Republican Fuckery XIIII: Randy McNally (TN Republican Hypocrite), TX Sued for Abortion Law, & SVB Woke Accusation

No one is perfect. We all have our flaws and mistakes to recover from. But there is a difference between knowing your imperfections and pretending that they don’t exist when it is convenient.

In Tennessee, Lt. Governor Randy McNally was accused of making adult comments on the Instagram page of a younger man who is in various stages of undress (otherwise known as a thirst trap). The young man whose images he responded to is gay. These Republican hypocrites claim to be for “traditional family values“. They talk a good game, but never walk the walk.

In Texas, five women have sued the state over its abortion ban. They are suing because they believe that the ban puts their life and the lives of their fetuses at risk. These women are my heroes. They are not just standing up for themselves and their families. They are speaking for all of us who are affected by arbitrary legislation that has more to do with the beliefs of a few than reality.

And finally, one of the major headlines of the last seven days is the collapse of the Silicon Valley Bank. The most disconcerting offshoots of the story are the accusations that “wokeness” was the cause of the bank’s downfall. Instead of zeroing in on the real problems that were the cause, the right once again chooses to pick the answer that suits them.

Two major points have been part of the discourse around the bank. The first is the repeal of the Dodd-Frank Act by the former guy. Like the accident in East Palestine, all of this might have been prevented had the regulations remained as is. The second is the irony that the organization received financial assistance from the federal government. However, when they wanted the government to be hands-off, they got what they wanted. They can’t have it both ways. Either there are structures in place to head off a collapse or it is the wild wild west.

Just another day in America.

Advertisement

Republican Fuckery XI: MTG on a National Divorce, You Know Who Visits East Palestine, TN Anti-Drag Queen Bill, and the Rising Use of Migrant Underage Children as Labor

In the Jane Austen novel, Sense and Sensibility, Marianne Dashwood says the following:


“The more I see of the world, the more am I dissatisfied with it; and everyday confirms my belief of the inconsistencies of all human characters, and of the little dependence that can be placed on the appearance of merit or sense.”

I could say the same about the Republican party.

A couple of weeks ago, Marjorie Taylor Greene decreed that it is time for a national divorce. It’s happened before. It’s called the Civil War. Though it ended almost 160 years ago, some of the scars are still bloodied and raw.

At about the same time, you know who visited East Palestine. Though he talked a good game (as he usually does), he ignored the obvious (again, as he usually does). The safety regulations that he gutted while in office led to the accident. In an effort to look good to those around him, he gave out his own brand of water and McDonalds. Let’s put aside the fact that this fast food giant is not everyone’s cup of tea.

What is more important is how nothing has changed with the man. His response was akin to when he visited Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria and threw out paper towels as if they were t-shirts at a sporting event. The only thing that I have to begrudgingly admit is that I agree with him that someone from the current administration should have been there sooner.

In Tennessee, a new piece of legislation that restricts drag shows has been signed into law. In an ironic twist, an image of Governor Bill Lee dressed in drag as a young man has made its way to the press. Though this question may sound obvious, don’t they have more pressing issues to deal with? I can think of a very long list that does not include anyone who dresses in drag.

Courtesy of the Other 98%

And finally, the right is constantly railing against “illegal immigrants” and the problems they cause. And yet, they look the other way when thousands of underage migrants cross the border without an adult and are employed in inhumane conditions by major corporations. I guess child labor laws mean nothing when one’s skin is brown and you come to this country looking for a better life.

Somehow, someway, we have to get these people out of office before they destroy this nation.

Thoughts On the 25th anniversary of the Clinton/Lewinsky Affair

Every generation has its own political scandal that defines that era. It speaks to the values and beliefs of that time.

This month is the 25th anniversary of the revelation of the Clinton/Lewinsky affair and the eventual impeachment of the President. On last Sunday’s episode of Meet the Press, host Chuck Todd and his rotating group of panelists discussed the long-term effects of this particular news item.

Starts at 26:44

Once the details hit the presses, Lewinsky became a punchline. Clinton would eventually weather the storm and end his time in office with a mostly solid reputation.

One of the things that struck me was a comment made by one of the guests. If it had happened today, the #MeToo movement would have vindicated Lewinsky. Clinton would be in the same league as Harvey Weinstein and Matt Lauer.

If nothing else, this shows that change does happen. It just sometimes takes a quarter of a century for it to be accepted as the norm.

Throwback Thursday: Wayne’s World 2 (1993)

The idea of not just one, but two movies coming out of a Saturday Night Live skit may seem like an impossible task. How does a writer take characters who are only seen for a few minutes on television and create a full-length film narrative?

It was done successfully in Wayne’s World (1992) and its sequel, Wayne’s World 2 (1993). Wayne Campbell (Mike Myers) and Garth Algar (Dana Carvey) are dealing with two major issues at the same time. They are trying to put on a rock concert. While the concert is in limbo, Wayne’s rockstar girlfriend, Cassandra Wong (Tia Carrere) has caught the eye of a record executive, Bobby Cahn (Christopher Walken). Bobby wants more than a professional relationship with Cassandra.

Like its predecessor, it is incredibly funny and remains true to its small screen roots. The references may be over the head of someone who was either too young or not yet born, but that can be overcome. I just get a kick out of watching a movie that is almost 30 years old and still makes me laugh.

My favorite part is the end scene which is essentially a throwback to The Graduate. It’s both true to its source while still being in the world of this narrative.

My only complaint (which is with many movies, both then and now) is that the women are confined to either romantic or sexual roles. While Wayne and Cassandra are dealing with their issues, Garth meets an older woman, Honey Hornee (Kim Basinger). Her name invokes everything the audience needs to know about her.

Do I recommend it? Yes.

Flashback Friday: Inside the Actors Studio (1994 to Present)

Acting, in its basest form, is not a mystery. It is a person pretending to be someone else. But it may appear to the public that an actor who gets to a certain level in their career has an aura about them that the average person doesn’t.

Inside the Actors Studio (1994 to present) was a talk show that initially aired on Bravo before moving to the Ovation network. Originally hosted by the late James Lipton, each episode featured one actor. Focusing on their life and career, it became more than just an opportunity for the performer to talk about their resume. The audience watching on TV got to know that person on a deeper level and the young performers sitting in the auditorium had the opportunity to learn from someone who was once in their shoes.

I remember watching Inside the Actors Studio. It was a fascinating inside look at the act of performing and those who have made a success of it.

Do I recommend it? Yes.

P.S. Saturday Night Live‘s version of this program and Will Ferrell‘s take on Lipton is hilarious.

Domestic Supply of Infants is Not That Hard to Understand

The difference between being seen as breeding stock and a fully-fledged human being with responsibilities, dreams, ambitions, etc comes down to one word: rights.

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito made a very damning and unnerving statement in the body of the leaked draft of the opinion that could potentially overturn Roe V. Wade. Buried in the footnotes is a quote from a 2002 CDC report about adoption within the United States.

“Whereas the domestic supply of infants relinquished at birth or within the first month of life and available to be adopted has become virtually nonexistent.”

I’m going to let NY Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and the late George Carlin take it from here.

What bothers me are two things. The first thing is that it opens the door to a slippery slope. Abortion is low-hanging fruit to these people. What’s next? Losing access to birth control? Taking away the ability to marry for LGBTQ couples and biracial couples? Undoing the 19th amendment and the 14th amendment?

The second thing is that this opinion is based on rulings that are centuries old. I’m not a lawyer, but it seems to me that they are grasping at straws, finding any legal theory (even the archaic ones) that they believe will support their cause.

Unfortunately, there is nothing we can do about SCOTUS judges. Their appointments are for life. But we can vote for Democrats at every level. They are the only ones who are both working for the people of this nation and fighting for the freedoms that we all hold dear.

John Lewis Vote GIF by GIPHY News - Find & Share on GIPHY

Hello, Molly!: A Memoir Book Review

Whoever said women can’t be funny has never seen Molly Shannon perform. This actress, comedienne, and Saturday Night Live alum have been making audiences laugh for more than twenty years.

Her new autobiography, entitled Hello, Molly!: A Memoir, which was co-written with Sean Wilsey, was published last month. Her life was forever changed at the age of four when her mother, younger sister, and cousin were killed in a car crash. Her father was behind the wheel. Raising his surviving daughters as best he could, Molly had a unique childhood that opened the door to her future career as a performer. While becoming a celebrated actor/comedienne, she struggled with the loss of her mother and her complicated relationship with her father.

I loved this book. It is candid, it is funny, and it speaks to the power of belief and rising above tragedy. What hooked me was her ability to deal with grief in a way that was not overpowering or stopped her from living.

Do I recommend it? Absolutely.

P.S. I cannot end this post without talking about my favorite character of Molly’s, Mary Katherine Gallagher. Mary Katherine was the rare comedic combination of insecure, fearless, and not afraid to be herself. The comedy love child of Lucille Ball and Chris Farley, this character never failed to make me laugh.

Hello, Molly!: A Memoir is available wherever books are sold.

Happy Molly Shannon GIF by Saturday Night Live - Find & Share on GIPHY

RIP Betty White

To be the first in anything is a difficult task. This often applies when one is part of an oppressed group or a minority who is lacking in opportunity.

Betty White passed away yesterday. She was less than a month from her 100th birthday.

She was more than a legendary actress and comedienne who entertained generations of audiences. She was a trailblazer who opened the door to future generations of female performers.

My first introduction to Ms. White was watching The Golden Girls. After my paternal grandfather passed away, my sister and I would spend Saturday nights with our grandmother. The Golden Girls was regular viewing for us. It goes without saying back then that many of the jokes were over my head. To this day, I treasure these memories and laugh out loud during reruns (which are available for viewing on Hulu).

It takes a smart performer to play a dumb character. Ms. White was clearly one smart cookie. Rose Nylund is a woman with a big heart who was not the brightest bulb in the box.

When she hosted Saturday Night Live a few years, it was a landmark episode as far as I am concerned. It was not hard to see the throughline between Ms. White’s career and the women who have followed in her footsteps.

May her memory be a blessing and may she continue to make us laugh. Z”L.

Golden Girls Dancing GIF by TV Land - Find & Share on GIPHY

This Will All Be Over Soon: A Memoir Book Review

When one reaches the peak of success in Hollywood, the assumption maybe that the problems this person had when they were not famous disappear. Their life is nothing short of perfection. The truth is that their pre-fame issues remain the same (or may even be magnified) with the harsh spotlight that comes with being in the public eye.

Saturday Night Live‘s Cecily Strong released her new memoir in August. Entitled This Will All Be Over Soon: A Memoir, the book tells her story of losing her beloved cousin, Owen, to cancer and the emotional destruction that Covid-19 has left in its wake. When he passed away in early 2020, Strong was devastated. Her grief was compounded when New York City became the epicenter of the virus a few months later. Needing a break from everything, she left the city, took refuge in a house upstate and began to write.

I like that it is set in a diary format. Strong reveals a personal side of herself that television viewers have not seen of her. She lays her mental health cards on the table, talking about emotions that are private, deep, and a little bit uncomfortable. My problem is that I expected to feel everything that she puts on the page. Unfortunately, I was not, which a dam shame.

Do I recommend it? Not really.

%d bloggers like this: