Frederik Pohl On The Ideas In Science Fiction

by John Holbo on May 23, 2018

A whole page of videos, mostly consisting of old interviews with science fiction authors. I just watched Fred Pohl on “The Ideas In Science Fiction”. I guess I’ll check out the Michael Moorcock one next. (Only on Facebook, it seems, so I guess you have to deal with that if you want to watch.)

I’ve also been reading old 70’s comics. For the dialogue.

Also, this. How can they NOT have called their paper “We Can Remember It For You Whole Snail”? Standards, people.

Neo-Marxism

by Henry on May 23, 2018

A couple of days ago, Andrew Sullivan delivered a blast against “neo-Marxism”:

The idea that African-Americans have some responsibility for their own advancement, that absent fatherhood and a cultural association of studying with “acting white” are part of the problem — themes Obama touched upon throughout his presidency — is now almost a definition of racism itself. And the animating goal of progressive politics is unvarnished race and gender warfare. What matters before anything else is what race and gender you are, and therefore what side you are on. And in this neo-Marxist worldview, fully embraced by a hefty majority of the next generation, the very idea of America as a liberating experiment, dissolving tribal loyalties in a common journey toward individual opportunity, is anathema.

There is no arc of history here, just an eternal grinding of the racist and sexist wheel. What matters is that nonwhites fight and defeat white supremacy, that women unite and defeat oppressive masculinity, and that the trans supplant and redefine the cis. What matters is equality of outcome, and it cannot be delayed. All the ideas that might complicate this — meritocracy, for example, or a color-blind vision of justice, or equality of opportunity rather than outcome — are to be mocked until they are dismantled. And the political goal is not a post-racial fusion, a unity of the red and the blue, but the rallying of the victims against the victimizers, animated by the core belief that a non-“white” and non-male majority will at some point come, after which the new hierarchies can be imposed by fiat.

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