The Art of Tetman Callis

Some of the stories and poems may be inappropriate for persons under 16

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Entries Tagged as 'Economics'

Nailing jelly to the wall

August 18th, 2017 · No Comments

“The trick never ages; the illusion never wears off. Vote to stop abortion; receive a rollback in capital gains taxes. Vote to make our country strong again; receive deindustrialization. Vote to screw those politically correct college professors; receive electricity deregulation. Vote to get government off our backs; receive conglomeration and monopoly everywhere from media to […]

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Tags: Economics · Politics & Law

Pay to play

August 9th, 2017 · No Comments

“Intellectual progress, which reveals itself in the growth of art and science and the spread of more liberal views, cannot be dissociated from industrial or economic progress, and that in its turn receives an immense impulse from conquest and empire. It is no mere accident that the most vehement outbursts of activity of the human […]

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Tags: Economics · Politics & Law · Sir James George Frazer

Babies for the state

August 6th, 2017 · No Comments

“The socialization of reproduction completed the process begun by the socialization of production itself—that is, by industrialization. Having expropriated the worker’s tools and concentrated production in the factory, industrialists in the opening decades of the twentieth century proceeded to expropriate the worker’s technical knowledge as well. By means of ‘scientific management,’ they broke down production […]

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Tags: Economics · Politics & Law

Efficiency and productivity

August 4th, 2017 · No Comments

“I started out my working life as a waiter. There is a saying in the restaurant business: ‘Full hands in and full hands out.’ It means that you never enter the kitchen without bringing an empty plate or glass with you, and you never leave the kitchen without grabbing a plate that needs to be […]

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Tags: Economics · Politics & Law

Thor of the boardroom

August 2nd, 2017 · No Comments

“Modern culture has produced a distinctive character-type, our equivalent of the Homeric warrior-hero, the Athenian gentleman-citizen, the Christian saint, the 18th-century honnete homme. The defining activity of this character-type is manipulation; its most common embodiments are the aesthete, the therapist and, above all, the manager. All three express their culture’s understanding of social relations as […]

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Tags: Economics · George Scialabba · Politics & Law

What it’s about

July 31st, 2017 · No Comments

“In theory, the outcome of elections in the United States reflects, with only minor distortions, the political preferences of the electorate. That’s what representative democracy is supposed to mean. Only it doesn’t work out that way. More precisely: the range of choices over which the American electorate is allowed to exercise its preference is sharply […]

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Tags: Economics · George Scialabba · Politics & Law

What you can get away with

July 29th, 2017 · No Comments

“There is a difference between a damage caused by continued vibrations of trains which are performing a necessary public service, and a damage caused by a single blast set off on the private property of another. It is such differences which make law not mainly the product of logic, but of experience, social necessity and […]

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Tags: Economics · Politics & Law

Just lie back and relax

July 28th, 2017 · No Comments

“The tendency of every utopian movement is totalitarian: when perfectibility is the assumption, coercion must be the result.” – George Scialabba, “The Crooked Timber of Humanity”

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Tags: Economics · George Scialabba · Politics & Law

Freedom isn’t free

July 26th, 2017 · No Comments

“Whatever else liberal democratic societies have had in common, there’s this: they’ve all been rich. The two pillars of liberal ideology—the right to undisturbed enjoyment of one’s property and the right to a fair share of society’s resources, at least enough for a decent subsistence—may be fundamentally inconsistent, but the contradiction has usually remained implicit. […]

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Tags: Economics · George Scialabba · Politics & Law

Imagine all the people

July 25th, 2017 · No Comments

“Culture and psychology are central to politics. But cultural politics must reckon with our psychic ecology: the sum of our adaptations, over the course of two million years, to infantile dependence, territoriality, scarcity, mortality, and the other hitherto inescapable limits of human existence. We are organisms; we cannot flourish at just any tempo, pressure, or […]

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Tags: Economics · George Scialabba · Politics & Law

You can’t get there from here

July 24th, 2017 · No Comments

“Utopia, then, is in the future. Why is this worth emphasizing? Revolutionists and abolitionists, utopia’s false friends, insist that it can be constructed out of present materials through a heroic act of will. This is to underestimate recklessly the depth and subtlety of the necessary changes and the intricacy and inertia of every moral culture. […]

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Tags: Economics · George Scialabba · Politics & Law

Divided we stand

July 21st, 2017 · No Comments

“Is it necessary to choose between cosmopolitanism and agrarian populism? Let us hope not. The liberal virtues and the republican virtues are both indispensable. But that does not mean they are, at this moment, equally urgent or equally vulnerable. The apparently irresistible thrust of global capitalism threatens the latter virtues far more than the former, […]

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Tags: Economics · George Scialabba · Politics & Law

Not to mention everything else

July 20th, 2017 · No Comments

“The truth about human nature is very bad news for socialism.” – William Barrett, The Truants

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Tags: Economics · Politics & Law

The simple things

July 17th, 2017 · No Comments

“What we want is . . . bread for the people, rest for the people, immunity from robbery and scorn for the people, hope for them, enjoyment, equal respect and consideration, life and aspiration, instead of drudgery and despair.” – George Bernard Shaw

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Tags: Economics · George Bernard Shaw · Politics & Law

The long way down

July 15th, 2017 · No Comments

“America has no real alternative to continuing imperial decline: the big questions are simply how fast and how peacefully. The problem is that the arms industries will fund any and every Presidential candidate and, whoever wins, those industries will demand to be fed. It is unclear, though, whether Americans at large are willing to accept […]

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Tags: Economics · Politics & Law · The American Constitution

Making America Great Again

July 14th, 2017 · No Comments

“Safe, simple, effective, and relatively cheap ways to increase intelligence and longevity in the American population include mounting the equivalent of the antismoking educational campaign against the high levels of fat, sugar, and salt in our national diet; encouraging physical activity, for example by forcing ourselves, through gasoline taxes and urban rezoning, to walk more, […]

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Tags: Economics · George Scialabba · Politics & Law

There doesn’t seem to be a shadow

July 12th, 2017 · No Comments

“The summer would be celebrated by people of every nation in the city. People marauding after work, discontented. Thugs surfing on the sides of cars, flagging. Going into the garbage cans and throwing bottles in the street. Immigrants working, forever working, watching people go by who have days off, time off, while they don’t. Trying […]

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Tags: Atticus Lish · Economics · Lit & Crit · Politics & Law · The Forever War

Score’s thirty-love, love

July 10th, 2017 · No Comments

“You can love the game, but the game loves no one.” – Atticus Lish, Preparation for the Next Life

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Tags: Atticus Lish · Economics · Lit & Crit · Politics & Law · The Forever War · Verandah

Yer gonna help us out, see?

July 1st, 2017 · No Comments

“CIA officers prevailed upon an Austrian woman, Martha Schneider, a onetime resident of River Edge, New Jersey, to help them with safe houses. Schneider signed leases on apartments in Vienna and Salzberg that the CIA used in its activities from early 1969 through 1973. The agency apparently left her with broken leases and unpaid rent, […]

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Tags: Economics · Politics & Law · The Forever War

But the rich have gotten richer, that’s a start

June 29th, 2017 · No Comments

“Despite some success, the industrialized world has done relatively little to alleviate poverty, not just in the Arab and Muslim world, but globally. Indifference is not the full reason. In absolute terms, significant sums are given over to poverty reduction by contributors to multilateral development banks and by bilateral donors. The ineffectuality of aid programs […]

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Tags: Daniel Benjamin and Steven Simon · Economics · Politics & Law · The Forever War

Decline and fall

June 27th, 2017 · No Comments

“History, scholars say, is written in three stages: heroic, with the narratives of great individuals and their feats; revisionist, which turns those accounts on their head; and tragic, where we see how events conspired to bring about an end beyond the reckoning of most actors of the time.” – Daniel Benjamin and Steven Simon, The […]

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Tags: Daniel Benjamin and Steven Simon · Economics · Lit & Crit · Politics & Law · The Forever War

Making art safe

June 23rd, 2017 · No Comments

“Contemporary society, and in particular contemporary criticism, has tamed the arts, gradually deprived them of their prophetic and subversive possibilities. There’s no place in modern life for the mystical or the unpredictable; the arts have been institutionalized and are now managed by a cultural bureaucracy of scholars, critics, patrons, businessmen, and publicists. . . . […]

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Tags: Economics · George Scialabba · Lit & Crit

It’s a free country

June 22nd, 2017 · No Comments

“A four-letter word beginning with ‘f’ has tragically corrupted the minds of countless innocent Americans. I mean ‘free,’ in the expressions ‘free market’ and ‘free enterprise.’ It is a glorious word, of course, but its association with these morally neutral abstractions generally serves to obscure their often harsh and irrational consequences.” – George Scialabba, “The […]

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Tags: Economics · George Scialabba

Day of locusts

June 17th, 2017 · No Comments

“Humanity today is living in a large brothel! One has only to glance at its press, films, fashion shows, beauty contests, ballrooms, wine bars, and broadcasting stations! Or observe its mad lust for naked flesh, provocative pictures, and sick, suggestive statements in literature, the arts, and mass media! And add to all this the system […]

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Tags: Daniel Benjamin and Steven Simon · Economics · Politics & Law · The Forever War

A well-founded opinion

June 12th, 2017 · No Comments

“The rejection of facts; the rejection of reason and science—that is the path to decline.” – President Barack Obama, Rutgers University Commencement Speech, 2016  

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Tags: Economics · Politics & Law · Verandah

It’s not in the budget

June 9th, 2017 · No Comments

“Generals are a happily blessed race who radiate confidence and power. They feed only on ambrosia and drink only nectar, except when they are drinking bourbon. In peace, they stride confidently and can invade a world simply by sweeping their hands grandly over a map, pointing their fingers decisively up terrain corridors and blocking defiles […]

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Tags: Economics · Politics & Law · The Forever War

Tell it like it is

June 3rd, 2017 · No Comments

“A true war story is never moral. It does not instruct, nor encourage virtue, nor suggest models of proper human behavior, nor restrain men from doing the things men have always done. If a story seems moral, do not believe it. If at the end of a war story you feel uplifted, or if you […]

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Tags: Economics · The Vietnam War · Tim O'Brien

Slipping away

May 4th, 2017 · No Comments

“In his attempt to keep planning for the war as closely held as possible, Lyndon Johnson would not give accurate economic projections, would not ask for a necessary tax raise, and would in fact have his own military planners be less than candid with his own economic planners . . . . The reasons for […]

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Tags: David Halberstam · Economics · Politics & Law · The Vietnam War

Play balls

May 3rd, 2017 · No Comments

“Westy [General and former Eagle Scout William C. Westmoreland] at the Cercle Sportif, playing his last tennis game, at the end lining up the little Vietnamese urchins who had served as ball boys, street-tough from some of the meanest streets in the world, unlikely candidates for Eagle Scouts, learning the black-market rate before they learned […]

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Tags: David Halberstam · Economics · Politics & Law · The Vietnam War

Crusts for the little people

May 1st, 2017 · No Comments

“If we get into this war I know what’s going to happen. Those damn conservatives are going to sit in Congress and they’re going to use this war as a way of opposing my Great Society legislation. . . . They hate this stuff, they don’t want to help the poor and the Negroes but […]

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Tags: David Halberstam · Economics · Politics & Law · The Vietnam War