politics

So much for the Fourth Reich

Like many of you, I spent last week watching election returns and reading silly hot takes about What It All Means. (My favorite, so far, is Jonathan Chait’s assertion in New York Magazine that “America, by and large, never wanted Trump to be president,” which is an exceedingly odd statement given that 70 million people just voted to reelect him.) Silliness aside, it looks like Trump really is on his way out and the republic isn’t going to fall just yet. So that’s a relief.

In other news:

* Lovecraft Country is on the New York Times bestseller list for the tenth week. Now that the HBO series has finished its first season, I imagine this won’t last much longer, but it’s been a great run.

* The Italian edition of Lovecraft Country, translated by Luca Briasco, was published on October 27, and the Polish edition, translated by Marcin Mortka, was published on November 2. This brings the total number of translations to nine, with eight more—from China, Greece, Hungary, Japan, Romania, Serbia, South Korea, and Turkey—forthcoming.

* Meanwhile in Germany, FISCHER Tor’s German-language edition of 88 Names, translated by Alexandra Jordan, is available now in ebook format and will be published in print on November 25.

* I have two more online events this week: On Wednesday, November 11, at 3 PM Pacific Time, I’ll be a guest on the Vox Vomitus podcast, chatting with host and fellow author Jennifer Anne Gordon. And on Thursday, November 12, I’ll be appearing via Zoom at Magic City Books of Tulsa at 5 PM Pacific/7 PM Central.

And finally, FYI:

So much for the Fourth Reich Read More »

Why do they hate us?

Via James Fallows and today’s New York Times, the latest shocking Wikileaks revelation:

In early 2008, American diplomats stationed in Ottawa turned on their television sets and were aghast: there was an “onslaught” of Canadian shows depicting “nefarious American officials carrying out equally nefarious deeds in Canada,” from planning to bomb Quebec to stealing Canadian water supplies.

In a confidential diplomatic cable sent back to the State Department, the American Embassy warned of increasing mistrust of the United States by its northern neighbor, with which it shares some $500 billion in annual trade, the world’s longest unsecured border and a joint military mission in Afghanistan.

“The degree of comfort with which Canadian broadcast entities, including those financed by Canadian tax dollars, twist current events to feed longstanding negative images of the U.S. — and the extent to which the Canadian public seems willing to indulge in the feast — is noteworthy as an indication of the kind of insidious negative popular stereotyping we are increasingly up against in Canada,” the cable said.

Oh, the humanity. Re: the propaganda “onslaught,” I don’t know which show had the Quebec-bombing plot, but I’m guessing the Canadian water supply theft is a reference to the H2O miniseries and its sequel, The Trojan Horse, in which Canada voluntarily merges with the U.S. and the former Canadian Prime Minister (Paul Gross) schemes with England, France, and Germany to get himself elected to the White House.

Why do they hate us? Read More »

“To get us out of this mess we should tax other countries, like Canada.”

More suggestions for the Republican Party agenda from the America Speaking Out website:

“Old people contribute very little to the economy and are total downers. Cut off all government benefits at 75. If you want to live until 95, work until you die or save up more money earlier in life. No more free rides. ”

“Reduce the size of the U.S. to that of a city-state like the Vatican. This will result in enormous savings.”

“My daughter went to private school and she just told me dolphins are descended from wolves. What do I believe? Help me out here, Republican party. ”

“May we ask that our leaders stop posting hate mail about each other on Twitter, etc., then join together to save our Gulf? How about you, John ‘Negative’ Boehner?”

“The concept of SUSTAINABILITY has become the huge over the last few years. There is SUSTAINABILITY in architecture, agriculture, food/restaurants, sustainable work places, sustainable communities, etc. Why don’t we DEMAND that any new GOVERNMENT PROGRAM or entitlement prove that is is SUSTAINABLE over the course of time. If it’s not SUSTAINABLE, then it’s GONE! ”

“Regulate and limit the size of dark pools of liquidity.”

“Isn’t it about time we stopped giving god credit for the good stuff and a bye on the bad stuff? He/She/It is apparently all powerful, so make him/her/it take responsibility for the bad stuff that happens.”

“Instead of taking the ring to Mordor and destroying it…just take it to Goldline and sell it for $$$$$”

“If we gave all the walruses back their buckets, they could help clean up the oil spill.”

“See, America was the new kid in the neighborhood. Once we got there we met a bunch of other local kids who all liked to play baseball. We never played baseball but we wanted to be accepted so we tried. We failed. We also had a goofy fish hat. But as the summer went on, we learned how to play and got better. Finally the local neighborhood kids played the local baseball team and beat them. It was glorious. Then, we had a baseball autographed by Babe Ruth that fell over a fence where a big dog lived. We tried to get it a bunch of times but failed. Finally our friend, Mexico, put on his PF Flyers and got the ball. The dog chased him all over town but his blind owner stopped him and we all became friends. Years later, Mexico played for the Los Angeles Dodgers and we were the radio voice for the Dodgers. And then Mexico ‘The Jet’ stole home. THE JET STOLE HOME! We thumbed up each other and then the credits rolled. Basically, America needs to get some PF Flyers.”

“I want an app for this that works on my Droid.”

“To get us out of this mess we should tax other countries, like Canada.” Read More »

“…but young, fresh and not refrigerated too long are what the Republicans are all about”

As you may have heard by now, the RNC has created a website, America Speaking Out, where American conservatives, or Internet pranksters posing as American conservatives, can post suggestions for the Republican Party agenda. (You can also vote thumbs up or down on other people’s suggestions.) Enjoy it while it lasts:

“The moon is American soil and therefore should be accessible only to Americans. I propose that we stop the illegal use of the moon and moon-related activities by foreigners. If this entails rigging some sort of grappling hook to the moon and drawing it down onto Texan soil, so much the better. That way people can travel to Texas if they want to see the moon, and nighttime will be a little darker for everyone. And, as the founding fathers used to say, ‘the darker the night, the easier it is to tongue each others’ balloon knots without our wives finding out!’”

“We should get off our fiat currency and move to one backed by feldspar, with quartz as a reserve currency. If we used silver as an additional reserve currency in the 19th century, we’d not have had to go to fiat currency, since we’d have reserves to expand our money supply. Feldspar and silicates, like quartz, are the most common minerals on the planet, so we shouldn’t have problems increasing our supply of these and our money supply.”

“Sometimes I see a new food at the store, but I don’t know if I will like it, so I don’t buy it. I propose we establish ‘food libraries’ where you can try new foods and if you like them, go to the store and stimulate the economy. Only legal U.S. citizens would be allowed in the food library. ”

“If you guys are so smart, how come you haven’t caught Osama Bin Laden and made a public display of him stuck up a hippo’s butt yet? I’M LOOKING AT YOU, JOHN BOEHNER!”

“Isn’t it funny, that a party that is fighting illegal immigration, and wants to build a fence to keep illegals out, is handing out badges as rewards for providing input to the site? Wait for it…wait for it…Badges? We don’t need no stinking badges!! ”

“My ideas are dubbed inappropriate because they make sense so I’ll just post something like SPAWN MORE OVERLORDS!”

“People should only be allowed to smoke cigarettes UNTIL they turn 18. Think about it. Smoking for a few years won’t do them much harm. And if people over 18 want to smoke they can bribe kids to buy them cigarettes.”

“KFC’s mashed potatoes taste like pennies.”

“Obviously, the value of American life goes down with age. Who wants a liver from a 93-year-old, like creepy old Robert Byrd, when you can get a fresh one from a 38-year-old, like Bobby Jindal. But, young, fresh and not refrigerated too long are what the Republicans are all about.”

“…but young, fresh and not refrigerated too long are what the Republicans are all about” Read More »

I need to start writing these prophecies down

Last year, when I wrote a blog post reacting to Sarah Palin’s nomination as a VP candidate, I almost included a lame joke about how Palin would be great at foreign affairs, since Alaska is right across the water from Russia.

Then on Friday, when I posted about Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize, I thought about including a line that said, “I give conservatives 72 hours before somebody makes an affirmative action comment.”

Guess what.

I need to start writing these prophecies down Read More »

Today’s alternate universe dispatch

A pop quiz for those of you who haven’t already seen today’s Times editorial page. Can you name the world leader who wrote the following?

“The basis for the modern State of Israel is the persecution of the Jewish people, which is undeniable. The Jews have been held captive, massacred, disadvantaged in every possible fashion by the Egyptians, the Romans, the English, the Russians, the Babylonians, the Canaanites and, most recently, the Germans under Hitler. The Jewish people want and deserve their homeland.”

Answer here.

Today’s alternate universe dispatch Read More »