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Thursday, December 25, 2014

The Holiday: We Accept the Love We Think We Deserve

Two women suffering from unfaithful boyfriends swap homes in California and Britain, respectively, where they each meet a local guy and fall in love. By unfaithful, I don’t necessarily mean cheating; rather, the cheating variety can be situated within the larger category of not committing to love one person completely and with fullness of heart. Such is the plot of The Holiday (2006), a film that is essentially about five good people. As the three unfaithful people are pruned out, the viewer is left with an optimistic feeling about human beings being capable of emotional intimacy.

The full essay is at “The Holiday.”

Monday, December 22, 2014

Little Women: Strong in Death and Love

Little Women (1994), based on the novel by Louisa May Alcott, can be thought of as a social history of civil-war-era New England—that is to say, the film captures what life must have been like on a daily basis. Yet the human predicament resonates and thus makes the film moving for viewers far removed from the world of the Marsh family in Concord, Massachusetts. In particular, the film confronts the viewer with the hard task of going on even with the emotionally heavy experience of loss.

The full essay is at “Little Women

The Fed Lets Banks Continue Risky Trades: Too Big To Fail Ensconced

In December 2014, the U.S. Federal Reserve Bank granted banks an extra year past the July 2015 deadline to comply with a major provision of the Volcker Rule requiring the banks to unwind investments in private equity firms, hedge funds, and specialty securities projects.[1] The Fed also announced that it would give the banks yet another year to hold onto their positions. The Fed’s rationale points to an underlying conflict of interest facing the Fed, a banking regulator that is arguably too vulnerable to the banks’ lobbying muscle.

The full essay is at “Risky Trades

1. Zach Carter, “Fed Delays Volcker Rule, Giving Wall Street Another Holiday Gift,” The Huffington Post, December 18, 2014.