1. There is absolutely no good reason to kill Halloween this year because of the Wuhan virus, but that appears to be what the fear-mongered flock is going to do. Children as well should know by now, are at about as much risk from this virus as any other, everyone is wearing masks anyway, and how hard is it to find ways to drop candy in bags?
Mark this down as one more little joy young lives are losing out on due to a) adult hysteria and b) partisan scaremanship. We never get many Trick-or-Treaters anyway, but I hereby announce that any costumed kids that drop by 2707 Westminster Place in Alexandria, Virginia will receive extra-generous treats for their spirit of adventure.
2. Not that they haven’t been trying to scare kids out of the tradition long before this… Here, for example, is an article that gratuitously warns us that “marijuana edibles” can look a lot like candy, so parents should be extra vigilant—never mind that pot treats are about ten times more expensive than candy, and the likelihood of any stoners slipping those into the TOT bags instead of peanut butter cups are about the same as the odd of my voting for Joe Biden next week. Poisoned Halloween candy is a hoary urban legend: there are no recorded cases of its, except the monstrous father who poisoned his own son’s Halloween haul to collect on an insurance policy. (That doesn’t count.)
3. And now for something completely non-Halloween: In Montana, a Flathead County District Court judge granted a petition filed by lakeshore property owners to formalize the lake’s name change to Lost Loon Lake from Lost Coon Lake. It is argued that the name “contains a racist slur for African-Americans.” I would normally argue that this is more “niggardly principle” hypersensitivity, as “coon” is a perfectly common and acceptable word for a variety of wildlife, and the presumption that the name is a racial slur is like banishing Uncle Ben. However, since the record shows that Lost Coon Lake was adopted after the older name of Nigger Lake was deemed too offensive, I withdraw my objection.
I do, however object to the fact that news reports wouldn’t print the former name of the lake that caused all this trouble,even though that detail is essential to the story. What was it, “Hunter’s Laptop Lake”? I refuse to believe any lake was named “N-word Lake.”
Meanwhile, activists for the mentally ill are mounting a challenge to the new name.
4. Here’s a Halloween ethics movie to watch, if you haven’t already: Joss Whedon’s “Cabin in the Woods.” It has all of the horror-with-ironic-humor flavor that fans of Whedon’s “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Angel” TV series cherished, plus a climax that may win the award for the most impenetrable ethics conflict ever: a moment when what may the ethical choice in an existential ethics conflict shatters The Golden Rule, Absolutism, and utilitarianism. There’s not much more that I can say about the film without wrecking it for you—I will just say that it starts out as the typical “Horny teens go to an isolated spot for a weekend of drugs and sex that goes horrible wrong” genre D-movie, and spins off into satire, parody, science fiction, horror of course, and social commentary. With ethics! Especially the Ethics Incompleteness Principle.
5. Be very afraid. Last presidential elect, the New York Times can right out and said, late in the campaign, that it would be deliberately favoring the Democratic candidate in its coverage. This time, they are just doing it, and so shamelessly that any reader who isn’t offended and alarms is too Trump Deranged to matter. I have kept most of October’s editions. Nearly everyone contains on the front page a negative article about Trump’s past, as if he were running for a first term. Today it was “How Trump Gained a Real Estate Windfall,” which sounds sinister, but which is really about how nearly 30 years ago, he lobbied Congress to keep some favorable tax provisions in the law. The Times has almost the same front-page headline back on October 10: “Low on Cash on ’16, Trump Generated his Own Windfall.”
As for the Democratic ticket, the Times business section informs us that Kamala Harris is “pragmatic moderate” in her approach to corporations. In the Arts section, the main article is about what a wonderful patron of the arts Joe Biden is. (Translation: he has pushed bills that gives taxpayer funds to arts organizations.) Trump, the article explains, mostly regards the world of culture as the habitat of effete liberalism. (Which, you know, it is.) Did you know one of Joe’s favorite writers is James Joyce? (Do you believe that?) This would explain his use of language of late. Might he have been quoting “Finnegan’s Wake” when Biden said yesterday, “I’ll lead an effective strategy to mobilize trunalimunumaprzure!”
In case you are wondering, the only mention of the Hunter Biden emails, and the mounting evidence that Biden supported and was a party to his son’s profitable influence peddling in China and the Ukraine in today’s paper was this: almost nothing.! No mention of the detailed allegations of Biden associate Tony Bobulinski.
In one article today, about Joe Biden’s anguish over poor Hunter’s misspent life being “weaponized” against him and how this must be affecting his son, we are told that “some of the attacks are unfounded.” In another potpourri article, one section alludes to the recent allegations relating to Hunter as an “unsubstantiated report” based on “unverified information” without revealing anything else. It also says the story hasn’t t “broken through,” apparently an example of the Times patting itself on its metaphorical back.
The New York Times publishes this in the same week we learned that the Times op-ed it claimed to have “substantiated” as an anonymous whistle-toot from a “senior administration official” was nothing of the kind.
The Times claims to be the nation’s paper of record, and if Joe Biden succeeds in winning the election, the Times will have decisively established itself his government’s Pravda.
Again, freedom and democracy-loving progressives should fear that as much as conservatives.
6. (Cont.) Here is Mollie Hemingway’s essay, Yes, Media Are Rigging The Election Against Half The Country. Here’s How.
I rate it as fair and accurate, and I rate those who would dismiss it as a partisan conspiracy theory as conspirators themselves, or dupes.