Dirty Tom, Trump Tower, San Francisco, Venice

The woman next to me murmured something about the plight of the homeless in callous America. I said, that man seems familiar…. Continue reading

WAR, PEACE, MIGRATION, and CLICKBAIT

  The elegiac tone of the 2016 Pulitzer centennial celebration, in a slightly musty but historic Los Angeles theater, suited  the program’s somber themes—“War, Migration, and the Quest for Peace.” The unprogrammed elephant in the room was the general consensus that newspapers are in serious trouble. The Los Angeles Times, hosting the occasion with the USC … Continue reading

Nega-centennials, Nega-nations

Russia had only a minor role in that hasty, furtive divvying up of Syria and the Middle East to please French and English interests…. Continue reading

The Panama Papers, Now Playing

             Map from  ICIJ (International Consortium of Investigative Journalists)   “The Panama Papers” could be the title of a mid-century noir starring Humphrey Bogart or maybe Alec Guinness. In fact it is an ongoing opportunity for our failing news media to research juicy data on global tax evasion by the … Continue reading

On Easter: Greek Migrations Now and Then

Has anyone suggested commandeering all available cruise ships (and car ferries) for temporary housing of the refugees?… Continue reading

Art thou Art?

Yes, a splashy opener—     Some of us can remember when the work of Christo and Jeanne-Claude was as often ridiculed as respected. Now we are slouching toward the centennial of Marcel Duchamp’s urinal, when he introduced a piece of shapely plumbing as a work of art called Fountain, and “signed” by R. Mutt, its … Continue reading

Early Postcards from Aleppo, Belated Cease-fires from Munich, and Picking Up the Pieces

  And more recently……   Last week from Munich came a triumphant announcement by foreign secretaries Kerry and Lavrov of major humanitarian interventions in Syria, to be followed in a week by a cease-fire. Celebration was muted, and within hours the news was qualified, deprecated, and disparaged by almost everyone not involved in the negotiations, and … Continue reading