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Music

Marxism: The Music Theory That Never Goes Out of Style

How fitting that a post-punk band from the late '70s, fascinated by the Marxist metaphysics of modernity, would re-emerge to remind us that nothing new has happened in rock in decades. Of course Thom Yorke might disagree...

Politics

Birthered in the U.S.A.

Every time Anderson Cooper cornered Leo Berman on his refusal to accept the abundant evidence about Obama’s Hawaiian birth, Berman changed the subject—right back to his original, hopeless claim.

Culture

Pulp Non-Fiction: Where Tarantino Meets Aristotle

Truth is as strange as fiction. Compare God in America with Angels in America and you can hardly tell the difference -- which is what Pulp Fiction has been saying all along.

Books

Philosophical Tactics in International Soccer

What exactly are Marx, Hegel, Aristotle and Socrates doing after Confucius blows the ref’s whistle? They’re not just thinking about soccer. They’re playing... sort of.

Books

Fooled by Skepticism

Skepticism has been fueling pop culture for decades. Just ask John Lennon or Pete Townshend. Lately it’s just been fooling pop culture about science.

Books

The Pope of Satire

Judging from the worried silence that met Stephen Colbert’s satirical comments about the current president, it seems he stepped over the line from his trademark truthiness that entertains to plain-old truth (or perhaps taboo) that his audience did not want to hear. As comedy routines go, this one died fast.

Books

Übermensch and Übermonk

Adrian Monk is slave to his obsessions, but he’s the master of his self. He's possibly even the master of the future of humanity.

Culture

Pop Culture's IQ: The Downward Spiral

How can you explain the difference between Julia Child and Rachael Ray without acknowledging the elephant in pop culture's living room? We're getting dumber.

Books

Nobel Prizes and Nobel Promises

President Obama probably rattled and hummed in disbelief when he got his Nobel Prize. Ask Bono.

Film

Captain Obama and the Final Frontier

Obama's four-year mission: to explore strange new worlds; to seek out new life and new kinds of political confusion; to boldly go where no rational health-care reformer has gone before.

Books

Where the Frak is All My Money?

Battlestar Galactica is like Wall Street—it’s hard to tell Cylons from humans, especially when it comes to galaxy-size Ponzi schemes.

George Reisch
Books

Our Zombies, Our Selves

Zombies, politicians, and consumers alike seek immediate gratification. But can they be happy?

George Reisch
Music

Fountains of Pain

Why does a band so gifted at crafting pleasing pop feel the need to lash out at losers and demand we chortle at half-baked stereotypes?

George Reisch

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