NPR recently revealed that the right is composed of sniveling snowflakes weeping out their broken hearts in safe places clutching their support animals because their triggers have been pushed.

No, really.  

Despite their control of all three branches of government,  "many [on the right]feel unfairly persecuted by the powers that be in American culture."

NPR cites Kurt Schlicter, columnist with Townhall.com, who described the frustrations of life as a conservative in a left-run world. "We want to be treated with respect, and we will not tolerate anything less which is just unacceptable for this to continue. I'm tired of Hollywood spitting on us. I am tired of academia spitting on us. I'm tired of the news media spitting on us," he said.

For an instant I thought that if he doesn't like the coverage the right gets in the media it should get its own news network. But wait! It has Fox News.   Oh--that's the creature of a dying Australian watched exclusively by angry old white men right behind him on the hopper to hell. Okay, get your own internet outlet. But wait! It has Breitbart--run, for now, by Steve Bannon, a mottled four hundred pounder  whose clicks come from tagsale PCs in trailerparks. In other words, not exactly the kind of audience with which you want to be associated. Even if you're part of it. In fact, especially if you're part of it.

Apparently the right doesn't want to have to hang out with old men and fat guys with bad skin.  No, they want to sit at the same cafeteria table as the cool kids.  

But the reason they can't becomes clear with the remarks of John Hawkins--happily, no relation--curator of the website Right Wing News.  Here's how he sees the cultural experience of his typical reader: "He turns on a TV show where he's insulted, and then he's like, 'well, maybe I'll just unwind and watch an awards show' — the Oscars or something — where he gets trashed all day long," Hawkins said. "He goes to Twitter and he's got some you know guy calling him in a-hole ... this is sort of like a pervasive all-out attack if you're a conservative. And it's all the time sort of thing."

Aww.  We know, Johnnie.  Words hurt, don't they?  I bet it was like sophomore year when that football player stuck that I LOVE DICKS thing on your back in the lunchroom and you finally started crying and shat yourself when everyone kept laughing and you didn't know why.  

But you showed them! You got yourself a website so you could get even! A website that features "Fifteen Best David Hogg Memes!"  Second of which is a crude drawing of the school shooting survivor and gun control activist getting pelted with "Hogg shit!"


See, that's the problem.  Things like that.  Things like cross-clutching Laura Ingraham's equally deplorable trashing of the Parkland activists.  Or things like spittle-spraying conspiracy theorist Alex Jones' exploitation of Seth Rich's murder to pump up Infowars' readership.  Or anything that comes out of Donald Trump's Twitter feed.

The culture doesn't hate you because you're conservative.  It hates you because you're assholes.



Though Sylvia Madrigal and I were in the same residential college at Yale--Hopper, then called Calhoun--at almost the same time, we didn't then know each other.  Our paths didn't cross for another oh let's see thirty-five years, when she came to the Yale Writers' Conference.

In the story linked here, she describes how a life-shattering loss led to a life-embracing transformation.  It's deeply moving and deftly told.  I am very proud of her.  


As recently exhumed Trump consigliere Rudy "the Laughing Corpse" Giuliani drags the president into the grave, a fun fact from his time on earth is worth remembering.

I'm not referring, at least directly, to his very recent--and successful--efforts to use pro-Trump elements in the FBI to throw the election.  At the time, it was widely thought that James Comey's abrupt re-opening and re-closure of the Clinton investigation were a response to the Lord of the Undead's threat to leak reports from law-enforcement contacts he'd maintained from his days as US Attorney. It's worth wondering whether anybody at Robert "Bobby the Gravedigger" Mueller's shop is looking into that, though, giving Nosferatu personal skin in an investigation he's doing his best to thwart.

No, I'm talking about his political response to 9/11.  True, he stepped up big league in the immediate aftermath of the attack. 

But then he used the disaster as a possible excuse for hanging onto power.  Giuliani was term-limited, compelled by the City's charter to leave office January 1, 2002.  But no more willing to leave office than any other fascist, he first floated the idea of postponing the election, and when that fell flat, explicitly proposed delaying the inauguration of his elected successor.

That didn't go over so well, either.  He left office as scheduled.

This is important to remember.  Giuliani's instincts are antidemocratic and authoritarian.  He saw 9/11 as a justification to subvert a fundamental element of New York's constitution.  He now has the ear of another tyrannical bully in deep deep trouble.  How long will it take him to find an excuse to fire Mueller? Or arrest Comey?  Or Hillary?  Or shut down CNN?

Luckily, given his recent grampa-off-his meds performance on Fox, it's entirely possible that he'll manage to drive a stake into his own heart.





Until today, it was widely thought that ousted FBI Director James Comey's characterizations of Trump's White House as a "La Cosa Nostra crime family" and the chief executive himself as a "mob boss" were hyperbole dreamed up to sell books.

But no more.

A recently obtained FBI affidavit submitted in support of the Michael Cohen search warrant reveals that if anything, Comey didn't go far enough.  It is now clear that many members of the President's inner circle--and the President himself--sport Mafia-style nicknames that harken back to the days of Al "Scarface" Capone, Charles "Lucky" Luciano, and Vincent "Vinny the Chin" Gigante.

While the most recent addition to Trump's legal team, former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani, may prefer to be known as Hizzoner, that is not what he's called in the West Wing.  Most frequently he appears in organizational charts as "The Laughing Corpse."  He is also termed, less formally,  "Rudy-Walking-Dead," or among Mr. Trump's few literate associates, "Nosferatu."  The putative quarterback of the defense squad, Ty Cobb, is known simply as "Batboy."

The administration’s public relations shop first evidenced its organized-crime character with the spectacularly brief tenure of Anthony “Tony Mooch” Scaramucci.  Since his fall from grace after a late-night interview in which he suggested that Steve “Do Not Resuscitate” Bannon was capable of autofellation, its public face has been Sarah “Strokemouth” Sanders.  The famously bad tempered Sicilian matron transplanted to Arkansas  is  is also sometimes known as “Deputy Dawg,” or “Huckleberry Hound."    Equally prominent in the Pennsylvania Avenue mob’s PR department is Sean “Johnny Melonhead” Hannity.

New to the family’s international efforts is National Security Adviser John Bolton. Though most members of organized crime are barred from military service because of their criminal records, they nevertheless prize bravery and scorn cowards.  Perhaps for this reason, the admitted draft-avoiding hawk is known as John “Chickenshit Jack” Bolton.

The Secretary of the Treasury, despite early media missteps in which he and his even more tone-deaf wife appeared to be posing as as Bond villains, and in distinction from the President’s son-in-law, is referred to as Steven “the Other Jew” Mnuchin. He is known to be an ally of the Chief of Staff, former Marine four-star general John "the Angry Priest" Kelly.

Not surprisingly, the President’s biological and married-in family also have Cosa Nostra-style aliases.  To his face, and to Mr. Trump's, his eldest son is referred to, respectfully and accurately, as “Don Jr.”  Privately, in a nod to an HBO crime family, he's known as “Little Lord Fuckpants.”  His half-brother Eric, cruelly, is simply known as “Sheltered Workshop”  or "Goodwill Eric."

Given the Oedipal tensions in the family, even the hardest made guys tread lightly where the Trump women are concerned.  Melania is “the Angry Slav” or simply “the Wife.”  Ivanka is “the Dream Wife,” or, among those in the closest circle, “the Wetdream Wife.”  The President's other, far less attractive, daughter is dismissively called “Percoset Tiff.”   And his son-in-law, when not simply named “Jared the Jew” is casually known as “Jared Lucky Fucker” or “the Hairless Lizard.”

The capo di tutti cappi at the apex of this unsteady pyramid has, of course, accumulated more nicknames than any of his family.  In his early days as a New York developer and party boy he was called “Toefingers Donald.”  He was also known as “Ratpaws” and “Chapter 13.”  But the recent disclosures from Stormy Daniels edited out of her CNN interview explain some of the even less flattering names applied to The Donald among "friends of ours"—“Thumbdick Donnie,” “Stubby Don,” and, “the Preemie.”

While the President's personal attorney called himself "the Fixer," or "Ray Donovan," he was the only one to do so.  Significantly, he is actually known as Michael “Sure you’re the Consigliere” or “Crying in the Squadcar” Cohen.  

But most telling is the name assigned the Special Counsel: Robert “Bobby Gravedigger” Mueller.  

American Neolithic Sequel in Blue Mountain Review


Clifford Brooks and his band of raconteurs, savants, and all-around polymaths at Blue Mountain Review have been kind enough to publish an excerpt from the sequel-in-progress to American Neolithic.  The rollicking ribaldry begins at page 43.

I must note that the sequel--provisionally titled Rats' Alley--is proving to be a heavy lift.  How is political satire possible in a time in which the former director of the FBI concedes it's possible that the President watched Russian prozzers piss on each other in a bed once occupied by his immediate predecessor?  And that's just last night. 

But perhaps a Neanderthal perspective is just what we need. 




As the Parkland shooting begins to slip into the abyss in which we bury any fact inconsistent with our triumphal exceptionalism--Gore Vidal called our country the United States of Amnesia--it is important crucial to do what can to keep the memory alive when the victims are not.  Please share this link.  Florida Teacher Tracey Amarant Merlin is my married-in cousin.  The catch in her voice is more eloquent than any words of mine.


Fox News flack Laura Ingraham has doubled down in her bid to be named Shittiest Human Being Ever.

You may know that in a move shocking even to the liberal--sorry!--standards of the Fox gerontocracy, Ingraham called out  on Twitter seventeen-year-old Parkland survivor David Hogg for not having got into his top pick colleges and then "whining" about it.

There are, of course, a number of problems with this apparent to anyone who has not sold his soul for a TV time slot that enables her to talk to Trump directly while he masturbates.  One is that you shouldn't make fun of a kid in public.  Another is that you shouldn't hurt a kid over a personal disappointment.  A third is that you shouldn't publicly ridicule a kid whose friends were killed in a mass shooting two months ago.  These are things any decent human being knows.  She, obviously, does not.

But what Laura should know is that you shouldn't make fun of anyone who didn't get into his top pick colleges.  Laura went to Dartmouth.  That means she was turned down by Harvard, Yale, and Princeton.  At least.  Probably Columbia too.  Dartmouth is nobody's first choice.  So she should know better.  

But this seventeen year old is no pushover.  Neither is his fourteen year old sister.  They launched a Twitter campaign asking people to boycott the famously made-over right-wing spittle factory's advertisers.

It worked.  So far Nutrish, Johnson & Johnson, Tripadvisor, and Wayfair have pulled their ads.  Companies that will now get my business whenever it's available.

But Safety School alumna Ingraham's response to the Hoggs made things worse.  Much worse.  She proved yet again that the hallmark of a marrow-deep, down in the DNA asshole is the inability to offer a genuine apology.  Here, in pertinent part, is what she said in this afternoon's tweet:

"On reflection, in the spirit of Holy Week, I apologize for any upset or hurt my tweet caused him or any of the brave victims of Parkland." [emphasis added]

Leaving aside for a moment the italicized language, her "apology" is not an acknowledgement of her own dreadful behavior.  She doesn't say, "I apologize for hurting you."  She says, "I apologize if you were hurt."  A form of words, mouthed only because they are expected,  completely unfelt, characteristic of high-functioning sociopaths everywhere.  

But most shocking is the italicized language.  The second-tier Ivy grad holds herself out as a believing Catholic.  So she says her apology, such as it is, is offered not in a genuine spirit of contrition but an act of grace in acknowledgement of the season.  Thus invoking the Passion and Resurrection in furtherance of her frantic effort to claw back advertisers and avoid the bully's ultimate humiliation: ruin at the hands of a couple of picked-on kids.  

Holy Week? Go to hell.  



Stunning archival footage reveals that new Trump "lawyer" and professional fantasist Joseph Di Genova is, in fact, seventies skinflick icon Ron Jeremy.