David Thompson
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December 22, 2014

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Drake D

Thanks from across the pond for all the entertainment. I've bookmarked your U.S. Amazon link as a way to provide small but steady support moving forward. It's a fine way never to forget to use your widget. No widescreen TVs in the immediate future, I'm afraid, but who knows what lies ahead.

P.S. There may be a purchase or two that could cause some people to blush -- Amazon sells almost *everything* you know -- but I trust you're made of sterner stuff. We're all consenting adults here, now, aren't we?

Connor

And to you and yours, David. Merry Christmas and thanks for the laughs.

JuliaM

And a very merry Christmas to you & yours.... :)

David

but I trust you’re made of sterner stuff.

Happily, my Amazon statements spare me the knowledge of who bought what.

Ames

The fox photos are lovely. Merry Christmas all.

Henry

Thanks once again for the great writing David. (and if you get any info, do let us all know about any unusual Amazon purchases - as we now know who the culprit is)

Have a great Christmas all :)

Jimmy

Merry Christmas, people.

RY

Merry Christmas, David, to you and yours.

And a very merry Christmas to all :)

R. Sherman

Merry Christmas, David.

beeper

Chat among yourselves and try not to get fag burns in the upholstery.

While our host's away...

"A survey last year revealed that fewer than one in five women now identifies herself as a feminist. Little wonder, and all our experiences confirm the fact. I asked my own mother a few days ago whether she was one and the response was positively volcanic. Feminism is a poisoned term. It is tainted; stained by the petty misandrist misdeeds of a thousand spoilt brats on the pages of the Guardian; an army of Jessica Valentis whinging about wrapping Christmas presents instead of objecting to the acid thrown in Indian women’s faces. Feminism is dead: feminists killed it. Not for them the struggles of women in oppressed Middle Eastern countries: that’s too hard, too politically tricky, too real. No. What really matters is the shirt a hero scientist wears, or the perceived sexism of video game players, or the non-existent 'rape culture' on American university campuses."

http://www.breitbart.com/london/2014/12/22/what-is-manspreading-and-why-are-people-angry-about-it/

Charlie Suet

Laura Bates had this article in the Graun:

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/womens-blog/2014/dec/18/year-of-brave-youg-inspirational-feminist-role-models

What's striking about it is that the Western feminists spend their time whining about shops packaging toys in ways they don't like, while their betters work to end FGM and give girls the right to education. It's quite extraordinary that Bates thinks these activities can be lumped together.

sk60

Merry Christmas all.

"A barber has told how he woke up from a coma following a car crash speaking fluent French and thinking he was Matthew McConaughey… Car crash victim Rory Curtis, 25, says the accident he was involved in changed his outlook on life, after he realised he wasn't a Hollywood actor."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/picturegalleries/howaboutthat/11307568/Barber-woke-from-coma-speaking-fluent-French-and-thinking-he-was-Matthew-McConaughey.html

Anna

Art critic: Overturned furniture is (still) art.

http://studiointernational.com/index.php/reiner-ruthenbeck-review-overturned-furniture-is-it-art-serpentine-gallery

David

Art critic: Overturned furniture is (still) art.

It’s curious how the critic’s question “is it art?” sounds so disingenuous and is followed by the standard self-flattering conceit that a negative answer can only be the result of some intellectual failure by unsophisticated heathens. Despite asking the question regularly, if not honestly, members of the art world’s establishment rarely arrive at an answer that non-establishment figures are more likely to discern. I.e., “It’s just more flummery being applauded by a disreputable and parasitic institution that has outlived its usefulness and has long since veered into desperation, irrelevance and self-parody, never to return.”

But then they wouldn’t, would they?

rjmadden

One for David...

https://twitter.com/falsedog/status/547095196752941056

And a Merry Christmas to all.

Ted S., Catskill Mtns., NY, USA

Merry Christmas from Icelandic scientists with a sense of humor

RY

This was up at Ace, a few days ago
From the Onion Archive:

http://www.theonion.com/articles/professor-deeply-hurt-by-students-evaluation,20130/

Theophrastus

Meanwhile, Zoe Williams agonises that she has no ideological home at Christmas. The poor lamb!
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/dec/23/atheist-anti-consumerist-christmas

Merry Christmas to you all!

David

Here’s one. A BBC reporter in Afghanistan stands next to an eight and a half ton pile of burning hash and opium. During the news report he starts to feel oddly buoyant.

Hal

The international culture wars continue, with an advance for our side:

Notes the Beeb, and a hell of a lot of others; The Interview: Sony's North Korea film to be screened in US.

Quoth the Beeb, North Korea says the film hurts the "dignity of its supreme leadership"

I've not seen translations from gibberish to communication being offered for "dignity", "supreme", or "leadership" in this instance.

I've already seen one note that it'll be playing near me starting on xmas. Apparently it's also then continuing for the several days after, so there won't be everyone who's interested all trying to get to the one theatre at once, so that'll be nice . . .

Hal

Art critic: Overturned furniture is (still) art.

Oy.

Where the opening paragraph from an art reporter would have simply been Assorted artworks of Reiner Ruthenbeck on display at Serpentine Gallery, London, 25 November 2014 – 15 February 2015.

And then following that the reporter would have stuck to stating what is on display, and never mind what the reporter thinks someone else should think of the display . . .

In the SF bay area, someone paid to be a reporter also completely missed the point a few days ago.

UC Berkeley effigies: It’s not art if it’s anonymous

The only secret in the Berkeley incident is who hung the effigies. The group that has claimed responsibility won’t tell us who they are.

I realized that what troubles me isn’t the effigies, it’s the anonymity.

. . . .

The Berkeley group is choosing to remain anonymous. We have no idea what they’re bringing out of the shadows at all.

And I’m not encouraged by what they’ve said in their statement.

Oh, really.

My immediate thought was to note that discussions of prehistoric cave paintings, assorted classical sculpture, tomb paintings, all the art being unearthed at Pompeii, and elsewhere, Etc. are going to suddenly get awfully interesting with that headline . . .

My followup thought was to note the writer very carefully quoting carefully selected bits from a statement that turned up on a bulletin board---but then including the a picture of the statement rather gives away a major point and totally undermines the writer's entire claim;

As the writer states;

The response from the anonymous group? They say it’s art.

“We are a collective of queer and POC [people of color] artists responsible for the images of historical lynchings

Actually, no, when one looks at the picture of the statement, that is not what the statement reads. Instead, the actual statement is: We are Bay Area collective of queer black and PoC artists . . .

And a main point of the statement that just gets referred to?

“We choose to remain anonymous because this is not about us as artists, . . . .

Oh, my. Actually delivering results, and letting the results explain themselves?!?!?!?

Gasp. Eek. Think of the children. Oh, the humanity. Who are these Philistines?!?!?!?!?!

---Oh, wait, that statement does rather state things doesn't it. Nevermind . . . !

Quint&Jessel, Sea of Azof, Bly, UK

Anonymous artists and silly feminists. Hopes for a Happier New Year to all!

David

Two more.

Laurie Penny says she would like to abolish jobs.

And Peter Robinson interviews Thomas Sowell about Basic Economics and much else besides.


[ Added: ]

Also, this.

Lancastrian Oik

Wishing our host, his contributors and readers a merry Christmas, and a happy and prosperous New Year.

AC1

Laurie Penny wants to abolish the ONLY way to increase wealth (Comparative advantage/employment) and the only way to adjust for relative productivity (pay).

After all rare skills shouldn't be rewarded with higher pay to entice more people into trying them...

I wonder why Marxism isn't a synonym for shortage as that's it's main output.

Gregoryno6

Merry Christmas to you, David and all your readers.
'Great feats of artistry' you say? Sounds legit. I'll take a look. Right after a meal would be a good time, no?

Hal

[ Added: ]

Also, this.

For the benefit of any others trying to place the face, Oh, is that what Owen Jones looks like . . . .

I tried reading Chavs at one point, but gave up once he'd rather emphatically demonstrated that he was completely missing the point and instead was hoping that if he just screams hysterically enough, people will cheer him on.

Quint&Jessel, Sea of Azof, Bly, UK

You will love this OUTRAGE! https://twitter.com/ParkerMolloy/status/547749409447223296?s=09

Henry

So here's my favourite comment of the year - from Brendan O'Neill's discussion of abortion with an Oxford post-grad student who turns out to be the feminist of nightmares (the podcast is worth a listen - quite horrifying)

Anyway - one comment noted of the pro-abortion feminists:

My body, my choice

Your college, my choice

Your business, my choice

Your shirt, my choice

Your money, my choice

Your words, my choice

Your body, my choice

Let us hope for more "choice" (including for thee and me) in the new year.

Quint&Jessel, Sea of Azof, Bly, UK

Henry, the "modern feminist" reminds me of no one so much as Gladys Kravitz, who always wanted to mind everyone else's business, and hated the thought of Sabrina maybe having unauthorized fun.

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