Tuesday, May 25, 2010

"rich flight" is not "white flight" + "libertarian" is dead to me + links


There's something in humans that thinks what rhymes must be true. Salon's Death of the "open Web": Greatly exaggerated reminded me of that. The writer caught something I missed in the New York Times' The Death of the Open Web: "In the migration of dissenters from the "open" Web to pricey and secluded apps, we're witnessing urban decentralization, suburbanization and the online equivalent of white flight."

I left this comment at Salon:
Apple is only for white people? That's almost as funny as the idea that the suburban exodus was driven exclusively by racism. That exodus included middle and upper class people of color who could afford to live in the suburbs. Oddly enough, much like ipad buyers.
Yes, racism was a factor in the original "white flight", but it was only a factor for some people. Everyone who headed for the suburbs had more money than the average American and wanted the comfort that money could buy.

We need a new phrase for the class equivalent of "white flight." Or maybe there's an old phrase that needs to be revived. "Rich flight" began when cities started to create neighborhoods that divided rich and poor. Surprisingly, that division isn't as old as you might think, at least not in England. Engels talks about it in The Condition of the Working-Class in England in 1844.


I hate what the libertarian party has done to the world "libertarian." For decades, I've done the nerd thang of arguing that people should capitalize it when they mean batshit right-libertarianism. But Rand Paul has got a lot of people using the small-l version to talk about his craziness, so I'm surrendering. From now on, I'm just a democratic socialist, and if necessary, I'll let my nerdness insist on the older meaning of "liberal" to qualify me further. It's no great loss. "Libertarian" has too many syllables.

3. Links:

Private pay shrinks to historic lows as gov't payouts rise - USATODAY.com:
Paychecks from private business shrank to their smallest share of personal income in U.S. history during the first quarter of this year, a USA TODAY analysis of government data finds.

At the same time, government-provided benefits — from Social Security, unemployment insurance, food stamps and other programs — rose to a record high during the first three months of 2010.
Feeling Anxious, Having Panic Attacks, Living With Phobias? You’re Not Alone - AARP Bulletin: "A new study reveals that anxiety disorders—such as panic attacks, irrational fears and exaggerated worry and tension—are twice as common as depression among middle-age and older people. Depression in older people tends to get more attention than anxiety, which is ignored in part because it can be tricky to spot."