February 2017Spectacle

Good Reads for February 2017 (and a video or two)

Essays and articles of recent vintage that socialists and fellow radicals might have missed, from various sources and often proposed by our readers.

DSA member Steve Early reviews an important new book on inequality for Portside.

 

A New York Times tech columnist laments that the unifying quality of mass broadcast TV is giving place to a socially atomizing mode of access through streaming services like Netflix. "The two versions of 'One Day at a Time' are noteworthy bookends in the history of television, and, by extension, the history of mass culture in America."

 

Naomi Klein updates her model of Disaster Capitalism for the Trump era, in Common Dreams.

 

From Medium, Emily Robinson on "De-Dudeing Socialism," a fine practicum sent our way by Peg Strobel on [DSA-Activist].

 

Brookings distributed this piece from veteran journalist-theorist Tom Rosenstiel about how journalists should adapt to a media landscape that was shifting radically well before Trump and his methods came on the scene. Among other things, a call for "collaborative intelligence" as a template, "blending the unique attributes of professional reporters with the power of machine learning and the intelligence and multiple vantage points of a networked community to learn and verify news at a much greater speed than ever before." Longish and wonkyish, but if you're worried about the press this is a useful framework for your thinking.

 

What's wrong with police unions? After all, they are supposed to protect members from unreasonable acts of their superiors. But the contracts cops write, all over the nation, protect them and their practices and actions from scrutiny by the public they are sworn to protect and serve. A deep dive into the issue by a Reuters investigation, from Portside.

 

Thanks to Jake Rowland at DSA national for this one; Jake is a leader of our new design teams that are making DSA's visuals so attractive to eyeballs.

 

David Cay Johnston is in Tom Edsall's league as a nitty-gritty chronicler of the venal underbelly of capitalist exploitation [and less deadpan]. Here in a Washington Spectator piece (via Portside) he exposes the wide difference between what Trump's working-class supporters think they will get from his tax promises and the self-dealing ruling-class reality of what's on the table for "tax reform."

 

From Portside, IPS' Phyllis Bennis on the chaos of Trump's so-called foreign policy.

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