“IT WAS CALAMITOUS for me. I feel a deep, deep grief.” Sir V.S. Naipaul is talking about his dead cat. We are sitting in the spacious two-story London flat in Kensington where the author and his welcoming second wife, Nadira, stay when they are not at their Wiltshire country residence. “Now that Augustus has died, I want to spend more time in London,” he continues, slowly picking at the meal Nadira has provided. “It is too painful to be [in Wiltshire]. I think of Augustus. He was the sum of my experiences.
Because Ryan Lizza’s terrific piece in this week’s New Yorker is filled with such good anecdotes, you might not notice something until you are finished reading it. I certainly didn’t. Lizza reports on the long rapprochement between Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, as the White House sought to bring Clinton into the tent and utilize him in this year’s election campaign. Bad feelings, stemming from Obama’s lack of respect for Clinton’s two terms in office, and the nasty 2008 primary campaign, still linger.
New York Times article, today: A Republican Voice with Tea Party Mantle and Intellectual Heft Quote from the same piece: “I’d have predicted that he would be a professor, not a politician,” said Robert P. George, Mr. Cruz’s adviser at Princeton in the early 1990s. Professor George, a noted social conservative, said that Mr.
Christoper Nolan is currently cinema’s master of foreboding. In Memento, he managed to convey anxious tension throughout a movie that was literally playing in reverse, and thus one whose “conclusion” was already known. With Insomnia, he trapped his characters in a perpetually-light but somehow gloomy Alaska, where menace seemed to lurk in the fog. And in his three Batman films, Nolan—aided along by Hans Zimmer’s and James Newton Howard’s overbearing but powerful score—has created a freaky, atmospheric Gotham where life appears permanently on the verge of going awry.
The New York Times announced today that its new public editor will for the first time be a woman. Margaret Sullivan, the editor of the Buffalo News, will take over for Arthur S. Brisbane. Part of the problem with the way the job is conceived can be seen in Sullivan’s statement to the press, in which she says that she sees the position as offering, “a chance to listen to readers, to respond, to learn and to write, always thoughtfully and also in real time.” The trouble here is with the obsessive focus on readers and their opinions.
When discussing the subject of bigotry, it is helpful to discriminate (no pun intended). It's more difficult to do so when reporting on poll results, and the latest attempt, in The Washington Post, shows just how difficult it can be. The headline of the piece, 'Mormons, African Americans Face Substantial Prejudice, Poll Finds,' is part of the problem.
Now that Conrad Black is no longer in jail, he is free to spread his ideas to the hungry masses. National Review, which is always pining for the glory days of imperialism, has taken Black under its wing, and apparently decided that July 4th was an opportune time for him to pen a piece about the glories of empire.
Amidst all the talk of a Republican "alternative" to Obamacare, it's refreshing to hear one Republican politician concede that, you know, he just doesn't care much about the uninsured.