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No. 621: Welcome to the big show
Photo by Richard Ciraulo / Unsplash

No. 621: Welcome to the big show

📅 Today, Davis talks about production budgets, Tyler reviews the new Daily Wire movie Lady Ballers, and Megan previews tonight’s Metro Council meeting.

Good afternoon, everyone.

Compared to the high-wattage, slickly produced, well-funded national media outlets competing for your attention, local media can sometimes look like an amateur student production. This is part of local media’s charm, of course. 

At the national level, the writing’s snappier, the stage is bigger, the actors more talented, and the direction more deliberate. A good example of this is how John Fetterman has slowly evolved from a bumbling, nearly catatonic vegetable into something of an idiot savant.

After Rep. George Santos was expelled for using campaign funds for personal expenditures, Fetterman asked on The View why the objectively more corrupt Senator Bob Menendez, who is basically “a representative of Egypt,” is allowed to remain in office.

By comparison, Santos’ crimes seem fairly benign, almost unworthy of mention. But what makes this callout a major league production worthy of its position in the national spotlight is the Fetterman office’s deft use of Cameo—an app that lets you pay celebrities for personalized video messages—to record George Santos addressing Menendez’s corruption himself.

High-quality entertainment.


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The conservative company tries to trigger their way to the top 

From Tyler Hummel

Nashville’s own Daily Wire has returned from an 18-month slumber between major film releases with the surprise reveal and release this past week of a new movie. The company is continuing its two-year experiment to expand the culture war in a new direction by making original films like Terror On The Prairie, Shut In, and What Is A Woman, appealing to “non-woke” audiences, and giving cancel culture victims like Gina Carano a second career chance. 

Their newest film, Lady Ballers, plopped onto social media this past week as a complete surprise, offering one of the most topically controversial premises for a film in recent history—a sports comedy about transgender women who dominate women’s sports. 

It is a movie selling itself on how offensive it is and how transgressive it is toward one of the most controversial political issues of our time. And yet, my biggest question after seeing the film now is a broader one—who is this movie being made for?

Continue reading...


A bill to extend and increase the contract between Axon Enterprise– the Taser manufacturing company –- and Metro is on second reading tonight. Though it made its way through the committee vote yesterday, there is sure to be a lively floor discussion during tonight’s meeting given that the bill’s main sponsor, Councilmember Porterfield, will be voting against her own legislation.


In addition, Councilmember Toombs filed a substitute to the bill, which would require MNPD to report Taser usage per quarter, including Taser injuries, average cartridge usage per incident, and the number of times Tasers were used in conjunction with a firearm. Midway through the Budget and Finance meeting, Councilmember Gamble explained that Toombs’ substitute will hold MNPD accountable; last year, the department asked to upgrade their Taser technology in order to reduce the use of lethal force used in the field. Councilmember Porterfield, despite her aforementioned dissent, also late-filed a substitute. If passed, it would require the department to include information about the demographics of those involved in Taser incidents. 


The new contract would also upgrade MNPD from Taser 7s to Taser 10s. According to Officer Chris Gilder, the new model is a “huge progression in safety.” That being said, some council members questioned why the department is requesting the upgrade so soon when the Taser 7s were just approved for purchase last February. 

“The model 10 was just released in January of this year,” said Gilder. Moreover, he explained, it’s unclear when Axon will stop supplying and supporting the 7 model. That being said, though there have been numerous horror stories of older-model Taser failures, the Taser 7 has been touted as accurate, reliable, and able to quickly shoot off another cartridge if there’s a misfire. What’s significantly different when comparing the Taser 7s to the Taser 10s is their range: the 7s have about a 12-foot range while the 10s have a 45-foot range. According to a pilot study by LAPD the new model also performs more accurately than previous models, reducing cartridge deployment.


Also included in the amended contract with Axon is something called the Non-Boycott of Israel Clause. In 2022, the state passed a bill preventing discriminatory business practices against Israel in contracts of $250,000 or more. The law prohibits “compliance with, or adherence to, calls for a boycott of Israel or…[discrimination] on the basis of nationality, national origin, religion, or other unreasonable basis… not based on a valid business reason.”


We’ll also see a resolution urging the state to accept federal education dollars, more mixed-used and multi-family zoning bills, a bill that redefines the term “beer,” and more during tonight’s council meeting. You can tune in live at 6:30 p.m.


Republican offers bill to block Biden from punishing Tennessee for 'sex' definition (Examiner) Rep. Mark Green (R-TN) is seeking to prevent his state from losing federal funding for defining the term "sex" as based on biological anatomy, anticipating trouble from the Biden administration on the issue of transgender rights.

He was buried in a grain bin up to his neck. These first responders saved him. (Channel 5) Video from inside the rescue operation shows first responders working to pull the man to safety. These grain bin or silo accidents are terrifying and dangerous to work, sometimes ending with deadly outcomes.

Tennessee tax collections miss budget by $62.1M for October (Center Square) Tennessee tax collections released on Friday afternoon were $62.1 million lower than the budgeted estimate and $50.9 million lower than last October. For the first three months of the fiscal year, done on an accrual basis, Tennessee has collected $108.9 million less than its budgeted estimates.


  • Rosemary & Beauty Queen team to open supper club-style restaurant in East Nashville (NBJ)
  • Ballpark-area apartment complex sells for $115M (Post)


View our weekly film rundown here.

📅 Visit our On The Radar list to find upcoming events around Nashville.

👨🏻‍🌾 Check out our Nashville farmer's market guide and our 2023 southern festival guide and 🎥 2023 movie guide.


🎸 We Are Scientists @ Exit/In, 8p, $30, Info

🎺 Todd Day Wait @ The Underdog, 11:30p, Free, Info‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌
+ Honky Tonk Tuesday afterparty, down the street

🎸 Honky Tonk Tuesday @ American Legion Post 82, 5p, Free, Info‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌
+ two-step lessons @ 7p, The Cowpokes @ 8p

In case you missed it...

📰 Check out the full newsletter archive here.

No. 620: The Look of Confusion
📅 Today, Davis discusses the Lookout overthinking something simple, Porter and Miles each dig into some football news from the weekend in high school and college respectively, and Megan talks about the city’s failed participatory budgeting campaign.
No. 619: The City Built on Sand
📅 Today, Davis talks about building, Jerod reviews The Shift, and Megan catches us up with the latest on the manifesto and comments on another recent high-profile crime.
No. 618: Blocked!
📅 Today, Davis ponders his next move, Jerod reviews the movie Thanksgiving, and Megan looks at the latest from the airport and Meta’s efforts to censor lawsuits against it.
No. 617: Educating Everyone and No One
📅 Today, Davis talks about Bill Lee’s announcement yesterday and Megan digs deeper into the state’s issues with keeping repeat offenders off the streets.
No. 616: We Fixed Traffic
📅 Today Davis solves traffic, we revisit Jerod’s piece on Hillsdale from last year in light of the pending school voucher push, and Megan takes another look at the sketchy rules around the city’s participatory budgeting.


  • 👾 The Shift brings authentic moral weight to the multiverse genre. (Read)
  • 🦃 With Thanksgiving, a titan of horror proves he’s also one of America’s most savage social critics. (Read)
  • 🌄 A review of Jeff Fynn-Paul’s Not Stolen: The Truth About European Colonialism in the New World (Read)
  • 🎞 The Pamphleteer's Fall 2023 Streaming Guide (Read)
  • And check out our podcast, YouTube, and article archive for more.