Tuesday 21st of August 2018

vale jerry... his replacement has us crying in the aisles...



Jerry Lewis, the comedian and filmmaker who was adored by many, disdained by others, but unquestionably a defining figure of American entertainment in the 20th century, died on Sunday morning at his home in Las Vegas. He was 91.

His death was confirmed by his publicist, Candi Cazau.

Mr. Lewis knew success in movies, on television, in nightclubs, on the Broadway stage and in the university lecture hall. His career had its ups and downs, but when it was at its zenith there were few stars any bigger. And he got there remarkably quickly.

Barely out of his teens, he shot to fame shortly after World War II with a nightclub act in which the rakish, imperturbable Dean Martin crooned and the skinny, hyperactive Mr. Lewis capered around the stage, a dangerously volatile id to Mr. Martin’s supremely relaxed ego.

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comedy, democracy and social justice...

In this paper, Nancy Goldman explores what is humor, what is funny, and the power of using humor in areas of social justice. America’s most popular humorists, including Benjamin Franklin and Mark Twain, have a long tradition of critiquing the dominant forces in society and ridiculing those in power. Since American society was built on the ideals of democracy but is awash in the realities of social and political imperfections, comedy can bring awareness to these discrepancies in a way that we can hear.

Humor is a social corrective. Through many examples, Goldman illustrates how humor can validate experience, help us to think more flexibly and reframe situations, illuminate the ways in which we live in the world politically, and be used to critique social injustice. Humor can diffuse the tension around controversial topics, such as in Laura Cunningham’s play and film about fracking, “Frack You.” Goldman discusses how satire can subvert authority and expose hypocrisy, highlighting comedians Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert who obscure the lines between news and comedy. In stand-up storytelling, D’Lo uses his sense of humor along with his body to confront society while making a safe space for people to be open and absorb information. Goldman looks at the relationship between humor and stereotypes and the impact that humor about race and ethnicity plays in society. Examples include Alex Barnett, a comedian who is broadening the scope of audiences’ thinking by his alternative perspectives about race, and Kristina Wong, who takes topics that are often taboo, such as mental illness and mail-order brides, and shines a light on them, making the invisible visible. Humor engages audience members in thinking, feeling, and speaking about the ways that we live in the world together, all of which can inform change.

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improv at the amateur theatre...


In the wake of Stephen Bannon’s firing, it has become almost inconceivable that President Trump can avoid a one-term fate. This isn’t because he sacked Bannon but because of what that action tells us about his leadership. In celebrating Bannon’s dismissal, The Wall Street Journal wrote in an editorial: “Trump can’t govern with a Breitbart coalition. Does he see that?” True enough. But he also can’t govern without the Breitbart constituency—his core constituency—in his coalition. The bigger question is: Does he see that?

It’s beginning to appear that Trump doesn’t see much of anything with precision or clarity when it comes to the fundamental question of how to govern based on how he campaigned. He is merely a battery of impulses, devoid of any philosophical coherence or intellectual consistency.

Indeed, it’s difficult to recall any president of recent memory who was so clearly winging it in the Oval Office. Think of Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon, both of whom made huge mistakes that cost them the White House. But both knew precisely what they wanted to accomplish and how to go about accomplishing it. The result was that both accomplished big things. Ronald Reagan propelled himself into governing mode from campaign mode as if he had shot himself out of a cannon. Even Jimmy Carter and George H. W. Bush, who stumbled into one-term diminishment, demonstrated more leadership coherence than the current White House occupant.

Trump’s political challenge on Inauguration Day was simple but difficult. He had to galvanize his political base and build from there to fashion a governing coalition that could give propulsion to his agenda. Further, that agenda had to give a majority of Americans a sense that the economy was sound and growing, that unnecessary foreign wars would be avoided, that domestic tranquility would prevail, that the mass immigration of recent years would be curtailed, that the health care mess would be fixed, and that infrastructure needs would be addressed.

He has made little or no progress on any of it. And now, with Bannon banished from the White House, the president even seems to be taking a cavalier attitude toward his core constituency, America’s white working class, beset by sluggish economic growth, the hollowing out of America’s industrial base, unfair competitive practices by U.S. trading partners, unchecked immigration, the opioid crisis, and a general malaise that accompanies a growing sense of decline.

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Improv does not mean improvement. Improv means IMPROVISATION...


dick gregory was funnier...


(CNN)"You know the definition of a Southern moderate? That's a cat that'll lynch you from a low tree." That joke, delivered in the 1960s by trailblazing comedian and civil rights activist Dick Gregory, who passed away Saturday, seems unsettlingly relevant in today's America. Though we aren't in the midst of the struggle for civil rights, that joke was about the evils of white supremacy -- something we are clearly still grappling with today.

Gregory has been credited by most as the first African-American comedian to reach fame by challenging racism through comedy. Richard Pryor may have put it best in a 2004 interview: "Dick Gregory was the greatest, and he was the first. Somebody had to break down that door."
He made people laugh while educating them about the most volatile issue of the time: Race.
But what might surprise some is that Gregory was famously quoted in the early 1960s undercutting the power of comedy as an instrument of social change: "Humor can no more find the solution to race problems than it can cure cancer."
Over the years that quote -- or slight variations of it -- has been put to political comedians, including myself, when asked if our comedy can have an impact on hot button political issues. While I believe comedy can move the needle by, at the very least, raising awareness of issues, I also believe Gregory did far more than simply tell jokes. He risked his liberty and his life fighting for equality for African-Americans.
In a 1963 protest in which Gregory participated in Birmingham, Alabama, he was arrested and beaten by the police for championing the right of blacks to vote. After that incident, Gregory wrote, "It was just body pain, though. The Negro has a callus growing on his soul, and it's getting harder and harder to hurt him there."
But even Gregory would likely be hard pressed to deny that his comedy was introducing many white audiences -- be it by way of his live performance or comedy albums -- to the reality of being African-American in the 1960s.
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I must say, I was never a fan of Jerry Lewis... I don't know why... possibly because he was the master of pulling idiotic faces without a satirical context. He was basically mocking simpleton idiots, not the idiots in charge. Satire has to cut to the chase, bring down the kings and presidents, and the savage psychopath. 


hillary — still crying in her soup...


Former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has said in a new book that Donald Trump made her skin crawl by stalking her around the stage during a 2016 campaign debate and questions whether she should have fired up and told him to "back up, you creep".

Key points:
  • Mrs Clinton questions if she "over-learned" a life lesson of staying calm as a woman
  • She refers specifically to a debate where Mr Trump loomed behind her as she spoke
  • The book What Happened is set to be released in coming weeks


In audio excerpts of the book titled What Happened that aired on US media on Wednesday, Mrs Clinton described her 2016 campaign as "joyful, humbling, infuriating, and just plain baffling" while acknowledging that she failed her millions of supporters by losing to Mr Trump in the November election.

In the excerpts, Mrs Clinton described the October 9 debate in St Louis in which Mr Trump followed her closely about the stage, lurking behind her, as she fielded questions from a live television audience.

"This is not OK, I thought," Mrs Clinton said.

"It was the second presidential debate and Donald Trump was looming behind me.

"We were on a small stage and no matter where I walked, he followed me closely, staring at me, making faces."

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Yes. Trump the Jerry Lewis understudy was pulling faces and distracting the audiences during the "debates". He would have done the same to a male counterpart. Nothing to do with stalking "a female". A male might have turned to him and said something like "you better hope the wind does not change or you'll be looking like this idiot-face for the rest of your life"... This is usually said to male kids pulling faces, by European mothers. It usually works...

But you preferred to become angrier because you yourself had been pulling faces (see videos) and said things like "the deplorables" to his possible electors... Funny but dumb. Your own actions in Libya spoke volume of the deadly policy style you hid from the public under a calm appearance — the same policies as now for The Donald who does impressions of a devious sergeant Bilko idiot behind an oak desk in the Oval Office. 


playing the trump card in a crummy game...


In normal times, you could bank the bet that a man who was a Russian stooge, gave comfort to neo-Nazis and spent his first year in office trying to take health care from 22 million Americans was going to get destroyed when voters finally had a chance to send him a message.

Add to that an approval rating that hit 34 percent this week, and a poll from swing states showing one in five of people who voted for Donald Trump are now embarrassed by his presidency, and you’d think Democrats were in great shape for next year’s midterm elections.

But consider Steve Bannon’s parting political words, which were largely overlooked in the chaos of his exit. You heard the jokes — Trump finally found a racist monument he could get rid of, one of the better ones. But they obscure a dark doctrine from Bannon the Barbarian.

“The longer they talk about identity politics, I got ’em,” he said of Democrats. “I want them to talk about racism every day. If the left is focused on race and identity, and we go with economic nationalism, we can crush the Democrats.”

He may be right. More than anything else, the white voters who drifted from President Barack Obama in 2012 to Trump last year — a seemingly incongruent transition — sealed the Republican victory.

It turns out that racial resentment was the strongest predictor of whether a voter would flip from supporting a thoughtful, intelligent Democrat to a boorish, mentally unstable Republican. When you say Black Lives Matter, these white voters hear Kill a Cop. When you say diversity in the workplace, they hear special privileges for minorities at the expense of whites.

So, if you still wonder why Trump would give comfort to racists and Hitlerites, look at the reaction of his base this week. While the civilized world was appalled at his remarks after the hate parade in Charlottesville, Va., a majority of Republicans approved of Trump’s response. Approved.

It’s too easy to write all these people off as racists, for that’s exactly what Bannon is counting on. Yes, there’s a genuine hate-cohort in the Republican Party — neo-Nazis, or “clowns and losers,” in Bannon’s terms — of about 10 percent, which is horrifyingly high.

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An idiot, a flipflopper and a caricature of power he may be , Trump isn't a "Russian stooge" despite what the Democrats have been trying to paint him as. Nor is he more of a neo-nazi than all other (racist/sexist) Republicans — or even the lying hawkish pseudo-Democrats for that matter who have already followed Bush-junior footsteps, while hypocritically making out they sung a different song. 


it's getting serious. sports stars are getting involved...


Basketball star LeBron James described US President Donald Trump as a "bum" over comments he made about fellow player Steph Curry.

Trump said the Golden State Warriors were no longer invited to the White House after star player Curry, 29, said he did not want to attend.

"Going to White House was an honour until you showed up," James, 32, said.

On Friday, Trump said NFL players who protest during the national anthem should be sacked.

James, who plays for the Cleveland Cavaliers and has won three NBA championships and four NBA MVP awards, campaigned for Democrat candidate Hillary Clinton, Trump's rival, during the 2016 presidential election campaign.

'We don't stand for the things he's said'


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Sports stars are the philosophical bread and butter of the lower classes, especially swinging voters (nothing wrong with this since our ancestors were monkeys). When these stars are rubbing salt into Trump's carcass, you know this caper is getting serious.