Friday, February 27, 2009

No, I Will Not Perish (yet) Horn

Ben Smith's Blog: Anuzis joins campaign against EFCA -
SEIU head fights to merge labor unions - Ben Smith -
Indeed, the anti-EFCA campaign is turning into something close to a full employment project for Republicans in exile. They were also giving away a Wii at CPAC yesterday.
Punditry: re the labor movement paints us as intrinsically tied to the electoral/legislative process and thus "special interest"-y...Maybe that's appropriate? We should ask Dave "I was born a Democrat and I'll die a Democrat" 3544 about this some time.

Slowcore Week: Slint and Codeine - a shared musical language? / In Depth // Drowned In Sound Pukekos: Codeine

Okay, in its matter-of-fact way, this is some of the best writing about Slint that I've read. Indeed, some of the speculation about possible Slint influences even kinda makes sense: Ubu, late Birthday Party, King Crimson, s/t-era Sabbath. Read this, even if you don't know who Slint are, because you need to know who Slint are. (Also, of course, Codeine are the original, glacial rock formation. But we've spoken of Codeine before, much more than Slint, who made what is probably, if I'm honest, my favorite record of all time with Spiderland. Check out the complete Codeine 7" discography on the Pukekos link above, btw.)

Economist's View: The Employee Free Choice Act
Bloggers and Unions Join Forces to Push Democrats -

Anyway, back to Big Labor. 'Seems we've even got our own squadron of Post-Keynesians, these days, telling people, shucks, maybe doing something to stimulate growth in real wages'd be interesting, and maybe it'd be even more stimulative than, say, lowering interest rates and/or maintaining a strong dollar policy? I wonder to what extent the MoveOn, kos-ish "progressive" crowd can be said to be on board with the Economic Policy Institure, CEPR milieu? Or are they more of a Center for American Progress Crowd? Do they have their own research institutes? Increasingly, I dwell upon the in-politics of those privileged wonks who're allowed to "shape" policy "debates."

Michael D. Yates, "Michael Steele Is a Nitwit and Wolf Blitzer Is a Jackass"
Ben Smith's Blog: Coming back to Romney -

And then there's the old Republican Party and the old conservative movement. Notice that I don't put "movement" in scare quotes: their thing is as real as any cargo cult or drum circle, to me. Conservatism is a social fact.

Letter from Washington: The Gatekeeper: Reporting & Essays: The New Yorker
Twitter / clairecmc

As I mentioned before, I do love my glimpses into the inner workings of staff meetings, staffers and staffers' bosses. "The Gatekeeper" is a long, fascinating portrait of Rahm, probably my most guiltiest pleasure of a good time in recent days. Claire McCaskill is easily one of our coolest senators and also one of our least snobbish.

Open Left:: Nate Silver to Progressives: STFU and Defer to the Serious Experts and Czars
Digby populism tango

What does it say about me, that I cannot quite bring myself to "care" about rival tendencies and rival formations within the Netroots? I dunno.
But I do know this: remember our legendary (and worth-revisiting) "let's eliminate these adjectives" thread from the Prisonship? I have a less elitist, more parochial, but nonetheless similar directive in mind for mainstream political discourse: nobody should be allowed to use the term 'populism' until having read Ernesto Laclau's On Populist Reason. Surely I have no authority, and only a scoffing, sardonic-at-best relationship with the kinda at-large political philosophy that informs whatever kinda dumbed-down 'realist' orthodoxy permeates pundits' collective consciousness. But in my ideal world, let's say, 'populism''d have a stable referent. And activists, at least, could drag it out of the gutter of commentator-speak and the graveyard of flippant, loose snob-lips.

Stephen Malkmus | Pitchfork

Do you know what? Malkmus never seemed that likable to me in interviews, until now! Dig his really interesting, sober appraisals of what was going on during the short life of "indie rock" (1989-1994).

Language and Obama’s Budget - The Caucus Blog -

Who else has budget mania? Don't stop until you get enough.


gabbagabbahey said...

Codeine's The White Birch is too painful to listen to - empirically proven fact.

at least, with headphones, at 8am in the morning on a packed double-decker bus of silent commuters.

oh, and it was a Monday too.

but seriously, I always wondered why I never really listened to that album that often.

schmidrew said...

that malkums interview is good.

lex dexter said...

gabba, yr White Birch scenario reminds me of arriving at Shannon Airport at 6am on a Monday morning, and busing to Galway with what turned out to be a large crop of pre-teen Catholic school girls.

i was listening to Zen Arcade at the time, but still...

bottom line? i am thin on "slowcore (sic) in Ireland" experience, and i hope to address that through some sort of exchange program in the near future.