Friday, January 17, 2020


In a mellow mood.

•   For grins (grim grins, but still) here's another newsletter Oval Office scene unlocked for your pleasure. Don't thank me, just subscribe!

•   David Fucking Brooks:
There is Donald Trump’s culture-war Theyism: The coastal cultural elites hate genuine Americans, undermining our values and opening our borders. And there is Bernie Sanders’s class-war Theyism: The billionaires have rigged the economy to benefit themselves and impoverish everyone else.

Each of these stories takes a genuine tension in society and blows it up into an all-explaining cartoon in which one part of America is trying to destroy the other part.

The G.O.P. has been swallowed by Trump’s culture war, and many Democrats seem to be rushing to join Sanders’s class war.
Trump convinces rubes that liberals and Messicans stole their good jobs and made their kids gay; Sanders wants health care and income equality. Same diff! And anyway, David Brooks says, capitalism isn't your enemy, it loves you, but it hates your boss and that's why you'll die in penury:
As Michael Strain of the American Enterprise Institute puts it, capitalism is doing what it’s supposed to do. It’s rewarding productivity with pay, and some people and companies are more productive. If you improve worker bargaining power, that may help a bit, but over the long run people can’t earn what they don’t produce.

Third, and most important, most of the increase in earnings inequality has happened between companies, not within them. As John Van Reenen of M.I.T. has found, all over the world superstar businesses are racing ahead of their competitors. As those companies grow more productive, they earn more profit per employee and pay their workers more. Companies that can’t match that productivity don’t, and their workers lag behind.
So if your Uber, housecleaner, and journalist gigs aren't paying enough to feed you and protect you from medical bankruptcy, blame your employer for not working you hard enough. Go to work for a superstar! Use the keyword search on Monster.
Successful executives are doing what’s best for their companies, gathering as much talent as they can. This isn’t evil. It’s not exploitation.
And by "much talent" he means "many stock buybacks." As long as Brooks draws fat paychecks for his bullshit, he'll assume it's because "capitalism is doing what it’s supposed to do." The rest of us can draw our own conclusions.

•   The fuck:

I'm beginning to think Idiocracy undershot. I mean, at least Macho Camacho showed up sober.

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