Joe Biden Is Too Timid. It Is Time For The Purge.
If you survive the Discourse, there's a lot of good tabs today.
I have a plethora, a profusion, an abundance, a veritable (OneLook tells me) nimeity (??) of good tabs for you to read today so let’s catch up on The Discourse as quickly as possible and get to them.
M.I.A. is an antivaxxer now, so if you see a baffling reference to the creator of that one song you last heard a week after “Slumdog Millionaire” came out, it’s about this tweet. It starts with truffle fries and this is where it ends up.
Ghostwriting Tweets: “I made $200,000 last year ghostwriting tweets for superstar VCs.” The article itself is cringey #grustle-culture LinkedIn bait—you want it to be a roast but it’s a brag. But I am charmed by the idea that venture capital Twitter is just this guy tweeting back and forth to himself, forever. ))<>((
$28 Worth Of Taco Bell: Some guy lying on TV said inflation is so bad he spent $28 for lunch at Taco Bell. In Defector, Patrick Redford determined that was a 2500 calorie lunch minimum, and also that guy is an idiot.
Incest? They’re either talking about the dragon show, or this somewhat surprising pro-incest opinion from repugnant bible thumping ninny Dennis Prager:
Gen Z emojis: The Daily Mail helpfully identified several good age-appropriate emoji choices for those of us over 40.
The Economist went extremely hard this week, with its “Leaders” section item “Joe Biden is too timid. It is time to legalise cocaine.” I also thought the print cover raised a lot of questions that were immediately answered by the print cover.
And Sabrina Imbler is our psychopomp between the earthly suffering of Discourse and the heavenly reward of good tabs that begin now, with “We Can Do So Much Better Than Legs.”
Maybe if Meta had tweeted, specifically, that “human legs are coming soon,” my expectations would have been more reasonable. But you cannot promise me “legs” and then expect me to be excited when the only options are human ones.
More Good Tabs
Former Suck contributor Jake Tapper wrote a whole podcast of an article for The Atlantic, about a Philadelphia teenager serving 30 to 60 years in prison for an attempted murder he clearly didn’t commit, due to abysmal lawyering.
A lawyer can sleep during part of a client’s cross-examination, or be arrested for drunk driving on the way to court, or be mentally unstable, or have been disbarred midway through a trial without sinking to the level of constitutionally defective performance—all of these instances have been adjudicated in various jurisdictions.
In this case, C. J. Rice’s lawyer did essentially no work on his behalf, not even the extremely minimal work that would have been required to disprove the prosecution’s absurd case against him. And now that he’s been found guilty there is no legal recourse for him beyond “media attention, I guess?” If this article works to get his case reconsidered, it will only prove Tapper’s father’s maxim: “We have a legal system, Jacob. We don’t have a justice system.”
In Eater, Jaya Saxena asked who pays the price for our booming social media industry of “menu hacks” and “creative starbies,” and the answer may surprise you! J/k it’s the workers, come on, it’s always the workers.
Because the thing about hacks is that it’s not the orders themselves that are the problem, it’s the entire culture of expectations around them — that a drink a stranger literally made up online should be second nature to a server, and that it should take the same amount of time to make as an iced coffee…
But of course, hacks are a boon to corporations. They drive name recognition, inspire brand loyalty, and essentially do their menu development for them. There’s no need to hire consultants and test kitchen chefs if a recipe is going viral for free on TikTok.
Amy Castor, “When Wells notice? Yuga Labs, the SEC is coming for you.” I can’t wait until people who think of themselves as serious are forced to say “the S.E.C. cracked down on ApeCoin today” in public.
Margaret Sullivan: “If Trump Runs Again, Do Not Cover Him the Same Way.” I mean, sure. Good luck with that.
Let’s Talk Movies 🍿
If you just skimmed everything else today, please read these:
“American Culture Is Trash Culture” by Wesley Morris for the Times Magazine. How did America’s love of trash film seep out and become our whole culture? Morris connects the dots from John Waters to that picture of Kellyanne Conway kneeling on the oval office couch on H.B.C.U. “Listening Session Day.”
And two posts by Jude Doyle, both more or less about queerness in horror cinema:
I Don’t Think Straight Men Ever Had a Lock on ‘Hellraiser.’
Horror is queer because horror is rude. It’s a genre that wants to make us uncomfortable, and it tends to violate any taboos it can find. Queerness and gender end up floating around with the rest — incest, murder, teens having sex at summer camp — precisely because they’re still somewhat “forbidden.” Oddly, this explicitly homophobic and transphobic process keeps producing stories that are affirming for queer people. A movie in which you are the monster is, at least, a movie in which you exist.
And “Stay Woke: Invasion of the Body Snatchers (Philip Kaufman, 1978).” Body Snatchers as an allegory for being trans in 2022, as well as its dark twin “cancel culture is devouring everything” counter-reading.
It can surprise you, that hatred. It’s fast, it’s contagious, it happens (like love, like bankruptcy) slowly and then all at once. Differences that formerly didn’t seem to matter, or even exist, become matters of life and death. Forms of monstrosity that once seemed impossible — Dave is from outer space; Suzy is a Nazi — become common.
Today’s Song: Soul Coughing, “Pensacola”
~ like tabs in which you drown me, shouting ~
Happy Gentlemen’s Friday! I thought today was gonna be short but it was not. Make yourself some pizza cereal and read those last few over the weekend, they’re really good. One fun side-effect of the two week subscription pause I did in August is that all the beginning-of-the-month unsubscribes from folks who have to cut back on their bills are rolling in now, so hey, if you like Tabs maybe pay me for it? Look I’ll even give you a button: