Over the Top

found online by Raymond

From (O)CT(O)PUS at The Swash Zone:

Earlier today, Associated Press announced: Trump reaches the magic number to clinch nomination (link here):

“Trump, a political neophyte who for years delivered caustic commentary on the state of the nation from the sidelines but had never run for office, fought off 16 other Republican contenders in an often ugly primary race.”

The words ‘caustic’ and ‘ugly’ are understatements; the word ‘sick’ may be far more accurate. For a clinical perspective on ‘sick,’ please read this definition of narcissism as defined by the American Psychiatric Association. Or better yet, go to this essay by psychologist Elizabeth Mika.

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Privilege And Delusional Black People

found online by Raymond

From Darcwonn at The Intersection of Madness and Reality:

Have you ever taken the time to listen to someone that absolutely makes no sense? These people may talk a good game. They are eloquent, verbally proficient, and even bring up talking points that sound good. Yet, all of their loquaciousness doesn’t add up with reality. It is as if they take a position on something and never completely seal the deal.

In many cases, these people tend to be delusional.

And that is what I have found within the video “White Privilege Doesn’t Exist” by Terry Swoope. This clean cut gentleman seems to have his head on straight. Still, the premise of his argument is solely based on one singular idea: privilege is based on money and wealth and not skin color. And he takes a nice amount of time (seven minutes and thirty one seconds) to hammer his point down. In the end, he wasted at least six minutes of this video because his thoughts don’t fully match the reality that exists.

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State Dept Report Actually Vindicates Hillary Clinton

found online by Raymond

From Ted McLaughlin at jobsanger.com:

The cable news channels had been making a big deal of the State Department report on Clinton’s use of a private e-mail server while Secretary of State. They are acting like it should be a blow to her presidential campaign. That’s nonsense.

Nothing new was revealed in the report, and Clinton didn’t violate any regulation or law. The cable news networks are (as they usually do) trying to make a mountain out of a molehill.

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Punishing the Poor Just Keeps Them Poor

found online by Raymond

From Yellow Dog at Blue in the Bluegrass:

The policy of deliberate impoverishment is not new; it’s been around at least as long as the idea of some people having more than others.

But it’s conservative America in which the policy has reached its highest achievement. Not coincidentally because in America the policy has been from the beginning justified by racism.

Erik Loomis:

One of the two fundamental problems with American welfare policy is that at its core, it assumes that the poor are morally deficient and need to be fixed instead of just poor.

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Donald Trump, Gunslinger

found online by Raymond

From Capt. Fogg at Human Voices:

Or Bullslinger: take your pick

He’s a long time member and so are his “boys” Donald Trump told the NRA. I have no idea if that’s true or whether his girls are duck hunters. I do know whether I think that’s a reprehensible organization — and I do.

Before you put the “liberaliberaliberal” disc on your Victrola, I’ll continue on and say that since 1993 when The NRA began to use the the Oklahoma City bombing and the holocaust in Waco, Texas as fund raising fodder and began to justify terrorism in the name of the second amendment, it lost any credibility as an advocacy for anything but arms manufacturers and insurrectionists.

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You Got a Big Mouth, Lady! Politics Borrows from Television

They’ve been running ancient episodes of Cagney & Lacey on one of the local unaffiliated stations here in St. Louis. I’ve been tuning in from time to time, just to see if it plays the same for me now as it did when I was 30 years younger.

Women were a novelty as protagonists in action dramas in those days.

I remember Honey West from my teenage years. Anne Francis played a sexy, alluring detective for an hour every week. Even back then I could see programming logic. Feminism was just becoming a household word. So television executives could appeal to what they saw as militant women as well as to male sexual fantasies.

Did I mention Honey West was sexy and alluring?

She lasted for a single season before they took her off.

Get Christy Love! was on about 10 years later. Civil rights was on the verge of becoming an accepted national ideal.

So Teresa Graves played a black sexy, alluring detective for an hour every week.

Christy Love lasted for a single season before they took her off.

About ten years after that, Cagney & Lacey had better luck. Women detectives were still a television novelty. But this time, executives discarded the sexy alluring part and cast two women who looked like somebody’s sister or mom. And it was a buddy show.

I suppose we get a false impression when we judge only from a few anecdotes. But it’s hard for me not to picture the television executives who ruled in those times as clueless dolts. Remember how they objected to Star Trek’s Spock because audiences would never relate to a pointy-eared non-human?

Network executives pushed for the Christine Cagney character to be more feminine, sexy, and alluring. Luckily, producers and the cast resisted.

As it turned out, ratings were high. The show was renewed for a second season, then a third. It went on for eight years. It was comfortable escapism and I liked it.

Of the cast, I mostly remember Tyne Daly, the Mary Beth Lacey character, as a fast talking working class mother. I remembered her from a Clint Eastwood movie a few years before, when she and Dirty Harry risked their lives to rescue a clueless, anti-police, liberal mayor who had been kidnapped by ruthless left-wing militants, thus giving the mayor a new appreciation of police work and of conservative sensibilities. I think Tyne Daly was killed off in the obligatory gun battle.

Damn liberals!

As with most police dramas, very few of the plot lines in Cagney & Lacey were noticeably original. Eugene McCarthy once reacted to criticism by some columnist, observing that someone facing two deadlines a week for intelligent commentary would sometimes be forced to submit a rash statement instead. As with any of us, the imagination of writers has limits. Cagney & Lacey was somewhat formulaic, as any weekly drama kind of has to be.

Character development is usually not devoted to villains. Shortcuts are needed to make sure the audience will not merely identify bad guys, but will detest them. I remembered one bit of dialogue. A criminal has Lacey trapped at the top of a tall construction site. He gets ready to throw her off the building.

In real life, trying to throw a detective out of a skyscraper would pretty much establish the guy’s credentials as a lowlife creep. But the script called for him to be a real stinker, someone who deserves to get the merciless pounding he’s about to receive.

So he snarls:

You got a big mouth, lady.

You-got-a-big-mouth-lady is a well worn phrase but it still performs. It fits a fellow who is willing to throw someone down to the street far below. It shows he has a little extra enthusiasm because the victim will be a woman. It demonstrates the source of that enthusiasm. She does not show the proper respect for his manhood. She does not know her quiet little place.

You-got-a-big-mouth-lady is often used to quickly establish that we’re dealing with a bully who can’t feel secure about his own manhood when he’s confronted by a strong, non-submissive woman. It might be a wife-beating tough guy, a woman-hating killer, or some loser with a propensity for violence against women. It can even be a little boy who can’t stand losing a verbal battle with a girl.

Freddie Benson - iCarly

Gahh! You got a big mouth, lady!

Nathan Kress as Freddie Benson, iCarly
   on Nickelodeon, September 8, 2007

Of course, there are other formulaic shortcuts in television and movies involving some drooling sort of prejudice.

I have enjoyed watching the television version of Fargo. The Native American character, Hanzee, is a cold blooded killer, loyal only to his adopted family, and even then only until he hears familiar racial slurs directed at him by a family member.

Jesus Christ, you mongrel… Just shoot these two and get me to a goddamn hospital.

Fargo, Loptop episode , November 30, 2015

And so Hanzee kills.

It only takes a few racial slurs to transform him into a sympathetic character during a fight scene in and around a bar filled with bigots. That they are cowards is shown by having a group attempt to bully their lone victim. That they are bigots becomes apparent in dialogue just before he maims the three who follow him outside.

Where you going, Geronimo? You gonna grab your bow and arrow there?

Fargo, Loptop episode

And, of course, Hanzee delivers the assigned mayhem.

The racial and sexual slurs make it easy to identify screen types.

Bigots, cowards, bullies, insecure little boys.

I started thinking about those television character types, and how easy it is to recognize them as I listened to a newscast covering a political rally.

I was being hit by Pocahontas. That’s Pocahontas. Pocahontas, that’s Elizabeth Warren. I call her goofy. She is — no, no, goofy. She gets less done than anybody in the United States Senate. She gets nothing done, nothing passed. She’s got a big mouth, and that’s about it.

Donald Trump, Anaheim, CA, May 25, 2016

It isn’t hard to make the connection.

I was being hit by Pocahontas.
Where you going, Geronimo?
That’s Pocahontas.
You gonna grab your bow and arrow there?
Pocahontas, that’s Elizabeth Warren.
You got a big mouth, lady.
She’s got a big mouth, and that’s about it.
Gahh! You got a big mouth, lady!

Okay, I suppose not all television typecasting is off-base.

Maybe at least a few of those television executives aren’t so clueless after all.

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found online by Raymond

From Infidel 753:

If you’ve been paying attention to polls of the Presidential race, you may be getting a little alarmed. As I write this, the RCP average has Hillary’s lead over Trump down to 3.1%, and the two most recent polls included (by Fox and Rasmussen) even show Trump leading. Is it actually possible he could win?

Well, I suppose it’s possible, but it’s still very unlikely. To understand what’s happening with the polls, you have to look at what stage the nomination race on each side has reached.

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Oh No, He’s Not Bringing It Up

found online by Raymond

From Green Eagle:

Maybe you thought, as I did, that it would take Donald Trump a while longer to descend far enough into the sewer to seriously bring up the insane claim that Hillary murdered Vince Foster. Well, you’d be wrong. In one of the most disingenuous statements I have ever heard a candidate make, here he goes:

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In Defense of Republican Opportunists

found online by Raymond

From Jonathan Bernstein at Bloomberg:

Marco Rubio’s decision to attend the Republican convention and speak for Donald Trump has exposed something important. Not about Rubio — but about a lot of Republicans.

Yes, Rubio is clearly showing himself to be, as the Washington Examiner’s Philip Klein says in a takedown, “an opportunistic politician with his finger to the wind.” Ross Douthat agrees.

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What is a “Computer”? What is “Information Processing”?

found online by Raymond

From PZ Myers at Pharyngula:

Just before I left the States, I read this, shall we say, interesting article about how your brain is not a computer. The subhead, which does more or less summarize the content, is:

Your brain does not process information, retrieve knowledge or store memories. In short: your brain is not a computer

Curiously, in order to comprehend the article, I had to retrieve knowledge and stored memories about neuroscience (I have a degree in that) and computers (I worked in the field for several years), and I had to process the information in the article and in my background, and I found that article confusing. It did not compute.

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