Season 5 of The Americans was about family as well as the innocents whose lives were affected by Philip and Elizabeth’s secret lives. The finale, The Soviet Division, was no exception. I do, however, take exception to some of the reactions to Season 5. It moved at a somewhat slower pace than past seasons BUT it has never been a Bond or Bourne-type spy extravaganza. Its closest kin is the work of John Le Carre; somber meditations on the lives of spies. The penultimate season was no different. Was it my favorite season? No, but it’s setting the stage for a wilder ride next season.
It’s time to dismount my soapbox and go to our spoiler break *after* playing a song that’s dedicated to Pascha and his soon to be divided family. It’s the first of five hit versions of a song written by Cat Stevens:
Every time I think we’ve reached Peak Both Sides, another mountain rears up in the distance: But now it isn’t just Mr. Trump. In their new “resistance” mode, Democrats have become just as nasty. Tom Perez, the Democrats’ new national chairman, has already earned notoriety for his use of profanity at rallies. At some of them, he has trouble speaking because the anti-Trump heckling is so loud. Does no one have an editor anymore? Doesn’t someone in the newsroom say something like, hey, I read your piece, and I was just thinking that the power differential is so vast between “heckler … Continue reading Profanity = State Sanctioned Violence Against Minorities
It’s important to know that somebody fought back: “I was saying, ‘Creator – provide comfort to his family who don’t know you’re here,” she recalled. An officer called out to her: “You did what you could, it’s time to come off the train.” [snip] The next night, Macy met Namkai-Meche’s mother and father at a vigil held by the train stop. She handed his father a purple-painted, heart-shaped rock, her prayer rock. She said the victim’s parents thanked her for being with their son, telling her that she was “a mamma to our boy in that moment.” Macy, a single … Continue reading ‘This is someone’s child’
A Trump moment went viral for the wrong reason on Thursday as he and the leaders of 27 other NATO member countries assembled for a photo at the treaty organization’s gleaming new Brussels, Belgium headquarters. As Trump made his way through the group to take his position in the front row next to Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, Montenegro’s Prime Minister Duško Marković was in his way. So Trump put his hand on Marković’s upper arm and shoved him aside.
Two quick hits. One: Oklahoma stands out for the velocity with which districts have turned to a shorter school week in the past several years, one of the most visible signs of a budget crisis that has also shuttered rural hospitals, led to overcrowded prisons and forced state troopers to abide by a 100-mile daily driving limit. Democrats helped pass bipartisan income tax cuts from 2004 to 2008. Republicans — who have controlled the legislature since 2009 and governorship since 2011 — have cut income taxes further and also significantly lowered taxes on oil and gas production. “The problems facing … Continue reading The Gods Lift Those Who Lift Each Other
Something an editor told me once, when we were digging into a story about public malfeasance: “It is always worse than you think it is.” At the time, the story we were in the middle of, I thought it was pretty bad. “Always. It’s always worse.” He was right. Every story’s an iceberg; for every single sharp thing you see there are a thousand others below the surface waiting to gouge holes in your boat. I thought of that when I read this thread today, about Trump and Russia, though to be honest it could be about Trump and just … Continue reading Journalism Wants the Status Quo More Than the Truth
The monuments aftershocks continue here in New Orleans. I went to a friend’s kid’s birthday party and was warned to skip the subject because there were some rabid Lost Causers invited. They went there, I did not. I asked for a gold star but did not get one. I considered pitching a fit but thought better of it.
While we’re on the subject of the late monuments, I have two articles to recommend, nay, commend. First, Adrastos acquaintances Campbell Robertson and Katy Reckdahlcollaborated on a story connecting the monuments and family histories. Second, the local public radio station, WWNO, has a piece about a proposed monument to Oscar Dunna former slave who was Gret Stet Lt. Governor during Reconstruction. The monument was never built. Dunn, however, is worthy of one. That’s where I’d like this process to go: Civil Rights figures. It’s what makes sense if we were striking a blow against white supremacy and the Confederacy.
I saw this week’s bucolic featured image on the Antiques Roadshow. I used it because I like the austere lines of the print by the austere Iowan, Grant Wood. Austere seems to be the word of the day. Besides, Dr. A won tickets to the Roadshow when it comes to New Orleans this July. I want them to know we’re coming.
As his peer Fats Domino would surely say, Ain’t That A Shame. Elvis brought rock-and-roll to the masses and was its first King, Besides, what will NOLA’s own Rolling Elvi do if the Elvis mystique is diminished?
This week’s theme song, All Shook Up, was written by Otis Blackwell and recorded by Elvis in 1957. According to his biographer Peter Guralnick, the reason Elvis received a writing credit is that he came up with the title.
First up is Blackwell’s rendition followed by Elvis’ studio version and then the Jeff Beck Group with Rod Stewart belting it out.
I don’t know about you but I’m, uh, all shook up, which is why we’ll take a break at this point.
I want to meet Mick Mulvaney, this man of billions who has the audacity to call people like my mother-in-law thieves. She sat in a hospital recliner this week with a giant blackening scar running down her leg as a stream of people she barely knew entered and exited at a rapid pace, spewing information into her stroke-impaired mind. She looked like a child who had lost her mother at the grocery store as doctors changed orders and nurses took readings, her eyes darting from one to the other as they spoke over her in multi-syllabic jargon. She had put … Continue reading I want to meet Mick Mulvaney…
The title isn’t a typo, it’s a pun on flashback. Another day, another pun. Oscar and his pesky kid sister belatedly discovered a Carnival throws bag that’s been sitting next to the fireplace for months. I never claimed to be … Continue reading Friday Catblogging: Carnival Flashbag
There, fixed it. Or Trumpcare, or whatever you want to call it. We got a sneak preview last month, but it was finally scored by the CBO, and the verdict is…no amount of lipstick, perfume, paint, wire, chewing gum, or … Continue reading Ecce Ryancare
I love the word penultimate as much as epistolaryor eponymous and since I used those words earlier today, there was only one title for my recap of The World Council Of Churches.
The reason for that unwieldy, even bureaucratic, episode title is that the KGB secured Pastor Tim a sinecure in Argentina to get him out of the Jennings’ hair. I’m uncertain if it’s their real hair or one of their flotilla of wigs but, in any event, he’s out of it. And Paige is wigging out with glee.
Before taking our spoiler break, here’s a musical selection inspired by Phillip’s Brad the pilot persona. You know the guy who “adopted” Tuan. The pilot may be ready to drop the Vietnamese Kid if you catch my drift. More about that anon.
When you get right down to it everybody is just mooching off the system, right? Dear Mick Mulvaney, Please clarify which of the following conditions means someone isn’t “really disabled” and so should lose their SSDI: pic.twitter.com/gYcxRV5q4J — Nick Gourevitch (@nickgourevitch) May 23, 2017 Everybody on welfare’s driving Cadillacs and everybody on food stamps is buying candy and everybody in Section 8 housing is just dealing drugs. The homeless by the highway are scamming you and kids who need lunch money are scamming you and that woman speaking Spanish in the grocery store might be talking about you and a guy … Continue reading Really Disabled
From their McMansions, Trump’s base looks down on people like these: The Navy veteran was one of several thousand former food stamp recipients who lost benefits when Maine, in 2015, declined to renew its waiver and reinstated statewide work requirements. He has spent much of the last year living in a tent. “I don’t wanna worry no one,” said Keefe, who recently testified to Maine’s Committee on Health and Human Services about the impact the work requirement had on him. But, he added: “I hope they understand that people fall through the cracks.” If Paul Ryan or Donald Trump had … Continue reading Veterans Skinning Squirrels to Survive, But Should Get To Work!
Good morning, constant readers! And you think The Darnold had a bad week?
Despite soaking the marks for around $352,000.00 per year in pledges – Free Republic crashed like a Piper Cherokee with a four-year-old at the controls.
And when I say “crashed”, I’m not talking about a server reboot – I’m talking four whole days.
And right in the middle of a Freepathon, too.
A pinned notice on what was left of the site directed jonesing Freeperati to the Free Republic Facebook page. OK – let’s go there.
At first, the posts are hopeful :
Coop DegrassHeck, this little glitch might actually create enough pent up craving among everybody Jonesing for FR that revenue might increase.
Robert MorrowIt’s not about money! At $345k a year income the site takes in 50 times more than it needs to operate so giving more will not fix the problem. The problem is how the forum is hosted. Until that mindset changes there will be no improvements regardless of how generous people are.
Bob ParkThe level of revenue isn’t the issue… it’s how its being used. Apparently, its not being used to do required/routine hardware upgrades/maintenance like it should. People are being paid salaries, but the proper procedures aren’t in place to deal with these situations… if they were, the thing would be back in operation day one. More money isn’t going to fix human caused problems.
The natives are revolting!
Coop DegrassRobert Morrowsaid: But it IS broke; that’s the point or the site would not be down for 3-7 days two times within 7 months.
If it doesn’t affect the bottom line, then it’s a good business model.
Robert MorrowI guess you haven’t noticed the snails pace of the recent freepathons. It is affecting the bottom line and after this extremely long outage how likely do you think people will be to give more when the site goes down every time critical events happen when it’s needed the most. Your logic is not sound. I want to see FR do well and be profitable but to do so going forward it must do things differently even if that means less money in their pockets for a while.
After several pages of complaining and pics of servers full of crap and hamsters on exercise wheels, David Robinson has has enough!
David B. RobinsonWhat a sense of entitlement I see here. This is Jim Robinson’s creation and if you believe in the principles of Free Republic then we should respect the private property rights the ones who run the website to run it anyway they want and with the hardware and software they want to run it on. Donations is not a contract for services, they can spend the donation however they want and if you want to stop donating you have that right. If I was Jim and John Robinson (no relation to me) I could see them saying the hell with the ingrates and just shut down Free Republic for good. For all the big talk of people who can’t wait for CWII to kick liberal asses. You think the internet is going to be running? If you can’t handle three or four days of no Free Republic I hate to know how you will be in a crisis.
Don’t you just love the “I’m not related to him or getting any of Mr. Not-a-crook’s money” disclaimer?
They’re going to finish this, one way or another, and then we’re gonna let them do it again. Really, Nixon should have died in federal prison, and that should have been the end of that party. Really, murdering Central American schoolchildren and nuns in order to fight an illegal proxy war should have resulted in the GOP being thrown on the trash fire of history. Really, tens of thousands of dead Iraqis and Afghans and lies to the entire world about why, that should have caused decent people to turn away from the word “Republican” in disgust. Really, turning the entire … Continue reading Oh, the Courage of the GOP
The unseasonably cool weather continued through the middle of this week in New Orleans. Summer’s cauldronis finally upon us, but this May has a chance to be one of the coolest on record. The coolish weather has thus far kept the Formosan termite swarms in check in my neighborhood. I have another theory: that the new and very bright street lights on Napoleon Avenue are attracting the swarms and keeping them away from Adrastos World HQ. It’s just a theory but if I’m right it will be a less swarmy and pestiferous year.
I’m burnt out on Lost Cause Fest. I’m glad that the Lee statue came downin broad daylight yesterday. At 16 feet tall, it was too big to be removed at night. I’m just glad it’s over. I haven’t gone to spectate at any of the removal spectacles; mostly because it’s slow, arduous, and somewhat boring. Lost Cause Fest involves statues but it doesn’t rock. This front page headline does:
This week’s featured image is a 1947 painting by Clifford Odets. Until I saw last Monday’s Antiques Roadshow, I had no idea that the playwright/screenwriter was a gifted painter. I guess that’s why they call PBS educational television.
This week’s theme song was written by Harold Arlen and Johnny Mercer for a 1943 Fred Astaire movie, The Sky’s The Limit. One For My Baby (And One More For The Road) is the torch song’s torch song or is that the saloon song’s saloon song? I am easily confused but you already knew that. If I were pretentious, I’d tell you that I curated three versions of the song but I’m neither a curate nor a cure-all…
We begin with Fred Astaire singing to an indifferent bartender named Joe followed by fabulous versions by Frank Sinatra and Billie Holiday. Frank called it a saloon song whereas Billie torched it up, y’all. There will be more about torches anon.
Now that Joe has set ’em up, let’s go to the break. It’s not a spoiler break as with The Americans recaps, it’s more of a length break. I do tend to go on.
(IMDB’s description of “Blazing Saddles” begins with “A corrupt politician hires a black sheriff…” which is all that film and this situation have in common.) News broke Wednesday that Milwaukee County Sheriff David A. Clarke was taking a position in the Homeland Security Department, leaving me to recall a line George Carlin once uttered about Ross Perot’s challenge for the presidency in 1992: “Just what a nation of idiots needs: A short, loud idiot.” Coming up with a descriptor for Clarke is like trying to catch a fart and paint it green. It’s also as pleasurable. Many news organizations relied … Continue reading If “Blazing Saddles” were a Bizarro-land, post-apocalyptic horror film…