Manufacturing Dissent Since 1996
New interviews throughout the week
1012maximillianalvarez

We keep operating on this outdated notion that we are just purchasing technologies to enhance they ways we live, but in fact the technologies we purchase are adjusting the ways that we live, and in fact roping us further into a system that is not built necessarily for our benefit, but is built first and foremost to make profit for the companies producing the things we buy.

Writer Maximillian Alvarez explores the sanctity of waste and ownership in the digital age - as refurbisher Eric Lundgren is imprisoned for criminal recycling, our values around ownership and technological progress are increasingly shaped not just by the products we consume, but corporations and a subservient state.

Maximillian wrote the article The Death of Media for The Baffler.

 


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

Posted by Alexander Jerri
991lineup

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

 

9:15 - Writer Elizabeth Catte explores the work of building solidarity and resistance in Appalachia.

Elizabeth is author of the new book What You Are Getting Wrong About Appalachia from Belt Publishing.

 

10:00 - Live from Seoul, Marc Flury explores missile diplomacy, peace talks and other Olympic events.

Marc was trying to get to PyeongChang but I guess the lunar New Year messed up the bus schedule according to his email?

 

10:35 - Journalist Kate Aronoff explains why Elon Musk owes the public a cut of his private profits.

Kate wrote the article The Case for Nationalizing Elon Musk for In These Times.

 

11:05 - Political scientist Patrick J. Deneen examines the impending, inevitable collapse of the liberal order.

Patrick is author of the new book Why Liberalism Failed from Yale University Press.

 

12:00 - Live from São Paulo, Brian Mier sees US involvement in the dismantling of the Brazilian welfare state.

Brian's book of collected interviews, Voices of the Brazilian Left: Dispatches from a Coup in Progress is available now from Brasilwire.

 

12:30 - In a Moment of Truth, Jeff Dorchen reviews his own movie.

Jeff's movie, in case you weren't paying attention to us plugging it this whole time, is Basmati Blues. He wrote it!

Episode 990

Incogito

Feb 10
Posted by Alexander Jerri
990lineup

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

 

9:15 - Philosopher Riccardo Manzotti explains why consciousness and the physical world are the same thing.

Riccardo is author of The Spread Mind: Why Consciousness and the World Are One from OR Books.

 

10:00 - Political scientist Susan Kang looks beyond the progressive illusion of Andrew Cuomo.

Susan wrote the article The Case Against Cuomo for Jacobin.

 

10:35 - Arielle Sallai and Rachel Reyes of No Olympics LA explain what cities lose when the Olympics take control.

Arielle and Rachel are organizers with No Olympics LA.

 

11:05 - Investigative journalist Yasha Levine explains why the internet has been a surveillance tool since day one.

Yasha is author of the new book Surveillance Valley: The Secret Military History of the Internet from PublicAffairs.

 

12:05 - Journalist and stripper Reese Piper discusses strip club raids and worker resistance in New Orleans.

Reese wrote the Medium article New Orleans Is Trying to Shut Down Strip Clubs. Why This Puts My Life In Danger and the op-ed We're real people with bills to pay, have right to work without fear for The Advocate.

 

12:35 - Our Man in San Juan, Dave Buchen checks in from whatever hasn't been privatized yet in Puerto Rico.

We're talking with Dave for the first time since his three reports in October 2017.

Episode 989

Trigger Discipline

Feb 5
Posted by Alexander Jerri

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

Like everything else – education, housing, food, medical care – luxury needs to move from being privately owned to being entirely available for public use. Just like Yellowstone and Arches national parks, luxury homes, luxury cars, luxury jewelry, clothes, art materials, foods, wines, all of it. Every bit of luxury available all the time for the public to share.

Oh, no! shouts the person with no imagination. But then no new luxury homes will be built. Who will make exceptional wines if they can't hold them hostage for the highest price the market will bear? The only reason we have luxury at all, you know, is because fabulously wealthy people can own it. Their snotty patronage, their willingness to pay top dollar for excellence, is why excellence exists at all.

Maybe so. After all, ever since the social system under which the great Egyptian pyramids were funded and built, we haven't had a similar project, a gigantic pyramid- shaped tomb wasting land and resources so a self-important egomaniac could be buried with all his servants and animals. I guess we'll just have to enjoy the ones that remain from that beautiful time of enslavement and mass stupidity.

True, without kings, no new palaces need be built. Without private luxury, no new mansions need be built. We'll just have to enjoy the ones remaining from that beautiful time when people were stupid enough to believe that a handful of wealth-hoarders deserved the wealth they hoarded, and were so much better than the rest of us that they merited six or seven or a dozen over-sized private habitats. Maybe, if some of them are so determined to hold onto the old ways, we can display them in their former homes like animals in a zoo.

But surely there are people deserving of luxury, the ossified mind persists. You can't mean to suggest that any old self-appointed sculptor eating raw roadkill by the highway deserves to carve their pedestrian design into a singularly glorious piece of marble! Yes, I do. A great artist will make something great out of anything to hand. We needn't worry about running out of art. We might run out of Art Star art. We might run out of the ego- stroked narcissists who get paid hundreds of thousands for their work. Bless 'em, I don't begrudge their success under the current market-obsessed zeitgeist. But once we throw off the tyranny of the market, if an artist was only... read more