Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Around the World Wide Web 39

1. Quite a weapon: A 747 with a huge laser in its nose. The future is here today. (HT: Ace of Spades)

2. Quite a story: A tale of internet deception and tragic consequences. (HT: Ace of Spades)

3. An account of a little known, disastrous American bombing raid during WWII in Romania that ended up with as many American casualties as 10 months of Iraq. Murphy's Law was at work on this one.

4. Captain Ed says Hillary Clinton's campaign is "getting close to a meltdown now." The campaign is falling apart because Hillary Clinton attempted to run a campaign that was dictatorial and Stalinist in spirit, if not in fact as bad as what communist dictators got away with. The candidate seems to want everything controlled and staged, including the questions she is asked. Much of the MSM would happily cooperate with Clinton in setting up a pseudo-Stalinist bubble of protection around the candidate. After all, who are they protecting her from? Corporate America and the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy. So they're justified, right?

If I was wrong in a previous post and Hillary Clinton does not get the nomination, despite having a lot of money and inheriting her husband's organization and party contacts throughout the land, it will be because the Democrats show remarkable good judgment and nominate someone else. That would be the worst thing that could happen in Republican eyes; to them Clinton's meltdown is coming nine months too early. The other candidates would be much harder to beat.

5. Senator McCain answers the question of how he would beat Hillary Clinton in this brief video. Actually, he says nothing, but the way he is relaxed and laughs shows why he would demolish Clinton. I don't like McCain at all, but I will admit the obvious, that he has more charisma than Clinton. He is Clinton's opposite, in that he comes off as a real, honest human being. In China they can set Mao on a pedestal as if he were a god, but that doesn't work in America -- at least, not yet. A candidate has to react to unstaged questions as McCain did, and as Clinton seems incapable of.

6. Where are the right-wing playwrights?

'Very simply put,' he says, 'after the Second World War the avant garde became the establishment. That meant that no one was poking fun at the establishment any more because they approved of it.'

So is it a conspiracy? 'Absolutely not. I don't want to give the impression that there's some plot going on. It's just become impossible not to be a socialist within the artistic community these days.'

See also The Playgoer and Parabasis.


Anonymous said...

The Parabsis piece is interesting. He asks what right-wing theater would look like and comes up with this:

"And so Conservative Political Theatre should, for example, be an overt critique of the virtues of multiculturalism, and argue for a return to previous notions of the cultural dominance of whites."

Once again we come up against the false alternative of Leftist multiculturalism and Rightist theocracy and racism. Most on the Left cant even consider a critique of leftism that isn't racist or theocratic. They think that the only opposition that they face is from the cultural / religious conservatives. I can understand that they don't see Ayn Rand and Objectivism as an alternative as Rand's ideas are still so new. But what about the legacy of Classical Liberalism? The legacy which they as Leftists stole and destroyed. I would love to see a pro-individualist, pro-reason, pro-capitalist Romantic artistic revolution. But at best estimates I think we are two or three generations away from that which doesn't exactly do me much good.

John Kim

Billy Beck said...

Without even glancing at the Romanian air-raid item, I say it's gotta be Ploesti.

I studied that raid in junior high school.

Myrhaf said...

It is Ploesti, yes. The piece tells how to pronounce it. I wonder if middle schoolers study WWII battles these days.

John, I found it amusing in that long piece that many of the people interviewed could not even imagine what a right-wing play would be like. If you think in fundamentals, Ibsen, Schiller and any playwright who pits the individual against the state or the collective is right-wing.

Jim May said...

If you think in fundamentals, Ibsen, Schiller and any playwright who pits the individual against the state or the collective is right-wing.

I emphatically disagree with that -- unless you are redefining "right" wing here to mean classical liberalism/Enlightenment ideas, which leaves conservatism and the Left -- well, on the left wing.

Enlightenment politics is opposed to both of them; it is neither Left nor Right. That is intentional; by defining that spectrum by nonessentials, laissez-faire capitalism falls off the map entirely. Those trapped in that box can no longer get "there" freedom) from "here" (conventional politics).

"My technique, Peter... poison as food, and poison as antidote.". --Ellsworth Toohey

Anonymous said...

"...unless you are redefining "right" wing here to mean classical liberalism/Enlightenment ideas..."

I agree. Its dangerous to define the "right" as meaning classical liberalism. As I've come to realize, many conservatives - especially the cultural conservatives which I am thinking of renaming the "Sharia Christians" - despise classical liberalism and see it as essentially the same as left-liberalism. They are not our allies. While there may be some watered down element of classical liberalism in the Neo-cons, to me they are essentially pro-America welfare statists as opposed to the anti-America welfare statists on the Left. The actual classical liberals themselves do not exert any significant influence on the conservatives that I can tell. I think that may be dated all the way back to Goldwater's defeat in '64.

As for right leaning cinema or theater, I think that it is impossible in today's culture to successfully produce a significant anti-left play or movie. It may be possible to show the individual against the collective for certain types of cases where the victim is one favored by the Left; ie blacks or homosexuals. But I doubt that you could make an anti-environmentalist or an anti-feminist, or an anti-Islam movie (take a look at today' war movies, they all portray Muslims as victims). So in that sense "right-wing theater" is an impossibility today. There are certain subjects that the Left will not let you challenge.

Now what does this say for the Atlas Shrugged project? Well is it at all possible that the anti-union elements of the book could ever be depicted loyally? How would that ever be possible making a movie with union labor? Also, I read on Bidinotto's site that the newly hired director was very impressed with Lillian Rearden as a character (!!). This should be interesting to say the least.

John Kim