Kalles Kultur

Kalle's Kultur

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The Wonder of Coincidence

This Friday, May 17, 2013, literally trillions of “things” will happen, as the seven billion person narrative of modern, human existence continues to unravel and evolve. Like every other day, the rotating engine of suffering, jubilee, and mediocrity will churn and scatter its lot among its willing, unwilling, and generally confused inhabitants.

But unlike most days, this day marks an unusual intersection of three superficially unrelated narratives: Norway will celebrate its national holiday, “Syttende Mai”; east Asian Buddhists will celebrate Buddha’s Birthday; and I will celebrate the one year anniversary of a trip to Stockholm that eventually led to the creation of this blog.

Finding myself at the chronological juncture of these three red threads that managed to weave their way into my own personal narrative, I find it difficult to reject the possibility that this day has additional significance - some priority over most other days. Granted, the initial conditions (i.e., the asynchronicity of the Gregorian and Chinese lunar calendars, and my decision to get on a plane one year ago today) were all set by choices, made by people. But when these choices overlap and interact in such spectacular and surprising ways, to reject their significance and meaning is to capitulate to a meaningless life. I choose otherwise.

Gratulerer Med Dagen!

CD

Filed under Syttende Mai Buddha's Birthday Sweden Me

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My response to Politico’s profile of Concord 51

This morning Politico ran a story about Concord 51. That story generated quite a bit of attention for us, but it also raised a number of questions, particularly about what it is that we believe as an organization, and who we are trying to attract as members.

We received dozens of comments and emails asking whether there is “room in your tent” for an “independent African American” or “a gay Republican”. Frankly, this is upsetting – the fact that any of you even have to ask is indicative of the poisonous narrative that has grown to dominate Republican politics, and apparently disenfranchised a large number of supporters.

For the sake of clarity – you are all welcome to join Concord 51, and we sincerely hope that you do.

The United States is on the precipice of a wildly competitive economic environment at the very same time that our national debt is projected to reach unsustainable and potentially ruinous heights. Unemployment and underemployment remain high despite a growing U.S economy. The whole world order is literally shifting under us as nations like China and India rise to capture an alarmingly large, and growing share of global GDP. With all of these grave realities staring us in the face, we as a party have wasted this country’s time staring into people’s personal lives.

We are not going to make it as a nation if we can’t set aside our differences and work together on policies that will set the ship straight.

Concord 51 is a small group, but we are growing, mainly because our ideas make sense. We are gaining traction with politicians because all of them know we are where the Republican party will be in 15 years – we’re just doing it first. Do we need to increase the diversity of our membership? Absolutely. You can help make that happen by joining us.

Filed under Me Politics Equality

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The Incredible Shrinking American Worker

My latest article for The Atlantic -

The mysterious and growing divide between the rich and the rest in just about every wealthy country on Earth, including the U.S., is really two mysteries wrapped in one. The first mystery is why real wage growth has sped up at the top and slowed down for everybody else. But the second, more recent, and more fascinating problem is why labor’s share of the winnings in developed economies has been in decline. It’s not just that middle-class wages are falling behind the rich. Overall wages are falling behind something else — capital.

People are becoming less valuable to businesses. Why?

Filed under Me The Atlantic Economics Labor Globalization

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I drove across Sicily from Agrigento back to Torreta (my father’s hometown) in the summer of 2007 with a few of my friends from law school as part of a month-long tour we took together across western Europe. A bunch of raucous students, we were predictably blasting house music through the barren interior of my homeland. Because it was a rental car, we were relying on the radio to keep the frenzied pace of the evening running. At some point we left the reach of the radio station’s transmission, at which point, without turning the dial, an orchestral arrangement of the first movement of Ravel’s Le Tombeau de Couperin came on. Glaring at the same volume we had previously set for the house music, the piece hit me like a ton of bricks. Already unable to wrap my head around seeing my paternal homeland for the first time, the experience compounded my confusion and wonder, with happenstance adding a layer of personal mythology, as one of my favorite pieces transformed and consumed a moment shared with some of my closest friends. image

Filed under Ravel Sicily Le Tombeau de Couperin Me

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18 notes &

Human beings have been predicting the end of the world for quite a while now. And while timing is subject to speculation, its inevitability is beyond question - this life will end. What these predictions fail to mention is that it’s the bit before that we should be most concerned about.

Filed under 2012 Existence Me Mayan Calendar

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