Tagged: cultural analysis

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Alan Catlin’s “Blue Velvet”

The slim chapbook “Blue Velvet,” winner of the 30th annual Slipstream Prize, is the perfect gift for someone who normally hates poetry. Author Alan Catlin, a well-published scribe intimate with the thrilling debasements of our popular culture, has written thirty or so homages(?), with titles like Blade Runner, The Deer Hunter, and Crash. His language is plain, strong,...

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Pizza Protest

Finally, what many of us long suspected has been categorically confirmed. No, not that the Democratic primary was rigged by the Clintons and their vassals at the DNC, rendering the millions of us who contributed to and volunteered for Bernie Sanders into suckers at a carnival midway trying to knock down milk bottles nailed to...

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Who Deserves to Be Sheltered from the Storm?

Just around the corner, a couple of blocks from our idyllic, tree-lined street, a homeless encampment has taken root on the sidewalk beside a utility building owned by AT&T. Nylon tents, food refuse, unwashed people — it’s an unlovely sight in an otherwise lovely neighborhood. Many of the wealthy homeowners in the area have taken...

Taking a Knee

A wealthy white friend of mine includes me on occasional BCC emails containing golf jokes, sex jokes, and, every now and then, political jokes. The latest one I got  — and I thought it was pretty funny — proposed a massive boycott of the NFL on our most sacred holiday weekend (Veteran’s Day). The humorous...

From the Department of Prognostication

In the near future — 20 years? 50 years? — capitalism will implode. The vast majority of what we today consider “jobs” will be accomplished by machines running on artificial intelligence. Billions of people will rendered useless — except as highly nutritious protein meal for their machine-owning overlords. Without wages, consumption of goods and services...

Expelling Children to Make America Great Again

Although progressive thinkers may have little ideological  common ground with President Great, we still admire his best qualities, the better angels of his nature. One beautiful character attribute President Great (and the vast majority of his steadfast supporters) consistently display is deep, profound, passionate love. They’re lovers. President Great and his acolytes love America deeply, they love...

A Righteous Application of Misanthropy?

Have you seen any of the popular listicles enumerating the Top 5 Things You Can Do to Save the Planet? The Top 3? If not, can you guess the Number One Thing You Can Do to Save the Planet? Hint: It’s not “switch to LED bulbs.” Going full vegan is almost the strongest move. So...

Elegy for American Values

Every year around this time, as we gather to overeat and watch “bombs bursting in air” — and what better way to symbolize America’s chief national fetish? — our celebrations of liberation from the British Crown offer an opportunity to review some of the reasons why it’s great to be an American. Aside from a ridiculously...

Reefer Gladness in 2017

Despite copious evidence that we may be currently living in a dystopia typically found in richly imagined novels, a Kingdom of Stupidity ruled by an overgrown baby wearing bespoke suits over his diapers, here’s a an important bulletin: Everything isn’t falling apart. At least here in Los Angeles, California, everything hasn’t fallen apart. Yes, we...

How to Make Yourself Irresistibly Attractive and Attractively Irresistible

Been hiking a lot lately, where what is and isn’t a “fact” seldom is argued. How nice to get away from “the news” — fake and otherwise. How nice to commune with the birds and the trees, basking in the sun, which, incidentally, is in no way whatsoever responsible for warming the planet, since the...