Blog Posts

Julio Cortazar - why just 1 reality?

We've underestimated our psychological complexity, our capabilities.
A game and not a game, and more.
Once these were the discussions of art & politics.
Rayuela - Hopscotch. We don't move linearly - we jump around.

Homerin' Hank

As a kid i couldn't understand why Hank Aaron got all these death threats and such pursuing the Babe, while everyone I knew was thrilled. I suppose or hope they had to realize there were tons of scrawny white kids proudly looking at their Hank Aaron, Bob Gibson, Joe Morgan, Lou Brock baseball cards as they followed the season each year.

Streaming=Stealing from Musicians

Gary Newman describes his £37 payday for a million streams.

Obscene ripoff from an industry that never had a good reputation to start. Still, why would you go the trouble of performing in 2021?

And what other creative industry does this apply to?

To Know Him Is to Love Him? Wall of Sound silenced

It's hard to think of a musician as flawed as Phil Spector - maybe Ike Turner.
Yet there's something to hear his wife defend his music, his studio work,
in an era where moral lapses and chasms are not just career enders, but
signal an end to viewing.
But nobody every really thought most musicians were nice boys and girls - 
they were the seedy side of life that were going to corrupt our souls with rock 'n roll.
With Phil, they were almost right - he corrupted his own, while he left the rest of us
a diamond mine.

Undumbing Down "Progressive Realism"

Response to "What is Progressive Realism" ["But the article was essentially about describing the differences between schools of thought while obviously giving evidence the author thought supported a different school than has predominated and was making a case for trying something different"]

Robert Wright in the 2nd paragraph makes "realist" a synonym for Kissinger's cynical "realpolitik", thus loading any "realist" with the baggage of Kissinger's policies in Vietnam, turning a blind eye to disaster in Indonesia, et al. A rather tawdry piece of smear and false equivalency. (To be clear, the level of human carnage in SE Asia and the expulsion of Commusts from Indonesia was huge - incomparable to the tolls we've seen in Mideast conflicts the last 20 years.)

But Wright pulls this off with a "Maybe McFaul had Kissinger in mind when he lamented the 'deaths and horrific repression' that past realists...." - or maybe McFaul didn't, and it's just Wright's fervent imagination leaping to smear by most distant association.

Wright leaves out McFaul's key sentence, "Realism is an ideology that produced millions of deaths & horrific repression over the centuries." - an expression that might include Mao's "to make an omelette you have to break a few eggs", efforts to "civilize" "backwards people" around the world, accommodate slavery in a new Constitution, Bismarck's approach to Europe & treaties, et al. Certainly not honed in on 1 particular Secretary of State from our Nixon years.

If this is Wright's "evidence" in "supporting a different school" (i.e. his version of "realists" before he trashes modern "progressive idealists", especially Biden appointees), he's off to a bad start. Note, the whole of McFaul's tweet:

In the debate about the future Biden foreign policy Im seeing people self-identify as "progressive realists." Where are the "progressive idealists"? Or the "pragmatic idealists?" Realism is an ideology that produced millions of deaths & horrific repression over the centuries.

— Michael McFaul (@McFaul) November 16, 2020

It's obvious by paragraph #6 that the real target of this is to bash the choices of Blinken and Sullivan (and Obama in general) as blinkered idealists with blood on their hands. You'd think Neville Chamberlain would come up as such an idealist before 2 apparatchiks within a much more limited alliance, failed or not.
As this piece progresses, we'll see that it's not really introducing a new framework, but using a purported framework to beat the old dead horse with once again. Let's take this framework 1 by 1:

Culture Wars - Liberty or Death?

Liberty students start to push back against the Xtian machine.

So long, Mary Ann...

No more Ginger vs. Mary Ann spats to contend with - Gilligan's Island actress among many other notable TV & theater roles succumbs to Covid. One memorable career event was when she agreed with a critic who noted she couldn't much sing, despite a singing role-cum-eye candy in a road show remarkable honesty. With Dawn Wells gone, Tina Louise remains the only surviving member from the seminal show.

Prairie Porn Companion: Admiring & Deconstructing Ingalls & the Frontier

An overdose on homegrown crafts and living. Though once you get past "Ingalls was a product of her time", there's not too much to criticize except "don't do this at home in 2020, kids... at least the racial tropes, not the cookies." (As if we didn't have Eagles & Neil Young songs in the 70s noting the rapaciousness of our conquest if the West)

Breach: Russian Hacking & Poisoning

Placeholder for Russian security attacks, Navalny results...

Thread on major hack:

Oddly timed death of Congressional Putin pal affiliated with Rohrbacher.


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