IS the nation in fact ready/willing to give up its BDSM-Submissive stance?

The question of the day, as we near the election, is whether a once-dominant nation, having discovered through its sadistic president the political gratification of ass up/head down, forced squirting, and nipple clamps, can forswear its Naughty Duce fetish and cast its vote for a man who will almost certainly not leather strap it until its bottom bleeds. Are we ready for that?

“I’ve seen all that I can take,” writes Frank Bruni, echoing a growing anti-sex-slavery sentiment in America.

The strongest holdouts against change are women: Lara Trump (violent rallies are “fun”) and Kimberly Guilfoyle (“The best is yet to… you know…”) speak for those Americans who remain mouth-gagged and ready to go. Women know that Trump is the only president they can rely on to call them disgusting and retarded and ugly and fat and weak. Disgusting because they have periods and menopause and plastic surgery. Women are not going to get this treatment from any other president, ever.

The Trump side’s latest campaign song, Do That To Me One More Time, makes an indirect appeal to the pursuit of happiness through increasingly exotic forms of humiliation, such as, say, Japanese rope bondage. There are always new and different ways to be spat at by a presidential strong man – certainly enough to fill up the next four years. Have you ever had hot wax dripped onto your thighs?

The famed Marc Kasowitz, one of this blog’s All-Time Favorites…

… threatens to sue The Lincoln Project.

With Rudolph Giuliani busy “reach[ing] into his legal briefs and whip[ping] out his subpoenas,” Trumps in search of a real tough-guy attorney have returned to the source — Mr. FUCK YOU HOW DARE YOU I KNOW WHERE YOU LIVE YOU FUCKING SHITMarc Kasowitz to defend their honor. Marc’s late-night threatening demented rant to a stranger who dared to question his ways made all the papers back in 2017; since then, he has maintained his gentle humble disposition.

He brags to friends he makes anywhere from $10 million to $30 million per year. He owns an apartment in a white-glove building on Park Avenue and a mansion in Westchester County. He travels by private jet and, when in New York, is driven around in a black Cadillac SUV. He owns at least two horses, according to a lawsuit Kasowitz once filed against his daughter’s equestrian stable.

From the start, [his firm,] Kasowitz Benson had a hard-drinking culture that its leaders epitomized.

“It’s like a time warp,” said one former employee, citing the firm’s “macho, scotch-drinking, fist-fighting” ethos. Multiple former attorneys said they saw Kasowitz under the influence at the office, an accusation Kasowitz denies.

He’s currently being sued by several ex-colleagues – it looks as though he stiffed them cuz his firm is losing money.

So if, like Ivanka and Jared, you want your honor restored, it’s hard to think of a more honorable guy than our old buddy Marc. Marc follows goodness and mercy all the days of his life, and his righteous indignation on behalf of innocents trampled by the bad boys at The Lincoln Project just sounds so right.

But it might be an uphill legal battle. Recall Lara Trump’s explanation that an angry mob at a Trump rally screaming LOCK HER UP LOCK HER UP about recently imperiled Gretchen Whitmer was simply part of a “fun, light, atmosphere.” Did Jared say No it wasn’t. It was obviously a threatening thing to do, and I hereby disavow it?

Of course he didn’t, because as Lara points out it was clearly all in fun! How could the advertisement in question, which doesn’t even promise to put Jared and his wife in prison, aim to create anything other than a fun, light, atmosphere?

The fifty percent…

solution.

‘[In the first debate,] Biden, in the eyes of most, did what he had to do, giving America a solid alternative to what is turning out to be a slow descent into political and cultural insanity.’

And in the second, he did even better. We may indeed be able to escape from the snake pit.

‘[N]ow that even Texas is reportedly tied up, Trump’s best bet might have been to hock a Covid loogie on Biden, infect him with viral load, and let the fates take their course before Election Day.’

LOL

************

‘The state that’s closest at the moment is — Texas. If Joe Biden wins Texas, it’s over.’

Escape from the Snake Pit

[T]he national defense strategy of the United States is built on the unstated assumption that the American people will not allow a lunatic to become president... Compelling evidence suggests that [Donald Trump’s] countless sins and defects are rooted in mental instability, pathological narcissism, and profound moral and cognitive impairment… Donald Trump … is a clear and continuing danger to the United States, and it does not seem likely that our country would be able to emerge whole from four more years of his misrule.

Giuliani issues an updated statement:

GEORGE SOROS DID IT

GEORGE SOROS MADE ME PUT MY HANDS DOWN MY PANTS

When you’ve been a bad girl, haughty is never a good look.

From Ghislaine Maxwell’s just-released 2016 deposition.

*******************

Did any of the masseuses … perform sexual acts for Jeffrey Epstein?

I have just answered the question.

No you haven’t.

I have.

No you haven’t.

Yes I have.

You are refusing to answer the question.

Let’s move on.

I’m in charge of the deposition. I say when we move on and when we don’t. You are here to respond to my questions. If you refuse to answer, the court will bring you back for another deposition.

Dutch Burqa Ban: Ho-hum.

In every country that has passed one, ideologues tried frightening people about how destabilizing it would be. Riots street violence blah blah. Country after country has seen calm and orderly implementation of a law that no doubt makes many otherwise swaddled women and children very grateful.

As for the fanatics out there who can’t imagine life unswaddled, or whose husbands threaten them unless they swaddle, there are so few of them that they are, I suspect, simply pitied and accommodated.

If I were anointed the PM for a day, I would put a ban on burqa and hijab for women in the country. … During my posting in Sawai Madhopur, I used to see women draped in burqa walking with four kids in scorching heat with their husband.

It was disgusting to look at their plight as her shameless husband walked along with her with all the unwanted and unnecessary pride. I always used to think if I can ban the burqa for these women

A media executive in India gets it said. There’s no way around the word “disgusting” in regard to such sights, and it’s good to see her use it.

In the Spirit of the Season

Rudolph the Big Attorney

Had a very shiny chode

And if you ever saw it

You would even say it glowed

All of the other lawyers

Used to laugh and call him names

They wouldn’t let poor Rudolph

Join in any lawyer games

Then one dark and stormy night

Borat came to say

“Rudolph with your chode so bright

Won’t you join my film tonight?”

Then all the lawyers loved him

As they shouted out with glee

“Rudolph the Red-Chode Trumper

You’ll go down in history”

Oh whoops gee sorry

One imam apologised today after his mosque shared details of [Samuel] Paty and his school on Facebook following a campaign by an outraged Muslim father. 

‘Given what happened we regret having published it,’ said imam M’hammed Henniche…

‘Four schoolchildren were being held by French police Monday on suspicion of helping a man who beheaded a history teacher to identify his victim in return for money, a judiciary source said.’

School song, Bois d’Aulne Secondary School:

Joy to the world, the teacher’s dead

We barbecued his head

What happened to his body?

We flushed it down the potty

And round and round it goes

Until it overflows

And rou-ound and rou-ou-ound and round it goes

“We’re going to have a great time fighting about the agenda of a non-crazy president.”

UD’s mother’s favorite film was I Know Where I’m Going, featuring a conventional, materialistic young woman waylaid in her money and status ambitions by a dashing young man and the phantasmagoric Scottish island culture that surrounds him.

Early in the film she observes a friend of the man’s acting bizarrely. She turns to the man and says:

“He’s a bit odd, isn’t he?”

And the man answers:

“Who isn’t?”

**************

As the Cheshire Cat says, “We’re all mad here. I’m mad. You’re mad.”

But there’s conventionally, universally, prosaically, woman-in-the-street mad, and there’s bedlam-mad. Our current president is arguably a confirmed bedlamite.

Gail Collins, in this post’s headline, dares to anticipate a new, non-crazy president in three months. Like many pundits, psychiatrists, and ordinary people, she has concluded that Mr Trump is mentally ill, and UD‘s inclined to agree. Immaturity, hyper-irritability, petulance, grandiosity, mendacity, manipulation – these are character flaws, but not necessarily signs of pathology. We have watched DJT exhibit them all with increasing frequency and intensity as the election looms, and though they clearly designate a horrible person, it hasn’t been – at least for me – until the last week or two that they begin also to designate a clinically unbalanced one.

For me the tipping point came when I realized that he hates everyone. Watching the president, I keep thinking of that line from Ubu the King, when Ubu describes his political plans (If you put Ubu in my search engine, you will see that from the beginning of the last presidential campaign, UD has identified Trump as “Trubu,” the Ubu of our day):

I shall soon have made my fortune, and then I’ll kill everybody and go away.

Everybody – everybody – Trump meets every day — Leslie Stahl, Anthony Fauci, his followers (he calls them “disgusting”), debate moderators, debate commissioners – he hates. Everyone’s a monster, an idiot, a catastrophe, a zero, a disgrace, a joke, pathetic, stupid, vile, sickening… It’s the nihilistic sweep of his rejection of humanity (I’m thinking Melania gets the absolute worst of it, which explains why she wisely absents herself from as much of their life as she can – she’s America’s most invisible first lady) that gets you thinking that you’ve got something schizy and not merely misanthropic. He’s killing everybody before he goes away.

If he is going down, he wants to bring everyone and everything down with him. He has no hesitation to break laws or destroy people. Democratic institutions and principles mean nothing to him.

*****************

Yes, I’m saying that Trump’s mental violence – again, see Ubu – threatens to become physical in these last days. Remember when he confined his violence to fantasies? Remember his comment about the 2016 Democratic National Convention?

“You know what, I wanted to hit a couple of those speakers so hard. I would have hit them — no, no — I was gonna hit them… I was gonna hit one guy in particular, a very little guy. I was gonna hit this guy so hard, his head would spin. He wouldn’t know what the hell happened… I was going to hit a number of those speakers so hard, their heads would spin, they’d never recover. And that’s what I did with a lot of people — that’s why I still don’t have certain people endorsing me. They still haven’t recovered, okay, you know?”

Pretty fucking graphic for purely mental violence, huh? Do you really have a lot of trouble imagining a moment during the next debate (if Trump actually agrees to it), when the moderator mutes the president’s mic, and this so enrages the president that he punches the moderator – or Biden? Remember how he physically stalked Hillary Clinton during their debates? Can actual physical contact – under far more pressurized circumstances – be far behind? Can’t you hear him shrieking at Biden?

You’re the head of the worst criminal family in the entire history of the country! Someone has to stop you before you take control of the country! Turn my mic back on or I’ll hit him so hard he won’t know what the hell happened!

**************

A couple of additional points: Is this suggestion at odds with my earlier claim that the president is possibly suicidal?

Of course not. Suicide is homicidal aggression directed against the self, but no one’s surprised when suicides first direct their aggression outward and pick off the people closest to them. They do it quite often. Nihilists loaded with rageful death instinct can go either way, or both ways.

Also: It wouldn’t even be strategically dumb for Trump to become physically violent, given the enthusiastic violence of many of his most devoted followers. I don’t just mean the bloodthirsty LOCK HER UP LOCK HER UP crowd; I mean the Proud Boys and all the other big ol’ shoot ’em up gangs. Nihilists love nihilism, babe.

‘I find myself haunted by a challenge that was offered on the BBC by a Muslim activist named Anjem Choudary: a man who has praised the 9/11 murders as “magnificent” and proclaimed that “Britain belongs to Allah.” When asked if he might prefer to move to a country which practices Shari’a, he replied: “Who says you own Britain anyway?”‘

Hitchens told France, long ago, how your country gets to a place where its teachers of free speech are beheaded in school courtyards, in front of crowds of children.

What happens to children who watch a man film their headless civics teacher, in order to delight Islamists and terrify secular France with it?

In time, the French Rate My Teacher app will feature, alongside “hotness,” a beheaded body emoji.

This much we know: It is always too late to take seriously the statements that religious fundamentalists make. They tell you until they’re blue in the face that they will kill people who act on their belief in the freedom of speech. Y’all just think they’re joshing.

“We’ve been sounding the alarm for years,” Iannis Roder, a historian and teacher, told French radio. “I hope this is a turning point in recognising the reality of what happens on the ground.”

I fear it’s too late for any turning point.

Toobin, All Too Toobin

Some nibble a bit on a Reuben

Some slyly puff-puff on a Cuban

But if you assume

You can hide that from Zoom

You’ll end up like Jeffrey Toobin

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Dr. Bernard Carroll, known as the "conscience of psychiatry," contributed to various blogs, including Margaret Soltan's University Diaries, for which he sometimes wrote limericks under the name Adam.
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George Washington University English professor Margaret Soltan writes a blog called University Diaries, in which she decries the Twilight Zone-ish state our holy land’s institutes of higher ed find themselves in these days.
The Electron Pencil

It’s [UD's] intellectual honesty that makes her blog required reading.
Professor Mondo

There's always something delightful and thought intriguing to be found at Margaret Soltan's no-holds-barred, firebrand tinged blog about university life.
AcademicPub

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truffula, commenting at Historiann

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Dagblog

University Diaries. Hosted by Margaret Soltan, professor of English at George Washington University. Boy is she pissed — mostly about athletics and funding, the usual scandals — but also about distance learning and diploma mills. She likes poems too. And she sings.
Dissent: The Blog

[UD belittles] Mrs. Palin's degree in communications from the University of Idaho...
The Wall Street Journal

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Lee Skallerup Bessette, Inside Higher Education

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Sean Dorrance Kelly, Harvard University

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Roland Greene, Stanford University

The irrepressibly to-the-point Margaret Soltan...
Carlat Psychiatry Blog

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Perplexed with Narrow Passages

Margaret Soltan is no fan of college sports and her diatribes on the subject can be condescending and annoying. But she makes a good point here...
Outside the Beltway

From Margaret Soltan's excellent coverage of the Bernard Madoff scandal comes this tip...
Money Law

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Anthony Grafton, American Historical Association

The inimitable Margaret Soltan is, as usual, worth reading. ...
Medical Humanities Blog

I awake this morning to find that the excellent Margaret Soltan has linked here and thereby singlehandedly given [this blog] its heaviest traffic...
Ducks and Drakes

As Margaret Soltan, one of the best academic bloggers, points out, pressure is mounting ...
The Bitch Girls

Many of us bloggers worry that we don’t post enough to keep people’s interest: Margaret Soltan posts every day, and I more or less thought she was the gold standard.
Tenured Radical

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Mary Beard, A Don's Life

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Notes of a Neophyte