No Future for You: Salvos from the Baffler MOBI ✓

No Future for You: Salvos from the Baffler There s never been a better time to be outside the consensus and if you don t believe it, then peer into these genre defining essays from The Baffler, the magazine that s been blunting the cutting edge of American culture and politics for a quarter of a century Here s Thomas Frank on the upward falling cult of expertise in Washington, DC where belonging means getting the major events of our era wrong Here s Rick Perlstein on direct mail scams, multilevel marketing, and the roots of right wing lying Here s John Summers on the illiberal uses of innovation in liberal Cambridge, Massachusetts And here s David Graeber sensing our disappointment in new technology We expected teleportation pods, antigravity sleds, and immortality drugs We got LinkedIn, which, as Ann Friedman writes here, is an Escher staircase masquerading as a career ladder Packed with hilarious, scabrous, up to the minute criticism of the American comedy, No Future for You debunks positive thinking bromides and business idols Susan Faludi debunks Facebook executive Sheryl Sandberg s phony feminist handbook, Lean In Evgeny Morozov wrestles open source and Weband other pseudorevolutionary meme making down to the ground Chris Lehmann writes the obituary of the Washington Post, Barbara Ehrenreich goes searching for the ungood God in Ridley Scott s film Prometheus, Heather Havrilesky reads Fifty Shades of Grey, and Jim Newell investigates the strange and typical case of Adam Wheeler, the student fraud who fooled Harvard and, unlike the real culprits, went to jail No Future for You offers the counternarrative you ve been missing, proof that dissent is alive and well in America Please be warned, however The writing that follows is polemical in nature It may seek to persuade you of somethingCopublished with The Baffler ContributorsChris Bray, Mark Dancey, Barbara Ehrenreich, Susan Faludi, Thomas Frank, Ann Friedman, James Griffioen, David Graeber, A S Hamrah, Heather Havrilesky, Chris Lehmann, Rhonda Lieberman, Anne Elizabeth Moore, Evgeny Morozov, Jim Newell, Rick Perlstein, John Summers, Maureen Tkacik You d think after 27 years critiquing the business of culture and the culture business , The Baffler might start to get repetitive, but it s precisely the nature of their subject specifically, its talent for conflating novelty with progress in the interests of driving consumption that ensures the steady supply of fresh new offerings to the market, traditional or intellectual, to expose in all their gleaming, focus grouped folly The newest batch of targets includes a fair number of perennia You d think after 27 years critiquing the business of culture and the culture business , The Baffler might start to get repetitive, but it s precisely the nature of their subject specifically, its talent for conflating novelty with progress in the interests of driving consumption that ensures the steady supply of fresh new offerings to the market, traditional or intellectual, to expose in all their gleaming, focus grouped folly The newest batch of targets includes a fair number of perennial culture critic punching bags like Mitt Romney, Thomas Kinkade, and 50 Shades of Grey, and their respective takedowns aren t any less impressive or fun for being so obviously necessary Still, The Baffler wouldn t have earned their curmudgeonly reputation if they settled for such easy pickings, and the real stars of the compilation are the essays that implicate the less brazenly contemptible forces at work in American life Susan Faludi s Facebook Feminism, Like It Or Not is a withering take on the Lean In movement, plowing through its semantically bleached ad copy to probe its fundamentally conservative heart and damningly juxtaposing it with the historic female textile workers of Lowell, MA a group who certainly didn t settle for dialogue or individual empowerment In Dead End On Shakin Street , Thomas Frank investigates the dogged pursuit of vibrancy in towns and cities across the country The clueless inauthenticity of it would almost be farcical if it weren t for the deeply troubling fact that this abstract ideal actually IS transforming cities, turning artists into the unit of ammunition in an inter city arms race to attract corporate tech money to the area Oh, hey, and speaking of tech money, there s even a piece on the self fashioned tech shaman, Tim O Reilly Tracing the seeds of the cult of Web 2.0 through the history of free vs open source software and the linguistics of Alfred Korzybski, we arrive at their logical, if dystopian, conclusion Government 2.0, or Government As A Platform, in which the unimpeded ingenuity of hackers, working in the free market of ideas and services, will finally achieve the dream of maximally efficient government Other ideals of democratic government like equity and access must be a couple rows further down in the agenda So personal empowerment , enforced vibrancy , and Randian, technocratic innovation A sampling of the most exciting, revolutionary visions on the horizon from the imagination of Late Capitalism The future s so bright I gotta wear shades First with Commodify Your Dissent and now with No Future For You, The Baffler keeps reminding me of the revolutionary potential in the long form expository persuasive essay, and how investigative zeal, sardonic wit, and a shameless sense of purpose can combine to make something moving, hilarious, and galvanizing In a perfect world, we wouldn t even have to call the folks at this magazine iconoclasts shining the investigative light on the moral and intellectual tawdriness of their targets before any could hit critical mass, we wouldn t have any icons worth killing Of course, the benefit to this world is that we have the pleasure of watching the blows get delivered sooo good omg No Future for You was a collection of essays from the magazine The Baffler, a digital publication that takes aim at a multitiude of different problems and systems infecting America today I say infecting because their sites in this book were specifically on corporate and political scam artists, and how they peddle progress, innovation, and other buzz words as false signs of progress and improvement while giving nothing real of beneficial to communities There was a whole section of articles in t No Future for You was a collection of essays from the magazine The Baffler, a digital publication that takes aim at a multitiude of different problems and systems infecting America today I say infecting because their sites in this book were specifically on corporate and political scam artists, and how they peddle progress, innovation, and other buzz words as false signs of progress and improvement while giving nothing real of beneficial to communities There was a whole section of articles in the book that specifically focused on digital corporations and the power they are wielding in the country, and I think this is a nice intersection of different trends we talk about in our program, so I ll take a crack at that.The overarching message from the collection of essays is this corporations and the extremely wealthy are building on selling the rest of us everything except for what we need Workers need healthcare and better paying jobs How about build a public sculpture and increase the vibrancy of the city instead Need equal pay for equal work for women Sheryl Sandburg starts a woman s group that requires the local subsets be connected on Facebook, and she provides the world with inspirational Facebook quotes instead of pragmatic, meaningful congressional lobbying Time and again, The Baffler digs into the corruption of the super rich and their half hearted or predatory attempts at charity and goodwill, keeping their public persona philanthropic and beautiful while becomingandbloated in real capital and real wealth.One essay that really hit home because of my time at the Roseville Library was an essay on political scare emails These emails offer fake news stories, fake sources, and exaggerated stories while asking for large donations The other stream of these emails are get rich quick schemes, where stock wealth will double in three months and you can get info on the stocks not even those closest to Wall Street know These email chains and scams keep people scared and terrified of straw men, while keeping them in the dark on actual mechanics of the economy that is screwing them and denying them basic access to living wages and decent benefits I recently had a couple come in last week to the library who had both of these, their first question was asking how to donate to an organization they got an email from that claimed Democratic Satanic rituals in congress, as well as Democratic plans to drone strike rural neighborhoods in America Fight them off now and take our country back The next was a string of three seperate stock market programs they had already bought and were asking how to download off their email It involved a packet they got in the mail going over the investors business model, which was a large collection of completely meaningless percentages and Wall Street jargon strung together in meaningless sentences.I told them on both accounts that these programs shouldn t run on public computers, and that donations shouldn t be made because credit card info can be compromised on public wifi networks But what does it say that I am so thankful they don t have a computer at home That their is some limit to the amount they can be taken advantage of, that they can be mislead This exact situation came up about two days before I read the essay, and of course it goes over how it targets the elderly and those who areprone to not knowing how to work a computer or interpret information online.If anything this collection of essays made meaware of how important our work can be We can offer actual help and solutions for problems, and we can help fight misinformation and fear mongering and empower individuals and communities to use technology effectively and beaware of what is available for them to make their life better and stronger

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back To Top