25 January 2018

Fantastic Fables: The Critics

While bathing, Antinous was seen by Minerva, who was so enamoured of his beauty that, all armed as she happened to be, she descended from Olympus to woo him; but, unluckily displaying her shield, with the head of Medusa on it, she had the unhappiness to see the beautiful mortal turn to stone from catching a glimpse of it. She straightway ascended to ask Jove to restore him; but before this could be done a Sculptor and a Critic passed that way and espied him.

"This is a very bad Apollo," said the Sculptor: "the chest is too narrow, and one arm is at least a half-inch shorter than the other. The attitude is unnatural, and I may say impossible. Ah! my friend, you should see my statue of Antinous."

"In my judgment, the figure," said the Critic, "is tolerably good, though rather Etrurian, but the expression of the face is decidedly Tuscan, and therefore false to nature. By the way, have you read my work on 'The Fallaciousness of the Aspectual in Art'?"


I wish I had a TARDIS so I could go back and snarf Ambrose Bierce and bring him to provide some commentary on the state of American affairs post-Trump. Probably would snag HL Mencken and Dorothy Parker, too. George Carlin, of course. Twain, Lord, couldn't forget Twain. I'm sure we can generate a long list of folks who could provide a bon mot or two.

What is simultaneously amazing and demoralizing is the inability of most of the mainstream media to be able to deal with Trump. There are multiple reasons and some that they bring upon themselves and others beyond their control, more or less. With the collapse of the papers classified advertising vehicles with some news thrown in, they've adopted the same sort of click-bait driven business models that drive blogs and the like, so anything that click worthy gets covered almost independently of it's newsworthiness. And President Trump is a cornucopia of click-bait fodder and outlets have to match their rivals tweet for tweet.

Where they go too far, however, is a certain type of reactionary anti-Trumpism where the reporting is distorted by mere animus toward the man. The animus is not the problem, its allowing the animus to cloud the reasoning and corrupt the reporting. This is not a partisan issue and it is not a pro or anti-Trump issue. It's a form of political correctness where facts are less important than virtue signaling. This is, of course, not limited to the MSM, but this is where you see its widest expression.

It seems unlikely that MSM will fix itself. They probably cannot, so, it will be left to us to expand our sources of information and be vigilant in trying to see the facts and reason clearly and objectively to arrive at our own conclusions.

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