Good Morning, bad night…
(and thank goodness it’s Saturday…)
1 Programming young victims to lie. In my mailbox today is a message from the Democrats.org, which, I must note, has ignored multiple requests to stop sending me their hackery. I have unsubscribed: it apparently makes no difference. This is both illegal and unethical, and only reinforces my previous conclusions about the House of Clinton, Perez, Pelosi, Wasserman Schultz, et al.
The message is allegedly authored by Sarah Imam, who announces herself as Parkland shooting survivor and writes in part,
On February 14th, I lost 17 members of my community in a mass shooting at my school, Marjory Stoneman Douglas. But we, the survivors, refuse to let their names be forgotten. We refuse to let their deaths be in vain. We have decided to take action to ensure that an event like this will never happen again. We are calling for stricter gun laws. We are calling for change.
Now, is Sarah lying, or is someone lying to Sarah, or to us? There is no “change” that will ensure that no mass shooting, in a school or anywhere else, will ever happen again. This is a false promise. Does Sarah know that, or is she just a puppet, being used to promote a dishonest message? Then we must ask, is Sarah smart enough to know that the only “change” that could even theoretically “ensure that an event like this will never happen again” is to ban and confiscate all guns. Is that what she means? Is that what Democrats really want to do, but can only express it that desire in code, and through the willing, naive mouths of grieving teens?
2. David Brooks doesn’t get it. Again. New York Times Stockholm Syndrome-addled formerly- conservative op-ed writer David Brooks nicely encapsulates the central delusion of “the resistance” and others, arguing that the gun control battle will be the tipping point for a progressive victory in the culture wars because…
“Progressives could be on the verge of delegitimizing their foes, on guns but also much else, rendering them untouchable for anybody who wants to stay in polite society. That would produce social changes far vaster than limiting assault rifles. Two things have fundamentally changed the landscape. First, over the past two years conservatives have self-marginalized. In supporting Donald Trump they have tied themselves to a man whose racial prejudices, sexual behavior and personal morality put him beyond the pale of decent society. Second, progressives are getting better and more aggressive at silencing dissenting behavior. All sorts of formerly legitimate opinions have now been deemed beyond the pale on elite campuses. Speakers have been disinvited and careers destroyed. The boundaries are being redrawn across society.”
This is essentially a Cognitive Dissonance Scale argument by an elitist who can’t distinguish between the public’s scale and his own. Donald Trump is President of the United States because he was elected, despite what Brooks calls his racial prejudices, sexual behavior and personal morality. Can’t Brooks see that he’s essentially making Hillary’s deplorables argument? He is saying that nobody who voted for Trump is a member of “polite society’! Incredibly, he’s also saying that supporting the President of the United States is marginalizing. Wow: get out of that echo chamber, David—RUN! No, you idiot, refusing to support the institution of the Presidency and the integrity of elections marginalizes Democrats, the “resistance,” the New York Times, and YOU. Then Brooks writes that progressives will win because they are getting “better” at totalitarian methods, like suppressing speech. Nah, this isn’t self-marginalizing, not at all! Americans love to have their freedoms disrespected, and to be told that only pre-approved opinions and viewpoints will be allowed when Democrats are in power.
Here’s a tip to help guide you back to sanity, David: one doesn’t get “better” at suppressing speech, at least from the perspective of a supposedly respectable columnist That implies that suppressing speech is good. It’s not good. Only progressives think it is, which is why ethical people, like me, don’t trust them any more.
3. But…but…it’s shouldn’t BE this way! Nonresidents of New York State now have to pay $25 under the Metropolitan Museum of Art ‘s new admission policy, which went into effect this week. One reason was because its “pay what you can” policy was a flop, as pay-what-you-can deals always are. What did I tell you, O Board of the American Century Theater, who were always ramming these vile stunts down my throat? Most people are incurable free-loaders, and ethics never occurs to them when they are told, “You don’t HAVE to pay, but it would be nice!”
Now all sorts of art-lovers are making the argument that “art should be free.” “It’s like taking the jacket off a poor person,” the artist Ai Weiwei said of the new fee. “I will never go to the Metropolitan. Am I calling for a boycott? No. But I myself will not go.” “What are we valuing in this difficult political and economic moment?” said Amanda Williams, an artist and architect based in Chicago. “And for young people, especially little black and brown bodies, they are receiving more and more messages that they don’t belong.”
Yup, the Met charging admission to out-of-state visitors is racist, like every other policy progressives want to attack. Surely there is some way this can be blamed on President Trump.
Chief art critic for the New York Times wrote in part,
“I believe major public museums should have universal free admission. You should be able to walk in off the street and see the art just as you can enter a public library and read the books on the shelf. If this country had a government that cared about its citizens rather than one that catered to its economic ruling class, we might be able to live some version of this ideal…That economic ruling class, for its part, could, and should, contribute to an open-door cultural policy. I think of a very small example of the possibilities: Thanks to earmarked donations by a single patron (the Rubins, of the Rubin Museum of Art in Chelsea) the Bronx Museum of the Arts was able to begin a free admission program for several years that the museum continues today. Which leads me to wonder about the civic good will behind — and institutional wisdom in accepting — another example of donor earmarking: the $65 million patron-inscribed fountains recently installed (and critically panned) at the Met. If the museum’s figures are accurate, and the new mandatory policy for out-of-state visitors will bring in $6 million to $11 million a year in admissions revenue; the money spent on the fountains would have covered that income for a decade.”
That’s a management problem, buddy. And good strategy there insulting people with money while demanding that the pay for your livelihood. (I’m sorry, I woke up sarcastic today.) A small proportion of New Yorkers go to the Met, a smaller proportion still of the nation at large. Why should it be “free”? Oh, that’s right: everything should be free. Public television, roads, schools, food, housing, medical care, lawyers, everything.
Here’s Roberta Smith, the other Times art critic:
“If libraries started charging entrance fees there would be a great uproar. We don’t have to pay for access to publicly owned books, and we shouldn’t have to pay to see art in museums whose nonprofit status is supported by our taxes. Reading skills are seen as essential to the common good. Visual literacy is every bit as important, and if our culture and school systems placed more emphasis on learning about art, people would grow up with more of a museum habit…Someone should be able to figure this out without putting it on the public’s shoulders. The projected annual increase in admissions revenue — from $42 million to $50 million — seems minuscule, and they say it’s only going to affect 31 percent of its overall visitors anyway. So why not find the money somewhere else and affect zero percent?”
Translation: “Do something.” The museum to libraries analogy is one that I would expect an art critic to make, but it’s intellectually dishonest. No, visual literacy is not as essential as reading skills and access to literature, and there are also many, many galleries and museums in New York City besides its biggest one.
Speaking of “taking the jacket off a poor person,” why doesn’t the State take all that money it tricks poor people into spending on lotteries and use it subsidize admission to museums—that almost none of those lottery players will ever visit? I think the reason is “priorities.”
Meanwhile, Time cultural reporter Sopan Deb wrote that he was able to avoid the non-New Yorker Met Charge by wearing a Yankee hat:
“I asked the staffer if I could have one in-state admission ticket for a dollar and held my breath. But to my great delight, the Yankees hat worked. She asked me for my ZIP code, but not any other identification. (I won’t try this at Fenway Park.) So at least for Day 1, there was no need for fake identifications or elaborate New York City-based disguises.”
Thus endorsing lies and cheating.