Tuesday Dusk Ethics Musings, 7/28/2020: Bitch, Bitch, Bitch

I had a friend who was sure the lyrics were about “ducks in the wind.” Dust, ducks, dusk…whatever. Never liked the song, but it suits my mood after today’s farewell to an old friend, maybe the sweetest person I’ve ever known or ever could know, at Arlington. Here were old friends, many who hadn’t seen each other in many years, standing around, six or more feet apart, trying to talk through masks and to recognize each other.

This is no way to live.

1. I have to say this: At a time when Gilbert and Sullivan is being “cancelled” by the sick combination of hyper-sensitivity to fantasy gender stereotypes and the ignorant belief that “The Mikado” is racist—morons!—I should not be forced to listen to Lifelight’s badly set, forced, incompetent parody of “The Major General’s Song.” I could write better lyrics than that, yes, even about vegetable meat substitutes, with half my brain tied behind my back. There’s no excuse for such lazy, lousy writing, especially for compensation. Was the writer the company CEO’s 12-year-old niece?  Gilbert and Sullivan were geniuses; their work shouldn’t be desecrated like that.

2. Shut up, David. David Price, who couldn’t be bothered to play baseball and help relieve the public’s stress for a paltry 10 million dollars, is home and sniping at Major League Baseball for not shutting down after 14 members of the Florida Marlins tested positive for the Wuhan virus. Well, some of his colleagues need their salaries, unlike Price, who has a 150 million or so in the bank unless he has a gambling habit, and baseball, to its credit, is determined to gut it out, much as it did during the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic. Good. Thank-you.

3.  How can anyone take an award seriously that does something like this? On the other  hand, it’s comforting that after all these years, the Kennedys are still hyper-partisan, hypocritical, and silly. 2020’s Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Ripple of Hope Awards, which supposedly honors “changemakers” who are advancing human rights, equality and justice, have been awarded to, among others, Dr. Fauci and Colin Kaepernick. The Kennedys’ game could not be more transparent if they admitted it. Kaepernick, whose questionable contribution  to human rights has been kneeling where he shouldn’t and cashing in with Nike, but he’s a walking Black Lives Matter ad, and so it’s a poke in the President’s eye. As for Fauci, the message is that he’s brilliant, so Trump is the reason why the pandemic has raged.

Here are some recent award winners: Obama, Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, and Nancy Pelosi.

4. This really is the Streisand Effect! OK, what’s wrong with this picture?

Give up? Apparently Jon Ossof’s nose isn’t really that long. Would anyone see that and think, “Wow, what a Jew!” Who knows or cares about Jon Osseff’s nose? Apparently Jon is a bit sensitive on the point, and he lashed out on Twitter:

Sitting U.S. Senator David Perdue’s digital attack ad distorted my face to enlarge and extend my nose. I’m Jewish. This is the oldest, most obvious, least original anti-Semitic trope in history. Senator, literally no one believes your excuses.

Here was the excuse: “In the graphic design process handled by an outside vendor, the photo was resized and a filter was applied, which appears to have caused an unintentional error that distorted the image,” said a spokesperson for the Perdue campaign. “Obviously, this was accidental, but to ensure there is absolutely no confusion, we have immediately removed the image from Facebook. Anybody who implies that this was anything other than an inadvertent error is intentionally misrepresenting Senator Perdue’s strong and consistent record of standing firmly against anti-Semitism and all forms of hate.”

I think Ossef’s accusation makes him look worse than the nose. [Pointer: valkygrrl]

5. I’d say that an inmate who calls himself Mr. Rape Torture Kill is not the best candidate for release from prison, but I don’t understand California.

59-year-old Cary Jay Smith was originally sent to Patton State Hospital in San Bernardino in 1999 after his wife alerted a psychiatrist that Smith had written in his  journal about sex acts he wanted to perform on a 7-year-old boy. Smith stayed in the hospital for two decades as a series of civil trials determined that he was a danger to children. He repeatedly said  that he fantasized about raping and killing young boys,  and  claimed to have killed three and molested 200.  He called himself Mr. RTK, standing for “rape, torture, kill.”

Cary Jay Smith was released from Coalinga State Hospital in Fresno County last week,

Nobody knows why.

24 thoughts on “Tuesday Dusk Ethics Musings, 7/28/2020: Bitch, Bitch, Bitch

  1. Re 4. Isn’t the trope about Semetic noses one that draws them as large hooked noses rather than Pinochio?

    To be honest I saw nothing wrong with length of his nose. I would not even noticed it had it not been drawn to me attention.

    BTW. Wasn’t gentile Tricky Dick often charactured with a big schnoz.

      • I truly wish the Senator from Wall Street (D) would stop wearing those glasses (I think they’re called “readers?”) way down his nose and looking over them with a passive aggressive sneer and making himself look as if he’s winning an audition to play Shylock. That all knowing, senior litigation/managing partner look is not a good one on you, Chuck. Combined with Nancy Pelosi’s Botox constantly round-eyed harridan look, you two don’t inspire much confidence.

  2. Jack,
    Condolences on the passing of your friend. I have lost loved ones. Some passed quickly without warning. Some lingered for months or years. Some welcomed the end. For the survivors, regardless of the circumstances it always sucks. While I hate using that term, “sucks” I have been unable to come up with a word that adequately captures the feelings of sadness, loss, anguish, and pain that seems to permeate your very being at their passing.

    The quote attributed to Rose Kennedy has helped me in the past. “It has been said that time heals all wounds. I don’t agree. The wounds remain. Time – the mind, protecting its sanity – covers them with some scar tissue and the pain lessens, but it is never gone.”

    • Tom P, you missed your opportunity!

      (And I must post a formal objection to the banal Americanism *sucks*).

      “Everyone can master a grief but he that has it.” (Much Ado)

      “Thou know’st ’tis common; all that lives must die,
      Passing through nature to eternity.” (Hamlet)

      “Like as the waves make towards the pebbled shore,
      So do our minutes hasten to their end;
      Each changing place with that which goes before,
      In sequent toil all forwards do contend.” (Sonnet 60)

      “He that dies pays all debts.” (The Tempest)

  3. Wait, the guy’s nose was altered? I wouldn’t have ever noticed. Nor would I have cared. Americans are supposed to do more research than basic political ads. If we did that as a country, the length of someone’s nose would never be a factor. If….

  4. Condolences on your loss, Jack. Arlington harbors many sad memories, but I hope that despite the masks and distancing, you were able to revisit some good memories as well.

  5. 4. The contention over this campaign ad makes neither side look good, but I’m betting this will help Ossoff more than Perdue. Yes, he’s making a big issue out of something that most people would never notice, nor would most make the connection that he says is there. But, charges of racism seem to stick even when they’re not warranted. And, those charges based on this one ad are multiplying across the media. Perdue’s Wikipedia page already, in the first line, labels him as “an American businessman, politician and racist” with a link to a CNN article about the ad.
    My fairly extensive experience with Photoshop tells me that Perdue’s statement that the nose lengthening was accidental is just not credible. There is no such filter that lengthens just one body part. (As an aside, I hope Perdue did not pay much for that lousy photo editing.)

  6. Unfortunately, Jack, this is the new normal, unless and until a vaccine gets developed and widely available, and that doesn’t look like it’s on the horizon any time soon, or any time not so soon. In NJ we’re supposed to try to resume jury trials in September, but with zoom and masks. How jurors can be trusted not to google when they are on zoom, or how you can get a read on a witness through a mask I don’t know, but justice delayed is justice denied, or something like that. We were supposed to reopen indoor dining at a reduced capacity July 2, but Murphy hit the indefinite pause button right before…after restaurants spent money to restock. He said if you don’t like it, go to Georgia, get sick, and die. And entertainment? Forget it. No more movies, no more concerts, no more plays, no more anything. It says something when the soloists from some of the Irish groups I follow are taking on voice students just to make ends meet and the venues in NYC have said they are definitely closed until 2021, at which point “we’ll see.”

    1. G&S were geniuses, especially Gilbert, but they were also men of the late Victorian era. A lot of their humor is difficult to understand for current audiences to understand, and, when you look at it through a current lens, the Mikado, which makes modern audiences uncomfortable, is just the tip of the iceberg. Patience pokes fun at the aesthetic movement in a way that might look anti-gay. Princess Ida mocks feminism pretty mercilessly. Utopia Limited (although that’s rarely presented) is pro-colonialization. Let’s not forget the shallow romances and the merciless treatment of the contralto roles (Gilbert’s mother issues). In the current political climate I think those plays and everything in them are going to be shelved for a while.

    2. I could care less about professional sports now. I’m not going to watch a single game until it stops being a forum to shove BLM in the viewer’s face and keep it there and every game isn’t preceded by America hatred

    3. I haven’t taken any of these awards seriously for years. As you point out, when they always seem to go to leftists, it gets pretty obvious that they are about politics, nothing else.

    4. If someone is looking only for racism, that’s all they will ever find, and they’ll find it everywhere.

    5. ???

    The fact is that this whole country is anti-white male (especially conservative white male) and very fragile at this point. I thought we’d pushed that back successfully at the end of 2017, but we didn’t. We just defeated it temporarily. I have concluded that the Great Stupid, as you call it, may well be the path to a new normal the way the civil rights movement was. Right now the black and brown folks are very angry and the younger white folks are angrier. Those populations are also pretty hopeless right now. They’ve been smoldering in anger and hopelessness since November 9, 2016, when they wrote the first “I can’t f***ing believe this” at 4 in the morning. Now it’s their day, and they’re determined to make sure it stays their day

    • 1. G&S is often done badly, but that’s because the music and energy carry even weak production. The hunore is universal…like all humor today, if people are looking to be offended, it won’t work. The shows are nonsense, and in a parallel universe where people encounter ridiculous situations and treat them as if they are normal. The shows cannot go out of date—taking them literally nuts. Patience was the first show I ever directed, and Koko is the only roe I ever played more than once—nailed both, if I dare say. The best 8 G$S shows are more entertaining and timeless than most B-way musicals.

      If I could earn a living doing so, I’d prove it.

      • We were supposed to reopen indoor dining at a reduced capacity July 2, but Murphy hit the indefinite pause button right before…after restaurants spent money to restock. He said if you don’t like it, go to Georgia, get sick, and die. And entertainment? Forget it. No more movies, no more concerts, no more plays, no more anything. It says something when the soloists from some of the Irish groups I follow are taking on voice students just to make ends meet and the venues in NYC have said they are definitely closed until 2021, at which point “we’ll see.”

        Writing of Governor Murphy.

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