Guardian


#103

Joel Golby always reminds me of Dan Ashcroft from Nathan Barley. He's quite decent when just writing snarky nonsense for Vice about viral videos and crap TV and people being arseholes but as soon as he steps up to a national newspaper and tries 'topical' he falls flat.


#104

nice glass of dutch wine?


#105

she didn't create the moral narrative though -- these are the first few results when you google minimalism. tell me there's nothing sanctimonious about them.



other people have written about it as well.


or this one (haven't read it)

edit: this post takes up way too much space


#106

Firstly, I don’t really have a dog in this fight. Minimalism isn’t really something I’d ever given much thought to as a concept before posting a throwaway link. Having clicked the first couple you posted, I don’t think they are especially sanctimonious to be honest though – no more so than your average lifestyle guru or motivational speaker anyway. The text in the preview for the first link is just an introduction to send up what the stereotype of minimalism is for instance.

From what I can gather from them, minimalism as a theory (at least in these links) is designed as a potential strategy to manage stress. It’s just a form of mindfulness – stripping back the excess in order to appreciate what you have more and worry less. There’s that phrase that modern people are like stone-agers in the fast lane – our biology is essentially the same as our ancestors, but the cultural context has completely changed. Expectations of ourselves, of our families, societal definitions of success, cultural ideals projected via the media and social media, advertising, consumerism etc . It’s a very different form of stress from those who are struggling to make ends meet of course, but you only have to look in the how’s my depression thread to see how real an issue it is for people. A lot of western stress and anxiety is rooted in feelings of failure when measured against cultural ideals or perceived success of friends/relatives/colleagues, and a lot of people take too much on in order to live up to them. I don’t see why a theory which appears to try and manage this has to be seen as an attack on or a cheapening of anyone else’s situation. Surely people can take as much or as little as they want from it and the purists who insist on some kind of minimalist nirvana are surely in the extreme minority (if they exist).

I still don’t see anything in any of this which is about gratuitous displays of non-consumption or of mocking the poor. The Guardian article creates a straw man and then tries to shoehorn this moral perspective in by trying to link minimalism as design aesthetic with attempting to “get all the gold coins of poverty”. It’s an excellent debunking of an argument that nobody is making.


#107

(This post is way too long and mostly garbage.) Having thought about this for a while now, I still can't pinpoint exactly why I find them so irritating. I mean I agree that there probably aren't that many people who take it to extremes. (But even a little bit of a tedious, bankrupt philosophy is more than is needed) It reminds me of those silicon valley types who have it all figured out, or people who post videos of themselves reciting poetry about how you should spend less time on social media. Really fucking irritating even they are trying to address a real problem, and have some small element of truth somewhere in there.

And yeah, I don't think that addressing a real issue is meaningful in any respect. Addressing depression, meaninglessness, and malaise in the modern world is pretty much exactly how all kinds of religions, new age bullshitters, spiritualists, and so on try to convert/spread their cause. And it has no absolutely no bearing on whether the solution they propose is 'good' or not.

I just can't read something like this without thinking it's absolute bullshit:

'Minimalism is a tool that can assist you in finding freedom. Freedom from fear. Freedom from worry. Freedom from overwhelm. Freedom from guilt. Freedom from depression. Freedom from the trappings of the consumer culture we’ve built our lives around. Real freedom.'

Fuck off, mate. I think this pretty much gets to the heart of it. It seems to be attempting to fight capitalism without actually fighting capitalism at all - instead it's all about 'personal enlightenment'. And yeah, it clearly falls into the area of inherently exclusionary. You need a (pretty high, I would suspect) degree of security in order to qualify. Hey you poor fucks! You'll never know true meaning and happiness like I do. What if you're worried about keeping a stable job (freedom from worry), feeding your family (freedom from fear), paying rent (real freedom)? Too fucking bad.

Yeah I'm obviously going overboard here, and I don't think that middle class, stable, unhappy people should just suffer or whatever. Maybe there is no one solution that crosses class lines (destroying capitalism?). Maybe personal enlightenment is as good as it gets. Maybe it isn't actively mocking the poor -- but I just don't think you can argue it doesn't fairly explicitly exclude them.

(In terms of rich, smug, condescending chodes talking about finding enlightenment, I'm far more susceptible to those 'back to nature' types. Mostly because of my own prejudices - it seems much more appealing, but it definitely has many of the same issues.)


#108

Here's the bellend behind Soylent on a spectacular minimalism bender:

Think you're minimalistic? This twat doesn't even have a kitchen.

Getting rid of my fridge was one of the greatest days of my life. Nevermore will I listen to that damn compressor moan.

I have not set foot in a grocery store in years. Nevermore will I bumble through endless confusing aisles like a pack-donkey searching for feed while the smell of rotting flesh fills my nostrils and fluorescent lights sear my eyeballs and sappy love songs torture my ears.

Doesn't do laundry either:

I get my clothing custom made in China for prices you would not believe and have new ones regularly shipped to me.

Seems like a strawman, but apparently it's for real...


#109

he's a personal hero of mine


#110

i'm not disagreeing that it's bellendry of epic proportions, but sufficient trawling of the internet could find ample evidence to paint any ism as being highly pretentious, wanky, or just dangerous. see previous discussions re fascism/antifa, vegan and vegetarianism, capitalism/socialism...


#111

#112

Is Harry Styles the new Bowie?

  • Yes
  • :frog:

0voters

Votes are public.


#113

#114

Is he really the head of the Kwik-E-Mart?


#115

We're through the looking glass people!


#116

My favourite comment from that article is the one that suggests he get an egg from Thorntons with his daughter's name written on it, for her and one with "Bellend" written on it for himself.


#117

Experience: I had a free birth

Just so many lines in here that make you want to smash your head on the desk...


#118

I have very mixed feelings about this article.


#119

There's an argument to be made for saying that the NHS does sometimes make mothers feel like they are on a conveyor belt and over-medicalise pregnancy and birth, but the recklessness displayed in the article isn't the way to challenge it.


#120

What, a mix feeling that the woman is a fucking idiot and then thinking how incredibly arrogant she is?


#121

For a start this comma is annoying me 'just me, my husband, Flynn, and our friend Claire.'
I assume her husband is Flynn and not a 4th party and she can't be bothered to name her husband.


#122

Two paragraphs in and every sentence is a joy.

(I'll stop live bloging my reading of it now)