So true it's trite:
Indeed, sadly, we have both the government and the news industry we deserve. Tens of millions of people now form their dogged (unfounded, hysterical, self-defeating, etc.) opinions about politics (and law and governance and history and science) based upon the sly words and dramatic performances of modern-day carnival barkers, false prophets and snake-oil salesmen like Glenn Beck and Lou Dobbs and Bill O'Reilly and Nancy Grace...
Intellectual honesty and rigor, or reasoned, dispassionate analysis, is for wimps, public television and the occasional unscripted moment on the Sunday shows. This paradigm wouldn't have been tolerated by news executives even ten years ago.
Ten year's ago? Tell that to the Clintons sixteen years ago.
Jackson Lear, from the preface to his new Rebirth of America: 1877-1920:
The laizzez-faire culture of market exchange played on ancient carnival traditions but detached them from constraints of time, place, and local authority. In an expanding capitalist economy, the representatives of the market were mobile and marginal. Often they were itinerant peddlers of exotic goods - perfumes, jewelry, magic elixirs. Patent medicines in particular became the focus for fantasies of regeneration through purchase. The promise of magical self-transformation through market exchange animated the endless renewal of consumer desire.
We've always been a country of con-men and grifters and eager rubes, peddling faith and stealing faith and buying faith to regenerate our failed selves. One of the standard scams is to bemoan the scamming. Witness BLCKDGRD!
Shit amasses; bullshit tastes the same.
- American World of War.
- Ideal of the post-democratic multitude.
- Obamapologist tells you to grow up.
- Living on Food Stamps.
- Bono is a moron, though the NYT puts him (and his stoopid-ass glasses) on their op-ed page.
- A last note on Health Care.
- Hume schooling.
- The Morgan Freeman Chain-of-Command.
- UPDATE! Morgan Freeman steals dead Walter Cronkite's job.
- Fat fuck-faced face-mullet gloats.
- Jesus fucking Christ.
- Shoot me.
- O'Malley's potential opponents.
- Maryland 2010 political preview.
- MOCO's 2009 top stories.
- MOCO decade reviewed. Snipers are what I'll remember.
- Speaking of Bleggalgazing! this past weekend I actually started to make changes to the blegrell - I want to sort out the newer links in New Toys - like the guy I linked to above - from older New Toys which really aren't New Toys anymore, but fucking Typepad's typelist function is fucked and I can't add a new list. Meaning, there are some New New Toys mixed up with Old New Toys if you're curious to look. I was also going to build the cemetery for the dead, those in comas, those on permanent hiatus, but see two sentences above for news on fucking Typepad's typelist function being fucked. (And speaking of Fuck Typepad: you've no idea of how much Typepad fucked with the fonts in the top segment. Fuck Typepad.)
- It's one word, pronounced blakDAHGred, since someone asked.
- He's a Whore! or: Bleggalgazing!
- Bleggalgazing! of a sort.
- Meh, or Bleggalgazing! And you know I've stored that Charles Nelson Reilly image, oh yes you do.
- Well, I finally watched The Big Lebowski, and !SNORT! and while there are funnier scenes, this happened to me twice, though not in a taxi. Two of you can guess whose car.
- Before you ask, I just don't watch movies, not out of any principle, not because I don't enjoy watching movies, it just doesn't occur to me, when I have free time, to watch movies - I grab a book. This does not make me better than anyone.
- RE: Grifters - 2010 resolution: not just Moby Dick (a chapter a day, mofos, a chapter a day), and not just Confidence Man, but Pierre too.
- Sex and the American Male Novelist. Click, yo.
- UPDATE! Male writers go limp.
- I may have posted this before, but looking for something else I found a review of Jack Spicer by Cal Bedient.
- New Literary History of America reviewed.
- I don't get it, but a friend I trust tells me Sondheim's a genius.
- Megabeats and Megabytes.
- A 4:20 summation of the passing decade.
- Darkblack's Sunday Overnight includes..... Bleggalgazing!
- This is a great album, as is this.
- Vic Chestnutt.
A BOOK OF MUSIC
Are exhausted like two swimmers. Where
Did it end? There is no telling. No love is
Like an ocean with the dizzy procession of the waves' boundaries
From which two can emerge exhausted, nor long goodbye
Coming at an end. Rather, I would say, like a length
Of coiled rope
Which does not disguise in the final twists of its lengths
But, you will say, we loved
And some parts of us loved
And the rest of us will remain
Two persons. Yes,
Poetry ends like a rope.