Tom Bossert (Photo illustration: Yahoo News; photos: AP (2), Getty Images)
Midst mounting warnings about another Russian cyber attack on the 2018 midterm elections, President Trump’s former homeland security adviser said a recent staff alarm ordered by national security adviser John Bolton has left the White House with nobody in charge of U.S. cyber policy and raised concerns about “who is minding the store.”
“On cyber, there is no clear person and or clear driver, and there is no clear muscle memory,” said Tom Bossert, who served as White House homeland security adviser until last April, in an interview with the Yahoo News podcast Skullduggery.
“In some way playing jazz music, improvising policy because there is no clear playbook for it,” Bossert said. “And so, yes, if you’re asking me do I have any concerns? The concern would be who’s minding the store in the coordination and development … of new and creative cyber policies and strategies.”
The grandest contest in British literature is about to begin. Whose numbers will rise up this year?
Photograph: Sherry Moore/Alamy
Sports fans still lamenting the end of FIFA’s football fiesta can perhaps console themselves with the opening round of the literary world’s favorite game: posh bingo. The Booker prize will unveil the runners and riders on this year’s longlist as Monday night turns into Tuesday morning.
So who will it be? Jostling this year to fill the slots generally reserved for former winners are Michael Ondaatje – fresh from his Golden Booker triumph – Pat Barker, Peter Carey, Alan Hollinghurst and Julian Barnes. Lining up to feature as American invaders are Anne Tyler, Richard Powers, Rachel Kushner and Madeline Miller, who face off against established home-team names such as Aminatta Forna, Jim Crace, Andrew Miller and Rachel Cusk. And could this be the year that Ali Smith finally gets a Booker prize? Or indeed Kate Atkinson – maybe Transcription will dictate this year’s conclusion.
Rob Zombie and Marilyn Manson commence their doubleheader Twins of Evil: The Second Coming tour of the US and Canada today, and to celebrate – and maybe demonstrate that they haven't turned out to be sheltered in their seniority – the combine have recorded a front of The Beatles track Helter Skelter – the tune that professedly propelled Charles Manson (it most likely didn't, yet how about we not ruin the folklore). It's a quite splitting front of maybe the best Beatles track, we think. In spite of the fact that Siouxsie and the Banshees presumably still have the edge on fronts of the tune.
The 10 Rules for Students and Teachers Popularized by John Cage: “Nothing Is a Mistake,” “Consider Everything an Experiment”
The Brian Eno archive More Dark than Shark recently posted on its Twitter account a list of posted on its Twitter account and teachers used by John Cage. Though much has been written about the artistic affinities between Eno and Cage, both of whose compositions have pushed the boundaries of how we think about music itself, they also both have a deep connection to the idea of using rules to enhance the experience of creation. Where Eno has his bedeck of creative process-enhancing Oblique Strategies cards, Cage had this list of rules first composed by an educator, silkscreen artist, and nun named Sister Corita Kent..
Kent came up with the list, writes Brainpickings' Maria Popova, "as part of a project for a class she taught in 1967-1968. It was subsequently appropriated as the official art department rules at the college of LA’s Immaculate Heart Convent, her alma mater, but was commonly popularized by Cage, whom the tenth rule cites directly." That tenth rule, more of a meta-rule, reminds the reader that "we're breaking all the rules" by "leaving plenty of room for X quantities." But one can easily imagine how the previous nine, having as much to do with the pleasure of the work of learning, teaching, and creating as with its rigorous performance, might appeal to Cage as well. The complete list runs as follows:
The Fawlty Towers star rails against the government, the BBC and British newspapers in an platform appearance for Hacked Off
It was hard to know what to expect of a solo show by John Cleese, organised by the campaign group. On 29 June, the comedian tweeted that it would be a “speech” but, by 5 July, he was calling it a “new one-hour comedy show”.
Cleese has experimented with standup as crowd-funding before. The audience helped to pay for his third divorce. The £30 ticket for this event (including an entry in a draw for a dinner with Cleese) was bankrolling Hacked Off’s campaign to seek judicial review of the government’s decision to leave the planned second phase of the Leveson probe into journalistic ethics, which would investigate the relationship between the press and police.
On Sunday at 7.30pm, there were 250 people in the at London’s Royal Geographic Society, which seems popular with former members of Monty Python: Michael Palin has been the society’s president for three years.
Above the stage hung a vast black and white photograph of Cleese looking gloomy, next to the words, “Why There Is No Hope”. It soon became clear that anyone drawn in by the love of would get only the intemperate manner, as Cleese read a 45-minute lecture from a large Autocue screen about how culture has been engulfed by stupidity.
Every artist explores dimensions of space and place, orienting themselves and their works in the world, and orienting their viewers. Then there are artists like Vincent van Gogh, who make space and place a primary subject. In his early paintings of peasant homes and fields, his figures’ muscular shoulders and hands interact with solid walls and knotted trees. Later country scenes—whether curling and delicate, like Wheatfield with a Reaper, or heavy and ominous, like Wheatfield with Crows (both below)—give us the sense of the landscape as a single living entity, pulsating, writhing, blazing in brilliant yellows, reds, greens, and blues.
Van Gogh painted interior scenes, such as his famous The Bedroom, at the top (the first of three versions), with an eye toward using color as the means of making space purposeful: “It’s just simply my bedroom,” he wrote to Paul Gauguin of the 1888 painting, “only here color is to do everything… to be suggestive here of rest or of sleep in general. In a word, looking at the picture ought to rest the brain, or rather the imagination.”
When Jean-Paul Sartre Had a Bad Mescaline Trip and Then Hallucinated, for Years, That He Was Being Followed by Crabs
Sometimes when confronted with strange new ideas, people will whoop “you must be on drugs!”—a charge often obtruded at philosophers by those who would rather dismiss their ideas as hallucinations than take them seriously. But, then, to be fair, sometimes philosophers are on drugs. Take Jean-Paul Sartre. “Before Hunter S. Thompson was driving around in cabriolet stocked full of acid, cocaine, mescaline and tequila,” notes Critical Theory, Sartre almost approached the gonzo journalist’s habitual intake.
According to Annie Cohen-Solal, who wrote a biography of Sartre, his daily drug consumption was thus: two packs of cigarettes, several tobacco pipes, over a quart of alcohol (wine, beer, vodka, whisky etc.), two hundred milligrams of amphetamines, fifteen grams of aspirin, a boat load of barbiturates, some coffee, tea, and a few “heavy” meals (whatever those might have been).
The film-maker weighs in on the disagreement surrounding BBC comedy chief Shane Allen’s comment about ‘six Oxbridge white blokes’
Terry Gilliam has responded to the BBC diversity debate which referenced Monty Python by saying: “I tell the world now I’m a black lesbian.”
Gilliam was commenting on the line over diversity triggered by the BBC’s unveiling of its new comedy programming, offered in June, at which the BBC’s controller of comedy commissioning Shane Allen emphasised the corporation’s commitment to “the stories that haven’t been told and the voices we haven’t yet heard”. In response to a question about Monty Python’s Flying Circus, Allen said: “If you’re going to assemble a team now, it’s not going to be six Oxbridge white blokes. It’s going to be a diverse range of people who reflect the modern world.”
Speaking at a press conference at the Karlovy Vary film festival, where he was presenting his new film The Man Who Killed Don Quixote, Gilliam said: “It made me cry: the idea that ... no longer six white Oxbridge men can make a comedy show. Now we need one of this, one of that, everybody pleaded... this is bullshit. I no longer want to be a white male, I don’t want to be blamed for everything wrong in the world: I tell the world now I’m a black lesbian... My name is Loretta and I’m a BLT, a black lesbian in transition.”
There’s no denying that Ingmar Bergman made a lasting impression on so many great filmmakers. But it’s often hard to wrap our heads around the fact that Bergman changed the whole course of cinematic history and helped to shape the landscape of filmmaking today.
There’s something wonderful about seeing the likes of Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, Claire Denis, and Wes Craven, going out of their way to make the journey to visit Bergman’s humble residence on the remote island of Faro. And seeing their reactions as they first step inside the house. Their gleeful, awestruck expressions show us a human side to this highly acclaimed and talented directors. It feels like we are witnessing something deeply personal, and we feel worshipful to be along for the journey. This is a rare event, very few have stepped inside the house of Bergman.
Directors Jane Magnusson and Hynek Pallas’ decision to use previously unseen behind-the-scenes footage from the making of Bergman’s films, along with candid conversations with other filmmakers, help to weave the story of the great director. Detailing his early days, to his peak in the 50s and 60s, to his slump in the 70s and the return to his form in the 80s.
The feature came out of a six-part 2012 TV series titled “Bergman’s Video.” with each episode centering with a central topic from Bergman’s films (for example, “Death,” “Fear,” “Silence”) and how that theme played out in the interviewed filmmakers’ work. For Trespassing Bergman, the directors decided to focus on the effect and impression that Bergman’s work had on the likes of great directors such as Martin Scorsese, Woody Allen, Michael Haneke, Ang Lee and Zhang Yimou.
Exchanging their shoes for slippers at the door, the Bergman property guests explore the carefully preserved building, which, which after Bergman’s death in 2007, was turned into a museum (everything left how it was when the man died, a bedside table complete with his scribblings reveals something pedantic about the director). Most of the guest often sit down into comfy chairs in the TV room to talk. The room has an extensive, carefully alphabetized collection of VHS tapes, (we discover that Bergman had a copy of Die Hard, it seems surreal to think of him sitting down to watch the 80s action flick).