What’s the Deal With ‘Seinfeld’?
Shame is a social emotion; it requires other people to function.
I’d put it another way: Republicans have become the Idiocracy Party
A half-decade ago, the originally Boston-based site and its rabid fan community wouldn’t have scanned as “political” at all. But now, its proudly Neanderthal, reactionary ethos aligns perfectly with the side of our political binary that Trump reconfigured: the one whose common denominator is a tooth-and-nail, middle-finger unwillingness to accept liberal social norms.
My go-to spot for such a colossus would have been Manganaro’s Hero Boy on Ninth Avenue, which claimed to be the originators of the six-foot sandwich it had peddled since the 1950s. What a store that was. You could smell the funk of aged provolone and the must of prosciutto from the sidewalk. It was thrilling to see those sandwiches being trucked out the front door by two aproned deli guys — one in front and one in back, like pallbearers, with the long white cardboard box on their shoulders — and sliding it into the back of the delivery van. But the shop closed down this year, and so I decided to make my own.
This anti-digital snobbery is an example of the members of the old guard living in denial about the Internet’s role as the primary driver of global culture.
There’s only one exception to the lack of interest in blockchain apps today: apps for trading cryptocurrencies themselves. What results is an almost hermetically sealed economy, whose currencies exist only to be traded and become derivatives of themselves. If you squint, it looks like an absurd art project.
There is quite a bit of research calling into question how effective this behavioral microtargeting really is. But it is how marketers choose to spend much of their digital advertising budgets. The result is that money that used to flow to journalistic publications is diverted not only to social media platforms like Facebook and YouTube but also toward lower-quality sites and apps, including purveyors of bigotry and disinformation. Conspiratorial garbage-peddlers like the Gateway Pundit would struggle to exist without an automated, user-targeting-based ad system that doesn’t require advertisers to consciously choose to spend money there. You don’t have to be totally biased in favor of the journalism industry, as I am, to be bothered by a business model that uses your personal data to imperil its financial viability. You need only accept that journalism is necessary for democratic self-government.
Judge Tatel also derided as “raising the specter of the absurd” an argument the Trump administration had put forward: If the court ruled for Mr. Karem, the White House would be powerless even “were a reporter to ‘moon’ the president, shout racial epithets at a foreign dignitary or sexually harass another member of the press corps.”
The judge said Mr. Karem’s behavior fell short of such acts, adding, “In any event, the White House can rest assured that principles of due process do not limit its authority to maintain order and decorum at White House events by, for example, ordering the immediate removal of rogue, mooning journalists.”
We can tout this as a really great space to live. Minnesota is absolutely beautiful: We do have beautiful parks, we have walkable places, bikable places, all of these lakes. But who and how we get to access those things has always been a part of it. Green spaces look different in North Minneapolis than they do in other parts of the city. Even up until recently, when they started investing in inner-city parks, there are huge disparities in what parks look like in North Minneapolis vs. Southwest Minneapolis. There’s been a value laid in the infrastructures that have allowed for those that succeed and those who that don’t to be held along the racial lines.
Black leaders objected to the highway plan, but without the same political influence as a white community, their concerns about the life of the neighborhood and the future of people in it fell largely on deaf ears. Construction began September 1956, just a few months after Congress passed the Federal Aid Highway Act that initiated the building of the highway system, and by 1968, a vast roadway spanning multiple lanes sliced down the middle of Rondo.
Local historians estimate that more than 300 businesses were destroyed, and more than 600 families lost their home.
Yet a University of Chicago study found that between 1996 and 2015, newly unionized law enforcement agencies saw a 27% uptick in misconduct complaints — a phenomenon the researchers tied largely to protections afforded by union contracts.
“For a lot of people a car means freedom and social status,” says Janette Sadik-Khan. “But if a city provides you no choice but to drive, a car isn't freedom, it's dependence. If you have no choice but to drive for every trip, it's not your fault. Your city has failed.”
Swordfish also gains cinematic notoriety for titling itself after a long-running Hollywood in-joke. "Swordfish" is used as a password in numerous hacking movies from Hackers to The Net and these references call back to a classic Marx Bros routine from Horse Feathers in 1932, where Groucho tries to get into a secret speakeasy with a password of "swordfish".
Office Space inspired a generation of young hackers to try their hand at this mythologized movie scam. In 2008 a man was convicted of siphoning $50,000 from several brokerage companies by opening thousands of fake accounts and filling them with micro-deposits. The man was ultimately caught after it was discovered that some of the fake accounts were opened using the names of characters from the movie Office Space.
I’m two weeks behind on my Times opinion reading, but this is golden. Somehow satirical and completely true at the same time. ???
Having no plan is the plan! Haven’t you been listening? Plans are for commies and the Danish.
And God, the brunch, the brunch. The phone hauled out for every single pancake and every single Bloody Mary to be photographed and Instagrammed. That guy who strolls in and won’t remove his sunglasses as he holds up two fingers at my hostess without saying a word: He wants a table for two. The purebred lap dogs now passed off as service animals to calm the anxieties that might arise from eating eggs Benedict on a Sunday afternoon. I want the girl who called the first day of our mandated shut down to call back, in however many months when restaurants are allowed to reopen, so I can tell her with delight and sincerity: No. We are not open for brunch. There is no more brunch.
These policies embodied a broad and muscular conception of liberty: that government should provide all Americans with the freedom that comes from a stable and prosperous life.
“We have come to a clear realization of the fact that true individual freedom cannot exist without economic security and independence,” Roosevelt told the nation in 1944.
The goal, of course, was never realized in full, but since the late 1960s, the federal government has largely abandoned the attempt. The defining trend in American public policy has been to diminish government’s role as a guarantor of personal liberty.
Advocates of a minimalist conception of government claim they too are defenders of liberty. But theirs is a narrow and negative definition of freedom: the freedom from civic duty, from mutual obligation, from taxation. This impoverished view of freedom has in practice protected wealth and privilege. It has perpetuated the nation’s defining racial inequalities and kept the poor trapped in poverty, and their children, and their children’s children.
“What is really dangerous to tenants and communities is the full integration of housing within financial markets,” says Maya Abood, who wrote her graduate thesis at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on the single-family-rental industry. “Because of the way our financial markets are structured, stockholders expect ever-increasing returns. All of this creates so much pressure on the companies that even if they wanted to do the right thing, which there’s no evidence that they do, all of the entanglements lead to an incentive of not investing in maintenance, transferring all the costs onto tenants, constantly raising rents. Even little, tiny nickel-and-diming, if it’s done across your entire portfolio, like little fees here and there — you can model those, you can predict those. And then that can be a huge revenue source.”
For reference, the average round-trip flight for a single passenger from Heathrow to Hong Kong produces about 1.82 metric tons of CO2, according to a flight emission calculator by The Guardian. That is more carbon pollution than the average person would emit in an entire year in 81 countries around the world.
His name was Fridrik, as it turned out, and he was the son of the hotel’s owner. He was on a pro handball team, and he was thinking about studying abroad in the States during college. He would come back, he said, because everyone goes abroad and they come back because they don’t see a way to emulate anywhere else the life they have here.
We are stuck between two metaphors. Are we the boy who cried wolf, always convinced the whole shitaree is spoil’t, or the frog in hot water, who claims things are just slightly worse, but still OK, until it’s too late and we’re cooked?
I ended up getting free rent in a garage that season, so I never watched Titanic with the old miner. I remembered him as I approached the shimmering glass and modernist cubes of flagstone at the Hoodoo. Audis and 4Runners glimmered in the lot. A variation of a Joni Mitchell melody sang in my head: They paved a trailer park, and put in a paradise.
"Closet partisans" rings true to me. I'm sick of hearing these people interviewed on NPR who claim to be independents and then go on to bash one side or the other. They're a bunch of worthless attention-seekers if you ask me.
The real “swing” doesn’t come from voters who choose between two parties, she argues, but from people who choose to vote, or not (or, if they do vote, vote for a third party). The actual percentage of swing voters in any given national election according to her own analysis is closer to 6 or 7 percent than the 15 or 20 most analysts think are out there, and that larger group, Bitecofer says, are “closet partisans” who don’t identify with a party but still vote with one.
Sometimes parrots can be roped into criminal activity themselves. In September of 2010 in the Colombian city of Barranquilla, a parrot named Lorenzo was taught by his owners, members of a Cali drug cartel, to say "RUN, RUN" when he spotted the police. Lorenzo was guarding a load of guns and marijuana. He wasn't prosecuted.
News stories overwhelmingly (but often subtly) shift blame onto pedestrians and cyclists, the researchers found. “Coverage almost always obscures the public health nature of the problem by treating crashes as isolated incidents, by referring to crashes as accidents, and by failing to include input from planners, engineers, and other road safety experts,” they write.
In all there are 33 counties that pay less than they get, and supposed leech King County provides 97% of the money boosting those counties.
The figures show King’s taxpayers sent the state $8.04 billion and got back just $5.09 billion in spending. Per capita, King paid $3,820 in taxes in return for just $2,419 in spending — or a net donation annually of $1,401 by each and every King County resident to the good people of the rest of the state.
Who are totally hacked off anyway. So much so they voted to slash transit and bus projects in Seattle in part out of sheer animus.
That’s some major league shade, NYT, and I tip my ball cap to you.
The umpires tried to raise Joe Torre, the Hall of Famer who moonlights as chief baseball officer.
See previous comment about small minds and enormous challenges.
Today’s monster fires result largely from three human forces: taxpayer-funded fire suppression that has made the forest a tinderbox; policies that encourage construction in places that are clearly prone to burning; and climate change, which has worsened everything. In the latest piece of evidence, a study published in July by the American Geophysical Union concluded that climate change is “very likely” the main reason that, between 1972 and 2018, the acreage burned annually in California jumped fivefold and the acreage burned in summertime forest fires surged eightfold. A warming climate has dried the ground and the vegetation on it, the study found, leaving them readier to burn.
Behind these three forces is a massive economic perversity: Society masks the costs of building on the edges of the forest, a zone that planners call the “wildland-urban interface,” or the WUI. With its vast forests and penchant for sprawl, California is the epicenter of WUI wildfire damage. Between 2000 and 2013, fire destroyed more buildings in California’s WUI than in all similar areas in the United States combined, and more than 75 percent of all buildings destroyed by fire in California were in the WUI, according to a University of Wisconsin–Madison study.
Absolutely frightening to imagine the small minds leading us as these enormous challenges bear down on us.
More than 20 million people in Vietnam, almost one-quarter of the population, live on land that will be inundated.
Much of Ho Chi Minh City, the nation’s economic center, would disappear with it, according to the research, which was produced by Climate Central, a science organization based in New Jersey, and published in the journal Nature Communications.
Here I am, 34 years old, and I learned more about TikTok than I ever knew before from reading this article in a print edition that had been sitting on my desk for more than three weeks. And here I am sharing the passage I most identify with on a pseudo-social network that, seemingly, only I use.
I already have enough digital tools to insure that I never need to sit alone with the simple fact of being alive.
At a time when youth sport participation is stratifying by income, one could argue that even soccer fields have become the domain of the upper-middle class and above. But true rich-kid sports include water polo, squash, crew, lacrosse, and skiing. One does not simply fall into the river and come out a water-polo star, and no downhill-slalom champions casually roam the halls of low-income high schools. These sports often require formal training, expensive equipment, and upscale facilities. No wonder they are dominated by affluent young players.
While there is nothing morally wrong with enjoying a game of catch in a pool, participation in these activities has come to play a subtle, yet ludicrously powerful, role in the reproduction of elite status in the United States.
At Harvard, nearly 1,200 undergraduates—or 20 percent of the student body— participate in intercollegiate athletics. That’s more student athletes than Ohio State University, whose total undergraduate enrollment of 46,000 is nearly seven times larger.
I delayed reading this because my own indifference-tending-toward-disdain for Joe Rogan, but it’s very worth the read.
There’s a tendency right now to make every single thing about Donald Trump, but if you don’t see the dotted line connecting the president to a wave of men who feel thwarted and besieged and sentenced to an endless apology tour, then you’re not paying attention. Lots of these panicked men, as it happens, despise Trump every bit as much as they love Joe Rogan.
It would be wrong, moreover, to portray French as innately inflexible. The language has, like any other, accepted many words from English over the years. Autobiographie, for example, was accepted as a borrowed term so long ago that it’s hardly considered a borrowed term at all anymore. More recently, les chips, le jogging, le bifteck, la vitamine and sexy have arrived in the French dictionary, without much enduring institutional resistance.
Someone asked me a similar question recently, but Klosterman is able to put into words what was just a bunch of flustered mouth noises from me.
You’re organizing a literary dinner party. Which three writers, dead or alive, do you invite?
I have a lot of issues with this question. I realize the purpose of the hypothetical is to reflect some deeper insight into the subject’s aesthetic sensibility, but I can’t help but take it literally. First of all, I have several friends who have coincidentally written books, and some of these friends I haven’t seen in years. I would obviously prefer having dinner with three old friends as opposed to three famous strangers, regardless of how talented they were as writers. Over the past 20 years, I’ve often found myself in professional situations where I’ve had to have dinner with arbitrary collections of random authors, many of whom were nice and a few of whom are brilliant. Yet the experience itself is almost always uncomfortable. It seems like the first half of dinner involves everybody trying too hard to be overly complimentary to everyone else at the table, and then the second half of dinner is just people complaining about how they don’t sell enough books or make enough money. It never feels like a real conversation unless everyone at the table is drunk. Moreover, the fact that this proposed scenario involves the possibility of selecting guests who are “dead or alive” really forces my hand. It seems insane to pick any living person if dead people are eligible. There is no author alive who’s a fraction as compelling as any dead garbageman, and there’s no theoretical discussion about the craft of writing that would be half as interesting as asking “What was it like to die?” to someone who could respond authoritatively to that query. The only problem is that dead people might not understand what was going on, why they were suddenly alive, or why they were being forced to make conversation with some bozo at a weird dinner party. They might just sit there and scream for two hours. And even if they kept it together, I’m sure they’d be highly distracted. If I invite Edgar Allan Poe to dinner, it seems possible he’d spend the whole time expressing amazement over the restaurant’s air conditioning.
I’m often asked to explain what makes internet culture different from some previous mode of human experience, and the maybe boring answer is that it is not always so different. There is a temptation to overemphasize the novelty of internet culture, but our media, economic system and values did not spontaneously appear in, like, 1996. I sometimes think about the internet as a fun house mirror, a tool for stretching and magnifying existing dynamics.
Anderson recalls an auction for pallets of robotic hamsters called ZhuZhu Pets, which were briefly hot in 2009, with a Disney Channel cartoon and video games. The pallet was number 20,000. “That means somebody imported 20,000 pallets at least. That is an insane number.” Doing the math, he comes up with almost 800 tractor-trailers full of robot hamsters that had become so unprofitable on Amazon that he told the auctioneer he wouldn’t take them if he was paid to.
A key player in the story of automobile supremacy is single-family-only zoning, a shadow segregation regime that is now justifiably on the defensive for outlawing duplexes and apartments in huge swaths of the country. Through these and other land-use restrictions—laws that separate residential and commercial areas or require needlessly large yards—zoning rules scatter Americans across distances and highway-like roads that are impractical or dangerous to traverse on foot. The resulting densities are also too low to sustain high-frequency public transit.
Further entrenching automobile supremacy are laws that require landowners who build housing and office space to build housing for cars as well. In large part because of parking quotas, parking lots now cover more than a third of the land area of some U.S. cities; Houston is estimated to have 30 parking spaces for every resident
While sulfide-ore mining techniques vary and continue to evolve, in the past some safety records have caused concern. A 2012 study by the nonprofit Earthworks reviewed 14 U.S. sulfide-ore copper mines—predominately open-pit—which produced 89 percent of the country’s copper in 2010, the most recent data available from the U.S. Geological Survey. All the mines experienced pipeline spills or other accidental releases. Tailings spills occurred at nine operations, and at 13 of the 14 mines, the study says, “water collection and treatment systems have failed to control contaminated mine seepage, resulting in significant water-quality impacts.”
That risk is more worrisome in Minnesota, where 6 percent of the surface area is water—more than any other state in the country. The three-million-acre Superior National Forest, which contains the Boundary Waters, holds 20 percent of the fresh water in the U.S. national-forest system. It also borders Lake Superior, the largest and least polluted of the Great Lakes, which holds 10 percent of the world’s fresh surface water.
“Beauty has been so domesticated in our imaginations here,” Goodyear says. “We’ve cheapened it by making such a pop-culture product out of it, where it’s the background to every car commercial, it’s a sold image. I think that dulled the awareness that what you were looking at was a picture of danger. But anyone who thought about it for a second, or even who didn’t think about it, I believe, probably unconsciously could feel that in those pictures of the coastline in California — with the dramatic cliffs and the sparkling blue oceans — that the beauty is the danger. It is the expression of the danger, of the seismic activity, of the relationship between the water and the land, which threatens the humans who would build along that strand. You feel it there, and you call it majestic or stunning or any of the things you might call it. But what you feel is awe, and awe is terror.”
My existential dread in a nutshell.
Behind all of it, Yang sees automation, driven by the unstoppable will of the market. The story starts with the decline of American manufacturing, something politicians are used to talking about. But Yang thinks that decline is driven less by globalization and more by automated assembly lines, which have allowed the sector to maintain roughly the same output levels as 2007 while dropping nearly a million jobs. In a few years, self-driving freight trucks will follow, unlocking tens of billions of dollars for investors and displacing millions of truck drivers, to be followed shortly by cab drivers, clerks, service workers, and radiologists. There will be no profit motive to reintegrate them, no training program that can make their skills valuable again. Yang predicts an epidemic of depreciating human capital hitting profession after profession until society disintegrates, overwhelmed by the sheer volume of human despair.
It’s grim, with obvious echoes of Marx (who was writing about automation too). But where Marx saw a struggle between discrete classes, Yang sees a tidal wave hitting group after group in sequence. In his reading, no one is safe and we’re all in it together.
Cayenne stimulates the nervous system, awakens mucus, and can cause the heart to beat faster. The heat builds on itself. Jeffries likes to say that hot chicken will sober you up and clean you out. She calls it “a twenty-four-hour chicken.” Activities that may not pair well with Nashville hot chicken include a road trip, a long flight, a first date, work, sleep, and your wedding. First-timers have been advised to prepare for hot chicken by putting a roll of toilet paper in the freezer at home.
This isn't a dystopian novel; this is real.
The social credit system aims to incentivise “trustworthy” behaviour through penalties as well as rewards. According to a government document about the system dating from 2014, the aim is to “allow the trustworthy to roam everywhere under heaven while making it hard for the discredited to take a single step.”
The controversy has focused on penalties for those who do not pay for their transit trip, thereby committing “fare evasion.” Punishment can be stiff: in the District of Columbia fare evaders on the local transit system, Metro, could get a $300 fine and 10 days in jail. That’s hard to square that with a comparably light $30 fine for an expired parking meter in the District of Columbia—especially since transit riders are more likely to be minorities or have incomes below $15,000 than the general population.
There are 50,000 tourists to Antarctica every year?
Ever since Beijing approved Antarctica as a tourist destination about a decade ago, the number of Chinese visitors making the journey has jumped from zero to more than 8,000 a year (making up about 16 percent of all tourists to Antarctica in 2018).
It took a nearly six-figure helicopter ride for an excavator, some frustrating bureaucratic jujitsu, sleepless nights and lucky weather, but Jantzer and others managed to avert the immediate crisis by modifying the dam before it failed.
Now the excavator, marooned amid a dispute over how to get it out, is a symbol itself of the water problems deep in Pacific Northwest wilderness.
Better. Than. Fiction.
The Soviets took notice. Not long after his initial discoveries, Mr. Frey said, he was invited by the Soviet Academy of Sciences to visit and lecture. Toward the end, in a surprise, he was taken outside Moscow to a military base surrounded by armed guards and barbed-wire fences.
“They had me visiting the various labs and discussing the problems,” including the neural impacts of microwaves, Mr. Frey recalled. “I got an inside look at their classified program.”
Moscow was so intrigued by the prospect of mind control that it adopted a special terminology for the overall class of envisioned arms, calling them psychophysical and psychotronic.
Soviet research on microwaves for “internal sound perception,” the Defense Intelligence Agency warned in 1976, showed great promise for “disrupting the behavior patterns of military or diplomatic personnel.”
Furtively, globally, the threat grew.
The National Security Agency gave Mark S. Zaid, a Washington lawyer who routinely gets security clearances to discuss classified matters, a statement on how a foreign power built a weapon “designed to bathe a target’s living quarters in microwaves, causing numerous physical effects, including a damaged nervous system.”
Mr. Zaid said a N.S.A. client of his who traveled there watched in disbelief as his nervous system later unraveled, starting with control of his fingers.
I want to go to there.
Black Restaurant Week started in Houston in 2016 and has since spread to five other cities. The restaurant Kitchen 713 has been one participant in the promotion, serving “Global Soul” food from its location near Rice University. Another is Turkey Leg Hut, a wildly successful late-night restaurant owned by the couple Lynn and Kia Price. Music was already pounding at noon, when I sat at the bar. Behind it hangs a yellow neon sign: WHEN LIFE GIVES YOU LEMONADE, ADD HENNESSY. That apparently goes equally for when life gives you turkey legs. The Hut's signature item is a tomahawk-size leg, smoked until ruby red and ready to fall apart at the slightest touch; one version comes lacquered with a sweet, slightly spicy Hennessy glaze. (There is also a Cîroc Mango Habanero version that I felt would be too performatively woke to order.) The legs are also available stuffed with shrimp Alfredo or crawfish mac and cheese.
Sounds like my hometown.
Not everything is to be had for a dollar, but rarely is anything priced above $10. But there is a cost. Dollar General’s aggressive pricing drives locally owned grocery stores out of business, replacing shelves stocked with fresh fruit, vegetables and meat with the kinds of processed foods underpinning the country’s obesity and diabetes crisis.
Dollar Generals are frequently found at the heart of “food deserts”, defined by the department of agriculture as a rural community where one-third of residents live more than 10 miles from a grocery store selling fresh produce.
ICE is a division of the Department of Homeland Security, and therefore not an official branch of the American military. HOWEVER…you don’t have to be Nancy Drew here to glean that the president is attempting, in his characteristically blunt way, to troop-ify ICE. He’s trying to make them as bulletproof as our armed forces, and to frame them as brave public servants willing to do the dangerous work that you, the coddled civilian, are too weak and spineless to do. ICE agents are risking their lives to keep you SAFE. You are the beneficiary of their bravery fighting the supposed animals of MS-13. You want ICE on that wall, you need ICE on that wall, etc.
All you have to do is brand ICE as a quasi-military operation, and you’ll get Wingnut Facebook to fall in line. They have troop-ified ICE, among other entities. They’ve also troop-ified local police departments, even giving them military-grade equipment so that they look the part. And, of course, they have troop-ified the troops themselves.
Fucking titles. Preach!
This is why ad agencies are collectively wondering why the Deloittes and McKinseys of the world have been moving into our world. Someone with an MBA working at a consultancy with three years of experience commands respect, while a person with the same credentials at an ad agency receives none. Quite simply, the person at a consultancy firm is given a basic title and thrown into the trenches with very little optical oversight, and in so doing is effectively able to get things done. The opposite is true in an ad agency. A junior or intermediate account person or creative left alone with a client, without layers of oversight and safety measures, which of course creates the opposite effect.
But it’s not simply the scale of requests that is perplexing utility staff. Many would-be miners have no understanding of how large power purchases work. In one case this winter, miners from China landed their private jet at the local airport, drove a rental car to the visitor center at the Rocky Reach Dam, just north of Wenatchee, and, according to Chelan County PUD officials, politely asked to see the “dam master because we want to buy some electricity.”
This might explain how we’ve arrived at this improbable moment when microdosing LSD in order to increase workplace productivity is, in some precincts, more professionally acceptable than having a glass of wine. But it’s not LSD that has replaced our midday cocktails; it’s that other modern intoxicant: productivity.