The Tragedy of the Commons

It’s hard living with other people. It’s also hard to live with a co-living startup that erodes cities’ social fabric while marketing itself as a communal experience.

Author: Zach Webb
Source: The Baffler
Published: Mar 1, 2018
Length: 9 minutes (2,397 words)

On Poisoned Ground

The city of East Chicago built an elementary school and public housing on a known polluted industrial site. The self-serving web of business interests and politicians who green-lighted these projects in this segregated community embody the term “environmental racism.”

Source: The Baffler
Published: Dec 1, 2017
Length: 20 minutes (5,087 words)

The Afterlife of Newsies

The Newspaper Boy Strike of 1899 was unlikely fodder for a Disney movie, but the 1989 film taught a generation about the true meaning of a fun job, great friends, and the necessity of organized labor.

Source: The Baffler
Published: Jan 8, 2018
Length: 19 minutes (4,800 words)

The Loneliness of the Long Distance Rocker

The lead singer of the Old 97’s discusses the way digitization has disrupted the collaborative nature of a musical community whose members treat each other with respect, even when they’re making money.

Source: The Baffler
Published: Dec 4, 2017
Length: 9 minutes (2,423 words)

American Pimps

Many NFL players are recognizing that their sports careers are lies, because the owners don’t care about players’ health or longevity, or validate their identity as black men in America. Seeing American professional football through the lens of the pimp game makes clear the power, exploitation, collusion and immorality at the heart of a business that treats players like property and gaslights the viewer.

Source: The Baffler
Published: Nov 22, 2017
Length: 10 minutes (2,718 words)

The Problem with Muzak

By reducing songs to “skip rates” and curated playlists, Spotify turns music to wallpaper and poses a threat to music itself.

Author: Liz Pelly
Source: The Baffler
Published: Dec 1, 2017
Length: 16 minutes (4,007 words)

The President of Blank Sucking Nullity

“It is not quite fair to say that Donald Trump lacks core beliefs, but to the extent that we can take apart these beliefs they amount to Give Donald Trump Your Money and Donald Trump Should Really Be on Television More.”

Author: David Roth
Source: The Baffler
Published: Aug 22, 2017
Length: 7 minutes (1,828 words)

Death Trips

Is dying alone the worst possible thing that can happen? With the onset of death doulas, you need not impose on friends and relatives in your inevitable decline or suffer the shame of kodokushi, the Japanese term for ‘“lonely death,” meaning the quiet but messy end of a solitary life.’

Source: The Baffler
Published: Jun 1, 2017
Length: 14 minutes (3,624 words)

Big Bother Is Watching

“Slack tracks and catalogs everything that passes through it, and that is supposed to be a perk. But if the little guy can find anything in the archive, so can his risk-mitigating boss.”

Source: The Baffler
Published: Mar 18, 2017
Length: 14 minutes (3,744 words)


A fantastic essay by Rick Perlstein, on the cult of “smart” in America and how it distorted the ideals of our democracy. “Even as we moderns spend enormous amounts of our conscious energy making evaluations about who is sophisticated and who is simple, who is well-bred and who is arriviste, and who is smart and who is dumb, these are entirely irrelevant to the only question that ends up mattering: who is decent and who is cruel.”

Source: The Baffler
Published: Mar 6, 2017
Length: 20 minutes (5,168 words)