ELIZABETH WURTZEL DECODES SARAH PALIN once and for all:
I like Sarah Palin. I like her because she is such a problem for all these political men, Republicans and Democrats alike, with their polls, and their John Dean Burnham theories of transformative elections, and their economy this and their values that--and here comes Palin, and logic just doesn't apply. She speaks in spoonerisms, she raises wretched children, she's a quitter, she's a refudiater, she shoots moose and beats halibut, she has a dumb accent that doesn't have the charm of Charleston or the Brahmin of Boston--really, she is just a lot of quirks.
But it doesn't matter. It will never matter and I bet it never has mattered, because Sarah Palin is hot. She has sex appeal. That's why people like her. That's the whole story. Everyone has to stop trying to deconstruct and decode it, because there is no accounting for chemistry, and Sarah Palin has lots of it going on with her public. I don't think anyone knows or cares what in particular she stands for, other than some general conservative cache of principles, because they are in love with her.
Saletan purports to be an expert on applied ethics, yet he is blind to the sexualized coercion implicit in the 'choice' between allowing a stranger in another room to see your naked body vs. having your junk touched.
. . . It's all about managing expectations. Homeland Security could have decreed that everyone must pass through the nude scanner. If that had been the edict, TSA would be grappling with even bigger backlash. Ostensibly giving passengers a choice between a scan and a pat-down makes the invasion of privacy seem more acceptable. It gives the passenger the illusion of control. We're so busy playing "scan or grope?" that we forget to ask why we're paying for scanners the TSA can't even justify with a cost-benefit analysis.
ALYSSA ROSENBERG DELIGHTS in the legal failures of Family Edited DVDs, for aesthetic reasons:
I have essentially no sympathy for Family Edited DVDs, a company that's being sued by a coalition of studios for editing theoretically objectionable material out of major releases and re-releasing them as family entertainment. It's not just that it's plagiarism, though of course, it is that, too. It speaks to a larger laziness.
Nobody has a right to insist that art contain only what they want it to be in it. Art doesn't exist by committee. . . . Experiencing art is about submitting to someone else's vision, to fall into someone else's world. . . . Lack of control is the price you pay to be truly entertained.