Linky Friday: All The News That’s Fit To Link

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Andrew Donaldson

Born and raised in West Virginia, Andrew has since lived and traveled around the world several times over. Though frequently writing about politics out of a sense of duty and love of country, most of the time he would prefer discussions on history, culture, occasionally nerding on aviation, and his amateur foodie tendencies. He can usually be found misspelling/misusing words on Twitter @four4thefire and his writing website Yonderandhome.com

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58 Responses

  1. Avatar Oscar Gordon
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    LF2: People wonder why the GOP is mostly quiet about Trump and his claims? This is why. His BS is filling a war chest.Report

    • Avatar Philip H in reply to Oscar Gordon
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      Yep. And these folks know EXACTLY what they are doing. Of course they expect he will share the war chest with them when the time comes – a belief they will find sorely disappointing.Report

      • Avatar Oscar Gordon in reply to Philip H
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        RNC already has their hand in the till. Now how much might they get out of Save America before Trump uses it to pay down his massive debt or shovels it into some casino or overpriced golf resort remains to be seen, but they are getting some of it already (the obvious price of their silence).Report

  2. Avatar Oscar Gordon
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    LF5: Two issues with such a thing:
    1) How to avoid it becoming a federal “Office of Official Taste and Style”?
    2) How to avoid it being a direct pipeline from federal tax rolls to Hollywood* production companies? There is already enough of a problem with cities and states handing over millions, maybe billions of dollars in tax breaks and subsidies to TV and movie productions.

    * Hollywood being a catch all for American Movie & TV/Streaming production companies, be they in CA or NY or anywhere else.Report

    • Avatar InMD in reply to Oscar Gordon
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      There may be a time and a place for such a thing, but now is not it. If the Biden admin has any sense anyone recommending it to him will be politely asked to leave. Talk about totally tone deaf, failure to read the room, etc.Report

      • Avatar dhex in reply to InMD
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        well, at a time when our society has never been more awash in readily-available and in-demand arts and culture, it’s important for the fedgov to throw money at the theatre critic’s pet projects because teh kidz are too far into soundcloud xanax rap and hyperpop to go to the opera. and this is a tragedy, because something something something something something something.

        i too enjoy the crisp, clean taste of drugs, but this guy’s dmt kulturekampf vape is on some next level stuff i can’t reach. color me jealous.Report

    • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to Oscar Gordon
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      A lot of other countries have ministries of culture without controversy or too much controversy. It is only in the United States that people seem to get really grumpy and angry about the concept.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Culture_ministerReport

      • Avatar InMD in reply to Saul Degraw
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        If other countries didn’t finance their own they would have no art except for that which comes from the United States. It simply isn’t a problem we have. We are cultural hegemon. Bask in the glow.

        Anyway it’s definitely not something an administration that came in to be the adults during a pandemic needs to spend any political capital on.Report

      • Avatar Oscar Gordon in reply to Saul Degraw
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        Do they have powerful lobbying groups for pop/mainstream entertainment corporations that would spend considerable effort trying to capture such a position for their own interests?

        Likewise, are they able to prevent such a posting from becoming the office of political propaganda? Imagine if Trump had such a position that had been well established? I can just see it now, all the productions of Hamilton being shuttered and the new, hit Broadway musical “Trump” getting all kinds of funding.Report

  3. Avatar Saul Degraw
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    As pointed out to Oscar, a lot of countries have cultural ministers/departments and/or have some form of government entity that recognizes and seeks to preserve the nation’s cultural patrimony. The U.K. has the National Trust plus still manages to think it is important to fund national museums and the BBC even during Tory governments. Japan has the concept of a Living National Treasure which seems designed to recognize and preserve traditional Japanese crafts and craftsmanship. Or as wikipedia states they are called, Preservers of Important Intangible Cultural Policies.

    I find it interesting that American conservatives (not you but in general) can go on and on about the importance of tradition and heritage but then have no appetite for preserving or supporting anything that resembles a our cultural heritage and patrimony even if it is something as uncontroversial as Hudson River School painters and/or methods for making Shaker Furniture. I think this is probably doubly so because a lot of America’s cultural heritage is more modern and avant-garde. When I was in my last year of law school, I was friends with the European LLMs. One of them was a huge fan of abstract art and modern dance. He considered these Americas great contributions to world art and culture and did so with reverence.

    Only in the United States do we make boorish jokes about preserving and promoting cultural patrimony.Report

    • Avatar Philip H in reply to Saul Degraw
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      I always thought it was a patrician sort of thing – like we shouldn’t fund the NEA because it focuses on art for the common person as opposed to reserving art for the well heeled.Report

      • Avatar dhex in reply to Philip H
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        leaving aside the idea that a minister of culture style position isn’t barf-worthy, pandering garbage akin to trump’s flailing about for a real NK style 4th of july parade…

        creating a new fedgov cabinet position and (presumably) office != increasing or decreasing funding of museums, or just increasing NEA monies. go read that guy’s piece. he’s not talking about increasing funding alone. he’s talking about the importance of – during a global pandemic no less – making sure there’s a cabinet-level position to…tell americans what is and isn’t important about culture that they largely, as a people, do not consume.

        hence the fantastically ridiculous line “…underline the value of arts and entertainment to the nation’s financial, social and psychological well-being.”

        dude, c’mon. we live in a world where kids stream videos of streamers who are streaming playthroughs of games based on movie properties adapted from books. everyone is fully awash in the arts. they’re just not fully awash in the arts no one pays to go see.

        this is why the piece is quick to conflate “arts and entertainment” in terms of $$$ power, but then revert the focus back to local theatres and whatnot. the popular stuff doesn’t need an arts czar.

        not that i would not enjoy the utter spectacle of the circular firing squad over “shared cultural heritage” and hammering out exactly what that means and to whom and all that fun stuff.

        that would be, as the kids say, “lit”. it’d be something else. it’d be a reason to load up twitter again. perhaps even a reason to sing again…

        (and then of course the additional gnashing of teeth when some qanon nutzo becomes president and reworks all of the arts funding into statues of some guy shooting up a pizzaria in the name of great pedophile justice.)Report

  4. Avatar greginak
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    Odd bleg here. Does anyone have a link to what conservatives think Critical Race Theory is? I know i can find what CRT people think it is, but who cares about that. I keep seeing conservatives freak about it yet it just seems like the newest boogie man to keep conservatives terrified. No one every seems to want to explain what they are afraid of or its so muddled it seems like they can’t handle even talking ….well….i’ll stop there actually. So what is “CRT”?Report

    • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak
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      Off the top of my head, it’s the “White Fragility”/”Anti-Racism” performative virtue signaling that companies engage in to cover up the fact that they use slaves in other countries.Report

      • Avatar greginak in reply to Jaybird
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        So that is both cringy and pretty shallow. C’s are all about banning CRT from schools and think the “theory” is the wrongest thing that ever wronged. Big companies PRing is not exactly news though it is the kind of thing people looooove to focus us even knowing it’s PR bs. What are C’s trying to ban?Report

        • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak
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          Do you have any links to conservatives saying that CRT is the wrongest wrong that ever wronged and they think it should be banned?Report

            • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Philip H
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              I did a search for the word “critical” and couldn’t find it.

              Are we going to say that the description of the various things in there counts as Critical Race Theory?

              If so, okay.

              Today, however, many people are pushing a different vision of America that is grounded in hierarchies based on collective social and political identities rather than in the inherent and equal dignity of every person as an individual. This ideology is rooted in the pernicious and false belief that America is an irredeemably racist and sexist country; that some people, simply on account of their race or sex, are oppressors; and that racial and sexual identities are more important than our common status as human beings and Americans.

              Huh. Are some people oppressors based on their race or sex?

              Going further down to the definitions…

              (a) “Divisive concepts” means the concepts that (1) one race or sex is inherently superior to another race or sex; (2) the United States is fundamentally racist or sexist; (3) an individual, by virtue of his or her race or sex, is inherently racist, sexist, or oppressive, whether consciously or unconsciously; (4) an individual should be discriminated against or receive adverse treatment solely or partly because of his or her race or sex; (5) members of one race or sex cannot and should not attempt to treat others without respect to race or sex; (6) an individual’s moral character is necessarily determined by his or her race or sex; (7) an individual, by virtue of his or her race or sex, bears responsibility for actions committed in the past by other members of the same race or sex; (8) any individual should feel discomfort, guilt, anguish, or any other form of psychological distress on account of his or her race or sex; or (9) meritocracy or traits such as a hard work ethic are racist or sexist, or were created by a particular race to oppress another race. The term “divisive concepts” also includes any other form of race or sex stereotyping or any other form of race or sex scapegoating.

              (b) “Race or sex stereotyping” means ascribing character traits, values, moral and ethical codes, privileges, status, or beliefs to a race or sex, or to an individual because of his or her race or sex.

              (c) “Race or sex scapegoating” means assigning fault, blame, or bias to a race or sex, or to members of a race or sex because of their race or sex. It similarly encompasses any claim that, consciously or unconsciously, and by virtue of his or her race or sex, members of any race are inherently racist or are inherently inclined to oppress others, or that members of a sex are inherently sexist or inclined to oppress others.

              Okay. If this is Critical Race Theory, I think I can understand why they don’t want it taught, at the federal level, that some races or sexes are better than others.

              Jeez, if this is Critical Race Theory, it sounds like a good way to create a toxic work environment!Report

              • Avatar Philip H in reply to Jaybird
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                It is loosely unified by two common themes:

                Firstly, that white supremacy exists and exhibits power maintained over time, and, in particular, that the law plays a role in this process.

                Secondly, that transforming the relationship between law and racial power, as well as achieving racial emancipation and anti-subordination more broadly, are possible.[6]

                Sure seems to match what the WH has banned in training.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Philip H
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                I did a search on “white supremacy” and then “supremacy” in the White House statement and couldn’t find it.

                When it comes to transforming the relationship between law and racial power, is that something that requires that I see you as racist?Report

              • Avatar gregin in reply to Jaybird
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                Did you see Tod’s brief story on the Tweeterz from a few weeks re: this. He said his son went to a youth service program. The program typically helps poor usually minority communities so they do some training for the typically white middle class kids to know what to expect and how to interact with a group they probably don’t know. Complete common sense.

                Welp that training got ditched due to trumps order. Dumb as a bag of hammers.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to gregin
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                There was no way to treat white kids on what to expect when dealing with poor communities without involving Critical Race Theory?

                This seems like a failure.

                Wait, is “Check Your Privilege” Critical Race Theory?Report

              • Avatar greginak in reply to Jaybird
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                Huh? What are you even talking about. Due to T’s ban simple obvious training was dumped. That is bad. What did it have to due with CRT? I’m still not sure what CRT is supposed to be other then the legalistic carp from the above order which i already knew about. Was that training even CRT? What is CRT supposed to be that is different from talking about race or cultural differences? There is usually some there there so speak. What it is the “there”?Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak
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                I read the White House release, linked above, and I don’t see how it would necessitate ending training white kids to go into poorer parts of town.

                Could you explain it to me?Report

              • Avatar greginak in reply to Jaybird
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                Well it was tod’s story and only a couple of tweets. My guess would be the internal message was to stay away from anything regarding race or different cultures. If you are teaching kids about how to interact with people of different race/culture it juuuust might come up that those people were treated poorly in the past or something like that.

                Fwiw i used to train my staff about dealing with Alaska Native teens and a brief history of how they were treated by white peeps and typical cultural habits/ differences was obvious to explain. Telling them that white people treated Alaska Native folk like crap for decades and still do was a thing.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak
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                Golly, all Critical Race Theory is is stuff like acknowledging that people were treated poorly in the past?

                I certainly don’t see why anybody could oppose Critical Race Theory, then.Report

              • Avatar greginak in reply to Jaybird
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                So you got nothing then. If you don’t know what the Consero version of CRT is then its fine to say you dont’ know.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak
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                Oh, I think I know what the Conservo version is: It’s the one that says that you, Greg, need to explain to the group how you are racist.

                How are you racist, Greg? What benefits from racism have you received?

                What are you doing to address how many benefits you’ve received from racism and do what you can to rightly redistribute them back to the people that these benefits were stolen from in the first place?Report

              • Avatar greginak in reply to Jaybird
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                Well my parents opened a luncheonette in the late 60’s in a place blacks couldn’t so their potential competition was unfairly eliminated. That helped them. When we sold my family house in NJ a racist (dad of childhood best friend) real estate agent tried to avoid selling to a black couple in 19 freaking 94. The part of NJ i grew up had a ton of segregation for all the usual reasons. Was that the kind of answer your looking for?.

                Or were you going for Attack All The Time as a rhetorical strategy. Yeah that seems like it. Answer questions with attacks. It’s okay for you not to know the answer to what C’s think. You arent’ their whisperer. We all don’t know some things. It’s okay to not have the answer.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak
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                Wait, you see me asking you how you’re racist and what benefits from racism you’ve received as an *ATTACK*?

                Oh, Greg.

                We’ve got a lot of work to do if you see being asked about the benefits you’ve seen from your whiteness as an attack.

                Here’s a book you should read: Ibram X. Kendi’s How to Be an Antiracist.

                And, you know what? You should really think about why you think that me asking you about the benefits you’ve received is an attack, rather than an honest question that you need to wrestle with every day.Report

          • Avatar greginak in reply to Jaybird
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            Trump made a show of banning it in any Fed workplace and that was great!!!Report

        • Avatar Philip H in reply to greginak
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          White guilt.
          White accountability.
          White government helping give another leg up to people of color.
          Anything that points out that white people oppress people of color.

          But they won’t answer this question for you any more then they answer my questions about what they want liberals to actually do on a whole host of topics.Report

          • Avatar greginak in reply to Philip H
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            Well that is party my assumption, that any discussion of race or racism is what is meant. But often there is a distorted version of X theory out there. Sort of like with “intersectionality” which when explained in it’s original meaning seems pretty banal and i’ve seen plenty of conservatives say makes sense. But there is some other carp loaded on that makes it the Fear De Jour.Report

            • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak
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              I am reminded of something that Scott Alexander wrote:

              I feel like every single term in social justice terminology has a totally unobjectionable and obviously important meaning – and then is actually used a completely different way.

              The closest analogy I can think of is those religious people who say “God is just another word for the order and beauty in the Universe” – and then later pray to God to smite their enemies. And if you criticize them for doing the latter, they say “But God just means there is order and beauty in the universe, surely you’re not objecting to that?”

              The result is that people can accuse people of “privilege” or “mansplaining” no matter what they do, and then when people criticize the concept of “privilege” they retreat back to “but ‘privilege’ just means you’re interrupting women in a women-only safe space. Surely no one can object to criticizing people who do that?”

              …even though I get accused of “privilege” for writing things on my blog, even though there’s no possible way that could be “interrupting” or “in a women only safe space”.

              When you bring this up, people just deny they’re doing it and call you paranoid.

              When you record examples of yourself and others getting accused of privilege or mansplaining, and show people the list, and point out that exactly zero percent of them are anything remotely related to “interrupting women in a women-only safe space” and one hundred percent are “making a correct argument that somebody wants to shut down”, then your interlocutor can just say “You’re deliberately only engaging with straw-man feminists who don’t represent the strongest part of the movement, you can’t hold me responsible for what they do” and continue to insist that anyone who is upset by the uses of the word “privilege” just doesn’t understand that it’s wrong to interrupt women in safe spaces.

              All that to say:

              I’m sure that there are definitions of critical race theory that everybody here would agree are things that ought to be taught to everyone.

              And then when something like a crazy person shows up and starts screaming that white people making dumplings at their restaurant needs to be shut down because it’s inherently racist to appropriate dumplings, the people who look at that and say “no, this Critical Race Theory bullshit is bullshit”.

              And people can pivot back to “don’t you think that white supremacy in the 1880s resulted in structural inequalities?”

              And, meanwhile, the restaurant is still shut down.

              Report

              • Avatar greginak in reply to Jaybird
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                True and the very common other version is conservatives taking a reasonable and useful term and turning it into the devil.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak
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                If “turning it into the devil” means “noticing when people are screaming for restaurants selling food they find personally offensive to close”, then we’re in a place where the devil exists.

                And now we can go back and forth on what Critical Race Theory is, in theory, and what it ends up being, in practice.

                For the record, I agree with Critical Race Theory. Well, the good one that isn’t crazy.

                I disagree with the crazy one that nobody argues is okay outside of the people screaming for superfood dumpling restaurants to be shut down.Report

              • Avatar greginak in reply to Jaybird
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                So it’s almost like there are different versions of a theory. My query was what exactly to conservatives think it is since they seem to be terrified of it. You don’t have that but you do have a story about nutty dumplings lady by cringy bad. Got it.

                Fwiw i agree with a lot of non crazy libertarian points. Just not the crazy ones that float around the webs and nobody takes seriously.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak
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                Oh, well, I’ve since learned that all Critical Race Theory is is acknowledging that bad things happened in history.

                As such, I think we should fully support Critical Race Theory.

                Have you decolonized your feminism, Greg?Report

              • Avatar Oscar Gordon in reply to Jaybird
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                This is why I like the hard sciences. No one is trying to take the Theory of Gravity and make it all about how the Earth is just keeping the little guy down.Report

              • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to Oscar Gordon
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                Read Conservapedia on Einstein’s Theory of Relativity.Report

              • Avatar Oscar Gordon in reply to Mike Schilling
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                Can I just say No, or do I have to hold my nose and do it for science?Report

    • Avatar LeeEsq in reply to greginak
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      Conservatives believe that Critical Race Theory is going against God, Mom, and Apple Pie. It is totally depicting the entirety of American history as evil white people doing bad things to virtuous people of color and that these evil white people must undergo re-education rather than relish in what they see as true patriotic history.Report

  5. Avatar Saul Degraw
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    LF4: If California and Virginia are any examples, the Arizona GOP will not learn any lessons from 2020. If anything defeat after defeat seems to turn them more into a rump minority that would rather fly the freak flag to own the libs than moderate and win elections.Report

  6. Avatar greginak
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    Apparently this just happened. House votes to legalize marijuana. Well yesterday was my birthday but i’ll take it today. Though it’s already legal up here. But this is a pretty big deal. Now onto the Senate or far more likely wait until the new congress is seated in january. And the D’s should have done this 3 months ago.

    https://twitter.com/voxdotcom/status/1334926504271208448Report

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