Stray thoughts 11/21

  • The pearl-clutching hysteria over people who say outrageous things on TV distracts from policy, which is where people’s rights and lives are taken away from them.
  • 1. Women and minorities are trapped in low-wage, no-benefit, variable-hour hourly jobs to a disproportionate degree.
    2. Speak kindly, directly and with intention to everyone, but especially people who are often threatened and shouted down.
    3. Pay women more. Pay more to black people whose historical wealth has been stolen from them for ten generations. Pay undocumented immigrants a fair wage for a day’s work. Start by enfranchising unions and raising the minimum wage. Ask your friends who work at Friday’s and the Gap if they care about your intersectional language policing or if they care about getting regular hours after the holidays. Stop trying to preserve your position as an arbiter of correct speech and give people money.
  • A moratorium on postmortems, absolutely, for sure, but just one more real quick, some bracing socialism from Dan O’Sullivan over at Jacobin:
    A kicker for the ages: “It is time to organize and prepare a politics that matters. It is time to confront and defeat Trump and those like him, not pay him soft homage. No more ceding the ground of what’s important to these snakes; we can’t anyway, our very lives depend upon it. Besides, we have a better way.
    “And so we say goodbye to the old ways — Goodbye! Goodbye! Goodbye! — and prepare to meet them there on the low road, where we might face what is coming — away from the fear that kept us from reaching you.”
  • Here’s a thing Republicans get right: your opponent is probably an okay guy. He’s probably nice to his kids and likes dogs and National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. He’s probably a charming dinner guest. It’s not necessary to hate him. Leave his constituents alone; they’re perfectly normal people. Just burn his politics to the ground, destroy his career, humiliate him thoroughly and drive him out of public service forever. It’s the right thing to do. It’s the *moral* thing to do. Our way is right and brings freedom and prosperity; his way is wrong and brings pain and suffering. He doesn’t THINK it does, but he’s incorrect. It’s not about personalities or appearances. Those things are just bonuses when they happen to break your way.
  • The people who cut their hair short at the sides and talk about building a white nation are nerds who want attention. They have no policy proposals, no direction, nothing except a huge loneliness and a mean streak; no one wants them. They’re an embarrassment. They expose the worst part of the popular press with the “Who are these fascinating young Nazis?” articles but let’s be clear: they are not the enemy, or they are not the enemy yet. The enemy has boring ideas like reinstituting programs with acronmyic names you can’t remember that mean it’s legal to pat down people and detain them in tiny rooms for hours because of their religion, and waylays people crossing the border in camps. There are not going to be interment camps. There already are internment camps. There already are secret prisons. Just because something is not happening to you, right now, does not mean it is not happening. Resist. Protest. Run for city council. Run for alderman. Run for head of the PTA. This is America; if you’re white, everything’s a referendum. Act like it.
  • Here’s Al Columbia:
    Al Columbia The Trumpets They Play.jpg
  • Here’s Kevin Huizenga:
    Kevin Huizenga.jpg
  • Here’s Manara:

Author: samthielman

Sam Thielman is a reporter and critic based in Brooklyn, New York. His blog is, his twitter handle is @samthielman, and if you can't find him you should check The Strand.

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