Tag: Popular Culture

President Oprah’s Dingbat Appointees

 

In our pandemic era, the American press has deemed it its solemn — and urgent — duty to protect news consumers from pseudoscience and misinformation. Snopes, for example, has a comprehensive list of ratings for assessing various claims: true, mostly true, mixture, mostly false, false, and Obama.

Enter the words “Trump fact checked” into any Internet search engine and you’ll find more than 20 million results, from organizations such as factcheck.org and politifact.com. This is as it should be. The man was, after all, president of the United States and therefore should be held to the most rigorous standards of probity, as is President Biden (pause for laugh). And yes, if Trump were still president today, he would no doubt be saying things like “And thanks to my beautiful vaccines, you’re damned right you can gather for Christmas!”

In other words, we can all rest assured that the wealthiest, most prominent, admired, and powerful purveyors of pseudoscience in popular culture are vetted at every turn by fact checkers, right?

Music: Woke War I, Prelude

 

Laurel Canyon is an Epix documentary about a Los Angeles hillside neighborhood and the years when it first became a refuge for like-minded folk and rock musicians. Like a Simon and Garfunkel lyric whose out-of-date-ness always amused me, “Thirty dollars pays your rent on Bleecker Street,” the idea that Laurel Canyon was once a cheap place to get a house with a pool was already long untrue by the time my wife and I moved to the Hollywood hills in 1977, but in the mid-’60s, it was a bohemian paradise.

Laurel Canyon would be a good companion piece for All Things Must Pass, the recent documentary about the Tower Records store on the Sunset Strip. They take place next door to each other in a unique physical environment where busy boulevards, and much of the business infrastructure of the west coast music industry, is only minutes away from bucolic hillsides. The films share a sense of whatever camaraderie the LA recording industry had in the ’60s and early ’70s, when much of New York’s popular music scene was moving to California.

Everyone looks incredibly young in photos and 8mm and 16mm home movies, which brings us to one of the interesting choices of this doc: other than the two elderly photographers who took many of the pictures and provide some connecting narration, you don’t see any people as they look today. You hear them speak, sounding candid and often funny. But since the movie is about a certain long-ago time and place, not about individual lives or careers, it doesn’t distract you with discordant notes of how they—and boomer viewers like me—have aged since those days of Monterey and Woodstock.

Member Post

 

This is an extension of a little convo we had in The Ricochet Film Society group. (Come hang out with us!) I was mostly inspired to start it because there would certainly be a response, but if all were right in the world, this would be an uncontroversial opinion. I use the word uncontroversial only […]

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Member Post

 

I was not raised with television. There was no television in my parents’ home until after I was off to college. So, my experience of television, outside of a babysitter’s home where I, as a 4-5 year old, found the original Star Trek a bit traumatic,* started with Hill Street Blues and Cheers in a […]

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While binge-watching season 3 of The Blacklist, it occurred to me that characters in film and television rarely get abortions but frequently give up babies for adoption. For instance, in The Blacklist, the main female character is pregnant and considering adoption as a method of unburdening herself from the child. Abortion was not contemplated. Another […]

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I am proud to be a part of Taliesin Nexus and I encourage all emerging filmmakers, storytellers, novelists, and nonfiction writers to learn more about and apply, for free, to the following programs at http://talnexus.com All of the programs are free of charge to participate in. You just have to display some chops as a […]

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Lent started yesterday and I let it pass, busy and rushing at work. My sister and I aren’t Catholic, but we grew up with Catholic traditions. I read an email from a local church and the other from a website EWTN. Both talked about Lent for our day and time. I still let it pass, […]

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Why Conservatives Should Care About #GamerGate

 

Assassin's_Creed_coverEvery once in a while, the progressivism’s destructive effects penetrate so deeply into a story that they change the way people view the world. To the under-35 gaming crowd, #GamerGate may be one of those events.

I suspect many readers have no idea what I am talking about, or caught a primer through this week’s Radio Free Delingpole. Milo Yiannapoulos has covered it over at Breitbart. In brief, the community of people who regularly play video games (“gamers”) has significantly grown and expanded, to the point today where the image of the lone white young man in his mother’s basement is no longer accurate. It’s a diverse and widely tolerant community of people, mostly still under the age of 40 (Mr. Delingpole aside, apparently). The industry has exploded in size, rivaling — if not surprising –Hollywood’s revenue.

Increasingly, the gaming press has taken a progressive bent by injecting specious feminist arguments into reviews and coverage of games. Instead of providing insight into the industry and delivering advice on the best up and coming games and development trends in an unbiased manner, they have been weaving in feminist theories of misogyny in video games and objectification of women in a manner that is meant to steer the industry towards the development of more progressive titles.