Fox News personality and racism expert Tucker Carlson
Boarding school graduate Tucker Carlson, whose first job out of college was an editorial position at Policy Review, knows something about the relationship between demographics and destiny. His father was George H.W. Bush’s ambassador to the Seychelles and ran the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, as well as Voice of America. His stepmother is the heir to the Swanson frozen food fortune. From these beginnings, Tucker somehow found his way into broadcasting and conservative politics. Yesterday he interviewed Rep. Steve King (R-IA) in this capacity, discussing the congressman’s controversial tweet from this weekend. And he held King’s feet to the fire in his signature, hard-nosed style. Quote:
Everything you said is, I think defensible, and probably right. The problem with the [other peoples’ babies] tweet was it suggested a racial component of American identity.
Yeah, that was the problem, wasn’t it? Fortunately, the two men talked it over, and they agreed there was nothing racist about King’s tweet. Video after the jump.
A panel from the Chick tract “Big Daddy”
Like a lot of people, Jack Chick had a hard time drawing hands. It’s good that thing on the end of the professor’s sleeve has fingers, or we might not recognize it. But look at his pear-shaped body, his smiling overbite, his stooped mien. He is very much the natural man, trapped in a box—heck, let’s call it cage—made from the rigid lines of the chalkboard, the corner, the portrait, the podium, even the frame itself. Here is a person caught by a fixed idea, a simian out of place in the world of humans. Rembrandt it ain’t, but this work of comic art is at least as good as something you’d find in Mad magazine. And it’s all the vision of one person. The panel above is from a Chick tract, those little black-and-white pamphlets on evangelical themes you have probably found on the bus or at the fair. The man behind them, Jack Chick, died in his sleep Sunday night. I do not admire his beliefs, but I envy his life.
I was maybe eleven years old when I first heard the phrase “life of the mind.” Up to that point I had been living the life of the sweatpants, so the possibility of doing all the same things I had been doing—Dungeons & Dragons, Isaac Asimov novels in which one of a roomful of robots has committed a crime, math—but with the imprimatur of stately pursuit seemed hugely appealing. At school, I calmly announced that I would be living the life of the mind from there on out. Obviously, that would exempt me from life-of-the-school activities like hitting, although I recognized that it also would require certain sacrifices, like never overcoming my fear of talking to girls. Twenty-three years later, the life of the mind is going strong: strangers still express an inordinate desire to hit me/continue to not meet me, depending on gender, and I know more about robots than anyone except people who have actually worked with them. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it. This week’s link roundup is about those intellectual pursuits that make even my life worth living: history, books, awful movies about books, and awful people who wrote plays, which are like movies that have been ruined by books. Won’t you live the life of the mind with me? Or at least keep an eye peeled for jocks while I do?