Sunday, February 26, 2017

L.A. Street Artist Sabo Skews Tinseltown by the Discounting of Hollywood

LA Street Artist Sabo Skews Tinseltown with Discounting of Hollywood installation

On the eve of the Academy Awards, L.A. Street Artist Sabo did a real life installation that skewered Tinseltown. 

Sabo created posters that looked very similar to Tinseltown publicity but which sported a message which did anything but hype the 2017 Oscars, particularly quoting from Quentin Tarantino's True Romance (1993).

The host of this year's Oscars host Jimmy Kimmel has warned that viewers acknowledges that much of his Academy Awards monologue will be about President Donald Trump (and it won't be all light commentary) because that is what people are talking about.  Still Kimmel worries that the Oscars will talk too much about Trump, and inevitably such political talk will alienate some people.

For those "Deplorables" who are already alienated from the progressive pontifications from Hollyweird, Doc Thompson is hosting the #SnowFlakeAwards on The Blaze TV (which will also be livestreamed on The Snowflake Awards website).   That will be a show that will be much more simpatico with Sabo, albeit the ceremony will not simply skewer the entertainment industry.

However, it is dubious if those who achieve the Peoples' Choice in the Snowflake Awards will pick up their trophies before they melt in the hot studio lights or the glare of public opinion.

Edward R. Murrow on Show Business

Edward R. Murrow on Show Business

Friday, February 24, 2017

Ciscentrism and Other PC Newspeak Conceits

 Campus Reform made headlines as it reported upon a "Bias Free Language Guide" posted on an official University of New Hampshire website  which noted problematic words in American (suggested substitute "Residents of America") lexicon. Such inclusive language sought to encourage "[C]ommunication that does not stereotype or demean people based on personal characteristics.”  This suggested UNC PC Newspeak rationale is that:  “Each step of inclusion moves us closer to a full democracy”.

To that end, campus skulls full of mush were encouraged to use non-binary pronouns with spivak pronunciations like ze/zie/hir as are "often used by trans, genderqueer, and gender non-conforming people.”  So there's nothing like paying thousands of dollars for an university education, only to finish sounding as if one has a speech impediment  (another verboten phrase - perhaps unconventional pronunciations) engender conversation on inclusive language use.  Would you like fries with that?

Even referring to gender-neutral bathrooms was considered "problematic" to the authors of the "Bias Free Language Guide" as  it reflects ciscentrism, which is defined as a " pervasive and institutionalized system that places transgender people in the ‘other’ category and treats their needs and identities as less important than those of cisgender people.”  Such ciscentrism can also include the lack of gender neutral lockers and residences.  Perhaps this will be featured on "Caitliyn" (ne Bruce) Jenner's new E! television reality show "I am Cait". .Bully for zie/zi (sic).

The UNH Bias Free Language Guide discourages the use of mothering and fathering in order to avoid gendering a non-gendered activity. This politically correct non-gendering language is about as convoluted as Jack Byrnes "Milking Cats" colloquy with Greg Focker in Meet the Parents (2000).Wonder if these PC philological protagonists would be as deft in intellectually accommodating  Stan aka Loretta's right to have babies as portrayed in  Monty Python's "The Life of Brian" (1979)

Denonyms are sensitive subjects because of the sense of latent American imperialism. If one were to identify as "American", that precludes other countries in the hemisphere. Hence, the Bias Free Guide Language Guide suggests "Resident of America".  But that frankly seems incorrect, as it excludes the other hemispheric inhabitants of the continents.  If one were to say "Resident of the United States", it also excludes Mexicans still residing South of the Rio Grande, as they live in "Los estados unidos Mexicanos".  So once again, there is the quandary of including an un-inclusive identification: "Resident of the United States of America" or "American" for short.

Of course it would be crass to politically correct types to refer to American citizens.  But it is problematic to refer to "illegal aliens".  It may be acceptable to refer to such persons as "undocumented immigrant" but it is recommended to call them "person seeking asylum" or "refugee" instead.  The UNH PC Newspeak makes saying foreigner problematic, as it is deemed better to say "international people".

As concerned as the UNH Bias Free Language Guide is about people, there is little doubt that our PC betters would still refer to abortion victims  as "clumps of cells" or perhaps of fetus (of what?) rather than unborn persons so as not to offend progressive womyn (sic).

Examples of Bias Free Language Guide's Problematic Lexicon 

Other problematic phrases included: "sexual preference", "speech impediment", overweight (as arbitrary), "freshman", (why not sophomore -- a wise fool?), "chairman" and "dumb".  It's a good thing that the latter expression was denounced as there would be no way in UNH PC Newspeak to convey the merit of this Bias Free Language Guide.

After a few days of "problematic" publicity in conservative media circles such as Laura Ingraham, University of New Hampshire President Mark W. Huddleston made an emphatic statement about free speech. This peon to free speech should seem unremarkable in a state with a motto of "Live Free or Die".

Huddleston's denials, however, seem somewhat hollow as the Bias Free Language Guide was part of UNH official website material and it referred to Counseling Center training on" Microagressions: Subtle but Detrimental".  The Bias Free Language Guide seems like companion scholarship, if that is politically correct to say.

Universities ought to be citadels of free speech and a Chatauqua of ideas. Alas today it seems to foster the inculcation of  anarchistic intellectual indoctrination under a polity governance of raised eyebrows. Sorry to say that ciscentrism sounds like politically correct crap which poses as inclusive language but really redefines rhetoric to an unreality that is antithetical.  No wonder George Orwell opined about the risks about truth telling in a delusional society.

h/t: Campus Reform

[This piece originally ran in on August 3rd, 2015, thus preceding the fight over the North Carolina Bathroom Bill and the Obama Administration Department of Education's "Guidance" on K-12 Schools Transgendered Bathrooms]

Alan Dershowitz on Keith Ellison

Alan Dershowitz on prospective DNC Chair Keith Ellison

Chuck Schumer Supposes Significant GOP Dissent on Trump

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer Supposes Significant GOP Trump Dissent

On the Danger of the Alt-Right

American Conservative Union CEO Dan Schneider on the Alt-Right

The opening of CPAC 2017 featured a speech by American Conservative Union President Dan Schneider, who warned of the dangers of conservatives and the Republican Party being infiltrated by elements of the Alt-Right.

CPAC 2017 was supposed to have a keynote address by Alt-Right provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos, but this invitation was quickly cancelled as Yiannopoulos again uttered sympathetic statements towards pederasty.

This year's CPAC also expelled Alt-Right leader Richard Spencer when he showed up to  the conference at National Harbor, Maryland. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

The GOP's Milo Test?

Charlie Sykes on the GOP's Milo Test for provacateur extraordinaire Milo Yiannapoulos

Last week, CPAC seemed to have scored a coup in landing provocateur extraordinaire Milo Yiannopoulos as the "Conservative" Political Action Committee's keynote speaker. Yiannopoulos was slated to speak about free speech on campus, as he was at the center of the UC Berkeley riots at the start of February.   

However, less than three days later on Washington's Birthday Observed (a.k.a. Presidents' Day), this honor was unceremoniously yanked from Milo, after Yiannopoulos made some statements which seemed to condone pederasty.  Yiannapoulos' book deal also was cancelled.

Many new to the political scene in support of President Donald Trump seemed ideologically enamored to Milo's in-your-face publicity stunts and alt-right rhetoric.  Whether this episode establishes the high mark for Alt-Right infiltration of Republicans or it underlines the tension between the establishment GOP and the so-called "basket of deplorables" nationalist populist wing remains to be seen. 

Milo Yiannopoulos on Policing Humor

Bill Maher and Milo Yiannopoulos discuss policing humor

Perhaps, but such a hermaneutic is not true for utterances which CPAC organizers  exclaimed: "You must be joking."

Trump HHS Secretary Dr. Tom Price on Patients

Trump HHS Secretary Dr. Tom Price on Patients

Monday, February 20, 2017

It's Not Really Presidents' Day-- It's Washington's Birthday (Observed)

"Hope" oil by Paula Hawkins and Glenn Beck (2010)

Most calendars indicate that today is Presidents’ Day. However, this is a misnomer which truly misses the mark.  Popular observance of President’s Day have come down to silly sales and a day off for the government and banks.  While we might enjoy the bargains at the malls and the time off in the District of Calamity (sic), we really ought to observe the real meaning behind the holiday.

Prior to the standardization of the Uniform Holiday Act in 1971, the shortest month used to have two holidays, both Lincoln’s Birthday (February 12th) and Washington’s Birthday (February 22nd) which many states observed.  Even though an early draft of the Uniform Holiday Act referred to the third Monday in February as Presidents’ Day, the Congress never changed the observance from “Washington’s Birthday”.

Rather than have a holiday celebrating the general office of the Presidency, or being forced to celebrate James K. Polk


it seems appropriate to honor the father of our country, George Washington, the man who gave the United States of America Hope and not anger

While there are many myths attached to the first President of the United States (e.g. chopping down the cherry tree) as well as an impressive resume as patriot, warrior, military leader and chief executive, there are several  that the American body politic should emulate.

Firstly, there is perseverance.  When we recall the American Revolution, we swell at the victory over the Great Britain, our mother country.  But when not gazing through the rosy glow of hindsight, Washington was leading a ragtag bunch of citizen soldiers against the hyper-power of the day.  Things did not seem so glorious after Washington lost New York City and he was huddling in the snows of Valley Forge, Pennsylvania.  But through Washington’s leadership, American forces eventually were victorious over the British Empire.

The Prayer at Valley Forge Oil by Arnold Friburg (1974)

After the victory in Yorktown in 1781, the new nation was starved for leadership.  If America followed European models, people would have yearned for a king.  Due to his prominence and his victory, there is speculation that Washington could have had the crown for America.  But Washington chose to retire to his beloved home of Mount Vernon, Virginia.  This proved Washington’s opposition to dictatorship and his belief in republican government.

When the Articles of Confederacy proved to be an inadequate governing framework for the American Republic, Washington came out of retirement to preside over what became the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787.   Despite his desire for retirement, Washington was the natural choice as the first U.S. President.  This shows Washington’s self sacrifice and his dedication to his country.

"He Returns Victorious, 1783" Oil by John Buxton 

After serving two four year terms, Washington chose to retire.  Washington’s retirement set a standard for chief executives (until 1940 with F.D.R) to have limited terms of power as President.  More importantly, Washington helped the American Republic to have peaceful transfers of power.  In addition, Washington’s quiet retirement served as a model for future Presidents (until Carter and now emulated by Clinton and Obama) to remain above the fray on his successors’ public policies.

At his death, Washington was hailed as "first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen".  I can think of a more fitting tribute to a great man who was instrumental in establishing the great experiment of America.

[This piece originally ran on DCBarroco.US in 2011 with some updates]

LBJ on a President's Hardest Task

Lyndon Johnson on a President's Hardest Task

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Ex Senator Jim Webb Laments the Democrats' Loss of Flyover Country

Former  Senator Jim Webb laments how Democrats have lost the White Working Class

Former  Senator Jim Webb (D-VA) has long exulted his Scots/Irish heritage from the Appalachians. Webb's political pedigree is a Republican who served as President Reagan's Navy Secretary but who shifted to be a moderate Democrat who was elected Senator in 2006.  Webb was briefly a candidate for the Democrat Party's nomination in 2016 but received utterly no traction in the primaries.

Webb is the epitome of a Blue Dog Democrat, which has become an endangered species in the District of Calamity (sic). Considering the progressive push in Democrat ranks, Webb's woes are unlikely to be abated anytime in the foreseeable future. 

UN Ambassador Nikki Haley on North Korea

US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley urges accountability for North Korean provocations

Paul Nitze on Errors

Paul Nitze on Errors