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Open Thread: Oct 19, 2013

Have a good weekend, folks.

About the author: Just the administrator of this humble blog.

  • Horace Jeffery Hodges

    In case anyone’s interested, Dalkey Archive Press is publishing Yi Kwang-su’s The Soil and Jang Jung-il’s When Adam Opens His Eyes, both of these being literary works that my wife and I translated from Korean into English.

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • RElgin

    Congratulations to both you and your wife.
    The task of translation, alone, is a monumental effort of love.

    I only regret that you are selling an e-book version through Amazon. I wish you had a Kobo books version.

  • Horace Jeffery Hodges

    They’re also physical books, and the KLTI has the arrangement with Dalkey, so we’re out of that loop altogether — and lest anyone wonder, we receive no royalties. Our reward was a grant and the pleasure of helping introduce Korean literature to the English-reading world.

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • RElgin

    Shee . . . someone should put some money your way, anyway.

    Translation is tough work.

  • Horace Jeffery Hodges

    I have no complaints — I get to be a footnote to history..

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • Towelthief

    What happened to Robert Neff? I used to enjoy his little historical postings a lot. Did I miss something?

  • RElgin

    Several of us tricked him into meeting us at a secluded spot, on Chejudo, whereupon we killed him, roasted him and ate him, while drinking makolli and taking pictures with his camera obscura.

    Good times.

  • Aja Aja

    Japanese revisionist history on colonization of Korea, in music video format, by a Japanese rock group.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=yUelX8kBThk#t=37

  • Koreandumbdumb

    Abe says he will shoot down the Chinese drones. The ChinoJapan war II about to start?

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    This has been bugging me ever since I saw the new Museum of Modern Contemporary Art but who designed the red brick part of the museum and why did they make it so damn ugly? There is absolutely no continuity between the more modern part of the museum, which looks fine, and this monstrosity. I suppose it is the administrative part, but even so, did it have to look like a goddamn elementary school?

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    http://www.mpartarchitects.com/ are the guys responsible for that red brick atrocity. They have declared war on the neighborhood.

  • RElgin

    Here is a photo we took to commemorate the occasion.

  • hoihoi

    an another song

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5q-8FC1fjoA

    revisionist history

    Korea Under Japanese Rule as Observed by Foreigners

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=-YPpWjHGFZU

  • RElgin

    Americans have a reason to be worried about data collection and the TSA, per the NY Times about the PreCheck program for travelers to and in the US:

    Data in the Automated Targeting System is used to decide who is placed on the no-fly list — thousands of people the United States government has banned from flying — and the selectee list, an unknown number of travelers who are required to undergo more in-depth screening, like Mr. Darrat. The T.S.A. also maintains a PreCheck disqualification list, tracking people accused of violating security regulations, including disputes with checkpoint or airline staff members. Much of this personal data is widely shared within the Department of Homeland Security and with other government agencies. Privacy notices for these databases note that the information may be shared with federal, state and local authorities; foreign governments; law enforcement and intelligence agencies — and in some cases, private companies for purposes unrelated to security or travel, for instance, an update about the T.S.A.’s Transportation Security Enforcement Record System, which contains information about travelers accused of “violations or potential violations” of security regulations, warns that the records may be shared with “a debt collection agency for the purpose of debt collection.”

    A recent privacy notice about PreCheck notes that fingerprints submitted by people who apply for the program will be used by the F.B.I. to check its unsolved crimes database. “The average person doesn’t understand how much intelligence-driven matching is going on and how this could be accessed for other purposes,” said Khaliah Barnes, a lawyer with the Electronic Privacy Information Center, which has fought to block these initiatives. “There’s no meaningful oversight, transparency or accountability.”

    Talk about government running amok.

  • dlbarch

    And none of this has ANYTHING to do with combating terrorism.

    In less than a decade, the TSA — and the DHS behind it — has become one of the most reviled bureaucracies handed down by the Bush administration. I would rather receive — and would be more willing to do battle with — a telephone call from the IRS or a knock at my front door by the DEA than be forced into a confrontation with a TSA goon at the airport.

    Fight the IRS or the DEA, and you’re exercising your civil liberties. Talk back to the TSA and they will pretty much f*ck up the rest of your traveling life, and there is precious little you will be able to do about it.

    “Thank you for your cooperation, citizen.”

    DLB

  • dlbarch

    Poseur-Alert Special (for all you poor bastards considering a Ph.D. in Korean Studies), I pass along this cringe-worthy, jargon-filled description of the latest from Nayoung Aimee Kwon, assistant professor of Korean and Japanese cultural studies at Duke University…and academic douche par excellence:

    “In the 1930s, with Japan’s expansions into the Asian continent, colonial Korean culture in general, and literature in particular, came to take important roles as both subject and object of such imperial expansions.This paper reexamines the colonizer and colonized binary by re-contextualizing the rise of translated texts packaged as ethnographic “colonial collections.”

    “In particular, this paper historicizes the ethnographic turn relegated to colonial culture by examining the rise of colonial collections as a manifestation of mass-produced objects of colonial kitsch at this time. The complex position of the colonial artist/writer cum (self-)ethnographer situated in between the colony and
    the metropole embodies an uncanny contact zone as the artist and work of art become reified as objects of imperial consumer fetishism.

    “In the colonial encounter, the artist as producer and the art object of his or her labor meld into indistinguishable and interchangeable forms, as producer and product of kitsch. In such relations of colonial alienation, cultural producers struggled to map out spaces as agents of artistic expression, while agency for the colonized artist often meant further alienation through self-ethnography or through mimicry of the colonizer’s racialized forms and discourses.”

    Sadly, this paper is being presented next week at Cal’s esteemed Institute of East Asian Studies, no doubt to the collective sigh of non-postmoderist scholars everywhere.

    DLB

  • dogbertt
  • redwhitedude

    Pass the popcorn I want to watch that.

  • yuna_at_marmotshole

    LOL, thanks for a good laugh. It’s like words popped out from the arse of a a purple cow with a flower on her head
    As a science person, unfortunately most papers in non-science (and indeed some science) that I come across read like that, well, to varying degrees.

  • Horace Jeffery Hodges

    In my editing work for various journals, I sometimes have to edit stuff like that.

    Worst of all are the young scholars who’ve been fed this jargon till stuffed full, and when they can finally release the half-digested load of crap, it spews forth like a bad case of diarrhea after a long bout of constipation.

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • yuna_at_marmotshole

    Talking of that topic, I was up against another extremely annoying Korean woman who kept insisting “위하여” instead of “건배” when we were out with some visitors to Korea. The *arbitrary* change of words/expressions from Japanese or Chinese origin to Korean words at some point annoy the crapl out of me. Everybody used to say Takuan when I was young. Why force/insist on Tanmuji(Korean word for a kind of tsukemono invented by, wait for it, a Japanese Buddhist monk called Takuan).
    If you’re going to insist 다마내기(tamanegi) is 양파(yangpa) I mean, why not go all the way and insist 둥근파, like the North Koreans.
    I actually quite appreciate the North Korean’s way of having pure Korean words, it’s like the Finnish words for things. I just don’t like the arbitrary wrong half-way of the South Korean system.

    At the same table, a non-Korean guy asked me if they spoke differently so I told everybody about the Korean joke “what do you call a chandelier in North Korean? 떼불알 ” Strangely, it was less lost in translation, than sense of humour because the Korean woman didn’t find it funny but the others did.

  • http://www.bcarr.com/ Brendon Carr

    You’d think your virtuous and special buddy Obama would have had some chance to address the Transportation Security Agency, what with him being in office five years now.

  • Wedge1

    Some academics think they are being clever using a bunch of $5 words, when actually it requires more intelligence to state your case in clear, concise language that actual people can understand.

    So, my thought is this person is purely looking for grant money, or perhaps the esteem of peers, not to actually enlighten the world about something important.

  • RElgin

    It looks more like the guy has made some significant mistakes, such as using drones to wage what has become a “war of terror” instead of a “war on terrorism™” – complete with bs movies about how noble we Americans are.

    Our government is becoming more like the Chinese!

  • RElgin

    Damn, at least the guy did not try to work some connection with golden mean sections into that crap.

  • RElgin

    Oh my word, that is rich!

  • Wedge1

    Actually, without the word “heteronormative” in the description, how good could this presentation be?

  • http://www.bcarr.com/ Brendon Carr

    I was thinking the same thing, except coming at it from the other angle: How is it that this omits the word “queer”? Or is that too 90s?

  • Jay

    Are you guys gonna translate Yi Kwang Su’s book about interracial homosexual love with a Japanese guy? It Might Be Love [Ai, ka]

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    There is no message there. Its all about the jargon.

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    and people wonder why i despise government. Wonder no more, and welcome to the dark side.

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    The US has more prisoners than China despite being 1/4 the size. You think it is BECOMING MORE LIKE CHINA?

  • Sperwer

    That’s because the US imprisons so many petty drug criminals; China just shoots them in the back of the neck

  • Horace Jeffery Hodges

    Didn’t he write it in Japanese? We lack that language skill.

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • RElgin

    I will totally buy that game when it comes out, especially if there are flying samurai robots; I mean what cool devices do the Chinese have anyway?

  • seouldout
  • MikeinGyeonggi

    If the US has more prisoners, it’s because we have more violent crime, which in itself is a serious problem.

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    Most US prisoners are non-violent and many are the victims of the War on Drugs.

  • MikeinGyeonggi

    The majority of federal prisoners are non-violent(~8%). This is because most violent crimes fall under state laws, not federal. Half of all federal inmates are in for drug-related crimes. Any time drugs cross a state or national border, the crime falls under Federal jurisdiction. 53% of state prisoners nationwide are in for violent crimes. That’s a lot.

    As far as “victims of the War on Drugs”…. C’mon. Drug cartels use terrorism and violence along the border so they can keep trafficking heroin and crack that will end up in the same neighborhoods as young children. And you say the convicted criminals are victims here? I’m all for legalizing drugs (pot) that don’t turn people into strung-out junkies who’ll do anything for a fix. But if you’re looking for a place where hard drugs flow freely, I hear Bogota is nice this time of year.

  • Horace Jeffery Hodges

    An interesting article, which I’ve now blogged on, with a hat tip to you.

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    Why do cartels exist if not for the artificially raised prices from the prohibition? Al Capone and his ilk existed during the era of prohibition on alcohol; can you imagine such nonsense today? It is so plain that even a guy named Mike living in Gyeonggi should be able to see that the vast majority of the crime associated with drugs is a DIRECT result of the war on drugs. It has done no good. Rates of addiction have not been lowered since the war was initiated, but the negative externalities have been magnified tremendously. I am for the legalization of not only pot but all drugs, even the hardest of the hard.

    Bogota may be a dump, but Bogota is a consequence of many things, not just “drugs running freely.” Cartels generate great revenues in markets where the margins are astronomical, such as in the US, and they use those profits to do bad shit in places like Bogota: buying off police and politicians, expanding into other business, extortion. Your analysis is too simplistic to take seriously.

    The problem on the state level is also the whole existence of private prisons and the contracts they sign with the states that mandate the states to provide a certain level of occupancy at any given time; states are incentivized to create more criminals just to keep up with the quotas. Hence you have much more rabid law enforcement. The whole idea that cops have quotas to fill stinks to high heaven, yet this is the reality; and the reality is also that to fill those quotas a lot of dirty shenanigans go on. Cops have become very aggressive in the past decade; they have also become militarized.

    The US is a police state in ways China is not. I am in no way a supporter of the Chinese but please realize that both on the federal and state level, right now the citizens are victims to a marriage between government and certain complexes: military-industrial, banking, prison, etc. People have become a commodity, little else.

  • Shep

    The War on Drugs or the law can’t be blamed when it isn’t even being waged properly or enforced.

    In fact, we’re not even really waging a War on Drugs. The front line in such a war would be the border with Mexico. In what kind of war do you allow the enemy to cross the front line at will? You’re not waging a war at that point. You’ve surrendered.

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    There should be no war, period.

  • MikeinGyeonggi

    You are 100% correct that keeping hard drugs illegal artificially raises the price and gives rise to drug cartels. But legalizing hard drugs creates new problems altogether. The reason heroin and meth are illegal is because they are highly addictive and users turn into monsters that threaten the safety of ordinary civilians. I certainly don’t want my children potentially growing up next door to a methhead who has access to cheap speed because it is legal.

    There is no easy answer to this problem.

    The military-industrial complex in the US is perhaps the scariest form of corruption in the world today. Centuries from now, historians will be discussing it and the negative effects it had on the world. But as far as states having quotas for prison inmates, do you have any evidence for this?

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    But Mike, rates of addiction did NOT go down after the WoD was initiated. They have stayed low but none of this is thanks to the war, it is thanks to the fact that hard drugs have appeal to a very small group of people who are not really stopped by the laws. You have just as much chance to have a meth-head neighbor now than ever before.

    Perhaps a visual will help:

    http://www.theatlanticwire.com/national/2012/10/chart-says-war-drugs-isnt-working/57913/

    So much money for NO effect.The drug addiction rate has stayed at below 2% for the past 40+ years. Not only has there been a huge cost in terms of money outlays on law enforcement, I would surmise that the money spent is really going to combat crimes that the laws CREATED. Its basically a really nasty vicious circle that destroys economic prosperity and millions of lives.

    There is an answer, though it isn’t easy: stop the war.

    I hate the HufPo, but hey, the article is good. This is probably the least known of the industrial complexes but maybe even scarier than the military one.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/donald-cohen/lockup-quotas-lowcrime-ta_b_3956336.html

  • Shep

    There’s been no War on Drugs. The front line in any real War on Drugs would be the border with Mexico. If you’re letting the enemy cross the front line at will, you’re not waging a war. You’re surrendering.

    Stop calling it the War on Drugs. Because there is no such war. Call it what it is: the Surrender to Drugs.

  • Shep

    Here’s a map of how the drugs enter the US:

    http://static1.businessinsider.com/image/4ff5ae4169bedd5462000002-1200/despite-wars-between-cartels-most-shipments-make-it-through-mexico-to-the-us-border.jpg

    In what kind of war do you let the enemy to just cross your front line at will?

  • cardigan stewz

    front line? americans make a lot of money letting drugs into the country.

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    Especially the government which has created a whole industry dedicated to stealing from the tax payers billions of dollars and paying themselves.

  • Robert Neff

    Towelthief…..thanks for the conpliment. Have just been busy transcribing and preparing another book. Hope to start posting soon.

  • Shep

    Yes, do you not know what a front line is?

    In any real “War on Drugs”, the front line would be the Mexican border. In a war, you don’t let the enemy cross the front line at will. If you do, you’re not waging a war, you’re surrendering. Since the US government lets the enemy cross the front line at will, it is not waging any kind of “War on Drugs”. The US government is surrendering to drugs.

    It shouldn’t be called the “War on Drugs”, since there is no such thing. It should be called the “Surrender to Drugs”.

  • RElgin

    Heavens Robert, you have tricked us all by your unforeseen return! ^_^
    I hope the book is going well.

  • cardigan stewz

    People like to make money, yes. Drugs through Mexico is huge money. If I’m a border agent making 45k a year and you triple my salary tax free I’d do it too.

  • cardigan stewz

    It’s business.