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Missive # 60

Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: April 14, 1935

This discerning study of a man and an era reveals the influences which created the most extraordinary mind in the early days of the Republic. As Max Eastman says, ‘I think John Dos Passos has done a great service to his country and the free world by lending his talents to this task. He has revived the heart and mind of Jefferson, not by psycho-analytical lucubrations or soulful gush, but in the main by telling story after story of those whose lives and thoughts impinged upon his.This is probably the best book by Dos Passos that I have read so far. The stories of those whose lives impinged on Jefferson’s were stories that you never heard when studying history in school. Reccommended! And Jefferson’s mind and heart are so livingly related to our problems today that the result seems hardly to be history.’ This is no ordinary biography. Mr. Dos Passos has woven all quotations from Jefferson’s writings and conversations and those of his contemporaries into the text to form an unbroken story. Since he has let his characters speak in their own words, the reader gets the impression of actually living in the period instead of merely reading about it. — Dust jacket notes @ goodreads.com

I have quoted from a good article about what Country Music was like and what it has become. All the performers that the author mentions in the article are those that I grew up with. When Country went pop was about the time my hearing went as well so I think I have been lucky to have lived during a time when I could enjoy both kinds of music — Country & Western.

In the past, Country was able to absorb pop cultural trends. Coe, in the hippie days: “my long hair just can’t cover up my red neck.” All sorts of quirky characters were able to inhabit Country’s nooks and crannies. But today’s CMT mainstream is about as hollow as the rest of corporate arts. It’s no secret that for decades now Nashville has been repackaging overproduced pop as Country. And since the personal is now political, genuine human stories are filtered through ideological gauze. — Leave country music alone by Katya Sedgwick

Do you remember Spuds MacKenzie  and the extensive advertising campaign marketing Bud Light. He was the first transgender to be used to market Bud Light. Spuds was portrayed as being a male dog when in fact the dog that they used was a female bull terrier named Honey Tree Evil Eye. Spuds was retired in 1989, with Anheuser-Busch claiming that the character’s image had started to overshadow the product. I think they can retire Dylan Mulvaney tomorrow and it will not be too soon. His/Her image has certainly overshadowed the product. 

This quote is the closing paragraph in an article about the Summit of Democracy.

Most African leaders will no doubt look at Biden and his cabal and will be as much inclined to accept human rights tutelage from them as they would take dental hygiene advice from a man with no teeth. The absurdity of the Biden administration is no longer the Magoo-type caricature struggling to leave the podium; it’s his ideas about how he believes the rest of the world views America which is the real joke which is going to stick. Even the most cynical world leader knows that the conference was about a struggling Biden administration trying to shore up support around the world for his own policies — chiefly Ukraine but also the brain-dead idea of containing China — and not using the traditional practice that previous U.S. presidents relied on for this: having a nice little war somewhere with U.S. soldiers killing people who dared to stand up and defend the oil that the U.S. is trying to steal. Times have changed but Biden hasn’t. It’s only a matter of time before the rising East will start its own annual democracy talk shops which will hold America to account for its own belligerency on a grand scale, followed by their own International Court, weapons inspection organisation. The list is endless. — Hilarious Goon Show of Biden Ddemocracy Talk Shop for Global South Leaders by Martin Jay

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