Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All

Thursday, March 31, 2016

New York Is Coming

Disrespecting Bernie Sanders

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Another Teaching Day

I have a sore and stuffy nose this morning. Once upon a time that would be a minor annoyance, now, after my epic bleeding episode and hospitalization a few weeks backs, it means full on existential panic. Highly enjoyable. Dreading somewhat the ordeal of commuting in a packed BART train to and from the City today. Anyway, it's another teaching day. This week I'll be talking about Thucydides and the "ideology of facticity" that drives his Eyewitness Epic and the personal trauma and also patriarchal anxiety underlying it. 

"Heightening the Contradictions"

Be very clear, "Heightening the Contradictions" means Democrats losing.
Be very clear, Democrats losing means the vulnerable and exploited lose most.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Teaching Day

In my graduate biopunk seminar in the City we'll be talking about artists Hayden Dunham and Zhang Huan and talking through more Octavia Butler, Adulthood Rites. Still in recovery, still trying to take things easy.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Can Such Things Be?

I sometimes suspect that the twitter primary between Cthillary and Paladin Shinywhite is only incidentally related to the actual Democratic primary contest.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Erasure And Truthiness

I'm a democratic socialist who is supporting Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders. To say more democratic socialists are supporting Bernie, more fool them, doesn't "erase" me. The numbers are the numbers. I am not erased by my failure to erase awareness of the numbers, if I wanted to do such a thing. For myself, I can only try my best to change the reality they represent by offering up arguments from my position of curious marginality to public scrutiny. For example: I am a democratic socialist because I value equity-in-diversity, and I happen to think Hillary Clinton's published policies, critical intelligence, pragmatic temperament, command of the issues, lifelong progressive commitments, and deep and wide connections with coalitions and organizations that must be mobilized in any effort to implement change are far more likely to build on the accomplishments of the Obama era, fatally undermine the reactionary evil of the Republican Party at a time of its greatest vulnerability, and bring this country closer to the equity-in-diversity I value than Bernie Sanders could even though he says he is a democratic socialist like me. That is certainly a more honest effort than whining about my so-called "erasure" would be just because most of my socialist friends and allies disagree with me on this topic for now.

Auntie Establishment

Bird of Ill Omen

The way Bernie supporters go on about the goddamn bird you'd think it was a superdelegate. By the way, if you think this is a winning image for the General Election you are, to put the point kindly, quite mad.

Sanders Media Blackout Conspiracists

Whiny white guys really do love victimhood theater, poor things.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Sanders Dismisses Progressive Southern Voters... Again!

Bernie Sanders literally began his victory speech today by dismissing voters in the South as voters from a "conservative part of the country" and then, in contrast, praised voters of that radiantly progressive part of the country... Utah. This is a truly ugly framing of the contest so far, and one to which his campaign has made repeated recourse. I just want to say that Southern Democrats are among the most righteous, brilliant, hardworking, committed progressives in this country. A decade of activism in Atlanta taught me so. Indeed, a decade of activism with Queer Nation, ACT UP and NOW in the South made me the progressive I am today.

Progressivism Without Pragmatism Is Conservatism.

Pragmatism without progressivism is conservatism.

I have long expected this to be the worst day in the nominating contest for HRC supporters.

But it occurs to me tomorrow's salivating horse-race think pieces in mainstream media and emo purity cabaret crowing on social media will be much harder to take.

So There!

Protest voting reveals incomprehension of both protest and voting.

Friday, March 25, 2016

The False Two Party Equivalency Thesis Is Not Just Wrong But Reactionary

State Of The Two Parties In A Two Party State

So Proud To Be Wrong

Indifference to the differences between Republicans and Democrats disqualifies you as a progressive. Bragging about it qualifies you as a reactionary tool.

Saint Bernard

Sniping at people who are compromising to solve real problems, all from a secure seat in a tiny white homogeneous comfortably liberal state isn't integrity.

Walk. Chew gum. Same time.

Partisan politics are at once inadequate but also indispensable for making progressive change.

With men it's their erections often finish their elections.

Offered without comment.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Another Teaching Day

Yesterday's teaching (and commute) wiped me out, and I embark on my second day with trepidation. It's my undergraduate course on Patriarchy in Greek and Roman antiquity, and I have to cover the ground I missed in the hospital (The Apology and Allegory of the Cave) as well as Aristophanes amazing satire Wasps, assigned for today to get me back on track with my Syllabus. It looks pretty daunting. The sun is shining, however, and it is lovely out. Nice for my long slog to the BART station.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

The Sanders Campaign As Political Miseducation

Upgraded and adapted from the Moot to this recent post:
I can't help the fact that people who have not read my qualified case for Clinton attribute unqualified advocacy to me.
Sanders continues to claim voting in a party primary is a Revolution when it is not. He still claims he can accomplish extraordinarily more progressive outcomes than Obama did which he cannot. He continues to refuse to run as a Democrat in the Senate or support down-ticket Democratic congressional races and attacks the party as "Establishment" all the while trying to assume a position of leadership over it. And he is actively misleading his mostly neophyte supporters about the delegate math he faces and the unlikelihood that party superdelegates who resent all of this would ever switch to supporting him short of a Clinton catastrophe.

It is true that my pragmatic case for Clinton has assumed a more ethical dimension over time. Sanders has disappointed me enormously. I was pleased that the candidates demonstrated how far left mainstream Democratic party politics had moved in the aftermath of Occupy and BlackLivesMatter and expected Sanders to use his national campaign to educate a broader electorate about left policy questions. He has instead demonized his rival and made promises he cannot keep and provided few to no details about anything. I consider his campaign an actively mis-edcuational one at this point and a prompt for generational demoralization that will be costly to the radical ambitions of the left opened up by the ruins of neoliberalism.

I do not conflate Sanders and Trump, but emphasize that any political appeal to white working class voters in America in particular will structurally conduce to racist politics in general. That is a hard truth you may want to deny, but it is true nonetheless. The Sanders campaign is demonstrating this whether you like it or not -- and the Trump campaign, well, surreally more so. Part of the problem here is that so many people are still sensitive because even after generations of carefully making the point that it is not so, asserting that one is abetting structural racism is still misconstrued as an accusation that one is exhibiting racist animus. This leads Americans to waste a huge amount of time tending to white fragility whenever one attempts to address the actually real impacts of white supremacy on actually real people of color.
The Sanders campaign -- and especially Tad Devine -- has explicitly admitted its appeal is to "whiter" states and the results still overwhelmingly bear that out for anybody to see. In fact, these results have assured both Clinton's primary and eventual Presidential victories.
I do agree that it is easy for people who don't want to pay attention to the arguments I am making to misconstrue them. That is always true, and there is nothing I can do about it. Since Sanders is losing, will lose, and deserves to lose, it doesn't bother me much.

Teaching Day and the Fear of Epic Nosebleeds

This afternoon in my Biopunk! graduate seminar we'll be discussing Octavia Butler's Dawn, which I have always loved so much. We'll also be talking about two enormously interesting artists (one of whom is a bit of an impresario would-be artist, granted), Herwig Turk and Gunther Von Hagens. Normally, I'd really be looking forward to all this, but this happens to be my first return to teaching after my hospitalization and I'm rather nervous about everything. At the height of my bleeding in the ER two weeks ago I was actually bleeding not only from my nostrils and mouth but from my ears and eyes as well. My platelet count is still low and even after a week of observation the doctors can't tell me definitively what precipitated the event. So, now I am left imagining myself trapped in a stuffy slow moving BART car mobbed body to body with rush hour passengers as I start fountaining blood from the eyes while everybody panics for fear that I may be gestating Cloverfield aliens or something. Pretty nightmarish. I'm still woozy a bit, having not yet made up the loss of over a liter of blood and would surely be better off staying under the blankets another week -- but adjuncts need to pay the bills and the hospital has seen to it that we have more than the usual bills to worry about now, and so here I go! Wish me luck!

Monday, March 21, 2016

The "Self-Flagellation" Of A White Male HRC Supporter

That's "white male votes," obviously. The "its" refers to the Clinton campaign.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

The "Anger" Of The Hillary Voter

Campaigns Are Job Interviews Not Revolutions

Trump And Sanders Can Have 'Em

If there's one demographic I couldn't care less about my candidate losing it would be that shriveling sniveling marginal minority of dumb resentful straight white guys.

Chris Christie Assures Us Trump Is Promising "Political Riots" If His Voters Don't Get Their Way Not "Literal Riots"

I wonder if Chris Christie would also distinguish literal humiliation from political humiliation.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

"Love Trumps Hate"

Twitter Smells Bitter

Failing to hijack the Democratic Party they so disdain, it would seem that many Bernie-Or-Busters are now retreating back to their pious Naderite, Steinian and reddit margins. Act surprised.

Happy St. Patrick's Day And Be Safer

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Sanders Disqualifactoids

I've been amazed at how pundit comments about how Bernie Sanders' strength is in "whiter states" are now treated as neutral commonplace observations when in fact they are disqualifying for a would-be leader of the Democratic Party. Hillary Clinton is performing very strongly among African Americans (overwhelming majorities), Latinos (less overwhelming majorities), women (two to one). The Democratic Party serves and celebrates the diversity of the REAL Real America represented by the twice-winning and ever-growing Obama Coalition. You cannot succeed in becoming the Democratic nominee, nor succeed in becoming the eventual President in the REAL Real America while failing to appeal to the Obama Coalition. As a white queer activist teacher I am a proud member of the Obama Coalition too. If you aren't an asshole, so are you. I do think that Sanders has improved his outreach to the Obama Coalition a little over time, but it is far too little, far too late. Let's just say the vote counts and delegate counts suggest Democrats won't be feeling Buyers Remorse over a Sanders victory any time soon. After all, if these contests for the nomination and leadership of the Democratic Party were confined to actually self-identified Democrats, Sanders would have won one state: Vermont. I am sure that once Sanders is done with his utterly cynical and disingenuous run as a "Democrat" (a label he has eschewed and even denigrated all his life and which he openly admits he recently accepted only "reluctantly" to make recourse to the money, media coverage, legitimacy, informational and organizational resources the Party made available to his self-described "Revolution") and returns to his Senatorial perch as an "Independent" we can expect him to resume his mostly ineffectual sniping at colleagues trying to solve shared problems with compromises and make modest reforms in the direction of progress from the security of his tiny, homogeneous, white, comfortably liberal postage stamp of a State.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Bernie Code

Every time Sanders says "We need a revolution" all I hear is "I got nothin."

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Schumpeter Was Wrong:

It is the process of predative, not creative, destruction which is the essential fact of capitalism.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Friday, March 11, 2016

Braking for Rainbows

Friday, March 04, 2016

So Self Whiteous

It's easy to indulge in unicorn righteousness cabaret when you're insulated by privilege from consequences of loss to GOP racist patriarchs.


Bernie dead-enders betting the farm on California unicorns should take a gander at the United Farm Workers' Clinton endorsement.

Thursday, March 03, 2016

Clinton's Twitter Game Not Bad At All Tonight

Wednesday, March 02, 2016

Another Teaching Day

Teaching the queerest possible reading of Plato's Symposium today in my undergraduate course on Patriarchy in Greek and Roman Antiquity. A bit bleary from the beer and staying up too late for Super Tuesday.

Your wishlist doesn't impress me.

Show me your fight.

Tuesday, March 01, 2016

The Revolution Cannot Fail, But Can Only Be Failed

After Sanders supporters organize to primary Elizabeth Warren for failing to endorse and thereby win Massachusetts for the Revolution it may be necessary for Sanders supporters also to primary math and possibly all the numbers.

Squeal the Bern

Unicornia's eight thousand delegates are gonna be the game changer come June.

Teaching Day

Today in the City in my graduate biopunk seminar we're finishing up Bruce Sterling's Holy Fire. Students will be presenting on Zhang Xiaogang, Christina Sommerer and Laurent Mignonneau. Planning to bring home beers and Mexican food and making a night of Super Tuesday.