More novels should invent macroeconomic concepts.
Who did neoliberalism?
The extent to which the iconic movements of the ’60s United States fed on existing liberalism and fed into neoliberalism is, however, all the more reason not to isolate the New Left as a singular cataclysm that destabilized the New Deal order. Far from a gently humming machine that could have kept operating indefinitely were it not for the intervention of a new generation of radicals, the United States’ simulacrum of social democracy was a fragile assemblage of competing intellectual tendencies and political coalition partners that was always threatening to fall apart.
I’m an asshole, he says. Don’t you love me?
On Deborah Levy
There is something to the way Levy writes that makes one believe she could hear, see, read, or experience anything and say: OK. She offers many interpretations, but few judgments and even fewer conclusions. Her loyalties are total and her betrayals are final.
January 18, 2022
On Dave McKenzie
Petty and glorious, revenge personalizes class war.
In the spirit of what he has called “unhinged generosity” toward the reader, Leyner wants to keep the gravy flowing.
On Pete Souza’s Obama
Once safely out of office, he acknowledged that “millions of Americans” had been “spooked by a black man in the White House.” An undeniable truth, but one that was miles away from the embrocations he had offered the country when he launched his national career by declaring that “there is not a black America and a white America.” That kind of thing sounds like denialism to some, a postracial utopia to others, and then, in certain places, like a threat.
The New Deal order was simply too fragile for its winners to prioritize solidarity with less-protected workers.
After all, no one ever mentioned the putting of a human dick into a living mollusc.
The restaurant before and after Covid
Pandemic-era restaurant culture extends and amplifies forces that were already apparent under the old regime: the numbing frictionlessness of delivery food, the retreat into private spaces, the appification of everything. By raising the cost of staying afloat online, Grubhub and Yelp have contributed more to the demise of Covid-era restaurants than their survival. Delivery workers’ bodies are now deemed essential, but their paychecks remain as murderously trivial as ever.
Inasmuch as the end of the world already feels imminent — we are, after all, staring down mass racial injustice, environmental catastrophe, and a global pandemic — vague gestures toward a radical restructuring of society without even a basic blueprint feel, if not incomplete, indicative of a failure of imagination.