Keywords for the Age of Austerity 32: The Take

The "take" has been carefully studied, and its obituary hopefully written many times. As historians of the take like Tomás Ríos, Elspeth Reeve, and John Herrman have argued, the take, whether it's "hot" or not, shares two major, related characteristics: huffy moralizing and speed. The take must come as quickly as possible after the event that requires … Continue reading Keywords for the Age of Austerity 32: The Take

You say “right-leaning,” I say “Alfredo Stroessner”

The phrases "right-leaning" and "left-leaning" have always infuriated me, for perhaps obvious reasons--it's a symptom of the "one-the-one-side-on-the-other" pantomime of even-handedness by which American media depoliticize politics. That is, there are no real sides, and no fundamental disagreements; there is only a political blob called "the center," on either bulging side of which different opinions … Continue reading You say “right-leaning,” I say “Alfredo Stroessner”

The worst -preneurs

In rough order of worst to almost as worst: Mompreneur Tacopreneur Pizzapreneur Ecopreneur Teacherpreneur Petrepreneur E-preneur Pastorpreneur Intrapreneur, extrapreneur, etc. Freedompreneur Leaderpreneur [thanks reader Roger!] Artrepreneur [thanks reader Anne!] Yogapreneur  

Syllabus: Good Grief: Humor and Tragedy in Twentieth-Century U.S. Literature

The German critic Bertholt Brecht wrote that “One may say that tragedy deals with the sufferings of mankind in a less serious way than comedy.” In this class, we will test this thesis by exploring the use of humor to tell stories of personal or social trauma in modern U.S. literature. We will also see … Continue reading Syllabus: Good Grief: Humor and Tragedy in Twentieth-Century U.S. Literature

Entitlements

I came across a 2013 article from the New York Times old Public Editor, Margaret Sullivan, about the paper's use of the word "entitlements" to describe Social Security, Medicare, and other federal "outlays," to use the more technical language that once drove coverage of tax policy. Sullivan agreed with a reader that "entitlements" is a partisan, sneering term … Continue reading Entitlements