Monthly Archives: June 2013

Happy Sunday

Appropriate on a week like this.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

It’s the pitch, not the message: No

Part Wag The Dog, part The Candidate, No shows how advertising how smiles and positivist drivel can force a military junta out of power. After nearly fifteen years of rule, the government of General Augusto Pinochet announced in 1988 that … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The state with the prettiest name

Florida was swampland. Our elected officials have never stopped treating it as property, to be sold to the highest bidder. Rick Scott, at it again: The nation’s largest outsourcing of prison medical care is finally underway in Florida with the … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

The last days of Orson Welles

Chief among the charms of This is Orson Welles are the star’s lapidary insights into contemporaries: Bunuel (“the most supremely religious director” in cinema), Sternberg (“a perfect, really an immense visual command over what is finally kitsch”), the pacing of … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

“In this modern civilization women have agency”

I’ve read it before but rarely in such plainspoken prose. Digby: Biology makes pregnancy very easy for most women. Nature very strongly wants us to procreate and it has no care for the circumstances under which we do it. Women … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Singles 6/28

Several years and millions of dollars later, Ryan Tedder assembles the oddest track of his career; imagine Rob Thomas studying the Killers. Kelly Clarkson goes Shania, Action Bronson goes stupid, Ciara goes blank (with help), and Todd Terje goes sublime … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

Glad you’re alive: Jason Isbell

Jason Isbell isn’t in the Drive-By Truckers anymore because he drinks. A recent New York Times Magazine profile reveals secrets and torments enough for a lifetime of songs. Southeastern, Isbell’s best solo album, boasts one exquisitely wrought tune after another, … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

Liz Phair and important rock artistry

Was Liz Phair this awkward on stage? Another missing element: despite her preternatural in-person poise, it was hard for Phair to play live. She wasn’t comfortable in front of an audience. Beyond that, the atmospherics that marked her début album … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

“We lose DOMA and the Voting Rights Act in the same week.”

So the Supreme Court did it. Antonin Scalia, defender of the will of the people, averred that the “democratically adopted legislation” once known as the Defense of Marriage Act and forever as a destructive historical footnote, deserved less scrutiny than … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

A proposition

I wrote the following almost exactly a year ago. Still applies, with minor revisions. I’m no lawyer but have always been interested in the Court as an institution: its history, personalities, decisions. I often get impatient with liberals when they … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Bookchat #11: “Bolivar” by Marie Arana

The most famous larger than life figure unknown in the United States, Simon Bolivar gets the large biography he deserves. In novelist Marie Arana’s telling, el liberador lead his polyglot army into a series of wars that drove Spain out … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

SCOTUS decision: a “poisoned chalice” for Republicans

As the news comes in that the Supreme Court has declared Section IV of the Voting Rights Act unconstitutional, Joshua Green sees good news, I suppose, in the next five to ten years: On its face, this looks like a … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment