Internet

Übertrolls

In short, blocking self-indulgently, whether out of laziness or anger or boredom or trifling annoyance or whatever obscure motive, amounts to a special kind of trolling: a narcissistic negation of discussion that, like most trolling, would be impossibly embarrassing to a contemptibly contemptuous perpetrator if attempted in “3-d life.”

Posted in Internet, Political Philosophy, Twitter Tagged with: ,

Will’s Affront (An Untimely Post)

An American conservative attitude toward the nature of crime, as committed by individuals against individuals, and as naming specific acts – not “rape is rape” and “no is no,” but “only real rape is rape” and “only a real no is no” – may prevent conservatives from saying what they really mean: that in fact they agree about the existence of a rape culture, but disagree as to who the real perpetrators have been and are.

Posted in Featured, Internet, notes, Philology, Untimely Tagged with: , , , ,

DJ Earworm’s 2014 Mash-Up

DJ Earworm Mashup – United State of Pop 2014 (Do What You Wanna Do)Watch this video on YouTube (Put abstractly: DJ Earworm’s art of re-assembly constructs or realizes a depth — or, perhaps more precisely, synthesizes and integrates an ideational

Posted in Internet, Music

TNR and Our Terrible On-Line Culture

First a comment from “Pinky” at Ordinary Times, which I’ll quote in full: I don’t know if I’m just in a melancholy mood, but I guess I’ve been thinking lately about the lack of quality online. What strikes me is

Posted in Internet, Meta, Political Philosophy, Web Design Tagged with:

Less Ephemeral: Site vs Blog

Though the big, slick, expensive sites and services offer many of the things, and better, that ten years ago we went to (each other’s) blogs to find, they are inadequate for anyone seeking more than “the literature of a quarter of an hour,” but not involved in, supported by, or satisfied with traditional commercial and academic publishing. A blog might seem to belong to that species of 15-minute literature, but, once the all-consuming desire for passing interest has been stolen away or stolen back, the blog-as-log begins to disappear, revealing a virtual location: the site, marked by the non- or anti-ephemeral durability of logos rather than log.

Posted in Featured, Internet, Meta, notes, Web Design Tagged with:

The Decline of Political-Cultural Blogging in One Page

The first thing to note about OT’s blogroll is that, though it has been moved off the blog’s front page and sidebars, it still occupies a prominent link-position in the main menu. The second thing to note about it is that it isn’t: The blogroll page’s blogroll is missing.

Posted in Internet, Web Design Tagged with: , ,

Last Comment on Comments (Read The Comments 3)

The non-trolling or serious response to unsalvageably obnoxious comments sections is to support responsible sites: Not “Don’t read the comments!” but “Read and comment where commenting is taken seriously!” – or, for those of us who operate our own sites, “Take commenting seriously!”

Posted in Internet, Meta, Web Design Tagged with: ,

Vox of the Voxless (Read The Comments 2)

All posts – as by further reasonable extension all articles, essays, treatises, books, Facebook updates, multimedia Snapchat ephemera, and retweeted links to images of the more photogenic galaxies – are commentary by other means

Posted in Internet, Meta, Web Design Tagged with: , , , ,

Read the (Moderated) Comments! (1)

The destructive proliferation of anti-social expression in a given virtually social environment, producing a failure of the commons in the usual pattern, can always be traced to an unwillingness to invest in solutions.

Posted in Internet, Meta, Web Design Tagged with: , ,

Don’t Read “Don’t Read the Comments” Comments

“Don’t Read Comments” (@AvoidComments) says: Yes, sometimes comment sections contain insight and reasoned discussion. But do you really want to take that chance? The tweet was originally submitted on September 9, and re-tweeted yesterday, September 20, by Cathy Young (@CathyYoung63,

Posted in Internet, Meta, Miscellany, notes

From the Featured Archives

Noted & Quoted

TV pundits and op-ed writers of every major newspaper epitomize how the Democratic establishment has already reached a consensus: the 2020 nominee must be a centrist, a Joe Biden, Cory Booker or Kamala Harris–type, preferably. They say that Joe Biden should "run because [his] populist image fits the Democrats’ most successful political strategy of the past generation" (David Leonhardt, New York Times), and though Biden "would be far from an ideal president," he "looks most like the person who could beat Trump" (David Ignatius, Washington Post). Likewise, the same elite pundit class is working overtime to torpedo left-Democratic candidates like Sanders.

For someone who was not acquainted with Piketty's paper, the argument for a centrist Democrat might sound compelling. If the country has tilted to the right, should we elect a candidate closer to the middle than the fringe? If the electorate resembles a left-to-right line, and each voter has a bracketed range of acceptability in which they vote, this would make perfect sense. The only problem is that it doesn't work like that, as Piketty shows.

The reason is that nominating centrist Democrats who don't speak to class issues will result in a great swathe of voters simply not voting. Conversely, right-wing candidates who speak to class issues, but who do so by harnessing a false consciousness — i.e. blaming immigrants and minorities for capitalism's ills, rather than capitalists — will win those same voters who would have voted for a more class-conscious left candidate. Piketty calls this a "bifurcated" voting situation, meaning many voters will connect either with far-right xenophobic nationalists or left-egalitarian internationalists, but perhaps nothing in-between.

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Understanding Trump’s charisma offers important clues to understanding the problems that the Democrats need to address. Most important, the Democratic candidate must convey a sense that he or she will fulfil the promise of 2008: not piecemeal reform but a genuine, full-scale change in America’s way of thinking. It’s also crucial to recognise that, like Britain, America is at a turning point and must go in one direction or another. Finally, the candidate must speak to Americans’ sense of self-respect linked to social justice and inclusion. While Weber’s analysis of charisma arose from the German situation, it has special relevance to the United States of America, the first mass democracy, whose Constitution invented the institution of the presidency as a recognition of the indispensable role that unique individuals play in history.

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[E]ven Fox didn’t tout Bartiromo’s big scoops on Trump’s legislative agenda, because 10 months into the Trump presidency, nobody is so foolish as to believe that him saying, “We’re doing a big infrastructure bill,” means that the Trump administration is, in fact, doing a big infrastructure bill. The president just mouths off at turns ignorantly and dishonestly, and nobody pays much attention to it unless he says something unusually inflammatory.On some level, it’s a little bit funny. On another level, Puerto Rico is still languishing in the dark without power (and in many cases without safe drinking water) with no end in sight. Trump is less popular at this point in his administration than any previous president despite a generally benign economic climate, and shows no sign of changing course. Perhaps it will all work out for the best, and someday we’ll look back and chuckle about the time when we had a president who didn’t know anything about anything that was happening and could never be counted on to make coherent, factual statements on any subject. But traditionally, we haven’t elected presidents like that — for what have always seemed like pretty good reasons — and the risks of compounding disaster are still very much out there.

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