10 May 2021


Migraines (and their aftermaths) suck. That is all.

Well, not precisely all — a couple of link sausages (not really enough for a "platter") have just come out of the smoker.

  • When even an opinion column in the LA Times is questioning something in the arts, you know that concept has gone off the rails. (Let's leave aside for the moment the dubious proposition that "blockchain means unbreakable and therefore unforgeable"; my distant-ancestral-cousin Friedrich proved otherwise for an "unbreakable" cipher system a century and a half ago, so I suppose I'm predisposed to skepticism.) The fundamental problem with NFTs, though, is not blockchain per se: It is the scarcity/uniqueness issue and the tension between "unique originals" and "actual creativity" that surfaces in so many copyright and related disputes. Advocacy of the NFT is, if anything, a reification of pre-Gutenberg mercantilist economics for the digital age. And that should cause one to pause right there, because the Ms Wertheim's piece just assumes it; just assumes that artificially created scarcity works.
  • But it could be worse. We could still be worrying about COINTELPRO. Maybe we'll eventually start comparing the USA PATRIOT Act to COINTELPRO. More likely… not so much. Because if there's one thing that the body politic in this nation has absolute confidence in, it's that it won't repeat the errors of the past once it recognizes them as errors.