I can’t believe, with so much Trump-water over the damn dam, that people still support this guy. Not since Creationism has there been such a clear and present example of how disconnected from reality is the thinking of many people. Never in my lifetime have I seen such a frightening example of all I disdain in the human race.
This is thoughtlessness and irrationality, bigotry and brutality, nationalism and populism. It’s childish, selfish, ignorant, and stupid! It boggles my mind.
It’s gotten to the point of basically stunning me into insensibility.
Between this punch-drunk feeling of having been hit too many times by political rabbit punches, the armed rebellion by my brain cells against watching so much cable news, and that there really isn’t much more to say about any of it, this is just a Friday dump of various and sundry notes and thoughts.
(To be specific, various notes and sundry thoughts.)
Doesn’t the death of former first lady Nancy Reagan rather amazingly reflect the death of class in politics?
One may have disagreed with her politics — I certainly did, and I was there at the time — but both she and Ronald had a lot of class and grace.
Which are concepts that seem to have fled the scene lately. The opposite of them is boorish and vulgar.
As a reader exercise, rank current candidates for POTUS along the classy–vulgar spectrum.
For extra credit, discuss the importance (or lack thereof) of class in public discourse. Has something been lost? Has anything been gained?
Speaking of signifying aspects, does the death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia reflect the increasing dissolution of the GOP?
Justice Scalia was a major force on the Court and was instrumental in several key conservative decisions (stuck in the craw of many is the Citizens United ruling).
And, again, while one may (and very much does) disagree with many of Justice Scalia’s decisions, all must respect his character, intelligence, and class.
And, again, we can look to the field of POTUS candidates to see how they rank in terms of character, intelligence, class, and grace.
Did both of these historical individuals die of sheer embarrassment over what’s happening to their Grand Old Party?
Is Josh Earnest the most ironic name ever for a White House Press Secretary?
He certainly looks very much like his name, but White House Press Secretaries walk such a delicate line between truth, politics, and national security that who can really tell?
Watching him squirm and carefully navigate the truth in his press conferences, sometimes “earnest” is the last personal attribute that comes to mind.
Sad, too, how Candidate Obama was going to change Washington (that was our HOPE), but so much turned out to be business as usual for President Obama.
Not all his fault, of course. Politics is a very large and unwieldy ship; it takes a long time, and a lot of effort, to change its course.
And it’s worth noting that most Presidents, once in office, do find the constraints of the office, and of trying to lead the free world, daunting and difficult. More than one hopeful reformer has been dragged back to business as usual.
If Hillary Clinton wins the Presidency (which is pretty high odds at this point), what will Bill Clinton be? Certainly not the FLOTUS (unless we want to go with the silly First Lad).
First Gentleman gives us FGOTUS, which is either unpronounceable or, if we decide there’s a silent ‘F’, not an ideal term (although, with Mr. Clinton, some might quite like the ‘goat’ reference).
Last week was the second week running in which all four episodes of The Daily Show were major disappointments.
Some of them were so lame I either fast-forwarded through them, or turned off the show entirely.
I used to so anticipate seeing the show’s episodes each week (I’d binge watch them on the weekend). It was a high point in the week. Now I’m about to drop the show from my list.
The problem is that it’s become a typical Comedy Central show. By which I mean it’s pitched at a young, dumb audience and the level of humor and intelligence has sunk to generally infantile.
In an article for Slate (Why Are Americans Ignoring Trevor Noah?), Willa Paskin writes:
“As we head into a presidential election totally different from any election we’ve seen before, one all but tailored for The Daily Show, there is a Daily Show–shaped hole in the culture, despite a lesser version of the show airing every weeknight.”
Oh, man, that hits the nail so very squarely on the head! If you’ve been a fan of TDS, but have been feeling as if it’s deserted you, you’re not wrong, and you should read her article.
The Daily Show joins The Nightly Show in my trash heap. I had such high hopes for both.
TNS disappointed me almost from the start, and for exactly the reason mentioned above: shallow, infantile humor.
There is John Oliver’s show on HBO (Last Week), and it’s quite good, although it shares a trait with TDS and TNS that I consider an off-putting negative:
There is a strong whiff of liberal groupthink behind all three shows.
All three tend to paint liberal-progressive ideas as Good and conservative-traditional ideas as Bad.
For example, all three shows express the belief that Guns Are Evil and wouldn’t exist in any right-thinking world.
Make no mistake; I am generally liberal-progressive (or at least libertarian), but groupthink and gnosticism (small ‘g’ — i.e. certainty about uncertain things) alarm and revolt me.
I’ve opposed them all my adult life. (As a Decisive Agnostic, I end up opposing both theists and atheists for their gnosticism.)
Which brings me to former Daily Show alum Samantha Bee’s new show, Full Frontal.
I think it just might be the new The Daily Show. Samantha Bee turns out to be awfully damn good at filling Jon Stewart’s shoes.
She’s definitely way more on his wavelength than Trevor Noah. She has the gravitas and the adult outrage that made Stewart the most trusted newsman in America.
The show is adult, intelligent, and balanced (albeit clearly liberal). I’ve enjoyed each of the five episodes I’ve seen so far very, very much.
Given that Bee (and husband Jason Jones) did some outstanding work during their time on TDS (12 years for Bee, and they didn’t offer a chance at the chair!), and given that Bee hired Jo Miller and Miles Kahn (former TDS producers) as her Executive Producers, it’s not at all surprising this is the new The Daily Show.
The only downside is that, as with Last Week with John Oliver, it only airs once a week and is only a half-hour long. We need more goodness!
In the last Brain Bubbles episode, I quipped about how feminism is the name of a (corrective) movement whereas racism is the name of a problem (in need of correction).
No one mentioned that sexism is the problem in the first case.
So what is the corrective -ism in the second case?