It's cold here,
"To Build a Fire" cold.
It was the time to lie snug in a hole in the snow and wait for a curtain of cloud to be drawn across the face of outer space whence this cold came.And our new furnace decided to flake on us last night, so Blue Gal and I are triple-layered bloggers this morning, huddled by a little gas fire that no melting snow from the bough above us (Spoiler Alert) will extinguish. Waiting for the furnace guy to come 'round and tap the thing in just the right spot or whatever.
This cold morning we also warm ourselves with the knowledge that, no matter how completely the administration of President Stupid has laid bare the Big Lie of Both Sides Do It, the Beltway media simply cannot stop repeating it, and hammering every story until it fits its contours. It is their default factory setting, never to be tampered with lest you void the warranty.
So when a big enough mouth with a big enough wallet decides to belly-flop into the political arena by announcing that he'll be throwing f'real money around like Mardi Gras beads to run for president on a platform of no greater depth or vision than "But Both Sidez!", it is Beltway Christmas in January! Which is why coverage of Howard "The Paler Vortex" Schultz has all but colonized cable news, and the haircuts in front of the camera are creaming themselves at the joy of being able to take a break from Republican treason and Republican corruption and Republican barbarism to squee about Democrats in Disarray and Both Sidez!
How much of a gift is Howard Schultz to cable news? So much that the were able to haul discredit farce of nature Ron Fournier out of mothballs and put him in front of a camera to recite the only poem he knows: The Road Not Taken Because The K'rupt Duopoly Ruined Everything!
When I was coming up, I was taught (at the wee schoolhouse shanty I walked to five miles both ways uphill and up to my knees in snow) that the five basic forms of literary conflict were: Human versus Human, Human versus Nature, Human versus Society, Human versus God and Human versus Themselves. Which, as basic Lit 101 lists go, isn't terrible, although it does omit legitimate variations like Human versus Technology/Science.
However given the absolute mindlessness with which corporations pursue their own ends often to the detriment of humanity, it really is long past time to add Human versus Corporation to the canon of recognized forms of literary conflict. As writers from C.M Kornbluth and Fred Pohl to William Gibson have shown, corporations -- which are not quite nature, and not quite society, and not quite human but are composed of humans -- can make splendidly relentless and aggressive antagonists and should be officially blessed as such by whoever bestows such blessings.
Point being, Ron Fournier may be a clown and an embarrassment to his former profession, but he isn't the main villain here.
The main villains here are media corporations which will grant priceless air time and column inches to virtually any talentless clown who will help advance their bold agenda of not paying taxes by poisoning healthy public discourse with Both Siderist bullshit.
* UPDATE: Because he has stopped cashing checks by shouting "Both Sides Do It" under the cover of journalism and started cashing checks by shouting "But Both Do It" for a PR shop, I have pretty much stopped giving a damn what America's Sad Clown of Centrism does with his time.
But this is hilarious (h/t Alert Reader Jeanne):
Ron Fournier Is President Of A ‘Bipartisan’ PR Firm, But His Clients Are Republicans
“The firm remains committed to its bipartisan roots,” [Michigan-based public relations firm] Truscott Rossman said in a recent press release announcing that it would open a new D.C. office. In a phone interview with TPM Wednesday, Fournier said the new office would “get me up to Washington at least once a month,” presumably to bring his Democratic perspective to the capital.
But, as it turns out, none of Fournier’s known clients at the firm are Democrats; in fact, TPM couldn’t find an example of a Democratic client at the largely Republican-leaning firm at all...
Behold, a Tip Jar!