October 2008



Lohan in Nylon rocking a NY look that Londoners stole

By Ray LeMoine

UK Haters Forget They Stole Nylon’s NY Style
In reviewing a column by Pecahes Geldof, Bob’s daughter, The Guardian UK says:

Nylon magazine, whose target market is evidently every jaded, self-regarding New York hipster who thinks they’re part of a movement, as opposed to the sort of people with whom you could only bear to have a conversation if speedballs were provided. Apparently Nylon has a really big Klonopin culture — something that may not come as the most awful shock were you to wade into its editorial content at any length — and Peaches is at the age where she thinks it’s totally edgy to tell people this stuff.

I’m not going to defend Peaches Geldof, who I’ve barely heard of. But really, Guardian, you want to try and talk shit on Nylon? The magazine that basically invented the New York high-low style girl? You know, the chick archetype that invaded every corner of the globe? And remember: Nowhere has been more on NYC’s nuts than London over the last seven years.

I remember when the first Marc by Marc Jacobs collection hit in 2001, right around when the Strokes were playing around downtown, before 9/11. I visited London a few times that year and everyone still had a Britpop hangover. When I returned year later, every single person I saw looked like Stroked-out, Marc Jacobsian clone. You Brits stole that shit from us, assholes!!! And no one was more influential in creating this look (vintage/high-design/street look) than Nylon.

Also, I’ve never read a Nylon article trying to get anyone to join a “movement.” Their editorial staff are more intelligent than that. They know they are a fashion magazine. Sure, their fashion editorials sometimes go one or two (or eight) accesories too far, but the photography and styling are both original and trend-setting. Maybe you Brits need to revisit 1994 and remind yourselves when London actually was cool—Liam, Justine and Damon, Jarvis etc.

(And what’s so bad about Klonopin? At least it’s not crack ala London…)

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Houses in Detroit are selling for $1000, according to the Guardian UK. Then you could fly to Manhattan every day…

What can you buy in America for $1,000? A flat-screen television, perhaps. A weekend break in the sun. Or a three-bedroom suburban home with stripped wood floors and a garage in the country’s motor capital.

FOX News 10/20 – 10/21 936 LV 3.0 49 40 Obama +9

By Ray LeMoine
Here’s a selection of photos I took at the Democratic National Convention. Yes, it’s a few months late, but I’m lazy. I did take some pictures of Obama, but these pictures omit the star and instead show the 80,000-man scene.

The stage is set for Obama and I’m sitting in the last row.

They had a bunch of “regular” people give speeches on the Jumbotrons. Of course, none were black. Most looked like this confused white guy, Obama’s target demo…

The Colorado sky at sunset streaked by a Homeland Security chopper.

“Take em and wave em!” said an Obama volunteer handing out flags and “CHANGE” signs.

T-minus 2 minutes to Obama…

JumbObama.

CNN glow…

Indie filmmaker.

After the speech, the Greco set goes boom.

They even has a floating camera, just like the NFL.

Tears of joy 1.

Tears of joy 2.

Walking out.

The end…

By Ray LeMoine
Obama’s trying to steal Red State Indiana today…

as the Wwar in Iraq continues, with a suicide attack on the labor minister’s convoy killing 11 in Baghdad.

By Ray LeMoine
Why are all terrorists drug dealers? And doesn’t that violate Islam and make them apostates?

Fake ass Muslim/drug dealing asshole

If selling coke isn’t haraam, what is?

For seven years we’ve been losing (or at least stalemated) in the Global War on Terror. In Afghanistan, the Taliban are stronger than ever. Iran de facto rules Iraq. Now comes word that Iran-backed Hezzbollah is tied to a Colombian drug ring. Funny, yes, but this is a potential PR coup. It’s long been known that Hamas makes the majority of the E consumed by Israeli kids trying to forget their military service. Likewise, the Taliban have been profiting (billions) off heroin. Hezzbollah’s been sketching around South America for awhile, mostly in Ciuadad Del Este, the tri-border region of Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina. But this is the first ties I’ve seen to Colombian coke ring:

Culminating a two-year investigation, authorities arrested at least 36 suspects in recent days, including an accused Lebanese kingpin in Bogota, the Colombian capital. Chekry Harb, who used the alias “Taliban,” acted as the hub of an unusual and alarming alliance between South American cocaine traffickers and Middle Eastern militants, Colombian investigators allege.

It’s time to start calling out the Taliban and Hezzbollah as non-Muslim drug dealing assholes…

By Ray LeMoine
Obama’s Closing Strategy? Focus on Narrative and Attacks

David Axelrod pic by Chip Somedivilla

David Axelrod, Obama’s chief strategist, is running the finest political campaign of my lifetime. The campaign just raised $150 million in a month, bringing Obama’s total to $600 million, the most ever. Nothing’s been more important in 2008 than “the narrative,” or specifically, the candidates’ “personal narratives.” And no one is better at spinning a “great story” about a candidate than Axelrod, a Chicago Tribune journalist turned ad man cum strategist. Born in New York, Axelrod’s conception of politics comes down to selling the candidate in the final weeks with a barrage of advertising. As TNR reported yesterday (in an ass-kissng, exhaustive profile):

Unlike many consultants, who impose their own messages and buzzwords on candidates–so much so that their clients all begin to sound alike–Axelrod is known for crafting campaigns that are centered on, and uniquely suited to, his candidates’ biographies.

And TNR points out Axelrod’s especially good at selling black candidates, like Deval Patrick when he ran for Mass Governor:

Like most Axelrod campaigns, Patrick’s focused more on the candidate’s biography than policy: Patrick’s most effective TV ad dwelled on his life story–“raised by a single mother,” “worked his way up from poverty to Harvard Law”–while giving short shrift to, as it described them, Patrick’s “honest ideas to lift our state.”

With literally hundreds of millions on hand, Axelrod’s getting to apply his methods virtually uncontested (Obama’s outspending McCain on ads by 4-1).

But the emphasis on personal narrative is not really a good thing, since it removes issues in favor of “great stories.” As Joan Didion writes this week in the NYRB:

For at least some months it had been clear that we were living in a different America, one that had moved from feeling rich to feeling poor. Many had seen a mandate for political change. Yet in the end the old notes had been struck, the old language used. The prospect for any given figure had been evaluated, now as before, by his or her “story.” She has “a wonderful story” we had heard about Condoleezza Rice during her 2005 confirmation hearings. “We all admire her story.” “I think she’s formidable,” Senator Biden said about Governor Palin a few weeks ago. “She has a great story. She has a great family.”

Senator Biden himself was said to have “a great story,” the one that revolved around the death of his first wife and child and taking the train from Washington to Wilmington to be with his surviving children. Senator McCain, everyone agreed, had “a great story.” Now as then, the “story” worked to “humanize” the figure under discussion, which is to say to downplay his or her potential for trouble. Condoleezza Rice’s “story,” for example, had come down to her “doing an excellent job as provost of Stanford” (this had kept getting mentioned, as if everyone at Fox News had come straight off the provost beat) and being “an accomplished concert pianist.”

But in the same issue of the Review, Paul Krugman notes that in the last few weeks Obama’s shifted from rhetoric and narrative to attack:

But all of that has changed in the past few weeks. Part of what has changed is, of course, the intensification of the financial crisis—the fall of Lehman, the panic in the markets, and the Bush administration’s admission that a huge government bailout was necessary—which has focused the electorate’s mind. But some credit should also be given to Obama, who responded to his sagging poll numbers by becoming much more effective at delivering the Democratic economic message. These days, Obama doesn’t try to place blame equally on right and left, he denounces “an economic philosophy that says we should give more and more to those with the most and hope that prosperity trickles down to everyone else,” and describes the crisis as “a final verdict on this failed philosophy.” He sounds, in other words, a lot like Bill Clinton in 1992.

And that’s a good thing.So the election will be a referendum on conservative economic policies after all. And while nothing in politics is certain, the odds are that this referendum will indeed produce a big victory for Obama and his party. What they’ll do with that victory is another question, but for now, at least, the prospects for a new New Deal are looking bright again.

In the TNR piece, Axelrod’s people and the story’s writer, Jason Zengerle, deny that they’re using attacks to take down McCain:

“There are certain things we’re not going to say in ads,” explains John Del Cecato, a partner in Axelrod’s firm who is a media adviser to Obama’s campaign. “I think sometimes people don’t understand our strategy: They think it’s either go for the jugular or you’re treating them with kid gloves. There is an in-between.”

Again and again, the ads that the Obama campaign has unveiled at the race’s most critical moments–on the eve of the Iowa caucus, in the aftermath of the global financial meltdown–have featured the candidate talking in an informal manner directly to the camera, much like John Street did in Philadelphia. By doing so, Obama has tried to show that he’s relatable and reasonable–not the radical figure white voters may have read about on the Internet and nothing like their worst images of black politicians.

Not so fast guys. Anyone watching TV the last few days, at least here in NY, where we see the prime time buys—NFL, MLB, MSNBC Hardball, etc—knows Obama’s biggest commercial is a direct attack on McCain, tieing him to Bush “90% of the time.” It’s a bold and brutal ad, effective too.

So, which is it? Is Obama using the final to weeks to sell himself, as TNR and Axelrod would like you to believe, or are they going on the offensive as Krugman and reality suggest? According to Tribune reporter David Mendell’s excellent biography, Obama: Promise to Power, Axelrod closes his campaigns with a mix of narrative and attack. Mendell considers both Axelrod and Obama to be at their best in the last two weeks of a campaign. It should be fun to watch it unfold on a national stage…especially in the form of a 30-minute prime time special to air on all the major networks October 29th.

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