I didn’t get an audience with the Pope when I visited Rome last weekend. But given that he’s a borderline commie, an open borders advocate and an increasingly fervent evangelist for the climate-change religion, we probably wouldn’t have found much to say to one another. Nice art collection, though.
Well, it would be if you had it to yourself which of course you don’t. Even in the autumn off-season, the Vatican museums feel like shuffling in the midst of a zombie horde from The Walking Dead. I’m surprised the frescoes in the Sistine Chapel haven’t peeled off by now, what with the collected acid exhalations of the 25,000 tourists who pass through every day.
South Park has “apologized” for mocking super serial Al Gore in its ManBearPig episodes. Naturally, the liberal media is going wild with righteous jubilation.
According to one sanctimonious commentary in the Guardian, it’s a sign that South Park has finally seen the error of its ways – part of a growing recognition by TV that politically correct snark has no place in this more enlightened, caring, woke modern world of ours.
Many TV shows which felt groundbreaking even a decade ago now appear problematic. Friends, Seinfeld and Ally McBeal: all have been criticised for demeaning attitudes to women and a lack of minority characters. But they are still celebrated as products of their time.
Shows which began in the 1990s and are still going to face a different, more complicated reckoning. The most high-profile example has been The Simpsons, in which the character of Apu has been severely criticised for stereotyping south-Asian Americans. The makers of the show have responded bitterly and a dispute continues.
South Park has demonstrated more humility, while managing to stay funny. It acknowledged a major misstep without any pressure to do so and found a way to apologise while remaining on brand. And for good measure, it had an episode this season which mocked the Simpsons’ saga.
Then again, it could just be another example of a phenomenon that has featured quite a lot in South Park over the years and which left-wing journalists often have trouble appreciating: a joke.
There’s nothing a star columnist hates to tell his readers more than “I told you so.”
But I’m afraid, through gritted teeth I’m going to be forced to say it. I was right, wasn’t I? I was bloody well right!
I told you to keep your nerve and that a No Deal Brexit was where we were headed. But many of you didn’t believe me because you were too busy running round like headless chickens and throwing your toys out of your prams and yelling at me for being taken in by the beguiling words of Tory toffs.
The co-author of a much-hyped, peer-reviewed, alarmist paper claiming to have found a huge, unexpected build-up of global warming heat in the oceans has admitted: “We really muffed” the calculations.
According to the paper by Laure Resplandy et al, published this month in the prestigious journal Nature, a lot of the missing heat from global warming — 60 percent more than hitherto thought — has been absorbed by the oceans.
Naturally, this shocking discovery caused much excitement across mainstream media and was widely reported by environmental correspondents as proof that the global warming crisis was more serious than evah.
However, their exultant doom-mongering has been short lived. An independent analyst, Nic Lewis, examined the paper and quickly spotted it was based on flawed math.
Many of the 17.4 million who voted Brexit — and many of the millions more who’ve since realised that the EU is a towering inferno we need to escape before it comes crashing down on us — are getting very upset about Theresa May’s “worst deal in history.”
But they shouldn’t be, for a number of reasons.
The first and most obvious one is: “What on earth were you expecting?”
It has been clear for months, years probably, that whatever deal Remainer Theresa May cobbled together with her Remainer Cabinet henchmen and her Remainer Civil Servants was going to be a massive betrayal of the Brexit vote.
Like many people in this age of weaponized migration, I’m increasingly wary of asylum claims.
But if anyone deserved rescuing by the benign and civilized West from a foreign hellhole it’s Asia Bibi – the woman who has been held in solitary confinement in a Pakistani prison for nine years under sentence of death on trumped up blasphemy charges.
Her crime? Being a Christian in a country swarming with Islamists.
If she stays she faces almost certain death. Two of the politicians who bravely defended her – Salman Taseer and Shahbaz Bhatti – have already been assassinated, while her lawyer Saif Mulook has fled to the Netherlands.
But where can she go?
The obvious place would be the country with the strongest cultural and historical ties to the Indian subcontinent, the one that included what’s now known as Pakistan as part of its Empire for more than two centuries.
President Trump was partly responsible for the California fires because he ‘denies’ climate change. At least that’s what liberal California would have us believe.
The latest alarmist to make political capital out of the fires is California Governor Jerry Brown, who on Sunday – in the wake of celebrities including rocker Neil Young and talk show host Jimmy Kimmel – sought to pin them on climate change.
Brown called California’s recent battles with massive wildfires “the new abnormal.” He added: “Scientists and the engineers and the firefighters all tell us forest management is one element’’ to control them, but warned governments must address “a whole range of actions” to address a problem he said may cost “billions” of dollars to tackle.
“Managing all the forests everywhere we can does not stop climate change — and those that deny that are definitely contributing to the tragedy,’’ Brown said. “The chickens are coming home to roost. This is real here.” He advised that governments and officials need to be “pulling together in these tragic circumstances and thinking wisely,’’ while being “collaborative.’’
Governor Moonbeam, like many California liberals, has been mightily irked by the president’s claim that the fires were mainly down to the negligence and incompetence of the state’s authorities:
How long do the state authorities think they can get away with it?
I wonder if Wisconsin has any idea what an international embarrassment it has become? By rights it ought to be an unexceptionable place, little more than the quirky answer to the occasional trivia question: ‘Where is the Badger State?’; ‘Whose state governor shares a name with the singer of “The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine (Anymore)?”’; ‘Which US state makes more Swiss cheese than Switzerland?’
Sadly for this unassuming Great Lakes state — pop. six million — it has instead become an exemplar of the kind of official corruption, mendacity, hypocrisy, bovine incompetence and rampant injustice less often associated with the leader of the free world and the beacon of democracy than with Islamofascist republics, equatorial African kleptocracies and other third-world hellholes.
This is all thanks to the Netflix documentary series Making a Murderer, which holds the state’s apparatus responsible for one of the most egregious miscarriages of justice in recent history.
Sir Roger Scruton is England’s greatest living philosopher. He also happens to be a very outspoken, articulate conservative — so it comes as no surprise whatsoever to see the left playing the faux outrage game in order to oust him from his position as a government advisor.
Scruton has been appointed as unpaid chairman of the UK government’s Building Better, Building Beautiful housing commission. As Oliver Lane argues elsewhere, there may be reasons to be cynical about the way Britain’s leading conservative thinker has been co-opted into a project which involves carpeting the British landscape with more houses. Nonetheless, as an aesthete and an intellectual with a sound grasp of architectural and social history, and a track record of campaigning, Scruton is undeniably well suited to the task of ensuring that if these buildings have to built then at least they must be attractive and of enduring quality.
But the leftist whinge brigade wants him out for no better reason than that it hungers for another Tory scalp.
British police have arrested five* men (*actually the figure has now risen to six) after they were caught on video on social media burning on a bonfire an effigy of Grenfell Tower. What? Is this some kind of sick joke??
I think we can all agree that it wasn’t a nice thing to do, making light of the awful conflagration in a London apartment block last year that caused the death of 72 people. But since when was not being nice an arrestable offence?
Brendan O’Neill asks much the same question in a characteristically trenchant essay headlined “Is it now a crime to be a twat?”