With the name Amazon Fresh, the company has managed to make even a rainforest sound somehow airless. / CIAT
The Baffler,  July 27, 2015

Daily Bafflements

With the name Amazon Fresh, the company has managed to make even a rainforest sound somehow airless. / CIAT
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Now that the Greek fire sale is on (anyone want to buy the Hellenic post? How about Athens’s water supply?), it’s worth noting that selling off services hasn’t worked out for Greece in the past. In the LRB, Tariq Ali writes: “the largest tax avoider in the country is Hochtief, the giant German construction company that runs Athens airport. It has not paid VAT for twenty years, and owes 500 million euros in VAT arrears alone.”

• Does the butcher have it in for you? Fallen out with the cashiers at your local store? Well, Amazon’s dream-vision of shopping without ever encountering any other living soul might be of use to you: just “order grocery items online, then schedule a pickup at a dedicated facility.” One source pointed out that groceries have the benefit (for Amazon) of being literally what everyone needs to have to survive: “They’re trying to win that consumables trip.” 

• Pearls of wisdom from an Instagram comedian: “because we live life in fast forward,” says Josh Ostrovsky (who calls himself the Fat Jew), “for a joke to be funny, it has to be fast.” Twitter, that other unpaid-labor platform and arbiter of humor, has started deleting plagiarized jokes. So a joke now has to be both fast, and your own.

• After shootings like that in Lafayette last Thursday, Americans rush to buy guns. Chase Madar wrote about Jennifer Carlson’s Citizen-Protectors in the new issue of The Baffler. Here’s Chase on the superb This is Hell! podcast, discussing his piece.

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Further Reading

 November 6

As the old refrain goes, at Gothamist and DNAinfo the union made us strong---not Joe Ricketts, not his money, not his decisions and certainly not his “direction.”

 August 3

I was wandering in a smoldering landscape, knowing that nothing could be done. The decisions had been made.