1. The good brother. It’s not worth a full post, but Ron Howard deserves a call-out for being a good brother. Last night I finally watched “Frost/Nixon,” and wondered if, since it was directed by Ron Howard, Opie’s hideous younger brother Clint Howard would be in the cast. Sure enough, he was. Clint, like Ron, was a child star, most prominently in the TV series “Gentle Ben.” Unlike Ron, Clint was not treated well by the puberty fairy, and once his goofy looks stopped being cute, he had a face that was usable, if at all, in cheap horror flicks and in bit parts playing various creeps and thugs. Clint’s not a bad actor, he’s just not very versatile, and relentlessly hard on the eyes. He would probably not have an A movie to his credit were it not for the fact that his brother, the rich and famous star director, puts him in the cast whenever he can.
Well, good for Ron. Sure, it’s nepotism, but Clint is serviceable, and certainly capable of playing the parts he’s cast in, like one of the NASA guys in the control room in “Apollo 13,” or a referee in one of the less important Jim Braddock fights in “ Cinderella Man.” Getting such roles in Ron’s prestige films make Clint more attractive for the parts he’s up for in his usual vehicles, like the upcoming “Hell of the Screaming Undead.”
2. On a related casting issue, I watched the Netflix production “Enola Holmes.” It was fun, but the “anti-racism” casting was already in evidence: African Americans were scattered through Victorian London in odd and ahistorical places. It didn’t undermine the quality of the productions: all of the black actors and actresses were pros, but it did make the piece seem set in some fantasy land that never existed. If you know history, it is jarring; if you don’t, then it has no impact at all. I did find the non-traditional casting half-hearted: in virtually all cases, the actors “of color” were relegated to extremely minor roles a step above the extras. You know—like the parts Clint Howard plays in his brother’s movies.
3. They’re doing it again! Once again, celebrities are threatening to leave the country if a candidate they don’t support—apparently only Democrats engage in these bluffs— is elected President. (The latest is Bruce Springsteen.) If any celebrity has ever made good on such a pledge, I missed it, but the threat itself is unethical. First, if it’s not sincere, it’s dishonest and grandstanding. Second, it’s un-American. If one is committed to democracy, then you accept losses in elections with grace and respect. Finally, it demonstrates a pathological lack of humility. The electorate is supposed to decide who leads the nation based on your threat to leave?
4. Another example of what 2020 Democratic voters are endorsing: Prof. Turley reports on the disturbing case of Loyola Marymount University student Stephanie Martinez , who was impeached in her elected position as student government senator for diversity and inclusion after a three-hour proceeding, because she expressed her opposition to illegal immigration on social media. Turley writes,
Free speech is under attack across the country and polling shows a falling level of support for free speech among students. The actions taken against openly conservative or libertarian students is having its impact on both students and faculty who are attacks. In this case, the student government is acting to counter Martinez’s views on immigration. In one of the offending postings, Martinez wrote “The same people advocating for rights, equality, and better conditions for illegal aliens are the same one censoring freedom of speech (a right), defaming and initiating hostility for those Americans with divergent views! Sad!” It proved a prophetic and ironic posting for Martinez. Fellow Diversity and Inclusion student Senator Camille Orozco cited such statements as the basis for impeachment under Article 8 in the student body bylaws as “conduct that severely damages the integrity or authority of ASLMU or the office held by the individual in question.”
5. Not Drudge, and also not trustworthy. The Citizen Free Press is the new fad news aggregator, stripping many conservatives away from the suddenly anti-Trump Drudge Report. Unfortunately, despite an excellent opportunity to exploit a lucrative niche, the CFP has no more reliable ethics than the mainstream it likes to tweak. Here, for example, is a headline currently up on the home page: AP admits the truth about mail-in voting…. The link goes to a conservative pundit’s attack on the opportunities for voter fraud, and that article links to this AP piece—which has nothing to say about voter fraud at all.