Gould’s novel, Friendship
, follows a best-friend pair through a turbulent period of break-ups and bad jobs in their late twenties and early thirties. After Amy and Bev meet as editorial assistants at a New York publishing house, Bev “start[s] making friendship advances toward Amy,” going out of her way to engage her in conversation. One day, she invites her to a concert after work; they start to take their lunch breaks together. One thing leads to another, and while eating sushi and drinking wine on a roof in Brooklyn, they make it official.
Alice Robb, “Grown Women Don’t Need a ‘Best Friend’,” The New Republic, July 10, 2014
In 2014, how on earth do you work on a novel-length piece of writing about people who work in publishing and eat sushi on Brooklyn rooftops without literally boring yourself to death?
Like, I totally disagree with Robb’s dismissal of the value of intense yet platonic non-familial relationships or the lack of artistic consideration of the same, but don’t people also have best friends in Kansas City? Or Columbus? Or Kinshasa? Or do New Yorkers actually really think the world needs a better understanding of the lives of New York editorial assistants?
I’m not asking for a moratorium about books in New York. I love books about New York! But if there isn’t something particularly relevant to New York about the story you’re telling — and, guys, I guarantee friendship wasn’t first devised in a Dumbo loft — then why not set it in any of the thousands of other cities in the world where real existing people also live and work?
On his recent visit to Australia, the American Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz was scathing in his assessment of his homeland.
"Countries that imitate the American model are kidding themselves," he told Fairfax, highlighting the US health care and education sectors as being particular failures.
If Australia were to imitate the United States, it could expect more inequality and worse results, Stiglitz said.
"You have to say that the American market model has failed."
Stiglitz’s words will be welcomed by those who have long suspected that the United States is a harsher, more ruthless, and less egalitarian society than our own.
Clearly, unless we’re talking about small bars or burger spots, “US style” is something Australians have firmly decided we would like to avoid.
But as brutal as America’s societal failures have been — and in some cases, as Stiglitz points out, they have been very harsh indeed — there are many areas in which Australia is far less progressive than its closest ally. We should not feel we need to race America to the bottom when it comes to the minimum wage or access to quality heath care, but that does not justify smug complacency about our own superiority.
Shout out to Australian lefties, are you that desperate to hear a Liberal say nice things about refugees that you’re ready to act like the man who tried to destroy universal health care and literally conspired with the representative of a foreign crown to overthrow a democratically elected government is worthy of being welcomed into polite society?
Earlier that same year the whole city had had a party. There was a new bridge to span the sparkling water between the meat of the city and its northern outpost.
The folks of the Hills didn’t give too much of a shit about the proceedings, but they were proud in a general sense because they knew there wasn’t another city in their fine country that had a bridge as big or as beautiful. So they partied and then they pretty much forgot about it. Wasn’t like any of them would ever use it. Who wanted to go that far from the Hills?
Justine Larbalestier, Razorhurst (2014)
yeah, same tbh.
More than half – 52% — of people surveyed said the former Alaska governor and 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee, who was recently seen calling for President Barack Obama’s impeachment in a Breitbart News column, should just “be quiet.”
Ms. Palin, still a tea party favorite and who maintains an active television and social media presence, scored worse than fellow former pols Jesse Jackson (45%), Dick Cheney (42%) and Newt Gingrich (39%).
Mr. Jackson’s numbers are a bit of a mystery, given that he has not been in the national media much of late. More than half of people surveyed who are 50 years or older – who perhaps remember the civil rights activist when he was more prominent and a potential Democratic presidential nominee – said Mr. Jackson should be quiet. Only 35% of people aged 18-34 said the same.
The Journal/NBC/Annenberg poll was kinder to Bill Clinton (31%) and Al Gore (37%), though about half of Republicans said they would prefer that the 1990s Democratic team in the White House would be quiet.
Poll: Most Americans Want to Hear Less From Palin - Washington Wire - WSJ (via waitingonoblivion)
I mean, I don’t think this poll really means much of anything — you’re asking people about something they probably aren’t thinking about and have no means of effecting anyways, but the Jesse Jackson bit is interesting. Conservatives seem to still like invoking him as a proxy for Black People Who Say Terrible Things — Al Sharpton is another favorite in this realm — so I sorta suspect the poll finding is just that 45 per cent want black people in general to shut up.