- Depravity Is Downstream of Donald Trump – The Atlantic – > Andrew Breitbart himself thought Donald Trump was a con man and no conservative, but he doubtlessly would have enjoyed the showmanship and sheer disruption of Trump’s primary campaign. – (trump rhetoric politics )
- [toread] The Observer view on Donald Trump’s unfitness for office – Your sixth month diagnosis: vipers, clowns, being held hostage
> Like some kind of Shakespearean villain-clown, Trump plays not to the gallery but to the pit. He is a Falstaff without the humour or the self-awareness, a cowardly, bullying Richard III without a clue. Late-night US satirists find in this an unending source of high comedy. If they did not laugh, they would cry. The world is witnessing the dramatic unfolding of a tragedy whose main victims are a seemingly helpless American audience, America’s system of balanced governance and its global reputation as a leading democratic light. – (politics trump tragedy )
- Donald Trump Tramples on Boy Scout Values | The New Yorker – Best Accidental Trump. Parable. Ever. – (none)
- David Bromwich · The Age of Detesting Trump · LRB 13 July 2017 – > President Trump, monster and scapegoat, is too rash in his overall demeanour, too uncalibrated in his words and gestures, too ill-adapted to the routines of politics to carry credit even when he is speaking common sense. – (none)
- Trump is ushering in a dark new conservatism – The real nostalgia is for the 1930s, not the 50s. – (politics trump )
- Full Text, Analysis: Donald Trump Jr. Emails On Meeting With Lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya : NPR – Annotation is the new broadcast. – (politics discourse trump )
- “I’ve Made You Believe There Is a Point” | ACADEME BLOG – TED Talks. Simply boring? Or simply boring platform for bogus Thought Leaders, self-promotion, and wasted lives? – (none)
From Society of the Spectacle
Everything that was directly lived has receded into a representation.
The spectacle is not a collection of images; it is a social relation between people that is mediated by images. …
The spectacle is the ruling order’s nonstop discourse about itself, its never-ending monologue of self-praise, its self-portrait at the stage of totalitarian domination of all aspects of life.
Trump’s clandestine business discourse is out of place on the social stage of politics. The result is that it unmasks both discourses as spectacle. It calls attention to the construction of the spectacular. Trump’s attempts to create change are shown everyday to be attempts to control message. In the spectacle, changing message is changing reality. It’s all that’s needed for a win.
The spectacle trickles down. Trump’s daily unmasking of the national administrative political spectacle also unmasks the discourse of other administrative contexts and calls them into his crisis of credibility. So that, locally, university administrators lose their agency as Trump reveals that their actions are attempts to shape the message rather than administrate real change. Declare a win, and you’ve won, but only because “Everything that was directly lived has receded into a representation.”
- Trump’s dangerous thirst for a clash of civilizations – The Washington Post – Trump the Colonialist. It suits you, sir. – (politics colonolialism trump )
- Noam Chomsky: On Trump and the State of the Union – The New York Times – > ridicule is not enough. It’s necessary to address the concerns and beliefs of those who are taken in by the fraud, or who don’t recognize the nature and significance of the issues for other reasons. If by philosophy we mean reasoned and thoughtful analysis, then it can address the moment, though not by confronting the “alternative facts” but by analyzing and clarifying what is at stake, whatever the issue is. Beyond that, what is needed is action: urgent and dedicated, in the many ways that are open to us. – (trump politics philosophy_as_action )
- [toread] Amy Collier – Exploring Digital Sanctuary – OFFICE OF DIGITAL LEARNING – – (none)
- Trump 2020 Is No Joke – NYTimes.com – > Trumpism is a form of collective gaslighting at Twitter speed. It is founded on the principle that velocity trumps veracity.
> All of this is serious. But it’s not as serious as the seeping, constant attempt — one sacred value at a time — to disorient Americans to the point they accept the unacceptable, cede to the grotesque, acquiesce to total arbitrariness as a governing principle. On one side the Constitution; on the other the rabbit hole that leads to the Trump International Hotel. – (politics rhetoric trump )
- Forget Julius Caesar – Trump is more like Richard III, Shakespeare’s satanic joker | US news | The Guardian – > Sponsorship, a British director once told me, is implicit censorship. … . A spokesperson for one of the sponsors said the portrayal of Caesar was clearly designed “to provoke and offend”, which some of us thought was one of theatre’s basic functions.
Why else would business put money behind art? Or a brand on a hockey rink? Or their name on an endowed chair? – (politics )
- In Trump’s America, a thick-headed man’s incredibly thin skin is threatening free speech | Opinion | The Guardian – Thick head, thin skin is no reason. But the point is that censorship is here. Political correctness now comes from the right.
> That large corporations are punishing creative expression because it is critical of Trump is worrying. Even more worrying, however, is the insidious but understandable creep of self-censorship among everyday Americans. This week provides yet another example that, when it comes to Trump, exercising your right to free speech – that dearest of American values – can prove an expensive endeavour. – (polemic politics censorship trump )
- Pigeons and Personalization: The Histories of “Personalized Learning” – Take your pick, says Audrey. Show your politics.
> But “personalization” is not simply how we cope with our desire for individuality in an age of mass production, of course. It’s increasingly how we’re sold things. It’s how we are profiled, how we are segmented, how we are advertised to. – (education globalcapitalism )
- Donald Trump Poisons the World – With toxic positioning – Trump's "cleareyed outlook that the world is not a ‘global community’ but an arena where nations, nongovernmental actors and businesses engage and compete for advantage" makes the global community a global hallucination. Asserts the only position is his. Closes debate. Explains his spectacle. Illustrates how politics differs from business. Assigns us each our role. – (trump rhetoric politics globalcapitalism )
- A Parallax Reading of Roethke’s “My Papa’s Waltz” | samplereality – Bringing close reading into focus. Method! – (modernism litcrit DH )
Tufte writes about attention and misdirection.
To create illusions is to engage in disinformation design….
In conjuring, strategies of disguise and attention control work to regulate the optical information available to the spectator. As we have seen for the backpalm and the copper-silver coin exchange, a common technique is to disguise smaller motions by means of larger motions; the ﬁngers craftily manipulate while the hand grandly waves. The attention-attracting but resolution-reducing character of motion is described by Henning Nelms:
“Although movement attracts attention, it also diminishes visibility. When a thread is used to support a light object, it can be seen from a surprising distance even when its color matches the background. However, the slightest movement makes it disappear. A large movement can be used to conceal a small one. For example, the weak spot in The Strong Man’s Secret [a trick based on a cut-and-restored storing] is the action of cutting the loop. The technique . . . can be made more deceptive if you keep the knife still and force the string against it by a sudden movement of the left hand. . . . The large movement of the left hand and the string draws every eye away from the kmf’e so that no one can observe the unnatural way in which the string is cut.”
And in detective stories, the small clue that solves the mystery may be similarly disguised: “It is Agatha Christie, too, who regularly contrives that just as the clue is dropped a distracting m‘cident occurs. Here we are close to the art of the stage conjurer.” As well as close to the arts of propaganda, strategic Intelligence, and politics — although for magic, at least, the targets of the deception are aware and pleased that they are being deceived. Tufte, Visual Explanations, 64.
Is any given bombing in Italy the work of leftist extremists, or extreme-right provocation, or a centrist mise-en-scène to discredit all extreme terrorists and to shore up its own failing power, or again, is it a police-inspired scenario and a form of blackmail to public security? All of this is simultaneously true, and the search for proof, indeed the objectivity of the facts does not put an end to this vertigo of interpretation. That is, we are in a logic of simulation, which no longer has anything to do with a logic of facts and an order of reason. Simulation is characterized by a precession of the model, of all the models based on the merest fact – the models come first, their circulation, orbital like that of the bomb, constitutes the genuine magnetic field of the event. The facts no longer have a specific trajectory, they are born at the intersection of models, a single fact can be engendered by all the models at once. This anticipation, this precession, this short circuit, this confusion of the fact with its model (no more divergence of meaning, no more dialectical polarity, no more negative electricity, implosion of antagonistic poles), is what allows each time for all possible interpretations, even the most contradictory – all true, in the sense that their truth is to be exchanged, in the image of the models from which they derive, in a generalized cycle.
Baudrillard, Simulacra and Simulations, 13.
- The Pretense of Neutrality: Twitter, Digital Liter – – (none)
- Spell-Check Nation – Decorum conceals power, calls for its return are calling for no less than a return to that power.
> Propriety, so it goes, makes the community; it brings the white folk together. But too often they mistake their binds for bandage. A wound wrapped twice is still a wound. Shame on the fools who believe themselves safe. The incision is deep, and being made deeper still. – (politics trump rhetoric )
- Labour Party Manifesto 2017 – – (rhetoric polemic politics )
- Facebook fake news: Sort it out yourself, readers – What? Be skeptical? Another country heard from.
"Facebook's list reflects the prudishness of the American news media it is now trying to please, where reporters take a vow of holy objectivity."
"Fundamentally … Facebook, and Silicon Valley, doesn't want to hold a mirror to itself and its role in the clickbait content economy, which is the only economic model it wants to pursue." – (facebook rhetoric )
- Predicting Financial Crime: Augmenting the Predictive Policing Arsenal Brian Clifton1, Sam Lavigne1, and Francis Tseng1 – It's about time: crime predicition algorithms used to map $$ crime. This is the paper behind the app behind the scenes. I feel safe now. I feel as safe as houses. How do you feel? – (ethics art rhetoric algorithms )
- 100 days of gibberish – Trump has weaponised nonsense – > Without language, there is no accountability, no standard of truth. If Trump never says anything concrete, he never has to do anything concrete. If Trump never makes a statement of commitment, Trump supporters never have to confront what they really voted for. If his promises are vague to the point of opacity, Trump cannot be criticised for breaking them. – (politics rhetoric trump )