by Tyler Cowen
on August 9, 2014 at 1:33 pm
1. Medicare revenue incentives in ACA for hospital cost control have not worked so far.
2. Canine bodyguards for bandicoots. And Dracula the time disrupter.
3. Are we headed for a future where everything is complained about? I fear so.
4. I expect the new Francis Fukuyama book will be excellent.
5. Elephant + Volkswagen. Photos.
6. The most obsessive record collector in the world?
7. Mother-fetus game theory.
8. Against jazz (partly ignorant, partly on the mark).
> 3. Are we headed for a future where everything is complained about? I fear so.
Welcome to the future, same as the present (and the past, for that matter).
The article makes no sense to me (or at least as a claim about the future). E-books should greatly lessen the cost electronic endnotes included with the book. (And end the infuriated practice of them being at the end of the book.) Fact-checking and editing for clarity the end notes sounds like money well spent in works of non-fiction. (Top journal require data sets and extra appendices be published on the journals website, not simply the authors personal webpage to insure access.) Also why can’t publishers run manuscript text through a scan for missing citations or plagiarism (like the software some use to check term papers.) Complainers have a role to play.
8. Bebop jazz was great in its prime. It’s just long, long past its prime. But the same can be said for rock, country, R&B, blues, bluegrass, opera, chamber music… The best American music of the past 20 years has been hip-hop, and hip-hop isn’t nearly as good as jazz was. The best live music these days is in South America.
Live music is dead, the next big thing will be vaporwave.
Jazz of the 20s and 30s was, at its best, wonderful stuff. Even better, huge amounts are free on youtube.
Hard to say if the WaPo jazz article was serious, but if the commentator below was not a pseudonym, apparently the jazz column was a parody. Making fun of African-American music in DC will not take you far, that’s for sure. Personally, I think modern synthetic pop and hip-hop is utter trash, bordering on the comical, but I don’t think most young people think that way. Same for Hollywood movies and their stupid overacting. Come to think of it everything modern sucks. Good think I have a gf half my age so I don’t sound like a complete geezer.
Justin Moyer 2:52 AM GMT+0800
The piece above is a work of parody and was not meant to be taken seriously. My apologies to anyone who thought it was real.
It’s your monocle and top hat and give off “geezer” signals.
I dont’ see that “parody” thing on the page now – and frankly it sounds about right as “serious” commentary to me.
I’ve got a coworker who knows serious music theory and is a Jazz musician and has played a lot of free jazz, “traditional” modern jazz, bebop, and you name it at me.
And Moyer’s criticism seems apt – especially the part about “jazz” being so broad it’s meaningless as a genre descriptor.
(Though he does seem to miss that there’s still people worldwide recording Traditional Melodic Jazz With Singing, which has actual tunes and people enjoy listening to.
But the Jazz Cognoscenti seem to hate that kind of thing – though it highlights the “overbroad term” issue. When Ornette Coleman and [arguably] Jacques Berrocal are “jazz” along with Lisa Ekdahl… what does “jazz” signify?
See also this response to the original Rollins parody piece by a professional music critic and Jazz fan.)
Condemning or praising entire genres is silly – both in music and literature. I see people criticizing a genre by quoting a poor example from within the genre while others defend the genre by providing good examples but I think a better way to compare between genres is to say whether there is little chance of finding anything good in a particular genre. In that respect I think jazz compares well to other musical genres, there is plenty of good stuff there for anyone who wants to look. But if we break jazz into more discrete genres, the “recent jazz” genre is pretty sparse in excellence.
#8 links to a Peter Brotzmann duo improv from 2014 and claims that it sounds similar to a session from 1974.
But the links on the right hand side of the youtube page illustrate the fallacy of the larger point. Brotzmann’s Chicago Tentet from 2004 includes more composed and tuneful elements, and the Full Blast trio from 2012 sounds almost like death metal.
“How did we humans get so unlucky?”
Ai yi yi…. #WarOnWomen
Maybe like the Roe Effect, in a few generations all the whiners will be gone?
4. 4. I expect Francis Fukuyama will spend a lot of time telling Fareed Zakaria and Nicholas Kristof that his new book is excellent.
#4. Prussia was indeed a great state, along innumerable dimensions at that, while it lasted. I believe it got hijacked.
7. One suggestion about mother-fetus game theory that I found very interesting is that schizophrenia, or “a” schizophrenia (there could be may of them resulting from different causes) and autism (and again there could definitely be more than cause of autism), are different sides of the same coin with schizophrenia resulting from the embryo’s development falling too far to the advantage of the mother and austism resulting from it being too far to the advantage of the father’s genes. People who go on to develop schizophrenia tend to have below average birth weights and in addition slightly smaller brains, while with autism there is the opposite tendency. And this doesn’t stop at birth. While young, before their condition presents itself, schizophrenics are often regarded as being wonderful children to raise who are very sensitive to the needs of their parents, while I probably don’t need to mention the difficulties of raising an autistic child. So even after birth the pre-schizophrenic child doesn’t demand too much of its mother whiile autistic children generally can’t even comprehend that their mothers have their own needs.
And an interesting thing is that as it becomes the norm for mothers to have access to high calorie, high protien food both before and during pregnancy and as medical support has improved, this has increased the amount of resources available to growing fetuses in the developed world and this is presumably responsible for the increase in autism we have seen and also the decrease in schizophrenia.
#7 was outstanding.
4. This book expands on his pessimistic essay in December, in which he laments the judicialization of administration, as many observers have lamented the financialization of the economy. I will suggest that there’s a connection. What is it?
#4 So we have political decay 20 years after the end of history, eh?
Philip Larkin in an interview with Paris Review: “…Charlie Parker wrecked jazz by – or so they tell me – using the chromatic rather than the diatonic scale. The diatonic scale is what you use if you want to write a national anthem, or a love song, or a lullaby. The chromatic scale is what you use to give the effect of drinking a quinine martini and having an enema simultaneously.
If I sound heated on this, it’s because I love the jazz of Armstrong and Bechet and Ellington and Bessie Smith and Beiderbecke. To have it all destroyed by a paranoiac drug-addict made me furious. Anyway, it’s dead now, dead as Elizabethan madrigal singing. We can only treasure the records. And I do.”
#7 The point of that article is to get into people’s heads the idea that baby’s are capable of intentional harm to the mother, therefore justifying abortion:
“The mammal mother works hard to stop her children from taking more than she is willing to give. The children fight back with manipulation, blackmail and violence. Their ferocity is nowhere more evident than in the womb.”
“Even with the help of modern medicine, pregnancy still kills about 800 women every day worldwide.”
Read the comments to the article.
Children can’t even decide whether or not to soil themselves until they are about two or older. As most people are aware of this, do you seriously think anyone reading that article will conclude that a fetus intentionally decides to harm its mother? Because that doesn’t seem a likely outcome to me.
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