June 23, 2021

GET BACK — THREE MORE MONTHS: Peter Jackson Restored So Much Beatles Footage That Get Back Is Now a Six-Hour TV Series.

Peter Jackson’s “The Beatles: Get Back” was originally set for a theatrical release in late August, but Disney+ has now announced the documentary is moving to Thanksgiving and expanding into a three-part series. The streamer explained that “because of the wealth of tremendous footage Jackson has reviewed, which he has spent the past three years restoring and editing, ‘The Beatles: Get Back’ will be presented as three separate episodes.” The installments will roll out November 25-27 and be approximately two hours in length each.

But will more be less? The Beatles: Get Back Is Now a Six-Hour Mini-Series. So Why Does It Feel Like More Might Be Less?

If the Beatles aren’t worthy of the big screen, I don’t know who is.

But that’s no longer going to happen. Now we’ll all sit at home, watching the Beatles separately, on three separate nights. Beyond that, I’m compelled to ask: Six hours? It’s clear that Peter Jackson fell in love with this material and was eager to give us more of it, which sounds like a generous impulse. But six hours of “Get Back” is a lot of “Get Back.” (My curiosity is at fever pitch, but no one pretends that this was the Beatles’ greatest record.) Jackson’s last film, “They Shall Not Grow Old” (2018), was a brilliant documentary reconstruction of World War I that elevated the cataclysmic experience of that war to a newly heightened immediacy, and did it in just 99 minutes. It was a transcendent film. In general, though, Peter Jackson tends to be dominated by his go-big-or-go-home side, which first showed itself in the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy (which I think of, in my snarkier moments, as nine hours of folks riding through the woods), then in the bloat of “King Kong,” and then in the jaw-dropping grandiosity with which he inflated “The Hobbit,” J.R.R. Tolkien’s slenderest Middle-earth novel, into three damn epic movies. Do you sense a trend here?

I’m not prejudging “The Beatles: Get Back.” I, of course, hope that it presents a revelatory vision of the Beatles. But I do have a trepidation, one that I feel justified in saying out loud. My fear is that Jackson, in chopping the “Get Back” footage down to a gargantuan six hours, hasn’t done the disciplined and demanding work of editing, of shaping, of putting an exquisitely honed movie together. My fear is that he’ll be giving us not a Beatles documentary but a Beatles document dump, the film equivalent of an overstuffed special-edition box set. Making “The Beatles: Get Back” into a must-see event on Disney Plus reduces the Beatles, on some level, to eyeball-driving artifacts of the newly commodified streaming world. We’ll see if that’s a fitting form for a group that was (to quote John Lennon) not just bigger than Jesus, but bigger than all of us.

It does sound like there will be a later physical release of the footage according to this fellow Beatles obsessive:

Will the original Let It Be finally be released on Blu-Ray as well? This quote from Jackson near the end of a lengthy Vanity Fair article on the upcoming Disney+ Thanksgiving streaming release sounds hopeful:

In a decisive and crucial creative act, Jackson says he avoided repeating footage from the original film. Even familiar scenes would use alternative camera angles. “One of our mantras is that Let It Be is one movie, and our movie is a different movie,” he says, “and we’re trying not to repeat any footage, with one or two tiny exceptions where we can’t do anything else. But we’re trying to not step on Let It Be’s toes so that it is still a film that has a reason to exist, and our movie will be a supplement to it.”

Presumably there will be a Super Deluxe box set, if not this Christmastime, then likely next year, including Blu-Rays of Get Back, Let It Be, and remixed CDs of the original Phil Spector version, the cashiered Glyn Johns mixes, and the 2003 Let It Be…Naked stripped down version.

And who knows? There could be an even more Super Duper Ultra Deluxe version of Get Back/Let It Be depending upon the sales of this upcoming solo Beatles boxed set:

But that will certainly change on Aug. 6, when Capitol/UMe presents the “All Things Must Pass 50th Anniversary Edition” in a variety of formats, the most “Are you crazy?” of which is the limited “Uber Deluxe Edition”: a toybox-sized wooden crate that includes the album and dozens of demos and outtakes spread across piles of vinyl, discs (in 5.1 surround sound and Dolby Atmos and Blu-Ray), books and other ephemera, and — perhaps best of all — the miniature facsimiles of the garden gnomes depicted on the cover, which were immortalized in a recent Variety article… all for just $998.98!

Fortunately, there will be more affordable version — sans gnomes, of course.

OPEN THREAD: Be nice.

AMERICA’S NEWSPAPER OF RECORD: Huge Spike In Americans Buying F-15s After Biden Suggests You’ll Need Them To Overthrow Government.

SPACE: Mars helicopter Ingenuity nails 8th flight on the Red Planet.

KURT SCHLICHTER GIVES JOURNALISTS SOME QUESTIONS TO ASK THE PRESIDENT AFTER HIS COMMENTS ABOUT NEEDING F-15S AND NUKES TO FIGHT THE GOVERNMENT.

UPDATE (FROM GLENN): This is bold talk from a military, and a government, that hasn’t won a war in my lifetime. Not even the War On Poverty . . . But the Transgender Awareness Training is up-to-date, I’m sure.

Seriously, this kind of threat is not just absurd and unseemly, but a disqualification for public office. One of many, I realize.

And I guess the ammo shortage will be back on.

ANOTHER UPDATE (FROM GLENN): Larry Correia: So you want to nuke Omaha? “For those of you who don’t know me, I’m a novelist now, but I retired from the Evil Military Industrial Complex, where I helped maintain those various advanced weapon systems you expect to bomb me with. Before that I was a gun dealer and firearms instructor. So basically I sold guns to the people you expect the people I trained to take them from.”

Plus: “In something that I find profoundly troubling, when I’ve had this discussion before, I’ve had a Caring Liberal tell me that the example of Iraq doesn’t apply, because ‘we kept the gloves on’, whereas fighting America’s gun nuts would be a righteous total war with nothing held back… Holy shit, I’ve got to wonder about the mentality of people who demand rigorous ROEs to prevent civilian casualties in a foreign country, are blood thirsty enough to carpet bomb Texas. You really hate us, and then act confused why we want to keep our guns?”

In a U.S. civil war, the first targets would be politicians, and media figures, and they’re all soft targets. Which is odd, because they seem the most eager to get things started.

Also: “The congressman’s suggestion was incredibly stupid, but it was nice to see one of you guys being honest about it for once. In order to maybe, hypothetically save thousands, you’d be willing to slaughter millions. Either you really suck at math, or the ugly truth is that you just hate the other side so much that you think killing millions of people is worth it to make them fall in line. And if that’s the case, you’re a sick bastard, and a great example of why the rest of us aren’t ever going to give up our guns.”

MORE: From the comments: “How does that saying go? ‘If you want to know who your rulers fear, look at who they threaten to nuke?’ It’s quite obvious that ruling class America hates and fears the American people much more than they hate and fear any foreign power on Earth.”

I DIDN’T REALIZE SUVs WENT BACK THAT FAR: Intensifying Thunderstorms Today Echo an Ancient Pattern at Least 50,000 Years Old.

THE BREAKFAST CLUB: Jerry Seinfeld To Star In And Direct Unfrosted; Netflix Wins Movie About Creation Of The Pop-Tart.

“Stuck at home watching endless sad faces on TV, I thought this would be a good time to make something based on pure silliness,” he said. “So we took my Pop-Tart stand-up bit from my last Netflix special and exploded it into a giant, crazy comedy movie.”

Seinfeld deconstructed the Pop-Tart joke in a video segment for The New York Times (watch it below). It recounted the moment when, as a schoolkid, his world was rocked by the breakfast product. “How did they know that there would be a need for a frosted fruit-filled heated rectangle in the same shape as the box it comes in, and with the same nutrition as the box it comes in?”

It’s good to see Seinfeld back in action, answering the important questions.

OLD AND BUSTED: Republicans Pounce!

The New Hotness? Politico: Mean Republicans Are Making Kamala Harris Finally Get to the Border and Do Her Job.

BIDEN TO GUN OWNERS: If you want to take on the U.S. government, you’d better have F-15s and nukes.

Meanwhile, at America’s Newspaper of Record: ‘You’ll Never Beat The Government With Just Guns,’ Says Party That Also Believes Government Was Almost Toppled By Unarmed Mob On January 6.

Update: “DC is threatening to nuke its own people again. The Swalwell Doctrine,” Jon Gabriel dubs it.

UPDATE (FROM GLENN): From the comments: “What does that Warrior Monk General “Mad Dog” Mattis have to say about such talk from our commander in chief?”

BOB MCMANUS: Dems and media now argue mayors can do nothing to stop skyrocketing murders — it’s a lie. They did plenty to cause them.

IS THERE ANYTHING IT CAN’T DO? Coffee may reduce risk for chronic liver disease.

SHUT UP, THEY EXPLAINED: What Changed: The important point is that only three years ago, questioning the validity of the previous presidential election wasn’t treason or insurrection, it was free speech.

Related: 55% of Voters Support Election Audits.

A new national telephone and online survey by Rasmussen Reports finds that 55% of Likely U.S. Voters support forensic audits of election results to ensure there was no vote fraud. Twenty-nine percent (29%) oppose such audits and 17% are not sure. . . .

The new survey also found that 41% of voters still don’t believe that Joe Biden won the 2020 presidential election fairly.

The more the political class tries to keep people from talking about this, the more people will conclude that they’ve got something to hide.

IT’S COME TO THIS: LPGA Moves Portland Tournament to Suburb Due to Homeless Concerns.

AT HELEN’S PAGE: The Weightless Ribbon: Rolling with Ease in Seven Lessons. This book teaches you to roll and fall safely, something all of us need at some point.

UPDATE: NOW #1 in Gymnastics Books. (Bumped)

BUT IT WON’T BE THE LAST: Journalists Hit New Low by Betraying Source.

Given the left’s hatred of [Tucker] Carlson – who is their current Bogeyman No. 2, after Donald Trump – and its habit of reporting fake news, Smith’s article could be a smear aimed at stirring up conflict on the right and problems for Carlson with his employer. That thought would not have occurred to me even five years ago, but that’s where we are.

If Carlson does dish dirt off the record, [Ben] Smith’s piece is a yet another new low for our increasingly partisan press. As my RealClearInvestigations colleague Tom Kuntz observed, “Protecting confidential sources is, of course, one of the bedrocks of journalism. The free flow of information depends on people being able to share hard truths without jeopardizing their careers or lives.”

It is why journalists have gone to jail to protect their sources. Outing Carlson sends the message that trust is dead in American journalism. No source is safe if reporters decide they don’t like or agree with them. Today it’s the Fox News anchor, tomorrow it’s the whistleblower who uncovered malfeasance in the Biden administration.

Still, the protection of confidentiality is not ironclad. All bets are off when a source lies. For example, false disclosures from dishonest anonymous sources were a prime driver of the bogus Trump/Russia scandal that dominated the news for several years. Smith’s paper was a prime dumping ground of misinformation, as was the publication he edited before coming to the Times, BuzzFeed, publisher of the now-infamous and largely fabricated Steele dossier. Smith also oversaw the seminal but deeply misleading BuzzFeed work of Ali Watkins (now also at the Times) that commenced the years-long media smearing of former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

Kuntz argues, “When sources engage in gross deception on a matter of such import, even committing national security crimes in the process, the news media involved should honor their higher duty – to their readers or viewers – to expose the malfeasance and correct the record.”

Even as the Times outs Carlson – who is not accused of misleading anyone – it continues to protect those who perpetrated devastating frauds upon the nation. That silence is a scandal; instead of honoring trust, it betrays it. If Smith truly cares about the fate of American journalism, he should insist that his editors identify the anonymous sources of their many debunked stories during the Trump years.

Just think of the media as Democratic Party operatives with bylines, and it all makes sense.

JIM TREACHER: When Everything Is Racism, Nothing Is — Stop offering people delicious food you think they’ll enjoy, you white supremacist.

The first time I ever saw Michael Che do his stand-up on late-night TV, before he joined SNL, he did a bit about African-Americans complaining whenever they’re served food that’s seen as stereotypically “black.” He noted how oversensitive and ungrateful that attitude is when your host is genuinely trying to be nice: “What kind of thoughtful racist finds out your favorite food and then threatens to make it for you? Sounds… hospitable!”

I had a chuckle over that joke as I read about the IKEA employees in Atlanta who stayed home from work over the weekend to protest a company Juneteenth menu. Why? Because it included fried chicken, watermelon, mac & cheese, potato salad, collard greens, and candied yams.

You know what? I’m about as black as Les Nessman, and I like all that stuff! Who doesn’t? Especially when it’s free. But somehow it’s racist to offer people food you think they’ll want to eat. Being a good host is now white supremacy.

But then, in the 21st century, what isn’t?

UPDATE: No, really, what isn’t?


(Updated and bumped.)

HERD IMMUNITY: Covid-19 news: 9 in 10 adults in England estimated to have antibodies.

ANTIFA IS JUST AN IDEA: Denver Post goes blind, didn’t see these violent protestors at conservative summit.

THE HARD CRIMINALITY OF SOFT EXPECTATIONS: Too Many Black Folks Break The Law? Get Rid of The Law! (Portland, of Course).

#JOHNMCAFEEDIDNTKILLHIMSELF: Antivirus mogul John McAfee dies by suicide in a Spain jail while awaiting extradition on tax evasion charges.

His twitter feed has lately warned about foreign infiltration of the tech industry:

And yes, #JohnMcAfeeDidntKillHimself is a real hashtag at the moment.

UPDATE:

I SHOULD’VE GONE ALL-IN ON GUN STOCKS YEARS AGO: Smith & Wesson Shatters $1 Billion Sales Barrier for the First Time.

HEY, WHEN DID FOX BUTTERFIELD START WRITING FOR BROBIBLE? NBA Playoff Ratings See Huge Uptick Despite LeBron And The Lakers’ Early Exit.

MEGAN FOX: 6 Ways to Beat the Family Court Racket.

NEED ENERGY? King Harv’s Rocket Fuel now on sale.

SPOILER: SHE WON’T SOLVE ANYTHING. Kamala Harris Finally Heading To U.S.-Mexico Border, Three Months After Being Put In Charge Of Immigration Crisis. “It appears that Harris was trying to beat former President Donald Trump to the border.”

A DEEP SEVEN OUTPOST: An Unexpected Planetary Feature Has Just Been Found on Venus.

SADLY, YES YOU WOULD: You Won’t Even Believe What’s Triggering the Thought Police Now.

ANOTHER LETDOWN FROM THE CONSISTENTLY UNDERPERFORMING BIDEN ADMINISTRATION: U.S. won’t hit July 4 vaccination goal, White House says.

OH: Fauci’s ‘Gain of Function’ Guy Dropped From The UN COVID Commission. “Daszak was the guy involved in diverting tens of millions of tax dollars to Wuhan’s gain of function research, despite official government sanctions against gain of function initiatives.”

NOT JUST AN OLD WIVES’ TALE: It’s true: Stress does turn hair gray (and it’s reversible).

LEAKED DOCUMENTS: Critical Race Theory Seeks to Undermine Equality and the Constitutional Order.

SO MUCH OF OUR RULING CLASS IS ON CHINA’S PAYROLL, OR AT LEAST ON THE TEAM:

REALCLEARINVESTIGATIONS: How Federal Cop Control Left Liberals Joyless in Seattle (Also, Tear-Gassed).

FASTER, PLEASE: 3D bioprinting can help end organ transplant waitlists — if the FDA stops delaying.

#RESIST: Maine parents reject race-focused reading list. “Students in the elective course were asked to think about how they would define ‘social justice and racial reckoning,’ ‘antiracism and structural racism’ and ‘white privilege and authority,’ before reading their chosen book.”

GOOD: Victory for property rights in Supreme Court union trespassing case.

VODKAPUNDIT PRESENTS YOUR DAILY INSANITY WRAP: Oregon Learning Lockdown as Lawmakers Say ‘You Don’t Need No Education.’
Plus:

  • How to make an adult diaper with a Big Mac
  • Colorado mayor bans Pledge of Allegiance at board meetings; members recite it anyway
  • Trump GPS is the classiest, most luxurious, easiest-to-follow GPS

So much more at the link, you’d have to be crazy to miss it.

SILENCE EQUALS CONSENT: Black Democrats, Activists Silent on Whitehouse’s White-Only Club Membership. NAACP, Congressional Black Caucus, 49 Democratic senators stay mum.

PHIL MAGNESS ON CRITICAL RACE THEORY:

Critical Race Theory’s defenders currently package it as a necessary tool to examine institutional racism, going so far as to claim that if you doubt CRT you must also doubt whether institutional racism exists. This is of course utter nonsense. It could also be the case that CRT is also an incredibly shoddy tool to examine institutional racism – one marked by extremely low rigor, a propensity to conspiracy theorize, and a tendency to offer inadequate explanations of the patterns it purports to diagnose.

In this sense, CRT’s argument of a proprietary claim over the study of institutional racism is directly akin to claiming that “astrology studies the movement of the planets. Therefore if you question astrology, you deny that the planets move.”

Sorry, no link because this is a private post that he gave me permission to quote.

CHEERLEADERS 1, EDUCRATS 0: Supreme Court sides with high school cheerleader who cursed online. The power-greedy efforts of public school administrators — and, increasingly, college administrators — to regulate students’ out-of-school behavior need to be slapped down.

YALE: “THE ALUMNI ARE READY FOR WAR.” Yale alumni call on Board of Trustees to reinstate petition process.

Students and alumni have pushed back against the decision to end the petition process. They are worried about becoming disenfranchised and ceding influence over the Ivy League university’s decision-making body. Change.org hosts two petitions calling for the board to reinstate the process. As of Tuesday afternoon, 654 people have signed one of the petitions, and more than 1,345 have signed the other.

“The Yale that I attended believed in free speech, transparency, and democracy,” Yale alum Frank Paprota wrote alongside his signature on Change.org. “Abolition of the petition process goes against all of those ideals.”
Gail Lavielle, a 1981 graduate of Yale, had planned to petition to become a candidate for the board in next year’s election. She said hundreds of alumni reached out to her after the board announced it had scrapped the process.

“They want to do something about this,” Lavielle said. “The alumni are ready for war.”

As a believer in public choice economics, I am of the opinion that institutions are generally run for the benefit of those running them, rather than for the benefit of their alleged mission. Yale is a particularly notable example of this.

MUST-SEE TV: Bill Whittle’s “Afterburner” on Coerced Cowardice.

RICHARD GRENELL:

Related: Democrats: OK, now crime is a problem. “The New York City mayoral race is split between two factions of Democrats: those who cut a tempered figure offering government solutions to the nightmares their own party created and stoked over the last year — and the kooky true-believers with the thousand-yard stare who continue to preach fire and damnation.”

WE NEEDED A JUDGE TO TELL US THIS? Judge Rules Rachel Maddow’s Show Isn’t News.

BEZOS EMBRACES THE GLEICHSCHALTUNG: Amazon Funding Distribution of Ibram X. Kendi’s ‘Antiracist’ Books in Public Schools.

YA GOT ONE, TWO, THREE, FOUR, FIVE, SIX POCKETS IN A TABLE. POCKETS THAT MARK THE DIFF’RENCE BETWEEN A GENTLEMEN AND A BUM. WITH A CAPITAL “B” AND THAT RHYMES WITH “C” AND THAT STANDS FOR CANCELED! Commentary: The Music Man is the wrong Broadway revival for this crucial moment.

Ultimately, “The Music Man” sets forth a sanitized, insular and very white America — a vision regularly exploited by a recent president (who gained a following with scare tactics and sold a “think system” of his own) to stoke racial fears and pit Americans against one another. It asks audiences to cheer for yet another romanticized fraud.

“The Music Man” is selling tickets while the culture is calling for corrective lenses on such white-centered visions of American history and protesting in the streets for a new vision of modern American life. The same is true of the theater industry itself, as actors and arts workers marched for a more inclusive, equitable and anti-racist workplace.

It is highly unlikely that this revival will question its source material, as Daniel Fish’s “Oklahoma!” did; most recent restagings of “classics” instead attempt to reframe problematic plots as updates. Not that every Broadway offering needs to address real-world issues, but it’s concerning when productions not only turn away from society’s exposed ills but also inherently reinforce them for, as Horton said, “the widest possible audience.” In the words of Harold Hill himself, it’s “trouble with a capital T.”

Really glad to see the L.A. Times focusing on the big issues America faces in 2021 — “problematic” (read: beloved) Broadway musical revivals. As to why, in February, PJM’s David Goldman, aka “Spengler,” (certainly an appropriate nom de plume here) explored: Mediocrity’s Envy of Genius: The Dirty Secret of Cancel Culture.

The Cultural Revolutionaries at the New York Times this week reviewed the witch hunt against classical musicians, who stand accused of racism simply because the great Western composers happened to be white. Cancel culture is despicable in all of its manifestations, but I take this particular instance personally: I trained in the school of musical analysis founded by Heinrich Schenker (1868-1935). My principle teacher was Carl Schachter, who also taught Prof. Timothy Jackson of the University of North Texas, the target of this particular witch hunt.

It’s all about envy.

It sure is. As Kevin Williamson wrote in his 2019 book, The Smallest Minority: Independent Thinking in the Age of Mob Politics, “David Foster Wallace argued that aspiring amateurs who envy professional athletes suffer from the ‘delusion that envy has a reciprocal.’ They believe that if only they could get themselves on the other side of the envy equation, then all of the loneliness and dissatisfaction they feel in their current situation of envy would be transubstantiated into joy and contentedness equal in weight and scope. Envy and spite are two cocktails with a heavy pour of the same brand of hatred—and both are methods for trying to make that interior pain exterior.”

ONE WAS TOO MANY: God Help Us: Sinema Says She Wants to Be the ‘Next John McCain.’

WHY DON’T THEY BELIEVE IN SCIENCE? Monmouth University requires vaccinated students to wear masks for fall semester.

DON SURBER: Manchin Is Not The Problem: Democrats Are.

Democrats did not win the last Senate elections. Republicans did. They did not win by as wide a margin as they needed to maintain control of the Senate, but the American people backed them, not Democrats.

And Democrats cannot handle that. They pretend that they received a landslide last November and January, when they actually lost. By believing their own Fake News, Democrats set themselves not only to fail but to fail spectacularly.

Republicans won 20 of the 35 senate races last year. Republicans received 49% of the vote, Democrats 47%.

This split the Senate 50-50. As president of the Senate, Vice President Kamala Harris decides any tie vote.

But Democrats want to pretend that they have this mandate from the people, which they do not have.

The echo chamber of the Washington media unthinkingly repeats their talking points. So reliably on message are ABC-CBS-CNN-NBC-MSNBC-AP that I truly believe their anchors are trans-species parrots. After decades of misleading the public, most people no longer follow them down the dark alleys of politics, where liberals mug them.

For example, since January the media have called Republican efforts to reform state voting laws Jim Crow. The media portrays Democrats as champions of voting rights, when in fact Democrats want to void state laws and have Washington run state and local elections.

The things Democrats want, voters do not want.

CNS News reported on its recent poll. It said, “Fully 78% of U.S. voters say asking voters to present a photo as proof of identity is an appropriate method of ensuring election integrity – more than four times the 17.2% who say it’s an unreasonable form of voter suppression. Another 4.8% say they ‘don’t know.'”

Plus: “Biden did not use his bully pulpit because he cannot speak well in public. And he needs naps. Lots of them. He called it a day at 2:44 p.m. on Monday. He is not a good salesmen. I doubt he could sell ice cream to Cub Scouts on a hot summer’s day, which is why they kept him in the basement during last fall’s campaign. Democrats have not won the Senate. Acting as if they did fools no one. Blaming Manchin gets them nowhere. And if their plan is to win in 2022 by voting on doomed bills, I see Republicans flipping the Senate.”

It would serve them right.

CHANGE: 51% of global knowledge workers will be remote by the end of 2021.

ALL THE RACE-TALK IS JUST A CON JOB: Sheldon Whitehouse and Racists Like Him: More proof that Democrats know that their behavior doesn’t matter.

KRUISER’S MORNING BRIEF: Progressives Are Having a Rough Time and It’s Glorious. “Because the Democrats have convinced themselves that their smoke and mirrors bare majority means that they have a mandate, they’re a bit upset. Strap in for some loud shrieks of ‘RAAAAAAACISM’ issuing forth from the usual suspects for the next several weeks.”

WELL, IT DOES CONSIST OF OPEN RACE DISCRIMINATION: Critical Race Theory May Violate Civil Rights Act, the Constitution: Dr. Carol Swain.

And its adoption by a school or employer certainly creates a hostile environment based on race.

MICHAEL WALSH: What Is to Be Done? A Blueprint for Taking the Country Back.

“What is to be done?” That’s been the cry of revolutionaries from time immemorial: the malcontents, the aggrieved, the misfits, the morally wretched. From the beginning of the modern “progressive” movement—which occurred around the time Jean-Jacques Rousseau published “The Social Contract” in 1762, adumbrating the French Revolution—to the uprisings of 1848 across Europe, through the advent of “scientific” Marxism and the horrors of those deformed twins, Soviet communism and German National Socialism, the same desire to inflict punitive misery has marked nearly every “revolutionary” movement.

For all their talk of “the people,” however, Leftist revolutionaries hardly ever spring from the people, or have them on their side. The people prize stability and order; the Left welcomes chaos and anarchy, leading to totalitarianism. Leftists are by definition minorities in their own countries, generally drawn from the intellectual vanguard, and very often—because their ideas are so ridiculous—not taken seriously until it’s too late. They think of themselves as elites, and they mean to continue in that status long after their revolution is effected.

Adept in operating the levers of power once they attain them, however, they quickly bring “the people” into line with a program of terror and brute force—the American Revolution was a notable exception—and henceforth do all of the people’s thinking for them. Only then do the people understand that the question, “what is to be done?” refers not to their former overlords, but to themselves. If and when Leftist movements are overthrown, it’s not other elites, but by the very citizenry they presumed to speak for: the proletariat, the working man, the average Joe. Or, as they view them, the schmucks and suckers.

As we sit here, six months into the disastrous Biden administration, the question is finally becoming evident to even the most politically disinterested American. The quality of life in the big blue cities has deteriorated markedly. The cost of gasoline has seemingly doubled overnight. The petty restrictions imposed unconstitutionally on the electorate are still insisted upon in many places—proof once more that tyranny is not primarily about rounding up folks and shipping them off to camps, but insisting that they conform to the most picayune and counter-factual ukases, just to illustrate their powerlessness. . . .

For there still is struggle for control of the GOP, and with Trump sidelined by the monopolistic social media—something the current incarnation of the Grand Old Party shows absolutely zero interest in investigating or remediating—the burden now falls upon the voters in the congressional districts to take matters into their own hands at the ballot box. This can only be done by pressuring the state legislatures to do their constitutional duty and “reform”—once and for all—state election laws regarding voting.

To that end, the only principles conservatives should accept are one man, one vote, in person, on Election Day, in public, with ironclad voter identification. Absentee ballots should be limited to overseas military personnel only; if you’re out of town or even the country, that’s your choice. There should be no “ballot curing,” drop-off votes, early votes, or judge-mandated late votes.

In facts, judges should have absolutely nothing to do with voting. After all, if that hands-off principle is good enough for the Supreme Court, which turned down the state of Texas’ last-ditch attempt to force the court to live up to its enumerated Constitutional powers on the grounds that the state lacked “standing,” it ought to be good enough for your local corrupt Democrat machine-elected or appointed black-robed hack.

Meanwhile, the ongoing audits of the 2020 vote in Arizona and other swing states will almost certainly not “overturn” Biden’s election—that way lies civil war—but they might provide a helpful road map for Republican legislatures to re-assert control over their states’ elections so that it both shames the Democrats and ensures they can’t pull such a brazen, Tammany Hall stunt again.

To summarize: Step one is to imitate Lenin and take total control of the party; one is tempted to say “by any means necessary,” but that is a communist slogan whose time has not yet come. But with the nation-as-founded under attack via the Frankfurt School philosophy of “Critical Theory,” neither is this a time for sentimentality about your grandfather’s Democrat or Republican parties, or the imputation of any good will toward the other side. The Democrats of FDR and Harry Truman died with George McGovern and the revolt of the Baby Boomers in 1968-72, and they are not coming back.

The next step, of course, lies in electing the right candidates at the state level in order to send a rebuke to the Robinettes and their Twitter chirpers on social media, and take back the Congress in 2022. Unless we allow the Wuhan-rigged voting system to stay in place (are there no Republican lawyers?), both the House and, especially, the Senate are ripe for takeover. The expulsion of Maerose Prizzi (Nancy d’Alesandro Pelosi, the shame of Baltimore; click on the link) would then follow, and surely Raphael Warnock, who’s up again in 2022, has little to no chance should there be an honest election in Georgia.

Democrats are out registering voters and organizing in key precincts. You won’t beat that with clever memes.

THAT’S PROBABLY BECAUSE PRICES KEEP GOING UP: Poll: 85% of Americans Are Concerned About Inflation. Just spitballing here.

WHY IS THE HOUSE OF STEPHANOPOULOS SUCH A CESSPIT OF HOMOPHOBIA? Joy Behar Blurts Out Sex Joke About Gay NFL Player Carl Nassib, Sheepishly Tries to Take it Back.

GLEICHSCHALTUNG: Hong Kong pro-Beijing legislators intervene in judicial appointment: Incident raises fears over future of financial centre’s independent legal system.

Spoiler: It won’t have one. Commies don’t like the rule of law, and commies are in charge now.

HMM: Seven Russian Warships Are Doing Something Weird Near Hawaii. “A large Russian Navy task force, including the flagship of Moscow’s Pacific Fleet, is cruising pretty far from home: just south of Hawaii. The U.S. government, meanwhile, appears to be preparing for a major missile defense test. It sure seems like the two incidents are related.”

With the guided-missile cruiser (and flagship of the Russian Pacific Fleet) Varyag in command, those seven ships represent the majority of Russia’s surface seapower in the Pacific.

SCHOOLS NEED ADULT SUPERVISION, WHICH MEANS SUPERVISION FROM PARENTS AND OTHER NON-EDUCATORS: N.J. district reverses course, will add holiday names back onto school calendar.

But they don’t like it: Unlawful assembly? Arrests in Northern Virginia school board meeting after parents erupt over CRT. “How does a public comment period at a school board turn into an unlawful assembly, and then into an ugly scrum? The Loudoun County school board apparently got tired of getting lectured over critical race theory by angry parents, who already were upset over the suspension of a teacher from a previous public-comment session. The school superintendent suddenly declared the meeting closed and told police to start arresting people who refused to leave, and … we have this great moment in woke representative government. . . . Bear in mind that this took place at a public comment session — whose explicit purpose is to hear points of view from the community on proposed regulation and policy.”

Plus: “In that sense, it’s not even about critical race theory or transgender pronouns. This conflict is about the definition of representative governance in local school systems, the First Amendment, and abuses of authority. Its eventual resolution will show whether accountability actually exists for politicians in Northern Virginia, and perhaps in many other places as well. Speaking of which, accountability takes more than one form.”

They need to get some accountability good and hard.

ÉPATER LE BOURGEOISIE: Grab The Flag! Trans Athlete Threatens To Burn Old Glory at Tokyo Olympic Games.

NEVER LET AN FBI-ENGINEERED NON-CRISIS GO TO WASTE: Jen Psaki Uses Capitol Riot to Justify Federal Takeover of Elections.

WHEN YOU’VE LOST OBAMA’S ETHICS CHIEF…: Hunter Biden’s Art Exhibit Is So Fishy, Even OBAMA’s Ethics Chief Can’t Keep Silent.

LET’S GET SUSHI AND NOT PAY: Restaurants Are Now Adding ‘Equity’ Charges to Customers’ Checks to Fight Oppression.

On its website, Broders’ has a notice to customers notifying them of a new 15 percent “benefits and equity” charge they’ve instituted. They justify the charge, first, by explaining that “many states have allowed reduced minimum wages for service staff in the form of a tip credit.” (More on this in a minute.)

The restaurant’s second justification is that many tippers are racist and sexist, according to uncited research.

“Studies have also shown that there is inequity and built-in bias in the way consumers give tips,” the statement reads. “In general, Black or Brown servers receive less tips than Caucasian servers. There is gender bias as well.”

The final part of the statement says the new policy stems from wider racial injustice and is not a substitute for gratuity.

Telling your customers that they’re awful people and then charging them extra for it seems like a lousy way to encourage repeat business.

HOW’S THAT WHOLE “DEFUND THE POLICE” STUFF WORKING OUT FOR YOU? Concerns rising inside White House over surge in violent crime.

WHERE’S HUNTER, FAT? Did Joe inadvertently pay for Hunter Biden’s wild night at Chateau Marmont?

THE AMERICAN HISTORY PODCAST: Our Finest Hour. “It will take all the resolution and courage we can muster today to save American freedom from the barbarism that stalks us from within.”

NEXT, BIDEN CONTRACTS-OUT CIA/NSA TO HUAWEI: Unbelievable that five GOP senators would vote to confirm this guy to be general counsel of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI).

The five are: Blunt of Missouri, Burr of North Carolina, Cornyn of Texas, Collins of Maine and Murkowski of Alaska. The first two are retiring. Why not the other three as well?

THE EQUIVALENT IS IMPORTANT FOR WRITERS, TOO:  DRAWING, DARKNESS AND THE ART OF TRUSTING THE GIFT.

THE TABLE IS ALWAYS SET AT THE CANNIBAL FEAST:  Hugo Administration Team Resigns.

To show we’re caring people, we should send them some packets of ketchup and a few paper napkins.

STOP, THE SHOCKED FACE IS GOING RELATIVISTIC: New Harvard Data (Accidentally) Reveal How Lockdowns Crushed the Working Class While Leaving Elites Unscathed.

INDY CAR’S SAM SCHMIDT WALKS FOR FIRST TIME IN 21 YEARS: Thanks to an exoskeleton, the Indy car owner and former driver was able to dance with his daughter at her wedding. More stories like this, please.

YOU KNOW, THIS SHOCKED FACE IS GIVING IT ALL IT’S GOT TO GIVE:  We Just Got Even More Proof that Stay-At-Home Orders Lethally Backfired.

OH, COME ON. I WAS HOPING TO WASH MY SHOCKED FACE, AND HERE I HAVE TO USE IT AGAIN:  Evidence Mounts — Chauvin Did Not Murder Floyd .

ALL THE EXTREME LEFTISTS ARE:  Uber-left, extremely nasty Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse has a racism problem.

THE FIRST AMENDMENT IS OPPRESSIVE. FREEDOM IS OPPRESSION. OR SOMETHING:  Today’s blacklisted American: Eric Clapton, for daring to express his own opinions.

WE SHOULDN’T GIVE THEM A SINGLE MORE WORD:  Word Up: Liberal Linguistic Lunacy.

Point and laugh, and refuse to use their ridiculous speech deformations.

SHOCKED, SHOCKED, SHOCKED. BEHOLD MY SHOCKED FACE:  Biden DOJ Nominee Worked With Hunter Biden at Law Firm That Represented Burisma.

AND NOW SOME OF THOSE GRIFTERS’ SECOND COUSINS WILL HAVE TO FIND A JOB:  UN Fury: World Leaders Just Failed to Deliver $100 Billion / Year Climate Deal.

LEFTISTS KILL EVERYTHING FOR FUN AND PROFIT:  LPGA Moves Portland Tournament to Suburb Due to Homeless Concerns.

GOOD:  Senate Republicans Use Filibuster to Block Election Reform Bill.

THE TURTLE BOYS WE SHALL ALWAYS HAVE WITH US; AND NO, TWITTER IS NOT THE NATION:  Media meltdown, summer solstice edition: why Twitter is extremely unrepresentative of the public; NYT’s Jonathan Weisman is our Turtleboy of the Month.

IT’S INTENTIONAL:  The Curley Effect, 21st Century Style.

IT’S RACISM, AND I SAY TO HELL WITH IT:  Five tenets of CRT and what they mean.

June 22, 2021

I REMEMBER THE OLD DAYS, WHEN MOST PEOPLE RESPECTED AND TRUSTED THE FBI: Julie Kelly: Recent History Suggests FBI Involvement in January 6: Sadly, the FBI is one of the least trustworthy agencies in the federal government—and that’s saying a lot.

To be fair, FBI misconduct was a steady theme back when InstaPundit was shiny and new, almost 20 years ago.

SOME AGENCIES ARE “DIRTY:” Gen. Tom McInerney: Here’s Why the Chinese Top Intel Head Defected to the DIA, NOT the CIA or FBI.

COLOR ME SKEPTICAL: Law firm concludes Lincoln Project didn’t know John Weaver was soliciting ‘underage individuals.’ “In any case, this conclusion flies in the face of the report published in February by The 19th. As I noted at the time, that report said members of the group had known about Weaver’s behavior for months.”

Nothing about this bunch of grifters suggests that anyone involved has any principles.

FIRE EXPOSES U. OF OKLAHOMA WORKSHOP TRAINING TEACHERS TO CENSOR AND INDOCTRINATE. OU has been a bad actor on these issues for a long time. From the video:

“If they’re writing and their goal is like ‘Oh, I should be able to use whatever pronouns I deem acceptable for this person despite how they identify,’ then they are invalidating that person’s humanity and their existence. And that’s not acceptable. So I flat out tell them that. This is what this is doing. You need to pick something else. You’re not doing that.”

This, in a class about argumentation. College does not have to be this way. It shouldn’t be this way.

BYRON YORK: Democrats’ Voter ID Debacle. “The headline is that 80 percent of those surveyed — a huge majority — favored photo ID. Just 18 percent said they opposed. That left just two percent who didn’t know, which means that voter ID is an issue about which most Americans have a considered opinion.”

But wait, it gets worse: “Looking at the results along racial lines, 77 percent of white voters supported photo ID — and 84 percent of non-white voters supported it, too. Along educational lines, 69 percent of Americans with a four-year college degree favored ID, and 85 percent of those with no degree favored it. . . . Bottom line: Americans support voter ID. They just do. And now, with Manchin’s voter ID proposal and the Monmouth poll, Stacey Abrams, the failed Democratic candidate for governor Georgia who has become the party’s voting-rights heroine, has flip-flopped on the issue and now says she not only supports voter ID but that she has never opposed it.”

To be fair, she lies a lot.

WHAT COULD GO WRONG? Restaurants Are Now Adding ‘Equity’ Charges to Customers’ Checks to Fight Oppression.

InstaPundit is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.