Monday Link Encyclopedia

don’t get this. Why shouldn’t kids play in the backyard if they are lucky enough to have one?

beautiful piece on why it’s important to read books we don’t understand.

How is it even possible to fit souch stupidity into such a short post?

Just as I started kind of liking Applebee’s, it decided to dial back the good changes

Walmart came up with a very dumb idea

Turns out that school vouchers are supported by the majority of African Americans.

Nothing else this time because the blogroll has been signally boring this week. 

And Another One

And within the same trend, a fellow I’ve been following on FB has announced today that he has to quit FB because he’s about to lose his job. His employers are getting tired of hearing from endlessly indignant right-fighters who are outraged by his posts. He’s the kind of writer who can’t be easily identified as being on the left or on the right. Meaning, the only kind it makes sense to read. 

In Lieu of Censorship

Anybody with even a glimmer of originality always ends up broken down and pushed out of blogging or social media. The only alternative is to avoid any subjects that can prove remotely controversial. Or somehow find a way to burrow into the deepest obscurity.

Internet enthusiasts used to warn against the dangers of governmental censorship of the Internet. Now they are all saying that in their wildest nightmares they couldn’t have anticipated how eagerly and happily users would self-censor until turning the Internet into a place to shop, gossip, and stare at cute kitties. 

What I Liked in The Great Regression

The article I liked in the collection is by journalist Paul Mason. He is from a working class family, so he tends to idealize the working classes, especially the way they were in his childhood. But at least, he’s not engaging in a wholesale condemnation of workers as racistsandsexists that is so fashionable right now. 

Mason explains that working classes withdraw their consent for mass migration into the country not because they are innately evil but because they legitimately feel that their working class culture is being eroded into oblivion. Plus, there are great observations on how neoliberalism tries to annihilate “space, community and non-abstract labour.”

Here is a quote I liked from the piece: 

The authoritarian populism that is mobilizing working class voters is, essentially, a demand for deglobalization. It’s reactionary nature lies. . . in its complete ignorance of the complexity of the task.

But, Mason says, those under 35 have so interiorized the lingo of joyful acceptance of globalization that it’s not going to be turned back. Mason is very optimistic about the “young networked internationalists” while I’m not, so he sees a very positive scenario of “saving globalization by ditching neoliberalism.” I don’t always want to be a negative scarecrow, so I’ll just let it stand for the moment. 

How Neoliberalism Defeats the Young

The way it works is this. You recruit some excitable young people into neo-Nazi groups. You recruit some more excitable youths into the Antifa. Then you sic them on each other. 

While they whoop each other’s asses, they represent no threat to the neoliberal order. Thus, the young population that could potentially question this order is declawed, defanged, and distracted.

In the meantime, the general public is horrified and will that more easily accept one of the pillars of neoliberalism, which is securitization

The Role of the Antifa

‚Äč“The local Indivisible chapter organized a peace vigil downtown here last Sunday in solidarity with Charlottesville. It was one of many such vigils around the country. Not a Nazi symbol in sight. Yet the local antifa group that attended seemed bent on taking over what was intended to be a peaceful rally. There was a shouting match with police the organizers had requested. Later, the group split off and marched through downtown chanting slogans.” 

Oh, come on, folks, let’s stop being childish already. These facile Antifa fools – not to be confused with the many thousands of anti-Nazi protesters who are wonderful people – are being revved up from the same place that gave us our current president. You know, the one that rhymes with gremlin.

The role of the Antifa (that the excitable little tools play mostly unwittingly) is to discredit the protesters and cast a shadow over the entire progressive movement. They are fulfilling this role extremely well. And the protesters aren’t managing to throw them off until it gets too late.