Quote of the day (see above; also left) belongs to Amanda F. Palmer, alumna of The Dresden Dolls, fiance of Neil Gaiman, and friend of The Rumpus (who have almost certainly already linked this, so even though I found it on my own let’s assume a HAT TIP to them; if nothing else they had AFP play one of their fundraisers and she was great). Anyway, AFP went to the Golden Globes because NG’s film Coraline was nominated for something. Her debrief on this experience is about a thousand pages long and worth every minute of your time–pissed off security guys! playing dead on the red carpet! Mike Tyson! armpit hair!
The Nation has Rebecca Solnit on how the media exacerbates the problems faced by survivors of disasters by the way in which it covers them–particularly in referring to scroungers food and supplies as “looters.” “Covering Haiti: When the Media is the Disaster.”
Felicia Sullivan blogs an elegy for Salinger that I think speaks for itself.
Matt Taibbi is still a badass. David Brooks thinks economic populism is like racism against rich people. Michael Steele wishes! Everyone else just thinks DB is a giant flaming dick. Anyway, here’s Taibbi-
And the really funny thing about Brooks’s take on populists… I mean, I’m a member of the same Yuppie upper class that Brooks belongs to. I can’t speak for the other “populists” that Brooks might be referring to, but in my case for sure, my attitude toward the likes of Lloyd Blankfein and Hank Paulson has nothing to do with class anger.
I don’t hate these guys because they’re rich and went to fancy private schools. Hell, I’m rich and went to a fancy private school. I look at these people as my cultural peers and what angers me about them is that, with many coming from backgrounds similar to mine, these guys chose to go into a life of crime and did so in a way that is going to fuck things up for everyone, rich and poor, for a generation.
Their decision to rig the markets for their own benefit is going to cause other countries to completely lose confidence in the American economy, it will impact the dollar, and ultimately will make all of us involuntary debtors to whichever state we end up having to borrow from to bail these crimes out.
When you think about it, the title of this post really asks two questions. The answers, as near as I can tell, are, respectively, nobody and nothing. But Felicia Sullivan (author of The Sky Isn’t Visible From Here and former everything-in-chief of the venerable & lamented Small Spiral Notebook) isn’t so sure. Over at her blog, she takes on what she calls “the culture of entitlement” within the literary world today. Then, in the comments section, Rachel Fershleiser (of Housing Works, Smith magazine & co-editor of the Six Word Memoir books) raises some questions about the assumptions underlying the arguments of the post. Things get pretty heated pretty quick, between the two of them and a third commenter named Les, who seems more interested in critiquing Rachel’s grammar than listening to what she says. (Felicia, on the other hand, dives in head-first). It’s an interesting back and forth between two smart people (and Les), who actually seem to be talking TO each other at least as often as they’re talking PAST each other, which in internet-thread terms is basically a miracle of loaves and fishes. I am still sorting out my exact thoughts about this debate/discussion, but forget about what I think for a second. WHAT DO YOU THINK?