Two Quotes

Two quotes, totally unrelated.

The first from Streetwise Professor on Emmanuel Macron, with which I agree and wish I’d written myself:

I must confess that I may have misjudged M. Macron. I pegged him as a cipher whom Merkel would dominate. But if anything, Macron is proving to lean more towards Napoleonic ambitions, labeling himself “Jupiter” who aims to overawe the petty squabbling political nation.

Macron left some angered, and others nonplused, by his bonhomie with Trump during the president’s visit to France on Bastille Day. This actually makes perfect sense, and is the best demonstration of his intent to be his own man, rather than a Merkel flunky. As Empress Angela’s pretensions continue to swell, Macron knows that he needs a counterweight. He further knows that Merkel disdains Trump, and Trump don’t think much of her either. So the clever thing to do is to build a relationship to Trump. It signals independence. It will aggravate Angela. And it will provide Macron with some muscle in his dealings with Germany, and with the EU.

The second is from the comments at ZMan’s concerning one of Barack Obama’s attempts at appearing cool. I quote this simply because I found it amusing:

My favorite “Race to the bottom” moment with Obama was when he invited a bunch of rappers to the White House for the “My Brother’s Keeper” initiative, which was designed to help keep young black men free from entanglement with the criminal justice system. Obama was giving a speech, when the ankle bracelet of one of the rappers present started beeping. Rick Ross (the rapper in question) had been charged with kidnapping earlier in the year.

Heh!

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Holidays and Sport

Tomorrow I’m off to visit some friends in Baden-Baden until Friday, so no blogging next week I’m afraid.

I was going to write a post on the Lions v New Zealand, but what’s there to say? The Lions played well but didn’t take two golden chances when they ran right up to the line, which you can’t afford to do against the All Blacks. The pack played well but so did that of the Kiwis, cancelling each other out. There was little penetration by the Lions for whole periods of the game, but the breaks by Liam Williams and Jonathan Davies were very good indeed and justified their selection. Nobody played badly for the Lions, in fact everyone played well, only the Kiwis played better.

It’s hard to know what to do for the second test. Perhaps play Itoje instead of Kruis? As I said, nobody played badly. The worrying thing is the All Blacks generally put in their weakest performance in the first test and get progressively stronger thereafter. Gulp.

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Travels

I’m in London until Monday, so posting might be light or non-existent. No particular reason for me visiting other than it’s been a while and it would be nice to see some folk. I’ll be meeting some of the Samizdata lot on Saturday evening, which promises to induce a ferocious hangover on Sunday.

Highlight of my journey was feeding my outdated fiver into the change machine in the cross-channel ferry and getting coins in return. That’s saved me a trip to the Bank of England, having missed the cut-off date by a week or two.

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Twitter

For reasons of which I am not entirely sure, but somewhat related to the fact I’ll shortly have a book to market, I have started a Twitter account. For anyone who is interested, I can be found here.

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The Alt-Right and Antisemitism

There’s a reason why I don’t think the alt-right is going to become a serious political force. Take this passage, written by a reader and posted at Chateau Heartiste:

Btw, just learned about some interesting studies, posted at the (((NYT)))

Basically they argue that single motherhood weakened mostly the male children, because the sisters in such one parent families perform better in life than the brothers. In normal families, there is no difference or brothers perform better.

In other words, the lack of father harms more the male child than the female child. Therefore if you want to weaken men, push for single motherhood. No wonder jews try to destroy the family in the West, while simultaneously strengthening the family in Israel. There is deliberate push to decrease male influence in western society because jews feel threatened by white males, and by their innate nationalism.

So the next time a woman tells you that there aren’t enough good men, you can answer her: there aren’t enough good men because they were raised by women.

The author is actually making a valid point: feminism’s war on the family and their push for single motherhood is harming boys, and this ought to be discussed more than it is. But look at what gets shoe-horned in there:

No wonder jews try to destroy the family in the West, while simultaneously strengthening the family in Israel.

Jews don’t go in for family values? Single motherhood is the goal of Jewish women? Really? I know what the author is trying to say: American Jews, in general, vote Democrat, particularly Jewish women. Lunatic third-wave feminism has been enabled if not encouraged by the Democrats, and therefore it is the Jews who are destroying American families. But they are looking after their own in Israel.

It’s nonsense, of course. Sure, there will be Jewish women contributing to the idiocy of third-wave feminism just as there are atheist white men, but you can hardly dump the whole movement at the feet of the Jews. And only an idiot with think that liberal American Jews in places like New York are the same individuals, and subscribe to the same politics, as Israelis.

This is just lazy, old-fashioned antisemitism: blaming the world’s ills on “the Jews” and lumping them all together as one bloc. The problem is, you don’t need to go far into the alt-right to find this sort of stuff. It’s a shame because, as I said, the overall point made by the author is a good one. The Jew-bashing sentence added nothing, and will only serve to put normal people off. If this is how the bulk of the alt-right will go about their business, they’re going to struggle to go mainstream. I know I’ve largely abandoned alt-right websites and Gab feeds because of the constant Jew-bashing, although to be fair most is to be found in the comments. I’m sure others have too.

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Back in Paris

I’m back from Lisbon, and it was superb. Miles better, in my opinion, than the vastly overrated Barcelona. I’ll write a full report sometime this week, along with some photos. Hopefully I’ll put a blog post or two up today as well, but we’ll see: things are looking busy.

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Holidays

I spent this morning driving down to Annecy, and tomorrow I will head to Meribel for a week’s skiing in Les Trois Vallées. I doubt I’ll be doing much blogging during that time, but I will resume when I’m back on 13th February.

Thanks everyone for reading and commenting.

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Luvvie Lovers Upset

The blogroll in my sidebar links to two blogs which specialise in films, and I have found both of them useful sources when looking for obscure films which pass under the radar but I nevertheless might like.  But being arsty-types, the proprietors aren’t half precious snowflakes.

Firstly, Mostly Film:

IF, in this Year Of Our Lord 2016 you think…segment after segment after segment on the living, breathing bowl-of-dicks now a month away from owning the nuclear codes aren’t topics for a late-night comedy show, then fuck you; you weren’t going to like it anyway.

Besides, when I called out this show for praise last year, there wasn’t a bona-fide narcopathic lunatic in the White House. When Last Week Tonight returns in February, god knows there’s going to be.

Satire pretty much never changes anything, sadly, and satire certainly didn’t stop Donald Trump being elected President. But if America’s shatteringly thin-skinned President-Elect is on (lying) record as being shatteringly thin-skinned about one particular piece of satire, then as far as I’m concerned, that particular piece of satire needs to keep doing what it’s been doing, only massively more so. Staying angry is the only response. That was this year’s finale’s message – don’t put up with this. You don’t have to put up with this.

Because if there’s one person in the world who doesn’t remotely care about deeply unsexy and boring institutional injustices that invisibly ruin the lives of the disadvantaged every single day, it’s that motherfucker.

Bless.  But wait, there’s more:

It’s a thoroughly satisfying film, although in a post-Trump world, it plays far more as an anger-inducing polemic than might otherwise have been the case. The tiny gains these women fought so hard for in terms of opportunity, respect and dignity, overthrown in a two-year campaign by a tiny-handed megalomaniac and his shit-for-brains supporters.

And more:

Hello to you all from Europe’s Best Website. Usually we take this slight breather to indulge in a bit of frivolity – a joke here, a quip there, a look at what we’ve come up with, and a glance at the upcoming treats the world has in store for our eyes and our brains.

This week, however – who gives the tiniest fuck about all that? When the world youactually live in takes a gigantic step towards a global fascist dystopia by handing the reins of power to the human equivalent of a massive bag of flaming dogshit, well, being snarky about upcoming movie trailers seems slightly beside the point. The caveat to that being if there was a film out there featuring a racist, woman-hating President-Elect being relentlessly bludgeoned to death by a crack team of angry gorillas – we’d definitely link to that. But there isn’t, so we can’t.

Next is Film Babble Blog:

In the age of Trump (man, I hated typing that), a story about fighting racism is as timely as can be, but this film teaches a lesson that would be just as important for people to learn and appreciate even if our country had elected the more qualified candidate.

As the saying goes, “those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it.” Right now, when it sure looks like we are doomed, it’s more crucial than ever that we look back at the times that we as the people of this great, but greatly flawed country actually got something right.

And again:

A blast of a spectacular yet intimate feeling big-screen musical is exactly what we need right now as there’s a strong sense that there’s bleakness on the horizon.

And again:

This film also stirs up emotions about dealing with the difficult transition involving power changing hands next month. The Obama administration was as close to Kennedy’s Camelot as I fear we’re going get again in my lifetime. Such a movie as this is a must see in these scary times as it reminds us that America has gotten through dark times before and will again. This movie makes me want to believe that, despite the scariness of what’s on the rapidly approaching horizon, Camelot lives!

There are few things more off-putting on a blog which adequately deals with a particular specialist subject when the authors start to shoehorn in their political views. It’s fair enough if it is a political blog, but when you go to a site which advertises itself as being about films in order to read about films and you find crap like this…well, at least write something that doesn’t read like a transcript taken from a high-school debating class made up of particularly wet pupils.

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