Humor Science Fiction

Watched Lower Decks S1E1

Watched Second Contact from

Ensigns Mariner and Boimler run into difficulty on Galar. Meanwhile, an alien virus infects the crew of the Cerritos.

Not our jam. Also the characters talked way too fast.

Art and Design Political Commentary

Climate commentary map art

Liked Petrofuture Gallery by JeffreyJeffrey (

The Petrofuture series of maps is a work of parody…taking old pieces of oil company advertising and propaganda, and turning it back on itself.

Using vintage gas station maps as a base, I add 66 meters of sea level rise, the highest predicted by the IPCC if all the ice sheets melt.

Science Fiction

Watched Don’t Look Up

Watched Don’t Look Up from

Two low-level astronomers must go on a giant media tour to warn mankind of an approaching comet that will destroy planet Earth.

Funny not funny to turn climate change into a one-time event that theoretically people would pay more attention to, except that they still wouldn’t.

Some of that satire hits too close to reality ūüėź Ugh the chanting and trucker’s hats and denial of reality and cronyism.

Activism Art and Design Society The Internet

Nuance and ambiguity

Bookmarked Art Should Be a Doorway, Not a Mirror by Lincoln Michel (Counter Craft)

There is a difference between attacking bigotry and in demanding that art be unambiguous is its moral messaging.

The ostensible ideologies of these art police run the gamut from conservatives like Jerry Falwell to centrists like¬†Tipper Gore to self-professed progressives and leftists. But what unites these people is aesthetic puritanism. They view art as a series of moral lessons that must be entirely unambiguous. Reading the tweets during these scandals, you see the same claims over and over again. Stories must be uplifting, characters ‚Äúlikable,‚ÄĚ messages clear, and all bad or messy or immoral lines/characters/events must be explicitly rebutted in the text.

This is a perspective from which satire cannot exist, or must be so blatantly obvious no reasonable person could possibly think it was valid (Poe’s law). This is tied to the challenge of interpreting intention from text or images without the benefit of tags like emojis and /s. These markers arose in our online communication for the same reason: fear of being misinterpreted through the worst lens. Art does not carry those same markers, but we’ve become used to being assured of when a thought is mocking or sarcastic. We’re afraid of identifying “wrong,” of being grouped with those who do harm, and leap to signal our “good” identity by defending any possible attack. It’s a defensive mechanic via aggression.

Although this particular flavor of art puritanism claims to be progressive, their insistence on purity tends to harm exactly the people they claim to be protecting. It is queer authors like Isabel Fall who must out themselves, or victims of sexual assault like Kate Elizabeth Russell who are pressured¬†to publicly state their trauma¬†in order for their¬†fiction‚ÄĒremember what that word means?‚ÄĒto be permitted.

Only once we’re assured the artist isn’t intending harm, is nuance or darkness or satire acceptable.

I ran a satirical project for a time, but we reached a point politically where I was too scared of the satire being misinterpreted and pulled back on it.

This attack response has such a strong chilling effect on artists it becomes a form of censorship — just as showing up with lethal weapons at a protest is chilling to free speech. When some nutjob with an AK gets to decide whether you deserve to live or die, that deters valid protest of any form. Not to validate it, but vandalism or property damage is not punishable by the death sentence under the law, except that right wing vigilantes have decided that it should be. And being on the right side of the law doesn’t matter after you’ve been murdered — so why risk letting someone who hates you getting to decide whether you’ve committed a killing offense in their eyes? Online attack mobs probably won’t kill you (unless they SWAT you), but they can slander you, make you lose your job, force you to disclose private experiences, harass you to the point of a mental breakdown, threaten you with rape and murder… Art and activism are strongly bound, but our culture of vigilante justice makes it a brave act to pursue either in an age of paranoid reading.

History Political Commentary Society

Monopoly was Originally Satire

Bookmarked Monopoly was invented to demonstrate the evils of capitalism (

The key innovation of her game, however, lay in the two sets of rules that she wrote for playing it.

Under the ‚ÄėProsperity‚Äô set of rules, every player gained each time someone acquired a new property (designed to reflect George‚Äôs policy of taxing the value of land), and the game was won (by all!) when the player who had started out with the least money had doubled it. Under the ‚ÄėMonopolist‚Äô set of rules, in contrast, players got ahead by acquiring properties and collecting rent from all those who were unfortunate enough to land there ‚Äď and whoever managed to bankrupt the rest emerged as the sole winner (sound a little familiar?)

The inspiration began with a book that her father, the anti-monopolist politician James Magie, had handed to her. In the pages of Henry George‚Äôs classic,¬†Progress¬†and Poverty¬†(1879),¬†she encountered his conviction that ‚Äėthe equal right of all men to use the land is as clear as their equal right to breathe the air ‚Äď it is a right proclaimed by the fact of their existence‚Äô.

The original inventor, Elizabeth Magie, sounds pretty cool.


The Expert

Watched The Expert (Short Comedy Sketch) by Lauris Beinerts from


Re-Watched Thank You for Smoking

Watched Thank You for Smoking from

Thank You for Smoking is a movie starring Aaron Eckhart, Cameron Bright, and Maria Bello. Satirical comedy follows the machinations of Big Tobacco’s chief spokesman, Nick Naylor, who spins on behalf of cigarettes while trying to remain a role model for his 12-year old son.

Humor Political Commentary

Watched Borat 2

Watched Borat Subsequent Moviefilm by Sacha Baron Cohen from Amazon

Didn’t especially like the first Borat but couldn’t resist the brilliant marketing for this one. Very cringey and horrifying, and astonishingly well pulled together at the ending.