March 20, 2019

At the Rattatz Café...

rat 1

... go ahead and talk about whatever you like.

I hope you get a glimpse of the Super Worm Moon. It's too overcast for us here at Meadhouse, but we did get a good look at this morning's moonset, so that almost counts.

Please remember to use the Althouse Portal to Amazon when you're purchasing your various worldly goods. The portal link is always there in the sidebar.

Thanks to all who've gotten into the swing of the new comments policy, which puts everything through moderation and has worked really well from our end, cutting out trolls, thread hijacks, and the dreaded "back and forth."

"'For men, the black turtleneck did it all. This garment was supposed to indicate the kind of freedom from sartorial convention demanded by deep thought...'"

"'... or pure creation (usually poetic)—with overtones, always carried by masculine black clothes,' fashion historian Anne Hollander wrote in her book Seeing Through Clothes. In spite of its long history, a backlash to the turtleneck followed [Elizabeth] Holmes’s explosive downfall. Will we think back to Ashton Kutcher as Steve Jobs when we think of the black turtleneck? Or will seeing Jennifer Lawrence scamming millions in the look forever taint it? As Vanessa Friedman wrote in the New York Times: 'In the same way that Gordon Gekko’s suspenders and Michael Milken’s toupee became symbols of their greed, Ms. Holmes’s black turtleneck is starting to seem less a brilliant frame than a false front; a carefully calculated costume that fooled everyone into assuming she was more brilliant than she was; a symbol of hubris rather than success.'"

From "Why the Black Turtleneck Was So Important to Elizabeth Holmes's Image/It has a long and symbolic history" (Esquire).

ADDED: Here's the most memorable opinion about turtlenecks:

Of spoons and forks and Birch Bayh and Amy Klobuchar.

From Ryan Lizzo's interview with Democratic presidential candidate Peter Buttigieg (in Esquire):
By the way we just got the word that senator Birch Bayh passed away. Did he have any impact on you growing up as a fellow Hoosier?

He was already out of office by the time I came of age but we’d see him campaigning for other people around Indiana. He was famous for carrying a spoon in his suit pocket to be ready for stops at Dairy Queen. He had that kind of nice retail touch. But also —

If only Amy Klobuchar had adopted a version of that.

Eeeeeeewww, uh, yeah.

I will note the non-response to that.

Morally conflicted.

The existence of women still a fascinating oddity at NPR.



That's how the NPR front page looks this morning.

That's either embarrassing or downright insulting to women.

"Dear ABC, when you asked me back to once again bail out your sh*t, f**kin’, low-rated network, I did so with the same vigor I’ve always rocked..."

"... and I delivered you the highest ratings you’ve had in 10 fucking years. At the first sign of controversy, you killed me off with a drug overdose. But you know what, I ain’t dead, bitches."

Said Roseanne Barr, quoted at HuffPo.

ADDED: Click the link to watch the video. It was embedded before but seemed to be hanging up my browser so I got rid of it.

The perverse power of the Democrats rule that a candidate with 65,000 donors gets into the debates.

WaPo explains, noting that the obscure candidate John Delaney is offering to give $2 to charity if you give him $1. Delaney is wealthy and self-funded. So he can do something like that easily.
The Democratic Party also set the fundraising threshold with the goal of expanding the early debate stage to include as many as 20 candidates, who will be randomly divided to appear on consecutive nights in a two-day June debate hosted by NBC and a two-day July meeting hosted by CNN.

Using polling alone to filter the field, especially this early in the process, would almost certainly have meant a far smaller group of candidates onstage. Recent national polls have shown no more than a dozen candidates with 1 percent support, the criteria used to qualify for the first Democratic debate in 2015....

“We are about 40 percent there, so we are getting there,” said Patricia Ewing, a spokeswoman for [Marianne] Williamson, a self-described spiritual teacher who gained fame for her work with Oprah Winfrey.
Yikes. Why wouldn't 40,000 Republicans give Williamson $1 just to make the debates more fun/weird/horrible?



"And I also like you because you want to give $100 million in reparations to black people"/"No more than that."

ADDED: That quote is mispunctuated. She didn't say "No more than that." She said "No, more than that. 200 to 500 is the number that I sort of landed on."

"Giant sunfish washes up on Australian beach: 'I thought it was a shipwreck.'"

Cool photo at The Guardian.

"Mexico has one gun shop. So why all the murders?"

Asks BBC.



Short answer: It's the U.S.'s fault.

New question: Can't Trump use this in his argument for his wall?

"My mum was chasing me and I started running. At first I could hear her but then I got lost... I leaned on a stone, started calling her, but she didn't hear me... I [started] walking towards a light that was very far away."

Said Benjamín Sánchez, a 5-year-old boy who was lost in the desert (in Argentina) for 24 hours, quoted in BBC.

The decision to start "walking towards a light that was very far away" is interesting. A couple weeks ago, there was a story about 2 little girls who got lost in the forest in California who remembered and followed a survival rule they had been taught: Once you know you are lost, stay put.

1,000 people were looking for Sánchez, and the point at which he became lost was known, yet the searchers never found him. A passing motorcyclist did. That boy must have really been determined to walk. He made the wrong choice, but I'm interested in his determination. I'd like to know the details of what he thought about the light and why it made sense to him to walk toward something very far away.

"I was cold, I slept badly, leaning on a rock."