Wow, all white people really do look alike! Seriously, I cannot wait for summer to be over because summer New Yorker covers are all beached based jokes and they are a snooze.
Talk of the Town
In the bummer leadoff spot for this week’s TotT we have news out of Iraq. This was published pre-retaking of the Mosul dam, so things are not quite as super bleak as presented here but things are still pretty bleak. George Packer sheds light on a possible response from countries in the region to the threat of ISIS as it grows and offers hope of a multilateral solution to the problem, which would be really really great. Next up Tad Friend talks to Penny Marshall about Robin Williams’ death which was a true tragedy (but was also good for finding out which one of your facebook friends actually likes Patch Adams). Penny Marshall is sad and makes the reader feel sad but there are some awkward chuckles in there which all one can ask for. Ughghghg, then there is a thing about one of the dudes who invented OkCupid and his admission about them doing a facebook-style experiment on its users and about the book he wrote. This dude was in a band that I HATED that also was named after a street that I lived on and so I could not read this without think about how much I disliked this band which is generally enjoyed by morons (sorry people who I’m friends with that I just called morons). I guess it makes sense that this dude invented a website that is mostly populated by morons too (sorry other friends that i just called morons). Finally, a thing about trilobites and the word trilobites makes me think of Hellraiser. I watched Hellraiser about a dozen times for a project I was a part of and man, that movie is super awkward. This what my brain was thinking while I read this thing about trilobites.
The Financial Page
This week we get a rundown on the ebola situation and how it relates to the economics of drug research. The gist is that there probably could be/is a cure for ebola but there couldn’t/wouldn’t be enough of it because there is no $$$ in looking for a cure for ebola and that is what pharmaceutical companies care about. Much like silicon valley, big pharma is only interested in research that serves the middle to upper class, better anti-depressants/boner pills/heartburn enders and the like. I would love to show this single page to any and all dickhead free marketers or even more insufferable libertarians because this is where big government is needed. Without things like the NIH and CDC there no one in the US would be looking for cures for diseases like ebola and people would be dying (even more than they already are) while the rich stroked their heartburn-free boners and wondered why it was all happening.
Let me say that, like Emily Nussbaum, Jill Lepore is one of my favorite New Yorker writers and seeing her name in the table of contents of the magazine makes my heart sing. Unfortunately I’m not going to talk very much about her fantastic article tracing the path of corruption law through history (other than to say that a person amazingly named Zephyr Teachout will only be governor of New York when it is a floating space colony in the year 2268) because this article reminded me of something that is MAKING ME MAD and I’m writing this so I can do whatever I want and be a real hot penis about it. This great article spent a decent amount of time talking about corporate donations and money as speech and maybe I’m being a dumb but maybe we should spend more time talking about actual speech. While the limits for what monied interests can do to influence politics seems to be lessening by each Supreme Court session the public’s ability to express their own desires seems to be shrinking at the same rate. It started back in the 90s in the wake of the WTO riots in Seattle and the ideas of “free speech zones” where people could express their displeasure at politicians at a distance where they could not possibly hear them. Currently you may be hearing about some other problems with people getting together to express opinions. Is it possible that we’ve spent too much time worrying about how rich people can express themselves and not enough about listening to the voices of human beings who lives are directly and forcefully changed by the decisions of people in power? To that I say a hearty NO-DOY.
Shouts and Murmurs
Did not read.
Letter From China
This is a thing about how messed up China’s medical system is and OH BOY IT IS MESSED UP REAL BAD. We get to hear the story of a dude who had an ordeal that sounds so much worse than that one time a doctor was rude when he told you to say ahh and his reaction was to straight up stab a doctor in the neck! The thing is, according to this article, people were kind of like “yeah, he should probably go to jail buuuuuuuutttt, we get it.” ?LOWQKEW)@)JE)*#H*(HHSHIDOIAJDIOJIJDFI)JEWFJIJEJJE. CHINA! Your medical system is gone straight in the toity!
A Reporter at Large
OOOOOOOOOOH another spy story, I love spy stories, even if this spy story is about a pretty boring spy who got this lady pregnant and then ran out like a spy-jerk. The whole idea of seeing someone you thought was lost to the sands of time turn up as an operative is fascinating but this dude was a spy for the British Police (snoooooooooze) who spied on British environmentalists (double snoooooooooooooze). The story itself is good and interesting but when you put spy in the title of the article I WANT MORE FUCKING SPY SHIT!
Annals of Science
Apparently there is a pretty famous environmental activist who talks like a total crazy person about food. This person is names Vandana Shiva and this article is basically about how crazy she is and how we’ve all gone a little over the edge with this whole anti-GMO thing. Shiva’s quotes comparing using modified seeds to the holocaust are pretty damning of her and this movement in general so I don’t have a lot of problems with her takedown. I’m pretty mistrustful of large corporations like Monsanto but mostly because they tend to look at the bottom line and patents rather than anything else but I don’t have a ton of problems with GMOs. I’m actually pretty freaked out by people mistrusting science and their willingness to just go with their “feelings” even in the face of hard evidence. This is the same line of thinking that brought us everybody’s favorite person to be stuck at a baby shower with, the anti-vaxxer. Things like Golden Rice seem like miracle solutions to deep seeded (no pun intended) problems but have been blocked from implementation because people just “think” it’s wrong, WHAT THE ENTIRE FUCK?
Did not read.
The Critics: Books
I read a lot of this New Yorker waiting to get my hair cut. This is a thing that happens in New York City, you go to the place that gave you that really good haircut that one time you had a gift certificate and then you’re stuck with the hour long wait time. By the time I got to this article I was out of reading ability. I tried, I swear I tried, but holy moly do I not care about the uproar caused by some dude who swears a lot and writes in the voice of poor Scottish people winning the Booker Prize.
Did not read.
This is another one where my eyes kept sliding off the page due to tiredness and a lack of interest. I managed to get to the end of the article but all I can tell you is that apparently country music is now just pop music sung by a white person in a dumb hat with an occasional hat tip to things white people like.
The Current Cinema
Two reviews of movies which I will for sure not see in the theater.
THAT’S IT GUYS! SORRY FOR ALL THE CONTROVERSIAL OPINIONS IN THIS ONE BUT SOME OF THESE ARTICLES REALLY GOT MY DANDER UP! JUST A PROGRAMMING NOTE, FROM NOW ON THE NEW YORK REVIEW OF NEW YORKERS WILL APPEAR EVERY TUESDAY! YES, IT IS BECAUSE OF SPORPS!
#HiFi systems by #MicheleDeLucci circa 1980.
Lee Pace auditioned for Peter Quill/Star Lord.
Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
I want to take this moment to let everybody know that Ronan the Accuser looks like the worst member of KISS
Dear Racists: I know you’re going to to be trotting this out in the next few days claiming that this shows how white people are just as badly treated as black people in the US (though, of course, the idea that “it happens all the time” to white people is, of course, a ridiculous and disgusting lie).
But guess what, fuckheads, as usual, you’re wrong as fuck. The reason this tragedy isn’t national news is because, surprise surprise, a similar (ish) shooting of a white teenager by a black cop is being handled by the authorities completely differently! That’s right, you dumbfucks, this officer is being immediately and vigorously investigated, the officer’s name was released, the victim wasn’t denied medical care, nor was his body left on the street for hours. It’s almost like we treat black and white people differently in our justice system! And if you want to argue that the fucking Salt Lake City PD (oh shit, was I able to read about this case in the NATIONAL NEWS?!?!?! ) is racist against white people, you are fucking out of your mind.
So, nice try, you asshole, I know you were salivating over finding a case to compare this to Mike Brown, but, even with this timing, you’re not even fucking close to proving your racist “point.”
Is this thing from the Classical comedy perfection? Possibly.
- Donate money to have those arrested in Ferguson released on bail. These people belong on the streets, especially at a time like this.
- Send a note of condolence to the family of Michael Brown. Let’s not forget the tragedy that started this.
- Donate to the Michael…
I think I saw this about two years ago and I think about it a lot. And I sing it a lot. I need a pencil.
Nothing says White People Magazine more than a pastel-ey painting of a lady reading a book and reclining in front of a hedge with a dog. Thanks for coming through Lorenzo Mattotti.
Talk of the Town
TotT starts out this week with a little bit on crime and punishment in the viral video age. Margaret Talbot starts with the Eric Garner story which I’m super familiar with because they kept playing the video of the choke hold that led to his death on NY1 at my gym (THANKS PLANET FITNESS!). She then transitions to speaking about the Ray Rice incident, linking the two by the prominence of videos in both stories. She goes on to give the NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell, the harsh judgement he deserves. I care a little too much about football (FOOTBALLZ, the internet’s first/only/best alternative audio broadcast of Monday Night Football starts on September 8th! SYNERGY!) so I have lots of thoughts on this subject. I agree with Talbot that the two games that Rice was suspended for is pretty weak, especially when other players get suspended for an entire year just for smoking weed (which is actually legal in some of the states that these teams play in), but if you paid attention you’d know that this is pretty much par for the course when it comes to the NFL. Goodell and the owners that he serves, and don’t get it twisted he is there for the owners and not the players, are concerned only with the money that the game lines their already well lined pockets with. Ideas of “fairness” or “safety” or “justice” or “morals” only exist when they might effect the bottom line. Goodell knows that the insane way many people think about crimes against women in this country, or hell, even this world (see this) won’t stop people from watching the games once they start up so Ray Rice gets two games and an apology tour and there is nothing we can do about it (except don’t watch and that isn’t going to happen). Next up was something about Ebola but I’ve been told by scientists not to worry about it. After that there is a thing about the owner of Uniqlo going to a Uniqlo and how he has lots of nice stuff but doesn’t use it because he’s always working, man rich stuff is really wasted on the rich. Also apparently to work at a Uniqlo you have to memorize weird phrases like “Uniqlo is clothing in the absolute”. Uniqlo is a weird company but they sponsor museum stuff so keep getting people to buy your boring clothes old dude! To close out we get a thing about Roger Angell, who often writes for the magazine, getting inducted into the baseball writers hall of fame. GOOD JOB ROG!
The Financial Page
Here is something about how moguls are going the way of the dodo focussing on Rupert Murdoch’s bid to buy Time Warner. This dude knows he’s going to die at some point right? And that he doesn’t get to keep all this crap? Maybe he’s using all of his money to find a way to be uploaded into some sort of ever living computer suit or something. I’d almost be down with it if it involved Neil Cavuto and Charles Krauthammer’s life forces being siphoned off or something like that. I don’t know how it would work or anything but those guys really suck.
Blllleeeeeeccchchchchchchchchchchchhc, another in-the-end pointless series of words from total schmuck Malcolm Gladwell. This time he compares the mafia of the 20th century to the drug dealing of today and then comes to the amazing realization that they are different. THAT’S REALLY IT. There are other words in there and some anecdotes but that is pretty much how it shakes out. THANKS MALCOLM, I NEVER WOULD HAVE THOUGHT THAT DIFFERENT PEOPLE IN DIFFERENT TIMES THAT HAPPENED TO DO SLIGHTLY SIMILAR THINGS WOULD HAVE DIFFERENT OUTCOMES IN AN EVER CHANGING WORLD. Yeeeeeesh, I would wonder how this guy is still allowed to have a space in the magazine but then I remember that they publish David Sedaris.
Shouts & Murmurs
Did not read.
This was an article about Nina Simone, Nina Simone was crazy and awesome, this article was awesome. Stop reading this and go listen to Nina Simone and think about how everybody who makes music today is kind of a coward compared to her.
Letter From Moscow
Before we get to the article I have to say that for some reason I could not stop staring at Vladmir Putin’s man breasts in the illustration that accompanied it. Barry Blitt really knows how to draw a hypnotic dude titty. The article itself shows the coarsening of Russian government during the Putin Regime through the story of Michael McFaul, the former US Ambassador to the country. I have to say despite all the horrible things that occur to the former diplomat he kind of comes off as a bit of a dick. I’m not saying that Russia is awesome and this guy brought this on himself because in the article you learn that Russia is currently very much not awesome but man I would not want to hang out with Michael McFaul.
This profile of architect Shigeru Ban has a lot of good stuff in it. Ban seems like a pretty fascinating dude and there’s lots about how architecture is vanity for a lot of super super rich and how things can be both beautiful and economical and eco-friendly but there needed to be more pictures. I enjoyed the long descriptions of materials I’ve never seen before in my life but seriously guys if you are going to have an article about building CAN WE PLEASE HAVE ONE PHOTO OF AN ENTIRE BUILDING? I know that I could just go onto the internet to see all sorts of Ban’s work but I’m reading a magazine BECAUSE I DON’T WANT TO BE ON THE INTERNET FOR FIVE FUCKING MINUTES. Anyway, other then the stunning lack of photos this article was great and actually made me want to go to Aspen to see Ban’s design. i won’t though because Aspen seems like it sucks and it also was a place that kids who beat me up would go to with their families.
Did not read.
The Critics: A Critic at Large
After reading this I really want to read Nixonland because Georg Packer makes it sound like a great book. He also lets everybody know that lots of stuff happened in the 70s despite what dickhead baby boomers might have you believe.
Did not read.
I did not want to watch The Knick before reading this review and I do not want to watch it after either. What can I say? It takes a lot to make me watch a non-post WWII period piece no matter how much Clive Owen rumples his forehead. Also, sorry Emily Nussbaum, there is no way I’m going to watch a show called Call the Midwife, I don’t care how rich a story it is supposed to have.
If you think I read Sasha Frere-Jones on Weird Al Yankovic then you are a total crazy person and should go to a crazy person hospital.
The Current Cinema
You know what else I don’t like seeing? Biopics. David Denby makes Get On Up sound okay so maybe if you want to go you should but I’ll just go get coffee while you do.
THIS ONE WAS PRETTY GOOD PALS, IF ONLY WE DIDN’T HAVE TO READ THAT DOPE GLADWELL THIS WOULD HAVE BEEN THE BEST ISSUE.