On this year's Mark Steyn Christmas Show (for previous, see here), we'll be reprising "The Christmas Glow Worm", which I know is a favorite of the Pundette, who says:
Christmas Glow Worm is like crack.
Be that as it may, the couplet I'm particularly fond of is:
Rev up your amps and show your full worth
Brighter than Christmas lights at Woolworth
- which is such an ingenious rhyme by Johnny Mercer I wouldn't dream of substituting a latterday alternative with Wal-Mart or Bed, Bath And Beyond or whatever. Woolworth's gave up the ghost in America and Britain a decade or so back, but the brand lingers on in Australia, Germany and a few other territories. Don't, however, go looking for those bright Christmas lights in the Dortmund store:
A row has broken out after staff at a branch in Dortmund decided not to bother with Christmas decorations, gifts or music this year because it is now essentially a Muslim store.
Shocked locals found out after the Christmas section, which featured decorations, gifts and and festive treats such as chocolate Father Christmases, was removed after just a few days on display.
And a staff member reportedly told baffled shoppers: "We are a Muslim business now. We do not want to sell Christmas articles."
Branch manager Seda Capakcur, 25, confirmed Christmas products had been withdrawn from sale.
Way up the corporate ladder, Woolworth's issued a clarification of company policy:
Spokeswoman Diana Preisert said: "Woolworth is, of course, not a Muslim company. Christmas merchandise is available from September onwards and should be sold out by the end of December.
"In this branch, however, demand was too low. Therefore the goods were distributed to other branches."
Ms Preisert said there were hardly any customers who celebrated Christmas as the shop was in a now mainly Islamic area which had created specific "local conditions".
I was in Dortmund over the summer. It's Germany's eighth biggest city and part of the Ruhr, which, with over five million people, is the country's largest urban area. And yes, Frau Preisert has a point: The town has Islamified pretty swiftly and there are now three dozen or so mosques.
But even in heavily Muslim North Dortmund, where the store is located, the population remains at least nominally about a third Christian. So lights out at Woolworth would seem a wee bit premature: The complete erasure of a hitherto widely observed communal holiday from major retail outlets is, to say the least, striking. How many more North Dortmunds are there? And how many will there be in ten years' time?
~America's President-Elect has caused some consternation among his supporters after a sit-down with The New York Times at which he apparently reversed course on waterboarding, climate change, illegal immigration, etc, etc. Well, we'll see. May just be the press doing their usual left-footed lockstep tango, a mere fortnight after Trump took the supposed Hillary landslide and detonated the very concept of "media narrative".
[UPDATE: Looks like more of the same old same old:
The 'fake news' that Trump had somehow moderated or changed his "global warming" views was not supported by the full transcript of the meeting.
So the media have decided there was nothing wrong with their brilliant coverage of the last 18 months that can't be extended for another four years.]
As a famed negotiator, Donald Trump is a rum cove: Sometimes he wants to be the tough guy - as when he called all those hacks over to Trump Tower and then shoved their crappy election coverage down their throats. At other times he seems to want to be liked, as at this Times chitchat.
Does schmoozing your enemies work? No, it doesn't. Powerline's John Hinderaker:
The Associated Press headlines: "Trump again disavows alt-right, white supremacists." No doubt much else was discussed, but this is what millions of newspaper readers will see: an association between Trump and white supremacists. The AP writes:
'President-elect Donald Trump is again distancing himself from the alt-right movement as its white supremacist members claim his election as a boon for their agenda.'
See how this works? Trump again is trying to "distance himself" from the "alt-right movement" and "its white supremacist members," who are big Trump fans and think his agenda is theirs. The more often Trump does this, the stronger the entirely fictitious connection will appear.
Will you distance yourself from beating your wife? "I totally disavow beating my wife. Whoever is beating her, I condemn it." Trump shouldn't waste his time sitting down with legacy media who have made it plain that they want his presidency to fail. But, if he's foolish enough to agree to meet with these chumps at all, he should at least slam these condescending irrelevant preoccupations back in their face, as John Hinderaker recommends:
Has Hillary Clinton–or any other Democrat, for that matter–disavowed the rioters who have brought destruction to cities across America in the days since their candidate lost? I have not seen a single such disavowal from any prominent Democrat, let alone Mrs. Clinton. Has Hillary disavowed the support of the goons who beat a Trump supporter nearly to death in Chicago? Nope. Has she disavowed the support of the Democrats who are threatening to murder electors who cast ballots for Donald Trump, the winner of the presidential election? Nope.
Lionel Shriver's fine new novel The Mandibles is set in the America of 2029, by which point The New York Times has gone the way of Woolworth's and closed up shop. If I were President Trump, I'd be aiming to accelerate that process - say, by November 2024, or maybe even November 2020.
~As Steve Doocy was kind enough to mention on "Fox & Friends" this morning, on December 5th I'll be launching my new nightly TV venture, The Mark Steyn Show. If you'd like to give your loved one a gift subscription, we've got a few seasonal special offers to sweeten the pot - a year's worth of telly plus a shot of eggnog, or a baker's dozen of kitty ditties, or a cryptful of classics, or an old-time Woolworth's-scale re-lighting of the lamps of liberty.
~Have a great Thanksgiving. I'll see you on the radio in Toronto and Ottawa on Wednesday afternoon (full details at right), and guest-hosting for Rush across the fruited plain for a full three hours on Black Friday.