Collected Content #10

In the little more than a month since my last Collected Content, my saved articles list has grown unwieldy. I try to keep these posts to 7-8 articles — crushable in a single lazy Sunday morning — but I now have over 40 saved up. It helps that a lot of the older articles have been rendered outdated by the newer ones — a testament to the speed at which ‘current’ information changes about any subject — but it was still really difficult to edit the list down. I think I did well enough:

Archive of Rachel Tashjian’s Writing for GQ
Rachel is one of very few writers I trust to deliver entertaining yet culturally pertinent takes on fashion. In the last few months, Tashjian has published hit after hit, covering the pandemic, Black Lives Matter, and the various fashion weeks with her unique voice of giddy excitement, palpable absurdity, and the right amount of high-low synthesis. I say read ’em all.

David Shor’s Unified Theory of American Politics by NYMag
This is the single most informative interview about electoral mechanics I’ve ever read. It provides stunning insight into how the American public actually perceives its candidates and policy positions. David Shor, the subject of a recent and widely discussed cancellation by his employer Civis Analytica, is the subject of this wonderful interview and someone I’m going to start following a little more closely.

How I Became a Poker Champion in a Year by Maria Konnikova for The Atlantic
The title says it all. It was such a wild read that had my attention all the way through unlike any longform I’ve ever encountered.

Web Design Museum
I’ve been really into the vintage web aesthetic recently, and this repository of old sites is so inspiring to browse through. We’re fully into the UI/UX thing in web design, optimizing user experience above all else, but it’s funny how a lot of what was done in the past actually trumps modern advancements in web aesthetics in terms of visibility and usability.

‘White Fragility’ Is Everywhere. But Does Antiracism Training Work? by The New York Times Magazine
Many of my friends, acquaintances, and co-workers have taken to Robin DiAngelo’s White Fragility as a one-stop shop to get ‘woke’. It was hard for me to talk about why I think the book is submissive in its goal as that argument, through the circular logic of the book, is itself a form of fragility. In addition to explaining that circular logic well, this article provides additional context in the form of the in-person antiracist trainings and cogent counterarguments. To me, in that antiracist trainings keeps white people obedient, it is a net positive contribution to social justice. Ultimately, I see it harming the movement’s march towards true equality.

The Tik Tok War by Ben Thompson
This is the fairest take I’ve seen on Tik Tok’s monstrous rise, recent ills, potential for foul play, and involvement, whether active or passive, in a seemingly likely Cold War between the US and China. Don’t be surprised if Mark Zuckerberg wraps himself in an American flag in an attempt to recover Facebook’s trust among the American populace.

A Plague Is an Apocalypse. But It Can Bring a New World. by Andrew Sullivan for NYMag
In this feature, Sullivan uses past plagues and their monumental effects on the world to predict how the world will shake out post-Coronavirus. As a speculator at heart, I found that this article has given me a clearer sense as to what to expect, as unpredictable as that is. Sullivan has since resigned from NYMag and moved to Substack for his writing, claiming a tension between the left-leaning values of the magazine’s younger editors and his own right-leaning ones. It’s unfortunate to see, but I’ll be following Sullivan’s new platform and I love the indie trend among content creators. I trust him to challenge my own worldview, even if arguments can feel like they were not made in good faith, and I suggest you do too.

Published by Brian

Reviewer Extraordinaire

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