Monthly Archives: September 2015

A few of my favorite things…

Over the next few days I’m going to post fifty of the albums that mean most to me. Notice my weasel words. I suppose this would count as my fifty favorite albums if I believed in carving things on stone … Continue reading

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‘Abortion can be the moral choice’

“All In” played choice bits from today’s House-Planned Parenthood hearings. Allen Drury’s Advice and Consent could not have presaged so lurid a set of exchanges: Chaffetz, who took the gavel for this often politically contentious committee at the start of … Continue reading

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‘Economic justice is not – and has never been – sufficient to ensure racial justice’

As usual, the senator from Massachusetts treated her audience like adults: I have often spoken about how America built a great middle class. Coming out of the Great Depression, from the 1930s to the late 1970s, as GDP went up, … Continue reading

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My favorite thing: Sugar’s File Under: Easy Listening

When Bob Mould came out to readers of glossy music magazines, he couldn’t have known that it made no impact on his sales. File Under: Easy Listening, which had peaked in the top fifty before plummeting, was a dead letter. … Continue reading

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Don’t call them comebacks: New Order and Robert Forster

New Order – Music Complete Boredom and a lifetime’s worth of acrimony having forced the departure of their most crucial member, the trio plus two unassuming additions record a better bunch of songs than anyone, including the trio, had a … Continue reading

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Pope Francis: conscientious objection ‘is a right’

Pope Francis said things that would lead a reasonable man to conclude that he believes people like Kim Davis have a right to refuse discharging duties they consider immoral: On the flight back to Rome, he was asked if he … Continue reading

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‘Outright lying and plausible dissimulating continue to be the name of the game’

The CIA has written an exculpatory book regarding its role in torture called, you don’t say, Rebuttal. Philip Giraldi will have none of it: One might well ask whether publishing an ostensibly serious book justifying torture could even happen anywhere … Continue reading

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‘I wanna be alone’

Fans will post Roxy Music material. I’m going to post an obscurity, smothered to death on 1994’s Mamouna but on a piano and strings arrangement recorded live five years later its lungs get filled with new oxygen. “You make me … Continue reading

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‘Take demagogues seriously’

Dismiss demagogues at your peril, Rick Perlstein writes. Donald Trump and the undying carcass of Ronald Reagan have similarities: This was a fairly accurate portrayal of how Carter’s aides saw their opponent. Carter speechwriter Hendrik Hertzberg has related that the … Continue reading

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Screenings #10

George H.W. Bush was president when I rented American Gigolo, therefore my viewing a few nights ago counts as a first time. Incapable of making a satisfying film, writer-director Paul Schrader nevertheless can shape at least a couple good scenes … Continue reading

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The New Girlfriend – François Ozon’s insouciant transgender drama

Bored easily, concise to the point of indolence, François Ozon makes films that are not so much about women as about feminine archetypes in movies. He understands how the male gaze often forces women into curious and unnatural poses. Douglas … Continue reading

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University of California and free speech

Meanwhile on the free speech front the University of California struggles to write policies that further restrict speech against foreign governments, namely Israel. As the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education notes, “it’s not up to public university officials to … Continue reading

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