The most depraved movie I may have ever seen

If you are intending to see Knives Out and want no plot spoilers, stop here.

On the other hand, let me tell you about a movie that is as disgusting in its baseline plot as any film I have ever seen. Also 96% from the media critics at Rotten Tomatoes which in itself might give you a clue. And while we normally shy away from Hollywood because of its messaging, this seemed like an Agatha Christie plot-line knock-off, so how bad could it be?

Turned out to be the most far-left looney politically-driven plot I have seen in years, whose underlying thread actually came up quite early on, when the family are sitting around after the death of this wealthy millionaire author whose will they are expecting to benefit from. There they are discussing open borders and migration. And while it was astonishing to see any such thing in the midst of a Murder-She-Wrote kind of plot, it turned out to be what the entire film was metaphorically about. Here’s one of the trailers for a bit of background before I go on. Keep an eye out for a young and pretty girl with an Hispanic look. Her name in the film is Marta Cabrera played by a Cuban actress named Ana Celia de Armas Caso. It is she that the plot ultimately revolves around.

Might just mention this although you needn’t bother going to the link: REVIEW: Ana de Armas’s Character in ‘Knives Out’ Is the Latina Heroine We Need in the Trump Era. Get the message? In bare bones, this is the story as related by the film producers:

Acclaimed writer and director Rian Johnson (Brick, Looper, The Last Jedi) pays tribute to mystery mastermind Agatha Christie in KNIVES OUT, a fun, modern-day murder mystery where everyone is a suspect. When renowned crime novelist Harlan Thrombey (Christopher Plummer) is found dead at his estate just after his 85th birthday, the inquisitive and debonair Detective Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) is mysteriously enlisted to investigate. From Harlan’s dysfunctional family to his devoted staff, Blanc sifts through a web of red herrings and self-serving lies to uncover the truth behind Harlan’s untimely death. With an all-star ensemble cast including Chris Evans, Ana De Armas, Jamie Lee Curtis, Don Johnson, Michael Shannon, Toni Collette, LaKeith Stanfield, Katherine Langford and Jaeden Martell, KNIVES OUT is a witty and stylish whodunit guaranteed to keep audiences guessing until the very end.

So here is the metaphorical meaning of the story, this time by me.

When renowned crime novelist Harlan Thrombey (Christopher Plummer) is found dead at his estate just after his 85th birthday, we get to see what a bunch of rotten persons his family really are, so that when the will is eventually read, we are not at all dismayed to find all of the money he had earned from his novels has been given in its entirety to his sweet young Hispanic nurse, who is shown by Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) to be the worthy inheritor of all of the family’s accumulated wealth in spite of the work many in the family had put in to assist this renowned crime novelist over the years. The nurse, Marta, however has a loving heart. At the end she stands on the upstairs verandah of the house she has just been given as part of the will, as the author’s family stand below in the driveway about to drive off pennyless and disinherited. Her coffee cup reads “My House, my land, my something or other.”

From the Wikepedia entry for the film here are some of the critics’ responses.

Critical response

On the review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 96% based on 136 reviews, with an average rating of 8.53/10. The website’s critics’ consensus reads: “Knives Out sharpens old murder-mystery tropes with a keenly assembled suspense outing that makes brilliant use of writer-director Rian Johnson’s stellar ensemble.” Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned the film a score of 85 out of 100, based on reviews from 26 critics, indicating “universal acclaim”.

David Rooney, writing for The Hollywood Reporter, described the film as an “ingeniously plotted, tremendously entertaining and deviously irreverent crowd-pleaser” and “a treat from start to finish”, praising the film’s script, the throwbacks to the murder mysteries of the 1970s, and the actors’ performances.

Am I reading too much into the film? I do not think so. But the very invisibility of the point the film obviously in spades is making is a major problem in itself. If no one can see it here, I fear they cannot see it anywhere else.

“A dream week for the Democrats”

That is a sentence about as wrong as could be written following the first week of the impeachment “investigation”. You’d kinda wish that at least The Oz might send someone along to the impeachment clown show who can understand, at least a little, that there is no there there. Instead they send Cameron Stewart who takes responsibility for this: Theatrics can’t disguise a simple reality: Republicans not turning. It’s not Republicans who are not being convinced, no one else is either other than the vast number of morons who want PDT out for reasons that are not identified. This is from the article:

Now that the public hearings are over, at least for now, in the ­impeachment inquiry we are able to draw three conclusions from the evidence so far.

  1. The first is that Donald Trump appears to have done almost everything he is accused of in seeking to pressure Ukraine to ­investigate his political rival Joe Biden and his son Hunter.
  2. The second is that the Democrats are hurtling towards ­impeachment and believe they already­ have enough material to argue Trump committed “high crimes and misdemeanours”.
  3. The third is that the evidence so far has failed to move a single ­Republican, with most believing that even if Trump did what he is ­accused of, it’s not an impeachable offence.

It has been a dream week for the Democrats, who saw almost everything go right except for the most important part — persuading congressional Republicans to abandon Trump.

This means, of course, that they are likely to impeach Trump in the Democrat-controlled House of Representatives and Repub­licans are likely to acquit him in a trial in the GOP-controlled Senate. In other words, Trump emerges with the black eye of being only the third president to be impeached, but keeps his job, with every chance of being re-elected.

He might also have mentioned that there has not been an ounce of evidence that the President has undertaken an impeachable offence. One might even go farther and ask why the President should not be asking the Ukraine to investigate Hunter Biden. Remember this?

And all this on top of the illegal never mind immoral efforts by Obama and the Deep State to remove the elected president by any means necessary. The media are themselves the enemies of the people.

A journey of a 1000 miles starts with a single step

Here perhaps is that step. A Groundbreaking Arab Initiative to Repudiate BDS.

In a groundbreaking event in London on Nov. 19 and 20, 30 public figures from 15 countries in the Arab world came together to repudiate the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement (BDS) against Israel and to call for direct civil relations between the Jewish state and their respective societies.

In an intensive two-day conference, concluded with a signing ceremony, the group, now formed as the Arab Council for Regional Integration, discussed — and sought solutions to — some of the most intransigent issues in the Middle East, calling for reconciliation both as a way to mend relations with Israel and also to heal some of the greatest internal problems in their own countries. The delegates addressed problems in the “cold peace” treaties between Israel and Egypt and Israel and Jordan, as well as expressing hope for further future cooperation elsewhere in the region.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch house: Amazon Banned Pro-Israel PJTN After It Attacked Ilhan Omar.

When asked about the SPLC’s accusation that PJTN is an “anti-Muslim hate group,” Cardoza-Moore said it is “absurd.”

“It’s absurd. PJTN exists to fight the oldest hate on earth: anti-Semitism. If standing up to anti-Semites like Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar is what got us blacklisted then so be it,” she said.

“It would appear that PJTN has become a canary in the coal mine to warn what happens when big tech is allowed to create discriminatory policies based on the nefarious listings of political organizations with an axe to grind,” she said in a statement. “If speaking out against the anti-Semitism of Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib has put me on the SPLC list, so be it. However, in a free country that cherishes freedom of expression, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, technology companies like Amazon should not be allowed to blacklist charities in this way.”

Barring the Gates of Vienna to the man who saved it

When we were in Kraków last year, we went to see the last resting place of Jan III Sobieski as well as the two statues of him in the city. If you don’t know who he is, think of that as par for the modern course. He is, nevertheless, one of the great men of Western history.

So now this: King Sobieski monument erected in Kraków after Vienna says it’s too controversial.

A monument of Polish king Jan III Sobieski has been placed on a platform trailer in front of the Papal Window in Kraków.

The monument has been put on temporary display to remind people of its existence after authorities in Vienna withdrew from a long-term plan to erect it on Kahlenberg hill in Vienna, from where the Polish king launched his history-changing attack 336 years ago.

Up to now, thirteen attempts have been made to erect a monument in Vienna in honour of the Polish king who relieved the siege of the city. This latest attempt looked set to be successful….

However, last July, the new mayor of Vienna, Michael Ludwig, announced that he was withdrawing from the project.

A coward, traitor and repulsive. Same as when I was in Tours looking for the site of the Battle of Tours in 732. It would have been one thing not to have commemorated the battle, or even to have lost sight of where it had actually taken place. What amazed me most was that all but one in the tourist office had even known of the battle’s existence.

And for extra:

Comment: 18,000 armed and mounted knights charging towards the Ottomans would’ve been a real-life Lord of the Rings battle. It’s one of the top 10 battles I wish I could’ve seen.

Response: Tolkien based that battle in LOTR on the Breaking of the Seige of Vienna.

Free speech as understood by the American student left

The speaker, by the way, is Art Laffer, the creator of the Laffer Curve from whom you can also learn about Say’s Law. About five minutes will get you all you need, although the best part may be at the 4:00 minute mark when the crowd starts shouting, “Free speech! Free Speech!” You can then wind it back to 1:40 to see how it begins. Ignorant and stupid doesn’t cover anything like it. Terrifying if anything. Also very loud.

Picked up from Steve Hayward on Powerline.

The Birth of Feminism

And then there is this to supplement the video: Feminism as Gender Terrorism: The Mortal Vendetta Against the Male Sex. All part of the death of freedom. Here’s the footnote which will have particular relevance to Australians:

Eltahawy might have had a stronger argument against Muslim men, as she did in Headscarves and Hymens, where she went to town against Islamic “personal status laws…where religious and conservative men shore up their control over women’s lives.” In 2011 Eltahawy was savagely beaten by the Egyptian riot police in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, where she was demonstrating against Hosni Mubarak’s autocratic rule. Repressive as it may have been, Mubarak’s government gave women more rights than the Muslim Brotherhood’s regime of Mohamed Morsi that would succeed it. In any event, Eltahawy’s campaign against male brutality in general is blatantly exaggerated; she is, after all, no longer living in an Islamic theocracy.

Here’s all that’s left of that toxic Q&A.

Their holy mission is to use the coercive power of the State

This has set the left ablaze: Attorney General William P. Barr Delivers the 19th Annual Barbara K. Olson Memorial Lecture at the Federalist Society’s 2019 National Lawyers Convention. It is almost impossible to have imagined more destructive despicable people than those who now inhabit the left. They want power only for themselves because they see only themselves as having virtue and good will. Everyone else is an enemy, and not just an enemy, but immoral as well. I must confess that I find everything about the modern left disgusting and immoral if it comes to that.

The closest I have come to understanding what they stand for occurred on Cup Day when we went to the Botanical Gardens for a wander with two friends on the left. And when we went for a cuppa tea, she went mad at the girl pouring the tea because there was a 25% surcharge because of the extra cost of labour. She was infuriated at the rip off prices as she saw it, but was taking out her anger on the one person who had with certainty not set the price. I could see that she was like some old Testament prophet who rages against the evil of the world. It is a disposition that is inlaid, always on the lookout for some evil to correct. She is herself the very essence of evil. Nothing she aims to achieve will make this a better world, but only worse. These people are nutters but very dangerous nutters for all that. There is no reasoning with such people.

Barr sets things out as I see them myself. Perfectly reasonable to me, but the left have gone mad with anger (their favourite mode of existence). See if you can identify what their problem is. Only an excerpt of a much longer speech of which this is a representative sample.

As I have said, the Framers fully expected intense pulling and hauling between the Congress and the President. Unfortunately, just in the past few years, we have seen these conflicts take on an entirely new character.

Immediately after President Trump won election, opponents inaugurated what they called “The Resistance,” and they rallied around an explicit strategy of using every tool and maneuver available to sabotage the functioning of his Administration. Now, “resistance” is the language used to describe insurgency against rule imposed by an occupying military power. It obviously connotes that the government is not legitimate. This is a very dangerous – indeed incendiary – notion to import into the politics of a democratic republic. What it means is that, instead of viewing themselves as the “loyal opposition,” as opposing parties have done in the past, they essentially see themselves as engaged in a war to cripple, by any means necessary, a duly elected government. . . .

The fact of the matter is that, in waging a scorched earth, no-holds-barred war of “Resistance” against this Administration, it is the Left that is engaged in the systematic shredding of norms and the undermining of the rule of law. This highlights a basic disadvantage that conservatives have always had in contesting the political issues of the day. It was adverted to by the old, curmudgeonly Federalist, Fisher Ames, in an essay during the early years of the Republic.

In any age, the so-called progressives treat politics as their religion. Their holy mission is to use the coercive power of the State to remake man and society in their own image, according to an abstract ideal of perfection. Whatever means they use are therefore justified because, by definition, they are a virtuous people pursing a deific end. They are willing to use any means necessary to gain momentary advantage in achieving their end, regardless of collateral consequences and the systemic implications. They never ask whether the actions they take could be justified as a general rule of conduct, equally applicable to all sides.

If political philosophy interests you, read the entire speech.

Every lie that’s fit to print

The others they delete. A story in three tweets with the link to follow.

Via Ace of Spades.

The two-minute hate

From the fantastically ignorant and snowflake idiocracy in which I was born: Educational Earthquake: ‘Disappearing’ the Great Writers From Schools. This is the problem with being “nice”: you don’t actually stand for anything but are prepared to be rolled over by cultural invaders.

The Greater Essex County District School Board in the Windsor, Ont., area is supplanting its grade 11 literature curriculum, which up to now has featured great writers of the western canon such as Shakespeare and George Orwell, with a year-long program of Indigenous writers. The change has already been effected in eight of the district’s 15 schools.

In the Peel district as well, I am informed by a reader, the same transformation is in progress. It would be naïve to assume that these schools will remain anomalies for long. The “disappearing” of dead white European male writers, however magnificent their achievements, may well be normalized across Canada before long.

It is hard to overstate the alarming implications of this educational earthquake. Deliberately withholding Shakespeare from young minds is a form of aesthetic starvation, but depriving them of Orwell is a moral crime. It is from Orwell’s “Animal Farm” that young minds first grasp the nature of totalitarian evil, whether it arises from the left or the right, and understand the preciousness of their freedoms.

Of course these Orwellians are suppressing Orwell. It is almost a sign of how deep the infection already is that the author is not emphasising the disappearance of Shakespeare. As my mother used to joke, why read Shakespeare; it’s just one cliche after another? Shakespeare deepens the reader in many different ways: listening and understanding great language and poetry; watching human nature play out in actual settings; learning English history from the time of King John through to Henry VIII; learning classical history from Julius Caesar to Timon of Athens; becoming aware of an extremely important part of the English literary canon. They probably no longer want to teach this since their teachers no longer know any of it themselves.

Still, bypassing Orwell is a major loss if he was already on the curriculum. As she writes:

The compulsion to assent to opinions we hold ridiculous is a form of totalitarianism. But only the most intrepid of citizens dare to dissent from the incoherence of the hegemonic definitions in play presently. Orwell’s “two minute hate,” conceived as satire, has achieved eerie verisimilitude on Twitter. Velvet totalitarianism replaces bullets to the back of the head with bullets to career and reputation.

The irony is that we who have read Orwell understand what the “two minute hate” is. Eventually no one will, even as they participate in their own two-minute hates, along with their teachers who won’t know what it is either.