Saturday, March 13, 2010

"They Fucked The Whole Thing Up"
Atrios (Ph.D, Brown University, 1999) links to Chris Hayes, (BA, Brown, 2001): "The Twilight of the Elites"

Atrios' new neighborhood:
"Despite the positive results of the initiative’s efforts, it ultimately led to significant community displacement. The former residents of the MLK towers were dispersed during the construction. In addition, the amount of residential space was reduced after the redevelopment, and the vast majority of former residents could not afford to move into and sustain a living in the new MLK complex. This has ultimately changed the demographic of the neighborhood; prior to the government intervention and development provided by Hope VI, the neighborhood was predominantly African American, however, since federal intervention the community is 67% White, 12% Black, 15% Asian, and 6% Latino."
It's true elite culture is becoming more democratic: it's becoming more vulgar while the popular is becoming more sophisticated (Atrios and Hayes are exemplars of both). But if leadership is becoming more diffuse the higher levels are also becoming much more secretive.

Jack Balkin on The National Surveillance State [and here]
Most people know the names Microsoft, Bill Gates, and Google but far fewer have ever heard of Sergey Brin. That diffuseness of representation is I think one of the reasons for Google's popularity as an institution even among those who should know better. It's true that unlike Microsoft they're good at what they do but it's not just that. In the long run Google will have to be nationalized [literally: internationalized] but that won't happen for awhile. Siva Vaidhyanathan

This country's academic and political elite are probably unique in their lack of intellectualism. Or rather unique in their having replaced intellectualism with a love of "ideas."

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