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May 23 2014

Geithner Meta

I’d like to explain why I’ve decided to include some familiar material in Geithner Extended (available in Earth Tones and Relentless Winter and it’s not just to fill up space (though it does an admirable job and that function is also important to the overall design).

The obvious reason is reinforcement by repetition.  The most charitable explanation of Geithner’s actions is that he’s an ignorant idiot.  Any student of Samuelson who actually achieved more than a courtesy ‘C’ in Econ 101 could tell you they’re nonsensical and self contradictory on their face, one need not be a Nobel Laureate like Krugman or Stiglitz; and denial of his policy’s abject failure if not classically delusional is a best an egotistical self defense mechanism.  Other explanations, while likely true, are more cynical and sinister.

However there is a more subtle nuance to which I’d like to draw your attention.

One great lesson I learned at Daily Kos is that most web surfing is remarkably shallow.  Markos is militant that Front Page pieces appear in their entirety on the Front Page not because he isn’t a hit whore (he’s said as much many times), but because he knows that people never click the links, even to read the bulk of an article.  It’s a time honored journalistic tradition called pyramiding, putting a short summary at the top (who, what, when, where, why, and how; or in an essay or speech- telling people what you’re about to say, saying it, and then telling them what you said).  If your object is maximum impact on the web you make your writing as accessible as possible which translates to in your face and short, otherwise it’s tl;dr (too long; didn’t read, now I’m going to start a flame war based on my visceral reaction to your title which is all I care about and am capable of understanding).

I am such a rebel that many of my links are Easter Egg jokes.  What’s important is that they amuse me.

This matters less to me on Daily Kos where my likelihood of appearing on the Front Page can be measured in two words- ‘slim’ and ‘are you fucking kidding?’.  My readers there are either regulars or people who tune in through the ‘Recent Diaries’ list.  In any case the whole piece is visible since the effort is a prerequisite.

On my own sites, The Stars Hollow Gazette and DocuDharma, I structure around it.

When I put up the embedded video of last night’s interview with Tim Geithner (something that is not possible at Daily Kos since they refuse to support iframe video, the only format offered from Comedy Central, because of some imaginary ability to use it to launch an exploit attack), I decided to include the material that, while it was part my cross posting of TDS/TCR (Unreliable Narrator), appeared below the fold where most visitors wouldn’t see it.

1 comment

  1. ek hornbeck

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