Oh man, Rick Sanchez sez that the Juice run the media, and the Juice-run media fires Rich Sanchez. The proof is in the kugel!
Actually, having listened to the comments in question, it seems to me that Sanchez didn't actually mean that the American media is run by a bunch of Jews like Jon Stewart, but that it's run by a bunch of smug, self-congratulatory, Ivy-boys like Jon Stewart. That's both more true and less objectionable, and on the whole, I think that any millionaire media personality with the balls to go on air and jerk off his working class background is worth keeping on the payroll just for shits and gigs.
Saturday, October 02, 2010
Friday, October 01, 2010
Nobel Paul, the conscience of liberality, recipient of the Pseudodynamite Memorial Svenska Piggybank Award, has a nice neoliberal screed about the latest, greatest enemy of glowballeyezayshun: the YELLOW MENACE, and their predatory currency manipulation.
Major advanced economies are still reeling from the effects of a burst housing bubble and the financial crisis that followed. Consumer spending is depressed, and firms see no point in expanding when they aren’t selling enough to use the capacity they have. The recession may be officially over, but unemployment is extremely high and shows no sign of returning to normal levels.GodDAMN those emerging economies, not doing their fair share to haul Joe and Jane sixpack out of their three-mortgage, jobless-recovery hole. We gave emerging economies capitalism, and what do we get in return but the vicious, perpetual competition for profit and advantage. I'd call it irony, if I were a religious man.
The situation is quite different, however, in emerging economies. These economies have weathered the economic storm, they are fighting inflation rather than deflation, and they offer abundant investment opportunities. Naturally, capital from wealthier but depressed nations is flowing in their direction. And emerging nations could and should play an important role in helping the world economy as a whole pull out of its slump.
But China, the largest of these emerging economies, isn’t allowing this natural process to unfold. Restrictions on foreign investment limit the flow of private funds into China; meanwhile, the Chinese government is keeping the value of its currency, the renminbi, artificially low by buying huge amounts of foreign currency, in effect subsidizing its exports. And these subsidized exports are hurting employment in the rest of the world.
Back in the nineties, before he was, har-har, radicalized by the two-turntable craziness of DJ Gee-Dubz, Krugman was one of our loudest advocates for the forcible cracking-open of so-called developing countries--for their own good, of course--rescuing them all from the curse of their own self-determination. The Chinese, however, cheated by being good at the game, and listening to Krugman bitch about their gameplayin is like listening to the sour grapes of American basketball fans in the post DreamTeam era, when a bunch of stinky foreigners who knew how to play team ball started whoopin America at the very game we invented. Ohmahgawd, who'd have thought that opening the world to competition would mean that we'd have to compete?
Thursday, September 30, 2010
Cabaret - Money, Liza Minelli
Uploaded by bebepanda. - See more comedy videos.
Listen, the dudes and dudettes at Corrente not only kindly link us all the goddamn time, but they are authentically not a gaggle of fuckers and sellouts. So, you know, give 'em some money.
Doping is bullshit. A bullshit category. A bullshit offense. You think that Contador is doing something natural? You think that elite athleticism in the 21st-century is the product of mere aptitude and hard workouts? Dude, an tour cyclist is a machine, a human body broken down and reformed into an engine of motion. The idea that chemical enhancements are somehow categorically distinct from the rest of the training regime, which regulates everything from caloric intake to sleep schedule, is a total fallacy.
And you can spare the concern that the drugs are "unsafe" and might harm an athlete. Becoming an athlete harms an athlete. And I am not just talking about training and competition injuries, which are of course far more prevalent and far more devastating than the side-effects of modern performance-enhancing chemicals. Being a top cyclist, or football player, or whatever, puts a huge strain on the physical body. If an athelete is very lucky, he gets out of it with nothing worse than chronic pain.
If, as the New Yuk Times tells us, a "nationwide shortage of several widely used anesthetics . . . has been exasperating doctors and veterinarians for months," then it certainly says nothing flattering about the American
psycho psyche that the shortage didn't make the front page until it fucking got in the way of fucking killing people. Oh, good, okay, so now it's serious.
I mean, for a nation that goes around the world killing thousands upon thousands of people with robots and high-altitute aerial bombardment and white phosphorous incendiaries and depleted uranium munitions, our persistence in applying capital punishment to our own criminals (and not-criminals) is a very minor barbarism, and yet its clinicalization has got to be counted as a one of the weirder and creepier (and more revealing) aspects of our civilization. Yah, m'kay, we're gonna kill you, but we don't want it to hurt ya. That would be cruel. Talk about soothing moral platitudes. You're going to enact the ultimate cruelty, the most singularly irrevocable act of violence, and you're concerned that it's going to sting?
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
So here is the plot of WS2: MoneyNeverSleepz. Shia LeBoeuf works for Lehman Brothers and is dating Michael Douglas' 10-year-old son, a Mozartian trouser role played by Carey Mulligan, whose last name translates as "an American accent, re-attempted but not counted against the player's score, in a friendly round of golf." Michael Douglas is played with flattering sincerity by well-known 1980s personality, Gordon Gekko. Josh Brolin is played by Pierce Brosnan, who sounds convincingly as if he had grown up in Dubuque, Long Island. Susan Sarandon plays your aunt, who sells real estate. Frank Langella is played by the uptown 5 train. The role of Wall Street is split between the set of the Dead Poets Society and the Apple Genius Bar. The soundtrack is by David Byrner, who does an uncanny David Byrne impersonation. After Lehman-manqué collapses, a pedestrian throws himself in front of an onrushing Frank Langella, killing everyone involved. Shia LeBoeuf vows revenge on 007. A series of things occur. There are two main sideplots. In one, Carey Mulligan's boyscout troop is mimeographing a newsletter. In the other, Shia LeBoeuf is trying to scam some money for a nuclear fusion project. Every once in a while, LeBoeuf's eyes dart from side to side and he pronounces his sincerity. Michael Douglas pretends to help him, then screws him over, then pretends to help him, then screws him over, then pretends to help him, then screws him over, then buys the love of LeBoeuf and his daughter with $100,000,000. They kiss. The camera pans. Fin.
WS2: The Wallstreetening has about as much to say about late global capitalism as a kindergartener about the collected works of Will and Ariel Durant, which is to say that it has a lot of fun stacking them up and knocking them over, but it can't read. It is the perfect Oliver Stone movie, an archetype of his own personal form, five-and-a-half hours of vaguely stylish but slightly tawdry nonsense overlayed with a filigree of dull portentousness that ultimately chickens out. If the movie had any guts, Shia LeBouef would've taken a job as the deputy assistant budget director for the administration that just bailed out his slime-ball boss; Carey Mulligan would've blown all 100 mil of his inheritance right up his nose along with the rest of his buddies at the Vienna Boys Choir, and Michael Douglas would've worn an eyepatch and demanded that everyone call him Snake. Charlie Sheen would've tackled Oliver Stone during his cameo and, standing on Stone's prone and broken body, declaimed on the 9/11 Truth Movement for ninety straight minutes. The soundtrack would've still been David Byrne, singing "People Like Us" over and over and faster and faster until the film caught fire and the theater burned to the ground.
In his introduction to The Overton Window, Glenn Beck insists that he is writing "faction", that is to say, factual fiction, and you'd be pardoned for giggling at the evidently unintentional and apparently unnoticed neological homophone that's produced in the contraction. Among the Window's many faults--plot points telegraphed so far in advance as to suggest that a time machine is at work; dialogue that makes the Saturday cartoons of my youth sound like Shakespeare--its persistent infelicity is the most vexing. Proper nouns are capitalized and the punctuation, although idiosyncratic, is mostly correct, so I've got to believe that there was an editor. Maybe a few. And yet:
The moon was bright and his eyes were well adjusted to the darkness.(Well, maybe I'm giving the punctuation too much credit. That compound sentence desperately wants a comma.) No description escapes its own undermining. The sentence I diagrammed last week works just as hard against itself. After a jumble of images notable mostly for their increasing specificity, the conscious source of the sensation says that he's not sure he heard anything at all. It's one thing to say, "I thought I saw a car pull away, but I couldn't be sure." It's quite another to say, "I thought I saw a car pull away, definitely a late-model BMW, looked like it had a sport package with low-profile tires, and it was red, with PA license plate ABC-1234, and there was a black man approximately 6'3" driving and a white man who weighed about 155 lbs and had a scar over his eye in the passenger seat, but I couldn't be sure." In real life, of course, eyewitnesses tend to confabulate, to add details that they never saw, but as a descriptive device in a story, especially a "thriller," it's a fat fucking dud, draining momentum and urgency, fading into soft focus and filling everything with haze.
Anyway, I come not to bury Beck, but to praise him! Sort of. The Overton Window, for all its manifold failures as a book, for all its infelicities and inconsistencies, for its schizoid sensibilities, actually--I swear to the baby Jesus--makes a simplistic but acceptable Marxist critique of the American state. I am not kidding. You have to look beyond the superficial stage dressings of American nationalism and generic anti-tax activism. In fact, the book convincingly identifies the political establishment as a subsidiary set of a more diverse ownership class who, through manipulation of public sentiment and political processes, have created a system of wealth expropriation for their own benefit. Haha, they're capitalists! It is a sign of the success of their real-life counterparts that Beck sings the praises of capitalism and calls them elites. But seriously, change the terminology and keep the lousy writing: this coulda been a freshman paper at Oberlin.
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Because I wanted to get an unbiased opinion from an objective and disinterested party on the importance of widgets to the future of America, I called up Joe Acme of the Acme Widget Company, America's largest manufacturer of Widgets to ask him for his opinion.