Category: News

Weekend Links

“Our major obligation is not to mistake slogans for solutions.” 
― Edward R. Murrow

I had to take a semi-break from news this week, kittens. There’s just too much to process and take in and too much of it is making me angry. What did I do with all those feelings? I channeled them into work and avoided Twitter; it did a lot of good. In spite of hurricanes, missile launches, racists amuk, and all the rest of it.

Here are your links, let me know what you’re doing for the long weekend, kittens! I’ll be doing some work, alas, but also watching the Game of Thrones finale through narrowed eyes (see below for more thoughts), cleaning the house, enjoying a fun brunch thanks to the kindness of a friend, and generally lazing about. I’m really looking forward to it!

It’s summer, let’s learn about seersucker!

I have a lot of thoughts about the current season of Game of Thrones (has time travel been invented in Westeros now? How the hell are people moving thousands of miles in mere minutes?), but of all the subplots I’m not enjoying, the most unenjoyable is how six seasons of character development for Arya and Sansa have been apparently been unraveled because some men seem to struggle writing female strength and growth narratives without turning them into rape victims or un-women. /rant.

Full disclosure, if this plot all turns about to be an elaborate plan to get rid of Littlefinger, I will gleefully eat my words. About the character arch I mean. Not about dudes struggling to write about women. That stands.

Ooh, yes, let’s talk about monstrous female archetypes.

Let’s be real, I am not here for this latest iteration of Taylor Swift. She got caught lying, she’s borrowing from Beyonce. Nope.

Man Repeller summarizes in case you are out of the loop on this one.

Super late to the game but here’s a new to me artist I discovered this week and have been digging.

I cannot wait for this film.

There is one Civil War pensioner still receiving checks!

Sit down, Cameron.

The Fug Girls wrote a hilarious thing about the topic in which they reign unquestionably supreme: royalty.

 

Album of the week: Legacy by The Cadillac Three 

Weekend Link Addendum: The Fall of Cromwell

Rookie mistake, C., posting the links before the end of the day…

Bannon is out. I’m not sorry to see him go, but I’m highly aware that this man still has the ear of and media arm around a large number of angry, empowered, militantly armed people. He’s mobilised them. He rose to prominence and put a president in power by channeling their rage and resentment. I’m worried he may still have influence over them.

I’m equally worried that he doesn’t or soon won’t. I believe that he has incorrectly judged that he could coalesce and control these groups long term to achieve his political ends–that a devil’s bargain was made. They have unleashed forces and brought to the sunlight what had been festering underground, online, on message boards, in chat rooms, but less seldom dared to show its face in public. I’m very aware that the younger generation of white supremacists chose deliberately to wear no face coverings.

This administration rose to power by rousing the rabble, as I once said. It’s roused. I don’t think they can control or check it. And we are all of us less safe, our morals in question, our national security compromised, because of it.

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Weekend Links

“Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness. ”
– Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. 

The American political news this week was appalling and, as a citizen abroad, cripplingly humiliating. The history of the American nation is one of a country constantly falling short of its own ideals, and yet striving tirelessly towards them anyway. We’ve backslid, we’ve divided, we’ve pushed for better, we’ve linked arms and moved forward together. I trust that will continue. But the current moment feels really, really dark. There are astonishing moments of light and brightness, yes, but I find myself constantly dismayed at my own naivete in thinking so many of the forces I see ascendant now were–not dead (I’m not that dumb), but were at least on the down and out. I was wrong. I was ignorant. I won’t make the mistake of complacency again.

To put your money where your mouth is in condemning white nationalism (code of white supremacy), BossedUp has put together an excellent list of causes you can support here. I will be donating, I encourage you to do the same.

The whole Charlottesville story is awful so let me be clear: if you are a purpose who purports to stand against people mobilized by dangerous ideology (political and religious) happening “elsewhere,” I damn sure expect you to oppose it on home turf. At time of adding this story, the photos look inches away from an actual Jim Crow South style lynch mob.

Added over the weekend: it got worse. Rest in power, Heather Heyer.

It got even worse. Seth Meyers, of all people, summed up my feelings on the president’s statements on the matter. Which he then tried to walk back with a scripted statement, which he later overturned again to confirm that his first statements that “both sides” were to blame truly reflected his views. I will concede that both sides threw punches; only one was able to show up armed better than the actual police (thanks to decades of paranoia-rousing and the systematic arming of civilians with military grade weaponry, and entrenched racism–I dare anyone to argue that a para-military group of black men armed to the teeth in an identical way would not have been met with swift and deadly force). Only one side is embracing an ideology that necessitates the subjegation or extermination of millions. There is no moral equivalency, and “both sides” arguments will not hold water here.

Seth Meyers nailed it again. I feel out of ways to say that Mr. Trump is unfit for the office he holds. I am not calling for his impeachment because that is a legal process that must be done in the right way for reasons within the boundaries of law…that or our laws are meaningless. But he is morally, intellectually, temperamentally unfit for the role he has been awarded, and I believe he is causing damage to the office and both the functionality and perception of the American government.

Vice produced a compelling, informative, and frightening mini-documentary almost in real time that should be required viewing in this moment.

This thread about the, let’s be frank, false victimhood of the American white male is required reading.

 

I legitimately had to read this article a couple of times and sit with it, because it’s so self-descriptive. I am horrible at taking holidays, and I am trying to take advantage of them (seeing as how I’m legally entitled to them, and all…) but the guilt I often feel for putting in a time off request is corrosive.

I am not the biggest fan of Taylor Swift, but I read this story of her testimony against a man she accuses of assault with great satisfaction. When questioned how she feels about him losing his job due to the incident, the cool response was: “’I am not going to allow your client to make me feel like it is any way my fault, because it isn’t,’ she said. Later, she continued: ‘I am being blamed for the unfortunate events of his life that are a product of his decisions and not mine.’” Amen and amen.

Sir, could you just not?

Wealth is a strange thing.

Disrupt away, ladies!

Faith in humanity ticking back up.

WAY behind the times but worth celebrating.

Oh man. I’ve given myself permission to buy from this collection when it launches, but now I fear it will take ALL of my money…

I might need to arrange to be on Westminster Bridge next Monday.

Pro tip: be a dick in public, get dragged in public. It’s the brave new media world.

Why white people don’t get to say, “This isn’t us.”

This story could have been handled in a tabloid-y and gross way. In McKay Coppins’ capable hands, it’s done very well.

Another tiny bright spot.

This week in Mormon news, another thing to warm your feeds!

What the **** is wrong with people?! (trigger warning on this one, but a number of -isms are on display here and need to be confronted)

And then, on Thursday, there was another terrorist car attack, this time in Barcelona. Waking up this morning, there was more bad news in Spain. My heart hurts.

Album of the week: Silk and Soul, by Nina Simone

Weekend Links: Leave Guam Alone!

“Un nota na tentashion nahoñg rason.”
[Transaltion: A very little temptation is enough.]
– Chamorro proverb, from pre-WWII Guam

My island of birth is caught between a despot and a reality TV star. What could possibly go wrong? Here are your weekend links, dropping on a Friday to help you kick off the weekend. If we all survive to Monday, let’s reconvene.

If my own trajectory is Cool Girl to Bitch to Broad, I will consider my life a success.

Relevant to my interests.

In news that shocks no one, Caitlin Moran continues to be brilliant.

This is just bloody adorable.

This story of this man’s dragging has been satisfying.

Janssen of Everyday Reading, who I’ve known since university days and with whom I’ve had the pleasure of touching base every few years, is starting an exciting new project!

This week in Mormon news, woah. This guy is the head of a pretty significant committee within the church structure responsible for the streamlining and dissemination of teaching tools, policy, and a wide range of official materials. At time of typing it’s a developing story, but it’s been a long time since a person of his rank has been kicked out of the church.

The world has seen this, sir. The guy who helped invent it could only quote, “I am become death,” when he saw what his fire could do.

As of Thursday, this story just keeps getting deeper and weirder.

go on

This thread, lit AF.

Album of the week: Early Grey, by Girl Ray

Emotional Journey: The Mooch

“When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.”
-Maya Angelou

Ducklings, it’s only Monday. Between the start and finish of our Game of Thrones watch party, Mr. Scaramucci was fired. My full throated laugh in response to this particular sounded not entirely unlike one of the highest and greatest of villainesses in reaction. Gifs of the Grand Evil Dame turned out to illustrate my emotional arc pretty well.

My initial petty reaction:

 

Seriously. Probably enjoying this a bit too much.

 

My internal rendering of Mr. Scaramucci’s surprise.

Not wanted?!

The President, who mistakes attention for progress and infighting for evidence of strength.

Dance, my minions.

 

Me, remembering every time that the Republican party thought he was on their side, or that he could be persuaded to act in their interest or advance their agenda.

Fools.

 

…Then remembering that a guy with an actual nuclear arsenal is treating the global community like an actual elimination style reality TV show.

Three competent generals stand before me, but I have only two slots in my cabinet….

 

Because we elected a guy who literally has never been successful at anything else besides cheap celebrity and getting views, and we gave him a political platform. Yes, we; because we all have to deal with the consequence of this now.

 

Meanwhile, I can only assume somewhere in the bowels of some sanctum somewhere, actual grownups in the Republican party are weighing their options.

Well, I’ll be going…unless you want to talk about cutting taxes for the rich…

 

And finally, my initial burst of malicious mirth subsiding because we are barely six months into this presidency and not a week has gone by without some kind of upset, coarsening of the office, massive gaffe, betrayal of a supposedly trusted subordinate, or a failure of competence.

That evil laugh may have been in poor taste. Let’s dial it down to a cackle, maybe.

 

Jokes aside, let’s now consider the somewhat sobering idea that this guys= might have been brought on board just to get rid of two other characters that the president didn’t like. Characters who, love their politics or hate them, served as the political tie to the Republican party that the president nominally heads. Mr. Scaramucci was a human plot device and he served his purpose. He was then expendable. He’s leaving the scene with a broken marriage, no job, and something of a laughingstock–as did a couple of guys before him. And if that’s not stark warning to anyone cheering on this administration, much less taking a job in it, I don’t know what else I can say about that.

Weekend Links

“You have to remember one thing about the will of the people: it wasn’t that long ago that we were swept away by the Macarena.” 
― Jon Stewart

I GIVE UP, 2017 IS THE DARKEST TIMELINE. Let’s recap.

Monday: POTUS reaches out to the kids. Massively inappropriate speech, sir.

Tuesday: Congress votes to move ahead to debate on a bill none of them have seen. Senator McCain returned to the floor from recent surgery…to vote to proceed with this nonsense and then try and fingerwag at his colleagues for their misbegotten tampering of process and hyperpartisanship. As much as I do like the guy, mixed messages there, sir. You’ll also forgive me for still holding you responsible for part of this mess when you gave Governor Palin and her ilk a spotlight, so the fingerwagging does come with some caveats.

Wednesday: a hideous trash tweet from the president stating that trans people will no longer be able to serve in the military (at time of writing, there was plenty of push back on this and no actual Pentagon policy so I’m hoping this is just Mr. Trump being an ass online per usual and speaking without the foggiest idea of how to bring his word vomit to fruition). Ostensibly this is to keep the government from bearing any costs associated with various surgeries or other medical conditions. Newsflash. What garbage.

Thursday: The Pentagon weighs in. The Mooch might have turned out to be a bit of a mistake.  God damn it, there’s even another Kardashian West in the making?! Secretary Clinton dropped some thoughts. And fuck this noise! Oh…wow…The Mooch story…um…got worse?

Friday: The healthcare repeal bid failed (for now). Senator McMain got a lot of credit for casting a “deciding” vote, which was rather obnoxious to some observers who were quick to point out that Senators Murkowski and Collins had held their position line consistently from the get go. Not a great week for The Mooch. HOLY SHIT.

Annnnnd with that, I’m calling it. No more news updates for the week. Everyone go home. I’m tired. Here, have a few more links for your enjoyment and go take a nap this weekend, kittens. I sure as hell intend to.

She’s back!

I mean, how could you not want a retrospective of her work?

I still remember my dad reading me this book as a kid.

This would be sad and not frightening but for the fact that I’ve just finished The Handmaid’s Tale.

Album of the week: Everything Now, by Arcade Fire.