1. souse, n.5: 3. A drunkard. slang (chiefly U.S.). (OED)
  2. white souse, n.1: A blog for literature, politics, science, and the occasional cocktail.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Palin and the Third Estate

Was reading a review in an old Victorian periodical about the French Revolution and found parts of the diagnosis eerily familiar:

M. Isuard, a deputy of some influence, and who, as such, was employed to harangue and quiet the mob on the memorable 20th of June, 1792, was, on the following 3d of August, accused in the Chamber of having sold himself to the English cabinet. Now, let any one consider for a moment what would be the defense of an Englishman in a similar case. He would bring testimony--he would allege his own previous character--he would retort on his assailants--in short, he would regularly plead his cause. What is the defence of the Frenchman? He unbuttons his waistcoat! He lays bare his breast! 'Malheureux, ouvre mon coeur et tu verras s'il est Frances!' ['Blackguards, open my heat and see if it's French!']

Such scenes might appear only ridiculous. But it is a source of danger in every country, that men seldom believe that what is ridiculous may also be formidable. People laughed at the follies of the New Assembly. They laughed at the clenched fists, furious interruptions, frothy declamations, and turbulent politics, which knew of no better security against despotic power than a feeble government. But those days of laughter were only the first acts of the piece.

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Sunday, March 28, 2010

Seder at the White House

Damn anti-semites.

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Friday, March 26, 2010

Duck Theathon!

I was trying to think of what to say about the passions of the Frum, sacrificed to Conservative Shibboleths, then realized there aren't any conservative shibboleths left. Oh, maybe one new one: Don'tCriticizeTheGOP (harder to pronounce than you'd think). As Frum pointed out in the blog post that cost his job at the American Enterprise Institute (and presumably his AEI Diners Club discount card):

But we do know that the gap between this plan and traditional Republican ideas is not very big. The Obama plan has a broad family resemblance to Mitt Romney’s Massachusetts plan. It builds on ideas developed at the Heritage Foundation in the early 1990s that formed the basis for Republican counter-proposals to Clintoncare in 1993-1994.

Yeah, it's uncomfortable when one of your own points this out. I guess tough love hurts. The entire episode recalls last September, when the conservative establishmen went similarly apesh*t after Frum wrote the following (that time, in a column):

On the one side, the president of the United States: soft-spoken and conciliatory, never angry, always invoking the recession and its victims. This president invokes the language of “responsibility,” and in his own life seems to epitomize that ideal: He is physically honed and disciplined, his worst vice an occasional cigarette. He is at the same time an apparently devoted husband and father. Unsurprisingly, women voters trust and admire him.

And for the leader of the Republicans? A man who is aggressive and bombastic, cutting and sarcastic, who dismisses the concerned citizens in network news focus groups as “losers.” With his private plane and his cigars, his history of drug dependency and his personal bulk, not to mention his tangled marital history, Rush is a walking stereotype of self-indulgence – exactly the image that Barack Obama most wants to affix to our philosophy and our party

The maxim: "Do as we say we say, not as we said." All of which reminds me of that old Bugs and Daffy saw:

During the last election (and throughout the healthcare debate), I was dreaming of a day when there would be principled conservative arguments that found airtime in the public forum. Perhaps I'm wistful for something that never happened -- think Bill Buckley's challenging interview of Noam Chomsky on Firing Line. Sure, there are Ross Douthat, and Reihan Salaam, and (formlerly) Frum -- but I was waiting for the day when their distinctively marginalized ideas received a broad airing in conservative and republican circles (I mean in a New Big Tent, not the New York Times). Looks like I'll be waiting a while.

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Monday, March 22, 2010

Ronald Reagan Will Rise from the Grave and KILL YOU

The following is a recording of Reagan railing against (then proposed) Medicare. For Reagan, "Health Insurance" == "Socialized Medicine" Just sayin'.

Or, as he put it in the Phil Collins video, "That's some nurse!"

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Eat Your Health Care

Was emailing with my friend Doug about the Party of No and their gripes that their Waterloo plan for Health Care turned out badly (who'd a thunk that they'd end up being Napoleon?).

Anyway, he mentioned something John Stewart said recently:

You lost. It's supposed to taste like a shit sandwich.

Well I just finished my shit sandwich, leftover from last night (appropriately enough, Italian stuffed pork loin -- thanks Talented Videographer!), and it was FUCKING AWESOME.

Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political HumorHealth Care Reform

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Sunday, March 21, 2010

John Hughes vs. Judd Apatow

Sacrilege! Blasphemy!

Was talking last night to The Talented Videographer about John Hughes -- we rewatched Ferris Bueller's Day Off and were marveling at what a brilliantly improvisational and tightly edited film it was (just think about those two merits together). And we were trying to think who might fill that role today. I'd put in Judd Apatow. Sure, there's no Ferris Bueller yet, or Breakfast Club. But John Hughes also did Uncle Buck and Home Alone 3. Anyway, most of Apetow's stuff is pretty uneven; but here are the 3 minutes that redeem Forgetting Sarah Marshal:

Sometimes I'll be riding the train or laying in bed, and think, "Die, die, die ... I can't!" and it makes me laugh *every time.* Now that's staying power.

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The End of Publishing ... turns out not to be so bleak.

This is an ad that DK books developed. It's pretty sharp (via Sullivan):

Callooh! Callay!

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Friday, March 19, 2010

Inglorious Annagramattica

Kinda wish she'd been our wedding videographer:

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