Culturally Discombobulated

Whimpering

There was no primal roar at the threshold being reached – just a feeble mewl.

“This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.”
T. S. Eliot

An American chocolate brand that may struggle in the UK

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Probably best buried under the patio.

Clinton also concerned about illegal aliens

With the GOP candidates no longer tearing flesh from one another, this is the sort of election news scraps we’re left with; and just when some of us thought Clinton might be the only adult left in the room she ends up talking about a completely different class of illegal aliens than Trump.

I understand, you want to both seem transparent and remind every one of those glory days of the 90s and Bill Clinton when The X-Files-inspired  paranoia around aliens and government cover-ups was at its height, but the last person in your position to talk like this was Carter in ’76 – and he never more sounded like his brother Billy than when discussing UFOs.

We all just need to get through this: West Virginia and Nebraska, 10 May 2016

Despite the overexcited energy and hyperbole they are programmed to engender, there was a subdued tone to cable news tonight. Gone was the febrile, unhinged coverage that has marked this strange electoral season. Perhaps, and this is probably just my wishful thinking, they feel a degree of guilt over their – the media’s – role in the triumph of Trumpism, or perhaps they’re just pacing themselves, taking a quick pause, before conventions, or perhaps they simply couldn’t bring themselves to get at all excited about what Nebraska and West Virginia might be thinking on matters that are already settled.

This new world where Trumpism exists as an actual legitimate political force is proving personally fascinating for how it is shattering a lot of my long held opinions. For one, I’m finding myself impressed with politicians in the GOP I previously never had time for; those who are deciding to not just conveniently line up behind the party’s nominee, but are proving resistant to him. Today, I actually found myself thinking fondly of Paul Ryan. We are most certainly in a new paradigm.

Cable news was grateful for the Sanders win in West Virginia as it allowed them to try and incite another exciting narrative. Clinton won a symbolic primary in Nebraska, but receives no delegates because Sanders had won an earlier caucus in March featuring a far smaller number of people. So Sanders wins a state though Clinton won a vote featuring three times as many votes in the state as in the former contest. I have no idea as to why the Nebraska Democrats would have a caucus and then two months later a symbolic primary. It is, however, worth remembering next time a Sanders supporter tells you about how the political system is conspiring against their candidate.

Sanders spoke impassionedly to a crowd of cheering students in Oregon after the result of his win in West Virginia was announced. I always find watching a Bernie rally somewhat bizarre; it’s as if you’ve discovered your old, hectoring eleventh grade science teacher has managed to create a messianic cult around himself.

American Notes: American Mother’s Day

AMERICAN MOTHER’S DAY: Confusingly, America designates a Sunday in May for Mother’s Day as opposed to the earlier Sunday in March that it is celebrated on in the UK and Ireland. This leads you to the awkward dilemma of debating whether you should celebrate the day twice. I’d advise yes – provided you can buy your cards on a two-for-one deal. American Mother’s Day is most noticeable as being the day of the year when middle-aged women across the country set out to scientifically prove that there is, after all, a bottom to the bottomless mimosa.