Breakdown

By | August 15, 2018

Is it time to break up Amazon.com?

I have no problem with this, but Amazon’s revenue is in the $170 billion range.

By contrast, Walmart’s is $500 billion. Walmart is, then, about three times the size of Amazon.

Additionally, Walmart is far more of an oligopsonist than Amazon, treats its workers just as poorly if not worse, and is used by far more people.

Breaking up Walmart would do far more good for the country and the world, as would making every effort to reduce media consolidation or preventing the destruction of the US Postal Service.

But people jump on what’s trendy and novel, not what makes sense.

Smokers

By | August 15, 2018

Why do people like Kevin Drum and John Scalzi seem to believe in their deepest hearts that corporations truly care about them, and are looking out for their best interests? I cannot understand it. I just cannot.

Memory Hole

By | August 15, 2018

Librarians call it “the 20th century black hole.” You can log on to the Internet and find creative works spanning almost the whole of human history. According to the internet, though, people by and large stopped creating things in the early 1900s, and only started back up again around the year 2000. What happened? Copyright—or, more clearly, our modern version of copyright, an exaggerated, metastasized version that’s now doing a great deal of harm to history.

So true. There are books and games and other software that I used during the mid-80s and very early 90s that I can find no record of any kind on the internet. For books, perhaps if I had the ISBN I could re-discover it. However, all I recall is the title of a book that might have been sold only in a region of the country, or a bit of software that might have sold 5,000 copies and been distributed mostly on BBSes. These items are forever lost to history thanks to obscurity combined with copyright laws.

All times lose most of their history. Thanks to copyright, DRM, and the evanescent nature of digital media, we are likely to lose nearly all of ours.

Lost in Posey Space

By | August 15, 2018

I feel the same way about the Lost in Space reboot.

It’s a show that never really resonates because it alternately tries to be light family fare and something deeper and darker. This could work, I guess, but in this case it does not.

Parker Posey’s Dr. Smith, though, is just great. What a slimy sleazeball that you somehow still feel some sort of begrudging affection for, and don’t even understand why you do. She just cannot help herself and I think that’s why. She’s the scorpion that can’t help but sting.

Cusp

By | August 14, 2018

You can tell the world is on the cusp of enormous revolutionary changes and rearrangements because everyone — including many so-called humanists — is quick to proclaim that philosophy is irrelevant, meaningless, was a mistake, etc.

It’s always when philosophy is the most important and the most consequential that those most enmeshed in the status quo want to declare its irrelevance and unimportance.

Cogit

By | August 14, 2018

She is the smartest person I’ve found on Twitter lately. And shares the moniker of my favorite fictional spy. I don’t agree with all of her ideas or positions, but dammit, at least she’s thinking. That is much more than I can say for the vast majority of my fellow humans.

Pickled Tink

By | August 14, 2018

The conventional wisdom is that you cannot tickle yourself. Yet, I can do this pretty easily. I don’t seem to have any enormous neurological deficits (despite what some ex-girlfriends might say) so I am not sure what that means, exactly.

Fa la la la

By | August 13, 2018

I have to admit, I was skeptical — attempting to renounce my own violent past, I think, and well aware of how violence can spiral out of control. And that I would enjoy punching Nazis, in my darkest heart, and I don’t want that to be the judge of what a political movement should do.

Antifa was right and it worked. Thanks to those who punched some fucking Nazis. I can’t think of a better hobby.

Point

By | August 13, 2018

Well, yes, that was the whole point of the entire movie, really.

What’s odd about that movie is really not a single neoliberal standard issue pseudo-feminists understood it. I am not sure what that means, fully, but it was clarifying.

Of course, most people’s analysis is shallow because most people are pretty shallow. This willful misunderstanding was something different, though. Narrative lock-in is interesting, and it explains a whole lot about our current predicaments and our inability to solve them.

That film is a good assay if you are capable of thinking on your own or not. Better than most, that’s certain.