Uber swag not included. / 5chw4r7z
The Baffler,  July 13, 2016

Daily Bafflements

Uber swag not included. / 5chw4r7z
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• Over at Reason TV, Baffler editor Chris Lehmann talks The Money Cult with Nick Gillespie. On whether the prosperity gospel’s popularity is waining or not, Lehmann says: “This whole word of faith tradition is regarded with great suspicion both on the right and the left of the theological spectrum. But I would say, if anything, we’re going to see a lot more figures like Joel Osteen.” At the very least, we’ll hear from Osteen and his ilk more often—he is, after all, good friends with the bombastic presidential candidate who’s pledged to “Make America Great Again”!

• It’s Uber, but for getting you to a hospital. Washington, D.C., straining under the weight of the city’s crumbling infrastructure, may turn to Uber to help transport 911 callers. The car service, we’re told, would only be used for those patients whose issues were not deemed “high priority” emergencies. (Curiously, if you’re talking about this article on Facebook Messenger, you may be prompted to order a ride of your own.)

• Felix Biederman and Virgil Texas take on Ezra Klein’s Hillarysplainer with the help of Genius. Take this nugget discussing nostalgia for our political past: “The good old days, when Lyndon Johnson would slap his beefus on a table so an elderly alcoholic would pledge his support, or Warren G. Harding would stumble into a convention wasted after his group of assholes in straw hats paid off a different group of assholes in straw hats.”

• Embedded in this rather bland story about Time, Inc. is a distressing question: What on God’s green earth is a “chief content officer”?

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The Baffler

Once again we are pleased to denounce the sordid art establishment of anti-establishment poseurs that burdens the American life. . .

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Simply put, if President Trump wants the government to achieve general excellence, he should run the government like a general-excellence factory. A general-excellence factory manufactures general excellence. If the government follows this model, it must guarantee every decision, program, law, and announcement achieves an overall quality of general excellence. This is nonnegotiable.

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Further Reading

 August 15

The alt-right era my book was about---the anonymous online trolling culture, the constant evasions and ironic styles---is over.

 August 3

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