Passings: They say that deaths come in threes, I don't believe it but I can pretend to. It seems to have happened with this week's troika:
Joe McGinnis wrote only one great book but it was a classic: The Selling of the President. McGinnis went undercover in Tricky Dick's 1968 campaign, which was the first fully modern teevee driven campaign. It was the first time most of us met Roger Fucking Ailes too. Slate's Dave Weigel has a swell personal remembrance of his friend Joe.
Tony Benn former cabinet member and highly divisive British Labour party politician died this morning at the age of 88. Benn became a beloved elder statesman even though his foes in the 1980's Labour party infighting still haven't quite forgiven him. The Guardian's Michael White has a balanced and very well-written piece about the man who was behind Labour's 1983 manifesto, which has been called the longest suicide note in history.
Finally, the movies "voice of God," Hal Douglas has died at the age of 89. He was the previews voice over guy who was best known for the phrase "in a world with..." And now we're without him.
Sympathy for the Devil: Historical ignorance is on display in the MSM commentary about Putin, Crimea, and Ukraine. The Russians are NOT crazy to see Ukraine as a vital national interest and Ukrainian governments, past and present, have done some needlessly stupid and provocative things such as trying to join NATO and honoring World War II era "nationalists" who collaborated with the Nazis. The best thing I've seen written about this was by Andre P. Tysgankov in The Nation.
True Detective Backlash: I really liked Nic Pizzolato's True Detective but some of the encomiums were a bit fulsome and over the top. It made me realize how underrated some of FX's recent dramas have been including The Americans, The Bridge and, one of my all time favorites, Justified, which has some of the best dialogue this side of the late Elmore Leonard whose novella inspired the show. Anyway, NOLA twitter legend Brian P Moore has written a typically incisive piece about True Detective's virtues and vices.
It's PI Day: Geeks, nerds, and dorks everywhere are geeking, nerding, and dorking out about it. It makes me think instead of pie loving FBI agent Dale Cooper of Twin Peaks fame:
Thanks to my old online pal Robert (Parenthetical) Beverly for posting that on his Facebook page and jogging my memory. Mmm, pie.
Saint Paddy's Day In NOLA: We have multiple parades and I can be found at the same spot at the corner of Louisiana Avenue and Magazine Street every year for the Irish Channel parade. My dear friends Greg and Christy have an annual open house that started off small but has grown like Topsy O'Kudzu. As you can see we have some colorful friends:
That's Greg and Christy with a guy named (what else?) Patrick in a leprechaun suit. I think he may have done it for poor-boys and grog:
Happy Saint Patrick's Day.
That is all.