Suck It, Wall Street

The title of the best GameStop crowd-squeeze story I’ve read thus far. By Matt Taibbi. Taibbi skewers the monied class for their blatant hypocrisy, describing the week’s events as. . .

“. . . an updated and superior version of Occupy Wall Street.”

On the hypocrisy:

“The only thing ‘dangerous’ about a gang of Reddit investors blowing up hedge funds is that some of us reading about it might die of laughter. That bit about investigating this as a ‘pump and dump scheme’ to push prices away from their ‘fundamental value’ is particularly hilarious. What does the Washington Post think the entire stock market is, in the bailout age?”

Taibbi’s short and sweet tutorial on the week’s events:

“Furthermore, everybody ‘understands’ what happened with GameStop. Unlike some other Wall Street stories, this one isn’t complicated. The entire tale, in a nutshell, goes like this. One group of gamblers announced, ‘Fuck you!’ Another group announced back: ‘No, fuck YOU!’

That’s it. Or, as one market analyst put it to me this morning, ‘A bunch of guys made a bet, got killed, then doubled and tripled down and got killed even more.'”

On why Taibbi’s siding with the Redditors:

“They’ve seen first that our markets are basically fake, set up to artificially accelerate the wealth divide, and not in their favor. Secondly they see that the stock market, like the ballot box, remains one of the only places where sheer numbers still matter more than capital or connections. And they’re piling on, and it’s delicious, not so much because they’re right, but because the people running for cover are so wrong, and still can’t admit it.

Buy the ticket, take the ride, nitwits. If you earned anything, it’s this.”

Sentences to Ponder

From “Tesla unveils redesigned Model S with new interior and 520-mile range option.

“Tesla has just announced the first major redesign of the Model S since it launched the electric sedan in 2012. This new version, which starts shipping in March, has a refreshed exterior, a simplified interior, and the option for a more powerful powertrain that lets the car travel at least 520 miles and go from 0 to 60 miles per hour in under two seconds.”

Dear Elon, when does public safety factor in?

Weekend Required Reading

1. The US is building a bike trail that runs coast-to-coast across 12 states.*


2. The pandemic is speeding up the mass disappearance of men from college. 

3. Europeans “get” station wagons in ways U.S. drivers do not. Could this begin to change that?

4. Trump Was the Swamp. Persuasively argued, but come on, no credit for pardoning Lil Wayne?

5. Biden Gave Trump’s Union Busters a Taste of Their Own Medicine. Elections have consequences.

6. Mina Kimes Eats All-22 Tape for Breakfast. Love me some Mina, but her brain and communication skills seem better suited to weightier subjects.

* thanks DDTM

The Problem With ‘Self Care’

Self care is a concept, a lucrative subset of a 4 trillion dollar wellness industry, and a red-hot social fad that doesn’t do anything to address the underlying issues of why so many people are burned out at work and seriously anxious about an ever-growing list of things.

Because of the money now associated with self care, the purveyors of it have a vested interest in NOT helping resolve the underlying issue of frantic busyness that defines so many people’s daily lives. Granted, some of that frantic busyness is explained by people trying to eke out a living with too few jobs that pay a livable wage, but a lot of it is the result of social contagion. I run on the treadmill of life because you do.

We will mute the clarion call for self care when people will themselves to get sufficient sleep, eat healthy food, and be physically active.

My university is a classic case study in the ridiculousness of self care. All of a sudden, despite my colleagues’ tendencies to overwork, the leadership is talking about the importance of self care. We are like seriously overweight people who think we’ve found the miracle diet, but in this case, we’ll be fine if we just make time for a warm bubble bath at the end of our frantic days. And don’t forget the candle.

I predict all of the self care talk will have no medium or long-term effect on how faculty live their lives. But on the plus side, more bubble bath and candles will be sold.

“Trump’s” Farewell Address

I’m here to save you 20 minutes of your life.

The Address is not really his. At minimum, the first half was written by people with no feel for his syntax and rhetoric. I suspect this announcement was made in the White House. “Would any remaining staff please report to the conference room to help write the President’s Farewell Address. Thank you.”

Just a few of the examples where the authors’ insult our intelligence.

To his children:

“You fill my world with light and with joy.”

On the advice of his attorneys, after passively watching the insurrection go down on television and not commenting on it for two days:

“All Americans were horrified by the assault on our Capitol.”

From the President of Red America:

“Now more than ever, we must unify around our shared values and rise above the partisan rancor. . .”

From the Narcissist-in-Chief:

“America had given me so much, and I wanted to give something back.”

From the person who repeatedly tried to wish Covid-19 away:

“We grieve for every life lost, and we pledge in their memory to wipe out this horrible pandemic once and for all.”

From the person who continually protested against protesters and fought the principle that every citizen is entitled to equal dignity, equal treatment, and equal rights:

“We fought for the principle that every citizen is entitled to equal dignity, equal treatment, and equal rights because we are all made equal by God. Everyone is entitled to be treated with respect, to have their voice heard, and to have their government listen.”

Half way in, there’s a dramatic shift in tone. These two boasts sound very, very much like Ex-President Trump:

“Incomes soared, wages boomed, the American Dream was restored, and millions were lifted from poverty in just a few short years. It was a miracle. The stock market set one record after another, with 148 stock market highs during this short period of time, and boosted the retirements and pensions of hardworking citizens all across our nation. 401(k)s are at a level they’ve never been at before. We’ve never seen numbers like we’ve seen, and that’s before the pandemic and after the pandemic.”


“Another administration would have taken 3, 4, 5, maybe even up to 10 years to develop a vaccine. We did in nine months.”

Finally, at the very end, a return to creative writing. From the most angry President of my lifetime.

“I go from this majestic place with a. . . joyful heart.”