Category: Politics

Weekend Links

“Why men great ’til they gotta be great?”
– Lizzo

This week the sexual assault conversation leaped from the realm of entertainment to the political, and liberal men are getting dragged along side conservative ones. Because OF COURSE THEY ARE.

Sexual assault and rape culture is not a partisan issue. If you insist on punishing abusers in other tribes, you must insist on punishing them in your own, otherwise, you’re just another trader in women’s bodies.  And I remain convinced the solution for abuses of men in power is to reduce their monopoly on power. In Hollywood that means more female (and other gendered!) professionals from crew members up to producers. In politics, that means we need to elect more women to office.

Of course, as thrilled as I am that these conversations and confrontations are happening, I fear a backlash. I fear that tribalism will prove more powerful and that in the current state of culture and the body politic, people will grit their teeth and embrace what should be smacked down because a guy happens to be their monster rather than the other side’s. Every single one of us loses in that instance.

And with that happy thought, I’m off to enjoy the rest of this gray and rainy Saturday. I have friends coming into town this weekend for Thanksgiving and there is much to do to prepare!

This thread ranking foxes is hilarious.

Sorry men, you’re going to have to be uncomfortable for a bit.

RadioWest was my favorite local radio program when we lived in Utah, and I still listen to the podcast in the UK. They have always dabbled in video but have been doing more and more of it lately. This short film about an unusual love story is a sucker punch to the gut.

Has anyone else watched Alias Grace yet? Anyone?! I need a pal to discuss this show with!

Another awful shooting this week, multiple in fact.

As with many of the good things in my life, X alerted me to this hilarious new YouTuber. You need her in your life, and you need to listen to her contouring tips and advice for getting a man. “If the men find out we can shape shift, they are going to tell the church!”

Yay, Australia!

The myth of the male bumbler.

It’s holiday party season, kittens, go get you some glitter!

Hey, it wasn’t all bad.

Do you need a deep dive into cinematic capes? You do, kittens! You were born to comment on this!

Why Trumpism will probably outlast Trump (it certainly predated him before he tacked his name on it the way he does so many skyscrapers), and why the next person elected under its banner may be even worse.

Album of the week: Rest, by Charlotte Gainsbourg

Weekend Links

“A great many people think they are thinking when they are really rearranging their prejudices.” 
― Edward R. Murrow

Happy weekend, ducklings! It’s a gray weekend and I had to bring some work home with me, so the intro is short but the links list is extra long this week to make up for it. Tell me what you’re up to this weekend in the comments.

Let’s check in on the news, shall we?

There is an old an abiding stigma against female anger and a pressure to swallow it down and stay silent. In the current cultural moment, for whatever reasons you want to attribute to, it feels like women are getting angry again, in a way that I haven’t yet seen in my own lifetime but I imagine many of you might remember from past decades. We’re angry. Out loud. In public. And it is glorious. 

“Like every other feminist with a public platform, I am perpetually cast as a disapproving scold. But what’s the alternative? To approve? I do not approve.”

The Paradise Papers story summarized thus far. I’ve seen the world of the ultra-wealthy from my work in property, but where that money ends up and how it moves is still endlessly fascinating to me.

Have you been following the news out of Saudi Arabia? It’s complicated. The Atlantic had a later piece that analyzes what might be happening and what the risks are for a regime ostensibly trying to modernize through might.

Greeeaaatttt.

There was another mass shooting this week and to all those sending “thoughts and prayers,” these victims were In. A. Church. Save the platitudes, send sensible and consistent policies. Because the president calling this shooting the product of mental unwellness, months after signing a bill that lifts restrictions on those with dangerous mental health backgrounds from buying guys while simultaneous trying rolling back health coverage for mental conditions seems the height of hideousness.

For the record this has been by far the most deadly and violent months in years.

I am beyond excited for the Black Panther movie. It’s going to look gorgeous.

This was a strange and disturbing read about how algorithms and content creation are intermeshing in weird ways.

Public broadcasting is doing the important work.

A number of allegations came out against Roy Moore this week. Some people then came to his defense. This is by far the worst version of that. Any justification of sexual conduct between an adult and a child is hideous and I am disgusted to see how many people are doing mental gymnastics to justify their political preferences. If you would rather vote for an alleged child abuser over a person of a different political party (as if there isn’t a VAST spectrum of options between the two), you never get to call yourself a “values voter” again.

Speaking of, here is an interesting take on religion and politics from a talk given at my alma mater that I think religious people and secularists alike should read.

Editor’s note: I would be remiss not to say that a single accusation brought down Kevin Spacey but there are at least four accounts in this case. Spare me the hand wringing and take women at their word.

The Baroness was always kind of a badass to me. This make me spit-take with laughter.

We had a fascinating discussion in the Small Dog house this week where my (feminist, ally and decently woke husband) demanded of me, “Men randomly masturbating or whipping their dick out in front of women–is this a thing?!” And I had the dubious honor of counting the number of incidents I can remember.

Abuse and sexual coercion is NOT NEW.

Album of the week: Weightless EP, by Adam French

Weekend Links – Remember, Remember

“November–with uncanny witchery in its changed trees.”
– L.M. Montgomery 

Howdy pumpkins, it’s November! This whole year truly has gone by in a blur, before you know it Christmas will be here. Yikes!

This weekend I’ve had to bring a few pieces of work home with me, but a rainy Saturday morning is making want to stay indoors for now anyway so I don’t resent it too much. It’s been a busy few months with this contract of mine but very rewarding ones.

It began this week.

Well, Kevin Spacey finally decided to come out…in response to allegations of sexual assault of a then-minor. Tom and Lorenzo were not having this, and I’m firmly on team TLo for this one.

Some of my favorite puppets sum up what’s going on in the world of YouTube and how that may affect creators.

The great and good Christine of Temptalia–the venerated beauty review site that’s more than extensive enough for its writer to qualify as a beauty editor in my eyes–has written a comprehensive post on how to reduce your beauty consumption with a “no buy” or “low buy” challenge. Inspiration for the intelligent beauty consumer, particularly as we move into the season of holiday releases and bombardment style marketing.

I’m not convinced we need a reboot, but I’m living for the casting anyway.

Mackenzie Horan and founder of the challenge has launched her third 101/1001 list! I’m a bit behind on my own goals, so this is a perfectly timed kick to get me back on track.

The kids aren’t just alright, they are goddamn awesome.

It was Halloween this week, so this article on the popularity of death masks seems apropos.

So…the void. Kind creepy.

The Pyramids hold yet more secrets, I’m delighted to say!

An exiting Twitter employee decided to deactivate the President’s twitter account and we had 11 minutes of questions as a result. I’m not giving this story too much attention. I find it a source of near-constant anxiety that in any normal presidency, if a tape of a conversation was leaked about a president sicking the FYI or DOJ on their enemies it would be a constitutional-crisis provoking scandal. Somehow this man is allowed to tweet it publicly and this is somehow fine.

This guy can exit, pursued by a bear.

Unless of course, this guy’s whack-ass theory proves true and saves us from the previously linked monster. (Spoiler, it won’t.)

These ladies, though, restore my faith in humanity.

US Kittens, there was a minor media scandal here in the UK this week!

I for one would like to salute Mashable for the heavy hitting journalism and dedication showed in putting together this very important post. #femalegaze

This oral history of the Brandi and Whitney Houston’s Cinderella is wonderful. And the story of Whoopi Goldberg refusing to wear fake jewelry is a life lesson for all of us.

A (hopeful) gender and sexuality story from the Weimar Republic. It’s nice to remember that history is a pendulum and swings towards good as well as bad.

ETA! Album of week: Stillness in Wonderland, by Little Simz

Weekend Links

“You will never find anybody who can give you a clear and compelling reason why we observe ‘Daylight Saving Time.'” 
— Dave Barry

Another week flown past, another batch of links to read! This week I said goodbye to one of the junior team members I’ve been working with on a contract. She’s off to new challenges and while I’m professionally horrified (she will be difficult to replace), I’m personally thrilled for her new opportunities–I love to see my chicks soar! Meanwhile I’m waiting to hear back on a freelance proposal, and working on a few other projects.

This weekend I’m planning on doing very little, and looking forward to it immensely. Binge watching Stranger Things is on the list, as finishing at least one audiobook, doing laundry, and catching up on some reading. Jeff is already well immersed into his Saturday video games. Let the middle age wild rumpus start!

Bill O’Reilly: trash. There is a much shorter word for “non consensual sexual relationship.”

But I repeat myself, with this horrifying story.

Credit to the creator, always.

I ran into one of these ads for the first time this week.

First of all, confirmed! Second…Iowa?

Marie Claire gets blunt about where the desire to restrict or legislate birth control comes from, particularly among social conservatives. The only way to legislate women’s sex organs is to legislate the whole body attached to them, until science gets better. They are not pulling their punches, but I don’t think they are wrong. In fact, having grown up in a conservative religious culture with very strict gender expectations, I think they nailed it.

Senator Flake announced he’s retiring because there is no place for “a republican like [him]” in Trump’s America. He’s probably right, but I’d not he didn’t do much to try and stop his own party for going off the rails in the first place. And don’t throw his recent book at me as a rebuttal, that was after his party was hijacked by nationalistic nativism–which most Congressional Republicans were thrilled to capitalize on until suddenly they had to live with the consequence of stoking grievance for a decade straight. I’m sorry that another principled person feels run out of their political party, however. It bodes ill for the rest of us. I would have preferred to see him run again, even thinking he might have lost. Instead of the Charge of the Light Brigade, this feels more like a surrender.

Who wants to write for the Times?

This piece from The Cut is hard to read but I think is on to something about the stalled progress of female empowerment, and the dangers of putting all ones emotional eggs in one basket–work as much as relationships. One of my great personal revelations of the past couple of years has been my tendency to do this very thing (particularly with work) and neglect other aspects of my emotional and creative life. We women (speaking broadly and acknowledging privilege) need to diversify both happiness and our sense of accomplishment, in my opinion.

Where my witches at?!

Album of the week: Glasshouse, by Jessie Ware

Weekend Links – Lady Rage Returns!

“Being a woman is a terribly difficult trade since it consists principally of dealings with men.” 
― Joseph Conrad, Chance

Hi kittens, it’s been a while since we had a links post dedicated almost entirely to lady-rage, so let’s do that. It’s a bit exhausting to be living in an age of real-time…everything. It feels as if we don’t get breaks between scandals or bombshells anymore and that can wear us down (or me at least), but the one bright spot is that a lot of things can also be confronted in real time now. Behaviors and trends that have been allowed to percolate in the shadows are now seeing sunlight. It’s ugly to witness what has been tolerated or protected for far too long, sometimes, but necessary to go through.

Let me know what you are doing this weekend in the comments! I’m working on a freelance assignment and lounging. I may do some laundry and talk Jeff into helping me clean the bathrooms if I’m feeling really frisky!

Fuck this noise! Whenever friends or family members ask me when I’m moving back to the states, my default answer has become, “You do know I have healthcare, birth control, and maternity cover options here, right?”

The reactions to this game’s release are…telling.

RIP.

Shock, surprise, etc.

So excited about this! I loved Planet Earth II and Sir David Attenborough’s voice is the most soothing to doze off to whilst watching documentaries.

I don’t think I covered this in last week’s links so let’s talk about Harvey Weinstein and long-running rumors bursting into the light.

The Cut talks about why it took so bloody long for years of rumors to become confirmed fact, including what women are up against in trying to go up against a rich and powerful man and why they are doing so in the current cultural moment.

The Cut also argues that calling the current epidemic of behavioral bs we’re confronted with these days “toxic masculinity” doesn’t go far enough. I can’t say I disagree.

Speaking of, yes. Let’s please talk about the radicalization of white men more. Like, now.

Because this shit is happening while white guys are buying arsenals and no one bats an eye until a mass shooting suddenly “just happens.”

To summarize: sorry, patriarchy, we’re coming for you.

Led by Emma Thompson.

There’s a new true crime podcast to fall for…and I’m preparing to lap it up with a spoon.

How nerd culture went toxic: a helpful twitter thread.

Goodness. I don’t need this. And yet…

David Frum sums up my worst ideological fears. A horrible president is bad. If military figures circumvent a president’s constitutional authority, a historically bad precedent is set for future generals to do the same–perhaps for less altruistic reasons. We have a civilian commander in chief for a reason…I have not yet grappled with what that means for someone like me who is certain that the current incumbent is doing harm to both the office and national prestige and safety. Where do I draw a line if I believe that, in wanting perhaps to do the right thing, military leadership permanently damages the powers of the presidency now in a way that may come back to bite us all?

Album of the week: Masseducation by St. Vincent

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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