Idle thoughts from December, 2017:
- Dec 2 2017: Cognitive dissonance is being at Dickens on the Strand listening to youth band with 15 bagpipes playing Camptown Races.
- Dec 2 2017: Pete Sessions is pleased with a massive tax hike on the middle class to pay for a massive tax cut for the 1%. I look forward to voting him out in 2018.
- Dec 2 2017: RT @NumbersMuncher: "From a year ago, but point remains: Ted Cruz propped up Trump during the primaries because he desperately wanted Trump's supporters. Ted Cruz is the worst."
Ted Cruz is the worst...and not just for his cynical support for Trump in the early 2016 primaries.
- Dec 2 2017: RT @TASBGR: "Behind Oklahoma, Texas Has Made Deepest Cuts To State Education Funding In Past Decade."
Don't let Villalba or Button or even Koop claim to support education without complaining about this to high heaven.
After the jump, more idle thoughts.
- Dec 3 2017: A tournament that fails to include four conference champions to determine the national champion is a fraud. Even the old Bowl system pitted conference champs against each other. Sorry, I don't want to watch an SEC do-over.
- Dec 4 2017: Win and you're in. Lose and you're out. Isn't that how sports should be? Ohio State won. Alabama lost. Crazy. What about that Ohio State non-conference loss? NCAA rewards schools for scheduling weak opponents. Crazy. Athletic directors will notice. Fans will be losers.
- Dec 5 2017: Wonder (2017): Self-conscious boy born with facial deformity starts school, deals with bullying. Well-crafted, sensitive, uplifting family drama. Hits all the right notes to bring tears. Although unrealistically optimistic, still a lesson for all. #ChooseKind A-
- Dec 5 2017: MT @marklamster : "great stories on our new home."
DMN covers itself well on good news stories like this, but for most news about DMN itself, you have to read Dallas Observer or D Magazine.
- Dec 6 2017: @PeteSessions, do something useful and re-authorize CHIP.
- Dec 6 2017: @brett_shipp challenging @PeteSessions is welcome news. But why are his tweets protected? Is he scrubbing them? Not a good first impression.
- Dec 7 2017: That's odd. @brett_shipp's Twitter feed was protected when he announced his run. Why? Was it being scrubbed I wondered. He didn't reply, but when someone else replied "Who cares?" @brett_shipp "liked" that reply. That's even odder.
- Dec 8 2017: Just got a fundraising email from Melania Trump with the subject "Have you gotten yours yet?"
Double entendre? Kind of risque for a First Lady, no?
- Dec 10 2017: RT @MattMarcotte: "People sorely underestimate how ubiquitous and effective 'crazy Bernie!' ads would be against him in a general election race."
Conventional wisdom agrees. But the same was said about Donald Trump.
- Dec 11 2017: Godless (TV): Old West town where all the men died in a mine accident is now terrorized by an outlaw and his gang. Dark mood and look. Scenes allowed to linger on senses. Rich subplots with religion, race, gender and sex. B+
- Dec 11 2017: @marklamster and @SteveBrownDMN both work for DMN, but whereas we get architectural critique from the former, all we ever get from the latter are developers' repackaged press releases.
- Dec 12 2017: The Disaster Artist (2017): A biopic about a real-life wacky auteur and the making of his bad cult movie, "The Room." No matter what they might say, it's more Hollywood insiders mocking him than embracing him. The result is a failed movie for different reasons. C-
- Dec 12 2017: Email from Melania Trump: "You’ve been chosen as one of our top supporters to receive a chance at the first batch of official 2018 Republican National Committee calendars."
I don't know about "top supporters" but I do look forward to counting down to Tuesday, Nov 6, 2018.
- Dec 12 2017: RT @benchmarkpol: "The incredible story tonight - a Republican, supported by the RNC, and endorsed by Donald Trump, could not beat a pro-choice Democrat in Alabama."
Sweet Home Alabama.
- Dec 12 2017: RT @elizabethforma: "If we take away 1 more lesson from Alabama, it’s this: Dems can win in every district & state across the country."
Almost like Elizabeth Warren was thinking specifically of TX-32 when she wrote this.
- Dec 13 2017: Bannonism can never fail, it can only be failed.
- Dec 13 2017: RT @brett_shipp: "Denial is no longer an option."
Tell that to your former co-worker, the meteorologist at WFAA. Pete Delkus downplays climate change: "Our climate has always changed and always will."
- Dec 13 2017: Look at the before and after photos of Kalita Humphreys theater and its added second story. It turned a beautifully balanced Frank Lloyd Wright masterpiece into a Frankenstein brutalist hulk. (OK, that's hyperbolic, but still).
- Dec 13 2017: RT @PolitifactTexas: "No, undocumented immigrants were not caught voting in Alabama Senate election."
No, but the KKK were voting in force, as always in Alabama.
- Dec 14 2017: Alias Grace (TV): Real-life mystery. Maid is convicted of murdering her employer in 1843 Canada. Mystery is explored through sessions with her doctor and flashbacks. Murderess or victim? Strong acting that lets us see into her soul but only so far. A-
- Dec 15 2017: The Vietnam War (TV): Ken Burns documentary. All the battles, lies, protests, it's all here. It tore our country apart. The war is now being lost to history, but the wounds never really healed. Even at 17 hours, the memories resurrected here fly by too fast. A+
- Dec 16 2017: Not sure I'm going to see Star Wars. Pretty sure I already saw it. In 1977. And 1980, 1983, 1999, 2002, 2005, and 2015. How many times am I expected to watch the same movie?
- Dec 17 2017: I grew up believing George Orwell's 1984 was a cautionary tale. Little did I know that a President would come along and treat it as a user manual.
- Dec 18 2017: The Beguiled (2017): Wounded Union soldier takes shelter in southern girls' school. Repressed social norms dominate, leaving movie disappointingly bloodless for subject matter. But everything and everyone look great. C+
- Dec 18 2017: RT @RachelChumney: "3 Reasons Millennials Should Ditch Karl Marx for Ayn Rand."
Yikes! Is there a third choice, "none of the above"?
- Dec 18 2017: RT @AndrewFlowers: "One benefit of getting older: holiday cards are easier because your friends’ addresses don’t change so much from year to year."
Just wait until the cards start getting returned marked 'deceased.'
- Dec 19 2017: She's Gotta Have It (TV): Smart young independent brash black female artist in Brooklyn and her friends, who talk mostly about sex and race. An exotic world (for me) but still shallow, even if Nola is deeper here than in the 1986 movie. Saw 3 of 10 episodes. C-
- Dec 19 2017: RT @gamongold: "Charter schools have always been half re-segregation and half money-grab."
And half escape from failing public schools. (Yes, I know that adds up to 150% but math was never the priority behind the creation of charter schools.)
- Dec 20 2017: The Shape of Water (2017): "Beauty and the Beast" meets "Creature from the Black Lagoon." In a heist movie with Russian spies. The premise is preposterous but it works. A love story with something for everyone. A-
- Dec 20 2017: As we speak, cartons and cartons of "Reduce the Deficit - Vote GOP" t-shirts are being shipped to villages in Africa.
- Dec 20 2017: Judging only by the photos on realtor.com, instead of hassling him out of the city, the City of Richardson ought to make a rubber stamp to automatically approve anything this renovator wants to do with any house in Richardson. IJS.
- Dec 21 2017: Headline: "Papa John's Pizza CEO Steps Down."
Please don't tell me I'm going to have to eat Papa John's tasteless pizzas again.
- Dec 22 2017: How the Mind Works: How natural selection explains vision, language, emotions, and even the desire to play Russian roulette. A hard slog through some esoteric topics. C+
- Dec 22 2017: Trump's ambassador denies ever saying it, calls it "fake news." Then we're shown video of him saying it. Then he denies using the term "fake news" even though he said it just seconds before. We're through the looking glass here.
- Dec 22 2017: RT @JimLedford1: "Received a call from Marvin Sedberry @ Naaman Forest. Major Applewhite pulled a scholarship offer from his DT who has been committed since June."
There's a word for luring high school kids then turning your back on them when they are no longer needed. #MajorApplewhiting
- Dec 22 2017: RT @WayneSlater: "Green Party keeps turning up as allies of the GOP."
Nothing new. Every election in Texas the GOP assists Green Party candidates qualify for the ballot.
- Dec 24 2017: Dick Cheney famously said that "Reagan proved that deficits don't matter." Well, Trump proved that hypocrisy and bald-faced lying don't matter, either.
- Dec 25 2017: The best thing about the coming end of Christmas season? We won't have to hear any more arguments over whether the song, "Baby It's Cold Outside" is a song about sexual harrassment.
- Dec 25 2017: The second best thing about the coming end of Christmas season? We won't have to hear any more arguments over whether or not "Die Hard" is a Christmas movie.
- Dec 26 2017: Headline: "Indonesian bakery refuses to write 'Merry Christmas' on cake."
I guess America is still the model the rest of the world follows. Only instead of modeling freedom, we're now modeling discrimination.
- Dec 26 2017: Wow. Not quite the "honor" you say, sir. The Salt Lake Tribune named Orrin Hatch as Utahn of the Year in recognition of "His utter lack of integrity that rises from his unquenchable thirst for power."
- Dec 27 2017: The Sense of An Ending (2017): Discovery of old diary forces man to investigate and confront his repressed memories. Wrongs were done, but just what were they? A touch of mystery to this watchable quiet character study. B-
- Dec 27 2017: Melania Trump calls for cutting back an iconic Magnolia tree planted by Andrew Jackson on White House grounds. Tree is a good symbol of what's happened to Old Hickory's reputation. IJS.
- Dec 29 2017: Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017): "If they blow you up one day, you'll blow them up the next. It's just business." The gist of any Star Wars movie, including this one. With jokes, the gap between Star Wars and Spaceballs lessens with each movie. C-
- Dec 30 2017: "Black Mirror: USS Callister" > "Star Wars: The Last Jedi"
- Dec 30 2017: Final: Wisconsin 34, Miami 24. On Wisconsin. Is it too late to get a Big Ten representative in the playoff? Any one. What a fraud.