An Especially Disappointing Golden Hicksie

Stephen Hawking undoubtedly knows better:

If machines produce everything we need, the outcome will depend on how things are distributed. Everyone can enjoy a life of luxurious leisure if the machine-produced wealth is shared, or most people can end up miserably poor if the machine-owners successfully lobby against wealth redistribution. So far, the trend seems to be toward the second option, with technology driving ever-increasing inequality.

So, what in the universe is he doing here?:

Not only is this an ad for the machine that is, barring sharp and unlikely new forms of popular education and intervention, virtually certain to finish completing “the second option,” but it is for an “SUV” version of said machine.

So, alas, Professor Hawking, to go along with your Lucasian Chair, etc., you hereby receive the un-coveted Golden Hicksie.

Meanwhile, the ad itself is a rather pristine exhibition of the profound adolescence of the contemporary overclass mind:

“Have you ever noticed how some people in life seem to get away with everything?”

and

“We live our lives from an elevated perspective. We keep our head [is this a British sic, or a grammatical match with the time-honored royal we?*] in the clouds.”

Wow.

*Either way, it’s funny.

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The Height of Capitalist Cynicism

cynicism So, with design help from Saatchi & Saatchi New York, Walmart is currently running this cause marketing campaign. Have you seen anything more unspeakable in every possible direction? A colored lightbulb (and heightened loyalty to Walmart) will supposedly do something meaningful about PTSD, mass un- and under-employment, and the carnage of war — to say nothing of the always-unmentioned criminality and futility of the wars in question.

To quote Mickey Sachs, “If Jesus came back and saw what was being done in his name, he’d never stop throwing up.”

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