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Well, well, let's take a look-see at theNew York Review of Books. There's some political stuff in here, yes? Sure there is. Besides, in a few months, the only magazines left in America will be a receipt for rice and dried fruit, and even that will be probably be a blog, and owned by Tina Brown. And plus, Steve Coll, a member of the original cast from last week's magazine discussion, has returned.


"One Big Unhappy Family": Fred Halliday takes on a new book by Steve Coll about Saudi Arabia. Meet the bin Ladens! They're a wealthy, influential, and politically well-connected family in Saudi Arabia. Like the Kennedys, kind of?, in the least imposing-a-Western-prism-y way as possible. So apparently, what Coll does is use these people to talk about The Way Saudi Arabians Live Now. Still, he does delve into the psychology of Osama, who is I guess the Caroline Kennedy here except even Osama bin Laden could have probably managed to secure that Senate seat. Anyway, Halliday gives Coll credit for debunking the following Osama urban legends: that ObL was something of a lazy trust-fund kid, that he wanted to "bring down" America, and that he is some sort of weirdo stuck in the middle ages. The more you know! [One Big Unhappy Family]

"Revolutionary Road":  Hilton Als has seen the Milk biopic. Except it's not a biopic at all—it's a gayopic, and gay, New Yorker theater critic Als doesn't take too kindly to its homosexual stereotypes, for instance, the insinuation that gays love the theater! But the film is actually effective, see, because even if we don't get to know our hero, we're still moved by his story. Als especially likes how director Gus Van Sant included, in the beginning and end, black and white footage of the real players. In summation, Milk is pretty to look at, and Emile Hirsch and Sean Penn play quite well off of one another, professionally. [Revolutionary Road]

"Such, Such Was Eric Blair": Eric Blair, as Julian Barnes takes literally about 800 words to announce, is the "Hannah Montana" to George Orwell's "Miley Cyrus." Barnes' long review of three new Orwell books does a few things. First, Barnes commits the Cardinal Sin Of Literary Theory by making biographic deductions about Orwell using the writer's characters. The authors is dead, etc.! Anyway, Eric Miley Montana Orwell actually is dead, literally, and Barnes tries to piece together his legacy. He's quite popular! On the right, on the left, everywhere really. Except this popularity sort of means that Orwell sometimes held contradictory ideas in his head at the same time. (A populist but a snob, a British person who relied on his Britishness but condemned it in others, etc.) Let's call this phenomenon "doublethink." It will be revelatory. [Such, Such Was Eric Blair]

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It started with them damn hats. (Image: Wikimedia Commons)

A guest post by "Knitsy McPurlson," which we suspect is not a real name.

Yr Wonkette is not the only website run by brilliant peoples unafraid to poke people with sharp, pointy sticks. Ravelry.com – a website for knitters, crocheters, and other folks interested in textiles and fiber arts – is poking people with knitting needles, which are very sharp indeed.

This past weekend, Ravelry.com's founders showed the world how easy it is to de-platform white nationalists and racists when they banned all "support of Donald Trump and his administration" from their website, concluding they "cannot provide a space that is inclusive of all and also allow support for open white supremacy." Seems like people smart enough to decode a knitting pattern are also smart enough to decode Trump's not-so-hidden message of racism and white nationalism.

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One day, God willing, my grandchildren will click open their history textbooks and read about the Central American migrant internment camps. They'll learn about sick kids, locked in cages, kept hungry and dirty and cold for weeks on end, and they'll be horrified.

"Bubbie," they'll say, "how could this happen in America? How could there be toddlers sleeping on the ground without blankets, without soap or toothbrushes to clean themselves?"

"I don't know. I wish I had done more. I'm ashamed," I'll say. We will all have to answer for this atrocity. But some of us will have to answer more than others. Not just the archvillains like Stephen Miller and John Kelly, but the people who kept right on doing their jobs, even as those jobs morphed into defending concentration camps.

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