Friday, August 30, 2013

WORDS.

GAWKER: Fifty Years After the March, White People Are Still a Disgrace

I Don't Need A Reason.

A video.

From Dizzee Rascal.

NEW SLAVES.

A Moment of Clarity.


WORDS.

"I’m writing this to be fair: it needs to be written, it needs to be read. It needs to be understood.

Dave Chappelle walked off stage tonight and Black people understand why.

Being in that crowd, a sea of drunk White male faces and seeing Chappelle sit there and be jeered at made me uncomfortable. Heckling isn’t uncommon for comedians but often when a comedian as famous as Chappelle puts their foot down, it is usually respected.

While the racial makeup of the crowd was incidental, the way they treated Chappelle is not. It speaks to a long complicated history: the relationship between the White audience and the Black entertainer. This is a relationship you can easily trace to early minstrel shows, to archetypes of Blacks that still define the roles we’re offered today. We have seen more Black comedians bow to racist tropes, demean themselves—albeit unintentionally—for White audiences.

Chappelle wasn’t having a meltdown. This was a Black artist shrugging the weight of White consumption, deciding when enough was enough. This isn’t the first time Chappelle has done so and it isn’t the first time his behavior has been characterized as a meltdown.

There is a long history of asking African-Americans to endure racism silently; it’s characterized as grace, as strength. Chappelle’s Connecticut audience, made up of largely young White males, demanded a shuck and jive. Men who seemed to have missed the fine satire of the Chappelle show demanded he do characters who, out of the context of the show look more like more racist tropes, than mockery of America’s belief in them..."

EBONY: Dave Chappelle Didn't Melt Down

MADE IN AMERICA.

Coming Soon.


It Was Written.

words.
 
"I couldn’t watch Obama’s speech without thinking of the aircraft carriers that were moving because he ordered them to, the diplomats he had mobilized around the globe to line up international support, the intelligence analysts he was grilling and re-grilling in an attempt to avoid the kind of mistake his predecessor made in Iraq.

And that is why Wednesday’s event, though designed to be similar in form, was nothing like the march in 1963. The featured speaker, in both cases, was an African American known for his powerful eloquence. But King was an activist, preacher and prophet who appealed to the nation’s moral conscience. Obama is something quite different — the most powerful man in the world. We have had nearly five years to get used to the fact that a black man is president of the United States. Some, I suspect, will never accept this reality; most already have, and judge Obama the way King wanted us all to be judged — by the content of his character.

 ...In Syria, Obama has made clear that he is contemplating a punitive strike — not an intervention to produce regime change.

As I have written, I don’t believe the use of chemical weapons can go unpunished. But I acknowledge having no idea what might happen next. Obama, as he stood Wednesday in Lincoln’s shadow, had no way of knowing, either.

It is an African American who bears this weight on his shoulders. That is the amazing context created by the many unheralded activists and agitators who have struggled for 50 years, and still struggle today, to make King’s glorious dream come true."

THE WASHINGTON POST: Obama’s speech remarkable for its context

Secrets.

A Moment of Clarity.

 
THE WASHINGTON POST: Fewer secrets doesn’t mean less security


My Story.

A viral video.

From R.Kelly & 2 Chainz.


Thursday, August 29, 2013

My Party.




STEREOGUM: Icona Pop – “My Party” (Feat. Zebra Katz)

"WHAT IS LOVE?!"

With RuPaul & Henry Rollins.



STEREOGUM: Watch RuPaul Give Henry Rollins Love Advice

Love More.

A video.

Starring Chris Brown & Nicki Minaj.

"We Can't Stop."



ROLLING STONE: Miley Cyrus and Justin Bieber Join Forces on 'Twerk'

A Moment of Clarity.

WORDS. 

"...there remains a sort of cultural complacency in America. After young people took to the streets as part of the Arab Spring, many Americans, like myself, were left wondering what had become of American activism. When was the last time our young people felt so moved that they took to the streets to bring attention to an issue?

There were some glimmers of hope around Occupy Wall Street and the case of Trayvon Martin, but both movements have lost much of their steam, and neither produced a clear leader.

So as we rightfully commemorate the March on Washington and King’s speech, let us also pay particular attention to the content of that speech. King spoke of the “fierce urgency of now,” not the fierce urgency of nostalgia.

(I was struck by how old the speakers skewed this week during the commemorations.)

What is our fierce urgency? What is the present pressure? Who will be our King? What will be our cause?

There is a litany of issues that need our national attention and moral courage — mass incarceration, poverty, gun policy, voting rights, women’s access to health care, L.G.B.T. rights, educational equality, immigration reform.

And they’re all interrelated.

The same forces that fight to maintain or infringe on one area of equality generally have some kinship to the forces that fight another.

And yet, we speak in splinters. We don’t see the commonality of all these struggles and the common enemies to equality. And no leader has arisen to weave these threads together.

Martin Luther King was a preacher, not a politician. He applied pressure from outside the system, not from within it. And I’m convinced that both forms of pressure are necessary."

THE NEW YORK TIMES: ‘The Most Dangerous Negro’

SEE ALSO:

THE NEW YORK TIMES: Voices for Equality | A selection of speeches since Martin Luther King Jr.’s address at the Lincoln Monument on Aug. 28, 1963, that have influenced the perceptions of race in America.

Twerkin' Overtime.



words.

GRANTLAND: #MILEYTAUGHTME: The Lessons We're Learning From Mileygate

QUESTION!


THE NEW YORKER: What Has Changed Since Lehman Failed?

For You.



A cover.

Starring Miguel.

FOX 101.9: Miguel - Like A Pill (P!nk Cover)

HOLY GRAIL.

A video.

Starring Jay Z & Justin Timberlake.


Sweet Serenade.



Starring Pusha T & Chris Brown.



DJ BOOTH: Pusha T - Sweet Serenade

Community.

A video.

From Gold Panda.


The Mighty Fall.

A video.

From Fall Out Boy & Big Sean.  


The Dream.

words.

"...President Obama approaches race as a participant-observer, a man whose perspective was formed on the penumbra of our bruised racial experiences. This was unquestionably an asset during his first campaign, when the very possibility of his election offered validation of the battered faith from which the movement sprang. No one with a lesser understanding of these matters could’ve crafted the masterstroke that was the “More Perfect Union” speech he delivered in the midst of the controversy over Jeremiah Wright. In his reĆ«lection campaign, when the ghosts of voter disfranchisement rose up and drove African-Americans to the polls with a determination rooted in the scar tissue of history, the act of voting for Obama seemed an extension of that struggle. He is unparalleled in conveying these insights, as he did in July when he spoke to the wounds that the George Zimmerman verdict had reopened in black America. But when he is speaking about race on his own terms, it becomes easier to suspect that he deploys that insight cynically.

...Not long ago, Jay Z fended off charges that, by comparing himself to Barack Obama and arguing that his mere existence as a powerful black man was a form of philanthropy, he was showing himself to be nonchalant in the face of the struggles of black America. His critics said that it was evidence of the rapper’s arrogance growing into terminal narcissism, but there was an iota of a point to be considered. To the alumni of housing projects or cotton fields, the kind of one-per-center glory Jay Z represents isn’t simply evidence of capitalism’s ability to produce plutocrats but a defiant assertion of the right of blacks to exist and thrive in America’s most privileged echelons. Obama would not make a statement as obtuse as Jay Z’s, but looking at his Presidency now, from its midpoint, it seems entirely possible that history will regard his biggest contribution to black people as his mere existence..."

THE NEW YORKER: Requiem for a Dream

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Black Hippy.

T.D.E.

Constant Craving.



PITCHFORK: Watch: 50-Minute Film About Passion Pit, Made by Taco Bell

Give It 2 U.

A (remix) video.

From Robin Thicke, Kendrick Lamar, & 2 Chainz.


Modern Guilt.

words. 

 "As banks zero in on more affluent customers who promise twice the revenue of their lower-income counterparts, close branches in poor areas and remain stingy with credit, pawnshops are revamping their image and stepping into the void to offer financial services.

“The way the banks have tightened up so much on making small loans and making equity loans, we’ve kind of evolved into, I like to call it the poor man’s bank,” said Robbie Whitten, chief executive of Money Mizer Pawn and Jewelry of Columbus, Ga.

...How fast the pawnshop industry is growing is unclear, but the industry association estimates there were 10,000 pawnshops in early 2012, the latest figures available, compared with about 6,400 in 2007. That expansion is, in part, fed by the rising number of Americans whose tarnished credit effectively bars them from the mainstream financial system. The growth has attracted the attention of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a recently formed regulator that has been scrutinizing pawnshops, along with other nonbank lenders like payday loan operators.

...As a result, pawnshops are offering services like check cashing, Western Union money transfers, bill payment and prepaid cards to customers who are “getting forgotten in the banking system,”..."

THE NEW YORK TIMES: DEAL B%X: Platinum Card and Text Alert, via Pawnshop

Friday, August 23, 2013

The Blow.

A Moment of Clarity.
 

words. 

"You could hope, after some of the loudest, costliest and most joyless products of the entertainment-industrial complex bombed this summer, that Hollywood would be having its Detroit gas-guzzler moment. That is, the point when a cobwebbed institution realizes that its main product is yesterday.

...popular films, the great American cultural export and the rare unifier in a toxically divided nation, are going the way of open Congressional districts and serendipitous love — to echo-chambered niches, where like-minded people can safely control expectations.

...More than ever, with the collapse of a number of tent poles, decent flicks are produced by premium cable television, or Netflix. Yes, Woody Allen still cranks out well-acted, original stories, but nobody watches them — by the standards of mega-viewing. And come the holidays, the studios will unveil an ornament or two of real durability, just to give executives something to brag about during awards season.

...Hollywood could listen to the likes of Elmore Leonard, who died this week, taking with him more knowledge of popular storytelling than the exists in all the suites of all the suits. He stopped writing screenplays in 1993.

“There were too many people you had to please,” he said in an interview. “This was a time when I needed the money, so I would adapt the scene according to what they wanted, and the result would be a bad picture.”

But what did he know?"

THE NEW YORK TIMES: Summer of the Big Dud

Thursday, August 22, 2013

"this can't be life."

-INTERLUDE-

Liz Phair in drag.

Dear John.



VULTURE: 7-Step Plan to Not Hating John Mayer Anymore

words.

SLATE: XXFACTOR: Chelsea Manning Is Now the Most Famous Transgender Inmate in America. Will She Be Treated Humanely?

-INTERLUDE-

In Search Of...


SLATE: An Open Letter to My Former NSA Colleagues

Find My Way.


Starring Nine Inch Nails.

STEREOGUM: Nine Inch Nails – “Find My Way”

Behind the Candlelabra.



ROLLING STONE: Kanye West Gushes About 'Joy' Kim Kardashian on 'Kris'

Believe.

A Moment of Clarity.


THE NEW YORK TIMES: Welcome to the Age of Denial

The Cool.


PITCHFORK: UPDATE: R. Kelly and Phoenix

King of NYS.

A video.

From Shyne.


WORDS.

FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION.

THE NEW YORKER: History Will Pardon Manning, Even If Obama Doesn't

SEE ALSO:

THE WASHINGTON POST: Bradley Manning’s sentence and the zealous national-security state

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Seven Horses.





STEREOGUM: Jonathan Rado – “Seven Horses”

"WHERE'S THE LOVE?"

A Moment of Clarity.



THE WASHINGTON POST: For retailers, low wages aren’t working out 





Fleet Foxes.

A Moment of Clarity.


THE WASHINGTON POST: The GOP’s Obamacare youth hoax

"I agree with these statements."


PASSION OF THE WEISS: Heisenferg: A$AP Ferg’s “Trap Lord” (A Review)

SEE ALSO:

PITCHFORK: A$AP Ferg - Trap Lord. (A Review)

Okay.


Starring Holy Ghost!


Human Mic.

A video.

Starring Talib Kweli.




The Wanted.

A Moment of Clarity.

words.

"Instead of casting about for a new maestro, we need to return the Fed to dullness and its chairman to obscurity.

...The Fed’s chairmen in recent decades have been eminently qualified individuals of undisputed probity. But they are humans, too, whose blind spots, egos and potential conflicts of interest — Mr. Greenspan has had a lucrative post-Fed career giving speeches and advice — raise real concerns about hubris, even bias. The solution is not to subject the Fed to the whims of a dysfunctional Congress but rather to scale back what we can expect of it.

...Before the crisis the Fed seemingly lost all capacity for the painstaking, boots-on-the-ground supervision of the banks under its purview. And, effective or not, top-down monetary interventions remain attractive to the Fed’s top brass. Running what amounts to a hedge fund on steroids is more glamorous and exciting than managing a regulatory bureaucracy. Perhaps the most important qualification for the next Fed leader is one all too rare in Washington: humility."

THE NEW YORK TIMES: Wanted: A Boring Leader for the Fed

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

-INTERLUDE-

Anniversary.



THE NEW YORKER: A HOLY TRINITY OF POP MUSIC

Jeremiah (The Denier).




STEREOGUM: Ejecta – “Jeremiah (The Denier)”

Unbreak My Heart.


Starring M.I.A.

For Your Consideration.

words.

"...instead of setting up a beat dedicated to covering Clinton, perhaps the Times could better serve the public by using those resources to cover women and politics more broadly.

Will shattering the Oval Office’s glass ceiling and electing a madam president be an inspiring achievement for this country? Of course. Do we also need madam mayors, madam senators, madam councilwomen, madam sheriffs, madam governors and madam congresswomen all across the nation? You betcha.

 ...A woman doesn’t always represent the most progressive candidate on a given ballot — just look at the New York mayoral race. But one key to turning back the regressive tide sweeping the nation is for progressive women to enter office at the national, state and local levels and make our “representative” political bodies actually representative..."

THE WASHINGTON POST: The women candidates we need

QUESTION!

words.

"The aggressive policing of public spaces under NYPD Comissioner Ray Kelly, combined with erosion of community spaces and social programs under the Bloomberg administration, has left many of the young people most at risk of being stopped – youth of color, LGBTQ and gender nonconforming, low-income, homeless, immigrant and Muslim populations, to name only some – feeling like they have nowhere to go and nothing to do. Advocates like Richie-Babbage argue that the most effective way to increase children's safety is to invest in community-based initiatives that empower youth and connect them with caring adults, such as employment and after-school programs – both of which have been drastically cut under the Bloomberg administration. The city's most recent budget attempted to eliminate 41,000 after-school slots for school-aged students and 8,000 childcare slots for young children, disproportionately affecting low-income communities.

Remarkably, the mayor acknowledged the importance of after-school programs earlier this summer, at a press conference denouncing the Community Safety Act meant to address police harassment and racial profiling in communities of color: "You take a look at who's killed, this is clearly a societal problem that most of the crime is concentrated in a handful of neighborhoods," Bloomberg said. "We have to improve our schools, we have to have after-school programs." Under his administration, after-school spots have been reduced by 35 percent since 2008.

Bloomberg has reduced social programs for New York's poorest children while adamantly defending police practices that criminalize them – even after those policies are found to be unconstitutional. For his critics, the question is clear: Which kids is Bloomberg really worried about protecting?"

ROLLING STONE: Stop-and-Frisk City: Does Bloomberg Really Care About Kids' Safety?

SEE ALSO:

THE WASHINGTON POST: Positive steps on ‘stop and frisk,’ drug arrests

Tear It Up.

Starring R. Kelly & Future.




Meanwhile in New York....



AND



PITCHFORK: Watch: A$AP Rocky and A$AP Ferg Respond to Kendrick Lamar's "Control" Verse With Freestyle, Interview on Hot 97

Know You Better.


Stream here.

Black & White.

An Ongoing Discussion/Moment of Clarity.

WORDS.

SLATE: Frisk Assessment: Mayor Bloomberg’s efficiency arguments about stop-and-frisk are wrong, as well as irrelevant.

My Name is Earl.



THE NEW YORKER: Earl Sweatshirt: A Leaf in the Wind

Monday, August 19, 2013

Everything

Starring Nine Inch Nails.



Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action.


Stream here.

PRIMETIME.

Starring Janelle Monae & Miguel.


words.

for your consideration...

"White people are products of their own whitewashed, sanitized environment. Black people have been systematically excluded from white neighborhoods. Black stories rarely surface in popular culture. The history of race in high school textbooks has been boiled down to a handful of bedtime stories about Jackie Robinson and Rosa Parks. Try to tap into the average white person's feelings on race and you won't necessarily find feelings of hate and antipathy. You just won't find much of anything, no fully formed or well-considered thoughts about race of any kind. There's nothing really there. Even white people who want black friends don't know where to start.

America's lack of integration wouldn't be such a big deal except for the fact that relationships and social networks are vital to economic advancement.

Even when programs like school busing and affirmative action give black people access to white spaces, when those people go to climb the social ladder there's nothing there for them to grab onto, because there's very little reciprocal effort coming from the other direction. It's high effort and low reward.
The result is that black people end up with integration fatigue. Many black writers responded to the Reuters poll with essays on why they didn't want white friends, and didn't need them. White friends weren't worth the bother.

This is their prerogative, but ultimately, it's to society's disadvantage because white people control the access to, well, just about everything. If you don't have white friends, you might have a decent job and a comfortable life, but all the doors of opportunity in this country are not open to you. "I may do well in a desegregated society," the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. said, "but I can never know what my total capacity is until I live in an integrated society."

Interracial friendships, social bonds across the color line, are a key factor in putting the sins of America's past behind us. But it's not something that's accomplished by white people knowing lots of black people. It helps if white people know how to be better white people."



An Impression.

A video.

From No Age. 




Live For.


Starring The Weeknd & Drake.

Stream here.

Applause.

A video.

Starring Lady Gaga.



Sunday, August 18, 2013

red.

words.

"...in fact, the tomatoes are too cheap. If they cost more, farmers like Rominger would be more inclined to grow tomatoes organically; to pay his workers better or offer benefits to more of them; to make a better living himself.

But the processed tomato market is international, with increasing pressure from Italy, China and Mexico. California has advantages, but it still must compete on price. Producers also compete with one another, making it tough for even the most principled ones to increase worker pay. To see change, then, all workers, globally, must be paid better, so that the price of tomatoes goes up across the board.

How does this happen? Unionization, or an increase in the minimum wage, or both. No one would argue that canned tomatoes should be too expensive for poor people, but by increasing minimum wage in the fields and elsewhere, we raise standards of living and increase purchasing power.

The issue is paying enough for food so that everything involved in producing it — land, water, energy and labor — is treated well. And since sustainability is a journey, progress is essential. It would be foolish to assert that we’re anywhere near the destination, but there is progress — even in those areas appropriately called “industrial.”"

THE NEW YORK TIMES: Not All Industrial Food Is Evil

REYNOLDS.


PITCHFORK: Listen: A$AP Ferg and Danny Brown: "Reynolds"

COMING ATTRACTIONS.



PITCHFORK: Prince Shares Incredible "Breakfast Can Wait" Cover Art Featuring Dave Chappelle

Beware.

A video.

From Big Sean, Lil Wayne, & Jhene Aiko.


Special Education.

A video.

Starring Goodie Mob & Janelle Monae.


Overjoyed.


A.V. CLUB: The episode that liberated—then destroyed—Ellen

Thursday, August 15, 2013

-INTERLUDE-

Binary Mind.

A video.

From Ra Ra Riot.



Party at the NSA.

Starring YACHT & Marc Maron.



STEREOGUM: YACHT – “Party At The NSA” (Feat. Marc Maron)

All My Niggas.

A video.

Starring E-40, Danny Brown, & SchoolBoy Q.



DORIS.


Stream here.

Locked Up.


SALON: Why John Boehner has to keep making crazy threats

Super Rich Kids.

 words. for your consideration.

"The politicians and pundits who get the most attention — at least for a while — are those who treat a genuine but limited and reversible trend as evidence of imminent utopia or approaching apocalypse. Such hype is then magnified by an infotainment industry that promotes drama and penalizes nuance.

...At the moment, fortunately, we are between ill-conceived elite fads in the U.S. But fashion abhors a vacuum. If experience is any guide, some new Big Idea that is at once fresh, seductive and wrong will soon emerge to excite the political class and the commentariat and become what every serious, respectable person believes — at least until it goes horribly wrong.

When it comes to the hype market, you will seldom err by betting against it. When everybody who is anybody in politics and the press agrees on something, it’s time to raise some doubts."

SALON: Elites keep ruining America

Elevators.

An Ongoing Discussion/Moment of Clarity.
 

THE WASHINGTON POST: Social immobility erodes the American dream

Free Ninety Nine.

With Sway & Earl Sweatshirt.


Again.


PITCHFORK: Listen: Dev Hynes Covers Drake's "Hold On We're Going Home"

Water & Power.

A video.

From the Cold War Kids.


NineteenEighty7.

A video.

From Stalley & Schoolboy Q.


The Way It Used to Be.

A video.

Starring Mike Posner.


Wednesday, August 14, 2013

She Ain't Speakin' Now.


Starring Of Montreal.


Stream here.

36.

 For Your Consideration.



STEREOGUM: Kwes. – “36″

Sunday.


Starring Earl Sweatshirt & Frank Ocean.


Comrade.



STEREOGUM: Volcano Choir – “Comrade”

"WHAT'S GOING ON?!"

A Moment of Clarity.



GAWKER: The Daily Show Destroys What's Left of the NYPD's Stop-and-Frisk

EARLIER:

JUSTICE.

screwface sessions.

JUSTICE.

A Moment of Clarity.


THE WASHINGTON POST: Justice served on ‘stop and frisk’ and mandatory minimum policies

Trying to Be Cool.


A Remix.

Stream here.

FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION.


THE WASHINGTON POST: Hillary Clinton power in 2016

"swerve."




words.

"these strikes take place against the backdrop of widespread anxiety in an era in which global competition and rapid technological changes have put the middle class at risk. Four years into a “recovery,” we’ve still got 20 million Americans who want full-time work and can’t find it. Half of all jobs in the United States pay less than $35,000 a year. Wages have been stagnant for decades, while a handful of top earners have walked off with nearly all the recent gains in national income.

Meanwhile, according to the SEIU, the typical hamburger flipper is no longer the teenager of popular imagination, but a struggling adult of 28. Many have lost better-paying jobs and are scrambling for whatever they can get.

The paradox is that for both fast-food employers and their critics these trends present an opportunity. If global economic integration is putting downward pressure on the wages of jobs that can be performed elsewhere, the one sector immune to these pressures is in-person service work. That means jobs in areas such as home health care, retail sales, teaching, personal grooming and fast food.

In-person service work accounts for roughly 30 million jobs in the United States. The sector is experiencing faster job growth than the economy overall, but wages are relatively low and lag wage growth in the broader economy. If we could make this non-offshorable segment of American work a more certain path to the middle class, it would offer an important measure of security and optimism in a global economy that poses threats to many Americans. Figuring out a feasible way to do this ought to be a national priority..."

THE WASHINGTON POST: Time for ‘Big Mac’ statesmanship

Shame on the Devil.


Starring "Clipse".



PITCHFORK: Listen: Clipse's No Malice and Pusha-T Reunite for "Shame on the Devil"

I Can Hardly Make You Mine.

Starring CULTS.


GROOVY POTENTIAL.



PITCHFORK: Prince Starts Using Twitter

6 Feet Beneath the Moon.


An album stream.

PITCHFORK: Stream King Krule's Album 6 Feet Beneath the Moon

THE OLD.

A documentary.

Starring Danny Brown.


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Paradise Valley.


Stream here.

Dear Mama.


GRANTLAND: An Open Letter to Sasha and Malia About Michelle Obama's Rap Album

EARLIER:

PITCHFORK: Michelle Obama to Put Out Hip-Hop Album

words.

"I am always leery of those who cloak their fear or bias in Bible verses. After all, the Good Book was used to justify slavery, deem African Americans inferior and subjugate women. Thanks to changing times and interpretations of scripture, we no longer put up with that nonsense today, and we shouldn’t put up with it when it is employed to strip the humanity of gay men and lesbians."

THE WASHINGTON POST: Standing up to anti-gay animus from the pulpit

You Belong.






THE WASHINGTON POST: What NSA reforms?

Higher.

A short film.

From Just Blaze & Bauer. (+ Jay Z).


Good Kid.

Mad City.



GRANTLAND: Callin' Out Names: Kendrick Lamar's 'Control' Verse and the Evolution of the Rap Name-drop

screwface sessions.

vol. 3,498.

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy