Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Episode 114: Coffee and Water Everywhere

Play Now!

It's time to once again let my gums flap without a script to guide them. I've done that before; all I need is sufficient anger. In this case the outrage source is the idea that some people are better than others, that because of their circumstances, they prove able to get stuff for "free" that others are denied, even when those others have the cash to pony up for whatever those entitled offerings might be. This is a class-based distinction, and so far too few seem to be sufficiently outraged at the ever-increasing instances of it popping up here and there. I thought I would help spread my outrage in this Episode 114: Coffee and Water Everywhere.

I was inspired/enraged by an NPR article from September 29, 2018, titled "No Cash Needed At This Cafe. Students Pay The Tab With Their Personal Data." I know, right!?

I also play: a dictionary definition from my computer; Martin Luther King, Jr. opening the show with KMFDM backing; and the primary show closer, Mistle Thrush.

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Monday, October 29, 2018

Special Announcement: The Cherry on My Crap Mondae

Play Now!

'Nuff said.

Addendum: Never mind. It was a fishing attempt. It's amazing what 2 hours of sleep and a really crappy day will do to one's brain, though. Ah, fatigue!

That said, I'm going to leave this snippet up just because it jives nicely with a topic I've been mulling about for some time now. Having this snippet will kick-start me into turning that snippet into a full-blown episode.

Thanks for your attention. Carry on.

—Jim

Monday, October 22, 2018

Episode 113: Drab Walls Dance… With Ads

Play Now!

Once again, I focus my attention on an inflection point, a moment in history when a technological improvement allows manufacturers to apply that tech in a new and previously impossible way. Today's technology is the color poster that, when introduced, made Episode 113: Drab Walls Dance With Ads.


More Chéret! More!


In this episode, I read extensively once again from Tim Wu's 2016 book The Attention Merchants: The Epic Struggle to Get Inside Our Heads. Musically, I play: Graham Bole's "Sunset at Goat Fell"; Lee Rosevere's "What's Behind The Door"; and Podington Bear's "Submerging Blue-Black". KMFDM backs Clark Gable in the opening. I close the show once again with Mistle Thrush.

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Special help came today from listener Vincent who gave me much needed assistance with the French language. In the course of editing a show together, I have seldom had as much opportunity to just… giggle. Thank you, Vincent! Your contribution was perfect!

Monday, October 8, 2018

Episode 112: Ragged Dick, Right Here

Play Now!

Ever wonder why a book was published? Ever since I saddled up and started riding this hobby horse of mine, this podcastic obsession I have with advertising and its deleterious effects, that's a question I can never not ask. I ask it again in Episode 112: Ragged Dick, Right Here, the conclusion to my deep-ish dive into author and cultural dog whistle Horatio Alger.

In this episode, I read pretty extensively from the introduction to Horatio Alger's Ragged Dick, at least from a more modern printing of that book (Horatio Alger, Ragged Dick and Mark, The Match Boy: Two Novels by Horatio Alger, The MacMillan Company, 1962). I think Rychard Fink used Ragged Dick to do his bestest to help thwart the leftist tendencies rising in his time. I also read: from Ragged Dick itself; and from a Politico article concerning the real reason behind the Little House books, an article I highly recommend you read yourself.

Musically, I play: Turmoil's "The World Is A Toilet"; and Podington Bear's "Ideas." KMFDM backs Bernie in the intro, and I close the show with Mistle Thrush.

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Episode 111: I've Got Your Ragged Dick

Play Now!

People have been describing the ascendence of busy business mucky-mucks from poverty to power for over a century as those that lead a Horatio Alger life. The trouble is, I'm willing to bet that precious few of these people so quick to throw out their easy descriptor have ever actually read a Horatio Alger book. Let's correct that in this Episode 111: I've Got Your Ragged Dick.

In this episode, I read from: Horatio Alger's 1867 book Ragged Dick; and from my computer's quickie dictionary. I also gave some plot examples from Upton Sinclair's Lanny Budd series, at least that portion I've read.

Musically, I played Jahzzar's "Storyteller." KMFDM opened the show backing Burlington Mayor Bernie Sanders; and I'm closing the show today with Mistle Thrush's "It's All Like Today."

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Monday, September 10, 2018

Episode 110: Head Banging

Play Now!

Alas, another diversion from the promised path, this one in a new form! Curious about how best the future of podcasting should proceed money-wise, I consult someone far more expert than I in making podcasting pay, if only a little: KMO of the C-Realm Podcast & Radio, and most recently the GEBB.IO web comic. KMO and I put our heads together for a bit of what I'm calling Episode 110: Head Banging.

I open the show with Henry Giroux backed by KMFDM; and I close with Mistle Thrush.

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Episode 109: Casserole

Play Now!

Sometimes leftovers happen. Why waste a perfectly good ingredient or two or three or seven just because there isn't enough of any one for a meal? Time to toss with pasta, bake, and serve up these perfectly tasty but two-year-old ingredients in Episode 109: Casserole.


Fun story behind these….


In this episode, I read from some old newspapers concerning their opinion of Col. Blethen; D. L. Myers reads the poem "All Is Well" by an Anonymous author from 1912, the poem found in Upton Sinclair's 1923 book The Goose-Step, which reprinted it; and from the depositions of Monica Lewinski.



(I don't remember which ones or where I found them online two years ago. I do remember it was a hell of a hunt for the poorly scanned gif images of the deposition papers without a hint of optical character digitization.)

Musically, I play tiny, tiny bits of: Lee Rosevere's "Thinking It Over"; Jupiter Makes Me Scream's "Shine, Shine, Shine!"; and Pietnaska's "Noakowski." Podington Bear backs the Blethen Chimes poem with "Feldspar"; KMFDM backs Mark Blyth; and Mistle Thrush backs me in the close.

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Episode 108: Day Breaks

Play Now!

Well, advertising haters, I think I've finally located the source of the scourge that plagues us: the man who invented the business plan that spawned almost wholly advertising-supported news! I'll tell you all about him in this Episode 108: Day Breaks.

In this episode, I read first from Clive Thompson's Smithsonian article, "Tweet All About It: From 'user-generated content' to political screeds, the future of news happens to look a lot like the past" (from the Smithsonian, Volume 47, Number 2, May, 2016, pp. 43-49), and from the book Beyond News: The Future of Journalism by Mitchell Stephens, who was a major source for Thompson's article. Then I had to read from a whole bunch of websites on printing press history to correct Mitchell Stephens and, by extension, Clive Thompson. I also both read from and play Tim Wu talking about his book The Attention Merchants, which was appropriate because he was the one to turn me on to how both Thompson and Stephens were wrong, wrong, wrong.

Musically, I play Podington Bear's "Nocturnal", Turmoil's "Intestinal Parasite Contamination", and Jahzzar's "Dip". I open as usual with KMFDM, today backing Jan Wong, and I close with Julie and Rolf.

I'm releasing this and all my shows under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Episode 107: Pitching Wu

Play Now!

To understand advertising today, we have to avoid simplifications like who paid for what message, and move into the nuances regarding how those paid messages—and the media that took the message money—attempt to capture our attention. So far, no better books address that nuance than Tim Wu's. Allow me, then, to endorse Wu's work by presenting Episode 107: Pitching Wu.

In this episode, I read from two of Tim Wu's books, The Master Switch: The Rise and Fall of Information Empires and The Attention Merchants: The Epic Struggle To Get Inside Our Heads. Again, if you like what I present on this podcast, you will find a lot to love in these books. I also play a bit of Wu himself from his publicity tour, recorded here in Seattle back in 2016. Musically, I play: Podington Bear doing "In My Head"; and Lee Rosevere doing "Gimmicks Three". KMFDM backed Clark Gable in the opening; and I close with Mistle Thrush.

I'm releasing this and all of my episodes under a Creative Content 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Episode 106: Summer Vacation Homework

Play Now!

For reasons too mundane to explain, I've got a short episode this time, one with three pleas for listener participation. Give a listen. I think at least a few listeners might be interested in the topics, and be willing to contribute. Hence, Episode 106: Summer Vacation Homework.

Here's the link to the alternate rules to Elizabeth Maggie's The Landlord's Game. Other than that, I only have one quote from an online article this time, along with the KMFDM intro with Henry Giroux opening the show, and Julie singing and Rolf on the uke for the close. By the time I release this episode, I'll be packing up after camping with both of them around the campfire once again, hopefully with a field recorder filled with new tunes!

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0, share-alike, attribution, and non-commercial license.

Important Post Script! I learned the night before posting this episode that Blogger, the folks hosting these show notes, has a malfunction underway since May, a gefuckening that prevents me from getting notice of comments you post the usual way, through my email. This means I have to do something else to even check for the existence of comments, which is more cumbersome, and therefore is something I will do less often. Meaning, if you haven't heard back from me, don't panic. I will get to your comments, that I promise. I can't, though, promise when.

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Episode 105: Show Me The Incentives

Play Now!

A simple question too often sends my brain into overdrive. That's what happened here, when I was forced to confront the ugly realities of how money warps elections, a confrontation that jived with other reading about how similar realities has warped our nation's agricultural system. If you want to know how things will conclude, consider first Episode 105: Show Me The Incentives.

In this episode, I read from: John Moe's Conservatize Me; Keith Bradsher's High and Mighty: SUVs- The World's Most Dangerous vehicles and how they got that way ; and Charles C. Mann's The Wizard and the Prophet: Two Remarkable Scientists and Their Dueling Visions to Shape Tomorrow's World. I also paraphrased from a podcast episode of Peak Prosperity. Sound-wise, I couldn't resist playing a tiny bit of both Monty Python and The Wizard of Oz.



Speaking of Oz, Julie and Rolf with the Campfire Gang play us out. Earlier, you hear KMFDM backing Tim Bousquet to open the show. I also play two from Jahzzar: first "Dirt"; and then "Octopus".

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0, attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Episode 104: Rave Review: The Hucksters

Play Now!

It turns out there are entertainments out there—books and movies mostly, but other entertainments as well—that cast a critical eye on advertising. It also turns out that these entertainments are seldom if ever seen or heard of today anywhere that relies on advertising dollars to keep the lights on. For that reason, you Dear Listeners have probably never heard of The Hucksters, either the 1946 novel or the 1947 movie adaptation of that novel. The movie version is the subject of this Episode 104: Rave Review: The Hucksters.

In this episode, I play copious excerpts from that movie, and quote once more Victor Pickard's 2013 book America's Battle for Media Democracy (NB: Link to a PDF preview of the book), the book that clued me in on the existence of this movie.

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Episode 103: The Boob's Halo & Halo's Boob

Play Now!

Ever wonder where the term "soap opera" comes from? After all, there are a variety of products sponsoring today's daytime serial dramas, not just soaps. It turns out that that wasn't always the case. In the past, only one sponsor dominated individual programs, as I'll demonstrate in Episode 103: The Boob's Halo & Halo's Boob.

In this episode, I read from: a footnote in Thomas Picketty's Capital in the Twentieth Century; from my computer's quickie dictionary; and from Victor Pickard's book, America's Battle for Media Democracy (NB: Link to a PDF preview of the book. Also, I neglected to mention Mr. Pickard's book in the show's concluding credits. I regret the omission.) I exerted quite a bit from a toothpaste company comedy hour featuring Spike Jones and the City Slickers Orchestra that aired February 11, 1950.

I also play: Lee Rosevere's "Last Call"; and Podington Bear's "Ideas" and "Crafty". I open with KMFDM backing Bruce Livesey's observations about the power of business interests; and I close with Spike Jones.

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Episode 102: The Mundane and The Sublime

Play Now!

Dualistic language is a problem for me, especially in this overly-polarized media where opinions are not held lightly but with as much force as can be mustered into the opinion blusterscape. By actively seeking less Good-Versus-Evil language, less dichotomous and divisive terms of description, we take the first step into embracing gradualism and nuance into whatever topic might be under discussion. Hence, Episode 102: The Mundane and The Sublime.

In this almost wankish look at descriptors: I read from my computer's quickie dictionary; and I paraphrase what I found to be a fascinating set of cognate word origin from Kevin Stroud's History of English Podcast. I also play the first "great" from longest-time listener L33t Minion into my theme stinger. Thank you, L33t.

Musically, I wove Podington Bear's "Fantasy" and Lee Rosevere's "As I Was Saying" into the show. KMFDM backs Henry Giroux's observation on the importance of civic literacy in the opening, and I close the show to Mistle Thrush's "It's All Like Today."

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Episode 101: So Good, So Far, Maybe, I Guess

Play Now!

While I'm wading through written material that will provide future grist for the yakking mill, what else to discuss? How about a brief recap of material already covered, along with asking how I'm doing? Hence, Episode 101: So Good, So Far, Maybe, I Guess.

In this episode, I read from: a New York Times article concerning Nix-ian psychographics; and from quotes and a "reference" found in Tim Wu's most recent book, The Attention Merchants: The Epic Struggle To Get Inside Our Heads. Doesn't the title say it all? I also play: Alexander Nix, giving a speech I'm willing to bet he now very seriously regrets ever making; and a now-banned online video ranter. (If anybody has any idea who this is, please, drop me a line in the comments.)

Oh, and another goof: I forgot to mention D. L. Myers doing my Powell Movement stinger in the show and its notes. I regret the oversight.

For musical bumpers, I play three song intros from Lee Rosevere. In order, they are: "Things We Mean To Say;" then "Curiousity;" and finally "Content." KMFDM's "Attack/Reload" backed the original Dmitri Orlov intro; and I'm closing once again with Mistle Thrush's "It's All Like Today."

As usual, I'm releasing this episode under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Episode 100: Mai FrootiToons Daybew

Play Now!

Ah, the celebratory nature of stuff that divides cleanly by ten! Time to reminisce, to look back, and to do new stuff as well, such as to make Episode 100: Mai FrootiToons Daybew.

In this episode, I play Tim Wu talking right here in Seattle about his newest book, The Attention Merchants: The Epic Scramble to Get Inside Our Heads. That talk was backed by Podington Bear doing "Jettisoned." I also play Raphae doing "Opening," close the main body of the show with someone singing "Poop in a Bucket," a song my sister sent me from a video advertising, no kidding, a product you use to, well, collect your own feces for garden fertilizer use. (I'll keep looking for the link; I've misplaced it.) I opened with KMFDM's "Attak/Reload" backing Bernie Sanders, and am now closing the show with Mistle Thrush's "It's All Like Today."

I also play snippets of the John McKenna song "20 Observations About Poo." I thought of playing the whole hilarious song, but I forgot it ran 9 minutes. By the way, John is a friend of a friend. He did this album of freaking hilarious tunes a few years ago; I played another of his songs on Episode 8, in case you're curious to hear more. If you want more than that, just leave your feedback here, and I'll contact him and get permission to play another.

I'm releasing this and all my shows under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Episode 99: The Headwaters of Bullshit River

Play Now!

When commercialism dominates our reference materials, what else can we expect other than the inability to discover facts, especially those hostile or critical of commercialism? I explore that theme (in a somewhat snarky way) in this Episode 99: The Headwaters of Bullshit River.

In this episode, I read: a few times from my computer's quickie dictionary; and from Upton Sinclair's 1934 book I, Candidate for Governor, and How I Got Licked. I also referenced the findings of a blogger.

Musically, I slipped Podington Bear's tune "Climbing the Mountain" behind my recollections of Orwellian readings past; and let Full Load of King's "Envelope Infrared Part I" back my closing remarks. KMFDM backed Bernie Sanders in the opening; and Rolf and Julie shred it in "Over the Rainbow" in the close.

I'm releasing this and all of my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Episode 98: So Many Layers of Fail

Play Now!

Sadly, in my last episode, I had to gloss over many details involving Mark Zuckerberg's company that I would have loved to launch and rhetorically blast out of the sky. Consider this Episode 98: So Many Layers of Fail a follow-through on the last, giving a far-from-final blast of rhetoric toward Mark and his minions the Effin' Bees.


Just a taste of what's to come.


In this episode, I play: the voice of Sara Wachter-Boettcher, from an interview she gave to Chuck Mertz over at This is Hell. I quoted extensively from her book Technically Wrong: Sexist Apps, Biased Algorithms, and Other Threats of Toxic Tech. I also read from: George Monbiot's book Out of the Wreckage: A New Politics for an Age of Crisis; a Guardian article titled "Facebook’s war on free will: How technology is making our minds redundant"; from Nir Eyal's book Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products; and a ProPublica article entitled "Facebook Enabled Advertisers to Reach 'Jew Haters'".

Musically, I opened once again with KMFDM's "Attack", this time backing Brian Kaller's observation about glowing rectangles and the fascination they bear; Lee Rosevere doing "We're Almost There"; and, woven into the end and playing now in the close, Visciera doing "Ceasing".

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Episode 97: Pull!

Play Now!

Back in my youth, my friends and I would occasionally gather to share ideas for projects. More often than not, though, we would pretend to first load shotguns before we asked someone to share by saying "Pull!" Into the conversation the idea would go; again, more often than not, it would be tracked by the listeners, who would follow with their imaginary shotguns and, when the time was right, pretend to fire. I thought I would give Mark Zuckerberg, head of the Effin' Bees, a taste of that experience in this Episode 97: Pull!

In this episode, I played audio from: Mark Zuckerberg's post election damage control video; and Alexander Nix very specifically describing why Mark's "solutions" simply won't work. I also read from Cathy O'Neill's Weapons of Math Destruction.

Musically, I played: Podington Bear doing "Operatives;" and Jahzzar doing "First Contact." I opened with Brian Kaller's observation of the screen-bound chasing their viral anger McNuggetts, that from Kaller's C-Realm interview with KMO (Episode 434: Ferguson Rorshach), backed by KMFDM; and I'm closing with Mistle Thrush.

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Episode 96: Cranky Jack Hammers

Play Now!

People are entitled to their opinions. They are not, though, entitled to spouting their opinions unchallenged when those opinions perhaps deliberately ignore crucial bits of history that, if better known, might greatly undermine the importance of those opinions. To issue just such a challenge is my aim in this Episode 96: Cranky Jack Hammers.


From this wonderful site.


In this episode, I excerpt Clive Desmond's selective history of commercial radio titled "A 700 Foot Mountain of Whipped Cream" (aired in edited form on 99% Invisible). I also play: Podington Bear doing "Bad Cut;" and Jahzzar doing "Reflections. To close out Black History Month, I produced a brand-new KMFDM opening that backed Martin Luther King, Jr. As usual, I close the show with Mistle Thrush.


My source for the MLK audio.


I read from: Henry Giroux's book, The Violence of Organized Forgetting; Tim Wu's The Master Switch: The Rise and Fall of Information Empires (the source of the Herbert Hoover quote); J.C. McQuiston's article in the August, 1922 issue of Radio News (something I also discovered thanks to Wu's book); testimony from the 1935 Federal Communications Commission hearings on radio policy; and a sentence from a letter written in 1934 to the magazine The New Republic. [I goofed when I finished up the episode by forgetting to list in the credits the quoted sources. Oops. I regret the error, but hadn't the time to correct it.]


Zappa's album cover mentioned in the episode.


I'm releasing this and all of my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 share-alike, attribution, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Episode 95: Let Me Educate You

Play Now!

I confess: I sometimes screw up. We all do, after all. The point worth remembering is not the fact that we D'oh! on occasion, but what we do afterwards. And, given our almost universal screw-upped-ability, it's probably best to not assume we are god's gift to the unlearned every time we drop "knowledge" on the masses' asses, and, moreover, to occasionally subject our own insights to review. Those two lessons are the subject of today's Episode 95: Let Me Educate You.

In this episode, I read from: my computer's quickie dictionary; and a few chapter titles from Michael Shermer's Why People Belive Weird Things. I played audio from: Sam Harris' Waking Up podcast (Episode 31, "Evolving Minds"); and from "The Hate Debate" from Jad Abumrad's More Perfect podcast.

Tunage includes: KMFDM's "Attack" (backing Mark Blyth); Lee Rosevere's "Multivac;" and two from Jahzzar, first "Lullaby," and then "Dip." I close once again to Mistle Thrush's "It's All Like Today."

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Episode 94: A Zillion Ringy Dingies

Play Now!

Though it has long been a presence in most of our homes, the telephone has of late morphed into an infernal device that has driven many to simply do away with land lines altogether, not out of a desire to simplify, but out of a need to have peace and quiet reign when they are home, uninterrupted by unwanted telemarketing intrusions. Hence, Episode 94: A Zillion Ringy Dingies.

In this episode, I read from a Washington Post article, "How robo-callers outwitted the government and completely wrecked the Do Not Call list" from January 11, 2018. You also heard Lily Tomlin doing her Earnestine the Operator bit from the early '70s.

Musically, I included three from Podington Bear: first, "That's Alright," then "Aim is True," and finally "Encounter." I also threw in portions of Anvil. You first hear their Stones cover of "Paint it Black," and close out the show with "Mothra." KMFDM, as usual, opens, this time with wisdom from Mark Blyth.

I'm releasing this and all my shows under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Episode 93: Can Something Else Happen?

Play Now!

(This episode is part of the series The Powell Movement.)

What a long stretch I've taken with Lewis Powell, Jr. and his Confidential Memorandum to his neighbor, the Memo that allowed the very wealthy to shake the country, resulting in the tectonic aftermath we see today. Not that the movement or the shaking has stopped…. So, now that we know what happened, here I ask, in this Episode 93: Can Something Else Happen?

In this episode, I read two pieces of listener feedback, one from thefuturefarm, the other from a listener whose name F#c&Book is keeping secret. I also read from: Nancy MacLean's book Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right's Stealth Plan for America; Jane Mayers' book Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right; and an October 8, 2015, Bloomberg article entitled "This Man Is the Most Dangerous Political Operative in America." I also play the voice of George Monbiot from his October 28, 2017, interview with Chuck Mertz on This Is Hell, and of D. L. Myers intoning the stinger for the Powell Movement.

Musically, I play three pieces from Podington Bear: first, "Small Bummer;" then "Moda;" and finally, "Camp." I open with KMFDM backing Henry Giroux, and close with Mistle Thrush.

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0, attribution, share-alike and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Episode 92: Forget The Bathtub

Play Now!

(This episode is part of the series The Powell Movement.)

There are lots of reporters and speculators mulling over the surprise result of our last presidential election, aren't there? As I've said before, though, this should have been what to expect, if in the last election, then in the next. As money exerts its muscle in its attempt to get its way, the people's choices will matter less and less. What was it that Grover Nordquist said about how small he wants government to get?

Along with the noise about what could have caused this outcome, though, precious few in the commercial media are focusing on signal and the well-connected, well-funded players like Cambridge Analytica. That's what this Episode 92: Forget The Bathtub, tries to do.

In this episode, I read from: a Buzzfeed article; a bit from Max Barry's novel Lexicon; a New Scientist article; the abstract to Michal Kosinski's research on that topic; a Telegraph article; a Motherboard article you really must check out; a definition from my computer's dictionary; and a New York Times article. I quoted: Paul Ford, from an On The Media interview; and Alexander Nix from his Concordia Summit speech. D. L. Myers read from the Powell Memo itself.

Music-wise, I played: two from et, first "A Song of Sadness," then "Joy & Emptiness"; and Podington Bear's "Intermezzo". I opened with KMFDM backing Henry Giroux, and am celebrating the recent season with the Vince Guaraldi Trio doing "Skating."

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 share-alike, attribution, and non-commercial license.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Episode 91: Refining Mining Into Tragic Magic

Play Now!

(This episode is part of the series The Powell Movement.)

I am constantly amazed at how people bend themselves into cognitive dissonance pretzels rather than admit that there are psychological pressures at work on all of us, so much so that maybe we should make ourselves aware of the pressures that prove most effective on ourselves. You know, to see when we are being snookered.

That's roughly the thrust of this Episode 91: Refining Mining Into Tragic Magic. This is an introduction to the concept that the technology used to determine ad targets and what best moves them may have gone too far, especially when used in political concerns.

In this episode, I read from: Nir Eyal's Hooked; a New York Times Magazine article entitled "How Companies Learn Your Secrets"; a Paste Magazine article, "Hillary Clinton's Super PAC, Taking a Page from Vladimir Putin, Spends $1 Million on Online Trolls"; and a New York Times article called "Fake Russian Facebook Accounts Bought $100,000 in Political Ads".

I play a bit of audio from: the movie Top Secret; President Ronald Reagan, correcting David Brinkley's pronunciation during his last interview as president; Mark Zuckerberg, trying to reassure everyone that he wasn't evil; and an On The Media episode titled "Trust Issues." D. L. Myers, of course, voices the memo itself.

I play two from Jahzzar, first "Twin", and then "Downtown Serenade". KMFDM backs a new intro from Henry Giroux. I close with Mistle Thrush.

I'm releasing this and all my episodes under a Creative Commons 4.0 attribution, share-alike, and non-commercial license.