Jason Arias
The Baffler,  January 26

Fresh Hell

The best dispatches from our grim new reality

Jason Arias
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Pass Go, Collect $2.8 billion.

This week, Amazon inched us further into our nightmarish future with the opening of Amazon Go: a grocery store without checkout lines or cashiers but chock full of cameras that sense, record, and charge you automatically for every impulse acquisition. All this technological ballyhoo and data mining is in our best interest; in fact, it’s a solution to humanity’s most pressing concern: “The number one problem for people is time poverty,” alleges Amazon Go’s vice president of technology Dilip Kumar. Within hours of the store’s opening, Jeff Bezos’ net worth climbed $2.8 billion. For comparison, all cashiers in the United Statesthe very folks Bezos aims to put out of work—make about $210 million a day.

 

Filet-o-Fish at 30,000 Feet.

When traveling to shithole nations aboard Air Force One, the President of the United States and his degenerate cronies can’t very well go hungry, and feeding those gaping maws requires the proper infrastructure, hence the urgent need to blow $24 million installing the newest, the best, the biggest bespoke refrigerators. If our calculations are right, however, it would be much friendlier to the deficit if a McDonalds was just installed aboard Air Force One instead.

 

Don’t give yourself an excuse to fail before you’ve even begun.

In appraising the bevy of tyrannical dietary regimes foisted upon the masses, one stands out above the rest: the Whole30’s 30-Day Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom. Total, absolute food freedom. Freedom from what exactly is outlined in excruciating, alarm-bells-ringing detail. No pancakes, ice cream, booze, grains, real or artificial sugar, legumes, butter, cream, MSG, carrageenan, sulfites, potato chips, on and on. As if spouted from the lips of our capitalist overlords, the diet is framed in terms of personal choice: “Unless you physically tripped and your face landed in a pizza, there is no ‘slip.’ You make a choice to eat something unhealthy. It is always a choice, so do not phrase it as if you had an accident.”

 

Great party, wasn’t it?

The Doomsday Clock is at two minutes to midnight, the closest it’s been since the United States first tested a thermonuclear weapon in 1953. Congratulations, everyone.

 

The Florida Project

A bright spot peeks through the noxious fumes: a measure to re-enfranchise felons in Florida will face voters in November. Florida is one of just three states where felons are all but blocked from the ballot box, a draconian measure borne disproportionately by African Americans—and about 10 percent of the adult population.

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