The Wednesday Curator – 6/18/14

June 17, 2014

So much stuff; so little space. Try picking out the five most meaningful things you read or heard last week. The Curator is not complaining, mind you, but it’s not an easy job. Really!

I was tempted to ignore the news of the days, for it is uniformly awful, at every turn. War, shootings, arguments about why arresting a terrorist represents something negative. Blah, blah, blah!

And then, I heard a piece I couldn’t ignore. News it isn’t, for this man claims he traffics in “fake journalism.” Yes, it’s Comedy Central time. Here’s the Daily Show’s Mess O’Potamia – Now that’s What I Call Being F**king Wrong about Iraq (June 15) for your viewing pleasure. Please pay special attention to

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The Wednesday Curator – 6/11/14

June 10, 2014

Wednesday again!

Wow! Just wow!!! In CD 7-VA, Virginia Republicans selected Dave Brat as their nominee, choosing home over House Majority leader Eric Cantor. Here are takes from the New York Times, the Washington Post (I) and (II), and Talking Points Memo. Now, I’m no fan of Congressman Cantor. But still! The man is next in line to be Speaker of the House of Representatives, and he loses to a college professor/Tea Partier he outspends by more than 40-1. In a primary! So much for the meme that the Establishment has retaken the Republican Party. Just wow!

The Koch brothers—Charles and David—have run a large number of advertisements that tell false stories about how the Patient Protection

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The Wednesday Curator – 6/4/14

June 3, 2014

Another Wednesday; another session with the Wednesday Curator!

Here’s a piece from The Daily Intelligencer at New York magazine (May 30), written by Jonathan Chait, titled Why Do Republicans Always Say “I’m not a Scientist”? Mr. Chait is always perceptive and worth reading.

Patrick Smith, writing for Salon on May 26, nails phony patriotism in American Exceptionalism is a Dangerous Myth. When I read pieces like this one (and Mr. Chait’s), I can’t help but recall Michael Douglas as President Andrew Shepherd in An American President, wrapping up an impromptu and angry talk with these words:  “This is a time for serious people, Bob, and your fifteen minutes are up.”

Is the World Losing Faith in Barack Obama?

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The Wednesday Curator – 5/28/14

May 28, 2014

Another Wednesday, and that means more from the Curator:

Here are two pieces, How Republicans Became the “Stupid” Party:  Turning Right, Refusing to Recognize Facts and Change by Edmund Fawcett and GOP’s Post-Obama Problem:  Why They’re Lost Without Him — and with the Electorate He Helped Create by Joan Walsh, both posted in Salon, that focus on longer term problems for the Republican party. No insult intended by me, but when you focus on winning the news cycle, when you’re only against things (and not for other things), and when you speak mockingly of the “reality-based community,” reality will bite you in the backside. (BTW, I take no pleasure in any of

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The Wednesday Curator – 5/21/14

May 20, 2014

Wednesday again. Here goes:

Jonathan Gatehouse, writing for the Canadian weekly Macleans on May 15, has noticed a phenomenon he calls America Dumbs Down. Well, duh!!! (#tbt—which, in our acronym-flooded culture means Truth Be Told—I was sort of hoping others wouldn’t notice our dumbing down. On the other hand, others would have to be pretty, pretty dumb not to notice.

Still Tinkering by Linda Greenhouse, in the May 15 issue of the New York Times, takes off on Justice Harry Blackmun’s comment, in a dissent from a refusal to take a death penalty case in 1994, that “[f]rom this day forward, I no longer shall tinker with the machinery of death.” Ms. Greenhouse calls to attention very well the

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The Wednesday Curator – 5/14/14

May 13, 2014

I’m putting a stopwatch on my week, for there’s no way 168 hours are passing from Wednesday to Wednesday! Like the deli owner whose heavy thumb seems to hover over the scale, someone is playing games with my clock.

The Wednesday Curator is back, and he doesn’t mind sharing the fact that he’s troubled. So much to read and share. Too much, frankly, and that’s without considering all of the overtly political stuff he tends to eschew. Alas, the dude’s got a job to do, and do it he does. Here goes nothing, or something:

Christina Sterbenz posted So this is Why Everyone Starts Sentences With “So” These Days on the Business Insider at Slate on May 13. The

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The Wednesday Curator – 5/7/14

May 7, 2014

Wednesday again!

I wrote in A Life at Fifty-Ish about professional apologies. At length. 33 pages in the print version of the book. I wasn’t kind, but those whose apologies I commented on deserved my scorn. Lots of passive voice apologies, of the “mistakes were made” variety. More recently, I’ve read many “if I have offended anyone” expressions of regret. Not cool!

I mention apologies because I read an honest-to-goodness, for real “I’m sorry” apology several days ago. Utah State Representative David Lifferth (Rep.) apologized for comments he made about the NAACP in relation to the Donald Sterling matter. The apology is here. I doubt whether I agree with Rep. Lifferth on much, but he certainly impressed me with his

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The Wednesday Curator – 4/30/14

April 29, 2014

Lots of reading this past week, and lots of issues to think about! Let me first cover what I won’t be focusing on:

You won’t see any Donald Sterling here, for you can find plenty elsewhere and, frankly, the issue doesn’t interest me much. If you’re “shocked, shocked” that racism is alive and well, get out more!

You also won’t see anything about inequality, but that’s for a different reason. Lots of great writing on a really important subject, and much of it focused on Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty. Expect a full, long post on the issue in coming days. (Don’t expect me to have finished the book; I’m about 60 pages in, and as well

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The Wednesday Curator – 4/23/14

April 23, 2014

Again, already, it’s Wednesday! So here’s what I’ve read recently that was exceptional.

The Confidence Gap appears in The Atlantic, dated April 14, and was written by Katty Kay and Claire Shipman. They’re reporters for BBC World News America and ABC News, respectively. The article is an overview of their new book, The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance—What Women Should Know.

Here’s a piece from the New York Times, last week:  Cost of Treatment May Influence Doctors. I’ll be writing more on this issue soon.

Talking Points Memo shares Charles Cooper’s story in Prop 8 Lawyer’s Views on Gay Marriage Evolving, posted on April 17. Mr. Cooper represented the Proposition 8 proponents in

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The Wednesday Curator – 4/16/14

April 16, 2014

After a few days off for Pesach/Passover, it’s Wednesday and that means Wednesday Curator time. This has been the toughest of weeks for I read so much good stuff, and have struggled with what to share. Here goes nothing!

I loved the “Grapes Of Wrath” Is 75, But Its Depictions of Poverty Are Timeless story on National Public Radio. Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.

Global Rankings Study:  America in Warp-Speed Decline was written by CJ Werleman and posted at Salon on April 9. One of my friends says we need to be positive, and I get that, but we can’t ignore facts either. And there are some mighty unpleasant facts here!

I thought my friends on

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