A few items I’ve recently stumbled upon or thoughts I’ve had:
- First, my first letter to the editor of the San Antonio Express-News was published last Sunday.
- While reading this, consider Facebook’s timeline and how its algorithm decides what you see and, thus, what you inevitably assign importance to:
As media scholar Ganaele Langlois aptly puts it, algorithms have the power to enable and assign “levels of meaningfulness” — thus setting the conditions for our participation in social and political life.
- The disorganization and infighting in Trump’s White House have made clear the president’s ineptitude as a chief executive.
- Recent legislation filed in a number of states would increase penalties against protesters who block highways and streets. Now, I’m no fan of protesters who cause traffic congestion — especially on highways and interstates — and the safety issues that poses, but terming such as “economic terrorism” is, obviously, melodramatic. (One piece of legislation would remove the penalty for running over a protester.) “Economic disruption” is a better phrase, but disrupting the business of corporate owners is the only tool union members can rely on as leverage. Criminalizing such would be criminalizing strikes.
- It’s interesting that those living in small towns and cities are the ones most afraid of terrorists when those of us in the cities, where a terrorist attack is most likely to occur, aren’t worried about refugees blowing us up to the same degree. Aside from the Bowling Green Massacre, of course.
- This quotation from The Pen and the Brush: How Passion for Art Shaped Nineteenth-Century French Novels reminds me of the Ruta Maya days, Brianna, John, et al.:
Poets make friends with musicians, musicians with painters, painters with sculptors . . . the one replies in madrigals to what the other gave him in vignettes.
More to come, but I must work.