Rule of Life

People who couldn’t accept that Trump was doing anything right operate within the same mistaken philosophy of life as those who can’t accept that Biden could do anything right. They are guided not by their own interests but by a nebulous illusion of belonging. This illusion is a trick to make them betray themselves, time and again.

An important rule of life is: never get emotionally attached to people who don’t know you exist and don’t get invested in the first opinion you form about something.

Where I Praise Biden

Wow, folks, this is big. Biden said yesterday on ABC News that the immigration process for Central America will be changed – and that it will happen soon! – to let people apply in place. Meaning that they won’t have to drag themselves across three countries and sit in detention at the border. They will be able to apply from where they live. Like all other civilized countries are doing.

No, this won’t solve all immigration problems. This won’t even solve most. But this is a gigantic step in a good direction. I’ve been for this for I don’t know how long. This whole practice of applying for asylum at the border is outdated. It had been born before internet, and it needs to go. It’s inhumane and it helps cartels and gangs. It tortures people. It’s devastating Central America.

The plan Biden described is verbatim what I’ve been ranting about at every opportunity. I’m really really glad, and I hope it happens. Trump never tried this, by the way. Contrary to the lies spread by WashPo, he never tried anything much on immigration, and I’m resentful. Obviously, Obama or Bush before him did absolutely nothing about this either. If things finally start moving now, what a great thing that will be.

Book Notes: Kate Elizabeth Russell’s My Dark Vanessa

There’s talent that even an MFA and a PhD in Creative Writing can’t spoil. And Kate Elizabeth Russell is that rate person who resisted the nefarious influence of both. In a little postscript to the novel, Russell explains how the stupid MFA tried to force her to change her novel into something crappy and generic but, thankfully, she refused.

This is her first novel, and it reads like one but there’s a lot of potential in this author. First and foremost, the writing is good. But then the story is good, too. You’d think, who can possibly write anything worthwhile about a teacher sleeping with a 15-year-old student? Especially “in the age of #MeToo” (and how I hate this phrase. Only “in these trying times” is worse). But Russell did it. She mostly avoids truism – OK, maybe she avoids it about 70% of the time – but these days it’s already a lot.

The female narrator is not boring, and there’s even a slight hint at how #MeToo was driven by cynical, nasty, clickbaiting journalists. It takes courage not to slobber over #MeToo these days, so kudos to Russell.

I’m experiencing an appearance of some very tender and possibly imaginary seedlings of hope that literature in English can escape from its current bog of preachy inanity and go back, if not to greatness, but at least to being readable.