The only thing relevant to the plot is Kittan and his sisters being introduced, wearing psychedelic costumes while riding cows backwards. The consumption of Boota's tail is instrumental in defeating this episode's enemy mecha, which is piloted by a bunch of pink puffballs that are supposedly beastmen but look nothing like any of the beastmen seen before or since which are generally human-animal hybrids to varying degrees. Supposedly episode 4 was made as a jab at other anime that decrease in overall quality after the first few episodes, but it was still effed up.
In this episode Ash and the crew get off a boat on a beach, Brock spots a mysterious girl and falls head-over-heels, but Ash and Misty miss her completely. Team Rocket gets off the same boat, and James suffers the same situation. They run into a strange old woman, who informs them of this condition, and the next day, both of them are kidnapped by the ghost.
When they are found, they have become completely obsessed with the girl, and the old woman from the earlier scene explains that the girl is a spirit who wishes to steal their souls. However, the sun rises and Gastly vanishes. Ash and co. The Gastly was also the old woman, actually working for the sake of ''real'' Maiden, who stood watching at a cliff waiting for her lover to return from a voyage and promises to one day find her lost lover.
And also to make some money on the side, but that's never really adequately explained either. Brock, May, and Max lose Ash in the woods. Ash meets a cloaked woman in the middle of the woods who is singing a little song about Baltoy and treasure. She has an old book, but Ash doesn't pay it or her much attention at the time. Later, he meets a much younger girl who's searching for a treasure with you guessed it her Baltoy.
She tells Ash she's searching for a treasure hidden somewhere in the woods, and opens a little book that talks about the treasure. It has a little song in it, which she starts singing. Ash interrupts and starts singing the rest, recognizing the song is the same one the woman was singing. The girl is surprised since the book only just came out.
Ash explains about the woman and they eventually find her battling Team Rocket. They win and she takes them to a cave, where they fall down a hole in the floor, leading to a tunnel. As they reach the end of the tunnel, the woman takes off her cloak's hood, revealing herself to be an older version of the girl. She then explains that the giant stone tablet thing at the end of the cave is a time machine activated by a Baltoy. Then she goes back to the future. Then the girl leaves and Ash meets back up with his friends. May and Meowth had a Time Travel episode too. Only instead of a Stable Time Loop , they end up changing the course of history so that a guy doesn't die anymore and a town expands into a city.
And instead of a time machine they get zapped by a magic locket. Because of love , or something. Anyway, neither May nor Meowth sees fit to tell anyone about the whole futzing about with time. An episode involving a sadistic Togepi, a rocket, and Rayquaza. It's probably one of the funniest and the second most surreal episode in recent history and needs to be seen to be believed. The episode also marks the first time Pikachu is referred to as male in the Japanese dub. This doesn't stop him from getting shipped with Piplup, especially considering what happened seven episodes later One episode has it all: Ash and James dressed up as eggplants, an old man attempting to sell souvenirs at every chance he can, Nurse May, Dancing Queen Jessie, a crossdressing Meowth and Wobbuffet , Wobbuffet's flute playing skills, and to top it all off Even funnier is that the Claydol actually falls in love with and chases Wobbuffet!
One episode of X and Y has Ash and Pikachu taken through a mirror into a parallel universe with psychedelic colours and everyone's personality is opposite to the normal world. Ash is a timid crybaby, Mirror! Clemont is an athletic wizard, Mirror! Bonnie is prim and proper with no sign of her usual Little Miss Snarker attitude and Mirror!
Team Rocket are servants of Justice. It's revealed that if someone stays past sunset, they can never return to their original world. Team Rocket also turn up in the mirror world and are shown to not make it back before sunset, but show up in the next episode anyway with no explanation. The whole thing is never mentioned again. Note that these oddities were only present in the Japanese version, with the dubbed versions instead showing Pidgeotto and Cubone respectively. Between the quarter-finals and the semi-finals of the Battle City tournament, they arrive on a submersible military base and have to fight the digitised minds of all previous high ranking officials of KaibaCorp in a mindscrewed reality, at the behest of Seto Kaiba's anime-exclusive Virtual Ghost half-brother, Noah.
The season also introduced the Deck Master to the games, a process that makes no sense whatsoever but what else is new. And to secure it as a total mindfreak, the digital mind of Kaiba's father tries to turn into a giant being of fire and eat their jet as it's leaving. Lampshaded when Kaiba says he never wants any of them to mention it again. And Tristan gets turned into a monkey. Lay off the crazy juice, Japanimators. Then there's the " Abandoned Dorm " sub-arc in GX. While "investigated" several times in Seasons 1 and 4, answers about what it actually was were few and far between, and usually resulted in bizarre Shadow Duels that get hardly a mention afterward.
And finally, there's the "Crashtown" arc of 5D's. In the middle of a season-long arc of finding the Three Emperors of Ylliaster, let's intercut a Noah-like arc in the Wild West involving a former villain from Season 2, and put Yusei in a poncho. Needless to say, until the real season started getting hit with Wham after Wham, this was the point in which fans were starting to wonder whether the cast had used their Duel Runners to jump the shark. Bizarro Episodes in Yu-Gi-Oh! The story had just come off its first true Story Arc , which introduced the first Millennium Item wielder other than Yugi and set up a whole bunch of things that wouldn't pay off for years of real-time.
The very next chapter is a lighthearted romp about Tamagotchi-style digital pets, and a bully who has his pets kill all his classmates' pets. This wouldn't be all that strange were it not for the strongly implied fact that the digital pets are alive, and even that would be only moderately strange were it not for the fact that not a single Shadow Game is played in this chapter; the Shadow Games have been repeatedly demonstrated to bring the pieces involved to life, but this is the one and only chapter in the series where sentient game pieces seem to exist without a Shadow Game.
Almost all of episode 7 of Str. Very little of what happens here is mentioned again, made especially jarring by the fact that Strain is only a thirteen-episode anime. The zombie episode of Samurai Champloo , which has overtly supernatural elements that would be out of place in the rest of the series, and ends with the main characters either dead or undead.
A very brief and light Lampshade Hanging later, and next episode, it's like none of this ever happened. In Cowboy Bebop : One episode has some sort of alien Blob Monster that had come to life in the refrigerator attack all the crew and it initially appears to kill them just incapacitating them briefly, instead. Lampshaded by Ed in the "Next Episode" preview on the English dub, which leads to a humorous exchange.
Edward: And so, they all passed away, every one. It was a short series, but thanks for your support. That was the last episode. May they all rest in peace. Mao : Beats me, Hei. This is The Gate , after all. Viga: Is this a PSA for keeping alligators as pets? Was this ever a problem in Japan? There's a message about discarding idols as well? Old waifu pushed away for your new waifu?
Remember, keep your idols spayed and neutered. Comic Books. After being abandoned by Cable in 's Wakanda, Deadpool is soon tasked to find cosmic puzzle pieces by a Watcher and a Giant Pungeon Master Robot known as The Ruler of Earth not the kind of ruler you think, he rules nothing for seemingly no reason.
This takes him to a few locations, including the Negative Zone. Oh, and he accidentally blows up the moon. Also, a baby Watcher poops, which Odin uses to power Asgard for the next years. All in all, the issue makes zero sense, especially to newer readers who may not get some of the references. Mxyzptlk was basically an Excuse Plot device to put Superman in bizarre situations, especially since Mxy's returning was a Reset Button putting everything back the way it was.
In short, they live up to a lawful good alignment instead of just paying it their usual lip-service. Sara's behavior remains unchanged from canon universe. It can be quite bizarre to any reader used to their normal behaviors. At the end it's shown to be a wish-fulfillment dream of the DM's. Chronologically meant to take place between the Return of the King special and issue 57 in the Sonic timeline, it has Particle steal the Master Emerald and bringing it to Dr.
In the end, Knuckles ends up wishing for everything to be restored to the way it was before, and afterwards, all but Particle and Shadowhawk forget the whole thing ever happened. Droid was supposed to make a return appearance in a later miniseries, as the threat Knuckles was prophesied to defeat. Thanks to Executive Meddling , though, that plot was dropped and the miniseries got turned into the infamous "Mobius: 25 Years Later" arc. Like the above example, almost every intercompany crossover is a Bizarro Episode.
They remain popular because of the potential for an Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny , and if nothing else, there's always the hope that fans of one character will read the crossover and decide they like the other character as well and start reading that — basically, companies trying to cross-pollinate their fandom.
However, for legal reasons these crossovers very rarely have any impact on ongoing continuity although it happens occasionally , and works set in different universes tend to have different assumptions and physical laws, in particular about Power Levels. Most intercompany superhero crossovers have involved characters casually running into each other even though if they existed in the same universe they really should have had plenty of encounters before now or something, and afterwards are never mentioned again in-story unless there's another crossover.
Robin : Has an odd bit where Killer Moth starts asexually reproducing and fills an abandoned YMCA with tiny rude versions of himself that try to eat each other and grow to adulthood in about a week, and start running about Gotham nude attacking people when they're big enough to get out of the pool. This new power of Walker's was never mentioned or used again.
Issue 34 of the first incarnation of Marvel Comics ' What If? Issue 34 of the revived series did it again, although without the epilogue. Issue 44 took place during a story arc where the team battled the Brotherhood of Evil and had a Crossover with The Avengers. However, this specific issue instead featured a largely unrelated plot where Angel battled Red Raven, a forgotten Golden Age hero.
The story then veered off into a subplot about Red Raven having to prevent the return of the Winged Humanoids who raised him, before Angel ultimately left to continue his search for the Avengers. The only real explanation is that Roy Thomas, a well known Golden Age fan, wanted to feature one of his boyhood heroes in one of the books he was writing.
The Tintin story Flight starts out normal enough for an adventure of that franchise: Tintin and company are kidnapped by Rastapopulus's henchmen, who later keep them prisoners on a tiny island somewhere in Indonesia. But it soon becomes clear that something weird is going on, and it turns out that aliens have been coming to the island for millennia. And yeah, everybody except for Snowy Tintin's dog are forced to forget all about the adventure due to Laser-Guided Amnesia. Even compared to other "Tintin" stories, which acknowledge the existence of things like Voodoo magic or the Yeti, this is generally considered to be the odd one out.
And it all of course ends with the "good" aliens erasing everybody's memory of the whole episode. Garfield was always a commercially-friendly strip, that clearly knew what its remit was, and wasn't going to confuse its audience by going beyond that. In , a multi-strip storyline saw Garfield alone in his apparently long-abandoned house. And that's it, no further explanation. Still the most unusual Garfield strip that has ever appeared.
It turned out to be All Just a Dream of one of the characters, a sentient street named Danny. Doom Patrol is essentially this for The DCU in general, and considering it exists in the same universe as aliens, gods, sorcerers, and Ambush Bug , that's really saying something. The franchise is often a vehicle for surreal, high-concept ideas, especially under the pen of the aforementioned Grant Morrison. Every year at Kwanzaa, Curtis runs a two-week-long Story Arc that involves new, made-up characters doing absolutely ridiculous things that resemble African folktales, with little concern for anything other than being awesomely over-the-top, often toeing the line between Rule of Cool and an outright Mind Screw.
Consensus among fans or at least among The Comics Curmudgeon and his followers is that these are among his best works; he even considers the otter "still the gold standard.
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You take the case of Syria, which has been chewed on a lot. But it continues to puzzle me, the degree to which people seem to forget that we actually got the chemical weapons out of Syria. My decision was to see if we could broker a deal without a strike to get those chemical weapons out, and to go to Congress to ask for authorization, because nowhere has Congress been more incoherent than when it comes to the powers I have. Maybe both. A doctor inserted a catheter that morning. I had a real scare. After an hour, I started getting really uncomfortable. I realized nothing was draining into the bag.
Literally minutes before I was supposed to be on the floor, the nurse practitioner came in and realized there was a stopper in the tube. As soon as she removed it, everything was fine. What was different on that day was that for the first time ever, the Texas Tribune had been granted [the right] to use its technology to livestream from the Senate floor. I did not know people were watching to the extent that they were, not even close.
I expected the gallery to be full, but I could hear them out on the lawn, I could hear them roar in the halls and in the rotunda, and from time to time I could literally feel the vibration of their voices beneath my feet on the Senate floor. My Republican colleagues were going to treat this filibuster very differently.
In the past, there has been a lot of leeway — senators can read names out of the phone book under the idea that everyone will be affected by the bill. And then I knew that they had plotted to call three strikes — that they were going to do everything they could to bring it to an end. My back was hurting, and I got another strike when a colleague helped me put a back brace on. But then I started getting mad, and when I got mad it was really great, because it kept me sharp and then time just flew, it really did.
Within a few hours we received 16, stories. The hardest part of the day, for me, was when I came to a story from a woman named Carol M. I felt as though I was reading my own story. She and her husband discovered that the child she was carrying suffered from a severe fetal abnormality, and ultimately they made the decision they felt was in the best interest of this baby that they loved and had wanted very, very much. At around or so, the final, third strike was called — again, absurdly. But then my Democratic Senate colleagues began to argue points of order, masterfully eating up the clock.
Finally, at about a quarter till, the filibuster was officially called to an end. At that point my sister, [then-]Senator Leticia Van de Putte, who was not expected to be in the Senate that day — she had just buried her father — but made a decision to drive the one and a half hours to the capitol, came in. She immediately sized up what was going on and of course became very upset. So she was shouting to be heard, and when she was finally recognized, she had the most perfect, poignant question.
President], at what point must a female senator raise her hand or her voice to be recognized over the male colleagues in the room? Their upset spilled out in that moment. They were screaming at the top of their lungs, in the hallways, in the rotunda, and outside on the capitol lawn. I did communicate with the White House counsel on occasion about high-profile cases, but it was much more in the nature of just giving them a heads-up, to calm any nervous feelings they might have.
Perry case in We were contemplating coming in and arguing that it was unconstitutional for California to refuse to recognize the legal validity of same-sex marriages. I wanted to make sure the president had a chance to thoroughly consider what we should do before we did it. It was really one of the high points of my tenure. It was a wide-ranging conversation about doctrinal analysis, about where society was now, about social change and whether it should go through the courts or through the majoritarian process, about the pace of social change, about the significance of the right at stake.
He was incredibly impressive. We made the judgment to take a position on marriage equality, and the position we took two years later in the Obergefell v. Hodges case followed from that. We ground both our arguments in this concept of equal dignity under the Equal Protection Clause.
The difference is that in Perry , we were trying to offer the court a stepping-stone on the way to full marriage equality — because of a concern that the court might not be ready yet, in , to take the step all the way. So we took an intermediate position: that in states that already recognized domestic partnerships, there was no valid justification left for denying marriage equality.
This is a place where the concept of dignity really matters. His most ardent admirers and nemeses alike invoke the now-familiar litany: , dead and nearly 5 million refugees, whose flight northward has shaken the European Union and may yet sink it. They cite the snuff-film horrors of ISIS and its remorseless spread around the globe. And they pointedly compare it with Sarajevo, where similar war crimes came to an end during the s thanks to American power. But even his most loyal defenders concede that he was too slow to make up his mind about Syria. He seemed almost to resent it — as if the conflict were, like the American project in Iraq, an unwanted inheritance from his predecessor.
And in fact, his impatience to get free of Iraq played a role in spawning the Syrian nightmare. As the U. But Syria was different. Decades of minority rule had built up enormous pressures, and the regime was more cunning and better prepared than those that fell in the Arab Spring.
Obama resisted but, after a round of strong lobbying by Israel and Jordan, eventually signed a secret order for the CIA to arm and train rebel groups. Obama continued to send mixed signals for more than a year. It was not until late August that events finally focused his mind. A poison-gas attack near Damascus left hundreds of Syrian civilians dead. But then, with his finger on the trigger, he backed away under the guise of seeking authorization from a Congress he knew to be opposed. To domestic critics, including some in his own administration, it was an embarrassing flip-flop that would surely embolden dictators the world over.
But most observers agree that it came about largely through luck. In the years since, the Syrian war has continued to absorb new players and damage everything in its path. The Obama administration is in deeper, though only to fight isis. The Russians are fighting for Assad, the Turks against him; the Kurds are in the middle. One of his favorite foreign leaders, Angela Merkel, has shared his concerns about intervention all along. But she has balanced her wariness with a much more generous embrace of Syrian refugees.
It is not too late for him to follow her example. The video is later seen by a friend of the victim. I meant what I said. But this was not a gaffe. Where are there opportunities to think big? So I had already assigned our team to start exploring what that might look like and how we might structure it.
And then it started late and it was pouring rain and security issues were a challenge. And so the handshake with Castro was actually pretty spontaneous. For me not to shake his hand would have been an inappropriate gesture at a funeral. So I shook his hand. It was me shaking the hand of an older man who was sitting on the stage when I was doing a eulogy.
At that point we had already begun to have some contact with the Cuban government and were thinking about what might happen. They interpreted that handshake and my willingness to do that on the world stage as a signal of greater seriousness. And so it did, I think, facilitate the series of negotiations that took place. On the day his political career died, Eric Cantor was busy tending to what he still believed was its bright future.
He was there to host a fund-raiser for three of his congressional colleagues — something he did every month, just another part of the long game he was playing, which, he believed, would eventually culminate in his becoming Speaker of the House. The preceding five years had brought Cantor tantalizingly closer to that goal. It never occurred to him that the wave he was trying to ride might crash on him instead. Cantor and his political team never took Brat, a little-known economics professor, as a serious threat.
But by , it was clear Cantor had been defeated. More than two years later, the two have still not spoken. In the two years since Mike Brown was fatally shot by the police in Ferguson, and the video footage of his dead body in the street went viral, we have seen the emergence of a perverse dichotomy on our screens and in our public discourse: irrefutable evidence of grotesquely persistent racism, and irrefutable evidence of increasing black cultural and political power.
In fact, it is all of these things, not least two terms with a black president. In the same way that black skin signals danger to the police and to more white people than anyone is willing to admit , his black skin, to black people, signaled black cultural preservation. Black people are reinventing mainstream vernacular and setting the tone for cultural dialogue.
All of this in parallel to viral video after viral video of black bodies young and old, shot and killed, beaten or pinned to the ground with a knee in the back, knocked out of a school desk. The spectrum of anti-black racism is extreme — from microaggression to monkey memes to murder. But so is the spectrum of black achievement. In the past few years, black America has harnessed centuries of pent-up capacity and shot it out of a cannon. I remember speaking with the president about how the administration should respond.
So we made the determination that I would go. It was high risk because we were, in essence, putting the prestige of the Justice Department, the attorney general, and potentially the administration on the line, and if the trip proved to be unsuccessful, if the protests continued in a violent way, that would have been very problematic.
I had to be visible. We took Air Force Two, the plane normally used by the vice-president. I remember there was a TV on the plane. It had a picture of the plane that I was on landing in Ferguson. CNN was covering the landing of the plane, and we landed and people from my staff were getting off. What struck me about the day was there was consistency from the residents there, young and old, black and white. When the report was done by folks in our civil-rights division, they found that the police department or the criminal-justice system was being used as a way to generate money for the local government.
I remember at the community meeting, there was a woman who was expressing concerns about whether we would conduct a really fair, impartial, independent investigation, and I assured her that we would. But I think it was the right thing to do. The decision to go was one that I made with the president. We always talk about the value of diversity, and the fact that you had two black men looking at that situation and being impacted in the way that we were, as both public officials and black men — I think that might have impacted the final determination that I should go.
I think it certainly was part of the calculus, never spoken, never said, between us. But I think it was something that had an influence on me, on him. It was not something we ever talked about since then, but I suspect that at some level, it was a factor. That was the Obama years: when pop became a kind of politics and used that assertive power to reconquer a music world that had not so long ago pushed it to the margins.
Eight years can be an eternity or an instant in music. This class restored a sense of artistic autonomy following the producer-Svengali era of the mid-aughts with Timbaland, the Neptunes, Irv Gotti, and the like. But it was more than just new musical auteurism: A different kind of pop star was forged in the Obama years, one that attempts to juggle the spectacle of song and dance with internet savvy and caring advocacy.
Many stars effortlessly nail two of the three.
Bull Review: Pillar of Salt (Season 3 Episode 22)
The Hive can build and nurture, but dissidents get stung, and hard. But the brilliance of Black-ish was that, as much as its timeliness made it a cultural landmark, it was also pretty timeless. Black America has always needed Black-ish, just as white America has always needed Seinfeld or Sex and the City ; like its s predecessor, The Cosby Show, Black-ish is essentially about the ordinariness of black family life, even if that ordinariness occasionally means staring down race-specific quandaries: What do you teach your black children about use of the N-word?
How do you straddle multiple roles in society and navigate a shaky proximity to blackness and whiteness that threatens to erase facets of your own cultural identity? Or post-class America, for that matter. Tom Frieden, the head of CDC, briefed us with a chart that basically blew all of our minds and predicted that by January , we could have up to 1. We needed to surge treatment facilities. We needed to surge logistics support. We needed to surge health-care workers. And to do all of that, we concluded that [we would need] the deployment of U.
The president felt that it was his job to be the voice of reason. Every plane that came from West Africa or every person who might be from West Africa was potentially carrying Ebola. There were calls to shut the borders and to prevent all West Africans from coming to the United States.
There were calls in Congress for the same, and it was really kind of getting crazy and overheated. By the end of November, we had bent the curve. And rather than 1. His death is the latest killing of an unarmed black man — or, in this case, a child — to fuel a national outrage, as well as private pain for the friends and families left behind. In the age of the hacker, privacy is a thing of the past.
Because even though we know these things are none of our business, were illegally obtained, and are flat-out unethical to view, it can still be hard to resist. After all, what good does it do? This is the unexpected, chilling reality of the information age: The second some intriguing bit of content hits the internet, it is distributed exponentially and will live on indefinitely. Not only will every word from the Sony hack of , the Ashley Madison hack of , and the Colin Powell email hack from this summer be accessible for years to come, but any of the personal information hacked from corporate and government databases Anthem, the IRS, the Federal Office of Personnel Management, Swift, and Yahoo could wind up online, too.
But then, sometimes playing dumb is the guiltiest pleasure of all. Google has a biotech company that aims to beat death at its game. Technological optimism in California is a natural resource, like oil in the Middle East, seemingly inexhaustible, a motive force of the economy, and not a little bad for the environment.
They tend toward a sunny libertarianism, they read relatively few novels, they love productivity tips, and they occasionally propose — so valuable are its pearls — that California secede from the Union, the better to disrupt the world. Pitch an app and a venture capitalist yawns.
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What they want is the market, the whole shebang. Google launched its own trading floor in , you know? The media tends to make this whole digital revolution a battle between Silicon Valley and, well, the media. Typical narcissism. The implosion of the media industry is really just collateral damage.
Silicon Valley wants to be the fun Wall Street, the market where all must come, taking a few pennies with every transaction. The idea that Silicon Valley could mint currency was almost pornographically exciting. To seduce a VC, whisper the word arbitrage into his pink, pink ear. To them, bitcoin was like a catchy earworm; once they heard it, they had to hear it again and again. You make the money yourself … with the computer?
The Book of Blam by Aleksandar Tišma
You mint cash … with computation? You no longer had to find a link between ever-faster central processing units and the global economy? The fast computer is the economy and things are looking uuuuuuuup. And predictably, they lost their minds. African-American women have been burdened with a reputation for anger, aggression, masculinity, and inhuman strength since their arrival in the Colonial United States. The stereotype was used to explain why enslaved African women, unlike the delicate moneyed white women they served, were able to endure the lash, grueling work, rape, and sexual exploitation.
It was more complicated to saddle the biracial candidate Barack Obama, son of a bohemian white mother from Kansas, raised in Hawaii by white grandparents, with being a source of simmering racial resentment. Though plenty certainly tried. That was on the nice end of things. And she has challenged Fallon to a push-up contest, embracing her strength in defiance of those who question her femininity.
She is, according to Gallup, a First Lady with favorability ratings that, on average, have exceeded those of her predecessors. For every person who endorses a stereotypical characterization of Michelle Obama, many more have been moved by her obvious humanity to walk away from broken narratives about her and all black women. When I started my last book in the early aughts, people to whom I mentioned the trans kids I was writing about were astonished that they existed; some were appalled by what they took to be a precocious sexual perversion. It is now accepted that you are who you say you are.
Trans and gay are not the same thing experientially, but they have been amalgamated politically under the now-dominant LGBTQ banner — a necessity given the much larger number of gay people than trans people. But that very acronym speaks to diversity within this embracing queer community and acceptance of that diversity outside it. How did it happen? I welcomed this new president, but I mourned Proposition 8 passing in California, revoking the right to marriage where it had already been granted; grieved over the state constitutional amendments in Florida and Arizona that made gay marriage illegal.
But the setback turned out to be galvanizing. The coherence the movement for gay rights had achieved as it fought disease was now focused on seeking acceptance, and through a bewildering alchemy, the test case became marriage. I used to be ashamed of being gay. For all that I put on a good show of pride, I used to feel I was making the most of an unfortunate situation.
Partly, that changed because I grew up, achieved self-acceptance, met my husband, and had kids, all of which salved the regret. But also, the world stopped pitying me. The external validation of the class of human beings to which I belong has worked a subtle magic. Our assertions of pride have finally achieved that pride. Then, one by one, longtime members would share their sexuality. That, more than any magic verse in the Bible, began to make it more possible for us to have gay people be deacon or teach a Bible-study class. The last hurdle for us, though, was same-sex weddings. SC: Why would we get married somewhere else?
JP: But they never said it in a way that was like blackmail. They were so gracious in saying yes. We lost some families over this. And we miss those folks, but we had to move on. I went with his parents. As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death. It would misunderstand these men and women to say they disrespect the idea of marriage.
They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right. JK: The initial meeting in Geneva had a little bit of posturing and some resistance. There had been months of negotiations leading up to that. And we had to keep Congress briefed, we kept Israel briefed. EM: We were asking for a very substantial rollback of the nuclear enterprise, in return for political-slash-economic concessions on the other side.
And the technical knowledge did matter. For [Iranian nuclear head Ali Akbar] Salehi, what was very important is that they were not entirely eliminating activities. So, they still get to run some centrifuges for enrichment, but only the old ones. We would write on whiteboards. But I would never pocket something until we came back the next time and it was still there, since Salehi would have to go talk to his teams and maybe get pushed one way or another.
On April 2, we got the interim agreement nailed. We were cornered into that by the imminent potential of Congress passing additional sanctions, which would have blown the whole thing apart. The people who were opposed to it were passing a lot of disinformation around. He was tweeting. And so we needed to go public with the outlines of the deal. This is terrible. But we plowed ahead. EM: Getting to that last one was tougher. I remember we all had planned to be home for the Fourth of July. The first of July came, the third of July, the Fourth of July.
My problem was I was still in a gingerly state. We had to prop my leg up under the table. There were moments when I thought these guys just were not serious. But the alternative to this genuinely was a road to conflict. EM: The deal really does have to be judged in a hard-nosed way on the peaceful-uses-of-nuclear-energy basis.
Unless you were a member of a small number of families in New York City, it would have been very rare over the past century to open up a newspaper and find, between international news and entertainment gossip, pictures of your new nephew or a wedding announcement for a middle-school classmate. But we live in the future now, and this alarming, alienating, and totally compelling collage of news, gossip, hoaxes, conspiracy theories, and videos featuring two different species of animals becoming friends is the conventional way to get information. Where Google requires you to seek out the news you want, Facebook will serve up relevant content the minute you open up the app.
Ties Russia to Strike on U. Convoy in Syria. Meanwhile, newspapers, magazines, and digital publishers jockey for space alongside small businesses, enthusiast groups, multinational conglomerates, actors, DJs, models, actor-DJs, model-DJs, and users like yourself. Who needs to search for news or, worse, rely on editors!
The result is less a media landscape peacefully democratized than one violently razed, its great edifices stripped for parts and its gatekeepers reduced to shrieking mendicants. The hacker dystopia Mr. Robot was different. Unlike, say, Lost, the fantastical elements of Mr. By whom? No one is quite sure.
Fifteen years after the Patriot Act and the first drone strikes, and several since Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden and Julian Assange, Americans are not, whatever previous generations of alarmists warned, living in a George Orwell novel. The world is much weirder than that. There could be no Guccifer the guy who leaked George W. Surveillance has not brought about total control and desperate passivity. Eventually, as with anything that becomes mainstream, woke made its way to memes, mocking people who believe they are deeper than they actually are.
Part of that glee has involved shifting the mortifying burden of the job onto his young daughters, who have stood there, flanking him, every year while he tries out four or five minutes of excruciating dad jokes on the American people. And still, year by year, something remarkable happened that changed the dynamic: The girls grew up. Sasha was only 8 when they did the first one, and mostly cheeks; Malia was Each year, their awkward rocking in place and skittering gazes were replaced by a little more poise.
They were changed, but still changing. Language is important, folks. But really, must we harp on inequality and exploitation every damn minute? Never mind that there is no audience except for workplace surveillance , no groupies, no music. Just ask the Department of Labor, whose website features a photo of some dude band rocking steady. What this image really has to do with the major sectors of the gig economy — administrative support, waste management — is up to each of us to decide. Or not. How did we arrive here? Corporations will tell you the answer is Silicon Valley and the restless ambition of millennials, who together have forged a vibrant new model of work.
Others might point to a weak job market that never really recovered from the recession and continues to fail the majority of workers. A close friend just got fired from her gig at a tech company so powerful that if I named it I would burst into a billion shards of frozen carbon. Yet millions struggle with situations far worse. There are high-end gigs with organic snacks and low-end gigs with unaffordable injuries.
Which is why a better metaphor for this economy is another kind of gig, often called a frog gig, a popular multi-tined spear used to impale fish and small game. And, two, I want to move quickly. We moved pretty quickly to put down a slate of potential candidates, casting a reasonably broad net, and then put those in front of the president to get an initial reaction. There was a picture on a Friday of the president carrying home for the weekend this giant binder that we had prepared. Was that a photo op? Clearly we were giving people the chance to take a photo of it.
But he did spend the whole weekend reading through hundreds of pages of material, and he came in on Monday morning with the binder marked up, ready to go through it in some detail. Former politicals, people who have principally an academic background. It was a balance between trying to encourage your team to be open-minded on the one hand and also then being able to make decisions and not get caught in an endless debating society. As we got down to the group of four or five, he wanted to sit down and interview them face-to-face.
And part of what he wanted to raise directly with these folks was the unique circumstances of this nomination. Obviously, [Merrick] Garland is somebody who has seen a lot of this before. His path to getting on the D. Circuit Court was blocked for two years for reasons having nothing to do with him. The right policy was also going to be the right politics. That was a good sign that the electorate was turning away from the Establishment— and that Fox had really become the Establishment.
And we find it quite thrilling. Aside from the climate and guns, he seems to have got a lot of his agenda through. We think his legacy is going to be much more negative than people perceive it now, but tactically he was a political wizard. A lot of what the left does is use the culture effectively. They try to appeal to a broader audience. They try to focus on issues that resonate with voters. Before the shocks of , Europe was intoxicated with self-satisfaction. Perhaps someday even the Albanians would be civilized enough to be governed from Brussels.
Instead, the subordination of national governments by a faceless bureaucracy has left elected parties vulnerable to populist creep on their right flanks. In the United Kingdom, it resulted in a vote to ditch the EU — a plea for national sovereignty, a racist howl, or perhaps a bit of both. A common European identity has been another fragile fiction.
It was one thing for Western European states to absorb workers from Eastern Europe, but the Syrian-refugee crisis and boats of migrants arriving from North Africa have led to waves of nativist hysteria. Neo-Nazis have returned to the frame.
The slaughter committed in by Anders Breivik in Oslo has been followed by a wave of arson attacks on refugee housing throughout Northern Europe. A continent once given to bragging of its cosmopolitanism and tolerance has discovered itself to be a bit too cosmopolitan for its own liking. Without a drachma to devalue, for instance, Greece has been bailed out three times since and still has debts equivalent to percent of its GDP, as well as 24 percent unemployment. In the ongoing morality play, the Germans are often cast as frugal and generous parents, the Greeks and Cypriots as feckless, lazy children.
Europe today is a dysfunctional family, half-bankrupt, half-abusive, in a house full of unwelcome guests. The police told me to get out of the street and I complied and I was still arrested. So, I spent the next 17 hours in a Baton Rouge jail alongside about other protesters. There are so many incredible activists and organizers in Baton Rouge that I met in jail, though. That there were all these people that believed the same thing as you. The movement has created a critical mass of people who acknowledge that there is a problem across the country.
If you think about two years ago, when we were in the street in Ferguson, people thought that St. Louis had a problem, they did not yet believe that America had a problem. The reality is that the police have killed nearly three people a day in , so the trauma is consistent. The next part of the work is creating a critical mass of people who know what to do next. One of the biggest misconceptions is around the difference between the hashtag, the organization, and the movement.
And, you know, what is so powerful about the protests in Ferguson, after Mike Brown got killed, is that nobody started it. It was just people coming together and organizing, organically, to create a movement that spread around the country. And one of the things that I worry about as the movement continues is that there are people who say the only way to build power is to build an organization. And what we know to be true is that people have been doing incredible work whether they had a c 3 tax-exempt organization or not. Harriet Tubman organized without tax-exempt status.
There are many ways to organize. Of all the storms that roiled America in the Obama era, few, if any, have been more consistently underestimated or more persistent than the Great Populist Putsch. The tidal wave of grass-roots rage that rose out of the wreckage of the crash and Bush presidency has variously spawned the tea party, Occupy Wall Street, the Bernie Sanders revolution, and the Donald Trump insurgency. Yet for much of the way, the elites of both political parties were often slow to grasp what was happening, and Barack Obama was no exception.
But the tea party was not your typical conservative tax revolt. It was not until the populist left staged its own revolt in the fall of that Obama acknowledged a bigger picture. Both on the left and the right, I think people feel separated from their government. All true, but there was still more than that going on here: the sense that the entire system was rigged — for the rich and well connected, for globalized corporations, for the Establishments of both parties, for every Wall Street bandit the Obama Justice Department allowed to escape scot-free after the housing bubble burst.
Not that Obama was the only leader who failed to recognize either the scale of the populist uprising or his own contribution to it. Had Republican leaders been listening to their own unhappy grass roots during the bruising primary campaign that yielded Mitt Romney, they might have anticipated the discontent that would boil over after his defeat. Trump was not just a big target but a safe one in the Washington Hilton ballroom. And the morning after, those of us who caught the replay on YouTube joined in the laughter.
But five years later, the Populist Putsch remains unchecked, with few voters of any persuasion confident that it will be pacified, let alone addressed, by the next occupant of the White House, no matter what happens on Election Day. For others, it could have been reading about bee colonies in collapse or a generation of crabs dying in water too acidic for them to survive or all those bleached coral reefs off the coast of Australia. Or when they learned that climate change could displace million people by and sweep more than a million species into extinction.
For me, the moment of sheerest panic and deepest dread was when I read about anthrax released into the Siberian air when thawing permafrost revealed a frozen reindeer, killed by the bacteria 75 years ago at least and now beginning to melt, and about the hundreds of young reindeer killed as a result, and the dozens of nomadic Russians who were hospitalized, and I considered how much more than just warm water would be unleashed from those ice caps by climate change. Melissa Dahl: The Fitbit was introduced at a tech conference eight years ago.
You got smartphones everywhere. A Fitbit-induced stress vortex. Cari Romm: It feels like productive stress, though. MD: Oh, God. Should I care? Sleep is the one thing I obsessed over for a while. Which does not really help one get to sleep. JS: Would Ben Franklin have been an insufferable tech-bro? MD: The evidence suggests that he might have been, yes. Since season 1, Flaca and Maritza have supported and helped each other. They confide in each other.
They laugh together. He holds a gun to her head to make her do it. She pukes repeatedly afterwards. Flaca is there to give her comfort. She really needs Flaca now. They have their betrayals and breakups, but they care. These two need each other.
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For everything. They have a long history. They understand each other. Who knows how long the intimate part of their relationship will last this time, but they will continue to be entwined emotionally forever. At one point, she confronts him and tells him he raped her. He makes excuses at the time. Later he comes back and apologizes. Their friendship is strained by this.
In episode 12, Doggett and Boo have a serious conversation. Doggett tells Big Boo she misses her. Suffering is a choice.