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Showing posts from May 18, 2008

Dr. Causabon scribbles a bit more in his notebook

J'devrais penser à m'forger un moral en acier trempé ne plus m'ronger mon vernis bleu cyber nacré m'sentir en sécurité sous protection à indice élevé traumatisée faudrait pas stigmatiser pas compliqué c'est pas compliqué j'trouve pas ça tell'ment sorcier bien décidée mes idées se sont arrêtées –Ysa Ferrer William Lilly, the astrologer and antiquary, left an autobiography. The beginning of his real life, outside of school (where he learned to speak Latin as well, he claims, as English) went like this: My father had one Samuel Smatty for his Attorney, unto whom I went sundry times with letters, who perceiving I was a scholar, and that I lived miserably in the country, losing my time, nor any ways likely to do better, if I continued there; pitying my condition, he sent word for me to come and speak with him and told me that he had lately been at London, where there was a gentleman wanted a youth, to attend him and his wife, who could write, etc. I acquain

Morons - tasty eatin'!

LI would advise readers to go to this superfinereview (heh heh) of Bill Bishop’s The Big Sort. Who is that reviewer, anyway? Give him a raise! At the moment, I am using Bishop as my template for political prognostication. Which gets us to the moron tax. The moron tax is the increase in the price of commodities, particularly oil, which have reliably fever charted its way across the Great Fly’s America. One statistic that truly struck Bishop, and should strike any politically astute observer, is the correlation between party affiliation and population density. The lower the density, the more likely the area will be GOP leaning, and vice versa. Now, it is easy to deduce from this handy factoid a few things: those exurbs were, in the naughties, some of the hottest construction sites around. Maricopa, Arizona is an exemplary GOP exurb: it is economically dependent on a larger metropole, it was constructed wholly on spec by drive by land speculators, it is an environmental horror, s

Marxalot

Turn on the news, it looks like a movie It just makes me want to sing Louie Louie From looking at my stats, I see what the vast majority of LI’s readership wants: naked pictures of Lady Bitch Ray. Unfortunately, she hasn’t mailed me any lately. So I will revert to a few jottings about a subject so sexy and hot that surely, aficionados of LBR’s perfect derriere will not be totally unhappy. I’m speaking, of course, about Marx and the German Ideology. Ho ho. Northanger, at a certain late point in the comment stream on Phantoms of Ideology, asked me what it was that I found particularly stunning about Amie’s discussion of ideology in Marx. What I found stunning about it was that Amie took Marx’s notion apart, and showed how it worked and didn’t work. This is in the best tradition of what Victor Skhlovsky, the Russian critique, called “estrangement” – by examining a thing as a composite rather than as a immediate whole, one gains a certain intellectual and moral mastery over a seeming

The britneyological report of the week

Again, a heavy schedule of editing is keeping LI from being the usual mad gabber. We have another post in the Marx and liberalism vein coming up, but a more urgent matter has loomed. As thousands of you have pointed out in outraged emails to me, LI has not taken a position on the all important Britney-Mel Gibson shocker. As a Britneyologist, I should have seen this coming. Mel, an aging rogue, is in a way a perfect protest pal. If she is going to be deathmarched by her Dad through terrible sitcoms and through court appearances involving chaste dresses with sensible shoes, why not chose the Leninist strategy of exacerbating the contradictions? This is my own take on what I can’t help but regard as a weakness, on Brit’s part, for manifest scoundrels. But luckily, reports are surfacing of one Felipe, who seems much better for Brit than the antisemitic drunk: Britney Spears is clearly working hard on her sobriety, rebuilding her career (''How I Met Your Mother'') and, I'

amazing news from the relative impoverishment front!

You don't know me I am an introverted excavator... Alas, LI is up to his keister ( whose word is that, I wonder? my mom’s? My grammie’s? the words that come out of a person went into a person first, and that mild word for butt, ass, or – for my Americanismophobe, Mr. Lawrence – arse must have been put in me a long ago ) with editing. There is nobody quite as demanding as a Ph.D. student with a week to turn in the final product. I think this is a truth universally recognized. LI found the tussle of the comment thread that followed Amie’s post totally cool. For me, thinking about the the construction not only of a marketbased industrial system, but of a shift in emotional norms and in the legitimation of political action, there was a lot of good hints about paths to follow. We’d like to write a post about, say, Marx, ideology, liberalism. I’d like to write it today, and drop everything, but, ho ho ho, the spirits of the telephone bill and the electric bill will have something to

Will Andrew Moonen be charged with Murder at Last?

Those of us who wonder if Andrew Moonen of Blackwater is ever going to be charged with the Murder of Raheem Khalif got some news, today – amazing news. The FBI is going to investigate! 15 months after the murder. Good job, you bloodhounds of justice! Now, if Andrew Moonen is actually charged, surely Margaret Scobey, the State Department officer who prepared Moonen’s flight and paid him a tidy sum, who administered the cleaning of State Department records concerning his crime, Margaret Scobey, his assistant, his help, his staff and his rod, Margaret Scobey of the State Department who is still employed, and is nominated as our Ambassador to Egypt, which will surely give Congress a chance to evade its duty and shame us still more deeply – oh, surely there is no way to avoid bringing her to justice unless justice stops at the powerful, unless the clique of kleptocrats that run us has changed the rules to make themselves not only invulnerable to charges of treason, to fraud, but even