one who never approached her, never raised his voice, and did nothing more than have the temerity to ask her to leash her dog and then film the encounter) and is probably abusing her dog. If social media justice results in her getting fired and having the dog removed from her possession, I think that’s fair. Even more fair would be for her to be fined or arrested for making a false 911 call that could have gotten an innocent man arrested or killed.

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  83. Monala says:

    @Monala: updates: the dog rescue organization contacted her, and she voluntarily surrendered the dog. Her employer has contacted her and asked her to issue a formal apology to the man.

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  84. Monala says:

    @Monala: update 2: her company (Franklin Templeton Investments) has put her on administrative leave. As someone on Twitter quipped, “That’s a pretty fast response for a corporation on a federal holiday.”

    2
  85. Gustopher says:

    @Monala: She seemed quite special. It was very convenient of her to pull down her mask to speak on the phone.

    And it’s a good thing the man recorded all of this, as if it was her word against his… well, I wouldn’t want to be a black man in that situation when the cops show up.

    I’m going to just hope that despite the yanking on the collar and causing the dog to yelp in terror that her stories of heroics with her dog were just made up shit, rather than her hurting him to rescue him. The dog doesn’t need that in his fluffy little life.

    White Twitter seems to be divided into those who worry about the dog, and those woker than thou types all upset that people aren’t worried about the black guy. Sigh.

    It was a good day to turn it off and play Animal Crossing. Rearranged my island because I need more space to grow black roses for the memorial to my beloved and departed cat. Maybe I will try to draw her in flowers.

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  86. Gustopher says:

    I could see myself spending a day on twitter responding to performative outrage with this fine clip from The Big Lebowski

    https://youtu.be/C6BYzLIqKB8

  87. Kurtz says:

    @Gustopher:

    Oh, I’m well aware. And that is a really good song, by the way.

    It was kind of a sly joke. The Dylan song was one year earlier.

    Jazz is really important as well. Freestyling* certainly has roots there. I’m not sure if it goes back further than that.

    I recall the opening comments from the Ken Burns series. The musician describes a feature of Jazz: it allows musicians who have never met to have a conversation, a negotiation. That describes just about every aspect of hip hop in general, not just the act of rapping.

    There’s more. Battle rap can be traced to a method of tension resolution common to many African tribes.

    The rapper as an MC, which sadly, is an art that has fallen by the wayside over the last several generations of rappers.

    I’m going to stop here before I rant about the sad state of Rock music and how a bunch of good rappers use literary devices that very few contemporary lyricists in other genres could even identify.

    Oops.

    *To me, most freestyles sound like shit. Two that don’t.

  88. Kurtz says:

    @Gustopher:

    Your revolution is over, Mr. Lebowski! The bums lost!

    Speaking of the Coens…how do you feel about Miller’s Crossing?

  89. Gustopher says:

    @Kurtz: I know next to nothing about Rap and Hip Hop — including whether there’s a difference between them. Those two freestyles were great.

    One day, I asked my Alexa to play something — I have no idea what — and it completely misunderstood me and introduced me to Eric B. and Rakim, and that was a good day.

    And that’s why I have an Alexa. Because it is so shitty that it randomly introduces me to things.

    And I haven’t seen Miller’s Crossing in ages, but recall liking it. A lot of their stuff is “when idiots collide” though, which gets tiresome quickly to me. I should hate The Big Lebowski by that standard, so maybe I need to rewatch the others — maybe this is the time.

    But, I then see the news in the real world, and maybe I see enough idiots colliding.

    There was a porn version of The Big Lebowski where all non-porn scenes were so wonderfully and lovingly done that I’ve wanted to edit out all the porn from it. Anyway, here’s the trailer (nothing explicit): https://youtu.be/6Em7pBE8pLs

    I guess I might have a new pandemic project. While under quarantine, Newton invented calculus, Shakespeare wrote Hamlet, and Gustopher could edit out all the porn from a porn film.

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  90. Kurtz says:

    @Gustopher:

    Miller’s Crossing is more like Fargo or Blood Simple than there comedic fare.

    This scene should whet your appetite.

    On hip hop:

    Listen to The Roots album Undun. It’s a concept album and very short. It’s the story of a fictional hustler in the 70s told backwards. Opens with him flatlining.

    Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN. is also worth a close listen. It won a Pulitzer, after all. Plus, you get to hear Kendrick skewer Geraldo–fun!

  91. Teve says:

    @roseannecash

    My daughter lives in Nashville & wore her mask to buy groceries. Guy yells at her: ‘Liberal pussy!’ Back story: she nearly died of H1N1. She was in the ICU for a week, on a ventilator for 3 days. She CANNOT get covid. The ignorance & hatred is so painful. She’s trying to survive.

    12:51 PM · May 26, 2020·Twitter for iPhone

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