Manufacturing Dissent Since 1996
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Episode 1003

Labor Nopes

May 13 2018

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Kevin Ovenden

Notes on the left's ideological battle with the right - and center.

Activist Kevin Ovenden discusses the work of building a left movement to challenge war, racism and the rule of capital - and why the left must confront not just a resurgent far right, but a political center that co-opts the language and energy of the left into policies that protect and empower war, racism and the rule of capital.

Kevin wrote the posts The anti-racist radical left must give the ideological battle and Unite the left and anti-racist movements against cynical right-wing disruption at his site. He's giving a talk in Chicago on Monday night titled Why LGBTQs (& everyone) Should Support Palestinian Rights.



David Graeber

On the meaning and meaningless of our bullshit jobs.

Anthropologist David Graeber explores the rise of useless work under late capitalism / early managerial feudalism - as a phenomenon everyone but CEOs and economists understand perfectly well, and as a grim reminder that we could all probably be doing something (or nothing!) better than with our time than bullshit work.

David is author of the new book Bullshit Jobs: A Theory from Simon & Schuster.



Virginia Eubanks

Empathy override: How technology is turned against the poor.

Political scientist Virginia Eubanks explains how a bi-partisan, technocratic shift towards automating social service and welfare programs works to encode and amplify inequality in America - building a vast 'digital poorhouse' that controls the flow of resources and policing in neighborhoods, and punishes those most in need of support.

Virginia is author of Automating Inequality: How High-Tech Tools Profile, Police, and Punish the Poor from St. Martin's Press.



Andrew Hartman

I welcome the polarization: Class and culture war in the MAGA years.

Historian Andrew Hartman visits the new Trump front of American culture wars of the 1980s and 90s (and 60s and 70s) - as longstanding divisions around class and identity remap themselves onto a new cultural and economic landscape in the decade after the 2008 financial crash, and increasing polarization presents both a challenge and an opportunity for the left.

Andrew wrote the article The Culture Wars are Dead: Long live the culture wars! for The Baffler.



Jeff Dorchen

Jeff Dorchen's segment last week was not problematic: A segment by Jeff Dorchen.

In a Moment of Truth, Jeff Dorchen explains to you what sarcasm is, and why you didn't understand his last Moment of Truth about raping Bill Cosby in prison, which was sarcasm by the way, if you didn't get it, and need it explained to you in this segment. Didn't listen to last week's MOT? Go back, don't get it, and listen to this one.

Read the transcript here