Attack Ads! The Podcast (general)

You might only realize how interesting the times in which you live really are when it's hard to distinguish which is worse: the reality surrounding you; or the commercial reporting on that reality. Hence, Episode 147: Blankstorm '95, CoVID-19, and…

Direct download: Blankstorm_95_CoVID-19_and.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:26pm EDT

Perhaps if more people understood how insulting the tenets of advertising are, or how poorly ad-men regard their audience, more might avoid it, or consider restricting it legally. Consider the title of this Episode 146: Hitler Was An Ad-Man.

Direct download: Hitler_Was_An_Ad-Man.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:19pm EDT

Sometimes, rare books are rare not because they have no value, but because their value is perceived as topical only for a certain time. Sometimes, though, good ideas suggested for one time prove timeless. Hence this Bonus Episode: Radio's Second Chance.

Direct download: Bonus_Radios_Second_Chance.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:39pm EDT

Some episode topics for this show are too obvious to even mention…until they affect me more grievously than a simple plea to get another credit card. I discuss that targeted, personal aspect of direct mail in this Episode 145: All Is Fare In Law and War.

Direct download: All_Is_Fare_In_Law_and_War.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:51pm EDT

Whenever you step on a stage, it's important to remember your lines, even if the very act of memorizing and later reciting those words warps and dominates your thinking… off-stage. I explore this in this Episode 144: The Thought Leader Three-Step.

Direct download: WTN_The_Thought_Leader_Three-Step.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:12am EDT

A lack of any response from communicants can grow into frustration, over time building into a sense of utter hopelessness. By watching what they do, one can sometimes infer that someone might indeed be listening. Hence Episode 143: Maybe They Do Care.

Direct download: Maybe_They_Do_Care.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:08pm EDT

New year looks back should be done when conditions grant the best insights. What better sight is there than that described as 20/20? Hence, Episode 142: 2020 Hindsight.

Direct download: 2020_Hindsight.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:05pm EDT

Sometimes, a company’s announcement causes not ripples but waves. Some laugh and grab their surfboards, while others panic and shout "Tsunami!" I look at one such policy change in this Episode 141: Campaign Season Greetings, Now Chunky Style!

Direct download: Campaign_Season_Greetings_Now_Chunky_Style.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:52am EDT

Take just about any phenomenon, and with enough searching it's usually possible to discover the first instance… or at least the first really, really popular occurrence. Serial broadcast drama is my focus on this Episode 140: As The Plots Thicken.

Direct download: As_the_Plots_Thicken.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:07pm EDT

As we learn from George Orwell, the words we use limit what thoughts we can entertain. The Powell Movementeers spent millions over the decades to limit our political language, giving us what I hope to illustrate in this Episode 139: Fail to the Chief.

Direct download: WTN_Fail_To_The_Chief.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:48pm EDT

When machines can read your expressions as well as humans, we should worry, especially when such predators, be they human or machine, feel not the slightest tinge of remorse. Hence, Episode 138: Digital Psychopathy.

Direct download: Digital_Psychopathy.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:06pm EDT

To understand the national anger at the first radio commercials, I find it helps to understand first and foremost that these ads came right into the home… like an intruder's pungent fart. Hence, Episode 137: Something Else in the Air.

Direct download: Someting_Else_In_The_Air.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:18pm EDT

Technology sometimes makes history dramatically, changing the way its witnesses think of the future forever. Today, I focus on one such unveiling, and link it to the first days of radio, in this Episode 136: Something Amazing In The Air.

Direct download: Something_Amazing_In_The_Air.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00pm EDT

Most of us are today packing a small, flat tech rectangle, something that provides hours of staring opportunity. Is that gadget using its microphone to betray our secret desires? I'll dip into this possibility in this Episode 135: Sweat the Petty Stuff.

Direct download: Sweat_the_Petty_Stuff.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:25pm EDT

Broadcasting ads hither and yon is bad enough. Today, though, advertisers can target their ads. What happens when those in the crosshairs are unable to resist? Who is to blame, then, for harm? I ask that in this Episode 134: The Opposite of Pride.

Direct download: The_Opposite_of_Pride.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:22am EDT

Sometimes, things I recently read about happen in real life, giving relevance to those books I keep diving into… and more evidence that my reading (and this show) is on the right track. I share one coincidence in this Episode 133: The End of the Myth.

Direct download: The_End_of_the_Myth.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:28pm EDT

Dictionaries are bound to have errors. What I found surprising is how many not just dictionaries but also others defined a pretty common word so egregiously wrong. So, I try to get that definition right in this Episode 132: No, Alanis, It Really Isn't.

Direct download: No_Alanis_It_Really_Isnt.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:03pm EDT

Online advertising is now an insufferable bastard. It forces regulators to verbally suck up to those they oversee, and journalists to participate in the crimes on which they report. I share this hot ironic mess in Episode 131: The Keys to the Treasure.

Direct download: The_Keys_to_the_Treasure.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00pm EDT

If you camp, protect your food, for the woods are full of opportunists quite happy to swap their diet of bugs and berries for your candy and cold cuts. Sadly, we must do the same at home, as I explain in Episode 130: Vermin Feed on Forgotten Trash.

Direct download: Vermin_Feed_on_Forgotten_Trash.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:36pm EDT

More forms our opinions than just what we read or hear. Habits, both social and not so much, might enlarge the chasm between us and others, a widening that may provide commercial interests an exploitative opportunity. Hence, Episode 129: Mined The Gap.

Direct download: Mined_The_Gap.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:41pm EDT

I know you're likely tired of my recent obsession with the term "stereotype;" but there is benefit to understanding that gap between our understanding of a thing and complexities inherent in the thing itself. Hence today's Episode 128: Mind The Gap.

Direct download: Mind_The_Gap.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:42pm EDT

Once the First World War removed the tarnished and tawdry reputation propaganda had with business, advertisers were able to expand their reach and hone their technique. I share three of their new tricks in this Episode 127: Brand, Demand, and Target!

Direct download: Brand_Demand_and_Target.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:59pm EDT

To wrap this whole use of propaganda against the citizens that started in the Great War, I thought I'd share my personal journey both within and outside of the myths pounded into us through the television we watch in this Episode 126: Self Evidence.

Direct download: Self_Evidence.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:21pm EDT

We're still at that turning point in history in this episode, this time when one country used the proven techniques of its ally to reverse a campaign promise and involve itself in a Great War. Hence, Episode 125: I Want You, Two.

Direct download: I_Want_You_Two.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:54am EDT

Today, I explore a turning point, the historic but still fairly recent time when an English-speaking country chose not to order its citizens into battle, but to convince them to do so. The main message is this episode's title: I Want You.

Direct download: I_Want_You.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:12pm EDT

At the height of their popularity, patent medicine nostrum pushers engaged in so many extreme acts of outdoor commercial vandalism the era was termed The Age of Disfigurement. I describe it in this Episode 123: The Fungus and Mould of The Obscenery.

Direct download: The_Fungus_and_Mould_of_The_Obscenery.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:42pm EDT

There's a lot wrong out there, but it's not enough to simply point it out and shout, at least for me. If you insist on wandering through Wrongville, you may never get to leave if you have only this Episode 122's title: A Map Without Utopia.

Direct download: A_Map_Without_Utopia.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:20pm EDT

Too many ads today owe their stylistic inspiration to old time pitches for patent medicines, empty exhortations promising far more than the elixirs they bottled could deliver. All that—and so much more!—in this Episode 121: Good for Whatever Ails You.

Direct download: Good_For_Whatever_Ails_You.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:46pm EDT

Sometimes I find something that should be shared in its entirety. It helps when the author of that something is generous with the permission that makes sharing possible. Such is the case with this Bonus Episode: Propaganda, An Introduction.

Direct download: Propaganda_An_Introduction.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:26pm EDT

You can call it propaganda, or you can call it bias, or you can call it undo pressure from funding sources involved in the topic. I call this Episode 120: Call It What You Will.

Direct download: Call_It_What_You_Will.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:25pm EDT

Plunging blindly ahead without due regard is one way to do something. A New Year, though, provides a convenient calendrical pause, where one can look back and make sure goals have not been completely abandoned or forgotten. Hence, Episode 119: My Filter Bubble of Vindication.

Direct download: My_Filter_Bubble_of_Vindication.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:17pm EDT

In one part of the world, at least, the phrase "getting good shit for Xmas" is taken more literally than in others. For a fun look at this region, one intended as levity for what December 25th can bring, I offer the gift of Episode 118: ¡Feces Navidad!

Direct download: Feces_Navidad.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:44pm EDT

It’s not coincidental that the most irritating advertising arose only after machines increased audiences. Broadcasting and amplification beyond the range of a single voice likewise allowed today’s aural effluent. Hence, Episode 117: Can You Hear Me Now?

Direct download: Can_You_Hear_Me_Now.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:19am EDT

The more I dive into media history, the more I find that surprises. For example, did you know there was at one time a chain of theaters that didn't charge for admission? It's a mulling topic for me on this Episode 116: Gates & Gatekeepers.

Direct download: Gates__Gatekeepers.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:13am EDT

Just when a good thing gets going, someone comes along to wreck it, merely because it doesn't make nearly as much money as it could. Like the witches in the Scottish Play, I show one such player in this Episode 115: With This Pin I Stitch Some Dumb.

Direct download: With_This_Pin_I_Stitch_Some_Dumb.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:37pm EDT

It's time to once again let my gums flap without a script to guide them. I've done that before; all I need is sufficient anger. Today I spread my outrage over growing class divisions in this Episode 114: Coffee and Water Everywhere.

Direct download: Coffee_and_Water_Everywhere.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:55pm EDT

I got hacked.  Maybe.  Details within.

Direct download: The_Cherry_on_My_Crap_Mondae.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:27am EDT

I focus my attention once again on an inflection point, a moment in history when an improvement allowed someone to do something previously impossible. Today's technology is the color poster that, when introduced, made Drab Walls Dance… With Ads.

Direct download: Drab_Walls_Dance_With_Ads.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:36pm EDT

Ever since I started this podcastic obsession with advertising and its deleterious effects, there’s a question I can never not ask: Why was a certain book published? I ask it here in this conclusion to author and cultural dog whistle Horatio Alger.

Direct download: Ragged_Dick_Right_Here.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:40am EDT

People for too long have described the poverty-to-power lives of business mucky-mucks as “Horatio Alger stories.” The trouble is, I'm willing to bet that precious few of these people have ever actually read a single one of that man's books. Let's correct that.

Direct download: Ive_Got_Your_Ragged_Dick.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:40pm EDT

Curious about how best the future should proceed money-wise, I consult someone far more expert than I in making podcasting pay, if only a little: KMO of the C-Realm and of the GEBB.IO web comic.

Direct download: Head_Banging.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:32am EDT

Sometimes leftovers happen. Why waste a perfectly good ingredient or two or three—or seven—just because there isn't enough of any one for a meal? Time now to bake and serve these perfectly tasty two-year-old ingredients.

Direct download: Casserole.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:11pm EDT

Well, advertising haters, I think I've finally located the source of the scourge that plagues us: the man who invented the business plan that spawned almost wholly advertising-supported news! I'll tell you all about him in this episode.

Direct download: Day_Breaks.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

To understand advertising today, we have to avoid simplifications like who paid for what message, and move into the nuances regarding how those paid messages—and the media that took the message money—attempt to capture our attention.

Direct download: Pitching_Wu.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:02pm EDT

For reasons too mundane to explain, I've got a short episode this time, one with three pleas for listener participation. Give a listen. I think at least a few listeners might be interested in the topics, and be willing to contribute.

Direct download: Summer_Vacation_Homework.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:06pm EDT

A simple question too often sends my brain into overdrive. That's what happened here, when I confronted the ugly realities of how money warps elections, creating a hot mess that shares too many similarities to our nation's agricultural system.

Direct download: Show_Me_The_Incentives.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:55pm EDT

It turns out there are books and movies out there that cast a critical eye on advertising; but these entertainments are seldom if ever seen or heard today anywhere that relies on advertising dollars to keep the lights on. Let me share one.

Direct download: Rave_Review_The_Hucksters.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:57pm EDT

Ever wonder why "soap operas"—today's daytime serial dramas—are sponsored by a variety of products, not just soaps? It turns out that that wasn't always the case. In the past, one sponsor paid for an entire, individual program. Here, I give an example.

Direct download: The_Boobs_Halo__Halos_Boob.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:25pm EDT

Dualistic language is a problem for me, especially in this overly-polarized media where opinions are not held lightly but with as much force as can be mustered into the opinion blusterscape. By actively seeking less Good-Versus-Evil language, less dichotomous and divisive terms of description, we take the first step into embracing gradualism and nuance into whatever topic might be under discussion. Hence, Episode 102: The Mundane and The Sublime.

Direct download: The_Mundane_and_The_Sublime.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:56am EDT

While I'm wading through written material that will provide future grist for the yakking mill, what else to discuss? How about a brief recap of material already covered, along with asking how I'm doing? Hence….

Direct download: So_Good_So_Far_Maybe_I_Guess.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:51pm EDT

Ah, the celebratory nature of stuff that divides cleanly by ten! Time to reminisce, to look back, and to do new stuff as well, such as to join the lemming parade to FrootiToons! New logo: Check! Descriptions: Late, but check!

Direct download: Mai_FrootiToons_Daybew.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:12pm EDT

When commercialism dominates our reference materials, what else can we expect other than the inability to discover facts hostile or critical of commercialism? I explore that problem in this episode.

Direct download: The_Headwaters_of_Bullshit_River.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:04am EDT

Sadly, in my last episode, I had to gloss over many details involving Zuckerberg's company that I would have loved to launch and rhetorically blast out of the sky. Consider this a follow-through, a far-from-final blast of rhetoric toward the Effin' Bees.

Direct download: So_Many_Layers_of_Fail.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:05am EDT

Back in my youth, my friends and I would occasionally gather to share ideas for projects. More often than not, we would first pretend to load shotguns before we asked someone to share by saying “Pull!” Into the conversation the idea would go….

Direct download: Pull.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:19pm EDT

People are entitled to their opinions. They are not entitled to spouting their opinions unchallenged when those opinions perhaps deliberately ignore crucial bits of history that, if better known, might greatly undermine the importance of those opinions.

Direct download: Cranky_Jack_Hammers.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:45pm EDT

I confess: I sometimes screw up. We all do, after all. And, given our almost universal screw-upped-ability, it's probably best to not assume we are god's gift to the unlearned every time we drop “knowledge” on the masses.

Direct download: Let_Me_Educate_You.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:15am EDT

Though it has long been a presence in our homes, the telephone has of late morphed into an infernal device that has driven many to simply do cut land lines altogether just to have peace and quiet reign uninterrupted by unwanted telemarketing intrusions.

Direct download: A_Zillion_Ringy_Dingies.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:08pm EDT

Lewis Powell, Jr. and his Memo allowed the wealthy to shake the country, resulting in today. Neither the movement nor the shaking has stopped. So, now that we know what happened, I ask: Can Something Else Happen? I read two pieces of listener feedback.

Direct download: Can_Something_Else_Happen.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:42pm EDT

Lots of folks are still mulling over the surprise result of our last presidential election, aren't there? As money muscles its way against people, their choices will matter less and less. How small did Grover Nordquist say he wants government to get?

Direct download: Forget_The_Bathtub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:45pm EDT

I am amazed at how people bend themselves into cognitive dissonance pretzels rather than admit that psychological pressures work on all of us. Maybe we should make ourselves aware of these effective pressures, if only to see when we are being snookered.

Direct download: Refining_Mining_Into_Tragic_Magic.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:45pm EDT

Lewis Powell was a learned man of his times that eschewed, I suspect, the majority of what the boob tube offers. He therefore dismissed the telly. Why, though, merely watch and criticize what you could simply buy and dominate?

Direct download: Triple_Threat.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:52am EDT

Podcasting is not an up-to-date pursuit. Some listeners arrive when the sound files are freshly minted; others years later. For that reason, it's best not to confuse later listeners with DailyExcitement! from the past. I thought I would back up a bit.

Direct download: Gamers_Gonna_Game.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:41pm EDT

I here take issue with an author who seems to ignore the Powell Movementeers in his reading of recent history.

Direct download: One_of_the_Most_Dangerous_Pleasures.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:00pm EDT

We've heard all about this phenomenon, but what constitutes that so-called "fake news?" I here suggest that the answer can be found simply enough: wherever you find the sources that funds the news, you find as well the most likely source of fakery.

Direct download: ALL_Commercial_News_is_Fake.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:28pm EDT

There are complexities and nuances learned when you split wood for, oh, 40 years. Often, you've got to not only bring out the wedges, but know how to use them. Splitting wood has quite a bit in common with splitting electorates using issues as wedges.

Direct download: Wedgies_of_Mass_Distraction.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:35pm EDT

It's bad enough that most radio is so filled with commercial interruptions that I and others find it unlistenable. Thanks to a rule change, however, one has to watch out for more than just crap in the breaks sneaking its paid influence into one's brain.

Direct download: The_Unfairwaves.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:02pm EDT

Sometimes conventional wisdom consists of nothing more than reasonable assumptions explaining evidence that, without those assumptions, appears incongruous. When we avoid looking at those obscured-by-assumption incongruities, we miss something important.

Direct download: Critical_Mass_Holes.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:49pm EDT

There are, I believe, a few select documents that, if known, reveal possible reasons behind actions that might otherwise go unappreciated or even unnoticed. I shared the first in The Powell Memo. It is time to share the second: The Wedge Strategy.

Direct download: Bonus_Episode_The_Wedge_Strategy.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:45pm EDT

Our English language is a mashed mush of a stew with ingredients from so many different sources that it is a discipline to guess from where any given word might hail. I thought it would be neat to offer a misplaced word to you, Dear Listeners.

Direct download: To_The_Perpentious.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:26am EDT

Recordings can be persuasive, sometimes in ways that give us goosebumps. Persuasive, sure·. But what if what we hear or see can work on our brains far more effectively than we know? I here share and rave about Max Berry's excellent book, “Lexicon.”

Direct download: Rave_Review_Lexicon.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:03pm EDT

We constantly hear that the left is in trouble. No wonder, since the voices most often heard on the “left” are those co-opted by quite un-left forces, who utter stammers of compromise to the forces of reaction in every attempt to champion progress.

Direct download: Pulpits_Bully_and_Otherwise.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:50am EDT

I have to remind myself that, when I start a task of reading and dissecting, I should read and dissect ALL of it, not just the parts I think would be interesting. Those boring parts can be interesting… like with textbooks.

Direct download: Textbook_Examples.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:09pm EDT

Lewis Powell said that higher education was too liberal, and that good people who believe in the enterprise system should be brought to campus to speak. I here suggest that inciting protest might be the real reason speakers are chosen today.

Direct download: Provacateurs.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:23am EDT

Sometimes, reality can bitch-slap us right upside our heads with its patented Clue-By-Four. Reality did that to me. This is a follow-up to my last episode, where I let other voices tell you how bad things have gotten.

Direct download: A_Quickie_After_Courting.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:40pm EDT

Wealthy fund the foundations, which fuel the thinkers, who publish the bunkum, which redefines the debate, which helps defeat some legislation and introduce new. But who can remove those unprofitable rules already on the books, perhaps once and for all?

Direct download: Courting_Disaster.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:24pm EDT

So far, I've shared the fortunes amassed into foundations, and the gobbledygook, bunkum and distortions that bought. At what point, though, could we say with some degree of certainty that these investments started to bear fruit? How about 1978?

Direct download: The_Pros_And_Their_Cons.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:04pm EDT

Lewis Powell, Jr. was adamant that his United States and its enterprise system, business culture, capitalism, call it what you will, was under assault. He was most explicit, though, about the primary source of that assault: academia.

Direct download: Lower_Education.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:10pm EDT

One bit of nonsense can be called gobbledygook. The same can be said for a bit of bunkum, true; but I'd like to expand the meaning of that word to refer to the coordinated fraud in its entirety that takes place in perpetrating falsehood for profit.

Direct download: Bunkum.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:10am EDT

I here rehash a book review I wrote years ago for my neighbor's magazine, and explore the history behind the word I chose to use to define it and others of that category.

Direct download: Gobbledygook.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:05pm EDT

Here I finish my deepish dive into a good example of a Distortion Factory, one that suckered me in back in '90 or so: The Breakthrough Institute.

Direct download: The_Distortion_Factories_Part_II.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:43pm EDT

Once a bunch of extremely rich people established philanthropic foundations; once they weaponized them with professional staff, the best money could hire; what happened then? I here dive deepish-ly into a good example of a Distortion Factory.

Direct download: The_Distortion_Factories_Part_I.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:20am EDT

The legal entity chosen by many previously discussed Unusual Suspects, the legal format that has benefited many a billionaire and corporation over the years, has been the philanthropic foundation. Many not only rolled with foundations: they rocked them.

Direct download: Foundations_of_Deceit.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:45pm EDT

Sometimes, ya just gotta rant. I'll let the rant speak for itself.

Direct download: Improvements_That_Aint.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:26pm EDT

We know that Lewis Powell, Jr. wrote his memo. But do we know who read it? It turns out several were influenced by that work, move to spend fortunes against the creeping tide of liberalism supposedly eroding the bulwarks of the free enterprise system.

Direct download: The_Unusual_Suspects.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:19pm EDT

Oh, where would I be without listener feedback? This is a lengthy explanation to longest-time listener L33tMinion about why I used the language I used in that episode. I had to give a little spoiler, given the weirdness that beset the entire United States of America two weeks prior to this episode's release.

Direct download: Two_Paths_You_Can_Go_By.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:44am EDT

Ah, those circumstances that try the soul into reconsideration! I here look into the before-and-after life of one of the most subtly influential people in American history, and give weight to the circumstance that drove him to his own formative moment.

Direct download: Something_Happened.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:42pm EDT

It's back to basics for this episode. No script or sound effects: just my pissed off rant. (That's "pissed" in the American sense of angry, not the British sense of drunk. As Winston once said, Yanks and Brits are people divided by a common language.)

Direct download: The_Commodified_Assets_of_Others.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:03pm EDT

It's not enough to wish things were better, is it? To make things better, it helps to do some planning. I here share and glom onto solutions for newspaper revival and revitalization that allow public inputs without compromising private ownership.

Direct download: Spitballing_Utopia.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:21pm EDT

There are too many existing and former government investments, protections, and subsidies to allow anyone to claim news outlets exist in a “free” market. Once we get that delusion debunked, we can fix the problem of failing news.

Direct download: You_REALLY_Didnt_Build_That.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:25am EDT

While everyone knows that newspapers are going the way dodo, how many know how bad the decline curve really is? For that matter, is there any reason to care? I here give a taste of how bad things are, and why you should care.

Direct download: No_News_Is_Bad_News.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:42pm EDT

When we hear folks say that "objectivity is impossible," what do they mean? When 100 things can be mentioned, and the reporter chooses to mention only 99 of them, objectivity goes bye-bye. I explore this tendency for certain stuff to go unmentioned.

Direct download: The_Sons_of_Omission.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:02pm EDT

I here explore new definitions for an old tradition: bullshitting. Call it "analysis" or "wisdom;" but the general term "bull shit" works best; it has the benefit of accurately describing the act of interpretation no matter what the quality might be.

Direct download: Lies_Bee_Ess_and_Journalism.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:35am EDT

To err is human, amirite? I'm not seeking forgiveness. I know I make mistakes. Here, though, I feel the need to correct the record lest I be accused not-journalism. Even though, I know, I'm not a journalist.

Direct download: Mea_Culpa.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:07am EDT

Here I look into a topic I haven't covered lately: commercials and how to avoid them. In the end I manage to Godwin the whole episode, tying corporate decision-making to an element that inadvertently hamstrung the fight against Adolf Hitler himself.

Direct download: Warring_Assumptions.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:59pm EDT

The title here refers to a condition I hope you will understand once you hear the content. Remember, when you do, that we have instincts shared by all the primates, no matter how “developed.”

Direct download: Cucumber_Monkeys.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:53pm EDT

I do here what I suspect the folks at Planet Money failed to do; to actually read the 1930 John Maynard Keynes essay, "Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren." I'm glad I did. His message was completely unexpected… and refreshing.

Direct download: Existential_Dread_From_Our_Grand_Uncle.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:19pm EDT

People should talk to each other. That way, eventually, perhaps someone says something that finally penetrates the thick skull of the listener, who finally realizes something very, very important. Listener L33t Minion commented. I finally listened.

Direct download: Weaving_Threads_From_Carved_Chunks.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:44am EDT

This just in: Boo! Should you be afraid? Stay tuned. Yes, news tries to suck the viewer in with the Scary. It's the stuff of stand-up and parody everywhere. What possible reason could they have for such silliness?

Direct download: Formatting_Fear_The_Knox_Formula.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:42am EDT

Some dreams from the past never came to be, and some should just stay permanently unrealized. Strap on and hear why the average person should never own a jet pack. Buckle up and learn why self-driving cars simply aren’t worth suffering.

Direct download: The_Fails_of_Past_Futures.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:38pm EDT

You can tell things are not well on television news. It, well, sucks like it has never sucked before. The quality? Gone. I briefly run down the major changes over the last 40 years that might have causally led to Telly News' demise.

Direct download: Exactlly_When_Did_That_Happen.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:04pm EDT