Manufacturing Dissent Since 1996
New interviews throughout the week
1003andrewhartman

It's a good thing if more and more people are moving to the left, especially those who might 10 or 20 years ago voted for centrist Democrats. In that way, I welcome polarization, but I think we need a clearly defined polarization that takes into account class division, and seeks common ground on some of the culture war issues, or at least seeks to put those issues secondary, as we try to go back to a 99% vs 1% division. To me that's the number one priority.

Historian Andrew Hartman visits the new Trump front of American culture wars of the 1980s and 90s (and 60s and 70s) - as longstanding divisions around class and identity remap themselves onto a new cultural and economic landscape in the decade after the 2008 financial crash, and increasing polarization presents both a challenge and an opportunity for the left.

Andrew wrote the article The Culture Wars are Dead: Long live the culture wars! for The Baffler.

 


Episode 993

Road To Joy

Mar 3
Posted by Alexander Jerri

Welcome to the Moment of Truth: the thirst that is the drink.

Anyone remember that Japanese soldier, Hiroo Onoda, who had been out in the jungle, patrolling a small island in the Philippines on behalf of the Emperor, then wandered out one day to discover World War II had been over for 29 years? There was a docu-drama about it called "Gilligan's Island" season 1, episode 15.

Well, that's me, but inverted. I've been in the jungle trying to hold down the territory for no one but myself, or so I thought, and I'm wandering out right now, only to realize World War II is still going on, that's what's been itching and aching and stinking so bad all these years, that where all that noise and smoke was coming from, the workers and poor people and crushed and dehumanized need my service, such as it is, because the enemy is still attacking, so I refuse to surrender.

Or if it's not World War II, it's another Civil War. Or the same one. Or another peasant revolt. Every war is always a civil war, because the borders are imaginary, one of the enemy's tactics in their strategy of divide and conquer. There was civil war over slavery, or was it more than one? In any case, it's sure not over. The one over labor began in the 1800s, and that's still going, labor had a few early victories but now the fascists are winning. The one against poor people, don't even know when that started. Probably when the first rich person sat in his palace on the Euphrates, saw some folks doing work and got paranoid. The one against black equality beginning in the 40s – the 1440s. And there's the formless, asymmetrical, unconventional, continual one against black people, children, poor people, old people, weirdoes, the essentially queer, and just about anyone who isn't a congenital asshole.

All I know is, there's some war, it started a long time ago, and it's still raging, like the most durable priapism in history. White profiteers and their bigoted supporters have been the enemy for a long long time now, fighting against whatever group can be stigmatized as a threat to white people's dainty little picnics. Oh, they love their picnics and their white linens, those white people. You're right, Whitey. We are coming for your frilly Ku Klux Klan church socials. We're going to pee all over them. You will not get the dark stains out of that linen because we all have kidney problems. Maybe if you stopped holding health care hostage in this asymmetrical... read more

Posted by Alexander Jerri
993lineup

Listen live from 9AM - 1:00PM Central on WNUR 89.3FM / stream at www.thisishell.com / subscribe to the podcast

 

9:15 - Author Noliwe Rooks examines profit and segregation at the end of public education.

Noliwe is author of Cutting School Privatization, Segregation, and the End of Public Education from The New Press.

 

10:05 - Teacher Angie Johnson reports from day eight of the West Virginia Teacher's Strike.

Angie is a middle school reading and language arts teacher in Morgantown, WV, and member of North Central West Virginia DSA.

 

10:35 - Geographer Julie Klinger explores the environmental cost of mining 'clean energy' metals.

Julie wrote the article Lithium, niobium, coltan: technological metals destroy Latin American ecosystems for a cleaner world for openDemocracy.

 

11:05 - Author Lynne Segal explains why transformative happiness can only be found with other people.

Lynne is author of Radical Happiness: Moments of Collective Joy from Verso.

 

12:05 - Writer Katie Roiphe makes the case that Twitter feminism is bad for women.

Katie wrote the Harper's cover story The Other Whisper Network.

 

12:45 -  In a Moment of Truth, Jeff Dorchen stumbles out of the jungle to realize the war is still going on.

Already has the beard for the look.

Episode 992

Human / Nature

Feb 24
Posted by Alexander Jerri

Welcome to the Moment of Truth: the thirst that is the drink.

Wayne LaPierre, who has made millions as the public face of the National Rifle Association, stuck his public face into the national debate on whether children have the right to protest the mass killing of other children. He says, emphatically, NO. LaPierre calls the act of children speaking out against gun availability in the US, and the inevitable bloodshed it leads to, communism. And socialism. And he calls Barrack Obama a socialist, and says that if the Democrats get control of any of the three branches of government, they, being socialists, will continue the job they began of destroying our freedoms.

No wonder crazy fascists are killing children, right? I mean, children are communists. Look at how their communist teachers teach them to share. They're trying to take away our freedom. So of course anxious white men are going to try to kill them. They listen to Wayne's story, get nervous, and go out and kill schoolchildren to protect America.

Wayne calls his wondrous fantasy, with a straight face, "the truth." In his fabulous tale, in his imaginary USA, racism, homophobia, xenophobia, and misogyny don't exist. Those problems are invented by "Them," people who just want an excuse to complain and riot. No black men ever get killed by police, no men use their positions of power to abuse and rape women, Donald Dump hasn't enacted draconian laws against people who've migrated here from other countries, gay people are treated just the same as if they were just as good as Wayne LaPierre.

"They," he says. They. These socialists. These liberals, who are socialists. Liberals who are socialists because cheese is meat, smoke is water vapor, gold is friendship. "They use their schools to teach children that their president is another Hitler," says Wayne. They. These liberals who are socialists and these children who are communists.

I'd like to propose a competing narrative, Wayne. In this fable, it's the neo-Nazis in the USA who believe Dump is another Hitler. That's why they came out with tiki torches and guns to march. They believed if they rose up he would give the word to kill non-white people. Now they're disappointed. He's a big disappointment, that Dump, just like Hitler.

Hitler loved torches, because he was part of the long tradition of torch-bearing, monster- chasing mobs – lynch mobs, they're called – and he would have loved tiki torches if... read more

Posted by Alexander Jerri

Welcome to the Moment of Truth: the thirst that is the drink.

Wayne LaPierre, who has made millions as the public face of the National Rifle Association, stuck his public face into the national debate on whether children have the right to protest the mass killing of other children. He says, emphatically, NO. LaPierre calls the act of children speaking out against gun availability in the US, and the inevitable bloodshed it leads to, communism. And socialism. And he calls Barrack Obama a socialist, and says that if the Democrats get control of any of the three branches of government, they, being socialists, will continue the job they began of destroying our freedoms.

No wonder crazy fascists are killing children, right? I mean, children are communists. Look at how their communist teachers teach them to share. They're trying to take away our freedom. So of course anxious white men are going to try to kill them. They listen to Wayne's story, get nervous, and go out and kill schoolchildren to protect America.

Wayne calls his wondrous fantasy, with a straight face, "the truth." In his fabulous tale, in his imaginary USA, racism, homophobia, xenophobia, and misogyny don't exist. Those problems are invented by "Them," people who just want an excuse to complain and riot. No black men ever get killed by police, no men use their positions of power to abuse and rape women, Donald Dump hasn't enacted draconian laws against people who've migrated here from other countries, gay people are treated just the same as if they were just as good as Wayne LaPierre.

"They," he says. They. These socialists. These liberals, who are socialists. Liberals who are socialists because cheese is meat, smoke is water vapor, gold is friendship. "They use their schools to teach children that their president is another Hitler," says Wayne. They. These liberals who are socialists and these children who are communists.

I'd like to propose a competing narrative, Wayne. In this fable, it's the neo-Nazis in the USA who believe Dump is another Hitler. That's why they came out with tiki torches and guns to march. They believed if they rose up he would give the word to kill non-white people. Now they're disappointed. He's a big disappointment, that Dump, just like Hitler.

Hitler loved torches, because he was part of the long tradition of torch-bearing, monster- chasing mobs – lynch mobs, they're called – and he would have loved tiki torches if... read more

Posted by Alexander Jerri
992lineup

Listen live from 9AM - 1:00PM Central on WNUR 89.3FM / stream at www.thisishell.com / subscribe to the podcast

 

9:15 - Historian Keisha N. Blain explores the revolutionary work of women in the Black nationalist movement.

Keisha is author of Set the World on Fire: Black Nationalist Women and the Global Struggle for Freedom from University of Pennsylvania Press.

 

10:05 - Ecologist Andreas Malm examines the future of climate and capital as the storm rolls in.

Andreas is author of The Progress of This Storm: Nature and Society in a Warming World from Verso.

 

11:05 - Journalist Vegas Tenold follows the rebirth of White nationalism in 21st century America.

Vegas is author of Everything You Love Will Burn: Inside the Rebirth of White Nationalism in America from Nation Books.

 

12:05 - Writer Shaun Scott traces a history of Millennials and the world they've inherited.

Shaun is author of Millennials and the Moments That Made Us: A Cultural History of the U.S. from 1982-Present from Zero Books.

 

12:45 - In a Moment of Truth, Jeff Dorchen wonders if he'd be a good guy or a bad buy with a gun.

I would guess a good guy but bad at guns.

Posted by Alexander Jerri

Welcome to the Moment of Truth: the thirst that is the drink.

Sometimes ideas will strike me several at a time, and I'm not sure how they're going to fit together. And then other times, like now, no ideas will strike me, and I'll say to myself, "Sure wish I'd set one of those disparate ideas aside for a time like this." But, you know, it's like that story of the ant and the... other ant.

Some things are obvious. And that's okay. Like that song, "Rehab," by Amy Winehouse. Amy Winehouse was a songwriting, musical, and performance genius, but not so bright about moderation. And the song, "Rehab," where she sings about how people are telling her she should go to rehab, but she doesn't want to – it's no mystery who that's about. It's not "You're So Vain." Amy should not have gone to rehab, she should have moved to rehab. She should've just brought all her little kitchen appliances and lamps and stuffed animals and pipes, and moved in. But she didn't want to. And she decayed before our eyes, from the inside out.

There's a couplet in that song that goes like this, "The man said, 'Why'd'you think you're here?' I said, 'I got no idea.'" What do you make of that line, anything? Because to me it sounds like shorthand for a story I heard from a young Irish drunk in Israel back in the spring of '81. His name was Sean, if you can believe it. He lived on the kibbutz where I was, shall we say, stationed – it was Givat Oz, also known as The Reject Kibbutz. Another time, perhaps, I'll tell you about that, and the many times I escaped death during my ulpan.

Sean was roommates with Robert, the hectored intellectual from Montreal, and Ariev, the guitar-playing stoned ladies' man from Montreal. Sean was a storyteller and a fiction writer. And a drunk. And the three of them and whoever dropped by in the evening would sit around drinking, singing songs, discussing poetry and philosophy, and appreciating Sean's stories. Sean was Irish by blood and affinity, but he went to school in Georgia.

And Sean told a story about rehab in Georgia, which was meant to illustrate the hubris and futility of trying to get good-time Charlies like him to give up the sauce.

There was an old guy named Hawkins in the rehab with young Sean, and it was sharing time, and everyone was talking about the horrible things drinking had done to their lives and their loved ones and even to strangers. But old Hawkins would just spin these tales about how he... read more

Episode 991

Polis Scanner

Feb 19
Posted by Alexander Jerri

Welcome to the Moment of Truth: the thirst that is the drink.

Sometimes ideas will strike me several at a time, and I'm not sure how they're going to fit together. And then other times, like now, no ideas will strike me, and I'll say to myself, "Sure wish I'd set one of those disparate ideas aside for a time like this." But, you know, it's like that story of the ant and the... other ant.

Some things are obvious. And that's okay. Like that song, "Rehab," by Amy Winehouse. Amy Winehouse was a songwriting, musical, and performance genius, but not so bright about moderation. And the song, "Rehab," where she sings about how people are telling her she should go to rehab, but she doesn't want to – it's no mystery who that's about. It's not "You're So Vain." Amy should not have gone to rehab, she should have moved to rehab. She should've just brought all her little kitchen appliances and lamps and stuffed animals and pipes, and moved in. But she didn't want to. And she decayed before our eyes, from the inside out.

There's a couplet in that song that goes like this, "The man said, 'Why'd'you think you're here?' I said, 'I got no idea.'" What do you make of that line, anything? Because to me it sounds like shorthand for a story I heard from a young Irish drunk in Israel back in the spring of '81. His name was Sean, if you can believe it. He lived on the kibbutz where I was, shall we say, stationed – it was Givat Oz, also known as The Reject Kibbutz. Another time, perhaps, I'll tell you about that, and the many times I escaped death during my ulpan.

Sean was roommates with Robert, the hectored intellectual from Montreal, and Ariev, the guitar-playing stoned ladies' man from Montreal. Sean was a storyteller and a fiction writer. And a drunk. And the three of them and whoever dropped by in the evening would sit around drinking, singing songs, discussing poetry and philosophy, and appreciating Sean's stories. Sean was Irish by blood and affinity, but he went to school in Georgia.

And Sean told a story about rehab in Georgia, which was meant to illustrate the hubris and futility of trying to get good-time Charlies like him to give up the sauce.

There was an old guy named Hawkins in the rehab with young Sean, and it was sharing time, and everyone was talking about the horrible things drinking had done to their lives and their loved ones and even to strangers. But old Hawkins would just spin these tales about how he... read more