The Death of Postmodernism and Beyond (2006)

Core postmodern concepts like the hyperreal and simulacra are more relevant and true than they have ever been.
Furthermore, the article claims that postmodern is characterized by an ironic self awareness, and never has this idea been more prominent in culture. In recent years I have noticed that TV commercials have become more and more self-aware. Take for example a recent commercial by what I believe was Verizon. It says something like “More coverage, more data.” and then another actor comes into screen saying “and more people saying more.” If this isn’t ironic self awareness, I’m not sure what is.

Those are postmodern concepts about culture. But the postmodern metaphysical and epistemological nihilism are, as another commenter said, basically bedrock in terms of philosophy.

.. The core of postmodernism is that we have exhausted modernity — and indeed there are no trends that are “new under the sun anymore”, not just because everything has been done before (which is almost true), but because society doesn’t care about following this or that form en masse anymore and then proceeding to another (e.g. how baroque turned romantic, turned 12-tone, etc. or similarly in any other sphere).

Instead, everything is fragmented, and everybody (artist or not) can do whatever they please and have an audience/followers. There is no canon and no single “normative” culture the way it was 80 or 100 or 150 years ago.

Plus, nothing is able to baffle anyone anymore — in the way that each generation before could shock some part of the established culture (up to perhaps punk, but probably not even that, and not even 50s rock n’ roll — it only shocked the most conservative parts of society, and had no problem being marketed, sold, and dominating the airwaves in record time).

Postmodernism is also about having access to all the cultural production and modes of the past, and the internet and co made that even more so. Artists, politicians, marketeers, etc can borrow from any period, and repackage and resell everything, combine it, etc.

All of these things are what are described as the “postmodern condition” by the now dead French theorists of the postmodernism.

And none of those things is going away.

Even a total return to modernism or classicism across all artists for example, would still be postmodern — because before post-modernism art didn’t regress to previous periods, it invented new modes.

.. Nothing is fragmented, because everything has been reduced to transactionalism.
You can do whatever you like, as long as you’re trying to make money (or sometimes more abstract social credit) by selling it/you as hard as possible to your customers.

And there are only potential customers now – not audiences in the old scene-with-common-values sense.

Postmodernism, such as it is, is now a marketing gimmick, occasionally used to add some spicy irony to make sales efforts more successful.

The real horror is that this applies everywhere – not just in commerce, but in the arts, the sciences, academia, and especially in politics.

My meeting with Donald Trump: A damaged, pathetic personality — whose obvious impairment has only gotten worse

I didn’t get his endorsement when I ran for governor — but the severely troubled man I met has only gotten worse

In 1994, I visited the home of Donald Trump. He was a Democrat then, of sorts, and I was the party’s nominee for governor of Connecticut. He’d taken an interest in our state owing to his keen desire to lodge a casino in Bridgeport, an idea I found economically and morally dubious. I had scant hope of enlisting him, but made the trip anyway, thinking that if I convinced him I might win, he’d be less apt to bankroll my opponent.

.. Trump soon appeared and we began to converse, but not really. In campaigns, we candidates do most of the talking; because we like to, and because people ask us lots of questions. Not this time. Not by a long shot.

Trump talked very rapidly and virtually nonstop for nearly an hour; not of my campaign or even of politics, but only of himself, and almost always in the third person. He’d given himself a nickname: “the Trumpster,” as in “everybody wants to know what the Trumpster’s gonna do,” a claim he made more than once.

He mostly told stories. Some were about his business deals; others about trips he’d taken or things he owned. All were unrelated to the alleged point of our meeting, and to one another. That he seldom even attempted segues made each tale seem more disconnected from reality than the last. It was funny at first, then pathetic, and finally deeply unsettling.

On the drive home, we all burst out laughing, then grew quiet. What the hell just happened? My first theory, that Trump was high on cocaine, didn’t feel quite right, but he was clearly emotionally impaired: in constant need of approbation; lacking impulse control, self-awareness or awareness of others. We’d heard tales of his monumental vanity, but were still shocked by the sad spectacle of him.

.. Over time, his mental health seemed to decline. He threw more and bigger public tantrums; lied more often and less artfully. The media, also in decline and knowing a ratings magnet when it saw one, turned a blind eye. Sensing impunity, Trump revived the racist ‘birther’ lie. In 2011, he told the “Today” show’s Meredith Vieira he had unearthed some dark secrets:

Vieira: You have people now down there searching, I mean in Hawaii?

Trump: Absolutely. And they cannot believe what they’re finding

As Trump recycled old lies, Vieira had a queasy look but no apparent knowledge of the facts. Of course, there weren’t any. Trump had no proof of Obama being born in Kenya. (Since there is none.) It’s highly doubtful he had any researchers in Hawaii. (It was only after Vieira asked him that he claimed he did.) Later, when Trump’s story crumbled, he followed a rule taught by his mentor, Roy Cohn, infamous architect of McCarthyism: Admit nothing. To Trump, a lie is worth a thousand pictures

Behind Wonder Woman Is a Great Man

Diana’s mother Hippolyta explains at the beginning of the film that humans were originally created to be “strong and passionate,” and Captain Trevor is both, and when it matters, he can use those qualities to support someone else.

.. Mr. Pine is working in a mode previously explored by Chris Hemsworth in “Ghostbusters” and Channing Tatum in pretty much everything — the preternaturally attractive man who wears his beauty lightly, who is both willing to be objectified and to make a joke of his objectification. A white, muscular man on the big screen isn’t exactly boundary-breaking, but even the acknowledgement that male bodies can be beautiful sometimes feels subversive, and an actor who’s willing to take a playful and self-aware attitude toward his own sexiness is a welcome break from a culture that frequently lays the heavy burden of hotness exclusively on women.

.. Captain Trevor is a reminder that masculinity itself isn’t the problem.

.. he remains masculine throughout the movie in a fairly traditional sense — his masculinity just allows for supporting a powerful (O.K., superpowerful) woman, rather than undercutting or resenting her.

.. it’s also important for boys and men to see a man who becomes heroic by following a woman’s lead.

Putting the Power of Self-Knowledge to Work

“I think when people look back at our time, they will be amazed at one thing more than any other,” she writes. “It is this — that we do know more about ourselves now than other people did in the past, but that very little of this knowledge has been put into effect.”

.. childhood trauma — so-called adverse childhood experiences, or ACEs — substantially increase risks for a range of negative outcomes, including dropping out of school, abusing drugs, becoming depressed, committing suicide, and being a victim of, or a perpetrator, of violence or abuse.

.. ACEs are common. Close to one in four people has three or more of these experiences, and they are far more prevalent among people under age 55.

.. And later, in the absence of healthy options, the way they cope with the pain, anxiety or shame is often by self-medicating. Nicotine is a great anti-anxiety medication, and the first prescription antidepressants were methamphetamines.”

.. There’s so much historic trauma in tribal communities,” she said. “Traditionally, children were seen as sacred beings and abuse was nonexistent.” But generations of displacement and discrimination, including the practice of removing tribal children from their families and placing them in boarding schools, where neglect and abuse were common, has contributed to persistently high rates of alcoholism, drug use and incarceration.

.. Usually, we’re so focused on the symptom level — addiction, abuse, disease,”

.. At present, the department’s recidivism rate — which it defines as committing a felony and returning to prison within three years — is 32 percent. Becker-Green’s goal is to lower it to 25 percent by 2020.