Blog Posts

Doctor Cleveland's picture

Arrivederci, Columbus

All statues, like all politics, are local. They're about the place where they are put up, and they change that place (which is to say, they're political). It's a mistake to think a statue is put up to represent some eternal truth; they're a local statement about the politics of the moment. So it is with Christopher Columbus, who got statues and a national holiday for political, and progressive reasons. Those statues don't seem progressive anymore, for a simple reason: they worked. So they've outlived their purpose.

Topics: 
Doctor Cleveland's picture

He Knows He's Losing: Trump as Mike Tyson

The most obvious thing to me about last night's toxic sludge fire of a debate is that Trump knows he's losing. Bigly. And he has no idea what to do about it. Many pundits are confused on this point, because they treat Trump as a conventional politician or as a media figure rather than as a psychiatric patient. And if you don't view Trump through the lens of his maladies, you misunderstand him. Trump is not a serious politician. Comparing him to other Republican presidential candidates doesn't help you understand him. This is not Mitt Romney.

Topics: 
Doctor Cleveland's picture

The Mayor from Jaws Explains those Quotes he Gave Bob Woodward

Everyone knows I want to be a cheerleader for Amity Island, right? You want to project confidence. So while I might have told some reporter from the mainland that we were facing “a  grotesque, Biblical monster of the deep,” “a bloody, churning nightmare of teeth,” or “a lean, mean tourist-eating machine,” there was no reason to tell the general public that. You don’t want to start a panic, fellas. Just think of the kids.

Doctor Cleveland's picture

Fear, Loathing, and Pandemics

An epidemic turns out to be a rotten time to have a germophobe President. Trump's more obvious pathologies -- ignorance, narcissism, magical thinking, pathological lying -- have gotten the obvious attention, because those are all real dangers to public safety. But Trump's germophobia makes him fundamentally unsuited to a public health crisis. His focus on making sure that he, personally, does not get ill, is just the mindset that increases the number of people who will. Selfishness helps an epidemic thrive. The outbreak can only be defeated by cooperation.

Topics: 
Doctor Cleveland's picture

Halloween Goofiness (Self-Promotion Edition)

I have a new piece on McSweeney's Internet Tendency today, right on time for Halloween: "I Am Just Trying to Have a Civil Online Conversation about Vampires." Here's a taste:
 

Doctor Cleveland's picture

Why Booing Trump Matters

Various elite media types clucked, scolded, and clutched their pearls after Donald Trump got booed at the World Series and some of the crowd spontaneously chanted "Lock him up!" Because when ordinary voters do it, it's "uncivil." When Trump does it, it's the Voice of the People. But the talking heads' discomfort was about something more important: cognitive dissonance. Trump being booed threatens their worldview. The American media cannot accept the fact that President Trump is unpopular.

Topics: 
Doctor Cleveland's picture

Impeaching the Black Swan

I have no idea how the impeachment proceedings against Donald Trump will play out. Neither does anyone else. The most important thing to remember when reading media coverage of the impeachment process is that the writer has no idea how the impeachment process is likely to go. This goes for everybody.

Topics: 
Doctor Cleveland's picture

Hoarding, Archiving, and the Public Domain: Universal Vault Edition

The New York Times Magazine just dropped a piece on the complete destruction of every master recording in Universal's West Coast vault. I haven't even finished reading it, because it's so terrible I have to digest it in installments and take breaks. Hundreds of thousands of irreplaceable master tapes were destroyed.
 

Doctor Cleveland's picture

Shakespeare Wasn't Perfect

So The Atlantic has seen fit to publish more "Shakespeare authorship" conspiracy-mongering, this time masquerading as feminism by proposing a female candidate. But the piece doesn't quote even a single line of the real poetry that woman wrote. It can't, of course, because that would give the game away.

Doctor Cleveland's picture

Should Our Allies Hack Our Elections?

Two things about the Mueller report are not up for debate: the Russians interfered in our last election, and no one is going to do anything about that. One party is hobbled by the need for bipartisanship, and the other so blinded by partisanship that they'll treat attempts to ward off foreign interference as political attacks on their own side. While we're making this about Trump, out foreign adversaries are preparing to attack our elections again. We haven't punished them or done anything to stop them, so why would they stop? All we've done is give them time to improve their methods.

Topics: 

Pages

Doctor Cleveland's picture

Personal Information

Website
https://jamesjmarino.wordpress.com/
Biography

Doctor Cleveland is a transparent pseudonym for Shakespeare scholar Jim Marino, who blogs about politics, education, literature, and the arts. His personal obsessions include live theater, Red Sox baseball, and powerful black coffee. He teaches college, somewhere along America's glorious North Coast. He has also been known to write about Shakespeare and early modern theater.

While he blogs about the general academic life, he does not discuss his current institution, its students, or its employees on the blog. Nor does he use any university resources to blog. Opinions expressed on the blog are not those of his employer, and do not reflect the content of his classes.

History

Blog
View recent blog entries
Member for
11 years 2 months

Latest Comments