I like to use this clip to start the day at least once a month….I’m also trying to overcome my cognitive dissonance regarding the film it’s from, in my view the greatest film musical ever made (no better one is likely to appear in the future), and the fact that the man it was made to honor, songwriter Arthur Freed who also ran MGM’s musical division during its “Golden Age,” exposed himself to a teenaged Shirley Temple when she was considering a move to that studio after her singing and dancing tot career at RKO had been ended by hormones. That information, which I only discovered this year, really has made “Singin’ in the Rain” hard to watch for me, much as O.J. Simpson’s presence almost ruins “The Naked Gun.”
1. Speaking of movie clips, this one is apt:
Actor John Cena posted a video to Sena Wiebo, China’s Twitterish social media platform, apologizing to Chinese fans—in Mandarin!– for calling Taiwan a “country” in his recent interview promoting “F9,” the latest installment of the “Fast & Furious” franchise. What a weasel. There may be diplomatic reasons that justify apologies to China, but an American citizen kowtowing to this Evil Empire (that just recently gave its citizens permission to have up to three children) is despicable. China maintains that it has dominion over Taiwan, a self-governed democracy that maintains its own sovereignty, while China is, in essence, a totalitarian regime. Cena grovelled because Chinese ticket sales are an essential part of most Hollywood movies’ profit, but apparently he did not grovel enough for China, and too much for Americans.
Ticket sales for “F9” in China have crashed, according to the Hollywood Reporter, because Cena was supposed to say that Taiwan is part of China. They have crashed in the U.S., because the kinds of Americans who are likely to go to “Fast and Furious” films tend not to appreciate actors who suck up to a genocidal, pandemic-spreading international menace.
2. Regarding Donald Trump, please refer to everything I wrote about him prior to November, 2016. His latest fiasco, the one-month blog that was just pulled down with all of its posts deleted, is signature significance. Trump doesn’t have sufficient respect for his followers, his party or the world in general to plan, be responsible, appear trustworthy, or to do or say anything but what pops into his head at a given moment. If he cared about the nation, he would be working to find a younger, less polarizing figure. Ideally, this individual would be blessed with charisma and ability, and could hold on to Trump’s supporters while appealing to NeverTrump conservatives and those disgusted with the Biden administration. That should be just about everybody who doesn’t advocate repealing the Bill of Rights. Instead, he’s on his usual ego trip, giving the news media constant opportunities to use his nonsense to keep the Trump Hate pandemic raging, and the public distracted from real problems, like…
3. …the Wuhan Virus cover-up. According to a Vanity Fair report, a U.S. government official reportedly ordered his staff not to publicly acknowledge American connections to and funding of the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV), the site implicated in a potential lab-leak coronavirus origin theory. After a months-long investigation, interviews with more than 40 people, and a review of hundreds of pages of U.S. government documents, including internal memos, meeting minutes, and email correspondence, the magazine found that “conflicts of interest, stemming in part from large government grants supporting controversial virology research, hampered the U.S. investigation into COVID-19’s origin at every step. In one State Department meeting, officials seeking to demand transparency from the Chinese government say they were explicitly told by colleagues not to explore the Wuhan Institute of Virology’s gain-of-function research, because it would bring unwelcome attention to U.S. government funding of it.”
Meanwhile, the news media gleefully called President Trump “racist” for publicly blaming the Chinese for the virus, despite strong evidence that the thing emerged from the Wuhan province, and that China was not transparent about the outbreak, allowing it to spread. Then they used the false “racist” slur to blame him for “hate crimes” against Asian-Americans. Anything to help Joe Biden get elected…
I hate to be childish, but Wuhan virus, Wuhan virus, Wuhan virus, Wuhan virus, Wuhan virus, Wuhan virus, Wuhan virus! So there.
4. Racist or just dumb and gratuitously nasty? During Tuesday night’s baseball game between the Arizona Diamondbacks and the New York Mets, D-backs announcer and former player Bob Brenly mocked Mets pitcher Marcus Stroman, an African American, for wearing a doo-rag under his cap, saying, “I’m sure that is the same doo-rag that Tom Seaver used to wear when he pitched for the Mets.” Brenly was immediately attacked on social media for being a racist, apparently on the theory that making fun of a piece of attire that only blacks wear and suggesting that it is inappropriate is racially hostile, or insensitive, or something.
Personally, I think all non-uniform accessories, religious symbols and jewelry should be banned on the field, but that wild horse became dog food decades ago. Thus picking a hair accessory only used by blacks to complain about is certainly racially insensitive, and broadcasters ought to have better ethics alarms than that.
Brenly, trying to save his job, issued an apology:
“During last night’s game, I made a poor attempt at humor that was insensitive and wrong. I apologize to Marcus Stroman and have reached out directly to share those thoughts. I have had several conversations with the D-backs and we agree that seeking sensitivity training is an important step so that I can continue to learn from my mistakes in order to be better in the future.”
5. The rest of the story…Yesterday, Ethics Alarms mentioned (Item#4) that Kmau Bobb, Google’s diversity czar, was revealed to have posted some harsh comments about Jews and Israel 14 years ago, including saying that Israel “an insatiable appetite for vengeful violence.” Google has re-assigned him.
6. Totalitarianism takes a hit! Is it fatal? Senator Krysten Sinema (D-Az) is suddenly evil in the eyes of progressives hoping to ram through SCOTUS packing, gun restrictions, D.C. statehood, HR One and other measures designed to make the US a one party, European-style nanny state until the stars turn cold. She announced that she is unalterably opposed to eliminating the filibuster, meaning that it’s probably here to stay, at least for a while. The ethical response to this development would be for the two parties to stop insisting on extreme positions, and work toward compromises, as our system was designed to foster.