Friday, September 25, 2009

Changes

With regard to the blog, a change in location (thanks to some cyberstalking weirdo), name, and traffic flow have led up to an opportunity to think about my focus here. I've been a bit busier as of late, so my posts are becoming a bit more sporadic. When I do post, I'm finding myself not just wanting to comment on the latest outrage, but rather comment at different level. For better or for worse I am a voice (certainly not the only voice, and thankfully not the most prominent) on the radical left. I find myself wanting to make more explicit a distinction between radicalism and extremism - the latter of which I find highly toxic (I've mentioned the paranoid style of American politics before), and a bit too prominent in contemporary discourse for my comfort. I am deeply concerned with the devolution in civil discourse that we've been witness to in recent years, and especially in recent months. You'll probably see more efforts to highlight that particular concern, noting wherever possible what I believe are some of the root causes.

Since I'm a bit of a pop culture junkie, I've been indulging in sharing some of that with you in recent weeks and months and will continue to do so much more often. I happen to find much in contemporary pop culture that is helpful in understanding the American Zeitgeist. A simple cartoon such as Venture Bros. can, for example, is a rather stunning commentary on the state of American society and its concerns and offers a contrast to the "anything is possible" mindset of the middle decades of the 20th century. I started an essay on that particular cartoon, and hope to have the finishing touches completed sometime in the next few weeks.

I've been advocating health care reform quite often in recent weeks - not so much due to some affinity with the Obama regime or the Democrats, but rather simply because the status quo is so bad that even the rather ideologically stunted efforts by the Pope of Hope and his minions would serve as a major improvement (and might within a few years bring our quality of life indexes up to par with those of some of the more successful post-Soviet-era eastern and central European nations, as opposed to being barely better off than most third-world nations).

I really haven't had much time to focus on American hegemony, but will from time to time use this space as a voice against war and against economic exploitation. If it weren't already obvious to many who characterize themselves as "left or left-leaning" it should be now: neither of the two major parties is willing or able to break with the status quo: occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq; threatened invasions and occupations elsewhere around the globe; a failure to abandon the "free trade" agreements that have starved and displaced millions throughout the Americas and across the globe.

Oh, and somewhere the should be some room to discuss baseball. Life can't be all bleak.

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