No. 24 The Jig Is Up!
Hey, it’s our play issue, in which David Graeber hopscotches over the robotic universe of contemporary science and winds up inventing a new law of reality. Barbara Ehrenreich calls for a science that can explain why fun is fun. John Summers reports from “The People’s Republic of Zuckerstan”—once known as the liberal community of Cambridge, Massachusetts, now a playground for startup science and tech professionals. Gene Seymour rescues science fiction from the warped real-world utopias of certain plutocratic cybervisionaries. Andrew Bacevich dances on the grave of Tom Clancy, the recently departed hack thriller writer. Ian Bogost analyzes the addiction economy lurking behind cutting-edge free-to-play videogames, while Rhonda Lieberman walks us through the trophy rooms of leisure-class art hoarders.
And that’s only the half of it. Look here for head-spinning salvos by Chris Lehmann, Susan Faludi, William T. Vollmann, George Scialabba, and Heather Havrilesky on history, politics, feminism, and literature. Anne Elizabeth Moore makes sport of Vice magazine. Alex Pareene practices journalism on the New York Times’ DealBook. Fiction by Paul Maliszewski and J. Wagner; short prose by Jaron Lanier, Gabriel Zaid, and Erik Simon; poetry by Thomas Sayers Ellis; and hilarious graphic art by Brad Holland, Mark Dancey, and David McLimans, who gave us the cover. Not to win or lose the game, but to be free of the system of winners and losers—that’s the spirit.
Table of Contents
UNDER THE TABLE
Nerds on the Knife Edge
The Real Toy Story Michael Wolf
THE JIG IS UP!
The People’s Republic of Zuckerstan
What’s the Point If We Can’t Have Fun? David Graeber
A Thing or Two about a Thing or Two, a.k.a. Science
The Billionaires’ Fantasia
Hoard d’Oeuvres: Art of the 1 Percent
Rage Against the Machines
THE DOLLAR DEBAUCH
Neoliberalism, the Revolution in Reverse
Deal Me Out: A stacked deck at the New York Times
The Vertically Integrated Rape Joke: The triumph of Vice
Anne Elizabeth Moore
Paul Maliszewski and J. Wagner
Airea D. Matthews
It was the year we turned to dragons
What It Look Like
A Poet’s Guide to the Assassination of JFK [The assassination of poetry]
Thomas Sayers Ellis
THE LITERARY PLAYGROUND
Feminism for Them?
Tom Clancy, Military Man
Decently Downward: An appointment with John O’Hara
William T. Vollmann
How Sweet Is It?
Feminism for Men
Melinda Beck, William Bengston, Joseph Ciardiello, Mark Dancey, Henrik Drescher, Michael Duffy, Mark S. Fisher, Mary Flatley, Patrick JB Flynn, Stuart Goldenberg, Brad Holland, David Johnson, Victor Juhasz, Lewis Koch, Stephen Kroninger, Zohar Lazar, David McLimans, P. S. Mueller, Chris Mullen, Alain Pilon, Jonathon Rosen, Laurie Rosenwald, David Sandlin, Katherine Streeter, Mark Wagner, and Michael Wolf.