Conservatives Want A Right-Wing Version of ‘SNL,’ Which…Sure, Okay

Tags

, , , , ,

Saturday Night Live has been a staple of American television for nearly a half-century. Which is kind of a weird thing to write, because hardly anybody seems to actually enjoy the show. Even when the show is firing on all cylinders (and I honestly can’t recall the last time that happened), the general praise is that it reminded the viewer of the show’s golden years.

It’s usually not a good sign when the most fervent praise you can offer a show is “A reasonable facsimile of the heights already achieved by the show in seasons past.” Nevertheless, despite perpetually being two or three years removed from when it was good, SNL somehow remains on the air.

Continue reading

The Overlooked Savagery of “The Story of Adidon”

Tags

, , , , ,

Drake Blackface.jpg

Technically speaking, the beef between Pusha T and Drake is really a proxy war. In 2002, the duo Clipse (comprised of Pusha and his brother, then known as Malice) guest-starred on the track “What Happened To That Boy” by Birdman, the head of Cash Money Records and Drake’s boss.

The track was produced by Pharrell, who had discovered and signed Clipse to his own record label; according to Pusha, Birdman never paid Pharrell for his production work. So, out of a sense of loyalty to Pharrell – who is too easygoing to engage in this kind of dispute – Pusha adopted the beef as his own. (The Washington Post put together a nice timeline if you want to follow along.)

Continue reading

Kanye West Is An Empty Vessel

Tags

, , , , , ,

I’m standing up and I’m telling you, I am Warhol. I am the number one most impactful artist of our generation. I am Shakespeare, in the flesh. Walt Disney, Nike, Google…

-Kanye West, Creator of the Yeezy, 2013

The last time we heard from Kanye West, he was unleashing a tirade at a show in November 2016, during which he called out Jay Z and Beyoncé, proudly proclaimed he would have voted for Donald Trump (West didn’t vote), then abruptly ended the show after four songs.

At the time, it was the latest in an ongoing string of very public meltdowns, and a few weeks after that show, West was hospitalized for mental health issues. West receded from the public eye for a while, and given the news about his mental breakdown, the public was willing to attribute his previous crack-ups to a manifestation of untreated mental illness.

Last week, however, Kanye West resurfaced, and as the kids say, he’s on one.

Continue reading

Is Healthcare a Privilege or a Right?

Tags

, ,

Since Donald Trump’s inauguration, the GOP has spent the majority of its legislative efforts on one thing: repealing the Affordable Care Act. Thus far, their efforts have been for naught; the ACA has remained the law of the land, though not for lack of trying on the part of congressional Republicans.

I’ve written extensively on this topic in the past, so a rehash of the various arguments seems fruitless; moreover, these arguments are primarily focused on the legislative ins and outs of the bills introduced by the GOP thus far. And though it is worthwhile to discuss the nitty-gritty elements of how these bills might work in practice, the underlying question is more important: should healthcare be considered a privilege or a right?

Continue reading

The Term “Fake News” Will Ruin Us.

Tags

, , , ,

If you’ve listened to Donald Trump speak at any point over the past year and a half, you’ve likely heard him use the phrase “fake news.” It’s become one of his favorite rebuttals — so much so, in fact, that he claimed to have invented the term “fake news” in late October. Much like the man himself, this marvelously idiotic assertion is what happens when you combine boundless egotism and staggering ignorance.

Continue reading

The GOP Tax Plan is a Disaster

Tags

, , ,

By now, we should be accustomed to the GOP’s preferred way of advancing legislation through the chambers of Congress: the bills are crafted behind closed doors, seemingly without any input from the constituents for whom the legislation is ostensibly created. In due time, the reason for the secrecy becomes apparent when the details of the bill are finally revealed to the public, at which point the GOP is faced with a massive public backlash.

Thus far in Trump’s presidency, this formula has not been a successful one. Invariably, the public outcry forces enough congressional Republicans to withdraw their support for the bill, most often in the form of very public attacks of conscience.

Continue reading

The Hypocrisy of James O’Keefe

Tags

, , , ,

On Tuesday, the Washington Post published the story of Jaime T. Phillips, a woman who approached the newspaper claiming to have engaged in a sexual relationship with Roy Moore, the Republican candidate for the United States Senate. Phillips told Post reporters that she and Moore had engaged in a sexual relationship, culminating in Phillips being forced to get an abortion when she was only 15 years old.

The allegation aligned perfectly with Moore’s apparent modus operandi (four women allege that Moore’s sexual misconduct took place when they were in their teens and Moore was in his thirties). Moreover, the hypocrisy of a pro-life, Bible-thumping, conservative Republican forcing his teenaged paramour to get an abortion would be extra ammunition for Moore’s political opponents.

Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it), Phillips’ story wasn’t true.

Continue reading

How the GOP Tax Bill Will Undermine Obamacare

Tags

, , , ,

In the months following Trump’s inauguration, Congress had a singular focus: to dismantle the Affordable Care Act. The goal was twofold; first, by repealing the ACA, GOP lawmakers would finally fulfill seven years’ worth of campaign promises to their constituents. And second, the elimination of Obamacare would free up a lot more money that could be used to offset that golden goose of the Republican Party: tax cuts.

Continue reading

Kneeling for the Anthem Is Not Disrespecting the Flag

Tags

, , , , ,

“I love America more than any other country in this world, and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually.” 

-James Baldwin, “Autobiographical Notes”

A large swath of the population has begun to define patriotism as unquestioning loyalty. Criticism of our society or our leadership, they claim, is an expression of hatred for our country and therefore must not be tolerated. Acknowledging that this country is not perfect, they assert, is not a simple exercise of free speech. It is tantamount to treason.

Continue reading