Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Weapons of Mass Consumption

Is society reaching the limits of material consumption?  Is it time to scale back consumerism and focus on the flourishing of human wellbeing over quarterly profits?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


(brief tutorial written by Danny Ledonne while camping at Dulles Airport on slow-ass Wi-Fi)

1) OUTLINE YOUR IDEAL GOALS: start by clearing assembling the "best case" scenario of all the items you want to accomplish.  If you fail to list them from the outset, you will never get them during negotiation.  (OBAMA EXAMPLE: start with single payer [i.e. government-run healthcare] instead of insisting it is "off the table" even as your own base of dedicated supporters advocate unrelentingly for it.)

2) ASSESS THE NEGOTIATING POWER OF THE OPPOSITION: How much leverage does your opponent have?  If you are in a weak position to bargain, be willing to concede much.  If you are in a strong position to bargain, be willing to concede little.  (OBAMA EXAMPLE: recognize your party held wide majorities in the House and Senate, rather than spending two years pandering to a group of stalwart ideologues who had a weak public mandate to do anything except attend Tea Party Rallies and appear on Fox News Channel.)

3) RECOGNIZE THE NEGOTIATION FROM YOUR OPPONENT'S PERSPECTIVE: What does your opponent want?  How much compromise are they willing to engage in to get it?  If you understand the mindset of the opposition, your own ability to negotiate becomes more effective.  (OBAMA EXAMPLE: realize most of these ass clowns are in "safe" districts wherein they can continue veering to the right without consequence and with little interest in your centrist positions.  They have demonized you in advance and want nothing to do with your ideas because they think you are a Marxist, a Muslim, a Kenyan, a liberal elite or somehow all of these combined.)

4) GIVE ONLY WHAT IS NECESSARY TO COMPLETE THE EXCHANGE: If your opponent hasn't asked for a particular concession, don't offer it without some modicum of exchange for your own agenda.  If you are in a position to bargain, you really have no need to concede your ground unless it is introduced as part of the negotiation.  (OBAMA EXAMPLE: your opponent already oppose gay marriage, already supports continued military occupation for imperial business ventures, already rejects broad environmental policy reform, already wants to extend tax cuts for billionaires, and already opposes even a public option in healthcare [let alone single payer]... so DON'T concede all of these positions to your opposition as though it will placate them on some other issue.)

5) AS THE COMPROMISE CONCLUDES, REMEMBER THE DESIRED OUTCOME: It can be easy to get muddled in the specifics of a deal, whether trading properties in Monopoly, swapping baseball cards, or running a massive bureaucracy into debt during an economic crisis caused by wanton fiscal malfeasance on Wall Street.  Keep principled, focused objectives in mind - these are the underlying fundamentals by which all your negotiations should be measured.  (OBAMA EXAMPLE: if your base is abandoning you, becoming disenchanted, and feeling alienated... it is because you seem to have forgotten why you were elected or how hard your constituents worked and continue to lobbied for these causes you claim to be representing as you appoint all the blood-stained foxes to guard the feather-strewn hen house).

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Legal Satyricon for ABA Journal contest!

Attorney Marc Randazza is a passionate First Amendment advocate, best known to me for his defense of the (hilarious) satire website that alleges Glenn Beck raped and murdered a young girl in 1990. Read all about it here.

Turns out Marc's blog, the Legal Satyricon is in the running for the first place in the American Bar Association Journal contest! If you enjoy free speech, or just find the PWNing of Glenn Beck to be hilarious, you should vote for Marc Randazza's blog! To vote you need to register here and then vote in the IMHO category here.

Marc thanks you in advance for your support. Glenn Beck doesn't, because while we don't think he raped and murdered a young girl in 1990, we are curious as to why Glenn has been so secretive about this issue...

"Thanks, kids, for remembering that when you're adults,
you will want to keep your First Amendment rights!"

Friday, December 10, 2010

Julian Assange - Heroes Are Hard to Find

It's no secret that I have been focused on Wikileaks for the past two weeks.  I believe so deeply in this moment of history and what it means for democracy, human rights, and the information age. What is happening here will be written about for decades to come.  This music video, the most recent in a series of current events media mash-ups I have created since 2005, is my culminating work on the subject.

"Great men, like great ages, are explosives in which a tremendous force is stored up. Their precondition is always, historically and psychologically, that for a long time much has been gathered, stored up, saved up, and conserved for them, in that there has been no explosion for a long time. Once the tension in the mass has become too great, then the most accidental stimulus suffices to summon into the world the 'genius', the 'deed', the great destiny. What does the environment matter then, or the age, or the 'spirit of the age', or 'public opinion?'" —Friedrich Nietzsche

Friday, December 3, 2010

"Celebrity" in Web 2.0

We have now entered a post-celebrity era - one in which a strange fellow named Keenan Cahill amasses enough YouTube viewership that 50 Cent appears in his webcam cover. The Internet has given the powerless a chance to be seen, all the while challenging the aesthetic dominion of the powerful.

@1:25 FTW! Did Keenan win a contest to meet 50 Cent OR did 50 win a contest to appear in the next BeenerKeeKee upload? All bets are off. The common YouTuber and the certified 8 times platinum rapper share the screen together. Just another day in Web 2.0.