Key Take-Away by Petersen: Timberlake has long reminded me of the mischievous neighbor boys I grew up with. Maybe it’s the fact that I watched him grow up, alongside those boys, on the Mickey Mouse Club; maybe it’s the sense, woven through his comedy in particular, that there’s a small, playful devil on his shoulder. He’s not unlike Huckleberry Finn, who, like Timberlake, wanted to flee the burden of dealing with the racialized reality of the South: “I reckon I got to light out for the Territory ahead of the rest,” Huck famously said, “because Aunt Sally she’s going to adopt me and civilize me, and I can’t stand it. I’ve been there before.” As Limerick explains, the West has long served this function: a “mechanism” to escape the “trials and burdens” of American civilization and the heavy tensions of the South in particular.
“The theory was the same,” Limerick writes, “the West is remote and vast; its isolation and distance will release us from conflict; this is where we can get away from each other.” The “Wild West, but now” is where we can get away from the internet and Twitter and Instagram, away from the hard questions that make us consider things we’d rather not. But that belief is as mythical as the rest that shape the West in the popular imagination, and Limerick has little patience for its perpetuation: “the workings of history carried the opposite lesson,” she writes. “The West is not where we escaped each other, but where we all met.” It’s where, in other words, the larger questions of privilege, whiteness, power, and masculinity seem to crystallize themselves in their most potent forms.
The great privilege of white masculinity has always been to avoid those questions. But these days, none of our contemporary Huck Finns — whether Donald Trump Jr., or Justin Timberlake — can excuse himself from those conversations without consequences.
Key Take-Away: Hope Hicks is going to prison. If the allegations as reported by The New York Times are accurate, and they appear to have multiple sources that can corroborate them, she’s not only complicit, she assisted in the destruction of evidence. And she can NOT claim Executive Privilige. Her actions speak to someone that is not only naive, but supremely stupid. I’d be shocked if she doesn’t try to cut a deal. Mueller not only has witnesses, I’m fairly certain, he has tapes of her, emails and other documents.
Key Take-Aways: You start seeing stories like this when one side is losing very badly. And it’s not Mueller’s Team. Folks in the White House are now at the stage where they will begin to leak stories that paint them in sympathetic lights. They all want a soft landing spot when this shitshow is over. So I’d look for more background pieces like this. The fact that the IDIOT can’t seem to understand that the DOJ doesn’t work for him, but for the American Public has caused him to commit numerous acts of Obstruction of Justice. Either he’s incapable of grasping this or doesn’t care. And having his people go out and make the argument that it’s not really Obstruction because he didn’t go through with the firing, is ridiculous. And they know this.
Key Take-Away: It is clear that Jared Kushner is in way over his head. It is also clear that This Family has used whatever means they can to enrich themselves. I suspect from the belief that they realize this is not going to end well for most of them. And also understanding that they never imagined the opportunity would present itself. Regardless, the clawback of the assets gained during this time, will be very interesting to follow.
All The Pieces Matter: Russiagate Breadcrumbs Galore! (Natasha Bertrand) The House Intelligence Committee on Thursday released the transcript of the panel’s November interview with Glenn Simpson, the cofounder of the opposition research firm Fusion GPS. The House investigators’ line of questioning Read More