Baltimore City Paper

Wandering Eye: Bad news for Martin O'Malley in Iowa, Dan Deacon plays the NPR offices, and more

We've told you about the ways Dan Deacon's new album, "Gliss Riffer," "splits the difference between wilder-eyed mutations of his songwriting aesthetic and experimental conservatory fare." We talked with Dan about learning to deal with his anxiety and more existential matters about time and space. And now NPR has a really fun video of Deacon playing a three-song Tiny Desk concert in its offices. (But really, when is one of his shows ever not fun?) Watch as he instructs the staff to think like they're Martin Lawrence at the end of "Bad Boys II" before launching into 'Feel the Lightning.' Added bonus: GIFs! (Brandon Weigel)

As Politico, among others, has reported, a Quinnipiac University poll of Iowa democratic voters released yesterday could not have gone worse for former Maryland governor and possible presidential candidate Martin O'Malley. Out of the 624 Iowa Democratic Caucus participants asked their choice among six potential democratic nominees—Hillary Clinton, Elizabeth Warren, Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Jim Webb, and O'Malley—O'Malley got support from . . . zero. And not just zero percent, like the votes he got weren't enough to round him up to 1 percent—he actually received zero votes. Clinton finished first, with 61 percent, Warren second with 19, and Biden third with 7. Jim Webb, the former senator from Virginia, finished second to last, with 2 percent, but remember, that's 2 percent, which means like 12 or 13 votes, which is 12 or 13 more than our man O'Malley got. When those polled were asked who would be their second choice, O'Malley tied with Webb for last place, earning 3 percent of the tally. You could say that these results mostly suggest that Iowa voters don't know anything about O'Malley—and indeed, when those polled were asked if they had a favorable opinion of the potential candidate, an unfavorable opinion, or hadn't heard enough to answer, 84 percent said that hadn't heard enough to answer for O'Malley, the most for any of the suggested candidates. But notably, when those polled were asked, "Are there any of these candidates you would definitely not support for the Democratic nomination for president?" O'Mally finished third, behind Biden and Clinton, meaning that most Iowa voters don't know O'Malley, and many of those who do, don't like him. (Evan Serpick)

Last Friday, Lawrence Grandpre of Leaders of a Beautiful Struggle published a piece titled "The Pitfalls of The Wire's Depictions of 'Po-lease' Violence," which we can only assume hasn't spread around the Baltimore internet the way it should because people in city don't want to think critically about "The Wire" much at all. We all just kind of agree that it's the greatest show ever made and very important and keep it moving. Grandpre's primary critique is important and something worth considering and certainly doesn't negate the show's overall quality. "In the Baltimore of The Wire, police bias is an aberration," Grandpre writes, "an individualized moment where cops can fall from grace and fail to attain the vaunted label of 'good Po-lease' by succumbing to their own egos, the pressures of a system driven by statistics and political posturing, or, at times, their own personal biases." Later on, Grandpre ties this element of the show to its massive success among white liberals: "The questions of subconscious bias are subsumed by the shows liberal individualism in ways that make the show palatable to a largely white liberal audience, but ultimately obscure the racialized reality of policing." In short, David Simon's show doles out the right kind of cynicism for its core white viewers and stops short of making them truly uncomfortable. It's a critique that rings true about the show and now that it's pretty much an inarguable cult classic, it's about time that we start thinking of it more critically like Grandpre does here. (Brandon Soderberg)