This past week, White House spokesman Josh Earnest admitted that Iran is a state sponsor of terrorism who kill Americans. But, he continued, it would be unrealistic to expect the Iranian regime to give up terrorism.
This statement was in defense of Obama’s continuing appeasement of the IslamoNazis of Iran.
In the past, when Americans were murdered by foreign tyrants, American leaders would react with anger and horror. They would move to isolate such totalitarian states. They would try and overthrow these wicked regimes.
But Barack Obama believes that America is the original sin of global instability. If only America would surrender her hegemonic role, then the global community would sort itself out, and America could build a socialist paradise at home.
Of course, the Obama doctrine has set the Middle East on fire. With America’s withdrawal, the Westphalian model of nation states is giving way to classic Islamist imperialism. Death cults, tribalism, and religious sectarianism are quickly erasing national borders, and birthing vast lawless regions where mass murder is the norm, and where hundreds of thousands of non-Muslims are under threat of Islamic genocide.
The only nation state in the region of which Obama clearly disapproves is Israel, the Jewish state, where democracy flourishes, where religious minorities have full equal rights, where homosexuals live openly and without fear, and where women are free of persecution.
But for Barack Obama, Israel is the problem, whereas Iran and Cuba are the solution.
Welcome to the moral inversions of Oceania.
A few pictures to deflect the gathering darkness.
Part I is here.
“Hurry up and wait!”
Anyone who has worked on a major Hollywood production is familiar with this ironic command.
There is a tremendous amount of down time on a Hollywood film. It takes hours to set up lights, rig camera and sound, and make sure the sets and props are in place. Thus, actors spend a huge amount of time waiting, waiting, waiting for the the cameras to roll.
In the past, especially in the 1930s, scores of Hollywood actresses took up knitting to help pass the countless hours between takes.
Several years ago, at a swanky Hollywood party, I met the wealthy widow of a prominent producer who had been active during Hollywood’s Golden Age. After draining a few glasses of champagne the elderly lady talked about, well, the good ol’ days. When I expressed my admiration for classic Hollywood movies she told me that at the tender age of 15, she was one of Busby Berkeley’s chorus girls.
“We didn’t really dance, y’know, just walked up and down those darn stairs and tried not to break our necks, while Buzz whipped the camera around on a huge crane.”
After a few more glasses of champagne the lovely ex-chorus girl explained that setting up Buzz’s excruciatingly complicated shots took so long that the chorus girls nearly went crazy with boredom.
“Some girls drank bootleg and flirted outrageously with front office wolves,” she said. “Other girls quietly knitted.”
“Which one were you?”
“Honey, I figured it out very quickly: Men had a good time with the girls who drank gin — but they married the girls who knitted.”
Leaning boards ( also called Slant boards) were invented for Hollywood players to relax between takes. Frequently, the costumes were cut on the bias, and tailored so snugly that the actor could not sit without bursting a ladder of seams. In fact, most of the time, there were no zippers or buttons on the costumes. Actors were stitched into their garments.
When you see Jean Harlow in Dinner at Eight, and marvel at the impeccable fit of the famous white silk gown, be aware that Harlow’s mobility was severely limited. In fact, just breathing was something of a chore.
Remember, classic Hollywood movies were designed to project images of glamour. For the screen, costumes had to be photogenic. Comfort and practicality were of little concern.
These days, leaning boards are still in use, but they are the exception rather than the rule.
If you want to torture yourself, take a look at your passport.
Chances are you look pretty awful. With flat lighting, a grim full frontal pose, and that look of bafflement, your photo probably looks like a mug shot.
Are glamorous Hollywood stars just like us when they submit to the artless lens of the passport photographer?
You be the judge.