Mammon category archive
Robert Reich explains “The Trump Doctrine.”
Hint: It’s all about the Benjamins.
The Florida legislature works on new plans to convert the public good to private
One of my local convenience stores features, GSTV, a vile and loathsome creation that yabbers commercials at you while you fill your gas tank. (Why they think that making persons angry is a productive sales technique mystifies me.)
At the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Glenn Harlan Reynolds offers his take on the soundwall of advertising that is consuming our attention. An excerpt:
He’s not talking about TV commercials, which pay for the show that you’re watching. He’s talking about ads that seize your attention while giving you nothing in return. He has a special dislike of gas station TV, in which saccharine fake newscasts appear on the pump while you fill your car, tethered by a short length of hose. But that’s not all, Wu writes: “In that genre are things like the new, targeted advertising screens found in hospital waiting rooms (broadcasting things like The Newborn Channel for expecting parents); the airlines that play full-volume advertising from a screen right in front of your face; the advertising screens in office elevators; or that universally unloved invention known as ‘Taxi TV.’ These are just few examples in what is a growing category. Combined, they threaten to make us live life in a screen-lined cocoon.”
I was recently subjected to one of those target medical “channels” when I picked up a friend from a doctor’s office. Ugh.
I chose to wait outside and look at my own screen–and at the trees, the flowers, the sky, and the near-misses on the adjacent street.
The Guardian considers the ongoing (mis)management melodrama at Uber following the recent departure of the
flack PR specialist who was supposed to fix it. A snippet (emphasis added):
Whetstone’s exit is just the latest in a string of several senior departures from the embattled company in recent weeks which include Uber’s second in command Jeff Jones, who left the company over what he described as disagreements with leadership.
But Whetstone’s job was arguably the most challenging of them all: public relations and policy for one of the most scandal-hit companies in America.
“I think basically you have a Donald Trump-like situation at Uber,” said crisis management specialist Jonathan Bernstein. “It doesn’t matter what his communicators say, ultimately it’s about what Travis Kalanick says. It’s like the problem Sean Spicer has – no matter how much he tries to spin, his boss is going to say something on Twitter he doesn’t know about and he ends up looking like an idiot.”
Pap and his guest discuss how Big Pharma designs diseases in order to deal drugs.
If you watch American television in the early evening, you can see scores of commercials that illustrate this, as aging actors perform numerous outdoor activities in front of the green screen.
News of the vapid:
The Navy is banning electronic cigarettes and vaporizers from its aircraft, ships and submarines after receiving multiple reports of the devices’ batteries exploding, catching fire and injuring sailors, it announced Friday.
The malfunctioning devices have forced at least one aircraft to land, started fires on ships and left sailors with second-degree burns . The injuries have occurred when the devices were being used, charged or replaced, or when they came into inadvertent contact with metal objects, according to the Navy.
The story goes on to point out that the “Vaping” business association, which is not called “Nicotine Addiction Pays Big Bucks,” is protesting.
Thom discusses the larger issues highlighted by United Airlines decision to beat the bejesus out of one of its customers and persuasively links them to Reaganomics.
This is . . . police violence as a dimension of a business plan.
Thom points out that the “rule” United Airlines cited to justify beating the bejesus out of one of their customers does not exist. “Deny boarding” is not the same thing as “removal from the plane.”
Meanwhile, Michael Hiltzik dissects United’s excuses. Here’s a bit from his piece:
United CEO Oscar Munoz then made things worse with a statement of Orwellian doublespeak. “This is an upsetting event to all of us here at United,” he said. “I apologize for having to re-accommodate these customers,” whatever that means.
But Munoz, whose version of the episode appears to come from the playbook of how to dig oneself into an ever deeper hole, also undermined the argument that the flight was overbooked. He related that “after the flight was fully boarded,” gate agents “were approached by crewmembers that were told they needed to board the flight.” The implication is that the crew members heading to Louisville were late in arriving, that every passenger held a paid ticket and had been properly boarded, and that only belatedly did United decide to pull passengers off the plane to make room for the crew.
Video via SeattlePI.
Lee Camp tees off on that recent Pepsi ad. (Warning: Language, and lots of it.)
At Psychology Today Blogs, Pamela D. Rutledge has a less profane take. A snippet:
For Pepsi, however, this has been a significant fail. Rather than pushing the edge of pop culture to show themselves youthful and “with it,” they have potentially alienated a younger generation known for having high levels of social concern.