Day 79: Marcuse for the Day


In Kim Stanley Robinson’s latest trilogy a character gets daily e-mail alerts called “Emerson for the Day.” Quite funny, as they stand in direct contradiction to the highly technologized life the character is leading (form which he departs more and more). I keep thinking I should do something like this myself and offer a “Marcuse for the Day” service. We’ll see how long I can keep this up (I’ll probably stop tomorrow–this seems like one of those ambitious Sunday ideas that will be thrown into harsh relief with reality come Monday). But as today is Sunday, let me indulge in my own utopism.

Ok, so here it goes, the first Marcuse for the Day:

If mass communications blend together harmoniously, and often unnoticeably, art, politics, religion, and philosophy with commercials, they bring these realms of culture to their common denominator–the commodity form. The music of the soul is also the music of salesmanship. Exchange value, not truth value counts. On it centers the rationality of the status quo, and all alien rationality is bent to it.

Figured that would speak in interesting ways to the discussions surrounding the political potential of the web 2.0 we have been having and which anaj and skunk are having on their blogs at the moment (still cannot figure out how to make names into links–maybe I have read too much Emerson for the day–ha! whaddoyouknow–just did it–had to go to “code”–damn!–that wasn’t all that hard). Not really sure what picture to put above this. Let me see what I have. Hmmm…maybe one of Emerson. Yep, found one. Wow, sure liked his pomade, that Waldo. Hey: who else likes what blogging does to the temporality of stream-of-consciousness narratives? Ha, ha. aaahh…ok, not that funny. Well, actually I am personally quite amused as I am typing this. I also like to explore this bourgeois indulgence in broadcasting egocentrism in its basest forms induced by the temporally problematic construction of readership. Ahahahahaha! (evil laugh)—read me! READ ME!!!

Ahem–sorry. Got new coffee. It’s pretty good. Topic change (btw: can you tell from my prose that I am desperately trying to avoid getting back to my chapter?).

I should include a visual reference to the FSV Mainz 05. They need all the support they can get.


Don’t have much else to say for today. It’s a pretty slow day thus far. Have been working on a chapter a little bit and am trying in my mind to articulate the ways in which Marcuse, Baudrillard and Badiou fit together in an analysis of culture’s relation to capital, but that may take me a little longer.

fragmentedly yours–cj

P.S.: I am thinking about abbreviating ‘cerebraljetsam’, going by c.j. and adding he last name ‘Parker’ to it? Who is with me on that one?

Some people stand in the darkness
Afraid to step into the light
Some people need to help somebody
When the edge of surrender’s in sight

Don’t you worry
It’s gonna be alright
Cause I’m always ready
I won’t let you out of my sight.

I’ll be ready
I’ll be ready
Never you fear
No don’t you fear
I’ll be ready
Forever and always
I’m always here.

In us we all have the power
But sometimes it’s so hard to see
And instinct is stronger than reason
It’s just human nature to me

Don’t you worry
Its gonna be alright
Cause I’m always ready
I won’t let you out of my sight.

YEAH! (I think  I just laughed myself a hernia.)



  1. Hey C.J., what’s this awful song? Congrats on the improvement of your coding capabilities. Exchnage value = link exchange value. And: Määnz! I spent three months of my live in Määnz and thought it to be the most depressing city ever (I was 19 and didn’t know about the West of Austria). Btw, what colour does the referee get to wear in a match with Mainz 05 participation? They wear all black, don’t they? Always look like the league of referees themselves.

  2. going with my new alias c.j. parker the song is the theme from baywatch–thought i should fulfill another stereotype about german people.

    määnz is actually not that bad. i truly learned to appreciate it after my brother and his girlfriend really introduced me to it. i always had the same reaction to it you had, but i have come to like it throughout the last few years. there’s a really cute old part of the city and there are lots of very charming bars.

    oh, about the fsv: no, they’re the “all reds.” also they evidently have the best fans in the country, as i have been told throughout the last few years (motto: wir sind nur ein karnevalsverein!). oh–you can even search youtube for their trademark. the “humba.” (humba, humba, täteräää!). try searching for “humba durch die polizei”–very funny and shows you how relaxed the police were during the world cup. still cannot believe i had to be here to teach and missed the whole thing.

  3. Hey, funny you mention Kim Stanley Robinson, his new novels (Emerson for the day) and Mainz 05 in one blog post. I’m working on a Ph.D. about Robinson’s California Trilogy. I live in Karlsruhe and I support Kaiserslautern (looking forward to the derby next season :-))

  4. Lautre! I think I was a K’lautern fan when I was 12 (but only because of one of my class mates who played in their junior junior team and whom I fancied).

    I’m shamefully oblivious to German stereotypes it seems! Do Germans like to sing this song? I think I watched Bay Watch once:-(

    Humba durch die polizei didn’t produce any search results – I tried to figure out what this masculine ritual of humba humba täterää consist of, but am not sure…. does it only begin when they jump up and down, singing h h t and clapping their hands? Or is the bit before it part of it as well?

  5. ok–quick writing break:
    they took off the previous video, but you can see it here as “grün weisser partybus”:

    i truly enjoy the extent to which the policemen, maybe for the first time in history, did something to serve the people. 🙂

    regarding baywatch: there is a us stereotype that germans love baywatch, as well as david hasselhoff. results, as far as i know, from a series of snl skits.

    @t.: well, as i am quite a ways from any of the stadiums, i am unable to actually see games. i tend to listen to them on internet radio, if i find the time, that is, but otherwise have to rely on my brother’s reports. hope you’ll enjoy the derby, which apparently seems unavoidable (from what i understand).

  6. oh–totally forgot: c.j. parker is the name of pamela anderson’s character in baywatch.
    yes. that’s right.

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