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Showing posts from January 4, 2004
Bollettino We’ve examined the combinations with regard to Iraq. Let’s examine the combinations with regard to Bush’s re-election. Most analysis of the election that LI reads in the paper is determined by a very short horizon: what happened this week. Or last week. And what the polls say about it. But let’s try to take another approach, and look at the bad news and good news possibilities held by this year. If good news is taken to help Bush, what good news can he expect? It was the orthodoxy – from October to December – that he would be enjoying great economic headlines in 2004. The newest employment figures rather kick that in the head. Plus the figures that aren’t being publicized – the dip dip dip of the value of the dollar. If unemployment doesn’t go down, the money flowing into the market might start seeking to take advantage of the dollar’s currently low status. This would be a double whammy of bad news for Bush. This is the hardest thing to predict. Economists h
Bollettino In our series of posts about Libya, we listed three dishonorable honorables – federal judges whose recently disclosed behavior during the Edwin Wilson trial should lead to the resignations of the two of them still on the bench, D. Lowell Jensen and Stephen Trott, and should cast a shadow over the third, Stanley Sporkin, who served as a judge in the very prominent D.C. Federal Court. Today, the NYT has a story about the Monsanto Judge . It is so nice when a major corporation has a judge in its pocket, it so makes one feel that capitalism is being guarded from its enemies.. The judge, Rodney W. Sippel, is a Clinton appointee – by way of Gephardt. When he was a mere lawyer for Husch & Eppenberger, he worked as a lawyer for Monsanto, and is even listed as a Monsanto lawyer on a price fixing case. Now, as a Judge, he is presiding over a Monsanto price fixing case. Oh, and he forgot to disclose that previous connection. But not to worry! We are assured by the archons
Bollettino LI readers should rush right out and read the winter issue of Common Knowledge. Surely that is the best general scholarly journal since Raritan. Well, okay, there’s Critical Inquiry, but let's not quibble. Common Knowledge has devoted the to the ‘second world:” Central and Eastern Europe. This is a world of drowned kingdoms – Austro-Hungary, the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union, Bohemia, and the like. Even as they were drowning, certain writers – Joseph Roth, Robert Musil, Andrei Bely – caught a last, fantastic glimmer. But we wanted to quickly go to the Galin Tihanov’s “Why Did Modern Literary Theory Originate in Central and Eastern Europe? (And Why Is It Now Dead?).” Cognescenti will know that we are according the highest praise when we say that Tihanov encyclopedic, smart essay reminds us of T.J. Clark. Tihanov doesn’t have Clark’s tactile ability – Clark’s ability to describe a painting so that you can track it with your eye, if your eye was endowed with su
Note from LI Well, we’ve been doing this for two and a half years. As our faithful readers know (LI has bitched often and loud enough that they ought to know), LI has been luxuriating in the character stiffening circumstances of the Bush recession, like a man falling downstairs on his ass who pretends it is a cheap form of chiropractery. Another tough month is upon us. As we were walking home with our groceries – you know, the Fosters and the salami – we figured, why not beg a little. No doubt, too, we’ve been influenced by a scarifying book that we are reviewing for the Austin Chronicle, The Working Poor, by David Shipler . It is a work of journalist ethnography concerning the forty to sixty million Americans who make enough money not to be considered poor, but too little money not to be considered credit risks. Shiplen went around, talking to these people. The authorial persona was sometimes condescending, but mostly pretty on top of things. For instance, he notices the way all A
Bollettino Smoking guns... aborting the dreams of a swindler Well, the WP has finally tracked down the most terrible threat ever to be faced by the American Republic. Yes, I’m talking of the truly awesome WMD capacity nursed, like a snake nurses its kittens, by Saddam the Monster. They have a picture of the reason we went to war on their site, here . Is it scary or what? One wonders if the paper got an ultra security clearance to publish these two extremely dangerous and war-worthy diagrams. Perhaps they can be waved in the air when our POTUS addresses Congress for the annual round-up. In other Iraqi news today... The WSJ is fronting an important story about Iraq’s oil industry, today. After extensively pondering how to get away with it, the U.S. is apparently backing away from privatizing Iraq’s oil. “U.S. advisers and Iraqi oil officials, now studying how to organize Iraq's vast but dilapidated oil industry, are leaning heavily toward recommending the formati
Bollettino And in other Cambodian news… When LI was a mere whisp of a lefty, we worked at a now defunct hardware chain store in the paint and crafts department as a clerk. It was a good time for LI. We were moonily enamored of the woman who ran the department – a small, fierce, and (unfortunately for our heart) married woman, D. D. was a little Nubian queen, or thought she was; she was in continuous flirtatious battle with the assistant manager of the place, Henry. We were also going to college then. While the thought of attending a class is enough to makes us ill, now, then we were in the magic undergraduate continuum – everything in class connected with everything in life. It was like being an astronaut and discovering, after landing on a dark planet, a whole other civilization outside the capsule door. It was around that time that Jesus fell out of our life, and Marx fell into it. We had the zeal of a convert when it came to politics. So we left political materials around
Bollettino The new year begins, and one resolves to read the pile of academic journals that have accumulated under the socks and wine bottles in the corner. Yes, I know, faithful LI readers – where to start? Slavic Studies? The Psychoanalytic Journal of Society and Culture? American Studies? Well, we recommend that you fling off the footware and testimony of bibulous nights from your winter copy of Journal of Religion, for there’s an article about one of those obscure figures we have all read and not read – the sad fate, that self-annullation, of the translator. The translator in question is James Legge. Anyone who has read any of the “Oriental Classics,” picked up an anthology of Confucian texts, or pondered the Tao Te Ching in a cheap and older paperback has read Legge. He was one of the indefatiguable Victorian era translators, like Max Muller. Yet what do we know about the man? An article by D.E. Mungello entitled A Confucian voice crying in the Victorian wilderness *. No