The Baffler,  August 19, 2014

Daily Bafflements

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• Dust off your monocle and top hat, New York City’s Metropolitan Opera and two of its unions (representing its orchestra and chorus) have finally come to a deal.

• Today in Advice from Billionaires: If you want to make it rich, see where this billionaire “agitator” invests and simply follow his lead, says Forbes. And don’t worry if you start small in life. With a little hard work and luck, you, too, could go from shoveling driveways to making a fortune on eyeball drugs.

• And now for a little global perspective on cops and guns: The Economist reports that the number of times a Ferguson officer fired into Michael Brown (six) is twice the number of times British police officers fired their weapons last year (three). (Via Jennifer 8. Lee.)

• “The killing of Leonard Deadwyler has once again brought it all into sharp focus; brought back longstanding pain, reminded everybody of how very often the cop does approach you with his revolver ready, so that nothing he does with it can then really be accidental; of how, especially, at night, everything can suddenly reduce to a matter of reflexes: your life trembling in the crook of a cop’s finger because it is dark, and Watts, and the history of this place and these times makes it impossible for the cop to come on any different, or for you to hate him any less. Both of you are caught in something neither of you wants, and yet night after night, with casualities or without, these traditional scenes continue to be played out all over the south-central part of this city.” – Thomas Pynchon, 1966, in a piece for the New York Times entitled “A Journey Into The Mind of Watts.” (Via Howard French and Armin Rosin.)

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