On Movie Old
'89 was the year my mom died, which made it functionally the end of childhood for me even though I was only 7. It's hard to imagine she's been gone that long. She was a dream, really. I know people are biased about moms but she was lovely and wild in the best way. Played naked badminton, saved an arboretum from developers. She really instilled in us a kind of unbreakable belief in the value and purpose of our own lives. That's unpopular these days but without it I'm sure I never would have made it through these 25 years. Anyway: it's a good movie, Say Anything, innit.
Yeah, geeks, the most powerful force in the history of pop culture-- and it's not close-- are a terribly, terribly oppressed minority. Let us all weep for the perpetual geek Kristallnacht that they must endure. The black experience, women's experience of sexism and rape culture, the worldwide persecution of homosexuals-- none can hold a candle to the immense burden that those who jerk off to comic books must endure. I pray that someday their Moses arrives and leads them out of this hell hole of total cultural and economic dominance into the perfect heaven they so richly deserve, where literally every moment of their lives a flight of angels will tell them that they are good and true and right and only what they like matters and everyone else is just jealous of their neckbeard wisdom, and where they are constantly blown by comely lasses in period-appropriate costume but with 21st century teeth, as only this is sufficient reward for their inherent and objective superiority over the rest of us all. Come the rapture.
Remember, elite mega-users of anything-- the people who really make the money off those somethings do no care about you.
Is that gif from the Lucasfilm game Loom?
But for it to mean anything, it has to work for the people you like least of all as well as for the people you like most. There is no possible way to meaningfully or usefully divide "the right kind" of disagreement or argument from the wrong kind. As long as you are the one dividing good from bad, you're prey to your own biases, most importantly the one for self-defense.
I don't doubt at all that you want to engage in the kind of honest, rough-and-tumble discourse you say you do. But in my long experience, 99% of writers claim that they want to but actually shy away from the genuine article of real, deep disagreement. So they find ways to dismiss criticism that doesn't come from a small set of admirers and friends, and claim that criticism that actually meaningfully targets their work is somehow the wrong kind of criticism.
You've made fun of me for this attitude in the past, and let's face it, I'm a very dismissible dude, which is my own fault. But since you're thinking about this here-- think it over. Not in relationship to me, I'm just some jamoke. Just think about whether individuals can ever be trusted to sort legitimate criticism from illegitimate, when the subject of that criticism is their own work.
"There were a number of reasons to be skeptical when I arrived at a very expensive bar in Fort Greene to talk with Benjamin Kunkel about Utopia or Bust"
Number one being that, as a member of a particular subset of the bourgie New York culture bunny writererererly set, you have both a social and professional incentive to support a kind of preemptively useless cultural politics that simultaneously complains about the plain fact that capital is a remorseless and all-consuming monster while disdaining any actual attempts to articulate a meaningfully post-capitalist political economy, given that your audience here and in general is necessarily a pack of bourgie overeducated striver types who know better than to support the status quo but who are also distinctly uncomfortable with anything that might resemble a meaningful political ideology.
Right? Right. But I'm sure you guys will .gif your way out of exploitation any day now.
I'm sorry-- are you really questioning whether there are people in the world who were surveilling Assange? Or that there are a lot of people who would like to kill him?
This is the perfect example of someone's desire to be a sophisticate rendering them very stupid.
The washing machine has had a far larger impact on human history than the internet.
@Nick Douglas Yes, but that doesn't change the basic fact that Apple has an ancient business plan-- make products and charge people more to buy them than you paid to make them. That is very different from Twitter's business plan, which is to sell ads, in a brutally competitive online advertising environment, and to sell "analytics" like all the kids these days want to do, which are totally unproven to be of much use to the people who buy them.
I've always argued a lot, which suits me fine. The difference lately has been that I'm always defending myself about stuff I haven't said and don't believe, rather than defending myself about stuff I have said and do believe. I put so many hedges into my writing about what I am explicitly not saying that it takes up the majority of the text. But if you don't do that, someone will squint hard enough and say, AHA! You're really saying X terrible thing! Even though, you know, I haven't said anything like X terrible thing. It's exhausting.