Jump or pushed? André Téchiné and In the Name of My Daughter

Last year French courts wrote presumably the last chapter in what’s known as l’affaire Le Roux. But don’t count on it. The question remains: did Maurice Agnelet kill or have a part in killing twenty-eight-year-old heiress Agnès La Roux in 1977? It took three trials to finally sentence Agnelet, 76, for a crime based onContinue reading “Jump or pushed? André Téchiné and In the Name of My Daughter”

‘The only trouble with being a woman my age is the men my age’

An original: a woman whose second single topped the country chart and debut album got certified platinum in her forties. The songwriter who hustled in Manhattan for years didn’t try to be anything than what she was; there’s a reason why women who have never heard K.T. Oslin or her song know what “’80s Ladies”Continue reading “‘The only trouble with being a woman my age is the men my age’”

What oppo research looks like

The first speaker of the House who wasn’t a name on the 6:30 news was Tom Foley. During State of the Union addresses I wasn’t sure whether he or George H.W. Bush looked more bored. I remember the homo rumors floated. As Dennis Hastert’s past become more clear, Digby posts a Foley-related story that showsContinue reading “What oppo research looks like”

Singles 5/29

A week when Eurovision nominees dominated squelched discussion of Taylor Swift’s third #1 from 1989 and worst single since “Everything Has Changed,” not to mention Kendrick Lamar’s first #1 of any kind (call it his “Heartbreaker“). Most of those nominees left me cold. I was more interested in rediscovering Nicki’s casually superlative performance on “FeelingContinue reading “Singles 5/29”

Bernie Sanders’ war on women

After Mother Jones‘ publication of his incoherent doggerel about women and sex from two decades ago, Bernie Sanders and his subsequent disgusting record on women deserves scrutiny: In 2003, Sanders was among 32 co-sponsors of the Prison Rape Elimination Act, a measure to “establish a zero-tolerance standard” for sexual violence in prison. (The measure passedContinue reading “Bernie Sanders’ war on women”

The terror of the CD burner

From Dorian Lynskey’s exemplary account of that grandest of hustles, the marketing of the compact disc, as proud a product of late twentieth century capitalism as the Reagan administration: As the decade wore on, there were tremors of unease. The industry was running out of albums to reissue, battling over price with supermarkets and big-boxContinue reading “The terror of the CD burner”

Spirals of silence

Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson have written an invaluable article for The American Propect explaining how the GOP gets rewarded for appalling behavior despite shutdowns, a deviance between its social positions and the voting public’s, odious rhetoric, and bullying: In a parliamentary system, legislative majorities govern, and those majorities are accountable for the results. VotersContinue reading “Spirals of silence”

Bisexuality: indispensable frivolity

I’m surprised it took Gawker so long to unearth Tom Hardy’s remarks seven years ago, in which he admitted to boyhood homosexual experiences. His 2011 comments, the site notes, were not so enlightened: the usual repudiation of any hint of fucking or getting fucked in the ass. Whether he thinks the 2008 comments are mistakeContinue reading “Bisexuality: indispensable frivolity”

‘The death penalty in Nebraska is broken’

Wow: Nebraska became the first conservative state in more than 40 years to abolish the death penalty on Wednesday when lawmakers boldly voted 30-19 to override the governor’s veto. There are 10 inmates on Nebraska’s death row — the 11th died this week — but the state has not executed anyone since 1997 and onlyContinue reading “‘The death penalty in Nebraska is broken’”

The risky backdrop of Burlington hippies in dreads

Meanwhile Politico publishes the same twaddle that convicted felons H.R. Haldeman and John Ehrlichman peddled in 1970 about Democrats: The liberal bastion is an enthusiastic base of support for the senator, who is looking to harness disaffected liberal voters in a primary fight with Clinton, the heavy front-runner. But it’s also a risky backdrop thatContinue reading “The risky backdrop of Burlington hippies in dreads”

Centrism: ‘anti-ideology’

Mike Konczal could have written this piece in 2011 but being Cassandra is a drag: Centrists position themselves as anti-ideology, representing a responsible compromise between liberals and conservatives. The word conjures sobriety and restraint, caution and moderation—all of which sound compelling in uncertain economic times. We live in uncertain economic times. When competence and centrismContinue reading “Centrism: ‘anti-ideology’”