Sunday’s Forum

Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. de stijl says:

    So, I finally watched Licorice Pizza.

    Love me some PTA.

    I liked it a lot. Cooper Hoffman was great. Alana Haim was super awesome – that woman was relevatory.

    Not Magnolia great or Boogie Nights great or Punch Drunk Love great, but pretty fucking good. It has a vibe. A Magnolia-esque through-line. I enjoyed it greatly.

    Made me want to watch old Haim walking videos. I think the best is Want You Back. The setting is epic – an empty dawn Valley commercial thoroughfare.

    The Haim women strut and stride so purposefully. It is a damn good video and an outstanding bit of film-making. And a fucking great song, too.

    I wish I could strut like that. I think it has to do with hips and proportions. Guys can’t strut as awesomely as a woman can.

    I waddle like a penguin – those women STRUT. It is glorious!

  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Politics as usual:

    “If Stacey Abrams is elected governor of Georgia, I just want to be honest, that will be a cold war between Florida and Georgia,” DeSantis said at a press event in the north-west of his own state.

    “I can’t have [former Cuban leader Raúl] Castro to my south and Abrams to my north, that would be a disaster. So I hope you guys take care of that and we’ll end up in good shape.”

  3. de stijl says:


    De Santis thinks a pretty centrist Democrat like Abrams is like Castro. Worthy of a cold war?

    Fuck him!

    DeSantis is worse than Trump. Trump is driven by pique, pettiness, and what he thinks of as his “honor”. DeSantis lies because it is useful to rile the rubes. Gays, Trans, and Disney.

    I’d rather have the glaringly obvious showboat idiot. A stupid buffoon is easier to pin into a corner. Trump is a breathing pinata.

    Trump is id. A Joffrey.

    DeSantis is calculating. Presents as superego. Isn’t. A Cersei.

  4. CSK says:

    @de stijl:
    “Trump is a breathing pinata.”
    My felicitations on an exceedingly well-turned phrase.

  5. de stijl says:


    I also like fussy teething toddler.

    The midterms are going to suck. The run up to 2024 is going to totally suck. It’s shaping up to be DeSantis or Trump.

    My only hope is it will get really nasty. Way worse than cucking Rubio and Cruz.

    What have we become? This toxic shitshow is the odds on favorite showdown. We are America for fuck sakes and the R choice is going to be Trump or DeSantis?!?

    I want to emigrate already.

    We fell far and hard. What the actual fuck has happened to the Republican party?

    I can’t even put this into perspective it’s so out of whack. Maybe if the D’s nominated Andy Dick? Rosie O’Donnell? Tulsi Gabbard? Some fucking idiot nutter.

    We are on a bad path and I fear for our future and I blame Republicans. They fucking line stepped hard. Fuck ’em!

  6. CSK says:

    @de stijl:
    Well, “toddler” has been used a lot to describe Trump. It’s very accurate, but not–probably because it’s so apt–unique. “Pinata” is new and fresh.

  7. OzarkHillbilly says:

    This looks good: Prayers for the Stolen – extraordinary tale of fear and friendship in Mexican drug country

    Ana (played by Ana Cristina Ordóñez González as a child and by Marya Membreño as an adolescent) has been trained by her mother to map out the sounds of the night – the film’s busy soundscape takes in crickets, barking dogs, a cow without an owner – in order to identify the one danger the villagers prefer not to talk about. The locals call them “those people”, as if to name them is to give them power: they are cartel foot soldiers, equipped with jeeps and automatic weapons, who tear through the community, snatching young girls from their families to be trafficked.

  8. de stijl says:


    No bite on “fussy” or “teething”? I thought them fresh.

  9. CSK says:

    @de stijl:
    Indeed they were. I give you full props for attaching them to “toddler.” But “breathing pinata” was great. So shoot me.

  10. CSK says:

    The NYT has a piece on how the Jan. 6 committee has enough material to issue a criminal referral of Trump, but some democrats are balking at this because it will politicize the matter.

    It may be because I’m tired and haven’t had sufficient coffee, but I don’t get it. Are they afraid of making Trump a martyr? Somebody read it and explain it to me.

  11. becca says:

    When Jimmy Kimmel noted that he was used to getting death threats from MTG’s brethren, I thought of all the journalists and pundits who must get the same. Wonder how much those threats chill their coverage, overall? 20 years ago, former GWB Treasury guy, Paul O’Neill, who got on the wrong side of Karl Rove, and remarked “these are very mean people” and since then the whole party has gone full yahoo and got even meaner.
    And even more stupid. Bobby Jindal and Mitt Romney said it out loud. A great nation won’t stay great long if it’s run by morons. If only Eisenhower had warned us, not just his brother, about “stupid” oil men. Oh, well…too late now.
    Also, CREEPY. The Q-approved focus on kids as sex objects just screams projection. Hastert, Foley, Gaetz, Jordan, Moore and Trump sorta give that game away to the sentient among us. Creepy, creepy, creepy.
    An honest picture of today’s Republican Party is horrifying. The GOP rule by fear, and as Franklin Roosevelt said, that is what we should fear most of all.
    Just a friendly reminder.

  12. Mister Bluster says:

    Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun the HQ-22 surface-to-air missile system…

    China makes semi-secret delivery of missiles to Serbia
    The arms delivery over the territory of at least two NATO member states, Turkey and Bulgaria, was seen by experts as a demonstration of China’s growing global reach.
    “The Y-20s’ appearance raised eyebrows because they flew en masse as opposed to a series of single-aircraft flights,” wrote The Warzone online magazine. “The Y-20′s presence in Europe in any numbers is also still a fairly new development.”

  13. Kathy says:

    I’m having one of those day when technology seems to be in rebellion.

    First my card wouldn’t go through at the gas station. Not for insufficient funds or something real, the terminal just reset while trying to handle the payment. Next at the office supply store the system wouldn’t recognize a product, and that took over ten minutes to solve. And now at the office nothing I do gets the printers to work.

  14. MarkedMan says:


    The GOP rule by fear, and as Franklin Roosevelt said, that is what we should fear most of all.

    We are going to pay a price in blood for years of pretending these open-carry thugs showing up at town meetings and official’s homes armed with assault weapons are just exercising some invented second amendment right. The first blood will be when they kill someone. The second blood will be when we do what we should have done years ago when the problem was small.

  15. CSK says:

    And yet those thugs are absolutely convinced that they’re the true patriots.

  16. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @MarkedMan: @CSK: They also believe they are the most courageous people ever.

  17. Liberal Capitalist says:

    Great article:


    @de stijl:
    re: “Licorice Pizza”. No. Just no.
    The story is horrendous. What if it was about an older man with a young female teen… it would be appalling; But here it is presented in reverse as a memoir of California the 1970’s.
    I hung with it for about 30 minutes and bailed.
    The characters are shallow and self-involved. There are no redeeming qualities.

  18. OzarkHillbilly says:


    79-yr-old Ed Clute was born blind & started learning piano at 3. He began formal training when he was 6 & went on to earn degree from New England Conservatory of Music

    In this clip he’d arrived to tune piano & when finished, plays song without warming up

    He can really tickle them ivories. The tune sounds familiar but I can’t quite place it. I don’t listen to enough ragtime these days.

  19. CSK says:

    I think they see themselves as the true heirs of the freedom fighters of 1776.

  20. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Batshit moments in Australian Politics

    We’ve been inundated with complaints that we haven’t uploaded Bob Katter’s gay marriage speech, so here it is in all it’s unhinged glory

    He sounds pretty well hinged to me.

  21. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @CSK: Of course they do. What they really are is a bunch of WATB with inferiority complexes.

  22. Liberal Capitalist says:


    I think they see themselves as the true heirs of the freedom fighters of 1776.

    Sadly, to them, anyone in government seems to be King George.

    They have no perspective, no depth, and no knowledge of history. And no understanding that the goal of the revolution was to LEAVE autocracy / monarchy and move TO a democracy.

  23. Jax says:

    Real, actual voter fraud…..committed by Republicans at their own convention. (So many eyerolls)

  24. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Jax: It’s always projection with the GOP.

  25. CSK says:

    @Liberal Capitalist:
    Indeed. Nothing would make them happier than King Trump forever, because they’re deluded enough to believe that he’s one of them, that he loves them, and will fight for them.

    Though I have to say they seem a bit perturbed by his endorsement of Dr. Oz in Pennsylvania.

  26. de stijl says:


    I got a solution for a balky work printer.

    Have you seen Office Space? “PC Load Letter?!?” What the fuck does that mean?”

    I’ve never done it myself, but I’d imagine it would be very cathartic.

    Take that printer out to a field and beat that sumbitch into tiny pieces with your buds to very aggressive soundtrack. A baseball bat helps.

    I love that movie.

  27. de stijl says:

    @Liberal Capitalist:

    I liked it a lot. You didn’t. You bailed.

    I am predisposed to like a Paul Thomas Anderson movie. Magnolia is a top 5 movie for me. Boogie Nights is a top 15.

    I rewatched Magnolia a few nights back. That is a great, great movie. The editing! The transitions between the various story lines. The unshowy single lens long takes that let scenes play out and linger. The weather updates intercut. 100% chance of frogs.

    You have a lot of opinions about Licorice Pizza for someone who watched the first 30 minutes and bailed. If you want to talk trash about it, watch the fucking movie first.

    Magnolia has the best integration of music and movie I believe I have ever witnessed. Aimee Mann’s songs are integral. Save Me. Wise Up, especially the end of it, breaks me into a million little tiny pieces, it shatters my psyche hard.

    I go through the 5 stages of grief hearing the end of Wise Up. Deep, existential realization. It absolutely breaks me into dust. It negates my preferred way of viewing the world. Obliterates it.

    That song makes me wish I were a Buddhist. I know that *that* end is coming. I listen on. It shatters me completely. Every fucking time.

  28. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @CSK: Don’t have a Times subscription, so I can’t read the article. Do have a guess. Democrats who are uninclined to make a criminal referral are leery about starting a trend in the hyper-polarized climate of the present. (For example, I would be entirely unsurprised to see a GQP-majority Congress in 2023 start impeachment proceedings against Biden simply to be retaliatory about FG–and state baldly that was the reason.) Additionally, it would be one thing if a criminal referral would result in some action by the DOJ, but everybody knows that’s not happening. “When you strike at the king, you must kill him” also applies to former presidents no matter how vile and pinata-esque you visualize them to be.

    On the other hand, have at it if you want. I like kabuki theater. Quite a bit, in fact. Kabuki theater, Hahoe Mask Dancing, commedia dell’arte, Congressional hearings, whatever. All entertainment for the masses. Add some bread, and we return to ancient Rome.

  29. de stijl says:


    I was never a fan of Paul Ryan. I thought him a stealth Objectivist idealist. Kinda hate him a bit.

    But he stepped away, stepped back. Props to him. He knew the course we were on and decided to not be a party to it.

    If the 2024 ticket were Romney / Paul I would dislike it and not vote for them, but would understand that if they won they would not purposely steer the nation directly at a reef for the lulz just to see what happens. If that ticket won, I would be fairly confident we were in semi-capable hands.

    With Trump, utter chaos determined by whim.

    With DeSantis, basically The Handmaid’s Tale. Weaponized misogyny and LGBTQ+ freak outs.

    I can barely believe I am pining for Ryan and Romney. I am. Truly. Wanting sanity. Steady hands. Order over chaos.

    When the world goes crazy nutzoid the status quo seems pretty good.

  30. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Well, the second clause does seem to be a non sequitur, but I suspect that being a party to the whole statement rather than a cherry-picked clip would help clear things up one way or the other.

  31. CSK says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:
    I think you’re right.

    Didn’t Marjorie Taylor Greene try to impeach Biden twice, the first time the day after inauguration?

  32. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: the second clause does seem to be a non sequitur,

    Not at all to me. He’s saying there are more important things for him to worry about than how other people get their jollies on. What does anybody care what goes on behind closed doors?

  33. Gustopher says:

    @de stijl:

    You have a lot of opinions about Licorice Pizza for someone who watched the first 30 minutes and bailed. If you want to talk trash about it, watch the fucking movie first.

    Meh. If someone bails after 30 minutes, I think that’s a fine basis for their criticism.

    If it turns out the last hour were all deconstructing the first 30 minutes and showing why you would have to be a horrible person of limited capacities to have enjoyed it… then that might be the type of turn that means you need to re-evaluate the beginning.

    But few movies do that.

    (Showgirls took 20 years to do that, with the introduction of a frankly hilarious commentary track explaining that it’s a terrible movie and the many, many ways it’s bad that you didn’t notice because you were focusing on this other part of its awfulness)

  34. de stijl says:

    One random thing about Aimee Mann.

    She looks exactly like an ex. Not pretty close. Not they could be sisters. S. and Mann could be twins. Pretty close to identical.

    When I see pics or vids of Mann when she is wearing glasses, that’s S to a tee.

    Not just any ex. My first. The first person I’d ever said those three little words to. I meant it completely, wholeheartedly. Different voice, thankfully. S. was kinda scratchy alto.

    Way, way back when Mann was in Til Tuesday, S. was already a dead ringer. No poofy hair or rat tail, but basically a twin.

    Circa 2000 or so seeing Mann unnerved me. She just looked way too much like S. It wasn’t creepy. It was good. Unsettling good weird, but good. The Germans probably have a word for that.

    BTW, Til Tuesday’s biggest song Voices Carry is a really damn good song and Mann nails it hard. About domestic abuse so be forewarned.

    Definitely worth a listen.

  35. OzarkHillbilly says:

    God Creating Animals

    God: you’re a buffalo.
    Buffalo: yay!
    God: you live on the prairie.
    Buffalo: double yay!
    God: wow you sound excited.
    Buffalo: I am! is time for me to go to Earth yet?
    God: I mean if you’re ready.
    Buffalo: ok bye Dad!
    God: Bison : )

  36. Gustopher says:

    @de stijl: Trump stoked hatred because he was a petty man. De Santis stokes hatred because he’s willing to do whatever it takes to get power.

    “Better to rule in hell than serve in heaven” and all that, but can’t he just go to hell rather than try to create it on Earth?

  37. Gustopher says:

    Anyone remember the movie Bob Roberts?

    It’s one of those prophetic warnings that basically turns out to be quaint.

  38. de stijl says:


    If you bail a half-hour in you have zero basis to diss the rest of the movie you haven’t actually seen with your own eyeballs and brain attached.

    Dude was going off of accounts from other people who actually watched the whole fucking movie. Hence, the gross misrepresentation and mischaracterization of the “kissing scene”. Dudette shut him down properly.

    If you have not actually watched the movie you are uninformed.

    Was it a great movie? No. Was it a pretty damn good movie? Yes. (I have a PTA bias. I like the vibe.)

    Alana Haim rocks hard. She’s really good, especially for a newbie. Besides music videos, I believe this is her first dramatic role.

    If you bail after 30 minutes you have the right to criticize the first 30 minutes.

  39. gVOR08 says:

    @de stijl:

    I was never a fan of Paul Ryan. I thought him a stealth Objectivist idealist.

    Stealth? He talked about it all the time and gifted copies of Ayn Rand’s books to his staff. And it’s really depressing that a Randite looney tune can be regarded as the good old days.

    Speaking of the good old days, over at LGM Scott Lemieux has a post on Bill Buckley and free speech. Buckley was against it.

  40. de stijl says:


    I wouldn’t go out of my way to watch it again, but I sorta liked Showgirls. It was freaking bonkers gonzo weird and off-putting.

    We weren’t meant to like anyone. (Which is a repeating motif for Verhoeven.) Everybody is crap and everybody is trying to monetize bodies. I remember the closing scene with really big show. Supposed to be redemptive or transforming in a less savvy director’s hands.

    No, the show is garbage “entertainment” for drunken Vegas tourists.

    It is decidedly shitty and over the top. Designed to rake in tourist dollars.

    Verhoeven is often a sneaky bastard. Most critics missed the point of Starship Troopers entirely. Verhoeven shoves our weirdness right back at us unashamedly. You want bread and circuses? Fine, here it is stripped of all pretense. Eat it up, you fucking lunatics. “I’d buy that for a dollar!” “Service guarantees citizenship!” Verhoeven is willfully, gleefully mocking us to our face. Thrusting our worst impulses back at us.

    I am going to regret this, but I am going to rewatch Showgirls. I’ve always liked Kyle McLachlan. I remember the pool scene as kind of traumatizing.

  41. de stijl says:


    The first time I saw a bison up close was in one of the Dakotas, I can’t remember which, I was absolutely floored by the size of it.

    They are goddamn huge! Take a cow. Multiply that by 2.5. Make it two or three feet taller. Fucking massive. Thick. Chonky. There.

    I briefly met Kevin Garnett once. I felt tiny. Miniscule. We’re both standing and I have to cock my head at that angle to look him in the eye?

    The size of his hands. My sweet lord! We briefly shook. Crikey freaking Moses!

    I have never felt so inadequate.

    The sheer mass and proportions of that man freaked me out. And he’s a fairly lanky guy.

  42. Kylopod says:


    Didn’t Marjorie Taylor Greene try to impeach Biden twice

    Yes, and Lin Wood called her a communist for it, because to impeach Biden is to acknowledge he’s president. I’m not even remotely making this up.

  43. CSK says:

    Oh, I believe you. With MTG and Wood, anything is possible.

  44. Kylopod says:

    @de stijl: Some of my memories of childhood have an almost cartoonish quality, because I still have the picture in my head of someone who looked like a giant to me but was also a kid. When you’re a six-foot adult, you begin to forget what it’s like to constantly be around people who tower over you. I keep having to remind myself that people who are, say, 5’2″ still experience the world that way all the time.

  45. Liberal Capitalist says:

    @de stijl:

    Apparently cathartic for you. good.

    As you said, I didn’t like it. and I don’t feel I need to stay with a film if I feel it stinks or look for deeper meaning.

    I’m not bound by sunk cost fallacy. (a ’69 corvette taught me my lesson on that.)

    As to Amy Mann, big fan… but that’s not enough to save that stinker.

  46. Michael Reynolds says:

    @Liberal Capitalist:
    I’m with you on Licorice Pizza. About 30m minutes in we’re just like, um, WTF is this?

  47. de stijl says:


    I am floored.

    Revolutions tend towards eating itself with purity purges.

    Lin Wood lost out. MTG is still nominally a US Representative. Wood is an implicitly disavowed failure.

    Wood pushed a plan that did not work and looked foolish for doing so, while doing so.

    100% totally tied in to elected officials who pushed the same bullshit. But, whatever. Hard choices have to be made, and I chose me.

    But, if you fail, you get chucked into the memory hole. Powell too. Giuliani is near enough to be almost there. Lindell. They failed. Looked foolish while doing so. Brought shame and disrepute down on us. And they are nobodies in the big picture, really. Hangers on. Parasites. We are the sharks. You are the remora.

    Away with you. You are banished. We disavow you. Unless you mount a miraculous come-back and then we will embrace you again. Sort of. Check the fine print. It is a conditional embrace.

  48. de stijl says:


    I’m 5′ 10″. Roughly 160 lbs. give or take 5 pounds. Middlin’ sized.


    One time at the state fair I proposed we should open a storefront called Middling Sized Scott’s Tiny Donut Holes.

    Mini or Tiny, I can’t remember which. I might have been near to peaking on two grams of psilocybin mushrooms at the time. (I was.)

    You know the joints that sell mini donuts? Buy up the mini donut holes, fry em up, make big dollars.

    It made sense at the time. I stand by the name.

  49. wr says:

    @de stijl: I love Magnolia and Boogie Nights, but I struggle with PTA’s later films. To me those first movies are like mid-60s Dylan or Springsteen’s first three albums or even Angels in America — bursting with ideas and characters and most of all words, the work of young artists so in love with what they’ve learned to do they can’t hold anything back.

    The later PTA’s make me think of, I don’t know, Nebraska. Serious and worthwhile and respected all over, even by those who sneer at the early works, but without a trace of the life and the joy.

    Haven’t seen Licorice Pizza yet so I don’t know where it falls…

  50. wr says:

    @de stijl: “Verhoeven is often a sneaky bastard. Most critics missed the point of Starship Troopers entirely.”

    I got it at the time. “People who like this kind of movies would fall for Nazi propaganda just as easily and become Nazis, so I’ll make a Nazi propaganda film in the form of a science fiction action movie to prove that you are all scum.”

    I get why Verhoeven the provacateur was doing this. I never understood why Sony let him spend a hundred million dollars saying fuck you to his audience…

  51. wr says:

    @de stijl: “I briefly met Kevin Garnett once.”

    I worked with Rick Fox for a while. (Lovely man, by the way.) The funny thing was, he was so well-proportioned that when you were just talking to him you never really realized how tall he was. It wasn’t until he shook your hand and yours disappeared completely you remembered this guy is huge…

  52. de stijl says:

    @Liberal Capitalist:

    I have bailed on movies before. It is a fine and cool thing. Not a problem. Not your speed or vibe. I get it.

    I generally do not spout off negatively on a movie I haven’t actually seen. I wouldn’t. That would be false and unseemly.

    You watched roughly 1/5 of the movie you trashed. You characterized a scene as exploitative. You haven’t even fucking seen it! You know exactly jack diddly squat about the context and what happened next.

    Interpolation does not work here.

  53. de stijl says:


    I really like the Nebraska analogy a lot. A serious work we should take seriously ™.

    When you dig in, the work is boring and repetitive. Hits the same story beats too often. Doesn’t have the chutzpah to back it up. All words. No jam.

    Born To Run has a unique scruffy energy. Rosalita too. This was a struggling person. Knew what it meant to be on the crux of do or die.

    People who are rich and know they are rich cannot produce that feel, that vibe, that longing, that desire. That big stonking want.

    When The Clash put out Sandanista it was bloated and mostly sucked. You could salvage a half of an album out of it that maybe would be marginally okay if you were a decent editor.

    Combat Rock was just insulting. Desperate. Trying to recapture that first magic poorly.

    One upside – I met a pretty significant life partner at the concert when they came to my town on that ill-begotten tour.

  54. Gustopher says:

    @de stijl: If you must watch Showgirls, I recommend watching it with the David Schmader commentary. You discover things you never dreamed about.

    I saw him do a live performance of the commentary and was laughing so hard I was crying and fell out of my chair. Seriously.

    Also, the dog food scene is genius.

    (The pool scene is the most aggressively unsexy sex scene ever filmed… it looks like a seizure)

  55. de stijl says:


    There Will Be Blood is sort of overwhelmed by Daniel Day-Lewis. He is so epic. Makes it hard to judge the movie itself fairly.

    The Master I really loved, but again for the acting. If I went back and tried to divorce myself from Rivers and PSH, crickey, that would be hard. It is hard to isolate the movie beats when the acting is that good.

    Magnolia is phenomenal. It gets interconnectedness. Shows it off. Plays with it. Wallows in it a bit. You do not have to be a mystery solver like in Nolan films to figure it out. It gets laid out explicitly.

    Perhaps the best organic integration of music and movie ever.

    100% chance of frogs. I really love the weather updates in retrospect. It sets the tone and predicts the lighting.

    I get where you are coming from. One could argue that PTA movies have gone from whip smart movies with great acting to actorly movies. I can easily see that.

    Licorice Pizza, well, watch that on your dime and your time.. The best analogy is probably to (I decided I am not going to go there.) Watch and see for yourself. Draw your own conclusion.

    I really liked the vibe, the feel of it, myself. YMMV. Liberal Capitalist was def not feeling it. I think it harkens back to Magnolia.

  56. Kylopod says:

    @de stijl:

    Revolutions tend towards eating itself with purity purges.

    This is especially true when conspiracy theories are a factor. Anyone who differs with you in the slightest must be part of the conspiracy. Did you follow how last year Mike Lindell accused TruNews of working with antifa and being funded by Media Matters? But then he retracted it and the two reconciled.

  57. de stijl says:


    I am a straight man. No straight couple has sex like that ever. It defies physics.

    I am going on memory.

    Actually, I am kinda looking forward to rewatching Showgirls. Now that I have broken his code.

    I am going to be very disappointed if it’s just a stupid movie about boobs.

  58. de stijl says:


    Every slight, every minor disagreement is a potential death sentence.

    Who, in that circle, wants to be called anti-revolutionary or a counterrevolutionary?

    More often than not the revolution eats itself until one person remains.

    It makes life way easier. No competing voices. I trust what Comrade X says. Comrade Y never existed and you are a counter-revolutionary for saying that he did. Which he didn’t, because he never existed.

    Orwell got most of it kinda right. A rabbit hole of denial. A does not equal A. Unless it now does today. Maybe not tomorrow.

  59. de stijl says:



    Going by his accent he is from Brainerd or nearabouts.

    He isn’t.

    He’s from Mankato. Pretty south. People from Mankato don’t say Ya Okay You Betcha. In that part of Minnesota it sounds like a California accent with a tinge of slightly rounded vowels.

    When Mike Lindell in his old school commercials said “I make these pillows in my home state of Minnesota” with a Fargo accent he is flat-out faking the accent. No one born and bred from Mankato speaks that way.

    Like Elaine in Seinfeld said, “Fake. Fake fake fake. Fake.”

    Lindell is a fake. His accent is way off. 200 miles off. He’s from fucking Mankato. The Minneesooda bullshit is bullshit. No one talks like that from where he’s from. People from Brainerd don’t even talk like that.

  60. de stijl says:

    Who does a fairly good upstate Minnesota accent?

    I’d vote for Kirsten Dunst is season 2 of the Fargo TV series. Some is a bit over the top, but she mostly nails it. She gets the stops and starts. The underlying politeness of it. The worst insult you could possibly dish out to a northern Minnesotan is that they were not polite to you.

    Jesse Plemmons did pretty good. Underplayed it a bit. Got the vowels correct.

    I had no clue Plemmons and Dunst were a real life couple until a few months ago. So cute. That is adorable.

  61. Liberal Capitalist says:

    I’d vote for Kirsten Dunst in just about anything.

    While covid was devastating for many reasons, one of the small things it destroyed was “On Becoming a God in Central Florida”.

    I was so looking forward to season 2.


    BTW: weird couples – Diane Kruger and Norman Reedus.

  62. grumpy realist says:

    @wr: There’s a YouTuber who has done a series of “Alien Civilizations Too Stupid To Really Exist”. (I ran across him when I was binging on analyses of the Daleks) He did a lovely dissection of the United Citizen Federation. Highly recommend. In fact, I recommend his entire series. Hilarious.