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Liberal Democracy

Liberal Democracy
The Free State

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Alan Eichler: Hour Magazine- Gary Collins Interviewing Lana Turner: 1982 TV Interview

Source: Alan Eichler- Lana Turner-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

There's a reason why America has a 50 percent divorce rate. That reason is called Hollywood and broader Los Angeles and the LA area where probably 7-8 out of 10 marriages don't last. Entertainers in Hollywood tend to look at marriage as business opportunities. "If I marry that person, I'll be seen with that person which will lead to other opportunities, plus it will help my image." Especially if they have a reputation as a playboy or playgirl who goes from romance to romance and not seeming very serious about anyone that they get involved with.

The best soap operas in Hollywood don't come from the studios, at least as far as the shows that come from there. They come from real-life in Hollywood and the personal lives that a lot of actresses and actors live. Some if not a lot or perhaps most great comedians in Hollywood, aren't actually standup comedians. But very funny people who are supposed to be serious actors and actresses, but who live very amusing personal lives. Who live crazy lives and do crazy things. Burt Reynolds is a great example of that, but only one example. Ava Gardner with her famous outbursts and temper tantrums, would be another great example of that.

Lana Turner's last big role in Hollywood was on the 1980s hit prime time soap opera Falcon Crest. She was perfect for soaps not just because of her ability as an actress and she's certainly one of the best ever, but also because she lived the life of a soap star and soap personality. She was married a total of nine times and married to one man (Steve Crane) twice. She was the girlfriend of Italian mobster Johnny Stompanato who her daughter Cheryl shot and killed at their home in self-defense. That would be a pretty good episode of General Hospital right there.

Lana Turner lived the real-life of a soap opera character which is why I at least believe she was perfect for soaps like Falcon Crest and could probably could have done other shows as well. Like Dynasty or Dallas, because she had the great dramatic appeal and comedic wit and timing that you need to be a great soap actress. But also because she lived the life of a great soap character. Lana Turner sort of lived the life of Jayne Mansfield, but lived well into seventies and manage to get her wildness and drinking under control to allow for her to live a long life. And Hollywood and the public are in debt to her for that.
Alan Eichler: Hour Magazine- Gary Collins Interviewing Lana Turner: 1982 TV Interview

Thursday, August 24, 2017

AEI: Ramesh Ponnuru- Up From Illiberalism

Source: Bloomberg News-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat 

I'm not going to argue here that anyone who is not a Liberal and is on the Right like Conservatives and Libertarians, but who are lets say small d democrats and people who believe in at least some democracy and believe in things like limited government, rule of law, individual rights, free press, property rights, etc, are illiberal. Because small d center-right democrats if anything believe in liberal values. Free speech, freedom of choice, right to privacy, property rights, checks and balances at least in government, free press, rule of law, etc.

My argument is that there illiberal's on the Right and on the Left. Far-Right and Far-Left, people who are so hard-core in their own political beliefs and believe they have all the right answers and that any form of opposition is not only a threat to them and to the people they claim they want to serve. People on the Far-Right who view a free press and open democracy as a threat to their political power. People on the Left who see free speech and individual choice as dangerous things because to means people may be offended and may make bad decisions with their choices. But if you look at Venezuela which is supposed to be a democracy and yet you have a socialist government there that also sees free democracy and a free press as threats to their regime and have clamped down on democracy and free press.

Illiberal means someone who is opposed to liberal principles. Like restricting free thought which is free speech or free behavior. The ability for people to live in freedom and make their own decisions. Someone who is intolerant, narrow-minded, unenlightened. Again, that covers people on the Far-Right like Nationalists in Russia and in other Slavic countries., theocrats and monarchs in the Middle East. But also Socialists in Venezuela, as well as Communists in Cuba, China, and North Korea.

Conservatives and Libertarians on the right, believe in free thought, free assembly, free choice, individual rights, free press, checks and balances, rule of law, limited government, democracy. Democratic Socialists believe in democracy at least, but also in a free press, but also at least some individual rights like privacy and even property rights in the sense they don't want government running the entire economy, unlike Marxists.

Where Democratic Socialists would differ from Liberals, Conservatives, and Libertarians, is that they tend to value what they would call welfare rights over individual rights. They believe everyone is entitled to well-being and see the government as having the main responsibility in seeing that everyone is able to live well. Even if individual freedom and free choice is restricted to see that everyone can live well.

This discussion about illiberalism which generally gets to around what's going on in Turkey and Russia right now which both are at best illiberal democracies where free press and democracy at are best heavily restricted there and where people in both countries have been arrested there simply for opposing the current government's in both countries, is not about Liberals versus everyone else.

But people who believe in liberal values like free speech, free assembly, free choice, privacy, free and fair and elections, free press, rule of law, limited government, versus people who don't. And people on the Center-Left like Liberals and Progressives (at least in the classical sense) and people on Center-Right like Conservatives and Libertarians, share these liberal values. Whereas people both on the Far-Left and Far-Right, Nationalists, Communists, and now Neo-Communists like in Venezuela, are the people in the world who are illiberal and practice illiberalism as a tool to accomplish their political objectives. And see their job as crushing the opposition by all means in order to accomplish their political objectives.
Source: Audio Pedia

Audio Pedia: Illiberal Democracy

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Alan Eichler: Robert Osborne Interviewing Lana Turner- 1982 TV Interview

Source: Alan Eichler- Bob & Lana-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

Just to be a little personal when you're talking about cute Hollywood blondes, Lana Turner is at the top of the list. Even in her late forties and fifties she was still as cute as a little girl and not just because she was really short. Love Has Many Faces from 1964 I believe is Lana's best movie and one of the best soap operas of all-time (at least in my opinion) Lana worked with the gorgeous baby-face adorable Stefanie Powers in that movie. And Stefanie is maybe 20 at that point and as cute as can be and Lana is in her early forties and Lana is the cutest women in that movie. That movie also had a beautiful adorable brunette in Ruth Roman in it. Peyton Place from the 1950s, she's cuter than her daughter in that movie.

Lana Turner was always an adorable gorgeous baby blonde with a keen honest intelligence and quick wit. Which made her perfect for soap movies in the 50s and 60s like The Big Cube in 1969 which is more of a cult favorite than anything else, but still a very entertaining and funny movie. And made her perfect for TV soaps like Falcon Crest in the 1980s. The Bad and The Beautiful where she plays a brand new soon to be the next hot star in Hollywood and she works with Kirk Douglas, Barry Sullivan and Dick Powell in that movie. She was like a little girl in that movie as far as physical stature but that little baby face and how she spoke and came off in that movie. The Bad and The Beautiful is the prefect title for that movie. Because there were no angels in that movie. But ordinary people simply trying to survive working for a selfish producer who was  user of talent.

If you were going to put together a list of the top 5-10 Hollywood actresses of all-time I believe Lana Turner would have to be on it. Of course it would also have to have The Love Goddess Rita Hayworth on it. Slim Lauren Bacall would have to be on it. Elizabeth Taylor would have to be on it. Ava Gardner would have to be on it and if you left Ava off she might sue you for that. Susan Hayward would have to be on it. I believe Lauren Bacall is the best perhaps Liz Taylor is just right behind her.

But Lana Turner is in that group as well because she was so convincing and a great dramatic comedic actress who combined great dramatic affect with quick wit as well. And self-deprecating humor as well and not afraid to make fun of herself. Maybe that had something to do with the alcohol or maybe just because she was so honest. But I believe the best actresses and actors are the most honest which allows for them to be the most convincing because they look like they're playing themselves. Which is why Lana Turner is so high up the Hollywood best ever list.
Alan Eichler: Robert Osborne Interviewing Lana Turner- 1982 TV Interview

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Alex Jones: Donald Trump- Is The Heart Of The Nationalist Movement: Separating Nationalism & Tribalism From Patriotism

Source: Alex Jones-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

I'm getting tired of hearing from the mainstream media that the Donald Trump movement is new, because it isn't. Donald Trump's base are made up of blue-collar Anglo-Saxon Protestant and other European ethnic nationalistic voters, who came on the scene in 2009 as part of the original Tea Party movement. They just didn't have one leader who could bring them all together in 2012 to win that presidential election.

The same people who love Donald Trump are the same people who love Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann. People who were against the Iraq War in 2003, the bank bailouts in 2008, ObamaCare in 2010. People who are loyal Republican voters going all the way back to the late 1960s, but believe the business class free market Republicans like the Bush's of the world and Conservative-Libertarians have let them down. And is why they're losing jobs and seen a lot of their small towns disappear.

Donald Trump might be an idiot when it comes to public policy and I believe might be is giving him too much credit, but he's a very smart politician in the sense that he knows where his support is and how to speak to those people. The Tea Party of today is now Donald Trump and his nationalistic blue caller wing of the Republican Party. Roughly 30-35% of the Republican Party and perhaps 20-25% of the country.

Who believe their 1950s America when European-Americans were dominant and had most of the power in the country and were ethnic and racial minorities lived behind the scenes, were women weren't expected to do anything other than raise their kids and run their homes, was considered mainstream American life. Where even rock music was considered out-of-bounds and fringe. That America is obviously no longer a big part of America and we now live in a country where diversity is everywhere and just racial and ethnic diversity, but all sorts of lifestyles and cultures are now a big part of American life. And these Nationalist voters want their old America back.

These Nationalist Donald Trump voters call themselves American Patriots. But really they're American tribalist's who believe their part and section of America are the true Americans and the real American Patriots. Which is different from true Patriots who love their country meaning the whole country and love their nationality all together. And not just people who live where they live and look the way they do and think like them.

I'm all for patriotism if it's justified and you don't just believe your country and people are great because it's your country and your people, but because your people (meaning your nationality) are great and you live in a great country. Its tribalism and tribalist's that I have a problem with. People who look down on other people in the country because they have different racial, ethnic backgrounds, different religion, different culture and lifestyle. There are Donald Trump voters who even look down on Americans who are well-educated and come from big cities and metropolitan areas. Perhaps have spent time oversees and have even lived oversees.

Again, I'm all in favor of patriotism and consider myself an American Patriot, but I love America and Americans period. I even love the celebrity culture and new-tech geeks who know what shoes Lindsay Lohan was wearing with her new bag when she went out shopping in Beverly Hills and what she had for lunch that day and camp out the night before to be assured they are one of the first 100 people to buy the latest smartphone. But couldn't even name the mayor of their city even if you spotted them the last name of their mayor. I love Americans who are experts on the superficial and morons when it comes to important issues and things in life. I don't love them because of that, but the fact that they're Americans and they are taking advantage of what's great about being American which is the freedom to be yourself.

I love rednecks, especially country girls not so much because I love that lifestyle, but vacationing in that part of the country would be a lot of fun. But again because I love people who feel free and the freedom to be Americans which is being yourself. Regardless if big city yuppie Yankees look down on you. And call them small time and everything else.

What's great about America is being American. The fact that no matter where you're personally from even from another country, or where your family originally came from, or what God you believe in or no God at all, or what gender you're attracted to, or where you grew up in America, or where you went to school or what you do for a living (short of being a criminal) you're just as American as everyone else in the country. The person from rural America or a big city ghetto who makes it out of that environment by busting their ass growing up and working the whole time while they're growing up and going to school and gets a scholarship to go to college and does well there and makes it in life, is just as American as someone like Donald Trump. Who started off as an adult already having a millions dollars from his father.

Being American is about being yourself and having the freedom to live your own life and to be yourself. Not about your ethnic or racial background, or what God you believe in, or were you born rich. But the fact that all Americans are just as American as everyone else. That is what makes America exceptional. But that is not the movement that Donald Trump represents. He represents nationalistic tribalist's which is different from American Patriots.
Alex Jones: Donald Trump Is The Heart Of The Nationalist Movement

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Crash Course: Craig Benzine- The Golden Age of Hollywood: Film History

Source: Crash Course-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

Damn, if Craig Benzine could only talk faster and not have to take breaths in-between words, he could get a lot done. But seriously, this guy must have a year supply of free Red Bull or Starbucks coffee, because he makes speed freaks sound like comatose patients. I'm not saying I've never heard someone else talk faster and for a longer period of time, I just can't name anyone right now. I would have to go through all of my memory banks and cash all them out and I might not be able to come up with another time where I heard a faster longer talker.

I'm not going to cover much of what Craig Benzine said there, because I don't have slow-mo on my computer and he just went through all of these areas really fast. But the Golden Age of Hollywood really for me goes from the 1940s up until the 1970s or so. It was an era where movies were about writing, plot, directing, and acting. Not who swears the most and loudest and who is the biggest asshole in the movie. Catch phrases that make rookie no names actors stars overnight where everyone in country is using that catch phrase to describe whatever current situation they're facing.

To succeed in the Golden Age of Hollywood, you really had to be able to write to make it as a writer. Unlike today where phrases and words are borrowed from other shows and movies and used for their shows and movies. The Golden Age of Hollywood wasn't cookie-cutter, but originalist.

Movies like Mr. Smith Goes to Washington from 1939 with Jimmy Stewart and many others. You can't really say there was a move like that before and there have been many attempts to make another great political movie and movie about Congress since, but most of them have come up weigh short. Mr. Smith came out in 1939 and almost either years later it's still one of the best and most popular movies in Hollywood history.

North by Northwest- still my all-time favorite movie and I would argue at least is Alfred Hitchcock's best movie, even though many others would argue for Notorious instead. There really isn't another movie like North by Northwest. Yes it's a Cold War movie involving the CIA trying to catch a traitor they believe is selling U.S. Government secrets to Russia and perhaps other communist states. So that by itself doesn't make it original. But you have a movie where ordinary people become heroes. Again that doesn't make it original, but it's how it was done.

The closing action scene where the good guys defeat the bad guys takes place on Mount Rushmore in South Dakota. Can't believe someone other than Alfred Hitchcock would come up with that. And then you have Cary Grant as the lead actor who arguably is the most handsome actor of all-time, but he also happens to be the best actor and also one of the funniest actors with incredible comedic timing. James Mason very similar to Cary Grant as far as what he brought to his parts, as the lead bad guy. Martin Landau playing a supporting role. The beautiful and adorable Eva Marie Saint who was also a great actress, as the lead actress.

 It wasn't a suspense movie. It wasn't a thriller. It wasn't an action movie. It wasn't a mystery. It wasn't a comedy. North by Northwest was all of those things in an action-packed movie with a lot of humor in it. That again was sell well-written, directed and delivered. Where the actors and crew knew they were part of something really special and wanted to be there and do their best work.

Today where in an era of Hollywood where TV and movies are about style and appearance. Who is up and who is down, who looks and sounds the hippest and has the most pop culture and reality TV appeal. Instead of who can actually act, who can improvise and be themselves and come off as likable and as someone who not only knows what they're doing, but can bring something different in value that perhaps hasn't been seen before. Where the biggest jerk (to put it mildly) who not only swears the most and puts people down as the most tends to be the most popular. Even if they're no better than your average reality TV star as far as their ability to act.

Today if the public likes the performer and they're so-called viral on social media and the internet, they'll continue to work and make a good living in Hollywood. Even if all their shows and movies are garbage as far as the material. Their shows and movies will continue to sell even if the critics are beating the hell out of their performances and not taking those performers seriously, let alone respecting their work.

The Classic Hollywood era was anti-reality TV. Of course they loved their beautiful, sexy, and adorable actresses. Women like Sophia Loren, Marilyn Monroe, Ava Gardner, Lana Turner, Elizabeth Taylor, Joan Collins, and many others were all big stars back then. And Hollywood loved their big handsome studs. Actors like Rock Hudson, Cary Grant, Dean Martin, Sydney Poitier, and many others. But the difference being that the Hollywood goddess's and gods, were more than their beautiful faces and bodies.

If you couldn't act back then, if you didn't show up for work, then you didn't work. It wasn't an era where Hollywood was trying to sell personality and popularity when it came to their characters, over substance. Classic Hollywood was a professional era where the professionals were in charge which is what makes it so great and classic. As long as reality TV is dominating TV and movies, we won't see another great era in Hollywood again.
Crash Course: Craig Benzine- The Golden Age of Hollywood: Film History