All entries by this author

There are enablers all over the place

Oct 13th, 2017 11:33 am | By

Harvey Weinstein wasn’t just a groper or rapist. He had a system.

A storyline stretching over 20 years with a rotating cast of actors, multiple locations across the US and Europe, a disciplined crew of assistants, producers and fixers, savvy dealmaking, and a publicity machine like no other.

But this was not The English Patient, Pulp Fiction, Shakespeare in Love, The King’s Speech or any other of his films that earned more than 300 Oscar nominations.

It was a shadow production, an inverted version of Hollywood that leveraged entertainment industry might into an alleged spree of sexual harassment and assaults, including rape, and into a methodical way of hushing it all up with payments, threats and non-disclosure agreements.


Read the rest

And make you smile my dear

Oct 13th, 2017 11:26 am | By

Boys will be boys.

Polly Toynbee was on Radio 4’s Today with a pompous bloviating Tory commentator –

If you didn’t hear Today, you can imagine what transpired. He took a swing at “our new establishment”, the “new elite … schmoozing and networking”, the “mass of people forever wagging fingers” and “telling us how to live our lives”. And as he did so, he betrayed again that curious paranoia of those who hold power, wealth and influence, and their defenders in the Tory press, pretending that they are the victims. For most of my life, the Tories have been in power, with brief social democratic interludes showing that democracy still functions, if intermittently. They are the captains of just

Read the rest

A good time to remember each one

Oct 13th, 2017 10:53 am | By

Judd Legum:






Read the rest

Pious hopes

Oct 13th, 2017 10:34 am | By

Think Progress on a new report from Brookings on Trump’s likely probable apparent obstruction of justice:

[T]he Brookings report — authored by Barry H. Berke, Noah Bookbinder, and Norman L. Eisen — argues that same wheeler dealer attitude coupled with Trump’s demands for loyalty, which helped make him famous on The Apprentice, could also land him in the hot seat and lead to obstruction of justice charges down the road.

The report outlines the many ways in which Trump could find himself faced with such charges, due to his many alleged attempts to influence federal investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election, as well as an investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn. Notably, the report explains,

Read the rest

Trump orders us to say “Christmas”

Oct 13th, 2017 9:25 am | By

President Pussygrabber spent his morning at a thing called the “Values Voter Summit.” So I guess the Values in question include sexual assault, bragging about sexual assault, lying about bragging about sexual assault, lying about everything, ensuring that only the rich will be able to afford health insurance, calling people rude names in public, shoving people, bullying, fraud, cheating, theft, corruption, bribery, treason?

Trump dove into America’s culture wars on Friday, touting his administration for “returning moral clarity to our view of the world” and ending “attacks on Judeo-Christian values.”

Moral clarity. Moral clarity. That guy. That guy who insults and attacks – in full public view – anyone who challenges him or criticizes him or simply annoys him. … Read the rest

Not pressed on what she’d done

Oct 13th, 2017 8:25 am | By

Here we foolishly thought Harvey Weinstein was at fault for three decades of (allegedly) sexually harassing and assaulting women, but it turns out it was Emma Thompson’s fault for not stopping him.

Read the rest

Guest post: Misogynist men as cool bros

Oct 12th, 2017 5:53 pm | By

Originally a comment by Bjarte Foshaug on An ordinary, malignant symptom of systemic sexism.

It’s hardly surprising that Hollywood, or the movie industry in general, should be such a hotspot of misogyny and sexism when you look at some (most?) of the stuff it produces. A while back (inspired by Anita Sarkeesian) I went through my own movie collection (not a vast one, but not exactly tiny either) and tried to identify all the problems (from a feminist perspective) I could find. Unsurprisingly most of my movies failed to pass the Bechdel test. Objectification/sexualization of female characters etc. was obviously a recurring theme. The Damsel in Distress as well as the even darker Woman in Refrigerator trope* were depressingly … Read the rest

The pressure was “nail the story”

Oct 12th, 2017 5:26 pm | By

Jodi Kantor, one of the Times reporters who broke the Harvey Weinstein story, was on Maddow last night. She also talked to Isaac Chotiner at Slate.

Isaac Chotiner: Tell me a little bit about how you got on this story. When did you start and what was the impetus?

Jodi Kantor: The Times has made a real commitment to sexual harassment reporting this year. My colleagues Emily Steel and Michael Schmidt did the Bill O’Reilly story and Katie Benner had done some really startling reporting on women in Silicon Valley. So basically we said as investigative journalists we can look at the whole pattern here, and not just focus on one individual woman’s experience. Let’s see if there

Read the rest

Trump to Puerto Rico: drop dead

Oct 12th, 2017 12:37 pm | By

Trump is also bullying Puerto Rico again, because why wouldn’t you bully 3 million people on an island devastated by a hurricane? What’s it all for if you can’t have that kind of fun?

President Trump suggested again on Thursday that Puerto Rico bore some of the blame for its current crisis following twin hurricanes, and warned that there were limits to how long he would keep troops and federal emergency workers on the island to help.

Mr. Trump, who has been criticized for a slow and not always empathetic response to the storms that ravaged the United States territory, sounded off in a series of early-morning Twitter posts. Angry about the criticism, he has sought to refocus blame

Read the rest

Hounded relentlessly in every conceivable way

Oct 12th, 2017 12:18 pm | By

Twitter has a terrible record of dealing with long-term systematic harassment and abuse. I know this from personal experience; most of the people I know know it from personal experience. Hannah Jane Parkinson knows it.

It was a great development when Twitter introduced inline gifs and videos, but not so great when Jewish women routinely receive messages such as “go back to the gas chambers” and it somehow doesn’t violate their terms of service. Some 2.6 million antisemitic tweets were sent last year. One woman was even suspended for reporting a tweet that told her: “Welcome to Trump’s America. Welcome to the camps!”

Rose McGowan, however, the actor at the forefront of calling out Harvey Weinstein’s alleged

Read the rest

Eminently reportable

Oct 12th, 2017 11:28 am | By

And this is interesting. Apparently Ronan Farrow took his story first to NBC and they said no thanks. Why? Pressure.

Read the rest

An ordinary, malignant symptom of systemic sexism

Oct 12th, 2017 11:15 am | By

Harvey Weinstein as symbol of Hollywood sexism and misogyny.

It is the perverse, insistent, matter-of-factness of male sexual predation and assault — of men’s power over women — that haunts the revelations about Mr. Weinstein. This banality of abuse also haunts the American movie industry. Women helped build the industry, but it has long been a male-dominated enterprise that systematically treats women — as a class — as inferior to men. It is an industry with a history of sexually exploiting younger female performers and stamping expiration dates on older ones. It is an industry that consistently denies female directors employment and contemptuously treats the female audience as a niche, a problem, an afterthought.

Still. After all this time. Feminism … Read the rest

In order to demean and denigrate

Oct 12th, 2017 10:01 am | By

So now the narcissistic no theory of mind jackass is actually complaining that the news media are demeaning and denigrating him. He of all people!

“Such hatred!” Exclaims the biggest hater who has ever held that office – the shame of the nation – the meanest man I for one have ever encountered anywhere, let alone as president.

It’s so repellent, this bleating and whining from the Chief Bully.

  • “Crooked Hillary”
  • “Pocahontas”
  • “Cryin’ Chuck”
  • “Liddle Bob Corker”
  • Alicia Machado
  • Jeff Sessions
  • James Comey
  • Duško Marković

To name only a few.

Action shot:

NPR has a story Read the rest

They’re simmering over there

Oct 11th, 2017 5:00 pm | By

Robert Reich on Facebook:

This morning I phoned my old friend, a Republican former member of Congress.

Me: So what’s up? Is Corker alone, or are others also ready to call it quits with Trump?

He: All I know is they’re simmering over there.

Me: Flake and McCain have come pretty close.

He: Yeah. Others are thinking about doing what Bob did. Sounding the alarm. They think Trump’s nuts. Unfit. Dangerous.

Me: Well, they already knew that, didn’t they?

He: But now it’s personal. It started with the Sessions stuff. Jeff was as loyal as they come. Trump’s crapping on him was like kicking your puppy. And then, you know, him beating up on Mitch for the Obamacare fiasco.

Read the rest

He hates us, precious

Oct 11th, 2017 4:00 pm | By

Gabriel Sherman at Vanity Fair says the wheels are coming off. It’s seemed that way all along, but at the same time it’s also been steadily getting worse.

He says Corker’s interview with the Times

brought into the open what several people close to the president have recently told me in private: that Trump is “unstable,” “losing a step,” and “unraveling.”

The conversation among some of the president’s longtime confidantes, along with the character of some of the leaks emerging from the White House has shifted. There’s a new level of concern…

In recent days, I spoke with a half dozen prominent Republicans and Trump advisers, and they all describe a White House in crisis as advisers struggle to

Read the rest

It’s frankly disgusting

Oct 11th, 2017 3:46 pm | By

Press conference, Oval Office. Justin Trudeau and the fucking moron answered questions. Trump said he thinks it’s frankly disgusting that the press gets to say whatever it wants to – you know, what the rest of us call freedom of the press, as spelled out in the First Amendment to the Constitution.

Q: Do you want to increase the nuclear arsenal?

PRESIDENT TRUMP: No, I never discussed increasing it. I want it in perfect shape. That was just fake news by NBC, which gives a lot of fake news, lately. No, I never discuss — I think somebody said I want ten times the nuclear weapons that we have right now. Right now, we have so many nuclear weapons.

Read the rest

Maybe we need to explain the whole world

Oct 11th, 2017 10:16 am | By

Ah so that’s why Tillerson said Trump is a fucking moron – it’s because he was shown a graphic of the reduction in the US nuclear arsenal and he promptly said ew that’s no good we need MOAR. I guess he’s not aware of the nuclear arms reduction treaty we have with Russia. Seems pretty basic for a president, but whatever.

President Donald Trump said he wanted what amounted to a nearly tenfold increase in the U.S. nuclear arsenal during a gathering this past summer of the nation’s highest-ranking national security leaders, according to three officials who were in the room.

Trump’s comments, the officials said, came in response to a briefing slide he was shown that charted the steady

Read the rest

This piece of shit human has very fine taste in cinema

Oct 11th, 2017 9:38 am | By

Scalzi on Harvey Weinstein:

4. While we’re on the topic, let’s dispense of some other nonsense. Weinstein tried to imply that coming of age in the 60s and 70s meant his moral compass was pointed a few degrees off true. Well, that’s bullshit; I know lots of people who came of age in the 60s and 70s who know perfectly well sexual coercion and rape is immoral. Pretty much all of them, in fact.

Well, not quite, or yes but. There are also lots of people who came of age in the 60s and 70s (and 80s and 90s and 00s and teens) who think men are somehow entitled to access to women’s bodies and thus don’t see sexual … Read the rest

Go back to Lake Wobegon and stay there

Oct 11th, 2017 9:07 am | By

Garrison Keillor is a jackass.

I am off lingonberries for the time being and Volvos and flat white furniture from Ikea. No meatballs, thank you. Once again the humorless Swedes have chosen a writer of migraines for the Nobel Prize in literature, an author of twilight meditations on time and memory and mortality and cold toast by loners looking at bad wallpaper. It’s not a prize for literature, it’s a prize for nihilism. The Swedes said he’s like Jane Austen combined with Kafka with some of Proust, three other writers you’d never invite to a party.

Jesus, where to begin. I guess at the end. Hello? The point of writers isn’t whether you would invite them to … Read the rest

Where he was been superb

Oct 10th, 2017 4:28 pm | By

The BBC is also asking.

Question: How often does President Trump talk about IQ?

Answer: All the time.

When Mr Trump recently boasted that his IQ was higher than Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s, it fit a pattern.

In 2013, he tweeted that his IQ was “much higher” than Barack Obama and George W Bush.

He has also claimed a higher IQ than comedian Jon Stewart and British star of The Apprentice, Lord Sugar.

Despite this, Mr Trump has never revealed his own IQ. So can we work it out?

Sure. We can work it out by watching him in action. We can compare him to other people in the same line of work. We can compare … Read the rest