THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2023
Here's the garbage they're serving instead: The events in Memphis have largely vanished—have been consigned to the past.
In part, that has probably happened because the events in Memphis were an insult to Storyline. But whatever the cause, those recent, brutal events are no longer being widely discussed.
Instead, consider what was being discussed this very morning in the (online) Washington Post.
We turned to the online Post to doublecheck a news report in the New York Times. That report concerned yesterday's congressional hearing concerning Twitter's widely bruited handling of the Hunter Biden laptop matter in the fall of 2020.
For one day in the fall of that year, Twitter refused to link to a New York Post report about that "laptop from Hell." The one-day event has become a cause célèbre in red tribe circles.
As we read this morning's report in the Times, we were surprised by the omission of that fact—of the fact that Twitter's blockade of the laptop report had lasted for only one day—for only 24 hours.
It seemed odd that the New York Times had omitted that one basic fact. We decided to see whether the Washington Post had included that basic fact in its report on yesterday's hearing.
We turned to the (endless) front page of the devolving newspaper's website. Remarkably, there was no report, on the endless front page, about yesterday's congressional hearing—no report at all.
Instead, we encountered this failing newspaper's newly mandated endless low-IQ piffle. Believe it or croak, these were the top three news reports featured on the online Post's endless front page:
First U.N. aid convoy enters rebel-held Syria as quakes’ toll passes 17,000
The convoy of U.N. aid trucks is the first in northwest Syria since the earthquakes flattened neighborhoods there and in Turkey.
Social Security, Medicare brawl awaits Washington, even if not this year
Department of Data / Analysis
The collegiest college town in every state, and more
Some places are way more gown than town. In other places, the deer and the antelope may play, but bears and beavers are mentioned more often.
Sure enough! As of 7:30 this morning, yesterday's hearing couldn't be found anywhere on the online Post's (endless) front page.
Instead, the paper was featuring the Department of Data's "analysis" of the "collegiest college town in every state." And more!
As of 7:30 this morning, the nation's "collegiest towns" were the topic of the third headline at the top of the Post's front page! Inevitably, things got even worse after that:
Lower on the endless front page, this brainless imitation of a news report was listed as the third MOST READ article in the whole of the Washington Post! Democracy dies when the droogs who work for Jeff Bezos treat the public this way—but also, when we the people lap this porridge up.
Memphis was absent from the (endless) front page, but one other topic was not. We refer to the big white coat which turned up at the State of the Union address.
Sure enough! As we looked for a report on yesterday's hearing, we stumbled instead upon this garbage can pseudo-report:
STYLE / Marjorie Taylor Greene’s coat sent a message even before she heckled Biden
At the State of the Union address, the congresswoman’s striking white outfit evoked religious imagery—-and the infamous Chinese spy balloon
Perspective by Ashley Fetters Maloy
In a "perspective" piece, the embarrassing Fetters Maloy explained the way Marjorie Taylor Greene's white coat had somehow managed to evoke the infamous spy balloon.
Democracy dies in the dumbness when the droogs who work for Bezos are willing to function this way. Apparently, though, one such piece wasn't enough for the new and devolved (online) Post.
One such essay wasn't enough! Soon, we hit upon this second "perspective" piece concerning the big white coat:
Marjorie Taylor Greene’s big mouth and her big white, fur-rimmed coat
Perspective by Robin Givhan
This second bit of "perspective" came to us courtesy of Givhan. In this case, the headline referred to Taylor Greene's big white coat, but also to her "big mouth!"
(For the record, Givhan has been at this sort of thing dating all the way back to late 2000. At that time, her acerbic critique of the makeup and wardrobe of a Florida official created a major distraction as Candidate Gore sought a recount in that state.)
Hard to believe, but true! As the online Post sinks toward the sea, its endless front page contained two (2) "perspective" pieces on the meaning of Taylor Greene's coat—and nothing about that congressional hearing, or about what happened in Memphis a million years ago.
Memphis seems to be dead and gone; the sheer stupidity isn't. Indeed, as we scrolled down the Post's (endless) front page, we saw five (5!) photographs of Taylor Greene on Tuesday night, appearing above five (5) separate articles about Tuesday night's event.
What we didn't see was any report about yesterday's congressional hearing—or about the brutal killing of an innocent person which took place in Memphis.
In fairness, that brutal killing in Memphis—a brutal killing of an innocent person—did put a bit of a strain on Preferred Blue Tribe Storyline. Beyond that, the videotape of the brutal killing created a set of images which don't comport with the simplified story our tribe prefers to tell.
Perhaps for those reasons, talk about Memphis has gone away, replaced first by a big white balloon and now by a big white coat.
Let it be said that Memphis isn't "the collegiest college town" in the state of Tennessee.
It's one of the two biggest cities in that state. Tragically, its murder rate is roughly three times that of Nashville, a city of similar size.
Indeed, Memphis is a deeply challenged major city. It's deeply challenged in the way David Graham described in a lengthy report in The Atlantic last November.
In what way is Memphis challenged? Yesterday, we posted this excerpt from Graham's report:
GRAHAM (11/2/22): [Mary] Wainwright is the kind of person you’d want as a neighbor: She’s quick with a joke, blunt and no-nonsense, and ready to help out. When the coronavirus pandemic struck, she canvassed the neighborhood handing out masks. When vaccines first became available, she knew that many of her neighbors didn’t have computers or internet access to make appointments, so she convinced officials to set up a pop-up clinic at her church. The line stretched around the block.
Even so, you might not want to live near her in Smokey City these days. Crime and violent-crime rates in the area and its next-door neighbor Klondike are routinely two to three times as high as in Memphis overall, according to statistics gathered by Whole Child Strategies, a nonprofit that works in the neighborhood. The homicide rate is four to five times as high.
When Wainwright got a new car not long ago, her son begged her to get something other than the Infinitis she’s long preferred—drug dealers like them too much and she might get carjacked, he warned. Wainwright has seen two people killed on her street. “One was laying up under my car. The other one, he got shot, ran around the church,” she recalls.
Wainwright’s sister, who lives nearby in the house they grew up in, is paralyzed on one side, but she doesn’t want to leave the neighborhood where she’s always lived, and her disability checks won’t cover much else anyway. “She spends 40 percent of her time on the floor, because of guns, shooting, just every day. During daylight hours,” Wainwright says. “That’s how bad it is in the neighborhood. You know, it is what it is. We live from day to day, and we pray at night, pray all day, pray in the morning when we get up, that we can survive the neighborhood.”
Presumably, that passage helps explain one of the (accurate) talking points our tribe prefers when we talk about events like the brutal killing in Memphis. If so, it helps explain that (accurate) point in a way which cuts against the simplified story our appalling blue tribe prefers.
Also, our tribe doesn't like to waste its time discussing people like Mary Wainwright and her terrified sister. Down through the years, we've displayed that fact again and again—and again and again after that.
We just don't like to go there! Perhaps for that reason, we've pretty much disappeared Memphis from the list of topics we like to pretend to discuss.
There's a talking point we like to insert into our discussions of deaths like that of Tyre Nichols, an innocent person. That talking point serves Storyline in its most simplistic form.
Unfortunately, events in Memphis made it harder for our tribunes to employ that bit of script in the way we most prefer. Perhaps for the reason, the horrible people we watch on cable have stopped discussing Memphis at all.
The Washington Post has rarely displayed its braindead new culture more clearly than it did this morning.
In our view, it's astonishing that the Washington Post is willing to devolve in this way. It even more astonishing that this can occur with no one calling attention to the paper's jaw-dropping decline.
That said, events in Memphis put a bit of a strain on preferred tribal Storyline. Perhaps for that reason, events in Memphis have largely been given a merciful death.
Tomorrow, we'll try to get it all in—we'll try to discuss what we can imaginably learn from those events, and what we can imaginably learn from John McWhorter's new essay on this general topic in the New York Times.
We'll be talking about what we can imaginably learn about a major American problem. Within the tents of our failing blue tribe, you rarely hear that problem discussed except in the most tribally pleasing way.
Our tribe prefers to discuss that state of affairs in the most simple-minded way possible. That reflects our love of Storyline, but also our tribal disregard for people like Mary Wainwright.
Experts say they know what we need. The Washington Post and blue tribe cable may be a bit more attuned to what they believe, or may even know, that we actually want.
Tomorrow: The novelization of news